By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
AEW Dynamite (Episode 70)
Taped January 21, 2021 in Jacksonville, Florida at Daily’s Place
Aired January 27, 2021 on TNT
[Hour One] The Dynamite opening aired… Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone, and Excalibur checked in on commentary. Justin Roberts was the ring announcer…
1. Lance Archer vs. Eddie Kingston. Jake Roberts walked onto the ramp with Archer, who sent him to the back. Archer chokeslammed Kingston over the ropes and onto the edge of the apron a few minutes into the match. Archer went to ringside and ran Kingston’s head into the active camera.
Back inside the ring, Archer performed a Full Nelson Bomb. Kingston eventually dropkicked the knee of Archer, then followed with a running elbow or forearm to the head and covered him for a two count. Archer came back and set up for his finisher, but Kingston slipped away.
Archer chokeslammed Kingston and then smiled while staring into the camera. Archer applied a claw and slammed Kingston’s head into the mat. The Butcher and The Blade dragged Jake Roberts onto the stage. While Archer and the referee were distracted, The Bunny appeared at ringside and passed brass knuckles to Kingston, who used them on Archer and then scored the pin.
Eddie Kingston defeated Lance Archer in 8:50.
After the match, Butcher and Blade performed a powerbomb/neckbreaker combo move on Archer while Roberts sold on the stage. They picked Archer up and then Kingston put him down again with a spinning back fist…
Powell’s POV: A good opening match with a legitimately surprising outcome. I assumed that Archer would go over strong, but I really liked the finish and the heat that it puts on Kingston. By the way, I am filling in for Jake Barnett tonight. Jake will return on Friday night with the WWE Smackdown live review.
The broadcast team hyped previously advertised matches and Cody Rhodes’s response to Shaq. They also hyped the Sting and Darby Allin vs. Brian Cage and Ricky Starks match for AEW Revolution on Sunday, March 7…
Jon Moxley delivered a promo from an outdoor setting. He said the Young Bucks are the tag team champions and are friends with Kenny Omega, who is friends with The Good Brothers. Moxley asked if they were all one big happy family. He said there’s drama within The Elite and compared it to a soap opera. Moxley said the Death Triangle doesn’t like any of them and he doesn’t think they like him. Moxley said he’s a simple guy. He told Pac and Rey Fenix to saddle up for gang warfare. He said he didn’t know what would happen at next week’s Beach Break themed show, but he assumed it would be wild… [C]
Powell’s POV: The usual excellent promo from Moxley. In case you missed it, AEW moved its pay-per-view date from Saturday, February 27 to March 7. Tony Khan has stated that he won’t run head-to-head with the NFL, so I wouldn’t expect Sunday nights to become a regular pay-per-view night for AEW, at least during NFL season.
Sting and Darby Allin delivered a promo from an undisclosed location. Sting acted like he was offended by Taz referring to them as hoodlums, then conceded that Allin is a hoodlum. Allin threw a skateboard through a window behind him and said that he is a hoodlum, no different than his partner. Sting slammed his baseball bat through the windows behind him, then said he is a hoodlum. He said it’s showtime at Revolution in the street fight…
2. Chris Jericho and MJF (w/Wardlow, Sammy Guevara, Santana, Ortiz, Jake Hager) vs. “The Varsity Blonds” Brian Pillman Jr. and Griff Garrison. The entrance of Pillman and Garrison was not televised. The bell rang to start the match. MJF said he needed to talk with Guevara after the match. MJF called Garrison “Goldilocks” and told him to go ahead and quit. Garrison punched him to start the match.
Ross spoke about Jericho and Pillman’s father both training at the Hart Dungeon. Jericho and MJF were isolating Garrison heading into a picture-in-picture break. [C] Pillman tagged in and performed a cross body block off the top rope onto Jericho for a near fall during the break.
Garrison tagged in coming out of the break and worked over both opponents. Pillman also picked up a close near fall on Jericho. Pillman went for a springboard move, but Jericho caught him with the Judas Effect elbow. Jericho followed up with a nice Lionsault and scored the pin.
Chris Jericho and MJF defeated “The Varsity Blonds” Brian Pillman Jr. and Griff Garrison in 8:10.
