AEW Dynamite Preview for December 16, 2020
All Elite Wrestling is coming at you LIVE this Wednesday night with another stacked DYNAMITE for fans across the lands! It all kicks off at 8pm EST/7pm CST on TNT, or check out AEWPlus.com if you are a member of our international audience! Plus, you can catch the Pre- and Post-Game shows exclusively on our YouTube channel to get the full Elite Experience (Click Here)!
A week ago, after he and Don Callis arrived via helicopter, we heard from the brand new AEW World Champion Kenny Omega. We also got to hear from the legendary Sting for the very first time, witnessed MJF keep hold of that Dynamite Diamond Ring at the expense of Orange Cassidy, saw all-out mayhem break out around the ring during said fight, FTR in action, the World Tag Team Champion Young Bucks beat Hybrid2, and more!
This Wednesday will be just as loaded with the World Champion stepping into the ring, a huge twelve man tag match, a women's tag team battle, six man action, the former TNT Champion competing, and more!!!
WORLD TITLE ELIMINATOR MATCH
***NO DISQUALIFICATION, ANYTHING GOES***
AEW World Champion Kenny Omega (w/ Don Callis) vs. Joey Janela
This past week was a very busy one for the AEW World Champion, first he headed to Nashville last Tuesday to appear on IMPACT Wrestling with their EVP, Kenny's surrogate uncle if you will, Don Callis. Then, as witnessed in the video embedded above, he landed on the scene at DYNAMITE in Jacksonville on Wednesday night via helicopter. There he addressed the AEW audience on what went down in the match with Jon Moxley the week prior, sent an arrogant message to Tony Khan, and teased the big plans he and Callis have for the future, plans that the duo apparently think fans are not ready to hear.
But Kenny Omega was not done yet with his week, nor was he done with addressing All Elite Wrestling either. Take a look at the tweet embedded below, filmed before Kenny headed to Mexico for AAA, where he would successfully defend the Mega Championship, to see how The Collector shaped this week's edition of DYNAMITE with a message for a former opponent...
One could look at this challenge as the AEW World giving an opportunity to someone whose chance was pulled out from under them, albeit for COVID-related precautionary reasons, or it can be seen as the arrogance of “The Cleaner” given that he's beaten Joey Janela on two separate occasions since the inception of AEW. Now only one of those matches is considered official, their October 23rd DYNAMITE match in 2019, but their first collision certainly casts a shadow on this match set to take place on Wednesday night.
See while that first bout, way back on the October 15th edition of AEW DARK, may have been contested as a Light Out, Unsanctioned Match with no bearing on the record books, the fact that it was also fought with no rules has to be acknowledged, especially given the stipulation for this week's encounter. It may be a world that Janela has thrived in over the course of his wrestling career, operating without rules or restrictions, but Kenny Omega did win that meeting.
Janela can look at this fight from several angles going in; first it can be seen as a chance for redemption, to make good for the two losses he has experienced at the hands of the now AEW World Champion. Second, it can be viewed as the opportunity Janela has craved to establish himself as a singles wrestler since the beginning of All Elite Wrestling. Joey has had some good outings in that division, wins over competitors like Kip Sabian, Marko Stunt, and Shawn Spears, but his highest profile matches against men such as Omega, Moxley, Cody, and Jericho have ended in defeat. His cumulative record in singles competition stands at seven wins and ten losses, with two additional unsanctioned losses not factored in, but in every single one of those nineteen matches, be it a win or loss, Janela has proven time and again that he is a fighter.
On Wednesday, Joey is going to have to dig deep and bring out every ounce of fight he has in his body to order to accomplish the improbable and defeat Kenny Omega. He has to focus on earning a future World Title shot by beating the champ, he has to zone in on what it would mean for his AEW profile to knock off the champion, especially in Kenny's first AEW match since capturing the title in controversial fashion from Jon Moxley.
Joey, on a three match win streak in singles competition, also wants to earn his first championship match of any kind in AEW and the nature of this match and the rules, or rather lack thereof, give Janela a boost in this one. And the fact that Omega is coming into this after a hellacious AAA Mega Title defense against Laredo Kid a few days ago may also help lean this one into Janela's favor.
Joey is the underdog, he knows it, fans know it, Omega knows it, and it may be the reason Kenny picked him for this opportunity in the first place, perhaps he sees an easy notch in the win column. So now the ball is in Janela's court, and it is up to him to take that ball, shove it down Omega's throat, and earn himself a World Championship match!
