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  • Writer's pictureAEW Staff

AEW Dynamite Preview for May 24, 2023


This is the it, the final few days before DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023 live on pay-per-view from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV, and it begins with an all-new DYNAMITE, hailing from the MGM Grand Garden Arena!


Although the face of DON '23 is fairly well-established, this Wednesday night could still shake things up, especially when it comes to the AEW International Championship, as just days before he's set to defend the title in the Blackjack Battle Royale, Orange Cassidy will meet Kyle Fletcher in a championship bout! And that's not the only title match going down in Sin City; as a result of Claudio Castagnoli beating Rey Fenix in that Double Jeopardy match, The Lucha Brothers will defend their ROH World Tag Team Titles against The BCC combo of the ROH World Champion and Wheeler Yuta! Plus, The House of Black will put their AEW World Trios Championship titles on the line in another Open House Rules match, this time against the unit of AR Fox, Blake Christian, and Metalik.


Also, ahead of her TBS Championship bout with Jade Cargill, Taya Valkyrie will be in action against the very impressive Lady Frost, we will hear from AEW World Tag Team Champions FTR, we will hear from “Absolute” Ricky Starks after his “victory” over Jay White, we will hear from all Four Pillars as they prepare for their AEW World Championship bout, and Adam Cole, as well as Chris Jericho, will sign the contract for their Unsanctioned Lights Out Match going down on Sunday night!


The action begins at 8pm ET/7pm CT LIVE on TBS, and at AEWPlus.com for our international fans, just be sure to visit the official AEW YouTube channel prior to showtime to catch highlights from last week's DYNAMITE and RAMPAGE, in addition this week's editions of ROAD TO, THE CONTROL CENTER, and more!


AEW INTERNATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH...

Orange Cassidy(c) vs. Aussie Open's Kyle Fletcher


Just two weeks ago, while he still reigned as both IGPW & NJPW Strong Tag Champions with Mark Davis, Kyle Fletcher made his designs on the AEW International Championship quite clear. Yet, even after suffering that assault at Fletcher's hands, Cassidy still got in the ring last Wednesday to team up with Darby Allin in a victory over Big Bill and Lee Moriarty. Following the match, he made the following statement to Renee Paquette regarding DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023:



What's shocking is how little time it took for members of the AEW locker room to pounce on the opportunity, thus Orange Cassidy creating something new for this Sunday night:



Yet after that was announced last week, another challenger was placed in the path of the defending AEW International Champion, and OC accepted that fight as well, full-well knowing that if he makes it through Wednesday night intact, he's still got to deal with 20 other athletes live on pay-per-view. So can Kyle Fletcher make Orange's 22nd championship defense his last, and if so, will he honor the Blackjack Battle Royale set-up by “Freshly Squeezed”? Fletcher had plenty of motivation already, wanting to add a third championship to his mantle, but after having to vacate his pair of Tag Team Championships due to Mark Davis' injury, he now finds himself empty-handed, and wants nothing more than to correct that situation.

Cassidy has been through the ringer for over 220 days, facing every size, shape, and style of competitor that made the challenge, all while fighting through an increasingly battered body, and a very damaged right hand. Orange is the winningest champion in Men's Division history, only Jade Cargill exceeds his volume of defenses, but her record took over 500 days to accomplish. It's hard to argue Cassidy isn't the hardest-working man in All Elite Wrestling, especially in 2023, but that also make his ripe for the picking in the eyes of Kyle Fletcher.


How will this effect Sunday's DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023 event? Will Orange roll into the T-Mobile Arena with the AEW International Championship still secure in his backpack, or will Aussie Open's Kyle Fletcher shake it all up by ending the record-setting reign on Wednesday night?


ROH WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH...

The Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero Miedo & Rey Fenix)(c)

vs.

The Blackpool Combat Club (ROH World Champion Claudio Castagnoli & Wheeler Yuta)


Just two weeks ago, the ROH World Champion Claudio Castagnoli and ½ of the ROH World Tag Champions Rey Fenix went to battle in an absolute showstealer of a contest. With both men reigning as Ring of Honor Champions, the bout was billed with a “Double Jeopardy” stipulation, meaning that the winner of the contest would earn a shot at the other man's championship title.

When the proverbial dust settled, it was the defending ROH World Champion who emerged from the near-15 minute bout victorious, having taken the measure of Rey Fenix, and found the man wanting. Given that both men can credit the legendary luchador Skayde with a hand in their training, it was fascinating to see how different the end results can be stylistically. Castagnoli just proved the better man on that night, but this Wednesday, when the ROH World Tag Team Championship is on the line, it could be Rey's night to turn the tables. After all, when it comes to tag team competition, The Lucha Brothers are light years ahead of any combination of The Blackpool Combat Club as far as operating as a duo. They've spent their entire lives together, and professionally, they've been working together as a team for the better part of a decade.


