Home AEW Dynamite TV report for 11/29/2023

Dynamite TV report for 11/29/2023

126

Venue: Target Center, Minneapolis, MN.

*****

‘Arrr matey, it be Bryan Danielson out to join the landlubbers on comms.

They ran through the rules again and showed the standings in both leagues.  That’s an improvement, still be nice to discuss strategy a little – ‘both Rush and Briscoe really need a win tonight…’ – make it seem real.

Jon Moxley vs Jay Lethal (Gold League)

Backstory: Match 2 of Tourney

Mox soaked about two rows of people when chucking his drink.  And for the second week in a row Jay Lethal is opening the show in a match he has no hope of winning.  Casual viewers, stay tuned!

Right to the mat: headlocks and headscissor counters, crowd chanting for Mox as he ran through Lethal with his shoulder.  Lethal got an early figure four, Mox rolled under the ropes still in the hold to break it, both crashed to the floor, Lethal landed a tope after staggering Mox, stopped to strut on the apron and Danielson pointed out it isn’t what he should be doing.

Thank you Bryan.

Mox came back with a tope of his own but seemed to hurt his knee, probably selling as he was quickly back on top until Lethal targeted the joint via dragon screw.  Crowd very quiet with the heel on offense.  Exchange of forearms in the middle, Mox getting the better until wildly missing a KKL, both countered finishers: Lethal Injection and Bulldog Choke , Lethal got a kneebreaker then headed upstairs.

Landing an elbow for two then smashing Moxley off the apron as the ads arrived.

Fairly good start.  But will anyone care?

Back to Mox staggering on his weakened knee to hit a cutter, pounding his chest, piledriver attempt – Lethal backed him to the corner, set him atop the buckle, dragon screw off the top, Mox struggling to get up, Lethal waiting until missing a dropkick to the knee.  Mox chops and strikes, yay/boo, Mox getting the better until a Lethal back elbow – Mox responded with one of his own and a KKL which looked like it hurt.

Death Rider attempt, Lethal countered into Lethal combination and barely got one with a late cover.  Then smashed Mox’s knee against the mat, tried a figure four, cradle as Mox got two, and again via rollup, missed a KKL, both slipped between rollups and chokes for two ending in Lethal putting on the figure four, dead center, crowd didn’t care, cause Mox isn’t going to tap.

After getting the ropes, Lethal tagrted the knee with a kick, setup the Lethal Injection, Moxley conned him by selling his knee then snatched him into the Paradigm Shift, KKL, piledriver, Lethal kicked out.  Why???  Right into the choke, Lethal tried to fight free by smashing the knee but tapped as Mox became the first guy to bag six points.

Pretty good clash if you can ignore how uninteresting the outcome was.  Will be interesting to see if they do something like having Mox sell the knee going forward and it getting weaker as he goes.

They showed both groups again in much-improved coverage of the tournament.

Winner: Jon Moxley

Then showed Eddie Kingston after Saturday’s loss.  He said Tony Khan hadn’t put any scrubs in the tournament.  Maybe he’d been too cocky.  Maybe he’d thought he deserves to win when everything has to be earned.  He sounded very emotional as he talked about facing Danielson next and being ‘behind the eight-ball’ then talking himself round about getting right for that match.

Crowd chanted ‘Eddie’ as we returned, Danielson promo’d back in fiery fashion, vowing to become the first triple crown champion and saying he was impressed with Eddie’s confidence putting his belts up but that if one loss is all it takes for him to feel like this…

They then showed all the tournament matches for tonight and Saturday again.  Could not have done more to keep fans up to date or make this feel important here.

Except perhaps for not having Jay Lethal in it.  Sorry, couldn’t help it.

Some nice promo work too – Kingston clearly loves these tournaments since he knows exactly what to say within the context.  He sounds like a guy in a real tournament.

*****

Tony Schiavone told us Sting’s last match is March 3rd 2024.  And the venue will be the Greensboro Coliseum in North Carolina.  He talked about the Flair/Sting match at that venue then both guys entered.  Flair looked like an aging pimp sans cup.  Which isn’t far off the mark.

Sting again talked about that match with Flair.  For a long time.  Flair said he didn’t make Sting, Sting made himself.  And turned bright red just talking – the point of all of which was to say he’s honored to be there at Sting’s last match.

Erm, any new material?  We heard all this last time.  Nice they decided to start hyping it properly but not a lot to it.  Crowd certainly weren’t screaming their lungs out as we came back.  In fact they were quiet till Mark Briscoe hit the ramp.

