By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
AEW Dynamite (Episode 150)
Charleston, West Virginia at Charleston Coliseum
Aired live August 17, 2022 on TBS
[Hour One] Dynamite opened with a video package that featured clips from HBO’s “House of the Dragon” mixed with shots of AEW wrestlers… Jim Ross, Excalibur, Taz, and Tony Schiavone were on commentary, and Justin Roberts was the ring announcer…
AEW World Champion CM Punk made his entrance with his title belt over his shoulder. Punk went to the ring where he was met with loud “CM Punk” chants. Punk said he tried to put his tough guy game face on, but the fans ruined it by making him smile. He said he doesn’t have the prettiest smile, but he does have the prettiest belt.
Punk said there was someone from the area that he wanted to challenge to a rematch. Punk sat down and laid the belt in front of him. Punk said that if Hangman Page wants his rematch, he has it on the spot. The broadcast team questioned if Punk was cleared and whether Page was in the building.
Page didn’t come out. Punk tapped on the mic. Punk stood up and said that’s not cowboy shit, that’s coward shit. He said a little bit of advice is that the public apology needs to be as loud as the disrespect. He said that anyone else who has a problem should come on down because everyone wants to be the champ until it’s time to do champ shit.
Punk said he knows that Jon Moxley has a lot of fans and he might be number one in the heart of the fans, but he’s not number one in AEW because he is the true champion. Punk said Moxley has always been number two. There were some boos and gasps. Punk told the crowd to stop him when he’s telling lies.
Punk said Moxley is the third best guy in his own group and that seems to be a recurring theme in his career. Punk said that doesn’t make Moxley a bad guy. Punk said he’s willing to test himself against Moxley, but Moxley isn’t willing to test himself against him.
Punk said Moxley’s buddy Eddie (Kingston) is the third best Eddie he’s ever been in the ring with, and the second best Kingston he’s ever shared a locker room with. “These people aren’t number one in anything,” Punk said. “Tell me when I’m telling lies.” A “CM Punk” chant broke out.
Punk said he’s missed the fans and had yet to defend the title. Punk said he’s looking forward to testing himself and his foot against John Moxley at All Out. Punk said Moxley won’t even be the first guy named John/Jon who he’ll beat in Chicago for a championship.
Jon Moxley’s music played and he walked out from the side of the stage with the Interim AEW Championship belt over his shoulder. Punk said he knew he had some time before Moxley got there. Punk laid down in the ring and did snow angels.
Moxley took his time before entering the ring. “Look out, ladies and gentlemen, CM Punk is dropping pipe bombs,” Moxley said. He added that Punk was doing what he does best by letting his mouth write checks that his body can’t cash. Moxley said it’s just a microphone and it doesn’t mean shit, nor does the belt over Punk’s shoulder.
Moxley said his own belt doesn’t mean shit until he beats Punk. Punk told Moxley that he could be the heart and the soul, and he’ll be the dollars and cents. Punk asked Moxley if he was done talking. Moxley said Punk only came to AEW because he ran out of money and everyone knows it.
Moxley accused Punk of running out of fighting spirit a long time ago. Moxley said if Punk wants to prove him wrong he could try to do something about it. “I don’t think you’re going to do shit,” Moxley said before dropping the mic. Punk said they have a match at the pay-per-view and he was afraid that if he touched Moxley now he would just bleed all over him.
Punk dropped his mic and went nose to nose with Moxley, who had his arms behind his back. Punk shoved Moxley, who kissed him. Punk and Moxley started trading punches. AEW security ran out to boos and pulled them apart. Punk stood on the second rope for a moment before dropping down. Moxley tossed his title belt to ringside, then climbed onto the middle rope. Punk moved toward him. Moxley jumped down and they got some shots in before security pulled them apart again
Moxley went to ringside and tossed a chair inside the ring. Punk set up the chair and took a seat. Moxley tried to get at him again, but they were kept apart by security. Moxley teased leaving, then came right back to ringside and hopped onto the apron. Punk and Moxley were pulled apart again, which led to boos…
Powell’s POV: I have no idea why they didn’t advertise this confrontation in advance, but it was a hell of a segment and the best verbal exchange of the year thus far. They sold a lot of pay-per-views with that one. By the way, I need Friday night off for a family function, so I swapped nights with Jake Barnett, who will cover Smackdown this week.
