The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 04.06.22
Live from Boston, MA
Your hosts are Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone & Excalibur
Adam Cole v. Christian Cage
So weird watching the recent AEW Games video where Cole, Danhausen and Evil Uno were all playing “Guess the N64 games” and being completely out of character the whole time. Adam Cole comes off as a completely different person when he’s not playing the dickhead heel. The crowd is very split to start and they trade holds on the mat, as Cage grabs a headlock and puts him down with a shoulderblock. Cole regroups and beats him down, but hocking a loogie prompts Christian to chase him to the floor for some chops. Back in the ring, Cole trips him up on the top rope and puts the boots to him, then runs him into the stairs as we take a break. Back with Christian hitting a dive that kind of goes badly, and they slug it out back in the ring. Cole goes up and lands on Cage’s foot, and Christian slugs away in the corner and follows with a sunset flip for two. Cage goes up with a tornado DDT for two. Cole misses the enzuigiri and Christian dodges it, but Cole hits the backstabber for two. Christian suckers him in for a small package that gets two and follows with the inverted DDT, but then he goes up and misses a diving headbutt. Cole superkicks him and hits the BOOM, but that only gets two. Christian slugs back on the ropes, but he goes up again and lands in a superkick that gets two. Cole goes up for the Sunrise, but Cage counters with a rana for two. Spear misses and Cole kicks the knee out and goes up with the Panama Sunrise again, but Christian escapes that again. Cole superkicks him and drops the kneepad, but Cage ducks the BOOM and spears him for two. Killswitch is blocked and Cole gives him the ol’ thumb to the eye, and this time he hits the BOOM for the pin at 14:38. It was lacking heat before the break but turned into a HELL of an opener. ***1/2 This prompts a giant brawl between reDRagon and Jurassic Express, and then Hangman Page comes out to deal with Cole, who still wants a rematch, so Page is like “Fine, Texas Death match next week in Texas.” On Rampage no less, so I guess TK has finally decided to rehab that show. And Page advises him to get his affairs in order.
Meanwhile, at ROH Supercard of Honor, Jay Lethal turns on Jonathan Gresham, before Samoa Joe returns to make the save. Man I’m glad I ordered that show. It apparently did really good business, too.
Owen Hart Foundation qualifier: Samoa Joe v. Max Caster
The crowd is pretty sure that Joe is gonna kill Max. Especially after he accuses Joe of carrying around the towel because he’s always playing with himself. That’s just uncalled for. So Joe beats him down in the corner and does some dancing before hitting the enzuigiri in the corner and dropping an elbow on him. Caster bails and Joe hits him with a tope suicida, but Bowens distracts him with the weird finger thing and Caster thinks he’s got it under control. Back in, Joe shrugs him off and hits the Muscle Buster for the pin at 2:52. ** And then Jay Lethal and Sonjay Dutt join us on the TK-Tron, accusing Joe of only answering his phone for billionaires. So next week they have a huge present for Joe.
Meanwhile, The Blackpool Combat Club has singles matches on Rampage and William Regal is OFF HIS NUT with excitement. And Wheeler Yuta won’t know if it’s “daylight, moonlight or Fanny by the gaslight” when Moxley is done with him. William Regal’s facial expressions while Moxley is doing his promo are AMAZING.
Captain Shawn Dean v. Shawn Spears
Spears hits a backbreaker right away and puts the boots to him, then tosses him over the top rope before going to run his boot on the Wardlow posters at ringside. Back in the ring, Dean chops away, but Spears hits a package neckbreaker for two and pulls him up. He goes for the finish, but once again we cut to the back where Wardlow is laying out security staff on his way to the ring. He gets swarmed again, but this allows Dean to get the rollup on Spears for the pin at 4:00. Not a huge fan of the banana peel finish but they’re getting Wardlow over huge as a babyface.
Meanwhile, Best Friends kicks Wheeler Yuta out of the group and Trent calls him a scumbag and a traitor. He’s better off with the Combat Club anyway.
Meanwhile, Santana & Ortiz brawl with Jericho’s guys, but Jericho runs away just because Kingston throws a giant TV at him. What a wuss.
Eddie Kingston and his boys join us now that Jericho is gone, and they finally get to do a promo unfettered. Apparently they will be attacking ON SIGHT and challenge the Appreciation Society to a six-man next week.
Jade Cargill joins us to introduce her Baddies section. It was tough to find good looking people in Boston, but she’s a hard worker and pulled it off. And Marina Shafir might be the Problem, but she’s the Problem Solver.
Meanwhile, MJF and Shawn Spears have TWICE as many guards next week when MJF faces Shawn Dean.
