The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 03.22.23
Stupid work, interfering with my wrestling viewing. Also by the time you read this, I’ll have my tickets for Dynamite in Saskatoon this July!
Live from Independence, MO
Your hosts are Excalibur, Tony Schiavone & Taz
Meanwhile, the Young Bucks have been ATTACKED. And they’re getting taken away in ambulances, which prompts Hangman Page to ride with them. Aw.
Orange Cassidy & Darby Allin & Sting v. Kip Sabian & Butcher & Blade
Orange is so pumped for this that he’s painted his face as well. Thankfully Taz is able to explain the symbolism of the “O” and “C” for Tony. Sabian puts Orange on the floor and showboats to start, so Orange throws him out and gets the hands in the pockets. Over to Butcher, so Orange brings in Sting and he shrugs off Butcher’s forearems and fires back. So Butcher bites him and tries a Butcher splash, but Sting moves and hits his own Stinger splash. Everyone brawls to break up the Scorpion and the heels triple-team Sting, but Kip goes up and Sting has learned from Orange Cassidy and rolls out of the way. Who says you can’t teach old dogs new tricks? Darby comes in and cleans house and hits the Code Red on Kip for two. Penelope takes the ref, however, and Darby gets laid out as we take a break. Back with Darby fighting for the tag, but the heels cut him off, so he sunset flips Sabian and makes the hot tag to Orange. DDT for Sabian and Orange brutalizes him with kicks, but Butcher and Blade double-team him with a powerbomb that gets two for Sabian. But then he celebrates too much and Sting sneaks up on him and uses even more brutal kicks before running wild for real and destroying the heels. Scorpion Deathlock on Sabian and the other two beat him down to break it up again, so Darby takes them out and Orange hits Sabian with a stunner and dives onto Butcher. Another stunner from Darby this time on Sabian, and then Sting hits him with the Scorpion Deathdrop and pins him at 11:20. This was one of the most fun party matches I’ve seen them do, with Sting right into all the nonsense. The fact that he can be such a good sport and look silly but still be over and intimidating shows why he was so great all along. ****. Darby meanwhile is busy gazing at the PPV sign. Great, let Sting mentor Orange and have some fun while Darby goes off and mopes about not being champion.
Meanwhile, we get a video package for someone named “Vikingo”. Yeah but did they say anything on Twitter about it?
AEW World tag team title: The Gunns v. Top Flight
If the Gunns can’t have a good match with these guys then they’re hopeless. Dante springboards with a wristlock takedown on Austin right away and Darius comes in with a dropkick before Top Flight dumps them to the floor with clotheslines. Back in the ring, Austin gets a cheapshot on Dante to take over as we take a break. Back with Darius running wild on the Gunns with a german suplex on Austin and Spanish fly on Colten for two. Dante with a uranage on Austin for two and he goes up to finish, but Colten cuts him off. Dante gets it on the second try, but Colten saves at two. This brings out Bennett & Taven to attack Darius on the floor, and the Gunns finish Dante at 7:01 to retain. The Gunns are just so useless and this was all Top Flight flying around the ring while they stood there. **.
Afterwards, FTR joins us and the Gunns don’t want anything to do with them and don’t want to give them another title shot. So Dax offers them one last deal: If they can’t win the tag team titles, they’ll quit AEW and leave. And the crowd is, like, legitimately upset and worried about this stipulation. So the Gunns accept and spit on FTR and leave.
Meanwhile, Jade Cargill has Mark Sterling draw up a cease and desist order for Taya to stop using her finisher. Well at last it’s SOMETHING for Jade to do.
Stokely Hathaway v. Hook
Apparently Stokely has “the heart of a lion and the wisdom of an owl” and the graphic notes that he’s a self-proclaimed submission specialist. Sadly, Stoke announces that he’s not medically cleared to compete, and he’s retiring today. He’s got a doctor’s note! It just says “He’s sick” on a fast food receipt. Sadly this doesn’t convince the ref, so he rings the bell and Stokley runs for his life into the crowd. So Hook retrieves him and suplexes him on the floor to block Stokely’s takedown attempt. Into the ring, Hook finds a guardrail under the ring and brings that in, but Stokely finds a fire extinguisher and sprays him to buy some time. Stokely gets a chair, but that goes badly for him, and Hook suplexes him into the railing and then picks him up at two. And he finishes with the Redrum instead at 3:20. I’d say this way overdelivered based on entertainment value. It wasn’t great but Stokely took some impressive bumps and got what he deserved. **
Adam Cole joins us for another update on his life, the biggest babyface in the world now that the crowds can sing along with his entrance and do his catchphrases. But before he can announce his opponent for next week, Daniel Garcia interrupts and runs down the people he’s beaten while Adam was “playing stupid video games on Twitch”. So Adam is happy to accept the challenge and he’s going to make a statement against Daniel next week.
Meanwhile, Kenny is freaking out about the Bucks, but Don Callis tells him to chill out because he sent Nakazawa and they’ll be fine in a few months.
