The fourth and final AEW pay-per-view of 2021 is Full Gear and it takes place this Saturday night in Minneapolis. The TJRWrestling has come together to preview the show in-depth as usual.
John: Welcome to the TJRWrestling AEW Full Gear 2021 preview. I think they have done a better job of putting together a card that utilizes a lot of the talent on the roster. There are still plenty of big names missing like Orange Cassidy (shocked he’s not in a match), Matt Hardy, FTW Champion Ricky Starks, Brian Cage, Powerhouse Hobbs and the many tag teams in the company. I’m surprised they didn’t announce some kind of battle royal or something to get more people on the show. I like most of the card. Can it top the 9.5 out of 10 that I gave All Out in September? I don’t know, but in terms of match quality, there should be a lot of action for fans to enjoy.
If you need info on how to order Full Gear on PPV, check out AEW’s website for info on how to watch it in your country. It’s different depending on where you live. I’ll be using Fite TV in Canada, most likely. It’s a good service. Most AEW PPVs run for four hours or just under that. I doubt it goes longer than four hours.
Joining me for the preview are Kurt Zamora, Matthew Fowler, Lance Augustine and Joel McIntyre.
(Note: All graphics are from AEW.)
Nyla Rose & Jamie Hayter vs Thunder Rosa & Hikaru Shida
Kurt: I think the finals of the TBS Title Tournament will be Thunder Rosa vs Shida and Shida ultimately winning. Shida gets a nice push with that after kind of being forgotten about once she lost the AEW Women’s Title. Thunder Rosa then is free to finally challenge Britt Baker at that point. I think it makes sense for Rose & Hayter to win this match here, to make them look stronger before being ultimately defeated in the actual tournament.
Prediction: Nyla Rose & Jamie Hayter
Joel: I’m not interested in this at all. A cold match with nothing behind it. I’ll pick Rosa and Shida simply because that’s who should win.
Winners: Hikaru Shida and Thunder Rosa
Matthew: Four talented women are regulated to the Pre-show as a last-minute edition this past Wednesday. I guess they should just be happy to be on the card, because Ruby Soho will be watching this one from the back along with a lot of other men and women. I will go with Rosa and Shida getting the win in this one, in what should be a good match.
Winners: Thunder Rosa and Hikaru Shida
Lance: This is a match that was thrown together for a match on the Buy-In. There isn’t much heat to it, but hopefully, the crowd is hot and they can start the night off the right way. I am feeling a babyface win because it seems like Rosa & Shida make the most sense to pick up the win.
Winners: Thunder Rosa & Hikaru Shida
John: There’s not much of a story here. It’s a way to get four more women on the pre-show. Hopefully in the future with the TBS Women’s Title, AEW can have a second women’s match on the main part of a PPV. They have a talented women’s roster that just needs more time to show what they can do. Anyway, I’ll go with the face side winning since I feel like Thunder Rosa can use a win.
Winners: Thunder Rosa & Hikaru Shida
Cody Rhodes & Pac vs Andrade El Idolo & Malakai Black
Kurt: This is an odd tag match that feels like it should be more of a fatal four way. Andrade & Black have at least established a partnership through their actions on TV and some of Black’s social media posts. Pac & Cody have had zero interaction with each other, so I guess we’re just to assume this is an “enemy of my enemy is my friend” situation between the two. I really don’t know what to make of this match as it felt the Black & Cody feud was over, but now we have this new layer to it. I wish I had more to say about this, but I truly don’t know what to make of it. It feels like a match Black & Andrade needs more, but Cody has taken a couple losses from Black so this may make them even at 2-2 and then have a true blowoff match after.
Prediction: Malakai Black & Andrade El Idolo
Joel: Two feuds that I’m ready to move on from. Don’t get me wrong, the matches between Pac and Andrade have been phenomenal. I’m just ready for them to move on. Andrade hasn’t done much in AEW wrestling wise. Combining two singles feuds into a tag match is not usually something Tony Khan does in AEW, but it gets four world class athletes on the card. Andrade and Black should win but let’s be honest here. Cody Rhodes and Pac are walking out with this one. Let’s hope this leads to better use of Pac going forward.
