AEW Dynamite Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from August 18

Erik Beaston@@ErikBeastonFeatured ColumnistAugust 18, 2021

AEW Dynamite Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from August 18

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    For the first time in 20 years, Sting returned to the squared circle on TNT as he teamed with Darby Allin to battle 2.0's Matt Lee and Jeff Parker in a Texas Tornado match on Wednesday's Dynamite.

    The Icon's return to the ring, his first match since May's Double or Nothing, headlined a show that also saw the conclusion of The Five Labours of Jericho as Chris Jericho squared off with MJF.

    An AEW Tag Team Championship defense by The Young Bucks and a major announcement from Sammy Guevara rounded out a show that continued to plant the seeds for All Out on September 5.

Match Card

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    • The Fifth Labour of Jericho: Chris Jericho vs. MJF
    • Tornado Tag Team match: Sting and Darby Allin vs. 2.0
    • AEW Tag Team Championship match: Jurassic Express vs. The Young Bucks
    • Thunder Rosa vs. Penelope Ford
    • Sammy Guevara vs. Shawn Spears (and a major announcement from Guevara)

Texas Tornado Match: Sting and Darby Allin vs. 2.0

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    Credit: AEW

    Jon Moxley and Eddie Kingston kicked off this week's show, making their way to the ring through the stands before 2.0 and Daniel Garcia attacked and left them lying.

    Matt Lee then grabbed a mic and called out Sting and Darby Allin, getting Wednesday night's in-ring action underway.

    Allin attacked Garcia with a skateboard, then joined Sting in teeing off on Lee and Jeff Parker. The fight spilled into the stands, where the babyfaces overcame an early onslaught to establish control, thanks in large part to a recovered Kingston and a fearless dive from Allin.

    2.0 delivered a double suplex to Allin on a skateboard and delivered a double powerbomb to Sting through a table. The Icon shook it off and delivered stereo Scorpion Death Drops. A double Scorpion Deathlock earned the win for the face-painted avengers.



    Sting and Allin defeated 2.0






    Anyone who blindly supports WWE and insists it's not the booking but rather the talent that is to blame when it doesn't succeed needs look no further than Lee and Parker.

    Released from their contracts as a result of "budget cuts" in June, they debuted in All Elite Wrestling on August 5 and have already proved their worth by mixing it up with Moxley, Kingston, Allin and Sting.

    Booking was the problem because the artists formerly known as Ever-Rise have picked up the ball and run with it as 2.0. They were great here, the perfect heels to battle Allin and Sting in this match. They elevated their game on the offensive and bumped like mad to put their opponents over.

    And in the process, they got the rub from having worked with one of the biggest stars in wrestling history.

    This was fun and energetic, and it had fans on their feet from the moment the bell rang.

Sammy Guevara vs. Shawn Spears

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    Credit: AEW

    Just hours after proposing to girlfriend Pam during AEW Dark tapings, Sammy Guevara made his way to the ring for a showdown with The Pinnacle's Shawn Spears.

    The Chairman attacked prior to the bell and joined Tully Blanchard in an assault on The Spanish God, delivering a spiked piledriver that put him on the defensive before the bout even started.

    With Blanchard tossed from ringside, Spears continued his beatdown on Guevara into and throughout the picture-in-picture timeout. Back from the break, both men leapt to the top rope, where The Chairman flipped his rival the bird. Guevara answered with a cutter for two.

    Spears recovered and delivered the C-4 from the middle rope but could only achieve a two-count. The Spanish God recovered and, feeding off his hometown crowd in Houston, delivered a 630 senton. He could only keep his rival down for two, though.

    After shaking off that frustration, Guevara delivered the GTH for the win and kissed his fiancee to celebrate the victory.



    Guevara defeated Spears






    The energy in the Fertitta Center for Guevara's homecoming was off the charts, and what was an otherwise strong midcard match was elevated.

    The action was tighter, the strikes stiffer and blood was spilled as the workhorses of The Inner Circle and The Pinnacle delivered a quality grudge match finale.

    Guevara looked like a star, a guy on the rise and the future of the company. And he is.

