All Elite Wrestling is coming off its biggest pay-per-view of the year with All Out. The promotion will look to keep the momentum going Saturday with Full Gear 2021 at the Target Center in Minneapolis. The card will be headlined by the highly anticipated AEW world championship bout between friends-turned-foes Kenny Omega and “Hangman” Adam Page.
Page and Omega have been on a collision course for the past year since the former tag partners had a falling-out. Omega went on to become AEW champion by defeating Jon Moxley. Page has scratched and clawed his way into the title picture; he plans to take out his ex-partner and realize his dream of becoming AEW champion.
Also on the card is the world championship No. 1 contender tournament final between Bryan Danielson and Miro; a grudge match between CM Punk and Eddie Kingston; Dr. Britt Baker, DMD defending her AEW women’s world championship against the surging Tay Conti; and an AEW tag team championship match between The Lucha Brothers and FTR.
Sporting News will recap and provide grades on every match and on the card in real time. Follow below for complete results and highlights from AEW’s Full Gear 2021 pay-per-view card.
MJF def. Darby Allin
Two of the four pillars of AEW kicked off Full Gear in front of a white hot crowd. While MJF has been lauded for his exceptional mic skills, some questioned whether his work between the ropes could match. Well, that question was answered as these two set the bar high for the rest of the show. An exceptional opening grappling sequence set the stage for a fantastic showdown where Allin often had to find ways to work from underneath the bigger and stronger MJF. But when Darby had those moments, he took full advantage. A suicide dive where Allin went full speed into MJF served as a highlight of the physicality to come.
Other highlights included a second rope stunner by Allin and MJF countering a leapfrog into a powerbomb backbreaker, a tombstone piledriver by MJF on the edge of the ring apron and a Code Red reversed by MJF into another powerbomb. The story told here was Allin slowly working over MJF’s left knee to compromise his opponent. But a more important story would play out later as MJF promised that he could beat Allin with a side headlock. He did just that, but only in a way that MJF could.
An insane sequence of pinning combinations brought the crowd to their feet as Allin finally hit a Code Red for a near fall. Allin attempted to hit the Coffin Drop but MJF rolled to the outside. What did Allin do? Hit the Coffin Drop on the outside of the ring. Another attempt was countered by a knee from MJF. Wardlow and Shawn Spears attempted to interfere for MJF but were thwarted by Sting. It was a clever spot to make sure that they didn’t get involved with the finish.
MJF dared Allin to hit him with a skateboard. But when Allin thought better of it and had the referee discard the skateboard, MJF used the ring from his trunks to punch Allin and pin him with a, you guessed it, side headlock.
This match was incredible for a number of reasons. MJF continues to be the best heel in professional wrestling but showed that he could be part of a well-put-together match. As for Allin, he bumps like a madman and gives it all he has at every turn. Losing didn’t hurt him at all. The future is bright with this company.
The Lucha Brothers def. FTR to retain AEW World Tag Team Championships
It was always going to be impossible for The Lucha Brothers to follow up on that absolute classic they had with The Young Bucks at All Out. But this was a great follow-up that had a minor blemish with an awkward finish.
FTR beat The Lucha Brothers for the AAA titles recently, which set the stage for this match.
If there was a complaint to be had, it’s that the referee had absolutely no control over this madness as all four men routinely ran in and out of the ring for double team efforts. It looked great but you’d like to think that the referee would need to gain control with a threat to disqualify either team if it continued.
Nevertheless, it was a great match that saw The Lucha Brothers get their revenge and retain their titles. It was a tale of two matches. Whenever FTR was able to slow the match down, they were able to grind on Pentagon and Fenix with tag team wrestling reminiscent of the 1980s with mat work and power moves. The Lucha Dragons sought to pick up the pace with a variety of acrobatic offense. It must be said that Fenix is an absolutely phenomenal talent that never fails to impress.
There were too many great tag team spots to mention but this is a match you should go out of your way to watch. The final stretch came when Cash Wheeler landed a shot with the AAA title on Fenix and Harwood hit the brainbuster for the nearest of near falls. Moments later, we were treated to an absurd sequence that saw Fenix spring off of Dax Harwood, who was eating a spike piledriver to splash Wheeler. Difficult to explain but something that needs to be seen
The end came when FTR attempted to use masks to disguise the legal man but Penta and Fenix sniffed out the scheme, hit Wheeler with the spike piledriver and pick up the win.
Bryan Danielson def. Miro
Two men who have been absolutely phenomenal in their respective roles since joining AEW met in a match that they probably wouldn’t have had in their old workplace. While most assumed that Danielson would come out on top, it didn’t take away from an excellent wrestling match that puts Danielson in position to challenge for the AEW World Championship.
With Jon Moxley taking a hiatus from professional wrestling, Miro stepped in and found himself in the finals of the tournament. With only one loss between the two wrestlers, they both met in this match at their strongest.
