By Jake Barnett, ProWrestling.net Co-Senior Staffer (@barnettjake)
AEW Dynamite (Episode 151)
Cleveland, Ohio at Wolstein Center
Aired live August 24, 2022 on TBS
[Hour One] Jim Ross, Excalibur, Taz, and Tony Schiavone opened the show on commentary. Chris Jericho made his entrance to open the show. The announce team plugged Death Triangle vs. Will Ospreay and Aussie Open later in the show. Jericho told the crowd they sound loud tonight, and welcomed them to Dynamite. He said there was an issue last week between himself and one of his favorite members of the JAS. Jericho welcomed Daniel Garcia, who we called his protege and a future World Champion.
Garcia walked out wearing a “Buffalo Kids” T-Shirt, and had a conflicted look on his face. A “You’re a Wrestler” chant broke out. Jericho said he was trying to be civil, and then told the crowd to please shut up. He told Garcia not to listen to them, and they don’t understand the connection they have. Jericho said he had a classic match last week with Bryan Danielson, and in his opinion he slayed the dragon. He called out Garcia for putting his hands on him after the match, and said he wanted to put the issue away quickly and have Garcia apologize to him.
The crowd chanted “No!” and Garcia told Jericho that he knew how special the moment was for him. He called Bryan Danielson his hero, and that people are calling it the greatest Dynamite match in history, and said he hung with the man people call “Best in the World” for 30 minutes. Garcia said he dreamt of having matches like that when he was a kid, and he got to have it last week. He said he hoped that kids watched that match last week and felt the same way he felt. Garcia then said when Bryan gave him his hand in respect, he wanted to have that moment, and Jericho ruined it for him.
Jericho replied that he was sorry Garcia felt that way. He called him the world’s greatest technical Sports Entertainer, and there would be plenty of those moments in his future. He demanded Garcia say that he was a Sports Entertainer, but he paused. Both men were then interrupted by the music of Bryan Danielson. He headed to the ring with a microphone.
Bryan addressed Garcia and said Jericho was bullying him into calling himself a Sports Entertainer. Bryan said he agreed with the crowd that Garcia was a wrestler, which caused him to be conflicted. Jericho again demanded that Garcia say he’s a Sports Entertainer. Garcia said he was torn between his mentor and his hero, and told Jericho to leave him alone. Jericho reached and grabbed Garcia’s arm, and he shoved him away and onto his ass. Garcia was conflicted again as Danielson chuckled and smiled.
Jericho got to his feet, and Danielson told him that he’s not the biggest fan of Sports Entertainment, but that was pretty entertaining. After he paced for a second, Jericho said he was tired of Jericho being the greatest wrestler. Jericho called himself the greatest of all time, and said he is the King of reinvention and the last survivor of Stu Hart’s dungeon. He called himself “Lionheart” Chris Jericho, and said he remembers every hold Stu Hart ever taught him, and said he knows more about wrestling than Danielson ever will.
Bryan laid into Jericho. He asked if Stu and Owen Hart would consider him a better wrestler than American Dragon Bryan Danielson. He then asked if they had a match right here in Cleveland, who would be the better wrestler? Jericho said he could have his match….at All Out. He then told Bryan to watch his back, because you never know when he’ll strike.
Jake Hager then appeared from behind and blindsided Danielson. Jericho and Hager stood over Danielson to end the segment…
The announce team plugged Ricky Starks, Britt Baker, Death Triangle vs. Ospreay and Aussie Open, and Harwood vs. Lethal is next.
In the arena, Dax Harwood made his ring entrance, followed by Jay Lethal. The seconds returned to the back so the match would be one on one…
1. Jay Lethal vs. Dax Harwood: Both men traded hard chops to start the match. Harwood landed a back body drop as red welts formed on his chest. Lethal fired back with a Russian Leg Sweep from the second rope…[c]
My Take: A good opening segment from Garcia, Jericho, and Danielson. The biggest outcomes are that Garcia comes across a lot more sympathetic, and they booked the All Out Match. The question becomes which path Garcia takes. Hopefully they find ways to effectively tease both possibilities.
Harwood landed a series of German Suplexes as the show returned. Lethal recovered and sent Dax to the floor, and then landed a suicide dive through the ropes. He quickly brought the action back into the ring and applied a Figure Four, but Harwood reached the ropes. Dax turned the tables and went for a sharpshooter, but Lethal avoided it. Hardwood managed to land a Liger Bomb a moment later for a close near fall.
