After last week's Owen Hart Foundation tournament finals, Ricky Starks will celebrate his victory over CM Punk on tonight's AEW Collision from Newark, New Jersey.
However, Punk will be on tonight's show as well and is "looking for a fight." Whether that is with Starks or someone else remains to be seen.
The AEW Trios titles will be on the line as the House of Black (Malakai Black, Brody King & Buddy Matthews) defend against The Acclaimed & Billy Gunn from May's Double or Nothing. They will be looking for the sixth defense of the titles.
Bullet Club Gold (Jay White & Juice Robinson) will look to rebound from last week's loss to AEW Tag Team Champions FTR as they take on Darius Martin & Action Andretti.
FTR will also be on the program in a promo.
Taya Valkyrie is also looking to rebound from last week as she lost to AEW Women's Champion Toni Storm. Valkyrie faces Skye Blue tonight.
Collision returned to the United States, in the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. Ian Riccaboni and Nigel McGuinness were on the call.
In our pre-show hype videos, we got words from The Acclaimed, Andretti & Martin, Bullet Club Gold, and Ricky Starks.
After the introduction package, Tony Schiavone welcomed out Owen Hart Cup winner Ricky Starks. Starks got a comical amount of pyro, reminiscent of Kevin Nash on that one episode of Nitro. Schiavone asked Starks about his use of the ropes to win the tournament as the crowd told Starks that he deserved it. After showing off his Louis Vuitton bag, he says that it doesn’t matter how he did it, all that matter is that it was done and that he was the winner.
After blowing off a question about Jushin Thunder Liger, he says that while he appreciates the sentiment from the fans, he doesn’t want to be a pillar. The Pillars never won the Owen Hart Cup, he did. Out walked CM Punk to a mixed reaction that leaned negative. Punk says he’s not mad at Starks, he’s actually a bit proud of him. Punk won’t act like he’s never cheated. He can live with the loss but asks Starks if he can live with the fact that he couldn’t beat Punk without cheating.
Punk goes to leave, but Starks says that his Vuitton bag is as empty as the red bag Punk’s been carrying around. Punk comes back and gets in Starks’ face. He says that Starks is just like MJF in that they just don’t want Punk to have it. Punk calls himself the Real World Champion before TNT Champion Luchasaurus & Christian Cage enter the scene. Cage says that they don’t want to be in New Jersey longer than they have to be, so he’ll ask one question. What kind of man carries around a title that he didn’t win?
Cage goes to leave, but Darby Allin – Royal Rampage winner – comes out. He addresses Starks and Punk before telling Luchasaurus that he’s going to win the TNT Title at All Out in Chicago. Allin suggests a tag team match, with Allin and Punk teaming against Starks and Cage. Schiavone says that Khan has made it official.
Riccaboni and McGuinness threw to video of Andrade El Idolo being removed from the building to make sure he wouldn’t interfere with the Trios Title match tonight.
Jay White & Juice Robinson (w/ The Gunns) defeated Action Andretti & Darius Martin
White and Martin started, with the announcers putting over his cardio after wrestling in the hour-long match last week against FTR. Martin fought off a double-team and tagged in Andretti, who hit Robinson with a corkscrew moonsault. Andretti and Martin ran wild on Robinson until Robinson cut off Andretti with a side kick. White tagged in and clubbered on Andretti in the corner before Robinson dropped Andretti with a neckbreaker off the apron. As the crowd chanted Daddy Doesn’t Love You to the Gunns, Bullet Club posed as we went to a picture-in-picture commercial.
Andretti fought for the tag to Martin as we came back from break. Martin made the tag and ran wild, dropping White and Robinson with a combination DDT/Death Drop. Martin hit a top rope crossbody to White for a nearfall. Martin sent Robinson and White to the floor, setting up Andretti to hit an Arabian Press moonsault on both of them. Andretti booted White into a German suplex for a nearfall.
