Welcome to the AEW Dynamite review here on TJRWrestling. This is a huge show for AEW with the 10-man tag Blood & Guts match in the main event between The Inner Circle and The Pinnacle. There are other matches, but Blood & Guts (AEW’s take on a WarGames match) will be the focus in the second hour. It’s a live show this week for the Blood & Guts match while the other matches were taped.
I missed the first couple of minutes. There’s a bigger crowd than usual with about 1500 fans in attendance. Don Callis was in the ring claiming that Kenny Omega wasn’t there and Michael Nakazawa was going to wrestle this match by himself. Eddie Kingston and Jon Moxley made their entrance coming in from the back of the arena and then Kenny Omega showed up with the AEW World Title that he used to knock Kingston and Moxley down. That led to the match beginning in the first ring on the left side. The announcers were Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone and Excalibur as usual.
Kenny Omega & Michael Nakazawa vs. Eddie Kingston & Jon Moxley
Kingston was in there first for his team as Nakazawa got some offense on him including a corner splash and Omega tagged in. The heels went for a double suplex, but Moxley went into the ring to save his partner. Moxley hit a Bossman Slam on Omega followed by a suicide dive on both guys on the floor. Moxley threw Omega into the barricade and Kingston sent Nakazawa into the ring apron. Back in the ring, Kingston and Moxley each hit running attacks on Nakazawa and Kingston delivered a knee. The referee was distracted by Moxley fighting Omega, so Nakazawa hit a low blow punch to Kingston. Nakazawa choked Kingston and then Omega choked Kingston across the middle rope. Omega raked the eyes of Kingston across the top rope followed by some more choking with his boot. Nakazawa with a cheap kick to the back of Kingston and Omega hit a Kitaro Crusher bulldog for a two count. Kingston blocked a suplex attempt, then Omega with chops and Kingston no sold them. Kingston with repeated chops, then Omega with chops, Omega with an enziguri kick and Kingston was down again. Omega with a rolling senton, then a moonsault off the middle rope, but Kingston moved and Kingston hit a running clothesline. Moxley tagged in against Nakazawa with a clothesline and another running clothesline. Moxley with a hair whip that sent Omega down. Nakazawa did a clothesline, Moxley no sold that, Moxley with a German Suplex and a piledriver for two with Omega making the save. Kingston tossed Omega out of the ring while Moxley held Nakazawa in a chinlock. Omega chose to walk away instead of saving Nakazawa. Moxley and Kingston did a clothesline/half n half suplex combo and Moxley pinned Nakazawa to win the match. It went about ten minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Eddie Kingston & Jon Moxley
Analysis: **3/4 It was a solid match with Nakamura as the obvious fall guy. I think most people watching this likely figured Nakazawa was going to be the guy that loses the match, so of course that’s what he was. It’s rare for Omega to lose, but it wasn’t his loss and it was a tag team match, so he’s protected in that way. Moxley and Kingston looked impressive as a team.
Following the match, The Young Bucks appeared on the stage to distract, so then Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson attacked Moxley and Kingston from behind. The Young Bucks joined in on the attack. The Good Brother hit the Magic Killer double team move on Moxley. Matt Jackson beat on Moxley with his shoe and then Matt hit a barefoot superkick on Moxley. Nick Jackson hit a superkick on Moxley. Kenny Omega was back out there with their cameraman Brandon Cutler out there as well. Omega hit the One Winged Angel on Kingston and Omega covered Kingston and Nick counted the pinfall.
Analysis: It was a typical heel beatdown that AEW loves to do week after week with their many heel stables. There are apparently no babyface wrestlers willing to help Moxley & Kingston from The Elite’s attack. There aren’t even referees that try to help them. That’s one of my issues with some of these AEW group attacks when nobody tries to save guys getting beat up for several minutes. It’s just not realistic.
It was announced that at Double or Nothing on May 30, Hikaru Shida will defend the AEW Women’s Championship against Dr. Britt Baker.
Analysis: I like that. I feel like Baker should have won the title several months ago. There’s nothing wrong with Shida, but her title reign has gone on for too long and it’s not that interesting. Baker should win the title at Double or Nothing.
