Powell’s AEW Dynamite Hit List: Bryan Danielson vs. Chris Jericho and Jon Moxley vs. Sammy Guevara in semifinal tournament matches for the vacant AEW World Championship, Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee vs. Penta El Zero Miedo and Rey Fenix for the AEW Tag Titles, Jungle Boy vs. Jay Lethal

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

AEW Dynamite Hits

Bryan Danielson vs. Chris Jericho in a semifinal tournament match: A very good main event that felt bigger and was better than their recent All Out pay-per-view match. Danielson sold the hell the ankle injury. It will be interesting to see if the injury is intended to give him an out for losing next week or to make a win feel all the more impressive. It does feels strange that we heard the great Moxley promo about the AEW World Championship last week and yet we haven’t heard a peep out of Danielson. I hope that changes next week because the lack of mic work has made it tough to really invest in Danielson’s quest to win the championship.

Jon Moxley vs. Sammy Guevara in a semifinal tournament match: The bookend matches carried the show. It was good see Guevara come out alone because he and Tay Melo are better separately than they are as an on-air couple. Unfortunately, it looks like nothing has changed, as Melo and Anna Jay came to help Guevara. This was the more predictable of the two semifinal matches, so the interference was fine in terms of attempting to make the outcome feel less predictable. Guevara and Melo get heat, but it often feels like go away heat.

Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee vs. Penta El Zero Miedo and Rey Fenix for the AEW Tag Titles: This was fun while it lasted. I’m not sure why this match was put out there with minimal build. Did they just want to cram it in before Strickland and Lee drop the tag titles against The Acclaimed next week? I don’t know if that’s the plan, but it sure feels like the the time and location will be right for a tag title change. Speaking of The Acclaimed, as much as I enjoy Max Caster’s raps, it was cool to see him deliver some traditional mic work.

MJF promo: MJF focussed heavily on Jon Moxley again this week. It seems to be foreshadowing Moxley winning the AEW World Championship, though I can’t rule out the possibility that it along with Bryan Danielson’s ankle injury are red herrings. Either way, MJF delivered another good promo before turning things over to his new protection squad (more on that later).

Powerhouse Hobbs vs. Matt DiMartino: A basic squash match win for Hobbs. His post match promo was brief and yet it was enough to show that he’s developed more poise and confidence on the mic. In fact, Hobbs has improved in every area of his game and is starting to feel like a complete package. Ricky Starks running off Hobbs after the match means we’re headed toward a rematch between the two rising stars.

Jungle Boy vs. Jay Lethal: A solid win for Jungle Boy and the usual good match from Lethal. On a side note, Sonjay Dutt’s mic work and heel antics are way too over the the top. It feels like he’s going for laughs more than heat.

AEW Dynamite Misses

Toni Storm and Athena vs. Britt Baker and Serena Deeb: As if Storm winning the interim championship didn’t feel flat enough, she took the pin in this match. Granted, the heels used a chair in the latest example of the AEW referees being made to look incompetent, but it’s starting to feel like they should just put the belt back on Baker since she’s the only AEW Women’s Champion who has been booked well. The post match angle involving Jamie Hayter was fine, though it didn’t really factor into the build for next week’s four-way for the interim championship.

Stokely Hathaway and The Firm: It was encouraging to see Hathaway finally get a chance to show off his mic skills. But even as someone who has often called for more promo time on AEW television, it felt like they took it too far by going right from a long MJF promo into a long Hathaway promo. There’s no natural chemistry between The Firm members. I’m happy that Hathaway was given a chance to introduce them all, but I didn’t come out of this feeling much better about the faction that’s apparently only a faction when MJF needs them to be.

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Readers Comments (3)

  1. The only interesting thing about Hathaway’s promo was W Morrissey’s reaction to the hug.

  2. >>It was good see Guevara come out alone because he and Tay Melo are better separately than they are as an on-air couple.<<

    YES YES AND YES. Unfortunately, Melo won't let that happen much. Like Brandi, she needs to be in the spotlight, and Melo got with Sammy TO BE in the spotlight. And yes, that's go-away heat they get for sure.

    Storm didn't lose clean, and I think this may be one of those old-school type storylines where the champ loses a couple of times but wins when the belt is on the line.

    As for Mox and MJF's interactions, I think this could also work if Bryan wins the belt, and then Mox and MJF go after each other to see who gets the next shot. A Mox-MJF feud would be fun.

  3. It was a strong show and a mediocre promo from MJF is better than most.

    But I have to say, I’ve been very disapppinted by the the Firm stable on retainer thing.

    I thought this was going to be MJF’s nWo. I thought he was going to be surrounded by them and he was going to elevate these guys and they were going to beat people up and take over.

    But they’re part time together? And their aspirations … Morrissey wants to do whatever he wants? The ROH Pure title, the All Atlantic title. I mean okay.

    I think it’s a big missed opportunity the way this is being presented so far.

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