It was a big celebration for the AEW crew on Wednesday. Not only was the crew thrilled with how the Bash at the Beach special came off live and backstage, but AEW celebrated the extension with TNT and WarnerMedia. AEW President Tony Khan was going around, shaking hands with every single member of the crew and fans before the show, thanking them for their part in reaching this point.
I will have more information on AEW's TV deal at some point this week on Twitter (@jeremylambert88)
Now, to the Power Rankings.
AEW Power Rankings - Week 16
1. Hangman Page & Kenny Omega
I've been told the issues between Page and Omega have been vastly overblown. Yes, members of The Elite are worried about Page's drinking away from the ring. But they admire his preparation once he gets into the ring and there are very little signs of him and Omega having issues once the bell rings. That said, Omega will reportedly keep a close eye on Page in the following week as he wants him at his best for their AEW Tag Team Title match.
2. Jon Moxley
Moxley scored a big win over a red hot Sammy Guevara and moves on to a number one contender's bout next week. However, the victory came at a cost. Moxley suffered a gruesome eye injury following an illegal attack by the Inner Circle. As fans saw at the end of the show, Moxley refused medical attention. Many in the league want Moxley to surround himself with a team since he's a star player and needs better protection, but he has stated that he won't change his style. AEW will seemingly let Moxley be Moxley, even if it's to his detriment. As confirmed by Moxley himself, he will wrestle Pac next week. He has been told to take it easy until Wednesday. A source extremely close to Moxley told me he will be watching, as best he can, a lot of 'This Is Us' over the next week.
There was worry that Pac didn't have his head in the match as he's been so focused on Kenny Omega. But he put that aside on Wednesday and defeated Allin, putting himself one match away from an AEW World Title bout. Much like Hangman Page, once Pac gets in the ring, he has tunnel vision. It's earned him a lot of praise from everyone I've talked to. Though they add, "he's still a bastard."
4. MJF, The Butcher, & The Blade
Everyone knows the upside of MJF and that was once again on display on Wednesday. His wrestling IQ is leagues above what it should be at this stage in his career. He's arguably the best prospect in the sport since Kurt Angle. The Butcher & The Blade were happy to get back on the winning track and will continue to hitch themselves to the MJF wagon. MJF has stated many times that he will not be a follower in the league, but relishes the role of being a leader. However, he demand a lot from those around him and it's questionable if The Butcher & The Blade will be able to match his level.
As reported last week, Cody was furious with how things went during Dynamite and left the arena after his match. He was much calmer this week, really taking in the Bash at the Beach setting. Cody apologized for his "terrible actions" from last week, saying nobody is perfect but he has one of the strongest minds he has ever known. His apology was accepted and everyone agreed to move forward. Despite speculation, there was never a doubt in Cody accepting MJF's stipulations for the match at AEW Revolution. In fact, Cody has indicated that MJF didn't take the stipulations far enough and he was disappointed in his former apprentice.
6. Joey Janela
Janela begged from some promo time this week, feeling he has not been able to showcase his personality on the show since it premiered. AEW agreed and had nothing but praise for him following the segment. Sources outside of AEW have wondered to me why Janela hasn't been given more promo time in the past, feeling they've dropped the ball in utilizing him to the best of his ability. Expect Janela to be given more promo time moving forward.
7. The Young Bucks
Matt & Nick Jackson are a little perplexed at the moment. They thought they would be at the top of the AEW tag team division from start to finish, and despite their chances, they have failed in the big spots. They felt the fatal four-way was their match because the rules were thrown out the window and they could get back to their roots. They felt they had one of their better performances in the company, but made one mistake, leading to their downfall. The brothers remain optimistic that 2020 will be their year and don't plan on changing much up.
8. Sammy Guevara
Though he lost, Guevara continues to impress in 2020. His momentum has been slowed a bit, but Guevara remains one of the brightest prospects in AEW. Officially are looking into whether the post-match attack from The Inner Circle on Jon Moxley was premeditated. The Inner Circle were obviously not happy following last week when they were hit with recruiting violations. Jericho was suspended from competition this week, which only upset him more. He will be in action next week, but he could be a couple thousand dollars lighter as a result of a fine stemming from the attack on Moxley.
9. The Dark Order
I've looked into potential recruiting violations pertaining to The Dark Order and have found that they are doing everything by the book. Officials around the league have been impressed with the Dark Order and their scouting department. They are targeting potential big name free agents and those with a high upside.
10. Darby Allin
Once agin, Darby can't come up with a victory in the big match. It's becoming a worrying trend for the young wrestler. Those close to the situation have indicated that Darby is still a raw prospect and he will eventually learn how to win these matches. It is chalked up to growing pains for a prospect who has all the talent in the world, but simply lacks the experience of his opponents. If things continue this way in six months, then it will be a cause for concern. But right now, Allin will not make any drastic changes.
11. Santana & Ortiz
Much like the Young Bucks, Santana & Ortiz are not happy with their start to 2020. They thought they would be wrestling Billy & Austin Gunn one week, but were pulled from the match at the last minute. No reason was given to the public, but sources have told me that the duo were pulled from the match at the request of Austin Gunn, who feared for his life. The duo remain optimistic in 2020 and know that with the backing of The Inner Circle, they are in a position to succeed this year.
12. The Best Friends
Chuckie T and Trent know they are right now. Their timeline was thrown off a bit when Trent competed in singles matches, taking his attention away from tag team competition. Chuckie T supported his friend, but both men know that they are better together than separate.
13. Hikaru Shida & Kris Statlander
Despite the victory, things look bleak for Shida & Statlander. The impact of their victory was lessened when Awesome Kong was pulled from the match. Mel & Brandi are considered "weak" opponents by many experts as they are often found in the Dark Division. Worse yet, Shida & Statlander did not impress in victory. When you're a favorite the size of Shida & Statlander were coming into this match, you're expected to dominate and look good doing so. It didn't happen for the duo. Both are wondering why they teamed together as AEW has no women's tag team division.
14. Brandi Rhodes & Mel
Brandi deserves a ton of credit for stepping up in this match. She was not prepared and got the call last minute when Awesome Kong became ill. I'm told that had Brandi not been ready to wrestle, the match could have been canceled, leaving AEW with no women's bout for Dynamite. That would have been a huge blow to the division, which has already faced a lot of criticisms since Dynamite premiered. They may have lost, but given the circumstances, they are given a pass.
15. Dustin Rhodes, QT Marshall, & Diamond Dallas Page
The veterans were not hanging their head after the loss. They went out there and gave it their all, but know they can't exactly compete with the young guys for a full match anymore. DDP was said to be banged up after the match and it remains to be seen if he will now go back into retirement. Dustin has said he's having the most fun he's ever had in his career. Is it concerning that the veterans don't seem to care about wins and losses? Maybe to some. But it's not an issue backstage.
*These rankings are a satirical take on pro sports power rankings and treat AEW as such. Any reference to sources or reports should not be taken seriously.