Next up is Cody Rhodes facing QT Marshall.
QT Marshall made his entrance with Nick Comorato, Anthony Ogogo and Aaron Solow since they are part of the group known as The Factory. The other guys in the group went to the back. Cody Rhodes ran out there with Arn Anderson and Cody got into the ring with Marshall. They were in the ring on the right side for this match.
Cody Rhodes (w/Arn Anderson) vs. QT Marshall
Cody delivered a delayed suplex where he dropped Marshall with a front suplex instead of a back suplex. Cody teased using his leather strap to attack, the referee took it away and then Marshall hit Cody with a leather strap to the back. Marshall was in control with punches, kicks, but then Cody came back and they exchanged chops. Cody did an eye gouge along with the deadly back rake and a running forearm to the face. Cody went up top, but Marshall came back with a belly to belly overhead suplex. Marshall hit a deadlift German Suplex across the ring. Marshall worked over Cody with a chop on the floor, then Marshall shoved Arn in the face and Arn punched him. Arn grinded Marshall’s head against the ring post. There were other AEW referees that showed up to make Arn go to the back. That means there were referees out there to stop a man in his 60s, but nobody tried to help Moxley/Kingston when five guys beat them up.
Marshall was in control with a chinlock and then they did a running double cross body block spot. They exchanged forearms, Marshall kicked Cody to the apron, Cody with a shoulder tackle and Cody went for a sunset flip. Cody pulled the tights down, they managed to blur it (short delay on a live TV show) and Cody hit a move that I missed. The blurring distracted me. Cody hit a moonsault press off the top onto a standing Marshall for a two count. Cody missed a Disaster Kick off the middle ropes, Cody with a back elbow and then Marshall caught Cody with a headlock leading to the Cross Rhodes move for a two count. Marshall nearly won with Cody’s move. Marshall set up for the Diamond Cutter, Cody countered it with a backslide and Marshall hit a Buckle Bomb into the turnbuckle. They battled over a Tombstone piledriver and Cody hit the Tombstone only for a two count. Cody hit the Cross Rhodes for just a two count because Marshall got his right shoulder up at two. It looked like Cody was showing some compassion, but then Marshall put his middle finger in Cody’s face and Cody applied a Figure Four Leglock. Marshall tapped out to give Cody the win after about 12 minutes. Cody was bleeding around his right eye. I’m not sure where it happened.
Winner by submission: Cody Rhodes
Analysis: ***1/4 This was a competitive match with some big spots and nice counters by both guys. The spot where they battled over the Tombstone was very good, but I think rather than a kickout they should have done a spot where Marshall gets his foot on the rope to kick out. I just think a move like the Tombstone should be a bit more protected than that and not have people kick out that easily. I liked the middle finger spot leading to Cody’s Figure Four Leglock for the win. Good finish.
After the match, Cody was celebrating the win and looking away from the entrance ramp, which was stupid. That led to Anthony Ogogo going out to the ring and punching Cody in the ribs. Cody was out on the mat, so Ogogo put the United Kingdom flag on Cody.
Analysis: The second straight match where a babyface was beaten up by a heel after the match. This company loves that.
They showed the end of Dynamite last week when Ethan Page and Scorpio Sky beat up Darby Allin and Sting to end the show.
Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page were interviewed in some upper deck part of the building. They were interviewed by Alex Marvez. Sky said that Sting is a mosquito sucking on the blood of this company and you know that we kill mosquitos. Sky told “Steve” (Sting’s real name) that he has overstayed his welcome and said showtime is over. Ethan Page said that he had a long history with Allin, but people didn’t want to hear about matches that nobody ever saw. Page said that Darby Allin wears paint because Page gave him a dent in his forearm and a metal plate in his arm. Darby Allin showed up and he dropkicked Page into some cement. Page went after Allin, who tripped him up. Allin climbed up something that was about eight feet high and did a Coffin Drop onto Page. Sky and Page attacked some more and then Sky/Page tossed Allin down a flight of concrete stairs. Allin was out on the stairs as the medical team checked on him.
