Powell’s AEW Dynamite Hit List: Christian Cage vs. Adam Copeland in an I Quit match for the TNT Title, Eddie Kingston vs. Kazuchika Okada for the Continental Title, Hook vs. Chris Jericho


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

AEW Dynamite Hits

Eddie Kingston vs. Kazuchika Okada for the Continental Championship: A competitive title match that concluded with a clean finish and a title change. It’s strange that Kingston only put one of his three championships on the line, but I wonder if that had something to do with New Japan Pro Wrestling officials not wanting Okada to win their NJPW Strong Openweight Championship right after his departure from the company. Either way, Okada beating Kingston clean this early in his AEW run helped to establish him as a major player for the viewers who didn’t follow his work in Japan. Okada gives the new title credibility and he always shines in the role as a champion.

Christian Cage vs. Adam Copeland in an I Quit match for the TNT Title: I enjoyed the first 3/4 of the match a lot more than the overbooked final quarter with all of the run-ins. The hockey related silliness from early in the match got a good rise out of the crowd and was actually replayed at the end of the NHL on TNT Postgame show. Unfortunately, the post game show aired very late after a doubleheader that concluded with the second game being a lopsided shutout, so I’m not sure how many viewers actually stuck around long enough to see the footage. Anyway, both wrestlers worked hard and the live crowd was engaged from the start. I also liked the brief shot of the champagne celebration that was held backstage for Copeland’s title win.

Hook vs. Chris Jericho: Jericho took a trip to Suplex City and put Hook over clean. Jericho has done the same for Powerhouse Hobbs, Action Andretti, and Ricky Starks just to name a few. The key is how the company follows up, which hasn’t been one of Tony Khan’s strengths. Hopefully Khan has a real plan for Hook. We’ll see what Jericho’s proposition for Hook is all about next week, but Jericho definitely did his part to make Hook by giving up so much offense and in clean and decisive fashion.

Mercedes Mone: AEW wasted no time in following up on Mone’s debut episode by having her open this show with an in-ring promo segment. They quickly established that Mone has issues with Julia Hart, Skye Blue, and even Willow Nightingale. It was odd to see Willow staring at Mone while holding a chair. We’ll see where it goes, but it feels like it would be a mistake to turn the likable Willow heel simply because Mone broke her ankle when they met in a match that most of the Dynamite viewing audience did not even see.

Swerve Strickland vs. The Butcher: A quick showcase win for Swerve on the road to him getting a singles match shot at the AEW World Championship. There was a time not all that long ago when a match like this probably would have been given roughly ten minutes with an attempt to make Butcher look strong in defeat and because the wrestlers were capable of having a strong match. The spotlight approach is so much better because it made the star shine while also helping with the pacing over the overall show. AEW has made some positive changes that started on season premiere. The occasional spotlight matches help, and it’s been refreshing to see the amount of time that the company has dedicated to mic work as opposed to focusing so heavily on matches.

AEW Dynamite Misses

Thunder Rosa and Deonna Purrazzo vs. Toni Storm and Mariah May: Rosa pinning the AEW Women’s Champion clean should have felt like a big deal. They had way too much going on with Rosa making a ridiculously illegal tag to enter the match, which upset her partner. This led to the post match feeling like it was more about Purrazzo’s angry reaction to Rosa tagging herself in than it was about Rosa pinning the champion to set up a future world title match.

Adam Cole promo on Wardlow: The promo was actually fine. The Miss is all about Wardlow being back in the same spot that he was in with MJF by being subservient to another wrestler. Cole was upset that Wardlow didn’t win the championship because the idea was that Wardlow was going to give him the title belt. The MJF storyline was that Wardlow signed a bad contract and was essentially forced to do MJF’s bidding. There’s been no explanation for why Wardlow is going along with how the Undisputed Kingdom is treating him. And hopefully he won’t. I suspect that this will somehow lead to MJF and Wardlow finding common ground by feuding with the Undisputed Kingdom together. And that might be fun, but in the meantime they are really making Wardlow look like a goof.


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