TWELVE MEN, ONE RING...
The Inner Circle (Chris Jericho, Jake Hager, MJF, Ortiz, Santana, Sammy Guevara)
The Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent), Top Flight (Darius & Daunte Martin), Varsity Blondes (Brian Pillman Jr & Griff Garrison)
The Inner Circle started their night last week by finding a way to get on the same page in the face of Chris Jericho's ultimatum to either do that or see the group disbanded. It was certainly touch and go for a minute, seeming like the animosity Sammy Guevara has for MJF could ruin the entire thing, but the group found their way to a harmony.
That harmonious state, tenuous it may be, could not have come soon enough because later in the night one of the newest inductees into the group, MJF, had to contend with Orange Cassidy over possession of the Dynamite Diamond Ring. Suffice to say the numbers were not in the favor of “Freshly Squeezed” even with Chuck Taylor and Trent at his side, and the involvement of the other six members of The Inner Circle led to The Best Friends finding some help of their own.
Unfortunately the addition of Top Flight, Brandon Cutler, and The Varsity Blondes, while evening out the odds with Chris Jericho's lot, was not enough to prevent Miro and Kip Sabian from getting involved. As seen in the video embedded right above, the pair used the distraction provided by the brawl around the ring for Miro to get involved, decimate OC with a clothesline, and leave him easy pickings for Maxwell Jacob Friedman.
In the aftermath of this chaos, after DYNAMITE went off the air, a huge fourteen man tag match was signed for this week's DYNAMITE pitting the full Inner Circle contingent against the seven men who were up to the task of facing down Jericho's crew last Wednesday. The Best Friends are quite familiar with the members of The Inner Circle, especially Ortiz and Santana, just take a look at at their Parking Lot Fight on the September 16th DYNAMITE to see the hostilities that run deep between that quartet, it's only Top Flight who are totally unfamiliar with The Inner Circle when it comes to in-ring competition.
While the experience of the Martin brothers' allies here help, this fight is a huge difference from any of the ones that have been fought prior to Wednesday night. For one, it's on DYNAMITE, that alone makes a huge difference when it comes to competition, and for another, it is the full force of The Inner Circle that stands across the ring, an Inner Circle that is (apparently) on the same page. One member of that group though will be absent this evening, necessitating a change to the originally scheduled bout,
But even with “just” six members of the Inner Circle in action, this a tough mountain to climb for any unit, a long row to hoe, and when it's six people who have never had to function as a unit before, there is quite obviously not the cohesion of the five OG Inner Circle members who have been together since DYNAMITE day one, plus their newest acquisition in MJF.
Which unit will rise to the occasion on this loaded Wednesday night?
(#3) “The American Nightmare” Cody Rhodes (w/ Arn Anderson) vs. Angelico (w/ Jack Evans)
It is time for Cody to focus on Wednesday night; there is no Sting teasing his nostalgic chords of getting that never thought possible dream match, there is no Team Taz threatening permanent bodily harm, and no Shaquille O'Neal playing with the idea of fighting the former two-time TNT Champion.
Standing across the ring from him when the bell tolls to start the match will be one of the most unique combatants on the AEW roster, one-half of The Hybrid2, the purveyor of the Navarro Death Roll, the unpredictable Angelico. Yes he is a man who generally swims in the waters of the tag team division with Jack Evans, but Angelico has dipped toes in the singles ranks, and stands with a pair of wins and a pair of losses in those endeavors.
Angelico is certainly unlike any opponent Cody has experienced in All Elite Wrestling, a true hybrid of various styles picked up in his world travels, with a definite leaning towards the Lucha part of the spectrum. And in those travels, Angelico has experienced his own successes as a singles wrestler, collecting titles in Mexico, Germany, Canada, and South Africa along the way. Point being, although the one-on-one competition in AEW has not been Angelico's focus, the man is no slouch as a solo act.
Based on tweets (View Tweets) Cody has made since the match was set for this week, “The American Nightmare” certainly recognizes the skill Angelico brings to the dance, and will treat him with the utmost respect as a competitor. That being said, Cody is of a mindset to get back on track as a singles wrestler and aims to have it start at the expense of Angelico. It is his first singles match since losing the TNT Title to Darby Allin at FULL GEAR 2020 over a month ago, and while Cody has stated he is not angling for a rematch yet, what plans he had post-title have become enmeshed in Shaq, Team Taz, and now Sting.