Analysis: I liked this as an angle to get some heat on the heels. There’s another segment with the heels beating up a face in a cheap manner. I’m only pointing it out because it happens so much in AEW. The babyfaces are usually outnumbered and made to look like fools. In Darby’s case, it was good that he tried to get revenge against Sky/Page on his own, but then he got his ass kicked. The bump down the stairs is pretty crazy and you can certainly hurt yourself pretty bad on there. Then again it’s Darby Allin, who is a major risk-taker and likely has no problem taking a bump like that. I’m glad that Sky/Page are being utilized more. I like both guys a lot.
It’s time for everybody’s favorite dentist Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. for singles action. Baker is 8-1 in singles action in 2021. Baker will challenge Hikaru Shida for the AEW Women’s Title at Double or Nothing on May 30.
Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. (w/Rebel) vs. Julia Hart
Baker was shoving Hart in the face to intimidate her and Baker hit a Slingblade neckbreaker. Baker got the black glove on the right hand and then Baker hit the Air Raid Crash. Baker slapped on the Lockjaw submission and Hart tapped out to give Baker the win after less than two minutes.
Winner by submission: Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D.
Analysis: 1/2* A short match to put over Baker. Hart was basically just there to take a few moves to make Baker look dominant. That was the only women’s match on the show.
There was a Taz video talking about Christian Cage. Taz spoke about Christian’s Frog Splash and then criticized Christian’s footwork during the Killswitch attempt. Taz said that Christian has been excellent, but the honeymoon is coming to an end, and he has a long way to go to catch up to Team Taz.
It was time for a four-way tag team match with the Varsity Blonds duo of Brian Pillman Jr. and Griff Garrison. The Jurassic Express team of Luchasaurus and Jungle Boy were next with Marko Stunt. The SCU duo of Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian were next. Their decree is they will stop teaming up if they lose a match. The Acclaimed duo of Max Caster and Anthony Bowens were next with Caster doing a pre-match rap.
SCU (Frankie Kazarian & Christopher Daniels) vs. Jurassic Express (Luchasaurus & Jungle Boy w/Marko Stunt vs. Varsity Blonds (Brian Pillman Jr. & Griff Garrison) vs. The Acclaimed (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens)
They are the top four ranked tag teams in AEW. The winners face the Young Bucks for the AEW Tag Team Titles next week. Two men are in the ring and the other six guys wait on the apron.
Jungle Boy got a rollup on Kazarian for two, then Kazarian got a two count and they kept exchanging pin attempts. Caster tagged Boy to become the legal man. The match broke down at that point as there were cheap shot punches shown. Luchasaurus hit a boot to the face of somebody. They went to break.
Bowens with a bulldog on Daniels and Caster hit a running dropkick for two. JR claimed this was a “main event level” match but it really is not. He said he liked that matches have something on the line, which is true. Bowens sent Daniels into the turnbuckle with Caster hitting a clothesline. Daniels kicked Bowens and did a STO trip to knock Bowens down. Luchasaurus tagged, he took out both Acclaimed guys and hit a German Suplex on Caster to send him across the ring. Luchasaurus hit back to back Chokeslams on the Varsity Blonds guys. Luchasaurus lifted up Kazarian and tossed him across the ring. Luchasaurus gave Kazarian a Chokeslam over the top onto Varsity Blonds. Luchasaurus with spin kicks on The Acclaimed. Jurassic Express with slams off their shoulders on both Acclaimed guys. Frankie sent Luchasaurus out of the ring. Pillman with a springboard clothesline on Boy for a two count. Boy with a running clothesline on Pillman. Daniels with a running flatliner on Luchasaurus on the floor. Kazarian tagged himself and got a cradle on Pillman for two. Frankie with a two count cradle on Pillman and then Frankie hit a clothesline on Boy for two. Pillman rolled up Kazarian for two. Kazarian held Pillman in an upside position and Daniels hit a moonsault off the middle ropes for the BME on Pillman and Kazarian covered Pillman to win the match. It went about 10 minutes.
