For the time being, the biggest “title” in the AEW Women’s Division isn’t the TBS Championship or the AEW World Women’s Championship. It’s ending Jade Cargill’s streak. 36-0. It’s a title that only one woman can claim. Is Athena that woman? She’s certainly worthy. But my gut says it’s not time.
Before the match they reshow the sit down segment hosted by Mark Henry between Athena and Jade Cargill (flanked by Baddies Kiera Hogan and Leila Grey) from Rampage which was AMAZING. Really good vid to set the tone.
Because who doesn’t love pageantry, let’s talk about their entrances! First we had Athena, who had her previous metal wings gimmick destroyed by Jade Cargill and a sledgehammer, come out with some bigger but kind of deconstructed looking wings that light up. She’s got lights on the trim of her jacket and around her hood and a mask that looks like a bird of prey’s skull. And her eyes! It looked really cool.
Not to be out done… Holy shit… There’s a brick wall with ”That Bitch” on it which suddenly crumbles and through the smoke and green lighting out walks Jade dressed as She-Hulk. She even has green body paint on and long black hair. Jesus Christ. At this point I wanna see Jade go 100-0!
Jade Cargill, due to debuting with an undefeated streak, gets Goldberg comparisons which a lot of people probably mean as a slight but people forget how mint Goldberg matches can be! This match had a lot of that energy as it just felt like a sprint with power move after power move. Except this match was a lot more inventive with its spots.
Athena draws first blood with a series of dropkicks, she runs off the ropes, Jade pops her up but she comes straight down with a Meteora onto Cargill! Athena immediately goes up top and hits the O-Face! She goes for the pin but Kiera Hogan and Leila Grey each grab one of Athena’s legs and pull her out of the ring to save the match. I will say, I think The Baddies were a tiny bit late on the spot and Rick Knox and Athena kinda had to help this happen. Still though, as a fan interpreting how this was supposed to go, tremendous wild start!
Athena exits to the floor and delivers a shotgun dropkick to Leila Grey into the barricade just about as hard as you possibly could. Athena really looking like an assassin. Kiera runs off scared.
Athena gets back in the ring and looks to setup the Code Red but Jade reverses it. Athena runs of the ropes but Jade pops her up, catches her in a Fireman Carry, Samoan Drops her then kips up to the roar of the crowd. But she walks feeling her neck, Athena kips up too. Jade immediately spears Athena. Pin gets a 2-count.
Jade hits a big elbow in the corner. Athena returns fire with a hard strike. Jade grabs Athena and tosses her across the ring. Athena even corkscrews in the air on this spot. Athena would hit a crossbody after jumping off the middle rope for two. This would setup Athena for another try at the O-Face but Jade catches her, reverses into a setup for Jaded but Athena escapes, turning it into like a code-breaker. Jade starts getting up but Athena feeds her a thrust kick to the face.
Athena would then lift Jade into a suplex position which would start to look like Jade was reversing it but Athena dropped down to turn it into a Stunner. 2-count again. Athena goes for the top rope but Kiera Hogan grabs her ankle. Athena thwarts this with a kick to Hogan’s face and while she’s standing on the apron, Jade comes in with a giant pumpkick but Athena dodges it. She gets an O’Connor Roll for two. Athena goes for another crossbody off the middle rope but this time Jade pump kicks her out of the air. This is a great spot!
This provides Jade Cargill with the opportunity to put Athena in position for Jaded and this time she hits it. 1-2-3. 37-0.
Jade celebrates while giving a shoutout to her daughter in the crowd who’s up on (I’m assuming?) her father’s shoulder. Man, that’s going to be a great device in the future when Jade is a babyface. We get a good camera shot of Jade’s daughter with a big smile on her face.
Professional wrestling is nothing if not subjective. This match was only 4:21. This match didn’t have chain wrestling. It had a lot of interference from The Baddies. Not every spot came off flawlessly. But I fucking loved this match! And I hope this is the direction for all future Jade Cargill matches where there’s just no two ways about it: If you don’t have a power game, you’re not gonna last long. And if you do have a power game, it’s still probably not gonna last that long because you gotta kill Jade before she kills you.
Run it back
My hope is that we’re getting Jade Cargill vs Athena 2 at Grand Slam. Not just because I’m going to be there live (although that doesn’t hurt) but I think a rematch would make for the most uncertain and unpredictable Jade Cargill match to date. This can be easily setup by having Athena say she would’ve beaten Jade if not for The Baddies and accuse Jade of “caring more about her streak than actually being good”. And yes, I’d have Jade win the rematch clean (or mostly clean).
Jade Cargill wins via pinfallJade Cargill wins via pinfall
- Both entrances! She-Hulk!!!
- SO. MUCH. POWER.
- Athena’s shotgun Dropkick on Leila Grey
- Maybe a touch late on the Baddies save spot