AEW Dynamite Preview for May 17, 2023
Last week was a busy one for All Elite Wrestling, it started with DYNAMITE and that shocking conclusion in the Steel Cage Match, continued with TWO loaded HOUSE RULES events, one in Kentucky and the other in Virginia, and wrapped with a stacked RAMPAGE! Now, with DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023 less than two weeks away, the excitement continues this Wednesday in Austin, TX!
For the very first time, AEW heads to Austin and the Moody Center for another jam-packed edition of DYNAMITE! Roderick Strong has his first AEW singles match when he goes into a Falls Count Anywhere fight with Chris Jericho while both Adam Cole and The J.A.S. are banned from the building! Speaking of The J.A.S., “The Spanish God” Sammy Guevara will be in action as he preps for the Four Way AEW World Championship Match on May 28th, and “Jungle Boy” will as well, facing LFI's Rush in singles competition. The Outcasts will be in trios competition against Dr. Britt Baker, Hikaru Shida, and the AEW Women's World Champion Jamie Hayter, and Ricky Starks will finally get his hands on “Switchblade” Jay White!
The night of action will get started at 8pm ET/7pm CT LIVE on TBS, as well as at AEWPlus.com for our international fans, so head over to the official AEW YouTube channel beforehand to watch highlights from last week's DYNAMITE and RAMPAGE, as well as this week's editions of ROAD TO, THE CONTROL CENTER, and more!
FALLS COUNT ANYWHERE...
***ADAM COLE & J.A.S. BANNED FROM BUILDING***
“The Ocho” Chris Jericho vs. Roderick Strong
It was just two weeks ago when Roderick Strong arrived on the scene here in AEW, coming to the aid of long-time friend Adam Cole when he, Bandido, and Orange Cassidy were being assaulted by The Jericho Appreciation Society. It was a joyous moment seeing the two men reunited after all this time, and that joy was further boosted the following week when Roddy, Cole, the AEW International Champion, and Bandido defeated The J.A.S. in a wild 8-Man tag.
Unfortunately Cole's attack on Chris Jericho, who was sitting at commentary during the bout, has led to the 2022 Owen Hart Foundation Tournament winner being banned from the building thanks to Jericho's legal machinations, thus in theory, and likely Jericho's intent, preventing Adam from balancing the scales. Yet as can be seen in that video embedded above, two can play that came, as Roderick made the necessary moves to insure that The Jericho Appreciation Society would also be banned from the building during this Falls Count Anywhere Match!
So without his allies to save him, Chris Jericho has to meet the man long ago dubbed as “The Messiah of the Backbreaker” and referred to as “Mr. ROH” for his contributions there, including becoming the 2nd Triple Crown Champion in Ring of Honor history following Eddie Edwards. His chops are legendary, ones that rival what Jericho experienced from Tomohiro Ishii, his Sick Kick has an impact capable of knocking a man clean out, and that says nothing of Strong's array of backbreakers.
Jericho is in for a nasty fight this Wednesday night, one he may regret signing on for given this Falls Count Anywhere stipulation!
“The Spanish God” Sammy Guevara in action!
The clock is ticking down to May 28th when DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023 comes to fans live from Las Vegas, and that night former 3-Time TNT Champion Sammy Guevara will be one of three men challenging MJF for the AEW World Championship. Ahead of his first World Title bout, “The Spanish God” will be in action this Wednesday night on DYNAMITE to keep himself warmed up for what's to come in less than two weeks time. It's a double-edged sword taking a fight so close to the biggest night of his professional wrestling career, but Guevara has proven time and again he's willing to take those risks. Whomever steps into the ring opposite Sammy could prove a major roadblock to his championship aspirations, or be a mere stepping stone to “The Spanish God” finally achieving the dream he's had since childhood!
