This week’s AEW Dynamite was the 200th episode with The Elite in tag team action, plus Toni Storm defending the AEW Women’s Title against Hikaru Shida in the main event.
Congratulations to AEW reaching 200 episodes of Dynamite. I have reviewed every episode except three or four of them. I don’t know for sure. I write a lot, so it’s hard to remember. Anyway, I’m happy for the company, I’m happy they exist and employ a lot of people that can work in the pro wrestling business.
It’s Wednesday night and you know what that means. Excalibur, Taz and Tony Schiavone were on commentary.
The team of Chris Jericho & Konosuke Takeshita was accompanied by Don Callis, who was wearing some shiny silver shoes. Sammy Guevera & Daniel Garcia exchanged words with the Jericho Appreciation Society leader Chris Jericho before the bell.
Analysis: It is almost a hometown match for Jericho since he has lived in the Tampa area for over 20 years and raised his kids there, but that’s not mentioned.
Chris Jericho & Konosuke Takeshita (w/Don Callis) vs. Sammy Guevara & Daniel Garcia
Sammy was aggressive against Jericho with a dropkick and a jumping knee. Garcia tagged in with a double shoulder tackle followed by a pose with Sammy just like Jericho used to do. Jericho with chops, Garcia did his dance moves and Garcia hit an elbow. Takeshita tagged in with a leaping clothesline. Jericho back in with a belly-to-back suplex on Garcia. Jericho hit a vertical suplex. Garcia went into the ropes, Callis grabbed the leg, the referee Aubrey Edwards did nothing about it and Jericho knocked Garcia. That led to a picture-in-picture break.
Jericho was still in control of Garcia with chops. Garcia with chops, then a bite to the head and Jericho got a knockdown. Jericho went for a Lionsault, but Garcia got the knees up to block. Sammy tagged in with a cross body block on legal man Takeshita. Sammy hit a clothesline to send Takeshita out of the ring. Sammy with a suicide dive onto Jericho and a twisting dive over the op on Takeshita. Sammy up top and hit a Frog Splash on Takeshita for two because Jericho broke up the pin. Garcia went after Jericho. Takeshita hit a Blue Thunder Bomb slam. Takeshita went for a Walls of Takeshita, but Sammy pushed out of that and Jericho tagged back in so Sammy hit a Spanish Fly for two. Sammy got an inside cradle on Jericho, then Jericho got back up and hit a clothesline. Garcia tagged in and Jericho hit a Codebreaker for two. Garcia hit a running kick on Jericho for two because Takeshita broke up the pin. Sammy superkicked Takeshita out of the ring. Sammy went up top and did a Shooting Star Press on Takeshita, which saw Sammy’s elbow hit Takeshita. Garcia got a rollup for two. Garcia applied the Dragon Tamer submission, the referee was looking at Takeshita getting grabbed by Sammy and Callis used the baseball bat to hit Garcia. Jericho said “what the f**k” at Callis, but then Jericho covered Garcia for the pinfall win after 13 minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Chris Jericho & Konosuke Takeshita
Analysis: ***1/4 Good match that was heavy on story since Jericho hasn’t fully committed to working with Callis yet, but Jericho took the pin when Callis did the baseball bat shot. Whether Jericho was genuinely mad at Callis for doing a cheap shot against Garcia is a good storyline point that they can follow up next week. I would have liked to see more of Takeshita in this match. Sammy and Garcia did fine, but I think Takeshita needs to be treated like a bigger deal.
Tony Khan was shown backstage saying “thanks guys” for a special message. Tony spoke about celebrating 200 episodes of Dynamite and called All In the biggest wrestling show of all time. Tony thanked the wrestlers and staff for helping us reach 200 episodes.
A video package aired showing highlights of Dynamite over the last four years.
Analysis: Good video. The crowd at All In will be massive and it’s coming on August 27th, so it will be quite a spectacle to see what AEW produces at Wembley Stadium.
Chris Jericho was shown walking backstage with Renee Paquette trying to talk to him. Matt Menard walked to Jericho saying next week there’s a Jericho Appreciation Society meeting and Jericho will be there. Jericho walked away without saying a word.
