Welcome to POST Wrestling’s coverage of the AEW Fyter Fest event from the Ocean Center in Daytona, Florida.
Davie Portman & I will be LIVE after tonight’s show with our Fyter Fest POST Show. Double Double, Iced Capp & Espresso members of the POST Wrestling can listen/watch our POST Show at this link.
*Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent) over SCU (Frankie Kazarian & Scorpio Sky) & The Private Party (Isiah Kassidy & Marq Quen) to receive an opportunity at a bye in the first round of the AEW Tag Team Championship Tournament
*Allie over Leva Bates
*Hardcore Match: Michael Nakazawa over Jebailey
*CIMA over Christopher Daniels
*Riho over Nyla Rose & Yuka Sakazaki
*Hangman Page over Jimmy Havoc, Jungle Boy & MJF
*Cody & Darby Allin fought to a DRAW
*The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson) & Kenny Omega over The Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero M & Rey Fenix) & Laredo Kid
*Unsanctioned Match: Jon Moxley over Joey Janela
Your commentators are video game commentators Logan Sama, Goldenboy (returning from last year’s show) and AEW’s Excalibur providing play-by-play. The stage features a number of hurricane tents, palm trees and bikini models, just like the real Fyre Festival.
BEST FRIENDS VS SCU VS THE PRIVATE PARTY
Private Party clears house with a number of impressive high flying double-team maneuvers, receiving the first big reaction of the night from the audience. A “Private Party” chant erupts.
SCU and Best Friends team up against Private Party. Best Friends deliver a double-team suplex to Isiah Kassidy on the floor. Best Friends eliminate SCU from the ring, embrace to a big reaction and a “Best Friends” chant.
Best Friends work over Kassidy for a long time, but with Quen removed from his corner, Kassidy reluctantly hot tags Kazarian.
SCU and Best Friends exchange big moves, resulting in Quen blind tagging Kaz. Quen hits a beautiful Shooting Star Press to Baretta for 2.
SCU hit an Unprettier/Double Stomp combo onto Kassidy for 2.
Quen and Kaz are up top. Baretta jumps up to German Suplex Quen from the top rope. Quen lands on his feet and step-up Hurricanranas Kaz into a Cutter from Kassidy for 2.
Best Friends are eventually left alone with Kassidy, hitting Strong Zero for the win.
WINNER: Best Friends win an opportunity to receive a buy in the AEW Tag Team Tournament at All Out.
An excellent 3-way tag team match that was almost exclusively built as a showcase for Private Party, who immediately captured the audience’s attention and favour as the biggest babyfaces in the match.
On the screen, The Dark Order (Evil Uno & Stu Grayson) appears. They have chosen The Best Friends to be their first opponents. The lights go out, with The Dark Order’s minions surrounding Best Friends in the ring when they go back on. After standing about for a few seconds, the lights go out again. They turn back on, and the minions are now gone. Okay.
Backstage, The Young Bucks are complaining about this show bleeding AEW’s budget. Continuing the parody, Nick and Matt appear in testimonial-style interviews, complaining about the lack of private jets, the tents (actually imported from the Fyre Festival), the cheese sandwiches and the lack of organic salmon. They meet with Kenny, who assures them that everything will be okay, including their gear for tonight.
In another interview, Matt says they Kenny spent so much on their gear that they can now only afford half of the bikini models on stage. 2 of the 4 models are replaced with mannequins.
LEVA BATES VS ALLIE
Leva Bates walks out on stage to “shhhhsh!” the crowd. Her calls are met with Peter Avalon’s, found hiding inside one of the hurricane tents. Avalon proceeds to destroy the tent and one of the bikini mannequins. Both Librarians walk down the ramp to a chorus of boos, including one fan audibly yelling, “This gimmick sucks.”
Bates vouches for the virtues of books over video games to the CEO crowd. The audience chants, “We can’t read!” Each introduces themselves as “The Librarian” before engaging in a “shssh”-off that Allie interrupts.
Leva is about to “shssh” Allie, but Allie grabs the finger and stomps on it.
Allie is in control. She runs the ropes but is tripped by Peter Avalon outside. Bates capitalizes with a dropkick that sends Allie to the floor.
