Powell’s AEW Dynamite Hit List: Samoa Joe and Swerve Strickland, Will Ospreay vs. Claudio Castagnoli, Adam Copeland and Willow Nightingale vs. Brody King and Julia Hart


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

AEW Dynamite Hits

Samoa Joe and Swerve Strickland: The bulk of the final push for AEW Dynasty was forgettable, but they got it right with Joe and Swerve. They were both featured in sit-down interviews with Renee Paquette and they provided a nice hook by making it clear that Swerve would eventually call out Joe. I came away from Dynamite feeling like Swerve must be winning the title on Sunday. It would be very strange to have Joe refer to Swerve as a choke artist and then lay him out at the end of the show if they don’t intend to have Swerve win the title.

Jon Moxley promo: Moxley returned to television and brought his newly won championship with him. There are way too many title belts on AEW television, but it’s certainly worth showcasing Moxley as the new IWGP World Heavyweight Champion. Moxley was starting to lose me prior to his break from television. His tweener character only cared about fighting and he acted like he was too cool to care about winning titles. Moxley returned as a babyface (at least for this week) and spoke about his five-year quest to win the championship. While it contradicts his previous lack of interest in titles, I’ll take it, as a focused Moxley who cares about championships as opposed to having random fights is a big upgrade. Moxley’s promo was strong and he had the cool factor that felt like it was fading a bit prior to his hiatus.

Will Ospreay vs. Claudio Castagnoli: The expected strong main event that concluded with the only logical outcome. Ospreay is facing Bryan Danielson in a match billed as determining which man is the best pro wrestler in the world, so there was no way he was going to lose this match.

Adam Copeland and Willow Nightingale vs. Brody King and Julia Hart: A good opening match with some clever booking that allowed Hart to go through with the match despite nursing a shoulder injury. The biggest pops of the match were for Willow performing moves on King. Willow continues to show major upside as a babyface, so hopefully there are no plans to turn her heel to feud with Mercedes Mone. The more sensible candidate for the heel mystery attacker role is Kris Statlander.

“The Elite” Kazuchika Okada, Matthew Jackson, and Nicholas Jackson vs. Pac, Daniel Garcia, and Penta El Zero Miedo: A solid heat generating win for Okada and the Young Bucks. It’s too bad it came at the expense of Garcia. It feels like the company flirts with moving Garcia up the card every few months or so and then he loses a high profile match and ends up right back where he started. Here’s hoping that Pac using the ring bell hammer to run off the heels was just a quick callback as opposed to him bringing back the silliness of him using the hammer as a weapon on a regular basis.

Deonna Purrazzo vs. Mariah May: A well worked match. The post match angle with Thunder Rosa was fine. I’m not really into Rosa and Purrazzo bickering with one another, but I assume it’s being done for a reason. I did have to laugh at the idea that Rosa smearing lipstick on Storm’s face was meant to humiliate the Storm character when we’ve seen Storm smear lipstick all over her own face.

AEW Dynamite Misses

Hook, Chris Jericho, and Taz segment: A soft Miss. I’m happy they cut to the chase by having Jericho be an overt heel over the last couple of weeks. The bothersome part of the segment was how little they got out of Taz taking a rare post neck injury bump. That should have been saved for a major moment and sparked Hook going into major revenge mode. Rather, Hook just backed Jericho into a corner and told him to leave the ring while showing little concern for what Jericho did to his father. Strange.

Orange Cassidy vs. Shane Taylor: It seems like AEW wants viewers to care about Shane Taylor Promotions despite never giving them meaningful wins. This felt like an opportunity to give Taylor a cheap win by interference given that the story of the match was that Cassidy was outnumbered because his friends were not in the building. Rather, Cassidy went over clean and then a couple of his friends actually did run out afterward only to be taken out by Trent Beretta (please stop with the unprotected chair shots to the head).


Readers Comments (2)

  1. TheGreatestOne April 18, 2024 @ 8:04 pm

    The promo from Moxley that was so “strong and cool” lost 52k viewers.

    The “good” opening match lost 140k viewers.

    Probably because it both were complete and utter shit.

    • You were still watching though, obviously. Your quest to find something else to do is even longer than Moxley’s quest for the IWGP title.

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