AEW Dynamite results (7/26): Powell’s live review of Orange Cassidy vs. AR Fox for the AEW International Title, Jon Moxley and Claudio Castagnoli vs. Lucha Bros vs. Best Friends, Darby Allin vs. Swerve Strickland, Taya Valkyrie vs. Britt Baker

By Jason Powell, Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

AEW Dynamite (Episode 199)
Albany, New York at MVP Arena
Aired live July 26, 2023 on TBS

[Hour One] They Dynamite opening aired and then pyro shot off on the stage. Excalibur, Taz, and Tony Schiavone were on commentary from their desk. Excalibur ran through the show’s lineup…

A video package aired on the history between Darby Allin and AR Fox. Allin spoke about living in his car and training with Fox, who would go for 13 hours per day. Fox found out that Allin was living in his car and then invited him to stay with him rent free. Allin said that there might not be Darby Allin if it wasn’t for Fox…

Ring announcer Justin Roberts handled the introductions for the AEW International Championship match. The champion and the challenger both came out alone…

1. Orange Cassidy vs. AR Fox for the AEW International Championship. Schiavone said Fox had a lot of momentum coming into the match because he was on a three match winning streak. Fox offered a handshake, which Cassidy accepted in his typical laid back style.

Cassidy performed a Stundog Millionaire. Fox came right back with a Stunner. Fox stuffed Cassidy’s tornado DDT attempt and put him down with a twisting brainbuster that resulted in a near fall. The crowd chanted “this is awesome” heading into a picture-in-picture break. [C]

Both men traded kicks and then threw simultaneous kicks coming out of the break. The followed up with simultaneous neckbreakers. Fox took offensive control with a flip dive moments later. Back in the ring, Fox performed a Swanton Bomb for a near fall.

Cassidy rallied with a tornado DDT. Cassidy followed up with Beach Break for a near fall. Cassidy removed his elbow pad and charged for an Orange Punch, but Fox cut him off and set him on the ropes. Fox pulled Cassidy from the ropes with a move and got a two count. Fox went up top, but Cassidy rolled out of the way.

Fox went to the apron and performed a senton on Cassidy. Fox followed up with a DDT for a two count. Fox went for a 450 splash and rolled through, but he sold a knee injury from earlier. Cassidy caught Fox in the Mousetrap and scored the pin.

Orange Cassidy defeated AR Fox in 13:45 to retain the AEW International Championship.

After the match, Cassidy showed respect to Fox by putting his shades on him and then posed with him. Fox waited until Cassidy turned away and then broke the shades. Fox punched Cassidy out and then left the ring while the broadcast team said that was out of character for him.

Darby Allin ran out and confronted Fox. Allin told Fox that he put his name on that and said it was embarrassing. “What the hell was that?” Allin asked. Fox headed to the back.

Cassidy was selling his neck in the ring and being checked on by the referee when Jon Moxley hit the ring and attacked him. Moxley put Cassidy down with a Death Rider DDT and then left the ring…

Powell’s POV: A nice opening match. I never bought into the threat of Fox winning the championship, but I didn’t see his post match antics coming. It will be interesting to see how Fox works as a heel given his acrobatic style. The Moxley attack seems to suggest that he won’t be a babyface despite the post match handshakes that occurred after the Blood & Guts episode went off the air.

A video package recapped the Blood & Guts match…

Renee Paquette stood on the backstage interview set with Chris Jericho and Don Callis. Paquette noted that Callis asked for the time. Callis said there was no pressure on Jericho to join his family, but he arranged a situation where Jericho could team with Konosuke Takeshita. Jericho said Takeshita is amazing, so he’s willing to give it a try.

Callis then informed Jericho that their opponents would be Sammy Guevara and Daniel Garcia. Jericho was hesitant. Callis recalled Jericho saying he wanted them to fly on their own. Jericho agreed to the match. Callis showed off a painting he had commissioned that showed them shirtless with a smiling Bad News Allen above them…

The broadcast team hyped Pac vs. Gravity, and said Jack Perry would speak after the break… [C]

Powell’s POV: The Callis paintings crack me up. This was perfect for the wormy Callis to get Jericho to agree to team with Takeshita only to then inform him that their opponents would be Guevara and Garcia.

Footage aired of Hook taking a seat on a subway bench with his FTW Title belt next to him. A train drove by and the belt was gone. Another train drove by and then Hook was gone…

Claudio Castagnoli and Wheeler Yuta stood in their locker room. Castagnoli told kids not to play with fire and then said the kids in AEW shouldn’t mess with the Blackpool Combat Club. Castagnoli said that if Pac thought the beating that he gave him was anything but the beginning, he was mistaken.

