“The Inner Circle” Sammy Guevara, Santana and Ortiz vs. Dustin Rhodes and “The Young Bucks” Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson
A great match to open the show as we saw a lot of innovative moves and counterattacks as usual when we have the Young Bucks in a match. It was also great to see Dustin Rhodes back in action and after about 11 minutes we saw an interesting combination of moves to end the match. Santana and Ortiz were grabbed by Rhodes and Matt in the position for Tombstones. Nick jumped off the top rope to double dropkick Santana and Ortiz and then landed on Guevara. Rhodes and Matt performed the Tombstone as then Matt pinned Guevara for the win.
Opinion: It’s typical for AEW that they open Dynamite with such a dynamic match to hype up the live audience. Besides, you have to add that Rhodes is still able to perform good matches while Guevara is great when it comes to selling moves but that often gets in the background. Anyways, a great match to open the show.
Trent (w/ Chuck Taylor and Orange Cassidy) vs. Rey Fenix
Then, the second match also promised to be outstanding as we had two great performers in it. Fenix once more showed a solid performance and worked throughout the match as a heel. Trent also got his moments, but after about 11 minutes Fenix performed the Black Fire Driver for the victory. After the match, Trent offered Fenix a handshake, but Fenix just shoved him away and talked trash towards Orange Cassidy and Chuck Taylor. Trent started to attack him, but Taylor dragged him away and calmed him down.
Opinion: Some unclean moments in this match, but all in all it was really entertaining. Also, good work from Fenix working as a heel and a solid post-match angle.
Cody Rhodes’ promo
Cody made his entrance and Tony Schiavone interviewed him in the ring. He talked about getting attacked last week and noted that the people who are normally there for him, have other things to do at the moment. His brother is in a feud with Santana and Ortiz, his wife walks around cutting off other people’s hair and his best friend gave him a low blow at Full Gear.
He said that he would offer the Butcher and the Blade a match and they could select his partner. He then talked again about MJF and said that he took him in when others didn’t want him. He added that when MJF wouldn’t face him, he sweetens the pot. He offered MJF several different things including his shows and then also a briefcase full of money. He also gave $100 a young boy in the first row. In the end, he noted that he would still believe that MJF is the future and that he should name him his price before he walked off.
In the backstage area, we saw Joey Janela who got asked by an interviewer why he accepted Jon Moxley’s challenge. He answered that he would want to prove himself. He said that this time it would count, the lights would stay on and Moxley would have to kill him. Moxley went into the picture to say “kids” before he walked off again and then another promo video of the Dark Order got aired.
Opinion: The promo of Cody was in my eyes one of his worst ones in AEW. Besides, he acted more like a heel by showing how rich he would be. However, MJF is just the best heel in all of AEW, so it doesn’t really matter. The interview with Janela and Moxley’s appearance were just great.
Leva Bates (w/ Peter Avalon) vs. Nyla Rose
Nyla dominated her opponent and as Avalon wanted to save Bates, Nyla hit both with a double Chokeslam. After that, she performed a Beast Bomb against Bates for the victory. As the match was over, Shanna came out to save Bates as Nyala continued to attack the Librarian. However, Shanna had no chance and Nyla set up a table. The ref wanted to stop her from continuing to attack Shanna. However, Nyla put the referee through the table and then placed Shanna with a Powerbomb on top of him.
Opinion: Great way to let Nyla look extremely dangerous. It’s just a matter of time until we see her against Awesome Kong and this will be really interesting.
Chris Jericho’s promo
Chris Jericho and Jake Hager made their entrance. Jericho talked about how much bottles of Champagne he already had sold. He added that he would be forced to have another match this year. He noted that he would have the chance to pick his opponent and had a list in his hand. Everyone expected that this would be the List of Jericho, but he just said: “Seriously? Get out of 20016.” He called it “the Lexicon of Le Champion” and it contained people who he wouldn’t face anymore in 2019. Moxley was at least five times on the list besides other funny names. However, also people, like Darby Allin, Adam “Hangman” Page, Cody Rhodes and the Young Bucks were on the list.