Mark Briscoe vs Rush (Gold League)

Backstory: Match 2 of Tourney

Both guys charged to the middle, right to a fight, chops, splashes and leg lariats in the corner.  Back to the chops, Briscoe on top, Rush ducked and fired back, stiff kick to the spine, stomp to the chest, then mimicked kicking a football or something, posed and was booed.  He’s supposed to be a face.

Danielson’s still on comms btw.

Rush took too long posing and Briscoe charged him outside, more chops against the barricade, taking turns until the Mexican flung him round ringside.

Briscoe hit back and landed an elbow off the apron.  Before waiting for Rush to re-enter.  Back to the chops, crowd pretty into this, Briscoe ran in, Rush avoided him and hit a release German right on Briscoes head, thrust kick, Mark popped up via lariat, both down.

Ads.  Man that German was a gnarly bump, almost became an overhead throw.

Back to Briscoe in a leglock, crawling and bagging the ropes, Rush selling his leg, seemingly legitimately since they said it happened during the break and didn’t show it.  Back to the fight, rights in the middle, Briscoe took one to the chin and hit the deck, ran at Rush, catching him in an overhead throw (Rush was using the ropes to hold himself up), Rush hit back with a throw into the ropes after Briscoe ran at him, he can’t seem to move easily or run.

Briscoe speared him out his boots mid-Bull’s Horns, neckbreaker, count of two.

Rush missed a ripcord lariat, Briscoe got a waist lock, Rush tried to fight out, Briscoe landed a turn-around enziguri, both down, Rush ending up on the apron.  Briscoe went after him, more chops until Briscoe was hurled off the apron via another throw.  Nasty spill.

Rush now awaiting Briscoe inside, the latter rolled back in, Rush set him atop the buckle, Briscoe fought off a superplex with a big overhand, froggy bow, Rush just kicked out, back dropped out of the Jay Driller, flung Briscoe into the ropes again, hit a stiff elbow strike, running dropkick in the corner, win.

Guessing that knee injury really is legit since he hit a dropkick rather than going to his knees for the Bull’s Horns.  And didn’t move a lot following break, Briscoe moved for both guys, frequently running at Rush so the latter didn’t have to move.

Still a nice match, they worked around it pretty well.

They again showed the standings with Rush now on the board.

Winner: Rush

Backstage, again black and white, Toni Storm was using her belt like an ice pack, as if she had a hangover.  Mariah May and Luther were with her.  RJ City was there to interview her.

Toni said she’d had a party to celebrate her win and JFK had been there and that she had ‘a touch of the gout’.  City asked if she were worried about an upcoming title defence, she listed a bunch of people from the old days such as Fatty Arbuckle who hadn’t been worried then asked City to remove her shoe cause she was uncomfortable, presumably on account of the gout.

‘That gout can be rough,’ said Taz the second we returned and everybody laughed, yours truly included.

All fairly entertaining but didn’t see a lot of point to it or much evolution.  She and May aren’t really interacting so that’s either being done very slowly or badly.

*****

MJF came out to a nice pop, again with his cane.  He addressed Joe and said he doesn’t like him but respects him.  How original.

He said Joe had come here ‘cause he believes in ‘those three letters’, pointing to the AEW logo.  Brief ‘A-E-Dub’ chant.  Max said he once tuned into TNA and saw a lot of good stuff but above all the others was Joe.  He might have looked ‘unconventional’ but Joe didn’t care ‘and neither did any of us’, because he was the baddest man on the planet.

Others didn’t appreciate his talents and he wasn’t afforded the chance to be a champion in WWE (please stop).

He said Joe broke the mold and allowed others to flourish: people like him, and companies like AEW.  So Max said ‘Thank you’, even though it pains him.  A brief ‘Thank you Joe’ chant started.

Max said he wasn’t too shabby himself though.  And helped build a new alternative.  He’s helped build this place brick by brick.  Crowd chanted his name.  He listed all the guys he beaten including Punk and Cody.  He was lucky to beat Joe last time, he might have been his toughest opponent.  But World’s End is about Max’s legacy.

‘I’m going to make a promise to everybody watching at home and everybody in this arena…’, whether his knee, hip or shoulder give out… if Joe’s Godzilla incarnate… he did the dog in the fight/fight in the dog line (again, very original).  ‘At World’s End you are gonna have to put. me. down.’

