AEW Dynamite results (12/20): Powell’s live review of Jon Moxley vs. Jay White, Swerve Strickland vs. Rush, and Mark Briscoe vs. Jay Lethal in Continental Classic matches


By Jason Powell, Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

AEW Dynamite (Episode 220)
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma at Paycom Center
Aired live December 20, 2023 on TBS

[Hour One] Swerve Strickland made his entrance with Prince Nana, Toa Liona, Bishop Kaun, and Brian Cage. The broadcast team of Excalibur, Taz, and Tony Schiavone checked in while Swerve headed to the ring and the others went backstage. The broadcast team ran through the Continental Classic leaderboards and then Rush made his entrance with Dralistico, Jose, and Preston Vance. Rush went to the ring while his sidekicks went backstage…

1. Swerve Strickland vs. Rush in a Continental Classic tournament gold league match. Swerve had his right shoulder taped. There were “Whose House” chants for Swerve with lighter chants for Rush that followed. Both men ended up at ringside. Rush dropkicked Swerve into the barricade heading into a picture-in-picture break. [C]

Late in the match, Swerve performed a 450 splash for the top rope and went for the pin, but Rush kicked out at one and then popped right up. Swerve put him down again with a brainbuster for a two count and then caught him with a kick to the back of the head. Swerve followed up with a top rope double stomp and scored the clean pin…

Swerve Strickland defeated Rush in 14:50 to earn three points in the Continental Classic tournament.

After the match, a graphic listed that if Jon Moxley beats Jay White, then Moxley and Swerve will meet in the semifinals. If White beats Moxley, then Moxley, Swerve, and White will finish in a three-way tie. As this was being discussed by the broadcast team members, the screen went black aside from the Live, AEW, and TBS logos for a few seconds…

Powell’s POV: A good match with a clean and decisive win for Swerve. The last time the screen went black during Dynamite it came off like it was intentional due to The Devil’s crew. I don’t think that’s what they were going for this time (or probably last time).

A video package recapped the Continental Classic blue league matches from Saturday’s AEW Collision… [C]

Chris Jericho stood on the backstage interview set with a microphone in his hand. He announced that Kenny Omega was hospitalized due to diverticulitis and will be out of AEW indefinitely. Jericho said they don’t know how long that will be, but it affects the Golden Jets opportunity to become AEW Tag Team Champions at the Worlds End pay-per-view.

Jericho said that while they decide what to do, the most important thing is Omega’s health. Jericho said everyone is pulling for Omega. The fans chanted “Kenny.” Jericho said he knew the fans were going to do that. He said he would be waiting for Omega once he returns and the Golden Jets will resume. Jericho delivered Omega’s closing line and said it’s only for now. “We’re pulling for you, Kenny, we’ll see you soon”…

Powell’s POV: Well done. I can’t stand when wrestlers disappear from television without explanation due to injuries or health issues that could be easily addressed like this was. Once again, here’s wishing Omega the very best in his recovery.

Ring announcer Justin Roberts delivered the introductions for the Mark Briscoe vs. Jay Lethal match…

2. Mark Briscoe vs. Jay Lethal in a Continental Classic tournament gold league match. The screen went black again aside from the logos for a few seconds as the match got underway. Lethal hit an early suicide dive and then went back to the apron and strutted. Lethal went for another suicide dive, but Briscoe blocked it and suplexed him at ringside. Briscoe went to the apron and dropped a Cactus Jack elbow heading into a PIP break. [C]

Lethal went up top for an elbow drop. Briscoe cut him off on the ropes. Lethal knocked Briscoe down. Lethal went to the other corner, but Briscoe punched him and he fell to ringside. Briscoe set up a chair inside the ring, ran the ropes, and then launched off the chair into a flip dive on the floor.

Back inside the ring, Lethal came back and put Briscoe in a Torture Rack before performing a rolling senton. Lethal followed up with a top rope elbow drop for a near fall. Lethal went for the Lethal Injection, but Briscoe went him over his back so that Lethal landed on his feet. Briscoe performed a fisherman’s buster suplex for a near fall. A “this is awesome” chant broke out.

Briscoe performed a rolling senton and went for Froggy Bow, but Lethal put his knees up. Lethal went for the Lethal Injection, but Briscoe followed him into the ropes. Lethal put Briscoe down with a piledriver and covered him for a near fall. Lethal showed frustration.

Mark went for the Jay Driller, but Jay blocked it. Jay went for a Lethal Injection, but Mark countered into a Burning Hammer. Mark hit the Jay Driller and then pinned Lethal. After the match, Briscoe and Lethal shook hands while kneeling in the ring…

Mark Briscoe defeated Jay Lethal in 13:55 to earn three points in the Continental Classic tournament.

