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AEW Dynamite recap & reactions (Apr. 6, 2022): Double champs

AEW Dynamite (Apr. 6, 2022) emanated from Agganis Arena in Boston, MA. The show featured FTR defending both the AAA and ROH tag titles against the Young Bucks, the Hardys competing in a tables match, and the debut bout of Samoa Joe.

Get caught up on all the Dynamite details with the excellent play-by-play from Claire Elizabeth.

Double champs

FTR and the Young Bucks met for round two of their rivalry. The Bucks won the first matchup to be crowned AEW tag champs. That was a while back. On this occasion, FTR were AAA and ROH champs with both titles on the line. FTR kept their gold when all was said and done.

The bout started with both teams mirroring each other in movement. The next stage saw slick teamwork. The Bucks executed a double hip toss, double back flip, and a double dropkick. FTR doubled up on Sharpshooters.

The following level was the close pinfall stage. Dax Harwood hit a brainbuster to Nick Jackson on the floor. In the ring, Cash Wheeler hit a Gory bomb on Matt Jackson. 1, 2, kick out. FTR aimed for the Big Rig, but the Bucks countered for a low blow to set up a Big Rig of their own. 1, 2, kick out. I appreciate how commentary protected the move by explaining that FTR’s mastery of the technique is more effective than teams trying it on a whim.

The Bucks followed up with More Bang for Your Buck, but that couldn’t seal the deal. Nick grabbed a title belt with bad intentions, so Dax tried to tug it away. Wheeler scored a sneaky roll-up on a distracted Matt. Kick out. Nick managed to smack the belt into Wheeler. Matt secured a tight roll-up, but Dax rushed in for the break.

A double superkick knocked Harwood out of the ring. The Bucks sized up a BTE Trigger. Boom! 1, 2, Wheeler placed his foot on the rope for a dramatic break. I loved how Wheeler sold the urgency of impending danger before that move when the Bucks had him trapped.

The Bucks plotted to take it up a notch with a Meltzer driver, but Harwood intercepted Nick in the air for a slingshot powerbomb. Wheeler reversed position on Matt for a piledriver. FTR was in the groove and stole the BTE Trigger to use on the Matt. They even kissed his cheeks. FTR finished with a Big Rig to retain gold.

FTR and the Bucks put on a very entertaining match. In terms of greatness, I don’t think it eclipsed FTR versus the Briscoes a few nights earlier. The ROH bout felt like a rugged fight, while this one was more on the finesse side with creative counters. Those two matches should erase any doubts fans have about FTR’s ability. They wrestled in two different styles with equal success to show versatility. What I liked most about this bout was complete unpredictability on a winner. It went down to the wire with neither team foreshadowing victory. The dramatic finish played out as a badass nail in the coffin victory for FTR.

Get the tables

The Hardys returned to action for a tables match against Butcher and Blade. AEW modified the rules so that both members of a team had to take an offensive maneuver through the table before victory could be declared. It sounded good in theory to prevent silly finishes like Big Show stepping through a table. However, the execution was muddled in confusion.

The rules were off to a good start when Jeff Hardy dodged a spear and Blade crashed into a table. That one didn’t qualify, so the match continued. Jeff was eliminated early when Butcher suplexed him as Blade leaped for a diving spear. The impact caused Jeff to smash a table.

Jeff was still permitted to be ringside to assist his brother. He saved Matt from chair violence. Matt grabbed the steel whacking both opponents. He connected on a flying leg drop to put Butcher through a table. Butcher was eliminated.

As the match reached its climax, that’s where the confusion set in. Matt clobbered Blade and Butcher with Twists of Fates on the floor. Jeff pulled out a ladder and set up tables. Matt placed Blade on the wood surface, and Jeff took a dive from high above to land on Blade into the tables. Match over. Hardys win.

So, the eliminated participant won the match, thus negating the purpose of being eliminated. Perhaps better terminology would solve this riddle for next time. As it played out on this evening, commentary referred to Jeff as being eliminated. He played that part for a while when ducking out after taking his table spot. I don’t know if the idea was to sell the pain. Eventually, Jeff was back in the game helping his brother. It doesn’t make logical sense that the match could end by him after already being eliminated. I’ve spent enough time on this paragraph trying to make it make sense. Moving on.

The action itself had some nice wrinkles with all the broken tables. Chairs and ladders also being used felt right with the Hardys in the match. Jeff’s final blow was a doozy living up to his wild reputation.

After the match, Sting used his bat to thwart AFO’s attempts to attack the Hardys. That was a pleasant use of the Icon and also allowed Tony Schiavone to shout, “It’s Sting!”

Let’s jam through the rest of Dynamite.

Adam Cole defeated Christian Cage. The bout was full of strategy with veteran instincts from both men. A riveting example was the sequence of Christian sizing up a spear. Cole kicked him in the knee to prevent the tackle, Christian escaped a Panama Sunrise and also ducked the Boom for a roll-up. Cole kicked out to set up Christian connecting on a spear. Cole kicked out on the cover for the match to continue.

In the end, Christian went for the Kill Switch, but Cole hooked the rope with his foot to stop the motion of the maneuver. As the referee intervened for a break, Cole poked Christian in the eye and Lowered the Boom to win.

That bout was a thinking man’s duel. It was enjoyable to see them spot tells time and time again for signature maneuvers to counter accordingly. Cole picked up a strong win. Even though he cheated, I can respect that he did it on his own accord as a sneaky scamp rather than relying on outside assistance. I’d say Cole earned a world title rematch with that victory. Nobody else is stepping up to wrestle top competition the last few weeks.

Later in the broadcast, Christian Cage threw his water bottle in frustration, then Jurassic Express challenged reDRagon to a bout and offered to put the tag titles on the line. The match was made official for next week.

