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AEW Dynamite (Episode 118) Recap & Review

AEW Dynamite
Episode 118

Original Air Date: January 5, 2022
Event Date: January 5, 2022
(aired live on TBS)

City: Newark, NJ
Venue: Prudential Center

Commentary: Excalibur, Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone
Ring Announcer: Justin Roberts


Show/Hide Match Previews


Intro Video
“Dynamite” by No One Hero


Match 1
AEW World Title Match
“American Dragon” Bryan Danielson vs “Hangman” Adam Page
(AEW Champ)
(referee: Paul Turner, Judges: Mark Henry, Jerry Lynn, Paul Wight)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Adam Page wins via pinfall after the Buckshot Lariat, Adam Page retains the AEW World Title in his second defense
Time: 29:05

Match Thoughts
Great match! This was a fight, and Bryan Danielson dominated the fight early. Danielson bloodied Page on the ring steps relatively quickly, and Page struggled to get much offense early on. Page was nearly always fighting from behind, at least up until Page used the ring post to get things almost back to even strength. Page started to mount more offense later in the match, but Page’s offense came in bursts while Danielson’s offense was a steady stream. Overall, a super-fun match to watch and another great fight between these two. I also REALLY appreciated the fact that finishers were respected in the match. There wasn’t any of the “kick out of a finisher a bunch of times” that we see in lots of matches these days. This had a good buildup for the finishers, and when they happened, they meant something.


The Acclaimed aren’t happy that boomer Sting had to get involved in Anthony Bowens’ match against Darby Allin last week, but The Acclaimed still stood tall after the match. Bowens and Caster aren’t done with Darby Allin, and next week they’ll have a viral music video to tell us all about it.


Match 2
MJF vs “Captain” Shawn Dean
(referee: Aubrey Edwards)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Shawn Dean wins via DQ when CM Punk attacks Shawn Dean
Time: 0:44

Match Thoughts
This was a story line segment masquerading as a match, but it was pretty fun. As the match begins, CM Punk runs to the ring. MJF quickly exits the ring and mocks Punk from the ramp. In the ring, Punk attacks Shawn Dean, hitting him with GTS. Therefore, your winner via disqualification, “Captain” Shawn Dean.


Ring Area
Still in the ring, CM Punk says this will happen every time MJF steps into a ring until MJF faces Punk in a match. MJF says everything Punk says is fake and induces boredom. MJF points out that Punk said he was done with MJF, but this week he comes out and does this. MJF says he and Punk both know that Punk is nothing without him. Punk is irrelevant without MJF. Punk isn’t a “savior” anymore, MJF is.

MJF goes on to talk about Punk laughing about MJF being compared to Roddy Piper. Does Punk think he’s as good as Piper? At least Piper was good enough to main event a Wrestlemania. Maybe MJF will go main event a Wrestlemania too. Punk laughs heartily. Punk says all he’s trying to do is kick MJF’s ass. So just get in the ring. And if MJF wants to go to WWE, then leave, fail, and come back. Punk will still be here, ready to beat up MJF again. MJF gets mad and makes a match for next week… CM Punk versus Wardlow. Punk agrees to the match, saying, like Piper, he’ll fight anyone at any time. And eventually, MJF will run out of people to hide behind.

A video package narrated by Jennifer Nettles (of the Go Big Show) promoting Cody Rhodes defending the TNT Title against Sammy Guevara at Battle of the Belts.

Ring Area
Chris Jericho heads to the ring. He says it’s great to be back on TBS, back in Newark, and back anywhere after 2point0 injured him six weeks ago. He also clarifies his actions last week, saying he didn’t run to the ring to save Eddie Kingston, he ran out to get a little revenge on 2point0. Matt Lee and Jeff Parker head to the ring.

Matt Lee speaks, but Jericho is too distracted by Lee’s square head to hear anything he says. Jericho then calls Jeff Parker a pinhead. Jericho grabs Floyd the bat and gets ready to use it, but Daniel Garcia runs in and attacks Jericho. As Jericho is swarmed, Eddie Kingston, Santana, and Ortiz run to the ring. Garcia and 2point0 flee.

Adam Cole (with reDRagon) says he knows Kyle O’Reilly didn’t mean to hit him last week. The boys are back together, and these are exciting times. Cole then addresses new AEW signee Jake Atlas. Cole wants a match with Atlas because people should still be talking about Cole, not some new guy.