The lights went out then flickered and the guys in black attacked with a baseball bat.  Joe’s music hit even though he was immediately there and ran them off.  The screen went blank and things went silent for several seconds before a message appeared on the big screen:

In the shadows, our game begins. Next week, MJF & Samoa Joe, you will face the unknown in a tag match. Are you a hero, Max?

Crowd chanted that he was their scumbag.

MJF said he was sick of ‘Scooby Doo bullshit’, a furious Skye Blue marched out (I kid).  But especially when he’s already dealing with Joe.  So he’s going to take out all his men and unmask him.  Max’s music started but went static-y again and the commentators came back.

Joe didn’t seem pumped on being signed up for a tag he didn’t agree to.

This was weird.  The Devil stuff’s beginning to tilt toward corny – altered voices, flickering lights, goons in masks and bodysuits, it’s feeling very Black Scorpion.

And any production snafus now just feel like the company’s f’d up again, which is exactly what I thought here, that the audio had gone because of a screw up.  They need to stay away from things like that until they’re competent enough that fans know it’s an angle.

We came back to the announcers talking about this being an internal issue and security are on it.  Tony Khan’s made that tag official.

Wardlow vs AR Fox

Backstory: NONE

Not coincidence that Wardlow’s out right after that is it?  We’re supposed to think he’s involved.  He needs new music btw to make fans forget his last run.

Fox attacked through the ropes after not getting an entrance.  Wardlow shook off his offense and dragged him in over the ropes as a brief ‘Wardlow’ chant kicked up.  Beal out of the corner – Taz explained the difference between that and a hip toss.

Fox ended up outside and Wardlow bealed him back in under the ropes.  Press slam, Fox slipped out, tripped Wardlow into the buckle, low dropkick through the ropes, 450 off the top briefly woke the crowd, Wardlow kicked out at one, Fox looked shocked.

The big guy also shook off some kicks, hit a chokeslam, his very lame cock-back lariat, powerbomb, senton bomb, second powerbomb, referee stoppage.

Erm, I guess Fox is a little higher on the food chain than Wardlow’s usual victims?  Like too many in this company, it wasn’t clear if he’s a heel or not.  Because what kind of heel stops to hit a friggin senton bomb between powerbombs?

Winner: Wardlow

They finally showed us Dante Martin’s injury from this past March and advised us to look away.  Which I did, hate seeing stuff like that.  Then pushed his return match, the one happening in mere seconds.

Hardys & Brother Zay vs Action Andretti & Top Flight

Backstory: NONE

Top Flight got a really nice pop coming out.  Possibly the best on the show, they’re on their home turf too.  It’s amazing this kid is back so soon from that injury.  Hope he’s not rushing.  Big fan of the team.

Matt and Andretti to start, Action hit a dropkick, shoulder to the gut and sunset flip from the apron for two.  Hardy landed a hip toss then tagged Jeff to hit a double team legdrop for two of their own.

The pair exchanged hammer locks as the fans chanted ‘We want Dante’ and ended up in a stalemate after Andretti flipped free.  Darius and Zay in, they crashed together, very athletic series of avoidances and counters, hiptoss, legsweep, Darius dropkick right to the mush, tag to his brother, lariat in the corner, Darius suplex and kip up, Dante stalling senton from the apron.

Ads.

Matt working over Andretti, see-sawing his neck into the ropes, Jeff in for a dropkick to the back, cover for two.  Andretti in the wrong corner, quick tags in and out, the Hardys working the majority of this for their side.  Action briefly fought back but was drilled via Side Effect for another two.

Andretti slipped behind a suplex, pair of kicks and enziguri leaving both down, Action making the crawl to Dante, who flipped over Zay, pair of elbows, cover for two.  Matt Hardy in, Darius hit a facebuster in through the ropes, Zay hit a pair of lariats to leave Top Flight down, Jeff knocked Andretti off the apron, Zay used Matt’s back to dropkick Darius off the apron, all six are in a lot, a ton of stuff’s happening, it’s very hard to keep up.

Zay hit a dropkick as the Hardys held Dante up in Domesday Device position.  Kickout at two.  Outside, Darius launched off Matt’s back into Jeff, Andretti moonsault off the barricade to Matt, the faces tripled up on Zay and Dante got the win via some kind of uranage.

Strange to have Dante face faces on his return.  Went a bit long and was spots on spots on spots but the crowd were hype for this, liveliest they’ve been all night.  Sure makes a difference to the feel of a show.