Andretti went for the split-legged moonsault, but Robinson cut him off, hanging him in the Tree of Woe. Robinson hit cannonballs on both men before hitting his pendulum DDT on Andretti. White hit the Blade Runner to score the win. The Gunns tossed Andretti and Martin out of the ring before celebrating with White and Robinson.
The announcers highlighted Willow Nightingale’s week, with her Owen Hart Cup win last week on Collision and her standout performance in the ROH Death Before Dishonor main event against Athena. I reviewed Death Before Dishonor for this site, and I cannot recommend that match enough. Go out of your way to see it.
Miro defeated Nick Comoroto
This crowd was into Miro. It’s time to do something with him that isn’t a squash.
Comoroto attacked Miro during his entrance. Comoroto controlled Miro early on, hitting corner splashes. Miro dodged one and hit a German suplex. Miro hit the big side kick and ripped his shirt off. He called for the Game Over and locked it on for the quick win.
We got a highlight package for FTR, highlighting their numerous title wins over the course of their AEW careers. We will hear from them later tonight.
AEW World Trios Title Match – The House Of Black (Brody King, Buddy Matthews & Malakai Black) (w/Julia Hart) (c) defeated The Acclaimed (Anthony Bowens, Max Caster, & Billy Gunn)
This was a surprisingly quick win, but the story here is the post-match.
Caster’s rap included jabs at Matthews, who charged Caster on the ramp to start the match. A Pier Six brawl broke out at ringside as Matthews and Caster started in the ring. King crushed Gunn and Bowens into the barricade with splashes. The champions isolated Caster as his partners crawled to the corner. Caster fought his way to the corner as the crowd taunted Matthews with Dirty Dom chants, as Mysterio is paired up with Matthews’ girlfriend Rhea Ripley.
King tried taking out Bowens and Gunn again, but Gunn took him down with punches. Caster made the tag to Gunn, who ran wild on the House before taking a massive lariat from King. Black hit the Black Mass on Gunn to score the emphatic victory. As Gunn recovered, Black whispered something to Gunn before leaving.
Back in the ring, Gunn began unlacing his boots as the crowd begged him not to. They chanted You Still Got It at him, making Gunn tear up. But Gunn took his boots off and left them in the ring, pushing his way past the Acclaimed to leave.
We got a recap of the Royal Rampage, where Darby Allin won a TNT Title shot at All Out.
Tony Schiavone welcomed FTR to the ring. Wheeler talked about unfinished business with several teams – Aussie Open, The Acclaimed, the Young Bucks – but they must focus on MJF and Adam Cole first. He tells Adam Cole not to trust MJF, as they know from first-hand experience. Harwood tells a story about his dad making him get a job when he was a teenager. He was made fun of by well-off kids who had money handed to them. He thinks Cole and MJF see the tag team titles as a joke, with the comedy skits and the dance breaks. He’s sacrificed his body to make FTR the best tag team in the world, and next week, there will be no comedy. He’s going to do to Cole and MJF what he should have done to those kids when he was a teenager and kick their asses. Top guys out. Solid promo.
We got a highlight package of Blood and Guts from Wednesday.
Taya Valkyrie defeated Skye Blue
Valkyrie patted Blue on the head before shoving her down. She shrugged off a waist lock before chopping Blue in the corner. Blue fired up with chops before getting knocked down with a shoulder block. Blue avoided a charge and hit a rising knee but got knocked off the apron and speared on the floor by Valkyrie. Valkyrie hit a Blue Thunder Bomb for a nearfall as we went to a picture-in-picture commercial.
Valkyrie knocked Blue down with a lariat as we returned to full-screen action. Blue won a strike exchange before firing up, hitting a rising knee and a low kick. Blue hit a high crossbody for a nearfall. She set up Skyfall, but Valkyrie tied Blue up in the ropes to hit a sliding German suplex. Blue hit a pair of kicks but ran right into a lariat. Valkyrie tied up Blue’s legs and hit a curb stomp to score the win.
Valkyrie grabbed the microphone and bragged about winning. She noted that Britt Baker won her match on Dynamite this week, albeit against an extra. She challenged Baker to a match this Wednesday on Dynamite.
