Tonight (May 20) All Elite Wrestling’s Double or Nothing go-home show comes our way live from a closed set in Jacksonville, Florida. Last week Cody drove his truck through the building, Hikaru Shida solidified herself as women’s number one contender, Jon Moxley fought back against The Dark Order, Pineapple Pete got juiced and Vanguard 1 was unceremoniously destroyed.
Advertised for tonight:
- Jon Moxley vs. Dark Order’s #10
- Arn Anderson & Jake Roberts “interview”
- Matt Hardy vs. Sammy Guevara
- Nyla Rose & Britt Baker vs. Hikaru Shida & Kris Statlander
- MJF vs. Marko Stunt
- Orange Cassidy vs. Fenix
Here are five questions about AEW tonight:
1) Are Brodie Lee & The Dark Order ready for Jon Moxley?
Brodie Lee and The Dark Order are really taking that whole “shoot your shot” thing seriously. The Dark Order debuts by attacked the AEW tag roster. Brodie Lee earns his title shot by attacking the champion and taking the championship. It’s a simple, but effective strategy. But sneak attacking your way into battle is different from facing a challenger that is prepped and ready for a fight. And if there is one thing we know about Jon Moxley it’s that he is always ready for a fight.
10 is supposed to weaken Moxley for the boss man’s big fight, but I think Moxley is going to use this fight to remind Brodie Lee just who he signed up for battle with. Last year he shocked the world when he showed up at Double or Nothing. This year he reminds the world - and Brodie Lee - why he’s the champion.
2) What are the odds of an elderly man getting punched in the face tonight?
We’ve seen the type of destruction Lance Archer is capable of. We know that Cody has the heart of a gladiator and will always rise to the challenge. We know that whoever wins this match is crowned the inaugural TNT Champion. We also know that this match is about so much more than gold.
Archer and Jake made it personal from the moment they made their presence known to the AEW audience. They have been singularly focused in their pursuit of Cody because, in their eyes, the way to take control of the company isn’t by winning the championship, but is by proving that Cody is a false god. Caesar isn’t Caesar anymore if he stops believing in his power.
For Cody the TNT championship is the singles belt he is allowed to win. It would be devastating to his massive ego to be forbidden from the main belt and fail, once again, to win when it mattered most. Sure, he can give a pretty speech, but if he can’t reach the top of he mountain what do his words really mean? Not to mention that Archer made this feud painfully personal when he bloodied his brother and harassed his wife.
Tonight we get to hear this story not from the wrestlers point of view but from their legendary managers. If Cody and Lance Archer are two trains that have been rolling towards a head on collision, than Arn Anderson and Jake the Snake are the conductors.
Arn has proven in AEW that he’s willing to get his hands dirty if he needs to and well, let’s face it, Jake’s hands have never been clean. They both clearly care about their charges, but they have a history of their own. It’s only a matter of time before one of them says something that the other just can’t forgive. Someone is gonna throw hands tonight. I just can’t decide if it will be Archer and Cody or Anderson and Roberts.
2) Will Nyla Rose be able to reinstate her control over the women’s division?
Shida is a formidable opponent, but so is Kris Statlander. Nyla will not only be facing both of them tonight in her scheduled tag match, but she will also have to lead and be wary of her partner, Britt Baker. Let’s face Britt Baker may be a role model, but she’s really only looking out for one person and she can’t be happy about teaming with the woman she wants to take the championship away from. Nyla will have to watch her back while trying to stay focused on her two opponents.
She cannot afford to look weak during this match. She needs to channel her Native Beast moniker. The champ is back, but after such a long absence the champ needs to reestablish herself as the threat that she is.
4) Will any other PPV matches or surprises be announced tonight?
This PPV is going to feel very different from AEW events of the past. Overall, AEW has done an admirable job making their show feel lively despite the lack of audience, but a PPV is supposed to feel different from weekly programming. How is AEW going to bring that big show feel with out an audience?
Some of the matches have had time to grow and build anticipation like the TNT Championship tournament match and the Elite versus The Inner Circle feud, but others feel a little slap dash. Exciting, but slap dash. Slap dash feels like weekly programming and Double or Nothing needs a little more flair to warrant the price tag.
The addition of the special guest referee is certainly a start to making the PPV feel different, but will we get other surprise announcements tonight? Any AEW stars making their return from their pandemic related absence? Will the stakes of some of the matches get raised? At the very least we should get a Vanguard 1 memorial service. He was a good little drone.
5) Wouldn’t it be great if Marko Stunt beat MJF?
I mean, It’s not going to happen. Marko Stunt is their resident underdog/sacrificial lamb. All heart and no chance. But sometimes, when I’m down, I like to imagine what MJF’s face would look like without his smug grin and a loss from Stunt would certainly do the trick.
That being said, what is more likely to to happen is Stunt is going to lose, MJF is going to run his mouth/keep beating Stunt up after the bell and Jungle Boy is going to come out and rescue him.
There’s really nothing to this feud other than MJF is smug and Jungle Boy is pure, but sometimes a good wrestling feud is best when it’s black and white.
Tune into AEW on TNT at 8 ET tonight to see if we get any answers to these questions!