AEW Dynamite Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from June 3
As All Elite Wrestling marches toward Fyter Fest, it produced a show Wednesday night that featured the first defense by Cody of the TNT Championship as he squared off with Battle Royal winner Jungle Boy.
That match headlined a show that also saw the return of Chris Jericho to action as Le Champion battled fellow veteran performer Colt Cabana.
Nyla Rose sought to rebound from her loss of the AEW Women's Championship to Hikaru Shida as she squared off with Big Swole, and the AEW Tag Team Championship was up for grabs as Kenny Omega and Hangman Page defended against Kip Sabian and Jimmy Havoc.
Who emerged victoriously, building momentum ahead of the upcoming pay-per-view extravaganza, and how did it affect ongoing storylines?
Find out with this recap of the June 3 broadcast.
Hangman Page and Kenny Omega vs. Kip Sabian and Jimmy Havoc
The AEW Tag Team Championship Match kicked off this week's show as Hangman Page and Kenny Omega defended against top contenders Kip Sabian and Jimmy Havoc, who defeated SCU to earn the title opportunity a week ago.
The challengers isolated Omega, working him over as FTR's Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler watched from the stands. A tag to Page sparked the babyface comeback as the champs unloaded with a series of chops to Havoc and tossed Sabian around.
Another attempt at interference from Penelope Ford on behalf of her fiance Sabian and Havoc resulted in her dismissal from ringside. As referee Rick Knox sent her packing, Havoc utilized a wrench to punish the champions and regain control of the bout.
A hot tag to Omega put an end to the challengers' dominance. The former IWGP showed off his speed, downing both Sabian and Havoc. A standing shooting star press by Page earned him a disappointing two-count on Sabian, who showed admirable resiliency in kicking out.
On the floor, Havoc sent Page into the guardrail, while Sabian caught Omega with a spinning DDT. A diving double stomp by Sabian and the Sing the Sorrow from Havoc nearly put Omega away, but Hangman made the save at the absolute last second.
The champions recovered, delivered The Last Call to Havoc and successfully retained the titles as FTR and Best Friends watched from the seats.
Page and Omega defeated Sabian and Havoc
Every time Page and Omega defend the titles, the result is a pay-per-view quality match.
This was no different, a 20-minute battle that was energetic and dramatic. The champions winning was the right call, if only because it feels like there is mileage left in their reign and a showdown with FTR just sounds too damn good to rob fans of.
With that said, Havoc and Sabian were excellent here.
They showcased fantastic chemistry and psychology, manipulating the referee to their advantage time and time again. Unlike their previous outings, no weaponry or Penelope Ford interference was enough to wrest the gold away from Hangman and The Best Bout Machine.
The future is bright for that particular team, but the current belongs to the champions.
Brian Cage vs. Shawn Dean
Brian Cage sent another message loudly and clearly to AEW world champion Jon Moxley as he destroyed his opponent Shawn Dean, finishing him off with the Drillclaw.
After the match, a furious Taz took exception to Moxley laughing and snickering at the idea of Cage challenging him. "Beat him if you can. Survive if he lets you," he said, warning the champion.
Moxley interrupted, coming to the ring despite Taz's warning.
The unpredictable antihero of AEW warned Cage and Taz that they are swimming with a shark unlike any they have ever known. A defiant Mox tossed the mic down and headed out of the arena, leaving his top contender and the ECW legend to mull his words.
Cage defeated Dean
Cage looked like an absolute monster here, just decimating Dean en route to another win. And the intensity from both Taz and Moxley was fitting for a world title feud.
What was a bit curious was the way in which Cage, this unhinged super-athlete, stood by and did not respond in the slightest to Moxley. There was not even the slightest indication of physicality. He just stood there and left Moxley, unintimidated, light him up on the mic.
It did not fit the tone of things to this point, essentially rendering Taz's rage over Moxley's snickering a week ago irrelevant.
Colt Cabana vs. Chris Jericho
A week after Colt Cabana restrained Chris Jericho during a pull-apart brawl with Mike Tyson, Boom Boom and Le Champion squared off, two industry veterans who had never crossed paths before now.
Cabana struck first, but Jericho answered with an eye rake. Cabana fired back, leaving Le Champion reeling until Jake Hager interjected himself and turned the tide in Jericho's favor.
Coming out of the break, Jericho retained control of the bout. A bit of arrogance proved problematic for the former world champion as Cabana fought back and downed him with a Bionic Elbow. A second-rope splash earned the fun-loving babyface a near-fall.
Cabana tried for the Superman, but Jericho countered and applied the Walls of Jericho. Cabana survived that but walked right into the Judas Effect as Jericho earned the hard-fought win.
After the match, Jericho demanded the wrestlers in attendance address him with respect. He recalled his showdown with Tyson from last week and called out the Baddest Man on the Planet...only for Orange Cassidy to answer.
Cassidy evaded Jericho and Hager's attack and joined Best Friends at ringside as a staredown with The Inner Circle ensued.
Jericho defeated Cabana
If ever there was a match we didn't know we needed here in 2020, it is Cassidy vs. Jericho. The comedic value, Jericho's willingness to create new stars and Cassidy's undeniable popularity make for a potentially blockbuster recipe.
