Reviews

The John Report: AEW Rampage 07/01/22 Review

aew rampage royal july 1

This week’s AEW Rampage featured the first-ever “Royal Rampage” match while The AEW Tag Team Champions Young Bucks were in action as well.

This is AEW Rampage from the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Chicago. It was taped after Dynamite on Wednesday. Check out the brand new AEW PPV listing archive only on TJRWrestling as well. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. Let’s get to it.

It’s Friday night and you know what that means. Excalibur was on commentary with Jim Ross and Tony Schiavone, so it’s the original Dynamite time on Rampage. I think they moved Taz to Dynamite permanently this past week.

Royal Rampage Match

The winner of this match gets an AEW World Title match against Interim AEW World Champion Jon Moxley.

They should have put a graphic up to explain the rules of the match. Instead, they rely on the announcers to talk about it. Use graphics! Anyway, here’s a tweet they did.

There were two rings since it was the Blood & Guts follow up. Powerhouse Hobbs and “Hangman” Adam Page were in the “red” ring and Darby Allin was with Tony Nese in the “blue” ring. Ricky Starks was next in the red ring joining his buddy Hobbs, so Page clotheslined Starks, but then Hobbs hit a boot to the face followed by Starks hitting a Spear. Allin hit a springboard back elbow. Mark Sterling grabbed Allin’s foot since Sterling was there for Nese, but Allin was still able to hit a back body drop over the top on Nese to eliminate him. Allin hit a suicide dive on Nese for the hell of it. The Butcher was #3 in the blue ring joining Allin. Since Allin was out on the floor after doing a suicide dive, Butcher swung Allin into the barricade repeatedly. Page was fighting off Hobbs and Starks in the red ring. The #4 entrant in the red ring was John Silver, who barely gets to be on TV these days even though he’s popular. Silver with a jumping kick on Starks and then Page worked with Silver to hit a belly to back suplex on Hobbs. Page and Silver hugged in the ring, then they each teased throwing eachother out. Max Caster was #4 in the blue ring with a rap on the way to the ring that took about one minute. Austin and Colten Gunn aren’t with The Acclaimed, but Billy Gunn was with them. Rush was #5 in the red ring in his first match in AEW. Rush unloaded with strikes in the red ring with a hard chop on Silver followed by a brainbuster. The Blade was #5 in the blue ring as Blade joined Butcher with a punt to the chest. Butcher and Blade stomped on Caster and Allin against the mat. Penta Oscuro was #6 in the red ring, then Rush went after Penta on the floor and Penta hit a Slingblade on Rush on the ramp. Back in the ring, Penta went for a move off the top, but Rush hit him with a dropkick. Starks eliminated Silver while Silver was trying to eliminate Hobbs. Swerve Strickland was #6 in the blue ring. Swerve was on fire with moves on Butcher, Caster and Blade including a clothesline. Swerve eliminated Caster with a superkick after sending Caster over the top to the apron. Keith Lee was #7 in the red ring, so he’s not in the same ring as Lee. Hobbs and Starks went after Lee as they went to a picture in picture break.

(Commercial – Matt Hardy was #7 in the blue ring.)

They came back with Dustin Rhodes as #8 in the red ring with Dustin hitting a powerslam on Starks, so Hobbs ran over Dustin with a clothesline. Rush and Penta exchanged strikes. Rush with a jumping knee, Penta with a superkick and Penta sent both of them to the apron Penta with a superkick, Rush with a low blow and Penta pulled down Rush by the hair to eliminate himself and Rush. Andrade threw a steel chair at Penta just for fun. Frankie Kazarian was #8 in the blue ring as Hardy hit a Side Effect on Blade. Blade pushed Matt towards Butcher, who sent Matt over the top to the floor and Matt was out. Dante Martin was #9 in the red ring. Martin did an up kick to nearly eliminate Starks, but Hobbs got a hold of Martin to save Starks. Konosuke Takeshita was #9 in the blue ring. Takeshita ran the ropes leading to a jumping clothesline on Swerve, then a Blue Thunder Bomb on Allin and Takeshita hit a double German Suplex on Swerve/Allin at the same time. Blade clotheslined Kazarian out of the ring while Frankie was dealing with Butcher. Brody King was #10 in the red ring, so he was the last guy in the red ring. Dustin went after King, but Brody went after him with punches and knocked Dustin down. Orange Cassidy was #10 in the blue ring, so he was the last entrant in the match. Cassidy took his time walking down to the ring.

