Professional wrestling is built on the stories told in and out of the ring. These often come in the form of rivalries, pitting opposing forces against one another in pursuit of bragging rights, championships, and successes. This edition of Rivalry Rewind takes a deep dive into the rivalry between The Young Bucks and The Lucha Bros.
All Out 2021 was without a doubt a phenomenal pay-per-view where AEW, in the words of Chris Jericho, “Changed the Game”. The show had moments that will go down in wrestling history as some of the biggest wrestling moments, such as Adam Cole, Ruby Soho, and Bryan Danielson making their AEW debuts, plus CM Punk’s first match in over 7 years.
However, it was the AEW World Tag Team Championship steel cage match between the Young Bucks and the Lucha Bros that perhaps stole the show. The 22-minute-long match has since been acclaimed by many as the greatest cage match of all time, with Dave Meltzer even awarding it with an enormous 5.75-star rating. Let’s take a look back at the rivalry in AEW and beyond.
The Young Bucks and The Lucha Bros: A Look-Back
The PWG and AEW Matches
The two sides had their first match against each other in 2016 in Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG), and have had numerous matches since. The two teams have met multiple times in an AEW ring. The first time they locked up in AEW was on AEW’s first-ever show, Double or Nothing in May of 2019. After this match, the two had a rematch at All Out 2019. In that match, the four men competed in a tremendous ladder match for the AAA Tag Team Championships. The Lucha Bros ended up with the winner’s purse which evened the AEW score between the two at 1-1.
The two teams met in a rematch at All Out 2021, but this time they met inside of a steel cage. This time, the AEW World Tag Team Championships, held by The Bucks were on the line. To earn the right to challenge the Jackson Brothers at All Out, Penta and Fenix won an eliminator tournament with the finals taking place on the August 27th episode of AEW Rampage, but don’t let this short 9-day difference between the final and the PPV trick you into thinking that this match isn’t an example of some good old long-term booking.
Analyzing the Long-Term Feud
Firstly, one should praise AEW for keeping the two sides away from each other for 2 years. This is something about which Tony Khan himself talked about, as this made the eventual clash even more mouthwatering. The Young Bucks won the AEW World Tag Team Titles at Full Gear 2020 after defeating FTR in a dream match for the ages.
However, after winning the titles, the Young Bucks turned heel and joined forces with Kenny Omega and the Good Brothers to form the “SuperElite” (now simply referred to as “The Elite“). In the week following, the newly turned Bucks defended their titles against Rey Fenix and Pac, who had won the Tag Team Casino Battle Royale at Revolution 2021 to earn this match. In this match, the Bucks repeatedly cheated, they even took off Fenix’s mask towards the end as they double superkicked him for the victory. This match was the first subtle tease by AEW that someday if it were the Lucha Bros who faced Nick and Matt, the end would have been different.
Adding Others to the Rivalry
This was not the only time the Bucks got a victory over one member of the Lucha Bros teaming with someone outside of the duo. On the post-Double or Nothing episode of Dynamite, it was Penta who teamed up with Pac to face the champions, but this time it was a non-title bout. The match however ended similarly with the Bucks winning after interference from their “Young Boy” Brandon Cutler. From here onwards Penta started teaming with his best friend Eddie Kingston as they looked for revenge after their respective losses to the Bucks.
Then, on the July 30th episode of Dynamite, Eddie and Penta became the first team to defeat the champions in almost a year as they got themselves a championship bout for the following week’s AEW Dynamite; Road Rager in Miami. Again, Lucha Bros having the number of Nick and Matt was visible here. Unfortunately, as the title bout was a no-DQ match, history again repeated itself as the Bucks used every dirty trick possible to successfully retain their spot as the top team in All Elite Wrestling.
The match ended when the Bucks filled the mad king’s mouth with thumbtacks and superkicked him. This was referenced in the eventual Bucks vs Lucha Bros bout on September 5th, 2021, when Penta sacrificed himself to protect his younger brother from a Matt Jackson superkick with a thumb-tacked Nike Jordan, as he has already seen his best friend fall to the vicious side of the Jackson Brothers.
The two sides met again in June 2022, when the Bucks picked up a victory in what was one of the best matches in AEW Rampage history.
The Young Bucks and The Lucha Bros: In-Conclusion
The match in the NOW Arena surpassed all the high expectations that people had for it, and once again showed the world why both the teams are the best tag teams of their generation, if not of all time. Just like their bouts in PWG, AAA Triplemania, Double or Nothing, and at All Out 2019, this match is an excellent next chapter for the insane rivalry between the two sets of brothers, and makes the fans crave for more because as the Young Bucks themselves said in their Twitter bio, they and the Lucha Bros are perhaps meant to “Fight Forever”!
Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world. As well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world. You can catch AEW Dynamite Wednesday nights at 8 PM ET on TBS and AEW Dark: Elevation (Monday nights) and AEW: Dark (Tuesday nights) at 7 PM ET on YouTube. AEW Rampage airs on TNT at 10 PM EST every Friday night.