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KELLER’S AEW DYNAMITE REPORT
“FYTER FEST – NIGHT 2”
JULY 21, 2021
AIRED LIVE ON TNT
Commentators: Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone, Excalibur
Ring Announcer: Justin Roberts
-The Dynamite opening aired. Ross introduced the show as cameras panned the crowd.
(1) CHRIS JERICHO vs. SHAWN SPEARS (w/Tully Blanchard)
MJF came out to his music to join the announcers on commentary. MJF made a joke about Jericho’s physique looking like he’s in labor, a play on the words “Labors of Jericho.” Jericho avoided an early chairshot attempt by Spears and then punched away at him. When Jericho took control at ringside, the crowd roared. MJF said it’s sickening how easily the fans are impressed. “Do you know what you call a hot girl in Dallas?” he asked Schiavone. “A tourist.” Back in the ring, Spears threw a chair at Jericho to knock him out of mid-air. Spears worked over Jericho’s arm. MJF said he applies the Salt of the Earth armbar very well, implying this is softening up Jericho for him.
Jericho made a comeback and a “Jericho!” chant broke out. He punched away at Spears’s head ten times and then took him over with a huracanrana off the top rope. He played to the crowd and they went bonkers for him. Spears surprised Jericho, who was playing to the crowd, with a superkick for a two count. Spears wedged a chair in the corner. He pushed a chair into Jericho’s throat and wound up, but Jericho knocked the chair out of his hands and spun him over into a Walls of Jericho. Blanchard DISTRACTED the referee as Spears tapped. Sammy Guevara ran out and yanked Blanchard off the ring apron. Tully swung at him. Sammy ducked. Fans loudly chanted “Sammy! Sammy!” He backed Tully away from the ring. Spears caught Jericho with a chairshot from his back and then hit the C4 for a believable near fall.
Spears lifted Jericho for another C4, but with a chair on top of them. Jericho slipped free and shoved Spears into the chair wedged in the corner followed by the Judas Effect for the win.
WINNER: Jericho in 12:00.
(Keller’s Analysis: Decent match, elevated massively by a huge crowd response for Jericho throughout.)
-After the match, MJF called for Jericho’s music to be cut. He congratulated Jericho for passing the first Labor of Jericho. He said he needed help from his “Glorified Young Boy, Sammy the Simp Guevara.” He said if Jericho has anyone come out to help him again during any of his Labors, the whole deal is off and he gets no match against him. He said the next Labor will be a no DQ match against a man who once stabbed his opponent in the jugular and robbed a bank without a mask – Nick Frickin’ Gage.
Gage came out and played to the crowd. It was tough to tell what percentage of the crowd knew him, but he was definitely not a stranger. He walked out with a pizza cutter and yelled at Jericho, who looked deathly concerned. “Just ask David Arquette about Gage,” Schiavone said.
(Keller’s Analysis: I’d be curious to know what percentage of the audience could have picked Nick Gage out of a line-up. Is it 15 percent? 50 percent? 85 percent? The crowd pop was intense, but I’m not sure how widespread. It’s a good “get” for AEW, either way, given the intensity of the buzz for him this year.)
-The announcers hyped upcoming matches and segments. [c]
-A video package aired with Rusev announcing that “God’s favorite champion” will fight at the Homecoming event in Jacksonville, Fla. “This is the word of the redeemer.”
(2) FRANKIE KAZARIAN vs. DOC GALLOWS (w/Karl Anderson)
The announcers hyped the AEW debut in New York City at Arthur Ashe Stadium and touted they already sold over 15,000 tickets and more were available. Schiavone stumbled over saying “New York City” and then repeated it a couple times for practice and comedy. They cut to an early break with Gallows in control. [c]
Gallows won clean with a sitout powerbomb.
WINNER: Gallows in 8:00.