    The Spanish God has enjoyed a banner 2021 and looks poised to be a consistent main event performer sooner rather than later in AEW.

    Spears remains one of the unsung heroes of the company, a consummate professional who can always be counted on to deliver when called upon.

Dan Lambert Is Back...and so Is Lance Archer

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    Credit: AEW

    American Top Team founder Dan Lambert made his second appearance in AEW, cutting yet another scathing promo on wrestling fans, this time with former UFC heavyweight champions Andrei Arlovski and Junior dos Santos as backup.

    He called out any AEW talent and Lance Archer entered the arena, looking to rekindle his rivalry with the American Top Team founder.

    Instead, though, Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page attacked The Murderhawk Monster, leaving him lying to the delight of Lambert and Co.






    Listening to Lambert denounce the "cancel culture" of millennials was not what we needed to get to a Archer-Men of the Year feud at all. 

    For Archer, this felt like a step down. Just a month ago, he ended Jon Moxley's IWGP United States Championship reign. He lost that title to Hiroshi Tanahashi at New Japan Pro-Wrestling's Resurgence but not a word was uttered about it on this week's show. 

    The company's continued use of Archer remains one of the biggest head-scratchers in its short history.

AEW Tag Team Championship Match: Jurassic Express vs. The Young Bucks

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    Credit: AEW

    The AEW tag team titles were up for grabs in the night's next match as The Young Bucks defended against Jurassic Express.

    The champions dominated the action, cutting Jungle Boy off from his partner. The underdog babyface then created separation and tagged his partner into the match.

    Fueled by the furious offense of Luchasaurus and a rejuvenated Jungle Boy, the babyfaces threatened their opponents' reign.

    Kenny Omega blasted Marko Stunt with a steel chair at ringside, only to be taken down by new Impact world champion Christian Cage. After a near-miss reminiscent of the steel chair spot that cost Omega his title on Friday's Rampage, the Bucks delivered the BTE Trigger for the win.

    After the match, The Elite beat down the babyfaces, culminating with a One-Winged Angel by Omega on Cage.



    The Young Bucks defeated Jurassic Express






    You don't have to love The Young Bucks or the incessant interference by The Elite that has defined their heel run, but it is nearly impossible to argue with the results.

    Matt and Nick Jackson are on a streak of extraordinary in-ring performances, the likes of which we have not seen since the height of The Rock 'n' Roll Express and The Midnight Express. 

    Whether it is stealing the show against young teams like Top Flight and The Acclaimed or raising the bar against Moxley and Kingston, they are the measuring stick for tag team wrestling today.

    Their excellence was on full display here, as they had less time than usual and still delivered a four-star affair against the red-hot Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus.

    Jurassic Express is perpetually over and if this loss did anything, it created greater fan fervor for an eventual tag title victory. In fact, they are so hot right now that the argument could be made that they should be the ones to dethrone the Bucks.

    Someone will, though, and based on the heat the Jacksons have developed through their cheating ways, it will be a huge moment when it happens.

Paul Wight's Got a Big Announcement

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    Credit: AEW

    Tony Schiavone introduced Paul Wight, one week after the veteran saved him and his son from a beatdown at the hands of QT Marshall and The Factory.

    Marshall interrupted and revealed Wight underwent hip surgery prior to his arrival in AEW. The big man responded, announcing that he will have his first match with the company at All Out...against Marshall.






    At least Marshall's facial expression in response to the announcement sold the idea of Wight re-entering the ring because the crowd couldn't seem to have cared less.

    The giant still brings energy to his performances, but no one was begging to see the 49-year-old back in action at this point in his careerespecially not against Marshall in a fairly middling feud.

    The match will mean a lot to Wight, who clearly wants to continue his in-ring career and prove the business hasn't passed him by. Unfortunately, the finished product will almost certainly leave fans wishing he had stayed behind the announce table.

Thunder Rosa vs. Penelope Ford and More

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    Credit: AEW

    Backstage, Tony Schiavone caught up with The Elite and revealed there will be a Tag Team Championship Eliminator Tournament featuring The Lucha Bros, Jurassic Express, Private Party and The Varsity Blonds. The winners will challenge The Young Bucks at All Out inside a steel cage.

