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AEW DYNAMITE TV REPORT
MARCH 23, 2020
CEDAR PARK, TX AT HEB CENTER
AIRED ON TBS
REPORT BY TYLER SAGE, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
AEW Announcers: Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone, Excalibur
(1) CM PUNK vs. DAX HARWOOD
The crowd chanted “CM Punk,” before the two competitors locked up to start the match. The two men locked up once more, Dax Harwood got a quick advantage, but CM Punk quickly countered as the two battled on the mat and in the corners of the ring. Dax hit a knee strike as Punk was running the ropes. This lead to Harwood getting in his offense for several moments on Punk.
Here Hardwood hit several moves that caused Punk to sell his lower back at this stage of the match. Harwood continued with strikes in the corner as Members of The Gunn Club stood up and got in Harwood’s face. Punk took advantage and made a slight comeback, until Harwood delivered a Forearm strike. Harwood went to the top and did a headbutt, but Punk had moves out of the way.
Punk was now in control of the match and he went to the top rope, but was hit by Harwood before he could complete his move. Punk fought back and got Harwood to the mat and then went for his elbow slam, but Harwood knocked punk down, and then hit a superplex on Punk. Harwood got to his feet first and then hit a diving headbutt for a near fall.
Punk and Harwood both suplexed each other over the top rope, Cash Wheeler came out at this point to cheer on Harwood. Dax rolled in and to the center of the ring, Punk for on the top and hit the elbow dive and then locked in the Anaconda Vice, Harwood escaped. Then hit a quick pinning attempt for a near fall. Harwood then hit a springboard power bomb for another near fall on Punk.
Punk followed up with a running knee stick and a GTS attempt. Harwood countered and locked in a Sharpshooter, Punk hit face strikes and locked in the Anaconda Vice once more and tapped out Harwood.
WINNER: CM PUNK
(Sage’s Analysis: A really good opening match that was really helped by the hot crowd. I do think Punk gave just a bit too much in terms of offense, but that is a nit pick by me. I just think that is the type of match Punk likes for this version of himself so get used to it against mid card opponents in AEW.)
-A photo of John Silver as a teenager with Chris Jericho was shown. Jericho was backstage and said the photo was cute, he then said he would kick SIlver’s ass tonight. They then said that they would future endeavor Silver and Reynolds. They acted like they were scared of Kingston and Santana & Ortiz but then laughed it off.
(2) THE HARDY’S & DARBY ALLIN & STING vs. PRIVATE PARTY & THE BUTCHER AND THE BLADE
Darby did a suicide dive, and Sting followed with a dive off the top as the bell rang. The men all paired off with Jeff Hardy and Blade going over the barricade. Butcher and Darby battled in the crowd. Sting and Isiah Kassidy battled outside the ring. Matt Hardy and Marq Quen in the ring. Andrade entered near the arena entrance. As Butcher took advantage and slammed Darby in the handrail and then threw him down the stairs. [c]
Butcher and Darby’s battle made it to the concourse, Private Party teamed up on the entrance ramp vs. Matt Hardy. Hardy hit a power bomb on Marq Quen as the show returned. Marq Quen hit a low blow to get the advantage, as Private Party took him off the stage and through a table.
On the concourse Jeff Hardy grabbed a ladder as Sting and Darby set up the Butcher and The Blade on tables that Hardy dove onto. Private Party then took Matt Hardy to the ring, Sting came to help Matt. Kassidy hit Sting with a chair, and he Hulked up and took out Quen and Kassidy. Sting then countered a Gin & Juice into a sleeper, Hardy and Sting hit comb finishers and pinned both members of Private Party.
WINNER: The Hardy’s & Sting & Darby Allin
(Sage’s Analysis: An absolute blast of a match that had the right opponents to not have this be a big story. Just a classic fun crazy, AEW style wrestling match to put over stars.)