Bates is now in control. The audience begins a “Hooked On Phonics” chant. Bates applies the Rings of Saturn to Allie, placing a finger onto Allie’s mouth to “shhhsh” her.
Bates delivers double knees to Allie in the corner. Allie strikes back with a hanging neckbreaker to send both wrestlers down. Allie ducks a number of strikes, delivering some stiff punch/chop combos of her own, ending the sequence with a sliding elbow strike.
Allie goes for the Best Superkick Ever but is countered with Bates’ Lungblower. Bates hits a Pedigree for 2.
Avalon attempts to throw his book for Leva to use, but Allie intercepts, throws the book at Leva, distracting her for the BSE for the victory.
It’s clear the crowd hates this gimmick and never quite got into the match. The work was not all that strong, though I thought Allie looked good. The finish was also an incredibly clichéd “sports entertainment”-style finish that felt rather uncreative.
Backstage, Kenny Omega is informed from Brandon Cutler that all the bands scheduled for tonight have cancelled.
HARDCORE MATCH: JEBAILEY VS MICHAEL NAKAZAWA
CEO founder Jebailey receives pyro for his entrance. The match begins and Nakazawa immediately goes for Jebailey’s previously injured left leg. Jebailey delivers some of the worst forearm strikes I’ve ever seen. He follows up with a decent bodyslam.
Jebailey rear-waistlocks Nakazawa, but Nakazaawa pulls out his baby oil and slips out. Jebailey and referee Bryce Remsberg both slip on the baby oil. Nakazawa pours baby oil on Jebailey’s bare chest, slipping on a running double stomp and inadvertently turning it into a senton.
On the floor, Jebailey uses a clipboard and a CEO joystick (handed to him by Justin.tv / Twitch co-founder Justin Wong) to attack Nakazawa.
They brawl to the inflatable pool near the stage, Jebailey attempts to drown Nakazawa. Nakazawa uses an inflatable flamingo on Jebailey. Jebailey bodyslams Nakazawa into the inflatable pool to chants of “holy shit”.
Jebailey digs up weapons from beneath the ring, including a table and a Nintendo Gamecube wired controller. Nakazawa uses the Gamecube controller to strangle Jebailey off the side of the ring. Nakazawa hilariously presses the buttons on the controller as he does this.
Nakazawa bites Jebailey, runs the ropes and spears Jebailey off the apron through a table. Nakazawa refuses to pin Jebailey, unleashing kendo stick shots on him. Nakazawa removes a thong from his underwear to set up his Thong Claw. Jebailey intercepts with a release German sending Nakazawa on his head.
Jebailey removes a bag from beneath the ring, revealing bunch of arcade push buttons. Nakazawa takes a back body drop on the buttons. This was a first.
Nakazawa escapes kendo stick shots from Jebailey, sets up the Thong Claw but Jebailey ducks and hits referee Bryce Remsberg instead.
Jebailey hits his finisher, La Majistral, but the referee is still out. Nakazawa reverses the cradle, placing his Thong Claw onto Jebailey’s face to keep him down for the victory.
WINNER: Michael Nakazawa
Much like last year’s match, this was very much a DDT-inspired comedy match that you’ll either love or hate. I’ll say, the crowd in attendance were completely engaged throughout. Jebailey is every bit a non-wrestler, but I thought they crafted some legitimately funny spots for this audience and overall, I’d consider the match a fun success.
Jim Ross makes his entrance to the announce desk, replacing Logan Sama, to begin the PPV.
CHRISTOPHER DANIELS VS CIMA
Daniels is in control and works over CIMA’s back throughout the early portion of the match. CIMA attempts to deliver a cross-legged Fisherman Buster but can’t because of the injury.
Daniels hits a Blue Thunder Bomb and Angels’ Wings for 2. CIMA lands a sunset flip powerbomb off the top turnbuckle for 2. CIMA hits Schwein, followed with the Meteora off the top for the win.
A good match between two veterans who know eachother well, though audience energy was surprisingly lower than expected. A very solid opener, but not something that’ll be remembered by the evening’s end. The booking makes sense with CIMA’s upcoming match against Kenny Omega. I’ll be looking for that performance to be a bigger statement.
