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AEW Dynamite- April 7, 2021
by Samoa Rowe
From Daily's Place. This is the last night of the Wednesday Night Wars because NXT is moving to Tuesdays to make room for NHL games on USA Network. Seeing as NXT is giving away night 1 of Takeover, I'd expect AEW to take the viewership loss on the way out. For those of you who care, Dynamite beat NXT in the key demos about 99% of the time and in total viewership something like 90%. Neither show experienced the growth I had hoped for them, so airing on separate nights should give them a boost. I still resent WWE for weaponizing NXT by expanding it to two hours and sticking it on USA just to slow down AEW, so maybe now I can get back into the NXT brand that I once enjoyed so much. Anyhoo, Jim Ross, Tony Shiavone, and Excalibur are on the call.
Show opens with a motorcade arriving at Daily's Place, and out pops the Inner Circle, looking uncharacteristically bad-ass.
Hangman Adam Page vs. Max Caster (with Anthony Bowens)
Caster cuts an amusing little rap, and Page makes Bowens pay for it with a boot. Hangman stomps Caster into the corner. Fallaway slam by Page and a vertical suplex for only 1. Caster's punches have little effect and Hangman puts him down with a pump kick. Bowens talks some trash and distracts Page from Caster's low dropkick. Page quickly answers with a springboard dropkick and slingshot plancha. Page crotches Caster on the barricade for a leaping lariat. Caster knocks Page into the ring post and Bowens cheap shots from behind. Caster enjoys a brief stint on offense and applies an STF. Page comes right back with a hard spinebuster. Exploder suplex by Page gets 2. They duke it out on the apron until Page hits a mean back suplex. Caster slips while leaping up for a superplex, but hits it anyway. Page escapes a tight armbar and Caster springboards into a lariat. Bowens slides in the boombox, but Page intercepts, and doesn't see Caster slip on brass knuckles for a sucker punch for 2! Caster misses the Mic Drop, Bowens stops a Buckshot and eats a moonsault for his trouble. Page delivers a Buckshot to win at 10:00. Caster looked like he had butterflies in his stomach a few times, otherwise this was a good win for Page, **½.
Winner: Hangman Adam Page
Tony Shiavone hosts Death Triangle in the ring. Pac is back and Laredo Kid is MIA. They will get their Tag Team Championship match next week. Orange Cassidy, Kris Statlander, and Best Friends interrupt and shows footage from their previous encounters. Pac deems them all to be unworthy and orders them off of his stage. Trent admits that they need to work their way back up the rankings, but reminds us all of their great win/loss record. The band is back in town and now they have an alien! There's no love lost, but they'll fight some other time.
Mike Tyson is in the house.
The Inner Circle comes to the ring for the first time since the Pinnacle laid waste to them. Chris Jericho finally has permission to play babyface to the fans singing his theme song. Jericho says the beatdown they received from "The Pineapple" gave them all a wake-up call that they were making bad decisions, and apologizes while also shifting the blame to "My Jerk-off Friend" MJF. Get it? Jericho clearly thinks he's onto something, because he repeats the nickname about a half dozen times in 30 seconds. He explains that he's not smart in many areas, but he's smart about pro-wrestling, and he only brought MJF into the Inner Circle to keep him under his thumb. Jericho enjoyed giving MJF a swirlie, and makes the case that at 25, MJF isn't ready to be better than the GOAT, especially while wearing the tired, old scarf. He goes on to call MJF a mark for himself and knows he'll never be better than Jericho. He makes fun of each member of the Pinnacle, Tully was the fourth rate member of the Horsemen, he can't tell FTR apart, Shawn Spears is a failure, and Wardlow is useless. Jericho vows to put the Pinnacle into a Human Centipede and challenges them to a Blood N Guts match on the May 5th Dynamite!
Backstage interview with Christian Cage. He frames his victory over Kazarian as the culmination of a year of hard work to come back. Cage loved every second of his match and puts himself over for making Kazarian level up. Taz interrupts to invite him into Team Taz and leaves before Christian can say no.
Hype video for Bear Country vs. Jurassic Express with clips from the new Godzilla vs. Kong movie spliced in. It's a cute little package. Personally, I hated Godzilla 2014 worse than Godzilla 1999, and turned Godzilla vs. Kong off after about a half hour of boredom. LIfe is too short to suffer through bad movies (and wrestling).