Jack Perry and Jerry Lynn Face To Face
Tony Schiavone introduced FTW Champion Jack Perry, who now has a full beard. That’s what heels do. Jack called out Jerry, who is a former wrestler that works backstage in AEW as a Producer.
Jerry Lynn said that making an example out of Jack would be child abuse. Jerry said with all the plates and screws in his neck, there’s not a doctor alive that would allow him to be in the ring. Lynn said he decided to call a friend of his who wrestled in ECW and still wrestled today. That led to Rob Van Dam making his AEW debut.
Rob Van Dam walked out to the ring with the fans cheering him and the fans popping for him. RVD walked out to the Pantera song “Walk” like he did in ECW. RVD got into the ring with Jack, who backed away and rolled out of the ring. The fans booed Jack.
After Jerry Lynn went down to the ring to talk with RVD, Jack Perry tried to attack with a steel chair. RVD ducked the chair attack and went for a spin kick, but Jack avoided it. Jack bailed in the crowd and even hid behind a little girl in the crowd. RVD did his “RVD” thumb point with the crowd cheering along with it.
Analysis: It’s not prime RVD, but it’s an ECW guy and RVD was a popular wrestler in his prime. I don’t know how well RVD is going to be able to move in a regular match at 52 years old, but I guess we’ll find out next week. The fans like him still, so that’s a good thing. I just think AEW should use some regular wrestlers on their roster more.
There were promos from Toni Storm and Hikaru Shida about their AEW Women’s Title match later in the show.
The triple threat match was next with Trent Beretta up first to no reaction, Penta El Zero Miedo was next with Alex Abrahantes and Jon Moxley was last. During the episode, they showed classic clips from Dynamite history for some of the wrestlers.
Anything Goes Match: Jon Moxley vs. Penta El Zero Miedo vs. Trent Beretta
It was announced as No countouts, no disqualifications and Anything Goes in this match. Normally in triple threats in this era, they are no countouts and no disqualifications already. At least that’s the case in WWE matches and I think it’s the same in AEW.
Trent dove onto Moxley on the floor, Penta hit a dive on Trent and then there was a clothesline from Moxley. Back into the ring, Penta smashed Trent with a trash can lid. Penta ran right into a Cutter by Moxley. Moxley went under the ring and grabbed a barbed wire piece of wood. Penta kicked Moxley in the gut, Moxley avoided the wood and Penta hit double knees to the back. Trent hit a running knee with a trash can lid. Moxley hit Trent with the barbed wire to the gut, the back and grinded it into Trent’s face. Moxley gave Trent a piledriver onto the barbed wire, but Trent came back with a suplex that sent Moxley onto the barbed wire. Penta battled Trent on the floor. Penta set up two tables side by side on the floor. Penta sent Trent into the steel steps and put him on the tables. Moxley used the barbed wire against the mouth of Penta. Moxley was on the top turnbuckle, Trent (who had a bloody head) gave Moxley a superplex through two tables on the floor! Ouch. They set up the tables perfectly for it.
After the picture-in-picture break, there was a table set up against the turnbuckle and another table in the ring. Penta and Trent each hit superkicks on Moxley. Penta superkicked Trent, who was put on a table. Trent got back up, he battled Penta on the turnbuckle and Penta hit a Destroyer off the top, which is really just Penta’s butt going through the table. Moxley did a running shoulder tackle that sent Penta through the table. The replay of the Destroyer going through the table makes it look even worse. Don’t do that move through a table. Do a move that looks like a more painful bump. Anyway, Moxley brought out a bag of thumbtacks and put them in the ring. Moxley did a Cradle Piledriver on the tacks for two. Moxley suplexed Penta onto the thumbtacks. Moxley gave Trent a Cutter onto the tacks. Trent hit a move where he sat on top of Moxley on the tacks for two because Penta threw a trash can at Trent’s head to break it up. They stood in the ring exchanging strikes. Penta with a superkick and Moxley hit a clothesline on Trent. Moxley and Penta exchanged punches, Moxley got a kick to the gut and hit a Paradigm Shift DDT. Trent hit a running knee on Moxley and Trent covered Penta for the pinfall win. It went 14 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Trent Baretta
Analysis: ***1/2 It was an entertaining match with weapons. The surprising thing about this match is that Trent won and it was also surprising that Moxley wasn’t a bloody mess. Seriously, Moxley was in a match with weapons for nearly 15 minutes and didn’t bleed? That’s a huge shocker. Anyway, some of the moves looked brutal on the weapons they used while others didn’t look as a bad. I’m not sure why Trent got the win other than to show that sometimes they can be unpredictable. Moxley rarely get beaten, so at least Penta was there to take the fall.