Throw in the matches Best Friends could have with the rest of the Inner Circle and the potential for everyone involved to benefit is extraordinary.
Jericho-Tyson seems like a direction things are heading, but until then, there are far worse ways to keep Jericho and Co. at the forefront of the product while spotlighting one of the breakout stars of AEW's first year.
Big Swole vs. Nyla Rose
Big Swole made her first Dynamite in-ring appearance in over a month but found herself sharing the squared circle with a vengeful Nyla Rose, looking to rebound after her AEW women's title loss to Hikaru Shida at Double or Nothing.
Swole looked to use her speed and athleticism to her advantage early, but The Native Rose dropped her on the ring apron heading into the break.
Dr. Britt Baker, the subject of a humorous training video prior to the match, watched from her homemade "Role's Royce" at ringside.
Swole launched herself through the ropes with a cutter, dropping Rose for a two-count. A big pump kick dropped Rose as the underdog babyface continued her onslaught. A spear from Rose halted her opponent's momentum, but a Beast Bomb was countered into a sunset flip for two.
Swole looked for Dirty Dancing, but Rose caught her and planted her with a sit-out spinebuster for the pinfall victory.
After the match, Baker interrupted a frustrated Swole's promo with Tony Schiavone. Swole chased her away with a chair to close out the segment.
Rose defeated Swole
This was a surprisingly competitive match considering Rose's place in the women's division and the fact that Swole had not been seen outside of her role as a spectator in weeks. With that said, she was impressive and looked the part of a legitimate contender to the AEW women's title.
While it was a bit strange to see her lose a match, then start a rivalry with Baker, it appears as though AEW is finally getting behind the charismatic young star.
Meanwhile, the victory keeps Rose primed for a rematch with Shida over the women's title.
Tony Schiavone Interviews FTR
Tony Schiavone hosted the first sit-down interview with FTR's Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler.
The team played coy with the meaning of their team name before putting over the extraordinary tag team division in AEW, using backhanded compliments on a few, including tag champions Hangman Page and Kenny Omega.
They next addressed The Young Bucks and the frustration they felt regarding the accolades heaped on them. "I don't want to have the Match of the Year with them. I want to punch them in the face," Wheeler said.
Harwood said he wants to be known as they beat when they beat Matt and Nick Jackson.
The Butcher and The Blade interrupted the proceedings, and a match between the two teams was made as security pulled the invaders away.
This did exactly what it set out to do: It introduced FTR to the AEW fans, gave them a taste of what type of characters they will be and planted the seed for three different matches.
The first is the showdown between them and The Butcher and Blade that will take place next week. It did seem somewhat interesting that the team could just barge into a Jacksonville Jaguars facility without being stopped by security, but that is neither here nor there.
Then there is the match with Hangman Page and Kenny Omega, which was teased earlier in the show as they watched the tag title defense.
Finally, the manner in which they addressed The Young Bucks and their desire to beat them and establish themselves as the best tag team in wrestling suggests they will be the heels in that equation and, moreover, that they are not interested in having the classic match with them that fans have been begging for.
It hit those topics, showcased a bit of an arrogant side and highlighted the plethora of matches possible with the expansive tag team division AEW has built from its inception.
TNT Championship Match: Cody vs. Jungle Boy
An aggressive Cody took the fight to Jungle Boy, looking to ensure his first defense of the TNT Championship would not be his last. The young challenger, though, would use his emotions against him, sending The American Nightmare face-first into the barrier wall.
A verbal battle with MJF at ringside provided a momentary distraction before cameras picked up on the bloodied face of Cody.
Back in the ring, Jungle Boy targeted the cut on his opponent's forehead, but Cody answered with a pump kick to create some separation. Jungle Boy retaliated with a clothesline, and Cody powered out at the referee's two-count.
A delayed superplex put Jungle Boy down as the battered and bloodied champion continued to fight.
Cody resisted the urge to use his weightlifting belt but did set up a table at ringside. He scaled the ropes, and Jungle Boy met him up top. An exchange of right hands gave way to both falling through the table and to the floor.
Jungle Boy scored a near-fall, but Cody came back with Cross Rhodes for the win.
After the match, Brandi and Dustin Rhodes and Jurassic Express hit the ring to check on the competitors.
Cody defeated Jungle Boy
Just because one can bleed on TV doesn't mean they should.
There was no reason for the proverbial crimson mask in this one as everything Cody and Jungle Boy did to get over the hard-hitting, high-stakes, desperation-fueled match could have been accomplished without the use of blood.
In fact, it was Lance Archer back at Double or Nothing who really could have benefited more from that particular parlor trick than Jungle Boy, whose issues with Cody beyond wanting the title were largely nonexistent. Yes, championships fuel wrestlers to fight harder and more desperately than ever before, but it still felt wholly unnecessary in this particular match.
With that criticism out of the way, this was a damn fun match with solid intensity, a nice nod to the Jungle Boy-MJF rivalry and a touch of sportsmanship at the end. It was exactly what you would hope for in terms of Cody going out there and continuing to put young stars over without sacrificing his own story.
Next week's match with Marq Quen should be equally as fun, especially if young Quen can rise to the occasion in a rare singles opportunity.