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The last match added to Full Gear could have the biggest impact on its future

Boo this man?
CM Punk’s Instagram

Tag team match

This Nov. 13 bout was allegedly originally a four way, and there’s still no telling who will do violence to who before it’s over.

The Road to Full Gear

It may or may not end up being relevant, but it’s worth remembering that at the first Full Gear back in 2019, MJF screwed Cody Rhodes out of not only beating Chris Jericho to win the AEW World title, but of ever again challenging for that belt.

We mention that because much of Rhodes’ journey to this year’s Full Gear has caused crowds to turn on Cody even as he promises never to turn on us. The more fans cheered as Malakai Black kicked the American Nightmare’s ass, or as Arn Anderson called him a p*ssy, the more we wondered if the Grandson of a Plumber wouldn’t become a heel who thinks he’s a face. You know, the kind of character that would go back on a vow to never challenge for the World title for “the good of the business.”

Aside from the reality-influenced fantasy booking, the build to this match has seen Rhodes lose frequently. Since August, he has a 1 - 3 singles record, with two of those losses inflicted by Black, and one by Andrade El Ídolo.

Speaking of El Ídolo, he’ll be making his AEW PPV debut in Minneapolis this weekend, and has only worked five television matches for the company. Three of those have involved PAC, as Andrade’s been fixated on convincing Lucha Bros to leave their Death Triangle alliance with The Bastard. Having been thwarted by Rey Fenix & Penta El Zero M to date, he’s instead struck a deal with FTR... around the same time he teamed up with Black.

The FTR/Lucha Bros Tag title feud was actually the backdrop to Tony Khan finally deciding to book this tag bout. Andrade & Black joined Cash Wheeler in attacking PAC after he submitted Dax Harwood, Rhodes joined the fray with Penta & Fenix, and voila!

What to watch for

Feels like I’m typing this for each of the Full Gear match previews I’m writing, but first and foremost, a hell of a match. PAC and Andrade are superb by any metric, Black is as innovative a striker as you’ll find, and Cody is one hell of a storyteller.

The storytelling ramifications should linger longer than however many stars this one gets, though. Everyone involved should be in the main event mix going forward. Of the four, given the way everyone has an opinion about him one way or another, Cody feels like he’s on the cusp of being a very big deal. The question is just how. While you think about that, answer this one for us, too.

Poll

Who will win?

This poll is closed

  • 73%
    Andrade El Ídolo & Malakai Black
    (542 votes)
  • 26%
    Cody Rhodes & PAC
    (192 votes)
734 votes total Vote Now