Twelve months (and two weeks) ago today, 1.4 million people tuned in to watch the first episode of AEW Wednesday Night Dynamite. It was the first pro wrestling show on a Turner network since March 26, 2001, and it marked the beginning of a new era of pro wrestling. One year (and two weeks), one pandemic and 54 episodes of Dynamite later, I’m here to take a look at the twelve best matches in AEW Dynamite history. The Dynamite Dozen, if you will. To be clear, this is only talking about the TNT show. No pay-per-views, no BR Live specials, no AEW Dark, and nothing since Dynamite episode #52. So if you tweet me wondering if I forgot to rank the Bucks vs. Hangman & Omega tag match or the Cody vs. Brodie Lee dog collar match, I’ll know you weren’t paying attention.

This isn’t a list of my personal favorite matches from Dynamite, although that list might not differ very much. This list has been curated through the users of the Grappl app and inmates of Between both sites, nearly 7900 ratings were logged for these matches! These rankings were made with the great scientific effort of adding the Grappl and Cagematch ratings together into one Overall Rating. The highest score one match can get is a 15, which would be a perfect 5.00 rating on Grappl and a perfect 10 on Cagematch. Now with the pleasantries out of the way, I can give you the matches that just missed out on the list.

Honorable Mentions

#15 – Omega & Page vs. Young Bucks vs. Santana & Ortiz vs. Best Friends
Dynamite #15 – Miami, FL (Bash at the Beach) – January 15, 2020
Overall Rating: 11.64

#14 – FTR, Young Bucks, Omega & Page vs. The Dark Order
Dynamite #44 – Daily’s Place – August 5, 2020
Overall Rating: 11.66

#13 – PAC vs. Darby Allin
Dynamite #15 – Miami, FL (Bash at the Beach) – January 15, 2020
Overall Rating: 11.69

And with that, let’s take a look at the Dynamite Dozen!

Dynamite Dozen

#12 – Cody vs. Wardlow – Steel Cage Match
Dynamite #20 – Atlanta, GA – February 19, 2020
Overall Rating: 11.7

When you think of this match, you think of the moonsault off of the cage. As well you should, since it’s an incredible spot. But the match itself was quite good to boot. In the biggest match of his career to date, Wardlow accounted for himself well inside the cage as the monster for Cody to topple. Cody was excellent fighting from underneath. MJF was great on the outside, begging for Wardlow to take Cody out. And the Atlanta crowd was rabid for Cody to get the win, which he did after the aforementioned moonsault. Great match, great finish, and a great moment for AEW.

#11 – SCU vs. Hangman Page & Kenny Omega – AEW World Tag Team Title Match
Dynamite #16 – The Jericho Cruise – January 22, 2020
Overall Rating: 11.71

This was the beginning of the most interesting storyline of the year so far. Hangman Page was coming off of a failed main event push. Kenny Omega was coming off of a wayward 2019, where he came off looking like less of a star after leaving New Japan. They end up forming this unexpected tag team, challenging Frankie Kazarian and Scorpio Sky for the tag team titles on Chris Jericho’s vanity cruise. Then they end up winning them in a damn good match and holding them for the majority of the year. This was a fun match in a great atmosphere that kicked off what, for my money, will be a seminal feud in this company’s history.

#10 – Cody vs. Eddie Kingston – No DQ TNT Title Match
Dynamite #42 – Daily’s Place – July 22, 2020
Overall Rating: 11.76

A match so good that it got Eddie Kingston a long overdue contract. Cody’s TNT Title reign was a very strong one. It highlighted the title, some lower card wrestlers, and several uncontracted talents without burning too many money matches for Cody. It was an expertly booked title reign, and this was a highlight of it. Eddie Kingston exploded onto the stage and controlled the screen for 15 minutes on the mic and in the ring. Cody went into thumbtacks, because why the hell not. Cody won the match, but we all win in the end, as now we have Eddie Kingston on national television every week.

#9 – Private Party vs. The Lucha Brothers (AEW Tag Team Title Tournament Semi-Finals)
Dynamite #4 – Pittsburgh, PA – October 23, 2019
Overall Rating: 11.77

This was the second round of the AEW Tag Team Title tournament, and it was also the follow-up to Private Party’s star-making win over the Young Bucks in the first round. Now this is where I’ll be completely transparent. I have no recollection of this match. I couldn’t tell you a spot from it. But that’s why projects like this are important, to remind people of matches that may have slipped through the cracks of time. The Lucha Brothers won to move on to the finals, but Private Party were made guys after their run in this tournament.

#8 – The Young Bucks vs. The Butcher & The Blade (Falls Count Anywhere)
Dynamite #42 – Daily’s Place – July 22, 2020
Overall Rating: 11.82

Every now and again, we get a reminder of just how good the Young Bucks are at this whole pro wrestling thing. On a random Dynamite in July, they had a falls count anywhere match with The Butcher and The Blade. It was an excellent showcase for both teams, as they had a fun brawl all throughout Daily’s Place. The Bucks won with a highlight-reel double dive off of the entranceway. If the Young Bucks ever made a comprehensive DVD of their best matches, this is the hidden gem on Disc 3 that makes you wonder why you hadn’t seen it before.