Winners: Cody Rhodes and Pac
Matthew: Cody found his way on the card at the last minute, with this match being added to just this past Wednesday. Rhodes and PAC are supposed to be the baby faces in this match, but I fully expect Idolo and Black to be the fan favorites. Never less Rhodes will continue his failed attempt to be a top baby face in this match, with Rhodes and PAC winning the match and Cody getting booed loudly for it.
Winners: Cody Rhodes and Pac
Lance: This has been brewing for a bit now. Cody has been at odds with both of his opponents in this match and teaming him with Pac is a good way to keep Cody from being booed out of the building. I think this will be competitive and will get a good bit of time. Idolo and Black winning seem likely, although I could see it going either way.
Winner(s): Andrade El Idolo & Malakai Black
John: Andrade and Pac had some great matches together while Cody and Black had some pretty good matches too, so it’s a combination of those rivalries. They should be able to have an exciting match with a hot crowd with a lot of nearfalls for each side. I get the feeling that they want the heel side of Andrade and Black to continue this alliance moving forward, so I think they should get the win.
Winners: Andrade El Idolo & Malakai Black
Falls Count Anywhere Match: The Superkliq (The Young Bucks & Adam Cole) vs. Christian Cage, Luchasaurus & Jungle Boy
Kurt: Out of all the new acquisitions that AEW has made, Adam Cole is the most surreal, to me, to see on AEW TV over anyone else. He was literally just on NXT, competing against AEW as their top, top guy, and now he’s all of the sudden on AEW. I love him back with his Elite brothers and he looks more in the groove than ever.
I’ve been critical of the booking of Jungle Boy since August and with this looking like another loss for him and his team, it leaves me scratching my head still. As much as Jurassic Express and Christian could use this win, I just don’t see Cole losing in his first PPV match, plus the Bucks need a rebound PPV win after losing the titles at All Out in September. This absolutely has the potential to steal the show since they can go anywhere in the building to do crazy spots. I wouldn’t be surprised if this opens the show in front of what’s sure to be a hot crowd.
Prediction: SuperKliq (The Young Bucks & Adam Cole)
Joel: How long have Jurrasic Express and The Young Bucks been feuding? It seems like they’ve been going at it since crowds came back. The Falls Count Anywhere aspect gives them an excuse to ignore tag team rules. It can get pretty chaotic and it will when you consider who is involved. I would like to see Adam Cole have singles feuds away from The Elite. I think this is a good way to get his feet wet. The story has built for months and I think this should be the pay off. I think The Superkliq takes this one. Christian doesn’t need the win and you can’t have Cole lose his first pay per view match.
Winners: The Superkliq
Matthew: If you like high spots while ignoring the basic rules of Tag Team Wrestling, then this is the match for you. Luchasaurus and Jungle Boy are two wrestlers who are either on the cusp of breaking out to the main event or will end up being lost in the shuffle. I am predicting that AEW realizes this and gives them and Christian Cage the big win to help push them to that next level.
Winners: Christian Cage, Luchasaurus and Jungle Boy
Lance: This has been the first taste of Adam Cole in AEW and he has been at odds with Jungle Boy since coming in. Christian Cage has played his role of mentor well, and seeing him get a spot on the show is a good thing. This should be back and forth with a lot of high spots. I thought The Young Bucks last performance on PPV was really good, so they seem to always rise to the occasion. With that in mind and figuring they are protecting Cole, I will take The Superkliq to win.
Winners: The Superkliq
John: This will be wild. Smart move to put the Young Bucks in a Falls Count Anywhere Match so I won’t get frustrated by their lack of following the rules in a regular tag team match. All six guys will be wrestling the whole time while they set up some huge spots throughout the building. Jungle Boy will probably get some high spots to look impressive, Luchasaurus will use his power and Christian Cage is consistently good. The Young Bucks, especially Nick, always like doing crazy shit. For some people, it might be their favorite match of the night. I think it might be the longest too. I really don’t think Adam Cole should be on the losing side in his first AEW PPV match, so I’ll go with him getting the win for his team with a pin on Christian Cage.
Winners: The Superkliq (The Young Bucks & Adam Cole)
Darby Allin vs. Maxwell Jacob Friedman
Kurt: I’m surprised they went straight to the one on one match between these two instead of starting with a tag match including Sting and Wardlow or Spears. Although with all the multiple men matches on this card, I can understand maybe holding onto that match until a big Dynamite down the road.
