By Jake Barnett, ProWrestling.net Co-Senior Staffer (@barnettjake)
AEW Dynamite (Episode 88)
Jacksonville, Florida at Daily’s Place
Aired June 4, 2021 on TNT
[Hour One] The Dynamite intro aired. Jim Ross, Excalibur, and Tony Schiavone welcomed the TV audience to the show from the arena. Death Triangle’s music played, and the duo of Pac and Penta El Zero Miedo will be competing. Footage was shown of The Bucks hitting multiple BTE Triggers on Jon Moxley at Double or Nothing. Excalibur revealed that Rey Fenix was attacked backstage earlier today. Both Moxley and Fenix are hurt and will not be appearing. The Bucks then made their entrance with Brandon Cutler, Doc Gallows, and Don Callis.
The Bucks gave a headband to Michael Nakazawa at ringside, but Frankie Kazarian attacked him immediately afterward and then made a run for it. Nakazawa was then down and out. Pac and Penta dove on The Bucks at ringside, and then continued the assault on the floor. Penta ran Matt Jackson into the ring post, and then tossed him into the ring. The bell finally ran.
1. AEW Tag Champions “The Young Bucks” Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson vs. Penta El Zero Miedo and Pac in a non-title match: Penta rolled up Matt early into a complex pin, but Nick broke it up and dragged Matt into the corner for the tag. Penta landed a thrust kick on Nick, which forced him to tag back out to Matt. Penta landed a kick to Nick, and then tagged in Pac. He landed a cutter and covered, but Nick broke up the pin again. Penta grabbed Nick for a backbreaker. Pac set up for a Black Arrow, but Matt rolled to ringside.
After a distraction from Don Callis, Nick Jackson leveled Pac with a kick from the apron. Matt then played to the crowd and took a long run around the ring to land a lariat on Pac. That was a bit too cute. Nick then had Cutler clean up his shoes and spray him with cold spray. Pac fired back with a big lariat. Nick Jackson attacked Penta on the floor. Pac knocked Nick off the apron, and then Matt recovered for a sneak attack from behind.
Pac avoided a splash in the corner from Matt, and then landed a rolling German on Nick. He then made a hot tag to Penta, who ran in and immediately landed a lungblower and senton combo on both men. He then pulled in Nick for a backstabber, but he was able to roll to the corner for a tag. Penta landed a half nelson slam into a sit out powerbomb. Nick had to break up the pinfall.
Pac tagged in and landed a big sitout liger bomb on Matt for a near fall. A moment later, Nick tagged in and jumped into a double superkick. Penta and Matt Jackson both landed destroyers within 20 seconds of each other. All four men ended up on the apron, and Penta landed a package piledriver on Matt. Nick Jackson landed a German Suplex on Pac. Penta and Nick ended up in the ring, and they traded strikes.
Penta ended up colliding with Referee Rick Knox. Nick pulled off Penta’s mask, but he wore a second one underneath. Penta landed a package pildriver, and Pac followed up with a Black Arrow. Matt had to run in last second and break up the pin. Pac went back up top, and Cutler took out Pac’s knee with his Camera. Nick Jackson stacked up Pac and got the win. Rick Knox was 300 miles out of position for the interference spot.
The Young Bucks defeated Pac and Penta at 9:39 in a non-title match
After the match, The Bucks set up for a BTE Trigger on Penta, but Eddie Kingston ran down to make the save…
The Stadium Stampede victory lap was plugged for later, and Christian and Jungle Boy will take on Private Party. Also, Dustin Rhodes and Nick Comoroto will have a bull rope match, and we’ll hear from Miro later. Mark Henry’s appearance is up next, along with Cody Rhodes and Lee Johnson vs. QT Marshall and Anthony Ogogo…[c]
My Take: Rick Knox has negative credibility at this point. There isn’t even the slightest attempt to enforce the rules on double teams. Just declare that the division is using lucha tag rules and save the referees the weekly embarrassment of standing there like dopes while all the competitors are in the ring for minutes at a time. The match itself was fast paced and crisp, as you’d expect from these four men. I guess Kingston could align with Death Triangle now that Moxley is out becoming a Dad, but Death Square just doesn’t have the same ring to it.
Tony Schiavone was in the ring, and spoke about being two months away from the debut of AEW Rampage. He then welcomed Mark Henry, who will be a “special analyst” for the show. Henry made his way out to strong applause. Henry said he wasn’t there to “fix” AEW, since it wasn’t broken, but he was there to turn the screws. Schiavone asked him if he was going to get back in the ring again. He said right now he’s not going to say yes, but then said he had a lot left in the tank.
Vickie Guerrero walked down and screamed in her usual shrill tones. She told them to get the hell out of her ring, and….they left? She said she wanted to introduce to then audience a man that has won championships around the world, and is a third generation wrestler. She screamed when the crowd got fired up, and then brought out Andrade El Idolo.
