Wednesday night on AEW Dynamite, the world witnessed a massive upset, as The Gunns (Colten & Austin Gunn) were able to take the AEW Tag Team Championship from The Acclaimed (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens) via questionable circumstances in the main event. The fact that All Elite Wrestling (AEW) had invested so much television time and merchandise into building The Acclaim, only for them to drop the titles to the Gunns, might have stunned many fans. The build for the Gunns, however, has been a long and well plotted story.
In 2020, the Gunns were introduced as just another tag team, also regularly serving as crowd participants during the pandemic era at Daily’s Place in Jacksonville, Florida. During 2020 and into 2021, the Gunns continued a slow build alongside their father, Billy Gunn, as the Gunn Club. This family stable allowed the Gunns to showcase not only their in-ring ability but also their mic skills as well.
Over the past few years, the Gunns have been featured on a regular basis on all of AEW’s shows, exposing them to a large audience. This exposure has allowed them to step out of the shadow of the large pool of tag-teams AEW showcases. With the massive number of tag teams floating around the AEW roster and limited direction for many, what’s next for The Gunns?
Don’t Call It A Comeback
The Acclaimed and Gunns have built a strong working relationship not only through the AEW Tag Team Championships but also through their common ally, Billy Gunn. After Billy Gunn accepted the challenge by his sons for a title shot and cost The Acclaimed the tag team championships through an unwanted match-up, where does Billy Gunn now stand? Does Billy Gunn’s allegiance still rest with The Acclaimed now that they have no titles? Perhaps, Billy Gunn pulls the trigger and turns on The Acclaimed and grooms his sons to be long term champions?
These questions would/could be answered over the next few months. The payoff to this feud will involve Billy Gunn in some fashion as his partnership is called into question. No matter the scenario, this feud can continue for months.
Knock at the Door
Over the past few months, the House of Black have not been involved in any title chases. Their focus has been sporadic and their direction unknown. The potential for an interesting feud between the Gunns and House of Black leaves plenty to the imagination. The feud could be centered around the idea of HoB attempting to recruit Billy Gunn while leaving the Gunns doing everything they can to keep him from the dark side.
This feud could be interesting for reasons outside of the norm HoB interactions though. Both teams have unique approaches when it comes to mic work and are ready for PPV match-ups. If this feud takes off, both teams stand to benefit from the focus on their mic skills and character appeal. Could this be the feud that plunges the AEW tag division into “darkness”?
A Proud Moment
This potential feud needs no Billy Gunn involvement. Proud N’ Powerful have been missing in action due to an injury that Santana received months ago in 2022 – although it has also been acknowledged that Santana & Ortiz’s real-life friendship has fallen apart and resulted in the permanent end of the tag team. With the potential to see Santana return and rejoin Ortiz in the tag team division, a feud with the current champs, the Gunns, seems hopeful, if not unlikely. However, these two teams have had limited interaction and the clash of Proud N’ Powerful’s no nonsense style and the Gunn’s brash approach to wrestling means things could get very interesting, very fast. Could the Gunns be the team to pass the titles onto the well deserving Santana and Ortiz or will the world continue to wait for a Proud N’ Powerful title reign?
The Gunns are officially the AEW Tag Team Champions. Their path going forward is one of potential nightmares and tough guy opponents. No matter who sets their sights on the Gunns, the mics are sure to be hot and the wins cheap. Time will tell if the same reason they won the titles, also costs them the titles.
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Photo Credits: AEW
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.