AEW Dynamite results (7/5): Powell’s live review of Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland vs. Orange Cassidy and Darby Allin in a blind eliminator tournament match, Britt Baker vs. Rubo Soho in an Owen Hart Cup tournament match, Kenny Omega vs. Wheeler Yuta


By Jason Powell, Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

AEW Dynamite (Episode 196)
Edmonton, Alberta at Rogers Place
Aired live July 5, 2023 on TBS

[Hour One] The Dynamite opening aired and then pyro shot off on the stage. The broadcast team was Excalibur, Taz, and Tony Schiavone, and Dasha Gonzalez was the ring announcer…

Footage aired from “moments ago” of Renee Paquette interviewing Darby Allin and Keith Lee on the interview set. She noted that Allin requested the time. Allin said he knows Lee doesn’t want to team with Swerve Strickland and has been in a funk since they broke up.

Allin told Lee to pull his head out of his ass and take this seriously or he could just sit on the apron and cry about it. Allin said he would see which Lee showed up. After Allin walked away, Lee said, “Ballsy, stupid, but ballsy” and then laughed…

Entrances for their tag match took place. Orange Cassidy and Darby Allin made separate entrances. Swerve Strickland was accompanied onto the stage by Prince Nana, Bishop Kaun, Toa Liona, and Brian Cage. Keith Lee came out last…

1. Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland (w/Prince Nana) vs. Orange Cassidy and Darby Allin in a Blind Eliminator Tag Team Tournament match. Highlights aired prior to the match of some of the history involving Lee and Swerve. Allin and Lee started the match. Lee tossed Allin across the ring, which drew a holy shit chant.

Lee hoisted up Allin, who elbowed his way free and then Cassidy tagged in. Cassidy handed his shades to the referee while a “Freshly Squeezed” chant broke out. Allin did light comedy chops on Lee, who scratched his head. The crowd chanted “holy shit” again. Lee blasted Cassidy with a double chop that knocked him over.

Moments later, Lee caught Allin going for a springboard, but Cassidy drilled Lee with an Orange Punch. Swerve checked in and launched off the back of Lee to hit Cassidy with a kick. Swerve put Allin down and then leapt from the second ropes and hit the back of his head.

Swerve whipped Allin into the corner, causing Allin to tumble over to the floor heading into a picture-in-picture break. [C] There was a tower of doom spot with Lee on bottom while Swerve superplexed Allin. Lee put Cassidy in a bearhug while Swerve and Nana put the ring steps over Allin.

Cassidy ducked a Lee clothesline and then speared Swerve. Cassidy wanted to free Allin, but he spotted Lee and went for an Orange Punch, but Lee blocked it with his hand. Cassidy put Lee in a sleeper while riding his back. Lee walked up the ring steps that Allin was under and returned to the apron With Cassidy on his back.

In the ring, Lee stuffed a few of Cassidy’s moves. Cassidy was finally able to hit the Stundog Millionaire twice. Allin returend and put Lee down with a Code Red. Cassidy went for the cover. Swerve tried to break it up with a 450 splash, but Cassidy moved and Swerve landed on Lee. A “you f—ed up” chant broke out.

Swerve put Allin down with a backbreaker. Swerve hoisted up Cassidy and passed him off to Lee. Swerve took out Lee with a spinning kick that Cassidy ducked. The broadcast team claimed the Swerve kick was intentional. Cassidy leaped off the top rope and put Swerve down with a DDT. Cassidy dove onto Lee on the floor and DDT’d him. Allin used the Last Supper to pin Swerve.

Orange Cassidy and Darby Allin defeated Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee in 11:15 to advance in the Blind Eliminator Tag Team Tournament.

After the match, Lee bumped fists with Allin and then did the nonchalant hand touch with Cassidy. Allin and Cassidy went to the floor and had moments with young fans who dressed up like them…

A video package aired with Allin talking about from inside the Buddy Wayne Training Academy. Allin spoke of training at the facility. Darby spoke about Buddy’s son Nick Wayne being eight when he trained there. Allin recalled being texted that Buddy died. He said he punched the window and the steering wheel, then wondered what Nick would do.