Winner: Top Flight & Action Andretti

Renee with the winners to ask Dante how his leg felt.  Penta rolled up before he could answer, offered a handshake and counted the trio: ‘1, 2, 3’.  Then ushered in Vikingo and Komander, counting ‘1, 2, 3’ again for their side.  Sounds good to me.

Julia Hart vs Emi Sakura (TBS Title, No Submission)

Backstory: God knows, maybe Sakura did a funny dance backstage?

Julia got a nice reaction too; she’s also from the area.  Sakura got barely any.

Loud ‘Julia’ chants as both stood in opposing corners.  Sakura laughed, Julia smirked, Sakura ducked a lockup but was grabbed from behind, forced to the corner and attacked.  Handspring lariat in the opposite one, hip attack, snapmare out, kick to the spine.

Skye Blue should be watching: Hart has intensity, doesn’t run in place and looks like she’s trying to hurt her opponent.

The attack continued in the ropes with more kicks before things spilled outside where the vet sent Hart to the steps then absolutely squashed her against them with a body splash.  Brutal.

Ads.  Short but nice start.

The champ struggling in the ropes, Sakura standing over her, big smile on her face, double underhook, long delay as she displayed Hart to all four sides of the ring before finally dropping her into a backbreaker.

Then tried another, Hart slipped behind into a sleeper then down into a headscissors; Sakura slipped out into a Romero Special before dumping Hart off then heading upstairs, missing a moonsault, right into Hartless.  But there are no submissions.

So she let go, hit a lariat to the back, stomped the ribs, moonsault from the top, barely hit it and that was with Sakura rolling to try to get underneath.  For the win.  Otherwise a solid match.  Julia’s another character who I’d love to know is heel or face.  The HOB certainly seem to be bad guys after Collision.

Winner: Julia Hart

Mariah May with RJ City.  She’s ‘dying’ to show what she can do.  And was flirting hard with City till he said Tony Khan was the guy who made things happen and she was immediately uninterested in him.

She knocked on Khan’s door and went in.  Good thing Tony’s not married based on all that.

*****

Christian Cage came out.  I’m amazed they haven’t played Copeland’s excellent promo from Collision to set this up.  At least in clip form. Since this is Cage’s ‘response’.  He had a bunch of security with him and started by inviting Copeland to the ring.

He asked twice and Copeland didn’t come.  Me smells a backstage attack.

The more he asked, the more the crowd yelled ‘ADAAAAAAAM’ a la Roderick Strong.

Copeland’s music finally hit and he came right down.  Little weird that took so long.  Cage immediately went to the corner, security forming a wall in front.  Cage said the security was ‘management’s idea.  So asked them to leave.  They did.

Cage said they’re not going to make it to Montreal next week.  Going face-to-face to say the reason they won’t is because… ‘I’m sorry’.  Cage said everyone might think this is because he’s been left alone – crowd loudly chanted ‘Bullshit’.  Cage called Luchasaurus Luchasaurus and had to correct himself – ‘Killswitch’ – he played it well, crowd laughed and chanted ‘You F’d Up’.

And after Copeland took out Killswitch on Saturday, Cage took a drive and it turned into a long soul-searching expedition.  How did he become the guy who did such horrible things?  He recalled fun times from their past and talked about how far they’d come, Copeland remained stoic.  Cage called them the greatest tag team ever, two of the best singles of all time.  But their friendship is even deeper.

He brought up that Copeland didn’t have a dad growing up– crowd howled laughing – ‘I am your brother’, and Cage’s dad became Copeland’s dad.  He became part of the family.  To this day his dad’s still Copeland’s biggest fan.  ‘I love you man’.

This is superb.

He then talked about Copeland’s mum dying.  She’d regretted not seeing them team one more time.  ‘Let’s do this for her’.  ‘For Judy, for the Jude-meister, for your mom’. This is such supreme heel bullshit.

Copeland now seemed to be torn, emotional.  He turned his back, Cage tried to whack him with the belt, Copeland kicked him in the nuts.

‘Nice try dumbass, sit up when I’m talkin to you, shine this (title) up real nice, sleep with it if you want to, cause she’s comin’ home with me.’  He started to leave then turned back – ‘Oh, I almost forgot, go fuck yourself!’, crowd cheered this wildly.  Copeland posed atop the ramp.  Such a turnaround for his character.  And nice to see a babyface who isn’t a moron.

This was killer.  I was totally out on Copeland, totally out on this match and feud, and after two promo segments, I’m right back in.  Could be these were great, could be I’m a slut.  It was a little dumb for Cage to try the cheapshot when Copeland appeared to be wavering but, hey, he’s a heel.

