There was a sign in the crowd that read 'I played this match on No Mercy' during the Matt Hardy vs Christian Cage match on last night's AEW Dynamite. A match between a pushed commodity in Christian, a man with name value, experience and that can still go, facing another man with name value is not necessarily a problem.. However, if one of those wrestlers, Matt Hardy, is physically limited then you have to make adjustments.
That is not how this went down:
99 Strikes in an 11 minute match is extreme. for context, in the famous 12 minute G1 clash between Ishii and Shibata, Hardy's numbers exceed Ishii's and are close to Shibata's. Hardy almost trebled Christian's strikes and doubled his grapples. Hardy achieved just over 2.5x Christian's total offence. For what reason? I can't tell you. Christian should have mowed through Hardy, not struggled and squeezed past.
Lethal vs Cassidy is another match where an arguably more valuable commodity was diminished for the benefit of someone else:
At least Cassidy got to be competitive, but did anyone really need Lethal vs Wardlow at Battle of the Belts? He is an easy win for Wardlow without anything being lost really. But Lethal's continued presence on AEW programming is fairly uninspiring. There are loads of interesting workers on the AEW roster that can put in there against Wardlow. A spirited loss to the unstoppable beast is no issue; Dante, Yuta, Ortiz, Dustin, Fenix or Allin would work.
Wheeler Yuta vs Chris Jericho was a really great television wrestling match. Wheeler Yuta deserved to get the large offence advantage over Jericho as he is a pushed commodity and has dangerous upstart booking. His push is maintained despite the loss and Jericho is not hampered by the offence disadvantage:
The 18% difference in offence is pretty large but not outlandishly noteworthy like the Cage/Hardy match. Yuta's use of bigger offensive moves; his dives and grapples, were particularly rewarding to the viewer and really drove home his domination of Jericho at times in this match.
When we take all the above and contrast the matches with each other, we can see how extreme the Cage/Hardy offence difference really was. Hardy almost doubles or actually more than doubles everyone's Offence For with the exception of Yuta. On most nights, Yuta's striking total of 81 would be the standout number.
Yuta's use of Big Offence is noteworthy however; outdoing all his competition by 5 big moves, I'd say that, without any calculation or method(!), that Yuta's performance was the most statistically complex of the night.
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