Another week in the books for AEW Dynamite and things are steady as they go. Officials are pleased with the TNT Title tournament, feeling those matches have carried the shows in recent weeks. Some were surprised that they would be wrapping up the semi-finals next week as there will still three weeks until Double or Nothing.
But I'm told AEW has something special in store for those weeks that will keep things rolling.
AEW Power Rankings - Week 28
1. Darby Allin
Allin was not surprised at Guevara's game plan on Wednesday. After the two met at AEW Revolution, he heard the talk that his win was a fluke and did not take kindly to it. He wanted this rematch against Guevara to prove it was no fluke and he wanted to be on Cody's side of the bracket to prove he can finally beat him. This is as motivated as I've ever seen Allin. While some aren't able to get the adrenaline going with no audience, Darby believes it's an advantage for him. He's an adrenaline junkie as is and doesn't need an audience to egg him on. He'll go base jumping with no one watching just because.
2. Dustin Rhodes
Rhodes put his career on the line as extra motivation, but Rhodes told me that he truly didn't need the extra motivation. A date with Lance Archer was all the motivation he needed. He put his career on the line to actually motivate Sabian, which obviously didn't work. Some are wondering if Dustin wasn't better off losing than moving on to face Archer. I've been told that those close to Dustin will try to talk him out of the match, but they know it's not going to work.
3. Orange Cassidy
Cassidy gave less than his usual effort, which is to say that he didn't really care until he decided to win. Everyone knows that Cassidy can be one of the top guys in the company, it's just a matter of him finding the motivation. He was motivated against PAC, but just came up short. The fact that he could go through the motions against Havoc and still pick up the win speaks to his talent level. Everyone knows he's one of the most naturally talented wrestlers in the business. It's just a matter of him giving a damn.
4. Kenny Omega
Omega admitted to me after the show that he took Angels lightly. He wants to remain sharp at the moment, but he is growing frustrated with the situation. Omega thrives on competition and being the best. But he's facing mid-tier at best guys right now and that's not pushing him like he needs to be pushed. Unfortunately for Omega, there's not much AEW can do given the situation. Jon Moxley has willingly offered to fight Omega, but AEW won't do that match in front of no fans, which is a smart call. So, for now, Omega will continue to chug along, hoping he doesn't slip up.
5. Brodie Lee
Lee added to The Dark Order with Preston Vance. As I've been reporting for weeks, Lee's leadership style will continue to work until he loses. But the second he loses, that style will come into question. Vance believes Dark Order will boost his stock, but he has been warned by other members in the group that he doesn't know what he's getting into and his freedom will be stripped from him.
An impressive performance that pleased MJF. He wants to keep Wardlow sharp while he is out of action as there's no guarantee he will be back to his old-self coming off of surgery. A severe hangnail is no joke and lesser wrestlers have seen their career ended by such an injury while others were a shell of their former selves. MJF is confident that he can return better than ever, but for that early period of mystery, he wants to make sure Wardlow stays ready to step in.
7. Sammy Guevara
The disappointment continues for Guevara. I don't know how many times I can write the same story about him, but something must change. Guevara was focused and executed the game plan laid out to him by Jericho. But it still wasn't good enough. Jericho wants to a mean streak to come out in Guevara, but thinks he's a little too young to find it right now. "He's more worried about these Instagram models," said Jericho. "But I'm a patient man. I have a lot of years left to groom him. I'll let him enjoy the models for now. And when he realizes the joy is in the ring and not the bedroom, I'll be there."
8. Matt Hardy
The Inner Circle is not happy with Hardy trying to dictate terms of the fight. It's why Jericho has avoided answering Hardy's challenge for Elite Delete. "I'm Le Champion," said Jericho. "Who is Matt Hardy? Dumb-ass kiss, is that what he's calling himself? I'm not going to North Carolina. The last time I was in North Carolina, I ate a place called Bojangles and let me tell you about Bojangles, it's no Chik-Fil-A. If Matt wants a match, he can earn it. My days of giving handouts ended with Shane Helms, another North Carolina idiot."
There are no long-term concerns with MJF's injury. He will get the surgery required and come back 100% healthy. I've been told that if things were normal, MJF would work through the injury because he had so much momentum coming out of Revolution. But now is the time to get the injury taken care of. As far as gambling goes, he was not gambling on AEW matches. He was simply playing a competitive game of dice. "I don't bet on wrestling. Only losers bet on wrestling," said MJF.
10. Shawn Spears
AEW has launched an internal investigation into the gambling allegations brought forth by Tony Schiavone. No AEW competitor is allowed to bet on AEW matches for the obvious reasons. If AEW finds any evidence that Spears bet on the match between Guevara and Allin, it's possible that he will forfeit his eligibility to the AEW Hall of Fame.
11. Kip Sabian
Sabian is extremely disappointed with himself following the loss to Rhodes. He felt he got distracted earlier in the night by caring about Orange Cassidy and there are questions remain regarding his on-screen partnership with Penelope Ford. Sabian has not seen any benefits from the relationship on-screen as he continues to lose. He's been told by many of his peers to not mix business and pleasure, but his only response is, "I'm Superbad."
12. Jimmy Havoc
Havoc was out of his element against Cassidy. Havoc has pushed for more violent matches, but AEW won't give in, leading to a lot of frustration on his side. He's still trying to find his role and hopes that a partnership with Sabian will be beneficial for him.
13. Alan Angels
Angels earned this match because officials were impressed with him despite not fairing too well against Lance Archer. He looks better against Omega and fans should expect to see more from him moving forward. AEW has thrown him into the deep end, and while he has yet to swim, he proved that he could at least tread water long enough to not drown before he was eaten by sharks.
14. Lee Johnson
Could end up on Dark.
15. Justin Law
Another competitor who should end up on Dark when things return to normal.
*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. Quotes are not real.