#7 – Jon Moxley vs. Darby Allin (AEW World Title Match)
Dynamite #44 – Daily’s Place – August 5, 2020
Overall Rating: 11.83

Someone who seems destined for stardom in AEW from year one is Darby Allin. From the debut where he went to the time limit with Cody, audiences have taken to Darby’s daredevil style and fighting spirit. On this occasion, he went to war with Jon Moxley for the World Title. Mox was in firm control, but it took everything in his arsenal (and some of Minoru Suzuki’s as well) to eventually put Darby down. Another close call for Darby with the World Title on the line, which will make the moment he does win it all the more special.

#6 – Chris Jericho & Sammy Guevara vs. Kenny Omega & “Broken” Matt Hardy (Street Fight)
Dynamite #31 – Daily’s Place – May 6, 2020
Overall Rating: 12.21

In the grips of COVID, everything about wrestling felt weird. There were issues with companies running to begin with, and the product being put out felt off with no crowds. This match came at just the right time to knock everyone out of the funk, even for only a little while. This was an insane brawl around Daily’s Place that included scissor lift dives, golf cart chases, and table spots. Jericho and Guevara would win to set up Stadium Stampede, but the bad guys winning didn’t take away from the fun this match provided. A true instance of wrestling being an escape from the real world.

#5 – Private Party vs. The Young Bucks (AEW Tag Team Title Tournament First Round)
Dynamite #2 – Boston, MA – October 9, 2019
Overall Rating: 12.22

The first great match in Dynamite history, and of course it involved the Young Bucks. They did everything they could to get the promising young team over with the AEW audience, and that’s not to call this match a carry job either. Private Party brought their energy and innovative spots into this one, and paired with the masters of the craft that are Nick and Matt Jackson, it made magic in Boston. Private Party got the upset win here, proving that they were going to be players in AEW for a long time to come.

#4 – FTR & The Young Bucks vs. The Butcher, The Blade & The Lucha Brothers
Fyter Fest Week 2 – Daily’s Place – July 8, 2020
Overall Rating: 12.57

Hey, it’s the Young Bucks again! Here, they teamed with FTR to take on two teams that were keen on starting problems with them in The Butcher & The Blade and the Lucha Brothers. It’s a multi-man tag with the Bucks and the Lucha Bros, what do you expect this was? Great spots, high energy, and a finish that builds to the larger match in FTR/Bucks. This match was a great detour on the road to the money match.

#3 – Kenny Omega & Hangman Page vs. The Lucha Brothers (AEW Tag Team Title Match)
Dynamite #20 – Atlanta, GA – February 19, 2020
Overall Rating: 13.1

This was the point where Omega & Page went from a storyline tag team to a legitimately great pair of tag team champions, taking on the Lucha Brothers in an incredible tag match. I knew this match was going to be good when it was announced, but I don’t think I had any idea it would be as great as it would end up being. The stakes were high, with a title defense against the Young Bucks confirmed for the winners. The action was excellent, with these four going all out from the word go. Omega and Page would win, which would lead to the MOTYC with the Bucks at Revolution. But don’t sleep on this stellar match for a second.

#2 – Santana & Ortiz vs. Best Friends (Parking Lot Fight)
Dynamite #50 – Daily’s Place – September 16, 2020
Overall Rating: 13.29

A match you wouldn’t expect to rank this high up when it was announced, but an absolute blinder nonetheless. This match felt like what every “cinematic” match wants to be, but never could be for a variety of reasons. This was gritty and violent. It wasn’t played for laughs, despite the genesis of the feud surrounding a soccer mom van. This was an excellent plunder match, and given the participants, I probably shouldn’t have been surprised.

#1 – Kenny Omega vs. PAC (30 Minute Ironman Match)
Dynamite #21 – Kansas City, MO – February 26, 2020
Overall Rating: 13.59

A match christened by Tony Schiovane as the best match in TNT history. This was a part of Omega’s manic February, as he took part in two tag team title matches the two weeks before and a title defense 3 days later at the Revolution PPV. This was a brilliantly worked match that was enhanced by the presence of the Young Bucks in Omega’s corner. Great psychology and great action make this not only the best match in Dynamite history, but one of the best matches of 2020.


AEW wanted to make tag team wrestling more prominent in their company, and I would call that a success. Eight of the matches on this list of twelve are tag team matches, with four in the top five. Not only is AEW giving tag team wrestling a spotlight, the tag teams themselves are shining bright, with eleven different teams on this list.

Then there’s Kenny Omega who, despite not being pushed at the top of the card, is all over this list. He had four matches make the top twelve, with two more matches in the Honorable Mentions. He is the most prominent name on this list, and he’s been helping to get another guy over for the majority of the time! Now that he’s going back to focus on singles competition, I can only imagine how many times he’ll end up on this list.

But he did give Alan Angels a lot of offense that one time, so maybe I should pump the breaks.