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Acero’s AEW Dynamite Review 1.18.23

January 18, 2023 | Posted by Tony Acero
AEW Dynamite Kushida Darby Allin Image Credit: AEW
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Acero’s AEW Dynamite Review 1.18.23  

It is with a heavy heart that 411 reported Khan’s newsbreaking announcement that Jay Briscoe has passed away in an accident, and although I’ll readily admit to having only JUST seen the bad-assery that they possessed the past year or so, I find no better way to honor Jay by officially renaming anything I deem a BANGER to a full-fledged, star-studded, Meltzer-melting BRISCOE!!!!

Myself and the readers have been looking for another word for Banger, namely as an opposition to overusage. Briscoes are undoubtedly two of the guys who would have amazing match after amazing match. While I can’t wear an armband daily, and y’all couldn’t see me even if I could, consider this a nod of respect to his talent and a way to remind people as often as possible to not forget the great work he’s left behind.

Let’s go!!!!

It’s Wednesday, you know what that means…

All-Atlantic Championship Match
Orange Cassidy vs Jay Lethal

Let’s get ready for a Briscoe!

Lethal calls for a timeout while we are informed that Lethal’s buddies are not allowed to interfere in the match. Jay welcomes his peeps through the crowd to a shower of boos, though. They bully some fans out of their seats.

OC is ready for the match. He rolls forward, tries for the Orange Punch, Lethal shoots the legs, tries for a Figure Four, but OC rolls him into a pin for 1.2…N!O!!! Rope work, Lethal tries a hip toss but Orange turns it into a backslide. 1….2..N!O!! Holds onto the wrist, gets whipped over the top rope and Lethal hits a hard right.

We head to the crowd, and Danhausen is wearing an arena shirt, proving to. Be an usher. He asks Dutt for his ticket, but Dutt has a fake! Danhausen wants to escort them to the back.

We then head to Chuck and Trent with a beer and some popcorn in the front row.

OC hits a suicide dive, enters the ring, tornado DD-NO! Lethal blocks and hangs OC on the top rope. Lethal covers, mounts with some punches. Stomp to OC. Jay sends OC into the buckle head first. He puts the boot to the neck. Lethal sends OC to the outside. Danhausen is now ringside sans arena shirt. Lethal walks down the steps, and shoves OC into the apron. Back in the ring, and Lethal covers for 1..2..NO!! Choke from behind, OC is able to escape, he corners Jay and sends his head into the buckle ten times. Crossbody from the top, he fakes a punch and hits a Stundog! Tornado DDT!!! Cover for 1..2..NO!!! It looks like Jeff Jarrett continuously tries to interfere in the match, but Dutt stops him.

OC is on the apron. He heads to the top rope. Stands. Waits. Dives…..into a backbreaker/Flatliner! Lethal tries for Lethal Injection, but Orange walks to the side like he’s Samoa Joe! He calls for the punch! Dives, Lethal catches into the fireman;s, then drops Orange and hits Lethal Injection! Orange rolls to the outside!

The Best Friends are there to taunt JJ, but Dutt talks them down. The ref is distracted with Dutt.

JJ hands Lethal the guitar, but Danhausen takes it away and curses it! Jay chases him into the ring and runs into a rollup for 1…2…NO!!!! Orange Punch! Cover! 1…2…3!!!

Winner: Orange Cassidy
Who’s bookin this shit? Jeff Jarr—oohhhhhhh. Ok, nevermind.
Total Rating: **
Match Time: 9:06

Satnam Singh enters the ring, so does The Best Friends. Singh with the double GOOZLE!!! Jef Jarrett looks to swing on Orange Cassidy with the guitar, but Sonjay Dutt stops him! Orange with the super vicious kicks to Dutt!!!! Lethal pulls him out of the ring before Orange pulls the trigger and murders Dutt with a shin kick!

Short video package on Kushida vs Allin later.

The Young Bucks vs Top Flight

Nick and Dante to start. Nick works the arm. Roll through from Dante, works the left arm. Nick flips out, works the left arm. Dante front flips like nothing and arm drags Nick down. Nick is up, pissed. Side headlock. To the ropes, tackle from Nick. They run the ropes, Dante rolls into a rana, Nick lands on his feet, double dropkick, kipup from both. Hard right kick from Dante to Nick. Matt enters and stops the madness, then hits a chop to the throat. Tag to Darius. Matt doesn’t see. Dante trips Matt, bulldog from Darius. Tag again, they beat some ass in the corner. Nick in, and they make short work of him. They try to suplex Mat, but Nick catches him and lands him on his feet. Dante to the top rope. Superkick from The Bucks. They get Darius in the corner and catapult into a kick! Stomp from Nick, rolls through, backstabber to Dante who is hanging in the corner!

