ALL ELITE WRESTLING DYNAMITE PREVIEW 1/5: First Appearance on TBS, Page vs. Danielson II for Championship, Ruby vs. Cargill in TBS Tournament Finals, Lucha Brothers vs. Jurassic Express for Tag Team Championship, Pillman, Jr. vs. Black, MJF in Action


PHOTO CREDIT: Mark Sterling Twitter


JANUARY 5, 2022
AIRS ON TBS NETWORK, 8:00 p.m. EST, 7:00 p.m. CST

Announcers: Excalibur, Tony Schiavone, Jim Ross

Match Results and Key Segments from Last Week

  • AAA Tag Team Champions FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) & Matt Hardy & Private Party (Isaiah Kassidy & Mark Quen) defeated AEW World Tag Team Champions Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero & Rey Fenix) & Christian & Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy & Luchasurus)
  • 2point0 (Matt Lee & Jeff Parker) & Daniel Garcia defeated Proud & Powerful (Santana & Ortiz) & Eddie Kingston.
  • Wardlow defeated Colin Delaney.
  • Dan Lambert cut a promo alongside his protegees Men of the Year (Scorpio Sky & Ethan Page). He made fun of Cody, Arn Anderson, and Brandi Rhodes saying she’s the only woman not a stripper named Brandi (Ethan slipped in “not currently” a stripper). Brandi came out and called Lambert a bobble-headed, ugly-ass, less talented version of Paul Heyman. Brandi said she would whoop his ass, to which Lambert said he was a black belt. She said, “well I’m a black bitch.”
  • Jade Cargill defeated Thunder Rosa to advance to the finals of the TBS Championship tournament.
  • CM Punk appeared at Daily’s Place for the first time and stated his intentions for the AEW World Champion. He said he was done with MJF and reminded everyone that “in that ring, on this microphone, even on commentary nobody can touch him.” (A call back to the June 2011 pipe bomb promo he cut while in WWE.)
  • Adam Cole & Bobby Fish & Kyle O’Reily (former Undisputed Era in NXT) defeated Orange Cassidy & The Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent Berretta)


Tonight’s episode of Dynamite and taping of Rampage will emanate from a familiar site for pro wrestling as they make their debut in the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. It’s AEW’s second appearance within the tri-state arena within the past month after appearing at the UBS Arena in Elmont, N.Y. on December 8, 2021. The arena, known as “The Rock” (no, not Dwayne Johnson), is home the NHL’s New Jersey Devils. It opened in 2007 and has been a frequent host to WWE, starting with Hell in a Cell in 2009 and last hosting Raw in July of 2019. Dynamite’s “Blood and Guts” special was supposed to take place in this building in March of 2020 but got cancelled due to COVID-19 outbreak.

Tonight’s episode will be the first to air on TBS, a network seeing wrestling for the first time since 2000 when WCW Saturday Night ended its eight-year run on the network. The show went through many incarnations after its creation in 1971 including Georgia Championship Wrestling and World Championship Wrestling (different from the WCW that started in 1988). Who could forget Black Saturday in 1984 when Vince McMahon appeared on TBS to introduce WWF programming when fans expected Gordon Solie and the stars of the Georgia promotion.

MJF “In Action”

In a backstage promo last week, MJF stated his intentions to be a champion in AEW. He told Wardlow that when he wins the Faces of the Revolution ladder match to earn a shot at the TNT Championship, and when he in fact wins the title, he must contractually relinquish it to him. When Wardlow objected, “Smart” Mark Sterling came in to read the contract and confirmed what MJF said. MJF said it’s time for him to accumulate wins so he can be TNT and AEW World Champion.

AEW has advertised that MJF will be “in action” (code for wrestling a squash match). I mentioned earlier CM Punk said he was done with MJF, so they don’t won’t wrestle tonight, but that story is clearly not over. MJF, a native Long Islander, is none too pleased he must be in New Jersey tonight.

Frank’s Analysis: I’m not breaking any news when I say the breakup of Wardlow and MJF is coming. It’s interesting how Wardlow has been wrestling squash matches and it’s likely MJF will do the same. Sooner or later, they’ll have to go back to MJF vs. Punk, which has got to be penciled in for Revolution.

