Arena: Sames Auto Arena
City: Laredo, Tx
Last Week’s Rating: 899,000 overall; 0.30 in 18-49 demo
It’s Wednesday night, it’s Dynamite. Let’s go.
Jeff Jarrett, Jay Lethal, Satnam Singh & Sonjay Dutt vs the Acclaimed, Billy Gunn & Orange Cassidy
Backstory: Jarrett etc attacked Cassidy Friday until the Acclaimed ran them off
Excalibur pushed that we’re just a couple weeks away from the ppv. Sonjay Dutt genuinely sounds like the Tasmanian Devil – just makes constant, incomprehensible noises.
Caster claimed Jarrett got no action on V Day since it was ‘T&A Lockdown’. Nice line.
A very fun face team. And if you hate the shenanigans, at least it’s all out the way in one match.
Bowens and Lethal started before a very quiet crowd after Dutt threatened to. Bowens caught Jay with a boot to the face then his over the shoulder Fame-asser before tagging his partner for a double team powerslam and count of one.
Caster then threw chops but was quickly dragged to the heels’ corner. Jarrett in – Caster took care of him with hip tosses until ducking his head and paying for it. Jarrett then tagged the latest failed NBA player to experiment with wrestling. Cassidy demanded a tag, Singh mocked him then tagged Dutt.
Dutt again threatened to wrestle but bailed to tag Jarrett as he and Gunn were about to face off. Just as Billy’s boys appeared on the ramp with their ice-cold tag titles. Taking advantage, Jarrett did the same leg-choke in the ropes/strut sequence he’s been doing since Communism was a thing.
Then tagged Lethal who continued the theme by grabbing a headlock, throwing double sledges then choking Billy. No fair, he stole all Singh’s moves!
Quick tags between the heels left Gunn struggling. Don’t know how many people are here tonight but it sounds like a studio wrestling show.
Jarrett struck Gunn with the Golden Globe, everyone took everyone out, including the just-tagged Dutt who received the kicks from Cassidy before eating Scissor Me Timbers as the Acclaimed bagged the win.
About on the level of last week’s main event. Not an AEW-quality match. Can’t help but wonder what any channel flippers think when they see Jeff Jarrett & Billy Gunn in the ring in 2023. And they wonder why the younger audience slims by the week.
WINNER: the Acclaimed, Billy Gunn & Orange Cassidy
Bryan Danielson package (still covered in blood after last week’s match): Max can’t go sixty minutes the way he can, what MJF did last Wednesday was the act of a scared man who knows Danielson’s coming to take his title.
Glad he believes it anyway.
Jon Moxley & Claudio Castagnoli vs Rush & Preston Vance, Tornado Tag
Backstory: The BCC boys want revenge for Rush’s assault on Danielson last week
Rush and Vance attacked the BCC while still in the crowd. We then went straight to break.
Returning to Vance and Moxley fighting in the ring, the latter landing boots in the corner until Rush attacked from behind. Claudio was nowhere to be seen.
Vance and Rush took turns squashing Mox in the corner until Vance dropped him with a spinebuster. Rush followed with a shotgun dropkick. For some reason they were wholly uninterested in attempting a pin.
Castagnoli returned to the ring, quickly removing Rush and bagging two on Vance as Mox got the toys out. An attempted catapult on Rush went awry as Hangman was shown watching intently backstage.
The BCC then flung Vance into a chair propped in the corner. Then did so once more per fan request, in Spanish. Mox then took flight to tope Rush, Vance sent Claudio through the ropes then speared Moxley off the apron onto the other two.
Another break. This has been nothing special so far.
Moxley was bleeding after the ads but managed to fling Vance over the ropes then brawl with Rush. They threw heavy chops until the former champ dropped Rush with a shot to the face but ate a chain-assisted blow from Vance, kicking out at two.
Vance launched more shots from the mount as Claudio again evened the odds to take out both heels with chain-assisted rights. Then hauled Vance up into the Giant Swing. Rush broke up the subsequent pin at the last second but was taken out by a Mox cutter. Vance then took him down with a lariat for two slaps of the mat.
They then split off: Mox/Rush and Vance/Claudio until both former ROH guys took out their opponents and faced off. Jose hit Claudio from behind but paid for it as Yuta beat him all the way backstage.
Rush readied the Bull’s Horns with Claudio slumped in the corner, Castagnoli met him mid-way with a spear, Vance just about broke up the pin, Claudio and Rush again faced off in the middle until Rush launched himself outside, landing into Swiss airspace and an uppercut.
Leaving Moxley to launch H&A then the Bulldog choke with a chain wrapped around the former Dark Order-er’s neck.
To bag the win.
Hangman was then attacked by Kip Sabian, Blade and Butcher. Until Silver and Reynolds ran them off.
This one definitely picked up after the second break. Could do without Moxley bleeding so casually but good match which seems to setup Claudio vs Rush at one of the upcoming ppv’s.
The announcers talked as if Hangman might not be fit to wrestle despite a pretty mundane attack.