Darby said he made a pact to watch over Nick even though he doesn’t needed it because he’s tough. Allin recalled asking Tony Khan if he’d seen Nick wrestle and said that he needs to be in AEW. Allin said it wasn’t about their friendship, it’s that Nick was that good at age 16. Allin said Nick is 18 now and said he’s ready for this…

Powell’s POV: A good tag team opening match with a hot crowd that was heavily invested. My only complaint is Swerve taking yet another loss. He feels like a guy who should be benefitting from the extra two hours that AEW with Collision, but he just keeps losing. Meanwhile, I like the way they are having Darby set up Nick Wayne’s AEW debut through video packages.

Highlights aired of Jack Perry running away from Hook last week…

Schiavone stood in the parking area while Perry arrived in an SUV. Perry got out of the back and said that what happened last week was ridiculous. He said that he’s not a thug from New York and wanted to do business in the ring. Perry said he was going to Tony Khan’s office to demand an FTW Title match. Hook showed up and attacked Perry, who got back in the SUV and had the driver pull away…

Excalibur hyped upcoming matches and listed Matt Menard and The Butcher as the opponents for MJF and Adam Cole. Excalibur also hyped The Acclaimed in action for after a break… [C] A shot aired from outside the building and then highlights aired of last week’s MJF and Cole segments…

Footage aired of MJF standing outside a gym and said he’d been waiting for Adam Cole to arrive. Cole opened the door and said he’d been doing cardio for an hour. MJF wondered where the t-shirt he gave Cole was, but Cole blew him off and went back inside. MJF started a benchpress set. Cole said he would spot him and looked at his phone instead.

MJF spotted an overweight man and told Cole a corny joke at his expense. Cole told MJF that he couldn’t say things like that anymore and said it wasn’t funny. Cole asked MJF who the man reminded him of. Cole and MJF said “Tony Schiavone” simultaneously. Cole took his turn doing benchpresses while MJF spotted him. MJF was surprised by Cole’s strength…

2. “The Acclaimed” Max Caster, Anthony Bowens, and Billy Gunn vs. The Blade and “The Bollywood Boyz” Gurv and Harv. Caster rapped on his way to the ring. Caster and Bowens performed Scissor Me Timbers on one of the Boyz. The Acclaimed did their scissors bit in the middle of the ring. Blade ran in and hit Caster from behind heading into a PIP break. [C]

Gunn performed a Cobra Clutch slam and then tagged in Caster, who hit the Mic Drop top rope elbow on one of the Boz and scored the pin.

“The Acclaimed” Max Caster, Anthony Bowens, and Billy Gunn defeated The Blade and “The Bollywood Boyz” Gurv and Harv in 6:40.

After the match, The Acclaimed were about to do the scissors schtick when they were interrupted by Harley Cameron on the big screen. Cameron was on the QTV set and said she made a video. She said she’s the most talented musician on the roster.

Billy took the mic and said he had something for her and it only comes in two words. Billy yelled “suck it” along with the crowd…

Powell’s POV: It was nice to see the Bollywood Boyz again, but this was a showcase win for The Acclaimed. They’re just not letting this QTV thing go.

Footage aired from earlier in the day of Eddie Kingston beating Kenta to win the NJPW Strong Openweight Championship in Tokyo (see Chris Vetter’s full reviews of nights one and two of the NJPW Strong Independence Day shows on the main page)…

A video aired with Jon Moxley talking about Eddie Kingston. Moxley said it pisses him off that Kingston spends so much time talking about the younger generation not having respect. Moxley said “we spend time building the next generation.” Moxley said he has a dream of Kingston letting go of the past and embracing the future, but he can’t pretend that dream is a reality. “Eddie, answer your phone,” Moxley concluded…

Excalibur hyped Blood & Guts for the July 19 edition of AEW Dynamite in Boston. Excalibur said Bryan Danielson has a broken arm and said we’d find out his replacement in the match in the coming weeks…

Backstage, Renee Paquette, RJ City, and Matt Hardy stood in front of the blind elimination hopper. Paquette said they drew Matt’s name earlier and were drawing his tournament partner. City announced that it was Jeff. Hardy asked if it was his brother, but City informed him that he’d be teaming with Jeff Jarrett. Matt said he hates Jeff Jarrett… [C]

A brief video focused on Wheeler Yuta talking about ending Kenny Omega for the Blackpool Combat Club…

“Judas” played while Chris Jericho made his entrance. Jericho played to the crowd by telling them how loud they are. He said it’s a little bittersweet for him. The fans interrupted him with a loud “Jericho” chant.

