The John Report: AEW Dynamite 03/27/24 Review

AEW Dynamite March 27

This week’s AEW Dynamite saw Will Ospreay face off against Katsuyori Shibata, a Swerve Strickland-Konosuke Takeshita main event, The Young Bucks in tag team action, Mercedes Mone on commentary and more.

The AEW Canadian tour rolls into Quebec City for this show following Toronto last week for Dynamite. Collision on Saturday is in my city of London, Ontario. I don’t have a ticket at the moment, but it’s a 10-minute drive to the arena so I might as well go even though Collision is a lot less interesting than Dynamite most weeks. We get Dynamite live on TSN 2 every week. Shows like Collision and Rampage are on TSN + meaning you have to pay even more money to access them. I could watch them on streams, but most weeks I don’t watch those shows.

This was AEW Dynamite episode #234 from Centre Videotron in Quebec City, Quebec. Follow me on Twitter/X @johnreport. Let’s get to it.

It’s Wednesday and you know what that means. The commentary team was Excalibur, Tony Schiavone, and Taz.

They got right to the action with Will Ospreay up first to a huge ovation. Will is 2-0 in his AEW career so far. That doesn’t count the matches he won before he signed with AEW officially. Katsuyori Shibata entered as the opponent while clips were shown of their 2017 match that Shibata won.

Will Ospreay vs. Katsuyori Shibata

Shibata went for an armbreaker, but Will got to the ropes and broke the hold. They did some mat wrestling exchanging some basic holds on the mat. When Shibata went for the PK, Will avoided it and they separated for a moment there. Will delivered a chop followed by Shibata coming back with forearms. Shibata charged and Will hit a running dropkick. Will connected with another dropkick to send Shibata out of the ring and then Will went over the top to splash onto Shibata on the floor. Will got onto the apron and Shibata and Shibata kicked him down. Shibata suplexed Will on the floor along with a kick to the back. The referee was on the floor with the wrestlers checking on Will and then back in to do a very slow count. Back in the ring, Shibata hit a backdrop suplex. They went to a picture-in-picture break.


The match continued with the two guys exchanging forearms in the ring and then they went to a wide camera shot that led to us missing Ospreay doing an impressive cartwheel move off the ropes. Bad directing. Show a replay of the cool move, but instead they don’t do that. Anyway, the action picked up on the floor with Shibata kicking Will in the face. Will hit a springboard forearm on the floor. Back in the ring, Will hit a springboard forearm for a two count. Will hit Shibata with some gentle elbow strikes that were no sold so Shibata hit Will with a forearm to the face. Shibata delivered a running boot to the head. Will came back with a forearm and then Will did his own running boot. That was no sold by Shibata, who chopped Will a bunch of times followed by a dropkick in the corner. They each hit German Suplexes, didn’t sell them and Ospreay hit a superkick. Shibata caught Will’s leg for a submission attempt, but Will got out of that. They finally decided to sell a bit leading to some slaps along with Shibata delivering a kick. There were more kicks by Shibata followed by Will doing a kip up into a jumping kick to the head. Shibata hit a Sleeper Suplex sending Will onto his head. Will stomped on the back of the head followed by a dropkick off the top. Will hit the Oscutter for just one and Shibata hit a clothesline. Will hit a backdrop suplex and a running elbow smash to the head. Will hit a stacked Tiger Driver followed by the Hidden Blade running elbow for the pinfall after 19 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Will Ospreay

Analysis: ***3/4 It was a terrific match. I’m not one of those people who gives every Ospreay match at least 4.5* or higher just because he went nearly 20 minutes. Yes, he’s great and I love to watch him, but I think sometimes people overreact in this era of wrestling a bit too much. All of the no selling isn’t great wrestling to me. Sometimes Will sells a lot better in matches and in this one, there was a lot of these guys no selling moves. Ospreay getting the win was the obvious result because he’s facing Bryan Danielson at AEW Dynasty next month and they are going to want him to be hot going into that match.

After the match, Ospreay and Shibata showed respect by bowing along with a handshake/hug. The fans cheered.

A video package aired about Bryan Danielson’s career journey and his final full year in AEW. It was done to build up his AEW Dynasty match against Will Ospreay.