-FTR had a backstage video calling out The Gunn Club. Dax and Cash both had Babyface comments as they challenged them next week. [c]
(3) BRYAN DANIELSON & JON MOXLEY vs. THE VARSITY BLONDES
Danielson and Moxley both bull rushed Brain Pillman Jr. and Griff Garrison, and took the early advantage. Julia Heart was seen sitting outside the ring and looking toward ten crowd. Danielson and Moxley swapped tags going into the break as they worked over Garrison. [c]
Pillman and Danielson were battling as the show returned, Moxley hit a pile driver and went for a pin, but Garrison broke the pin. Garrison and Pillman hit a tandem move and got a two count on Moxley. Danielson entered and hit the running knee, Moxley then hit a DDT. Moxley elbowed Griff as Danielson stomped Pillman, until the Ref called the match.
WINNER: Bryan Danielson & Jon Moxley
(Sage’s Analysis: A continuation of the beatdown that this pair is dishing out to lower tag teams. Most of the match was in the break which didn’t help the overall match.)
-Jon Moxley got on the mic and said that he has always wanted the approval of William Regal. He said all he has done is to earn that approval, just like Danielson. He said they were both forged in combat, he said that other AEW tag teams better step up of get stepped on. He said whoever thinks can ride with them, they need to reach deep down and prove they love pain. He said to get the Blackpool Combat Club’s approval you need to get that, the hard way.
-The announce team ran down the second hour of AEW Dynamite before the break. [c]
-MJF’s music hit and the AEW crowd booed him as he walked out. MJF compared the number of brain cells to the number of teeth in the crowd, and asked the crowd to pipe down. MJF started in explaining to Wardlow that he kept his end of the bargain and that it was too bad he couldn’t beat Scorpio Sky last week. He then called out CM Punk and said he had him beat at Revolution and that he had to cheat to win. He said when there is another match he will give CM Punk the most embarrassing loss of his career. He said that he wouldn’t stop till he goes to his funeral and pisses on his grave.
MJF then moved to Wardlow and called him Pig. He said when he first met Wardlow, he didn’t have anything. He said thanks to him he has a roof over his and his mother’s head. He then said that he turned on him and asked to get out of his contract. He said that Wardlow signed a deal with the devil and its Iron Clad. He said that he would nail Wardlow to a cross like Jesus and he would pull his mother rout of that house because ehe owns him.
Wardlow walked down to the ring and was surrounded by security. He said Wardlow works for him, not AEW. He said he was trespassing and that he will sit at home and everyone will forget him. He will be a nobody like he was before MJF made him someone. MJF then said that the Pinnacle is not over and they have never been better. He said that FTR will win next week and that the Pinnacle will once again be on the rise.
-Tony Schiavone was with Wheeler Yuta and The Best Friends and Orange Cassidy. Trent got in Yuta’s face and said he was done with Yuta. Both agreed that they didn’t like each other.
(4) ADAM COLE vs. JAY LETHAL
The match started with a collar and elbow tie-up. Adam Cole pushed Jay Lethal into the corner, where Cole hit some offense until Lethal countered and hit chops in the adjacent corner. Lethal then was in control for a moment until Cole countered the two men traded moves. Lethal went for a kick and missed, Cole celebrated and Lethal hit a drop kick and then three dives out onto Cole. reDRagon was then standing on the stage as the break started. [c]
Jay Lethal was in control and tried a number of pinning attempts on Cole. Lethal then locked in the Figure Four as reDRagon ran up and cheered on Cole. Lethal was distracted as Cole got a pin and then went for a boom knee, Lethal hit a cutter counter. Lethal then went for a lethal injection and was hit with a super kick. Cole then hit a Panama Sunrise for a near fall on Lethal.
Lethal dodged the Boom Knee, reDRagon distracted once more. Cole hit a low blow and then the Boom Knee for the pinfall win.
WINNER: Adam Cole
(Sage’s Analysis: This was very much a ROH match, more so a Jay Lethal PPV Special. That is not saying it’s bad, just a match that is more on the choreographed side than the simulated fighting side. I like that Page was built up and got a good pop, but it feels like more of the same with him and Cole and I am ready for it to complete because I just don’t think this is gonna take off as a feud.)
-Adam Cole said that no one deserves the AEW title more than him. He said that Adam Page has stolen that title form him twice. He said that Page got lucky and he wouldn’t be next time, he also said that Page was a coward and wouldn’t come out. Page then came out to the ring. Page took his belt off and hit the three men in the ring, but they soon overwhelmed Page. Jungle Boy, Christian Cage and Luchasaurus came for the save. Cole stole the AEW World Championship belt and he escaped the arena.