Lethal attempted a dragon screw, but Harwood held himself up and went for a pinfall for two. Harwood managed to apply a Sharpshooter, but Sonjay Dutt reappeared and went on the apron. He and Harwood collided, and Lethal rolled him up for a near fall. They traded some chops, and then both men made roll up attempts. Lethal managed to pull up the trunks on the final attempt and got the win.
Jay Lethal defeated Dax Harwood at 12:51
After the match, Dutt said they announced the Trios match for All Out, but never said who Jay Lethal would be tagging with. They announced that Lethal would tag with two close personal friends, and a video played for the “Motor City Machine Guns” Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin. Lethal and MCMG will face FTR and Wardlow at All Out…[c]
My Take: A strong match from Lethal and Harwood, but I can’t say I really cared much about the outcome either way, as the match had no stakes. The Motor City Machine Guns announcement was a welcome one, as I couldn’t imagine Dutt and Satnam Singh having an AEW PPV match.
Tony Schiavone had an interview backstage with AEW Women’s Champion Thunder Rosa, who was visibly shaken and crying. She said that she had to step down as AEW Women’s World Champion due to injury, and there would be an interim champion crowned at All Out. She wished her friend Toni Storm luck and said she would be back with an even bigger chip on her shoulder…
Colten Gunn made his entrance in the arena with Austin Gunn. Stokely Hathaway was shown observing from the crowd. Billy Gunn made his entrance with The Acclaimed to their music. Caster ripped them for being ass boys and said Billy should have used a condom. Anthony Bowens scissored Daddy Ass.
2. Colten Gunn (w/Austin Gunn) vs. Billy Gunn (w/Max Caster, Anthony Bowens): Loud “Who’s your Daddy” chants broke out. Colten ran away to start the match, but Billy was able to knock him down with a shoulder block eventually. Colten rolled to the floor while Billy took a breather in the corner…[c]
My Take: I assume the KiLynn King vs. Britt Baker match will determine the other half of the Interim Championship Match later in the show.
Colten landed a hard right hand and stomped on Billy in the corner. The announce team blew up my previous prediction and said that Toni Storm vs. Britt Baker vs. Jamie Hayter vs. Hikaru Shida was the match for All Out. Billy knocked down Colten and stomped the crap out of him in the corner. He then pulled Austin to his feet. Hathaway hit Max Caster with a boombox, and Austin threw Bowens into the ring steps. Colten used the distraction to land a low blow and Colt 45 for the win.
Colten Gunn defeated Billy Gunn at 6:07
After the match, Stokely handed them both business cards and Stokely clapped. Colten and Austin beat down Billy and The Acclaimed, but Swerve and Keith Lee made their entrance and The Gunn’s ran off. The Acclaimed stood up and Keith Lee helped Billy get to his feet.
Backstage, Death Triangle stood next to Will Ospreay and “Aussie Open” Kyle Fletcher and Mark Davis. Ospreay said “long time no see” to Pac, but he and his crew had one mission, and that was more gold for the United Empire. Pac said they had been waiting a long time for this, and they weren’t going to kill them, they were going to murder them…
My Take: I’m not entirely sure what the distinction was meant to be there. If someone tells me they aren’t going to kill me, they are going murder me, the last look on my face will be one of confusion. I cannot be bothered to care about the drama inside the Gunn family, but I am often Sports Entertained by The Acclaimed.
Britt Baker made her entrance in the arena, followed by KiLynn King…
3. KiLynn King vs. Britt Baker: Baker got an early advantage, but King quickly got back into the match with a missile dropkick. Baker replied with some forearm shots in the corner. King had the crowd firmly behind her, as Cleveland hates Britt Baker’s Pittsburgh Steelers. Baker went outside and pulled King into the ring post under the bottom rope. She then used her foot to grind against her face. King escaped and landed a German Suplex. She then pulled her in for a Full Nelson slam of sorts for a near fall.
Baker fired back with a thrust kick, followed by a second one on her knees. She then landed a stomp to set up the LockJaw. She then applied the hold and forced King to submit.
Britt Baker defeated KiLynn King at 3:44
After the match, Baker said it was quite a shame about Thunder Rosa. She reminded the crowd that she wrestled her entire title reign with a broken wrist because that’s what a champion does. She then told Toni Storm that she’d finally be on a PPV where someone gives a damn because she’d be in the ring with her.