Jon Moxley entered the picture and said that’s what happens when you try to flex on his friends when he’s not in the building. Moxley said anyone else who thinks they are the coolest cats in the room should stay in their lane. Moxley said the Lucha Brothers and Best Friends were playing with explosives and would get hurt…

Tony Schiavone introduced FTW Champion Jack Perry, who came out to classical music wearing an orange and black “I Beat Hook” t-shirt. Schiavone recalled Perry saying that he would bring home a world title and said he did. Perry said Hook realized after one loss that couldn’t hang with the big boys and hopped on a train to nowhere.

Perry said that when he said he was going to win a championship, he wasn’t thinking about the FTW Title. He said it represents a second rate company filled with scum bags. Perry said that it became the real deal once he put his hands on it. Perry said he’s the greatest wrestler to ever get within 100 feet of it.

Perry addressed Taz and told him that he would run circles around him and his friends from back in the day. Jerry Lynn came out and said that’s enough “Jungle.” Perry said he doesn’t use that name anymore. Lynn said he doesn’t care what Perry calls himself. Lynn said they paved the way for the younger generation in ECW. Lynn said that without ECW, there wouldn’t have been a Jungle Boy. Lynn told Perry to keep running his mouth and he’d get his ass kicked.

Perry told Lynn that he’d like to see who would kick his ass. Lynn dropped his mic and glared at Perry, who then said he wasn’t dressed for a fight. Perry said they would do things on this time. Perry told Lynn to show up next week and they’d see who gets his ass kicked…

Powell’s POV: I’d be surprised if Lynn has any interest in returning to the ring, so I’m not sure where this is going. Never say never, I suppose. I cringed when Schiavone credited Perry with winning a world championship, but Perry handled it really well by claiming that the unrecognized championship became the real deal once he won it.

Backstage, Paquette interviewed Britt Baker, who responded to the promo that Taya Valkyrie cut on her on AEW Collision. Baker said she was excited about their first-time match and said she truly respects Valkyrie. Baker said she can’t think of a better opponent to beat to remind everyone that TBS stands for The Britt Show…

2. Pac vs. Gravity. Both entrances were televised. Pac caught Gravity with an early dropkick through the ropes. Pac went to the floor where Gravity whipped him into the barricade and then powerslammed him. Gravity followed up with a stall splash and then returned to the ring and walked slowly as the show cut to a PIP break. [C] Pac took offensive control and performed an avalanche brainbuster and then applied the Brutalizer and got the submission win.

Pac beat Gravity in roughly 8:15.

Pac didn’t release the hold initially. He eventually did and then jawed at Gravity, who sat in the corner and indicated that he wanted nothing to do with Pac…

Powell’s POV: The top rope brainbuster looked more like a superplex, but I’m not complaining because it’s such a risky move. Gravity got some offense in, but the outcome was never in doubt. I was surprised to see Gravity act so submissive afterward.

In a segment that was listed as being from last Wednesday, Paquette interviewed MJF and Adam Cole on the backstage set. She tried to talk to Cole, but MJF pulled the mic toward him and said FTR’s peak was during The Pinnacle. MJF mocked Dax Harwood by calling him Mr. Clean and Yosemite Sam, then mocked him for repeatedly saying that he loves the business, his wife, and his daughter. MJF said he would punch Harwood so hard that he would spit out CM Punk’s jockstrap.

Cole said that when the tournament started, it was all about winning the gold. Cole said it’s become about friendship since then. Cole said he never though they would become friends. Cole told MJF that he has nothing to worry about when it comes to the AEW World Championship. Cole said MJF isn’t just a friend or a close friend, he’s becoming one of his best friends.

MJF said that win, lose, or draw on Collision, he wants to give Cole a rematch for the the AEW World Championship. Roderick Strong stormed in still wearing his neck brace and shoved MJF. Cole asked MJF for a minute with Strong. Once MJF left, Cole told Strong that he loves him like a brother, but Strong is acting crazy and pushing him away.

Cole said he has other friends and Strong has to trust him if he wants to stay friends. Cole told Strong that he was going to talk to MJF. Strong pulled Cole back, but Cole yelled “Boundaries.” Strong told him that he’s making a big mistake…

Excalibur hyped the remaining matches… [C]

Powell’s POV: The twist and turns keep coming. Based on the latest development, it would seem as though MJF is acting in good faith given that he said he would give Cole a title match even after Cole said he wasn’t asking for one. Plus, Cole has repeatedly told Strong that he has to trust him. Of course, those could be red herrings. Either way, I like that they are keeping things interesting.

A Paquette interview conducted last Wednesday with FTR was shown. Cash Wheeler said he genuinely likes Cole. He said MJF calls himself a generational talent, but he’s really just a generational ass kisser. Wheeler said he likes Cole, but they have to show MJF not to mess with FTR.

