Slam’s Ben Lypka was in the crowd for last night’s episode of AEW Dynamite, and the tapings for Friday night’s Rampage and this week’s ROH show.

Here are his observations – and photos – from the show:

Wednesday’s (May 24) go home edition of AEW Dynamite inside the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas saw the promotion’s final pushes towards Sunday’s (May 28) Double or Nothing
pay-per-view show and potentially address a lingering elephant in the room.

We had a final meeting between the four pillars, a reference to Dixie Carter, the Anarchy in the Arena build heat up and a surprising appearance by Sabu – but the most newsworthy item saw
the looming status of CM Punk become a little clearer.

AEW president and CEO Tony Khan revealed the site for the first-ever edition of the new Saturday Collision show and Chicago’s United Center was announced as the venue. It’s the same building that Punk sold out for his initial return to wrestling with AEW back on Aug. 20, 2021.

Khan shared the decision in a pre-recorded backstage video and the reaction of those inside was unique. Initially there was a big pop, followed by CM Punk chants and then some booing. While there has been no confirmation that Punk will be returning, it has widely been speculated and the small sample size of fans’ reactions inside the MGM Grand Garden means we could be
in for a wild summer.


The show opened with Orange Cassidy defending the title against Aussie Open’s Kyle Fletcher. Some amusing stalling tactics by Cassidy frustrated Fletcher early, but a superkick and a long delayed vertical suplex put Fletcher in control. He followed up with a pair of tombstones and a sit out Michinoku Driver, but Cassidy refused to stay down. Eventually a DDT was hit by Cassidy
and he then reversed another tombstone into a roll-up and earned the win.

I thought Fletcher was impressive in the match and Cassidy continues to be a reliable workhorse in AEW. It was later revealed that Fletcher and his partner Mark Davis have signed with AEW.

Ricky Starks stated in a backstage promo that he is sick of Juice Robinson and Jay White and is refocusing on the International Title for Sunday. He was then attacked by White and Robinson
and it appears that feud is continuing.

A short video aired on Jungle Boy, which explained his motivations for Sunday’s world title match. Surprisingly, Jungle Boy was not popular in Las Vegas and was booed all night by the live

Cash Wheeler and Dax Harwood arrived and called Jay Lethal and Jeff Jarrett rejects from TNA. Harwood then suggested Jarrett call the queen of the mountain after they lose on Sunday – not
his wife but Dixie Carter. That brought out Mark Briscoe who was unhappy after being accidentally piledrove last week by Harwood. Briscoe did not accept Harwood’s apology and
struck him. He then hit Jarrett and Sonjay Dutt before leaving.

Sammy Guevara had a short backstage promo similar to Jungle Boy. Guevara was treated like a babyface and was quite popular with the Las Vegas crowd.

The House of Black then defeated the trio of AR Fox, Metalik and Blake Christian in short fashion. The finishing sequence was well-done with Black locking Metalik in a kneebar, Matthews putting Fox in a prism trap and King choking out Christian at the same time. The lighting for the HOB matches is unique and looks very cool in-arena, but the division needs more established challengers.

The Blackpool Combat Club followed with an incredible promo from Jon Moxley promising a significant amount of violence on Sunday and that the BCC will prove why they are
professionals and The Elite are amateurs.

MJF came out to a lot of heat and re-dubbed Sin City as Virgin Vegas. He also hinted at his contract expiring soon and spoke about the lack of competition. He was then confronted by Darby Allin, who claimed that AEW saved him and he will win the title. MJF then hits Allin with a low blow and is about to hit him with the Dynamite Diamond Ring when Allin was saved by Guevara and then Jungle Boy. Again, Guevara was popular in Vegas and Jungle Boy was not. Allin and MJF both had their supporters.

Lady Frost vs. Taya Valkyrie was next and Frost was impressive and got a lot more offence than I expected. Jade and her crew came out to watch, but did not get involved. The crowd was quiet
for this match, as it’s not really clear if Taya is a heel or face and Frost was a newcomer.

The Adam Cole/Chris Jericho contract signing was next, and the crowd was very much into both guys. Cole taunted Jericho and threatened him with a high level of violence and Jericho brought
up the fact that Cole allowed Britt Baker to be attacked. Cole then noted that there are four other men with Jericho and he only had Roderick Strong by his side.

Cole then introduced Sabu who scared off the Jericho Appreciation Society by throwing chairs at them. A completely random addition to the match, but it did get a big pop.

Strong vs. Daniel Garcia was next. This was perfectly acceptable wrestling, but the crowd did feel a bit down after the last segment. Solid match and Strong won with a backbreaker. Garcia’s
goofy dance is getting over and he got some “you can’t dance” chants.

Lucha Bros. vs. Claudio Castagnoli and Wheeler Yuta main evented the show and this was a lot of fun. Castagnoli is such an excellent base for high flying guys and all four guys worked well.
The finish came when the Young Bucks attacked Castagnoli and the Bros hit a spike fear factor on Yuta to win.

Moxley got on the mic to close the show and promised more violence on Sunday. After the cameras stopped Danielson slapped Yuta several times for punishment after losing.

Most Over:

  • Adam Cole
  • Lucha Bros
  • FTR

Most Heat:

  • Chris Jericho
  • MJF
  • Jungle Boy

Match of the night:

  • Lucha Bros vs. Claudio Castagnoli and Wheeler Yuta


Photos: Ben Lypka