Tiffany is back with her take on Double Or Nothing, where she debunks the notion that AEW buried the heels at Double Or Nothing.
Double or Nothing has come and gone. Jon Moxley is STILL the AEW World Champion, Cody Rhodes is the inaugural TNT Champion, Hikaru Shida is the NEW AEW Women’s Champion, and Kenny Omega and Adam Page are still the Tag Team Champions. It was a great night for the first AEW PPV since the Coronavirus outbreak.
However, there are a lot of people who complained, as usual. The most common complaint was that, except for MJF beating Jungle Boy, the babyfaces largely won/retained. The complaint was that the heels, namely Lance Archer, were buried at Double or Nothing. No, they weren’t.
For reference, to ‘bury’ someone in wrestling is to beat them in such a way as to make them look bad and then keeping them off TV unless it’s to be cannon fodder for the stars. True burials are rare, but semi-burials happen quite often, and can backfire on the person that is supposed to be wielding the shovel. Vince tried to bury Dean Ambrose by having him lose every week, but it backfired when the first schmuck he used, EC3, got buried by the fans, who sensed what was going on and rebelled against the burial of fan-favorite Ambrose.
That did not happen on Saturday night. Let’s start at the top.
Jon Moxley vs Brodie Lee
Brodie Lee was certainly NOT buried. Jon Moxley won that war by referee stoppage because Moxley choked Lee out because Lee kept kicking out of the Paradigm shift. The match could best be described as a stalemate. Mox looked like a tough SOB that would not lose and Lee looked unstoppable.
The biggest issue with the Moxley/Lee feud is that Lee was shot through to the title shot, but there doesn’t seem to be any idea of what he’ll be doing now that he lost, especially with Mox’s attention turning to Brian Cage. The fact that Lee technically didn’t lose should keep the door open for another round, but we haven’t seen AEW really do a long-term title feud yet.
Cody Rhodes vs Lance Archer
This was the one where EVERYONE seemed to be crying foul. Lance Archer has been built up as this unstoppable monster, only to fall to Cody in the TNT Championship. However, Lance Archer wasn’t buried. He wasn’t even hit with a shovel. He lost to Cody in part because of Mike Tyson. Before that, he’d basically beat the living hell out of Cody. No, Archer wasn’t buried or even kicked with dirt.
I pointed out in another article that it was past time for Cody to be a champion of some kind, and since he’s barred from the World Championship, the TNT Title would have to be his title. As frustrating as what happened to Archer is to some fans, it’s important to remember that Lance Archer isn’t well known to fans who don’t watch Ring of Honor or New Japan Pro-Wrestling. If you came to AEW because of a WWE guy, like Chris Jericho or Jon Moxley/Dean Ambrose, you would probably have no idea who Archer was, which is also why Archer needs a legend like Jake Roberts as his manager. Cody is well known to the majority of AEW’s fans and was needing a win in order to not bury himself on his own show.
Nyla Rose vs Hikaru Shida
This isn’t even a talking point. Nyla Rose looked every inch the beast she is, and I mean that nicely. Shida won by being tough and refusing to lose. Yes, it sucks that Rose lost her first title defense, but what I’ve been hearing is that AEW just moved forward with their booking ideas regardless of the coronavirus, so Nyla was going to lose anyway, it just looks awkward because of circumstances that were out of everyone’s hands.
Inner Circle vs The Elite
If you haven’t watched the Stadium Stamped match from Saturday, I URGE you to find a way to watch it. It was HILARIOUS, silly, fun, but also wrapped up the Elite vs Inner Circle rivalry…at least for now. However, to say that Inner Circle was buried is bullshit. They all looked great and it was a way to wrap up the storyline since Blood and Guts is apparently not happening for the foreseeable future. While it would’ve been easy for Inner Circle to be relegated to the mid-card, the fact that they are feuding with Mike Tyson and his crew shows that they are still going to be in the top tier for a long while.
What’s Going On?
I think it’s safe to say Cody learned a lot from his legendary father and one of the things Dusty Rhodes was good at was putting babyfaces over on heels without hurting the heels and that lesson was on display at Double or Nothing. yes, the heels, by and large, lost, but none of them were buried. All of them dominated the babyfaces, and largely lost because the face got lucky. All of the heels looked great, even in loss.
Bottom line, no one was buried on Saturday Night, and this week’s Dynamite proves it. Jungle Boy is getting a TNT title shot, Inner Circle is going to be feuding with Mike Tyson, Lance Archer and Brodie weren’t on the show, but we can be assured that they’ll be back, the heels will be fine. Let’s enjoy the show.
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