The Elite and the Good Brothers unite at AEW: New Year's Smash - Night 1
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AEW: Dynamite kicked off the new year with AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1. The card was delayed a week, as AEW bumped its original scheduling to do a heartfelt tribute to the late Brodie Lee.

But this week it was full speed ahead. AEW Champion Kenny Omega put his title on the line against Rey Fenix. Who emerged with the title? Hikaru Shida finally put the AEW Women’s Championship up for grabs against the creepy Abadon. And Darby Allin and Brian Cage had a weigh-in ahead of their TNT Championship match next week. Would Sting do, you know, anything?

We got answers to these questions and much more. Let’s get into our review of AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1.

The Young Bucks and SCU stand tall at AEW: New Year's Smash - Night 1

SCU & Young Bucks Vs. The Acclaimed & TH2

AEW: Near Year’s Smash – Night 1 kicked off with a star-studded 8-man tag. Kudos to JR for again opening the show with, “It’s Wednesday – you know what that means.” I really hope he makes that a weekly thing. It would make for a fitting “gone but not forgotten” tribute to Brodie. Max Castor opens with a rap, and the AEW censor falls asleep on the button a few times.

Bowens and Daniels start, and it immediately de-evolves into a Pier 6. Things calm down, and Bowens starts the match proper against Kazarian. But Evans and Angelico run in only to get taken out by the Bucks. Nick Jackson hits an escalara on everybody on the outside, likely sending Jim Ross into a quiet coronary. I’m completely lost on who’s legal, because there haven’t been any tags and now Daniels and Bowens are legal. Castor tags in, and they double-team Daniels. Castor goes for a couple of covers, but Daniels kicks out. Now Angelico is in.

He lifts Daniels up and tags in Evans, who dives onto Daniels into a jackknife pin for two. Bowens comes back in and puts the fists to Daniels. Another near-fall gets two. Castor tags back in and hits a diving bulldog followed by a Macho Man elbow from Bowens. Evans hits another splash, and Angelico tags in and hits a crucifix bomb into a Navaro submission. Daniels gets to the ropes to break the hold. Bowens tags back in. He and Daniels trade waist locks until Bowens hits a back elbow, but Daniels hits a blue thunder bomb. Daniels makes it to the corner and tags in Kazarian. Evans tags in, and Angelico tries to run interference. Angelico gets taken out, and Kazarian hits a German suplex on Evans into a bridge in for two.

Evans takes over and tags in Bowens. He and Evans whip Kazarian into the ropes, but Kazarian reverses into a meeting of the minds. Now Matt Jackson gets the hot tag and hits a double Northern Lights suplex. Really hot opener for AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1. Jackson scoop slams Bowens and teases the flying elbow, but he dives onto the heels on the outside. Back inside, Nick  goes up top, and the Bucks hit Risky Business for two. Matt hits the bucklebomb, and Kazarian sneaks in a DDT, but Bowens kicks out. Now Nick tags in and they go for the BTE trigger, and Castor runs in. But Kazarian and Nick hit the BTE trigger for real, only for Evans to break up the pin.

Evans and Angelico hit a backbreaker/stunner combo. Now Evans goes for a 630 senton, but Nick gets the knees up. Matt tags in, and they superkick everything that moves. They go for the Meltzer driver, but the heels make the save. Daniels tags in and and he and Nick hit Best Melter Ever for the pin.

These guys threw a lot of action in the ring. And somehow they got through the sheer confusion of the first half and turned it into a solid match to start AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1. After the match, Kazarian reminds us that the next time he and Daniels lose a match, they will dissolve their partnership. But before that happens, Daniels says he and Kazarian want a shot at the Young Bucks. Gentlemen’s ageement and feel-good sportsmanship all around. What could possibly go wrong?

Winners:  SCU & Young Bucks

Match Rating:  *** 3/4

Jon Moxley Promo

Jon Moxley is out next on AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1 for the first time since dropping the AEW World Championship to Kenny Omega at AEW Winter Is Coming. Seriously, I wish the announcers would stop pretending Moxley was “robbed.” He was cheated, yes, but for God’s sake, stop treating it like Montreal.