Jurassic Express (Luchasaurus and Jungle Boy, with Marko Stunt) vs. Bear Country (Bear Bronson and Bear Boulder)
Hot start for Jurassic Express, and Luchasaurus hits a plancha. Bear Country recover and pummel Luchasaurus into their corner. Luchasaurus flips into a tag to Jungle Boy, but his rana is blocked. Luchasaurus tries to save JB with a flying crossbody and takes an awkward landing, as if the other guys didn't know what to do. On that note, they quickly cut to picture-in-picture. Back from break, Bear Country is still working JB over in their corner. Hot tag to Luchasaurus and he roars into action. Boulder cuts him off with a superplex for 2. JB hits Bronson with a springboard DDT, Luchasaurus plants Boulder, but Bronson breaks the cover by piledriving JB onto them. Bear Country hit a backpack double cannonball on Luchasaurus for a close nearfall. Bear Country prepare an electric chair splash, but Luchasaurus sits up, and JB returns to help clear Boulder out. Luchasauurs chokeslams Bronson and finishes with the standing Moonsault at 8:57. This was a bit better after the commercial, but was pretty messy throughout, *½.
Winners: Jurassic Express
QT Marshall, surrounded by Anthony Ogogo, Nick Comoroto, and Aaron Solow, vents about his frustrations with Cody Rhodes from the safety of his wrestling school. QT seems to brand the group The Factory, and they vandalize the Nightmare Family logo on the wall. I'm a sucker for stables of young upstarts (see Nexus, Natural Born Thrillers, etc).
Tony Shiavone hosts STIIIIIIIING on the stage. As per usual, they're interrupted right away, this time by Jake Roberts, who recently shaved and got a haircut. Lance Archer grabs the mic and complains about his lack of opportunities in AEW, and blames Sting for taking away his TV time. Sting yanks away the mic and tells him to shut up because he actually agrees that Archer is a main event guy who disappears far too often. Sting puts the pressure on Archer to go do the work and leaves. Ethan Page and Scorpio Sky seem really amused by Sting's words over in the balcony.
There's more trouble within Team Taz, as Ricky Starks and Brian Cage can't seem to stop getting on each other's nerves. Taz orders them to get on the same page so they can bring in "blue chipper" Christian Cage.
Darby Allin © (with Sting) vs. JD Drake (with Ryan Nemeth and Cezar Bononi)
Allin wants to be a fighting champion, so even Dark mainstays like Drake are getting title shots. Drake chops Allin from the ring. Allin lures Drake to ringside for a tope suicida, Nemeth distracts, and Drake counters Allin's crossbody with a shoulder block. Sting marches Nemeth out of Daily's Place, while Drake picks Allin apart heading into picture-in-picture. The commercial break eats up a significant chunk of the match. Drake bounces Allin off the ropes for an outside lariat. Drake misses a running cannonball into the guard rail, allowing Allin to hit a top rope somersault senton. Drake recovers and puts Allin into a Tree of Woe for a running cannonball. Vader Bomb by Drake gets a nice nearfall. Drake misses a moonsault, and they trade slaps on the top rope. Allin bites the finger and hits an Avalanche Code Red! Coffin Drop seals the deal at 9:14. Good pacing and energy on display, Drake made a good big man for Allin to dispatch, ***.
Winner and still TNT Champion: Darby Allin
Allin's celebration is cut short when he's assaulted by the Hardy Family Office. The Bunny orders Butcher and Blade to put Darby through the announce table, but the Dark Order run in for the save. Bunny is slow to realize she's all alone and Tay Conti pounces on her. They get pulled apart, and I think their match is next...
Hype video for tonight's main event pitting Kenny Omega and The Good Brothers against Jon Moxley and The Young Bucks.
Alex Marvez interviews Chris Jericho backstage, it's broken up when the Pinnacle attacks. They haul Jericho into the ring, and MJF chokes with his scarf. FTR hit their spike piledriver. The big screen reveals that the other Inner Circle members are trapped in their dressing room but are busting down the door. Wardlow prepares to powerbomb Jericho through a table when Mike Tyson struts in and unleashes a barrage of body shots on Shawn Spears! If anyone is still confused why Spears is in this stable, here you go. The Inner Circle arrives to help clear the ring, and Tyson and Jericho share a handshake and hug.
