AEW DYNASTY PPV PREVIEW & PREDICTIONS (4/21): Samoa Joe vs. Swerve Strickland, Ospreay vs. Danielson, Okada vs. Pac, Bucks vs. FTR in Ladder Match, Storm vs. Thunder, more

By Javier Machado, PWTorch contributor


AEW debuts a new PPV, AEW Dynasty at Chaifetz Arena in St. Louis, Mo. on April 21, 2024.

Samoa Joe (c) vs. Swerve Strickland, AEW World Championship match

Story in a nutshell: After coming up short in a triple threat match at AEW Revolution when Adam Page tapped out to AEW World Champion, Samoa Joe, Swerve Strickland rose through the AEW Rankings again and faces Joe once more in a singles match.

In the midst of their blood feud, Swerve Strickland and Adam Page found themselves at the top of the AEW rankings. The two faced each other once again to determine who’d wrestle Samoa Joe for the AEW World Championship at AEW Revolution. Thanks to a time-limit draw, the match was made into a triple threat. At Revolution, Adam Page did all he could to prevent Swerve from winning the title, and he eventually tapped out to Samoa Joe. Swerve felt he deserved another shot since he wasn’t beaten but was forced to make his way up the rankings once again. Number one contender once more, Swerve and Joe got violent on several occasions. Samoa Joe accused Swerve of being a “choke artist”, incapable of winning a title. Joe left Swerve lying in the ring on the go-home episode of Dynamite as to prove his point.

Prediction and analysis: If we operate under the assumption that Will Ospreay will be challenging for the title come AEW All In, I don’t like the idea of Swerve winning the title here since it basically makes him a transitional champion. The only way out that I see is if Adam Page interferes in the match since Page swore that Swerve won’t win gold as long as Page draws breath. Otherwise, Swerve being (truthfully) called out for constantly losing the championship matches he’s had in AEW, plus the beating he received at the go-home show, all scream Swerve wins the title.

Will Ospreay vs. Bryan Danielson

Story in a nutshell: Bryan Danielson gets to cross off another opponent off of his bucket list when he wrestles one of the best and hottest wrestlers in the world.

Soon after officially debuting for AEW as a contracted wrestler, Don Callis booked his two Callis Family members, Konosuke Takeshita and Will Ospreay for a match since, according to Callis, no one wanted to wrestle Takeshita. Ospreay won the match then was booked to wrestle his other stablemates, Kyle Fletcher and Powerhouse Hobbs. A wild Bryan Danielson then appeared and challenged Ospreay to a match. Ospreay defeated Danielson’s stablemate Claudio Castagnoli and the Callis family appeared for a post-match beatdown of Claudio, an act Ospreay wasn’t too keen on.

Prediction and analysis: Tough one to call since Ospreay is hot right now, but Danielson seems to be racking up the “L’s”. I find it hard to believe that Ospreay loses here without interference from the Callis Family. A third option is the Callis Family helps Ospreay win and Ospreay rebuffs the group leading to a split. I’ve got Ospreay.

Nicholas Jackson & Mathew Jackson vs. Dax Hardwood & Cash Wheeler, AEW World Tag Team Championship Tournament Finals Ladder match

Story in a nutshell: With Sting’s retirement, Darby Allin vacated the AEW World Tag Team Championship and it was decided that the winners of the AEW World Tag Team Tournament would be the new champions.

With the AEW World Tag Team Titles vacated by Darby Allin due to Sting’s retirement, Tony Khan announced the AEW World Tag Team Tournament to crown new champions. The Young Bucks, Nicholas and Mathew Jackson defeated Private Party and the Best Friends to advance to the finals. FTR, Dax Hardwood and Cash Wheeler, defeated the Infantry and Top Flight to advance to the finals. FTR had last beaten the Bucks at All In. The Bucks aired footage of CM Punk’s (real-life) violent encounter with Jack Perry that led to Perry’s suspension and Punk’s firing. The Bucks blamed that event for distracting them from their match with FTR later that night (since the Bucks are EVPs of the company), which led to their loss. Since FTR were known supporters of Punk, the Bucks accused FTR of setting up the whole thing so that they would have the edge in the match.

Prediction and analysis: The Bucks made mention of Jack Perry being “scapegoated” which makes me think they’ll win with Perry’s help since there is no disqualification in a ladder match.

Kazuchika Okada vs. Pac

Story in a nutshell: Pac had been demanding for stronger competition and set his eyes on Kazuchika Okada soon after Okada’s debut as a signed AEW wrestler.

Pac returned to AEW after a hiatus and easily dispatched the opponents placed in front of him. He demanded that Tony Khan feed him stronger competition before he took matters into his own hands. Soon after Kazuchika Okada debuted after signing with AEW, Pac did exactly that, going after Okada and setting up this match.

Prediction and analysis: Easy. Okada wins.

Toni Storm (c) vs. Thunder Rosa, AEW Women’s World Championship match

Story in a nutshell: After returning from injury, Thunder Rosa rose through the rankings to earn the right to challenge Toni Storm for the AEW Women’s World Championship, a title Rosa was forced to vacate due to said injury.

When she was AEW Women’s Champion, Thunder Rosa was to defend her title against Toni Storm. Unfortunately, due to an injury to Rosa, the match never happened, and Toni Storm eventually became the interim champion. When Rosa’s injury was worse than feared, Storm’s reign was retroactively recognized. When Rosa finally returned from injury, she worked her way up the ranks, ultimately defeating Storm’s protégée Mariah May to become Storm’s next challenger. Along her rise, Rosa has had some chilly interactions with Storm’s previous challenger Deonna Purrazzo.

