Top WWE Star UPSET With Booking? Vince McMahon Search Warrant! AEW Dynamite Review | WrestleTalk

Welcome to the WrestleTalk News, I’m Pete Quinnell. It’s Oli’s favourite time of the year, because WWE filed their quarterly report to the SEC, and among its usual numbers and business business business, there were also some very interesting details in the legal section of the filing. As well as mentioning the ongoing lawsuit with MLW, the filing noted that while their own special committee within WWE finished their investigations into Vince McMahon’s allegations of misconduct in the fourth quarter of 2022, governmental investigations remain ongoing. The filing then mentions that on July 17th, 2023, “federal law enforcement agents executed

a search warrant and served a federal grand jury subpoena on Mr. McMahon”. No charges were said to have been brought forward due to these investigations. Both Vince and WWE have now issued statements to CNBC, saying: “I have always denied any intentional wrongdoing and continue to do so. I am confident that the government’s investigation will be resolved without any findings of wrongdoing.” John Pollock of POST Wrestling reported that Vince also made an internal statement to the rest of WWE and its staff, which said mostly the same thing, continuing to say that the internal investigation concluded late

last year, and he denied any wrongdoing. It had also been reported recently that Vince McMahon underwent back surgery, which brought about some question

marks as to his role within WWE, and we now have a little more info on that. In the same SEC filing, it was mentioned that Vince had undergone this surgery, and was now on medical leave as of July 21st, and would remain on medical leave “until further notice”. What this means for his influence backstage on week-to-week creative remains to be seen, because this is Vince we’re talking about. I don’t think he knows

what time off actually means. Women’s wrestling has been a big topic of conversation lately, with more vocal criticism of AEW’s booking, as well as WWE’s decision to seemingly remove two women’s matches from SummerSlam. Dynamite last night had a women’s world title match as the main event, Oli will have his review here shortly, but there seems to be some unrest still in WWE. One of the two matches that was reportedly pencilled in for the show but now doesn’t seem to be happening was Rhea Ripley vs Raquel Rodriguez, and Rhea may have now shown how she feels

about that decision, as she has liked a tweet saying “Treat your women better. Simple” with screenshots attached of Rhea Ripley and Becky Lynch being annoyed about their exclusion on the SummerSlam card. Rhea also liked another tweet that said that Rhea has every right to be upset about not being on the card. So it seems pretty conclusive. And while not everyone can get on the SummerSlam card of course, it does seem odd that there’s no match for Rhea’s belt, or the biggest women’s star in WWE right now. But someone who has made their way onto the

card is LA Knight, who will be competing in the SummerSlam Battle Royale, which I presume is for…fun? There’s been question marks over Knight’s status in WWE and whether he will actually ever be pushed or not, despite the crowd reactions he’s been getting. There’s another update from PWInsider, who report that Knight’s booking is all by design and that WWE execs are super high on him, they’re just waiting for the right time to pull the trigger. They’ve even reportedly gone as far as to praise him for breaking out of the mold of the character he’d been presented

with, which, if you think about for a second, means they knew Max Dupri was a bad character. WWE, everyone. However, WRKD Wrestling on Twitter added to this, saying: “We can add that there are parties worried that the company won’t strike while the iron is hot and momentum will fade, as they’ve done with some in the past.” What? WWE would never. And now over to Oli for the Dynamite review. It’s Thursday, 3.84 years after this show debuted, you know what that means – it’s time for my review of the 200th episode of AEW Dynamite… in about

5 minutes. Sammy Guevara took on his mentor Cody Rhodes, remember him?, on the first ever Dynamite almost four years ago. Here, he took on his newer wrestling daddy, Chris Jericho, tagging with Daniel Garcia against Chris and Takeshita to open the show. That carny piece of s-word Don Callis interfered, but mostly always behind Jericho’s back. There was no plausible deniability for the finish, though – when Garcia had his Dragon Tamer submission on Chris, and Don knocked him out with the baton behind the referee’s back. Jericho looked annoyed initially. This wasn’t what he wanted to do to

his boys. But he made the cover anyway, putting him one step closer to joining The Don’s Family. Afterwards, Daddy Magic kept up his excellent serious delivery and called a mandatory JAS meeting for next week – where we’ll presumably have Jericho’s final decision, which somehow leads to him being booked against Will Ospreay in one of the top matches at All In. Tony Khan promoted All In later this month in Wembley in what will be the biggest era of AEW yet. This cued up a montage of some of the promotion’s best moments over its 200 episodes. What

an incredible run… from January 2020 to March 2022. But as is the lifecycle of any wrestling promotion post-the Invasion, you will eventually do an ECW Originals storyline. Jerry Lynn said he couldn’t whoop Perry’s ass himself because a) all the screws in his neck, and 2) that’d be child abuse. So he got someone else to commit the child abuse for him – Rob Van Dam! Side note: Child Abuse should be Christian’s faction name. RVD’s secret sauce of yoga and weed means he’s 52 years young, springing into sudden life by ducking a Perry chair shot and swinging