Winners by pinfall: SCU (Frankie Kazarian & Christopher Daniels)
Analysis: ***1/4 A wild tag team match that went off the rails a bit at times as everybody was trying to do big moves and it seemed like they lost control a bit. Every time I see Jurassic Express in a tag team match I’m impressed and wonder why they are not given a title push because they work so well together and the fans love them. The win by SCU seemed obvious since they have the stipulation that if they don’t win then they’ll stop teaming up, so now we’ll get the match next week with the Young Bucks ending SCU as a team for good.
A video aired about Jon Moxley defending the NJPW US Title against Yuji Nagata next week on AEW Dynamite. They showed some promos from Moxley and Nagata, who called Moxley a little punk via translation. Moxley said no matter how long you have been in the business, you will always learn something. Moxley said he wondered when is Yuji Nagata finally not going to get back up again and that time is coming soon. Moxley said when that bell rings, he has no respect for anyone.
The AEW Blood & Guts cage was surrounding the ring.
Kenny Omega Interview
Tony Schiavone was on the ramp to announce the AEW World Title match for Double or Nothing. Kenny Omega made his entrance as the AEW World Champion with the title around his waist while Michael Nakazawa was carrying Kenny’s other titles. Omega said enough about him, how many people are ready for Blood & Guts? The fans cheered. Kenny said: “Well, that makes one of us.” Good heel comment. Omega said he’s a busy man as we got a good look at all of Kenny’s gold. Omega said he’s not here for fun or games and he wants the announcement. Schiavone said that next week, the two top contenders will go one on one in an eliminator match with the winner to face Kenny for the AEW World Title. It’s Pac vs. Orange Cassidy. Omega said that Pac is a man that has defeated Kenny, he has made Kenny tap and he understands that everybody wants to see that match again, so let’s just get to the point. Omega said let’s just announce Pac vs. Omega. Tony said it’s Pac or Orange Cassidy. That led to Orange Cassidy walking onto the stage to a nice pop from the crowd. Omega made Tony repeat it saying Pac or Orange Cassidy. Omega laughed at the thought of Cassidy as the fans chanted for the Orange guy. Omega said he knows what Cassidy means to this company, he sees kids dressed up like Cassidy because they think it’s cool and Cassidy is a feel-good wrestler. Omega said that somebody like Cassidy would never be championship material. Omega said that the only thing championship material about Omega is something that Cassidy has ripped off of Omega and Kenny took the sunglasses. Omega said that he’s a shade guy too because he’s the guy that made the whole thing famous. Omega wondered if they cost $800 or $1000 on the black market. Omega told Cassidy that he won’t take the title, but he has taken Kenny’s valuable time. Kenny put the glasses on Nakazawa. Omega told Cassidy that the glasses look better on Nak and Nak looks like more of a champion. Omega said we shouldn’t count on this as a possible match, so he’ll see Cassidy in ten years when Cassidy becomes an adult. Kenny mock Orange some more and walked away from him.
Analysis: Based on how much time they gave this segment, I think it seems likely that they do Omega vs. Cassidy at Double or Nothing. It’s not what I would do, but the AEW decision-makers like Cassidy a lot more than me. I just don’t think he’s the right guy to be in a PPV main event level match. I’m not even sure what meaningful wins Cassidy has this year. I know he beat Jericho last year, but their PPV match wasn’t even that good. Anyway, I’d prefer Pac wins, but I think it will be Orange Cassidy beating Pac next week.
Miro was interviewed on the stage by Tony Schiavone. Miro said that he had a signed contract saying he has a TNT Championship match against Darby Allin. Tony read the contract saying there was something about if Darby is unable to compete, then Darby would have to forfeit the title. Miro made some more threatening remarks to end it.
Analysis: I think Miro will win the title next week. I hope so.
Next week on Dynamite:
* TNT Title: Darby Allin (c) vs. Miro
* Orange Cassidy vs. Pac with the winner earning an AEW World Title match at Double or Nothing
* AEW Tag Team Titles: The Young Bucks (c) vs. SCU (Frankie Kazarian & Christopher Daniels)
* NJPW US Title: Jon Moxley (c) vs. Yuji Nagata
* Cody Rhodes will make an announcement for Double or Nothing
* Jade Cargill interview
Analysis: That is a very strong lineup for next week.
