On Wednesday, AEW is treating us to Night One of their two-week special event, New Year’s Smash. This was originally slated to take place last week. AEW needed to postpone it due to untimely passing of Brodie Lee. We’re getting matches for both AEW’s men’s AND women’s championships. We also will witness a good old-fashioned hoss fight between two members of the Inner Circle. Sports Obsessive colleagues have decided to give our best shots at trying to predict the outcome of these matches. Do you agree with our ability to tell the future?
AEW Championship: Kenny Omega(c) vs Rey Fenix
Jon: Keep your hands and feet inside the ride, folks. It’s going to be a wild one! Kenny and Rey are two of the best professional wrestlers on the planet. They have a history with each other going back to AAA. With all of the bangers that they have put on before, I don’t see this one being any different. I can only imagine what they’ll pull out to try to top their previous encounters! That said, Omega is clearly on a mission right now. The current AEW champion is on a roll and seemingly can not be stopped. The matchup will be great, but I don’t see any outcome other than The Cleaner retaining.
Junior: Kenny Omega vs. Rey Fenix will be spot set mayhem. Two amazing athletes that if you place a bet that a new move will be created, you may win the bet. I don’t see a clean finish here. Kenny will not drop the title, but Fenix will take Omega to the limit in a reputable loss.
Sam: I think this is a great match. I also believe that Don Callis can’t help, but get involved. He has to be “the guy.” Someone from the Death Triangle has to get involved. Probably Callis and whoever gets thrown out by Aubrey. This allows, after Kenny wins, for either Rich Swann or Jon Moxley to come out and cut their promo. I want it to be Jon Moxley, but since Rich Swann has Kenny next, then it would need to be him. My question is, if Swann…do we see The Good Brothers come out?
Chris: This is going to be a killer match. Kenny is not losing the title any time soon, but Rey is going to put in a performance to make us think otherwise. Watch out for “The Invisible Hand” at ringside!
Jon’s Prediction: Kenny Omega
Junior’s Prediction: Kenny Omega
Sam’s Prediction: Kenny Omega
Chris’s Prediction: Kenny Omega
AEW Women’s Championship: Hikaru Shida vs Abadon
Jon: To be totally honest, I wasn’t originally sold on Hikaru Shida as champion. Over time, however, she has changed my mind. I have grown to really like her. I’m still not too sure about Abadon, though. Something about her just doesn’t click with me. This should be a good match, but I’m going with Shida to retain. I think she still has something to prove.
Junior: This one is a toss up. Shida has been a fighting champion by fending off the top talents in AEW to retain her world championship. Abadon continues to torture Shida with mind games and her disturbing presence, and relentless aggression. Shida retains her title, but will be beaten to within an inch of her life by a furious, psychotic Abadon.
Sam: I want Shida to win. She has truly become the AEW Champion before our very eyes. She grew into the role. However, they have been playing her up as scared of Abadon. I do think Abadon comes out with a new trick to get the win. I hate it though and I want Shida to keep it.
Chris: Abadon will dominate here and take the title. It sets up the chase where Shida will eventually slay the monster. Abadon is genuinely a bit creepy. I think AEW could do worse than giving her a short run with the title.
Jon’s Prediction: Hikaru Shida
Junior’s Prediction: Hikaru Shida
Sam’s Prediction: Abadon
Chris’s Prediction: Abadon
Wardlow vs Jake Hager
Jon: This is, by far, the least anticipated match of the night for me. I’ve never really been super impressed with either one of these guys. Maybe they’ll prove me wrong. Hopefully, they treat us to a stiff, hard hitting affair that befits two men of their stature. I feel like the obvious choice to advance the story here is a Wardlow victory with an assist from MJF.
Junior: This one will be a pissing contest right from the gate. Two bulls vying to be the alpha muscle of the Inner Circle. This will be a no contest because there is no winner if either loses. It will not benefit either wrestler to record a win while in the same team. The match will simply showcase their talents, but if there has to be a winner. Then it will be Wardlow. He needs the push and Hager doesn’t. Hager just needs to remind the fans why he is there.
Sam: Hopefully, this isn’t a boring one. I think Hager is usually boring. Even Moxley couldn’t get a very good match out of him. I think we get to see Wardlow’s athletic talent in this one. Jim Ross came out on the Grilling JR podcast and said that Wardlow is AEW’s Next Big Thing, so I look for him to win.