Jericho said he’s had some big losses over the last few months and things haven’t gone exactly the way he’s wanted them to. Jericho said it might be time for him to reevaluate things and make a couple of changes. He said he was saying this because Alberta was the place where he started his career.

Jericho recalled training under Stu Hart. Jericho asked the fans if they were really booing Stu, but Excalibur clarified that they were chanting Stu’s name. Jericho recalled an early time in his career when wrestling was everything to him. He said it reminded him that maybe wrestling still is everything to him. Jericho said it’s time to become a better Chris Jericho, maybe even the best version of Chris Jericho ever.

Don Callis made his entrance and joined Jericho inside the ring while a “F— you, Callis” chant broke out. Callis said it sounded like Jericho needed a change. The fans booed loudly. Callis recalled that it was six years ago to the day that he called Jericho from a hotel room in Tokyo and asked how he’d like to main event the Tokyo Dome with Kenny Omega.

Callis said they changed the course of wrestling history. Callis said that without that match, none of the people would be there and even Jericho might not be there without his idea. Jericho said it was hard to hear Callis over all the boos.

Jericho recalled helping Callis get back into the pro wrestling business in 2015 and said that he helped him get into AEW. Jericho said that Callis might not be there if it wasn’t for him. Callis said that as with most things in their 34-year friendship, they were in agreement.

Callis said he was betrayed by Kenny Omega. Jericho nodded along. Callis spoke about starting a new family because Omega took his away from him. Callis spoke about trust and said when he thinks about trust, he thinks of Jericho.

Callis asked if Jericho is ready to join the Don Callis family. Jericho asked if Callis was seriously asking him to join his faction. Jericho said he doesn’t join factions, he creates them. Jericho played up giving Callis an answer and then said “maybe” before leaving the ring…

Powell’s POV: I’m all for Jericho joining the Callis family or turning babyface. Basically, I’m open to whatever will finally put the Jericho Appreciation Society out of its misery.

A video package aired to promote Saturday’s CM Punk vs. Samoa Joe match. Punk said he’s going to beat Joe for the first time. Punk said that whatever is left of him will continue on and win the tournament. “Tell me when I’m telling lies,” Punk concluded…

Excalibur hyped Punk vs. Joe and then set up a video package to push the Powerhouse Hobbs vs. Ricky Starks semifinal tournament match…

[Hour Two] Footage aired from Collision of Joe slamming Roderick Strong on a chair during Saturday’s AEW Collision…

Paquette was inside a dressing room with Roderick Strong, who wore a neck brace, and AEW trainer Doc Samson. Strong said he felt amazing after Samson spoke of being cautious. Adam Cole showed up and asked Strong how he was feeling. Cole told him to be careful. Strong asked Cole what the deal was with him and MJF. Cole said he made it clear to MJF that he has his boundaries. Cole read an MJF text that asked if he was ready to do a double clothesline…

AEW World Champion Maxwell Jacob Friedman made his entrance. He waited on the stage and then Adam Cole made his entrance and they headed to the ring together…

3. MJF and Adam Cole vs. Matt Menard and The Butcher in a Blind Eliminator Tag Team Tournament match. The Menard and Butcher entrances were not televised. MJF, who wrestled in his Batter Than You BayBay t-shirt, and Cole debated something in the corner and then their opponents attacked them to start the match.

MJF got Cole to grab his hand for leverage behind the referee’s back while he had Menard in an abdominal stretch. Menard came back and then the heel duo had MJF isolated heading into a PIP break. [C]

The isolation of MJF continued coming out of the break until Cole took a hot tag. Cole worked over both heels. MJF called for a double clothesline spot, which distracted Cole long enough for Butcher to hit him from behind. Cole fought off both opponents an then hit a superkick on Menard. MJF called for the double clothesline again. Cole ignored him and hit his Boom knee strike and then pinned Menard…

MJF and Adam Cole beat Matt Menard and The Butcher in 8:40 to advance in the Blind Eliminator Tag Team Tournament.

After the match, MJF called for Cole’s music to stop playing. MJF played to the crowd and asked if there were any devil worshipers in the house. There were a lot of cheers followed by an MJF chant. MJF asked if there were any fans of a man with a super cool, over name. MJF told Cole to do the thing. Cole struck his pose while the fans yelled, “Adam Cole bay bay.”