Analysis: I think Ospreay will win that match. It will be an excellent match.

The Young Bucks were interviewed by Renee Paquette earlier in the day. Nicholas Jackson didn’t like Renee’s unprofessional question and Matthew claimed they retired Sting’s old ass, which they did (by losing). They bragged about bringing in Kazuchika Okada. Matthew said their biggest goal since coming back was winning the AEW Tag Team Titles again. Matthew told Renee she was doing a great job and told her to smile more.


They showed a red Ferrari arriving at the arena and it was Kazuchika Okada with the AEW Continental Title.

AEW Tag Team Title Tournament Quarterfinals: The Young Bucks (Matthew & Nicholas Jackson) vs. Private Party (Isiah Kassidy & Marq Quen)

The PP boys took control early with superkicks knocking The Young Bucks out of the ring. Private Party followed up with dives onto the Bucks on the floor. Matt threw Quen over the barricade and then Kassidy used Quen to bounce back with silly string for a DDT on Matt on the floor. Nick kicked Kassidy down on the floor. Quen & Nick battled on the barricade where Nick gave Quen a Falcon Arrow on the floor. Great spot there. Kazuchika Okada, the Continental Crown Champion, was shown watching on TV backstage to support his pals in The Elite. The Bucks were in control of Quen as the show went to break.


The match continued with Kassidy hitting a springboard cross body block. Nick tripped up Kassidy leading to Matt getting a clothesline as The Young Bucks took over again. The Young Bucks hit a double team reverse neckbreaker/Powerbomb combo off the top for two because Quen made the save. Nick hit legal man Quen with a forearm to the back and a German Suplex. Nick also gave Quen a German Suplex on the ring apron. The Bucks tried a double team move, Kassidy grabbed Nick on the top rope and Quen rolled up Matt for two. Quen countered a move from Matt and shoved him into the turnbuckle to trip up Nick. Quen and Kassidy hit their Gin & Juice double team move even though Kassidy was illegally in the ring, but it’s AEW. PP hit a Young Bucks combo move that the Young Bucks do More Bang For Your Buck and Kassidy covered Matt for two because Nick made the save. Nick brought the ring bell into the ring, the referee took it away and Matt hit a low blow kick that the referee didn’t see. Quen hit Matt with a Tag Team Title belt for a two count because Nick put Matt’s leg on the bottom rope. Quen tagged in for a 630 Splash attempt off the top, but Matt moved and Quen’s back hit the mat. The Young Bucks hit their EVP Trigger where Nick slipped doing the move so the knees were off and both Bucks covered Quen (which is illegal in a regular tag, but it’s AEW) for the pinfall win. It went 13 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: The Young Bucks (Matthew & Nicholas Jackson)

Analysis: ***1/2 It was a solid match with some crazy spots and nearfalls for both sites to make Private Party look competitive. The finish was done to show that Quen was dumb to go for the move off the top and the Bucks capitalized to win. I did like some of the moves. I just wish they would do these matches without ignoring tag team rules. The announcers try to put over Private Party as a good team because they beat The Young Bucks FIVE YEARS AGO and yeah they are talented, but when you do nothing with them for five years and they don’t come close to ever winning the Tag Team Titles then what kind of booking is that? It’s weak booking. I like Private Party and I think the fans do, but this company needs to use them better.

A video package aired about Konosuke Takeshita with Don Callis talking about how great his client is.

Mercedes Mone was shown walking backstage since she was on commentary for the next match.


There was a video with Darby Allin and legendary skater man Tony Hawk. They talked about some charity work together. I wasn’t paying attention, but Darby has a broken foot so he’s out for a while and not climbing Mount Everest after all.

Chris Jericho and Hook were interviewed by Renee Paquette. Jericho praised Hook for beating him last week. Jericho claimed he had never been in the ring with somebody like Hook. Jericho said that if Hook wants any advice after 33 years in the business, Jericho will give it to him and Jericho said Hook could be a future World Champion. Hook said he would take advice from him and they touched fists as a sign of respect.

Analysis: I guess this is a new alliance where Jericho will help Hook grow as a performer and maybe there’s a decent push for Hook coming soon.

Kris Statlander vs. Anna Jay vs. Willow Nightingale vs. Skye Blue

The winner will become the top contender for the TBS Title.