Conversely, while Claudio and Wheeler's can both trace their wrestling lineage to time spent in CHIKARA, it wasn't until All Elite Wrestling that they ever spent time together. They were of two different generations, Yuta being trained by the people who Claudio helped train, but they've come together under The Blackpool Combat Club banner, and found greater common ground in a love for violence. As a team, between AEW and ROH competition, Claudio and Yuta are 8-1, with that lone loss coming in a Three Way with Top Flight and The Butcher & The Blade after The Blade was pinned by Dante Martin. So technically, this BCC pairing has yet to be beaten across those nine matches, but their numbers pale in comparison to the number of tag matches The Lucha Brothers have competed in just in All Elite Wrestling. Together, Penta and Fenix are 33-13 in AEW tag team competition with a 122-day reign as champions making up part of their history with the company. Looking beyond the walls of AEW, and these brothers have at least 200 tag team matches to their name and ten different championship reigns counting their current ROH World Tag Team Title holding.

As a 2-Time ROH World Tag Team Champion with Chris Hero, with their second reign being the longest in company history until the effects of the COVID pandemic on ROH helped push Jay Lethal & Jonathan Gresham into the lead, Claudio is quite familiar with what holding those titles mean, and should he capture them with Yuta, it would put him into rarified air. Of the 67 different men who have held these belts, The Kings of Wrestling's combined 433 days puts them above 58 other individuals, some like Jimmy Jacobs who reigned as a 5-Time Champ with multiple partners, but never with the dominance of the KoW, and quite frankly, in the history of ROH tag team wrestling, the only other teams with stronger resumes are reDRagon and The Briscoes. That is the tag team pedigree Claudio Castagnoli brings to this fight, the ROH history in which his roots were first planted, and that have helped build him into the dominant ROH World Champion we have now.


So the question becomes, can Claudio experience that same success with Wheeler Yuta, can he take all he learned as a ROH World Tag Champion over a decade ago, add in everything else he has learned and experienced since, and make himself the first man to ever hold the ROH World and ROH World Tag Championships simultaneously! For Yuta it would be his third ROH championship, accompanying his two reigns as Pure Champion, the only man to accomplish that feat it should be noted. Or it could be a tremendous night for The Lucha Brothers if they turn away the challenge of The Blackpool Combat Club just days before they head into Anarchy In The Arena II on Sunday night!

There's a lot at stake here on Wednesday, the titles, pay-per-view momentum, and it's all going down inside the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, NV!


ABSOLUTE...



Once again, Ricky Starks rose above the odds and stood tall over his foes, in this case the BULLET CLUB GOLD pair of Juice Robinson and Jay White, but appearances to the contrary, the record books chalk that bout between Starks and “King Switch” as a disqualification loss for “Absolute”. Ricky may have been standing tall with that chair in hand as BC GOLD scurried away, but the only victory was a moral one for Starks, making sure Robinson paid for his sins and trying to see that White did the same.

Unfortunately for Ricky, “Switchblade” was pulled to safety by his running buddy, meaning Starks didn't get all the revenge he had hoped for, but perhaps that's what he's got to get off his chest this Wednesday night in Las Vegas!


THE CHAMPIONS SPEAK...



As AEW World Tag Team Champions, FTR are on a collision course with Jay Lethal & Jeff Jarrett at DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023 in Las Vegas. Last week, Dax and Cash aimed for a leg up on the competition, or rather revenge for the ills perpetrated upon them, and instead ended up giving their own friend a piledriver, and being hit in the groin by Karen Jarrett. So now, with her addition to the mix, there's even greater numbers stacked against the defending champions, and they've got to have some concern about how Mark Briscoe will respond to that accidental assault.


So with all that on their plate, the AEW World Tag Team Champions will be in the house on Wednesday night to discuss Sunday night's title defense against Lethal & Jarrett and, one would imagine, the incident with Mark Briscoe given he's about to be the Special Guest Referee for their title fight!

AEW WORLD TRIOS CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH...

The House of Black (Brody King, Buddy Matthews, & Malakai Black)(c)

vs.

AR Fox, Blake Christian, & Metalik



As reigning AEW World Trios Champions, The House Of Black has declared Open House Rules and they are as follows:


1: 20 Second Count Outs

2: No Rope Escapes

3: Disqualification Rule Enforced

4: Dealers Choice: Challengers Decide The Last Rule


In addition, the Open House part of this also means that anyone can challenge for the titles regardless of their record, or history as a Trio, which is why a group like AR Fox, Blake Christian, and Metalik are challenging for The House's championship title this Wednesday night on DYNAMITE! Just as The Best Friends and Bandido did two weeks ago in Detroit in their first time as a team, this Ring of Honor trio will do the same this week in Las Vegas!

Now Fox, Christian, and Metalik have a brief history together competing in Ring of Honor. As a trio they are 1-1, including a failed bid to dethrone The Embassy as ROH World Six-Man Champions at SUPERCARD OF HONOR 2023, and all three men have teamed up in various forms in tag team action, but this Wednesday will mark their first-time united under the AEW banner, and they couldn't possibly have picked a tougher first time out than The House of Black. That being said, it could also be a moment to shock the world and dethrone The House as reigning World Trios Champions, and that could be made possible by whatever these men choose for their fourth rule.