MJF told Cole he thinks they would have done better had they hit the double clothesline earlier. MJF said that he and Cole should have another bro session and asked the fans if they wanted to see it. A “yes” chant broke out. “Sure, Max, why not?” Cole responded.

Cole tried to leave, but MJF stopped him while saying he had one more thing to tell him. MJF put his title belt down in the corner and yelled happy birthday. Streamers shot off and then MJF lead the crowd in chanting happy birthday.

MJF called for “the birthday stuff.” A group of production crew members walked out dressed in black with a small birthday cake, party hats, and balloons. MJF put one of the hats on his own head, then put one on Cole’s head. Cole tried to talk, but MJF put a party favor in his mouth and said today is all about Cole.

MJF said it was time for the birthday song. MJF sang a note filled happy birthday to Cole, who cut him off and said he gets that he’s a good singer. Cole said he appreciated everything and MJF had done more than enough. MJF said there was one more thing and told Cole to make a wish.

The production guys lit one candle on the cake. Cole blew out the candle. MJF was about to slam his face into the cake when Cole reversed it and slammed MJF’s face in the cake. MJF laughed and said Cole got him. Cole said he sincerely appreciated what MJF did. “Thank you, my friend,” Cole said before leaving the ring. MJF was all smiles…

Powell’s POV: MJF is all over the place these days as a character. I’m fine with that if he can tie it all together or simply reveal that everything he’s doing with Cole now was a ruse from the start. The odd couple routine is working if the live crowd reactions are any indication. I didn’t think their workout video was anything special, so I hope they come up with something better for their next bros weekend…

Britt Baker was interviewed by Paquette on the backstage interview set about her match with Ruby Soho. Baker said she doesn’t care what anyone says about her, but Soho lied when she said she took away everything she cares about. Baker said Soho could never take her pride. Baker said she will always be the face of the division. She said that’s something she actually took from Soho by winning the first Owen Hart Cup tournament. She showed off the belt said she would win it again and was just sorry she would beat Soho in the first round this time… [C]

Backstage, Paquette stood with Jericho, Daniel Garcia, and Sammy Guevara. Garcia told Jericho that they need him. Jericho said they would have to branch out and do it without him eventually. Paquette informed Garcia and Guevara that they are a team in the blind eliminator tournament. Jericho said it was perfect and encouraged them to go out and become tag team champions…

Powell’s POV: The amazing random draw coincidences continue. The lack of creativity shown for most of the pairings is really disappointing.

4. Britt Baker vs. Rubo Soho (w/Toni Storm, Saraya) in an Owen Hart Cup tournament match. Both entrances were televised. Baker went for an early move on Soho that was botched. Soho rolled to ringside and then pulled Baker to the floor with her. Storm and Saraya barked at Baker, and then Soho took advantage of the distraction by laying out Baker heading into a PIP break. [C]

Soho took advantage of her allies causing a distraction and got a two count. Baker came back and rolled Soho into a pin, then went for her Lockjaw finisher. Saraya climbed onto the apron and started messing with the turnbuckle, which distracted the referee. Soho slammed Baker’s head into a title belt that Storm held up in the corner.

Soho went for the Lockjaw, but Storm and Saraya pulled Soho to the floor. Balker went to ringside and took out both women. Baker put Soho in electric chair position. Soho performed a victory roll and then Storm held Soho’s hand from the floor to help her get the win.

Ruby Soho defeated Britt Baker in 10:05 to advance in the Owen Hart Cup tournament.

The heels ran to the stage to celebrate. Storm and Saraya headed to the back. Skye Blue walked out and stared down Soho while Excalibur hyped their semifinal tournament match for next week’s Dynamite. He also hyped Kenny Omega vs. Wheeler Yuta for after the break… [C]

Powell’s POV: Well, at least The Outcasts didn’t use spray paint this week. I’m totally over all of the interference in their matches and how incompetent it makes the referees look and how foolish the babyfaces look for always being shorthanded against them.

Wheeler Yuta made his entrance from the stage. Kenny Omega’s entrance followed. He had some tape on his neck and right shoulder and had a small pyro display while he was on the stage…

5. Kenny Omega vs. Wheeler Yuta. Omega started to do a gun pose in the ring when Yuta attacked him from behind. The referee rewarded the heel by calling for the bell to start the match. Omega quickly regrouped. He eventually went for a rolling senton and clutched his neck. Yuta sent Omega to ringside and hit him with a suicide dive.

