As Beach Break was ending last week, we had New Japan Pro Wrestling star Kenta show up on AEW’s turf to attack Jon Moxley. Kenta is the #1 contender to Moxley’s IWGP U.S Championship, so they will be going head-to-head on February 26th at NJPW’s “New Beginnings” event. While Jon Moxley has it in his contract that he is able to work for both AEW and NJPW, this is huge news that Kenta showed up in AEW because this is an indication that there is some sort of partnership between the 2nd and 3rd biggest promotions globally.
Kenny Omega and Kenta vs Jon Moxley and Lance Archer- Falls Count Anywhere
The IWGP U.S title match will only be taking place at the end of February, but we will get a sneak peak of the match tonight on Dynamite. This blockbuster main event will have Kenny Omega and Kenta take on Jon Moxley and Lance Archer. This match has multiple layers to it and is wrestling booking at it’s finest.
For starters, this match has a deep connection to the IWGP U.S title as we have the champion and challenger on opposing teams, and the two other men in the match have also won the IWGP title. Lance Archer won it when it was vacated 2019 and Kenny Omega was the first ever IWGP U.S champion in 2017.
Secondly, The Bullet Club and Super Elite have been going back at fourth on Twitter about who is the “real” Bullet Club, with Super Elite’s 5 members – Kenny Omega, the Young Bucks and Gallows and Anderson all being members of the Bullet Club a few years ago. So, it will be interesting to see if Kenta and Kenny Omega can put aside their differences for this match.
In the other corner, we’ll have Jon Moxley and Lance Archer teaming together and they are no strangers to each other either. Moxley defeated Archer back in 2020 at Wrestle Kingdom to become the IWGP U.S Champion. Moxley would also be victorious against the MurderHawk later that same year, defending his AEW Championship on that occasion.
This match is going to be amazing and the stipulation of “Falls Count Anywhere” basically guarantees we’ll have cameos from other members of the Super Elite and, dare I say it, more members of the Bullet Club?
TNT Title Match: Darby Allin (C) vs Joey Janela
A lot of this match seems to be more focused on Darby and Sting vs Team Taz rather than champion versus challenger. Usually, I would hate that, but I’m a big fan of Joey Janela and any advantage he gets is a bonus to me.
Darby Allin and Sting have been tangled up with Team Taz for what seems like an eternity now and because AEW are protecting Sting from having too many matches, it’s been kind of repetitive over the last few weeks. The Sting/ Darby and Team Taz storyline will get it’s payoff at the upcoming PPV Revolution but the TNT Championship has gotten lost in the fold.
Aside from the great match that Allin had with Brian Cage for the TNT Championship on New Years Smash, Darby has only defended the championship one time in three months. The TNT championship needs to feel like a big deal and right now it’s taking a backseat to the Team Taz/ Sting and Darby feud.
This is where the Bad Boy, Joey Janela comes in. Janela took part in the GCW Fight Forever two weekends ago, where he got on the mic and announced that he had been missing in action since his last match on Dynamite vs Kenny Omega because of concussion protocol. A run with the TNT championship would be a great vote of confidence for Janela and more importantly it would bring the title back to the forefront. This is probably wishful thinking on my part, but the bad boy is one of the most charismatic wrestlers on the roster and the TNT championship could take him to the next level. Normally, I don’t like when a distraction causes a title to change hands, but if anyone from Team Taz were to cost Allin the championship, I wouldn’t be upset.
Chris Jericho and MJF vs The Acclaimed
Fresh off winning the Tag Team Battle Royal, Jericho and MJF are now the #1 contenders for the Young Bucks Tag Team titles. This match will most likely be a filler in the build up to the championship match at Revolution, but I also expect to see a few more cracks in the Inner Circle.
Don’t sleep on The Acclaimed however, AEW seem to be very high on the young tag team and they set to play a big role in the near future. Aside from any funny business, this one should end in a Judas Effect or Salt of the Earth to see Jericho and MJF’s hands raised in victory.
Other matches that are scheduled for tonight’s Dynamite:
We’ll see Pac return to singles action as he takes on “the Hollywood Hunk” Ryan Nemeth. Cody Rhodes and Lee Johnson take on Pretty Peter Avalon and Cezar Bononi in a tag team match that should be pretty straight forward for the Nightmare Family. Last but most certainly not least is the first match of the (absolutely stacked) women’s tournament will take place tonight, as Leyla Hirsch takes on Thunder Rosa.
Dynamite will be live on TNT (and TSN in Canada) starting at 8PM EST.
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Here is the latest NSFW episode featuring John Bowman.