Cowboy shit. Speaking of the world title scene, Hangman Page addressed the situation. After Cole’s win, reDRagon ran out to kick the loser while he was down. Jurassic Express made the save and brawled with reDRagon out of sight. Hangman made a beeline to the ring with fire in his belly and flames in his eyes. Hangman gave Cole the rematch, except it will be a Texas Deathmatch instead of a standard bout. That will go down next week on a live episode of Rampage.

That was a great exchange between Hangman and Cole. Hangman’s intensity and anger radiated through the screen. Cole provided a perfect facial reaction upon realizing his plan may have backfired. Texas Deathmatch is a good stipulation for this feud. I have trouble buying Cole as a threat to Hangman in a fair showdown. In deathmatch rules, the word fair is thrown out the window. I would not be shocked if Cole won, and that will help the sense of unpredictability for the clash.

Samoa Joe defeated Max Caster. The winner qualified for the Owen Hart tournament. Caster rapped about sex positions, Joe’s injuries, and AEW beating NXT in the ratings with Joe as champ.

Caster’s vocal bravado pulsed into his fingers to poke Joe in the chest. Bad move. Joe headbutt Caster down to the mat. Caster had a little bit of help from Anthony Bowens, but Joe was in control for most of the match. Joe closed with a musclebuster to win.

Joe’s AEW debut was on point. There was nothing too fancy. Joe stuck to his strengths to give the people what they want, which was a specialist in kicking ass.

Afterward, Jay Lethal and Sonjay Dutt interrupted on the big screen. Lethal tried calling Joe for advice as a mentor, but Joe never answered the phone. That left Lethal to change his outlook in life to do whatever the hell he wants. Lethal and Dutt still want to celebrate Joe’s arrival to AEW, so they will present a gift next week.

Shawn Dean defeated Shawn Spears. MJF was on commentary. Spears was about to finish with a DVD when cameras showed Wardlow backstage thrashing security guards. Dean took advantage of the distraction for a surprise roll-up win. Wardlow laughed at Spears’ misfortune. The Chairman was not pleased with MJF that this drama affected his match.

Later in the show, MJF requested a match with Dean with plans to injure him worse than could happen in combat.

Thumbs up for the sneaky win by Dean. That has helped make him a little more interesting in the role of fodder. The way his wins unfolded make me very curious what MJF has in store next week. The Wardlow bit is a fun way at advancing the story. I do wonder why I’m supposed to cheer that man beating up innocent security chumps. His beef is with MJF, not those goons. Wardlow was just in their shoes as a man doing his job for the paycheck. I will admit that the violence definitely makes me laugh. Seeing Wardlow launch bodies into the air may never get old.

Hikaru Shida defeated Julia Hart. The winner qualified for the Owen Hart tournament. Hart still copped a dark attitude. She kicked Shida in the back before the bell and choked her with a jacket. Brian Pillman Jr. and Griff Garrison were not cool with that wicked deed, so Hart ordered them to leave. Shida rallied in the end for spinning knee strike and a Falcon Arrow to win.

Afterward, Serena Deeb’s music played loud as a trick. Shida sensed a blindside attack and caught Deeb in the act. Shida held her kendo stick and Deeb had a chair for a stalemate. Deeb exited the ring rather than take the risk.

Hart’s aggression stood out in the match as a character trait while wearing the eye patch. She has been adopting an attitude to win at any cost. If not for Shida being an exceptional wrestler, Hart may have been able to win. If Hart uses those same tactics against ladies of equal experience, then she could rack up some victories. The post-match tease was well done to produce eager anticipation for another round between Shida and Deeb. I think their final showdown is worthy of a TV main event slot.

Notes: The Blackpool Combat Club has busy plans for Rampage. Bryan Danielson will wrestle Trent, and Wheeler Yuta will wrestle Jon Moxley. Yuta has impressed William Regal and Danielson. Now, he need to impress Moxley. Mox predicted a forecast of thunderous sounds of violence with blood as rain.

Chuck Taylor tried to smooth over the tension with Yuta. The Best Friends have brought him this far, and there is no reason why Yuta can’t be the best with them by his side. Trent protested to call Yuta a scumbag and traitor. He plans to make an example out of Danielson to show Yuta what he is capable of.

Sammy Guevara was joined by Tay Conti for the cue card gimmick. They want revenge on Dan Lambert’s group and won’t stop breaking things until they get the match.

Eddie Kingston, Santana, and Ortiz beat up the Jericho Appreciation Society before the show. Jake Hager drove the getaway car to safety. Kingston proclaimed that they will attack on sight whenever they see the JAS. It doesn’t matter if wives and kids are present. A 6-man tag was made for next week.

Jade Cargill welcomed her baddies, beautiful women with confidence. Cargill was confident that Marina Shafir will be win #30. She is tired of MMA losers crossing over into professional wrestling.

Nyla Rose appreciates Thunder Rosa’s passion for women’s wrestling, but she still plans to win the title at Battle of the Belts II on April 16.

Jamie Hayter and Toni Storm have beef brewing. Storm extended her hand in peace. Hayter slapped it away. Hayter plans to stop Storm’s momentum if they meet in the Owen Hart tournament.

Swerve Strickland was ambushed by Team Taz in the locker room. Keith Lee made the save and pounced Will Hobbs through a wall.

Stud of the Show: Samoa Joe

Joe’s badass aura remains intact. The man is a major draw poised for big bouts.

Match of the Night: FTR vs. Young Bucks

The main event was a dandy of excitement never lulling in action.

Grade: A-

This episode of Dynamite was high-energy with an ornery vibe in the air. It had a good mix of matches with purpose combined with quick story building scenes.

Share your thoughts about Dynamite. How do you rate it? Who stole the show?

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