Andrade slowly made his way to the ring, and she adjusted his tie before he grabbed the microphone. He thanked her and said that he used to call himself the face of Latinos, but now he will call himself the face of All Elite Wrestling. Vickie demanded applause, and the shocked crowd was polite…
Cody Rhodes and Lee Johnson are up next against QT Marshall and Anthony Ogogo…[c]
My Take: I can’t tell if it was just the shock or what, but the reaction was not thunderous. Andrade is a big acquisition for AEW. It would seem like he would be an ideal next opponent for Kenny Omega, as they are already scheduled to face each other in AAA for the Mega Championship. The promo was basic, and may have had something to do with the crowd reaction. I think people want to cheer him as well, and the juxtaposition of seeing him with Vickie Guerrero might have caused some confusion. Also, why did he debut at 10:20 on a Friday Night Show?
Cody made his entrance with Lee Johnson and Arn Anderson. The Pyro and music timing were a little off. They were followed by Anthony Ogogo and QT Marshall…
2. Cody Rhodes and Lee Johnson vs. QT Marshall and Anthony Ogogo: Marshall and Johnson started the match. Lee and Cody landed some rapid fire offense and made quick tags. Johnson landed a dropkick and covered for a two count. Ogogo tagged in, which prompted Cody to tag into the match. Ogogo threw Cody with an overhead belly to belly suplex. QT tagged in, and Cody immediately pulled him down with an STO. Lee tagged in and pulled in QT for a hanging neckbreaker. QT tried to toss him out of the ring, but Lee skinned the cat and pulled QT to the outside. Ogogo met Johnson on the floor and drilled him with a stomp. QT and Ogogo then began the process of isolating Johnson in their corner…[c]
During the break, Johnson showed some flashes of a comeback, but was consistently shut down by QT. When the show returned. Cody got his hot tag and immediately took it to QT. He landed a release vertical suplex, and 10 punches in the corner. He then went for a Monkey Flip, and he landed somewhat awkwardly on his knee. Cody leapt up for a disaster kick on Ogogo, and then threw down QT with a snap powerslam. He applied a figure four to QT. Ogogo threw Lee Johnson into the barricade on the outside, and then jumped into the ring with a frog splash.
QT landed a diamond cutter on Cody, and Lee Johnson was late for the break up, so Cody had to kick out. Lee landed on top of them a second later. Aaron Solow ran out and provided a distraction. Rhodes grabbed QT for a CrossRhodes, but Ogogo landed a right hand to the jaw for a KO. QT made the cover with Ogogo standing there, who made no effort to conceal what he did.
QT Marshall and Anthony Ogogo defeated Cody Rhodes and Lee Johnson at 9:40
After the match, QT Marshall celebrated and grabbed a microphone. He told Schiavone that he never believed in him, and now he had to sit there with that stupid look on his face…
The announce team brought up that the Inner Circle remained together at Double or Nothing, and introduced some highlights from the Stadium Stampede Match…
The Inner Circle then made their ring entrance. They all hammed it up while the crowd sang Judas. Chris Jericho introduced them as the 2021 Stadium Stampede Le Champions. Jericho gave the fans free Stadium Stampede 2021 Champions t-shirts under their chairs like Oprah. He then introduced Sammy Guevara as the hero of the match. Sammy spoke about doing a 630 off the roof at his Mom’s backyard, so it was a surreal experience to go from that to using it to keep his brother’s together.
Santana said it was the greatest moment of their lives and careers, but he questioned what they accomplished other than keeping themselves together. He said they still have to see them backstage, and hear their trash talk, and he’d rather see them lying in a ditch if you know what he means. He then said FTR tried to end their careers, and that won’t be forgotten. He said this Inner Circle and Pinnacle shit is far from over.
Jake Hager then said it wasn’t over until they said it was over. He called out Wardlow and said he was pulling his man card first. He said he beat him once in an AEW ring, but then challenged him to a MMA Cage Fight in two weeks on Dynamite.
Jericho said when he thinks of Shawn Spears it pisses him off, and when he thinks about FTR and Tully it pisses him off. But most of all, when he thinks about that mealy mouthed loser MJF, it pisses him off the most. He said he thinks about MJF pushing him off the cage at Blood and Guts every day, and he won’t stop until he can settle the score. He said he must affect MJF’s career and his life in the same way he did to him, and so he must settle the score.
