To keep AEW Dynamite going under extraordinary circumstances means it’s all hands on deck. Tonight, that means Chris Jericho gets to join Tony Schiavone on commentary. Le Champion should certainly liven things up as we go live on TNT.
When Jake “The Snake” Roberts is cutting your most consistent promos, maybe just let him lead off the show. Though his goal is to get Cody to get in the ring with his client, Lance Archer, he also warns the American Nightmare not to look past his match with Shawn Spears. Speaking of Archer …
Match 1 – Lance Archer vs. Alan Angels
It’s somewhat surprising there is a ready supply of local talent in the midst of a pandemic, but here we are. Jericho knows Archer from New Japan, and he seems pretty enthused about the way he squashes Angels. But hey, as he points out on Twitter, Angels got on TV. That counts for something.
Match 2 – Dr. Britt Baker, D.M.D. vs. Hikaru Shida
Schiavone notes that we haven’t seen Baker wrestle on Dynamite much as of late, but what he doesn’t say is that it’s because Britt has been getting over as a heel by making fun of him. Jericho compares turning heel as going from kissing babies and shaking hands to shaking babies and kissing hands, which is pretty funny. Shida has been on such a roll that it almost feels weird to see her take so much offense, but that’s good because it means they aren’t burying Baker. It’s quite possible Baker’s nose is broken, as it’s a bloody mess by the finish, which comes via running knee strike by Shida. That was about as physical a match as you’ll see on TV.
Kenny Omega and Michael Nakazawa need a team name, and when the latter points out that the former is an EVP and can just take the name Best Friends from Trent and Chuck Taylor, it seems like just a joke. Alas, Orange Cassidy is … spying on them? In a distinctly Freshly Squeezed way. An unamused Trent and Chuck challenge Kenny and Nak to a match with the Best Friends moniker on the line, apparently.
A video package sets up the upcoming bout between Jon Moxley and Jake Hager, and Hager’s wife says if you don’t win, you don’t come home. OK then. Mox has such a natural way of putting his opponents over, and all told, this segment probably did more to make Hager appear to be a main event level threat than anything he’s done in AEW so far. The idea of him chasing gold in both wrestling and MMA at the same time is pretty powerful. It works for that guy in the other promotion.
Cody and Spears talk up their match, and in case you think Cody might have forgotten about that vicious chair shot months ago, uh, no.
Match 3 – Best Friends (w/ Orange Cassidy) vs. Kenny Omega and Michael Nakazawa
Not sure if Nakazawa has wrestled on Dynamite. Maybe once. Spears says he’s watching, as he’s still searching for a permanent tag team partner. There’s definitely some room for Nakazawa’s comedic in-ring stylings, but Spears is very upset he’s allowed to use baby oil while he wrestles. Both Schiavone and Jericho end up cracking up during the match, so maybe more Nak is something we can all use every now and then. Despite the appearance of the Ultimate Venom Arm — of which the less said, the better — the Best Friends rally to get the win and keep their name. All four competitors hug around Cassidy after the bell.
Brodie Lee wants his creepers to dress better, berating the two who don’t look like the one wearing a tie. The Exalted One has a special mission for that guy.
Damn, Baker is still bloody when she gives a brief backstage interview. She’s tough.
When I said earlier that a video package helped put Hager over, that did not mean I wanted to see another one. Just getting that out there.
Let’s hear from Matt Hardy, shall we? After mocking Jericho for sitting in a hot tub in leather pants last week (yes, really), he rails against the Circle that is Internal and invites Jericho to face him at the Hardy Compound in the Elite Deletion. Yeah, that usually doesn’t work out too well for the away team.
Match 4 – Lee Johnson vs. “The Exalted One” Brodie Lee
Not much to say for this one except thanks for showing up, Mr. Johnson.
One more preview for Cody-Spears, as well as a tale of the tape. Taking this tourney pretty seriously and giving it a big fight feel.
Main Event – “The Chairman” Shawn Spears vs. “The American Nightmare” Cody (w/ Brandi Rhodes) – AEW TNT Championship Tournament Quarterfinals Match
There’s more than chairs to Spears. He sets up one of the guardrails on the side of the ring and delivers a suplex onto it, and for good measure, also tosses Cody from the ring to the floor through a table later in the match. Spears seems to be dismayed that Cody doesn’t get counted out, and that’s a mistake because his foe rallies to hit Cross Rhodes twice. Brandi is incredulous when Spears kicks out, but when Cody locks on the Figure Four, the Chairman is too busy writhing in pain to get his shoulders off the mat, and is pinned instead of submitting. Cody moves on to face the winner of the Sammy Guevara-Darby Allin bout, but that’s for another night as we’re out of time. See you in seven!
Nick Tylwalk has been with SLAM! Wrestling since the dawn of time, or at least since before the turn of the century. He spends his days doing PR things, but he’ll always make time to sneak away for some wrestling.