WE come back to Dante JUST missing the tag as Nick takes Darius off the apron the hard way. Matt sends Dante into the corner, no Dante reverses, knee strike but here comes Nick to Bulldog Dante into a bulldog. Tag to Nick. Risky Business from The Bucks. Cover for 1..2…NO!!!!! Nick holds Dante up, tag to Matt. Whip to Dante, he gets setn into the ropes, bounces off, arm drg to The Bucks. Off the rope, Dante with a spin mid air into a rana to Matt. Nice. Tag to Darius, who hits a Manhattan. Right hands to Matt, four, a fift, a clothesline sends Matt down hard. One for Nick. Kick out of the corner, flies, roll through, go behind, whip, SPANISH FLY!!!! Darius dives through the ropes into Nick! To the top rope! Dives! Matt catches, crossbody! Cover for 1..2…NO!!!!! Matt swipes, misses, back suplex but Mat lands on his feet. Tag to Nick, misses a right but hits a huge kick. Tag from Darius, flies off te top rope, alands on his fet. Matt tags. Roll through from Darius, Nick lifts, tries for a backslide, into Matt, who catches him for a piledriver, Nick is about to fly, but Darius sweeps the legs!! Kick to Matt! Flatliner from Darius to Matt! Dante with a moonsault to the outside! Darius tags! Goes for a powerbomb, Darius to the top rope into a moonsault/powerbomb sick as fuck bad ass move!!!! Cover for 1..2…NO!!! Nick stops it!!!

Nick on the apron, flies into the ring and hits an X-Factor to Darius. Moonsault to Dante on the outside! Over the top rope with a Destroyer!!! Cover for 1..2….NO!!!! Tag to Matt. Both Bucks in. THIS IS AWESOME chant. Matt kisses the armband for Briscoe, puts Darius on the top of his shouylders. Nick to the top rope. He points up. Doomsday Device! Cover for 1..2…NO!!! Dante dives into the ring to stop the pin! He sends Matt outside, then Nick onto Matt on the outside! Dante hits the ropes, dives…..SUPERKICK FROM THE YOUNG BUCKS!!! Nick rolls into the ring, Matt follows. They grab the arms of Darius.

BTE TRIGGER!!! NO!!!! THEY GO KNEE TO KNEE!!!!! Darius rolls Matt up! He’s stacked up! Darius with a 1…2….3!!!!

Winners: Top Flight
The match started slow, I was actually a bit concerned that I’d have to say they didn’t give me what I expected, but after the quick commercial break, this shit was straight fire. All four boys were on fire, and did we just see a shocking win? I hope the follow up is there.This shit was good. It was, dare I say…our very first BRISCOE!!!!
Total Rating: ****
Match Time: 12:11

We are back, and although the announcers say we are hearing from The Acclaimed, The Gunns are here to a chorus of boos. Last week, The Acclaimed embarrassed them on National TV. They made The Acclaimed popular. Have we forgotten that? They even gave The Acclaimed their dad! But that will be the last time they ever embarrass The Gunns.

The Acclaimed is here! The Gunns cut their music. They don’t want to hear it. This isn’t about Fresno.

Max asks the crowd what they’d rather hear, and tells production to shut Austin’s mic off and hit his music.

We start over with Max hittin his shit.

The Acclaimed attack!!!! But here comes Billy Gunn to stop Max. Whoa. He tosses Max to the side while his sons leave, saying he doenst need this shit.

Billy is sick and tired of this. He calls his sons whiny and privileged. As for The Acclaimed, they are tag champs – lets start acting like this. Next week, we’re hashing all this out.

Next week: Family Therapy.

If they don’t get Dr. Shelby, I ain’t want it.

We head backstage, and Hangman Adam Page who says he got his word back. Renee tells Page that Moxley told her Page really pushed him to be a better wrestler. Page understands the nature of wrestling, he understands the jokes, so he told Moxley to his face he’d knock him out, so if Jon has something else to say to his face, he’ll gladly knock him out again. Renee asks where he goes from here, and Page says he has some tough conversations he’d like to have, and mend some fences that have needed it for a long time.

