September 1, 2018
Sears Centre
Hoffman Estates, IL

Watch: PPV / Fite.TV / NJPW World / Honor Club

The night of September 1, 2018 birthed something truly historic that changed the landscape of independent professional wrestling forever. The Cody Rhodes and Young Bucks produce show—ALL IN—was a showcase of the thriving wrestling scene from around the world. A supershow in every sense of the word.

Being the first United States, non-WWE/WCW show since 1993 to draw over 10,000 fans, ALL IN proved that wrestling is as hot as ever. ALL IN featured talent representing AAA, CMLL, NJPW, and ROH, men and women that have created stars out of themselves without being in the most popular wrestling company.

Those who wrestled in the Sears Centre on September 1 went ALL IN on themselves and created a night that nobody in wrestling will ever forget.

Regardless of your opinion on Cody, The Young Bucks Bucks, Kenny Omega, or anyone else on the card, you cannot write off this show as being just another wrestling show. What they’ve accomplished (alongside Conrad Thompson with Starrcast) will help all levels of professional wrestling for years to come.

This may be the best-built wrestling card of the year. Nearly every match had a story to accompany it and each of those stories has been building for months thanks to the Being The Elite YouTube channel. 10,000 people crammed in the Sears Centre because of coherent, logical, storytelling.


Unfortunately, I had no way to watch the ZERO HOUR special that aired on WGN America. From what I have seen from FanCam clips and GIFs online, the battle royale looked to be well booked and a fun ride. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again here, Jordynne Grace, Ethan Page, and Marko Stunt are all great and have very very bright futures ahead of them. The Flip winning reveal was well done and he is a guy who has benefited tremendously from the Being The Elite series. Flip is over as rover thanks to the Bucks’ series, a testament to how well simple storytelling works in getting a guy over.


Maxwell Jacob Friedman is the best heel in pro wrestling today, he gets “IT.” It’s nice seeing a young talent like him getting the opportunity to shine on this big of a show, on pay-per-view. I really enjoyed this match and I think it set a good pace for the rest of the show on what we could expect.

Matt Cross being noted as “one of the best-kept secrets in professional wrestling” is one of the truest statements I have ever heard as this guy has been awesome since he started in the business. I always love a good Sasuke Special and this one has one of those. Some good stuff with Cross getting the win in 9:23. Enjoyable.


Stephen Amell is not a wrestler, we all know that but this was still a very enjoyable match. Amell clearly worked hard and he had the perfect dance partner in Christopher Daniels. While a little clunky, this match was all about the long-term storytelling. The inclusion of the table played off the BTE story perfectly and allowed the match to breathe comfortably while leading to its conclusion. I’m happy that Amell DID THE DEAL, he did a bunch of moves that he didn’t need to do but he did anyway. For that, he has earned my respect completely — especially for that sick table bump. That particular bump was an amazing display of wrestling psychology 101, with Daniels coaxing Amell into the jump. I have seen some criticize the way Daniels put himself on the table, but that played into the story of the finish. Daniels got the win in a very fun 12:30, Amell might be my favourite celebrity wrestler ever.


I’m sure the ghost of Adam Cole is smiling at the tribute from Britt Baker who used his former indie song for her entrance. Unfortunately, Baker and everyone else in the match was overshadowed by Tessa Blanchard who looked like an absolute star from the moment her music hit.

This was a very good four-way that managed to showcase the strengths of all four competitors. All four of them held their own in the ring and differentiated themselves from one another – a great feat seeing as they only had twelve minutes.

Many of the moves were crisp, while some were a bit sloppy but it worked within the Four Corner Survival match type. Blanchard got the win over Green at 12:41 and I really enjoyed the failed attempt to break up the winning pin. It really put over the intensity and the importance of the win. Some more good stuff in one of the best matches of the night.