We got a video package highlighting AR Fox’s win on the Death Before Dishonor Zero Hour over Shane Taylor, leading into his International Championship match this Wednesday on Dynamite.
We got a rundown of the Dynamite card, featuring:
– AR Fox vs. Orange Cassidy for the International Championship
– Darby Allin vs. Swerve Strickland
– Britt Baker vs. Taya Valkyrie
– PAC vs. Gravity
– Castagnoli & Moxley vs. The Lucha Brothers vs. Best Friends
– We hear from Adam Cole & MJF.
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We got our Collision card for next Saturday:
– FTR vs. Adam Cole & MJF for the AEW World Tag Team Titles
– El Hijo del Vikingo, Action Andretti & Darius Martin vs. Juice Robinson & The Gunns
– Buddy Matthews vs. Andrade El Idolo in a rematch from the debut edition of Collision
Ricky Starks & Christian Cage defeated CM Punk & Darby Allin
A fine main event. Starks winning with the ropes for a second time is setting up a payoff, either with the referee catching him or his opponent kicking out anyway. Starks had a vocal fanbase here, a week after cheating to win a prestigious tournament. The situation with Punk being a divisive babyface makes everything energetic, but it muddies up a lot of the face/heel division surrounding him.
Cage came out wearing the TNT Title. Starks and Cage both got on the apron, assuming the other would start the match. The referee counted them up to nine before Starks got in the ring. Punk immediately rolled him up and teased a Go To Sleep before Starks tagged Cage, who got pinballed around by Punk. Punk and Allin controlled Cage’s arm as Punk mocked Starks. Starks avoided a tag until Christian got Punk in control. Punk and Allin hit dives to Starks and Cage as we went to commercial, with the announcers teasing big breaking news for next week’s Collision on the other side of the break.
Back from commercial, and the breaking news is that next week’s match between Buddy Matthews and Andrade El Idolo will be a ladder match, with Andrade’s mask as the prize above the ring and the House of Black banned from ringside. A bit wacky, but still a compelling match. Speaking of matches, Cage and Starks worked over Punk. Starks went Old School on Punk before tagging Cage back in. We got a glimpse of Scorpio Sky in a Scorpio Sky-Box watching this match. I will not apologize for the pun there.
Punk made the hot tag to Allin, who ran wild on Starks and Cage. Allin hit a dive into Starks but ran into Luchasaurus on a dive attempt to Cage. Cage threw Allin into the announce desk before tagging in Starks to beat down Allin. Starks hit Snake Eyes on Allin before flooring him with a lariat for a nearfall as we go to another picture-in-picture break.
Allin beat a countout as we came back to full screen. More clubbering on Allin before Allin moved out of the way of a diving headbutt. Starks ripped Punk off the apron, leaving Allin with no one to tag when he broke free from Cage. Allin fought his way free and made the tag to Punk, who ran wild with rising knees. Punk did a random cartwheel in the middle of his comeback, with Riccaboni calling it a tribute to New Jersey native Bam Bam Bigelow.
Punk hit the Pepsi Twist on Cage for a nearfall. Punk hit a high crossbody, but Christian rolled through for a sneaky nearfall. Punk knocked Christian off the top rope, then went up and hit an elbow drop for a nearfall. Cage tagged in Starks, who ran right into a GTS attempt. Starks turned it into a rollup for a nearfall. They traded strikes before Punk floored Starks with a high kick. Punk tagged in Allin, who avoided a spear upon entry. Starks then speared Allin out of the air before hitting a Rochambeau for a nearfall.
Starks took Allin up for a superplex, but Allin turned it into a Death Drop from the top rope for a nearfall that Cage broke up. Punk got involved, taking Cage to the floor and hitting a GTS. Allin set up a Coffin Drop, but Luchasaurus crotched him on the top rope. Starks set up a second Rochambeau, but Allin reversed it into a rollup. Starks reversed that rollup, grabbing the ropes to win again.