Posted on 9/22/122 by Colin Vassallo
Arena: Arthur Ashe Stadium
City: Queens, NY
Last Week’s Rating: 1.175,000 overall; 0.39 in 18-49 demo
Big night tonight. The rating should clear the million mark
for the fifth week running. More importantly, will MJF ‘cash
in’? I say he shouldn’t. The idea of him threatening to take
the belt to WWE isn’t a bad storyline per se, but it is at
the moment. That belt needs stability. It shouldn’t change
hands between now and February.
It’s Wednesday night, it’s Dynamite. Let’s go.
Excalibur welcomed us, along with Taz, Tony & Ian Riccaboni,
and you know what that means! ROH up first. Bobby Cruise
again on announcing duty.
Chris Jericho vs Claudio Castagnoli, ROH World Title
Backstory: Jericho challenged Claudio for the title of the
only company whose belt he’s never held
The crowd belted out Judas as Jericho emerged, holding up
eight fingers, the crowd making it clear this wasn’t your
usual few thousand people in the house.
Cary Silkin was there to watch, Aubrey on the call, first
ever female to ref an ROH World Title match.
Crowd absolutely hyped as Jericho used the code of honor to
take a cheapshot, Claudio drilling him with a flurry of
uppercuts, whipping him corner to corner, following him in
with running uppercuts, hoisting him up top in a gorilla
press and dropping him ‘yambag’ first onto the ropes, as Taz
would, and did, say.
Continuing the blistering start, Claudio pursued the
BeeWeeBeeCee (BWBC) to the outside, where Jericho used
Silkin as a shield to take a cheapshot at Castagnoli,
hurling chops, sending CC back inside but caught with yet
another uppercut as he attacked off the top for a dodo-rare
An exchange in the middle saw Castagnoli land on the apron
but blast the BWBC with another uppercut mid-springboard.
Fighting on the apron, a rake of the eyes ended with Jericho
suplexing CC all the way to the ringside mats. The crowd
loved it; I kinda wish he wouldn’t take those bumps at his
Rocked by a defensive boot to the face as we returned,
Jericho fought back, hurling more chops with Claudio perched
up top: shots to the face, top rope hurracanrana. Or not.
Claudio converting it to a powerbomb from the top only for
Jericho to counter back into a hurracanrana in mid-flight.
Jericho then ran at Castagnoli but was caught with the
pancake/uppercut combo for a close 2. Hammer and anvils
followed – love that the BCC have a thing they all do.
Leaping double-foot stomp for another two slaps of the mat
from CC, then the sharpshooter, Jericho slap-bang in the
middle but finally grasping the bottom rope. Jericho went
for a low blow but had his foot caught, Ricola Bomb for
another close count.
Claudio well on top but Jericho refusing to be put away.
Next it was Claudio’s turn to be caught mid-springboard –
Codebreaker! – another 2. Getting to his feet, Jericho swept
the Swiss into the Walls, despite Castagnoli fighting,
grasping at the neck, shots to the face, pulling himself up
out of the hold, shots to the jaw.
Big Swing time. Crowd again loved it.
Jericho slingshotted into the buckle, another uppercut as he
rebounded, another count of two. Jericho reached for Floyd,
Claudio blocked it, went for another Ricola Bomb only to be
flung over Jericho’s shoulder, kind-of into Aubrey, allowing
Jericho to hit a low blow, then the Judas Effect. The Ocho!
Does this mean ROH has a TV deal coming?
The JAS out to celebrate, Garcia looking less than impressed
at his mentor cheating again.
The vast majority of this was excellent. One or two parts
were slightly off, Jericho maybe a little gassed by the
frantic pace of the contest.
WINNER: Chris Jericho
Swerve in our Glory vs the Acclaimed
Backstory: Acclaimed lost at All Out in a belter, this is
their second shot
Very heavy boos for Swerve as he emerged, along with
Fabolous. Lee certainly wasn’t booed but the crowd were very
clear on who they were there to cheer: the Acclaimed
accompanied by DJ Whooooo Kiiiiiiiiid.
‘Ohhhhhh Scissor Me Daddy!’ the chant from the crowd as the
Big Fella and Bowens started us off. Lee with the size
advantage, Bowens getting nowhere, Lee striking with a
running hurracanrana. Crowd went wild for that.