WINNER: Jon Moxley & Claudio Castagnoli
JR’s sit-down with Wardlow followed. The latter talked about his complicated relationship with his dad who passed just as they were getting back on track. His long hair and beard are kind-of a tribute to his dad. Wardlow said Samoa Joe knew this and took his last connection with his dad from him (by cutting his hair).
He then moved into ‘promo mode’ to address the camera and Joe, who he promised won’t survive him when they meet.
The first part was very good but like much of AEW tv they rushed to the finale, which was just a sub-par promo and made the whole thing seem hokey
Mark Briscoe vs Josh Woods
Backstory: Briscoe turned down Sterling’s offer to rep. him on Friday, Woods got in his face
After starting with Woods chain-wrestling, Briscoe sent him outside via shoulder block and was readying a dive when he was tripped by Tony Nese et al. The Lucha Bros attacked to even the odds, getting a huge pop, though Woods remained on top after a twisting suplex off the apron to the outside.
Redneck kung-fu was in full effect as we returned until Woods returned fire with a jawbreaker. Briscoe floated over to the apron, caught Woods in the gut then punted him outside. Before grabbing a chair to cannonball himself over the top onto Woods. Then hit an avalanche powerbomb for two.
And was looking for the Jay Driller but Woods countered into pure chaos then launched a knee strike. Briscoe countered back with an enziguri then caught him into a DVD before heading up top to hit a Froggy Bow for three.
Solid action with a couple cool spots.
WINNER: Mark Briscoe
Renee’s interview with Adam Cole: Who said he was doing great and has a couple ideas about who he wants to face. Though wouldn’t name names.
This was a whole bunch of nothing. If you saw the teaser on Friday, you saw the whole thing.
The ‘contractually obligated’ MJF was up next. So presumably he’s been turning up just for fun the last few weeks?
He talked about how the people used to love him the way they love Danielson. But the fans are fickle so he turned his back on them first. Because he’s honest about who he is. Unlike Danielson, who in ‘real life’ is not who he appears to be on tv.
Danielson has the people convinced that he’s better than Max. But wrestlers get into this business to win titles. And whoever holds the AEW title is the best in the world. Something Danielson has never done.
He admitted that the iron man match would be tough but promised to emerge victorious. Because he, not Danielson, is the best in the world. He has the balls to do what it takes to win.
He had to race through his catchphrase because the crowd were chanting along.
MJF then brought out Christopher Daniels to talk about Danielson. Daniels got almost zero reaction from what was clearly a very small crowd judging from the way they were lighting this interview.
Max asked Daniels to tell ‘the truth’ about Danielson.
Daniels quickly explained that MJF had paid him to trash Danielson. But promised that BD will ‘knock your d*** in the dirt’. Before talking about how Danielson had helped start ROH, which helped start AEW, and was the reason MJF was here today.
Daniels said BD was what Max wished he could be, MJF’s a ‘fraud’… at which point Max slapped the mic free and the two sparred verbally. The vet smacked Max, Max kicked him in the balls then locked in the Salt of the Earth.
Before fleeing as Danielson made the save.
Thought this was a good, short and sweet promo from Max until he introduced Daniels and it went much longer than it needed to. AEW has a nasty habit of using attacks on people who’ve never been shown to have an on-screen relationship to build ‘heat’.
The Gunns promo. They bragged about having only ten televised matches and falsely apologized for not having to have come up through the indies.
Remains a mind-boggling decision.
Jack Perry vs Brian Cage
Backstory: Cage stood on the top of the ramp after Perry won on Friday, a grievous insult
Perry attacked quickly but was immediately overwhelmed by Cage’s power. Though succeeded in sending the bigger man outside where he launched a series of topes until being caught and planted against the apron via powerbomb.
Straight to break.
A big boot welcomed us back, Perry responded with an enziguri then caught the bigger man with an elbow but was himself caught into a backbreaker then a waterwheel drop. Two slaps.
Then buckle bombed and F5’d for another close count.
The crowd chanted for ‘Jungle Boy’ as Perry hit a stomp with Cage draped across the ropes then a diving splash for two of his own. Before landing a dvd from which an angry Cage kicked out at one. Perry continued the attack with a crucifix bomb, elbow to the back of the head, roll-up, win.
That came out of nowhere. Very good while it lasted. From one Cage to another, Perry was again making the ‘belt’ motion afterward when Christian’s music hit. The vet came out, arm still in a sling, to absolutely no response whatsoever, spraying Perry with something as the youngster went to attack.
Christian then removed the sling and hit the Killswitch on the ramp. Oh good, more of this feud.
WINNER: Jack Perry
Renee had an announcement for the ppv: The Gunns will defend their titles in a triple threat. She was explaining the usual convoluted series of battle royals when the Acclaimed and Billy Gunn interrupted to announce that it would now be a four-way as they were enacting their rematch clause.
Bowens cut a good, passionate promo about getting their belts back.
Backstage, the Elite were talking about the upcoming All-Star Game when Top Flight and AR Fox interrupted to challenge them again for Friday. They seemed about to agree when Callis told them no. Top Flight made a ‘balls’ joke and suddenly the Elite were happy to wrestle. Matt then threw a ball at Brandon’s groin, stealing a thirty-year-old Simpson’s joke.