The Pinnacle five-man group was up first with manager Tully Blanchard joining them.
The Inner Circle five-man group made their entrance. Santana and Ortiz had white face paint to show they are ready for this war. They had outfits making them look like inmates. The fans sang along with Jericho’s “Judas” theme song.
Blood & Guts Match: The Pinnacle (Maxwell Jacob Friedman, Dax Harwood, Cash Wheeler, Shawn Spears & Wardlow) vs. The Inner Circle (Chris Jericho, Sammy Guevara, Jake Hager, Santana & Ortiz)
Here are the Blood & Guts Match rules coming from AEW:
*Two men start
*After 5 minutes, the 3rd man enters
*After that, every 2 minutes a new man enters
*The Pinnacle has the advantage
*Match can only end when all competitors have entered the cage
*Match can only end by submission or surrender
*Referees will be stationed around the cage
It’s the two rings with a steel cage surrounding both rings and with a roof on top. Sammy started with Harwood with Sammy jumping over from the right ring and over the top into the left ring. Sammy was on fire, the crowd was loud and Dax hit a spinebuster followed by a pin attempt. There are no pins in the match, so they wanted to try to establish early that there are no pin attempts. Sammy sent Harwood into the three turnbuckles and then into the steel ring post that had a camera in it. Sammy and Harwood battled on the top rope as they exchanged strikes and Sammy punched Harwood enough to knock him down. There was a bit of room on the ring apron for the wrestlers to walk on it. Sammy whipped Harwood into the cage repeatedly. Harwood was the first one to bleed from the forehead. Sammy did a springboard off the top rope of both rings and hit a Cutter on Harwood.
The Pinnacle’s Shawn Spears was the next man in with a steel chair. Sammy was ready for Spears, but Spears hit him with a spinebuster. Harwood’s face was bleeding heavily, Sammy tried to fight off both guys and when he turned around, Spears hit Sammy with a hard chair shot to the head. That sounded brutal.
The Inner Circle’s second man was in next with Ortiz going in for his team. Ortiz had some white face paint and he threw a chair at Spears while hitting a clothesline on Harwood. Ortiz hit Harwood with a chair to the back, Ortiz with a chair to the jaw of Spears and Ortiz tossed the chair at Harwood. Spears and Sammy fought on the top rope, so then Ortiz threw a chair at Spears and then Sammy hit a Spanish Fly attack off the top onto Spears back into the ring! That was so cool. Sammy went for a springboard move, but he collapsed and hit the mat hard. That was a slip by Sammy there. Sammy was bleeding, so that is the second bloody guy in the match.
The Pinnacle’s third entrant was Cash Wheeler, who hit Ortiz with a clothesline and attacked Sammy as well. FTR hit an assisted brainbuster on Ortiz. Spears tossed Sammy into the cage so Sammy’s body hit the cage. Ortiz was sent down the side of the ring and went down to the floor where there wasn’t much room. Spears had Sammy in a Sharpshooter as well.
The Inner Circle’s third man was Santana, who unloaded on Harwood and Wheeler with punches. Ortiz got back up. Santana hit a powerslam. They went to break.
(Commercial – There was split-screen action, but I don’t review it.)
The Pinnacle’s fourth man was Wardlow, who was wrestling in a singlet. Wardlow was dominant during his part of the match while they were in picture in picture. Wardlow launched Sammy and tossed him into the cage. Wardlow with a Powerbomb into the cage.
The Inner Circle’s fourth man was Jake Hager, who was dominant against Harwood, Wheeler (he was bleeding too) and Spears. Hager hit a Hager Bomb on Wheeler. Hager with the Ankle Lock on Spears, who tapped out, but you can’t end the match yet. Wardlow faced off with Hager and the fans were so into it as the two men rocked eachother with punches. Wardlow sent Hager to the apron, then back first into the steel cage and Hager hit some knees. Hager choked Wardlow and then Wardlow splashed Hager into the cage. Spears hit the C4 slam on Sammy.