Excalibur hyped the show’s lineup and then highlights aired of Ricky Starks beating Aaron Solo and escaping before The Factory could attack him…
Powerhouse Hobbs was interviewed by Tony Schiavone, who said he thought Starks and Hobbs were friends. Hobbs said he doesn’t need friends. He said Starks showed his true colors and showed the world that he’s okay with losing. Hobbs said he’s not okay with losing. Hobbs said Starks hid behind his back for two years because he knew Hobbs would get the job done. Hobbs said he also had something for The Factory…
Justin Roberts introduced Ricky Steamboat as the guest timekeeper. Chris Jericho made his entrance and joined the broadcast team. Bryan Danielson made his entrance, followed by opponent Daniel Garcia…
1. Bryan Danielson vs. Daniel Garcia in a best of three falls match. There was a loud “Let’s Go Bryan” chant a couple minutes in and then they cut to a picture-in-picture break. [C] Danielson threw kicks at Garcia and then performed a huracanrana from the ropes, but Garcia rolled through and got a two count.
Garcia caught Danielson in an arm bar. Bryan escaped and then executed a suplex that made the crowd gasp and resulted in a two count. Garcia ended up at ringside. Danielson kicked him through the ropes. Danielson leapt from the apron, but Garcia avoided him and then suplexed him on the floor.
Back inside the ring, Danielson applied a triangle sleeper. Garcia powered Danielson up and countered into a piledriver, which drew more gasps. Garcia put Danielson in a Dragon Sleeper. Referee Bryce Remsburg ruled that Danielson was out and ended the fall.
Daniel Garcia beat Bryan Danielson to win the first fall in roughly 9:30.
Danielson beat Remsburg’s ten count to keep the match going. Garcia went right at Danielson and fired chops at his chest in the corner. Garcia backed up and then threw a running dropkick at Danielson heading into a break. [C]
Footage aired from during the break of Garcia DDT’ing Danielson on the exposed concrete at ringside. Danielson bled from the forehead. Back in the ring, Garcia executed a reverse suplex and then threw elbows at the head of Danielson. When Garcia hooked Danielson’s head, Danielson countered into a pin.
Bryan Danielson beat Daniel Garcia in 15:10 to win the second fall.
Danielson put Garcia on the ropes and gave him a German suplex. Danielson followed up with a missile dropkick. Garcia ended up at ringside. Danielson performed a suicide dive. Danielson ran Garcia into the ring post, then hooked his arms around the post and pulled his shoulder into it twice. Garcia returned the favor and then took turns pulling each other into the post. Garcia performed the last post shot and they both fell to the mat at ringside.
Ricky Steamboat was shown checking the time. Garcia returned to the ring and then Danielson barely beat the referee’s count heading into a PIP break. [C] Garcia also bled. They knelt in the ring and Danielson encouraged Garcia to continue chopping him. Danielson sat crosslegged and allowed Garcia to hit him with a running kick and more chops.
Garcia went for another running kick, but Danielson shot up and dropped him with a strike and then flipped him off. Danielson threw kicks at Garcia, who called for more. Garcia blocked one of the kicks with his arms and then hit Danielson from behind. Garcia put Danielson in what Excalibur referred to as a Liontamer (looked more like a Sharpshooter) as the show returned from the break. Danielson escaped.
Garcia dropkicked Danielson n the corner. Danielson shrugged it off and slapped Garcia, who came right back with a running knee that led to a two count. Both men hooked hands and traded elbow strikes as they got to their feet. Garcia knocked Danielson down, but he got up and got the better of the exchange with elbow strikes. When Garcia fell down, Garcia threw punches at him.
Danielson grabbed Garcia’s arms, but Garcia flipped him over and threw repeated stomps at hm. Danielson rolled Garcia onto his back and headbutted his chest several times and then stomped him. Danielson caught Garcia in a triangle sleeper. Garcia tried to power Danielson up, but he couldn’t do it. They traded strikes and then Danielson applied the LeBell Lock. Danielson threw elbows at the head of Garcia and then wrenched him back until the referee called for the bell.