Powell’s POV: A fun match. It’s a testament to both men that they both entered the match with zero points in the tournament and yet still had the live crowd fully invested.

Footage aired of MJF being inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. MJF said he’s accomplished a lot in his young career, but this one might hit home the most. He said we’re still dealing with antisemitism and that’s why he feels it’s so important for him to be involved in these things and speaking pridefully about being Jewish… [C]

Powell’s POV: I’m happy that AEW found time to air that footage. With antisemitism inexplicably on the rise, it’s great that MJF uses his platform to combat it while also serving as a role model for young Jewish people.

A Wardlow video package aired. He spoke about how the clock is ticking on MJF. Wardlow said the world will see him broken. He said the payment for MJF’s sins can’t be delayed any longer. Wardlow said he will be the one to bring the devil to his knees…

Samoa Joe made his entrance and was well received by the “Joe” chanting live crowd. Joe spoke about the victims of The Devil character. Joe noted that MJF was found lying gingerly on the ground backstage. Joe called out MJF and said he had a few questions for him.

AEW World Champion MJF made his entrance. Once in the ring, MJF asked if Joe was accusing him of being the man behind The Devil. “Correct,” Joe said. MJF recalled Joe stating that he would protect him heading into their main event at the Worlds End pay-per-view.

MJF recalled Joe labeling him his property and said it’s apparent that Joe cares as much about his property as he does his own diet. MJF said he doesn’t recall The Devil ever laying a finger on Joe. MJF said he doesn’t like or trust Joe, and then asked why he was waiting to face Joe at Worlds End when he could end his world now.

MJF removed his scarf, jacket, and title belts before shoving Joe. Suddenly, a group of masked men dressed in black hit the ring and were quickly tossed to ringside by MJF and Joe. Devil Mask men henchmen hopped the barricade and surrounded the ring.

The screen went black (intentionally this time) and then The Devil mask logo appeared on the big screen. A caption read: “Where can you go? Who can you trust? Next week, will you accept a challenge for your ROH World Tag Team Championship? Are you a hero, Max?”

MJF assumed Joe would say no, but he said he made a promise to Adam Cole to defend the ROH Tag Titles until he returns. “We accept,” Joe barked. “It seems the best way to handle a devil is with our bare hands and next week we beat his boys’ asses.” Joe stormed to the back while his entrance music played and then MJF followed him…

Powell’s POV: I still think it’s risky to have the henchmen wrestle an actual match. So will we get an actual match this time or will it be another angle? Is it as simple as Joe being laid out this time since MJF was laid out the last time they teased a match involving the henchmen?

Renee Paquette stood backstage with Orange Cassidy, Kris Statlander, Rocky Romero, and Trent Beretta. Romero noted that he lost the CMLL Middleweight Championship and said he wants some gold.

[Hour Two] Cassidy said he understood and would see Romero on Friday. Paquette said Cassidy would defend the AEW International Championship on Rampage. Romero looked surprised while the others congratulated him…

Toni Storm and Luther made their black and white entrance. Storm joined the broadcast team at their desk on the stage and then entrances for the No. 1 contenders match took place…

3. Riho vs. Saraya for a shot at the AEW Women’s Championship at Worlds End. Ruby Soho was shown watching the match on a backstage monitor. Both wrestlers ended up at ringside. Saraya picked up Riho and swung her head into the barricade twice. Saraya returned to the ring and took a bow heading into a PIP break. [C]

Riho battled back and then went to the rope and jumped into a kick from Saraya, who covered her for a near fall. Riho caught Saraya in an inside cradle for a two count. Riho executed a Northern Lights Suplex for another near fall. Riho performed a top rope double stomp and then drilled Saraya with a meteora before scoring the pin…

Riho defeated Saraya in roughly 6:30 to earn an AEW Women’s Championship match at the Worlds End pay-per-view.

After the match, Luther carried Storm to ringside. Storm entered the ring and looked at Riho through opera glasses. Riho threw punches at Storm and then hit her with a 619. Mariah May entered the ring and hit Riho with the AEW Women’s Championship belt. Storm rolled out of the ring while Taz said it seemed like she didn’t accept what May did…

Powell’s POV: It seemed pretty obvious that Riho would get the win given the push they’ve been giving her lately. And that’s not a negative in this case. I like that it feels like her character got some wins and then won a No. 1 contenders match as opposed to winning a battle royal or a random four-way to earn her title shot.