-After the match, Anderson and Gallows double-teamed Kaz, delivering a Magic Killer. Kenny Omega and Don Callis then walked out. Callis told the Texans to take a good look at what just happened “because this is what happens when you mess with The Elite.” They entered the ring and surrounded Kaz. Omega relished in hunting the “Elite Hunter.” Callis whispered something to him. Omega said he’s now become “The Elite Hunted.” The announcers mocked that Callis needed to tell that quip to Omega.
Hangman Page’s music played and the crowd popped. He had a drink in hand and seemed to be a little tipsy. When he entered the ring, Callis said, “Whoa, cowboy.” He pointed out their numbers advantage and said he knows cowboys aren’t all that bright. “Are you that stupid or are you just drunk?” Callis asked. Hangman took on Gallows and Anderson. Omega leaped out of the ring with Callis, which was pretty funny. Anderson and Gallows overwhelmed Hangman. Dark Order ran out and got a big pop. Hangman gave a Buckshot Lariat to Anderson, then looked down at Omega and Callis at ringside. Callis pretended to have to hold back Omega from charging the ring. John Silver handed Hangman a drink, which he swigged.
(Keller’s Analysis: They’re keeping it basic and simple with a clear-cut heel faction who are cocky when they have a numbers advantage and Hangman Page as a likeable stand-up babyface. Omega and Callis are rebounding after a lull as characters on Dynamite for a few months and really stand out now as a top tier heel duo.)
-Dasha Gonzalez interviewed Brian Cage backstage. She threw to a soundbite with Taz, Ricky Starks, Hook, and Powerhouse Hobbs. Starks said there will be one of the biggest celebrations ever next week to commemorate his FTW Title. Then Cage said he loves celebrations, suggesting he’ll get involved next week.
(3) WHEELER YUTA (w/Orange Cassidy) vs. DARBY ALLIN
Darby bit on the middle rope to force a break when Yuta applied a hanging octopus. Yuta clumbed to the top rope, but Darby met him up top and superplexed him to the mat. Sting walked up to Cassidy at ringside. Cassidy lifted his hands, then put them in his pockets. Sting slow-kicked Cassidy. Cassidy “returned fire.” The crowd was super into it. Yuta, meanwhile, rolled up Darby for a two count. He scored another two count with a crucifix, then went for a submission. Darby countered with a flip-over stunner and a Coffin Drop for the win. Ross noted Darby has won 19 of his last 21 matches. Excalibur called it a gutsy win coming off of the Coffin Match last week.
WINNER: Darby in 4:00.
(Keller’s Analysis: Really good action.)
-As Cassidy checked on Yuta, Blade showed up and punched Darby with brass knuckles. Excalibur said Blade and Cassidy were scheduled to wrestle later. Ross wondered if he’d be ready to compete later.
-A video package aired on the Jon Moxley vs. Lance Archer feud with soundbites from both of them.
-They showed Hikuleo watching at ringside. Excalibur said he’s part of Bullet Club and would be closely watching their main event. [c]
(4) BRIT BAKER (w/Rebel) vs. NYLA ROSE (w/Vickie Guerrero) – AEW Women’s Title match
Baker came out with a confident swagger and smile. She was joined by Rebel, who had her knee in a brace and a crutch. Justin Roberts did formal ring introductions. Fans chanted “DMD” at the start as they locked up. Rebel pulled Baker out of harm’s way on the ring apron. Baker then drove Rose’s face into the middle turnbuckle. They cut to a split-screen break. [c/ss]
Baker took Rose down with a backslide for a one count, but the ref did two partial tentative hand slaps before the shoulders were down, which made part of the crowd think it was a three count. They were upset with the ref. Baker followed with a DDT for a two count.
