TJRWrestling AEW-NJPW Forbidden Door 2024 Preview

AEW Forbidden Door Preview 2024

It’s AEW-NJPW Forbidden Door with Swerve Strickland facing Will Ospreay while Jon Moxley’s against Tetsuya Naito and Mercedes Mone tries to win a second title.

The third annual AEW-NJPW Forbidden Door show is here. I don’t watch that much NJPW anymore while the only AEW show I watch is Dynamite most weeks. With that said, it’s still a good card from top to bottom. I think the lineup will appeal to the hardcore AEW fanbase that loves turning in for long shows like this. I’m most excited about the Swerve Strickland/Will Ospreay match while some other things are appealing too.

There are a whopping 13 matches on the show with three of them going on the Zero Hour pre-show and then ten matches on the main show. It’s too many matches in my opinion, but that’s AEW. When I review their shows, I don’t watch the pre-show because the four-hour main show is long enough. It should be a good crowd in Long Island, New York even though the hometown boy MJF is not in one of the biggest matches on the card.

Check out AEW’s website for information on how to order the show. Let’s get to it.


ZERO HOUR Pre-Show: Kris Statlander & Momo Watanabe vs. Willow Nightingale & Tam Nakano

I know there’s a storyline between Statlander and Nightingale since Kris turned on Willow, but I don’t know about the others in the match. I’ll go with Willow’s team getting the win.

Winners: Willow Nightingale & Tam Nakano


ZERO HOUR Pre-Show: Los Ingobernables de Japon (Yota Tsuji, Titan, & Hiromu Takahashi) vs. The Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero Miedo & Rey Fénix) & Místico

It’s a matchup between six athletic guys that are going to pull off some incredible moves. The Lucha Bros and Mistico are experienced masked fliers that should work well together. I don’t know that match about the LIJ guys other than Takahashi. I’ll go with the Lucha Bros & Mistico to win since it features the AEW guys Penta & Fenix in the match.

Winners: The Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero Miedo & Rey Fénix) & Místico


ZERO HOUR Pre-Show: Women’s Owen Hart Cup Tournament Mariah May vs. Saraya

If you read my Dynamite reviews regularly then you know that Maria May is my pick to win the Women’s Owen Hart Cup Tournament and then go on to win the AEW Women’s Title from her mentor Toni Storm at All In taking place in England, which is May’s home country. Last year at All In was Saraya’s turn to get the AEW Women’s Title. Over the last year, Saraya hasn’t really done much in AEW while just being a part of the roster without much impact. That’s disappointing to see because I like Saraya a lot. May is good in the ring, she knows how to work a crowd and will advance in the tournament.

Winner: Mariah May


“The Learning Tree” Chris Jericho, Big Bill & Jeff Cobb vs. Samoa Joe, Hook & Katsuyori Shibata

They added Jeff Cobb to the match after he helped Jericho on AEW Collision. Bryan Keith is part of Jericho’s group too. I don’t think The Learning Tree gimmick of Jericho is working as well as some of his past gimmicks, but I doubt anybody in AEW is going to put a stop to it. Jericho’s face turn last year bombed, so he’s back to being a heel because he’s better in that role. The trio of Joe, Hook & Shibata have been having fun as babyfaces that liked to fight people. Joe was better as a heel, but he has the respect from the fans a wrestling legend who is a former AEW World Champion. I think this is the kind of match where Jericho’s team should lose, so I’ll go with Hook beating Cobb by submission.

Winners: Samoa Joe, Hook & Katsuyori Shibata


Orange Cassidy vs. Zack Sabre Jr.

These guys are going to have a good match because Orange Cassidy is a Tony Khan favorite and always gets plenty of time for his matches. Sabre’s style isn’t the most exciting to watch, but as a technical wrestler, he really is good at what he does. I’ll go with Sabre getting the win since I can see AEW wanting to use him at the All In show in England as well since he’s from England. Building him up with a win here seems like a good idea. Plus, I think some of the NJPW guys need to get wins, so here’s one that makes sense.