Tables match: The Butcher & The Blade v. The Hardy Boyz
Butcher wisely smashes up a table before the match and uses the pieces as a weapon against Matt. Jeff beats on Blade in the ring, but Blade comes back and then misses a spear, putting himself through a table. That doesn’t count, though. Butcher tries to suplex Jeff through a table, but Matt saves and they put Butcher on the table for a Jeff swanton attempt that takes so long to attempt that Elon Musk has time to buy 9.2% of the company while we’re waiting. Blade brings Jeff down and the heels take over and put Jeff through a table to eliminate him as we take a break. Back with Matt fighting them both off and putting Butcher through a table to even it up. Matt dives at Blade outside and misses, going through another table. Butcher and Blade just keep double-teaming Matt on the outside despite Butcher being eliminated, and hit a double suplex off the railing, although Jeff pulls the table away to prevent the loss. So Jeff just starts wrestling again as JR pulls out “bowling shoe ugly” and he’s not wrong. Jeff gets a ladder and hits them with that, and then puts Blade on a pair of tables and goes to the top of the ladder for a swanton to win the match at 12:00. This was a huge mess, with rules that didn’t really make sense and the Hardys shuffling around like nursing home residents. -* This brings out Andrade and his crew, but Sting saves and chases them off with the baseball bat.
Meanwhile, Jurassic Express challenges reDRagon to a title match NEXT WEEK.
Meanwhile, Thunder Rosa challenges Nyla Rose for Battle of the Belts.
Meanwhile, Jamie Hayter and Toni Storm do a promo teasing us with the Battle of the Thiccness in the tournament.
Owen Hart Foundation qualifier: Hikaru Shida v. Julia Hart
Julia attacks before the bell and chokes Shida out with the varsity jacket, and then sends the Blonds to the back to prevent further distraction with their do-gooding. Shida comes back and hangs Julia in the corner before booting her from the apron, and then she hits a dropkick off the chair on the floor. Back in, Julia catches her with a DDT and slugs away on the mat as we take a break. Back with Shida beating her down, but Julia dodges a knee strike and bails to the apron. Shida suplexes her back in from the apron, but Julia gouges the eyes and bulldogs her for two. Julia goes up and misses a splash, and Shida finishes with the Falcon Arrow at 7:43. This was perfectly acceptable wrestling. **1/4 This brings out Serena Deeb with a chair, but they’re at a stalemate and Deeb backs off and leaves.
Meanwhile, Swerve Strickland does a promo about the Grammys, but Team Taz attacks and then Keith Lee bursts through a wall to save.
ROH & AAA tag team titles: FTR v. The Young Bucks
The fully babyface champions get a big “FTR” chant to start, and Cash wins a shoving match with Matt. They trade headlocks and Cash puts Matt on the floor with a shoulder block and offers a Young Buck muscle pose. Dax comes in and grabs a headlock on Nick, prompting a tantrum from the Bucks that leads to headband-throwing. Now it’s on. Nick and Dax trade takedowns and we get a Mexican standoff in the ring before everyone calms down and Matt comes in. Dax slugs it out with Matt, and we get stereo cheapshots from the guys outside, and everyone slugs it out again. The Bucks hit double dropkicks on FTR in sequence, but Cash slugs them down and we get stereo sharpshooters from FTR, which I’m sure is a very subtle hint. Yup, you guessed it, Riki Choshu is All Elite. Bucks hit Cash with a double cannonball in the corner to take over and Matt gets a legsweep before going up with a familiar middle rope elbow and even more familiar pose. And you guys think that my Elevation rant was a huge troll. We take a break and return with Cash fighting back with a snap suplex on Nick before he fights them both off and goes for the hot hand. But then Nick hits a perfectly timed superkick to knock Dax off the apron, saving the tag, but a double team attempt goes badly and Cash gets the real hot tag to Dax. Uncle Dax cleans house and chops Matt in the corner, and a small package gets two. They trade pinfall attempts and fight over a backslide, which Matt wins for two. Dax headfakes him and piledrives him for two. They fight to the top and Nick brings Dax down, but Cash suplexes Nick on the apron to set up the POWER PLEX, and then Nick hits Cash with a top rope rana to cockblock that move as well. Bucks double-team Cash in their corner and Nick gets the slingshot X-Factor on Cash, but Dax pulls Nick out for a brainbuster on the floor. And Cash hits a Gory Bomb on Matt for two. Big Rig is countered by Matt and he goes low on Cash to set up their own Big Rig for two. More Bang For Your Buck gets two on Cash. Nick goes for title belt and Dax gets into a tug of war while Cash rolls up Matt for two, but Matt hits Cash with the belt for two and Dax saves. Superkick for Dax to get rid of him and that sets up the BTE Rigger on Cash for two, as the foot lands on the ropes to break up the pin. So they set up the Meltzer Driver, but Dax catches Nick and powerbombs him to break it up and we get an FTR Trigger on Matt and Big Rig to finish at 20:05 and retain the titles. Holy god what a week for Dax and Cash. This was tag team nirvana. *****
What can you say about this one? The tables match was a bit of an atrocity but the main event was an easy Match of the Year Candidate and they set up a ton of big matches for the next couple of weeks. FTR are legit the best tag team in the world right now in my eyes, bar none.