NYLA ROSE VS RIHO VS YUKA SAKAZAKI
Riho and Sakazaki team up to take on the much larger Rose, who overpowers both. Rose hits a big splash onto both women but Riho and Sakazaki both impressively bridge out in unison.
With Riho and Sakazaki stacked on top of eachother, Rose applies a double camel clutch. Very cool.
Chants of “Yuka” are heard as Sakazaki delivers a springboard plancha. Riho delivers a 619 to Rose. Sakazaki lands a top rope Thesz Press, followed with a double stomp from Rose. Rose catches a sliding lariat from Sakazaki, planting her with a Side Effect for 2.
As Riho is draped on the top rope, Rose dives off the top to hit her with a flying knee to the biggest reaction of the match thus far. Rose goes back up top to deliver a Senton Bomb, but Riho gets out of the way.
Riho climbs up top, her diving body press is caught by Rose. Sakazaki dives off with her own body press, which Rose impressively ALSO catches while carrying Riho. The mass of bodies topple over with Riho and Yuka pinning Rose for 2.
Sakazaki delivers a springboard press but Riho blocks with knees. Rose hits her sitout powerbomb, The Beast Bomb onto Sakazaki. Riho breaks it up with a running knee, which inadvertently causes Sakazaki to pin Rose for 2.
Rose lands a DVD onto Riho for 2. Rose looks for another Beast Bomb, but Riho rolls through into a cradle for the surprise victory.
After the match, Rose attacks Riho. Sakazaki saves and the two send Rose out of the ring. Riho however, shoves Sakazaki down. Sakazaki gives the best “sad face” ever.
An excellent match that was a great spotlight for Nyla Rose. Her power-based offence looked that much more impressive against two far thinner, more flexible opponents in Sakazaki and Riho. Both Joshi wrestlers looked incredible, with Sakazaki continuing to steal the show with her in-ring skill and charisma. They are two of the best wrestlers in the entire company.
Kip Sabian sits down to join the commentary team for our next match. He faces the winner of this upcoming 4-way.
“HANGMAN” PAGE VS JUNGLE BOY (w/ LUCHASAURUS) VS MJF VS JIMMY HAVOC
MJF delivers a promo insulting the video game-playing audience as well as his 3 opponents. MJF says he used to love video games, but then he lost his virginity. The camera cuts away to an unfortunate male member of the audience.
Very fast paced action between all four men to start. They break out for dives on the floor. MJF teases a dive, stops short, and motions to the crowd to “shove it”. Jungle Boy delivers a Hanging Cannonball from the turnbuckle to the pile on the floor. It doesn’t look perfect, but cool nonetheless.
Hangman Page and MJF finally meet face-to-face alone in the ring. MJF chop blocks Page, targeting his injured knee. MJF applies the Sharpshooter as a callback to his interaction with Bret Hart and the rest of this match’s opponents at Double or Nothing. Page reverses and applies his own Sharpshooter.
MJF delivers the Heataseeker onto Page. Jungle Boy breaks up the pin with Luchasaurus’ help.
Havoc blocks MJF’s Heatseeker and hits a diving stomp onto MJF for 2.
Havoc’s Acid Rainmaker is blocked with an eyepoke from MJF. Page runs in, Buckshot Lariats Havoc as MJF is thrown out of the ring. Page hits the Deadeye onto Jimmy Havoc for the win.
WINNER: Hangman Page
A very good 4-way match that delivered consistent action at a fast pace. The in-ring was good, but the talk of the segment will be MJF, who continues to be AEW’s best heel promo and perhaps their best, period. The match also reminds the audience of Page’s knee injury, which they suggest Sabian or Jericho may be targeting in their upcoming matches.
CODY VS DARBY ALLIN
Allin walks out with a body bag labeled “Cody 1:1”. As with Cody’s previous appearances at All In and DoN, the audience reacts at a heightened level at the start of the match. Duelling chants are heard for both men.
After a show of respect resulting in a slower pace, Cody slaps Allin to escalate into his more aggressive heel mode. Cody throws Allin into the steel post, with Allin continuing to fall to the outside. Cody taunts Allin by doing push-ups inside the ring.
Cody continues to slow the pace, throwing Allin around and applying a Butterfly Lock submission, breaking up these moves with punches and posturing.
