It’s Saturday night, and you know what that means? Yes, it is the first episode of AEW Collision and Saturday night’s all right for fighting, apparently, and we are at the United Center in Chicago, where we get to see CM Punk for the first time in a long time since…well, you know.

So what does the Chicago native have to get off his chest? We’ll find out as Kevin Kelly and  Nigel McGuinness have the call and Punk comes out to a heroes welcome, but oddly he has his wrestling shoes on his neck and is carrying a red bag while wearing a shirt looking like his dog Larry, stylized like “Rowdy” Roddy Piper’s old Panther shirt. 

As for what he has to say?  I’m gonna let him explain:

Yeah, he’s back, and let’s hope it’s good for business.  

But let’s go to the First Match of the Night and that is a title match for the…

TNT Championship: Wardlow (c) vs. Luchasaurus (with Christian Cage)

This is a straight-up hoss fight and Wardlow makes short work of the dino at the onset of the match.  A dropkick by Wardlow, and Luchasaurus takes a powder to compose himself and confer with Cage who distracts the Symphony Conductor and Luchasaurus kicks him off the apron.  He lands a thrust kick to Wardlow and during Picture in Picture, he keeps the champ grounded.  At one point Wardlow picks him up in an electric chair and slams Luchasaurus to the mat, followed by a tackle in the corner and a spinebuster to the dark Dino.

Lucha gets a one-armed choke slam for a two count and goes again for a goozle and Wardlow bites his thumb and then headbutts away.  He goes for an overture of his Symphony (get some culture, ya savages!), and Cage disrupts again.  Wardlow tries for another but Luchasaurus choke slams again for a two count.  Now Wardlow powerslams him, followed by a swanton.  He set him up in the corner but Luchasaurus escapes and Cage blasts Wardlow with a camera as the ref is distracted, and Luchasaurus for the three count.

Your Winner and New TNT Champion:  Luchasaurus

TNT Championship: Wardlow (C) Vs. Luchasaurus (with Christian Cage) at AEW Collision at the United Center, in Chicago, on Saturday, June 17, 2023. Photo by George Tahinos,    MORE COLLISION PHOTOS IN OUR GALLERY

Lexy Nair is  backstage with QT Marshall and Powerhouse Hobbs. Hobbs makes it clear he is the face of TNT and a new chapter has turned as he takes what is his.  

Now let’s get Tranquilo for…

Andrade El Idolo Vs. Buddy Matthews (with Julia Hart) at AEW Collision at the United Center, in Chicago, on Saturday, June 17, 2023. Photo by George Tahinos,  MORE COLLISION PHOTOS IN OUR GALLERY

Andrade El Idolo vs. Buddy Matthews (with Julia Hart)

Chants of “Welcome Back” fill the United Center for Andrade.  Now, if he can stay away from Sammy Guevara…

(Wait, what?  You mean, this show was created and set up because people backstage can’t play nice and there will be a brand separation?  Color me shocked!)

Anyway, neither man gives an inch and Matthews sends him into the ropes, but Andrade is Tranquilo.  Hart goes for his ring intro gear to distract Andrade and then it’s luchatastic for the Chicago fans.  He nails a huracanrana from the barricade to the floor, and Matthews is sent back to the ring.  Matthews catches him with a Meteora and gets a two count.  During Picture in Picture, Matthews acts hurt and the ring doctor gets in to check his status, and then…

Ads (Ugh! Whay?  Just…WHY?!)

We come back and Matthews kicks away but Andrade hits a dragon screw leg whip to hobble him, and then he kips up and nails his signature double moonsault for a two count.  Matthews comes back and uses the ropes for a DDT and covers for a close two count.  He attempts a sunset flip but his leg gives out.  He goes for a kick and Andrade nails him with a back elbow.  Matthews comes back with a knee lift and covers for another close two, and twists his legs to a clover leaf amid “This is awesome!” chants.  Andrade has him thrown into the turnbuckle, and Andrade cinches the Figure Four (Woo!) and taps out!

Your Winner via Submission:  Andrade El Idolo

Andrade goes for a handshake of sportsmanship, and Matthews pushes his hand away. He keeps his hand outstretched and lights go dim. Then Brody King and Malakai Black appear and the numbers game catches up and El Idolo is no longer tranquil.  Pobre Idolo!


We get a Scorpio Sky vignette, and that’s another face missing from the AEW roster of late…

Miro Vs Tony Nese (with “Smart” Mark Sterling) at AEW Collision at the United Center, in Chicago, on Saturday, June 17, 2023. Photo by George Tahinos,  MORE COLLISION PHOTOS IN OUR GALLERY

Tony Nese is in the ring with “Smart” Mark Sterling with the “Chicago trash” and wants to offer a group training to get the crowd into shape.  Before this goes any further, my prayers were answered because now it’s…

Miro vs Tony Nese (with “Smart” Mark Sterling)

Great to see The Redeemer back in the ring.

As for the match?  Eh, this is time for a Milagro Haiku Review™:


Are you there, Miro?

God says Nese and Sterling know

The match is Game Over.