Tony Schiavone stood on the stage and said he had a prepared statement from Christian Cage. Long story short, Cage took Nick Wayne on vacation. Cage will make his return on Saturday’s AEW Collision and respond to Adam Copeland’s challenge to a No DQ match at AEW Worlds End…

Excalibur hyped the two remaining matches… [C]

A graphic touted Christian Cage’s return on AEW Collision. Excalibur noted that there was “some sort of disturbance.” They cut backstage where MJF and Samoa Joe bickered. MJF walked away and found a black mask on the ground in front of the Mogul Embassy dressing room.

MJF knocked on the door. Prince Nana answered the door. MJF grabbed him by the collar and questioned him about the mask. Swerve Strickland exited the room and told MJF to be careful with the way he handles “my property.”

Swerve said it seems like MJF has been ducking him since he arrived in AEW. MJF said he and Swerve did long car rides on the road together when they were trying to make names for themselves on the independent scene. MJF said he’s proud of Swerve.

MJF said he hasn’t been ducking Swerve. “There are levels to this shit, and you’re just not on mine,” MJF said. Swerve said MJF was the best chauffeur he ever had on when they were on the indies. Swerve recalled MJF’s issues with William Regal and called him the whiney little bitch champion that he is today.

Swerve said there are levels. He said MJF does tryouts whereas he signs contracts. Swerve told MJF to be careful how he talks to him. He said the last person who wasn’t careful was hung by a chain in front of 13,000 people.

MJF told him that was a solid monologue. MJF said he’s the world champion and told Swerve to watch his mouth. He also took a jab at him for wearing a Flavor Flav grill. MJF said Swerve wants to be AEW World Champion and mocked him for begging for it in every interview.

MJF asked Swerve if he’s The Devil. MJF mentioned Swerve’s “whose house” catchphrase. MJF said he’s the big bad wolf and will blow Swerve’s house down if he feels like it. MJF said he would break both of his arms and then he can swerve while he drives.

Swerve told MJF if he keeps waving his championship in front of his face, then he would be the one to bring him down. Nana opened the dressing room door and laughed while standing with Toa Liona, Bishop Kaun, and Brian Cage. Samoa Joe showed up and said that he and MJF had business elsewhere. Swerve told him to go handle it. Nana called Swerve boss and said that he “forgot to put you on about Collision last week”…

Powell’s POV: There’s a money match. Do they go to it early next year? Does Swerve win the Continental Classic and move in a different direction as the Triple Crown Champion? Heck, does he win the tournament and the titles and still challenge MJF to create a Grand Slam Champion?

4. Roderick Strong (w/Matt Taven, Mike Bennett) vs. Komander (w/Alex Abrahantes). Strong placed Komander in a seated position on the top rope. Komander used his legs to pull Strong to the floor heading into a PIP break. [C]

Komander performed a Phoenix Splash for a near fall. Komander went back to the ropes, but Taven and Bennett pulled Strong to the floor. Komander performed a top rope dive onto all three heels at ringside.

Komander threw Strong back inside the ring and then went for a springboard move, but Strong drilled him with a leaping knee. Strong performed a wild gutbuster and scored the clean pin…

Roderick Strong defeated Komander in roughly 10:00.

After the match, Taven and Bennett gave Strong his neck brace and then taped “MJF Is The Devil” signs to the barricade. Renee Paquette entered the ring and asked Strong what they were trying to accomplish. Strong said it was obvious that MJF is The Devil. Strong told Samoa Joe to wake up. Strong said Joe is his best friend by proxy…

The broadcast team recapped Thunder Rosa saving Abadon from an attack by Julia Hart and Skye Blue, which set up a tag team match for Saturday’s AEW Collision. They also spoke about Keith Lee facing Brian Cage on Collision and ran through the other advertised matches for Saturday’s show…

A trailer aired for the new Aquaman movie that included footage of Christopher Daniels, Evil Uno, Ethan Page, Nyla Rose, Luther, and Ryan Nemeth acting like they had just attended a screening of the movie (they were the only people in the theater)… [C]

Jim Ross joined the broadcast team and waved to the crowd. Jay White made his entrance via the stage and then Jon Moxley entered via the crowd for the main event. Excalibur said they would stick with the match past the top of the hour if they needed to (Tony Khan previously tweeted that the show was given another five-minute overrun)…

5. Jon Moxley vs. Jay White in a Continental Classic tournament gold league match. Moxley took White up the ramp. White fought back near the top, but Moxley backdropped him. White rolled down the ramp and then Moxley tossed him back inside the ring.