TBS Championship Tournament Final Match: Ruby Soho vs. Jade Cargill

Ruby Soho’s destination is known for sure now as she goes one-on-one with Jade Cargill tonight in the finals of the TBS Championship tournament.

After Cargill defeated Thunder Rosa last week, Rosa went after Cargill when a masked woman appeared. This turned out to be Mercedes Martinez, who had been released by WWE several months ago. Ruby came out and the heels fled the ring. Here’s a bit of an interview with Ruby and a quote tweet from Cargill. Cargill quote tweets the same post with other remarks, so feel free to look at her Twitter page to see what else she had to say. She’s quite fired up and the “numbers.”

Frank’s Analysis: I’ll pick Ruby to win this, but I could see it going to Cargill as well. They shouldn’t put the title on her because she “looks like a star.” That’s WWE mentality. Ruby is the better talent, and she should be the one to win this. With Martinez in the picture now, I fear shenanigans, but I’m also traumatized by years of WWE crappy booking. This is the finals for a brand-new title. A clean win is in order.

AEW World Tag Team Championship: Lucha Brothers (champs) vs. Jurassic Express

Things are finally coming to a head tonight between the Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero & Rey Fenix) and Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus) when the Luchas put the AEW World Tag Team Championship on the line.

Jurassic Express are the #1 ranked tag team. The first bit of tension came several weeks ago on Rampage when they came out to help the Lucha Brothers after they were on the losing side of a 10-man tag match. Afterwards they awkwardly handed them their titles, but you can tell things weren’t right. Last week, in the 10-man tag which found both teams as partners, there were issues with blind tags made by Penta and later Christian. The Christian blind tag cost them the match as Penta was setting up for Fear Factor, but instead Christian got FTR’s Big Rig for the pin.

Frank’s Analysis: With this being the first TBS show, I would like to think they want to run a big angle, and thus I can see Christian turning on Jurassic Express. It doesn’t feel like time to take the titles off the Luchas, and this gives them the chance to run a Jungle Boy vs. Christian feud.

Malakai Black vs. Brian Pillman, Jr.

During an interview with Tony Schiavone last week, Brian Pillman, Jr. said it was his turn to enter the “House of Black” after seeing his Varsity Blondes partner Griff Garrison get beaten in short order by Malakai Black. He challenged Black to a match and afterwards, the lights went out. When they came back on, Black was on stage with a head piece with horns. The lights went out again and when they came back on, he was gone.

Frank’s Analysis: I don’t know if anybody picked up on Pillman saying, “he’s not going to bust down his door because that’s what Black wants him to do.” I remember when Black was in WWE in late 2019, he begged people to “knock on his door and pick a fight with him.” It may be a coincidence, and it’s overall not a big deal, but I noticed it. Anyway, this is just something to do for Black until he moves on to bigger and better things. Pillman is fodder, and that’s fine.

AEW World Championship: “Hangman” Adam Page vs. Bryan Danielson

It’s been several weeks since Winter is Coming where “Hangman” Adam Page and Bryan Danielson wrestled to a 60-minute time limit draw in their match for the AEW World Championship. One week later, we learned their rematch would take place tonight with judges on hand in case they went to a time limit again. Danielson made it clear he would not wrestle until this match took place. He had been wrestling members of the Dark Order every week leading up to Winter is Coming following his win at Full Gear to earn the title match.

A video package aired last week hyping the match. Jim Ross speculated on what the judges will factor in. should the match go to a draw. Hangman Page defeated Kenny Omega at Full Gear to win the AEW World Championship, completing a two-plus year journey. Page was in the first world title match at All Out in August of 2019, coming up short to Chris Jericho. At last year’s Full Gear, Page lost to Omega who earned to right to wrestle for the title. Omega went on to defeat Jon Moxley at Winter is Coming.

Frank’s Analysis: The more I think about it, the more I wish Miro won that match at Full Gear. Page would have beaten him and could have been on to another challenger. This Danielson program feels like it should have happened in six months or so. That said, I’m looking forward to the match and dreading it at the same time. I worry about the judges getting involved and possible shenanigans. What can you do? It’ll be a good match though; I’m not worried about that. The decision can go either way. They could put it on Danielson and put Page back in chase mode.

Follow Frank on Twitter @FrankPeteani. Thank you for reading!

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