This seems patently obvious to me, and becomes more so whenever the TBS champion appears on my screen. But every time Jade Cargill adds another win to her undefeated streak, there are... I’ll call them doubters, others might call them haters... criticizing Tony Khan for pushing someone who’s been wrestling less than a year for not being able to carry her opponents to great matches.
Or maybe you’ve never watched AEW? Those folks can probably settle the argument for us. I wonder what their impression would be if we showed them Cargill’s entrance from Revolution last night (Mar. 6)?
Now, some would say, “Of course she looked like a freaking star. She entered dressed like her namesake from Mortal Kombat to a kickass live version of her entrance music from two-time Grammy-nominated guitarist Christone ‘Kingfish’ Ingram!” Which is true.
But it’s also true that that doesn’t work unless Jade knows how to carry herself. I could show up cosplaying as my namesake from Zardoz with an accompaniment from the ghost of Eddie Van Halen, and it wouldn’t make me come off as anything other than a weirdo in a speedo and matching bandoliers.
The more common criticism is that she’s not a talented enough in ring performer to merit her push. Here, I’d mostly just respond, “Says who?” I enjoy her matches. Are they Bayley vs. Sasha, or Utami Hayashishita vs Syuri? No, but they don’t need to be. Cargill’s charisma and character get them over without needing to be five star classics.
It’s also here that we should all remember the whole “wrestling less than a year” thing, too. If you’re hesitant to get on the Jade bandwagon, look to how she’s progressed from squashes that consisted of simply hitting her finisher to 5-10 minute matches where she sells, and even employs some psychology. If she can make those strides in year one, it’s reasonable to assume that within a few more years she’ll be capable of — if not five star classics, some really, really good matches against a variety of opponents.
And if you are on the Jade bandwagon? Her progress to date is a reminder to stay excited about her future.
The biggest issue facing Cargill, Tony Khan & Team AEW right now is probably how long they can manage to keep her heel. Once you catch sight of her daughter watching one of her matches, you’re predisposed to root for her. As Jade does more media and more folks learn her story, she’s only going to gain more supporters.
Plus, she’s funny as hell! She got an impromptu feud with Tay Conti over by just saying, “don’t nobody give a damn about that karate shit” and a couple kisses. There’s a lot more where that came from. Her in-ring trash talk is some of the most entertaining this side of Roman Reigns, and her social media is full of proof Jade’s a quick wit.
Fortunately, whenever TK decides to pull the tigger on a face turn, all they have to do is have Cargill destroy Smart Mark Sterling. The sky’s the limit for That Bitch (her words, not mine) as a badass babyface.
Point is, whether you’re on board or on the fence, a convert or a critic... buckle up.
Jade Cargill is a freaking star.