The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 04.20.22
Live from Pittsburgh, PA
Your hosts are Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone & Excalibur
CM Punk v. Dustin Rhodes
We get the handshake to start. What is this, Ring of Honor? Dustin with armdrags and they trade headlocks to some pretty big dueling chants from the crowd. Punk tries a bow and arrow and that doesn’t go well, so he rolls Dustin over for two and goes for the leg instead. Dustin drops him on the top rope to break free and goes back to the armdrags, but he misses a bodypress and lands on the floor, hurting his knee. That’s how I felt today after our freak snowstorm that resulted in me wiping out on the ice four times on the way to the store this afternoon. WHAT THE HELL, SASKATCHEWAN WEATHER? Back in the ring, Punk works on the knee and we take a break. Back with Dustin sending him to the floor, but Punk SWEEPS THE LEG and trips him up on the apron. Dustin runs him into the post in retaliation and back in the ring for a slugfest. Dustin wins that and slugs away on Punk in the corner. Dustin knee gives out and Punk tries a running knee in the corner, but that misses and Dustin hits a Code Red for two. Dustin comes back with the powerslam for two. Punk clips the knee again to set up a figure four this time, but Dustin gets all fired up and they trade shots in the move until Dustin reverses it and Punk has to make the ropes. Punk tries to springboard and Dustin catches him in a Crossroads and follows with a piledriver for two. Dustin tries the Dusty comeback, but Punk catches him with the high kick and tries the GTS. Dustin reverses to a sunset flip, but Punk blocks it for the pin at 18:07. This was some very professional wrestling between two gunslingers. ***1/2 And speaking of gunslingers, Punk’s belt motions bring out Hangman Page for the staredown, making the main event of Double or Nothing all the more clear.
Meanwhile, Wardlow shows up and Mark Sterling informs him of a security detail that will follow him everywhere and handcuff him on the way to the ring.
The Blackpool Combat Club v. Dante Martin, Brock Anderson & Lee Moriarty
The BCC attacks all the geeks to start and Yuta wraps up Dante in a bow and arrow, but Dante fights back with an enzuigiri. And Wheeler has real tights now! Good for him. Over to Danielson for some kicks in the corner, but Dante fights back with a dropkick to chase Bryan back to his corner. Moxley comes in and Brock beats on him in the corner while William Regal reminisces about partying with AA and leaving his liver in Vegas. Moxley suplexes Brock on the top rope, however, and we take a break. Back with Moxley walking into a spinebuster, setting up the hot tag to Lee Moriarty, who cleans house on the Club and hits a springboard clothesline on Bryan. Danielson unloads on him with forearms, but Moriarty takes him down with a back suplex for two. Moriarty with a crossface, but Bryan suplexes out of it, so Dante comes in with a missile dropkick. Over to Moxley, but Dante dumps him and follows with a springboard dive, but he lands short on the moonsault and Moxley puts him in the choke. Moriarty tries to save and Moxley just tells him to do his worst, and then the Combat Club does a triple ass-kicking before Moxley finishes with the Paradigm Shift at 8:14. These guys are GREAT. Get us some trios belts! ***
Meanwhile, the Elite continue bickering again, as Bobby Fish was apparently unaware that they lost to the Jurassic Express last week. So next week, it’s an Undisputed Elite open challenge 10 man to show that they’re still the best.
Meanwhile, Satnam Singh speaks. With subtitles.
Tony Khan joins us for this week’s major announcement, which is interrupted by Adam Cole, who steals the announcement that AEW and New Japan team up for Forbidden Door on June 26. And he’s facing Ishii on Rampage. And then we get the furthest thing from a major announcement, Jay White, who comes out and claims credit for selling out MSG. He can’t even sell out Impact’s TV tapings.
Meanwhile, Jade Cargill and her new crew act all mean to Marina Shafir.
Wardlow v. The Butcher
MJF has now confiscated Wardlow’s music while watching from a skybox and throwing popcorn on the fans. They slug it out and Butcher bites him in the corner, but Wardlow puts him down with shoulderblocks. They head to the floor and trade clotheslines, with neither guy going down, and Wardlow runs him into the post before Butcher comes back with a slam on the apron. Back in, Butcher gets his own version of the powerbomb for one. But then Wardlow pops up and hits him with the Powerbomb Symphony as the crowd goes nuts, and that finishes at 4:19. Nice little hoss fight here. **1/4
Meanwhile, Eddie Kingston throws out the challenge to Daniel Garcia for Rampage, which is going to be a preview for what happens to Jericho eventually. He doesn’t sow, he just reaps.