After the match, Moxley was choking out Trent. They showed Claudio Castagnoli and Wheeler Yuta entering from the back part of the arena, but they were met by Orange Cassidy and Chuck Taylor on the floor. Those guys were on the floor, so Trent hit a dive onto the BCC guys on the floor. Taylor threw a steel chair at Claudio’s head to knock him out of the ring. Cassidy hit an Orange Punch on Moxley to knock him out of the ring.
Chuck Taylor said that this Friday night on Rampage, the Best Friends wanted to fight the BCC in a Parking Lot Fight. It was agreed to by the BCC.
Analysis: I don’t watch Rampage, but at least it’s been built up fairly well going into it. They have been building to a Moxley-Cassidy match, which is probably happening at All In, I assume.
There was a replay of AEW Collision when FTR beat MJF & Adam Cole to retain the Tag Team Titles. MJF and Cole hugged after the match.
Up next is the AEW World Champion MJF.
Rob Van Dam was interviewed by Renee Paquette. RVD said he heard Jack Perry running his mouth, so that’s why he was there. RVD talked about making titles more important. RVD said next week he wants to challenge Jack Perry to an FTW Title match. It was made official later in the show.
Let’s Hear from Maxwell Jacob Friedman
The AEW World Champion Maxwell Jacob Friedman made his entrance for his 256th day as the champion. The fans were cheering for MJF, who had a smile on his face and even was greeted by “MJF” chants. Max said that it sounds like they have some “Devil Worshippers” in the house.
MJF said he has Attention Deficit Disorder (fans chanted “ADD”) and MJF said he also struggled with rejection while saying he had a disorder for that. MJF said that life would be more difficult for him without RSD. MJF talked about all the things that have happened to like when he was bullied, cheated on and other things. MJF recalled kids throwing quarters at him and telling him “Jew boy” to pick them up. MJF said it made him think that everybody was an evil scumbag, so it led to him thinking he had to stab everybody in the back before they stabbed him in the back. MJF said he realized that is no way to live. MJF said that he ended up being a scumbag himself. MJF said that getting people to boo him is easy.
MJF said it was hard to open himself up to be emotional. MJF spoke about how he’s not scared anymore. MJF said that he is not scared anymore because of each and every single one of you (the fans). MJF told the fans that they taught him that they do care about Max. MJF said that they have sympathy for The Devil. MJF admitted he’s still a scumbag, but god dammit he is ready to be “your scumbag” referring to the fans. The fans cheered him. The fans chanted “He’s a Scumbag” for Max.
MJF made the big introduction. MJF claimed that this person taught him that even Max Friedman, the Devil, deserves a friend. MJF did a big introduction for one of the best wrestlers in the world, one of the best people in the world and his best friend…Adam Cole bay bay.
Adam Cole made his entrance wearing a MJF/Cole “Double Clothesline” shirt with no music playing. Cole joined MJF in the ring as the fans chanted “Adam Cole” for him.
Adam Cole told MJF he continues to impress him (Cole) every day. Cole said that it’s not just because MJF is one of the best pro wrestlers in the world at a young age, but it’s because of the man that MJF is becoming. Cole said he wanted MJF to know he was not alone. Cole said for years he was a jerk. Cole said he did it because he was afraid and he didn’t understand what it meant to be a man. Cole said that Max is becoming the man that he wants to be. Cole told Max that the fans believe there is a good guy in there, so Adam said that he is proud of MJF and the fans are proud of him too.
MJF said as much as he enjoyed “verbiage fellatio” for him, MJF also pointed out Cole wearing the Double Clothesline shirt. MJF said that he made Cole a promise that no matter what happened in their match with FTR, MJF said he wanted to give Cole a shot at the AEW World Title. MJF said he came to the conclusion that Cole doesn’t deserve a match.
