Segunda Caida

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Wednesday, May 20, 2020

AEW Dynamite Workrate Report 5/20/20

What Worked

-Ten makes his Dynamite debut and his offense looked better than Moxley's. I liked his spinebuster, I liked his shot to the back of Moxley's head while Moxley was weirdly touching Aubrey Edwards' face, and the post match arm breaking angle looked good.

-I wouldn't have had money on MJF being the best squash match worker in the company, but here we are. AEW is filled with big guys who worked slow paced squashes while making dumb faces at the camera, or top stars who work way too competitive with bad structure. Here, Blackface MJF (MJG?) knows how to leave Marko openings by being cocky, and his established goofy selling works really well when used to mock Stunt's ineffectiveness (like when he sold a sunset flip by hammily waving his arms and bugging his eyes - the way he typically sells a sunset flip - only to reveal he was in no danger of going down). The shoulderbreaker looked great, him catching Marko in the ring skirt and missing a hard axe handle to the apron looked great, and he took a fantastic bump into the ring steps. I look forward to MJF matches now, which was not a thing I used to do.

-Arn has a sweater vest with Cody's bad logo on it!! Not a surprise that a talking segment with Arn and Jake is going to work. They aren't quite as quick as they used to be, but there are still going to be some great pull quotes when you let these two talk for a few minutes. I particularly liked Jake - boiler stretching buttons - accusing Arn of "looking a little thick".

-Wow, I really loved Fenix/Cassidy. This was one of the greatest Fenix performances of the past year, and I did not expect him to work so great as Cassidy's foil. He played into early match comedy (that was limited nicely to just the first minute or so), and him kicking and headbutting turnbuckles felt like a well done vintage Super Porky opponent spot. The rest of the match he worked really vicious, loved his big springboard legdrop, loved him doing little things like kicking Cassidy in the temple whenever he was on the mat too long, his nasty baseball slide dropkick, and thought his timing was super tight. Perhaps most importantly, he made Cassidy's offense look really dangerous, and the way he took a tornado DDT and a diving DDT was worth the cost of admission, and that was before he got dropped hard with a air raid crash. He really knows how to spike himself and make it look like a guy getting spiked. The Kip Sabian stuff at the end was dumb, but the match itself was incredibly fun.

-Hardy/Guevara was good, even though I think it went a little too long. I especially liked the first part of the match with Sammy eating a beating on the outside. Sammy is really good at flying into objects. He can make a spot like getting pulled into the ringpost a couple times look really nasty, and he flies into guardrails more enthusiastically than anyone else in AEW. Matt Hardy has been moving quicker since debuting in AEW, not sure if his body healed up from not being used often over the past year or he's just really going full effort in AEW, but the energy is good. Sammy's comeback segments were fun, loved his payback by smashing Hardy's face into the ringpost. Things did feel a bit too back and forth and I would have preferred a match without so much "stuff", but they worked like a main event and it came off mostly well.

-The endzone brawl was a cool visual and nice change of scenery, and it may have been the most interesting work from Hangman Page in a couple months. I love guys running in from long distances, and him doing a 100 yard dash to run the length of the football field - but not in a funny joke payoff spot - is something I can get behind. They've gone for laughs so many times in their big brawls that the whole thing worked because things that could have been silly - Page being on the other side of the stadium for some reason and needing to run at full speed to save his friends - was played straight. Page throwing hard right hands when he finally arrived didn't hurt.


What Didn't Work

-Not sure the last time I saw three straight dives end with three straight bodies flying directly into the ground, but somehow six men managed to whiff on catching Fenix, Cabana, and Cassidy, all in under a minute. After Fenix tope con hilo'd to the floor, I took stock of Jimmy Havoc, Kip Sabian, and you just know having all the worst guys on your roster out there was going to result in them all botching the one job they had.

-Had high hopes for this one, as I think a tag format is a much smarter way to use the women, rather than the messy 4 ways they always throw out there. And I think this was not far from being on the top side of the page, but fell a little short. I thought the long Nyla control segment was really good, with her straight leveling Statlander with a big pounce to start her control. Stomping her head, kicking her to the floor in the neck, dropping a nice legdrop, nice slow heel control. It also played to Britt Baker's strong apron work, as Britt is really good at making shirt collar tugging faces and not rushing to tag in. The match dipped when Shida and Statlander made their comebacks. Stuff looked sloppy, Shida stuff comes up light, but it's not bad. Shida makes up for weak offense with energy and charisma, and it does close up some of the gap. I liked when Baker finally had to tag in, thought her stumbling control and stooging with Statlander was good. Match had some miscommunication, but I could see this tag being run back next week and being actively good. And I couldn't see that happening if this was just a 4 way.


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