This was a match where brute strength met technical wrestling. For much of the match, Miro used his physicality to cut Danielson off or thwart his attempts and using his submission wrestling. It was well booked as Miro continues to be one of the most unique talents on the roster. It will always be baffling how WWE botched his time with the company. Fortunately, he’s reaching his potential with AEW. Despite the loss, Miro remains a threat to everyone on the roster. And the best part was that a call back to Miro’s weakness being his neck ended up doing him in.
After a great back and forth, Miro countered the running knee with a powerbomb for a near fall. Miro asked his wrestling God how to finish his opponent and sank in the Game Over submission. Danielson made his way to the ropes for a break but Miro dragged him back to the center of the ring for another attempt. But Danielson escaped and slapped on the LaBell lock. But Miro powered out and dug into his opponent with ground and pound. Danielson threw up a triangle choke and Miro gouged the eyes to escape. Danielson made the mistake of exchanging strikes with Miro and found himself kicked to the canvas.
Miro carried Danielson to the corner and attempted a superplex. However, Danielson reversed and planted Miro on his bad neck with a tornado DDT for the sensible pinfall and finish. Again, an excellent match and these two will probably see each other at some point again.
Jurassic Express & Christian def Superkliq
With this being a street fight with falls counting anywhere, there was no question that the action would be non-stop between these six wrestlers. It was full-fledged chaos that could have benefitted from a few minutes being shaved off. There was a lot going on throughout with everyone getting their moments of violence in. Tables, ladders, chairs and tacks were all brought in with both teams finding creative ways to get their offense in.
Jungle Boy’s reluctance to use weapons would be the story here and they managed to find a way to make this pay off in a satisfying way.
Adam Cole was the first to bleed and was busted open. Christian gave Jungle Boy a chair to hit a Con-Chair-To but Jungle Boy hesitated, which led to the Young Bucks taking over.
A step-up hurricarana sent Adam Cole through a table while Matt Jackson sent Luchasaurus through a table with a flying elbow. Meanwhile, Nick Jackson and Christian battled through the arena until dove off the upper level of the arena onto Jackson and his crew.
With the Superkliq getting the upper hand, they introduced thumbtacks to the fray and, shoved them in Jungle Boy’s mouth and stereo superkicked him. Christian broke up the pin and nailed a tornado DDT on top of a ladder on Nick Jackson. All six battled up the entrance ramp but Cole hit a Panama Sunrise on the stage for a near fall.
Cole retrieved three thumbtack kneepads for a three-way BTE trigger. But that didn’t end it as Jungle Boy broke up the pin. More madness ensued with Luchasaurus hitting a shooting star press on the Superkliq from off the stage. Christian took out the Young Bucks and set up another Con-Chair-To. This time, Jungle Boy had been pushed to his limit and mustered up the gall to hit Matt Jackson with the Con-Chair-To to pick up the win.
This was a busy match that wasn’t bad by any stretch but went a hair too long. But the finish was well done and gives Jungle Boy a great edge and story as this feud is unlikely to be over.
Pac and Cody Rhodes def. Andrade El Idolo and Malachi Black
There were three great wrestlers and an individual who this story was built around. The question is no longer if but when will they pull the trigger on the Cody Rhodes heel turn. And the longer it goes, the more uninteresting it gets. The fans are revolting but it’s difficult to decipher if AEW is reluctant to turn Rhodes heel because this has been dragging on for quite some time. It’s clear that Cody is at his best when he’s a heel but the rationale behind this has been baffling. And it ultimately hurt the match.
Rather than these four wrestlers showing out, we had a strange story centered around Rhodes constantly involving himself in the match, causing a rift with his tag partner Pac.
When Cody wasn’t involved, the match was fine. But you knew that it wouldn’t be long before the match would orbit Planet Cody. Pac was able to turn back Black and Andrade long enough to go for a tag but Cody was nowhere to be found. An unwitting Pac was nailed with a slingshot pendulum DDT for a near fall. Black and Andrade had their own altercation, that allowed Pac to take out Black and get the hot tag to Cody.
Cody got the upper hand with a figure four on Andrade but Pac tagged himself in to hit a 450 splash for a near fall. Black pulled Cody into a diving Pac and you would think that would cause a rift. Nope. The match just played out with Pac eventually hitting a poisonrana and Black Arrow on Andrade for the pinfall.
This match just didn’t click and whatever story they were trying to tell didn’t make much sense. Too much talent to have an average match. But, alas. Here we are.
Dr. Britt Baker, DMD (c) def. Tay Conti to retain the AEW women’s world championship
Seeing Tay Conti go from just a worker in NXT to working herself into a title fight has been impressive. However, with this PPV entering its second hour, the crowd was burning out. And, unfortunately, these two had a difficult time bringing them back into it. Strangely enough, the problem wasn’t Conti, it was Baker.
