The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 05.10.23
Live from Detroit, MI
Your hosts are Tony Schiavone, Excalibur & Taz
Double Jeopardy Match: Claudio Castagnoli v. Rey Fenix
So the winner of this match gets a shot at the other guy’s title, which is a cool idea. They trade gymnastic takedowns to start and Claudio hits him with a backbreaker out of the corner and then another one to take over. Fenix hits a multiple springboard rana, however, and puts Claudio on the floor for a pair of dives as the crowd goes nuts. Dive #3 is caught in a press slam, however, and Claudio drops him on the railing to cut off that comeback. Claudio with a delayed suplex on the stairs, so delayed they should call it “Double or Nothing’s ticket sales”, but Fenix manages to get back to the railing and hits an incredible ropewalk into a rana off the railing, and both guys are down on the floor. Back in the ring, Claudio hits a death valley driver for two. They fight to the top rope, but Fenix brings him down with a rana off the top and that gets two. Fenix tries to roll into a Code Red and Claudio counters out and clobbers him with a lariat for two. Back to the floor and Claudio just tosses Fenix into the front row with a press slam as we take a break. Back with Claudio in control and they slug it out, but Claudio ducks the hooking rebound kick. So Fenix hits him with a superkick instead and a rolling cutter for two. Claudio bails to the floor and Fenix hits him with a moonsault to the floor. Back in, Claudio catches him with the Swiss Death uppercut for two to block a springboard, and follows with a powerbomb that Fenix reverses for two. They trade forearms and Fenix gets a superkick for two. Claudio with a slam for two, and Claudio puts the elbows to him and finishes with the Ricola Bomb at 14:01 to earn a shot at the tag team titles with a partner of his choice. Spectacular opener, and I like the new ROH World title belt! ****1/4
Meanwhile, Tony Khan gets a visit from MIRO.
Meanwhile, MJF sits down and compares himself to the Beatles and we get a lot of mentions of CM Punk.
FTR joins us, and they owe an apology to Mark Briscoe, but Triple Jay answers instead. So they demand to know if FTR accepts their challenge, but Dax isn’t so enthused about the idea. So he offers them a shot if Sonjay will admit to using Mark Briscoe. So this brings out Mark with some refreshments for everyone, and he announces that Tony Khan has made the tag title match for the PPV, and Mark will be the referee. But then Sonjay takes a swig of the peace-giving booze and blows it in Dax’s eyes, and Dax accidentally piledrives Mark while blinded. Man if I had a nickel.
Last week: Adam Cole assaults Jericho like a hotel concierge, and we get words from Jericho, and now he’s got a court order banning Adam Cole from any arena where he’s in attendance. So Roddy Strong steps up and challenges Chris to a falls count anywhere match. Jericho accepts…for next week. Crowd doesn’t like that one.
Meanwhile, Renee waits for word from Tony Khan, but then Thunder Rosa also returns and wants a word.
Meanwhile, we hear from Sammy Guevara and he pretty much does a babyface promo about Double or Nothing.
Meanwhile, I have a special announcement to announce! Tony Khan announces that next week will be a big announcement, and also followup on a big announcement that will be announced elsewhere. The announcers wonder what this announcement will announce.
AEW International title: Orange Cassidy v. Daniel Garcia
Orange shoots in with a takedown right away, but Garcia reverses out to win that battle and dances in celebration. Orange takes him down with an armbar and then does the world’s laziest reversal on Daniel and it’s pocket time. Orange runs wild with dropkicks, but Daniel goes after the bad hand and takes him to the floor. Orange keeps coming with a tope suicida, but Garcia cuts him off with a back elbow in the ring and puts him on the floor again. Garcia drops him on the railing a few times to take over, and we take a break. Back with Garcia hitting a curb stomp for more dancing and he goes after the knee, but Orange fights back on the top rope with elbows. Garcia goes back to the injured hand and brings him down with a superplex, but Orange rolls into the stunner and they’re both down. Garcia cuts off the comeback with a dragon screw to take out the knee again, and they slug it out with elbows. Garcia loses that battle, so he kicks the leg out of Orange’s leg and then tries a piledriver. Orange reverses that into the Beach Break for two. Orange Punch, but Garcia dropkicks the knee to counter that and then mockingly throws soft kicks. What kind of a jerk would do that? Garcia with a piledriver for two. Orange with a small package for two and another Beach Break for two. Orange tries another punch, but Garcia counters with the Dragon Tamer and Orange fishhooks the mouth to escape. So Garcia wraps him up in a crossface instead and stomps on Orange’s hand like a complete dick, but Orange has one last reversal into a cradle to retain at 13:46. Every week the challengers get closer and closer but still not enough to beat him! Once Garcia started stomping the hand I was buying it as the finish. ****. Man they’ve gotta be building to something really big when someone finally beats him.