Mercedes Mone was on commentary. Blue nailed Kris with a clothesline and Willow got a clothesline on Blue too. Jay with a kick to Willow knocked her back a bit. Willow hit a running hip attack splash on Jay in the corner. Willow hit a boot on Jay along with a running cross body block for a two count. Blue worked over Willow with a boot to the throat. Mone said that she didn’t trust Willow’s smile very much while Blue hit a DDT on Willow. Kris did a body slam to Blue along with a lariat. After Jay hit a neckbreaker, Kris hit a running clothesline for two. Kris knocked down Jay with a shoulder tackle. Blue pulled Kris down and kicked her. Willow hit a running Pounce on Blue on the floor. Willow stared at Mone at ringside as the show went to break.


Blue hit a running kick on Willow to knock Willow out of the ring. Kris unleashed on her opponents with strikes and a sitout slam on Blue for two. Each woman hit moves leading to two counts, which included Blue hitting a Code Blue on Willow. Kris did a move driving Willow onto her knees and then Jay did a slam where she slammed Kris onto Blue on the mat. Willow got back into it with a dropkick off the middle turnbuckle on Jay. Kris & Willow faced off as friends while Blue shoved Willow into Kris. Blue hit Willow with a kick while Willow was against the ropes (poor setup going into that spot) and Willow gave Blue a Death Valley Driver on the apron. Jay and Kris battled in the ring with Jay countered Kris into a pin attempt for two. Jay hit a spin kick on Kris to knock Kris down on the floor. Willow hit a sitout Powerbomb on Jay for the pinfall win after about ten minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Willow Nightingale

Analysis: **3/4 It was a solid match, but I wouldn’t say it was that interesting. It felt very formulaic throughout the match with each woman hitting moves, then getting a two count, then leaving the ring and the other women did their spots. It just felt too repetitive. Willow winning is fine. Perhaps she’ll win the title to give her a bit of a push, but I honestly can’t say I care too much about the TBS Title. It just doesn’t feel like much of a priority in AEW these days.

After the match, TBS Champion Julia Hart attacked Willow from behind with the TBS Title to the back of the head. Hart had a staredown with Mone, who looked on from ringside.

Analysis: They should put the AEW Women’s Title on Mercedes Mone by the All In PPV, if not sooner. I wouldn’t put the TBS Title on Mone. Let the other women fight for it. She needs the main title.

It was announced that Julia Hart will defend the TBS Championship against Willow Nightingale at AEW Dynasty on Sunday, April 21.

Dustin Rhodes was interviewed by Renee Paquette saying that at 55 years old, he’s still as passionate as he’s ever been. The Butcher interrupted the promo to say he wanted to face Dustin on Rampage. Dustin said he was a Natural Born Legend and everybody loved him, including Canada.

Analysis: Good for Dustin Rhodes continuing to wrestle if he still loves to do it.

Toni Storm, the AEW Women’s Champion, was talking to the Turner Classic Movies guy. I don’t think I’ve ever watched that channel despite having access to it. Anyway, Storm said her catchphrase and left. Thrilling.


A video aired featuring Swerve Strickland talking about his AEW World Title number one contender’s match in the main event.

AEW Tag Team Title Tournament Quarterfinals: Best Friends – Orange Cassidy & Trent Berretta (w/Chuck Taylor) vs. The Kingdom – Matt Taven & Mike Bennett (w/Roderick Strong)

Taven and Bennett are the ROH Tag Team Champions while Strong is the AEW International Champion. I missed the first couple of minutes. Taven connected with a dropkick on Trent early, but Trent came back with two German Suplexes and Taven sent Trent into the turnbuckle leading to Bennett tagging in. Trent hit double knees on Bennett and then Taven superkicked Trent. Bennett gave Trent a piledriver on the ring apron as the show went to break.