I love the concept of these two being two of the pillars of the company along with Jungle Boy & Sammy Guevara. It’s a great way to make these guys feel important, but also does a great job of how AEW is always looking towards the future and even though they’re bringing in all these big names now, they know the future is in the hands of the homegrown talent they’re currently creating. I don’t expect this to be the end of the feud by a long shot, as there’s so much left to explore with these two against each other with their distinct personalities. I think either Darby gets a surprise win and gets beat down after, or MJF cheats somehow to get the win and Sting has to make the save. Either way, I’m excited to see where this goes after the PPV.
Joel: This one is tough for me because neither person should be losing right now. Darby Allin just came off losing to CM Punk at All Out two months ago and MJF hasn’t won a pay per view match since last year’s Full Gear against Chris Jericho. Ironically, all three of his pay per view matches so far this year also involved Chris Jericho. I think both men should be World Champion in the next two years. That being said, I expect a good match out of these two. Sting and Wardlow will probably get involved. I think MJF is the most polished and ready made championship contender out of the two so I’m going with him on this one. I don’t think it will be clean.
Matthew: If you were going to predict who would be the top stars of AEW in five years, the two competitors in this match would be on that list. MJF has done an awesome job as usual of hyping this match with several weeks of promos. As for who wins, I am going to go with MJF to win this match and get pushed into either the TNT or World Championship picture.
Lance: These two are part of the “pillars” of AEW that should be future World Champions one day. Darby Allin has impressed me since very early on in AEW and as CM Punks handpicked return opponent, he has been very solid in the ring. MJF is one of the best heels in the industry and can talk people into the building to see him get his ass kicked. This is a different kind of opponent for both men, but I think it should be fun. MJF needs to pick up some wins, so I think he may be going over here.
John: I find it strange that AEW doesn’t put MJF in televised matches more often. MJF is a heat magnet whether he’s wrestling or doing a promo, so I want to see more of him. Darby Allin is a popular guy that’s coming off a loss against CM Punk at All Out two months ago just like MJF lost to Chris Jericho at All out. They both could use the win as my friends above have pointed out, but who needs it more? I think MJF does. I think it will be a fast paced, exciting and somewhat technical wrestling match that goes about 15 minutes.
Winner: Maxwell Jacob Friedman
AEW Women’s Championship: Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. (c) vs. Tay Conti
Kurt: As popular as Britt Baker is within the company, and make no mistake, she is not just the face of the women’s division. She’s the face of the company as a whole. The issue with her title reign has been she’s only had challengers, not contenders. There’s a big difference between the two. Baker won the title back in May, and almost six months later, she hasn’t had a long term feud. It’s just a new challenger every month and Tay Conti just happens to be the challenger this time.
The reason Britt went to that next level is because of an established, long-term feud with Thunder Rosa. Maybe they’re just waiting for the right time to go back to that rematch with the title on the line, but in the meantime, I think they’ve hurt Britt’s reign as champion by not giving her a true contender. I think Tay is great, she’s energetic and you can’t help but like her. I’m sure this will be a fun match with a lot of shenanigans by Britt and her group, but it’s just not a match I can get fully invested in.
Prediction: Britt Baker retains
Joel: I think this will be a decent match. Britt Baker is a star. Tay has improved but I do not think she is the one to end Britt’s reign. I think it will be hard fought. It’ll go 10-15 minutes as most Britt Baker matches do and I think Britt Baker takes the victory.
Winner (STILL AEW Women’s Champion): Britt Baker
Matthew: Britt Baker has been dominant since capturing the title, and is without question the biggest star in the division. The only problem with Bakers run so far has been the lack of credible opponents for her. Continue, although a great wrestler, does not fix this problem. I predict Baker to win this match and continue her dominance in the women’s division.
Winner: Britt Baker
Lance: Tay Conti has been impressing people lately with her improved ring work. She is coming along nicely and it seems like a shot at the title is just what she needs to get to the next level. Britt Baker is one of the best performers right now in any company and her reign as champion has been impressive. She has become everything you want in someone carrying the division and while I think Conti will get a lot of offense in, it’s not time to take the title off of Baker yet.