Renee “ends” the interview then says Jon is fine, and will dust himself off. Page asks her to tell someone something, but thinks twice of it and says nevermind, it’s stupid. Interesting “little things” here.

Ricky Starks vs Jake Hager

LOCKUP!!! Hager to the corner. Hits some big rights then puts his hat on and mocks Starks’ pose. Hager with a shoulder tackle. Hager whips Starks int othe corner, Starks with a boot. Sends Hager to the corner, rips the hat off and walks the ropes with a sexy strut. Hager pulls him off and carries him to the center. Starks hops off the back and sends Hager to the outside. Starks follows then gets sent into the post, THEN eats a BIG BOOT! Hager gets his hat back and sends Starks into the barricade.

WE COME BACK to Hager looking to powerbomb Starks into a table again! Starks dodges it and sends Hager to the outside, but Parker and Menard move the table! Starks leaves the ring and tosses Parker aside, collapsing the table. Lol. Back in. the ring, Starks hits a dropkick, Hagger with a boot, goes for a Hager bomb, Starks kicks up! Tornado DDT to Hager! Cover for 1..2…NO!!! Menard and Parker to the apron, Starks knocks Menard off the apron, but Parker holds his arms back.

Hager rushes, Starks moves, Hager knocks Parker off the apron! Hager turns. SPEAR FROM STARKS! !!!! Cover for 1..2..3!!!

Winner: Ricky Starks
A good Starks win as he climbs his way towards Jericho.
Total Rating: **
Match Time: 6:16

The Jericho Appreciation Society tries to attack, but Starks makes his way through the crowd quickly, leaving them all waiting in the ring while Jericho scowls.

A video package for Adam Cole, who reminds us that he will run through anyone who stands in his way.

Next, Daniel Bryan v Bandido.

Backstage, Chris Jericho is big mad. He says next week, it’s all going to end. Jericho wants a tag team match with Starks and Andretti. He’ll be teaming with Sammy, but Daniel Garcia wants to be his partner. Sammy Guevara tells him wow, this is exactly what they’ve talked about. If Daniel beats Starks on Friday, he can have Sammy’s spot next week. Garcia doesn’t look impressed but gives in.

Bryan Danielson vs Bandido

Loud Bandido chant as Tony questions the covering of the mouth Bandido has. Bryan works the arm, but Bandido points the gun at Bryan. Bryan kicks the hand away and they go to either side of the ring. Arm drag from Bryan. Bryan works the headlock on the mat. Head scissors from Bandido, Bryan kips out, locks the legs up, and falls back onto it. He grabs the arms and spins Bandido into a pin. 1..2..NO!!! Bryan points his own vegan fueled gun. Bandido nods in respect. They circle, finger lock. Drop toe hold from Bandido. He hooks the arm, locks the legs for a Romero special. He slaps the sides, then Bryan reaches back and we get a Surfboard!!! But Bryan escapes out of it, turns, kicks the leg! Sick. He gets his own attempt at the surfboard, but Bandido brings the arms forward to stop it. Bryan pulls back on the arms, Bandido steps forward, so Bryan just steps on the back of the knees hard. Bryan shoots Bandido to some boos. Bandido has TWO GUNS!!!! OH SHIT!!!! HE HAS TWO GUNS! They trade pins, Bandido looks to stack Bryan up, but he fucking pulls himself up WHILE in the clutches of Bandido! Headbutt! Another! Another! Deeeeyum, Bryan! Bandido looks to finish Bryan with Blue Panther’s finisher, but Bryan escapes and they smirk. Knuckle lock again, but bryan in with the kicks, he catapults, Bandido lands on his feet, Bryan hits the ropes, Bandido tries with an arm drag, Bryan stops it, so Bandido hooks the leg and finishes the hip toss. NICE! Bandido with El Nudo Lagunero!!!