his own heel kick counter. Perry ran into the crowd and used a young girl fan as a shield. They were booked for an FTW title match next week. The RVD surprise is fun, but I’d had my fill of ECW storylines about 13 years ago, and what’s happened to Hook? Trent pinned Penta in the following Anything Goes match with Jon Moxley with some supremely fun hardcore action reminiscing the best parts of the Pandemic era like the five star parking lot brawl. Suplexes outside through tables, an avalanche Destroyer through a table, all the thumbtacks, and the final

sequence of moves and near falls was terrific. After Trent got his win back from being pinned by Penta last week, Mox immediately embraced him from behind-oh no, wait, he’s choking him. He’s choking him to death. This prompted a Best Friends vs Blackpool Combat Club brawl, which saw the faces stand tall to challenge Mox and Claudio to a parking lot fight on Rampage. No Tony, Collision is the show going up against SummerSlam. That match is meant to be on Saturday, not Friday! Many were calling for MJF to be a face when he returned last September. The

crowd wanted to cheer him, and the company suddenly found itself missing all its top faces after Brawl Out. I understood the reasoning, but I never agreed. Character-wise, Max back then was still a heel. Turning him would’ve been needs-driven, not organically from character. A year later, though, the timing is perfect, and it’s no coincidence that time and patience has created one of the most over acts in wrestling. After embracing Cole at the end of their Collision tag, MJF cut a full on babyface promo, once again recalling his villain origin story, of having quarters thrown at him

in high school, and how that made him believe everyone else in this world is evil. He has to stab others in the back before they can do it to him. But in trying to protect himself, he became the very scumbag he hated. Getting people to hate him is easy, he said in potentially a meta-commentary on performing as a heel or face. Being honest is hared. But he’s not scared anymore, and he’s ready to be the fans’ scumbag. He called out Adam Cole, and booked not just any title match, but The Title Match – for Wembley

at All In. Throughout this entire segment, I was waiting for Max to turn on Cole, or Cole to turn on Max, but they just embraced and smiled at the end. This isn’t just an incredible storyline, it’s another brilliant MJF subversion of a wrestling trope. Can they co-exist? Yeah, actually they become stronger from it. Instead, the antagonist force will likely be Roderick Strong teaming with The Kingdom, who trashed a backstage area in jealousy. Of course, everyone was looking forward to the 200th episode for the dream in-ring encounter decades in the making of Kenny Omega vs Jeff

Jarrett. But I was just as into the idea of Generation Me meeting their maker. Jarrett’s TNA booked Max and Jeremy so badly, it forced them to take indie wrestling into their own hands. In many ways, Jeff Jarrett is the real cause of AEW. The trios match was really fun, complete with patented TNA overbooking – involving Sonjay, Karen, the Hardy Boys and a wild Hangman Page from outta nowhere all getting involved. The Elite won and then announced they’ve signed long term with AEW, and are looking forward to the next 200 episodes. We’ll see them on Dynamite,

Rampage, ROH… heck, even Collision. And like that, an unacknowledged rift at the heart of the promotion, and on my own, felt like it started to close. Just like how I felt something go off kilter when Tony Khan announced he’d bought ROH – from which I believe you can trace a throughline of diluting the product and splitting attention from managing backstage personnel issues – I felt something resolve itself here. I think we’ll look back on this milestone episode and see this as the true start of AEW’s return to full strength. Kenny referencing Collision makes me think

this is the longterm build to the Elite vs CM Punk. The recently emboldened Mogul Affiliates, which now includes AR Fox, got an excellent video package, which saw them invade the Buddy Wayne Academy to beat everyone up, smashing a father and son photo frame over Nick Wayne’s head, and calling Darby Allin on the phone to let him know what they’ve done. This was an intense, awesome angle. Aussie Open successfully defended their ROH tag titles against Vikingo and Kommander in a fun, if slightly sloppy, styles clash match. It’s great to see Mark Davis, no relation, back in

the ring. And for the main event, it turns out Tony Khan does read fan signs. Quick, someone make a Jeff Jarrett world champion poster! Shida and Toni Storm closed the show, where Shida shockingly won the Women’s Championship for a second time – a wonderful, emotional victory, as Shida’s first run was in front of zero fans over the pandemic. Now she’ll get to hold the belt in front of what might be the most fans at a show ever in Wembley. The finish was excellent, playing on the Outcasts’ usual template of interference wins. But Shida kicked out

of spray paint in the face and a Storm Zero in an amazing near fall. What a moment… However… ‘Book the women’s division better’. What does that mean to you? If it means: sudden title change in a very high profile slot – great. Let’s be optimistic about the follow up. But I’ve been optimistic about women’s division follow ups for 200 shows, and I’ve been disappointed every time. I’m at the same place with AEW women’s division booking as I was with NXT call-ups in 2019. No matter how excited the debut felt, I was conditioned to know they’d

be no follow-up. There was no substantial storyline here. Shida didn’t come down with a Willow Nightingale or a Sky Blue, despite them being on the same side previously, and the Outcasts being there in full force. This might’ve always been the plan, but it more feels like a knee-jerk reaction to AEW’s poor booking over the last two weeks. A very heartwarming and well-deserved moment, but I’ll reserve judgement for if this is the sign of actual change for a couple of months. This week’s AEW Dynamite is 86%. It’s SummerSlam this weekend! Watch mine and Luke’s predictions for

every WWE star in three words or less, fewer…

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