The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 10.12.22
Live from CANADA. Toronto to be specific, but they’re even deader to me than usual after the Blue Jays pulled a Maple Leafs and choked yet again.
Your hosts are Excalibur, Tony Schiavone & Taz
Renee Paquette debuts as the newest interviewer, with special guest Christian. And goes right for the Leafs heat, guaranteeing that Luchasaurus will win tonight, just like it’s guaranteed that the Leafs will lose in the first round of the playoffs. He’s not wrong.
Luchasaurus v. Jungle Boy Jack Perry
Perry attacks to start and slugs away in the corner before choking him out like the Blue Jays. Luchasaurus comes back with a slam and slugs Perry to the floor before setting up a table, but Perry escapes that and goes to work on the arm. They fight on the floor and Luchasaurus tosses him into the railing to take over again as we take a break. Back with Jungle Boy trying a dive, but Luchasaurus catches him, so Perry reverses him into the post with a rana. To the apron and Perry tries something inadvisable, but can’t slam him through the table. So he superkicks Luchasaurus instead and follows with a sunset flip powerbomb to put him through the table, but Christian heads down for the distraction, which allows Luchasaurus to make the comeback exactly like the dinosaurus didn’t. Death valley driver gets two. They head to the top and Perry brings him down in the Tree of Woe, but Luchasaurus actually catches him with a headscissors and drives his head into the mat, then follows with a buckle bomb and chokeslam for two. Luchasaurus goes for a samoan drop, but Perry reverses into a crucifix bomb for two. Perry with a poison rana and then he uses a Killswitch for two. The crowd was wanting that one. Perry with the Snare Trap, but Luchasaurus makes it to the ropes. Perry goes up and gets distracted by Christian some more, and Luchasaurus finishes him with the Burning Hammer at 14:16. This was a shocking great opener, probably Luchasaurus’ best singles match ever. ****
Meanwhile, Stokely Hathaway reveals that he bought Private Party’s contracts from whatever is left of Andrade’s group, so this Friday it’s Kassidy v. Ethan Page for his emancipation. But if Page wins, Matt Hardy is also property of the Firm.
Wardlow & Samoa Joe v. QT Marshall & Nick Comoroto
Joe quickly destroys QT and slugs away in the corner, and then does the casual walk-away when QT tries to dive on him. Over to Wardlow for the headbutt and lariat, so QT tags out and Comoroto gets some shots in the corner. So Wardlow flattens him as well with a spinebuster and goes up with a swanton, and Joe finishes with the choke at 2:25. And that’s apparently not enough suffering for QT, so they destroy him with powerbombs until Brian Cage interrupts. But then he talks shit about FTR and they come out to a giant reaction and challenge the Embassy to a six man match on Rampage, with special partner Shawn Spears. Underrated nice moment: Spears offers a silent apology to Wardlow and they bury the hatchet.
Meanwhile, Chris Jericho continues to be disappointed in Daniel Garcia, and promises that he’s beating Danielson tonight without cheating.
Swerve Strickland v. Billy Gunn
The babyface pop for the Acclaimed is just insane. I have no idea how long they can ride this but it’s gonna be a long time. Daddy Ass grabs a headlock and puts Swerve down with a shoulderblock, but Swerve dropkicks Billy’s knee as we take a break. Back with Swerve sending Billy to the floor and then diving onto his knee with a kneedrop. Back in the ring, Swerve slugs away on him, but Billy comes back with a tilt-a-whirl slam and a jackhammer. Swerve escapes the fameasser and rolls into the flatliner, then goes up with the Swerve Stomp for two. Billy tries for the One and Only, but Swerve rolls him up for the pin while holding the ropes at 9:22. But before the Acclaimed can get their heat back with a good scissoring, Mark Sterling interrupts and claims to now own the Scissor Me trademark, so they can no longer scissor or risk getting sued. Oh, that’s a clever way to stretch out the bit and make the fans want it even more. I approve. **1/2
Meanwhile, MJF discusses his near-handshake with Wheeler Yuta last week, and tells Stokely to get lost. Also he has to be the bad guy, because he’s not fond of himself. Hell of a promo from MJF here.
Jon Moxley joins Tony in the ring to discuss his title defense next week. He discusses how tough it is to be World champion, noting that some people crumble under the pressure, some faster than others. Oh snap. So this brings out Hangman Page, who is apparently not terribly popular in Canada. So Page talks about respecting Moxley for the past three years, while MJF watches from the skybox. So Moxley doesn’t think Hangman has the guts to knock him off a ladder, and Page talks about watching his friends disappear lately, and the medicine isn’t working lately, but he’s still here. So he’s going to beat Moxley within an inch of his life next week no matter how many family members are there. This was exactly the kind of promo we didn’t get in the buildup to Punk v. Moxley last month. Of course the crowd undermined it at the end by chanting for MJF, but they’re just fighting the inevitable with him at this point anyway.