Weeks ago he started to spit out the name of MJF before Jade Cargill interrupted him, so perhaps that is where Cody's head was at weeks ago, but now, with so much thrown at him in a short time, it is hard to tell what direction this man is headed. The one certainty is that Cody is headed to DYNAMITE this Wednesday night for a head-to-head meeting with Angelico!
WOMEN'S TAG TEAM ACTION...
NWA World Women's Champion Serena Deeb & (#1) Big Swole
Diamante & Ivelisse
To say Jade Cargill has been a chaotic presence within the locker room would be understating the impact this woman has had on AEW in a very short time. It may have begun with a simple verbal confrontation, first with Cody Rhodes and then with Brandi, but it quickly escalated into an alliance with Nyla Rose and Vickie Guerrero, an assault on AEW's CBO that has left Brandi's arm in a sling, and now the incident captured in the tweet above.
Now Jade may not be part of this tag team match, but clearly she is involved in the circumstances that led to its creation, although both her and Nyla have escaped the results in the short term. Rather it falls on Diamante and Ivelisse to face the consequences of others actions, and they must do so this week on DYNAMITE.
Unfortunately for the Women's Tag Team Cup Tournament winners, their consequences come in the form of NWA World Women's Champion Serena Deeb and the number one ranked Big Swole. It may mark the first time these two women have united, but they aren't totally unfamiliar with one another seeing as how Swole holds a win over Deeb back on the October 7th DYNAMITE just prior to Deeb winning her championship. As the last person to beat Serena, it could even be argued that Swole has a reasonable argument for a title match, but that's not the tale of this tape.
This one is about tag team competition, and settling the score for a situation none of these four women even created, but Swole and Deeb weren't about to sit back and let Red Velvet be assaulted by Nyla and Cargill. Clearly Ivelisse and Diamante were also unwilling to pass up a chance to take a shot at the women who are now their foes for this evening. The tag team experience factor weighs heavily on the side of Diamante and Ivelisse, the duo has only lost one match in their nine bouts as a unit, but the nascent pairing of Deeb and Swole are certainly no slouches. If they can find a groove as a team, Serena and Big Swole could no doubt pick up the win in this tag team encounter.
SIX MAN TAG...
Hangman Adam Page & The Dark Order (Alex Reynolds & John Silver)
Matt Hardy & Private Party (Isiah Kassidy & Marq Quen)
And speaking of teams with no experience working together, this week on DYNAMITE it will be Hangman Page going into Trios action with, of all people, Alex Reynolds and John Silver! Now The Dark Order has been courting Hangman Page for quite some time, at least as far back as July when he fought Five in singles competition, but their efforts have drastically ramped up as of late in the aftermath of FULL GEAR 2020. Just look at the interactions between Page and The Dark Order over the course of the last few weeks on BTE (Watch Here) and see that, at the very least, Reynolds and Silver are wearing on Page. Even with the match Page and Silver had on November 25th (Watch Here), there seemed to be a strange bond forming between the two men; Page even smiled after a playful little smack on the ass from “The Meat Man”!
Whatever is going on here, whatever this relationship between Page and The Dark Order is turning into, it is not the first time we have seen Hangman seem to find some drunken solace in friendships. But look how that all turned out with FTR...
On the other side of this coin, Matt Hardy has spent several months at the side of Private Party serving as mentor for Isiah Kassidy and Marq Quen. The young duo have learned, grown under his tree, but clearly after the Dynamite Diamond Battle Royale, there are some issues with the “Hardy Party” seeing as how Matt dumped Isiah out a minute into the proceedings. In that video above, Matt even seems a bit condescending to his proteges, putting the onus on Private Party for all of three of their eliminations that night, and taking little responsibility himself. It is in keeping though with his rather self-aggrandizing social media presence as of late, and that does not exactly endear people, even ones who have already invested so much time in the relationship.
Now, one strange thing about this side of the match, maybe unexpected is more accurate than strange, is that this also marks the very first time Hardy and Private Party have actually united for a six man tag! Given how intensely focused Matt had been on Sammy Guevara throughout the summer and fall, as well as the injuries he sustained while enmeshed in that rivalry, it is of little surprise that he did not have the capacity to venture into that territory with Isiah and Marq.
