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Saturday Night's starting to feel more like "Wheel CM Punk" out... AEW Collision Review - 01/07/23

The third episode of AEW's newest show included a couple of the great singles bouts from the Owen Hart Cup Tournament.

In the TBS championship match between Kris Statlander and Lady Frost, Ricky Starks and Dustin Rhodes faced Powerhouse Hobbs and Juice Robinson, respectively.

Samoa Joe vs. Roderick Strong was the contest that everyone was most looking forward to. In the following round of the Owen Hart competition, CM Punk will meet the winner, thus he joined the commentary team.

Let’s get down to reviewing the events from Saturday's Collision episode.

MJF vs. Ethan Page

This week, MJF competed in his first Collision match inside the ring versus a local star. He submitted the opponent to win the fight in under a minute.

It could make sense for a villain like MJF to want the simplest matches possible, but booking the world champion in a squash seems pointless. Thankfully, there were other plans as well.

The AEW champion made the invitation to defend the championship against any Hamiltonian who entered the ring. Ethan Page was then brought out to replace another jobber who was about to enter the ring.

MJF was attacked by Ego nonstop until he consented to the match.

It began when the bell rung.

A charging MJF was evaded by Page, who then stomped him to the ground. Although MJF responded and clipped his knee, he nearly hit Ego's Edge.

We all knew before the match even began that Page wasn't going to win, but he had a terrific response and gave a great promo. They battled through the commercial break and into the following segment, making MJF work for the majority of the first quarter of the show.

Although that made him appear better, MJF ultimately prevailed. This match was passable but not particularly noteworthy.

The true meat of this piece was the promo.

Dustin Rhodes vs. Powerhouse Hobbs

Rhodes and Hobbs competed in an Owen Hart Cup Tournament match in the second game of the evening. Harley Cameron and QT Marshall were by Hobb's side, but thankfully, Cameron didn't sing when he came on stage.

Once they were tied up, Hobbs made a dominance move by shoving Rhodes into a corner. To demonstrate that he wasn't intimidated, The Natural smacked him.

This match moved slowly and deliberately. Rhodes occasionally had a brief offensive burst, but the focus of this fight was on showcasing Hobbs' dominance. To make the second half more enjoyable, they quickened the pace towards the conclusion.

Hobbs was able to deliver a spinebuster to secure the pin and the victory following a cheap shot by Marshall.

Miro vs. Anthony Henry


The Workhorsemen's Anthony Henry and Miro squared off.

Henry was bulldozed over by The Redeemer as planned, treating him like a rookie.

The squashiest of all squash matches was this one.

Honestly this took longer to write than the match…


Juice Robinson vs. Ricky Starks

Before Robinson and Starks' second Owen Hart Tournament bout of the evening could begin, Bullet Club Gold held an in-ring segment. The remainder of the Bullet Club was excluded from ringside, according to Tony Schiavone.

Before entering the ring, Starks participated in a brief backstage session with Punk and FTR. The broadcasters made sure to point out that Starks had prevailed in their prior meeting.

The crowd began to yell in unison as they locked up and exchanged wristlocks. Although each man had his admirers, The Absolute One undoubtedly had the majority of them.

Together, these two were able to create a lively match that gave each of them the opportunity to enjoy brief periods of domination because their styles are complementary.

About half of the match was spent with Starks battling a knee ailment, but he still managed to win and move on to the next stage of the competition.

After the match, the rest of BCG attempted to attack him, but FTR and CM Punk stopped them.

Kris Statlander vs. Lady Frost

There were some strength tests for both competitors because both of these women take great pleasure in their strength.

Compared to the pace we have seen both of them work at in the past, the opening half of this game felt lethargic. It appeared as though Frost was holding back for some reason because she wasn't employing the acrobatics for which she is renowned.

After the commercial break, the challenger started to gain some momentum by using some of her speed and agility, but it was too little, too late.

With a technique Nigel McGuinness dubbed Saturday Night Fever, Statlander kept her title.

Roderick Strong vs. Samoa Joe

Samoa Joe and Strong faced in a singles bout for the first time in more than 17 years during this week's big event.

CM Punk was watching this match with the commentary team, which added to the intimate nature of the situation.

They locked, and Joe instantly used a wristlock to Strong's arm to rip it off. Strong changed the hold, forcing Joe to grab the ropes to break free.

You could see that this was a duel between two men who were well acquainted but hadn't shared the same ring in a while. They got along well and knew how to enhance both their own and each other's appearances.

The competition in this game was just what you would anticipate. Because it was, in many ways, the most significant match of the evening, both men were treating it as such.

After a thrilling battle, Joe forced Strong to submit to claim victory.

To close the show, Punk and Joe engaged in a stare-down.

At some point soon, they will clash in the Owen Hart Cup Tournament semifinals or so you would hope!

Honestly wasn’t a bad show this week! Starting to feel like its a “Wheel CM Punk” show... BUT some really strong matches!

I shall see you all next Saturday for Rampage!

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