AEW Dynamite Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from November 11
On the heels of a blockbuster Full Gear pay-per-view, AEW Dynamite hit the TNT airwaves with a show that furthered ongoing storylines, introduced new feuds and featured MJF's induction into The Inner Circle following his victory over Chris Jericho at the extravaganza.
Would things go as planned for the loudmouth villain, or would he find out that you can never truly take Jericho at his word?
Find out the answer to that question and more with this recap of the November 11 episode.
Announced for Wednesday's show:
- MJF's induction into The Inner Circle
- Taynara Conti (with Anna Jay) vs. Red Velvet (with Brandi Rhodes)
- Matt Sydal vs. FTW champion Brian Cage (with Taz and Ricky Starks)
- The Natural Nightmares (Dustin Rhodes and QT Marshall) vs. The Butcher and The Blade (with The Bunny)
Matt Sydal vs. Brian Cage
Taz kicked off this week's show, accompanying FTW champion Brian Cage to the ring for the night's opening contest against Matt Sydal. He made comparisons between Sydal and new TNT champion Darby Allin in a prematch promo before joining Jim Ross and the commentary team.
The fearless Sydal teed off on Cage early, but The Machine answered, delivering a hip-toss into a backbreaker that halted the smaller babyface's momentum. He pummeled Sydal, punishing him with his raw strength and size advantage.
Sydal showed grit in fighting back, rocking Cage with a Meteora from the top rope that drove the heel into the entrance ramp.
Kicks and a Paige Turner earned Sydal a two-count as the babyface rolled. He went for the move again moments later, but Cage countered out and delivered a nasty lariat that turned him inside out.
Sydal recovered and mounted one more offensive before Cage caught him in midair and drove him to the mat with the Drillclaw for the pinfall victory.
Cage defeated Sydal
This was really, really good.
Sydal and Cage had wicked in-ring chemistry, which really shouldn't be a surprise to anyone who has followed either competitor for any significant period of time. Sydal works extremely well with bigger guys, while Cage is almost always motivated to show he can hang with smaller, faster opponents.
This was no different.
Fast-paced with nonstop action, it was a hell of a way to kick off the in-ring portion of tonight's show.
Cage picked up a big win against a proven opponent, and Team Taz had the opportunity to showcase itself as it continues to chase Darby Allin and the TNT Championship. This was the epitome of a hot start to a show.
Cody Rhodes Speaks; Jade Cargill Debuts and Drops a Bombshell
Former TNT champion Cody Rhodes made his way to the ring, just days removed from a stunning loss to Darby Allin at Full Gear.
After revealing that he would not be requesting a rematch against Darby Allin at this time, he said he does want another shot at the newest member of The Inner Circle: MJF.
Before he could continue, Jade Cargill made her AEW debut and teased the arrival of a one-named giant coming for Cody: Shaq.
This brought out Brandi Rhodes, who took exception to Cargill and cut a fire promo on the newcomer.
Back inside the squared circle, Brain Cage reappeared and attacked Rhodes. Ricky Starks joined in, just in time for TNT champion Darby Allin to make the save. The unlikely allies cleared the heels out of the ring to close a dynamic segment.
There is a ton to unpack here.
First, it was clear Cargill was nervous on the mic, but she still hit all of her marks and delivered with the Shaq reveal. Even better was Brandi, who spit fire at the newcomer and did so convincingly and naturally. She was great here, cutting her best promo as on-screen talent.
Cage and Starks attacking Cody was in-line with Taz's commentary, which took shots at The American Nightmare, while Allin coming to the aid of the former TNT champion was a nice touch that sets up a most unlikely alliance.
The second straight super-strong segment in a row to kick off this broadcast.
Bunkhouse Match: The Natural Nightmares vs. The Bunny and The Blade
For the first time in AEW history, four competitors did battle in a Bunkhouse match as The Natural Nightmares' Dustin Rhodes and QT Marshall squared off with The Butcher and The Blade. The contest, the latest in a rivalry that began with The Bunny manipulating Marshall, maxing out his credit cards and dumping him in short order, spelled the end of the rivalry.
