FEUD TRACKER – AEW: Tracking the length and key developments with Moxley vs. MJF, Young Bucks and FTR, Jericho vs. Orange Cassidy, Britt Baker vs. Swole, more

By Michael Taylor, PWTorch contributor

Big Swole (photo courtesy AEW)

SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...

TOP TIER FEUDS…

(1) Jon Moxley vs. MJF

New Developments: In a pre-taped segment, MJF was seen verbally abusing his “campaign staff” at his “campaign headquarters”. MJF said Tony Kahn officially announced him as the number one contender for the AEW world title, and he would face Jon Moxley at All Out if Moxley beat Darby Allin in the main event of Dynamite. During that match, MJF hit Moxley with the AEW title. Despite the attack, Moxley beat Allin, thus solidifying the match against MJF.

Highs & Lows: MJF is leaning too hard into the comedic side of his character. He isn’t coming across as a credible threat to Moxley in any way. The campaign segments aren’t helping him at all. They feel like an uncreative and unsuccessful way to get heat. His match with Moxley would mean so much more if MJF got heat by being a vicious, aggressive, and conniving heel. There’s very little time left for MJF to show that side, and this could very well be an underwhelming main event.

Start of Feud: 8/5/20

Forecast & Prediction: Moxley should retain the title at All Out. The fact that he’s been champion for this long adds credibility and value to the AEW title.

SECOND TIER FEUDS…

(1) The Young Bucks vs. FTR

New Developments: The Elite, FTR, and Hangman Page took on The Dark Order in a 12-man tag match. During the match, Dax Hardwood sustained a knee injury. Cash Wheeler and Hangman Page escorted him to the back. Page returned to the ring, but his team ended up losing to The Dark Order.

Highs & Lows: Tension continues to build in interesting ways, however, the feud seems to be evolving from The Bucks vs. FTR to FTR & Hangman Page vs. The Elite. This is a great way to prolong the build to the eventual match between FTR and The Bucks. Still, it’s possible that the central issue between the teams could get lost with the additions of Page and Omega.

Start of Feud: May 27th, 2020

Forecast & Prediction: As noted last week, All Out will feature “Tag Team Appreciation Night”. While it’s not yet clear what this entails, FTR should officially turn heel on The Bucks at All Out and do their best to spoil the evening. Page and Omega could lose the tag titles on the same night, causing the allegiance between Hangman Page and FTR. A six-man tag team match should take place between these teams, which will eventually lead to a match between The Bucks and FTR.

(2) Chris Jericho vs. Orange Cassidy

New Developments: An in-ring debate, moderated by Eric Bischoff, took place between Cassidy and Jericho. Bischoff said the questions in the debate were decided throughout multiple social media platforms. On commentary, Taz said that Cassidy would have to replace Jericho’s $700,000 OJ-stained sports coat if he lost at All Out. Jericho said he despised Cassidy because Cassidy didn’t take anything seriously. Cassidy didn’t answer any questions until asked about how to combat global warming. Cassidy spouted off several facts about global warming and rising sea levels. Jericho said he was going to beat Cassidy a second time at All Out, but Cassidy told him to shut up. Cassidy said Jericho purposely scheduled a debate against someone that doesn’t talk. He called his match with Jericho at All Out the biggest match of his life. He said he was going to embarrass Jericho and beat him. Bischoff declared Cassidy as the winner of the debate. Jake Hager attacked Cassidy and beat him down in the ring, Jericho hit the Judas effect and knocked Cassidy out in the middle of the ring.

Highs & Lows: Why was a comedic, goofy debate needed to further a personal issue? This entire segment could have taken place without the corny debate backdrop. This feud has been goofy and unappealing, but Cassidy can still be elevated to a higher level by being in the ring with Jericho a second time.

Start of Feud: June 17th, 2020

Forecast & Prediction: Cassidy should get his win back at All Out, and this could very well turn into a three-match series. Jericho could make Cassidy into a credible star if he puts him over at the end of the feud, so long as it’s done without more goofy comedy.

(3) Matt Hardy vs. Sammy Guevara

New Developments: Matt Hardy cut an in-ring promo and said he came to AEW because he wanted to be an attraction and celebrate his career. He said he presented multiple personas to the AEW audience, but knows the audience wants him to just be himself. He said he would do that going forward while on-screen. He turned his attention to Sammy Guevara. Hardy said he offered advice to Guevara, but Guevara wouldn’t accept it. He said on his first night in AEW, Guevara attacked him from behind and that’s why he attacked Guevara on last week’s Dynamite. Guevara came out from under the ring. Hardy knew Guevara was about to attack him, and the two brawled around ringside. Eventually, Guevara dove from the stage onto Hardy who was propped on a table. Hardy bled profusely from his head after the attack.

Highs & Lows: Hardy’s promo was awful. Using words like “persona” and “on-screen” are not the way to get the audience to invest in a wrestling show. Hardy knowing that Sammy was going to come out from under the ring felt contrived. Despite the negatives, Sammy will benefit from being in the ring with an established star. However, Hardy can’t ever cut another promo like that again.

Start of Feud: 7/29/20

Forecast & Prediction: Guevara should go on to beat Hardy at All Out using underhanded tactics. This will establish Sammy as a heel act and a future, singles title challenger.

LOWER-CARD FEUDS…

(1) Britt Baker vs. Big Swole

New Developments: In an interview with Tony Schiavone, Britt Baker said she was going to announce an opponent for Big Swole because she was still not medically cleared to wrestle. Baker said her assistant Reba would face Swole. This shocked both Reba and Schiavone. Reba entered the ring, followed by Swole. Swole beat Reba in less than two minutes.

Highs & Lows: A squash match was a good way to show how dominant Swole can be. But, why would Baker choose Reba? It was clear from the beginning that Reba was no threat to Swole. Baker should have chosen someone who could have weakened Swole so that Baker could beat her easily in the future.

Start of Feud: January 2020

Forecast & Prediction: A match needs to take place between Baker and Big Swole, preferably at a pay-per-view. Baker should beat Swole with heel tactics and solidify herself as an obnoxious challenger for the AEW women’s title.

CONCLUDED AND FORGOTTEN OR DORMANT FEUDS…

  • Hangman Page vs. The Elite – Dormant
  • Chris Jericho vs. Mike Tyson – Forgotten
  • Cody vs. Jake Hager – Concluded
  • Hikaru Shida vs. Penelope Ford – Concluded
  • Jon Moxley vs. Brian Cage – Concluded
  • Britt Baker vs. Tony Schiavone – Dormant
  • Darby Allin vs. Brian Cage – Dormant

RECOMMENDED: AEW DYNAMITE HITS & MISSES 8/5: Cassidy debates Jericho with Bischoff, Moxley vs. Darby, 12-man tag, MJF campaign HQs, more

8/5 AEW DYNAMITE TV REPORT: Sage’s alt-perspective report on Moxley vs. Darby, Jericho-Cassidy debate, 12-man tag match, Cardona & Cody battle Dark Order

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