AEW Champion Jon Moxley confers with tag team partner Darby Allin on 'AEW: Dynamite'
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AEW: Dynamite continues to roll toward the All Out PPV.

After the shocking return of Sammy Guevara last week, the conflict between Orange Cassidy and Chris Jericho raged on. And indy wrestling favorite Warhorse got his shot at the TNT Championship.

With more shocking debuts and a huge promo from MJF, AEW: Dynamite doesn’t look like it’s going to put the breaks on any time soon.

On with the hits and misses from this week’s All Elite Wrestling action.

Best Friends & Friends came up winners on 'AEW: Dynamite'

NEAR MISS – 10-Man Tag Team Match: Inner Circle Vs. Orange Cassidy, Best Friends, & Jurassic Express (W/ Marko Stunt)

When the Orange Cassidy vs. Chris Jericho feud started, I really thought AEW would let it fizzle out. But here we are, two months later on AEW: Dynamite. And it’s unquestionably the top program in the company.

Hey, they’re doing a tag match where tag rules don’t apply? That doesn’t involve the Bucks? Matt and Nick must be pretty upset about that.

There wasn’t really too much to this match. It was solid enough, and it kept Orange vs. Jericho at the forefront. They teased a hoss fight between Hager and Luchasaurus for what feels like the six billionth time. Matt Hardy runs out to distract Sammy, allowing Jurassic Express to make the pin.

Nothing bad by any means, but nothing earth-shattering either. And at least we’re finally gonna go somewhere with Sammy vs. Hardy.

I will say, Orange’s “exciting” bounce off the ropes is a thing of beauty.

Warhorse came up from the indies to challenge Cody for the TNT Championship on 'AEW: Dynamite'

HIT – TNT Championship Match: Cody (C, W/ Arn Anderson) Vs. Warhorse

So ever since Cody announced the open challenge for the TNT Championship, I’ve been hearing the internet freak out that Warhorse needs to get a shot.

Well, here he is on AEW: Dynamite. And he’s fine? I guess? There just doesn’t seem to be much to him.

And that doesn’t translate to the match being bad at all. The match was pretty good. But after all that hype, to find out that Warhorse is just kind of pretty okay is a bit of a letdown.

The open challenge isn’t doing Cody any favors, and it’s not doing AEW any favors either. It’s a nice way to give new guys from the indies their shot, but it’s not the best use of someone who – arguably – is AEW’s top guy.

I do really like the running thread of Arn getting more frustrated with Cody ignoring his coaching. When the heel turn comes, that’ll be the catalyst.

Matt Cardona made his AEW debut on 'AEW: Dynamite'

HIT – Matt Cardona Debuts

After the match, the Dark Order makes its presence known on AEW: Dynamite. They jump a defenseless Cody, which brings out Not-Zack-Ryder! Matt Cardona is All Elite, apparently.

Man, I’m absolutely batting a goose egg with that story about where all the WWE releases from April would land.

Cardona makes the save, and he and Cody chase the Dark Order off, setting the stage for a match next week on AEW: Dynamite.

The use of the TNT title wasn’t the best, but Cardona can’t ask for a better debut than to be paired with Cody.

HIT – Meanwhile-Mania!

Jericho and the Inner Circle make their way back out on AEW: Dynamite. And Jericho is less-than-pleased.

Le Champion demands his rematch with Orange Cassidy in two weeks. If Cassidy loses, he has to pay for Jericho’s $7,000 jacket. In the meantime, Jericho and Cassidy will have a debate next week. With a special guest moderator. Um. About a debate about what?

Anyway, the point is that Santana thinks Jericho’s jacket smells like cat pee. Then stop wearing the damn thing!

Earlier in the day in some board room, FTR officially signed their AEW contract. Arn Anderson comes out as FTR’s “tag team representation” and assures them that they will always have a tag rope for their matches. Just don’t ask him to be a coach. He doesn’t do anything.

Another stipulation: The August 12 AEW: Dynamite must be ‘Tag Team Appreciation Night,’ hosted by FTR.

To wrap the segment, Hangman Page comes out to share some booze with FTR. He offers Arn some, but Arn passes. What, does he got the dia-beetus?

Hangman Page and Kenny Omega put the AEW Tag Team Championship on the line against Dark Order on 'AEW: Dynamite'

HIT – AEW Tag Team Championship Match: ‘Hangman’ Adam Page & Kenny Omega (C) Vs. Dark Order (Evil Uno & Stu Grayson)

AEW: Dynamite intro graphic update: ‘Hangman’ Page didn’t like the white wrist tape. I’ll tell you what I like, though. Dark Anna Jay. I like that quite a bit.

