AEW announced the second annual World Title Eliminator tournament a few weeks back, but officially revealed the bracket on this past Saturday’s edition of AEW Dynamite. The bracket features exactly zero (0) people that were in the field last year, so the Jacksonville-based promotion automatically deserves credit off the bat for that. The field is rounded out as follows: 10, Jon Moxley, Orange Cassidy, Powerhouse Hobbs, Dustin Rhodes, Bryan Danielson, Lance Archer, and Eddie Kingston.
Let’s take a look at what the chances are for all involved in the tournament and what it would do for their respective careers.
Who Could We See Win The AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament?
Dark Order’s 10
10 is definitely on the mind for the future of AEW, as he boasts a career record of 39-14 with the company. That being said, 10 probably isn’t making it out of the first round given that his first opponent is Jon Moxley. 10 beating Moxley would be a weird decision and it probably wouldn’t go over well with diehard fans.
10 will most likely become AEW World Champion down the line in 5-10 years, but his current role in the company is a perfect fit for the time being.
If we’re going off the assumption that Hangman Page is able to take the title off of Kenny Omega at Full Gear, Moxley would be a great first opponent for Hangman. If Omega retains the championship though… there may be little interest in seeing another Moxley/Omega feud for the time being. A Moxley heel turn seems to be impending according to some fan chatter, which is a move that would definitely benefit his momentum headed into 2022.
My personal prediction is that I see Moxley at the very minimum going to the finals of the tournament, if not winning the entire thing.
Orange Cassidy is great, but he should probably never have a run with the AEW World Championship. The title has a reputation of hosting some of the more serious and important stories within the company. The potential to tell these types of stories are very limited with a character like Orange Cassidy.
Expect him to defeat Powerhouse Hobbs in the first round, but then most likely fall to Moxley in the second round.
Aside from the outcome of the Full Gear title match, Hobbs would be a really fun one-off challenger for the main event of a special themed Dynamite for either Omega or Hangman. Hobbs winning the tournament would arguably be the biggest moment of his short AEW career, and it would be a big surprise if he were to do it by scoring upset victories in both Cassidy and Mox.
Unfortunately, this probably won’t happen. Upsets happen sometimes in tournaments, but I don’t see that playing out in this scenario.
There was a bit of backlash from the decision to put Dustin in the tournament and while the criticisms are valid, he’s not making it past the first round. Rhodes vs. Danielson will be a really good, if not great match but Danielson’s first AEW loss won’t be to Dustin Rhodes and that is practically guaranteed.
Rhodes in the AEW Championship scene is something that’ll probably never happen, especially given his age.
Bryan Danielson is most likely going to meet Moxley in the finals of this tournament. It’s nearly inevitable, especially given the supposed leaked Full Gear card. It’ll be interesting to see if Danielson wins the tournament, given that his title opponent will most likely be Hangman Adam Page. That’s a matchup that could seriously go either way.
The most intriguing thing about Danielson’s admission into the tournament is his second-round opponent. I expect Eddie Kingston to be in that role and that is sure to be a really fantastic match.
Those who complain about Lance Archer’s booking in AEW are missing the bigger picture. Archer is put in top positions constantly and even if he doesn’t win all of those matches, he comes out looking strong most of the time. Given his age, Archer is in the perfect spot on AEWs roster.
I don’t see a reason to do Archer vs. Danielson, so I personally see the “Murderhawk Monster” dropping out in the first round and moving on to another program. Archer has been in a few AEW title programs, another one wouldn’t really do anything for him especially if it resulted in a loss.
Kingston feels like he’s in a similar boat as Archer. He doesn’t need another AEW Title program to feel important, and he was probably just placed in the tournament for the sake of having a match with Bryan Danielson.
Kingston is most likely going to lose in the semi-finals to Danielson and maybe he continues his alliance with Moxley in a new heel fashion after the loss.
Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world. You can catch AEW Dynamite Wednesday nights at 8 PM ET on TNT and AEW Dark: Elevation (Monday nights) and AEW: Dark (Tuesday nights) at 7 PM ET on YouTube. AEW Rampage airs on TNT at 10 PM EST every Friday night.