Toni Storm walked to the ring, but was blindsided by Jamie Hayter. Baker and Hayter took shots at Storm until Hikaru Shida cleared them from the ring with her kendo stick…
Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee were backstage with The Acclaimed. They hastily booked a match for the AEW Tag Team Championship at All Out.
[Hour Two] Anthony Bowens called them the people’s champions, and said that everyone loved The Acclaimed. Swerve responded “Not anymore”…
My Take: Baker made King look pretty bad by showboating at the end of the match. She then quickly degraded her competition after the match, making any eventual win at the PPV less valuable. I don’t understand this business strategy.
In the arena, Jon Moxley made his entrance for the Title Unification Match. He was followed by CM Punk. Justin Roberts made ring introductions…
4. CM Punk vs. Jon Moxley in an AEW World Championship Unification Match: Both men stared down to start the match, and then tied up. Moxley backed Punk into the corner and laid into him with a flurry of punches. Moxley talked trash, and then Punk slowly got up and returned fire. He landed a barrage of knees.
Moxley landed a headbutt over the referee, and Punk replied with a kick, but clutched his foot in pain. The ref called for a doctor, but Moxley landed a huge lariat. He then wrenched on Punk’s foot, and landed two Death Riders and got the win. Moxley flipped the bird as the three count was made.
Jon Moxley defeated CM Punk at 3:01 to become Undisputed AEW World Champion
After the match, the announce team said Punk got dominated, and Taz said he came back too soon. Moxley celebrated with both titles as Punk was checked on by physicians. Punk’s friend and AEW coach Ace Steel checked on him in the ring. Moxley exited through the crowd in celebration…
Backstage, Tony Schiavone was with Christian Cage. He had his arm in a brace. Cage said last week was his last opportunity to apologize for the personal things he said about him, and for losing them the AEW Tag Team Championship. He then said he said personal things too, but it was to make him the best version of himself, and that he was too stupid to realize it. Christian said he will never be as smart as him, and then he tried to maim him on top of it. He called himself special, and an anomaly, and told Jungle Boy that all out he will find out he was never in his league. Cage then officially accepted the challenge…
Back in the arena, Ricky Starks made his entrance. Starks said he hasn’t been in the best mood because he’s hurt and he’s pissed off. He said he’s been dealing with losing the FTW Title, the end of Team Taz, and Powerhouse Hobbs stabbing him in the back. Starks said last year when he broke his neck, Hobbs checked on him mentally and physically, and wanted him to make a big comeback. He said Hobbs wanted him to do well, but he didn’t want him to do better than him.
Starks said he plucked him from obscurity when he was playing Britt Baker’s security guard in Jacksonville. He tried to make the spotlight big enough for both of them, but he had the nerve to try to take it away from him again by hitting him in the neck. Starks said he considered Hobbs a friend, but now he calls him a low down slimeball snake, and where he’s from they cut the head off of snakes. He then told Hobbs to bring his five dollar ass to All Out, and face him one on one…
A replay of the Punk vs. Moxley match conclusion was shown, and we’ll hear from Moxley and have the main event up soon…[c]
My Take: AEW went with a shockingly fast match between Punk and Moxley. Either there was legitimate worry that Punk had returned too soon, or some political maneuverings forced Tony Khan to make some executive decisions about who was going to represent his brand. Either way, this throws the Main Event for All Out into serious flux, and there’s a lot of potential options. Both Cage and Ricky Starks delivered serviceable promos, but I can’t see it was either one’s finest work.
Moxley said “Oh, was that now hot that was supposed to go?” He said the people who kept calling him interim champion were the same people that always write him off. He called himself the guy in this industry, and there is no one that can imitate what he does. Moxley said he’s tired of people asking when it was going to be their time, because his time is right goddamn now…
The announce team ran down several matches upcoming for Rampage, Dynamite, and the All Out PPV. The Casino Ladder Match was announced, as well as confirmation of all the matches that have been announced tonight…
A video package that covered the return of Kenny Omega. We then got the entrance of Will Ospreay and Aussie Open for the main event.
My Take: A solid mission statement promo from Moxley. Short and to the point. It does feel odd that he’s going to have one week to promote a World Title Match for All Out. Seems like they can’t really go back to Punk, so who is it? MJF? Do you really want to give that away with a one week build?