Winner and STILL AEW Women’s Champion: Britt Baker
John: Baker is a heel champion that gets cheered a lot because the AEW crowd likes cheering some of the heels in the company. That’s just how it is. Plus, the D…M…D thing is cool to do before the match. It’s also because AEW hasn’t really built up many of their babyface women to come across as a big deal. Kris Statlander was just an opponent for Baker at All Out two months ago and now it is Tay Conti’s turn. I’m sure Tay will get some nearfalls and come close a few times, but Baker should put her away. I assume that Thunder Rosa is the one to beat Baker for the title perhaps at the Revolution PPV next year. If there’s a long term build, it could be fun.
Winner: Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D.
Minneapolis Street Fight 5-on-5 Tag Team Match: The Inner Circle (Chris Jericho, Sammy Guevara, Jake Hager, Santana & Ortiz) vs. American Top Team (Ethan Page, Scorpio Sky, Andrei Arlovski, Junior Dos Santos & Dan Lambert)
Kurt: This feud has confused me on what the goal is. Was the goal to give the Inner Circle a reason to get back together? Was the goal to push Ethan Page & Scorpio Sky? Or was the goal to establish that these MMA guys from American Top Team are now pro wrestlers? Whatever it was, I don’t know that they’ve done a good job completing that goal. Especially since I think the goal was to push Sky & Page. Lambert has been a great promo and given this match some importance, but they made it beyond obvious on Dynamite this week that the Inner Circle was going to win this match. That hurts the match now to me.
If I’m in this match, I’m begging to go on before the Falls Count Anywhere match. It would be really hard to follow that and having similar gimmick matches, showing the crowd something they haven’t seen already. Especially with guys in this match that have never wrestled before. I’m sure something will happen to Lambert that will be a fun moment, but ultimately this feels like a Dynamite main event over a big PPV match to me.
Prediction: Inner Circle
Joel: This is another match that is going to be all over the place. I have not been interested in this feud in the slightest. I’m glad guys like Scorpio Sky, Sammy Guevara, and Ethan Page are getting the spotlight but the whole angle has been a miss for me. The promos have been okay at times and cringe at others. The match will be a mess. Street fights in general usually are. When you add ten people to the mix, that’s a recipe for it. I think The Inner Circle win this one based on the fact ATT and Men of the Year have had the advantage almost every week. I think Sammy gets the pin on Page or Sky.
Winners: Inner Circle
Matthew: This feud has been made by the promos of both Chris Jericho and Dan Lambert. I personally am a big fan of Sammy Guevara, Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page and think they should be in the conversation with MJF and Darby Allen for future top guys of the company. Unfortunately, I think the focus of this match will be Lambert finally getting what he deserves for talking smack about AEW, and not on the young stars of the match.
Winners: The Inner Circle
Lance: This is one of those feuds that some weeks are intriguing, but most of the time it just falls flat. I would rather see Sammy defending the TNT Title instead of being involved in this match, but here we are. Jericho and Lambert have been exchanging barbs over the last couple of weeks, and with Lambert being involved in the match, the fall is going to come down to those two. After The Inner Circle were wiped out on Dynamite, I can’t see them losing this match.
Winners: The Inner Circle
John: It’s another multi-man tag team match where weapons and brawling around the building is allowed. I can see Sammy doing some big spots to excite the crowd. The match will end with Jericho or maybe Sammy pinning Lambert. I doubt The Inner Circle loses since they got beat up on Dynamite and should get their revenge here.
Winners: The Inner Circle
AEW Tag Team Championships: Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero Miedo & Rey Fenix) (c) vs. FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler)
Kurt: This is a match that highly intrigues me. I think it’s gotten lost in the shuffle a bit, but AEW loves them some long tag title matches on PPV, so they’ll have a chance to more than make up for it. With two completely different styles, I think this could be a 20-minute masterpiece, or it could be oil and water.
FTR are going to make The Lucha Bros wrestle an actual tag match, so it’ll be the Lucha Bros adjusting more to FTR than vice versa. I found it a little weird to introduce the AAA titles right after the Lucha Bros had won the AEW tag titles, because after that incredible match they had at All Out, you’d think they’d want the AEW tag titles front and center, but it’s been all about the AAA titles instead. I don’t see FTR getting two in a row and the Lucha Bros losing the AEW titles just like that without an established reign, so I’m taking the champs to retain. I do think on Sunday, we’ll either be talking about this being a show stealer or asking WTF was that?
