The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 07.06.22
Live from Rochester, NY
Your hosts are Excalibur, Taz & Tony Schiavone
TNT title: Scorpio Sky v. Wardlow
This is a STREET FIGHT, because I guess we haven’t had one of those in a week or two, and Scorpio brings all of ATT with him. Sky slugs away to start, but Wardlow powers him down, so Scorpio kicks him in the nuts. Wardlow shakes that off and suplexes Sky around the ring, and Sky bails to the floor, where he lures Wardlow over for a trip to the stairs and a beatdown from Lambert’s gang. We take a break and return with Scorpio trying a superplex, but Wardlow brings him down and follows with a swanton. This brings the ATT crew in for the attack, but Wardlow runs them off, and Sky lays him out with the title belt for two. Wardlow gets rid of Lambert to set up the Powerbomb Symphony for the pin and the title at 8:28. This reminded me a lot of Goldberg annihilating Raven back in 1998 for the US title. **1/2 It was time to pull the trigger on giving Wardlow some gold and the trigger has been pulled.
Meanwhile, Jon Moxley talks about carving people up with weapons for fun last week, which Brody King doesn’t want none of if he’s smart.
Meanwhile, Tony Nese makes overtures to Keith Lee but he is politely rebuked.
Christian Cage and his pet dinosaur join us, as Blood & Guts was last week “but he’s the Cage everyone is talking about.” Ha. Matt Hardy quickly interrupts and notes that Christian is “the Michael Jordan of being an asshole”. Now there’s a backhanded compliment. Christian retorts with “you’re starting to make your brother sound like the sober one” and people in the audience were literally gasping at that one. Matt admits that he might have used Private Party and he regrets that, but Christian accuses him of being a clout chaser who uses everything from his brother to a “dilapidated boat” to prop up his own star power. Christian calls Matt a bigger loser than his brother, and that’s too much for Matt to take, but Luchasaurus mauls him and boots him into the ringpost before chokeslamming him through the table. Christian is just another level of unlikeable heel. What a piece of crap.
Meanwhile, Claudio and Jake Hager set up a challenge for next week.
The Butcher & The Blade v. Keith Lee & Swerve Strickland
BUNNY UPDATE: Evil Uno tried to trigger her by making her play Spelunky 2 this week on the Rage Index, but it backfired and she was actually pretty good at it. Uno, if you’re reading this, you want Getting Over It. It would be GLORIOUS watching her try to navigate the controls. Lee and Butcher have a quick hoss fight showdown, and then Swerve does a couple of takedowns on Blade to frustrate him. Lee comes in and the babyfaces show glimpses of teamwork again, and Swerve dumps Blade to the floor, but Blade SWEEPS THE LEG on the apron and they’re both down as we take a break. Back with Swerve coming off the top with a back elbow on Butcher and he makes the tag to Keith, who hurls Blade into Butcher and follows with a primal scream. But then he pounces Swerve by mistake and Blade hits a stunner on Lee to get rid of him. They double-team Swerve and Butcher hits a lariat for two, but Lee makes the save. Lee slugs it out with Butcher, but Swerve flies in with a shining wizard, and the faces regroup and hit the double-team powerbomb on Blade to finish at 9:40. Kind of messy and it never really took off. **1/2 And then Team Taz comes out and they’re sick and tired of hearing about Swerve and Lee, and Starks gets all worked up, to the point where the Young Bucks hear “the best team in the sport” and come out on cue. The Bucks note that the other teams had a “four and a half star match” at Double or Nothing, which is an “off night” for them. So next week they propose a three-way tag title match while the crowd chants for FTR. Man they’ve gotta get to that match pretty soon.
Meanwhile, Malakai Black is going to make sure that Brody King leaves his mark on Moxley.
Eddie Kingston joins Tony in the ring and offers congratulations to Wardlow and even to Claudio. He’s a nice guy! But then we cut to the back, where Chris Jericho shows Tay Conti slamming a car door on Ruby Soho’s hand, even though Ruby could have literally just moved her hand. Did they not have a better take on that one?
The Dark Order joins us, or at least what’s left of them. Evil Uno teases breaking up the group, but then reaffirms that they’re still a team, and is about to let Negative One cut a promo, but QT Marshall interrupts. He threatens the kid with various violence, but Hangman Page comes out to rejoin his friends, and they all kick QT’s ass. Not much of note to this one.
