The John Report: AEW Dynamite 08/30/23 Review

aew dynamite august 30

This week’s AEW Dynamite followed All In while leading the company into the All Out pay-per-view this Sunday and it had Orange Cassidy facing Penta in the main event.

It’s a unique week for AEW after having 81,000+ fans at AEW All In last Sunday at Wembley Stadium and now they have to try to set up the AEW All Out pay-per-view this coming Sunday, September 3rd.

Going into this show, AEW was dealing with illness for some wrestlers that might have been on it and some wrestlers had travel issues due to the hurricane in Florida, so they didn’t have the full roster at their disposal and it meant changes to the show. Names like Kenny Omega, Saraya and Swerve Strickland were mentioned among the absent wrestlers.

I am going to do a summary style review for every match except one, which will be a play by play review. Just my way of trying to write a bit less.

This was AEW Dynamite episode #204 at the NOW Arena in Chicago, Illinois. Follow me on Twitter/X @johnreport. Let’s get to it.

It’s Wednesday and you know what that means. Excalibur was on commentary with Tony Schiavone and Taz. There was a rundown of what’s coming up with a bunch of random matches including an International Title match main event.

Jon Moxley vs. Komander (w/Alex Abrahantes)

Moxley was aggressive with kicks and punches to start. Komander managed to send Moxley out of the ring leading to a cross body block off the top. Back in the ring, Komander went for a twisting splash and Moxley avoided it. Moxley hit a suplex into a slam leading to a break.


Komander got some offense with a running forearm. Komander hit a Lung Blower with double knees to the ribs for two. Komander went for a top rope splash, so Moxley got the knees up. Moxley got a two count after a piledriver. Moxley applied an armbar pulling on the left arm and Komander tapped out after about nine minutes.

Winner by submission: Jon Moxley

Analysis: **3/4 It was an obvious win for Moxley over a guy that doesn’t really beat the big names. Komander got some offense and was a bit of a threat, but we all know Moxley was going to put him away. No surprise there. It’s hard to get into some of these matches when it’s so obvious.

There was a video about Orange Cassidy talking about how he’s going to continue to defend the International Championship whenever he has to. Orange said he’s not the same guy that started here four years ago and he’ll show us why.

The Young Bucks were shown in the locker room after their match at All In London when FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) walked in. FTR wondered why The Young Bucks didn’t shake their hands and Young Bucks said they were frustrated. Bullet Club Gold’s foursome mocked The Young Bucks for losing. It led to a 4-on-4 tag team match set up for All Out with Young Bucks & FTR against Bullet Club Gold’s Jay White, Juice Robinson & The Gunns.

It’s official for All Out: FTR & Young Bucks vs. Bullet Club Gold in an 8-man tag team match.

Analysis: It’s a random eight man tag team match for All Out. It should be a good match, but there’s no story other than a one-minute backstage interaction.

Chris Jericho was up next.


A video aired about Saraya winning the AEW Women’s Championship at All In. It was emotional for Saraya in her home country and with her family joining her.

Toni Storm was interviewed by Renee Paquette doing her over the top character. Storm was freaking out about how she can’t trust people and she just ranted as the interview ended. When Storm said things were going “tits up” that’s when Renee looked down her own chest, so I thought that was funny at least.

Let’s Hear from Chris Jericho

Chris Jericho made his entrance alone with the fans singing “Judas” for him. Jericho called All In one of the greatest weekends of his career for Fozzy’s big show on Friday and then over 81,000+ tickets sold and that number is shoot (real). Jericho said he really liked the match with Will Ospreay too. Jericho said he regrets how he treated Sammy Guevara after the match by pushing him away, so he called Sammy out.

Sammy Guevara made his entrance to join Jericho in the ring. Jericho cued up a video of Sammy helping Jericho try to win the match. Jericho apologized and shook Sammy’s hand. Sammy said he always has Jericho’s back and a little push isn’t going to break them out.

Jericho said he’s replaying the Will Ospreay match to try to figure out what could have been done like Sammy hitting Ospreay harder with a baseball bat. They argued about that point. Sammy spoke about how he left his pregnant wife in Orlando to be there for Jericho’s corner. Sammy said if he wasn’t worried about having Jericho’s back then maybe he could have wrestled on the show. Sammy insulted Jericho back about losing on the biggest show they’ve ever had and Jericho insulted back saying Sammy lost the AEW World Title match in the past.

