The tournament to crown the next challenger for the AEW World Championship began on this week’s AEW Dynamite as four quarterfinal rounds were set to take place. Who came out on top? Let’s find out.

AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament Quarter Final match: Wardlow vs Jungle Boy

With a clear weight disadvantage, Jungle Boy tried to use his speed to outpace Wardlow and wear him down over time. He attempted several speedy manoeuvres but attempts at the high risk kept resulting in him being caught by Wardlow’s power advantage.

An impressive counter saw a middle rope slam attempt from Wardlow converted into an avalanche hurricanrana from Jungle Boy. He followed up with a top rope double knee strike but only managed a two-count.

However, the high-risk offence was Jungle Boy’s downfall as he was caught by Wardlow from a dive to the outside and swung back into the ring with the F-10. Another F-10 in the ring and Wardlow easily pinned Jungle Boy for the three-count.

Wardlow looked dominant here and Jungle Boy certainly looked impressive but clearly had a lot to learn about ring tactics. This is no detriment as it’s very appropriate for his character and is something that can be built into future narratives.

Eddie Kingston and Jon Moxley ‘I Quit’ match confirmed for Full Gear

Footage was shown from after the show last week of Kingston giving a blazing promo on the unconscious Moxley. He decried Moxley for leaving him behind and told him he had nothing compared to Moxley’s titles, wife or popularity. How this wasn’t aired last week is beyond me, the whole angle could have been sold on this promo alone.

Afterwards, Moxley retorted saying how much he loved Kingston but doesn’t recognise the entitled brat he’s become. He promised to end things at Full Gear and prove that Kingston had no one to blame but himself.

Kingston would follow up later in the night laughing manically at Moxley’s threats. He hyped the upcoming matches featuring his crew and said he would make Moxley beg for his “old boss” to take him back.

He said he had to become bitter, that he hates what he’s become, but it’s necessary. He said he got nothing before but now he gets his shot at the title.

This angle is by far the most interesting AEW World Championship feud Moxley has been involved with so far and has a great combination of impactful promo work, especially from the promo perfection from Kingston, and baked in history.

AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament Quarter Final match: Kenny Omega vs Sonny Kiss

Unfortunately, Joey Janela wasn’t able to participate in the tournament due to potential COVID-19 exposure. In his stead was his tag team partner Sonny Kiss.

After a hilariously over celebratory intro for Kenny Omega, complete with claims he had a greater grasp of Japanese than Michael Nakazawa and a pair of models dancing with brooms, Omega hit Kiss with the V-trigger. He then followed with the One-Winged Angel and put Kiss away in swift fashion.

A cocky Omega mugged to the camera before raising an apprehensive Kiss’s hand. This was shocking in all the right ways with Omega looking phenomenally strong heading into the next round. Janela probably could have eaten the loss better than Kiss but I don’t think it will have major repercussions for Kiss who is well-loved by AEW audience regardless.

AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament Quarter Final match: Penta El Zero M vs Rey Fénix

I’m going to put this simply. This was potentially the best match of the year. These two put on a sensational match full of incredible spots, sibling rivalry drama and close finishes.

To list the spots would be a disservice to the excellence these two showed in the ring.

I have not marked out more during a televised wrestling show over this entire year than I did during this match.

Do yourself a favour and watch this match in full, it’s remarkable.

AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament Quarter Final match: Colt Cabana w/ Evil Uno vs Hangman Page

Page and Cabana traded blows but Page clearly had the edge from the beginning, easily batting off Cabana’s offence.

After the break, Cabana looked to make a comeback as he defiantly struck back at Page who had begun to act cocky.

Cabana hit a big elbow and some impressive headscissors knocking Page off base. He kept up the offence with a Dusty style ‘Flip, Flop and Fly’ and attempted his crawl under counter. Page had it scouted but Cabana managed to trip Page into a cradle pin for a close two-count. The Flying Apple was countered into an awesome looking stalling German suplex bridge pin from Page but Cabana managed to kick out.

Page went for the Orihara moonsault but Cabana pushed him off causing Page to clatter back first onto the apron and followed with a huge diving splash to the outside.

Cabana came close to a win with a tricky counter into the Superman pin but Page kicked out and managed to fake out Cabana into being open for the Buckshot Lariat to win the match.