-A video for Lance Archer and Dustin Rhodes match at AEW Rampage this week was shown. [c]
-Sammy Guevara and Tay Conti were in the ring with Tony Schiavone. Tony asked how they were both doing, Sammy said that he still has the ring and said that he will always put a on a show. He said that how he will feel when he is older is fine because he is living in the now. He handed the mic to Tay and said that they wanted payback against Sky and Paige Van Zant. Sammy said both of them vs. anyone from American Top Team.
Dan Lambert, Ethan Page and Scorpio Sky came to the stage area. He then said that fans should pay for Paige’s Only Fan page. He then praised Sky and made fun of Sammy and Tay. Lambert said that they were not getting a match. Sammy made a joke about having sex with the belt on and Lambert freaked out.
-Swerve Strickland challenged Ricky Starks for the FTW title at Rampage this week in a video.
(5) LEYLA HIRSCH vs. RED VELVET
Leyla Hirsch kicked Red Velvet off the apron as she did her ring entrance. The two brawled on the outside, Velvet threw Hirsch into the stairs and then into the ring. The match officially started and Hirsch quickly hit s suplex and got a one count pinning attempt. [c]
Red Velvet made a comeback as the show returned, and then hit a double knee strike. Red Velvet and Hirsch traded some weak punches and then Velvet hesitated on the middle rope as Hirsch hit a counter German. Red Velvet hit the mix and Hirsch rolled to the outside. Hirsch grabbed the turnbuckle and the Ref pulled it away, but she had a second in her trunks and hit Red Velvet and got the pinfall win.
WINNER: Leyla Hirsch
(Sage’s Analysis: This was not very good, the post commercial break sequence was pretty sloppy and this story feels like I am watching a recap over and over again. I would very much like this story to resolve.)
-Jade was backstage and she wanted to plan her 30-0 victory celebration.
-The announce team ran down the card for Rampage and next week’s Dynamite.
-Thunder Rosa came to the stage with her new AEW Women’s World Championship belt. Vickie Guerrero came out and said that she isn’t a leader and needs to lose her fake green card and go back to Mexico. Nyla Rose came in and took out Thunder Rosa. [c]
(6) CHRIS JERICHO & DANIEL GARCIA vs. JOHN SILVER & ALEX REYNOLDS
Chris Jericho and John Silver started the match. Jericho squeezed Silver’s muscles and patted his head, Silver ran the ropes and hit some slams on Jericho. Silver then hit an arm drag, and Alex Reynolds tagged in and Dark Order teamed up and took out Jericho. Chris Jericho rolled to the outside and ate a big kick from Silver, then hit Jericho with a dive and brain buster combo. Jericho then made it look like Dark Order’s 5 & 10 threw him into the stairs and they were thrown out going into the break. [c]
When the show returned Daniel Garcia had just gotten a tag after a long Jericho run in the ring. He and Jericho were taking out Reynolds together. Reynolds battled and got a tag into Silver, after dodging a Lionsault. Silver took out Jericho and Garcia. Jericho put Silver on the apron and Silver took out every member of the JAS. Silver then hit a cross body and got a near fall on Jericho. Jericho countered a move with a Codebreaker for a near fall. Garcia was tagged in The two teamed up on Silver. Soon Jericho was taken out and Silver and Reynolds hit numerous moves and got a near fall on Garcia. Daniel Garcia and Reynolds battled, Jericho hit Reynolds with Floyd the bat and Garcia tapped out Reynolds.
WINNER: Jericho Appreciation Society
(Sage’s Analysis: A fun, if not limited on time, match. This is what it needed to be from a result standpoint. I liked that Silver and Reynolds had big moments and that near fall was believable.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: This week was an average episode of AEW Dynamite for me. The first hour was really strong and everything post MJF/Wardlow felt less than. I think some rotation of the first hour into the second hour would have helped. But, not everything can be a home run on a two hour show. Taking chances and trying to tell stories outside of the top few people in the company is important for future growth. Some weeks pay dividends and some are a net loss. The first hour of content made this show must see, I am curious to see if AEW Rampage will be better than hour two of tonights show.