HEYDORN’S DYNAMITE RECEIPT 2/23: MJF pulls out major win with risky, high upside Punk promo


AEW Dynamite Analysis
MJF (photo courtesy AEW)


This week’s episode of AEW Dynamite has wrapped. Let’s take a stroll down memory lane and relive some of the madness.

-AEW has proven to execute successful battle royals, but the tag team version that kicked off this week’s Dynamite got off to a rough start. The action was slow out of the gate and it took a lot to pull the audience along. By the end and when it mattered with the Red Dragon/Young Bucks angle, they were there for it, but boy was it close.

-I’ve been critical of AEW’s presentation of the AEW World Championship and even though it was given some time this week, it felt squeezed into another angle. Adam Page needed to get that comeuppance and the promo was effective, but the program with Adam Cole feels in the background of other feuds in the company AND within the Red Dragon, Young Bucks, and Cole saga. That belt simply needs to be front and center and hasn’t been.

-MJF is next level and his promo this week screamed why. Look, a promo like that was a massive risk. MJF, Punk, and Tony Khan flirted with presenting Punk as a silly and gullible babyface for buying MJF during this, which would have stunted the feud. The only way it works is if MJF delivers and genuinely is able to manipulate the audience to feel something for him. A huge ask and he succeeded. MJF will certainly pivot on this and when he does, there is significant heat to be had and it’s all set up by his performance this week.

-Special shout out to C.M. Punk as well. His body language and facial expression when speaking off mic to MJF sold MJF’s words and helped emphasize them. Great stuff.

-I’m digging House of Black. Aleister Black is a smart act to lead a faction in AEW and though, this week’s job for Black was curious, they’ve been relatively protected to this point. That means the tag team titles could be on the horizon for them and a world title program opposite Adam Page is on the table as well.

-Buddy Matthews is a nice add to House of Black. Matthews is a wonder in the ring, but battles 50/50 with paint drying when it comes to personality. This association helps him lean a certain direction as far as character goes and is a concrete tone to hit week and week out.

-Chris Jericho vs. Eddie Kingston needed a reason to happen and after this week, they have one. Jericho played the heel nicely, poking Kingston for being a loser. We’ve seen that narrative before, but it felt different coming from Jericho. Whether this is a permanent heel turn for Jericho or just an angle to get through this match, he was effective in articulating why Kingston beating him would matter. Those are the stakes and the match needed them big time.

-Thrilled to see Ricky Starks in the Revolution ladder match. Worried, too. Hopefully his neck is fully heeled and ready to go, as ladder matches are unpredictable and dangerous.

-Jade Cargill vs. The Bunny certainly isn’t something to go out of the way to see, but it absolutely articulated Cargill’s progress. A year ago, she isn’t having a match like that one.

-Bryan Danielson vs. Daniel Garcia was a good match, but left enough out there for a more meaningful match down the road.

-It’s signed. Danielson vs. Jon Moxley at AEW Revolution on March 6. This should be fun and the possibility of a stable between both coming out of the match makes things all the more intriguing.

CATCH-UP: HEYDORN’S NXT 2.0 RECEIPT 2/22: Ziggler and Ciampa deliver in main event while continuing championship story

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