King eliminated Martin with a hard chop. Cassidy hit a double hurricanrana on Butcher and Blade. Cassidy with a light touch to Takeshita, so Takeshita hit him with a hard chop. Takeshita with a brainbuster. Hobbs and Starks teamed up to eliminate Dustin. Takeshita tried to fight against Butcher and Blade, but Takeshita missed a jumping knee, so Butcher/Blade eliminated Takeshita. Swerve dumped out Cassidy. It looked like they would work together, but Swerve tossed Cassidy out. Lee eliminated Hobbs with a clothesline and then Starks dumped Lee out. Butcher and Blade hit a double team neckbreaker on Swerve and dumped Swerve out of the ring. It’s Page, King and Starks in one ring with Page pulling down the ropes so Starks was sent over the top to the floor. Page wanted the Buckshot Lariat, but Brody King gave him a clothesline on the apron to eliminate Page. I rewound a bit to see that Page was sent over the top to the apron at the start of interaction with Starks, so that’s why Page was eliminated from King’s clothesline. The other ring had Allin send Blade over the top to the floor and then Allin eliminated Butcher as well.

The final two men were King and Allin, so King went after Allin in the far “blue” ring. King gave Allin a stiff gutwrench Powerbomb and then he tossed him into the other “red” ring. Allin hit a cannonball attack in the corner. King lifted Allin to the turnbuckle where King connected with a chop. Allin managed to send King over the top to the apron. King fought off an Allin attack, King pulled Allin over the top to the apron and King choked out Allin with a sleeper, so King dropped Allin to the floor. It went about 23 minutes.

Winner: Brody King

Analysis: ***1/2 It was a very good match. I liked the format of it with a bit of a Royal Rumble feel to it with wrestlers coming to the ring every minute and then it felt like the old WCW World War 3 battle royal with multiple rings leading to a final showdown. King was booked in a strong way from the moment he got in there. Darby is such a unique guy that you can believe in him possibly surviving against King, but when King won it made sense since he managed to wear Darby down. You could pick this apart to logically ask why more top guys weren’t in the match considering that it was for a title shot. However, I don’t mind it that much. I doubt Moxley is going to lose to King, but it should be a physical match.

The win by King means he’ll challenge Jon Moxley for the Interim AEW World Title on Dynamite next Wednesday.

(Commercial)

Hook was eating chips backstage with Alex Marvez asking what’s next for Hook. No reply. When Marvez said Hook was a “go with the flow” guy, Hook grabbed him by the shirt and said something that was hard to hear. They needed to place microphones better in that segment.

Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson) vs. Hirooki Goto & Yoshi-Hashi

The Young Bucks are the AEW Tag Team Champions, but this is not a title match.

Goto got some offense going with a shoulder tackle on Nick, then Yoshi tagged in for a double team shoulder tackle. Goto and Yoshi did their “punches to the back” spot on both Bucks. Nick got a boot up to stop Yoshi, Matt made the tag and Matt hit the Northern Lights Suplex locomotion (three times) and then Matt suplexed Goto across the ring. Nick tagged in with a twisting dive off the top onto both opponents. They went to a picture in picture break.

(Commercial)

Yoshi hit a suplex on Nick, Goto tagged in against Matt with Goto hitting a back elbow and a hip toss. Goto with a leg lariat in the corner followed by a running bulldog for two. Nick made a blind tag leading to a running knee on Goto and Matt hit a neckbreaker followed by Nick with another knee leading to a two count. Yoshi into the ring illegally with a clothesline followed by a neckbreaker/legsweep combination for two. Nick battled Goto in the ring with Nick hitting a clothesline. Matt into the ring illegally with a superkick on Goto, a superkick on Yoshi and Yoshi hit a clothesline on Matt. All four guys were down. Goto with the Ushigoroshi slam onto the knee on Nick. Yoshi tagged in with a chop, then a superkick and Goto back in illegally as he hit a superkick into a Ushigoroshi on Nick for Yoshi getting a two count. Matt saved Nick from a move leading to a double superkick and Young Bucks hit the BTE Trigger to Yoshi’s head. Goto rolled into the other ring so Nick ran the ropes and jumped off the top with a cross body block. Nick did a double springboard back into the ring for a Meltzer Driver with Nick pinning Yoshi after 11 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson)

