AEW Dynamite Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from September 15

Erik Beaston@@ErikBeastonFeatured ColumnistSeptember 15, 2021

AEW Dynamite Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from September 15

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Adam Cole made his in-ring debut Wednesday on AEW Dynamite, battling Frankie Kazarian in a blockbuster main event.

    That match, the latest in The Elite's quest for dominance in All Elite Wrestling, headlined a show that also saw Darby Allin battle Shawn Spears, Jon Moxley and Eddie Kingston in tag team action and Bryan Danielson address world champion Kenny Omega.

    Was Cole able to kick off his in-ring run with the company on a positive note or did Kazarian score an upset, dealing The Elite a devastating blow during what should be a celebratory time for the faction?

    Find out with this recap of the September 15 broadcast.

Match Card

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    • Adam Cole vs. Frankie Kazarian
    • Jon Moxley and Eddie Kingston vs. 2.0
    • Jade Cargill vs. "Legit" Leyla Hirsch
    • Darby Allin vs. Shawn Spears
    • Bryan Danielson interview
    • Dan Lambert appearance

Adam Cole vs. Frankie Kazarian

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Moments after CM Punk arrived for his spot as guest commentator, Adam Cole hit the ring for his first match as an AEW competitor.

    His opponent, Frankie Kazarian, set his sights on a quick win as he took the fight to Cole early and often. The former Ring of Honor and NXT world champion turned the tide in his favor, though, dominating the middle portion of the match.

    Kazarian fought back into the contest, but Cole cut him off at every turn and eventually put The Elite Hunter away with Panama Sunrise and The Shot for the win.

    After the match, Cole issued a challenge to Christian Cage, Luchasaurus and Jungle Boy for a six-man tag team match against him and The Young Bucks next week at Arthur Ashe Stadium. 

           

    Result

    Cole defeated Kazarian

         

    Grade

    B

           

    Analysis

    Kazarian is the perfect first opponent for talent coming into AEW. We saw it a few months back with Christian Cage and now with Cole, both of whom had strong first outings against one of the godfathers of Impact Wrestling's X-division.

    Cole looked as great here as he did throughout his NXT run. He was crisp and showed the in-ring charisma that fans demand from a star of his stature.

    The idea of Cole and The Young Bucks battling Cage and Jurassic Express is mighty appealing to fans of energetic and explosive tag team wrestling, and such a bout should help propel the feud between the babyfaces and The Elite forward.

MJF Talks Grand Slam, Brian Pillman Jr. Outsmarts Him

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    MJF hit the ring with Wardlow to address his upcoming match with Brian Pillman Jr.

    In typical fashion, the heel ran down the state of New Jersey before turning his attention to the late, great Brian Pillman Sr. This brought out his Dynamite: Grand Slam opponent, who outsmarted Wardlow and sent MJF scurrying with a steel chair.

    After the match, a pretaped interview featuring Jim Ross and Pillman Jr. aired, with the latter promising an ass-kicking for MJF next week at Arthur Ashe Stadium.

         

    Grade

    A

            

    Analysis

    The feud between MJF and Pillman has been great fun to this point and should make for a red-hot match in New York City.

    The biggest development here was Wardlow again letting MJF down and the growing tension between them. Eventually, MJF is going to mouth-off to his bodyguard, and the big man is going to lay him out.

    When he does, Wardlow will generate the loudest reaction of his career and begin a rivalry that will elevate him to heights he has yet to achieve in AEW.

Dante Martin and Matt Sydal vs. FTR

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    The team of Matt Sydal and Dante Martin tested their skills as a new tandem, battling arguably the best in the business in The Pinnacle's FTR.

    The energetic babyfaces set the tone early but an alert Cash Wheeler halted their momentum by kicking Martin to the apron and working with Dax Harwood to seize control of the bout.

    The former AEW tag team champions worked over their opponents, using expert quick tags and tandem offense. The high-flying underdogs battled back, taking to the air to spark their comeback.

    Martin, a star every time he takes to the squared circle these days, rolled late but fell victim to the Big Rig as Wheeler and Harwood earned the victory.

         

    Result

    FTR defeated Martin and Sydal

        

    Grade

    B

        

    Analysis

    What was a totally random tag match with no real reason for existing beyond getting everyone on television was, in the end, a fun bout that reminded the fans of FTR's excellence and continued to highlight the immense talent of Martin.

    Sydal is always great but Martin has made the most of every opportunity he has had in front of the fans. He steals the show with every outing and showed some great in-ring chemistry with the opposition, who would make great opponents for Martin and brother Darius when he returns.

Cody Rhodes Returns to Attack Malakai Black

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Ahead of next week's Dynamite Grand Slam, Malakai Black made his way to the ring and immediately turned his attention to actress Rosario Dawson at ringside.

    The co-host of The Go Big Show showed no fear as the Dutchman drew near.

    Before he could do any harm, though, Cody Rhodes made his way through the stands and attacked his rival. The two brawled through the arena heading into the commercial break.

          

    Grade

    B

          

    Analysis

    As a tease of Rhodes vs. Black, this mostly worked and had the fans completely into it.

    One cannot help but wonder, though: Why did Rhodes come through the crowd? He's an AEW executive vice president. Was he hanging out in the arena lobby when he heard Black's music? It didn't come across naturally and felt a bit too much like an unnecessary display of theatricality when it wasn't needed.

    Still, the brawl was good enough to create excitement for next week's main event.

Chris Jericho and Jake Hager Interrupt Dan Lambert

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    American Top Team's Dan Lambert addressed the AEW fans, as he does weekly now, flanked by The Men of the Year, Junior Dos Santos, Andre Arlovski, Kayla Harrison and Paige VanZant.