After the match, the other Dark Order members who had derided Cabana earlier in the night helped him to the back. Despite the loss, Cabana looked the strongest he has in a long time here and the ending with the acceptance of his Dark Order brethren was a nice touch.

Team Taz’s burning asses

Team Taz came to the ring and while I’d like to talk about what a superb job Ricky Starks did on the microphone, all I can think about is Taz saying that Darby Allin getting a TNT Championship opportunity really ‘burns his ass’.

I think you need an antiseptic cream rather than a title shot Taz.

Chris Jericho and MJF: The Dinner Debonair

Jericho and MJF started by ordering a steak when MJF committed the most heinous act of his career. He ordered a porterhouse steak well-done…

After trying to one up each other with how rare they were willing to go with their steaks, MJF and Jericho concluded that they really were very similar in a lot of ways.

Then magic happened as the pair entered into a heel themed version of the Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr classic “Me and my Shadow”.

I’m a big musical fan so, to see wrestling and musical numbers in the same show now basically confirms AEW is essentially just writing TV for my benefit.

A silly but entertaining segment that continues the love/hate relationship of the pair. Jericho and the Inner Circle will have a town hall meeting next week to determine if MJF will join the group.

Britt Baker w/ Reba vs KiLynn King

Baker continued her dominant streak in the women’s division as she took the hurt to King despite some deft wrist control tactics from King early in the match.

Despite some very technically impressive chain wrestling from King, a fisherman’s neckbreaker and a curb stomp softened up King enough for Baker to lock in the Lockjaw for the victory.

A short match but a fun watch regardless with King’s technical prowess coming through despite the loss. If Baker isn’t the next AEW Women’s Champion, then there is no justice. Baker could very easily carry the division on her back with the excellent work she’s been doing in and out of the ring.

AEW World Tag Team #1 Contender 4-Way Tag Team match: Private Party w/ Matt Hardy vs the Butcher and the Blade w/ the Bunny vs Alex Reynolds and John Silver vs the Young Bucks

FTR joined the commentary team to view their potential title challengers.

The Bucks and Private Party clearly had some animosity after their cheap super kicks they ate last week but responded with their own to even the score. Quick tags at the start saw Marq Quen take on all comers and look incredibly strong with his unique gravity-defying style.

Sammy Guevara snuck down to the ring to brawl with Matt Hardy as we went into the break.

Private Party kept on strong as they hit a silly string and double splash on Reynolds but their pin attempt was broken up. It seemed this exchange had knocked Reynolds out and had to be dragged to ringside by the Blade to get him out of the ring. Reynolds apparently left the ring under his own power so, hopefully, he’s okay and we wish him the best.

The Bucks took control of the action and hit an assisted spike piledriver onto Isiah Kassidy as a dig at FTR.

Kassidy was left isolated as the Bucks kept everyone off the apron leaving him unable to tag out. A Meltzer driver attempt was countered as Kassidy attempted a roll-up on Matt Jackson but Matt reversed it and got the three-count over Kassidy.

This match was an enjoyable tag match but it was alarming to see Reynolds knocked out after the Hardy incident is still fresh in everyone’s mind.

The outcome, however, was not great. It’s actually getting irritating that the Young Bucks are continually putting themselves into PPVs without significant build or storylines. FTR and Bucks is a long-running dream match that should happen eventually, but is now really the time? Both FTR and the Bucks are currently heels for one.

Adding further confusion was the post-match angle. FTR faced down the Bucks in the ring but the Bucks were blindsided by a chair from a masked assailant. The assailant, who turned out to be Tully Blanchard, helped FTR hit Matt Jackson with a spike piledriver and then FTR attempted to break Matt’s arm with a chair that the commentators said may take him out of action.

There are two outcomes I see from this; one the Bucks can’t compete and won’t be on the PPV. In this case, why even have them in this match? Make this a chance for another team to get over, the Bucks are over as is.

The other outcome is that this is intended to make the Bucks face. This is maddening if the case because the heel turn has barely had time to breathe and why should we feel sorry for the Bucks considering they’ve been assaulting innocent bystanders for the last month? This is comeuppance if anything.

It’s confusing booking that deflated the end of what was actually one of the best episodes of AEW Dynamite of the year and possibly one of the best of the entire shows run. The match quality was sensational throughout and even had a potential match of the year contender. The only downside was the finish that could not come to close to meeting the high standard the rest of the episode had set.

All pictures and videos provided by AEW