Winner: Zack Sabre Jr.


The Elite – Kazuchika Okada & The Young Bucks (Matthew & Nicholas Jackson) vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi & The Acclaimed (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens)

They set this match up on Dynamite this past Wednesday when The Elite challenged The Acclaimed and Billy Gunn to match, but then Billy said no to his involvement and played a video of Hiroshi Tanahashi taking his spot. There’s a long rivalry between Okada and NJPW President Tanahashi, so it will be cool to see them go at it again. With that said, I’d rather see in singles matches rather than a tag team match for the second straight PLE show.

The Acclaimed already beat The Young Bucks non-title to set them up for an AEW Tag Team Title match that seems likely for the All In PPV in England unless AEW does it before that. With that in mind, the match could go either way and I think the right move is to continue the positive momentum of The Acclaimed. I can see Bowens pinning Nick for the finish. What I like about this match is that it’s unpredictable in terms of who will win. AEW needs more matches like that.

Winners: Hiroshi Tanahashi & The Acclaimed (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens)


Maxwell Jacob Friedman vs. Hechicero

This is the easiest match to predict because I don’t think Hechicero stands a chance. The crowd is going to love the hometown boy MJF and they should because he’s great. Hechicero has a good look, he’s a talented veteran and should have some moments in the match where it looks like he might get the win. It’s still going to be a decisive win for MJF.

Winner: MJF


AEW Women’s Championship Match: “Timeless” Toni Storm (c) vs. Mina Shirakawa

The story here is that Storm is Mariah May’s mentor while Mina is May’s good friend who loves her buddy May. Storm hasn’t fully turned babyface although at times she is booked that way. We saw on Dynamite when Mina accidentally hit May with a champagne bottle since she was going for Storm, who ducked.

I think they are going to book a finish where Mina gets distracted by May and Storm takes advantage to get the win. That will lead to May celebrating with Storm to show her loyalty to her. As I alluded to earlier, I think we’ll see May beating Storm at the All In PPV in England in late August.

Winner: “Timeless” Toni Storm


Men’s Owen Hart Foundation Championship Tournament Quarterfinals: Bryan Danielson vs. Shingo Takagi

Here’s another very predictable match because Danielson beating Takagi is a lock. It’s a fresh match between a former WWE Champion Danielson against a former IWGP Champion Takagi, so that’s cool. Bryan has had a lot of interesting matchups during his AEW career.

Up next for Bryan after this is Pac, who Bryan should beat and move on to the finals. When Bryan gets to the finals, he certainly might win to go for the AEW World Title at All In just months before he “retires” as a full-time wrestler.

Winner: Bryan Danielson


TNT Championship Ladder Match: Konosuke Takeshita vs. Mark Briscoe vs. Jack Perry vs. Dante Martin vs. Lio Rush vs. El Phantasmo

I like having a Ladder Match on this show because the rest of the card is full of matches without stipulations. By having one match with a stipulation it’s going to make this match stand out more. The Ladder Match should be very good although I think they did a poor job of putting wrestlers in this match.

I don’t see Martin, Rush or Phantasmo having a shot to win, but at least I know Martin will do some crazy spots and Rush probably will too. Mark Briscoe is the ROH World Champion so I doubt they put the TNT Title on him too. That leaves Takeshita and Perry as possible winners. I’m going to go with Perry since The Elite is full of champions already since The Young Bucks are AEW Tag Team Champions and Konosuke Takeshita is the Continental Champion. Perry winning makes sense even though he hasn’t had that many singles matches since coming back to the company.

Winner AND NEW TNT Champion: Jack Perry


TBS Championship & NJPW Strong Women’s Championship Match: Mercedes Mone vs. Stephanie Vaquer

This match is for both titles. When it comes to predictable matches, this match is right at the top because I don’t think Vaquer has any shot to win. I know they put Vaquer on Collision show before Forbidden Door, but it’s not like that many are going to watch that and know much about Vaquer going into this match. This is the problem with a show like this. The fans watching don’t know much about Vaquer, so why should we care that much if she loses a title? Of course Mone is going to win. I’m sure they’ll have a competitive match, it will go around 10-15 minutes and Mone will put her away.

