AEW Dynamite entertained us with a Bash at the Beach theme for Dynamite this week, throwing back to the glory days of WCW. But the show that was delivered was not a throwback -- it was pure AEW product. New contenders were determined for top championships, storylines had big developments and there were high-octane matches featuring some of the best wrestlers in the world.
Let's take a look at what went down when AEW landed at Watsco Center in Miami, Florida, for Bash at the Beach.
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Two weeks after MJF laid out his three stipulations for Cody to get the match he so desired, Cody delivered his decision. After Cody had taken MJF under his wing, he paid for his trust when MJF threw in the towel during Cody's shot at Chris Jericho's world championship at the Full Gear pay-per-view. Not only did Cody lose the match because of MJF's actions, he had set his own stipulation that he would never challenge for the title again if he lost. All doubt cast over the intentions of MJF's decision was laid to rest when he then turned on Cody in the match's aftermath.
Cody said he had no problem with the stipulation that he could not touch MJF because he is "living rent-free" in his head. He also said the stipulation he would have to wrestle Wardlow in a steel cage would backfire on MJF when his muscle realized he shouldn't be carrying MJF's bags, it should be the other way around. And to the stipulation he take ten lashes live on an episode of Dynamite, Cody said skin welting and bleeding is far from the worst thing that will happen during their rivalry. So, Cody accepted the stipulations and the match is on. He added one last note: MJF thinks he's writing his own story, but he's actually just a chapter in Cody's book.
Cody remains fire on the microphone, able to sell a fight unlike anyone else in AEW with the exception of Chris Jericho. He even delivered a great bit during his promo talking about how old-time wrestlers say MJF is a true old-school heel, but Cody doesn't see it that way. He sees MJF as simply lazy. He also took a dig at MJF's parents for being "stage parents" who trotted him on the Rosie O'Donnell show (which you can see here). Cody just delivers perfect intensity that adds an incredible weight to everything he says. Grade: A
Jon Moxley def. Sammy Guevara via submissionwith a rear-naked choke. The match was part of a mini-tournament where the winner would advance to face the winner of the match between PAC and Darby Allin to be held later in the night. Guevara was also looking to give Moxley some payback for turning down an invite to join Inner Circle and Chris Jericho last week. The match ended when Guevara was going for a moonsault body block and was caught in the move by Moxley, who locked in the choke for the tap.
As Moxley was celebrating his victory, Jericho's music briefly hit before the lights went out. When the lights came back on, Jericho, Santana, Ortiz and Jake Hager were in the ring. The group put a beating on Moxley, including Jericho whipping him with the championship belt and Hager landing a running kick to the groin. Jericho then unscrewed one of the spikes from his jacket and drove it into Moxley's eye. After the commercial break, Jericho cut a promo backstage saying Moxley brought the attack on himself and it was an eye for an eye after Moxley smashed a bottle over his head last week.
PAC def. Darby Allin via pinfall after hitting the Black Arrow. The winner of this match was supposed to face Moxley next week to determine a No. 1 contender. PAC delivered some brutal shots early in the match, swinging Allin's body into the ring steps and later powerbombing him directly on the steps. Every time it seemed Allin had found an edge, PAC would roll out of the ring to avoid potential pinfalls. No matter what PAC hit Allin with, it seemed like the rising star would not accept the idea of staying down. Eventually, PAC was able to hit a Black Arrow on a prone Allin and finally got the pinfall victory. After the match, PAC made it clear that he was now the No. 1 contender because Moxley wouldn't be able to compete. Moxley then kicked his way out of an ambulance that was about to take him away. He entered the arena and said it "wouldn't go down like that," and that he would indeed face PAC next week to determine who would get a crack at Jericho.
Moxley walks alone, which is proving to be a serious issue with a tight-knit, anything-to-win group like Inner Circle. He got one over on Jericho last week by pretending to join Inner Circle before smashing the champagne bottle on Jericho's head. But the numbers game was going to catch up with him. It's what makes Jericho such a great heel champion. He is a great wrestler, yes, and he can talk a massive game. But he also just has that unfair edge that someone has to overcome with a group of men with no morals behind him at all times. It will be interesting to see how the "eye injury" angle progresses in the coming weeks. Moxley facing PAC and then Jericho with one eye is a big move to build up how badly he wants to get his hands on the champ.Grade: B+