The Kingdom were in control until Trent got his knees up to block a moonsault and Orange got the hot tag. Orange was on fire with a cross body block on Taven and Stundog Millionaire on Bennett. Taven was illegally in the ring with a running knee. Bennett & Taven hit a double team move with a running kick/slam combo. Orange had Bennett on his back and Trent did a double foot stomp off the top for an assisted Beach Break slam by Orange for a two count. Bennett and Orange each hit DDTs on Taven while Trent hit a running knee on Taven as well. Strong got into the ring and when he left the ring, Orange dove onto Strong on the floor. Taven & Bennett went for a double team move, but Taylor tripped up Taven on the top rope and Trent did a jackknife pin on Bennett to win. They got around ten minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Best Friends – Orange Cassidy & Trent Berretta

Analysis: *** It was good most of the way. It was also hurt by all of the illegal offense throughout the match. I don’t get why so many tag teams in this company keep doing it so much and why nobody seems to want to put a stop to it. Anyway, it was a clever spot for the finish since Strong was trying to cheat for his friends, but after the referee was distracted by Orange taking out Strong, it led to Taylor getting involved and costing The Kingdom this match.

After the match, The Young Bucks appeared and had a long distance staredown with the Best Friends since those team will face off in the Tag Team Championship Quarterfinals next week.

Analysis: I think the Young Bucks should win that.

Kyle O’Reilly was interviewed by Renee Paquette backstage. Kyle talked about how great it was to be back in the ring and how they have a great roster in AEW. Renee mentioned Undisputed Kingdom and Kyle said he loves those guys, but he’s prepared to do this alone. Kyle said that he’ll be there on AEW Collision on his own to prove he belongs.

The Strickland/Takeshita main event was next.


A video aired about new TNT Champion Adam Copeland after his title win last week over his best friend Christian Cage. Copeland said that was one of those nights that he’ll take with him to the grave. Copeland said he was a sore, bloody mess but he is the TNT Champion. Cope said that it felt like that chapter was closed and it was time to move on. Copeland said that the Cope Open is back on AEW Collision this Saturday.

Analysis: I’m happy for Adam Copleand for winning the TNT Title last week and having fun in AEW. I hope he has some more great matches during this title run. I don’t know when the Adam/Christian reunion is coming because Christian is so amazing as a heel, but hopefully, there’s a good long-term plan for an Adam/Christian reunion.

It was main event time with Swerve Strickland up first joined by Prince Nana with Swerve getting cheered since he’s a babyface. Konosuke Takeshita was up next with Don Callis by his side.

Swerve Strickland (w/Prince Nana) vs. Konosuke Takeshita

The winner gets a shot at the AEW World Title. Don Callis was on commentary supporting his buddy Takeshita.

It started with some mat wrestling from both guys as Swerve went for a short-arm scissors, but Takeshita got to the ropes to break the hold. Takeshita hit an impressive jumping clothesline while AEW World Champion Samoa Joe was shown watching on a TV backstage. Swerve got some offense going with a running uppercut against the turnbuckle and then Swerve jumped off the turnbuckle with an uppercut to the back. Swerve hit a neckbreaker across the middle rope for a two count. Swerve hit a backbreaker, but Takeshita came back with a brainbuster. Takeshita worked over Swerve with elbow strikes. Takeshita charged, Swerve got a hold of him and Swerve hit a German Suplex, but Takeshita no sold that leading to Takeshita hitting an elbow smash that knocked Swerve out of the ring. They went to a picture-in-picture break.


The match returned with the two men delivering strikes again with Takeshita hitting a forearm to the jaw. Swerve managed to send Takeshita out of the ring followed by Swerve jumping onto Takeshita on the floor and doing a hurricanrana. Back in the ring, Swerve hit a cross body block off the top for two. Takeshita came back with another stiff elbow smash to the face. Swerve tried to come back with a move, but Takeshita caught him leading to a slam off the shoulders. Takeshita kicked Swerve out of the ring followed by Takeshita doing a somersault dive over the top onto Swerve on the floor. They battled by the turnbuckle, Swerve delivered some kicks to the leg and Swerve hit a DDT off the turnbuckle. Great spot. Swerve jumped off the top with a Sky Twister Press for a two count. Takeshita came back with a reverse hurricanrana and a Blue Thunder Bomb for a two count. Takeshita tried to follow up, but Swerve punched him in the jaw. Takeshita hit a jumping knee to the head followed by Swerve doing a headscissors and then Swerve spiked Takeshita on his head. They were past the 10 p.m. ET hour as Swerve went up top and Takeshita went to the apron. Swerve jumped off the top with the Swerve Stomp on Takeshita on the apron. The fans chanted “holy shit” for that. Back in the ring, Swerve jumped off the top, Takeshita hit a Powerbomb and Swerve got out of another attempted move. Takeshita hit a German Suplex along with a running knee to the jaw for two. Swerve came back with some offense and went for Swerve Stomp again, but it didn’t work. Swerve did a hurricanrana into the turnbuckle. Swerve with a House Call kick to the head. Swerve went up top and hit a Swerve Stomp on Takeshita for one…two…no. That was a great nearfall since Swerve does win with that move. Swerve with a headbutt, Takeshita with a jumping knee (with a very loud leg slap) and Swerve hit a standing foot stomp. Swerve hit the move he used to hit the Big Pressure (fka JML Driver) for the pinfall win after 19 minutes. Tony Schiavone thinks it was a five star match. I don’t. Still really good.

