Sting recently announced his retirement from wrestling, with his last match being held at AEW Revolution 2024. It will be three years after his debut match for AEW, and since then he has had 20 great matches for fans to look back on and enjoy.
This is just what we’re doing here. We have picked the 10 best matches from Sting’s AEW run, ranking them from the worst to the best and picking what the fans have voted as the greatest AEW matches Sting has had since 2021. All of these matches are tag team matches, because Sting has confirmed he cannot wrestle a singles match at his age anymore.
10. Sting, Darby Allin, Jeff Hardy & Matt Hardy vs Isiah Kassidy, Marq Quen, The Blade & The Butcher
Starting off the list of Sting’s greatest matches is one of the most instance multi-man matches in AEW history. In the never-ending Hardys vs Andrade feud, one standout moment was this match that saw Sting soar through the air and crash down through tables and on people – and that’s not even starting on what Jeff Hardy does.
Despite a combined age of about 200, the team of The Hardys, Sting and Darby Allin put their body on the line in this No-DQ match, despite the occasion not really calling for it. The bout is filled with moments that make you think “why are they doing this!”, as Sting and Jeff Hardy roll back the years in a match that is pure fun to watch.
Darby Allin also gets thrown down some stairs – how is he still alive? (More on how he should be dead in literally every match on this list).
9. Andrade El Idolo, Isiah Kassidy & Matt Hardy vs. Darby Allin, Sammy Guevara & Sting
Another multi-man, spot-heavy bout involving the men from the previous bout, but this time with Sammy Guevara involved to add some flips to the insanity. He teamed with Sting and Darby Allin in another tornado tag match that made the best use of Sting – big jumps and no-selling everything, jumping up and beating his chest to the roar of the crowd.
It was a fun match that was unlike anything else on the show. All six men put everything on the line, and did all they could to set up Sting to steal the show and pop the crowd to finish the match. His performance in turn made everyone a bigger star, and is the perfect way to use The Stinger in his later years.
8. Sting & Darby Allin vs Chris Jericho & Sammy Guevara
Sting wrestled Chris Jericho for the first time a week before this match (in Sting’s worst AEW match ever), but this two-on-two match was the dream match fans wanted between the two. Sting and Chris Jericho shared the ring many occasions, doing some great wrestling while Darby Allin and Sammy Guevara flew around the ring and took huge bumps.
The match was made a Tornado Tag Match, and with Chris Jericho wrestling as incredibly cringeworthy “Painmaker” gimmick, it was always going to be absolute chaos – in the best way possible. The only big issue with the match was Sting failing to roll off a table in time, so Sammy Guevara’s 630-splash hit him full force and knocked the wind out of him. Sting had to get into the ring for the finish, which made Guevara look really bad, which knocks the bout down the list of Sting’s best matches ever so slightly.
7. Sting & Darby Allin vs House of Black
While not Sting’s best performance, the clash between Sting & Darby Allin and Brody King & Buddy Mattheews at Grand Slam 2022 was carried by the incredible performance of the other three men in the match. Brody King manhandled Allin, tossing him around for some huge bumps throughout, while Buddy Matthews continued his bad-Kenny Omega impression with great effect.
As most no-disqualification matches in AEW, weapons and big spots were the heart of this match. Sting was put through tables and handcuffed during the match, although he did struggle to keep up with the rest of the match. The Great Muta showed up at the end to save Sting, leading to an all-time great moment in AEW history.
6. Sting & Darby Allin vs Christian Cage & Swerve Strickland
Sting wrestled his first match in the UK for a decade when he teamed with Darby Allin at the historic “All In” show in 2023. At Wembley Stadium, the pair teamed up to do battle with Swerve Strickland and Christian Cage (after AR Fox was taken out of the match a week prior) in the first ever tag team coffin match in AEW history.