Moxley says sometimes you’re on the bad end of a bad deal? Right?! That’s what I’ve been saying Mox. The former champ promises to take it on the chin, but he says the adversity isn’t going to chase him away. He ponders what to do with Omega and “that guy he hangs around with that looks like a used car salesman.” Mox has a zero tolerance policy for crappy people. The AEW censor misses an “as*hole. Mox would rather run them both down with a crowbar, but he isn’t going to stand in the way of Fenix getting his shot at the title. But some day, Mox promises that Omega is gonna get his eventually.

Seriously, Jon Moxley has the art of the promo down. He can be a noble babyface and a vicious madman, and he can balance them both. Moxley is a violent lunatic who compares himself to the literal devil. But you never once question whether you should be cheering for him. Jon Moxley has this stuff down to a science.

Chuck & Orange Cassidy Promo

Backstage at AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1, Dasha catches up with Chuck and asks about Trent’s condition. Chuck says that Trent is gonna be out for four or five months, which brings in Miro, Kip, and Penelope. Miro offers his condolences and says Chuck needs to step up and be his own man.

And Miro promises to be Chuck’s best friend – Chuck can do his laundry, wash his car, etc. But Chuck isn’t willing to be Miro’s young boy. So Miro ups the ante. Next week will see Miro vs. Chuck, and if Chuck loses he has to be Miro’s young boy.

Okay, some context before this segment gets read as creepy. In Japan, a young boy is essentially a pro wrestler’s apprentice. A padawan, if you will. They learn from the older wrestler, but they’re also taught to respect the locker room veterans. It’s not creepy. Well, I mean, it’s pro wrestling. So everything’s a little creepy. But it’s not, like, creepy creepy. Okay, I’ve gone too far. I’ve gone too far in a few places. Chuck vs. Miro next week, and if Chuck loses he has to be Miro’s butler. It’s like that Seinfeld show within a show. Anybody?

This is awkward.

Jake Hager Vs. Wardlow

AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1 rolls on with a HOSS FIGHT, BAH GAWD. Is it weird that I’m looking forward to this more than I am to Omega vs. Fenix? The Inner Circle watches from the entrance way.

Lock-up to start. It breaks up with neither guy having an advantage. Hager goes for a waistlock, but Wardlow breaks and gets one of his own. But Hager scores a takedown, only for Wardlow to escape with a headscissors on the mat. Back to the waistlock for Hager. Wardlow breaks it and takes Hager down to the mat. They give each other some space, and Hager’s visibly frustrated. Hager swings and misses with a punch. Wardlow gets a waistlock, and Hager escapes with a back elbow. Wardlow whips Hager into the corner and lays in some punches.

Now Wardlow whips Hager into the corner, but Hager comes out and they nail each other with an elbow. They exchange a couple of chest bumps. Wardlow leap frogs a charging Hager, and he clotheslines Hager over the top. They fight on the outside and take each other out with a double clothesline. Very evenly booked to this point so far. But back inside, Wardlow takes over. He whips Hager into the corner, and Hager goes chest-first into the turnbuckle.  Wardlow maintains the beatdown. And he whips Hager into the corner again. Wardlow charges. But Hager dodges, and Wardlow goes shoulder-first into the post.

Wardlow gets whipped into the corner. But Wardlow whips out another leap and turns it into a tackle into the turnbuckle. Wardlow hits a trio of release suplexes on Hager for a two-count. Now Wardlow goes for the F-10. But Hager escapes and hits a couple clotheslines in the corner before hitting a short-arm clothesline. Hager hits a suplex for two. He goes for the Hager-Bomb. But Wardlow dodges only to fall into the ankle lock. Wardlow escapes and backdrops Hager over the turnbuckle and onto the apron. Then Wardlow hip tosses Hager off the apron and into the barricade. Wardow throws Hager back inside and hits a pair of release German suplexes for two.

Senton atomico from Wardlow gets two, and Hager rolls over into the triangle. But Wardlow gets a foot on the rope to break. Wardlow rolls onto the apron. But Hager pulls him up and cinches in the triangle only for Wardlow to drop the apron, driving Hager into the turnbuckle. Back inside, Wardlow hits the F-10 for the win. WOW. I did not expect to see Wardlow come out of this as the winner. Let alone cleanly. Hager was a little sloppy in spots, but Wardlow showed off yet again why he’s gonna be a huge star.

But after the match, Hager and Wardlow fist bump, and it looks like all is well within the Inner Circle. What could possibly go wrong?