Owen Hart Foundation qualifier: Kyle O’Reilly v. Jungle Boy
Jungle Boy tries his springboard wristlock reversal on Kyle, but O’Reilly counters that with an armbar and JB has to make the ropes. Jungle Boy puts him down with a dropkick and they trade chops. Kyle sweeps the leg and goes to a wristlock, then hits Jungle Boy with a knee on the ropes and into a series of butterfly suplexes as we take a break. Back with Jungle Boy making a comeback and dumping Kyle to the floor before hitting a tope suicida and then bouncing off the railing with a lariat. Back in the ring, Jungle Boy slingshots into a DDT and goes into a guillotine, but Kyle suplexes out of it, and JB fires back with another rebound lariat. Kyle recovers first and charges, but JB catches him with a suplex into the corner. They fight to the top and Kyle tries a wristlock on the top rope, but JB hangs him in the Tree of Woe and puts the boots to him. He tries his own version of the Boom, but Kyle dodges it and fights back until JB rolls him up for two. Kyle switches to an anklelock, but Jungle Boy reverses to the Snare Trap and Kyle quickly makes the ropes. JB goes up and Kyle cuts him off with a superplex, which Jungle Boy reverses into a cradle for two. Kyle with a brainbuster and he goes up with the flying knee to the back to finish clean at 13:00. Somewhat surprising finish but it was a hell of a mat wrestling match. ***1/2
Meanwhile, MJF admits that he’s a snake and there’s still more money where that came from. In this case, a payoff to Jake Roberts, which means a match with Lance Archer for Wardlow.
HOOK v. Anthony Henry
Hook takes him down and goes for the knee, but Henry makes the ropes, so Hook beats on him in the corner and flings him around with throws. Sliding lariat and crossfaces set up the finish, but Danhausen pops out of the ring and tries to curse him again. And it still doesn’t work, as Hook finishes with Redrum at 1:30. And Danhausen makes the stupidest decision of his career, challenging Hook to a FIGHT before realizing what he did. Hook’s gonna choke the demon out of him!
Meanwhile, Frankie Kazarian is about to challenge Sammy Guevara, but Scorpio Sky interrupts and asks him to step aside in exchange for the first shot. And Frankie agrees!
Sammy Guevara joins us, fully in heel douche mode now, and the Men of the Year interrupt, as Dan Lambert offers to give him “the pounding that his girlfriend dreams of” and so next week it’s a ladder match for the TNT title. Also we’re getting the mixed tag team match at some point. Hopefully it’s Paige & Page as the team and it happens on Rampage in a cage.
Meanwhile, The House of Black is going to kill the sun the next week, I guess. Huge if true.
Owen Hart Foundation qualifier: Dr. Britt Baker DMD v. Danielle Kamela
Obviously Britt is the huge babyface here. They trade rollups to start and we quickly take a break. Back with Kamela choking Britt out with her own towel, but Britt comes back with an elbow and sling blade. Neckbreaker and curb stomp set up the Lockjaw at 6:14. Basically just a squash. Afterwards, Britt buries the entire women’s division and gets some pretty good burns in, so no babyface turn as of yet.
Coffin match: Andrade v. Darby Allin
Darby uses the skateboard to beat on Andrade, but the Family Office runs in and beats Darby down, being no DQ and all. They head to the floor and Andrade slams Darby through the railing, but a fan dressed as Sting turns out to be Sting and evens the odds on Blade and Marc Quen. So they all head to the tunnel and fight there, and Sting throws Quen onto Andrade and Blade and then dives off the balcony like a crazy man. We take a break and return with Andrade missing a running knee in the corner, and Darby hits the Code Red on him, but he tries a coffin drop onto the floor and gets caught and suplexed. They fight in the coffin, which is covered in thumbtacks inside, but Andrade can’t close the lid. So he heaves Darby out and hits a muscle buster on the ramp before suplexing him onto a metal grating beside the ramp. OUCH. Back to ringside and Andrade tosses him into the stairs and busts up the coffin, but Darby manages to hit him with a tope and put him in it. Jose the Assistant makes the save, but he gets backdropped on the thumbtacks, and Darby closes the lid at 12:29 for the win. This was definitely not boring, although there wasn’t really much in the way of a “match” here. ***
Well this certainly was an episode with a lot going on, most of it really good wrestling and interesting setup for the future.
And also Jay White. Well even Dark needs main eventers.