Perplexed, Bowens tagged in Caster.
Who couldn’t do much more with Lee until finally countering
the biel into an armdrag mid-stream, Swerve in angrily to
break-up the Scissor as the break beckoned.
Caster was stranded in the corner as we returned, fighting
out, powerslam to Strickland then hauling Lee up for a quick
suplex/brainbuster as the crowd again exploded. Bowens back
in, running wild, back body drop to Swerve, thrust-kick
dropping Lee, the crowd hot.
Until Swerve spoiled their fun again, the champs looking for
the double-team Swerve Stomp, Bowens fighting out, grabbing
a quick 2 count, hurling Swerve to the outside but then
meeting Lee’s noggin and plummeting to the mat.
As the Big Fella sized up the biel all the way to the ramp,
Bowens landing hard, Caster not faring any better, planted
in the middle as he ran in to help. The Big Guy heading up
top, missing with the moonsault, both he and Caster down,
the latter trying to psyche himself up with Bowens still out
of it. Bringing Swerve to the apron with the boombox,
blasting Lee with it after Castor ducked.
Blockbuster from Bowens, Castor looking for the Mic Drop but
seemingly injuring his knee as he landed, flattening the
crowd. Bowens grabbed a 2, Caster finally back in, Swerve
drilling Caster with a leaping spinkick, Caster responding
with a back suplex, hobbling his way to the top, Swerve
striking before he got there. What seemed like a screw-up
followed as they set up a double team pounce, acombo
powerbomb sufficed instead, Castor kicking out at 2.
Swerve with a ridiciculous 450 legdrop to the outside,
wiping out the Acclaimed, going face to face with Billy
Gunn, being dragged away by his partner. Allowing Bowens to
hit an elbow, Famasser on the outside with the ref
distracted, Swerve sent in, the Arrival, the Mic Drop…
This was disappointing. Messy and lacking fluidity, despite
a number of very cool spots. They probably tried to do a bit
too much. And the sequence where Caster ‘hurt his knee’ was
strange in retrospect, taking the crowd out of it and
disjointing the match.
Not that the crowd cared: confetti and celebrations as
Swerve stared in disbelief.
WINNER: The Acclaimed
FTR with Lexi. Cash congratulated the new champs but they’ve
been no1 contenders since April and they want a shot. The
Ass Boys interrupted with a series of F-T-Are you…? jokes.
FTR didn’t seem to care too much. Weird segment. Should’ve
just left it with the challenge.
Yuta joined Tony on the ramp to give his thoughts on the
World Title match later, barely getting a word out before
MJF interrupted, again coming out to a rapturous response.
‘Questionable Queens, the Devil has arrived!’ Loud MJF
chant. He called them his ‘Devil Worshippers’.
Max said Yuta would never receive a response like he just
had, this crowd would drink his spit (one guy liked that a
little too much) and let him sleep with their wives, if only
they weren’t ugly. Yuta insulted MJF, the crowd booed
MJF called them the Blackpool Cuckold Club, said Yuta could
still get advice from Danielson about how to get injured or
ask Regal ‘how to pop pills’. Yuta finally snapped, belting
him with a slap, MJF finally turning the crowd as he shoved
the biggest babyface in the company – Tony Schiavone – on
his ass. Only for Morrisey to attack, allowing MJF to drill
Yuta with the ring.
MJF was very good here and the crowd loved him; otherwise
this was an awful segment. They seem determined to fight the
crowd and it made Yuta look stupid.
Diamante revealed that her surprise for Rampage is Trina???
Which was my first thought on Friday after that description
but I couldn’t believe they actually thought she was
relevant in 2022.
Pac vs Orange Cassidy, AEW All-Atlantic Title
Backstory: The two feuded years ago, recently renewed the
rivalry & Orange attacked Pac last week
Excalibur reminded us that Cassidy has never beaten Pac. I
fancied Orange to win here, but surely they won’t do three
changes in a row?
Amidst the usual antics, Orange flung his shades at Pac,
incensing the Brit who ran in and was caught in two quick
pinfall attempts before ducking outside to avoid an early
Orange Punch. Even hesitating to get back in as Cassidy
found his pockets.