Jericho said MJF calls him the GOAT, and while he doesn’t know if he believes that, he knows he must beat MJF. He promised a Summer of Violence for the Pinnacle, and said he would best MJF within an inch of his life. He closed by saying that the Inner Circle doesn’t forgive, and they never “f’in” forgets…[c]
My Take: That QT Marshall and Ogogo win would have meant a lot more if Ogogo had beaten Cody on Sunday. It would look like he actually had his number. As it is, I just don’t care about Cody feuding with QT’s fork of the Nightmare Family. It feels like it exists in a pocket universe. The Inner Circle promo was good, but I don’t know how excited I am about the long upcoming build to the Rubber Match at the end of the Summer. It feels like this story is already long in the tooth.
We got a backstage promo over some highlights where Best Friends explained that Orange Cassidy had Omega beat twice, but the bad guys cheated and they won. They swore it wasn’t over…
Backstage, Callis and Omega were backstage reviewing a video board. Marvez walked up and asked about what Best Friends had just said. Callis said they shouldn’t worry about that, because they would blow the lid off the conspiracy to take the title from Omega next Friday on Dynamite.
[Hour Two] Omega, who had a brace on his left hand, mocked Jungle Boy and his music by humming it, and told Marvez to go film Jungle Boy instead…
In the arena, Jungle Boy made his entrance for the next match. Christian was out second, followed by Private Party with Matt Hardy. Private Party now wears their club outfits as ring gear…
3. “Private Party” Marq Quen and Isiah Kassidy (w/Matt Hardy) vs. Christian and Jungle Boy: Christian and Kassidy started the match. Quick tags to start from Christian and Jungle Boy, who focused on the arm of Kassidy. Quen tagged and and Christian pancaked him. Jungle Boy tagged in and they landed a double hip toss for a two count. Quen and Kassidy turned the tables and made quick tags and focused on Jungle Boy’s arm. Jungle Boy fought out of the double team and landed a double arm drag on both members of Private Party.
Quen and Kassidy escaped to the floor to regroup with Hardy. Jungle Boy attempted a second rope dropkick, but was met with another kick in mid air. Private Party tried and failed to isolate Jungle Boy, who evaded them and made a tag to Christian. He entered the match and sent Quen to the apron, and stood on Kassidy’s back on the second rope. Christian then landed a back elbow from the second rope. Hardy caught Aubrey Edwards attention, and allowed Quen to interfere and kick Christian in to start an advantage…[c]
Kassidy picked up Quen and slammed him onto Christian. They then did a five second pose to mock Christian. Jungle Boy was knocked off the apron during the break. Christian started a comeback with strikes, but Kassidy shut him down quickly. He then knocked Jungle Boy off the apron again. They then did more five second pose mockery, except they used Christian like Weekend at Bernie’s.
Christian took them both down and made a tag to Jungle Boy, who entered with some good fire. He sent Kassidy to the floor and landed a brainbuster on Quen for a near fall. He then landed a tornado DDT in the ring. After repeated interference from Hardy and Kassidy, Quen stacked up Jungle Boy for a close near fall. Private Party went for Gin and Juice, but Christian broke it up. Jungle Boy pulled Quen into a snare trap for the tap out victory.
Christian and Jungle Boy defeated Private Party at 11:44
After the match, Hardy snuck up on Christian on the apron and put him down with a DDT. The show then cut to a video package where Taz promised revenge on Hangman Page, and said they’d start with his friends in the Dark Order next week…
Back in the arena, Tony Schiavone brought out Darby Allin and Sting. They entered to some strong applause. Sting grabbed the mic and said he has had many incredible experiences in wrestling, but Double or Nothing will be a night he will never forget. A “You still got it” chant broke out, and Sting thanked the crowd. Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page interrupted from the video screen, and congratulated Sting for being the Icon on Sunday. He was so good, he was able to drag Darby Allin over the finish line.
Ethan said if Sting hadn’t been there, Darby would still be laying there. He then called him a bitch, and they demanded he go out and fight anybody but Sting to be his partner to beat them. They demanded Darby prove them wrong…
Britt Baker was hyped as coming up next…[c]
My Take: Jungle Boy getting a strong victory made sense heading into his title match. There is a level of absurdity involved in Page and Sky demanding Darby Allin find a younger, fitter tag partner that isn’t covered in plot armor so they have a chance to win.
There was a pile of Big Macs on a platter set up in the ring, along with all of Britt Baker’s friends. Peter Avalon, Nyla Rose, Vickie Guerrero, Diamante, Luther, Serpentico, TH2, etc. were there. Britt Baker then made her entrance with Rebel.
Baker thanked the crowd for attending her championship celebration. Baker said she understands they all got some freebies tonight, and she’s not one usually one to one up Chris Jericho, but she revealed that the audience all had burger coupons. It was all a ruse, however, and they were all with her in the ring. She said they were all hers, because she did the work, and nobody else deserves them but her.
