By Rich Bailin, Contributor (@RichBailin)
AEW Dark: Elevation (Episode 80)
Taped August 31, 2022 in Buffalo, New York at KeyBank Arena
Streamed September 12, 2022 on the AEW YouTube Page
The music of Nyla Rose played as Excalibur welcomed us to this week’s Elevation. He was joined on commentary by Matt Menard, while Justin Roberts was the ring announcer…
1. Marina Shafir and Nyla Rose (w/Vickie Guerrero) vs. JC Storm and Joelle Clift. Shafir and Storm started the match. Rose made a blind tag early as Shafir took a swipe at Clift on the apron. Storm rolled up Shafir but Shafir rolled out and Rose ran into Storm knocking her down. Rose missed a corner splash and Storm quickly made the tag to Clift. Rose suplexed Clift then rolled through and lifted up Clift again for a gord buster. Rose tagged in Shafir and then lifted up Clift again. Together Rose and Shafir hit their elevated DDT for the pinfall.
Marina Shafir and Nyla Rose defeated JC Storm and Joelle Clift by pinfall in 1:40.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A quick showcase for Shafir and Rose.
An ad for this week’s Dynamite aired.
2. Tiara James vs. Julia Hart. Hart stomped on James’s foot instead of locking up and then kept on beating James down. James got in a couple of shots but Hart quickly recovered and kicked James and then pulled James down to the mat by her hair. Hart then hit the moonsault press and went for the cover but pulled James up instead and locked in Heartless for the submission victory.
Julia Hart defeated Tiara James by submission in 1:30.
3. Zack Clayton and Serpentico (w/Luther) vs Matt Sydal and Dante Martin.Both teams had televised entrances. Clayton came out to Chaos Project’s music. Serpentico did not look happy because Clayton beat Serpentico last week on Dark. Excalibur said Luther was trying to play peacemaker. Clayton tried to clothesline Martin and Sydal from behind but they ducked and sent Clayton out of the ring.
Serpentico left the ring not wanting to compete but Clayton and Luther threw him back into the ring. Sydal kicked Serpentico out of the ring and then Martin dove off the middle of the rope onto Clayton, Serpentico and Luther. Martin threw Serpentico back into the ring and Sydal kicked him in the head. Martin followed up with the Nosedive for the pinfall victory.
Matt Sydal and Dante Martin defeated Zack Clayton and Serpentico by pinfall in 0:55.
Bailin’s Breakdown: No that is not a typo. The match lasted 55 seconds.
4. Emi Sakura vs Athena. Sakura teased shaking Athena’s hand but instead pulled away. Sakura then went to lock up but posed instead. Athena got in Sakura’s face and was slapped, Athena slapped back then the two women pushed each other. After locking up, Athena monkey flipped Sakura then caught Sakura with a running hip attack in the corner. Athena sent Sakura to the other corner and hit her with a front handspring elbow smash.
Athena tried to bodyslam Sakura but Sakura slipped out and dropped Athena on her head with a spinning neckbreaker. Sakura followed up with her chops and double underhook backbreaker. Sakura maintained control until she tried the double underhook again. Athena fought back and kicked Sakura in the head and followed up with a shotgun dropkick.
Athena put Sakura down with a backdrop but Sakura got right up and hit Athena with a series of strikes. Athena absorbed the strikes and yelled at Sakura. Athena then hit Sakura with a powerbomb and flipped her over and kicked Sakura in the face. Athena then climbed the top rope and hit O-Face and got the pinfall.
Athena defeated Emi Sakura by pinfall in 4:40.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A good back and forth match with a predictable outcome.
5. Brody King and Buddy Matthews (w/Julia Hart) vs. Isaiah Prince and Kubes. Matthews and Prince began the match as the fans chanted “House of Black.” The fans then began chanting “we want Kubes” so Prince tagged him in and they faced off with Matthews. Matthews calmly turned around and tagged in King. Kubes and Prince ran towards King but were met with a shoulder tackle. King threw Kubes and Prince around the ring then tagged in Matthews. King hit the cannonball splash on Kubes then fed him to Matthews. Matthew hit Kubes with a knee to the face and followed up with a pump-handle driver for the pinfall victory.