The match kicked off with incredible hype, as Tony Khan forked out the money to secure Metallica’s “Seek and Destroy” for Sting’s entrance, and the bout continued on from that. The match was fast-paced (despite the 113 combined age for Cage and Sting) and did not let up, with some big bumps taken from all involved. Sting even took a splash onto the coffin, which was awesome, but inadvisable at 64-years-old.
5. Sting & Darby Allin vs Ethan Page & Scorpio Sky
Following his debut match at AEW Revolution 2021 (more on that match later on in the list), Sting began to feel like he could get back into the ring, in front of a live crowd again. He took bumps in the ring prior to his first match (Brian Cage famously powerbombed him in the ring on Dynamite), but did not feel like he could put on a live match before Revolution 2021.
At Double or Nothing 2021, Sting knew he could go. Locked in a rivalry with Men of the Year (Ethan Page and Scorpio Sky), he teamed with Darby Allin to face off with the duo in a live match. Showing supreme confidence, he started the match with a dive from the stage onto his opponents, and put on a great performance in his first live match since facing Seth Rollins at Night of Champions 2015.
4. Sting & Darby Allin vs FTR
One of Sting’s best matches is not one you’d have expected him to win, but The Icon teamed with Darby Allin to beat FTR at the first ever AEW Grand Slam event. It’s very hard to not have your best match against FTR, but Sting certainly played his part in this great match at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
FTR played the ultimate heels in this match, hearkening back to their role in NXT as “The Revival”. Despite the fast-paced nature of the bout (and it was lightning-quick), the 62-year-old Sting managed to keep up with all the spots and held his own with three of AEW’s top wrestlers. The match was tons of fun and saw some amazing comebacks from Sting and Darby, to help pick up the win against FTR.
3. Sting, Darby Allin & Shingo Tagaki vs Bullet Club
This match looks like a bizarre WWE 2K Universe Mode match, but it did actually happen at Forbidden Door 2022. The Young Bucks turned back the clock and rejoined Bullet Club for one night only, teaming with El Phatasmo to take on Sting, Darby Allin and former IWGP World Heavyweight Champion Shingo Tagaki.
The Young Bucks hit all of their classic spots from their time in NJPW (ones that thoroughly annoyed the fans back in the day) and generally acted as inredibly annoying individuals – which made the eventual Sting hot tag even better. The match built up to Sting getting into the ring, and the crowd erupted when The Stinger finally made his appearance.
2. Sting & Darby Allin vs Team Taz
Sting’s debut match in AEW was different to the rest of his matches, but definitely deserves a spot on this list. With his first match back in wrestling for six-years, fans weren’t sure that Sting would be able to go in the ring anymore (especially at the age of 61). Sting wasn’t either, so AEW decided to pre-tape the match, doing a cinematic-style match that was innovated by The Hardys in TNA.
Filmed in an abandoned concrete facility, Sting’s debut in AEW was a fantastic match. The pre-taped nature allowed for some huge stunts to be performed by Allin, and a host of weapons and innovative ways to inflict pain were utilized by all four men. Sting won the match for him tea, but it was a star-making performance for everybody involved.
1. Sting, Darby Allin & CM Punk vs MJF & FTR
One of the most fun matches AEW have ever put on was the first time Sting and CM Punk shared the ring together in AEW. In the midst of CM Punk’s rivalry with MJF in 2021 and 2022, he teamed up with Sting and Darby Allin to take on three members of the Pinnacle – MJF, Cash Wheeler and Dax Harwood.
This was the match where CM Punk paid homage to Sting by painting his face like the classic “Surfer Sting“, while Sting also referenced Punk with his own face paint. The match carried on the fun, with Punk chasing MJF all around the arena while Sting hit all his classic spots in the ring with FTR.
If you want a five-star mat classic, this match isn’t it. But if you want to switch off your brain and have some fun watching some of the all-time greats entertain a hot crowd, this match is for you and is the reason why this is Sting’s best match in AEW.
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.