May 12th, 2021
Daily’s Place - Jacksonville, FL
1) Jon Moxley (c) (w/ Eddie Kingston) vs. Yuji Nagata (w/ Ren Narita) - IWGP United States Championship Match
Shocked this opened things, but damn if it didn’t own. Eddie & Mox look sick together in their entrance and MOX CAME OUT TO “WILD THING” god dammit. This was so fun but also SERIOUS. Lil Ren Narita showed up with Nagata which was a nice touch and showing for him. These two worked exactly the style match you’d expect. Stiff and strike/throw heavy. Mox gets a bloody cheek from one of the many elbow shots to the face. Tight, simple sub 10 minute match with Moxley retaining. Post match, they stare down, but show respect. This was a fantastic little New Japan style showcase.
Match rating - ***
Backstage, we have Sammy Guevara, Ortiz, & Jake Hager. I guess Jericho is out selling the bump from last week and according to Ortiz, Santana was detained last week for using the work by authorities or something. Guevara and Hager say they want another match and that this isn’t over yet between the Pinnacle and the Inner Circle.
Next up, we have Cody Rhodes.. and man.. I don’t even know what to say or where to start even almost 24 hours later. Most times, I love Cody. What he’s done with AEW is amazing and his pure babyface fire, great. Then other times, like this, I cringe and am embarrassed to ride for him. Talk about being out of the loop and somehow cutting a behind the times promo in a company you started that is largely WITH the times. So much 1980’s America bullshit. I guess we shouldn’t have expected anything less once he got that forsaken American flag tattoo on his neck. I chalked it up to “wellllll, his dad was the American dream, it’s a tribute thing, not too problematic” well, now here we are and Cody, a babyface, wants to get people behind him against a man from the UK by spewing about how much he loves America and shit... gross. This sucked and was very tone deaf, I don’t even wanna get into all that he said, it was just.. yeah. The only thing I liked was it wrapping around to him going into his match with Anthony Ogogo as “the American Dream” instead of “American Nightmare” — that is a cool moment and a big moment for Cody to give Anthony Ogogo for his first PPV match. The road to get to that, though. Embarrassing. Please don’t do this again, Cody. Let’s forget it ever happened. Unfortunately, we probably won’t be able to forget, especially when Cody runs for office like he said he’s planned to in a few years when he’s done wrestling. On the bright side, I’m very excited for this match with Anthony Ogogo, IF they leave the American vs. Foreigner aged tropes aside.
2) The Young Bucks (c) vs. Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian - AEW Tag Team Title Match
The stipulation here is that if Daniels & Kazarian lose, SCU will disband and they will never team together again. This was quite the contest to go out on because holy hell.. Daniels bled buckets. I admit, part of me thought they may go this route. Especially considering their history and the classic three way ladder match these two teams had with the Motor City Machine Guns back in 2016 in ROH where Daniels got split open just as badly as he did here. This essentially was a prolonged squash in a way. SCU fought hard for every ounce of pride that they have as a team, but that super kick on Daniels into the post spiraled this into a downward fall. Just a brutal, demeaning showing that definitely continued to enhance and define this version of the Young Bucks as they destroyed a legend in Christopher Daniels and disbanded a long-standing tag team. Also, Kazarian broke out a Styles Clash which was an unforgettable moment that brought me out of my seat considering the vast history that all of these men have with AJ Styles. God I love moments like that. The more I think back, the more I love this match. Storytelling, fellas. Bucks win with the BTE trigger and some shenanigans from all their cohorts at ringside.
Match rating - ****
Backstage, Jon Moxley & Eddie Kingston destroy the Elite’s locker room in response to the match that just happened. Nice touch to continue the build toward that inevitable match.
Backstage, Christian announces he has an open contract next week and also announces his participation in the Casino Battle Royal at Double or Nothing, along with his intentions to win. Matt Sydal shows up and begs to differ because HE is gonna win. Christian jokes on his debut last year where he fell and Sydal reveals he signed the open contract for next week and they will face off on Dynamite.