Sammy mentioned Jericho becoming AEW World Champion in this arena and then he lost the title at a steakhouse in Jacksonville. Sammy had a staredown with Jericho. That led to Jericho saying they need to reunite the Sex Gods and let’s go after the AEW Tag Team Titles. Jericho said next week they should start on that road. Sammy shook Jericho’s hand and hugged him. Jericho said you can boo all you want, but they will become new Tag Team Champions.

Analysis: It seems like there will be a slow burn for this split. I don’t see their tag team going that well. The promo work was good by both guys as usual. They were on the same page, yet they also insulted and took personal shots at eachother.

There was a backstage promo with The Blackpool Combat Club’s Jon Moxley standing by Claudio Castagnoli and Wheeler Yuta. Moxley said he would leave AEW All Out as the International Champion. Very basic promo.

Eddie Kingston vs. Wheeler Yuta

Eddie is the NJPW Strong Openweight Champion, so he had that title with him. Yuta attacked Eddie’s right arm that was taped while Moxley & Claudio were shown watching backstage. Yuta kept on working on the right arm as he took off the bandage that Kingston was wearing and Yuta sent Kingston’s right arm into the ring post. Eddie got some offense with a clothesline knocking Yuta out of the ring and a sloppy suicide dive. They each connected with suplexes with Eddie hitting a Saito Suplex for two. Yuta hit a unique version of an Angle Slam for two. After some Yuta strikes, Eddie no sold them, Eddie hit an overhead suplex and Eddie finished him off with a spinning back fist for the pinfall win. It went about seven minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Eddie Kingston

Analysis: **3/4 Good match for the time allotted, but too short for me to really go higher. I thought Kingston did a nice job of selling throughout the match. The fans love Kingston. Yuta is technically sound, but we know he’s not going to win a match like that.

After the match, Claudio Castagnoli walked out with the ROH World Title and didn’t stare at Kingston at all. Claudio helped Yuta to the back.

There were comments from Maxwell Jacob Friedman and Adam Cole after their match at AEW All In. MJF said he was going to France. MJF said there was a battle royal on Rampage to see will challenge them for the ROH Tag Team Titles at All Out and then MJF has to defend the AEW World Title at Dynamite Grand Slam on September 20th. They said they loved eachother and Cole left.


Sammy Guevara was interviewed by Renee Paquette, but Don Callis interrupted before it could get very far. Callis said it was hard being Jericho’s friend. Callis claimed he just heard that Sammy is pregnant. Sammy told Callis that what he does is none of Don’s business so Don left.

Next week on Dynamite is a Grand Slam World Title Eliminator Tournament with the winner getting a World Title match against MJF at Dynamite Grand Slam on September 20th.

Let’s Hear from Adam Cole bay bay

Adam Cole made his entrance with his ROH Tag Team Title. Cole called AEW All In the greatest pro wrestling event of all time (I don’t agree, but happy for AEW having a huge crowd). Cole spoke about winning the ROH Tag Team Titles and then he said it hurt losing the AEW World Title to MJF in the main event. Cole said MJF is banged up, but he’ll be ready to go at All Out this Sunday night.

Roderick Strong arrived in his neck brace along with The Kingdom’s Matt Taven & Mike Bennett. They got into the ring with Cole. Strong said that Cole cares more about MJF than he cares about Strong’s neck. Bennett interrupted with his own version of story time.

Bennett talked about 2010 at the ECW Arena and the fans chanted “shut the f**k up.” Bennett said they got signed to Ring of Honor that night. Bennett said they did everything together, Cole was at his wedding and hosted his bachelor party. Bennett trashed Chicago to get some heat. Bennett said Cole cares far too much about what the idiot fans think about him. Cole tried to speak, but Taven told him to shut up.

Taven told Cole this is just who he is. Taven said that Cole used The Kingdom in ROH, then he went to Bullet Club and then Cole went to Florida where he surrounded himself with their friends. Taven said Cole is a liar thinking he’s a changed man. Taven said that Cole has latched onto MJF because he thinks it’s the gateway to the AEW Title.

Strong said that he’s going to enter that Grand Slam tournament and he’s going to take the AEW World Title from MJF. Cole said that Strong is in no condition to wrestle. Strong sarcastically said that Cole is caring about him. Strong said he doesn’t need a neck that is 100% to win a match decisively here. Strong said he’s going to win that tournament because he’s a wrestling legend. Strong and his friends left.