Christian Cage and his dinosaur join us, and Christian explains why he’s #1 contender to the TNT title while Detroit absolutely boos him out of the building. Christian takes the high road and promises not to go after Wardlow’s dead father, since his father wasn’t famous and no one cares about him anyway. Then he moves onto Arn Anderson, who was “the other guy in the tag team with Tully Blanchard” and “Ric Flair’s lapdog”. He’s not wrong. And then he just barrels on with his promo while Detroit tells him “Edge is better” and this is just tremendous on both sides. And after telling off Wardlow and Arn, he wraps up by telling Detroit to kiss his ass, and he’s out.
Meanwhile, we hear from Darby Allin.
No Holds Barred: Anna Jay v. Julia Hart
Anna lays out Julia with a chair during her dramatic song entrance, and I can’t help but notice that Anna’s new gear is once again accentuating her stuff. Julia runs her into the railing and grabs a kendo stick for some shots, but Anna gets it for her own shots and suplexes her on the floor. They fight on the floor and Julia runs her into the post and then into the table as we take a break. Back with Julia running her into the corner and then piling chairs on the floor, but Anna drops her on them facefirst. Back in, that gets two. Anna with the Oscar the Grouch spot for two. Anna piles up the chairs in the ring while Julia has something going on in terms of injury and recovers. They fight to the top and Julia brings her down with a superplex, which unfortunately misses the chair pile completely (or fortunately I guess) and Julia finishes with the Hartless submission at 10:00. The slam on the chairs derailed the match completely but it was going OK up until then. ***
Meanwhile, the Best Friends are scared of Julia Hart, so they pick “No spooky witches allowed at ringside” for their “dealer’s choice” rule. Orange: “Renee, I’m so tired.” Renee: “Me too, buddy.”
AEW World Trios title: The House of Black v. Best Friends & Bandido
I would have not have bet on Bandido as the temporary replacement for Danhausen in this crew, but here we are. So the lights are dimmed for this, which is a cool look for the match, and Bandido takes Black down with a rana to start but walks into a kick. Black works him over in the corner and then takes him down for a kneebar while the lighting crew reconsiders and gives us some crowd lighting. Bandido gets the ropes, but there’s no rope breaks here and he has to pull himself out to the floor instead. The Best Amigos triple-team Black with an elbowdrop and Trent rolls him up, but Brody tags himself in and smashes everyone as we take a break. Back with Buddy clearing the ring, but Trent fights back on him with a DDT and a superkick for two. Buddy rolls him up for two, so Bandido gets the hot tag and flies around on all three House members. He dives onto Brody and Black outside, but springboards onto Buddy and lands on a knee strike. Over to Chuck, but Brody comes in again and wrecks him to finish at 8:46. This was mostly just a pleasant diversion for the House of Black. **.
Meanwhile, Kyle Fletcher of Aussie Open lays out Orange backstage, and is apparently the next contender.
Meanwhile, we hear from Jungle Boy and get some hostile witness testimony from Christian as well.
Meanwhile, Rampage kind of looks like hot garbage in the Saturday slot this week, and Ricky Starks has words for Jay White in advance of next week.
Cage match: Kenny Omega v. Jon Moxley
We get the big brawl between the BCC and Elite to start, with various people getting thrown off the ramp, leading to Nick Jackson diving onto them all. Finally they’re locked into the cage and slug it out before beating on each other with chops. Kenny with You Can’t Escape for two right away. And Kenny busts out the barbed wire early with a chair, slamming that into Moxley’s face and then beating on Mox’s back with it. Moxley is busted open, but he rams Kenny’s head into the camera in a hilarious spot and then shoves him into the cage to block a springboard. So then Mox gets the chair and that’s bad news for anyone who isn’t him, but Kenny bulldogs him onto the barbed wire. Kenny slams him on the chair and goes up, but Moxley brings him down with a superplex onto the barbed wire and we take a break. Back with Moxley choking Kenny out with the remnants of the ropes after loosening them, but Kenny fights back with the turnbuckle, so Mox puts him down with a knee. Next up, Moxley finds the good old bag of broken glass, but Kenny hits him with a neckbreaker and tries for the Angel. Moxley reverses to a choke to escape that, but Kenny drops him on the glass and then Moxley pops up like a horror movie villain and locks in another choke. Kenny rolls him into the glass for two, but Moxley tries a piledriver, so Kenny reverses into a knee strike to put him down again. They slug it out again and Kenny hits him with another knee strike and a snapdragon into the broken glass, and then a V-Trigger actually puts Moxley THROUGH the cage for a crazy bump to the floor. So this just angers Moxley further and he retrieves his trusty screwdriver, but Don Callis steals it. So Kenny with another V-Trigger and the One Winged Angel for two…but Don Callis does the turn and spikes Kenny with the screwdriver to save, and puts Moxley on top for the pin at 15:00. Who has two thumbs and called that one from a mile away? THIS GUY. I’m gesturing to myself with my thumbs, which you obviously can’t see, but just trust me. Now the next step is for Emperor Palpatine to gaslight Takeshita into joining the Dark Side with him. IT’S ALL COMING TOGETHER. Anyway this match was one of their lesser confrontations but still pretty great for a TV match. ***1/2.
Now this was a PPV quality episode this week! Probably still getting smoked by the NBA and the Trump circus on CNN tonight but they took their best shot and god bless them for it.