Prediction and analysis: Toni Storm retains thanks to help from Mariah May, Storm’s valet Luther, and/or Purrazzo inadvertent involvement, setting up a multi-man match in the future.

Julia Hart (c) vs. Willow Nightingale, AEW TBS Championship match

Story in a nutshell: Willow Nightingale won a fatal four-way match to earn a title shot at AEW TBS Champion Julia Hart, a woman Willow has been feuding with for a while.

AEW TBS Champion, Julia Hart, misted Willow Nightingale’s tag team partner Skye Blue which eventually corrupted Blue who turned on Willow. Willow feuded with Hart and Blue with assistance from Kris Statlander (who in turn has Stokely Hathaway trying to corrupt her). Willow then defeated Statlander, Blue, and Anna Jay in a fatal four-way to earn a shot at Julia Hart. Willow and Adam Copeland agreed to team up in a mixed tag team match against Brody King and Julia Hart, only Cope was forced to go at it alone since Willow was attacked before the match. Willow has also had some chilly confrontations with Mercedes Mone who blames Willow for an injury Mercedes suffered when the two wrestled for the New Japan Strong Women’s Championship.

Prediction: With Mercedes Mone challenging the winner of the match, and with bad blood between the two, I’ve got Willow winning. Mercedes Mone was attacked when the light went out during an interview and I believe that Willow and Mone are going to blame each other for these nefarious attacks. (It’s probably Kris Statlander.)

Roderick Strong (c) vs. Kyle O’Reilly, AEW International Championship match

Story in a nutshell: Kyle O’Reilly returned from injury and was welcomed back by his longtime running mate and current AEW International Champion, Roderick Strong, only for Kyle to let Roddy know he wanted to go at it alone… and that never works out well in wrestling.

Kyle O’Reilly returned from a long hiatus. Roderick Strong welcomed him back and offered Kyle the chance to join the Undisputed Kingdom since Kyle, Roddy, and Adam Cole have often teamed up in the past. Kyle politely declined saying he wanted to go solo for a while. Roderick seemed understanding but started showing up to Kyle’s matches for “support”. Eventually Roddy attacked Kyle, leading to this match.

Prediction and analysis: I expect the Undisputed Kingdom to interfere in the match, winning it for Roddy who’ll retain.

Hook (c) vs. Chris Jericho, unrecognized FTW Championship FTW Rules match

Story in a nutshell: When Chris Jericho became too pushy in his attempt to teach Hook, ultimately revealing his true colors, until Hook had enough leading to this match.

Chris Jericho, searching for a new apprentice, set his eye on Hook, playing upon his connection to Hook’s father Taz. The two teamed up for a bit before a tone-deaf Jericho began getting pushy. Jericho began demanding his instructions be followed to the letter saying it was an honor to sit under his “learning tree” (Brian Myers wants his gimmick back). Jericho talked down to Katsuyori Shibata who is a veteran in his own right. This disrespect of Shibata finally pushed Hook to break ties with Jericho. In an attempt to smooth things over, Jericho got Taz to set up a parley between him and Hook. Jericho couldn’t keep his arrogance in check and began speaking out of turn which led Taz to interrupt. Eventually Jericho shoved Taz down which finally triggered Hook, leading to this match.

Prediction and analysis: As I don’t think this is a one-off, and it being a no disqualification match, I think Jericho wins (maybe with help) to set up a rematch.

Adam Copeland & Eddie Kingston & Mark Briscoe vs. Malakai Black & Brody King & Buddy Mathews

Story in a nutshell: Brody King attacked Adam Copeland from behind drawing in the rest of the House of Black on Brody’s side, and Eddie Kingston and Mark Briscoe to Copelands.

AEW TNT Champion Adam Copeland is open to defending his title against anyone in sharp contrast to former champion Christian Cage. Brody King, who apparently has designs on the title, blindsided Copeland. The rest of House of Black, Malakai Black and Buddy Mathews were soon involved. Mark Briscoe, who had been feuding with the House of Black, and Eddie Kingston who had a friendly rivalry with Mark Briscoe over the ROH Championship, came to Copeland’s aid, leading to this match.

Prediction and analysis: If Brody is going to be challenging for the TNT Championship, I can see him pinning Copeland to cement his choice. Otherwise, Buddy Mathews is getting pinned.

Buy-In match: Anthony Bowens & Max Caster & Billy Gunn (c) vs. Jay White & Austin Gunn & Colten Gunn (c), AEW Trios Championship and ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Championship Winner Take All match

Story in a nutshell: After a brief alliance as the Bang-Bang Scissors Gang, Bullet Club Gold turned on the Acclaimed and Billy Gunn since their ultimate objective was to have all the gold.

Prediction and analysis: I think the Acclaimed with Billy Gunn are a bit long in the tooth so give the titles to Bullet Club Gold where they could continue squandering Jay White’s talents.

RECOMMENDED NEXT: AEW Dynamite Ratings Report (4/17): Up against NBA Play-in Tournament, did AEW hold onto the demo gain from last week? Comparisons to last two years including averages, total viewership

OR CHECK THIS OUT AT PROWRESTLING.NET: McGuire’s Mondays: Sure, AEW is good for pro wrestling… but how good?

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