Britt Baker said when she walked out at Double or Nothing, she saw 3 letters plastered all over the building, and that was DMD. She then said those same 3 letters would carry the company into a new stratosphere. She then invited Tony and Rebel to have a burger with her to celebrate. As they were about to take a bite, Nyla Rose dumped the Burgers out of their hands, and threw the rest of them out of the ring. Rebel and Britt regrouped in the ring…
Backstage, Pac and Penta told Eddie Kingston they didn’t want his help, and to keep his nose out of his business. Kingston said the enemy of my enemy is my friend, and asked them to let that marinate in their brains for a little bit…
JR and Excalibur recapped events from the show on commentary…
The Bunny made her way to the ring for the next match. She was accompanied by The Blade. Red Velvet then made her entrance with Big Swole and KiLynn King…
4. Red Velvet (w/KiLynn King, Big Swole) vs. The Bunny (w/The Blade): Velvet was doing her mixing pose, and Bunny tried to sneak up on her from behind. Velvet got out of the way and sent Bunny down for a two count. She then dove at Bunny on the floor, and fired up the crowd. Velvet brought the action back in the ring and landed repeated kicks in the corner.
Bunny intercepted Velvet climbing the ropes, and landed a thrust kick that sent her to the floor. She then pursued and landed some stomps on the floor, and tossed Velvet back in the ring. Bunny landed a hard kick in the corner, and then landed a sliding forearm…[c]
My Take: I guess Britt Baker just likes Big Macs? The burger coupon joke was a funny reversal of Jericho’s big giveaway earlier, and it helped get Baker back on the shit list of fans in the arena. I don’t think people quite understood how to react to Nyla Rose breaking up the celebration. They’ll need to do some character work with her to clarify her situation.
Velvet landed a rising knee strike in the corner, followed by a Stunner for a near fall. Bunny recovered and landed a thrust kick when Velvet hit the ropes. The Blade slipped Bunny her brass knucks, but Velvet avoided them and landed a spinning heel kick for the win.
Red Velvet defeated The Bunny at 6:32
After the match, Kilynn King and Big Swole celebrated with Red Velvet…
The Dark Order had a Birthday Celebration from John Silver. Tony Khan gave him a TNT Title shot for his birthday, but he’s not cleared, so he gave it to Evil Uno instead. Uno promised to make them all proud. Miro said Uno is too emotional to beat him, and he’s not the kind of man you come after when you think you might win. He’s someone you come after when you’re sure you’ll survive…
Miro and Uno was officially announced for next week, as well as Brian Cage and Powerhouse Hobbs vs. Hangman Page and Preston “10” Vance…
Dustin Rhodes and Nick Comorato is next in a bull rope match. Justin Roberts then made ring introductions for the Main Event…[c]
My Take: Red Velvet continues to impress in the ring, and The Bunny played her role well too. Miro is 1000% better away from Charisma Vacuum Kip Sabian, and it’s nice to see him begin to approach his potential.
5. Dustin Rhodes vs. Nick Comoroto (w/Aaron Solow) in a Bull Rope Match: They brawled immediately on the ramp, and Comoroto threw Dustin back into the ring over the ropes. The ref got control and connected the bull rope to both men. Dustin pulled the rope immediately into Comoroto’s groin. He then landed a shot with the bell to Comoroto’s head. Rhodes then clotheslined him to the floor, and they began to brawl on the outside.
Comoroto escaped a choke attempt and landed some heavy right hands. Comoroto shoved Fuego Del Sol, who was in the spectator wrestler section and then jumped on his back. Comoroto pulled Del Sol off his back and chucked him into the nearby wrestlers and chairs. Aaron Solow got involved, and Dustin slammed him on the floor. Comoroto came up bleeding in all the commotion. Comoroto used his power to slam Dustin against the post and onto the floor on the outside…[c]
Aaron Solow set up a table at ringside while both men brawled. Comoroto threatened to put Dustin through it, but he avoided the slam and slipped into the ring. Dustin tried to attack Comoroto on the apron, but he got picked up and powerbombed through the table instead. A cover was attempted in the ring, but Dustin kicked out.
Colten Gunn ran down to even the odds at ringside. Solow was able to remove the turnbuckle pad. Dustin landed a powerslam on Comoroto for a near fall. Dustin then dropped him on the exposed turnbuckle, and hit him with the bell. He then followed up with a top rope bulldog. Dustin used the ropes to tie up Comoroto a bit and then covered for the win.
Dustin Rhodes defeated Nick Comoroto at 11:13
After the match, Dustin Rhodes celebrated his win with the crowd.
My Take: I don’t know that this match really should have been in the main event slot. I know Dustin Rhodes is a legend, but this Nightmare Family/Factory feud just isn’t all that hot, and the secondary characters interfering and being at ringside got precisely zero reaction from the live crowd. The match itself wasn’t bad, but it didn’t do anything exciting with the concept of the bull rope, and I’m not sure people had seen enough of Nick Comoroto on Dynamite to view him as a threat to Dustin.