Winner by pinfall: Swerve Strickland

Analysis: ****1/4 It was a great match from two of AEW’s best wrestlers right now. Going over four stars in a TV match is excellent and a reminder of how spoiled we are in this era of pro wrestling. I think the result was obvious with Swerve getting the win to earn the World Title match at AEW Dynamite. I don’t think Takeshita is capable of having a disappointing match when he goes 20 minutes like he did here. My only gripe with Takeshita sometimes is he doesn’t sell some of the big moves for a long enough time and when that happens, it makes those moves look weaker. I get why it’s done to hit another big move, but sometimes I want to see these wrestlers lay out a bit and let a match breathe. In AEW, it just seems like these guys are in a rush to hit the next move instead of sell for more than ten seconds. Anyway, Swerve winning was a very obvious result that we could all see coming.

Samoa Joe was interviewed by Renee Paquette backstage. Joe: “You should ask him how he’s feeling right now. Next week, Swerve, when you walk down to that ring and sign onto that dotted line, I am going to make sure that you understand what you are asking for. You think you’re ready. No, no, you’re not that man.”

Analysis: It sounds like some sort of contract signing next week.

Swerve Strickland celebrated the win in the ring as the graphic was shown letting us know that Samoa Joe will defend the AEW World Title against Swerve at the AEW Dynasty PPV on April 21st.

Analysis: I think Swerve Strickland winning the AEW World Title at that show would be great. Why not? I like Joe, but he doesn’t need the title for six months or more. Elevate Swerve by giving him the title as a guy that the fans really like. That’s what I would do.


Three Stars of the Show

  1. Swerve Strickland
  2. Will Ospreay
  3. Konosuke Takeshita/Katsuyori Shibata


The Scoreboard

This Week: 7.5 out of 10

Last Week: 7.75

2024 Average: 7.58


Final Thoughts on AEW Dynamite

It was an entertaining wrestling show that was heavy in terms of in-ring action and carried by the main event as well as the opening match. There really wasn’t much talking on this episode with only a few segments backstage and nothing that long in the ring in terms of talking. For some fans, this is what they love about AEW the most because it’s all about the action. I think there needs to be more of a balance. There really aren’t any super hot storylines going into the Dynasty PPV. The Ospreay-Danielson match is a dream match but there’s not much of a story. The Joe-Strickland thing is okay and I want Swerve to win, but it’s not like it’s a great angle or anything. It’s just a title chase.

I thought the Swerve Strickland-Konosuke Takeshita match was outstanding and the best match of the night. Some people might say the Will Ospreay-Katsuyori Shibata match was better. It all depends on personal tastes and all that good stuff. They were similar matches in terms of having outcomes that were very obvious because you knew Swerve & Ospreay were winning, so the nearfalls for the other guys didn’t mean much. I’m happy for Swerve getting a push while Ospreay will probably win every match he has for several months. Other matches were fine around the three star level, but nothing really stood out about them except Nick Jackson slipping when doing the finish. Oops.

There have been better shows of late. This one was still very good. It was just more of a basic wrestling show where two great matches carried it.


Thanks for reading. Go Toronto Blue Jays, Toronto Raptors & Toronto Maple Leafs. You can contact me using any of the methods below.

John Canton


Twitter/X: @johnreport