Yuta targeted Omega’s injuries by performing a neckbreaker on the floor. Excalibur read through the previously advertised AEW Collision matches and graphics were shown in a lower corner of the screen while the match continued. Yuta remained on the offensive heading into the last PIP break. [C]

As the match continued, Excalibur listed the following matches for Friday’s 100th edition of Rampage: Jeff Jarrett and Matt Hardy vs. Sammy Guevara and Daniel Garcia, and Brian Cage and Big Bill vs. Trent Beretta and Matt Sydal in blind eliminator tournament matches, Hikaru Shida vs. Marina Shafir, and Hangman Page and The Young Bucks vs. Evil Uno, John Silver, and Alex Reynolds.

Excalibur also listed the following matches for next week’s Dynamite: Orange Cassidy and Darby Allin face the winner of Jarrett and Hardy vs. Guevara and Garcia, MJF and Adam Cole face the winners of Cage and Bill vs. Beretta and Sydal in eliminator tournament semifinal matches, Ruby Soho vs. Skye Blue in an Owen Hart Cup tournament semifinal match, Nick Wayne vs. Swerve Strickland, and Chris Jericho vs. Komander.

Yuta continued to control the majority of the offense and picked up a near fall. Yuta went up top, but Omega cut him off and superplexed him and then put his arm over him and got a two count.

Yuta performed a German suplex into a bridge for a near fall. He performed another German suplex and then picked up Omega, who backed him into the corner and threw elbows at him. Yuta threw chops at Omega, who kicked him into the corner.

Omega caught Yuta with a knee to the back and then executed two snap dragon suplexes. Omega wanted a third, but Yuta countered out of it. Omega drilled Yuta with a V-Tigger knee. Omega struggled to hoist up Yuta for his finisher.

Yuta performed a Seat Belt for a two count. Omega came back with a powerbomb and a knee strike for a two count. Omega played to the crowd and did his gun point.

Don Callis walked out and was stopped by security. Meanwhile, Konosuke Takeshita entered the ring and performed a Blue Thunder Bomb on Omega while the referee was at ringside. Yuta picked up a good near fall. Omega caught Yuta on the ropes and performed a One Winged Angel and scored the pin…

Kenny Omega defeated Wheeler Yuta in 16:20.

After the match, Claudio Castagnoli and Takeshita entered the ring and put the boots to Omega. Hangman Page, Matt Jackson, and Nick Jackson ran out with chairs and worked over the heels. The Jacksons hit Castagnoli with a BTE Trigger. Hangman Page wound up to hit Castagnoli with a chair, but Evil Uno, John Silver, and Alex Reynolds entered the ring behind him. Uno pulled the chair away from Page and then the show concluded…

Powell’s POV: A very well worked main event. I’m not crazy about Yuta being so competitive with Omega, but at least they worked in the story of Omega’s preexisting injuries. I also could have done without another spot where the referee looked like an idiot for leaving the ring and joining a mob of security guards in stopping Callis from entering the ring. The Dark Order’s drama with Page does nothing for me, but I know there are some fans who really enjoy their history and their ongoing story.

Overall, this was a middle of the road show. I like the tease that changes are coming with Jericho regardless of whether he joins Callis or not. The MJF and Cole silliness is fun and weird all at the same time. I will have a lot more to say about Dynamite in my weekly same night audio review for Dot Net Members (including our Patreon patrons). Let me know what you thought of the show by grading it below.

AEW Dynamite Poll: Grade the July 5 edition free polls


Readers Comments (2)

  1. I usually get turned off from Dynamite due to seeing the same thing 200 times, or just general stupidity. This episode, other than MJF and Cole, was just boring for me.

  2. The Outcasts are in their bag right now, I like how they’re really being booked right now, they’re making it look like it’s hard to beat them. I was still surprised Ruby got it done against Britt, but I had to figure it was going to be a babyface in Skye Blue against a heel instead of babyface vs. babyface. I do like The Outcasts were interfering in this one to make sure Ruby got the win. I’m picking Skye Blue to win the cup though, but it would be interesting if Ruby won the cup to add more achievements to The Outcasts group.

    I do like the idea of finally breaking JAS up. Put Anna Jay with The Outcasts as a 4th member, they need a younger member added to the group.

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