It's Wednesday Night, and AEW Dynamite has another stacked card for a live show. Can they deliver as they have been for the last few weeks? Can they do it without Excalibur? We'll find out…
AEW Dynamite 7/29/2020 Part 1
Justin Roberts is standing in the ring as Dynamite begins. Jim Ross welcomes us to the show. Tony Schiavone is there, but Taz is filling in for Excalibur. No reason is given, but we can assume it has to do with those videos resurfacing of Excalibur using the n-word during his days as a wrestler. That happened as part of a storyline, not in Excalibur's private life, for what it's worth. I don't know enough about PWG to have a lot of background on it. But the wrestler who the word was used against in the promo, Human Tornado, has been campaigning for Excalibur to be put back on TV.
Inner Circle vs. Jurassic Express and Best Friends
Chris Jericho and The Inner Circle head to the ring, followed by Best Friends, Jurassic Express, and Orange Cassidy. It's a ten-man tag. Jericho and Cassidy look to start things off with everyone else on the apron. Jericho immediately tags in Jake Hager. Cassidy hits his shin kicks on an unamused Hager. Hager tosses Cassidy into the corner and then lifts him in the air. Cassidy claps him in the ears. Cassidy goes for a move off the ropes, and Jericho knees him in the back. All ten men get in the ring, and pandemonium breaks out—lots of dives and flips. In a cool spot, Luchasaurus gorilla presses Marko Stunt over the rope, but Hager catches him. Hager tosses him back at Luchasaurus, who catches him and throws him back again, taking out the entire crowd of wrestlers.
Orange Cassidy gets in the center of the ring and puts on his sunglasses. All four of his teammates do the Best Friends hug. Sammy Guevara tries to leap on them from the top corner, but they see it coming. Everyone takes turns beating on Sammy until Hager hops up on the apron and gets an elbow on Trent. Now for whatever reason, everyone suddenly starts following tag rules with Jericho and Trent, the legal men. Jericho tags in Santana, who takes Trent outside where he and Ortiz double-team him. Back in the ring, Santana hits a suplex, and the Inner Circle all jump in the ring to beat Trent down… while Aubrey Edwards prevents the Jurassic Friends from coming in. JR and Tony do their best to explain this as being really difficult to officiate because of everyone in the ring. You can tell JR is annoyed. Everyone on Reddit is complaining about JR "shitting on the product," but JR is right.
Anyway, the Inner Circle take turns beating up Trent for a while. Eventually, he gets a suplex on Hager and makes the tag to Luchasaurus. Luchasaurus cleans house on the Inner Circle. He gets Sammy alone in the ring and wants a clothesline, but Hager interrupts. They exchange blows, and Hager gets a clothesline. Now all ten men take turns hitting big moves, ending with Luchasaurus hitting Sammy with a roundhouse. Jericho tries to bring Floyd the bat in, but Cassidy stops him. This distracts Luchasaurus, though. Sammy is about to hit a top rope move on him when Matt Hardy's music plays, causing Sammy to look to the stage. Hardy sneaks up behind him instead and tosses him off the ropes into Luchasaurus. Luchasaurus hits a roundhouse and gets the pin.
Winner: Jurassic Friends
This match felt very disorganized, especially in the beginning. It was entertaining, but it also wasn't up to Dynamite's usual standards for killer opening matches. Commercial time.
JR shows off the announce team's coronavirus masks and pink wristbands, which signify they've been tested and passed. They run down the card for the night. Then we get a prerecorded promo from Jon Moxley. Moxley says he tries to stay out of people's business. But if people get in his business, it's a different story. Moxley is mad at Brian Cage and Ricky Starks for picking on Darby Allin because Allin is just a little guy. Moxley says he'd be a little bitch if he didn't do anything about it. Tonight, the odds will be even with Moxley and Allin vs. Cage and Starks. After the promo, Taz says Mox sounds scared, and his team will win tonight.
Cody Rhodes vs. Warhorse – TNT Championship Match
Warhorse makes his way to the ring for the TNT Championship open challenge. Cody Rhodes and Arn Anderson come out. Cody looks unimpressed with Warhorse as he continues to work this slow heel turn. They trade some grapples to start, and Warhorse annoys Cody by getting the better of him. Cody pushes Warhorse into the corner and is about to chop him, but decides not to. He's being really arrogant, and Arn doesn't look pleased. He turns his back to Warhorse, and Warhorse takes control of the match, ending up working an armbar on Cody. They trade some Irish whips and dodges, and Cody rolls out of the ring, frustrated. Arn gives him a pep talk. Cody gets back in tries again, but he ends up getting shown up by Warhorse again. Cody rolls out of the ring after a clothesline, and Dynamite goes to commercials.
Back from break, Cody has Warhorse in a half crab, working the leg. He puts on a figure four, but Warhorse turns it over. Nothing is more devastating than a figure four turned upside down on your opponent. Cody somehow manages to escape, but Warhores hits a dropkick and some clotheslines into the corner. He takes Cody down with a striking combo and then stops to headbang. He goes to the top turnbuckle but takes his time. Cody slides out of the ring again. Warhorse hits a running double stomp from the apron and throws Cody back in. Now he goes to the top and hits an elbow drop, but Cody kicks out of the pin at two.