[Hour Tw0] Dax Harwood said he also likes Cole and made it clear there’s no love lost between him and MJF. Harwood took issue with them making a mockery of pro wrestling. Harwood said he would beat the shit out of MJF, then apologized because his daughter was watching. He said he would rip MJF’s eyeballs out if he said something about his wife and daughter…

3. Swerve Strickland (w/Prince Nana) vs. Darby Allin (w/Nick Wayne). Both entrances were televised. Both wrestlers ended up at ringside. Darby moved the ring steps and then dove over them when Swerve reversed a whip. Swerve ran up the steps and kicked the side of Allin’s head going into a PIP break. [C]

There was a nice series of back and forth pin attempts. Allin used the Last Supper to get a near fall. Excalibur said that Allin’s previous wins over Strickland in AEW were via the Last Supper. Moments later, Allin speared Swerve through the ropes and then took a rough landing on the floor.

Allin got Swerve back in the ring and wanted to cover him, but Swerve rolled out the other side. Allin went for a cannonball through the ropes, but Swerve hit him with a knee. Back in the ring, Swerve performed a top rope double stomp for a near fall.

Swerve set up Allin for a move from the ropes, but Allin countered into a Stunner. Swerve rolled under the ropes to the apron. Swerve ended up performing a Death Valley Driver on the apron, which drew holy shit chants.

Swerve returned to the ring. Wayne encouraged Allin, who got back in the ring. AR Fox showed up and ran Allin into the ring post while Wayne was running toward Nana. Swerve hit his finisher and scored the pin.

Swerve Strickland defeated Darby Allin in 12:05.

Afterward, Fox attacked Allin. Wayne tried to make the save and threw punches at Swerve until Fox threw Allin’s skateboard at Wayne. Nana held up a Mogul Embassy t-shirt and presented it to Fox, who put it on and then walked to the back with Allin’s skateboard…

Powell’s POV: A wild match. The Fox turn felt logical given what took place earlier, but I can’t say that I’m excited about Mogul Affiliates. They just didn’t do establish the exiting players before adding a new one. On the bright side, Swerve is finally winning singles matches.

Paquette stood in a backstage hallway where Anna Jay, Tay Melo, Matt Menard, and Angelo Parker were standing outside Chris Jericho’s dressing room. Jericho showed up and invited them inside. The Callis painting was on the wall. Jericho asked Melo about the baby. Melo said the baby is great and then asked what’s going on with Jericho.

Parker pulled out his comb and said Jericho gave it to him. He said he wasn’t giving it back yet. Parker said their crew means the world to him and he thinks it means the same to Jericho, but he’s not entirely sure anymore. Jay said Jericho is being selfish. Jay said they’ve spent all this time appreciating him and he doesn’t appreciate them. Jay said they can’t give him 100 percent. Jericho asked if they thought it was easy for him as they all exited the room. Menard said it did and told him he better figure it out fast… [C]

Highlights aired of Billy Gunn leaving his boots in the ring on AEW Collision after he and The Acclaimed lost to House of Black in an AEW Trios Title match…

4. Britt Baker vs. Taya Valkyrie. Both entrances were televised.

Valkyrie hit Baker with a couple of early chops and then clotheslined her before covering her for a two count. Valkyrie caught Baker going for a move and dropped her awkwardly in what looked like a weak Road to Valhalla. Valkyrie hit Baker with a series of elbow strikes heading into a PIP break. [C]

Valkyrie dominated baker during the break. Baker put her down with a ripcord elbow strike. A short time later, Valkyrie caught Baker with a kick. Baker came back with a lousy superkick. Valkyrie tagged her with a knee strike and a clothesline for a two count. Baker went to the ropes and jumped off and then took a northern lights suplex.

Baker threw a better superkick than the previous one. Baker hit the Panama Sunrise and covered Valkyrie for a near fall. Baker took out her glove and played to the crowd. Valkyrie avoided a neckbreaker and then speared Baker. Valkyrie went for a Road to Valhalla, but Baker countered into a takedown and applied the Lockjaw for the win.

Britt Baker beat Taya Valkyrie in 9:50.

Powell’s POV: Hilariously, they cut to a “Book The Women’s Division Better” sign in the crowd right after the match. Ouch. The match was slow paced and had some really rough moments.

A video package promoted a Hikaru Shida vs. Nyla Rose match for AEW Rampage. Rose said Shida had to go through her to get a shot at Toni Storm…

They cut to Jay Lethal, Sonjay Dutt, and Satnam Singh talking about getting a shot at the tag team titles because no one could throw Singh over the top rope. Up next, Prince Nana stood with Brian Cage and Big Bill and said they were taking the titles. Ethan Page and Brother Zay spoke about getting a shot at becoming No. 1 contenders to the tag team titles. Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy spoke…

After all that, a graphic listed a tag team eliminator battle royale for a tag title shot for AEW Rampage. The show will also feature Scorpio Sky vs. Kip Sabian, Matt Taven and Mike Bennett in action, and Hikaru Shida vs. Nyla Rose…

Powell’s POV: I had no idea what the hell the tag team wrestlers were talking about. Perhaps I missed something the broadcast team said, but I think they aired that video before they actually announced the tag team battle royale.