Match 3
Wardlow w/ Shawn Spears vs Antonio Zambrano
(referee: Rick Knox)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Wardlow wins via pinfall after five powerbombs
Time: 1:25

Match Thoughts
The match was basically the same as all the recent Wardlow matches on Dynamite. Powerbombs. Five of them. The only difference tonight (besides the number of powerbombs) was that Shawn Spears attacked Antonio Zambrano before the bell, hitting him with a C4 on the floor. So, this was another story line segment more than a match, furthering the idea that Wardlow isn’t happy with The Pinnacle.


We see clips and hear commentary about the further fracturing of the friendship between Leyla Hirsch and Kris Statlander.


Match 4
TBS Championship Tournament Final Match
Jade Cargill
w/ “Smart” Mark Sterling vs Thunder Rosa
(referee: Aubrey Edwards)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Jade Cargill wins via pinfall after an avalanche Jaded, and she becomes the first TBS Champion
Time: 11:13

Match Thoughts
Pretty good match. Jade still struggles in some areas, but Ruby Soho did a good job of helping accentuate Jade’s strengths. Ruby basically wore herself down trying to stay away from Jade’s grasp, and she damaged herself going for big moves on Jade (specifically, a shotgun dropkick on the floor in which Ruby hurt herself by jumping from the apron to the floor). Jade did have some good offense whenever she got a hold of Ruby though.


Jim Ross sits down with Serena Deeb to discuss her feud with Hikaru Shida. Deeb started her rivalry with Shida with respect, but Shida’s actions have caused Deeb defeat Shida by any means. Deeb takes what she wants, and she demanded another match with Shida. Deeb will take out years of frustration on Shida.


Match 5
Malakai Black vs Brian Pillman Jr.
(referee: Rick Knox)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Malakai Black wins via pinfall after Black Mass
Time: 6:02

Match Thoughts
Pretty good match. Pillman got an okay amount of offense, but he also looked a little hesitant at times. Overall, the finish felt inevitable, like it was just a part of the ongoing story.


Ring Area
After the match, Malakai Black begins to leave. Black gets back into the ring and approaches Julia Hart who is attending to Brian Pillman Jr. Before Black can do anything, the Lucha Brothers (with Alex Abrahantes) come out to the stage. The lights go out, and when they come back one the Lucha Bros. and Abrahantes are in the ring, and Malakai Black is on the ramp. Black walks away.

Tony Schiavone is with Ruby Soho. Before Soho can say anything, Britt Baker, Jamie Hayter, and Rebel interrupt. Baker says this is the second time Soho couldn’t win the big one. Soho responds by saying Baker can’t beat Riho, so maybe Baker should go prepare for her upcoming title match against Riho. Baker attacks Soho, but Riho runs out and tries to attack Baker. Referees hold Riho back as Baker and friends walk away.

QT Marshall says Hook learned everything from him at his wrestling school. He also says Hook has never stretched Aaron Solo. Solo says, “Hook, stretch me if you can, survive if I let you.”


Match 6
AEW World Tag Team Title Match
Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus
w/ Christian Cage vs The Lucha Brothers (AEW Tag Champs) w/ Alex Abrahantes
(referee: Bryce Remsburg)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Jungle Boy pins Penta El Zero Miedo with a rollup counter to Penta’s attempt at Made in Japan, Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus become the sixth AEW Tag Champs in their first reign
Time: 14:34

Match Thoughts
Great match. The pace was extremely high for most of the match, and, as you’d expect, there was a lot of flying from three-fourths of the competitors in the match. Jungle Boy did a lot of the work for Jurassic Express, though Luchasaurus made big impacts whenever he got into the match. Unfortunately, Rey Fenix suffered a grotesque injury towards the end of the match. Luchasaurus chokeslammed Fenix from the apron to the floor through a table, but Fenix’s left arm hit the floor awkwardly, bending his elbow completely backward under his own body weight. With Fenix out, Penta and Jungle Boy finished the match quickly. The finish was still very good, even if the moves they did probably weren’t in the original plan.


Ring Area
After the match, a bunch of tag teams line up on the stage: Private Party (with Matt Hardy), FTR, 2point0, reDRagon, The Acclaimed, and the Gunn Club. Chris Jericho, Ortiz, Santana, and Malakai Black are also watching (not necessarily together).


Show Impressions
This was a very good show and a nice start to the TBS era.

Match of the Night
Bryan Danielson vs Adam Page
Great fight.



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