ROH World title: Chris Jericho v. Bryan Danielson
Bryan rolls him up for two and they slug it out, before Jericho tries a dropkick and Danielson catches him with a catapult to the floor. Back in, Bryan slugs away in the corner while the crowd signs “Judas” since Jericho robbed them of the chance earlier. Jericho fights back with chops and Danielson gets his own and they’re already both red in the chest. Jericho beats on him on the top rope and brings him down with a top rope rana as we take a break. Back with Jericho hitting a DDT and dropkicking Danielson to the floor before following with a dive. Back in, Jericho goes up and Danielson brings him down with a butterfly suplex to set up the Lebell Lock, but Jericho fights up and reverses him into the Walls. Danielson pounds him on the mat and gets his own Walls as the crowd is just openly booing Danielson now, but Jericho reverses into a cradle for two. Danielson beats on him with the hammer elbows, but Jericho powers him up into a death valley driver for two. Lionsault misses and Danielson goes up with a flying knee, but he tries a third one and Jericho counters with the codebreaker for two. They trade kicks and the ref is bumped, as they clothesline each other for a double down. This sets up some TOMFOOLERY AND SHENANIGANS from Matt Menard, as he gives Jericho the belt, but Daniel Garcia hits the ring to protest, before turning on Danielson to a giant babyface pop, laying him out with the belt himself. And Jericho retains the title at 14:44. This was quite the Bizarroworld reaction and I think the crowd’s reactions kind of threw them off. ***
Meanwhile, Nyla Rose points out that possession is 9/10ths of the law, so ergo she’s TBS champion. And Anna Jay challenges her to her first title defense on Rampage. Nyla was pretty damn funny here and hopefully they continue to lean into her comedy stylings to play off Jade.
Toni Storm & Hikaru Shida v. Jamie Hayter & Dr. Britt Baker DMD
Shida dropkicks Hayter’s knee to start and the faces double-team her, but Britt trips up Toni Storm as we take a break. Back with Shida fighting back on Britt with forearms, before beating on her in the corner and hitting a meteora for two. Hayter comes in and runs wild for a bit, but Shida fights off both heels until they put her down with a double superkick. Curb stomp gets two for Britt. Storm saves and dumps Hayter, and hits a DDT on Britt to set up the piledriver for two, but Hayter breaks that up. Shida with a falcon arrow, but Britt reverses to a cradle for two and into the Lockjaw. Shida cradles for two to escape that and hits the falcon arrow, but Britt reverses for two, and Shida reverses that for the pin at 8:23. A fun and fast-paced match with a great finish. ***1/4
AEW All Atlantic title: Pac v. Orange Cassidy
Orange goes for the punch right away, but Pac kicks him down and follows with a running boot in the corner. Pac shoves Orange’s hands in his pockets and MOCKS him with tiny kicks, but Orange pops up with a dropkick and sends him to the floor. Pac catches him on a dive attempt, however, and drops him with a falcon arrow on the floor. Ouch. We take a break and return with Pac hitting a piledriver on the ramp, but Orange uses the force of gravity to roll back to ringside and beat the count at 9. Bu then Pac puts him right in the Brutalizer and Orange has to make the ropes. Pac heads out and looks for his hammer, which gives Excalibur a chance to run down all the shows at 100 MPH before Orange makes the comeback with a DDT and Orange Punch for two. Orange goes up and Pac narcs him with his own slow roll to the apron, but Orange hits him with the Beach Break out there. Another Orange Punch is caught by Pac and reversed to a suplex and the Brutalizer, but Orange rolls himself over and into the ropes. Meanwhile Pac has managed to bust his ear open, but he goes for the hammer again and this time he gets foiled by Danhausen and CURSED. And the ref catches him with the hammer, but Pac finds another one under the ring. Orange cuts him off with the Orange Punch and threatens to use the hammer himself, but he gives it to the ref, allowing Pac to roll him up for two. Orange with another Punch, and then a third one to win the title at 11:22 to thankfully pay off the stupid hammer gimmick with an awesome moment. This was all GREAT and the crowd was super hot for everything. ****
Hey, this “wrestling events in Canada” thing might actually be a good idea! More promotions should look into it. This was a banger of a show, and I’d call it a home run but nothing in Toronto is really associated with that term right now. The Raptors haven’t choked lately so we’ll go with a basketball analogy instead and say it was a TOUCHDOWN!