Tony Shiavone interviews Britt Baker and Reba backstage. Britt announces her intentions to challenge for the Women's Championship, Tony reminds her she's ranked #4. Britt argues that her drawing power and merch sales are more important.
The Bunny (with The Hardy Family Office) vs. Tay Conti (with The Dark Order)
Bell rings and they immediately resume their brawl. Conti captures Bunny's leg for an exploder suplex. Pump kick by Conti and running boot sends Bunny to ringside. Bunny trips Conti on the apron for a face plant. Shotgun dropkick by Bunny sends Conti into the rails. This is absolutely cooking, but it's time for some commercials. Back from break, Conti hits a tilt a whirl backbreaker, but misses a running bicycle kick into the buckles, so Bunny hits a pump kick for 2. Conti is distracted by Matt Hardy, but manages a TayKO on Bunny for a good nearfall. Bunny snaps Conti's neck over the ropes, and cheap shots Hikaru Shida with her kendo stick. The Dark Order brawls with the Hardy Family Office. Shida removes the kendo stick, and Conti hits Bunny with a superplex and holds on for a hammerlock DDT to win at 7:48. This overdelivered thanks to the convincing hatred on display. Conti is making a serious case for Most Improved of 2021, ***.
Winner: Tay Conti
Hype video for Jade Cargill vs. Red Velvet. Their singles match will finally take place next week.
AEW World Champion Kenny Omega (with Don Callis) and The Good Brothers (Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows) vs. Jon Moxley and AEW Tag Team Champions The Young Bucks (Nick and Matt Jackson)
Matt Jackson starts, but lets Callis' taunting get under his skin. Matt aggressively locks up with Omega. Matt looks shaken and tags Nick in. Nick catches Omega with a slick arm drag, but Omega answers with a shoulder tackle. Step up head rana by Nick sends Omega to ringside. Anderson tags, only to eat Nick's springboard armdrag. Gallows interferes, but the Bucks hit stereo dropkicks, and Moxley helps hit triple suicide dives! On that note, they cut to commercials. Back from the break, Matt escapes enemy territory and hot tags to Moxley, who no sells Anderson's blows and hits a German suplex. Moxley hits Omega and Gallows with Germans as well, but Anderson breaks a sleeper with a guillotine on the ropes. Gallows unloads on Moxley, who fires back with a neckbreaker. Hot tag to Nick, who flusters Anderson. Nick hits Gallows with an enziguri and double stomp to the back, followed by a backstabber. Anderson reverses into a slick spinebuster. Matt tags in and Omega is reluctant to attack and eats some hip tosses. Matt fakes a superick and hits a DDT. Matt can't bring himself to superkick Kenny, and gets slapped in the face. Matt tackles Kenny and unloads punches. Gallows uppercuts Matt, Nick dropkicks Gallows, Moxley clotheslines Gallows over the ropes. Omega catches Matt with a snap Dragon, and follows with a proper Dragon suplex. Moxley ambushes Kenny with a lariat, and Matt hits a piledriver but Kenny kicks out! Matt shows concern for Kenny but still sets him up for More Bang for Your Buck. Anderson breaks the pinfall. Nick takes out the Good Brothers with a top rope plancha. The Bucks have Omega cornered but continue to show remorse. They can't bring themselves to hit the BTE Trigger, which annoys Moxley. Mox tags himself in out of frustration and hits the Paradigm Shift. Moxley gets into Nick's face and hits Kenny with a second Paradigm Shift. Moxley puts Kenny in the sleeper choke, and the Bucks turn on him with superkicks! Eddie Kingston limps in, but the Good Brothers cut him off at the pass and hit a Magic Killer onto the ramp. Magic Killer on Mox, and Kenny is draped over for the pinfall at 16:57. High drama on display as the Bucks are clearly torn between their friends and principles, ****.
Winners: Kenny Omega and Good Brothers
The Good Brothers hoist Moxley, and Kenny orders the Bucks to hit more superkicks, and they oblige. The fans chant "You sold out" and it looks like the Bucks are full fledged reluctant heels.
Final Thoughts: I enjoyed this show a lot more than I was expecting to, based on the ho-hum feedback I'd read overnight (I finished this on Thursday). I'm enjoying all the various stable wars, as well as Jericho's face turn rejuvenation. I think Double or Nothing is going to be something special again.
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