With AEW Revolution just two days away, would AEW Dynamite bring the noise or leave it at home, in fear of burning out its talent before the PPV? Well, as I’ve got two of these things to write today and I can’t be arsed with writing a long introduction, let’s find out, shall we? It’s time to lace up our boots and head to the ring for the AEW Dynamite: Feb 26th Edition.
30 Minute Iron Man Match: “The Bastard” PAC vs. Kenny Omega
10 Count Rating: 10
This might upset a few of you out there but in my humble opinion, this war between PAC and Omega was easily the equal of anything the two men have ever been involved in.
And yes, I am including the “Okada Trilogy” in that statement.
This was perfect from the first bell to the last and out NJPW, well, NJPW.
There wasn’t a single misstep through-out, with both PAC and Omega bringing their A plus, plus, plus game to the ring, with so many near falls that you barely had time to breathe between the counts and so many outrageous spots that you couldn’t take your eyes of the screen, even if you’d been on fire, for fear of missing something jaw-dropping.
And the way they built the story was 100% spot on.
Just when it looked like this was heading down the path of a fantastic, but inevitably scoreless, stalemate, PAC beat on The Cleaner with a chair, costing himself the first point but putting himself in the driving position.
Quickly, “The Bastard” leveled the score and took full control of the match, including a Shooting Star Press from the top turnbuckle onto Kenny as he lay on a table that had me convinced that PAC had killed him.
How neither man came out of this whole match seriously injured is a testament to just how f*cking fantastic they both are as wrestlers, and even though he tried every trick in the book to take his bitter rival down, PAC saw the counter tick down to zero and a draw declared while he had Omega in a submission move.
Time Limit Draw
This did not sit well with PAC and he proceeded to smack the ref upside the head, which led to Aubrey Edwards coming down to the ring as the match went into sudden death and she’d be the one who would count the 1-2-3 after Kenny Omega finally managed to hit the One-Winged Angel to get a truly magnificent victory.
Winner: Kenny Omega
6 Man Tag-Team Match: Sammy Guevara, Santana, And Ortiz vs. Jurassic Express
10 Count Rating: 8
Having to follow what had just happened must’ve been like following Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania, but I’ll be damned if the Inner Circle and Jurassic Express members didn’t give it a damn good try.
In fact, it was pretty awesome, but it was going to have to be.
Whereas PAC/Omega had been paced from a slow build, this hit the ground running, with all six men making this a Tornado Tag, even though it was supposed to be held under normal rules, as everyone got in their shots and high flying antics to keep a red-hot crowd simmering over nicely.
I’ve been raving for weeks about everyone involved here, but my God, Luchasaurus is on another level when it comes to big men in wrestling.
He’s on a par with Keith Lee, Dominik Dijakovic, and Damian Priest when it comes to reinventing how a human being of his size should be viewed in the squared circle, by incorporating moves usually reserved for Luchadores into his hard-hitting style.
Jurassic Express would pick up the win here, thanks to some interference from Darby Allin, but this was a joy to watch and would’ve been my Fight of the Night if it hasn’t been for that curtain-raiser.
Tag-Team Match: The Butcher And The Blade vs. Best Friends
10 Count Rating: 6
This was a pretty solid outing, but when I tell you that the only thing I can remember about it now is the exchange between Orange Cassidy and The Bunny, where she stole his sunglasses and he stole her ears, then you can see that it was a pretty average match, overall.
It might have had something to do with the endorphins starting to wear off after such a frantic opening to the show, but all I can recall thinking while it was on was, once again, why is the former Allie not in the Women’s Division?
I’ve been saying it for weeks now, she’s got enough to talent to be a real asset to that branch of the company, and though this way she gets to spend all of her time with her husband, I just think it’s a waste to have her valeting instead of wrestling.
But hey, as long as she’s happy, right?
Winners: Best Friends
Fatal Four Way: Yuka Sakazaki vs Big Swole vs Hikaru Shida vs Shanna
10 Count Rating: 7
Holy crap! I managed to find a poster for this thing!
Seriously, whoever runs the Women’s Division does a really bad job promoting it, cause these things are rarer than Unicorn shit, but lo and behold, there it is.
And lo and behold, these four women put on a pretty damn good match, proving what I’ve been saying like a goddamn broken record for the last 200 years that if you let your wrestlers do the job that you pay them for, they’ll do what they do best.
No outside interference, no dodgy ending, no sodding Luther pointing at his head and sticking out his tongue, Sakazaki, Swole, Shida, and Shanna were allowed to exhibit their skills and everyone benefited.
There was even some time for a little humor, as Sakazaki stood watching the action going on around her she was moving in the way that a fighter in a Traditional Kung-Fu film does while they’re waiting for their cue to step into the scene, it might be only something you’d notice if you were a nerd but it made me laugh.
Winner: Hikaru Shida
Young Bucks/Omega/Page Promo
10 Count Rating: 7
A decent promo/interview that set up a Young Bucks heel turn at AEW Revolution perfectly.
What? You don’t think so?
Well, maybe not but in your friendly neighborhood wrestling writer’s opinion, Hangman Page is in the right here.
He’s tried to quit The Elite, which the Bucks proceeded to tell him here was never going to happen, he’s tried to make a go of it on his own, which they reminded him that he’d never have done because he was just a Jobber before they brought him into the Bullet Club, and it seems to me that whenever Page tries anything for himself, the Young Bucks do whatever they can to hold him back.
But I’ll guess we’ll see Saturday.
Contract Signing: Chris Jericho And Jon Moxley
10 Count Rating: 6
Closing out the show with a promo and a contract signing just seemed weird to me, but this was a pretty solid effort on the whole.
The problem here is that I’ve personally seen enough beat downs to last me a lifetime by now, and can’t wait for them to get into the ring Saturday and get it on.
You can overdo a good thing and this was always going to descend into chaos, which would, inevitably, end with Moxley getting the shit kicked out of him because numbers.
That’s pretty much what happened, and even though Le Champion got cut pretty badly, this was just a little bit too much for me.
Let’s put it to bed this weekend, eh fellas.
Just like yesterday’s review of AEW Dark, I’ll raise a beer to that.
It was always going to be hard to keep up such high-level action and drama that was given to us from the PAC/Omega opener, which is why it should’ve gone on bloody last, but overall this week’s AEW Dynamite was pretty damn good.
It was nice to see the women finally getting some overdue time to actually get out there and perform and there was enough about the rest of the show to keep me interested in the upcoming AEW Revolution PPV, which is what you want from your “Go home show”.
And on the subject of AEW Revolution, tomorrow sees the return of the Predictions Showdown.
We’re two PPVs into our first season and so far The Power Mad Grevas is sitting atop the tree with 12 Points, while The Professor O’Donnell and The Flack are both hot on his heels with 9 apiece.
As for your friendly neighborhood wrestling writer, well he’s languishing behind with a measly 6, but this is all part of his long term cunning plan.
Or it might just be that he’s shite at this.
Only this weekend will tell.