Swerve Strickland vs Jay White (Gold League)

Backstory: Match 2 of Tourney

Now this is a fun one.  Not just for the quality of match but because the winner’s tough to predict.  Hopefully they don’t do a lame finish again.  White out first, Danielson’s rejoined on comms.  Nana joined Swerve and was using a single crutch but managed to do his dance.

‘Whose house…?’ chant as the two circled.  Lockup, White forced Swerve to the corner, driving shoulders to the gut then took things outside, introducing Strickland to the barricade.  Until Swerve countered.

Nice to mix things up with a fast start, White usually does a bunch of heel BS.

White countered back, Swerve almost ended up in the front row, White took things back inside and yelled ‘Whose House?’, the crowd answered.  He took Swerve down again then asked again, crowd still answered Swerve.  Who was sent to the apron, countered a White baseball slide then belly to backed him into the front row.  One of the fans was getting a little too involved and drew the attention of security.

As Swerve hit a leaping stomp to the back off the barricade, fought off a dragon screw coming back through the ropes but was caught into a draping ddt.

Ads.  Quiet so far outside of the ‘Whose House?’ stuff.  Danielson adds a lot of believability on comms.

Back to Swerve caught in a double overhook, fighting to his feet, stinging right, big chop, White nailed a saito suplex after ducking a back elbow, throw into the ropes for two; Swerve blocked a chop, slipped behind, hammerlock into a belly to back, awkward landing for White.

More rights and bodyshots, rolling flatliner countered into uranage only to be countered back as Swerve rolled through into a tejeiras, back into the rolling flatliner, back up into a brainbuster as Danielson marvelled at how smooth Swerve is.  And god damn is he.  And he got two.

White landed kicks to the knees, flatliner, deadlift German, Strickland popped up with a smacking lariat, both down, Danielson raving about each.  TiA from the crowd as they went head-to-head on their knees, fighting to their feet, big rights, staggering away only to return fire, yay/boo, White dropped.

And suckered Swerve in, targeting the knee, uranage, two only.  Sleeper suplex hooked, Swerve tried to elbow free, White caught it into an armbar, still in the hold Strickland climbed to his feet, rolled through and behind into a killshot.  He’s trying so hard to be a heel here but the crowd love him.

White nearly crushed the ref in the corner like last week, tried a low blow, Swerve saw it coming, caught the boot, hit house call, to the top, Stomp, White kicked out.  Wow.

Going to a draw?

White still down, Swerve dragging him up, the Kiwi played dead to land a Bladerunner, Swerve spilled outside.  White dragged him back in, tried a sleeper suplex, got two via rollup, Swerve got two via jackknife pin, dragged back up into a Bladerunner but Swerve slipped behind, White blocked the JML driver, landed chops, Justin spoiled things by announcing five mins left.  HATE IT!!!!

White hit a sleeper suplex, Swerve countered another Bladerunner into a cradle to win.  Nice, very nice, got me there.  Nice touch doing the announcement which usually always means a draw.  AEW are behind Swerve Strickland.  And they should be.

Really good match btw, full of slick counters, feints, finisher attempts and even a nice spot playing in to last week’s crappy finish between White and Rush.

They showed the updated standings, Mox and Swerve topping the group and presumably facing next week?

Maybe not?  All they advertised was Copeland vs Cage.

Winner: Swerve Strickland

 ________________________________________________________________

Next Collision:

  • Blue League matches:
  • Kingston vs Danielson
  • Claudio vs Brody
  • Garcia vs Andrade

Next Dynamite:

  • Adam Copeland vs Christian Cage (TNT Title)
  • MJF & Samoa Joe vs the Devil’s Goons

Thumbs Up/Down

  • Copeland/Cage segment, one of the better AEW promo segs all year
  • Show was well-paced and largely enjoyable
  • Strickland vs White, and a clean, decisive win by one name wrestler over another (it’s embarrassing that AEW allow Rush to refuse to do clean jobs)
  • Much better job pushing the tournament

 *****

  • Can you please tell us where the hell Hangman is? It’s so damaging to your product and wrestlers when it doesn’t matter that they aren’t there
  • Flair/Sting segment – Sting said it felt like the 80s and while a little nostalgia never hurt, this felt like it started in the 80s and was repetitive to boot
  • It’s not totally a thumbs down but this Devil stuff better pick up quickly, that was awkward tonight

Appreciate you reading.  Have a good week.

 

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