Rush (w/Jose The Assistant) vs. “Jungle Boy” Jack Perry
Sammy Guevara won't be the only Pillar in action this Wednesday night though as “Jungle Boy” Jack Perry goes into battle with “El Toro Blanco” Rush on DYNAMITE! This is certainly a question of what's worse; not knowing exactly who your opponent is ahead of time like Sammy or heading into a fight with this former 2-Time ROH World Champion? It is definitely a risky endeavor for Jack, taking on a fight with an uncontrollable entity such as Rush and his Faccion Ingobernable, especially so close to his first AEW World Championship bout since June 26, 2021 when Jack fought Kenny Omega.
Heading into this, the former AEW World Tag Champion has won his last eight one-on-one matches, including a Steel Cage Match with Luchasaurus at FULL GEAR 2022 as well as that Final Burial bout at REVOLUTION 2023 against Christian Cage, and 11 out of his last 12 fights. Jack is on a strong roll as he attempts to fulfill his promise to be a singles champion in AEW by year's end, but Rush is the kind of man to put an end to this run in violent fashion. Just look at his recent track record when it has dovetailed with the machinations of Maxwell Jacob Friedman, specifically that February 8th bout with “The American Dragon” Bryan Danielson, a match that essentially existed as a means for Rush to brutalize Danielson prior to his Iron Man bout with MJF at REVOLUTION 2023. Could we see MJF offer up that financial motivation to Rush once again? A little cash incentive to hurt Jungle Boy's chances of defeating Max at DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023? Rush clearly has no qualms about taking the money of another, so Jack best be wary of the forces that could align against him this Wednesday night on TBS.
AEW Women's World Champion Jamie Hayter, Dr. Britt Baker DMD, & Hikaru Shida vs.
The Outcasts (Ruby Soho, Saraya & Toni Storm)
This one has been building for months now, essentially since Saraya arrived in All Elite Wrestling last fall prior to her FULL GEAR 2022 fight with Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D, a night that also saw Jamie Hayter top Toni Storm to become the new AEW Women's World Champion. Although it took some time for the two sides to coalesce into the positions they are now, for Saraya and Storm to recruit Ruby Soho to their side, and for Hikaru Shida to return to the AEW stage, this rivalry between The Outcasts and the homegrown women of All Elite Wrestling is set to explode.
What's fascinating about the entire situation is the strange bedfellows that have found each other on the side of the Homegrown. Though largely despised by many who have occupied that space since 2019, Dr. Britt Baker has emerged as the staunchest defender of those who have helped build AEW's Women's Division, and chief among those who have their issues with the Good Doctor would be Hikaru Shida. Baker is, after all, the woman who ended Shida's historic 372-day reign atop the division at 2021's DOUBLE OR NOTHING event, and Shida also one of the challengers Jamie Hayter has beaten during her championship reign.
Despite that history though, despite the general disdain that exists between Shida, Baker, and Hayter, there is at least a common goal of defending their home turf, and showing The Outcasts who really built this house over the last four years. That being said, if Soho, Storm, and Saraya can beat two former Women's World Champions as well as the current reigning champ, it has to put one of them in the running for a future title fight, possibly even at DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023 in eleven days time. This Wednesday night on DYNAMITE is a prime opportunity for both units to assert their dominance as one of AEW's marquee events approaches...
“Absolute” Ricky Starks vs. “Switchblade” Jay White (w/Juice Robinson)
“Absolute” Ricky Starks has had his fill of people getting in the way of his pursuit of championship success in All Elite Wrestling. After vanquishing Chris Jericho at REVOLUTION 2023, Starks was primed to pursue a goal he's had since making his AEW debut by challenging Cody Rhodes for the TNT Championship, that goal of becoming a champion and ascending to the top of the heap.
Unfortunately for Starks, Juice Robinson inserted himself directly into Ricky's path and has made Starks' life a bit hellish ever since. The first time Ricky thought he was going to get his hands on Juice, the match never even got started thanks to the return of “Switchblade” Jay White to All Elite Wrestling. The two men christened themselves BULLET CLUB GOLD, pulling from their mutual history as members of the BULLET CLUB proper, despite White being exiled both from New Japan Pro Wrestling and Japan as a whole, something, it should be noted, that hasn't sat well with BULLET CLUB's current leader David Finlay.