Your Winner, because God is Good:  Miro

And now for a tag match that looks really good, we get…

Willow Nightingale & Skye Blue Vs. Toni Storm & Ruby Soho at AEW Collision at the United Center, in Chicago, on Saturday, June 17, 2023. Photo by George Tahinos,

Willow Nightingale and Skye Blue vs. Toni Storm and Ruby Soho

There is an equally-sized Punk pop for the Chicago native Blue.  As she goes to the crowd and gives her mom a hug (d’awww) the Outcasts attack.  They get in Momma Blue’s face and she slaps them around because Momma Said Knock You Out!

What?  Just me?  Ok, then.

Now the bell rings and Nightingale lights up Soho.  During Picture in Picture, Storm and Soho have the NJPW Strong champ grounded and just when it looks bleak for The Babe with The Power, we get…

Ads (Double Ugh!!!!  Why have Picture In Picture again?  Is Warner Brothers Discovery so gods damned cheap that they can’t spring a few bucks to knock that out? 

Oh, they are!  Well, mystery solved, Scooby gang)

Nightingale fights back and gets the hot tag to Skye and she is a Blue Flamita en Fuego.  Pretty soon the match becomes a Pier Four brawl and Soho ties up in a Cloverleaf, but Blue digs deep and claws at the mat and grabs the bottom ropes.  Now Nightingale comes in in and slams Storm, but Soho distracts.  Things get hectic until Blue delivers the Code Red…err, Code Blue on Storm for three for the hometown crowd.

Your Winners via Pinfall:  Skye Blue and Willow Nightingale

The Owen Hart Tournament is around the corner.  As the vignette highlights AdamCole and Dr. Britt Baker, D.M.D. as the inaugural winners, Ricky Starks declares that he will enter the tournament and be the Absolute winner.

Tony Schiavone interviews The Acclaimed and Billy Gunn at AEW Collision at the United Center, in Chicago, on Saturday, June 17, 2023. Photo by George Tahinos,    MORE COLLISION PHOTOS IN OUR GALLERY

The Acclaimed are here with Tony Schiavone, and Daddy Ass shows off a new pink Scissor outfit. Bowens says that as far as everyone is concerned,  AEW not only stands for “Acclaimed Every Wednesday” but also “Acclaimed Every Weekend.” Then everyone scissors, including Schiavone.

Jim Ross joins at commentary (hoarsely, given he had a bad fall over the week) and we now turn to the Main Event, and the little hand on the clock says It’s Clobbering Time with…

CM Punk & FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) Vs. Samoa Joe & Bullet Club Gold (Jay White & Juice Robinson) at AEW Collision at the United Center, in Chicago, on Saturday, June 17, 2023. Photo by George Tahinos,  MORE COLLISION PHOTOS IN OUR GALLERY

CM Punk and FTR (Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler) vs. Samoa Joe and Bullet Club Gold (Jay White and Juice Robinson)

White and Harwood start the match and soon the Switchblade makes him pay.  But Harwood whips him from post to post and tries for a  submission, but he escapes.  Now Robinson tags in and he starts to get Juicy,  but FTR gets the better of the Bullet Club Gold member.  Wheeler goes to town but soon Robinson trips him up and keeps him grounded.  Then FTR tag in Punk and all three land an assisted avalanche slam to the mat.  Punk covers for a two count.

Now  Joe tags in to face Punk in and the fans erupt as business picks up between the two Ring of Honor rivals.  The Samoan Submission Machine works over the Chicago native but Punk reciprocates as we learn it has been over 6518 days(!) since the two were in the middle of the squared circle.

During Picture in Picture Joe is dominant, then Robinson and Harwood get involved and keep Harwood isolated.  He is a Top Guy in Peril but manages a suplex to get out of the ring and tags in Wheeler who is an FTR en Fuego.  He catches Robinson with a spinebuster for a two count, then Punk tags in with an elbow drop to Robinson for another two count.  During another Picture in Picture, Wheeler gets in trouble again as White has him in a single-leg crab but he manages to reach the bottom ropes to break the hold.  Punk gets back in and signals for the GTS.  As he gets him in a fireman’s carry, White rakes his eyes.  Punk regains his composure and nails a roundhouse kick, and Punk sets him up on the top turnbuckle but Robinson trips him up.  White follows with a high uranage that gets a two count and then goes to the Blade Runner, but Punks pushes him into the corner, and FTR nails a suplex, followed by a splash and a Punk elbow drop to cover, but still gets another two count.  Now Joe comes in with punches and Punk stands his ground.  It then devolves into a Pier Six brawl, and despite Punk hitting Joe with a high knee, he quickly locks in the Coquina Clutch.  Robinson and White try to hold off FTR but they free themselves and get Joe to release the submission.  Robinson gets isolated and Punk nails a roundhouse kick, and then Harwood and Wheeler deliver the Big Rig, and then Punk adds the cherry on top with the GTS and covers for one, two, and three.

Your Winners via Pinfall:  FTR and CM Punk

Punk and FTR stand tall in the ring as the Chicago crowd cheers on the heroes, and Punk takes one more step to being redeemed.  Hail to the King, indeed.


George Tahinos’ AEW Collision Chicago photo gallery

AEW Collision - 06/17/2023

Final Thoughts:

Welcome back, CM Punk.  Here’s hoping Saturdays are the right time for fighting in All Elite Wrestling.  It was a good main event, and the rest of the matches were solid as well.

Also, welcome back Miro and Andrade.

For now, See ya next Saturday!