Bryan Danielson defeated Daniel Garcia in a best of three falls match in 25:55.
Afterward, Danielson sat in the ring and pointed at Garcia, who then acted like he didn’t know the match was over and slowly tried to get at his opponent. Danielson played to the crowd and then offered a handshake to Garcia, who got to his feet.
Jericho entered the ring and hit Danielson from behind before Garcia could shake his hand. Jericho worked over Danielson until Garcia pulled him off. Jericho stuck his finger in Garcia’s face until it was slapped away. “You better think about this,” Jericho told Garcia before leaving the ring. Garcia ended up leaving the ring without shaking hands with Danielson…
Powell’s POV: An outstanding match. We’re pay-per-view main event worthy. Even before the post match angle, Garcia gained more from this loss than he did from beating Danielson in their previous match. What a terrific first hour thus far. And while it’s a bit lost in the shuffle now, I also enjoyed the Hobbs promo.
Backstage, Tony Schiavone interviewed AEW Tag Team Champions Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee and their Rampage challengers “Private Party” Marq Quen and Isiah Kassidy. Strickland said this was as close as Private Party would get to the tag titles. Kassidy said they would win the titles and take them back to New York City… [C]
Tony Nese and Mark Sterling made their entrance. As they stood on the stage, Jon Moxley came out and knocked Nese down with a shot from behind. Moxley went to the ring and said he was sick of waiting. “Let’s do it right now, let’s get this shit over with,” Moxley said.
CM Punk came out and was held back by Pat Buck, BJ Whitmer, Ace Steele, and security. Claudio Castagnoli and Wheeler Yuta entered the ring and held Moxley back while security led Punk up the entrance ramp. Moxley left the ring and tried to get to Punk, but he was held back…
Chris Jericho, Matt Menard, and Angelo Parker were interviewed by Schiavone. Jericho said he was going to give Daniel Garcia a pass because he had a hell of a match. Jericho said he wanted to talk to Garcia face to face next week to find to find out which side he is on.
Ricky Steamboat showed up on the interview set and said Jericho is the same guy he met years ago. Steamboat said Bryan Danielson is the right guy to mentor Garcia. Jericho said he hasn’t liked Steamboat for fifteen years and told him to stay out of his business. Jericho stormed away with Menard. Steamboat tried to follow, but Parker stopped him and mouthed off to Steamboat, who hit him with a chop…
[Hour Two] Entrances for the Gunn Club vs. Varsity Blonds match took place…
2. “Gunn Club” Austin Gunn and Colten Gunn (w/Billy Gunn) vs. “The Varsity Blonds” Brian Pillman Jr. and Griff Garrison. Austin started the match and knocked Pillman off the apron before going at Garrison. Colten tagged in and hit Garrison with Colt 45 and pinned him.
“Gunn Club” Austin Gunn and Colten Gunn defeated “The Varsity Blonds” Brian Pillman Jr. and Griff Garrison in 0:33.
Billy entered the ring and said he told his sons that’s what they had to do and that’s what gets things done. Billy said he knows he’d been hard on them, but he’s super proud of them. Billy said he’s done a lot of great things, but he put over being able to work with his sons, who hugged him.
Stokely Hathaway walked out and stood on the stage with his arms out. Austin and Colten attacked Billy. “The Acclaimed” Max Cater and Anthony Bowens came out and ran off Austin and Colten before checking on Billy. “They took out their father,” Ross said. “And for those of us who don’t have a father any longer, it’s just, god dang it, it’s pathetic.”
Bowens got a mic. “Scissors me, Daddy,” Bowens said. Billy got up and did the scissors hand deal with Bowens and Caster. They all backed up and then met in the middle of the ring and did it again. Ross said he would never ask Taz to do that…
Powell’s POV: We’ll see what the Hathaway thing turns out to be, but it’s a good move to get the Gunns away from their father, who towers over both of them. That said, I guess we’ll see if Billy ends up being aligned with The Acclaimed throughout their feud with his sons.