Prediction: Lucha Bros retain
Joel: This match should be awesome. It has a little bit of a story that is also tied into the Black/Andrade/Pac/Cody story. FTR got the win over Lucha Brothers a few weeks ago for the AAA Tag Team Titles. I think Lucha Brothers get the payoff here and retain the AEW Tag Team Titles that they just won back at All Out. This will probably be the match of the night.
Winners (STILL AEW World Tag Team Champions): Lucha Brothers
Matthew: FTR defeated the Lucha Brothers to capture the AAA Tag Team Championships last month on Dynamite. Could history repeat itself, with FTR taking more championships from the Lucha Bros? Personally, I don’t see it happening, as Lucha Bros are just gaining momentum as tag champions. I expect the Lucha Bros to win after what unquestionably will be an incredible possibly show stealing match.
Winners: Lucha Bros
Lance: FTR has been getting pushed through the ranks in AEW, and I don’t think you’ll find anyone upset with that. They are at the top of the tag team world and you couldn’t ask these guys to do more than what they are right now. The Lucha Brothers are awesome but haven’t been on TV much leading up to this match which would have made this feel a little bigger. I am excited for this though, and this match has a show-stealing potential to it. Since FTR recently won the AAA Tag Team Titles, I have a feeling The Lucha Brothers retain here.
Winners and STILL AEW Tag Team Champions: The Lucha Brothers
John: I don’t think this match has been built up that well in terms of storyline, but I think the match quality will be one of the best on the show. FTR are my favorite tag team in AEW because they follow the rules (FTR!) for the most part and realize that using the referee to tell a story in a match is more beneficial than having four guys in the ring getting their spots in. It’s not old school wrestling. It’s normal wrestling. Lucha Bros are pretty fun to watch and I think these teams will work well together. I think Lucha Bros need to keep the titles until the new year least, so the champs should retain.
Winners: Lucha Brothers
CM Punk vs. Eddie Kingston
Kurt: The sentiment of “talking them into the seats” has been a lost art in recent years. However, CM Punk & Eddie Kingston on Rampage last week did just that. A perfect promo exchange between the two has made this the most anticipated match on the card, behind the main event, in just under a week. I hope there is more to this after this match because I feel like they’ve caught lightning in a bottle and can be a great feud for both men who weren’t doing much otherwise. (Punk by design obviously.)
I didn’t expect Punk to wrestle this much in his first two months, but it’s been a lot of fun seeing all the crowds react to him. This might be the match where we say that Punk is all the way back, because you know Eddie is going to bring his A game and this is going to be a hard-hitting affair. I truly think behind cheering for Hangman, this is the match the crowd is going to be the hottest for. For the sake of a great story, it would go a long way to have Eddie win here, but ultimately, I don’t see Punk losing just yet.
Prediction: CM Punk
Joel: This one is kind of disappointing. Don’t get me wrong. I’m looking forward to it and the promo face off they had at Rampage was awesome. However, neither one of these guys have been doing anything for two months. This feud could’ve kicked off a month before it did and it would’ve probably been a contender for feud of the year for AEW. Instead, they had Punk just go from match to match while cutting the same promo every week. Nevertheless, I’m looking forward to the match. I hope this is just the start and not the end of this rivalry. I do think CM Punk wins. I think he loses soon, but Eddie Kingston should not be his first loss in seven years. Build that up to be a huge moment.
Winner: CM Punk
Matthew: CM Punk returning to the ring was possibly the biggest moment in wrestling all year. Since debuting last August Punk has already wrestled five matches, with the momentum he had when he first came in unquestionably waning. As for Kingston, he is a guy that you naturally want to route for due to all he has overcome in his past. As much as I and a lot of people would love to see Kingston get the win here and the huge push, I don’t see it happening. Punk wins to continue his winning streak.
Winner: CM Punk
Lance: These two did a promo on Rampage that blew me away and instantly made me want to see this match. Fans have been calling for a Punk feud and it seems we might be on the brink of one that seems to be personal, which makes it that much better. Kingston is really good on the mic and held his own with Punk going back and forth. Kingston’s biggest downfall is his in-ring work, which isn’t terrible, but Punk should bring out the best in him. There is an argument for Kingston going over, but since I can see a couple of more matches between the two, Punk wins the first one.