    The loudmouthed MMA trainer cut another scathing promo on today's generation before being cut off by Chris Jericho.

    The Demo God, along with Jake Hager, fired back with his own insults before issuing a challenge to fight Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page. Lambert refused, saying a fight needs to be held off until next week, in a real city like New York.

    Jericho vowed that he and Hager would kick ass at Dynamite Grand Slam.

         

    Grade

    C

        

    Analysis

    Jericho and Lambert sparring on the mic is a ton of fun, and it was great to see Harrison and VanZant get some screen time out of the segment, but it still feels unnecessary for the American Top Team leader to be cutting promos for Sky and Page when the latter is one of the best talkers in the business.

    If nothing else, this feud will give The Men of the Year a high-profile match on an enormous card next week. It will be a welcome return to relevancy for a team that impressed more times than not in their rivalry with Darby Allin and Sting ahead of Double or Nothing in May.

Jade Cargill vs. Leyla Hirsch; Team Taz Attacks CM Punk

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Leyla Hirsch sought to continue her journey up the ranks in the women's division Wednesday night. To do so, she would have to do what no one had done to that point: beat Jade Cargill.

    The superathlete overcame a spirited comeback by Hirsch late, putting her away to extend her unbeaten streak in AEW and further establish herself as one of the top young stars in the company.

    After the match, Taz and son Hook confronted CM Punk at the commentary position. It was a ploy as Powerhouse Hobbs attacked The Best in the World, leading to a three-on-one assault that even saw Hook apply a dragon sleeper.

    Hobbs hurled Punk into the announce table, which did not break, leaving him in a heap heading to the break.

           

    Result

    Cargill defeated Hirsch

          

    Grade

    C+

            

    Analysis

    Cargill is undeniably a star. She has a presence and a look that commands attention and an in-ring ability that is evolving with every performance. She was great here, showing off her strength and size advantage against a smaller opponent in Hirsch. 

    Legit showed the grit and toughness necessary to fight back, but her ability was not enough to overcome the determination and raw power of her opponent.

    The Punk-Team Taz stuff may feel flat but the idea of the former working with the youthful competitors that make up the opposition adds credibility to his claims that working with the young talent in AEW is a top priority.

    A match with Hobbs would likely be a fun contest and a learning experience for the powerful heel.

Darby Allin vs. Shawn Spears

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Darby Allin battled Shawn Spears in the latest chapter of their rivalry this week.

    The Chairman of AEW attacked, brutalizing the former TNT titleholder before the bell. He attempted to humiliate him, wiping the facepaint from him in the process.

    An ill-advised charge into the steel steps left Spears nursing a knee injury. He recovered and resumed his attack on Allin until falling prey to a tope through the bottom ropes that took Spears off the ring steps.

    Allin added the Coffin Drop for the pinfall victory.

    After the match, FTR joined Spears and Tully Blanchard in a beatdown of the babyfaces that concluded with Tully wiping the facepaint from Sting's face.

           

    Result

    Allin defeated Spears

          

    Grade

    C+

             

    Analysis

    The feud between Sting, Allin and The Pinnacle isn't exactly lighting the world on fire but at least it gives all involved something to do. In particular, FTR, who followed up a strong match earlier in the card by beating the life out of Sting and Allin to set up a match in New York next week.

    Harwood and Wheeler have earned the opportunity for that level of exposure, against stars of that magnitude, and the result should be very good. Allin will sell his ass off, Sting will pop the crowd with the babyface comeback and the fans will go home happy.

    Whatever the endgame is with this program, at least the in-ring portion is destined to impress and FTR will benefit from association, if not from being the best of the two teams from a performance standpoint.

Bryan Danielson Challenges Kenny Omega

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Bryan Danielson joined Tony Schiavone in the ring for a special interview but was almost immediately interrupted by Don Callis and AEW world champion Kenny Omega.

    Despite Callis' attempts to talk his way out of Bryan's challenges for a match with The Belt Collector, the champ became immersed in The American Dragon's appeals to his ego and accepted a match for next week in New York to prove he is the best wrestler in the world.

         

    Grade

    A

         

    Analysis

    A short and sweet promo segment that set up an enormous PPV-quality match for next week's episode of Dynamite.

    Danielson used his words carefully and appealed to the ego of his rival in an attempt to get what he wanted. He talked his way into a match with Omega by making it about who is the best, rather than the title. It worked and he suckered Omega right into a big match on an enormous stage.

    If given the time, next week's show has the opportunity to produce one of the best contests in the history of the show.

Jon Moxley and Eddie Kingston vs. 2.0

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Jon Moxley and Eddie Kingston sought to conclude their rivalry with 2.0's Matt Lee and Jeff Parker, who were accompanied to the ring by Daniel Garcia.

    A wild, chaotic start gave way to a competitive tag team match down the stretch, won by Moxley and Kingston as they looked to build momentum ahead of their showdown with Minoru Suzuki and Lance Archer in New York.

    After the match, Suzuki appeared and Archer attacked Kingston from behind. A brawl broke out, with the grizzled antiheroes of AEW gaining the upper hand just in time for the show to fade to black.

            

    Result

    Kingston and Moxley defeated 2point0

          

    Grade

    C+

         

    Analysis

    This was a perfectly acceptable battle that saw the right team go over ahead of next week's high-profile showdown with Suzuki and Archer.

    The post-match brawl would have meant more had we not seen similar from Rhodes and Black earlier in the show, but the personalities and intensity at its center helped it succeed.

    Next week's bout will test both teams' toughness and give an indicator as to where AEW's booking is heading. A win for Moxley and Kingston ends the feud, but victory for the opposition suggests Suzuki will be sticking around for a while. 

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