Excalibur ran through the previously announced matches for AEW Collision, and a brief video aired on the ladder match…

The following matches were announced for the 200th edition of AEW Dynamite for next week: Chris Jericho and Konosuke Takeshita vs. Sammy Guevara and Daniel Garcia, Jack Perry meets face to face with Jerry Lynn, and Excalibur said more matches will be announced on Rampage…

Best Friends made their entrance for the main event… [C] The remainder of the entrances took place coming out of the break, and the BCC members came through their usual area…

5. Jon Moxley and Claudio Castagnoli (w/Wheeler Yuta) vs. “Lucha Bros” Rey Fenix and Penta El Zero Meido (w/Alex Abrahantes) vs. “Best Friends” Trent Beretta and Chuck Taylor in a three-way tag match. There was a lot of brawling to start. Moxley was getting the better of Beretta heading into a break. [C]

Late in the match, Castagnoli was on the verge of hitting his finisher on Beretta while Moxley stood by, but they were distracted by Orange Cassidy coming out. Moxley left the ring. Wheeler charged Cassidy, who hit him with the Orange Punch. Moxley and Cassidy fought at ringside. Beretta had Castagnoli pinned, but the referee informed him that Castagnoli wasn’t the legal man. Beretta set up for his finisher on Penta, but Fenix superkicked him. Penta hit hit the Fear Factor on Beretta and pinned him.

“Lucha Bros” Rey Fenix and Penta El Zero Meido “Best Friends” Trent Beretta and Chuck Taylor and “BCC” Jon Moxley and Claudio Castagnoli in 14:10 in a three-way tag team match.

The broadcast team framed this as an upset because BCC were the favorites. The BCC trio attacked Cassidy. The Lucha Bros fought with Best Friends. Cassidy hit Stundog Millionaire on Castagnoli. Excalibur said Tony Khan just informed him that there will be an anything goes three-way with Moxley vs. Beretta vs. Penta on next week’s 200th edition of Dynamite. The brawl continued even though Moxley and Yuta had already made their exit over the barricade. Cassidy hit Castagnoli with the Orange Punch to end the show…

Powell’s POV: My apologies for the lack of details regarding the main event. It was chaotic to the point that I didn’t even try to keep up. That said, it was entertaining for what it was. I would have enjoyed it more had they gone with BCC vs. Lucha Bros straight up, but I guess they wanted Best Friends to be there to take the loss. I wonder if I’ll write something similar about next week’s three-way match?

Overall, this episode had some good in-ring action, but it suffered from the usual pacing issues. I’m just plain annoyed by the announcement of the tag team battle royale for a shot at the tag team titles. It’s becoming a rarity that wrestlers or teams earn title shots without winning oddball tournaments or battle royals in AEW. I will have more to say in my weekly same night audio review for Dot Net Members (including our Patreon patrons). Let me know what you thought of Dynamite by grading it below.

AEW Dynamite Poll: Grade the July 26 edition free polls


Readers Comments (9)

  1. I just tuned in so I missed the match and angle earlier, but I like AR Fox with the Swerve group for sure. Are Big Bill and Brian Cage still in though? I’m watching without audio, so not sure if it was addressed.

  2. Imagine using ECW as the basis for an angle inn 2023. WWE has the bloodline so AEW has the mudline with this Jericho/Callis crap. Booker of the year everyone

  3. Moxley wanted to get out of the silliness of the WWE and now he’s going to feud with the company mascot Pockets. No wonder Lesnar wanted to work with this clown. Did they just sign Taya to job to everyone?

  4. TheGreatestOne July 26, 2023 @ 9:33 pm

    Shit company delivers shit product, news at 11.

    I don’t know who is booking the Saturday show but it’s clearly not Cokeboy, Pockets, the Elite, or any of these other indie shit for brains hacks.

  5. I really like Swerve, they should do a lot more with him.

    It looks like Alex Marvez and The Bella Twins might have a rival for “worst actor of all time” in Tay Melo based on that performance.

  6. Both shows are 2 hours but boy dynamite is not good. Collision just owns it … I don’t think I’m going to bother with dynamite going forward.

    As for the tag titles, juice and jay, the gunns, the Acclaimed, house of black … plenty of challengers. Why not build towards a match with these teams rather than this nonsense again.

  7. I love the fact that whatever the final opinion of Powell is when he does a review is what poll results reflect. Wish people learned to think for themselves.

  8. TheGreatest, its sad that you still come on here just to bash AEW. Weak, pathetic, but also sad. I feel sorry for you, and now, you’re dismissed.

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