AEW Dynamite Grades and Reactions for January 31, 2024

"Hangman" Adam Page and Swerve Strickland stood center stage for the latest edition of AEW Dynamite.
Hangman Adam Page 7.png
Hangman Adam Page 7.png /

Jeff Hardy Vs. Jon Moxley

Dynamite kicked off with two very familiar faces and served as a great way to warm up the audience. Hardy has been wrestling much more prominently within the past few weeks. While the veteran heads toward the end of his career, he certainly has more than a few matches left. Hardy looked strong tonight. He was able to keep up with Moxley in the ring and maintain a steady flow. With Matt Hardy at ringside, Jeff may have surprised some people with his performance. After a long and “extreme” career, Jeff Hardy seemed to have slowed down a bit, understandably so.

It was thrilling seeing Hardy hit his moves organically and fly from the top rope as he’s so famously known for doing. Ultimately, when Hardy did go for the Swanton Bomb off the top rope, Moxley rolled out of the way and immediately capitalized, choking Hardy out. With not a whole lot going on with Moxley on TV at the moment, this win felt fresh and needed. However, moments after, Moxley was attacked by members of the CMLL roster who were not scheduled to compete on Dynamite. While the rest of the BCC was absent tonight, Moxley was outnumbered and was beaten to the ground. This will undoubtedly follow up with the BCC getting involved further down the line.

Grade: B

Hangman Adam Page Vs. Toa Liona

It was announced last week that both Hangman Adam Page and Swerve Strickland would be in “Dealer’s Choice” matches, picking each other's opponents for the evening. Page would have his hands full early on in the night, as he battled Toa Liona. Adam Page was the heavy favorite to win the match. His long-term feud with Strickland only seems to progress and evolve. When Liona seemed to have the match won after a brutal Samoan drop, Page rolled Liona up unexpectedly and earned the victory. Page’s victory wasn’t shocking to many, as this may be the beginning of a huge Adam Page push. 

Grade: C+

Wardlow Vs. Komander

The Undisputed Kingdom made their presence known, as they all proudly stood at ringside to cheer on Wardlow. Despite being in a wheelchair, Adam Cole sat at the commentary table. Cole started to talk about how much The Undisputed Kingdom has helped Wardlow in the short time frame that they have been an established faction. It didn’t take time for Wardlow to make quick work of Komander, but not before what seemed to be a knee Injury. He struggled to deliver the finishing powerbomb but secured the win regardless.

Predictably, the Undisputed Kingdom attempted to punish Komander after the bell. Suddenly, plans were changed when Orange Cassidy, Trent Beretta, and the rest of “Best Friends” ran out to the ring to aid Komander. Rather than engaging, Undisputed Era left the ring as if nothing had ever happened. One thing is for certain; This faction is doing a lot better than many may have previously anticipated.

Grade: B-

Chris Jericho Vs. Kyle Fletcher

Representing the Don Callis Family, Kyle Fletcher would have much to prove in his match with the legend, Chris Jericho. Jericho has had his issues with Callis for months now. Initially, Callis wanted Jericho to be the leader of his new faction but ultimately had other plans. Since then, Callis recruited PowerHouse Hobbs, an enormous addition to the group who watched Fletcher’s match from ringside.

Of course, Callis found ways to involve himself in the match. Callis swept the leg of Jericho from outside the ring apron, giving Fletcher an upper hand. He’s possibly the best manager in AEW right now and he’s making newer talent like Kyle Fletcher and Hobbs look much better than they would on their own. The ROH TV Champion had an amazing match against Jericho, surprising many people regarding his in-ring ability. After a long and grueling fight, Jericho put Fletcher away with a Judas Effect off the top rope. However, Konosuke Takeshita appeared at the top of the ramp to remind Jericho of what is to come next week in Phoenix, when they go one-on-one.

Grade: A-

The Bang Bang Scissor Gang Summit

The Acclaimed and Billy Gunn’s alliance with Bullet Club Gold seems to be getting better and better each week. Both factions made their way to the ring to usher in a new era. As exciting as it’s been, almost nobody expected Billy Gunn to make up with his sons after they went to Bullet Club Gold. Both parties are now on the same page. Gunn stated that the two words were no longer “Suck it” but now “Guns Up.” The future certainly looks bright and exciting for The Bang Bang Scissor Gang.

Grade: B

Taya Valkyrie Vs. Deonna Purrazzo

Deonna Purrazzo has been looking better and better each week. Week after week, the AEW fanbase has been reacting to Purrazzo with great enthusiasm and excitement. This an amazing position to be in, especially when AEW Women’s champion, Toni Storm is on commentary and looking at the action. 

Valkyrie showed strength in this fight as well but served more as someone to help showcase Purrazzo’s capabilities. Ultimately, Purazzo tapped out Valkyrie, staring a whole right through Toni Storm. Storm appeared speechless and looked right back at Purrazo, subtly implying that a title match may soon be underway between these two. 

Grade: C

Swerve Strickland Vs. Rob Van Dam (Hardcore Match)

With it being Page's turn to pick the opponent for Swerve Strickland, Page also made it known that he had picked the stipulation as well. Swerve was to face Rob Van Dam in a Hardcore Match.  With no DQs or count-outs, Strickland looked to put away Van Dam right in front of his true competition, The AEW World Champion, Samoa Joe. Strickland was seen retreating early in the match.

RVD put Strickland through the ringer and made him earn his victory. Despite interference from Brian Cage and Hook, the match continued as a one-on-one. Van Dam ended up taking a hell of a beating which ended in a Swerve Stomp. However, as soon as Strickland won the match, Adam Page returned to the ring to confront Strickland. 

Page reminds Strickland that he will never get his hands on the AEW World Championship. Strickland disagreed and challenged to fight Adam Page for a third time in his career. Page loved the idea and so did Tony Khan, so much so that he made the match official for next week just as Dynamite was going off the air. The winner of next week’s match will have earned himself a championship match at Revolution against Samoa Joe. Joe grinned from commentary, inviting either opponent to challenge for his title if they dare.

Grade: B+