Analysis: It was good to hear from The Kingdom guys talking about their thoughts on Cole because you can’t assume everybody watching at home knows the history. I still think Adam Cole is going to turn heel to lead these guys, but I don’t know when it’s coming.

Kris Statlander, Hikaru Shida & Britt Baker vs. Marina Shafir, Nyla Rose & Emi Sakura

This feels like such a random tag team match. Probably because it is. Shida hit a dropkick on Sakura and brought in Baker, who hit a Slingblade. Sakura was choking Baker against the ropes, which led to a picture-in-picture break.


Statlander was in control by slamming Shafir off her shoulders to the mat. Rose and Sakura illegally did a double team because it’s AEW where they lose control. Baker superkicked Shida by accident because Rose moved out of the way. Statlander cleared the ring, then she went up top and hit a cross body block on the three opponents. Statlander hit Wednesday Night Fever for the pinfall win after about seven minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Kris Statlander, Hikaru Shida & Britt Baker

Analysis: ** It was just an average tag team match. As I said, it was pretty random and tough to get into it. Statlander winning as the TBS Champion is the right call.

Hikaru Shida was mad at Britt Baker for kicking her in the match.

After the match, Ruby Soho ran in and hit the No Future kick on Statlander. Soho ran away before Statlander could get her.

Analysis: There’s a Statlander/Ruby match at All Out so this is supposed to make us care about it.

A new match at AEW All Out on Sunday: Samoa Joe defends the ROH TV Title against Shane Taylor. They showed a brief video about Taylor.

There was a backstage scene with Don Callis telling Konosuke Takeshita about how to attack Kenny Omega at AEW All Out this Sunday night. Callis mentioned past surgeries that Omega had in his career. Takeshita made evil faces towards the camera.


The Acclaimed Celebrate With New Trios Tag Team Titles

The Acclaimed’s Max Caster & Anthony Bowens entered with Billy Gunn. Caster had a good line about teams being bloodshot and “looking pissed like Trump in his mugshot.” Well played. At one point, Bowens welcomed us to the “House of Ass” and the fans chanted that. Anyway, they introduced brand new Trios Tag Team Titles that had a pink strap. The back of the titles look like scissors so they can do scissoring. They announced they will defend the Trios Tag Team Titles on Collision. It took about five minutes to get through it.

Analysis: I like these guys, but this was time consuming and not that interesting. I kept waiting for an interruption, yet it didn’t happen. Anyway, new pink Trios Tag Team Titles. Fine, I guess. I have no preference for strap colors in a company that has way too many titles.

Here is the AEW All Out lineup they mentioned during the show.

* Kenny Omega vs. Konosuke Takeshita

* Powerhouse Hobbs vs. Miro

* Young Bucks & FTR vs. Bullet Club Gold

* TNT Championship: Luchasaurus vs. Darby Allin

* TBS Championship: Kris Statlander vs. Ruby Soho

* ROH World Tag Team Championships: Adam Cole & MJF vs. Winners of Battle Royal on AEW Rampage (It’s been taped but I won’t spoil it here.)

* ROH TV Championship: Samoa Joe vs. Shane Taylor

The full lineup is at the bottom of the post.

Penta El Zero Miedo entered first as the challenger with Alex Abrahantes by his side.


The AEW International Champion Orange Cassidy got a good ovation.

AEW International Championship: Orange Cassidy vs. Penta El Zero Miedo (w/Alex Abrahantes)

Orange is 21-0 in singles matches this year. It’s good to be a Tony Khan favorite. The winner gets to defend the International Title against Jon Moxley at AEW All Out. There was a lot of time left in the show for this match. I’ll go play by play for it. Orange and Penta did a gymnastics routine where neither man was really going for moves, but just doing flips to get out of pin attempts. Orange did a hiptoss while his hands were in his pockets. Penta caught a diving Orange and launched him into the barricade.


Orange hit a suicide dive onto Penta on the floor. Orange with a superkick, but when Orange jumped off the steps, Penta hit him with a superkick. Penta hit an impressive somersault dive over the top onto Orange. Back in the ring, Penta hit a springboard leg drop. Orange sent Penta into the turnbuckle, but Penta came back with a jumping kick to the head. Orange hit Stundog Millionaire followed by a DDT. Penta with a running punt to Orange’s ribs. Penta with a backstabber to Orange’s back for a two count. Another picture-in-picture break.