A video package showcased Wardlow and FTR beating up Jay Lethal after Sonjay Dutt and Satnam Singh were out the ring. Lethal, Dutt, Singh spoke. Singh told Wardlow to powerbomb him if he’s so strong… [C]
AEW All-Atlantic Champion Pac, Rey Fenix, Penta Oscuro, and Alex Abrahantes stood on the interview set. Pac said Will Ospreay likes to parade around like he’s the best that Britain has ever produced. Pac said there’s unfinished business and he’s looking forward to next week when they face Ospreay and Aussie Open…
Jungle Boy made his entrance for an in-ring promo. He spoke about wearing a shirt on the show and being asked to never wear it again. He said he tried to get his hands on Christian Cage and even tried to hit him with a car, but Cage does nothing. Jungle Boy said he will continue to chase Cage until he gets his hands on him.
“Or… you can man up and face me at All Out,” Jungle Boy said. He said Cage would face him unless the shirt was right and he’s too big of a pussy (he was cut off before he could finish the last word).
Christian Cage made his entrance and spoke from the stage. “My answer is no,” Cage said. He explained that things are getting too out of hand, which includes last week when Luchasaurus headbutted an AEW official and got himself suspended.
Cage entered the ring and claimed that he wants to fix their problems. The crowd chanted bullshit. Cage called him Jack and said he wants him to come back home. Jungle Boy teased hugging Cage, but then tackled him and threw punches at him. Cage got up and Jungle Boy tackled him again and threw more punches.
Cage escaped to ringside. Jungle Boy followed and then Cage kicked his knee. Cage ran Jungle Boy’s head into the barricade. He tried to toss Jungle Boy into the ring steps, but Jungle Boy reversed it and slammed Cage’s head off the steps a few times. Jungle Boy got Cage’s arm in the slot for the ring post in the steps and then stomped it. Security ran out to stop the fight… [C]
Powell’s POV: Jungle Boy took a step back with his promo this week. It was especially awkward when he said “or” and then paused and looked back at the crowd. The rest of the angle was fun, though I’m surprised that they didn’t have Cage elude Jungle Boy until the pay-per-view. The producers, refs, and security are getting quite the workout tonight with all these pull apart brawls.
Backstage, Wardlow and “FTR” Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler stood on the interview set. Wheeler made it clear that Wardlow didn’t ask for their help. He said nobody messes with the Pinnacle. Wardlow said everybody gets powerbombed no matter how big they are. Harwood called for a match with Lethal…
3. Toni Storm vs. KiLynn King. Both entrances were televised. AEW Women’s Champion Thunder Rosa was shown watching the match on a backstage monitory. King got some early offense and sent Storm to ringside. Storm avoided a slide kick. King caught Storm going for a move and then drove her back into the edge of the ring and the barricade. [C]
King got more offense, but Storm came back with a suplex and then her running as slam, which Schiavone says she calls Sweet Cheek Music. Storm DDT’d King, then hit her with a high angle DDT and scored the pin. Rosa was shown clapping backstage. The broadcast team questioned Rosa’s level of enthusiasm…
Toni Storm beat KiLynn King in 6:45.
Powell’s POV: I know we had the lopsided Gunn Club vs. Varsity Blonds match, but I’m not really sure why this match needed to be as competitive as it was. It’s nothing against King. There are other ways to build up King if that was the goal.
A video package aired with Best Friends and The Trustbusters talking about their AEW Trios Title tournament match that will air on Friday’s Rampage. Excalibur also hyped Hook vs. Zack Clayton for the FTW Title, Penelope Ford vs. Athena, and a promo from ROH Champion Claudio Castagnoli speaking and the previously announced Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee vs. Private Party for the AEW Tag Titles for Rampage…
Thunder Rosa vs. Toni Storm for the AEW Women’s Championship was officially announced for AEW All Out…
Dax Harwood vs. Jay Lethal, and CM Punk vs. Jon Moxley for the undisputed AEW World Championship were announced for next week’s AEW Dynamite.
Powell’s POV: Wait, what? Punk vs. Moxley on next week’s show? This has to be an angle and not a sign of desperation via hotshot booking, right? It would be crazy to put that match on television and even more insane to just have Excalibur throw it out there at the end of his marathon stretch of match announcements. If it’s not an angle, what headlines the pay-per-view?
