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AEW Dynamite: Homecoming - August 4, 2021
by Samoa Rowe
Live from Daily's Place in Jacksonville, Florida. The venue is reasonably packed. Our hosts are Jim Ross, Tony Shiavone, and Excalibur.
The 5 Labours of Jericho: Chapter 3 - Jericho Must Use Top Rope Move to Win
Chris Jericho vs. Juventud Guerrera
MJF joins commentary. Juvie scores first with a flying rana. Both guys look a little confused while Juvie hits another flying rana. Juvie scores a flying leg drop to ringside. Missile dropkick by Juvie gets 2. Jericho winces while hitting a dropkick to ringside. High crossbody by Jericho gets 2. Guerrera comes back, Jericho breaks an armbar and rallies for a flying axe handle. Backbreaker by Jericho, but referee Aubrey Edwards won't count because it wasn't a flying move. Jericho grumpily goes for Juvie's mask and takes Snake Eyes. Jericho clunkily reverses an avalanche rana into the Walls. Juvie escapes and hits a neckbreaker and superkick for 2. The very kind fans give them a “This is awesome” chant. Juvie counters into an implant DDT and then Juvie Driver for 2. Jericho surprises with a Judas Effect, remembers he needs to fly, and then delivers a nifty flying Judas Effect to win at 9:50! The clunky execution couldn't match up to the strong narrative, **½.
Winner: Chris Jericho
Wardlow attacks Jericho and leaves him in a heap. MJF reveals that Jericho's fourth labour will be a match against Wardlow.
Dasha interviews Lucha Bros. and Alex Abrahantas, who are very upset that someone tampered with Pac's flight arrangements. They're interrupted by Chavo Guerrero and Andrade El Idolo. Chavo touts all the cozy travel perks of working for Andrade, but the Lucha Bros. aren't interested.
Tony Shiavone talks to the Dark Order in their clubhouse. They're quickly distracted when Hangman Page comes in to look for a beer. Page apologizes to his friends for costing them their tag title shot. Hangman thinks he needs to do things on his own, and while he loves the Dark Order, he's breaking up with them. The formerly evil cult decide to honor Hangman's wishes.
Daniel Garcia and 2.0 (Matt Lee and Jeff Parker) vs. Darby Allin (with Sting), Eddie Kingston, and Jon Moxley
2.0 were recently Ever-rise in NXT, and before that were 3.0 in CHIKARA. Darby starts and soon finds himself getting outworked by 2.0's teamwork. Eddie relishes a tag and trades chops with Lee. Parker's distraction allows Lee to tackle Eddie's knee, and 2.0 take over in time for commercials. They return with Kingston taking Parker down with a clothesline. Garcia kicks Eddie's hand to prevent a tag, so Moxley throws him into some production workers. Moxley clears the ring and runs through Lee with mean slams. Paradigm Shift on Garcia, and Darby finishes with a Coffin Drop at 7:09. Hot squash match that didn't need 2 segments, **.
Winners: Darby Allin, Jon Moxley, and Eddie Kingston
Brian Cage talks a lot of smack against Team Taz in a disappointingly generic video promo.
The Elite Squad are still partying after beating Hangman Page and Dark Order last week. They goof around with a basketball. The choice of wardrobe is interesting too, as the Young Bucks are wearing Hawaiin shirts (Bray Wyatt), Doc Gallows is wearing a Ric Flair robe, and Kenny Omega has a cookie monster shirt (same initials as CM Punk). The Bucks are thrilled that they won't have to defend their titles against the Dark Order, and since there's no one else worthy in the division, they ought to just retire their jerseys. Brandon Cutler cuts down the net while Omega basks in his victory.
Christian Cage vs. The Blade (with The Bunny)
Cage meets Blade on the ramp and hauls him in for a brawl. Blade pulls off Christian's shirt for some cheap shots. Christian hits a clothesline, Blade runs away to hide behind Bunny. Christian smartly cuts off Blade's sneak attack, Bunny grabs his foot on the buckles, Leyla Hirsch runs in to neutralize Bunny. Christian recovers with a DDT, but Blade then slams him onto the top rope to send us to commercials. They return with Blade enjoying the upper hand. Christian side steps to send Blade through the buckles and then hits a flying forearm. Christian's comeback is interrupted by Blade's power slam. Blade's scheme to get his brass knucks fails and Christian finishes with a spear at 9:55. Totally average match, Christian looks just like his 2012 incarnation, for better or worse, **¼.
Winner: Christian Cage
Video promo with Santana and Ortiz. They aren't ready to move on after losing to FTR. Dax Harwood is outraged by Cash Wheeler's gruesome injury (when he got cut on the buckles) and wants to fight them again too. Sounds good to me.
Tony Shiavone hosts AEW Women's Champion Dr. Britt Baker and Rebel in the ring. Red Velvet interrupts to insult Britt's wardrobe and challeng her to a title match. Britt reminds us that she beat Velvet in 3 minutes in their last encounter. Velvet fires back that since then she's earned a 22-4 record, including winning her last 7. Wins and losses matter! Britt accepts the match for Rampage, and they beat Velvet up with Rebel's crutch.