Chris: The curious relationship between The Inner Circle has led us to this—a battle between Jericho’s and MJF’s henchmen respectively. After being cracked in the head with a cane last week by Brodie Lee Jr, MJF is not going to want to lose face. I suspect he’ll interfere here to give Wardlow the win. It will push the tension further in the direction of a Jericho/MJF battle in the future.
Jon’s Prediction: Wardlow
Junior’s Prediction: Wardlow
Sam’s Prediction: Wardlow
Chris’s Prediction: Wardlow
Cody vs Matt Sydal
Jon: I really like Matt Sydal. I’m extremely pumped that he’s “All Elite,” but Cody loves himself a whole awful lot. This should be a good match, but I just don’t see The American Nightmare losing here. He gets my vote in this one.
Junior: This match is very interesting. There’s no belt on the line. Sydal has no alliance with a faction, so what’s the outcome here? Cody is grooming another superstar. He loses nothing by taking a loss here to Sydal, but it won’t come easy. Cody and Sydal put on a contest that marvels any match on the card. It’s a new year to flourish with new talent. Cody has established himself as a cornerstone in AEW. Sydal has had good matches on Dark and some on Dynamite. It’s his time for him to start paying his rent on the contract that they’ve invested in him. A hard fought match, but Sydal upsets Cody to grab the victory. Matt Sydal will find his place in line as an AEW championship contender.
Sam: I think this could be where a lot of people finally see what Matt Sydal can do. We all know Cody is going to make him look good. He is also going to be tortured some by Cody to show that his 150 lbs body can take it. I really think after his debut went awful, he will win or maybe even a time limit.
Chris: He might have a third eye, but does Matt Sydal have what it takes to beat the “American Nightmare?” Maybe, if Team Taz makes an appearance. Does this mean we’ll see Sting and Darby too? Whatever the case might be, I can’t see Cody taking a loss here.
Jon’s Prediction: Cody
Junior’s Prediction: Matt Sydal
Sam’s Prediction: Matt Sydal
Chris’s Prediction: Cody
Young Bucks & SCU vs The Acclaimed & The Hybrid 2
Jon: This is tougher than it should be, really. I want to say the Bucks and SCU pick up the clear victory. But I also feel like The Acclaimed are rising to stardom extremely quickly. They could benefit from some sort of win over the AEW tag team champions. I think that happens, but I doubt that it will be a clean victory. Either way, this match with be past paced and fun.
Junior: This contest only requires one part of your seat…the edge. This match will do nothing more than establish the red-hot tag team division in AEW. Although this is an 8-man tag match, the three teams in the ring with the Bucks will get themselves over more than ever. This will no doubt be a fast paced, high flying contest loaded with false finishes and several team combo moves that defy that of conventional wrestling as we know it. One on one, there’s no team that has been hotter than the Bucks. SCU is very polished and covert as a team, but their lack of willingness to break the rules will be what causes their team to record a loss. I’m picking The Acclaimed and TH2 to grab the win over SCU and the Bucks.
Sam: My immediate first thought seeing this was oh, they are putting over The Acclaimed by using SCU. Maybe they will. I think Hybrid 2 is ready to catch fire though. I wish they would let them be singles wrestlers. Their styles are so different. I know that’s why they are together though. I actually think Angelico ends up being the star of the match using all his different techniques of submissions. But The Acclaimed show off at the end and it costs them or they pin Christopher Daniels. But I’m going with the veterans here.
Chris: This should be a straight win for The Bucks and SCU. Not too much to say here. Although I’d love it if SCU turned on The Bucks to start a feud with them for the tag titles. Don’t think it’ll happen, though.
Jon’s Prediction: The Acclaimed & The Hybrid 2
Junior’s Prediction: The Acclaimed and The Hybrid 2
Sam’s Prediction: Young Bucks & SCU
Chris’s Prediction: Young Bucks & SCU
That’s it for Night One of AEW’s New Year’s Smash. What do you think of our predictions? Do you agree or are we way off? Let us know in the comments and on Twitter by following: @ShartzerJon, @bashlander, @Sam4413, @ChrisFlackett and @SportsObsessive.