    Inside the arena, Taz, Hook and Ricky Starks called out Brian Cage, only for Will Hobbs to attack The Machine. As the former FTW champ fought back, the heels fled to the backstage area.

    Elsewhere, PAC challenged Andrade El Idolo to a match at All Out in Chicago. The heel arrived and accepted but only on his terms.

    Back in the arena, Thunder Rosa hit the ring for her match with Penelope Ford. Her arrival popped the crowd, but it was the Philadelphia native Ford who seized control and worked over her opponent during the break.

    Ford countered a Fire Thunder Driver and applied a Muta Lock. Rosa countered and applied a half Boston crab. She added an airplane spin and death valley driver for two. Ford went back to the Muta Lock, but Rosa countered for the submission victory.



    Rosa defeated Ford






    There was a ton to tackle here.

    The announcement of a tournament to crown the next top contenders to The Young Bucks is a welcome development, as is the revelation that the titles will be determined inside a steel cage.

    Any of the potential opponents would make for a great match but after the events of this show, it's time to pull the trigger on Jurassic Express. Give them the tournament win and title victory in Chicago and let them run atop the division. 

    The Team Taz stuff was rather nondescript and felt like a segment that existed to remind fans that Cage and Starks are still feuding. Ditto PAC vs. Andrade.

    Ford and Rosa had a competitive match, but they appeared to be on different pages occasionally. Still, the reversals late were pretty cool and helped the women recover after an iffy start.

The Fifth Labour of Jericho: Chris Jericho vs. MJF

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    Credit: AEW

    Jon Moxley cut a scathing promo that called out everyone from Danny Garcia to Kenny Omega and "Hangman" Adam Page before promising to bring hell to AEW.

    For nearly a year, Chris Jericho and MJF have engaged in a rivalry that has seen the scarf-wearing heel stay one step ahead, earning victories in high-profile matches against Le Champion.

    Jericho survived matches against Shawn Spears, Nick Gage, Juventud Guerrera and Wardlow to make it to Wednesday's showdown with MJF.

    Entering the arena without his trademark "Judas" theme music by Fozzy, Jericho was greeted by fans singing the iconic song for him. An early onslaught put MJF on the defensive, but the younger star downed his opponent and worked over his injured left arm during the break. 

    Jericho fought back coming out of the break, delivering a double axe handle from the ropes. He added a lionsault for a dramatic two-count. 

    MJF recovered an applied the Salt of the Earth armbar, refocusing on the injured joint of Jericho in hopes of forcing the submission. The veteran countered, applying the Walls of Jericho. MJF fought out, hung Jericho's arm up on the top rope and delivered the Heatseeker pendulum piledriver for two. 

    The heel capitalized on an undetected low blow, trying to apply Walls of Jericho of his own. 

    MJF overcame a late shot from Floyd the baseball bat to reapply the Salt of the Earth submission. Despite a gutsy effort by Jericho to overcome the pain, he had no choice but to tap, giving the loudmouth heel the victory.



    MJF defeated Jericho






    It feels really strange to say this considering the wrestling landscape and fans' constant desire for younger and fresher faces but...this was the wrong outcome.

    For five weeks, AEW took us on a journey of Jericho's labours, putting the grizzled veteran through hellish tests throughout. There was the deathmatch with Gage, the cruiserweight showdown with Juventud and the physical dismantling at the hands of Wardlow.

    After enduring all of that and finally getting to MJF, Jericho just taps?

    It would have made more sense if those opponents had specifically attacked the injured arm but they didn't. At least not consistently. Jericho simply tapped here, with the pain too much for him to endure despite a seething hatred that fueled him through everything he suffered in the weeks leading into the match.

    The contest itself was very good and had the fans in Houston invested the whole way through. The finish was great, too, with Jericho hesitating just for a moment and MJF making him pay for it.

    Under any other circumstances, MJF winning would have been the right call. Here, it just felt like an anticlimactic conclusion to long-term storytelling AEW set in motion well over a month ago.