3) Orange Cassidy vs. PAC - World Championship Title Eliminator Match
The winner of this faces Kenny Omega at Double or Nothing for the AEW World Title. They start this with some shenanigans as Orange places his glasses on PAC, to which PAC responds by breaking them. This starts off with the same momentum as their highly acclaimed Revolution 2020 match, but slowly screeches to a hault then we get a belt shot from Kenny Omega during a Don Callis distraction. This leads to a double countout finish. Tony Schiavone hits the stage with news that since there was no winner, it will be a 3 way match at Double or Nothing for the AEW Title - Kenny Omega defending against BOTH PAC and Orange Cassidy. Okay.. that match will probably be a blast, but this finish came off weird, some even said it looked like it was an audible and Orange may be injured off a rough looking powerbomb. I hope he’s not :(
The Coronation of the Pinnacle is next. MJF comes out in a crown looking goofy. They have women walk the entire group out. Tully talks and I don’t care. This leads to MJF addressing the challenge Guevara & Hager made earlier by saying no. Next thing you know, a golf cart pulls up with Ortiz, Guevara & Hager in it. They are pulling a Chris Jericho bubbly trailer. He pops up and Guevara sprays the Pinnacle in the ring with bubbly out of a sprayer thing attached to the golf cart. This was Jericho’s way of coaxing MJF into accepting a challenge for another match. MJF challenges them to Stadium Stampede - “the match they lost last year” and if the Inner Circle loses, they disband forever. So, I loved parts of this and thought other parts were bad. For the most part though, this entertained the hell out of me and I’m not upset at the two units battling one last time in Stadium Stampede at the PPV, that should be a blast. Jericho not even taking a week off to sell the cage bump, though? And them going another round for such a brutal, bloody war games match? Logically, lots didn't make sense here, but this is pro wrestling after all.
4) Thunder Rosa vs. Jazmin Allure
This is Rosa’s first Dynamite match since the unforgettable unsanctioned match with Britt Baker a few months back. I’m sure she will have something to say in regards to Britt getting a title shot despite losing that match. They also mentioned Serena Deeb during this match and announced her return next week. With that in mind, I hope we get Deeb/Rosa for the NWA Title at Double or Nothing. This could lead to a title vs title match between the two hottest and storied rivals in the women’s division - Rosa & Britt. Ok, I’m fantasy booking here, let me stop. Rosa wins and this is indeed a squash..
Next week, Serena Deeb defends the NWA Women’s Title against Red Velvet plus The Bucks defend the tag team titles against the Varsity Blondes and Matt Sydal faces Christian Cage.
Another Jade Cargill video airs because we definitely needed to do this for like the fourth week in a row. Get her in the ring for a squash match at least, dammit.
5) Darby Allin (w/ Sting) vs. Miro - TNT Title Match
The final match of the evening and a fitting main event. Miro attacks Darby before the bell and Darby's unbelievable selling draws you in from the jump. I'll say right off the bat, this was Miro's best match since joining AEW by FAR and one of the best matches of his career. Not too tall of a task considering his off/on usage in WWE, but still.. this is the role I saw Miro stepping into when he signed with AEW and we finally got it. The pre-match beatdown leads to the ref asking Darby if he can go and of course he can barely stand, but says yes. Miro continues his assault and this battle begins. Darby fights from underneath, but gets quite a bit of offense in when he mounts his numerous failed comebacks. His dive bump somehow looked even more awesome than normal. Miro really looked like a complete monster here and I loved it so much. The qualms I had with Darby's recent TNT Title match bookings did cause some of this to not stick for me, but I'm gonna go with my gut and say this was still a great match. It accomplished what it set out to and was the perfect way for Darby to drop the belt and for Miro to win his first title and the company and gain his first bit of real footing. Miro is your new TNT Champion after he basically destroyed Darby Allin.
Match rating - ****
Post-match, Ethan Page & Scorpio Sky show up to attack Sting again. The Dark Order chases them off. Show closes with Miro posing over Darby with the title.. jk.. Lance Archer comes out and stares at Miro from the stage and that sends us off air. Looks like we are getting Miro/Archer and Sting/Darby-Page/Sky and I am totally ok with that.