The Elite are heels? Right?
Hangman Adam Page vs Kip Sabian
Backstory: Kip questioned Page’s manhood on Friday
A fired-up Hangman went right after Kip, who caught him coming in, hit a weird over the shoulder stunner (those always look like they do more damage to the giver than the receiver) but then ate a big boot and was lit-up with chops. Before being caught into a fallaway but avoiding the rest of Page’s usual sequence.
Sabian hit a basement dropkick through the ropes then launched a springboard moonsault to bring the break.
We returned to Sabian missing a stomp then being Cactus Clotheslined outside and flung around ringside. Back inside, a pop-up powerbomb brought two.
This should be over by now.
Sabian blocked a Dead Eye, Page came back with a brutal lariat and hit Dead Eye to win.
Fair enough, didn’t last much longer. Still a little lengthy.
The Cowboy’s music was still playing when the BCC (sans Danielson) hit the aisle. Mox grabbed a mic to say they had no more unfinished business. He had respect for Page but has ‘your number’ and ‘there is no chance you will ever, ever beat me again. So let it go.’
A ‘Moxley’ chant broke out as Page again claimed that neither man was really happy with how their last match ended. They have to go back into the ‘cold, dark alley’ and only one of them comes out. He says it ends at Revolution.
Moxley kinda hoped Page would say that. Hoped that none of Page’s friends would talk him out of it. He then said Page had no friends. Cue the Dark Order’s music. Page tried to tell them to stay out of it. Uno got right in Mox’s face and pie-faced him.
Moxley had the last word(s):
‘Cowboy, Cowboy, Revolution, Texas Death.’
WINNER: Hangman Adam Page
JAS with Schiavone. Jericho is sick of Starks. He’s not on his level and will receive no more matches against him. Garcia then promised to beat him and expose him on Friday as an ‘Absolute fraud’.
Pretty poor follow-up after Starks looked like a goof losing to that very weak Judas Effect last week. Guy at least needed a promo.
Schiavone now with Stokely Hathaway and etc. He claimed Hook broke his arm last week and should be fired. Ethan Page said Hathaway deserved justice. Schiavone revealed that Hook had been suspended pending an investigation.
This story wasn’t good when they did it with Swerve and replacing him with Hook doesn’t make it any better.
Britt Baker vs Toni Storm vs Ruby Soho
Backstory: Soho is yet to pick a side in the Storm/Saraya vs Britt/Hayter feud
A planted fan was dragged over the rail and about to be beaten up by Storm and Saraya when Soho’s music hit. Ruby checked on the ‘fan’.
There are barely ten minutes left so this screams angle rather than match.
Britt immediately went after Storm; Soho got a quick two on both women.
Baker hit a neckbreaker for two but was then dragged outside by Storm. Toni started questioning Soho and ate a shoulder block. Storm then hip-attacked Britt off the apron but was Saito suplexed out to Saraya on the other side by Ruby.
Leaving Soho with a choice about who to go after as the final ads arrived.
Britt took down Toni with clotheslines then a slingblade, before using Soho to unknowingly double-team Storm with a twisting neckbreaker. Saraya grabbed the boot, right in front of the ref as usual, allowing Toni to launch a hip attack until being stopped by Ruby, allowing Baker to bag two on Soho, leaving all three down as the crowd briefly chanted ‘DMD’.
Baker got another two on Storm via roll-up before the two got to scrapping, ending with another swinging neckbreaker for nearly three. Soho dropped Britt with a trip but was slugged by Storm as she came off the top, right into a Texas clover leaf. Baker put the Lock Jaw on at the same time. Saraya came in to attack Britt, Hayter went after Storm (forgot about the stupid ‘anything goes’ in a three-way rules).
Soho used the heels’ attack on Baker to roll the latter up for the win. Both Saraya and Hayter confronted her afterwards as Ruby shrieked that she’d had enough.
An un-AEW-worthy main event to complement the opener. I was briefly into this story a couple weeks back. Now back to not caring.
Has to be easily the worst back-to-back main events the company’s ever put on.
WINNER: Ruby Soho
Next Rampage (Starts 7pm Eastern):
- Swerve Strickland vs Dustin Rhodes
- Daniel Garcia vs Ricky Starks
- The Elite vs Top Flight & AR Fox, Trios Titles
- Jade Cargill vs Vertvixen
- Jon Moxley vs Evil Uno
- Revolution tag team battle royale
- Samoa Joe vs Wardlow, TNT Title
- Bryan Danielson vs MJF, AEW Title
- Gunns vs the Acclaimed vs ?? vs ??, Tag Titles
- Hangman Page vs Jon Moxley, Texas Death Match
The question going into tonight was whether the company would begin properly stacking up the card for Revolution. The answer was mixed. They did nail down several matches but interviews they pushed ahead of time were nothing much and speaking for myself, only Page and Moxley seems to have any steam with just two shows left till the ppv.
Check Out (If you really need a fix)
- BCC vs Rush & Preston Vance (second half)
- Jack Perry vs Brian Cage (very short but good)
Thanks for reading.