Brody King and Buddy Matthews defeated Isiah Prince and Kubes by pinfall in 2:45.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A dominating win for the House of Black. I’m a little surprised at the reaction they got. It’s good to see that Matthews and King along with Hart will remain a group for the time being and I could definitely see a tag title reign in their future.
6. Hikaru Shida vs Christina Marie. Shida controlled the early portion of the match with strikes and kicks but wasted too much time when she had Marie in the corner. Marie fought out of the corner and got some limited offense in on Shida. Shida recovered and suplexed Marie. Shida then climbed the top rope and hit Meteora and then set up and hit the Katana kick for the pinfall victory.
Hikaru Shida defeated Christina Marie by pinfall in 2:10.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A solid win for Shida.
7. John Silver vs Ryan Nemeth. After some early back and forth Silver went to climb the top rope but was dropkicked down by Nemeth, who took over. Nemeth hit Silver with a series of knees to Silver’s chest. Nemeth then started to lay right hands to Silver as Silver began to hulk up. Silver got up and connected on a pair of clotheslines and a German suplex. Silver then followed up with an Angle Slam and then kicked Nemeth in the back of the head. Silver then lifted up Nemeth for the Spin Doctor and the pinfall.
John Silver defeated Ryan Nemeth by pinfall in 3:30.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Way too much air humping for my taste, but to each their own. Otherwise, it was a strong showcase for Silver. We will probably see more of Silver on Dark and Elevation as Alex Reynolds and 10 recover from their injuries.
8. The Butcher, The Blade (w/The Bunny) vs. Aaron Solo and Nick Comoroto (w/ Cole Karter, QT Marshall). After Justin Roberts announced Solo and Comoroto, Marshall with a mic in hand admonished Roberts for not mentioning Cole Karter. Marshall then said Buffalo was one of the cities he would never come to. He said nothing good has ever come from Buffalo and no he couldn’t think of anything or anybody from Buffalo that wasn’t a piece of crap. The Butcher and The Blade then made their entrance with The Bunny wearing Buffalo Sabres jerseys. They received a loud hometown reaction.
Solo and The Blade started the match. Solo immediately kicked The Blade in the midsection and backed him up into the corner with strikes. Solo taunted the crowd then went back after The Blade but Blade sent Solo to the corner and chopped and kicked Solo down to the mat. The Blade then caught Solo with a powerslam but only got a one count on the pin attempt. Solo quickly tagged in Comoroto. Butcher then tagged in and they went face to face. Comoroto had a lollipop in his mouth and threw it at the Butcher.
Butcher and Comoroto then traded shoulder tackles with neither man knocking the other down. Comoroto did get Butcher down to one knee. Butcher got right back in Comoroto’ s face but got hit with a knee to the midsection. Butcher shrugged it off and reversed an Irish whip and backdropped Comoroto as he came out of the corner. Butcher then dropped Comoroto with a shoulder tackle and made the tag to The Blade. Butcher and Blade double teamed Comoroto and then Blade came off the ropes but was hit in the back by Solo.
Comoroto attacked Blade from behind and made the tag to Solo. Comoroto and Solo then took their turn in double teaming Blade. Blade fought back and made the hot tag to Butcher. Butcher knocked Comoroto off the apron and then hit a pump-handle slam on Solo. Butcher and Blade set up for Drag the Lake but Comoroto broke it up and sent Butcher to the outside.
Comoroto then hit Blade with a backbreaker as Solo came off the top rope with a stomp for a near fall. Cole Karter then got on the apron to distract the referee. QT Marshall entered the ring and took off his watch and put it on his fist. The referee turned around and sent Marshall and Carter to the back. Butcher sent Comoroto out of the ring again and then Butcher and Blade hit Drag the Lake on Solo and got the pinfall.
The Butcher and The Blade defeated Aaron Solo and Nick Comoroto by pinfall in 4:45.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A good back and forth match. It was odd seeing The Butcher and The Blade being cheered as much as they were, but it was good to see them featured in their hometown. In fact, the crowd’s reaction bumped this match up to match of the night. Athena vs Sakura was the only real competition for that “highly coveted” designation. Overall, a slightly better than normal episode this week. Episode 80 clocked in at 43 minutes and 14 seconds.

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