So this is truly a match of first-time partners, but not first-time opponents, as Private Party holds a victory over this Dark Order duo from the BUY-IN at ALL OUT 2020, and have competed against Alex and John in several multi-man situations as well. Then there are the pair of tag team victories Adam Page holds over Isiah and Marq with Kenny Omega, the Stadium Stampede history of Page and Hardy, plus the general Dark Order and Page history discussed earlier.
This comes down to which trio can gel together the smoothest: the three men who have had a mentor/student relationship for months but is certainly on the rocks, or the three men who have been foes in the past but have developed some weird chemistry in the last month? Tune in Wednesday night to find out!
TAG TEAM COMPETITION...
SCU (Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian)
(#5) The Acclaimed (Anthony Bowens & Max Caster)
Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian have proven to be two of The Young Bucks most stalwart friends since the dawn of All Elite Wrestling. Over the last few weeks, they have proven it several times over by coming to the aid of Matt and Nick Jackson in times of need.
This past week, in the aftermath of the World Tag Team Champions victory over The Hybrid2, Anthony Bowens and Max Caster hopped the railing from their ringside position, and attempted to assault The Young Bucks. Daniels and Kaz were johnny-on-the-spot, hitting the ring before The Acclaimed could make their move, and preventing any shenanigans from going down.
Well now instead of getting The Young Bucks in the ring, Bowens and Caster have to answer to one of the premier tag teams of this generation in Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian. Now The Acclaimed may be sporting a 7-1 record coming out of this week's AEW DARK, while Kaz and CD have a 4-4 AEW record as a team, the former has not scored those victories over any teams with the lineage of this SCU pair.
Daniels and Kaz were highly decorated as a tag team prior to AEW, if not for The Lucha Bros it may even have been that pair who were crowned the first World Tag Team Champions last year, but that was not what fate had in store. But that does not change the history of Daniels and Kazarian as a tag team, nor diminish the challenge that The Acclaimed face this Wednesday night on DYNAMITE. If they can conquer the challenge, it will be the biggest victory of Bowens' and Caster's careers, and certainly propel them up the rankings, especially as they just cracked into the top five after last night's DARK.
The pressure is on The Acclaimed to prove to everyone else what they believe about themselves, that they deserve to be talked about alongside The Young Bucks, SCU, FTR, and the other great tag teams that compromise the division.
THIS IS STING!
Two weeks ago the legendary Sting shocked the AEW audience, and the wrestling world at large, by showing up on DYNAMITE to aid Cody and TNT Champion Darby Allin. One week ago, he emerged just as Cody was aiming to address the world, but while it seemed initially that Sting's appearance was focused on the former TNT Champion, in truth his interest was in the current holder of that title Darby Allin.
What that interest entails, what the certifiable all-time great wants from Darby, well that remains uncertain, but it is as Sting said himself, the only thing for certain is that nothing is for certain. Still, with Sting set to appear LIVE this week on DYNAMITE, perhaps we will all find out more about what the man behind the painted face has going on in that brain of his...
THE NATURAL HAS SOME WORDS...
Last week, “The Natural” Dustin Rhodes defeated The Dark Order's Ten in singles competition only to be offered a spot, complete with designate Seven, alongside Mr. Brodie Lee's legion. Dustin gave a solid response to that:
This week, Rhodes will have some words to address what went down that he will share with Dasha Gonzalez and all the AEW fans on Wednesday night! Dustin has stated on many occasions that it is his mission in life to tear down The Dark Order, so what does he have to say about that?
CONTACTLESS PRE-SHOW MEET & GREET...
DYNAMITE this Wednesday night is loaded top-to-bottom with one tremendous match after another; the World Champion is in action, 12 top athletes will collide in one crazy tag team battle, Sting will be in the house, and loads more for your viewing pleasure! It all goes down LIVE on TNT, starting at 8pm EST/7pm CST, with our Pre-Show on the official YouTube channel (Watch Here) prior to DYNAMITE!
Speaking of YouTube, do not miss out on another action-packed edition of AEW DARK from Tuesday night featuring AEW Women's World Champion Hikaru Shida in action, as well as Brian Cage, Ricky Starks, Jurassic Express, The Acclaimed, Anna Jay, and more!