Winner: CM Punk
John: I’ll be very surprised if CM Punk loses this match. At some point in the next six months, I can see him going after some of the top titles in the company. The Punk/Kingston segment on Rampage segment was outstanding. However, prior to that they only interacted with a backstage face to face segment, so it’s not like there has been a long build to it. I just wanted to point that out because I have heard from so many people that are excited about this just because of that one ten-minute segment on Rampage last week. It’s the power of hitting a home run in one segment. Punk is the wrestling legend while Kingston is the guy with a cheap on his shoulder that wants to prove he’s as good as Punk. Kingston said he didn’t want to beat Punk, he wanted to beat him up and make him leave wrestling for another seven years. It was such a great line that started the brawl. Anyway, I expect an extremely hot crowd for this and it will be a lot of fun to watch. Maybe there’s a post match handshake too. In the end, Punk wins clean.
Winner: CM Punk
AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament Finals: Miro vs. Bryan Danielson
(Note: The winner of this match earns an AEW World Title match.)
Kurt: First thing first, all the best to Jon Moxley right now after he made the incredibly strong and brave decision to get help in an alcohol inpatient treatment program. This was his match, and I honestly would’ve picked him to win after completing what felt like a big heel turn. Miro is no slouch replacement though, and this match should be off the charts. I’ve had issues with the tournament if you’ve read my Week in Review here on the site, but we ended up with a great finals where either man has a claim to win.
I love matches with stakes on the line and it feels like either man can win. It makes everything about the match better. It truly is a toss up to me, but gun to my head, I feel like if Omega loses the title, they can then go back to Danielson vs Omega and Miro then becomes a great first challenger for Hangman. I know I’ve said I can’t see the likes of Cole & Punk losing just yet, and Danielson would fit the category, but they do have to lose sometime, so I’ll predict a loss here for Danielson.
Joel: This was kind of an unfortunate compromise due to Jon Moxley’s situation and I wish him a speedy recovery. One of my favorites. That said, Miro is a fine replacement. It’s weird because I was going to pick Moxley here because I was expecting him to turn heel before his title match. Based on who I’m picking for the World Title, it’s hard for me to pick Bryan. I could, but Tony Khan doesn’t usually do babyface vs. babyface main events on pay-per-views. Especially for the title. I’m going out of left field here and predicting Miro to get the win after he and Bryan beat the crap out of each other.
Matthew: Miro was a last second replacement in the tournament, after Jon Moxley had to drop out to go into an inpatient alcohol treatment program. Danielson for his part has been on fire since debuting for AEW, having many incredible matches including a five star match against Kenny Omega. With all of that, it would seem like Danielson winning is a given. However, I see the world title changing hands at the end of this show and the new face champion is going to need a top heel challenger Therefore I predict Miro to give Danielson his first loss in AEW here.
Lance: Danielson has been doing his best to have quality matches and prove that he is the best wrestler in the world. That is a hard thing to argue. Miro has been on a tear of his own and I really like the character he has created. It’s something new and fresh and the gimmick, along with his sheer power, makes him a force to reckoned with. I can’t see a way that this match Is bad, and I think both of them come out of this looking great. I was leaning Danielson for a lot of the week, but I feel like they may be on to something with Miro. I hate to see either guy lose, but this would be a way to shoot Miro to the next level.
John: This likely would have been Bryan Danielson vs. Jon Moxley, which would have been a lot of fun to watch and hopefully we get to see that soon. Moxley has his personal matters to deal with, so we all wish him the best. I look forward to Mox’s return whenever it happens. To AEW’s credit, they found themselves a credible replacement in Miro, who is certainly a threat to beat Danielson in this match. I’m actually stunned to see my friends above picking Miro to win this match. Yes, I know Miro is a heel and Adam Page is likely going to be the babyface AEW World Champion, but I just think Danielson winning has been the plan from the start of this tournament. I don’t think AEW wants to give Danielson his first loss against Miro, no offense to him. This might be one of the best matches Miro ever has since Danielson is so amazing and on quite the roll right now. I’m going with Danielson getting the win using one of the many submissions that he can use to win a match.