Baker turned to Rebel at ringside and put on her glove. She turned around and fended off Rose, then went for a Lock Jaw. Rose fought out of it and countered with a Death Valley Driver. She placed Baker over the top rope and leaped off the top rope with a flying knee to the back of her head for a two count. The crowd gasped at the believable near fall. Then came a “DMD!” chant. Baker came back with a swinging neckbreaker and a superkick for a near fall. Rose came back with a chokeslam for a two count for a near fall. Baker landed a Crucifix Bomb for a two count. She followed with two Stomps for a believable near fall. Rose caught a charging Baker with a forearm to the jaw. Both went down and were slow to get up. Rebel stood on the ring apron to DISTRACT the referee. Baker picked up her title belt and threw it to Rose and then fell backwards. Vickie held the ref’s leg so he wouldn’t see what was happening. Rose threw the belt back to Baker, who explained to the ref she didn’t use it. Rose begged off, but didn’t get the trick right as she didn’t pretend she was already hit. Rose landed a quick Beast Bomb for a believable near fall. Baker countered a second Beast Bomb attempt into a Lock Jaw for the tapout win.
WINNER: Baker in 12:00 to retain the AEW Women’s Title.
(Keller’s Analysis: A mixed bag that might have seemed clunky at times if not for the crowd being so into it, but it was mostly very good and dramatic with effective near falls.)
-They went to a press conference with FTR and Santana & Ortiz to hype their match at “Fight for the Fallen” next week. Santana talked about his tough upbringing in the Bronx. Dax said he cares about three things – his family, God, and pro wrestling. He vowed to beat their ass in Charlotte. It led to a shouting match and a pullapart. [c]
-Schiavone introduced Andrade El Idolo who was accompanied by his interpreter Alex Alhambres. Schiavone introduced Chavo Guerrero Jr. as Andrade’s new executive assistant. He came out to a big pop. He entered the ring and said, “Wow, you remembered!” He said of course they remember because this is Dallas. He said backstage he is so impressed by all the talent and he said it’s a great time to be a wrestling fan. He said he doesn’t see anyone backstage with the talent of Andrade.
They were interrupted by Death Triangle. Pac said they heard his name come out of Andrade’s mouth. He said they hide from no one. Andrade laughed and said he is good, but he is an elite superstar. He spoke in Spanish for a while. Chavo told Pac that his waist should have a shiny belt so he should start listening to Andrade. Andrade asked Penta and Rey Fenix why they work for Pac; he suggested they come work for him. Pac said Penta and Fenix don’t work for him, but rather they’re a family. Fenix spoke up in Spanish, then said they are the real face of the Latinos. Penta spoke. Alex said, “He says why would they work for Andrade when he’s not even at their level.” Death Triangle entered the ring. Andrade and Chavo bailed out.
(Keller’s Analysis: A good segment of trash talking. Chavo had to be thrilled with that response. It seemed Chavo was a babyface, but Andrade was a heel and Death Triangle were babyfaces.)
-They showed a segment from AEW Dark before Dynamite where Christian Cage ran to the ring to help out Marko Stunt when Matt Hardy, Angelico, and Private Party attacked him.
-Christian challenged the heel foursome to an eight-man tag match next week. [c]
-Schiavone interviewed The Factory’s Q.T. Marshall. Marshall told Marvez not to be nervous about them pouring a protein shake over his head because he didn’t disrespect them like Schiavone did. He said next week they will expect to hear an apology from Schiavone in the ring in Charlotte.
(5) ORANGE CASSIDY vs. THE BLADE (w/Bunny)
Cassidy approached Blade from behind just as Blade thought he was going to be declared the winner via forfeit as Cassidy’s music played. Blade faked a knee injury early, so the ref backed Orange away. Fans booed. Blade popped up and caught Cassidy with a running kick as the ref was backing Cassidy away. Cassidy landed a surprise Slumdog Millionaire. Blade caught Cassidy on the top rope and yanked him off balance. Blade then delivered a gut-wrench bucklebomb. Yikes. They cut to a split-screen break. [c/ss]
Cassidy made a comeback after the break. He landed a top rope crossbody and then a tornado DDT for a near fall. Bunny stood on the apron, but Kris Statlander yanked her down. Cassidy dove through the ropes onto Statlander when Blade pulled her in his path. Bunny then yelled at Cassidy. Blade went after Cassidy, but Cassidy shoved Bunny into Blade. “She dropped her ears!” Schiavone exclaimed. Ross asked if he had ever said that before. Orange went for another DDT, but Blade blocked it and dropped Cassidy over the top rope followed by a clothesline and a leaping corkscrew tombstone for a believable near fall. Fans chanted “Freshly Squeezed!” Cassidy went for a Beach Break, but Blade slipped out. He then hit it seconds later for a near fall. Both were down and slow to get up. Bunny leaped onto the ring apron and tossed Blade the brass knux. Cassidy ducked and hit an Orange Punch for the win. Cassidy picked up the knux afterward and landed a flying Orange Punch on Blade with them on.