With no disqualifications, no count-outs and no time limits, Rhodes and Marshall wasted little time taking the fight to the heels. Rhodes left Butcher lying, and Blade answered, obliterating Marshall with a guitar shot to the head, busting him open.
Heading into the break, The Bunny joined Butcher and Blade in handcuffing Dustin, allowing the heels to tee off on the battered Marshall.
Bunny repeatedly interfered on behalf of her team, assisting them as they maintained control of the bout. Rhodes introduced a ladder and used it on the opposition and then unloaded with a cane to the back of Butcher. The battle spilled onto the stage, where Marshall blinded Butcher with a fire extinguisher and Rhodes delivered a bulldog through a plywood setup.
Back in the ring, a now-bloodied Blade and Marshall exchanged a series of rights and lefts. Marshall got the upper hand with a trash can lid to the face. He introduced a 12-foot ladder into the mix and delivered a big elbow drop. The Blade, though, just narrowly shot his shoulder off the mat before three.
Butcher returned to the fray, as did Rhodes. The heels, though, got the best of their opponents momentarily, delivering Full Death to Dustin through a pair of steel chairs. Marshall made the save.
Late in the match, Blade accidentally bumped Bunny through a table. Rhodes blasted Blade with a cowbell, and Marshall delivered the Diamond Cutter for the win.
Natural Nightmares defeated Butcher and Blade
This was great.
It was a violent, physical, well-executed match that made the most of the stipulations and featured great work from all involved. Marshall was the sympathetic babyface who you wanted to see get his revenge on Blade and Bunny, while Dustin and Butcher beat the hell out of each other like the hosses they are.
There is certainly an argument to be made that the feud was not necessarily hot enough to warrant such a gimmick match, or that the company tends to book gimmick bouts too often. With that said, the teams more than delivered, and the result was a hell of a fight that featured the right team going over and a great table bump by Bunny late.
MJF's Inner Circle Induction
On the heels of a loss to MJF at Full Gear, "Le Champion" Chris Jericho made his way to the ring for the 2020 Inner Circle Induction Ceremony, where he sought to welcome the young star and his bodyguard, Wardlow, to the faction.
Santana, Ortiz and Jake Hager made their way to the ring while Sammy Guevara was conspicuous by his absence.
MJF and Wardlow made their way to the ring, the former cutting a promo that plagiarized rapper Drake, something Ortiz called out right away.
"This is the new unstoppable force in AEW, and you will make it work!" Jericho told Ortiz.
MJF surprised Jericho, celebrating his birthday and planning a trip to Las Vegas.
This was the first segment of the show that didn't really hit.
MJF is a great talker, and Jericho is one of the best ever, but this was much ado about nothing and only served to set up pretaped vignettes from Vegas rather than any match or wrestling-based segment. Inner Circle is indifferent to MJF, which is a nice touch, and it feels like it is only a matter of time before he turns on Jericho and reveals his true motives.
Still, this felt more like a placeholder than a hot follow-up to Saturday's match.
One positive takeaway was Guevara's absence. Sammy is going to be a fantastic babyface when his time comes, something we saw flashes of in last week's tag team match against MJF and Wardlow.
Scorpio Sky vs. Shawn Spears
A feud weeks in the making came to a head Wednesday as Scorpio Sky battled Shawn Spears, accompanied by Tully Blanchard. Spears, riding an 11-match win streak, found himself on the defensive early and often as Sky unloaded weeks of frustration on him.
Spears delivered a side suplex on the ring apron during the commercial break to seize control of the bout.
Sky fought back into the match as the battle spilled to the floor. He launched himself off the steel steps, but Spears blasted him with a superkick. A sidewalk slam on the steps followed as Spears reestablished control.
The babyface recovered and applied the Scorpio Death Lock. Blanchard threw a weapon to Spears, who blasted Sky with it behind the official's back and picked up the tainted win.