After the match, the Inner Circle members gathered in the ring. Jericho had to keep Guevara and MJF apart…
A Pac video package aired from an undisclosed location. He said Kenny Omega would face the consequences during next week’s main event on the Beach Break themed show… [C]
Powell’s POV: The tag match was exactly what it needed to be with the young babyface duo looking good against the heels, who pulled the rug out from under them in the end. Pillman and Garrison shined in defeat, thanks in part to the work of Jericho and MJF. We’ve seen Jericho win matches with the Judas Effect. I suspect that he was trying to prove a point with the good looking Lionsault after the rough version last week. On a side note, I like that we’re getting promos in advance of next week’s Beach Break show.
Footage aired from “earlier tonight on the AEW Awards show” of Shaq calling out Cody Rhodes for a fight. He told him to name the time and the place. He suggested they do it in March…
Tony Schiavone stood in the ring and introduced Cody Rhodes and Arn Anderson. Schiavone asked Cody to respond to Jade Cargill’s comments from The Waiting Room segment. Cody said he’d rather just deliver a classic promo stating that he and his wife Brandi Rhodes would face Shaq and Cargill.
Cody said he couldn’t say that because Brandi is having a baby. Cody said that in moments like these when he’s distracted, he defers to his coach Anderson. Cody said Anderson chewed his ass out for taking Peter Avalon lightly last week. Anderson said Cody deserved the ass chewing.
Anderson said he would earn his money tonight and would probably contradict himself a few times. He asked for patience. Anderson said Cody being a father is the most important thing in his life. Anderson brought up June 29, 1985 and asked if that date meant something to Cody. Anderson explained that Cody’s father faced Tully Blanchard in Los Angeles, then got on a plane and flew across country to see the birth of Cody.
Anderson said that if Cody chooses to take the match then he should do so with his eyes wide open and no regrets. Anderson said it’s hard to capture the public’s eye like he could with this match. He said Shaq dominated his sport for 19 years and proved he was a world class athlete.
Anderson said Jade dominates the area whenever she walks into a room. Anderson said he saw something in the last two weeks that can’t be measured and he doesn’t know if a name can be put on it. He said he wanted Cody to see something, then said, “Come on down.”
Red Velvet joined Cody and Anderson in the ring. Anderson said Cody and Velvet both have fire. Velvet looked into the camera and said she’s tired of being attacked and seeing Cargill disrespect Brandi when she knows that Brandi can’t defend herself. She said she knows that Cody would never lay a hand on Cargill, but she will. She said she was going to “tear your bitch ass up.” Schiavone said it seemed like the ball was now in the court of Shaq and Cargill…
Powell’s POV: The storyline dragged on for a long time, then really kicked into gear with the Shaq video and the babyface response. The tag match is a hell of a pay-per-view hook for AEW.
Excalibur hyped the Kip Sabian and Penelope Ford wedding. A video package aired with Sabian and Ford talking lovingly about one another and inviting viewers to their wedding. They also mentioned their best man Miro, who pinched the cheek of his butler Charles (Chuck Taylor) before saying it would be fantastic…
3. “Hangman” Adam Page vs. “Hollywood Hunk” Ryan Nemeth. Page dominated early and performed a dive from the ring onto Nemeth at ringside. Page rolled him back inside the ring and charged at Nemeth, who moved, and then dropkicked Page.
Matt Hardy walked to ringside as watched while the broadcast team assumed he was scouting. Page came back and performed a spinebuster. Hardy applauded at ringside. Ross said it seemed like Hardy’s focus was on Page, who then delivered a clothesline to a seated Nemeth and covered him for a two count.
Nemeth came back with a DDT and covered Page for a two count. Nemeth ran into an elbow and a boot from Page, but ducked a clothesline. Nemeth went for a German suplex, but Page landed on his feet. Page clotheslined Nemeth and followed up with the Buckshot Lariat for the win.
“Hangman” Adam Page defeated “Hollywood Hunk” Ryan Nemeth in 5:40.
Matt Hardy walked onto the entrance ramp and applauded. Hardy started to leave, but Page seemed to indicate that he was wondering what Hardy was up to. Schiavone entered the ring and said Page called Hardy back. Hardy said he didn’t want to create a scene. He said he wanted to be in Page’s corner to let him know that he supports him.