The Pinnacle’s last man was Maxwell Jacob Friedman, who was greeted with “asshole” chants by the crowd. MJF was stomping on all the Inner Circle guys and then Wardlow hit a cheap shot to Hager’s legs and then MJF stomped on Hager as well. MJF trash-talked Jericho outside the cage. They showed a closeup of Wheeler bleeding on the entire right side of his face. The Pinnacle guys had a meeting as they focused on Santana.
The Inner Circle’s leader Chris Jericho was up last as the bell rang and now it’s “submit or surrender” time. There were about 20 minutes left in the show. Both teams stood on separate sides of the rings and then they charged at eachother to meet. Jericho whipped MJF into a steel structure and Jericho clotheslined MJF. Jericho had Floyd the bat that he used to hit a couple of Pinnacle guys in the back. Spears tried to climb the cage to escape, so Jericho choked Spears on the truss that was part of the setup. They went to a picture in picture break again.
The match returned with about 16 minutes left in the show. There was a portion of the ring where the ring mat was pulled up to expose the would. FTR did it as they battled Santana & Ortiz. That led to Sammy going to the middle rope and Ortiz/Santana hit a double spike piledriver on both FTR guys. Jericho hit a Codebreaker on MJF and Sammy hit Spears with a move while Spears hit a turnbuckle in his hands. Ortiz set up Spears upside down, Ortiz had a chair in front of Spears and then Sammy hit a Coast to Coast dropkick into the chair into the face of Spears. That was great and it drew a huge pop from the crowd. Jericho had a steel part of the turnbuckle that Spears originally took off and Jericho hit MJF with the steel to the face. Santana pulled out a fork. MJF was bleeding from the forehead and Santana jabbed MJF in the head with the fork. MJF was bleeding all over his head. Jericho choked Wardlow with his baseball bat. It looked like Jericho was getting a time cue from referee Aubrey Edwards. Wheeler was getting his face raked against the cage. Hager held MJF and Jericho punched MJF to knock him down. Wardlow got back into it with punches, he lifted up Sammy with a slam and then a powerslam to Hager. Wardlow was getting attacked with chair shots and Hager charged at Wardlow, who stumbled with Hager for whatever they were trying to do. Sammy hit Wardlow with a stiff chair shot to the head.
Analysis: That is multiple chair shots to the head in this match. I understand wanting to be violent, but it’s not smart to do chair shots to the head when we all know how concussions can mess somebody up. I’m just saying you don’t “need” to do those spots.
During the break, they managed to get the door open with MJF climbing up to the roof of the cage. Jericho left the cage, so he climbed up the steel structure to go after MJF on top of the cage. Tully Blanchard beat up referee Bryce Remsburg and then opened the cage for MJF.
There were about eight minutes into the top of the hour as Jericho neared the top of the cage with a bloody MJF on there as Jericho made his way there too. Jericho applied the Walls of Jericho on top of the cage and MJF looked like he was going to tap out, but MJF swung his right hand back and punched Jericho in the groin. Nice low blow by MJF. That led to MJF pulling on the left arm of Jericho for the Salt of the Earth submission and Jericho and then MJF stomped on Jericho’s left hand. They weren’t showing anything in the ring as the camera focused on MJF and Jericho with MJF again applying the Salt of the Earth submission on the left arm. A bloody MJF was booed as heavily as the camera focused on him. MJF put on his Dynamite Diamond ring and he punched Jericho in the face. MJF looked down off the side of the cage as Jericho got back up with blood coming from his forehead after the ring punch to the head. MJF set up Jericho near the side of the cage saying he was throwing Jericho off the top if Inner Circle doesn’t surrender. That led to Sammy saying: “We surrender!” That led to the bell ringing to give MJF’s team The Pinnacle the win. The match went 35 minutes.