Penta Oscuro v. Rush
They trade chops to start and Penta gets a rollup for two. They fight to the floor and Penta gets taken out, and back Rush takes over with corner splashes for two. Alex and Jose the Assistant get into a scrap and fight to the back as we take a break. Back with Penta hitting a backstabber, but Rush powerslams him for two. The announcers finally start mentioning the ROH PPV at the end of the month, so I went to Fite to check it out and it’s FORTY DOLLARS to order it?! That’s a no from over here, dog. Rush and Penta slug it out again and exchange headbutts to put each other down, and then throw more chops in the corner and batter each other. Rush with a missile dropkick for two. Rush goes up with a senton for two, but Penta rolls into a cutter and hits him with the package piledriver for two. But Andrade puts the foot on the ropes and takes the ref, allowing Rush to steal Penta’s mask and kick him in the nuts for the pin at 11:30. Kind of disappointed after all the buildup for Rush. ***
Meanwhile, Orange Cassidy outsmarts Mark Sterling with the help of his legal advisor, Danhausen.
The Acclaimed & The Gunn Clubb v. Fuego Del Sol & Bear Country & Leon Ruff
OH MAN. The Gunns become the biggest heels in the building just by snatching the microphone from Max Caster so that he can’t rap. Fuego manages to hit Bowens with a tornado DDT and Bronson comes in and clotheslines the Gunns and powerbombs Austin for two. Bowens comes in with a Rough Ryder to set up the Mic Drop from Caster, but Austin blind tags and steals the pin at 2:30. And then things finally come to a head as the teams get into a brawl, but Daddy Ass shows his true colors and turns on the Acclaimed, even as Bowens is sadly asking to be scissored one last time. Well we knew how that story was always gonna end up, but now the Acclaimed have officially gotten the babyface turn the world was ready for. A surprisingly amount of heat and pathos for the battle of the goofy rappers and the Ass Boys. I was already an emotional wreck after learning that Buff Bagwell’s Twitter feed was not actually him all this time, and now Daddy Ass has delivered a fameasser to my heart.
Meanwhile, Miro is now coming for the House of Black, and that’s probably not good news for them.
Nyla Rose & Marina Shafir v. THUNDER STORM
Rosa and Toni double-team Shafir in the corner to start while the cameraman seems, uh, very focused on Rosa in the corner. Well we know Tony Khan has a type. Rosa with a chinlock on Marina and they trap her in the corner and deliver chops, until Nyla finally turns the tide by hitting Storm with an umbrella from the apron. Marty Scurll to AEW confirmed? No, probably not actually. Still, HUGE IF TRUE. We take a break and return with Rosa hitting a dropkick on the ropes on Nyla, and that looks terrible so she does it again. Nyla chokeslams her and brings Marina back in, who hits Rosa with a slam for two. But then Toni sends Marina into the corner for the HIP ATTACK OF DEATH and Rosa finishes with a package piledriver at 9:15. Just kind of a match, but at least Shafir didn’t look completely embarrassing here, so that’s a win. **
Meanwhile, Stokely Hathaway introduces interim Baddie Leila Grey, but Jade notes that she better deliver. Are we supposed to know who Grey is other than an enhancement talent last week? I don’t really get why I’m supposed to care about her.
Meanwhile, Daniel Garcia challenges Wheeler Yuta to a Pure Title match on the ROH PPV, and FTR challenges the Briscoes. OK well that price tag is looking better now. Dammit. OK fine I used my Fite credits and bought it. Hope you’re happy.
AEW Interim World title: Jon Moxley v. Brody King
They slug it out and Brody sends him to the floor and beats him down, but he charges and runs into the stairs. Moxley tries a piledriver and Brody backdrops out of it, but Moxley dropkicks the knee and figure-fours him in the ring. Brody escapes that and they slug it out until Brody hits a Bossman slam for two and we take a break. Back with them fighting over a superplex, but Moxley fights dirty and wins that battle. Mox with a dragon suplex for two, but Brody piledrives him for two. Brody does the hanging choke sleeper in the corner and releases it to set up the cannonball for two. Moxley rolls him up for two and hits the Paradigm Shift, and then gets the hammer elbows and tries for the choke. Brody powers out of that and slams him, but Moxley sinks it in again and taps him out at 13:15. This was quite the hard-hitting hoss fight, but I don’t think it’s going to do much for Brody overall. There wasn’t any real buildup and he just ended up being a guy to put Moxley over. ***1/2
The Wardlow title win was a pretty memorable start, but the rest of the show just kind of felt like a “setting the table” effort this week. Hopefully that means they can back into a groove again as we move past New Japan crossovers.