We are BACK and Bryan has Bandido cornered with some chops. Bandido waits for Bryan to hop off the corner and hits a kick. Another kick to the head. Ducks a clothesline, Bandido kicks the mid, sets up for a Brainbuster, holds onto Bryan, wow, he deadlifts Bryan into the upright position and drops Bryan. Bandido to the top. FROGS—NO! Knees up! LaBell Lock! Bandido reaches. Bryan tries to stop the break, but Bandido gets to it! Bryan with a few kicks. Bandido stuffs the last one, Bryan charges forward, Bandido catches him. Torture Rack! He drops Bryan onto a knee! Bandido goes for a HUGE 21-plex, but Bryan lands on his feet. Drop toe hold, cradle! 1..2…NO!!! Drop toe hold again, but Bandido trips Bryan, another cradle, this time from Bandido. 1…..2……NO!!! SI SE PUEDE Chant. Whip to Bryan inot the corner, Bryan shoots Bandido over the top rope to the outside! Bryan dives through with a kick! Bryan to the apron. He flies off with a knee! Bryan sends Bandido into the ring. Bryan to the top rope. Bandido with a right hand. He climbs the corner. Both men standing tall. Bandido locks up, takes Bryan sideways, backflips with Bryan in his clutches!!!! Holy shit. Bandido with a 21-plex into a pin for 1..2…..NO!!!!!

Both men up. They trade heavy right hands! Huge roundhouse from Bryan, kick ffrom Bandido. He tries for a Brainbuster, buy Brain locks the arm and drops down. He tries for the LaBell Lock. Bandido lifts Bryan up! Bryan spins and rolls Bandido forward! Ropes!

Bandido shoves Bryan up! Backslide, Bandido breaks through. Bryan hits the ropes. KNEE!!!! Cover! 1..2….3!!!!

Winner: Daniel Bryan
Good golly. It’s so amazing that the opening contest was an easy four stars for me, without a shred of hesitation, and this match was every bit as good yet that is about all that they had in common. AEW truly has something for everyone.
Total Rating: ****
Match Time: 17:52

MJF is on the screen! He says he is feeling unappreciated. He is not deaf nor dumb. He has heard all we’ve had to say claiming he’s not deserving. People seemingly have forgotten who he is and how he became champion. He takes this personally. All the moments he’s given us? Fickle is an understatement.

Bryan has only been dealing with masked Max. he likes to keep things light, have some fun, but you’ll find that the further Bryan goes, the closer to March 5th, the more his mask will slip off and you do not want that. Nobody does.

Saraya, Toni Storm, and Hikaru Shida are backstage. Saraya is upset about the kendo stick last week, but Toni calms her down by saying the AEW homegrown talent are simply not well seasoned and she will show Willow tonight what she’s learned outside of the company. Saraya will accompany her. She tells Shida to stay put.

Backstage, Renee is with Brian Cage and his favorite Prince. In comes MJF to hand Cage a big envelope of cash. He slaps the chops off of Brain’s face and tells him to use that anger next week and break Bryan’s arm.

Willow Nightingale vs Toni Storm

Side headlock takedown from Toni, Willow turns into it, lifts Toni to try and break the hold. They hit the ropes, Storm tries for a shoulder tackle. Willow hits her own. Hip toss from Toni, Willow reverses, rolls through, whip to the ropes, Willow catches Toni and hits a back suplex. Willow hits the ropes, low crossbody. Cover for 1…NO!!! Willow corners Storm, hits a right hand, whip to the corner, but Willow cartwheels out of it. Toni goes for a handshake, Willow extends, so Toni slaps Willow. Willow hits the ropes, hip attack to Willow! Toni to the apron, drops an axe on Willow.

Shida is here with her kendo stick! She walks down the ramp, slowly, dragging her kendo stick.

We are BACK and Willow is smashing Toni in the corner. Clothesline, snapmare, then a kick to the chest of Storm. Willow whips, lifts Toni up, SPINEBUSTER! Stacks her up! 1..2…NO!!!! Willow to the 2nd rope, dives off with a dropkick! She goes for a cannonball, but Toni moves! HIP ATTACK!!! DDT OFF THE ROPE! Cover for 1..2..NO!!!! Rope work. Willow with a POUNCEEEEEEEE!!! She drops the straps! Willow hits the corner, dives with a cannonball! Hits it!!! She pulls Toni to the center, covers! 1…2…NO!!!!

Saraya on the apron!!! Willow heads over to her! Toni with a rollup. She’s holding the tights! 1…2…3!!!!