Winner:  Wardlow

Match Rating:  ** 1/4

Private Party/Matt Hardy Promo

Backstage, Private Party argues over who was supposed to bring the gin and who was supposed to bring juice. Luckily, Snoop Dogg comes in and provides the juice. Now Matt Hardy comes in, and he’s got a contract to make himself Private Party’s manager. The terms seem pretty steep (Matt gets 30 percent). Snoop, talk them out of it!

Matt double checks that all Private Party’s demands are covered. But Matt sweetens the pot (heh, ’cause Snoop). Private Party can continue to seek opportunities with third party platforms like Twitch and Cameo. I’m sure that wasn’t directed at anyone specific. Certainly not anyone whose name rhymes with Mince VcMahon.

Darby Allin and Brian Cage, face-to-face at AEW: New Year's Smash - Night 1

Brian Cage/Darby Allin Weigh-In

Okay, I get that AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1 needs segments to plug Night 2. But what’s a weigh-in between Brian Cage and Darby Allin really gonna reveal? Like, through a real-world lens. Brian Cage is a 973-pound gorilla, and Darby Allin weighs approximately one and five-eighths Doritos bags. As in, one empty bag of Doritos and a bag of Doritos with three eighths cut off the top. Anyway.

Cage is out first, accompanied by all of Team Taz. Tony Schiavone is officiating the festivities. And Darby has the new TNT Championship belt, complete with a black strap. Sharp title belt. Taz objects to Cage having to weigh in first, just because he’s a challenger. Cage acquiesces, still protesting loudly. I love what a jerk Taz is. Cage weighs in a 272 pounds. Okay, I was only off by about half a ton. Now Darby steps up, and he weighs in at 19 pounds. Nah, I’m just kidding. Darby weighs 170 pounds. Taz protests that Darby’s wearing chains, a jacket, the title belt.

Darby Allin and Sting stand together at AEW: New Year's Smash - Night 1

But Darby takes the mic, and now the AEW censor misses a “sh*t.” Darby goes all self-aware. “We know how this ends, so let’s get to it.” Taz evicts Tony from the ring, and the lights go out. Snow falls. And Sting emerges. Team Taz bails, and the facepaint pals stand side-by-side in the ring. Taz says he’s sick of this, and he’s sick of Sting. And he warns that next week, Brian Cage is going to take the TNT Championship. And now Sting and Darby silently stare each other down. You know, I like Sting. And I’m really glad that Sting is back and in AEW. But it’s been about a month.

We’re getting to a point where Sting has to, you know, do something.

MJF/Hager Segment

Backstage at AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1, MJF talks up Jake Hager. And Hager is throwing an absolute fit. But MJF tries to calm him down, assuring him he has nothing to be ashamed of. The whole world saw him go toe-to-toe with Wardlow, and just because Hager came up short doesn’t mean he’s not still one of the best athletes in the world.

Hager says that when MJF came in, Hager had every intention of laying him out. But he appreciates MJF being a jolly good soul by checking up on him. And then he tells MJF to get out so Hager can get back to his Kylo Ren hissy fit.

I like this, I like this, I like this. MJF slowly getting on the good side and being a team player for the Inner Circle members who doubted him. That other major wrestling promotion wishes they could tell stories like this.

Snoop Dogg accompanies Cody Rhodes at AEW: New Year's Smash - Night 1

Cody Rhodes (W/ Snoop Dogg) Vs. Matt Sydal

Backstage, Alex Marvez catches up with Jurassic Express. Marko Stunt says Jurassic Express is on a quest for the AEW Tag Team Championship. FTR wanders in and rightly asks what Marko has to do with Jurassic Express. So Marko says next week he’ll take Luchasaurus’s spot, and he and Jungle Boy will take on FTR. What could possibly go wrong?

Everyone write AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1 as the night we all heard JR say “ain’t nothin’ but a G thing.” I mean. Just. I don’t know how I feel about that. Anyway, Snoop is filling in for Arn as Cody’s coach. And plugging The Go-Big Show while he’s at it.

Both guys lock up. They trade waistlocks, but Sydal throws him off. Cody goes for a cover, but Sydal reverses. Sydal goes for one, and Cody slips out. Then Sydal hits a wicked roundhouse kick to Cody’s head. Cody reverses a whip, but Sydal hits a reverse elbow and slides down his back into a botchy armdrag. That was ugly. Sydal hits a running kick on Cody in the corner. He goes for the cover but only gets two. Sydal heads up top while Cody goes to the floor. Matt Sydal goes for a meteora and almost hits Snoop in the process. But Sydal tweaks his knee on the landing.