Penta with a superkick, Orange with a superkick and Penta hit a Slingblade neckbreaker. Penta with a superkick and lame cover for two. Penta went for an armbar, so Orange put his hand in his pockets and got out of it. Orange did his comedy routine, which led to Orange running the ropes for a Canadian Destroyer piledriver. That was no sold by Penta, who hit a Canadian Destroyer piledriver of his own. Orange no sold that and hit another Canadian Destroyer. Mr. Everything Is Great Tony Schiavone: “What the hell are we watching? My God! It’s amazing.” It’s called no selling. They decided to sell by stumbling around. Orange tried an Orange Punch and Penta avoided it leading to a Made In Japan slam. Orange hit a back body drop for two. Penta did a superkick on Orange’s right hand. They fought on the apron with Penta hitting a Fear Factor sitout piledriver for two because Orange got his right hand on the bottom rope. Penta snapped the right arm of Orange. Penta hit Fear Factor again as a sitout piledriver for a two count. Orange did a crucifix pin hooking the arms and that was enough for a three count. It went 17 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Orange Cassidy

Analysis: ***1/4 A long match that was entertaining for the most part and had a good finish. The Canadian Destroyer spot was dumb and really an embarrassment to pro wrestling. Learn to sell, please. Be willing to sell. I would have rated it higher if they actually sold moves better. Since Orange kicked out of so many big moves, it made Penta’s offense look weak since he couldn’t put away this guy. Anyway, I was surprised by the finish, so I’ll give them credit for something creative.

Post match, Orange Cassidy did a rare promo in the ring while seated on a chair. Orange said he’s tired and his body hurts. Orange said he’s here, he’s wrestling and he’s defending the International Championship because this means everything to him. Orange said he was a guy who was told he would never do anything, he was too short, he’s too different and now “I’m the champion.” Orange said he’ll continue to defend his championship for as long as he wants. Orange told Jon Moxley to bring more than just a fork because Orange will always be the International Champion and he does not have a catchphrase.

Analysis: A rare promo from Orange Cassidy that was actually very effective.

Jon Moxley went into the ring. He shoved Orange in the face and then Orange punched Moxley in the face. They had a staredown. Moxley did a middle finger salute and left.

Analysis: There could be a title change there. I’m not sure if Moxley needs the International Title, though. I’d rather see a younger, newer wrestler beat Orange for it.


Three Stars of the Show

  1. Orange Cassidy/Penta – I still wish they would sell better.
  2. Jon Moxley
  3. Adam Cole


The Scoreboard

This Week: 6.25 out of 10

Last Week: 7

2023 Average: 7.32


Final Thoughts

This was one of the weaker episodes of Dynamite this year. It’s the third time in four weeks that I rated a Dynamite episode under 7 out of 10, so I think it’s fair to say they are in a cold spell at this point. I do have sympathy toward the company because some wrestlers missed due to illness and travel issues getting out of Florida, but it just didn’t feel like a great show at all.

There were four matches in two hours. Three of the matches were just average at best with very predictable outcomes. Usually, match quality is better in AEW. The main event with Orange Cassidy beating Penta had some good moments, but I hated that Canadian Destroyer spot. Pro wrestling is better when you sell moves. Popping right up and doing another move right away makes the move look meaningless. Anyway, only one match above average is weak for AEW.

Going into AEW All Out this Sunday, some of the matches have decent build, but most of them do not. It’s hard to get that excited about it. I’m sure the in-ring action will be good and even great at times. I just feel like they could have prepared for it better.

Here’s the AEW All Out lineup for Sunday, September 3rd in Chicago.

* AEW International Championship: Orange Cassidy vs. Jon Moxley

* Kenny Omega vs. Konosuke Takeshita

* TNT Championship: Luchasaurus vs. Darby Allin

* ROH World Tag Team Championships: Adam Cole & MJF vs. Winners of Battle Royal on AEW Rampage

* Powerhouse Hobbs vs. Miro

* The Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson) & FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) vs. Bullet Club Gold (Jay White, Juice Robinson, Austin Gunn & Colten Gunn)

* TBS Championship: Kris Statlander vs. Ruby Soho

* Eddie Kingston & Katsuyori Shibata vs. Claudio Castagnoli & Wheeler Yuta

* ROH TV Championship: Samoa Joe vs. Shane Taylor

The show is available on pay-per-view everywhere.


Thanks for reading. Go Toronto Blue Jays. You can contact me using any of the methods below.

John Canton


Twitter/X: @johnreport