Cody hits a powerbomb, holds the legs, and flips over into a pin, but Warhorse kicks out. Cody tries a figure four but gets rolled up with an inside cradle. Cody kicks out. Warhorse tries again, unsuccessfully. He tries a top rope move, but Cody dodges, and he lands on his feet, further damaging that leg Cody has been working on. Cody gets the figure four on, and Warhorse taps out.
Winner: Cody Rhodes
Decent match. Warhorse sold a hurt leg most of the match, and it ultimately played a role in the finish when he missed that top rope move and landed on the leg, and then tapped to the figure four. This is the first I've seen Warhorse wrestle, and he was pretty good, though not mind-blowingly good to match the hype around him on the internet. Last week's match with Eddie Kingston was better. Even so, I like that AEW has established indie wrestlers coming in and challenging for the TNT title.
After the match, The Dark Order's John Silver and Alex Reynolds hit the ring and attack Warhorse, kicking him out of the ring. Then they take down Cody. They turn toward Arn Anderson. Matt Cardona comes out and makes the save. OMG! What is Jack Passenger doing in the Impact Z… oh, wait. He and Cody hug. Dynamite goes to commercials.
After the break, Tony Schiavone wants to talk about the upcoming All Out PPV, but the Inner Circle interrupts. Chris Jericho is furious. He's tired of the Inner Circle getting screwed. Sammy Guevara is pissed at Matt Hardy for his interference earlier. And Jericho is sick and tired of Orange Cassidy too. He says we'll get a rematch between the two next week. And when Jericho beats Cassidy, Cassidy will pay him $7,000 for his jacket. Also, next week, he's challenging Cassidy to a debate with a surprise guest moderator. Jericho says he's the greatest orator ever and the demo god and popular with the female demographic. He asks Santana and Ortiz if his jacket still smells like orange juice, but they say it smells like cat pee. That was a weird turn. JR wants to know who wrote that promo.
We see a video of FTR's contract signing, which was recorded earlier in the day. FTR have their lawyer with them, and they bring in Arn Anderson as a consultant. Or maybe we're getting swerved. Arn goes over the contract and has some suggestions. FTR says Tony Khan promised them that there would be a tag team appreciation night on Dynamite in two weeks, hosted by FTR. It's in the contract, apparently. They sign. Hangman Page comes in with some whiskey to celebrate with FTR and Arn. The Four Horseman revival teases continue.
The Dark Order (Evil Uno and Stu Grayson) comes out to the ring for the tag team championship match. Brodie Lee, Colt Cabana, and Anna Jaye come with them and set up at the commentary area. Cabana joins the commentary team. Dynamite goes to commercials.
Dark Order vs. Page and Omega – AEW Tag Team Championship Match
After the commercials, the champs come out. Kenny Omega and Evil Uno start off the match, and Kenny immediately finds himself in trouble at the hands of Uno and Stu Grayson. After a brief beatdown, Kenny makes a comeback an tags in Hangman Page. They hit some tandem offense on Grayson, and Page gets a two-count off a standing moonsault. Page and Omega chop the s**t out of Evil Uno when he gets in the ring. The champs high five each other. They're on the same page right now, despite recent friction. They control the match for a while until Dark Order takes the fight outside, where they take out Omega. Back in the ring, Hangman Page is in trouble now. Dark Order work him over up until Dynamite takes another commercial break.
When Dynamite comes back, Omega is in the ring and in control. In a cool spot, Kenny tosses Stu Grayson into the corner, and he goes right over the top turnbuckle and ring post to the outside. But Uno kicks Kenny in the face right after, and he and Grayson almost put Kenny away with a powerbomb. Page makes the save, but Page is banged up from the beatdown he took earlier. With all four men in the ring, Dark Order get some big offense on Page and Omega. Another cool spot leading to the finish sees Omega hit a snapdragon on Evil Uno, only for Grayson to immediately hit a splash on Kenny. Page hits a big clothesline on Grayson, then a powerbomb on Uno. Kenny hits the V-Trigger on Uno, and then Page and Omega hit the Last Call on Uno and get the win.
Winner: Page and Omega
Brodie Lee sends Cabana and Jaye backstage, so they don't have to witness what happens next. Then he berates Evil Uno and Stu Grayson. He throws his papers in Grayson's face and roughs him up a little. Lee sees Hangman Page laughing, so he turns his attention to the ring. The Young Bucks come out to the ring to get Page and Omega's back. But Page looks suspicious. Lee berates Omega for not being there to save his partner last week. He says the Dark Order has members everywhere, and Page has pissed him off for the last time. Dark Order creepers come out of the crowd and surround the ring. But before they attack, FTR comes out and hits Lee with a cooler of beer. The Elite and FTR clear the ring of Dark Order goons. Dark Order gathers at the top of the stage. Lee smiles, plotting revenge.
Tony Schiavone gets a note from Britt Baker, who wants to cut a promo on Big Swole. Britt says Swole is obsessed with her. Britt says she's a role model, so she'll give Swole a shot at her if she can beat an opponent of Britt's choice. Dynamite goes to commercials, and we'll pick this up in part two.
This post is part of a multi-part series: Wednesday Night Wars 7/29/2020.