This match was really, really good. And a big part of me is gonna be sad whenever Kenny and the Hangman break up. Having said that, Kenny is doing an awesome job of playing quiet resentment.

Evil Uno and Stu Grayson have become an infinitely better team since they debuted at last year’s Double Or Nothing. Page and Omega pick up the win to retain with the Last Call.

After the match, Mr. Brodie Lee beats up Uno and Grayson. Brodie turns his attention to Hangman and Omega. “Kenny, thanks for actually showing up this week.” Ooooh, sick burn. The Dark Order goons jump out from the crowd and surround the Elite, but FTR makes the save again.

This was a picture-perfect AEW: Dynamite segment. Three separate stories on display, all given equal weight. Great stuff.

After the match, Britt Baker offers Big Swole a match against the good doctor. But only if Swole beats an opponent of Baker’s choosing.

AEW Women's Champion Hikaru Shida took on Diamante on 'AEW: Dynamite'

MISS – Hikaru Shida Vs. Diamante

Shida, the ultimate sportswoman of AEW: Dynamite, offers a handshake to start. Diamante isn’t having it.

These women put everything they could possibly fit into a five-minute match. And they put together a pretty good showing.

But three words tell the story. “Five-minute match.” That’s the story of every AEW women’s match. The division is struggling to catch on as it is. Nobody can get over if all we’re going to get is these short bouts. Shida picks up the win with the Falcon Arrow, but again. What does this do for anybody?

It doesn’t do the champion any favors, and it doesn’t help Diamante either. This is a miss for AEW: Dynamite. Not because of the match, which was pretty good. But the booking was poor, at best.

MJF continued his campaign to be the AEW World Champion on 'AEW: Dynamite'

HIT – MJF’s State Of The Industry Address

MJF with a Burberry podium. And a prepared speech. On AEW: Dynamite. Is it my birthday?

So, long story short. Fifteen months later, AEW is getting serious with MJF. The Salt of the Earth made his case to be the next AEW World Champion. I gotta say, it’s pretty compelling.

To say nothing of being DAMN entertaining.

He demands AEW fans begin using the hashtags “NotMyChampion” and “MJF2020.” Done. MJF claims that Moxley is afraid of him being featured too prominently. “A guy who came from a place of TITANS isn’t new – brother!” I laughed out loud.

MJF further digs in at AEW in general. He gripes about gymnastics, flips, and flops. Then he really digs in and basically calls Moxley an Austin clone. Ouch.

This was fantastic. And we’re finally on the road to MJF vs. Moxley at All Out. I’m there for it.

Darby Allin and Jon Moxley took on Brian Cage and Ricky Starks on 'AEW: Dynamite'

HIT – Jon Moxley And Darby Allin Vs. Brian Cage And Ricky Starks

I’ll give AEW: Dynamite credit. It’s Ricky Starks second match on the big show, and he’s in the main event. Cool.

This was a fun garbage fight with all kinds of hardcore-ish madness. Trash cans and goofy bumps aplenty. Kinda making MJF’s point for him, aren’t you, Mox?

Starks earns his stripes in a big way as Allin opens up a huge gash on his back with a thumbtack-covered skateboard. Yeesh.

The thumbtack skateboard is enough to get Darby the pin, and the babyfaces emerge victorious. And next week, we’re getting Moxley vs. Allin for the title.

Those two burned the house down in November on AEW: Dynamite in Indianapolis. If next week’s match is even half as good, we’re in for a treat.

The Breakdown

It wasn’t the strongest episode of AEW: Dynamite. And somehow, even at its weakest, AEW is head and shoulders above the competition.

Some of the booking was wonky, and AEW has got to get serious about its women’s division. Big Swole vs. Britt Baker is a big step forward. But it’s only a drop in the bucket.

Still, we’re working toward big things at All Out. And hopefully the coronation of MJF.

AEW: Dynamite airs Wednesday nights on TNT at 8 PM/ET.

All images courtesy of All Elite Wrestling.

'AEW: Dynamite' - July 29, 2020

7.2

In-Ring Action

7.5/10

Booking/Writing

6.2/10

Promos/Video Packages

8.0/10

Entertainment Value

7.1/10

Pros

  • The tag title match was a perfect storm of awesome
  • AEW keeps pushing Orange Cassidy to the moon
  • Maxwell. Jacob. Friedman.
  • Matt Cardona debuts!

Cons

  • AEW's women keep getting the short straw
  • Warhorse didn't live up to the hype
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