Winner: Bryan Danielson
AEW World Championship: Kenny Omega (c) vs. “Hangman” Adam Page
Kurt: I’ve been watching wrestling for 33 years now. Obviously as a kid, I’m sure I couldn’t have been more excited for a certain Sting match and really wanting him to destroy a villain that had hurt him. Talking as an adult though, and since I’ve been old enough to truly understand pro wrestling and how stories make the match, I can honestly tell you I’ve never been more excited for a match than I am this one. Matt Cardona has a great saying: “Sometimes in wrestling, you just gotta give the fans what they want.” Meaning, even if something is predictable, that doesn’t make it bad. It’s okay to give the fans something they’re 100% expecting, because they’re going to go crazy when it happens, and ultimately that’s the response you always want.
Hangman completing this two year journey of becoming AEW champion, along with the year plus “Ballad of Hangman Page” that’s gone on with him and The Elite/Dark Order, it’s my favorite story ever. Using BTE to help tell that story along with everything we’ve seen on TV, it’s been amazing how they’ve connected all the dots and has really been the essence of long-term storytelling. Hangman said it himself, he did the most Cowboy Shit thing ever and left the company for a few weeks at the peak of his popularity. The likes of Punk, Cole, & Danielson showed up. Yet, when he returned, he was the most over babyface in the company still. It’s a credit to him and a credit to the story.
There’s nothing I want more than to see Hangman hit the Deadeye or Buckshot Lariat and get the 1-2-3 with thousands of fans counting along and going nuts. This doesn’t need to be complicated; it just needs to be what it is, a perfect moment. I have no idea if they’ll have Hangman kick out of a One Winged Angel, but I’m sure there will be some incredible near falls for Omega. Ultimately though, we should have a new AEW champion and one incredible moment.
Prediction: New AEW World Champion, Hangman Adam Page
Joel: This is the highlight for me. I think this match goes 25 minutes. It is a full circle moment as Kenny Omega defeated Adam Page at Full Gear 2020 to earn an AEW World Title shot against Jon Moxley that he won and turned heel. Now one year later we’re here again. The feud has lost a little steam to me since Page came back because he hasn’t wrestled since winning the ladder match. They really upped the intensity on Dynamite with the contract signing. As I wrote for TJR earlier, this needs to be Adam Page’s moment. If he’s “not ready” by now, he’s never going to be ready. Anything other than Page winning this match would be a mistake. I think he kicks out of the One Winged Angel and puts Omega away with the Deadeye or Buckshot Lariat to become the new Champion.
Winner (NEW AEW World Champion): Adam Page
Matthew: What an interesting ride it has been for Adam Page. Page was originally rumored to be facing Kenny Omega at All Out in September. Page taking time off for the birth of his first child derailed those plans however, with Christian Cage getting the match instead. When Page returned and won the Casino Ladder Match a month later to earn his title shot with Omega, the crowd popped loudly. Since then the crowd has just gotten more and more behind Page, with them clearly wanting to see him finally reach the top of AEW. Tony Khan will pull the trigger this Saturday, and give the fans what they want. Adam Page to win to capture the AEW World Championship after an incredible match.
Winner and New AEW World Champion: Adam Page
Lance: This is the feud that Tony Khan has decided will stand the test of time. Page was on the brink of winning the title earlier in the year, but the feud was halted when he took some time off to be by his wife’s side during the birth of their child. He came back for the Casino Ladder Match and ended up winning it to put him in line for another shot at Omega. This feels like the main event should and seems like a long time coming for The Hangman. I was going back and forth, but at the end of the day, I feel like Khan has made up his mind that Page will be the one to dethrone Omega.
Winner and NEW AEW World Champion: “Hangman” Adam Page
John: It’s a clean sweep for Adam Page predictions. If not now, then when? The story has gone for a couple of years now. I think any AEW fan is familiar with it. Page was basically dumped as a friend by The Young Bucks and Kenny Omega. Then Page had confidence issues, so even though he was able to rack up a lot of wins in AEW, it just didn’t seem like he could be “the guy” and become a World Champion. When Page came back after a few months off (congrats on the birth of his son), he won a Ladder Match to earn this title shot and it feels like the fans love him more than ever. Page can go in the ring, he’s good on the microphone and the most important thing is that the fans believe in him. They want him to be the AEW World Champion.
