All Elite Wrestling Double or Nothing 2020: Reactions & Review

Here are my final thoughts on All Elite Wrestling’s Double or Nothing 2020!

Private Party (Isiah Kassidy and Marq Quen) vs. Best Friends (Chuck Taylor and Trent) (Tag Team Match to Determine the #1 Contenders for the AEW World Tag Team Championship)

Reactions: I’m always a big fan of tag team matches getting the time they need to build into something truly meaningful. That’s exactly what took place here, but a series of noticeable slipups and a lack of chemistry between Private Party and Best Friends kept this match from being truly great.

Both teams fought hard here and produced some nail-biting near falls at several points throughout this lengthy affair, though. Once this match concluded, it was clear to me that the duo of the Private Party still needs some fine-tuning in the ring even though their gimmick is already over with the AEW faithful. Both teams still looked good out there and kicked this event off with a spirited matchup. I just wished some of the things they tried to do came off a little bit smoother in execution.

Rating: 2 & a Half out of 5 Stars

Darby Allin vs. Colt Cabana vs. Orange Cassidy vs. Joey Janela vs. Scorpio Sky vs. Kip Sabian vs. Frankie Kazarian vs. Luchasaurus vs. Brian Cage (Casino Ladder Match for a Future AEW World Championship Match)

Reactions: Out of sight, out of mind huh? I totally forgot that Brian Cage had left Impact Wrestling and became a free agent for months since his last appearance on TV. He was a great wild card surprise that also ties in well with Taz’s ongoing storyline with Darby Allin. Seeing him prevail here was the perfect way to mark Cage’s official AEW debut.

As for the match he ended up winning, it was an expectedly wild affair. Having SCU compete against each other first was a unique way to get this bout underway. And as the rest of the field poured in from the back, the action intensified and led to some painful spots from everyone involved. Darby Allin’s skateboard ladder crash was insane, as was Joey Janela smashing Orage Cassidy with a DVD atop Cage. Every member of this ladder war (plus their outside cohorts) did their part in making this match a memorable and entertaining PPV opener.

Rating: 3 & a Half out of 5 Stars

MJF (with Wardlow) vs. Jungle Boy

Reactions: I figured this match would be solid enough. But it ended up going above and beyond my expectations going into this show. MJF and Jungle Boy showed everyone why they’re the future of this company and that it’s in such good hands. The story of MJF doing everything in his power to disable Jungle Boy’s arm was played intelligently from beginning to end.

Jungle Boy played the part of the resilient babyface amazingly well here as MJF ratcheted up his heelish game plan. Both men worked hard here and maintained a good pace right up until MJF went for the old reliable tights pulling pin finish. MJF and Jungle Boy came out of this match further cementing themselves as the future pillars of this company.

Rating: 3 & a Half out of 5 Stars

Cody (with Arn Anderson) vs. Lance Archer (with Jake Roberts) (Tournament Final for the Inaugural AEW TNT Championship; Presented by Mike Tyson)

Reactions: There was a lot going on here. And thankfully, I enjoyed most of it. Arn Anderson and Jake Roberts added the extra element of passionate and participatory managers who stuck their nose in the match. Mike Tyson enforced the rules and kept things fair during the match’s closing moments. And Cody and Lance Archer did their part in putting on a well-worked contest that was super intense.

Archer dominated Cody for most of the match and even looked to be on the verge of a quick victory when he landed his finisher as soon as the bell rang. Cody held on for dear life and made several comebacks that spoke to his likable tenacity. Everyone and everything played a part in making this title an enjoyable barnburner. I’m totally open to seeing this feud continue. CODY FINALLY WON A TITLE IN AEW!

Rating: 3 & a Half out of 5 Stars

Penelope Ford (with Kip Sabian) vs. Kris Statlander

Reactions: First off, salute to my and everyone else’s role model Britt Baker. Get well soon, Doc! Penelope Ford stepped up in her place to contend with Kris Statlander and actually looked pretty good in her PPV debut singles debut. Penelope has shown a lot of promise these past few weeks and it was pretty cool to see her shine even brighter on PPV against a quality opponent. Watching Kris almost overshoot her suicide dive to Penelope and Kip Sabian made me a bit nervous, but the rest of the match thankfully went off a lot smoother. This was good, concise, and straight to the point.

Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars

Dustin Rhodes vs. Shawn Spears

Reactions: It was pretty obvious that this match was played up for laughs more than anything else. I’m not a huge fan of Shawn Spears being treated like nothing but jobber fodder, plus the whole Tully Blanchard undergarment deal was a bit off-putting. Dustin Rhodes got to give Spears his comeuppance on PPV though, which was fine I guess.

Rating: 2 out of 5 Stars

Nyla Rose (c) vs. Hikaru Shida (No Disqualification and No Countout Match for the AEW Women’s World Championship)

Reactions: This was easily Nyla Rose and Hikaru Shida’s best AEW match to date. with the relaxed rules stipulation put in place here, both ladies were able to produce an immensely satisfying hardcore brawl. The Kendo Stick came into play plenty of times and increased this bout’s brutality factor. Nyla looked like a monster as she manhandled her foe with the assist of a blackjack table.

Shida made sure to keep up the pace by fighting back valiantly and sending her devastating knee right into Nyla and a massive poker chip. The near falls actually had me on the edge of my seat as I thought there was no way Nyla would lose here. But to my surprise, Shida overcame her much larger foe and captured the AEW Women’s World Championship. And I’m so pleased to see it take place after such an enthralling title fight.

Rating: 3 & a Half out of 5 Stars

Jon Moxley (c) vs. Brodie Lee (AEW World Championship)

Reactions: For a match that didn’t have a lot of heat going into it, it ended up being one of the better contests of the entire evening. This was practically a street fight since most of it took place on the outside. It was clear that Jon Moxley and Brodie Lee went out of their way to prove that they could deliver a good outing on a non-WWE stage.

And judging by their performance, both men accomplished their goal. The vicious spots that played out here were pretty wild, especially that running dropkick counter Lee pulled off on Moxley. And of course, that Paradigm Shift DDT through the stage area shocked the hell out of me too. I enjoyed this a lot more than I thought I would.

Rating: 3 & a Half out of 5 Stars

Matt Hardy and The Elite (Adam Page, Kenny Omega, Matt Jackson, and Nick Jackson) vs. The Inner Circle (Chris Jericho, Jake Hager, Sammy Guevara, Santana, and Ortiz) (Stadium Stampede Match)

Reactions: When I heard this match was filmed beforehand, I got the feeling that AEW was going to go the crazy cinematic route. That’s been the theme of wrestling in 2020 as WWE used WrestleMania 36 as a way to utilize that style of match. This Stadium Stampede presentation was an over the top brawl that went up and down the stadium it was enclosed in. I’d have to put this one on par with “Broken” Matt Hardy’s Broken Universe craziness and AJ/’Taker’s Boneyard Match.

It featured some hilarious moments (Matt Hardy’s gimmick switching in a pool and Adam Page vs. Jake Hager in a barfight added the laughs), good hardcore action, and a big-time feel brought on by the football field arena. Page really shined here during his horse-riding segments, plus I gotta give props to Chris Jericho’s instant replay call with the ref. The Elite’s been on top for so long now, so it made sense for them to take the loss here. The Elite prevailed after a whole bunch of football field mayhem ensued. As a way to cap off this PPV, the Stadium Stampede spectacle succeeded.

Rating: Wow…Just Wow!

Match of the Night

Jon Moxley vs. Brodie Lee!

Final Verdict

All Elite Wrestling has been doing a great job of making sure its live shows have a bit of life to them with the use of their wrestlers as members of the crowd. They kept that theme intact here for this major PPV and didn’t skimp on the special arena setup, which made this year’s Double or Nothing installment another eventful night of AEW wrestling. Every match got a good amount of time to work itself into something good, the women’s and world title matches exceeded my expectations and the Stadium Stampede main event was batshit crazy (in a good way, though).

The short Dustin Rhodes/Shawn Spears match was unnecessary but inoffensive still. The debut of Brian Cage added to the big atmosphere of this show and gave me something to look forward to in the near future (Cage vs. Moxley should be pretty hype!). And there were tons of replay worthy spots that popped up over the course of the entire evening. AEW Double or Nothing 2020 was an evening full of jaw-dropping moments, a major debut, and the crowning of AEW’s first TNT Champion (that belt looks horrible, though). Overall, this show was worth a watch.

Final Score: 3 & a Half out of 5 Stars

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