MJF had a contract in his hand saying that Cole didn’t deserve a match, he wanted to give Cole “THE MATCH” in the main event of AEW All In at Wembley Stadium in front of the biggest crowd of AEW history. MJF handed Cole the contract and told him to sign it. Cole didn’t read the contract and signed it. Cole: “Max, I love you, man.” MJF said: “I love you too, dude.” They hugged.
There was a graphic shown on the screen making it official with MJF defending the AEW World Championship against Adam Cole. Both guys posed on the turnbuckles.
Analysis: A huge match announced for All In. I figured it was going to happen there. It will be interesting to see if MJF goes back to being a heel or of Cole goes heel leading into the match. Maybe they’ll do something during the match where MJF goes back to his heel roots to use a weapon to cheat to win. There’s something more interesting about the hug that suggests maybe it will be Cole that is heel in the scenario. Look at the tweet below. It shows Cole hugging Roddy Strongin their NXT days before Cole turned on his friend. Cole’s right fist is balled up kind of like it would be in a stabbing motion as if he was stabbing a friend in the back.
watch Adam Cole's hand closely…he STABBED MJF IN THE BACK!😳😳😳
— AIR (@AEWGold) August 3, 2023
Analysis x2: It could be nothing or it could indeed be something. It’s not like they just accidentally had the camera right there to film in it that spot. Cole was also on that side so it could look the same. I’m just saying at some point in this story, Cole is probably going to be the heel and turn on his friend Max, which could lead to Cole becoming AEW World Champion at All In. I think that’s what will happen.
It was mentioned that All In London was available on pay-per-view.
Roderick Strong was backstage freaking out about what happened. The Kingdom’s Mike Bennett and Matt Taven walked up to Strong saying that Cole was always forgetting about his real friends.
Analysis: It’s a nice tease with The Kingdom possibly playing a factor in that storyline. Maybe Strong will join that group. Then again, all of this could be a ploy by Cole and Strong if it’s Cole going heel as mentioned above. Perhaps there will be a group with Cole, Strong and The Kingdom along with Kyle O’Reilly when he comes back. It’s certainly a possibility.
The Elite (Kenny Omega, Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson) vs. Jeff Jarrett, Jay Lethal & Satnam Singh (w/Karen Jarrett & Sonjay Dutt)
Jarrett with an arm drag and a body slam on Omega to start the match. Matt tagged in against Lethal with a double axhandle and Nick tagged in with a double stomp on Lethal’s arm. Nick with a hurricanrana on Lethal and the Bucks did a double dropkick. Singh tagged in against Matt, who avoided a chop and Nick tagged in. Young Bucks hit multiple dropkicks on Singh and then Singh did a cross body block on both Bucks. The heels mocked The Elite’s pose.
Nick hit Jarrett with a superkick (sort of, it barely touched him) and that led to Omega getting the tag against Lethal. Omega hit a rolling senton on Lethal. Singh grabbed Omega but the throat, Omega broke free and did a moonsault with Lethal getting his knees up. Both Young Bucks in illegally with superkicks for the heels and multiple superkicks for Singh. Omega hit a V-Trigger knee on Singh. Karen was on the apron. Omega tried to pick up Singh, Dutt hit Omega in the back and Lethal hit the Lethal Combination. Brandon Cutler sprayed the cold spray in Karen’s face, Dutt punched Cutler and the Hardy Boys ran out there to beat up Dutt. Jarrett tried a guitar shot on Omega, but “Hangman” Adam Page showed up with a Buckshot Lariat that the referee didn’t see. Omega hit a V-Trigger on Lethal, some bad guitar playing and Omega hit the One Winged Angel on Lethal for the pinfall win. It went about nine minutes.
Winners by pinfall: The Elite (Kenny Omega, Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson)
Analysis: **3/4 To the six fans of Satnam Singh hoping that this would be his breakout match to show what he can do…well…it didn’t happen. An easy win for The Elite. There was a lot of silliness at the end of the match too.
There was a post match promo from “Hangman” Adam Page announcing that The Elite have re-signed with AEW. Page said they’re happy to be at Dynamite 200 and here’s to the next 200. Omega said whether it’s Dynamite, Rampage, Ring of Honor or even Collision, you’ll see more of them. Omega did his “goodnight bang” line to end it.