But that's neither here nor there as it pertains to Ricky Starks; what does is how Juice and “King Switch” marshaled their forces against Starks, a man who has essentially been an island in AEW since the demise of Team Taz, with an occasional ally found when purposes crossed. Action Andretti was once such individual with their mutual Jericho Appreciation Society issues, and Shawn Spears would emerge as another in this BC: GOLD situation. That put Starks and Spears together against Juice and White, but it would be the BULLET CLUB GOLD pair who found victory in that RAMPAGE tag team affair.
That would not be the case a few days later on DYNAMITE when Starks finally got his hands on Juice Robinson, and put him down for the count. Of course that wouldn't be the end of the road for the BULLET CLUB GOLD pair and “Absolute” Starks, there was still the matter of exacting revenge on Jay White, and Ricky will get that opportunity this Wednesday night on DYNAMITE, and in front of Austin, TX fans who have been following his career from its humble beginnings. As much as New Orleans, Austin is home for Ricky Starks and he knows that in this battle with BC: GOLD, the fans in attendance will rally to his side! Will that home field advantage be the secret ingredient Starks needs to overcome the uneven playing field having Juice Robinson at ringside creates? Can Ricky do his people proud and put down “King Switch” this Wednesday night?
WHY, DON? WHY?
Let's face facts, Don Callis has proven time-after-time-after-time that he's the lowest of low. He's made a career out of being an opportunist, and attaching himself to whoever seems to represent the biggest boon to Don. But it seemed when it came to his presence in All Elite Wrestling, a presence that first began when Don would slide into commentary as Kenny Omega's special guest, it seemed his allegiance to Omega was true. Their history together dated back long before AEW existed, back to the earliest years of Omega's professional wrestling aspirations, and that the two men were as close as family.
Don and Omega were thick as thieves throughout Omega's historic 346-day reign as AEW World Championship, a reign that began at WINTER IS COMING 2020 when Callis conspired with Kenny to cost Jon Moxley the championship. So when that reign came to an end at Hangman Page's hands at FULL GEAR 2021, and Kenny took a hiatus from AEW to heal up from his many nagging injuries, AEW fans also breathed a sigh of relief as it meant Don Calls might be out of the picture as well. Sadly that wouldn't be the case, and when Omega returned to AEW, so too did Callis, much to the chagrin of a great number of the AEW faithful. But that was the depth of Omega's loyalty to Don, keeping Callis in the mix, despite the fact that he's far from a beloved figure while Kenny is exactly that.
So with all their history together, with everything Callis did for Kenny's career in its early days and for everything Omega has done for Don's over the last few years, why did Don stab Omega in the head? What possessed Callis to cost Kenny Omega that Cage Match with Jon Moxley last week on DYNAMITE? It doesn't seem like a situation where The Blackpool Combat Club would pursue the assistance of Don Callis, there's likely nothing he could offer that group of men they'd want or need, so it stands to reason that Callis' motivations were purely selfish, but to what end? This Wednesday night on DYNAMITE, Don Callis will hopefully provide answers to the question that's been nagging the AEW faithful for the last week, but what will be the response from Omega to whatever Don has to say?
All Elite Wrestling debuts in Austin, TX at the Moody Center this Wednesday night for a loaded DYNAMITE! Hopefully we get answers from Don Callis about his actions last week, but if not, at least we know that some things are certain! The Outcasts will be in trios action against Hayter, Baker, and Shida! Ricky Starks will get Jay White in the ring! Both Jack Perry and Sammy Guevara will be in action preparing for the AEW World Championship match at DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023! And Chris Jericho will have to meet Roderick Strong in a Falls Count Anywhere match with his J.A.S. crew banned from the building!
DYNAMITE kicks off at 8pm ET/7pm CT on TBS, or at AEWPlus.com for our international audiences, so swing by the official AEW YouTube channel prior to showtime to catch DYNAMITE and RAMPAGE highlights, as well as this week's editions of ROAD TO, THE CONTROL CENTER, and much more!