While suspended in mid-air in a delayed vertical suplex, Allin wrenches Cody’s fingers, which he injured earlier in the match, to break out of the move. He continues to attack Cody’s fingers in a Fujiwara Armbar. Allin hits a Code Red to Rhodes.
At the 15min mark, there is a “5 minutes remaining in this match” announcement.
Up top, Cody hits an avalanche inverted superplex to Allin for 2. On the apron, Allin bites Cody’s fingers out of desperation. With Rhodes laying on the apron, Allin goes up top and delivers the Coffin Drop, which Cody avoids as Allin lands back first onto the hardest part of the ring for the biggest reaction of the match thus far.
Allin falls into his own body bag located in the corner of the ring. Rhodes zips him up, props him up, and delivers a Disaster Kick for 2.
Cody takes off his weight-training belt and whips Allin with 30 seconds remaining. Allin blocks Cross Rhodes and delivers a Stunner. With 10 seconds remaining, Rhodes lands Cross Rhodes. He slowly covers, but the 20 minute time limit elapses before referee Aubrey Edwards can make the count.
RESULT: Time-Limit Draw
As the crowd chants “overtime”, Shawn Spears appears with a chair, nailing Cody in the head with it, completely unprotected. The camera pans out, and Cody appears to be bleeding from the back of his head. It’s a nasty sight.
MJF, Frankie Kazarian, Scorpio Sky, Dean Malenko and a number of officials come out to check on Rhodes.
The match itself was far slower than the other matches on the show, which often works with Cody in these settings, but without a strong story attached to this match unlike his bouts with Nick Aldis and Dustin Rhodes, the crowd did not seem as invested. Allin, without resorting to more violent antics, I thought really impressed with his gracefulness and agility in his high-flying.
The unprotected chairshot looked highly irresponsible and resulted in turning me off a bit. However, it managed to add a deal of severity to a new feud between Rhodes and Spears that will likely culminate in a match at All Out.
THE ELITE (THE YOUNG BUCKS & KENNY OMEGA) VS LUCHA BROS. (PENTA EL ZERO M & FENIX) & LAREDO KID
Nick, Matt and Kenny come out dressed up as Street Fighter’s Ken, Ryu and Akuma respectively. Trust me, it was equal parts ridiculous and completely awesome.
A planted fan runs on stage to interrupt The Bucks’ entrance with a Batista-like machine-gun taunt. Kenny gets Justin Roberts to announce, “Round 1, fight!” before the bout begins.
Laredo Kid and Nick Jackson pair off to start. Laredo Kid gets the better of their exchange, resulting in Nick spitting at him as everyone spills in.
The Elite are sent out of the ring. The Lucha Bros. execute stereo topé con giros as Laredo Kid hits his own Asai Moonsault in unison. The luchadors then hit an awesome double superkick/reverse rana to Matt Jackson.
Matt Jackson nails rolling Northern Lights suplexes to Laredo Kid and Fenix, ending the sequence with a double Northern Lights suplex to Fenix and Penta together.
Kid goes for a high cross, which Kenny intercepts with a dropkick. His Rise of the Terminator dive is interrupted by Pentagon as the two stand off in a callback to their All In match. After a stiff chop exchange, Omega takes Penta out with the Kotaro Krusher.
Pentagon delivers a double stomp in the corner to Matt Jackson for 2. He looks to break Matt’s arm, but Matt fights out, hitting a Canadian Destroyer followed by a spear.
Kenny tags in and delivers Snapdragons to all 3 luchadors. Pentagon interrupts a Kenny dive, launches Nick to the floor with a back body drop, then launches Fenix to the floor with another back body drop onto Nick.
With all 6 men now in the ring, the luchadors deliver triple superkicks, while The Elite respond with a triple Hadouken followed by a triple Liger Bomb.
With Laredo Kid and Fenix draped on the second rope, Nick Jackson flies down with a 450 splash. Kenny hits the V-Trigger to Laredo Kid and is about to deliver a dive, but is stopped by Fenix’s cutter. Nick runs in with a reverse neckbreaker to stop Fenix.
On the floor, Matt sets up the Meltzer Driver. Nick Jackson balances on the top rope, but Fenix runs up to meet him, executing a Spanish Fly to the floor into the pile below.