Keep in mind also that next week’s Dynamite is in Page’s home state of Virginia so it’s a homecoming of sorts for him. It makes sense for that to be a championship celebration for him in front of friends and family. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that AEW booked a Virginia episode of Dynamite as the follow up to the Full Gear PPV with Page getting the AEW World Title shot.
There have been three AEW Champions in the nearly three years that the company has existed. Chris Jericho had a long reign, Jon Moxley held the title for even longer and Kenny Omega has been the champion for even longer than Moxley since he won it nearly a year ago on December 2. Omega’s had that dominant run as champion. It’s time for it to end. I think Page is going to be the first guy to kick out of the One Winged Angel in AEW. I assume Page will win with the Buckshot Lariat, but it might take two of them to get the win. I’m expecting this to be one of the best matches of the night, it will probably get 20+ minutes and I expect the crowd to be hot for it even though they’ll be in their seats for four hours at this point counting the pre-show. The fans want this for Page and they are going to support him. It’s going to be a cool moment as Hangman’s Cowboy Shit leads him to the AEW World Title. And if it doesn’t happen? I’ll be very surprised.
Winner AND NEW AEW World Heavyweight Champion: “Hangman” Adam Page
The Match I’m Looking Forward To The Most
Kurt: Omega vs. Hangman.
Joel: Adam Page vs Kenny Omega.
Matthew: Omega vs. Page.
Lance: CM Punk vs. Eddie Kingston
John: Adam Page vs Kenny Omega. It’s tough to pick just one.
The Match I Care About The Least
Kurt: Tie between Women’s Title Match and 5 on 5 street fight.
Joel: Buy in match.
Matthew: Probably Baker vs. Conti, but the whole show should be good
Lance: The Inner Circle vs. American Top Team
John: On the main show I’d say Baker vs. Conti because it feels obvious that Baker will win. Still should be a good match.
Kurt: Tag Title Match.
Joel: Lucha Brothers vs FTR.
Matthew: Omega vs. Page.
Lance: AEW World Title Match – Omega vs. Page.
John: Falls Count Anywhere Match between The Young Bucks/Adam Cole and Christian Cage/Luchasaurus/Jungle Boy. Multiple matches will go over 20 minutes.
Kurt: Women’s Title Match.
Joel: Buy in match.
Matthew: AEW doesn’t do short matches.
Lance: The Superkliq vs. Jungle Boy, Luchasaurus, & Christian Cage.
John: Inner Circle vs. American Top Team since non-wrestlers are involved. Everything on the main show will get over 10 minutes at least.
Excitement Level on a Scale of 1-10 (1 being low, 10 being high)
Kurt: I’ll go 8.5. It’s a 10+ just for Omega/Hangman, but there are a couple matches that have me shrugging my shoulders, so can’t go 10 for the entire show. It should be a great show.
Joel: 7. The matches on this card will be great. The problem is the build. “Build” and “Story” are not always the same thing. There’s a story with pretty much every match, but the Build has been lackluster for several of these matches. Some have gone on way too long (Inner Circle/ATT) while some didn’t get enough build (Eddie/Punk). That’s the trend with AEW Pay Per Views. They put on high-caliber five-star matches, but the builds are usually lacking except for the main matches. You have two, sometimes three months between pay per views. Proper build to a story should not be an issue. I still think this will be a great show. Wrestling wise, it should be better than All Out and that’s what has my excitement level so high. I just wish some were built better.
Matthew: 8 – This card is stacked with several matches I fully suspect to hit four stars or higher. The only reason my excitement level isn’t higher is I suspect the show to be very long and go way past this old man’s bedtime.
Lance: I am at a 9. AEW always delivers when it counts on PPV and All Out was one of the best shows I have seen in a long time. I think they continue the trend and everyone on the card makes this one to remember.
John: It’s an 8 for me and I’m leaning towards going even higher because most AEW PPVs are outstanding. The lineup for this show is very strong. Some of the matches could have had better build for a company that only has four PPVs in a year, but I have liked a lot of the TV shows going into Full Gear. I’m excited for the main event as well as some of the tag team matches although I don’t know if they will have the big surprises that All Out had two months ago. It should be an excellent show. I’m excited to watch it and write about it.
John: I’ll be back with a review of AEW Full Gear on TJRWrestling.net during the show. Check that out during the show or after it’s over.
If you want to send an email, send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org as well. Thanks for reading.