A huge night we have in store with PAC vs. Trent, Private Party vs. Dark Order, Riho and Shanna vs. Jamie Hayter and Emi Sakura, and a massive main event Hangman Page and Kenny Omega vs. Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara!
Plus, “The American Nightmare” Cody will be interviewed by Tony Shivani ahead of his AEW World Heavyweight Championship Match against “Le Champion” Chris Jericho this Saturday at Full Gear!
The Bastard PAC vs. Trent
The show opened with “The Bastard” PAC making his slow methodical entrance for his match against Trent who is accompanied by Chuck Taylor and Orange Cassidy who made their way down to ringside. The announcers state that this is a rubber match since both competitors have traded victories in the past.
The match started off with high-octane offense and counters by both competitors. The Bastard rolled outside for a breather but was stopped by Cassidy. Trent caught his foe with a Northern Lights Suplex for a near-fall. The action spilled outside as PAC slammed his opponent against the barricade and slammed Trent headfirst onto the ramp. The experienced veteran landed a beautiful corkscrew moonsault wiping out his foe.
The fan-favorite attempted a comeback but was caught in a wicked German for a near-fall. After The Bastard blasted Cassidy with a stiff kick, Trent finally turned things around with vicious lariats followed by a stunning Senton to the outside.
The babyface smashed PAC’s head off with a running stiff kick for a 2.8. Trent delivered a magnificent swinging DDT for yet another near-fall. Both competitors are beating the hell out of each other. The finish came when PAC executed The Black Arrow and Trent kicked out but he was unable to escape The Brutalizer for the tap-out.
After the match, PAC delivered a scathing promo to his long-time rival Hangman Page declaring he’ll make an example of him again on Saturday.
Opinion: AEW provided yet another explosive opening match that they’ve perfected over the past month. I’m not sure PAC even noticed he was in the ring with Trent as he beat the bloody hell out of his opponent. The Bastard made an example out of Trent as heads into Full Gear for a fight with Hangman Page.
The American Nightmare Cody made his entrance and the l hometown Charlotte crowd gave him a hero’s welcome. Cody then proceeded to deliver one of the most passionate and thought-provoking promos that in my opinion, is right up there with CM Punk’s Pipebomb in 2011. He pieces together how important his AEW World Heavyweight Championship match is this Saturday.
Opinion: Man, Cody is a freaking genius and when he speaks people listen. To just think, if WWE would have realized his true potential and pushed him to the main event there may not be AEW at all. There are few wrestlers who have such a strong connection to the fans and can pull the heartstrings with their undeniable passion and Cody is one of those few.
The inaugural AEW Tag Team Champions SCU makes their way down to commentary to scout their competition for Full Gear.
Dark Order vs. Private Party: Winner Added to Tag Team Championship Match
As soon as the bell rang, Stu Grayson came right out of the gate firing on all cylinders pummeling Mark Quen and tag to Evil Uno and both engaged in a two-on-one beatdown. Isiah Kassidy entered the match with explosive high-octane offense executing some great double-team maneuvers.
A thunderous urinagi allowed Dark Order to regain control. A suplex from Kassidy mounted a small comeback to tag in Quen but was cut off by a sidewalk slam/top rope leg drop combo. A failed Fatality allowed the high-flyer to execute a series of stunning dropkicks to finally gain some momentum.
A fantastic counter to a double-team maneuver allowed Grayson to regain control and tag in Uno who executed a nasty-looking neckbreaker to the knee for a near-fall. A magnificent overhead belly-to-belly suplex allowed a cannonball/450 splash combo. Dark Order was sent crashing into each other which gave Private Party to execute Gin and Juice for the win.
Opinion: The Dark Order has a great gimmick with an ominous presence that portrays them as a dangerous force to be reckoned with. Grayson and Uno will be great future challengers for SCU after they finish their feud with The Lucha Bros. Private Party, on the other hand, could very easily walk into as the underdogs Baltimore, MD and walk out of Full Gear as the new tag team champions. We now have an explosive triple-threat-match set up between all three teams!
A wonderful parody vignette aired featuring Le Champion Chris Jericho with members of The Inner Circle and previous teachers arrogantly chalking up Jericho as the greatest thing since sliced bread.
Riho and Shanna vs. Jamie Hayter and Emi Sakura
Champion and her challenger/mentor started the match with a battle of one-upwomanship. Sakura tossing the Women’s Champion around like a rag toy. Jamie Hayter cut Riho off from making the tag to Shanna. A stiff knee strike allowed Shanna to enter the match who delivered some arm drags and an uppercut to Sakura.
Shanna executed some well-placed kicks followed by a swinging neckbreaker to gain a near-fall. Sakura countered a tiger kick from the champion into a double-hooked neckbreaker to the knee which allowed Hayter to enter the match and punish Riho heading into the break.
We return to see the young up-and-comer delivering a vicious beating to the champion but a perfectly-timed headscissors takedown allowed Shanna to re-enter the match. Rapid-fire chops in the corner and a hard strike picked up another near-fall. Sakura cut off a tag which gave Hayter the opportunity to execute a nasty-looking Chokeslam/knee combo. Sakura entered into a chorus of boos from the Charlotte crowd.