Death Triangle made their entrance as the show returned for the main event…
5. “Death Triangle” Fenix, Pac, Penta Oscuro (w/Alex Abrahantes) vs. Will Ospreay and “Aussie Open” Kyle Fletcher and Mark Davis in an AEW Trios Tournament Quarterfinal: Fenix and Ospreay traded flippy reversals for the first 30 seconds of the match and fired up the crowd. All six men ended up in the ring and brawled about. Ospreay and Aussie Open were cleared from the ring, and then Death Triangle performed synchronized suicide dives onto all three of them.
Back in the ring, Fenix isolated Ospreay and landed some chops. Death Triangle continue to isolate him in their corner heading into a break…[c]
Rey Fenix took his turn being cut off and isolated as the show returned. Mark Davis took control of the match and landed a running senton and some heavy elbow strikes from a mounted position. Best Friends were shown in the crowd as they watched the match.
Penta got a hot tag after a nifty Fenix reversal and landed a series of strikes and kicks on Ospreay and Aussie Open. Davis managed to recover and landed a huge lariat on Penta when his attention was pulled in another direction for a near fall. Fenix broke up the pinfall, but was then cleared from the ring…[c]
Penta caught Ospreay with a boot in the corner. He then landed a superkick while Ospreay did a handstand in the corner. Pac tagged in and landed a German Suplex Throw on Ospreay. He then held up Ospreay for a Penalty Kick from Fenix, and then pulled him in for another German. Fletcher and Davis pulled Pac out of the ring, and then brawled with Fenix and Penta. They traded kicks, and then Pac and Ospreay landed Poisoned Rana’s that took out all four men in the ring.
After a series of strikes and reversals, Ospreay landed an OsCutter. Both men were down for a seven count, and then Ospreay was the first man to his feet. Both men ascended the ropes, and Pac landed an avalanche brainbuster from the top in a nasty looking spot. Aussie Opened continued to brawl with Penta and Fenix on the floor…[c]
Pac and Ospreay continued to brawl on the ropes. Pac knocked him back into the ring, and then set up for the Black Arrow from the top. Ospreay crotched him on the top rope, and the brawl on the turnbuckle continued. Fenix got involved and landed a few kicks. He then attempted a top rope head scissors, but Ospreay landed on his feet. Fenix replied with a cutter, and then tagged in Penta. He splashed Davis on the floor, and then Fenix dove on Fletcher.
Pac got back up on the top rope and went for black arrow, but Ospreay got the knees up and covered for a near fall. Ospreay then went for Stormbreaker, but Pac reversed into a pinfall for a close near fall. Fenix tagged in, and Fletcher took him out of the air. Aussie Open were cleared from the ring, where Pac jumped off the ring post with a moonsault to take them out.
A man was shown with a box on his head, which the announce team thought was Kip Sabian. Pac pulled the box off the head of the man, who was not in fact Kip Sabian. Pac was surprised by Sabian from behind. Sabian suplexed Pac onto the floor. Ospreay and Aussie Open singled out Fenix. They landed an elevated OsCutter using an assist from Fletcher and Davis and covered for the win.
Will Ospreay and “Aussie Open” Kyle Fletcher and Mark Davis defeated “Death Triangle” Pac, Rey Fenix, and Penta Oscuro at 24:51 to advance to the semifinals of the AEW Trios Titles tournament
After the match, Kenny Omega’s music hit and he walked out with The Young Bucks. They had a stare down with Ospreay and Aussie Open to close the show. Kenny’s knee and shoulder were heavily taped. Don Callis had to physically prevent Omega from going after Ospreay.
Claudio Castagnoli vs. Dustin Rhodes was advertised again for Rampage. Jake Hager vs. Bryan Danielson will happen next week on Dynamite…
My Take: That wasn’t the finish I was expecting, but it was a very good spotfest style match if you enjoy that style. Ospreay, Fenix, and Pac were the standout performers, and I hope we see more of Pac and Fenix in singles competition on TV soon. The return of Kip Sabian set up the victory, and he got something of a babyface chant from the crowd after executing his attack. I’m not sure that’s what they were going for, but it happened. Overall, this was a noteworthy episode of Dynamite, and there was far more that I liked than things that didn’t work for me. Check back later for Jason Powell’s same night audio review for Dot Net Members.