The kicks were next, Pac beckoning him to bring it, which
Cassidy did with a dropkick but Pac exploded with a violent
one of his own, then stomping away in the corner, choking
Cassidy with his boot on the apron, working his way outside,
drilling Cassidy face-first against the apron before
flinging him into the ringpost, Cassidy catching it more
with his shoulder than his face.
Pac headed to the top. Cassidy bailed but was walloped as
Pac somersaulted over the ropes. Shotgun dropkick from the
top as the Brit continued the assault into the break.
Still on top as we returned, the crowd still eerily quiet
outside of Orange’s antics, Pac headed up top for the Black
Arrow, Orange rolling away but caught and drilled with a
German before the Brit headed back up. Cassidy then holding
the legs up, playing possum as he grabbed a frustrated Pac
into a two-count.
Managing to block a swinging ddt but caught with a Stundog
Millionaire, the Brit was then drilled with a tope suicida,
diving ddt, kip-up – the pace quickening as Cassidy landed
the swinging ddt for a close two-count.
Cassidy got another two countering out of the Brutalizer,
then hit an Orange Punch, Pac just about getting the ropes
at 2.99, heading outside where he caught Cassidy with the
ringside hammer as the ref was unsighted, then rolling
Cassidy back inside for 1,2,3.
This was a bit strange. The crowd was dead, eating away at
what was a good match. They didn’t care a lick about Pac and
the finish was a letdown.
Ethan Page to win it in Toronto?
Toni Storm vs Britt Baker vs Athena vs Serena Deeb, AEW
Backstory: Stems from a tag involving all four last week,
Deeb pinned Toni after help from Britt & a chair
Nice responses for Britt and Toni, who squared off straight
away, the faces dispatching the heels and going to work,
Storm getting a two on Athena via backslide, Deeb trying to
pin both at the same time, drop toe hold from Serena on
Toni, before locking both in holds at the same time: Storm
in a leglock, Athena in an abdominal stretch.
Britt back in with a crucifix pin, then a roll-up, both
kicked out of quickly. Slingblade on Deeb, Toni attacking
Britt, countering the neckbreaker, running shotgun dropkick,
front-chancery throw, Toni to the top but caught by the
heels, looking for a double superplex as Athena gave all
three a powerbomb from the top.
The crowd have been absolutely silent for this so far.
Storm and Serena had the other girls in a sharpshooter as we
returned, talking trash as they faced each other. Deeb was
drilled with a German, Toni hip attack to Athena, Britt then
blasted by Athena, Serena landing uppercuts to Baker,
missing with a clothesline in the corner but then dropping
Britt across the ropes before catching Storm with a swinging
neckbreaker for 2.
Serenity Lock right in the middle. Crowd could not have
Britt thrust kick to break it up, Athena catching both her
and Deeb, briefly rousing the crowd, dropping both, Britts
face getting the worst of it as she was landed on. Crazy
athletic sequence in the ropes between the faces culminating
with Athena getting a 2, again briefly getting the crowd
Storm then hit a tornado ddt (Stormado ddt?) off the ropes
on Athena, Britt with another crucifix attempt, Storm
countering back into a roll-up of her own for the victory.
Baker attacked straight after, beating down the champ with
blood pouring from her face once again. Bringing Jamie
Hayter out once more. But it was a… Swerve Bro! The pair
laying in shots, Deeb joining them as they laid out the
faces, ending with a Curb Stomp to Athena, then applying the
glove, readying the Lockjaw.
Saraya! Huge pop. The heels bailed as the former Paige
soaked up the crowd’s adulation. Assuming she’s healthy
enough to wrestle, she’ll be a huge addition to the women’s
WINNER: Toni Storm
Another of those weird Darby videos ahead of their match
with the HOB on Friday. He dragged a body bag around – on
the train, in a cab – telling the cabbie he was heading to a
funeral at Arthur Ashe.
Bryan Danielson vs Jon Moxley, AEW World Title
Backstory: BCC Boys won their respective semi’s
Regal joined on comms as Moxley made his way through an
extremely appreciative crowd. Excalibur again talked about
their overall records, Danielson having far the better of it
but losing their most recent encounter.
Rapturous response for both as Justin made the
introductions, the crowd maybe leaning slightly towards
Bryan, MJF looking on from above, clutching the chip.
