AEW Collision featured Christian Cage and The Patriarchy against FTR & Daniel Garcia in the main event along with Bryan Danielson in singles action.
Episode 33 of AEW Collision is live from Bert Ogden Arena in Edinburg, Texas. Low ticket sales for Dynamite and Collison have been something worth keeping an eye on with AEW struggling to sell more than 2,000 tickets. There have been three AEW shows in a row that were right around the 2,000 mark. According to Wrestletix, Around 3,000 tickets have been sold in Edinburg a few hours before the show. It’s a near sellout for the setup they are using in the arena. The venue normally seats 7,700. It figures to be the fullest building AEW has had in recent weeks.
Christian Cage, Killswitch and Nick Wayne are taking on FTR and Daniel Garcia. That should be good although it feels random. Bryan Danielson is facing CMLL’s Hechicero. I’m really looking forward to that. Hechicero was impressive on Rampage Friday. Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting. Let’s get to the action!
Proving Ground Match: Eddie Kingston def Bryan Keith – If The “Bounty Hunter” Bryan Keith wins he earns a shot at Eddie’s Continental Crown Championship. “Eddie Kingston”, “Bryan Keith” chant at the start. After an evenly matched slow pace early the combatants exchanged hard strikes on the mat. Bounty Hunter finally got the advantage in the striking game. Kingston is selling a jaw or face injury. Good action before the first picture in picture commercial break. Death Valley Driver and two count for Keith. Exploder suplex from Kingston. Keith with one of his own. Liger Bomb from Byran Keith. Very good near fall there. Backfist and Saito suplex from Eddie. “This is awesome” chant. Machine gun chops from Kingston. Keith fought them off hitting an inseguri. Sleeper Hold then DDT and a two count for Kingston. Eddie won after knocking Keith out with a second backfist. Rating ***½
After the match, Tony Schiavone announced that “Bounty Hunter” Bryan Keith is All Elite. Eddie Kingston shook his hand. The crowd was very happy with the announcement. Bryan Danielson came to the ring and raised Keith’s hand. It was clearly a jab at Kingston.
Gino’s take – Outstanding match to open Collision like we often see. Bryan Keith is a phenomenal wrestler who has a good gimmick. I don’t know if he’ll ever get a push in AEW. I’d like to see it, he’s the type of wrestler I like seeing in AEW. Eddie took a beating from Bryan. He did a tremendous job selling all match. That’s something I’d like to see more of in AEW. Congratulations for Keith for being signed to a full-time contract. He deserves it and showed why here. This was his best match in AEW. Danielson coming out to take the spotlight from Kingston again just adds fuel to the fire of their rivalry. AEW has done a great job building to their next match that will likely happen at Revolution.
— Tony Khan (@TonyKhan) February 4, 2024
After the commercial Jon Moxley is shown in a recorded video from after Dynamite. He talks about being jumped by the CMLL wrestlers on Wednesday. He compared it to a night in a drunk tank in Laredo, Texas. There will be a trios match between Blackpool Combat Club and the CMLL crew on Dynamite in Phoenix. He seemed to tease BCC may show up in CMLL.
Bryan Danielson def Hechicero – Hechicero has an awesome entrance using props that were on fire. Announcers Tony Schiavone, Kevin Kelly and Niguel McGuiness talk about Hechicrero’s technical prowess comparing him to Zach Sabre Jr. As you’d expect the match started with a lot of mat and counter wrestling. “Hechicero” chant after a crazy rolling surfboard maneuver. He pinned Christopher Daniels on Rampage with a similar move. There is too much action to write about. Hechicero’s offense is amazing. Very unique. He’s out-wrestling Danielson by a wide margin before a PIP commercial. Schiavone says Danielson is being taken to school. He really is. Bryan is being dominated.
Jumping knee strike in the corner from Hechicero. Danielson has tried to make a comeback with strikes a few times. Hechicero quickly gets the advantage back with some crazy hold every time. Excellent over the top rope tope suicida on Danielson. Another painful looking hold from Hechicero where he’s also ripping at Bryan’s fingers. Danielson is finally evening things up. The wrestlers went back and forth with a lot of good-looking holds, submission and pin attempt towards the end. Danielson won by reversing a roll up and sitting on top for the pin. Rating ***¾
Hechicero did not take the loss kindly and attacked Bryan. Claudio Castagnoli came out and chased him off.