What could tip the balance in their favor? What could put The House of Black at a disadvantage in this championship bout? We will soon see what AR Fox, Blake Christian, and Metalik have up their sleeves!


THE FOUR PILLARS...


AEW World Champion Maxwell Jacob Friedman, “Jungle Boy” Jack Perry, “The Spanish God” Sammy Guevara, and Darby Allin have a date with destiny this Sunday night at DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023 when the meet with Max's title on the line. Last week, all three of MJF's challengers were victorious in their respective bouts, with a bloodied Perry having gone through the worst of it en route to barely squeaking out a victory over former ROH World Champion Rush.

This week on DYNAMITE, with the clock ticking down to their championship clash, we will hear from all four men. Darby, Jack, and Sammy at least seem to be on the same page when it comes to seeing MJF's reign of terror come to an end, but will that be the case when it comes game time Sunday night?


It will be quite interesting to see what the three challengers have to say before their title fight, and even more interesting to hear what MJF has to say considering how he left the arena last week after seeing Darby, Sammy, and “Jungle Boy” gain momentum.


SINGLES MATCH...

Taya Valkyrie vs. Lady Frost


Taya Valkyrie has a second chance at ending the 500+ day TBS Championship reign of Jade Cargill this Sunday, as well as her undefeated streak, after being rather screwed over in her first attempt at toppling Cargill off her throne. But first, this Wednesday night in Las Vegas, Taya will be in action against one of the most impressive individuals in Women's Wrestling today, Lady Frost. She's looked quite strong in her previous AEW bouts, as well as in ROH competition, and could very well derail Valkryie's ride towards the TBS Championship. A loss for Taya on Wednesday could have some serious repercussions on her championship bid, even a win could end up with injurious consequences for the TBS Title challenger that effect her goal of become both champion as well as the 1 in 59-1. For the sake of her title fight on Sunday, Taya best try to end this bout as quickly as possible lest she risk the potential for injury, or even simply the kind of damage that lingers for days and effects her body come Sunday night.


CONTRACT SIGNING....


On Friday night's edition of RAMPAGE, Chris Jericho and Adam Cole ended up coming to blows after “Le Champion” rescinded the ban on the 2022 Owen Hart Foundation Tournament Winner, allowing him to be in the same space as the original AEW World Champion, with the caveat that they meet this Sunday night in an Unsanctioned Lights Out fight at DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023! Of course Adam Cole would agree to this fight, and of course it ended in the two men fighting on a Friday night, but this Wednesday they have to co-exist long enough to sign the contract making their fight official. Now it may seem strange to sign a contract for an Unsanctioned Fight, but the dynamic of the match does require both individuals to agree that this one goes down without rules, without restrictions, and technically speaking, outside the auspices of All Elite Wrestling. The referee assigned to this match is only there to count the pinfall, to register the submission, or rule an individual unable to compete, and thus call for the bell that ends the “match”. Adam Cole has done this dance once before, fighting Orange Cassidy in early 2022 in a Lights Out bout, but Jericho hasn't done this dance in AEW as of yet. This is his first Unsanctioned Lights Out scenario in All Elite Wrestling, but far from his first dance under such stipulations, yet each man must still agree on paper to meeting under such circumstances come Sunday night on pay-per-view.

Can this contract signing go down without a physical altercation, or will the situation get ugly like it did when Roderick Strong beat Jericho last Wednesday night in their wild bout?


ONE-ON-ONE...

Roderick Strong vs. Daniel Garcia




Speaking of...last week on DYNAMITE, Roderick Strong and Chris Jericho engaged in a wild Falls Count Anywhere fight that went all across the Moody Center, ending up outside the arena where Adam Cole was contractually allowed to be involved and get a measure of revenge on “Le Champion”. In addition, it also netted Roddy his first singles victory in AEW and, by association, put him directly in the crosshairs of The Jericho Appreciation Society.



Which brings us to this Wednesday in Las Vegas, just a few days prior to DON '23, where Daniel Garcia will look to avenge his mentor's loss when he takes on Roderick Strong in singles competition! The eyes of the wrestling world are on Las Vegas this week, making it a huge opportunity for Garcia to further cement his self-proclaimed status as “The Greatest Technical Sports Entertainer” by defeating the man once called “The Messiah of The Backbreaker”! That being said, it's also Roddy's opportunity to continue establishing himself in AEW, and further frustrate Jericho's...appreciators.



All Elite Wrestling returns to Las Vegas to kick-off DOUBLE OR NOTHING 2023 week at the MGM Grand Garden Arena this Wednesday night with a stacked DYNAMITE! Three championships will be on the line with the AEW International, the AEW World Trios, and the ROH World Tag Titles all being defended, plus Taya Valkyrie will be in action heading into her TBS Championship bout on Sunday. We will also hear from many competitors involved in DON' 23, including all Four Pillars prior to their AEW World Championship Match, and both Chris Jericho and Adam Cole will be in the house to sign the contract for their Unsanctioned bout going down on PPV!


DYNAMITE kicks off at 8pm ET/7pm CT on TBS, as well as 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!











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