This was a fine Rampage. Plenty of big names, tons of good in ring action, and plenty of storylines furthered. Moxley and Danielson looked good. Which I do realize is a little like saying Michael Jordan looked good, but they did. So did Shawn Spears, and getting Big Damo as the surprise opponent was really fun to see as a big, Damo fan. Kris Statlander looked incredible in her match and I can’t wait to see what she and Ruby Soho can do in their huge Owen Hart Foundation Tournament encounter. Oh Yeah, Danhausen and Hook will team together for the first time ever on the buy-in for Double of Nothing!
Preview: Tonight’s Rampage card is littered with excellent matches. In an Owen Hart Women’s Tournament Quarterfinal match Kris Statlander will battle Red Velvet. The Blackpool Combat Club is in action tonight as Bryan Danielson and Jon Moxley will face Dante Martin and Matt Sydal. Shawn Spears is scheduled to face, “A Giant,” whatever that means… Then the last of the scheduled matches is The House of Black vs. Fuego Del Sol, Evil Uno and 10. Appearances from Hook and Danhausen are also expected!
GOOD House of Black vs. Fuego Del Sol, Evil Uno, and 10: Both teams are already in the ring to start the match. Evil Uno starts with Brody King and despite showing some great athleticism he’s at both a size and strength advantage that allows King to throw him around the ring before tagging in Malakai Black. Black doesn’t have the same success and 10 is tagged in. Unfortunately for 10 the striking advantage of Malakai is too great and he uses that to set up a heel hook attempt. 10 is able to fight out of the heel hook but Fuego tags himself in. That wasn’t a good idea. Fuego is drilled with a devastating back elbow before Buddy Mattews is tagged in for the House of Black. Buddy calls out Penta by mocking his signature “Zero Miedo,” gesture. This is seriously the best the House of Black has looked as a trio. It isn’t the most exciting trios match from a competitive standpoint but it makes perfect sense in how strong the House of Black will look by the end of this. 10 has a brief flurry for his team and scores a near fall on Malakai himself. Blacks striking and grappling ability are sublime, however and 10 gets stuck in a kneebar after catching a massive flying knee. Evil Uno breaks the hold and 10 is able to get up to deliver a Discus Lariat a-la Brodie Lee, but his leg is significantly compromised so he is unable to make the cover. He does tag in Evil Uno but the House of Black has time to recover themselves. Brody King is tagged in and after a crazy sequence, he delivers the Gonzo Bomb on Evil Uno for the victory. Post match as the House of Black celebrates Death Triangle makes their way to the stage. There is a tombstone with the House of Black on it as well as the Double or Nothing logo. That trio’s match is happening and there is no argument here.
Result: House of Black by Pinfall via Gonzo Driver
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 3.00 Stars
Gunn Club and Max Caster backstage interview: I really don’t understand the deal with the Gunn Club and the Acclaimed, and thankfully this segment was too short to rate.
GREAT Shawn Spears vs. Big Damo: Big Damo is in the building and the superheavyweight from Ireland is in All Elite Wrestling at least for tonight! The artist formerly known as Killian Dain is on fire and looks excellent. Somehow Spears is able to get him up for a C-4 and as short as it was this was outstanding. Spears takes the microphone and begins to cut a promo on Wardlow but the crowd’s chants of the War-Dog’s name drown out his silly words. This was so well done, I absolutely loved it.
Result: Shawn Spears by Pinfall via C-4
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 3.50 Stars
ABOVE AVERAGE Kris Statlander vs. Red Velvet Owen Hart Foundation Women’s Quarterfinal Match: Velvet and Stat trade strikes to start the match before Velvet is lifted in a military press slam by Kris Statlander. She does it with one arm, you need to go back and watch that, there aren’t many wrestlers on the planet with the strength to pull that off. Velvet is able to trap Statlander in the ring apron and Chris Jericho makes an important announcement on commentary. Red Velvet is Chris Jericho’s, “Sports Entertainer of the Week,” which means about as much as it sounds like it does. While the match has been back and forth, this hasn’t exactly been the tightest bell to bell but it is still entertaining. Velvet rolls up Statlander, but she is able to reverse it and win by rolling her back up herself! The Baddies converge on Statlander and Ruby Soho runs down to support her own opponent in the next round of the tournament.
Result: Kris Statlander by Pinfall via Rollup
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 2.50 Stars
Me of the Year and ATT in ring promo: Page, Sky and Lambert are in the ring and they’re getting proper heel heat. Scorpio calls out Sammy Guevara and he’s backstage. Sky’s old belt is broken into pieces by Sammy, Tay Conti and Kazarian and that’s how we end this too short to rate segment.
GOOD Dante Martin and Matt Sydal vs. Jon Moxley and Bryan Danielson: Danielson gets a big pop, then Jon Moxley blows the roof off the place. Moxley pours in early offense on Dante Martin. He brings in Danielson who continues to bury Martin. Jericho and Regal on commentary are the highlight of this match without question. This is excellent and the argument between the two is outstanding entertainment. The in ring action is incredible as well now as Sydal and Martin have found a little bit of rhythm and the pace has quickened. After a huge back and forth, Danielson lands a butterfly suplex off the top rope. He follows with the Lebell Lock and Dante Martin is barely able to get his foot on the bottom rope. Danielson delivers multiple roundhouse kicks on Martin and brings Moxley back into the fray. Mox locks up a rear naked choke but Martin nearly pins him rolling back the other way a-la Brett Hart. Moxley starts firing elbows at Martin and is joined by Danielson who elbows Matt Sydal. This is finally it, Moxley hoists Dante Martin up for the Paradigm Shift and spikes him right on his skull. After the match Chris Jericho and Jake Hagar run down to attack the BPC and the melee is on as the show ends. What a great show it is, and we’re only 9 days away from Double or Nothing!
Result: Blackpool Combat Club by Pinfall via Paradigm Shift
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 3.00 Stars
Overall: This was a fine Rampage. Plenty of big names, tons of good in ring action, and plenty of storylines furthered. Moxley and Danielson looked good. Which I do realize is a little like saying Michael Jordan looked good, but they did. So did Shawn Spears, and getting Big Damo as the surprise opponent was really fun to see as a big, Damo fan. Kris Statlander looked incredible in her match and I can’t wait to see what she and Ruby Soho can do in their huge Owen Hart Foundation Tournament encounter. Oh Yeah, Danhausen and Hook will team together for the first time ever on the buy-in for Double of Nothing!
Matches: 0.50/1 Stars
Show Structure: 0.75/1 Stars
Atmosphere: 0.50/1 Stars
Storytelling: 0.50/1 Stars
Production/Theme: 0.75/5 Stars
Overall Rating. 3.00/5 Stars
Photo Credit: AEW
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