Gino’s take – Wow! What a match. I know this type of bout isn’t for everyone as there was really no story behind it. From a pure wrestling standpoint it doesn’t get much better than this. The ending wasn’t great or it probably would have been four stars or higher. I get why AEW didn’t want to do a decisive finish as this could be the start of a rivalry. We already know there will be at least one more match. I think this would have been a great spot for an upset. With AEW being so predictable lately it would have seemed like a big deal. Hechicero is incredible. He definitely is worthy of beating a top star like Danielson. It would have at the very least made the trio’s match on Dynamite seem like a bigger deal.
Lexy Nair is backstage with Daniel Garcia and FTR. They have closed the book on House of Black but they are opening a new chapter with the Patriarchy and the Trios rankings. Smart of Dax Harwood to mention the rankings. If AEW is going to make them matter the wrestlers should push them during their interviews.
Hook def Outrunners (Turbo Floyd & Truth Magnum) – The jobber team got a bit of offense. They hit a double suplex on Hook. It only fired Hook up. Hook tapped out Truth with Red Rum. Rating * ½
Gino’s take – I can’t call it a squash because The Outrunners were on offense for at least half of it. It was short and fun. Good way to showcase Hook. The Outrunner were entertaining jobbers.
Let’s hear from Mark Briscoe – Mark pandered to the Texas crowd firing them up. He got them to chant for Tony Schiavone. Briscoe talked about how he helped FTR and Garcia beat House of Black last week after the House jumped him before the match. He’s flying solo now. The lights go out. I think we know what’s coming next. House of Black with Julia Hart were shown on the big screen. They are going to eradicate Mark. The lights came back on. Briscoe expected them to be in the ring but they weren’t. It’s just mind games for this week.
Gino’s take – Good way to start a new rivalry. I wrote last week that Mark Briscoe might feud with House of Black after helping FTR and Garcia win the excellent escape the cage elimination match last week. It looks like that is happening. Mark better get some back up. My wife Amber mentioned maybe Malakai Black will finally have a singles match against Briscoe. I wondered if he would do the job against someone like Mark.
We’re shown a video package of the “Cope Open” challenge that Adam Copeland has been competing in lately.
Serena Deeb def Queen Aminata – Deeb had the early advantage out-wrestling Aminata. Niguel McGinness compared it to Hechicero’s last match to take a shot at Bryan Danielson like he always does. Queen got a little offense before an early commercial. We’re only about three minutes into the match. Serena had some good offense including a spinning forearm and swinging neck breaker. Hip attack from Aminata. Deeb got out of the way of a knee attack and slapped on a figure four around the ring post. A second swinging neckbreaker from Deeb who tapped out Aminata with the Serenity Lock. Rating **½
Gino’s take – Queen has had a few matches in AEW recently. She looks great but has yet to get a win. I would have liked to see her get a win before facing Deeb. If you want the rankings and matches to matter we need to see more wins from wrestlers like Queen Aminata and Red Velvet who we will see later tonight. The action was good for the most part. It was a little slow and choppy at times. The commercial break didn’t hurt the match that bad but it’s still hard to rate a shorter match with a break very high. It’s a formula we see too much in AEW’s Women’s Division. I’ll still say this was a pretty good use of the time for the women tonight as Deeb continues to be built up.
Let’s hear from Swerve Strickland – Prince Nana is back. Thank the maker! He wasn’t with Swerve on Dynamite. Nana is an important part of Swerve’s presentation. Kevin Kelly mentions Swerve is the number one ranked wrestler in the men’s division. Swerve talks about Black History Month. He mentions Ron Simmons, Kofi Kingston and Athena. There is a graphic on the screen showing Swerve vs Hangman III is a number one contender’s match for the AEW World Championship at Revolution. There is a “Cowboy Shit” chant for Adam Page. Swerve is going to become Black History when he beats Hangman then Samoa Joe to become AEW Champion. Prince Nana says he’ll be by Swerve’s side against Page. Swerve tells Nana there will be no interference.
Gino’s take – I like how there has been a lot of talk of the ranking tonight. I hope it’s more than just talk. If the rankings matter AEW could create exciting matchups without having major storylines which is something we know isn’t a strength of theirs. I believe Swerve when he says there will be no interference. Even though Strickland has beaten Page twice, Hangman is not wrong when he says Swerve hasn’t beaten him by himself. It raises the stakes for the match. I’m really not sure who will win. It is without a doubt the most significant match of the new year in AEW. The most unpredictable by a wide margin. I don’t know who will win but if I were to venture a guess, I’d say it will be a 30-minute time limit draw.
