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AEW Dynamite preview (Dec. 20, 2023): Chris Jericho needs to make an important announcement

AEW Dynamite

Dynamite airs tonight (Dec. 20) with a live show from Paycom Center in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. This is the fifth episode of Dynamite during the six week build towards Worlds End, which takes place on December 30.

Chris Jericho needs to make an important announcement

AEW World Tag Team Champions Ricky Starks and Big Bill are currently scheduled to defend the belts at Worlds End against The Winnipeg Jets Chris Jericho and Kenny Omega.

Those plans will have to change because Omega is indefinitely out of action after being hospitalized with diverticulitis. That means Jericho needs to find a new tag team partner for the title match. AEW hasn’t specifically said anything about this announcement being made tonight. However, Jericho has seemingly confirmed he will be on Dynamite for Holiday Bash, so I think we will find out who the replacement is:

I suppose it’s possible that AEW can abandon the tag title match altogether and instead move Jericho into a PPV singles match with someone from the Don Callis family. But things are often more fun in wrestling when there’s chaos, so Jericho should be allowed to pick a new partner for Worlds End.

How about AEW International Champion Orange Cassidy? Omega will need to be replaced by someone who is a big deal and typically booked on PPV; Cassidy fits the bill. Maybe he and Jericho can form The Orange Jets?

If not Orange, will Chris try to convince his longtime friend Jake Hager to once again stand by his side for a violent war? Anybody who teams up with Chris is putting themselves on the Don Callis’ hit list, so it’s probably a bigger commitment than just teaming up with Chris for one match.

There ultimately isn’t an obvious answer as to who Jericho will announce as Kenny’s replacement. We’ll just have to tune into Dynamite tonight to see what change(s) AEW makes to adjust for Omega’s absence.

The rest of tonight’s lineup

The Continental Classic tournament continues tonight with the final three matches in the round-robin portion of the Gold League. The top two ranked wrestlers will advance to face each other in the Gold League Final next week.

Mark Briscoe (0 points) vs. Jay Lethal (0 points) is completely inconsequential to determining which two Gold League wrestlers will advance. Mark and Jay agreed to wrestle this match with honor. Will Lethal actually stick to that agreement, or will he cheat to ensure he doesn’t finish the tourney with an 0-5 record?

Rush (6 points) needs to beat Swerve Strickland (9 points) to have a chance to end up in three-way tie for second place at 9 points with Swerve and Jay White. AEW has not explained how that complicated three-way tie will be handled, so it’s probably not going to happen.

The main event should be the undefeated Jon Moxley (12 points) vs. Jay White (9 points). If Swerve moves up to 12 points by beating Rush earlier in the night, then a Jay White victory over Mox will result in a three-way tie atop the Gold League at 12 points. Hopefully AEW will provide an explanation for what happens in this hypothetical case.

The most obvious way to avoid a three-way tie is for Swerve and Moxley to win their respective matches, in which case they will be the two wrestlers who advance. Another possibility is for Swerve vs. Rush to end in a draw, moving Swerve up to 10 points. In that case, Jay White will be in a must-win situation against Moxley, where Jay advances (over Swerve) with a win and is otherwise eliminated.

There are two other matches announced for tonight’s show that aren’t part of the Continental Classic tournament. Riho and Saraya will go at it in a singles match to determine who challenges “Timeless” Toni Storm for the AEW Women’s World Championship at Worlds End. Ruby Soho has already told Saraya that she won’t be ringside for this fight. Will Anna Jay step up in Ruby’s place?

The final advertised match is Roderick Strong vs. Komander. This looks like a tune-up for Strong as he tries to get back in the winner’s column following last week’s loss to Hangman Page.

Samoa Joe and AEW World Champion MJF will also make an appearance tonight. They are scheduled to fight each other for that belt in 10 days at World End, but will first address everything that’s been going on with The Devil’s attacks. Will we get any closer to learning the identity of The Devil and his masked goons?

Other stuff to keep an eye on

- Adam Copeland has challenged TNT Champion Christian Cage to a No Disqualification match at Worlds End. Will Cage accept or decline the challenge on tonight’s show? If the match is made official, Copeland should find a few friends to neutralize Nick Wayne and Luchasaurus Killswitch, because they will be allowed to interfere in the match. Are Sting, Darby Allin, and Ric Flair around?

- AEW World Trios Champions Daddy Ass & The Acclaimed will defend their belts against Action Andretti and Top Flight later this week on the Holiday Bash episode of Collision. That show will also feature Thunder Rosa’s in-ring return to AEW. There will likely be some promos tonight hyping up these matches.

- Will FTW Champion HOOK vs. ROH Pure Champion Wheeler Yuta be made official for Worlds End?

- Does Wardlow have a couple of minutes to spare tonight at Holiday Bash to destroy Santa Claus with a powerbomb symphony?

- It sounds like Jack Perry is no longer suspended by AEW, so where the f*** is he?

What will you be looking for on Dynamite?

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