Hailing from Minnesota, USA, this extraordinary high-flyer is certainly among the most exciting additions to the AEW roster.
The career of Dante Martin (aka “Angel Dorado”), now 21, began as far back as 2017 where he first leapt from one independent promotion to another, including F1RST, IWA-MS, Glory Pro, and Warrior Wrestling, where he honed his daredevil-like maneuvers whilst still only a teenager.
Dante made his official debut for AEW on Dark 58 in a tag team match with his brother and fellow wrestling partner, Darius Martin.
When his brother, Darius was pulled out of action, due to an injury, Dante was left to sink or swim in singles competition. Fortunately, with the guidance of veterans Dean Malenko and Jerry Lynn, Dante would not only swim, but thrive after making his first appearance on Dynamite (60), and would take on top tier main eventers such as Chris Jericho and MJF.
Martin’s first grasp at an AEW championship came in the form of TNT title holder, Miro in Dynamite on May 28th, 2021.
The cornerstone to his progress was his back-and-forth action with mid-carder and crisp-clean veteran, Matt Sydal (previously known as Evan Bourne in his tenure in WWE).
These two baby faces wouldn’t just test each other in singles competition, but would form as a team on several occasions. It was with this partnership (and with Mike Sydal) where he would get his first real test and exposure when faced against Elite members, Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks, on Dynamite 98.
The biggest leap towards the brass ring came when he took on “Hangman” Adam Page for the AEW World Championship proving to the audience and the wrestling world that he belonged in the big leagues.
Dante’s prolific style and ‘never say die’ approach is the driving force that’s helped to elevate him to new heights with plenty of time to improve into main event material.
So, with all that adrenaline-pumping done, let’s take a first-class flight as we countdown Dante Martin’s Top 5 AEW Matches! (in descending order)
5. With Matt Sydal vs. FTR – AEW Dynamite 102 (Sep. 15, 2021)
Dante re-joined Matt Sydal in a tag team match against former AEW Tag Team champions, FTR (Cash Wheeler and Dax Harwood), a team known for their formidable presence and tremendous force in contrast to Dante and Sydal’s, team of graceful high-flyers.
It was clear from the get go that FTR were the more dominant duo, yet as soon as Dante got the tag in, he tapped his inner beast and single-handedly wiped the floor with FTR.
Even when the former Tag Team Champions got their act together and proceeded to gang up on “Angel Dorado”, Dante’s spectacular feats of flight outwitted both Wheeler and Harwood.
It was only a matter of time, however, until FTR caught “Angel Dorado” into their Big Red finisher move for the pinfall win.
Even when out-matched and out-muscled, young Dante’s tenacity and courage helped show the AEW crowd that he could hold his own in the heat of the moment.
4. Vs. Matt Sydal – AEW Rampage 13 (Oct. 27, 2021)
In addition to being tag team partners from time to time, Dante Martin and Matt Sydal had two singles competitions around June 2021, with Sydal coming out on top in both of their encounters. It would be four months before these two exhilarating talents would meet for a third outing on the 12th episode of Rampage.
Much like their last two bouts, Matt Sydal held nothing back against the young blood of AEW, giving him no time to so much as catch his breath.
There were moments where Dante’s evasive movements held a significant advantage over “The Vision”, but Sydal still had the destructive edge with his twenty years of experience and ingenuity.
Nevertheless, Dante managed to match Sydal with his own flair of combined acrobatics and explosive maneuvers that helped him counter Sydal’s aggression.
The result showcased a tremendous amount of progression by the young man from Minnesota after finally scoring a win over “The Vision” in their third outing.
3. Vs. Adam Page – AEW Dynamite 127 (Mar. 9, 2022)
In his fifth title defence, “Hangman” Adam Page placed the belt on the line against Dante Martin.
This was Martin’s first major shot at a world title, but he would have to take it from an all-star talent who conquered the best wrestlers around such as Kenny Omega and Bryan Danielson.
In the biggest match of his career, “Angel Dorado” was relentless in his approach, knowing full well the power possessed by “Hangman”.
Page had immaculate timing and quick thinking on his side, crushing Dante’s momentum once given the chance.
The challenger, Dante, showed an impressive array of evasive moves, but this could only get him so far, as the champion connected the Buckshot Lariat to successfully defend his title.
This was a grandiose display of class and showmanship by these two energetic stars.
Despite Dante’s limited experience, Page placed a lot of faith in the young talent, resulting in an enthralling world title match.
2. Vs. Rey Fénix – AEW Dynamite 135 (May 4, 2022)
On the 135th episode of Dynamite, Dante’s next test was against one of the most beloved and dynamic luchadors in AEW, Rey Fénix.
Fénix has wide experience in various promotions; Lucha Libre AAA, Japan, Impact Wrestling, and Lucha Underground, where he became the first athlete to obtain all of the promotion’s championships, including the Lucha Underground World title. No matter the string of accolades, Dante, however, was up for the challenge.
The most impressive endeavour from “Angel Dorado” was his ability to predict and counter Fénix’s athletic maneuvers, while Fénix’s endurance kept him in the game long enough to catch up with the young blood, culminating in an unforgettable climax that brought the best out of both men.
No matter the result, the dynamism here showcased some of the most thrilling action and breathtaking moments you could ever hope for in a spectacle involving two phenomenal athletes and, in the eyes of the wrestling world, could be considered an instant classic.
1. With Matt & Mike Sydal vs. Kenny Omega & Matt & Nick Jackson – AEW Dynamite 97 (Aug. 11, 2021)
The first match on Dynamite 97 pitted some of the most electrifying high-flyers in AEW in a six-person tag team match; members of the Elite, AEW World Champion Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks (Matt and Nick Jackson) faced off against the Sydal brothers, Matt and Mike, and up-and-coming star, Dante Martin in a bid to demonstrate their categorical dominance in AEW.
Despite being overwhelmed by The Elite’s coordinated assaults, the Sydal brothers and Dante’s combined athleticism and ingenuity helped them to escape some very tight spots, performing some daring comebacks, and making The Elite eat their words.
Dante Martin’s chance to shine came once he was given the tag-in and he held nothing back, showcasing some effortless acrobatics and sheer tenacity in the face of his enemies.
He even held his own against World Champion, Kenny Omega and countered some of his signature techniques; the Tiger Suplex and the One Winged Angel.
It would take the combined efforts of The Elite and a second One Winged Angel move to put the fire out. Yet, the sheer drive and vigor from all parties and a star-making performance from Dante, made for one of the most memorable six-person tag events in AEW history.
This match provided a significant career boost for Dante Martin in the eyes of the promotion, and in the eyes of gobsmacked fans watching around the world!