Toni Storm has a vignette that was taped at Dynamite. Mariah May asks Toni Storm if she watched her match. Storm didn’t. It seems like they are building to May turning against Toni. Storm is going to sniff and taste Deonna Purrazzo lol. Storm will have a public workout on Dynamite.
Red Velvet def Vertvixen – Toni’s public workout will be against Red Velvet. It’s just a normal match. Vert got some offense early including a sit-down powerbomb. Double knees against the ropes from Velvet followed by her finisher which is a spinning kick called Stir it Up. It looked like she missed. Rating *¼
Gino’s take – Short match to put Velvet over ahead of her “public workout” against Toni Storm on Dynamite. It was smart to give Velvet a win before having her face Toni as I mentioned earlier. That said, I wouldn’t say this was a big win.
FTR & Daniel Garcia def The Patriarchy (Christian Cage, Killswitch & Nick Wayne) – It seems fairly obvious that Nick Wayne will take the pin here. I will say the outcome of this match isn’t as much of a lock as most AEW matches have been so far this year. There is plenty of time left in the show. This will get at least 20 minutes. Early commercial before anything really got going. It’s more tolerable in a long match like this. Killswitch hasn’t tagged in yet. He made an impact by attacking FTR before they hit a double team move momentarily taking him out of the match. Belly to Back Superplex from Dax Harwood on Nick Wayne. Two count on Wayne with Killswitch making the save. Chokeslam from Killswitch on Harwood. Killswitch sill has not legally entered the match. We got a second PIP break.
As we often see in AEW, things have broken down after the break. The pace is very fast and action-packed. I don’t mind it. Killswitch has now had his knee taken out on the steps outside. Daniel Garcia made a hot tag and dominated Nick Wayne. Tope suicida from Cash Wheeler on Killswitch. They are finding a lot of ways to keep Killswitch grounded. Wayne raked Garcia’s eyes and got a two count on him after a fisherman’s suplex. Christian Cage knocked Daniel Garcia off the top ropes into Nick’s Wayne’s World cutter. It wasn’t completely clean but looked good. It’s completely broken down now. Killswitch was taken out again in the process. He never officially tagged in. There is too much action to keep up with. Garcia pinned Nick Wayne with a similar roll up Danielson used earlier. Rating ***½
Garcia and FTR taunted Christian using Daniel’s dance as the show went off the air.
Gino’s take – Great main event. I think it was the start of a new rivalry but there wasn’t much at stake. It was fun and action-packed although it never really got going as a true classic like many FTR matches have on Collision. That’s not to complain about it. It was a fine main event. I’ll like it more if it does indeed start a fresh feud. Nick Wayne looked great for such a young performer. Everyone got their moments. The main thread of the match was Killswitch never tagging in. I’m surprised the announcers didn’t talk about it. I wouldn’t be surprised if Christian uses it as another reason to put Killswitch down. I’m not sure if the former evil dinosaur will turn on his leader but he should considering how he is treated. I don’t think it will happen, but Daniel Garcia would be a great choice to end Cage’s TNT Title reign. A match between them does seem likely. I like the possibilities that were created with this match.
Overall Rating for AEW Collision – 7.75/10
2024 Average Rating: 7.5
Final Thoughts – Excellent episode of Collision for the most part. My favorite thing on the show was Hechicero. He’s amazing. Worth checking out for sure. I’ll probably go down a rabbit hole watching his matches on YouTube. The ending of his match with Danielson fell a little flat but it was a fantastic match. The opener and main event were terrific matches like we normally see on Collision. I’m happy Bryan Keith is signed to AEW. Like I wrote a few times in this review, I hope he gets some wins soon. I like new talent who built their careers in the indies. I don’t like bringing them in to lose all the time. There have been two women’s matches in the last two episodes of Collision. That is a wonderful development. The matches weren’t great tonight but more time for the women will only help.
There was pretty good storyline development on this show featuring fresh new rivalries. Blackpool Combat Club has another match against the CMLL foursome. I’m not sure how long the CMLL guys will stick around but I want to see a lot more of Hechicero. That’s why I would have loved to have seen him beat Danielson. House of Black seems to be starting a rivalry with Mark Briscoe. It won’t go well for Mark unless he makes some friends. He teamed with the Hardy’s once this year. It was enough for them to be ranked in the trio’s division. I’m not sure if they’ll be the team to have his back. It would make sense. I think we also saw a new rivalry begin in the main event. More matches between The Patriarchy and FTR/Garcia can only be a good thing.
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