After winning the TNT Championship in a gruelling dog-collar match against Mr. Brodi Lee, Cody Rhodes lost it to the rising star Darby Allin at AEW Full Gear. A poetic outcome, considering Darby made his debut against Cody at Fyter Fest last year, which resulted in a time-limit draw. Allin was also defeated by Cody in the semi-finals of the tournament to crown the inaugural TNT Champion.
Though a newly introduced championship, only being held by Mr. Brodi Lee and Cody himself before Darby's victory, the title has already become recognised as one of the top belts of the promotion.
On the following episode of Dynamite after his loss, Cody announced that he will not invoke his rematch clause, thereby freeing the TNT championship and Darby for new potential challengers.
One of most exciting young talents on the roster, Darby Allin shows his in-ring prowess and high-risk offence everytime he enters the squared circle. Now, with the addition of the championship, the stakes are raised even higher for the up-and-comer.
With a stacked roster, there is seemingly no end of mouth-watering match-ups for the new TNT Champion. With this in mind, here are 5 possible challengers for Darby Allin's TNT Championship.
#5 Brian Cage
On the post-Full Gear episode of Dynamite, Darby's longtime rival Ricky Starks called out the newly crowned TNT Champion. But a clash with the other member of Team Taz, the current FTW World Champion, Brian Cage, seems inevitable.
The clash between the respective champions could also be a winner-take-all, possibly even a merger of the two mid-card titles. Cages' machine-like strength and athleticism against the high-risk, unpredictability of Darby Allin is a combination virtually guaranteeing a wonderful match. Add to that the on-screen charisma of faction leader Taz, the ever looming presence of Starks, and possibly the addition of another rising star in Will Hobbs, who has proved to be Darby's ally in the past, it could create a memorable and difficult first feud for the new champion.