Analysis: Kenny Omega saying that they will be on Collision is interesting at least just because of their past issues with CM Punk, who is a Collision guy.
Swerve Strickland and AR Fox aired a video of a visit to the Buddy Wayne Academy, which is a shed where Nick Wayne was training with a friend. It was earlier in the week. Fox threw a skateboard at Nick’s friend and beat up another guy. Nick was left alone with Swerve and Fox. Swerve hit Nick with some glass picture frame and showed the camera man Prince Nana a photo with Nick and his late dad. Nick was a bloody mess. They made Nick unlock his phone and call Darby Allin. Swerve and Fox talked to Darby with Swerve wondering why Allin didn’t call Fox when Allin signed with AEW. Swerve said they are the ghosts of Allin’s past and they are hear to haunt him. Swerve said this was just the beginning. Swerve and Fox left with Nick down on the mat as a bloody mess.
Analysis: It’s actually a good storyline on a show that needs better storylines, so I’m all for it. Allin is Nick’s mentor while Fox was Allin’s mentor. Fox is against Allin now and with Swerve, so now you can build some big matches between them.
Aussie Open to defend the ROH Tag Team Titles. They got no reaction.
ROH Tag Team Championships: Aussie Open – Mark Davis & Kyle Fletcher vs. El Hijo Del Vikingo & Komander (w/Alex Abrahantes)
El Hijo Del Vikingo is the AAA Mega Champion. Vikingo with a headscissors on Fletcher knocking him out of the ring. Komander tagged in and did a hurricanrana on Davis, who was in the ring illegally. Davis with a kick to Komander, Fletcher in illegally with a kick to Vikingo and Fletcher kicked Komander as well. Fletcher got the tag, Davis caught Komander and Fletcher kicked Komander in the ribs. Fletcher jumped off the ropes with a Cutter on Komander for two. Komander sent Fletcher out of the ring, Davis into the ring illegally and Vikingo tagged in with a dropkick. Vikingo kicked Fletcher in the back of the knee and Vikingo hit a top rope leg drop. Komander got the tag leading to suicide dives, but Aussie Open caught them and ran the challengers into eachother.
The match returned with Vikingo jumping off the top right into a double superkick. Davis hit a sitout slam after an assist from Davis and Fletcher got a two count. Aussie Open hit double forearms to Vikingo. Komander jumped off Vikingo’s back and hit a Destroyer. Vikingo hit a Crucifix Bomb. The champions were on the floor, so Vikingo and Komander walked across the top with double moonsaults onto the champions on the floor. Back in the ring, Vikingo and Komander each hit 450 splashes on Davis for two because Fletcher made the save. Fletcher tackled Vikingo into the barricade. Komander went up top, jumped with an SSP attempt, Davis avoided it and kicked Komander in the head. Double clothesline by the Aussie boys and Aussie Open hit the Coriolis double team slam for the pinfall win after ten minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Aussie Open – Mark Davis & Kyle Fletcher
Analysis: ***1/4 A good wrestling match. No story or anything like that going into it, but they got ten minutes to show what they can do. It was the usual AEW tag team match with random guys going into the ring illegally and they could sell moves better too. Some of the tag team moves by Vikingo and Komander were really cool to watch, but there wasn’t enough of it. The champions Aussie Open pinning Komander instead of Vikingo made sense since Komander is a champion.
A video package aired about CM Punk’s match against Ricky Starks on Collision this Saturday. It is a match for CM Punk’s “Real World Championship” with Ricky Steamboat as the special guest outside official.
Hikaru Shida made her entrance for the main event. The graphic said Shida is 62-11 in her AEW career. I don’t remember the last time Shida won a singles match on Dynamite, but they said she recently won a match on Rampage (which I don’t watch), so I guess that’s enough to earn a title shot.
Toni Storm entered as the AEW Women’s Champion with a 14-3 record in 2023. Storm was joined by The Outcasts’ Saraya and Ruby Soho.