Then “the Jurassic Express” Luchasaurus, Marko Stunt and Jungle Boy made their entrance. Jericho noted that dinosaurs and little children were not on his list. Luchasauras said that even though Stunt would be small, he’s more man than Jericho will ever be. Jericho answered that Stunt would be small for any age. He then turned his attention to Jungle Boy and said that Jungle Boy couldn’t last 10 minutes with Jericho in a ring. Jungle Boy replied that he could last 10 minutes and that he would kick his ass. Then, he slapped Jericho and a brawl broke out. In the end, Hager and Jericho flew and were at ringside. The AEW Champion said that he would see him on 18 December as they left the arena.
Opinion: This came somehow out of nowhere and I’m not sure if it is a good idea to let Jungle Boy fight Jericho. Of course, Le Champion will pick up a win to improve his win/loss rate, but in my eyes, Jungle Boy doesn’t yet have the level for such a match. Besides, Jungle Boy looked not very confident when he had to talk, and his slap was also really harmless.
Kris Statlander vs. Hikaru Shida
After about eight minutes Statlander hit her opponent with the Big Bang Theory for the win. Then, Brandi Rhodes and Awesome Kong came out. Brandi had a microphone and said that people are wondering what they were doing during the past weeks. She said that they are part of a nightmare family. She then noted that the goal of her family is to grow and asked Statlander if she would want to join them. Then a fan offered to pledge. They let her through to the ring and Brandi and Kong cut off her hair. Statlander never really responded.
Opinion: The match itself was good and we once more see that the person who is in the first position of the win-loss ranking (Shida) loses a match. The post-match angle was a bit weird and besides, I’m not such a great fan of this whole storyline around Kong and Brandi, but let’s see where this leads in the upcoming episodes.
Pentagon Jr. vs. Christopher Daniels
Before the match even started, Daniels attacked Pentagon at ringside. The match was not that quick, but we saw well-delivered moves and hard hits. In the end, Fenix came out to cause a bit of a distraction as he grabbed Daniels’ mic stand. As Daniels got the mic stand back it looked as he wanted to hit Pentagon with it, but then he tossed it aside. As the ref wanted to take it and throw it out of the ring, Pentagon hit his opponent with a low blow followed by a Package Piledriver for the pinfall victory.
After the match, we saw a video package of the Butcher, the Blade and the Bunny. The Bunny said that they were here to cut the head off the snake.
Opinion: A good match between Daniels and Pentagon and I liked to see Pentagon working as a heel what made sense since earlier that night Fenix did the same. Besides, good that both men pick up wins since they lost some matches within the last weeks. Honestly, I don’t know much about the Butcher, the Blade and the Bunny and due to that they still have to show me what I should think about them.
Jon Moxley vs. Joey Janela
We saw a solid match from these two men, and it lasted about 12 minutes. Janela showed several good moves, but in the end, Moxley was just too strong and he performed the Paradigm Shift DDT for the three count. During the match, we also saw, for example, a dive from Janela which sent himself and Moxley through the timekeeper’s table.
However, after the match, Jericho’s music started to play and he was shown in the crowd like Moxley has been last week. They had another staredown as the show went off air.
Opinion: A solid match to close the show, but nothing too outstanding for the main event. However, also a good way to continuing the build-up for a match between Jericho and Moxley. Last week we had the same situation just vice versa.
Looking back at this week’s episode of AEW Dynamite I can clearly see one development for which I waited for quite some time: the women received more TV time. We had two women’s matches this week and besides one also had a longer post-match angle. This truly helps to build their characters and storylines. However, I still had once more one problem as Jericho had a long promo while Moxley had no time at the microphone. This needs to change if they want to make this feud more interesting, but it is clear that they want to improve Moxley’s win/loss rate.