Dasha interviews Andrade El Idolo and Chavo Guerrero backstage. Chavo brings Fuego Del Sol into their little collective, and orders him to shine Andrade's shoes. Fuego doesn't want to, so Andrade smashes him against the steel door. Chavo rubs Fuego's mask against Andrade's shoes, and uses this as a warning shot against Lucha Bros.
Tony Shiavone hosts Hangman Adam Page in the ring. The Elite Squad show up on the stage to throw more salt into his wounds. Omega accuses Hangman of trying to rejoin the Elite. Omega says even if he wanted Hangman back, it wouldn't work, because they have no room for losers. Hangman can't help but slap Omega, so the Squad descends upon him. The Good Brothers hit a Magic Killer. The Dark Order try to make a save, with some members holding others back, because they wanted to honor Hangman's wishes from before. Instead, Frankie Kazarian makes a failed save attempt, falling to the numbers as well. Omega smashes the AEW title between Hangman's eyes and stands tall. Well, if you were worried that Hangman's title chase was over, you can sleep easy.
Video promo from Dan Lambert, he's coming back to AEW to serve some hard truths to Lance Archer.
Miro © vs. Lee Johnson (with Dustin Rhodes)
Lee runs into a clothesline. Miro bats Lee around, giving this a squash-like feel. Lee hits a pair of enziguris to the arm, but Miro counters a flying crossbody into a slam. Lee takes a time out, and they cut to picture-in-picture. They return with Miro working a tight bear hug. Lee escapes and hits a DDT. Miro looks dazed and Lee hits a pair of tope suicidas. Lee hits a third dive, I think Miro was supposed to catch him for a counter, but instead they tumble into the rails. Lee's springboard crossbody gets 2. Lee blocks a German, hits a series of superkicks to the face, and hits a frog splash for 2! Miro angrily stands up, swats away an enziguri, and nails a thrust kick. The fans pop for Miro as he finishes with Game Over at 9:37! Fun match, Miro was in trouble long enough to give Lee some credibility, but then looked ferocious in victory, **½.
Winner and still TNT Champion: Miro
Tony Shiavone interviews Christian Cage backstage. Christian is the new #1 contender. Tony wants to know if Christian will support Leyla Hirsch tonight. Christian sings the Golden Girls theme and makes the point that Leyla already has friends, in fact, maye some Best Friends. He is focusing on himself.
NWA Women's Championship Eliminator Match:
The Bunny (with The Hardy Family Office) vs. Leyla Hirsch (with Best Friends)
Leyla isn't scared of Bunny's height and takes it to her, quickly hitting a tope suicida. She hammerlocks Bunny's arm to send her into the buckles. Bunny answers with a backstabber. Bunny dropkicks Leyla into the rails, and spots NWA Women's Champion Kamille
in the front row. They cut to commercials. They return with Leyla hitting a superplex. They slug it out and Leyla hits a pair of Germans. Leyla hits double knees in the buckles for 2. Bunny escapes an armbreaker, but Leyla hits a knee to the face. Leyla totally whiffs on a moonsault, but sells it, and Bunny hits a DVD for a good nearfall. Leyla relentlessly goes for an armbreaker and Bunny taps at 8:13. Fine match, that botched moonsault could have hurt more, but they did well to incorporate it into the story, **¼.
Winner: Leyla Hirsch
Kamille gets into the ring and looks like she's twice Leyla's height. They'll meet for the title later.
Video promo with Jade Cargill and Smart Mark Sterling. Mark explains that Jade hasn't been in action lately because they've been so busy expanding her brand elsewhere.
Malakai Black vs. Cody Rhodes (with Arn Anderson)
The fans give them a "holy sh!t" chant before anything happens. They aggressively lock up, and Black hits a stiff kick to the inner thigh. Cody's too hurt for a suplex, and Black tries a kneebar, and then bites to block a Figure Four. Cody hits an enziguri, but Black sweeps his leg and locks on a half crab. Cody gets the ropes, Black blocks Cross Rhodes and kicks Cody off the top rope and through the timekeeper's table! Malakai takes a seat and waits to see if Cody can crawl back. Cody barely beats the count, and Black Mass ends it at 4:36 via cocky pin! This was exactly what it needed to be, great squash, ***.
Winner: Malakai Black
Tony Shiavone interviews a wounded Cody in the ring. Cody rambles incoherently while getting back to his feet, he seems overwhelmed by sentimental feelings of his career, from refereeing at age 15, to starting a wrestling revolution with the Jacksons. Cody chokes up while thanking the fans. He tries to leave his boots in the ring, but Malakai returns to knock him down with a crutch. Black is pleased with himself and that's a wrap.
Final Thoughts: Generally enjoyable that was a bit stronger in the soap opera, episodic storytelling department than providing great in-ring action. The best part is that I'm really eager to see where things are going with Hangman Page, who is not losing his title chase despite the pending arrival of big time free agents.
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