AEW Women’s Championship: Toni Storm (w/Saraya & Ruby Soho) vs. Hikaru Shida
Shida was aggressive against Storm, who bailed to the floor. Storm went back into the ring leading to Shida getting a shoulder tackle. Shida punched Storm in the head with some weak punches hitting her own hands. Shida hit a running knee lift while Storm was by the apron. Shida threw Storm into the barricade. Storm managed to counter Shida by sending Shida into the barricade. Back in the ring, Shida suplexed Storm into the turnbuckle followed by a brainbuster. Storm did an eye gouge to take over with some light kicks to the head. Storm hit a running hip attack to knock Shida off the apron to the floor. Saraya and Ruby stomped on Shida on the floor. Back in the ring, Storm got a two count.
Shida caught a charging Storm and hit a German Suplex. Shida hit an enziguri kick to the head. Shida with a knee strike two times followed by a missile dropkick. Shida hit the meteora double knees for a two count. Saraya distracted the referee so Ruby did a cheap shot (the director chose a poor angle for that) and Storm hit a DDT. Storm hit a running hip attack against the turnbuckle followed by another DDT for a two count. Excalibur screamed about that nearfall. It wasn’t that close to a finisher. Storm and Shida exchanged strikes as usual in most AEW matches. Shida got a knockdown with a knee strike to the head followed by a Falcon Arrow slam for two. Saraya threw the kendo stick into the ring, Shida grabbed it, Storm dared Shida to do it and Shida hit Ruby & Saraya with the kendo sticks. Storm with the spray paint to the eyes while the referee moved the kendo stick out of the way and Storm hit Storm Zero for a two count. Now that was a great nearfall and that’s how you use referees properly to set up spots like that. Storm went for a sunset flip, Shida reversed it and sat on top while hooking the legs for the pinfall win after 14 minutes.
Winner by pinfall AND NEW AEW Women’s Champion: Hikaru Shida
Analysis: ***1/2 It was a very good match with a lot of nearfalls throughout the match and an exciting final few minutes. I wasn’t expecting a title change, but I’m certainly fine with it since it was episode 200 so having an AEW Original like Shida take the title is a good move. That nearfall after Storm used the spray paint and Storm Zero was great. I liked the finish with Shida countering the sunset flip while also doing a great job of holding onto the legs for the pinfall.
Hikaru Shida celebrated with the AEW Women’s Title while the announcers put her over for being the champion during the Pandemic Era of AEW without fans in attendance, so now she gets another title reign. Shida celebrated with confetti in the ring. End show.
Analysis: The title reign of Storm really wasn’t that interesting. It was just a bunch of random matches without any significant storyline during the reign. I know it was The Outcasts as a group, but there is no depth to the story. I would assume that Saraya will be in a match at All In in England, or at least she should be. In my opinion, Saraya should win the title at All In in England. I know she’s a heel, but I think that would be an incredible moment for her considering she lost several years of her career before coming back last year. I think it’s a possibility so maybe it will be a short reign for Shida.
Three Stars of the Show
2. Hikaru Shida/Toni Storm
3. Trent Beretta, Jon Moxley & Penta
This Week: 7.25 out of 10
Last Week: 6.5
2023 Average: 7.43
It was a pretty good show overall. This was definitely better than last week’s show. The match quality was typical of AEW with a bunch of tag team matches that were mostly entertaining with some chaos at times. The triple threat Anything Goes Match had an interesting finish since Trent got the win over Jon Moxley and Penta (who took the pin). I didn’t think that result was coming, so at least that was a surprise. Hikaru Shida won the AEW Women’s Title from Toni Storm. As I wrote in the review, I think Saraya should win the title at All In in England because even as a heel, it would be a great story.
I’m not that excited about watching RVD in 2023, but I hope he can have a decent match with Jack Perry next week. AEW already has enough wrestlers in their 50s and higher. Feature some younger talent that doesn’t get a chance instead. There are so many people they do nothing with.
The MJF/Adam Cole segment was entertaining with MJF in babyface mode. I noted in the review that when they hugged, Cole had his fist on MJF’s back almost like a symbol like he was going to stab him in the back, which is something Cole did to Roderick Strong in NXT too before turning on him. It makes me think Cole is the one going heel. Anyway, that MJF/Cole World Title match should be great at All In later this month. I’m thinking a title change is very possible there.
Thanks for reading. Go Toronto Blue Jays. You can contact me using any of the methods below.