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AEW Dark Elevation recap (Dec. 12, 2022): Willow should never turn heel

Episode 93 of AEW Dark: Elevation is in the books. If you missed the live broadcast click here for the Cageside Seats stream. The announce team of Tony Schiavone, Matt Menard and Paul Wight called the action. Let’s rock and roll!

Emi Sakura vs. Danni Bee

Sakura brought a 23-11 record to this contest. Bee was waiting for her in the ring with a record of 0-1, but was a local favorite and got a fan chant as a result. She offered a handshake, Sakura said no thanks and flipped her hair to cackle at Bee, then Bee got a half minute of shine before Sakura took over for her “we will rock you” chops and crossbody. She inverted Bee and showed her to all four sides of the ring before submitting Bee with a dragon sleeper. Short and nasty.

Jericho Appreciation Society (Matt Menard & Angelo Parker) vs. Zach Mason & Warren Johnson

J.A.S. brought a team record of 12-4 to this match. To the surprise of no one Mason and Johnson were waiting for them in the ring, with a prior record of 0-1 in AEW as a team.

Wight: “Look at the abs. You don’t need a washboard!” Despite their impressive physiques this entire match was 30 seconds tops. Menard never even tagged in. Schiavone: “I didn’t get to call the match.” Wight: “I can’t even make a sandwich that fast!” And the most fun part is if you were trying to watch the live premiere, you probably missed the whole thing, because either AEW or YouTube had major technical issues tonight. This was followed by a promo from Butcher & Blade directed to the entire tag team division.

Willow Nightingale vs. Vertvixen

Nightingale brought a record of 9-7 to this match. Menard: “Too positive for me.” Wight: “Obviously!”

Vertvixen was in the ring with a record of 0-6. She got the advantage early and kicked Nightingale repeatedly. Nightingale did a cartwheel and a hip attack in the corner, Vertvixen tripped her and planted her on her face then pounded on her from behind. Nightingale kicked her in the gut then gave her a series of short arm lariats before another hip attack. Big boot to the face. Vertvixen blocked a charge in the corner with a boot but ate a spinebuster when she tried to take advantage. Nightingale was all smiles but Anna Jay and Tay Melo ran down to stomp a mudhole in her. Ruby Soho came out to make the save. I think they’ve set up a women’s tag team match... and I like it!! Hopefully that’s on Elevation or Dark next week.

Best Friends vs. Zack Clayton & Zane Valero

Clayton and Valero were teaming together for the first time. If you want a clue that these matches are airing out of order, Wight and Schiavone referred to Menard as “rejoining the broadcast booth” even though he was just on commentary for the last match. Best Friends brought a record of 31-12 to this bout. Nobody on commentary who knew who Valero was, so I didn’t feel so bad that I had no idea either, but I did eventually find him on CageMatch. Beretta tagged out to Taylor and immediately picked up Valero and threw him down. Clayton walked away and left Valero out to dry as Taylor tagged Beretta for the double team Strong Zero. Menard: “He did not care.” Not one bit. Best Friends gave Valero a group hug afterward.

Ari Daivari, Tony Nese & Josh Woods vs. Chaos Project & Brandon Cutler

Chaos Project were teaming with Brandon Cutler for the first time as a trio in the main event. “Smart” Mark Sterling came out with their opponents, who were also teaming together for the first time. He immediately ranted that there’s a law on the books in Texas that you can’t eat your neighbor’s garbage, and said if you’ve had barbecue in Texas that’s not surprising. I don’t think you even needed to get extra heat on Daivari like that — he’s pretty good at getting it on his own.

Luther gave Woods a big boot and tagged in Serpentico, who got scooped up and slammed on him. Serpentico tagged in and Luther slammed him on Woods too. The faces did a triple airplane spin and all got dizzy afterward. Woods gave Serpentico an overhead belly to belly suplex. Daivari tagged in for a near fall. Nese tagged in and they both put the boots to Serp. Serp gave Nese a ‘rana, fell down and crawled for the tag. Nese knocked Luther off the apron but Serp still escaped to tag in Cutler. Dancing, dab elbow, near fall. Menard: “He hooked the leg and everything!”

Cutler grabbed the cold spray but Sterling stole it from him, tried to use it on him, and sprayed Nese instead. Cutler rolled Nese up for a near near fall. Luther tagged in, Serp held Nese up, but before Luther and Cutler could double team him they both got tripped. Daivari tagged in and did a frog splash after a double team neck breaker to make the pin. Menard: “That was a fun main event guys.” Agreed!

What to watch/skip

This week’s “what to watch/skip” is brought to you by “Hip Twitch.” Nightingale vs. Vertvixen is my must watch for this short episode, although as good as the main event I strongly recommend it too. Skip the J.A.S. match if the live broadcast didn’t skip it for you. For better or worse it works just fine on the replay. You could probably skip the other two matches (particularly Sakura’s) but you’ve got a half hour free right? It’s not like they were offensive to watch — they were just so one-sided that they weren’t matches at all. FOX would have switched to a more competitive game already in progress.

Cageside commentary crew! Share your thoughts in the comments section below and find me on Twitter for even more wrestling talk. See you tomorrow night after AEW Dark!

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