I absolutely love the idea of both Rhodes and Aldis having their own cornermen, it provided such a unique visual that really put this over as a very important match in both competitors’ careers. This crowd was absolutely electric for the entire bout and this felt like something huge. I really liked the feel of this match, it felt like a nice combination of the old school NWA 80’s wrestling match combined with the modern style.

Nick Aldis was the perfect choice to bridge the NWA from the Tim Storm era to the Cody Rhodes era. He did his job well here and put over the Alliance by looking like a star in front of this huge audience. Not only does it help boost Cody’s image as the Face of the NWA right now, but it also adds a nice dynamic of having an established heel for an eventual rematch. The commentary added a nice touch to the match and Cody getting colour also pushed this to the next level. This may not be everybody’s cup of tea but I thought this was fantastic. A very good story told with the nice emotional win being the climax at 22:01. Awesome!


This was a beautiful contrast to the match prior as this was wild display from the word “Go.” Joey Janela is such a good talent and pairing him up with Hangman Page provided a stellar contest that allowed Page to be built as a figurative and literal killer. Some of the power moves from Page looked crisp and Janela sold them beautifully. Once again, the storytelling of the BTE plot of Page being afraid of his own boots brought us a fantastic moment that was accentuated by Page’s acting abilities. The finish was absolutely bonkers and was a great visual. The match went 20:08 but it flew by – a great match with good weapons usage.

The talk of the show was the post-match antics where Joey Ryan’s boner revived him (seriously) and he walked out with a parade of penises to one of the biggest pops of the night. The penis druids was one of the weirdest but amusing things I have ever seen in wrestling. Hangman Page was carried out by walking, talking, penii and Joey Ryan’s penis stood tall in the middle of the Sears Centre.

Yes, this really happened.


As expected Lethal came out as “BLACK MACHISMO” with the added bonus of LANNY F’N POFFO! What a great throwback to insert some more fun to the show.

While the Macho Man stuff was good fun, the match these two had was good and Flip stood out with his displays of athleticism.

Flip was really good in this match and I wish he would have won here. The fans would have gone nuts. All in all, this was a good match but Flip really should have won it.


Pentagon has one of the best looks in wrestling. While this is the biggest stage in the United States that he has wrestled on, he did not feel out of place against Kenny Omega. This was fast-paced and well worked, exactly what you would expect from one of the best from Mexico versus one of the best from Canada. The back and forth between these two guys created a certain big match energy for the bout, but it did feel like there was no chance Penta was winning as Omega is the IWGP Heavyweight Champion. Even with that, this match was awesome and I hope these two face off in a rematch down the line.

The post-match angle saw Chris Jericho (in Penta’s gear) attacking Omega and was fantastically done. The reveal was perfect and the production really helped it. Seeing Chris Jericho in a non-WWE ring in America was a great visual and earned a great pop.


This went a little long, but it was a good wrestling match nonetheless.

The back and forth between the two competitors allowed the fans to get into the match and provided some good near falls. Seeing as Marty is a regular of BTE, I thought there was a chance he would walk out the winner of this match, unlike the earlier Pentagon match.

The match picked up near the end and Okada proved to be the better man with two Rainmakers to earn the W at 26:05.


This was insane. People were flying all over the place to start. The Mysterio and Kota Ibushi staredown and back-and-forth was excellent and I would love to get a proper singles match between the two. Fenix is a treat to watch and is one of the best flyers in the world right now. I will always pop for the reaction the 619 gets when a guy is on the ropes. The only downside of this match is it was fairly short. Clocking in at only 11:48, this was the second shortest match of the night. The spots were nuts and the style of match was certainly my type of match. Good stuff but everything felt crammed as they were short on time. The PPV went dark right after the match and the announcers didn’t even finish signing off as everything went off the air. A good match but I hope we eventually get round two so this can go longer.

Final Thoughts:

ALL IN was not only a great PPV but a historic event in pro wrestling history. Everything on the show felt fresh and I felt rewarded as a viewer of Being The Elite. If you have yet to see this show, definitely do so. There will be something on this card that you will like.