Hardy said Page seemed lost and conflicted and that’s understandable. He said he was with him at the Stadium Stampede and knows how much love he has or had for the Young Bucks and Kenny Omega. Hardy said he didn’t want anything from Page. He said Page is a good person who deserves to be happy. He said he needed to say it and Page needed to hear it. Hardy said he has a huge dressing room and Page is welcome in it with no strings attached. Schiavone said he thinks Page should take him up on the offer…
Excalibur hyped the Dax Harwood vs. Jungle Boy match for after the break… [C]
Powell’s POV: Nemeth is the younger brother of WWE wrestler Dolph Ziggler, and he wrestled as Briley Pierce in NXT. It’s nice to see him in AEW (and thank God they don’t have the rights to his brother’s entrance theme). Nemeth didn’t really stand out, but he’s also had a long layoff and did fine with that in mind. I actually assumed that Hardy was there to scout Nemeth, but the development with Page was logical and intriguing.
FTR and Tully Blanchard made their entrance. A video package aired with Dax Harwood and Jungle Boy talking about Cash Wheeler and Tully Blanchard being handcuffed to Luchasaurus at ringside…
[Hour Two] The Jurassic Express trio made their entrance…
4. Dax Harwood (w/Tully Blanchard, Cash Wheeler) vs. Jungle Boy (w/Luchasaurus). Marko Stunt came out with his teammates, but he headed to the back while Luchasaurus was handcuffed to Blanchard and Wheeler. Jungle Boy got off to a good start. Blanchard pulled to move closer to Harwood, but he couldn’t move Luchasaurus.
Harwood came back by dodging Jungle Boy as he slid under the bottom rope for a move on the floor. Harwood shoved him into the barricade heading into a PIP break. [C] Harwood performed a nice side suplex from the top rope. Jungle Boy fired up a short time later, but Harwood cut him off with a clothesline.
Harwood executed a slingshot sit-out powerbomb for a near fall. Jungle Boy came back with a Backstabber and a pair of German suplexes. He went for a third, but Harwood dropped him with an elbow to the head. Jungle Boy came right back with a clothesline. Harwood responded with a DDT for a near fall. There was a nice exchange of back and forth pin attempts. Jungle Boy caught Harwood in an STF and got the submission win.
Jungle Boy defeated Dax Harwood in 14:55.
After the match, Blanchard threw powder in the eyes of Luchasaurus, then Wheeler ran him into the ring post. With the handcuffs off, Wheeler entered the ring and helped Harwood suplex Jungle Boy, then Blanchard assisted the FTR duo with a spike piledriver on Luchasaurus.
FTR handcuffed Luchasaurus to the top rope and then used a scissors to cut the horns off his mask. They were going to cut the hair of Jungle Boy, but Marko Stunt, SCU, and Top Flight ran out to scare them off…
Excalibur hyped Britt Baker vs. Shanna for after the break… [C]
Powell’s POV: This looked like a good match on paper and it actually delivered beyond my high expectations. That was fun. I like that the handcuff gimmick actually accomplished what it was supposed to and they didn’t come up with some way creatively for it to backfire. I can’t say that I care about Luchasaurus having the horns cut off his mask, but perhaps I’m in the minority.
Taz, Brian Cage, Ricky Starks, Powerhouse Hobbs, and Hook were shown walking outside the building. Taz was delivering a promo on Sting and Darby Allin when Hobbs and Hook got into an argument with guys who were selling merch. They apparently took issue with the merch stand having Sting and Allin gear, yet not having Team Taz gear. The Team Taz group beat up the merch crew. Taz said Cage and Starks would beat the asses of Sting and Allin in the street fight…
5. Britt Baker (w/Reba) vs. Shanna. Excalibur noted that Shanna has been impressive on Dark since relocating to the United States. Shanna was in offensive control until they ended up at ringside and Baker took advantage of a Reba distraction heading into a PIP break. [C]
Baker had offensive control and got the rubber glove for her finisher from Reba, but Shanna came back briefly and threw a rough dropkick with Baker leaning up against the ropes. Reba stood on the apron and provided a distraction, which led to Baker applying the Lockjaw on Shanna for the win.