Ring entrances for the main event took place. Ross said he was shocked by the Punk vs. Moxley announcement and claimed they found out at the same time viewers did. The Young Bucks and Brandon Cutler came out last. The Bucks handed a sheet of paper to Justin Roberts, who then read the over the top introduction for the returning Kenny Omega…
4. Kenny Omega and “The Young Bucks” Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson (w/Brandon Cutler) vs. “La Faccion Ingobernable” Andrade, Rush, and Dragon Lee (w/Jose) in an AEW Trios Titles tournament first-round match. Don Callis sat in on commentary. The crowd delivered a loud “welcome back” chant for Omega, who wore a black shirt and a shoulder brace along with his regular gear. Nick and Lee shook hands to start.
Omega checked in early and put Lee on his shoulders and then did a rolling senton and landed on his butt rather than shooting up into the corner. Omega smiled while the broadcast team said you have to knock the rust off no matter who you are.
Omega and Andrade ended up in the ring together. Jose climbed onto the apron, which distracted Omega. Rush entered the ring and took a cheap shot at Omega. Andrade and Rush put the boots to Omega heading into a PIP break. [C]
There was a contrived triple suplex spot with the babyfaces on the offensive side of it. The live crowd loved it. The broadcast team told the story that the Bucks were doing the heavy lifting for Omega. Excalibur hyped Punk vs. Moxley again and said tickets are still available. Taz called t the biggest match in the history of AEW Dynamite. Matt ended up being isolated by the heels and took a triple dropkick while seated in the ring heading into the final break. [C]
The Bucks and Omega took offensive control and hit some of their signature spots on Lee, including a triple superkick. Matt covered him, but Andrade and Rush broke up the pin. Omega tagged in. The Bucks took out Andrade and Rush with dives on the floor. Omega dropped to a knee and did the Terminator hand pound. Omega ran the ropes and was tripped by Lee. The crowd booed.
Omega sent Lee back to the floor. Omega sold knee pain while the broadcast team played up rumors that his left knee is bone on bone. Omega ran the ropes and was tripped by Jose. Rush and Jose held Omega on the barricade. Andrade held the ropes open and then Lee did a suicide dive and knocked Omega off the barricade and into the crowd, which drew holy shit chants. A “this is awesome” chant followed.
Back in the ring, Andrade went to the ropes while Omega was down. Nick cut off Andrade, but Lee performed a hurancanrana that pulled Nick to the floor. Andrade got a near fall on Omega then hit him with a Hammerlock DDT. Matt shoved Rush onto the pin to break it up.
Omega came back with a V-Trigger on Lee. Omega hoisted up Lee for his finisher while the Bucks held off Andrade and Rush. Omega hit the One Winged Angel on Lee and pinned him…
Kenny Omega and “The Young Bucks” Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson defeated Andrade, Rush, and Dragon Lee in 20:50 to advance to the semifinals of the AEW Trios Titles tournament.
The broadcast team hyped Punk vs. Moxley for the AEW Undisputed World Championship while graphics rolled for Rampage matches and then finally for Punk vs. Moxley. Ross emphasized that fans will see the match for free.
In the ring, Rush held up Lee’s arm and then passed him to Andrade, who gave him a Hammerlock DDT. Lee’s mask came off. Omega and the Bucks started to walk back to the ring, but the show went off the air…
Powell’s POV: A good main event with some crazy spots, storytelling, and then a poorly timed post match attack on Lee. The focus should have been on Omega and even the hype for next week’s show, not on Andrade and Rush taking out Lee, who hasn’t done enough in AEW for it to feel important.
The first hour of this show was fantastic. The hype for what seemed like the pay-per-view main event was terrific and I was looking forward to more great verbal exchanges throughout the month. Instead, it looks like they really intend to deliver Punk vs. Moxley next week. We’ll see what they do, but I really don’t understand the logic because I think Punk vs. Moxley is a huge match that deserves a full build, and I can’t think of another Punk or Moxley title defense that will feel bigger with the limited amount of time they have left before All Out. Are they really feeling pressure to deliver big television numbers? If not, I don’t understand this move, though I hope it makes a lot more sense coming out of next week’s show. MJF?