Conti worked her tail off to prove that she belonged in this moment while Baker’s offense often felt disjointed and sluggish.
An absolutely brutal air raid crash on the edge of the apron nearly broke Conti in half and reinvigorated the dying crowd. Conti escaped a Lockjaw attempt to hit a Tay-KO and a Gotch-style piledriver for near falls. But Baker’s crew got involved and slowed things down. Interference led to a curb stomp by Baker to the steel steps followed by a second stomp and a lockjaw. But Conti got to the ropes, avoided another curb stomp and bicycle kicked Baker to the outside. Conti with a moonsault to the outside onto Rebel and Jamie and even the odds. A DDT-Tay for another near fall. Conti sought the finish but an extremely slow pinning sequence saw Baker pick up the victory.
Baker might be champ but she can’t afford to have matches like this. This match could have definitely seen some time shaved off and the constant interference became egregious. Hopefully, we’ll see more of Conti.
CM Punk def. Eddie Kingston
A fantastic build led to a great brawl that moved Punk away from the white meat babyface and more into a role of tweener because, as everyone knows, Punk is best when he has an edge. Rather than waste anyone’s time with wrestling, this ended up being a fight with some wrestling moves sprinkled on it.
But Kingston wasn’t interested in wrestling at all and met Punk’s face with a spinning backfist before the match even began. From there, it was war. These two just wailed on each other from the opening bell with stiff strikes and power moves. Punk found himself getting a smattering of boos from a crowd that has warmed up to Kingston, who continued to pummel on Punk until he busted him open.
With much of the show having long matches, the brevity here was appreciated because they cut to the chase and had the crowd in the palm of their hand. Not to mention that Kingston’s phenomenal column in The Player’s Tribune couldn’t help but make everyone a fan.
They told a great story of respect and made sure to keep everyone engaged. Punk called back to his rivalry with John Cena with a five-knuckle shuffle set up but Kingston met him with a middle finger (there were plenty of those). Punk hit the Three Amigos in honor of the late Eddie Guerrero. A great visual followed of Punk and Kingston meeting in the middle of the ring with fists and more middle fingers. Punk eventually hit the GTS but was physically spent and couldn’t make the pin. Kingston missed a spinning backfist out of desperation and Punk realized that he needed to put the wounded dog down for good.
Punk clobbered him with elbows and knees as the crowd booed. But the boos weren’t so much for Punk as they were in support of Kingston. Punk hit another GTS to put an end to the match. In the aftermath, Kingston refused a handshake and left while Punk smiled as blood streamed down his face. Just a very well-done match with excellent storytelling that was unlike everything else we saw on the card.
Inner Circle def. Men of the Year and American Top Team
This match was unnecessary but served as a bit of a breather before the main event. One thing is clear: it’s time to move Sammy Guevara, Santana and Ortiz away from the Inner Circle. And if this feud was supposed to help elevate the Men of the Year, it hasn’t. At all. Dan Lambert ended up getting over the most with this feud and has a future in this business as a heel manager if he wants it.
The match was full of plunder and weapon spots. Junior Dos Santos shined with a moonsault and a power slam. Dan Lambert, who looked absolutely ridiculous in a velour sweatsuit, finally tagged himself in and thought he was going to sneak some offense in. Instead, Inner Circle recovered and chased him down. It was all silly. It wasn’t great but it had some decent spots.
Guevara hit a senton bomb off the top of a ladder and sent Scorpio Sky through a table and LAX took out the rest of the American Top Team.
Dan Lambert was left in the ring with Chris Jericho, who tore into the ATT leader with chops. Dos Santos was extremely late to interrupt a Lionsault attempt, which led to an awkward botch. Jericho hit Lambert with a kendo stick and stapled his nether regions before hitting Lambert with an Eddie Guerrero-inspired frog splash for the finish.
This match served no purpose, didn’t get over the talent it needed to and we should all be glad this is over so we can move on.
The best thing about this match happened afterward when former ROH champion Jay Lethal announced he joined AEW and challenged Sammy Guevara to a TNT title match on Dynamite.
AEW Full Gear card
There are eight announced matches for Full Gear 2021. Three of the company’s four major championships will be on the line.
- Kenny Omega (c) vs. “Hangman” Adam Page for the AEW world championship
- Dr. Britt Baker, DMD (c) vs. Tay Conti for the AEW women’s world championship (15:24)
- Bryan Danielson def. Miro to become AEW world championship No. 1 contender (20:06)
- The Inner Circle def. Men of the Year and American Top Team
- The Lucha Brothers def. FTR to retain AEW tag team championships (18:36)
- MJF def. Darby Allin (22:06)
- CM Punk def. Eddie Kingston (11:00)
- Cody Rhodes & Pac def. Malachi Black and Andrade El Idolo (16:52)
- Christian Cage and Jurassic Express def. Superkliq (22:35)