Sports, TV Shows, WWE

AEW & NXT 3/3: Ranking the Wednesday Night War Matches

On Wednesday night, AEW Dynamite put on their go-home show heading into the Revolution PPV, with NXT moving towards their next TakeOver event. Shaq is kicking AEW off in a mixed tag team match, while Tully Blanchard returns to the ring later in the evening. On the NXT side, Finn Balor goes one on one with Roderick Strong.

The Wednesday Night Wars review takes all of the matches from each show and gives them a star rating. The matches are then ranked from best to worst.

AEW vs NXT: Bottom of the Barrel

11) Rey Fenix & Pac d. John Skyler & D3 (AEW Dynamite)
Rey Fenix & Pac destroy the poor jobbers within a minute. Pac hits a 450 splash on Syler before Fenix ends it with a Rikishi Driver. Take a Pass. SQUASH

10) Ember Moon w/Shotzi d. Aliyah w/Robert Stone (NXT)
Ember Moon gets the best of Aliyah early on as she uses her strength to her advantage. The action spills to the outside as Moon catches Aliyah after she attempts an apron crossbody. Aliyah gets control briefly until Aliyah is knocked off the top rope. Blackheart hits a cross body onto Stone and Kamea, as Ember connects with the Eclipse for the win. Decent enough match but nothing to go out of your way to see. Skim It. **

Moving along

9) Max Caster d. Ten (AEW Dynamite)
Ten goes for a quick roll-up that gets a two-count to start. After a 10 count in the corner, Ten brings the action to the outside but is slammed into the ring post by Max Caster before the break. Back from the break as Caster continues his offense before Ten is able to make a brief comeback. Jac Evans appears from under the ring and his Ten with a boom box allowing Caster to get the win. Decent filler match but not much to see. Skim It. **

8) Cameron Grimes d. Bronson Reed (NXT)
Cameron Grimes tries to payoff Bronson Reed before the match but it doesn’t go over well. Reed reversed a Grimes sunset flip into a sitdown splash for a two-count as we go to commercial. Back from the break and Grimes has gained control, doing his best with several kicks and strikes. Reed is not phased as he unloads on Grimes with chops, a standing Thez Press and a lariat. Grimes tries to leave the match put his hit with a suicide dive from Reed. LA Knight makes his way done and crotches Reed on the top rope allowing Grimes to get the win. Decent little match with Reed showing some skill for a big man. Skim It. **1/4

AEW: Wednesday Night Filler

7) Ryo Mizunami d. Nyla Rose (AEW Dynamite)
Hard exchange between both women until Ryo Mizunami gets the best of things. Nyla Rose is able to bounce back with her power but Ryo takes it to the corner for a chop fest. Ryo does a bunch of mime-work which is just bizarre and makes no sense. After a stiff back and forth battle, Rose hits a superplex to Ryo who shakes it off and hits a speak. Ryo climbs to the top rope and finishes things with a leg drop. Pretty solid match but unless you are really into this portion of AEW, the women’s division is just not that interesting. Skim It. **1/2

6) John Silver & Hangman Adam Page d. Matt Hardy and Marc Quen (AEW Dynamite)
John Silber and Marc Quen start things off. Quen gets the advantage and tags Matt Hardy who enters until Page is tagged. Hardy retreats and tags Quen to return. Page and Siler maintain the advantage until Quen is hit with a side-effect onto the apron. The action moves back and forth until Page gets the tag. Pop-up powerbomb by Page, German suplex by Siler, and the Buckshot lariat ends it. After the match, Page is beaten down by Hardy. Nearly the entire AEW run to the ring and brawl to end the show. Skim It. **1/2

Shaq Attack

5) Shaq and Jade Cargill d. Cody Rhodes and Red Velvet
Shaq and Cody lock up as they move to the corner. Shaq absorbs Cody’s punches until he lands a stiff over-the-top chop. Cody is backdropped as Shaq moves over to the corner for more hard chops. Jade Cargill tags in causing Red Velvet to follow. Cargill powers her way to an advantage as Cody gets the tag back in and knocks Shaq off the apron. The Gunn Club attack Shaq from the crowd but get beat down as a result.

Red Velvet connects with a moonsault to the outside to knock down the crowd. The men head back in with Shaq hitting a powerbomb before getting body slammed Cody. Two tables are set up on the outside as Cody dives onto Shaq as they fall from the apron through the tables. Cargill connects with the Glam Slam for the win. Pretty fun all things considered. Grading it on a curve it’s Worth a Watch, but don’t expect much besides a few high spots. **1/2

Tag Team Action

4) Danny Burch and Oney Lorcan d. Timothy Thatcher and Tommaso Ciampa (NXT)
Ciampa and Thatcher are filling in for an injured MSK. Thatcher and Burch engage in stiff chain wrestling before Ciamoa and Lorcan are tagged in. Ciampa gets the best of Lorcan and tags Thatcher back in who gets a two-count off an elevated uppercut. Lorcan hits a hard lariat before the commercial break.

Back from the break and Ciampa cleans house with corner close lines. Imperium appears on the apron to distract Ciampa who is knocked off the apron. Thatcher is then hit with an elevated DDT as Lorcan and Burch retain. Really solid tag match that opens the door for new feuds. Worth a Watch. ***1/4

WWE: Tag Team Title Match

WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship: Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler d. Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez (NXT)
3) Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez won the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic to earn a #1 contenders shot. As expected, the power of Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler is used early on as they corner Kai throughout the entire commercial break. Back from the break and Kai is able to eventually break free and make a hot tag to Gonzalez. After getting the advantage, Kai is tagged back in but is caught in the Kirifuda Clutch by Baszler. Gonzalez makes a blind tag and brawls with Jax on the outside. Back in the ring, Adam Pearce sends another referee to the ring to call for the submission of Kai despite her not being the legal woman. Very good match with a screwy finish. Worth a Watch. ***1/2

The Horseman Rise

2) FTR and Tully Blanchard w/ JJ Dillon d. Jurassic Express (AEW Dynamite)
Tully Blanchard enters with his trademark black robe and NWA United States Title for nostalgia. Back and forth action from both sides as FTR work over Jungle Boy early on. Blanchard hits his classic slingshot suplex on Marco Stunt. A wild ending sequence included a Power Plex from FTR, a suicide dive from Jungle boy, and help for FTR by a masked man. A Blanchard-assisted Spike Piledriver gets the win for FTR.

Shawn Spears is revealed to be the masked man as Arn Anderson throws up the four fingers on the apron. This was all types of fun. This was Must-Watch territory for the nostalgia alone. ***1/2

NXT: Main Event

1) Finn Bálor d. Roderick Strong (NXT)
Finn Balor gets the early advantage in a chain wrestling sequence before Roderick Strong breaks free with an inverted backbreaker. A commercial takes us to a picture in picture before we return to Balor putting the boots to Strong. Balor continues to work the arm until Strong power slams the champion. Strong is able to finally gain some control but it wouldn’t last long.

Finn Balor is able to counter a gutbuster from Roderick Strong before hitting the Slingblade. Balor heads to the top rope for Coup de Grace before connecting with 1916 for the win. As expected, this was a really good main event that was just a bit too short to get into must-watch territory. Worth a Watch regardless. ***3/4

Robby Steven

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