Cagey start, exchanging grapples and chops, down to the mat,
up again, Danielson emerging on top, drilling Moxley in the
back of the head until the latter grabbed a keylock to break
Then backing Danielson into the corner, both hurling chops,
Danielson on top after more chops, a running leg lariat, a
couple slaps to the face as he fired Moxley up. Back to the
corner, Mox laying in shots but caught again with a running
leg lariat after a reverse. Heavy palm strikes,
reverberating through the arena, the crowd oohing loudly,
yes! kicks dropping Moxley to the mat, the Dragon
comfortably on top early.
One leg lariat too many: Moxley immediately targeting the
spine with kicks, jumping stomp to the chest, bodyslam,
Danielson though quickly back on top via a barrage of chops
and kicks, perching Mox on the top, running dropkick sending
Mox to the outside where the attack continued.
Back inside, Danielson landed a leaping shotgun dropkick off
the top, Mox decidedly off his game, drilled with a German
suplex on the apron as the ads arrived.
Strange crowd – they’re mostly silent but were big into that
two count. For the best aprt of an hour, they’ve generally
seemed into the entrances, pinfalls and big sequences but
aren’t into most of the wrestling.
‘I have five!’ was the message as we returned, the Dragon
still in control. No mention or selling of the ankle thus
far. Maybe spoke too soon: Mox catching Danielson coming off
the top with a powerbomb then immediately targeting said
ankle. Then folding him up with brr-rew-tal leg-capture
A few boos for the back-rake with Danielson on the buckle,
Mox looking for a superplex, BD escaping as he did last
week, dropping Moxley face-first onto the buckle, straight
back up for an avalanche belly-to-back, the cover
interrupted due to BD grabbing his ankle, allowing Mox to
transition into the LeBell Lock.
Danielson fighting out with more shots to the face, the pair
fighting upside down with their legs locked, heads planted
on the mat, Danielson applying the Cattle Mutilation, hammer
and anvils, Moxley locking the triceps to escape but drilled
in the head. Then responding with the King Kong Lariat but
eating a back body drop from Danielson, then a busaiku knee
for two slaps of the mat.
Moxley struggling to his knees, Yes! kicks ending when Mox
managed to catch the ankle, brutal stomp to the face, Death
Rider, 1, 2, thr – kickout!
Hands locked, exchanging elbow strikes, Danielson rolling
through with the wrists captured, ready to kick Moxley’s
head in but Mox again targeting the ankle, Danielson
escaping again into the Triangle, both guys fighting
frantically in and out of holds, finally landing in the
LeBell Lock, the hand perched, ready to tap but somehow
making it to the ropes.
Mox to the apron, diving knee off the top from BD but
blasted immediately with a Death Rider on the stage,
Danielson’s momentum taking him back into the ring where he
somehow kicked out once more.
Bulldog Choke, right in the middle, nowhere to go, Danielson
fading, finally fighting up, kicking off the buckle but
crashing face-first, still in the Choke, all of Moxley’s
weight on him, finally passing out in the hold.
As good as some of them were, every other match tonight had
either a slip-up or a highly choreographed sequence which,
if you’re easily taken out of the moment, might’ve spoilt it
slightly. None of that here. This was a fight. This was two
guys fighting desperately for control, for and against
submission attempts until finally, one could take no more.
WINNER: Jeeeeeee-yoooon Moxxxxx-ley!
Next Rampage (2hrs):
• Hook & Action Bronson vs 2.0
• Sammy Guevara vs Eddie Kingston
• Jade Cargill vs Diamante, TBS Title
• Hobbs vs Starks
• Rey Fenix vs Jungle Boy
• Darby & Sting vs HOB, no-DQ
• Golden Ticket Battle Royal for future AEW Title shot
(Penta, Archer, Lethal in addition to the guys mentioned
during the show)
• Wardlow & Samoa Joe vs Tony Nese & Josh Woods
I didn’t actually enjoy this as much as last week. Perhaps
it’s just from the recapper’s pov, but I was begging for a
five-minute break. For something a little lighter to break
up the pile of title matches.
That said, nights like tonight are exactly why AEW should
stick with the four (or five) PPVs. They’re able to put
genuinely competitive title bouts involving their biggest
stars on free tv, culminating in a scorcher between perhaps
the two biggest. Now can we get some of those on Rampage?
• Jericho vs Claudio
• Danielson vs Moxley