A hurricanrana from Shanna sent Sakura to the outside and she executed a double crossbody off the top rope. A double-hooked DDT scored a 2.9 count. The heels regained control to execute some great double-team maneuvers for another near-fall. Sakura almost picked up the victory after landing a splash off the top rope but Riho broke it up from a massive double-stomp.
Shanna made the tag to the champion who faced off with her mentor with a series of high-octane pinfall attempts for a long near-fall but the veteran managed to use a la magistral cradle to outsmart her opponent at Full Gear and pick up a major victory ahead of their championship match.
Opinion: The concept for this match is simple giving Sakura a win over the Women’s Champion ahead of their match this Saturday and garnish some heel heat for the veteran. It also provided the two newest additions to the women’s division a great opportunity to showcase their talents and continue the development of their characters.
Before we went to commercial, a vignette aired hyping Brandi Rhodes and Kharma’s dangerous partnership.
Brandon Cutler vs. Shawn Spears
The match started off with arm wrenches until Spears leveled him with a lariat. Cutler bounced back with some fantastic high-octane offense including a backflip to mock his opponent’s Perfect 10 hand gesture. After a perfectly-timed distraction from Tully Blanchard, Spears viciously attacked the young up-and-comer on the outside.
Back in the ring, Spears continued the onslaught until a high kick gave Cutler the opening to mount a small comeback with devastating stiff kicks. The egocentric heel turned things around and hit the Death Valley Driver for the victory.
After the match, “The Chairman” attempted to execute a Michinoku Driver on the steel chair but his opponent on Saturday Joey Janela thwarted his plans
. Opinion: This was my first time seeing Cutler on AEW as I was quickly impressed by his agility and high-octane offense. He’s definitely a star in the making if they continue to allow him to ascend to the top. I am anxiously waiting for AEW to announce a mid-card Championship hopefully sooner than later. I haven’t watched too much of Spears but his attitude and personality has drastically changed.
Main Event: Hangman Page and Kenny Omega vs. Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara
Before the match began, a promo video was shown to hype Jon Moxley vs. Omega.
Omega and Guevara started the match with waistlocks and headlocks. The young up-and-comer had some great reversals but was no match for the seasoned veteran who overpowered him. Page and Omega delivered a springboard leg drop and moonsault combo for the first pinfall. Hangman continued on offense while avoiding a kick from Guevara and delivered a fall-away slam right in front of Le Champion.
The young up-and-comer made the tag to Jericho who landed a double ax handle to Page and proceeded to ground and pound him. Guevara came in for a second and attempted a suplex but was countered into one by Page. After some quicks tags between the heels, Omega got the tag and began laying out the young up-and-comer with some hard knife edge chops and a rolling senton slam and moonsault for a two.
Guevara took control with a high kick but was cut off by the veteran who sent him outside. Omega went to fly but was interrupted by Le Champion, after a hurricanrana he tried again this time Hager shot him down as we head to the final commercial.
We return to the heels isolating Omega but he rolls through and makes the tag to Page. Hangman delivered rapid-fire lariats to Jericho. Omega came back in and sent the heels crashing to the outside. Omega nailed a massive senton to everyone and Hangman hit a stunning moonsault. PAC low-blowed Page on the apron which gave Le Champion enough time to hit The Judas Effect for the victory.
After the match, The Inner Circle to deliver a three-on-one beatdown to Page. Cody ran down and made the save and the heels scurried up the ramp. MJF came out and leveled Jericho and company with chairs before tossing him back to eat a Cross Rhodes.
Mox entered the arena through the crowd with a barbwire baseball bat staring straight at his rival so Omega pulled out his barbwire broom. Before these two rivals could beat each other up, Santana and Ortiz attacked them. The Young Bucks made the save with unison Superkicks and suicide dives to the outside.
The chaotic brawl continued as Mox and Omega finally went to war. Nick Jackson flew right off the stage to deliver a jaw-dropping Senton to everyone. Both sides separated momentarily but then all hell broke loose for round two as the show ended.
Opinion: The match was great for what it’s worth, it gave both parties enough time to deliver a small appetizer of how amazing the pay-per-view will be on Saturday. Guevara having Jericho as his leader and mentor will do wonders for his young career ask Randy Orton or some other WWE talent about that. The exciting brawl to end the show was the perfect decision as it made the audience more red-hot for Full Gear.
Summary: Another terrific episode for AEW Dynamite. I love that even though this is the Go-Home-Show for the pay-per-view, they still gave several young talents an opportunity to shine. This is something that you consistently receive more of every passing week.
Both AEW and NXT ended their shows with exciting brawls and I am not even including myself in the Wednesday Night Wars. I’m enjoying both shows equally as two entirely different companies that produce two hours of fantastic action. I wish that I had the money to buy the pay-per-view because it’s going to be amazing!
Show Grade: A+