Winners by surrender: The Pinnacle (Maxwell Jacob Friedman, Dax Harwood, Cash Wheeler, Shawn Spears & Wardlow)
Analysis: **** A great match full of violence with several guys bleeding throughout, which was expected since that’s the name of the match as well. I think the match was lacking submission attempts. You have to try to submit guys to win, but there just wasn’t much of that. It was also hurt by the fact that in the last five minutes, they stopped showing the eight guys in the ring to focus on the two guys on the cage. I understand that MJF and Jericho are the leaders of the teams, but it really made the first 30+ minutes of the match feel meaningless when you stop showing the guys that were in the ring. With all of that said, I thought Sammy was the star for his team while I liked the violence that Ortiz/Santana brought and Hager was really good as the power guy. It seemed like the FTR guys were getting their asses kicked more than they were on offense and they had the bloody heads to show it. Wardlow had a lot of power spots, which was smart. Spears was just kind of there with some decent moments, but nothing that really stood out. As I mentioned earlier, I would have avoided the chair shots to the head because I think they are completely unnecessary in this kind of setting. Work smarter. You don’t have to overdo it. Having MJF and Jericho fight it out on the cage is something I wouldn’t have done at all, but I do understand why they wanted to do it in order to tease a big bump. Having MJF win for his team puts him over in a big way and gives The Pinnacle bragging rights for the future even though I thought an Inner Circle might happen since they were the ones attacked to set up the match. There’s no question that MJF is a huge star to keep an eye on in the future and this match was done to put him over even more.
After the match was over, MJF shoved Jericho back first and Jericho went crashing through a crash pad that had a cover it. It was a soft landing for Jericho, but it did look visually impressive in terms of how far Jericho fell with that bump. Poor JR had to sell it by saying Jericho may have broken his back. On what exactly? Soft padding? I kinda laughed at it, to be honest.
MJF celebrated on top of the cage while AEW doctors checked on Jericho along with guys like Dean Malenko, who is a close friend of Jericho, and other AEW personnel were there checking on Jericho. The announcers tried to put it over as a huge bump, but I think the audience is smart enough to know it was just crash pads that made it a soft landing.
MJF continued to celebrate the win on top of the cage while Jericho was shown getting looked at by doctors again. MJF’s celebration continued without his guys joining him since they were on the floor. That was the end of the show.
Analysis: The focus was very much on MJF and Jericho here. I assume we get an MJF vs. Jericho match at Double or Nothing unless Jericho sells an injury and misses that show. If that’s the case, then maybe they can do MJF vs. Sammy at Double or Nothing because they have had issues for a long time as well. Anyway, these teams are likely not done feuding and I think we’ll see plenty more matches between them in the weeks and months ahead. I think FTR vs. Santana/Ortiz as a tag match will be fantastic. There’s no question that MJF is a huge star to keep an eye on in the future and this match was done to put him over even more.
Three Stars of the Show
- MJF/The Pinnacle
- Sammy Guevara/Inner Circle
- Cody Rhodes/QT Marshall
This Week: 7.75 out of 10
Last Week: 7
2021 Average: 7.40
It was a very good show overall. I liked the Blood & Guts Match a lot even though I think the ending with MJF & Jericho on the cage hurt the match more than it helped. They worked 35 minutes at a high level with a lot of blood and cool spots, but then everybody just stops to watch two guys on the cage. They shouldn’t have gone on the cage at all because it takes away from the work in the match. MJF won by teasing a toss of Jericho off the side, so Sammy Guevara surrendered the match and MJF still threw Jericho off the side onto…some cushions. Poor JR has to say Jericho may have broken his back…on cushions? It looked so lame. I understand wanting to be safe, but if you’re going to be safe maybe don’t do stiff chair shots to the head too. It made sense for The Pinnacle to win as the newer faction and it puts over MJF in a big way. I still rated it highly, but not like some all-time great match and I think WWE’s WarGames matches in NXT have been better.
Nice promos by Kenny Omega and Miro as well. That angle where Darby Allin was attacked was creative also because it was in a part of the building we don’t usually get to see and then Allin had to take a bump going down some steps. That looked rough.
The rest of the show had some really solid in-ring action as well, so I liked the show a lot overall.
The next AEW pay-per-view is Double or Nothing on Sunday, May 30. Here’s what we know so far.
AEW World Championship: Kenny Omega (c) vs. Pac or Orange Cassidy
Women’s Championship: Hikaru Shida (C) vs. Britt Baker
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