White avoided a charging Moxley in the corner and then clipped his knee from behind. Excalibur said Moxley was saying something to the referee. Ross asked if the referee was going to stop it. White knocked Moxley off the apron heading into a PIP break. [C]

A fan in the front row held up a sign that read: “Spoiler – Mox Is Going To Bleed”. Moxley no-sold White’s elbow strikes and then dropped White with one of his own. White ended up on the floor and was hit by a suicide dive. White battled back and dumped Moxley on top of the ring steps.

White grabbed a chair, but the referee cut him off and threatened to disqualify him. White slid the chair inside the ring. When the referee went to clear it, White hit Moxley’s knee with a second chair that the referee missed. Moxley struggled to beat the referee’s count. White went for his finisher, but Moxley countered into a Paradigm Shift for a near fall.

[Overrun] White performed a wicked sleeper suplex and then executed a uranage slam for a near fall. White put Moxley down with a Kiwi Crusher for another near fall. White performed another sleeper suplex, but Moxley shot right up and put him down with a lariat.

White went for a Bladerunner, but Moxley countered into a short-arm lariat. Moxley hit the Stomp just before Justin Roberts announced there were five minutes remaining. Moxley went for the Death Rider, but White countered into a Blade Runner and scored the clean pin.

Jay White defeated Jon Moxley in 15:05 to earn three points in the Continental Classic tournament.

Excalibur said there will be a three-way between Moxley, White, and Swerve in the gold league semifinals on next week’s Dynamite.

The final standings for the Gold League were shown as follows: Moxley, Swerve, and White with 12 points, Rush with six points, Briscoe with three points, and Lethal with no points. They also showed the Blue League standings and previewed the final matches for Saturday’s AEW Collision and promoted the finals and the other advertised matches for the Worlds End pay-per-view. Excalibur said it was great to have Ross back. Ross said he was feeling a lot better and wished everyone happy holidays.

Swerve Strickland’s music played and he walked onto the stage and looked at the ring. White did a mock version of the Prince Nana dance while Moxley was still down and selling. Moxley stood up and White clipped the back of his knee again. White mocked the Nana dance again to close the show…

Powell’s POV: Sorry, sign guy in the front row, but Moxley did not bleed. The main event was entertaining. I would have preferred a singles match in the semifinals, but I’m not going to complain about getting Moxley vs. Swerve vs. White next week.

Overall, this was another good show. The tournament has really helped with the pacing of AEW’s top two television shows in that I don’t feel like they are throwing too much at viewers. Hopefully that pacing will stick even though the tournament is wrapping up. I will return shortly with my weekly same night audio review of AEW Dynamite for Dot Net Members (including our Patreon patrons). Let me know what you thought of this week’s show by grading it below.

AEW Dynamite Poll: Grade the December 20 edition free polls


Readers Comments (13)

  1. Anti semitism isn’t on the rise, idiot. Islamophobia is on the rise. Look what the IDF is doing. Look at the genocide. Jewish people are doing just fine in this country you dolt maybe have some compassion for the tens of thousands of dead Gaza children who are being blown to smithereens while they’re in the hospital. Stupid American

    • You’re a real charmer. Sadly, both are on the rise. For the record, I am sympathetic to peaceful people caught up on both sides of this or any war. I must say, your approach is a great way to endear people to the causes you care about. We could all learn a real lesson from your diplomacy.

  2. Mr. Wrestling III December 20, 2023 @ 8:15 pm

    Before the usual suspects weigh in on whether AEW is the best thing since sliced bread or if Tony Khan is the devil himself, I just want to throw some credit where it’s definitely due. In this case, it’s the fans in attendance at this show. A fired up, energetic crowd can make a show that much more enjoyable, and they are doing a great job. Kudos to them for bringing the energy tonight. Those Swerve chants throughout the match were as fun to watch as the match itself.

    • I believe this was AEW’s first time in the market, which typically helps. Either way, great crowds definitely make shows better. I wish we had more of that in AEW. The party atmosphere during the early shows really made AEW stand out. It’s one of the reasons why I think it would be wise for them to fill smaller venues rather than run half filled (or worse) shows in NBA sized arenas.

  3. If they stretch out this story line much longer the Devil is going to be revealed as -1

  4. lol mox rocking the Alo cargos. Funny stuff

  5. Did they finally get rid of Flair? He (and Sting) have not been seen since his Rampage promo, and they didn’t have any product placement for his stupid drink tonight.

  6. The Continental Classic has provided some of the best pro wrestling television in a very long time.

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