Wednesday, April 6, 2022

AEW: Dynamite Review - March 23rd, 2022

AEW Dynamite
March 23rd, 2022
Austin, Texas 

AEW World Champion: Hangman Adam Page (since 11/13/21)
AEW World Tag Team Champions: Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus (since 1/5/22)
AEW Women’s World Champion: Thunder Rosa (since 3/16/22)
AEW TBS Champion: Jade Cargill (since 1/5/22)
AEW TNT Champion: Scorpio Sky (since 3/9/22)

Commentators - Excalibur, Jim Ross, & Tony Schiavone

1) CM Punk vs. Dax Harwood

These two having this match to open the show is so refreshing. Everyone jokes about it being a Bret Hart tribute match, but that just makes me love it even more. This is Punk’s first match and appearance since the classic dog collar match at Revolution a few weeks ago. I’m a massive fan of the Punk/FTR pairing so I was immediately glued to this and they made me love it even more once things got going. Just classic, traditional pro wrestling with no frills or flashy things. They throw some nice counters in down the stretch including an awesome GTS counter from Dax. This rocked. Punk wins after quite the back & forth. 

Match rating - ***3/4

Backstage, the Jericho Appreciation Society is here. Jericho stumbles through a promo about Silver & Reynolds. Garcia & 2.0 crush their lines. Hager stands there looking dumb. They point out that they ran off Santana, Ortiz, & Eddie Kingston as we haven’t seen them in recent weeks. Guess that means we might get a run-in tonight! 

2) Darby Allin, Sting, Jeff Hardy, & Matt Hardy vs. Private Party, The Butcher, & The Blade 

After a traditionally great singles match to open the show, we get this batshit crazy tornado tag spotfest and it fucking rules. This might be my favorite two matches they’ve ever run back to back on Dynamite and that’s saying something. This was like the trios match they had at Revolution involving some of these guys, but turned up to 11. They brawl through the crowd and around the ring. Tons of sick spots including a side effect off the stage through tables and Butcher tossing Darby down some stairs. Not to mention, Jeff Hardy doing a swanton off a huge ladder in the concession area. The finish rules despite Sting visibly having some trouble, he recovers well, though and I mean.. the man is 62 years old and doing insane shit, it’s gonna catch up to him every now and again. So that didn’t bother me at all. Scorpion Death Drop/Twist of Fate combo ends it. 

Match rating - ***3/4

3) Jon Moxley & Bryan Danielson (w/ William Regal) vs. Brian Pillman Jr. & Griff Garrison (w/ Julia Hart)

Best part of this for me was GOTH Julia at ringside. Well, I did enjoy seeing Danielson clobber the dork that is Brian Pillman Jr. I hate that he’s such a loser because they’re a good fiery babyface undercard team and that was on display again here as they were so positive & hopeful even though we all knew they had no chance. Tandem stomps and chokes end this son of a bitch. Love Mox & Dan. 

Match rating - **1/4

After the match, Moxley cuts a promo as Regal joins them in the ring. Mox says if anyone thinks they have what it takes to join them, they better look down deep and find the place inside them that enjoys pain. And if they want a badge of honor from the Blackpool Combat Club, there’s only one way to earn it —- the hard way. 

MJF comes out next. It’s more long drawn out cheap heat stuff that I’m personally over. He does say that he’s gonna strap Wardlow to a cross like Jesus when the crowd starts chanting ‘Jesus’ which was funny as fuck. Wardlow ends up coming out. MJF prodded him by saying he still owns him. When Wardlow comes out, MJF’s security restrains him and MJF “fires” him and they haul him off. MJF says The Pinnacle isn’t done despite what most people think and starting next week with FTR beating the Gunn Club, they’re gonna start moving up around here. Interesting considering FTR seems to be leaning toward a face run.

Backstage, Tony Schiavone is with the Best Friends. Trent immediately goes after Wheeler Yuta for trying to join “William Regal’s tough guy club” last week and says he never liked him and he’s done with him. Yuta says he loves Chuck & Orange, but he’s never liked Trent either. Yuta says he is focused on becoming the best wrestler, not the best friend. OOF. Love this so much. Glad they’re following up on the awesome Yuta angle from last week. 

4) Adam Cole vs. Jay Lethal

This was everything you’d expect and not in a good way. Not in a bad way, either. Just.. in a ‘yeah Cole & Lethal had a match’ way. This was the same lifeless match that ROH and NXT became known for in their later years and it’s no surprise considering it features two men who were prominent in one, or in Cole’s case, both of these promotions. ReDragon comes down and blah blah. Panama sunrise, kick out. Last shot counter. Yeah yeah. The hits. Cole wins and it’s whatever.

Match rating - ** 

After the match, Cole cuts a good promo that makes me forget about that boring match. He is still hung up on the AEW World Title. He says that no one deserves the title more than him and that Hangman’s win at Revolution was a stolen victory. Cole says Hangman doesn’t have the guts to come face to face with he, Kyle, & Bobby in the ring right now. Almost as soon as he says that, Hangman’s music hits and our valiant world champion comes down and it rules. He starts whipping Cole & ReDragon with a belt, but the numbers catch up to him. Jurassic Express runs down for the save, but Cole still gets the last laugh as he leaves with Hangman’s AEW World Title in his possession. 

5) Leyla Hirsch vs. Red Velvet

They’re trying really hard to get this story over, but something isn’t clicking. The match is fine and I enjoyed it more than Cole/Lethal, but I don’t know. Leyla is almost always solid and she is here. Velvet puts in one of her on again off again decent performances. So yeah, this is fine. Not sure why people hated it so much. Leyla wins. 

Match rating - **1/4

6) Chris Jericho & Daniel Garcia vs. John Silver & Alex Reynolds

This was flat until the finishing run from Silver, Reynolds & Garcia. Jericho wasn’t too offensive here, but he also stuck out a good bit and him being involved thwarted my full interest, if I’m being honest. But as the action built down the stretch, they pulled me in. This was just an odd main event choice. Jericho & Garcia win and celebrate with their JAS stablemates to close the show. 

Match rating - **1/2

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