Britt Baker beat Shanna in 8:45.
After the match, Baker roughed up Shanna and reapplied her submission hold. Thunder Rosa ran out and chased Baker and Reba away from ringside while Excalibur hyped Baker vs. Rosa for next week’s Beach Break episode…
Powell’s POV: A solid match. It’s good to see Shanna back on Dynamite. I would have been surprised to see her lose in her first match back on Dynamite, but Baker wasn’t going to lose clean this week before her match with Rosa.
MJF approached Sammy Guevara somewhere in the building. MJF said Wardlow will never get involved in one of his matches ever again. Guevara said MJF is a great manipulator, but he sees exactly what he’s up to. “Sammy, are you sure you want to play it this way?” MJF asked. Guevara got nose to nose with him and replied, “I’m not playing”…
The broadcast team hyped the following matches and segments for next week’s Beach Break show: a tag team battle royal for a shot at the AEW Tag Titles at AEW Revolution, Thunder Rosa vs. Britt Baker, and Jon Moxley, Pac, and Rey Fenix vs. Kenny Omega, Doc Gallows, and Karl Anderson in a six-man tag match. It was noted that the Young Bucks will be in the battle royal and would be allowed to pick their challengers if they win the match…
Excalibur hyped the AEW Women’s Title eliminator tournament and officially announced Serena Deeb vs. Riho as a match on the U.S. side of the bracket… Ross hyped the television main event… [C]
Backstage, Dasha spoke with Doc Gallows, Karl Anderson, Matt Jackson, and Nick Jackson. Anderson said it was a full on Bullet Club reunion. Gallows spoke about how they would beat up Jon Moxley next week. Matt mentioned the possibility of Omega’s “creepy uncle Don” getting involved. Omega and a bandaged Don Callis showed up. Callis accused the Bucks of assaulting him. The Bucks headed out for their entrance, then the remainder of the entrances took place…
6. “The Young Bucks” Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson and “The Good Brothers” Doc Gallows, and Karl Anderson vs. “The Dark Order” Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, Alex Reynolds, and John Silver. Anna Jay, Colt Cabana, 5, and 10 came out with their fellow Dark Order members, but headed to the back once the bell rang to start the match. Grayson had a big offensive flurry and performed a top rope splash on Anderson shortly before a PIP break. [C]
The Dark Order continued to dominate the offense. Uno got a near fall on Matt that was broken up by Anderson. Nick fired back with superkicks and then dove onto his opponents at ringside. Nick, Anderson, and Gallows performed simultaneous apron powerbombs on Uno, Reynolds, and Silver.
The trio returned to the ring where the Bucks and Brothers delivered simultaneous superkicks to Grayson. They had him beat, but Uno broke up the pin. The Good Brothers hit the Magic Killer on Uno, then the Bucks followed up with a Meltzer Driver on Grayson, which led to Matt pinning him to win the match.
The Young Bucks and Good Brothers defeated Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, Alex Reynolds, and John Silver in 11:45.
After the match, the Bucks and Brothers stood in the ring for a promo. Matt spoke about next week’s battle royal. He said that if he and Nick win, they get to handpick their challengers for the pay-per-view. Matt said it could be anybody, then he and Nick looked at Gallows and Anderson. They all did the Too Sweet hand sign.
Rey Fenix ran out and performed a springboard dropkick that sent the Bucks out of the ring. Fenix was quickly outnumbered by Gallows and Anderson. Fenix avoided the Magic Killer. Jon Moxley ran in and clotheslined Gallows to ringside. Fenix performed a big dive onto the Good Brothers.
Kenny Omega ran out and tried to hit Moxley with the AEW Title belt, but Moxley ducked it and put him down with a Paradigm Shift DDT. Moxley and Fenix celebrated while the broadcast team hyped next week’s six-man tag main event…
Powell’s POV: A hot main event with action from bell to bell. The Dark Order team was given a lot of offense and looked good in defeat. The post match angle did a nice job of setting the table for the battle royal and the six-man tag main event. Overall, this was a really good edition of Dynamite. Every segment served a purpose and, more importantly, clicked.
I will have more to say about the show in my weekly same night audio review for Dot Net Members. Let me know what you thought of Dynamite by giving it a letter grade in our poll below.