By Rich Bailin, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@RichBailin)
AEW Dark: Elevation (Episode 63)
Taped May 11, 2022 in Elmont, New York at UBS Arena at Belmont Park
Streamed May 16, 2022 on the AEW YouTube Page
An ad for Draft Kings and AEW aired… Tony Schiavone welcomed us to Elevation and was joined on commentary by Paul Wight, Mark Henry, and Anthony Ogogo. Justin Roberts was the ring announcer…
1. Brandon Cutler vs. Bear Bronson. Bronson started the match by working over Cutler’s arm. Cutler wound up slapping Bronson to escape then ran around the ring so that Bronson would chase him. Cutler grabbed his cold spray but didn’t realize that Bronson had stopped chasing him and instead Bronson dove the middle and top ropes onto Cutler.
Cutler avoided a corner splash and was able to kick Bronson but Bronson quickly recovered. Bronson almost ran into the referee but stopped himself. Cutler was going to use the spray on Bronson but Bronson avoided it and dropped Cutler with a sidewalk slam then sat on him for the pinfall victory.
Bear Bronson defeated Brandon Cutler by pinfall in 2:20.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A quick showcase win for Bear Bronson, nothing more.
An ad for Double or Nothing aired…
2. Brody King vs. Alex Reynolds. Once the bell rang King immediately grabbed Reynolds and threw him into the corner. King then ran into Reynolds with a corner splash then followed up with a cannonball. Reynolds tried to make a comeback with running elbows but got caught with a lariat from King. King then lifted Reynolds up and dropped him with a Gonzo bomb for the pinfall.
Brody King defeated Alex Reynolds by pinfall in 1:50.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Reynolds did not get a lot of offense, as this was all Brody King. A dominating showcase for King in what I believe is his first match on Elevation or Dark
An ad for this week’s Dynamite aired…
3. Yuka Sakazaki and Anna Jay vs. Emi Sakura and Nyla Rose (w/ Vickie Guerrero). Sakura and Rose attacked Sakazaki and Jay before the bell rang. Rose and Sakazaki wound up starting the match as Rose was choking Sakazaki on the bottom rope. Sakazaki stomped on Rose’s foot then made the tag to Jay. Rose went to clothesline Jay but Jay kicked Rose’s arm, then knocked Sakura off the ring apron. Jay started to punch Rose and got Rose in the corner and then tagged in Sakazaki. Both Jay and Sakazaki kicked Rose then Sakazaki climbed to the top rope and came off with a dropkick.
Sakazaki went for the cover but Rose powered out at two. Sakazaki tried to come off the middle of the top rope until Vickie Guerrero and then Sakura grabbed Sakazaki’ s leg. Rose then came off the top with her legdrop onto Sakazaki. Rose then tagged in Sakura who did her corner chops and splash onto Sakazaki and then followed up with the double underhook backbreaker. Instead of going for the cover, Sakura went after Jay. Sakura then held up Sakazaki so Rose could come in and hit her but Sakazaki ducked and Rose hit Sakura. Jay then came into the ring and locked in Queenslayer as Sakazaki lifted up Sakura for the Magical Merry Go Round for the pinfall.
Yuka Sakazaki and Anna Jay defeated Emi Sakura and Nyla Rose by pinfall in 3:20.
After the match Rose attacked Sakazaki and threw her out of the ring…
Bailin’s Breakdown: A good back and forth match, which honestly it should have been as many times as Jay has been on the opposite of the ring of Rose and Sakura lately. I’m glad Sakazaki was in this match just to save me from coming across as cutting and pasting because a lot of the match featured things we have seen before from the other three in recent matches.
An ad for the Forbidden Door PPV aired… A preview for Hey (ew) show aired…
4. “The Acclaimed” Max Caster and Anthony Bowens and “Gunn Club” Colten Gunn and Austin Gunn (w/Billy Gunn) vs. Zack Clayton, Bryce Donovan, GKM and Lucas Chase.GKM started the match for his team. Caster was going to start but Austin tagged in but immediately tagged back in Caster. Caster locked in an armbar and Austin tagged back in and pulled GKM down by the hair. Austin then ran the ropes and tripped GKM and slid out of the ring to pull Donovan off the apron. Colten came in and knocked Chase and Clayton off the apron before hitting GKM with the Colt .45. Caster then came off the top rope with the Mic Drop and then tagged in Bowens to make the pinfall.
“The Acclaimed” Max Caster and Anthony Bowens and “Gunn Club” Colten Gunn and Austin Gunn defeated Zack Clayton, Bryce Donovan, GKM and Lucas Chase.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A very quick showcase win for the new tandem of The Acclaimed and The Gunn Club in with the match ending at 1:21. This was Bowens first match back from injury, which could explain why he only made the cover, or the fact there is only so much eight people can do in a match that was less than 90 seconds in length.
The Double or Nothing ad aired again…
5. Eric James and VSK vs. Evil Uno and 10. Uno and James started the match with James trying to kick Uno as the bell rang. Uno held onto James’s leg and caused James to fall face first. Uno then stomped on James’s fingers. Uno tagged in 10 who held James up for a vertical suplex and held on for 10 seconds. Uno tagged back in and lifted James for another vertical suplex but only held it for one second.
Uno went to lift James but James dropped down and kicked Uno in the head and made the tag to VSK. VSK Came over the top rope with a flip onto Uno. VSK stomped on Uno to no effect then went to kick Uno. Uno held onto VSK’s leg and spun him before hitting a reverse neckbreaker and made the tag to 10. 10 cleared the ring and then dropped VSK with a spinebuster. 10 then tagged in Uno and locked in the Full Nelson on VSK before lifting him into Uno’s arms for a powerbomb.
Evil Uno and 10 defeated Eric James and VSK by pinfall in 2:35.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A solid match meant to showcase the new team of Uno and 10. They are calling their Full Nelson/Powerbomb combo Dark Reckoning.
6. Mercedes Martinez vs. Trish Adora for the ROH Women’s Championship. Justin Roberts delivered formal championship match introductions. TheCode of Honor was adhered to. Both women went back and forth trading armbars, headlocks and head scissors in the early portion of the match. Adora held onto a head scissors that Martinez eventually fought out of then hit Adora with an open hand slap. Adora fought back and managed to roll up Martinez a couple of times. Adora then got behind Martinez with a waist lock but Martinez stomped on Adora’s foot and pushed her back into the corner.
Martinez then fired up with punches. Adora went for a kick but Martinez caught her leg and lifted Adora and then slammed Adora to the corner. Martinez followed up with a leaping forearm and a running kick to the head. Adora fell to the mat so Martinez came back with a running single leg dropkick. Martinez went for the cover but only got a two count. Adora fought back with an enzuigiri and a German suplex. Adora then began to work on Martinez’s arm but Martinez fought out and hit the Three Amigos suplexes then draped Adora’s legs on the top rope before hitting a spinning neckbreaker. Martinez then locked in the Dragon Sleeper and Adora tapped out.
Mercedes Martinez defeated Trish Adora by submission in 5:35 to retain the ROH Women’s Championship.
After the match Martinez helped Adora up, shook her hand, and hugged her…
Bailin’s Breakdown: Martinez is now calling her finisher the Brass City Sleeper. This was a good back and forth match and worthy of a main event on Elevation. It being a title match definitely helped, though it was a little too short to rank it higher. That said, it was this episode’s match of the night. Overall, this was a solid episode of Elevation with a few new and returning faces in Martinez, Brody King and Yuka Sakazaki. Episode 63 clocked in at 40 minutes and 31 seconds.