news aew dynamite preview washington d c to host shows three year anniversary
Sports

AEW ‘Dynamite’ preview: Washington, D.C., to host show’s three-year anniversary

mjf wheeler yuta
Graphic: All Elite Wrestling

I was in Washington, D.C., three years ago – Oct. 2, 2019 – for the premiere of “AEW Dynamite,” and I’m lucky enough to be able to be back in D.C. this week for the three-year anniversary show.

This time, we’ll be in the Entertainment & Sports Arena, the 4,000-seat home to the Washington Mystics and the G-League team, not in the 20,000-seat Capital One Arena, which was booked for an NHL preseason game on Wednesday.

It says a lot about how much Tony Khan wanted to be back in DC that he’s going back to the Entertainment & Sports Arena, which is, charitably, a dump – tight concourses, limited concessions, basic seating, nothing in terms of atmosphere that you wouldn’t expect out of your local high school gym.

The opener for Wednesday night’s show (8 p.m. ET, TBS) will feature MJF for his in-ring return in a match with Wheeler Yuta, a quasi-shooter who will help the future world champ look good.

We also get a tag match pitting Bryan Danielson and Daniel Garcia against the team of Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara.

This one feels to me to be a setup to having Garcia, who has teased a face turn in recent weeks, to double-cross Danielson.

The women get a few minutes in a trios match pitting AEW women’s champ Toni Storm, Athena and Willow Nightingale against the team of Jamie Hayter, Serena Deeb and Penelope Ford, with Britt Baker and Saraya at ringside.

In a matchup that means nothing in the grand scheme of things, but should be good nonetheless, we get former AEW world champ Adam Page meeting up with Rush.

Darby Allin faces Jay Lethal in a total throwaway match.

What a waste, having these guys doing nothing of consequence.

Oh, and we also get National Scissoring Day, a segment featuring the new tag champs, The Acclaimed, and their manager, Billy Gunn.

Something involving whoever their next contenders will be will take center stage here.

As long as we get a Max Caster rap on the way out, I’m cool with that.

And then what could and should be the main event: TNT champ Wardlow, victim of failed booking, defends against Brian Cage, victim of being absolutely forgotten by Khan, for several months.

The Wardlow-Cage match runs the risk of exposing both, running against the old maxim that you don’t put two big guys in a match with each other, because you need the big guy to be in there with a worker to make him shine.

You know Wardlow is going over here; I don’t suspect that Cage is going to make him look all that good in the process.

The night being the third anniversary, there may be some surprises – perhaps a return of The Elite?

They were the highlight, to me, back in 2019, because I’d never seen Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks live before.

The bloom is off the rose now, but it would still be nice to have the EVPs around for the anniversary show.

Chris Graham

I write books, two on UVA basketball, one on pro wrestling, one on politics, which is getting to be like pro wrestling more and more each day. I've finished three marathons, but my maranthoning days are over. I'm also a progressive who voted for Biden, but we need another Democrat in 2024. (Sorry, Joe, and thanks.) Want to reach me? Try [email protected]