Spears defeated Sky
The commercial break hurt the flow of the match, but this was still a solid bout that showcased the talent involved and continued to build on Spears' low-key great record here in 2020.
The heel act with Tully has worked wonders for Spears, and it was nice to see him get some Dynamite time this week. Sky still looks like a future star for the company, but he has seen his momentum diminished significantly in recent months.
Hopefully, both men can utilize the exposure to catapult themselves back into prominence on Wednesday nights.
Red Velvet vs. Tay Conti
Two of the brightest young stars in the women's division battled as Tay Conti (accompanied by The Dark Order's Anna Jay) battled Red Velvet (seconded by Brandi Rhodes).
Back-and-forth action early gave way to Conti controlling during the picture-in-picture commercial break.
Coming out of the break, Velvet fired off an arsenal that included a pair of clotheslines, a bulldog and double knees to the back. A running stunner followed, but Conti kicked out.
A stereo roundhouse kick left both women down. Jay slid Conti a chair, but the conflicted Brazilian kicked it out of the ring. Velvet capitalized on the distraction and blasted her for two.
Conti recovered, delivered a knee to the face and followed with a Gory Special into another knee for the win.
After the match, Jay and Conti had a bit of a disagreement before embracing, all while Dark Order watched from the entrance tunnel.
Conti defeated Velvet
Conti winning was the right call given the emphasis put on her relationship with Anna Jay and potential membership in The Dark Order. Velvet was explosive in spots and looked every bit the future of the women's division in AEW, a breakout star in the making.
It looked like the competitors ran out of steam late as things slightly broke down, but the effort was certainly there, and both women are better off for having gotten the extended in-ring time.
The post-match disagreement plants the seeds for a breakup between Jay and Conti and a potential feud. That would certainly make for an interesting secondary program.
Rey Fenix vs. Penta El Zero Miedo
In a rematch from a month ago, brothers Penta El Zero Miedo and Rey Fenix battled in the main event of this week's show, with Eddie Kingston on commentary for the blockbuster encounter.
Back-and-forth action dominated the opening moments of the match, giving way to Penta tearing at his brother's mask in what the commentary team described as a disgraceful act. A big superkick by Penta allowed him to firmly seize control.
After dominating through the commercial, Penta set up for a package piledriver, but Fenix countered into a pinfall attempt. The younger brother mounted a comeback and scored a series of near-falls, looking to make it 2-0 against Penta in recent weeks.
Fenix tore at Penta's mask in a nice bit of revenge as Tony Schiavone pointed out that they never had a cross word with each other until Kingston associated himself with them.
Penta delivered a flipping inverted DDT for two as the crowd came alive. Fenix answered with a twisting plancha. Penta recovered and delivered a package piledriver on the ring apron, leaving Fenix motionless on the arena floor. A destroyer to the floor followed as even Kingston questioned how long the fight could go on.
Penta delivered another package piledriver and scored the hard-fought victory.
After the match, Kingston attempted to get Penta to discard his brother until "The Bastard" Pac made his long-awaited return to the company. He immediately attempted to brawl with Kingston, but AEW officials and referees separated the combatants as the show headed off the air.
Penta defeated Fenix
What. A. Match.
There's nothing about Penta and Fenix that can be said that hasn't already, and their encounter here was the stuff of a violent, physical, intense brotherly rivalry. The ripping of the mask and Penta's relentlessness in search of a much-needed win brought a sense of urgency to the bout that even AEW's creative team could not muster.
Kingston, the scumbag heel, trying to split The Lucha Bros was a great touch, while Pac's return was exactly the exclamation point the show needed to get fans to tune in next week. Oh, and to keep the great Kingston involved in a fairly high-profile program.
An excellent exclamation point to one of the better episodes of Dynamite this past month. The depth of the roster was on full display as the company relied on those competitors who did not have matches at Full Gear to make up the majority of the in-ring content while splicing in some promos from top stars to continue their ongoing programs.
Great stuff this week.