On the inside, Cody hits the drop-and-uppercut. Sydal throws Cody over the top. Cody hangs on and flips back in only to eat a kick. Sydal hits a running baseball slide on Cody and sends him into the barricade. But Cody reverses and goes to swing at Sydal, and Sydal dodges. Cody winds up punching Serpentico at ringside, and the heel section goes ballistic. Cody tries to apologize, but Sydal throws him back into the ring. Sydal goes up top and hits a crossbody, but Cody rolls through into the Sharpshooter. Sydal makes it to the rope to break.

Cody looks to Snoop to call a play. Apparently the play is “miss kicking Sydal in the knee by a mile.” Sydal sells it anyway. Good man, Matt. Cody whips Sydal into a knee to the gut. He picks Sydal up and hits a body slam into an ATOMIC FIST DROP, BROTHER! Now Cody whips Sydal, but Sydal reverses. He hits a running elbow on Cody in the corner and follows with an enziguri. It only gets two. Standing moonsault from Sydal gets another two-count. Cody and Sydal slug it out in the corner. But Cody gets the upper hand and hits an elbow to the back of Sydal’s head.

The American Nightmare pulls Sydal up and crotches him on the top turnbuckle. Cody hits a wicked inverted superplex. That looked awesome. Both guys are wiped out, but Cody crawls for the pin. He only gets two. Cody positions Sydal for the moonsault, but Sydal gets to his feet. Cody misses, and Sydal hits a rising knee strike. Sydal heads to the top and goes for a shooting star press, but Cody gets the knees up. Cody hits a Scorpion Death Drop, but it only gets two. Sydal hits a standing rana and hooks in a crossface on Cody. But Cody elbows his way out. Sydal hits a chop-block, but Cody hits a clothesline and both guys go sailing over the top.

Cody throws Sydal back inside and goes for a pump kick. Sydal goes for a roundhouse, but Cody evades and hits the disaster kick for two. Yes, AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1 crowd. This is awesome. Sydal hits a standing hurricanrana for two. He hits a high roundhouse into a lightning spiral on Cody for two. Sydal gets frustrated, and he goes for a jumping knee. But Cody hits Crossroads. Sydal is too close to the ropes, and Cody picks him up for another Crossroads to finish it. After the match, Luther and Serpentico run in to beat down Cody ad Sydal.

Sydal dispatches with Luther, and Cody powerslams Serpentico. Next Sydal goes up top, but Snoop waves him off. Snoop Dogg comes off the ropes and hits the most awkward frog splash in the history of ever. Well, he tried. Snoop covers him, and Cody counts the three. That was fun.

Winner:  Cody Rhodes

Match Rating:  *** 1/2

Hikaru Shida battles Abadon at AEW: New Year's Smash - Night 1

AEW Women’s World Championship – Hikaru Shida (C) Vs. Abadon

And I won’t be sleeping for a month or so. Is that AEW’s goal with Abadon? Anyway. After a month of Abadon scaring Shida, Shida saying she isn’t scared, and culminating with Abadon trying to eat Shida’s neck, we finally get to the ring.

Abadon tries to attack Shida on the entrance ramp, but Shida whacks Abadon with the kendo stick. Now Abadon tries to bite Shida’s neck again, but Shida fights her off. The bell rings, and the match starts proper. They lock up, and Jericho (on commentary) does the match no favors by constantly referring to Abadon as a “gimmick.” Shida lays some stomps in to the back of Abadon’s head. Abadon hangs over the edge of the apron, and Shida goes for the drive-by knee-lift. So naturally, Abadon catches it and bites at Shida’s thigh. Abadon gets a hand around Shida’s throat and throws her into the barricade.

The challenger drags Shida to the ring and slips inside to restart the count. Abadon goes back outside and drags Shida under the ring. The referee crawls under with his butt hanging out one side of the ring, barking orders at wrestlers we can’t see. Compelling television. Abadon crawls out alone with blood dripping from her mouth. Shida crawls out, holding her neck. Abadon throws Shida back inside and hits a dropout bulldog from the top rope. But the champion kicks out. Abadon keeps up the attack, punching Shida in the gut while she’s down.

