AEW Dynamite held their "Holiday Bash" last night, which featured the shocking debut of Kyle O'Reilly/reformation of the group formerly known as The Undisputed Era to kick things off....
....and the show was headlined by a six-man tag featuring CM Punk, Sting, and Darby Allin vs The Pinnacle (MJF, Cash Wheeler, and Dax Harwood) - which was basically the wrestling equivalent of a feel-good movie you'd watch around the holidays.
Sting came out in a CM Punk shirt/CM Punk inspired facepaint, Punk came out in Surfer Sting inspired facepaint and custom Sting tights, Darby had on some awesome pink Sting makeup as well….
….and it was just a fun fucking wrestling match from top-to-bottom where Sting impressed yet again.
I mean, do you see that video at the top of this blog?! Dives to the outside from the top rope?! That ain't the old man half-committed dive you see in wrestling so often, either - that is a FULL SEND from Big Steve Borden….
Credit to MJF for getting back on his feet quickly to catch Sting with FTR after taking this nasty bump to the outside….
He tweeted that he was okay after the show, and that it's Punk we should be worried about (lol), so luckily it seems he got outta that one without injury. Made Sting look like a trillion bucks in the process - and that has been Tony Khan's goal with him all along.
When I spoke with Khan recently, he ripped WWE for their use of the wrestling legend, saying, "It had been a while since Sting won wrestling matches like the last time we saw Sting, he wasn’t winning. The whole time he was back in his last run in the competition, they screwed him out of multiple matches, let’s be honest. He should have been presented better and that’s one thing I won’t back down on. Sting deserves to be treated like one of the great legends in wrestling and I set out to do that from the beginning with him."
As a big Sting fan myself, I'd have to agree with Tony there. Sting spent some time in the WWE in 2014-15, and he had 4 matches total with the company.
In the first, with Triple H at WrestleMania 31, he looked pretty good - and then they weirdly had HHH go over clean (in the context of the no disqualification match). He'd come back a few months later to continue his feud with The Authority - now targeting Seth Rollins - and got booked for a match on RAW against The Big Show.
If I remember correctly, there was a run-in finish where Sting got attacked (giving him his first win in the WWE) and that set up a tag team match later that night - Sting and John Cena vs Seth Rollins and The Big Show (which Sting/Cena won). Then, in Sting's final WWE match, against Seth Rollins, he suffered a terrifying neck injury that forced him into retirement for five years and he almost couldn't finish that match at all. It honestly looked like the end of the road for The Stinger, especially considering his age, and it was all very sad.
Since returning to wrestling with AEW last year, though, Sting is a new man - total career rejuvenation. He's putting on tag team bangers with Darby Allin constantly, being used to perfection (where his weaknesses and limits are hidden), and he's treated like the legend he is in this business by all. It's fucking awesome to see this man do that at 62 years old.
Here's some random highlights from the past couple years….