AEW Blood & Guts Should Take a Break Until…


All Elite Wrestling just had its second-ever Blood & Guts match, which saw Blackpool Combat Club beat Jericho Appreciation Society in a fantastic contest.

Most people would be immediately thinking “I can’t wait to see that again! When is the next one going to take place?” Traditionally, I would think the same. Part of me does. However, I’m actually going to go in the opposite direction, even more so.

I think AEW should hold off on doing another Blood & Guts match. In fact, I’ll go so far as to say it shouldn’t happen until one match in particular is on the books.

Why Wait?

Two phrases worth remembering are “sometimes, less is more” and “absence makes the heart grow fonder.” It doesn’t apply to all scenarios, but I do think Blood & Guts is a fitting example.

Hell in a Cell has lost so much of its value for a number of reasons. Of course, WWE not allowing more hardcore action and playing it safe is one, but another of the main culprits is that we get it every single year like clockwork. Even if there isn’t a feud worthy of being inside the cage that once was the ultimate feud-ender, just because it’s time for the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view, WWE decides to slap something together.

In order for Blood & Guts to stay the special attraction, it has to be special. It can’t be something we expect all the time around May/June just because. There has to be enough tension between two groups to go all out and not just be Death Triangle and a few others against The House of Black and Andrade’s crew or something.

Blood & Guts should come out when two factions have been feuding for a few months, exhausted all their one-on-one and tag team matches, and are ready to bury each other once and for all.

So What’s That Exception(s) We’re Waiting For?

To preserve this gimmick’s credibility, we need the biggest possible faction warfare this company can produce and the original plan of Blood & Guts, before things got derailed.

We need The Elite.

But I’m not talking about Adam Cole, The Young Bucks, reDRagon, Kenny Omega and company against some random group of people put together to be the opposition. I think this needs to revolve entirely around The Elite and be about the faction splintering out.

There are two possible scenarios I could imagine being worth the next Blood & Guts, being The Elite vs. Bullet Club at the next Forbidden Door event (assuming it returns in 2023) or The Elite vs. The Undisputed Originals (or whatever they want to call themselves, as that’s a pretty lame name in my opinion).

The Bullet Club one I think is less likely. You can get away much easier with a regular multi-man tag team match at Forbidden Door and saving the cage for something else. Plus, I don’t know if New Japan would want its guys getting so banged up for another company’s show, all things considered. But Elite vs. Undisputed is in-house. That is much easier to pull off.

It all depends on Roderick Strong, though. You can’t do the match until he’s in the company, as anything less would feel like a missed opportunity.

Granted, that might not be too far off. We know Strong requested his release a few months back, but wasn’t granted it. He’s appeared on NXT television regularly since, but has been butting heads with the rest of Diamond Mine. This upcoming week at Great American Bash, he’s teaming with Damon Kemp to fight The Creed Brothers, which could be what sparks his excommunication from the group.

Maybe that’s all WWE was waiting on—for him to finish out that story and then, they’ll reconsider letting him go. His contract is going to expire eventually and I doubt he’ll re-sign, particularly with his wife, Marina Shafir, being in AEW, along with the rest of his buds.

His addition to the roster should be what springs this separation, along with the return of Kenny Omega, whenever he’s healed up and ready to go and these can correlate.

Last year, Blood & Guts was five-on-five. This year, it was six-on-six. But we’ve seen War Games with The Undisputed ERA and it was amazing. We can do four-on-four and make it one of the best matches AEW will ever have.

Cole leads Kyle O’Reilly, Bobby Fish and Roderick Strong. Omega leads The Young Bucks and probably Hangman Adam Page. In a way, it’s “the original Elite that started this company, minus Cody Rhodes, against the parallel earth version of them that they were up against in NXT”

Even if it takes more than a year to get to that point, I think it will mean so much more if Blood & Guts doesn’t happen again until these two factions can fight. That way, when one of the teams pulls out the promo of “We’re going to fight in Blood & Guts”, the fans will go nuts, just like they used to when someone would call out another for Hell in a Cell.

Admittedly, if two other great factions spring up and AEW does this match before then, it’ll probably still be great. This isn’t some death knell. But too much of a good thing can potentially spoil the fans, and I want Blood & Guts to remain something that sends shivers down your spine when you hear it is going to happen.

As far as I’m concerned, there is no bigger match that can take place inside that structure than the implosion of The Elite—so much so that I’m willing to wait on another until getting that specific lineup.

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