Winner: Toni Storm
Not a fan of the rollup, even if she had some tights, but I suppose it is a heelish tactic to cement the turn of the non-homegrown.
Total Rating: **
Match Time: 7:13

Saraya attacks Willow! She stomps and tomps. Toni joins her. Shida is on the apron. Here comes Ruby Soho to stop them! Ruby is shocked…SHOCKED! Shida walks back up the ramp slowly.


TNT Championship Match
Darby Allin (w/ Sting) vs Yujiro Kushida

Darby with a hammer lock from behind. He snapmares Kushida to the mat and locks up from behind. Kushida turns into it, hits the ropes, tackle from Darby. He hits th ropes, dives over, trips the leg, covers for 1..NO!!! Kushida escapes, but Darby holds the arm, tries for an armbar, Kushida counters, gets an arm bar of his own, but Darby is close to the ropes. Breaks the hold. Both men up. Kushida works the left ankle, Darby kicks him away, hip toss from Shida, he cartwheels away, dropkick to Darby! Darby ot the outside. Kushida slides outide over Darby, Darby sends him into the barricade head first! Kushida grabs Darby, pulls him out of the ring, runs in, waits, kick to the arm of Darby. Boot to the face. Kushida works the left arm, wraps it around his leg.Kushida spins, twisting the forearm, and tugging on the shoulder. Chop to Darby. He thrusts the throat, whip to the corner, Darby flies over, back splash in the corner, tries for a coffin splash off the ropes, Shida stops it with an elbow strike, tries for another, but Darby hits the ropes, CODE RED! Cover for 1..2.NO!!!! Darby to the top rope. He dives off onto Kushida and his young boys! Kushida with an armbreaker on the outside!

WE ARE BACK and just in time to see Darby hitting a Scorpion Death Drop! Both men are down, and Bryce starts the count. Darby’s left arm is hurting bad. Both men up at 7. Darby slaps Kushida across the face once, twice, three times! Ouch. Darby hits the ropes, and Kushida follows with a huge kick to the face. Kushida to the apron. He runs, dives with a knee to the back of the shoulder!!! Kushida kicks Darby away on the apron, then drags Darby up by his arm. Back elbow from Darby. He hops up, over the head, hits a stunner! Darby falls right on his ass. Lol. Darby with some more hard strikes to the face on the outside. He sits Kushida on a chair, heads to the top rope, Darby dives!!!! Kushdia stands and grabs the arm!!! ARM BAR!!!! Kushida grabs th fingers! He bends them back!! The ref calls for them to get into the ring. Kushida breaks the hold. Ref is at 6. Kushida rolls into the ring! Kushida is at OCHO!!!! Darby hops into the ring, then rolls right back out. Kushida grabs his arm, locks in a key lock, but Darby climbs the corner. Kushida walks up the ramp with him! Kushida with a HUGE hip toss to Darby! Kushida tries for the Hover Board Lock, but Darby locks his fingers to prevent the hold completely!

The guys outside toss a white towel to Sting, telling him to toss it into the ring! Sting tosses it into the crowd.

Darby rolls through the hold, Last Supper! Into a pin! 1…2…..3!!!

Winner: Darby Allin
A solid match that saw more technical prowess than balls-to-the-wall abuse that we are used to seeing Darby go through. Not to say that wasn’t present, but this was a far more “wrestling” wrestling match than your typical Darby fair. With that being said, it was still bad ass.
Total Rating: ***1/2
Match Time: 13:40

Darby Allin stands up slowly and extends his hand a Kushida points to the title. He holds the number one up, wanting another one.

Excalibur gives one more shout out to Jay Briscoe before we go off the air.

End Show

The final score: review Very Good
The 411
Another episode of AEW that pretty much had everything. I love Orange Cassidy, but even I thought that opening contest was over-booked. However, when you mash it in with the rest of the show, you can see that maybe it has a place. Maybe. It's fine, though, because we got a hell of a match between The Young Bucks and Top Flight that saw a surprise winner, a technical masterpiece with Bandido and Bryan, and a mixd bag of goodness at the end with Darby and Kushida. Sprinkle in some hellish tactics (finally) of Saraya and Storm, a great showing from Ricky Starks, and The Acclaimed freestyle and you got a great show. Truly, my only complaints are possibly the sudden yearning for Billy Gunn to "fix things" amongst the foursome he is tied to and perhaps the way things ended in the Storm/Nightingale match, but those are true nitpicks if anything.

article topics :

AEW Dynamite, Tony Acero