Creepy McCreepyLady keeps up her attack on Shida. We start to come back from the picture-in-picture break, but TNT has other plans. It’s another Snowpiercer trainer. But I wanna know if TNT gonna have a Star Wars marathon or not! Back to the action, Shida manages to throw Abadon over the top rope. Shida perches on the middle rope and hits a frog splash on the outside. The champion starts smashing Abadon’s head into the barricade before superplexing her into the ring. Abadon openly steals from Bray Wyatt and does the spooky spider thing. She hits a clothesline on Shida, but it only gets two. Shida rolls her up for another two-count.

Shida hits the Tamashi running knee for the win. This was fine, but this was the blow-off for a feud that’s been going on for two months? It came across like WWE 50/50 booking. Make Abadon look spooky, but don’t put her over. I guess I just don’t get the point of it. And it’s the credibility and prestige of the AEW women’s championship that suffers.

Winner (And STILL Champion):  Hikaru Shida

Match Rating:  **

Backstage at AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1, Tay Conti hypes her shot at Serena Deeb for the NWA Women’s Championship next week. Oh, right. The women’s championship they defend on AEW: Dynamite that’s treated like it means, you know, anything.

Conti admits respect for Deeb, but that doesn’t mean she isn’t coming for the title. She hypes her real-life martial arts experience. Oh, and she’ll have the Dark Order as back-up.

Kenny Omega defends the AEW World Championship against Rey Fenix at 'AEW: New Year's Smash - Night 1'

AEW World Championship – Kenny Omega (C, W/ Don Callis) Vs. Rey Fenix

Justin Roberts’s introductions of Kenny Omega just keep getting more obnoxious, and I love it. Can somebody do me a favor, though? What’s the significance of Justin’s over-the-top mentions of North Carolina? I feel like I should know this already, and I know that Google is a thing, but I’m a busy fellow.

And here’s our AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1 main event. They lock up, and Fenix goes for an inverted armbar. But Omega fights out and goes for a snapdragon. Fenix fights him off with a drop toehold into a knee bar. Omega escapes and drives Fenix’s knee into the mat, followed by a stomp to the back of the challenger’s head. The champion stays in control with an elbow to the head. Omega cinches in a hammerlock, but Fenix hits a couple of back elbows. The champion hits a vicious standing spike hurricanrana. Omega calls for the Terminator, but Fenix rushes back in and hits a rana of his own.

Fenix hits another huricanrana on Omega on the outside. The challenger keeps up the attack, and he throws Omega back into the ring. He goes for rolling soul, but Omega evades and hits a swinging DDT, but Fenix lands on his feet and hits a standing dropkick. Omega backdrops Fenix onto the apron, but Fenix dodges. He goes to leap over the ropes, and Omega chops him down to the floor. On the outside, they trade chops before Omega tackles Fenix’s back into the apron. The champ follows with a couple smashes into the barricade. Omega whips Fenix toward the barricade, but Fenix jumps over it and hits an enziguri followed by a springboard. Omega catches him in mid-air and hits a snapdragon onto the floor! This match is nuts.

The champion pulls Fenix up and backdrops him onto the apron. Yeesh. And then he crotches Fenix over the barricade. 1998 Jim Ross would be screaming his face off about Fenix “HAVING A FAMILY FOR GAWD’S SAKE!” Back inside, Omega hits the crusher, but Fenix kicks out at two. The champion hits a backbreaker. Fenix fights to his feet and chops at Omega’s chest. They chop it out like you’ see in NORTH-CA-RO-LI-NA! Seriously, somebody explain it. Omega gets in a shot to Fenix’s kidney. He pulls Fenix up and goes for a backdrop, but Fenix evades and hits a springboard shoulder tackle.

Fenix hits a double springboard dropkick. Omega goes to the outside, so Fenix hits the most insane tope con hilo I’ve ever seen. That was insane! The challenger throws Kenny back inside. He lays in some more chops on the champ in the corner and tries to whip him, but Omega reverses. Omega sets up for the OWA. Fenix escapes, but he walks into a back elbow. And then the challenger hits a springboard German suplex, and my jaw hits the floor. What is it with AEW putting out the match of the year at the start of the year. RIP Kenny Omega’s skull.

Omega goes to the apron for a respite, but Fenix hits a diving foot stomp to the back of Omega’s head. Fenix follows to the outside and rams Omega into the barricade before hurling him back into the ring. The challenger goes for a pin but only gets a pair of one-counts. THE SUPER OMEGA HAS ARRIVED! Both guys are on their knees, and they trade chops. Omega is first to get to his feet, but Rey keeps fighting from the ground.

