Emi Sakura def. Skye Blue
Blue had a hell of a weekend over All Out weekend and I'm honestly shocked she hasn't been signed by AEW yet with the momentum she has right now. She has competed for the NWA since then, so maybe it's a contract thing. Considering she's been competing semi-regularly on the Dark shows in recent months, I'm sure she'll be "all elite" eventually. Sakura was a good person for her to work with given how experienced she is, even though Sakura bores me to tears as a character. I appreciated that this was more competitive than I was expecting.
Daniel Garcia and 2point0 def. The 1ManThrillride, Shayne Stetson and Justin Corino
1ManThrillride (a.k.a. Jimmy Preston) has been wrestling all over the independent circuit in the northeast for years. He had a one-off in Ring of Honor against fellow northeast wrestling Christian Casanova (now known as Carmelo Hayes in WWE NXT) two years ago, but I guess officials weren't impressed with what they saw because he wasn't hired. In fact, he has yet to be signed by a major promotion, and it's a shame because I feel he would've been a fine fit for AEW before he peaked in popularity five or six years ago. He did absolutely nothing of note in this match other than getting kicked to the outside as this was a total showcase for Garcia and 2point0. Poor guy.
The Pinnacle (Shawn Spears and Wardlow) def. Marko Stunt and Fuego Del Sol
There was a point in the match where Spears did one of Brodie Lee's mannerisms, which the crowd didn't really react to because they may not have seen or gotten it. The commentators certainly didn't acknowledge it. At any rate, this a pretty basic bout for The Pinnacle. Spears has turned into the fall guy of the group, but I like how they're protecting Wardlow. As for Stunt and Fuego, they played their roles well. Stunt's appearances in the ring should be limited, but this was what it needed to be.
Lance Archer def. Louis Bruno
Jake "The Snake" Roberts was out for a little while with a health issue, but he finally returned by Archer's side for this match and got a great reaction. The crowd clearly missed him. This was even quicker than most matches Archer has because Bruno threatened Roberts beforehand and Archer didn't take too kindly to that. He hit him with his finisher and called it a day. Will Archer be able to find some direction now that Roberts is back? Time will tell.
Abadon def. Davienne
Davienne is another name I've seen in action many times here in the northeast, specifically for New England Championship Wrestling years ago. Unfortunately, she didn't have much of a chance to shine in this match as it ended as quickly as it started. Abadon's hair was wild, but I still couldn't care less about her or her shtick. It's no surprise that she hasn't been on Dynamite all year because she doesn't feel like she fits in with the rest of the roster.
Santana and Ortiz def. Kodama and Obariyon
Kodama and Obariyon are better known as The Batiri from Chikara. The only reason I know that is because I saw people talking about it online and not because I know anything about them. Despite having a level of notoriety with some fans, this was completely one-sided in favor of Santana and Ortiz. Then again, if they're being built toward a shot at the AEW World Tag Team Championship, I understand wanting to keep them looking strong.
Kris Statlander def. B3CCA
This is irrelevant to this match, but I actually had a chance to see Statlander wrestle at a bar for a wrestling trivia show last week in Connecticut. It was totally random yet awesome at the same time. She faced "Man Scout" Jake Manning in the main event. At any rate, this was a total squash for Statlander. She's doing a whole lot of nothing right now coming off her unsuccessful attempt to win the AEW Women's World Championship from Britt Baker at All Out.
The Acclaimed def. Colin Delaney and Cheech
Delaney is best known for the jobs he was doing in WWE in 2008, though I'm pretty sure we've seen him on a Dark show at least once or twice. Mark Henry being on commentary for a Colin Delaney match gave me WWE ECW 2008 vibes. He can take quite the beating and that's exactly what we got here. Plus, you'll never get a complaint out of me when it comes to an Acclaimed match. I liked that Delaney and Cheech beat them up before the bell even rang and didn't take their shit for what The Acclaimed said about them in their pre-match rap.
FTR def. Zach Nystrom and Elijah Dean
This was my first time hearing FTR's new entrance theme and I dig it. It's obviously inspired by The Midnight Express, which is perfect for them. This match literally lasted than 15 seconds with FTR immediately hitting the Big Rig one of their opponents and pinning them. Hell, they didn't even take their ring jackets off. Following their loss to Darby Allin and Sting on Dynamite two weeks ago, this was an effective way to get them back on track.
Sonny Kiss def. KM
Putting Kiss in the main event spot was certainly a choice and not one I would've gone with myself. I was actually happier to see KM get this opportunity. I can't tell you one memorable match I've seen him have, but he always reminded me of Biff from Back to the Future when he was in IMPACT and I liked him for that reason alone. There wasn't much to the match, but we did get some progression of Kiss' feud with Joey Janela afterward. On a side note, Kiss' new entrance music is a vast upgrade over his last theme.
As a wrestling fan from the northeast, I appreciated seeing a few familiar faces on this episode. This edition of Elevation wasn't anything out of the ordinary for most people, though. Roberts returning was notable and FTR and Kiss debuted new music, but it didn't make the whole show worthwhile. It was just 10 squash matches from start to finish, but at least none of them overstayed their welcome and the show was over in under an hour.