WINNER: Cassidy in 12:00.
(Keller’s Analysis: Fun match, and good use of Cassidy in this context.)
-Marvez interviewed Jericho backstage about facing Gage next week. Jericho said if MJF is going to bring in the most deranged and demented man in pro wrestling, he’s going to bring the most deranged and demented version of himself. He had his back to the camera, but then turned around and revealed he’ll be “The Painmaker” version of himself. Excalibur talked about the top stars Jericho beat as The Painmaker in New Japan.
-The announcers hyped next week’s line-up: Jericho vs. Gage, Santana & Ortiz vs. FTR, Hardy Family Office vs. Christian & Jurassic Express, and Hikuleo challenging the winner of Moxley and Archer, and Hangman Page & Dark Order vs. The Elite.
-Ross threw to a video package on the Cody Rhodes-Malikay Black rivalry. They are scheduled for a match Aug. 4 in Jacksonville, Fla. [c]
(6) JON MOXLEY vs. LANCE ARCHER – Texas Death Match for the IWGP U.S. Title
Moxley went after Archer with a kendo stick early. Archer landed a pounce on Moxley to send him hard to the mat. He then beat him up at ringside as the crowd stood and cheered at ringside. They brawled up the steps among fans. Archer grabbed a “fan” and hit him and threw him at Moxley. The announcers got a chuckle out of it. Back in the ring, Moxley charged through the ropes, but Archer caught him with a forearm. Moxley came back and jabbed Archer with a fork over and over on his forehead. “You sick f—!” chanted the fans. They cut to a split-screen break. [c/ss]
Mox was still in control after the break. When Mox swung a trash can lid, Archer punched it into Mox. Both went down and were slow to get up. Fans stood and chanted, “This is awesome!” Moxley bit Archer’s forehead. Archer fought back with a hard clothesline. Mox landed a released German suplex; Archer fired back with a quick big boot and then a chokeslam. Archer set up an inverted Razor’s Edge off the top rope, but Mox slipped free and delivered a low blow to Archer. The announcers stressed it was legal in this Texas Death match. Mox set up a chair, but Archer chokeslammed Mox on the chairs. He landed hard on the back of the two chairs which didn’t give much at all. Yikes. They cut to crowd reactions. A loud “AEW!” chant broke out. Archer then gave Mox a King Kong Lariat. Mox fired back with a Paradigm Shift. He strutted as Archer lay on his back. Archer popped up and gave him a finger. Mox jabbed a fork at Archer’s forehead. Mox set up barbed wire on two tables at ringside. Ross said this makes them squirm in their seats.
Mox then pulled Archer up by his hair and set up a Paradigm Shift. Archer jabbed Mox with a fork and then slammed him onto the barbed wire tables. The ref began his count, and fans counted along. Excalibur said Mox was stuck to the barbed wire. The ref got to ten.
WINNER: Archer to capture the IWGP U.S. Title in 14:00.
(Keller’s Analysis: JFC!)
-Hikuleo entered the ring and got in the face of Archer. The announcers said they didn’t know he was so tall. He was a couple inches taller than Archer.
FINAL THOUGHTS: What a wild ride Dynamite is. They are in their groove and ratings should keep going up, especially in the core adult demo, with this product. Such a contrast to what WWE is doing. Even if WWE was doing what they try to do immaculately, this is just a whole different breed of pro wrestling.