In the ring, Kenny executes the Tiger Driver ’98 to Laredo Kid for 2. He hits a V-Trigger, followed by the One Winged Angel for the win.
WINNERS: The Elite
This was an amazing match. It very much felt like the two teams wrestling mirrored versions of each other. It’s been a while since we’ve seen Kenny team with The Bucks and this continued to live up to the standard their team-ups have set. So many spectacular spots with a great deal of creativity. Execution wasn’t completely flawless, but there was nothing that interrupted the flow of the match. The debuting Laredo Kid looked impressive, as did Nick Jackson and every other member of this match. Thus far, my match of the night.
UNSANCTIONED MATCH: JOEY JANELA VS JON MOXLEY
Early on, Janela grabs a prosthetic leg from a fan ringside to attack Moxley with. It’s unsanctioned!
Janela sits Moxley onto a chair inside the ring. He dives off with a somersault senton as Moxley moves away, sending Janela through the chair.
Moxley pulls out a barbed-wire steel chair from beneath the ring and places it onto Janela. Janela gets up and hurricanranas Moxley onto the barbed-wire chair from the top rope. His back is cut up bad.
They fight on the apron, Janela executes a Side Russian Legsweep onto Moxley through a table on the floor. Back in the ring, Moxley spinebusters Janela through another table propped up in the corner. Janela responds by giving Moxley the double bird.
Moxley pulls out a barbed wire board from beneath the ring. Janela delivers a DVD to Moxley onto the boarbed wire board. He gets a 2 count.
Janela sets up an extra-ladder in the ring and delivers a diving elbow drop into Moxley through 2 tables on the floor.
Moxley delivers a Death Valley Bomb to Janela from the ring through a barbed wire board propped up between the apron and the guardrail.
Moxley pulls out a bag of thumbtacks. Nothing unusual, right? Then he goes over to Janela, and TAKES HIS SHOES OFF. Moxley delivers an X-Plex to Janela into the tacks. He stomps on his hand into the tacks. Then he drops Janela feet-first into the tacks. Janela responds with middle fingers.
Moxley drops more tacks onto the ring and hits the Paradigm Shift / Death Rider to Janela for the win. The camera closes up on shots of Janela and Moxley’s thumbtack-ridden feet and lower back.
WINNER: Jon Moxley
I thought this was spectacular and my match of the night. Finishing the show with it was absolutely the right call. Nothing was going to top the guttural reaction a match this violent would provide. This was a re-debut for Jon Moxley in front of his largest North American audience since leaving WWE. He not only completely washed away the memory of the last months of the Dean Ambrose character, he sent that guy through a bed of thumbtacks feet-first. He seemed to be genuinely enjoying himself and I couldn’t be happier as a fan.
As renewed as Moxley looked, this was also a debut of sorts for Joey Janela, who more than earned the crowd’s respect for his fearlessness and level of damage he took in this match.
Post-match, Kenny Omega runs in and delivers a V-Trigger to Moxley. He sends Moxley through a table with a piledriver and takes him to the stage, smashing him into the drum set and attacking him with drumsticks and a Stratocaster. Moxley is carried to the back but drives the referees away. Kenny then comes down the entrance and attacks with a trash can. Omega hits the Paradigm Shift to Moxley onto the trash can. Moxley flashes a smile as the show goes off the air.
Overall Thoughts: I enjoyed this show top to bottom. In terms of promoting new stars, nearly every match highlighted someone new in a big way. Acts such as Private Party, Nyla Rose, Darby Allin, Laredo Kid, Joey Janela and a renewed Jon Moxley all gained a great deal from their appearances on this show.
Many will look at The Buy-In as another failed representation of what AEW should be to a new audience. While it’s clear gimmicks like The Librarian are having difficulty translating from BTE to a live setting, I feel comedy matches like Nakazawa vs. Jebailey have their place on show such as this one, in front of this audience. The violence on this show will also be a point of contention for many viewers. If there’s one thing we’ve learned from AEW’s offerings thus far, it’s that none of their cards stick to any one genre, instead showcasing the best of indy wrestling in all of its forms: high-flying, deathmatches, and even comedy.