What Mone needs is a good storyline to make her AEW run more compelling. Right now it’s just not that interesting at all. Maybe when Brit Baker comes back soon she can go after Mone and that will be good if it happens. I’m not sure who else they have that could have a rivalry with Mone that actually generates interest.

Winner: Mercedes Mone still the TBS Champion AND NEW NJPW Strong Women’s Champion


IWGP World Championship: Jon Moxley (c) vs. Tetsuya Naito

It’s cool that Jon Moxley won the IWPG World Championship, but I’m not sure that he needs a long title reign. I know that Naito said something about if Moxley wins then he should take Naito’s spot in the G1 Climax tournament. I’m not sure if Moxley is going to want to be in that tournament or he would be already, so that makes me think Naito is going to win. Throughout this card, I picked a lot of AEW people to win while NJPW people are losing some big matches, so I think this is a case where the full-time NJPW guy Naito picks up the big win and regains the IWGP World Title from Moxley.

This should be one of the better matches on the show. Naito has been one of my favorite NJPW guys from this era while Moxley always delivers in a PPV setting. I’m sure they’ll get plenty of time as well. I’m looking forward to this match.

Winner AND NEW IWGP World Champion: Tetsuya Naito


AEW World Championship: Swerve Strickland (c) vs. Will Ospreay

This main event match is the match I care about the most and it’s the match that I think will be the best on the show. It’s a Will Ospreay match in a main event, so you know it’s going to be amazing and it should be one of the best AEW matches of the year.

The argument could be made for either one of these guys winning. In Swerve’s case, he won the title just over two months ago and most AEW World Title reigns have lasted about half a year or more, so that means Swerve might be champion for several more months. However, I look ahead to AEW All In as the next PPV in two months in England and that’s where Ospreay is from. I think Ospreay going into All In as the AEW World Champion is a lot more interesting than Swerve. And that’s nothing against Swerve, who I like. I think AEW fans are behind Ospreay more than anybody right now. The winner of the Owen Hart Foundation Cup Tournament will face the AEW World Champion at All In and to me, an Ospreay match against Bryan Danielson (rematch from Dynasty) or maybe the “wild card” Adam Page would be an epic match that could main event All In.

I know I made a good case for Ospreay to win, but I’m going to go with Swerve retaining because I believe AEW is going to give him a longer title reign. If there’s a title change I certainly wouldn’t mind it because I genuinely like both guys. I just think Swerve will find a way to win in a grueling match that goes 25-30 minutes.

Winner: Swerve Strickland



The Match I’m Looking Forward To The Most

It’s Swerve Strickland vs. Will Ospreay for the AEW World Title.

The Match I Care About The Least

Toni Storm vs. Mina Shirakawa for the AEW Women’s Title

Longest Match

Swerve Strickland vs. Will Ospreay for the AEW World Title.

Shortest Match

MJF beating Hechicero in about 10 minutes.

Excitement Level on a Scale of 1-10 (1 being low, 10 being high)

I’ll go with a 7.5 out of 10. There are going to be plenty of great matches, so if you’re a fan of AEW for the in-ring performances then Forbidden Door will deliver like most of their PPVs. With that said, I think some matches are lacking in terms of storyline and some of them are very predictable, so it’s hard for me to get into them. The best part of the show is that the Swerve Strickland-Will Ospreay match is the one I’m excited about the most and I think it will be the best match, so that’s a nice combination to have. I hope there are some surprises on the show as well even though I didn’t really predict any of them.


In Closing

I’ll be back with a review of AEW-NJPW Forbidden Door on TJRWrestling.net on Sunday night. I may not be home to do it all live because I’ll be away earlier on Sunday, but I should be back for most of it.

You can also tweet me @johnreport. If you want to send an email, send it to me at mrjohncanton@gmail.com as well. Thanks for reading.