Wardlow def. Luchasaurus in a Lumberjack Match
This was originally scheduled to take place at Blood and Guts three months ago, but since that special edition of Dynamite has been postponed indefinitely, it made sense to do it here with MJF and Jungle Boy still feuding after MJF beat Jungle Boy at Double or Nothing. I don't think the stipulation was necessary, especially in light of the news that a number of WWE wrestlers tested positive for COVID-19 (as well as Jon Moxley's wife Renee Young), but they made the most of it. The group of lumberjacks getting up three or four times to catch the competitors was silly, but this was an enjoyable opener on the whole with the right outcome.
AEW Women's Champion Hikaru Shida def. Red Velvet (Non-Title)
I hated how, in Shida's first match after winning the title at Double or Nothing, she was taken to the limit by someone I can't even remember. She needs to be showcased like a star and that was exactly what happened here. She hit two moves and it was over. That's how you establish someone (specifically a champion) as being dominant. Her post-match brawl with Penelope Ford was weak, but it did set the stage for their title match next week.
Colt Cabana and Brodie Lee def. Joey Janela and Sonny Kiss
Janela and Kiss have been on a roll recently over on Dark, but I believe this marked their first match as a team on Dynamite. It was weird seeing Lee go from wrestling for the AEW World Championship at Double or Nothing to being involved in a matchup with three lower-level talents (at least based off how they've been booked), but at least it served a purpose with Lee and Cabana winning and Lee teasing the idea of Cabana joining The Dark Order. The match was fun with everyone getting a chance to shine. Lance Archer, who we haven't seen much of on Dynamite since Double or Nothing, reemerged afterward to lay out both Janela and Kiss.
FTR def. SCU (Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian)
FTR were scheduled to take on The Natural Nightmares, but QT Marshall stayed home after coming in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and SCU filled in for them. Honestly, the last-minute change ended up being a blessing in disguise. SCU are a terrific team and it's well documented how fantastic FTR are, so I wasn't at all surprised that this was as awesome as it was. It was essentially tag team wrestling at its finest. This is what FTR came to AEW for and I'm thrilled that they're finally having the top-notch matches they've always been capable of. It was also cool to see The Lucha Brothers return afterward, as they'll be teaming with The Butcher and The Blade in two weeks against The Young Bucks and FTR.
Brian Cage def. Jon Cruz
Cruz was supposed to be in action against Moxley with Cage sitting in on commentary with Taz before Moxley voluntarily pulled out of the show due to coming in contact with someone who has COVID-19 (Renee Young later confirmed on Twitter it was her). Cage destroyed the dude instead before Taz cut an excellent promo on Moxley. I don't see Cage walking out of Fyter Fest in two weeks as the new AEW World Champion, but at least he's been built up very well leading up to it.
"Broken" Matt Hardy def. Santana
Hardy has been immersed in a storyline with Sammy Guevara in recent weeks, but that'll have to be put on hold for a while with Guevara getting suspended this past week. Santana was a logical replacement for Guevara as he and Hardy have history and Hardy's new friends Private Party will be facing Santana and Ortiz at Fyter Fest. Hardy has looked pretty good in the ring for the most part in AEW, but he was rather slow here and the match felt plodding as a result. I don't have an issue with Hardy winning because he's a bigger star than Santana on his own, but this didn't need to last as long as it did.
Orange Cassidy and Chris Jericho Brawled
Jericho deserves credit for doing everything imaginable to try to get Cassidy over as a serious threat over the last month. That continued here as, after cutting a scathing promo on him that some fans may find to be truthful, he let Cassidy get the better of him in a brawl that spilled out into the arena seating. I don't doubt for a second that Jericho is winning at Fyter Fest (as he should), but I appreciate the effort Jericho and AEW have put into attempting to legitimatize Cassidy as much as possible.
There was also a press conference between Cody and Jake Hager on this show, and while it didn't light the world on fire, i it was a refreshing change from the contract signings we usually get. As a go-home show for the next two weeks of Fyter Fest, this was an effective edition of Dynamite that either hyped up the matches that matter and have already been announced or made new ones official (such as The Dark Order and Cabana vs. SCU and Archer vs. Janela). It wasn't must-see by any means, though the FTR vs. SCU match was a real treat.
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