AEW DYNAMITE HITS & MISSES (2/28): Hangman completes his turn, Ospreay’s debut as a full-timer, set-up for Jericho-Atlantis, Bucks and Sting, Free Jay White

By Gregg Kanner, PWTorch contributor


It’s go-home show time for AEW and Revolution. This week’s Dynamite was the last chance to hype up what is expected to be a very solid PPV in front of a very large crowd. Most of the matches have had nice builds so I am going into this show hoping to see a solid two hour preview for Sunday. Here we go.



Nice performances from all three wrestlers in the opening segment. Hangman (hopefully) completed his heel turn while Swerve showed the fire of a fan favorite but kept his edge. Joe remained calm and serious and in complete control. I expect Hangman to do something to cost Swerve the title on Sunday keeping Joe as champ. That makes the most sense as they can keep Swerve in chase-mode while they figure out what to do with the incoming Osprey and Okada. All in all, a solid preview to the World Title match.


Over the years, AEW has been criticized – rightly so – for lacking explanations and backstories to certain “special” match-ups. On this show, they did a great job giving viewers the history between Chris Jericho and the Atlantis family by showing old clips and hearing Jericho clearly explain the purpose behind the match. During the previous segments where they teased that the match was coming up later, I was confused and not really interested, but by the end of the promo, I was onboard and ready to engage in the battle.


Great work from Will Ospreay here reminding the fans who he is and what he’s done and setting a “babyface” tone to set up what is expected to be the match of the night at Revolution between him and Takeshita. Ospreay looked comfortable on the mic and Don Callis was gold as usual playing off the crowd. I can’t wait to see this one on Sunday as well as what the future holds for Ospreay in AEW.


“Great guy” Tony Schaivone — Furthering my enjoyment of the weekly commentary as the subtle jab Excalibur took tossing to Schiavone that made him laugh out loud on camera.

“I’m sitting down and I’m taller than him… and that’s me saying it.” — Taz on Stokely Hathaway

“I’m not a fan of second generation wrestlers at all.” — Taz

I continue to very much enjoy the fun the commentary team is having on a weekly basis and it makes the show more enjoyable to watch.



Just end this bit before White is buried too far down the card to recover.


It may have been the layout of the venue, but the darkness of the crowd just took me out of parts of this show. There were over 3,000 people in the building and they were loud at times, but they needed to do a better job of hiding the strange layout of the building where you could see random suites and areas without seats. I’m very much looking forward to Sunday and the packed house in Greensboro and hope the new hires in AEW find ways to showcase smaller venues better than this week.



This is a first for me since I started writing this column. The Bucks and Sting/Darby segment had some stuff I really liked and some stuff I really did not.

First, kudos to AEW for providing a show-long narrative with the Bucks searching for Sting in order to rough him up. Too often they will do a segment on a storyline and then it’s done and forgotten as soon as it’s over. Being able to go back to it during the two hours keeps viewers engaged in what is going to happen and, thus, they keep watching!

Second, getting the Ric Flair “whose side is he on” stuff out of the way before Sunday was a smart move. I’m fine with the two week angle, and I’m happy I won’t be watching the match on Sunday wondering when Flair will make his choice.

Third, Sting coming down from the rafters was way cool.

Now, the bad. This was an overbooked mess. Why would Sting hang out in the rafters and watch his best buddy and tag team partner get beaten up, EVP triggered, and beaten with a bat and not come down?. Why would Sting watch Flair get beaten up and still do nothing? Why wait until they are conveniently on the stage to come down? It was just plain stupid and made no sense.


I’m not quite sure how many extra PPVs they sold during this go-home show. It was a fine, entertaining show, but it didn’t have that special hook that I feel was needed. As usual, it’ll be a great PPV on Sunday and I can’t wait to watch it, but I can understand and see why AEW is struggling to gain more audience in ratings and in-person week to week. I’m hoping the new additions will help, but it’s going to take some adjustments from Tony Khan and the decision-makers to get back what has been lost.

Continued thanks to everyone listening to The All Elite Conversation Club on the PWTorch Dailycast podcast lineup on Friday afternoons. Joel Dehnel and I have a great time breaking down all things AEW and appreciate those who have given us a try!

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