Analysis: *** A solid match here. Easy win for the Young Bucks against opponents that weren’t really threats to beat them. As usual for most Young Bucks matches, there were several times where the referee was made to look like a fool because wrestlers kept going in there without tags and doing their moves. I think the last couple of minutes featured no tags, yet none of the announcers commented on it. Just book a tornado tag team match next time and it’ll be better to watch.

They showed a promo from Ring of Honor World Champion Jonathan Gresham talking about his tag team match against two of Tully Blanchard’s guys on Rampage next week.

(Commercial)

There was a main event interview conducted by Mark Henry talking to Toni Storm and Nyla Rose with Marina Shafir.

Toni Storm vs. Nyla Rose (w/Marina Shafir)

Rose was in control early on with a hard clothesline. Storm with a dropkick followed by some strikes in the corner. Storm charged, Rose knocked her down and applied an armbar. Rose with a suplex. Storm ran the ropes, Rose distracted the referee and Shafir pulled the ropes, so Storm fell to the floor. Shafir kicked Storm down on the floor. They went to a picture in picture break.

(Commercial)

They returned with about five minutes left as Rose hit a corner splash on Storm. Rose went for the cannonball, but Storm moved and Rose hit the turnbuckle. Storm hit her running hip attack. Shafir held onto Rose, so Storm kicked Shafir and that allowed Rose to wrench Storm’s neck against the top rope. Storm sent Rose out of the ring and Storm jumped off the apron with a double DDT. Back in the ring, Storm jumped off the top with a cross bod block for two. Rose blocked a DDT and hit a running body block attack for two. Storm countered a Beast Bomb and then Rose sat on top for a two count. They did the “stand in the ring and exchange strikes” that every AEW match does, then Rose pulled the turnbuckle pad off and Rose hit a superkick for two. Rose set up Storm on the top rope, then Storm had to hold herself on the top rope with one hand and the middle rope with the other hand, but Storm moved out of the way of the knee drop attempt. Storm with a neckbreaker across the top rope and Storm hit a German Suplex for two. Rough landing on the shoulder for Rose. Shafir was on the apron, Storm kicked her and hit a DDT. Storm hit a Pendulum DDT for the pinfall win after 10 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Toni Storm

Analysis: **3/4 It was kind of slow paced early on and then got better in the final few minutes. Storm really likes DDT moves. I thought they could have done a better job of making it look like Rose might win because there just weren’t enough nearfalls. If you’re going to have Shafir out there, have her interfere even more than she did.

Post match, Shafir kicked Storm in the back of the leg. Shafir with a takedown leading to forearms to the head. Thunder Rosa, the AEW Women’s Champion, ran down to the ring and avoided Shafir while hitting Rose with a dropkick. Rosa and Storm cleared the ring together. When Thunder and Storm shook hands, Excalibur made the obvious “Thunderstorm” reference. Rosa and Storm celebrated to end the show.

Analysis: Rosa beat Storm at Forbidden Door last week, but they are both babyfaces so they were allies in this spot with Rosa making the save. It was a way to end the show on a happy note.

After the show, Tony Khan announced Thunderstorm teaming up against Rose/Shafir on Dynamite next week.

 

Three Stars of the Show

  1. Brody King
  2. Darby Allin
  3. Young Bucks

 

The Scoreboard

This Week: 7 out of 10

Last Week: 6.5

 

Final Thoughts

A solid wrestling show with the unique Royal Rampage match that was kind of like a Royal Rumble and WCW World War 3 style match. I thought Brody King was booked really well in that match while Darby Allin also shined. The match featured 20 wrestlers, got a lot of time and I was entertained by it.

The Young Bucks match was fine. Typical match for them. The women’s main event with Storm and Rose was okay. It furthers the story a bit with Thunder Rosa saving Storm to set up a tag team match next week.

Thanks for reading. You can contact me using any of the methods below.

John Canton

Email: mrjohncanton@gmail.com

Twitter: @johnreport