Tony Kahn once again left the fans wanting more. Yes, you read that right, a professional wrestling company leaving the fans wanting more. What a novel concept that is right? But that is exactly what AEW did Wednesday night during their Winter Is Coming Special headlined by the AEW World Championship match Hangman Adam Page vs Bryan Danielson. Many people thought Page would get the clean victory going into the match, however, Tony Kahn pulled an old rabbit out of his hat. Just as I thought he would use the time limit draw to have another pay-off match down the road between these two wrestlers. And like with Kenny Omega and Danielson, this was the right call.
The fans did not agree with the decision when the bell rang and Justin Roberts announced a draw as boos could be echoed throughout Curtis Culwell Center. However, this was the only possible outcome. AEW in its short history has not used a time limit draw often, but when they do it is perfect. This is now the second time in four months AEW used the limit draw to prolong a storyline. And it is pure genius despite what others want.
Hangman Adam Page vs Bryan Danielson Ends In A Draw
Ever since Bryan Danielson debuted at All Out you were wondering when he would get the shot at the title. After winning the World Title Eliminator Tournament at Full Gear, Danielson won the right to challenge the champion. Danielson really wanted it to be Omega, especially after the draw at AEW Grand Slam. However, AEW had to the payoff of the two-year storyline with Page and Omega. Which was the right call in the end. But how was this match going to be built? AEW did a great job building to this match as Danielson turned into a heel, and my God was it some of his best work ever.
Danielson ran through Dark Order members defeating them in different ways in their home towns. Danielson is such a great heel. Just go back to his run in WWE as champ being the planet saviour. Danielson got under the skin of Page, even saying how Page wanted to challenge him after a match calling that “coward sh*t.” The work was brilliant and Tony Kahn was a genius to get to this point. After weeks of building up the match, AEW set the stage for Winter Is Coming.
Was It The Right Result?
First off, if you haven’t watched the match go back and watch it because it is up there for match of the year contention. But with only four matches listed, you knew something was up heading into this match. And just like AEW Grand Slam, when Danielson’s music hit to open the show, you had a feeling a draw could be in the air. The crowd was jacked up for this one as it was a mixed crowd for sure. Danielson sure knows how to pace a match, because the first 20 minutes, where the match normally leads to the final 10 minutes of false finishes, led to another angle in the match. Just brilliance on Danielson’s part.
Just like he did with the build-up to the match, Danielson got under the skin of Page. He frustrated Page at every turn during the match playing the cocky heel that knows every wrestling hold. Page was able to mount a comeback around the 30-minute mark after Danielson missed a kick and instead of kicking Page, kicked the ring post. Now Page had a body part to work on after Danielson was working over Page’s shoulder.
With the 30-minute mark passing, you knew something was up with this match. It felt like a draw was coming. The final 10 minutes was great with Danielson hitting a DDT on Page on the exposed concrete. Page tried to splash Danielson through a table and missed. Each wrestler traded submission moves. Page hit Dead Eye on Danielson, but only got a two-count. You could see Page’s frustration come out. The ending came when Page hit Danielson with this big clothesline and after he hit the Buck-Shot Lariat on Danielson, the bell went off and the match was a draw.
This match did not drag at all, while some others thought it did. Omega’s match with Danielson went 30 minutes and it felt shorter. This match went 60 minutes and it felt shorter. And while some wanted an outcome, this result leaves the door open for more. Just a great way to open the Winter Is Coming.
The perfect way to start this feud was having a time-limit draw because now Page and Danielson can have a rematch at the Battle of the Belts in January. Plus another storyline can be around Danielson and can he ever win the big one in AEW.