With seven championship defences, a total of 11 matches on the card and a new “blockbuster” signing for the AEW roster, The Inner Sanctum breaks down the biggest talking points coming out of Full Gear.
Will Ospreay is All Elite
After Tony Khan revealed earlier in the week AEW would have a blockbuster signing to announce at Full Gear, the newest member of the roster eventuated to be Will Ospreay.
Ospreay, who is widely considered as one of the best professional wrestlers in the world, declared he was ready for the road to AEW Revolution.
Having to wait until his contract with New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) is finished, he made it clear that he will show the AEW roster what elite really is when he arrives.
The upheaval of the Women’s Division
Toni Storm elected to throw the script out of the window for her AEW Women’s World Title clash against Hikaru Shida, but put on a ‘Timeless’ classic in a back and forth match.
Storm would get her Hollywood moment, securing a pinfall victory over her opponent and a record-tying three-time AEW Women’s World Championship reign.
In the triple threat match for the AEW TBS Championship, Kris Statlander defended her gold against Skye Blue and Julia Hart.
After Hart put the black mist on Blue a few weeks ago, we have seen a slow descent into madness of Blue, with her ring gear and eye makeup slowly turning blacker, and Blue attempted to form an alliance of sorts with Hart.
Hart, however, had other ideas, choosing to attack Blue, creating a true triple threat environment with it being every woman for herself.
Statlander would hit a Friday Night Fever on Blue, and almost secured victory until the pinfall was broken up by Hart, who would cover Skye Blue and secure the pinfall, becoming champion.
With the victory, Julia Hart would begin her first reign as AEW TBS Champion, which is also her first championship in professional wrestling, and bring championship gold back to the House of Black.
There was brutality in spades for fans to take in
After losing his AEW International Championship to Jon Moxley at All Out, Orange Cassidy came into the second meeting between the two knowing he had to beat Moxley to not only successfully defend the title he regained, but feel like his reign was legitimatised with a victory over the man who beat him.
It was a brutal and chaotic match, with Cassidy moving away from his usual relaxed style of wrestling and choosing to take the fight to Moxley, who responded in kind, creating a slugfest between the two.
After a strong back and forth which saw Moxley bite Cassidy’s nose, and Moxley eventually busted open, Cassidy gained the upper hand, needing six Orange Punches and a Beach Break to put Moxley away and defend his title.
The four way tag team ladder match also saw a ton of brutality, with flying bodies, broken ladders, blood, and chaos amongst the eight competitors.
Ricky Starks and Big Bill would retain their titles, setting the stage perfectly for more brutality between ‘Hangman’ Adam Page and Swerve Strickland in a Texas Death Match.
After Strickland defeated Page at WrestleDream, their feud got even more personal after Strickland broke into Page’s house, leading to a Texas Death Match.
Page did not wait for his entrance music or introduction, choosing to attack Strickland during his entrance, and immediately hitting the Buckshot Lariat.
With submission or knockout being the only methods of victory, Page went right to work, tying up Strickland’s wrists with tape, before using a staple gun on his upper body.
Prince Nana would cut the tape off of Strickland’s wrists, allowing the Mogul Embassy member to deliver some punishment back to Page, using the staple gun, delivering a Death Valley Driver to Hangman on a cinder block, then pile driving him onto the barricade a couple of minutes later.
With both men covered in a crimson mask, the brutality continued, with neither competitor able to gain the upper hand.
Page almost had the match won after pile driving his opponent onto a barbed wire covered steel chair, but Prince Nana would help Strickland back to his feet before the 10 count.
After almost failing to beat a 10 count, Page would find adrenaline and momentum, before the Mogul Embassy’s Brian Cage would get involved to give the advantage back to Strickland, and eventually securing victory, before he collapsed himself after the bell rang.
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MJF successfully defends one of his championships
With two title matches to compete in, Maxwell Jacob Friedman (MJF) finally found a tag team partner to defend the Ring of Honor (ROH) Tag Team Championships with after accepting Samoa Joe’s offer on Rampage.
Facing off against The Gunns, MJF and Samoa Joe found themselves at odds throughout the match, before being able to settle aside their differences and work together to get the better of The Gunns.
The injured Adam Cole, who Joe was filling in for, made an appearance towards the end of the match, limping his way to the ring, and providing a significant distraction, allowing MJF and Samoa Joe to leave victorious.
MJF’s second title defence of the evening would be in doubt after the AEW World Champion found himself ambushed by The Gunns, who targeted the knee of Friedman to soften him up for fellow Bullet Club Gold member Jay White in the main event for the World Title.
With the injury to MJF, Jay White was about to be announced as the Champion “by default” after the match was cancelled, when Cole came out and announced “if MJF can’t defend his AEW World Championship, then dammit I’ll do it for him.”
Adam Cole gets ready to fight, before MJF makes his way back and retains the title
With Adam Cole limping his way to the ring on crutches, he looked set to make good on his promise to defend the title on Friedman’s behalf, before the ambulance that MJF was carted out on made its way back to the arena, being driven by Friedman himself.
Limping his way to the ring, MJF would get into the ring, striking Jay White as the match began, before his left leg collapsed under him, allowing White to go to work as he attempted to win his first AEW World Championship.
The Gunns would attempt to get involved in the match, beginning to set MJF up for another battering with a steel chair, before being caught by the referee, who would eject the two from ringside, and with Juice Robinson being injured 24 hours earlier on Rampage, White would have to go it alone.
As the match continued, it was clear the injured leg was troubling the champion, but with adrenaline beginning to kick in Friedman would build momentum.
He would put White into some precarious positions which included a Boom Drop from the top rope onto the rubble of the announce table.
As the match wore on, Cole strongly considered throwing in the towel as Friedman began to struggle, but would hold off in doing so.
Referee Bryce Remsburg would get knocked out, which saw Cole hand MJF the Dynamite Diamond Ring.
The ring would be stolen by White, before MJF would regain it, knocking out Jay White and retaining the AEW World Championship in spectacular fashion.
In retaining the title, MJF now owes Samoa Joe a Championship match, but there is also someone else MJF needs to worry about.
There was no sighting at Full Gear of whoever is under The Devil mask, but one has to imagine they will be appearing sooner rather than later.
Claudio Castagnoli vs Buddy Matthews
Winner: Claudio Castagnoli
ROH World Championship: Eddie Kingston (c) vs. Jay Lethal
Winner: Eddie Kingston
ROH Tag Team Championships: MJF & Samoa Joe (c) vs. The Gunns (Austin Gunn & Colten Gunn)
Winner: MJF & Samoa Joe
Sting, Darby Allin & Adam Copeland vs. Christian Cage, Luchasaurus, & Nick Wayne
Winners: Sting, Darby Allin & Adam Copeland
AEW International Championship: Orange Cassidy (c) vs. Jon Moxley
Winner: Orange Cassidy
AEW Women’s Championship: Hikaru Shida (c) vs. Toni Storm
Winner: Toni Storm
AEW Tag Team Championships: Ricky Starks & Big Bill (c) vs. LFI (RUSH & Dralistico) vs. FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) vs. House of Black (Malakai Black & Brody King)
Winners: Ricky Starks & Big Bill
AEW TBS Championship: Kris Statlander (c) vs. Julia Hart vs. Skye Blue
Winner: Julia Hart
Texas Death match: Swerve Strickland vs. “Hangman” Adam Page
Winner: Swerve Strickland
The Golden Jets (Kenny Omega & Chris Jericho) vs. The Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson)
Winners: The Golden Jets
AEW World Championship: MJF (c) vs. Jay White
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