AEW Pro Wrestling

AEW Dynamite Preview: World Title Eliminator Tournament, First Round!

With Dynamite being on Saturday night for the second week in a row, AEW are trying to stack the card again to fight off competition from the rest of the sporting world. The brackets for the World Title Eliminator Tournament was announced last weekend, and on tonight’s show we’ll be getting two of the quarterfinal matches. One has a long time vet taking on Bryan Danielson, and the other has two maniacs going one-on-one. We also have Black vs Rhodes 3 scheduled for this Saturday’s episode!

All that and much more, and here is where we’ll break it all down.

Malakai Black vs Cody Rhodes

This is a rivalry that has picked up steam very quickly, and has really helped build Malakai Black as a character. The mind games he’s been playing with Cody Rhodes and all the Nightmare Family has been interesting to see unfold, and now it looks like the Nightmare Family are taking the “tough love” approach with Cody. In the vignette shot from Cody’s training facilities, we saw the entire Nightmare Family take it to Cody, even his own brother Dustin. I thought this was a little over-dramatic, but there trying to get the point over that Cody will need to dig deep to beat Malakai Black.

It was an interesting video, because I think this plays right into the hands of Malakai. He’s someone who’s trying to get Cody to snap, and I think that the Nightmare Family are helping Malakai do just that. Cody has stated publicly that he doesn’t want to turn heel, but it looks like he might have to if he wants to beat Black.

This is now the third singles match between the two competitors and that’s noteworthy because AEW do a really good job of not doing rematches. In this case though it makes sense because Malakai did cheat to get the win the last time out. I hope Malakai Black makes it three in a row over Cody, and we finally get that heel turn from Rhodes.

Eddie Kingston vs Lance Archer – World Title Eliminator match

Out of all the quarter-final match ups, this is the one I’m the most excited for. We know that when we get these two guys in the ring, it’s going to be hard-hitting, and completely out of control. Putting that aside, the reason I’m looking forward to this match the most is because of how up in the air the result is. The fact that both Lance Archer and Eddie Kingston are big names, makes this match a toss up, and that makes it all the more interesting.

I think that both Kingston and Archer need wins in a big way, and advancing to the semi-finals is good way to get your momentum back on track. If I had to choose a winner here, I’d go with the Murderhawk, because Eddie can always rebound from any loss with his mic skills.

Bryan Danielson vs Dustin Rhodes – World Title Eliminator match

This will be the second World Title Eliminator match will be getting on tonight’s episode, and unlike the Kingston/ Archer match up, I think it’s a pretty safe choice as to who will be advancing from this quarter-final.

Dustin Rhodes is a great veteran, but it makes absolutely no sense for him to get a win over Bryan Danielson in this tournament. However, Rhodes will have a chance, once again, to show that he’s still got when he steps in the ring with one of the world’s best. Danielson is coming off an amazing match with Minor Suzuki, where Danielson won the match but both guys looked awesome. I hoping that we get a very similar result in this one.

There are a few big names missing from this tournament, like MJF, Chris Jericho and of course CM Punk, but I understand Tony Khan not wanting to reveal all the aces up his sleeves right away. The bracket for the newly announced Women’s TBS title will be unveiled on Friday’ Rampage, so it’s possible we can be getting a match from that tournament on this show as well. 

All this and so much more can be seen on TNT (TSN in Canada) on SATURDAY this week.

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