Monday, May 30, 2022

AEW: Rampage Review - May 20th, 2022

AEW Rampage
May 20th, 2022
Houston, Texas

AEW World Champion: Hangman Adam Page (since 11/13/21)
AEW World Tag Team Champions: Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus (since 1/5/22)
AEW Women’s World Champion: Thunder Rosa (since 3/16/22)
AEW TBS Champion: Jade Cargill (since 1/5/22)
AEW TNT Champion: Scorpio Sky (since 4/27/22)

Commentators - Excalibur, Taz, Ricky Starks, Chris Jericho, & Ruby Soho

1) Malakai Black, Brody King, & Buddy Matthews vs. Evil Uno, 10, & Fuego Del Sol

This was a great opener. It's setting in that Stu Grayson really is gone from AEW as we see Uno teaming with 10 & Fuego here. RIP :((( BUT YEAH. HOB kills these trios matches and this was no exception. Just a blast of a way to kick this show off. HOB obviously wins, but that doesn't take away from how fun this was along the way. 

Match rating - ***

After the match, Death Triangle shows up on the stage with a gravestone. They challenge the House of Black to a match at Double or Nothing now that Fenix is back. As you may remember, they ran Penta/PAC/Rowan vs. HOB at Revolution on the pre-show in a BANGER, but I guess they're determined to get the proper DT/HOB 3 on 3 and I'm not too upset about it because I know it will rule. 

Backstage, The Gunn Club is with Anthony Bowens. Bowens is hurt, but The Acclaimed will be united again soon when he is back to health. 

Also backstage, FTR stakes their claim for an IWGP Heavyweight Title Match, but also says that they first are down to accept Roppongi Vice's challenge from Wednesday on Dynamite. LETS GO. 

2) Shawn Spears vs. Big Damo

Big Damo is debuting here. Damo gets some decent offense in early, but this is largely a Spears squash heading into his steel cage match with Wardlow on Dynamite. Good way to establish that he can beat a big man. Harmless sub 5 minute matches like these are something that Spears always does well. 

Match rating - **

Backstage, The Undisputed Elite is here. The Young Bucks challenge The Hardy's to a match at Double or Nothing in Las Vegas. 

3) Red Velvet (w/ Jade Cargill) vs. Kris Statlander - Owen Hart Foundation Tournament Semi-Final Round Match 

KRIS STAT IS A LEGEND. She kills it here. These two have wrestled before, but Statlander is now in her full form so it just doesn't compare. This is really just a showcase for her and it rocks. Statlander wins, but things really break down after the match ends.

Match rating - **1/2

Post match, The Baddies run down and attack Kris. Luckily, Ruby Soho is on commentary and comes down for the save followed by Anna Jay who takes Mark Sterling’s crutch, lmao. 

Ethan Page, Scorpio Sky, & Dan Lambert hit the ring next. They want Sammy Guevara to return Scorpio’s TNT Title. Cameras cut to Sammy, Tay, and Frankie Kazarian.. somewhere. Sammy smashes the belt with a sledgehammer. This was whatever. 

Backstage interview happens with Britt Baker & Toni Storm to hype their upcoming semi finals match on Dynamite. Not really anything of note here, just the usual back & forth. Storm gets the verbal upper hand and Britt walks away. 

4) Bryan Danielson & Jon Moxley vs. Dante Martin & Matt Sydal 

The kings of pro wrestling do it again. Danielson & Moxley with another awesome TV tag here. Dante looks GREAT working underneath and getting in some crazy flurries that stun the BCC duo. The pre-match promos hosted by Mark Henry really set the stage perfectly for this. Most of the time that segment feels like it’s there just to get Henry on TV, here Sydal, Dante, Danielson & Mox knocked it out of the park. Sydal says he’s all about peace, love & pro wrestling. Danielson says he feels the same except he doesn’t like peace and love IN his pro wrestling. So, this is basically a battle between how two veterans view pro wrestling and it’s a drastic difference. Sydal says he is here to uplift Dante not drive him to bleed and make others bleed. All this translates immediately into the match as during Danielson’s entrance he laughs when looking across the ring at Sydal and says “peace, love and pro wrestling” with the most judgemental smirk on his face. The story told itself and the action more than followed suit. These guys can have a great match without any of the pre-match stuff, but the fact that they developed this into something more all in the span of one night and technically two back to back segments is what makes this so great. Moxley is the wrestler of the year and Danielson isn’t far behind and stuff like this is why. I don’t even care to do play by play, just give this a watch for yourself, it rocks.

Match rating - ***3/4

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