Until Omega has enough, and he just goes ninja crazy town on Fenix with punches. But Fenix won’t quit. So Kenny just keeps punching him down. The challenger finally fights to his feet. Omega reverses a suplex attempt, but Fenix scores with a superkick. The champ throws him into the ropes, but Fenix swings back inside and runs right into a V-Trigger. But Fenix nips up and kicks Omega in the side of the head! Fenix goes up top for the tornillo, but Omega gets a knee up. He powerbombs Fenix but only gets two. Another V-Trigger only gets a two-count! I am unashamedly marking out.

With Fenix limp on the middle rope, Omega hits another V-Trigger and goes for the One-Winged Angel. But Fenix counters with a Frankensteiner?! Both guys are down now. Fenix gets up first, and Callis taunts him on the outside. The challenger rushes toward the ring, and Omega hits another V-Trigger. He drags Fenix to his feet and chokes him with the rope as leverage. Fenix hits an enziguri to escape before leaping over the ropes with a cutter for two. But Fenix doesn’t let up. He hits a fire-thunder driver that somehow only gets two!

The challenger perches on the top rope and goes for the Eddie frog splash. Omega gets the knees up. He perches Fenix on the top turnbuckle, but Fenix fights him off. Fenix goes for a rana, but Omega catches him and hits Tiger Driver 98 into another V-Trigger, and Fenix kicks out again. Omega hits the One-Winged Angel for the pin, even though one of Fenix’s shoulders is about a foot off the mat. How much of a jerk do I want to be with the rating? I mean, this was an incredible match. But that’s not even, like, a WWE-style “he gets a rematch because the ref screwed up” type-thing. It was a straight botch. Sigh.

This is still gonna be a contender for match of the year months down the road, but it ain’t perfect. But it’s as close to perfect as you can get.

Winner (And STILL Champion):  Kenny Omega

Match Rating:  **** 3/4

After the match, Callis helps Omega up. Callis hypes that we’ve already seen Omega beat Rey Fenix. Now he calls for Omega to end the career of Fenix while Eddie Kingston and company beat down the rest of Death Triangle in the back. Callis has Omega set Fenix up for an OWA, but Moxley runs out for the save with a barbed wire bat. He takes a swing at Omega and threatens Callis. Callis beats a path out of town. Mox threatens another shot at Omega, but the Good Brothers rush the ring and beat down Moxley!

The Impact Tag Team Champions hit the Magic Killer on Moxley. Anderson and Gallows exchange high fives with Callis and Omega. The AEW Champion gets his own shots in on Moxley Now Omega has the barbed wire bat, and he takes a couple swings at Moxley’s back. Griff Garrison tries to make the save, so Gallows murders him. The whole AEW job squad rushes in, but the Good Brothers fight them all off. Omega, Callis, and the Good Brothers stand tall. But the Young Bucks run out. Garrison and Pillman hold Omega up, and the Young Bucks square up for a superkick. And they take out Garrison an Pillman.

And Not-The-Bullet-Club unites in the ring with the too-sweet. I gotta say, the Bucks signing in for this is confusing, considering they were baffled by Omega alligning with Callis a few weeks ago. Still, a hot angle to end a hot show.

The Breakdown

AEW: New Year’s Smash – Night 1 looked like it was gonna be just another great AEW: Dynamite special. And a month later, AEW pays off Omega’s involvement with Impact in the biggest way they possibly could. A Bullet Club reunion, a near-five-star match, and a perfect kickoff to 2021.

There were some issues. Abadon is getting the Fiend treatment, going for a title she shouldn’t care about and losing heat in the process. And it’s time for Sting to do something, anything. But even though there are things AEW needs to work on as we move forward in AEW, they’re doing all the important things right.

This was an awesome show across the board.

All images provided by All Elite Wrestling.

AEW: New Year's Smash - Night 1

8

In-Ring Action

8.3/10

Booking/Writing

7.5/10

Storytelling

8.0/10

Entertainment Value

8.1/10

Pros

  • Omega vs. Fenix might be match-of-the-year already
  • The continuing slow burn with the Inner Circle
  • Wardlow gets a big win
  • Cody vs. Sydal was solid stuff

Cons

  • The AEW Women's Championship means less and less every week
  • Wait, why would the Young Bucks side with Omega?
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