Jon Moxley v. Stu Grayson
Mox works a headlock to start, but Stu sends him to the floor and then hits him with a rana in the ring. Stu with chops in the corner, but Mox hits him with a Saito suplex and runs him into the railing from the apron, as we take a break. Back with Moxley getting two on Stu off a piledriver and stomping his head in for two. Mox beats on him with kicks, but Stu makes a comeback with a shiranui and uranage. Twisting quebrada gets two. Stu goes up and gets distracted by the BCC, so he hits them with a moonsault instead, and then Moxley dives onto Stu. Back in the ring, Stu kicks him down and goes up with the 450 for two. Grayson goes to finish with a backbreaker, but Moxley counters out to the bulldog choke. But then Stu powers out of that and cannonballs Moxley into the corner to break. Moxley tries the DDT and Stu flips out of that and hits the Pele kick, but he goes up again and Mox cuts him off with a superplex that finishes at 10:38. Result wasn’t in doubt but it was a hell of a showing for Grayson. ***1/2.
Meanwhile, Ricky Starks is sick of talking about Juice Robinson, so now it’s time to FIGHT. On Rampage.
Meanwhile, on QTV, we get some cell phone video coverage from their mystery woman, and she was having the same haze issue I was! Oh also Aaron Solo hacked into Dave Meltzer’s Twitter account and caused the issue with Tony Khan. Well glad we got that wrapped up.
Toni Storm v. Skye Blue
Yes, it’s time for another chapter of the Outcasts storyline that everyone loves. They slug it out to start and Skye dropkicks her out of the ring and follows with a rana to the floor. Back in, Skye goes up and gets cut off and sent to the floor for some cheapshots from Saraya. Toni accidentally chops the post and we take a break. Back with Storm throwing Skye around in the ring, but Skye fights back with his hairtosses and a flying bodypress. Running knee gets two. Storm escapes the Code Blue and gets a Thesz Press, and a DDT gets two. Skye dodges the hip attack and hits the Code Blue, but the Outcasts take the ref and Storm dropkicks Skye. Not quite in the corner, sadly, so Skye has to pull herself into position for the hip attack, and the piledriver finishes at 8:45. Usual good Skye match, although the finish got a bit questionable. **1/2. And we get another showdown with Riho and Willow, which I’m sure will set up a match where they’ll do the job as well as this storyline continues to go nowhere.
Meanwhile, the BCC continues to be big meanies and attacks Stu Grayson as well.
El Hijo del Vikingo v. Kenny Omega
Vikingo dives on Kenny before he even finishes his entrance, and into the ring with a springboard dropkick before they slug it out in the corner to officially start. Kenny misses a charge and Vikingo goes up with a shooting star into a rana that was so crazy I actually yelled WHAT THE FUCK in my living room and scared my dogs. IN THIS HOUSE WE OBEY THE LAWS OF PHYSICS, YOUNG MAN. He puts Kenny on the floor and follows with a shooting star press off the apron, and back in for two. They trade chops and Kenny puts some STANK on those and puts Vikingo down with them before hitting a backbreaker for two. Suplex gets two. They head to the floor and Vikingo goes into the railing as Kenny sets up Chekhov’s Table on the floor as we take a break. Back with Kenny slugging away on him in the ring, but Vikingo spins into a rana and they slug it out on the apron. Kenny with a monkey flip on the apron as time stands still before Vikingo lands safely after seemingly contemplating landing on the table. So then Kenny tries a snapdragon out there, but Vikingo blocks that and pops up to the top with a dragon rana, on the apron, to the floor. WHAT EVEN IS THIS?!? Back in the ring, Vikingo with a corner clothesline and they fight to the top rope, where Kenny tries a powerbomb, but VIkingo counters to a rana in mid-air to bring him down. And then Vikingo goes from the outside on the apron, into the ring, with a springboard Phoenix splash for two. WHAT THE HELL AM I WATCHING? I’m scared and yet can’t look away. Kenny counters another springboard with a double powerbomb and a V-Trigger for two. Snapdragon sets up another V-Trigger on the ropes, but Vikingo escapes the One Winged Angel and springboards out of the corner with a poison rana, which finally puts Kenny onto that damn table outside. So Vikingo goes for the big finale with a springboard 630 from the ring and through the table. I am GIDDY watching this. This is the craziest fucking shit I have ever seen in my life. Back in the ring, that gets two. They slug it out and Kenny hits him with the knee, but Vikingo snaps off a sunset flip bomb for two. Vikingo goes up and misses another 630 this time, and Kenny finally wallops him with the V-Trigger and finishes with the One Winged Angel at 17:43. What the hell else can I rate this nonsense? *****
Afterwards, Kenny goes to do his victory promo, but the Blackpool club attacks, which certainly seems like it might have a setup with the help of Don Callis. But then the ambulance returns, and Hangman Page makes the save. But then Callis takes a bump and blames it on Page, trying to keep his spot with Kenny secure and prevent the reunion we’re all waiting to see.
So YEAH that main event. Holy crap. Go watch it. Wrestling is great.