This week’s Rampage featured a matchup between The Elite’s Adam Cole and The Dark Order’s John Silver while CM Punk had a confrontation with Eddie Kingston.
This is AEW Rampage from the Chaifetz Arena in St. Louis, Missouri. It was a live show. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. Let’s get to it.
The announcers were Excalibur, Taz and Ricky Starks, who is the FTW Champion that is an active wrestler in AEW, but he doesn’t get booked in televised matches often. I guess the yeller Chris Jericho was off this week.
Bryan Danielson entered to a big pop with a 6-0-1 record. Danielson is in the finals of the AEW World Title Eliminator tournament at Full Gear where he will face Miro.
Anthony Bowens was the opponent with his tag team partner Max Caster doing a rap on the way to the ring. Caster rapped the acclaimed only does numbers, but this guy is busy growing cucumbers. Caster claimed that Bryan was only known for his wife’s reality show – ouch. I think Bryan has done okay for himself actually! Caster suggested that Bryan should eat some eggs because look at Bowens’ arms, they are bigger than Bryan’s legs. Caster said: “I’m gonna put you into poverty, dog, cuz I end careers quicker than your father in law.” Bryan’s father in law is WWE Head of Talent Relations, John Laurinaitis, who is married to Brie Bella’s mom. The fans let out a big “ooohhh” for that. The announcers laughed with Taz saying that was good. Taz said maybe the Acclaimed will be in Tony Khan’s good graces after that. There is some storyline that The Acclaimed don’t like Tony Khan and vice versa, so Tony put Bowens in a match against Danielson because of that.
Analysis: The last line about Bryan’s father-in-law John Laurinaitis really got the Twitter wrestling fans wound up laughing about it and Laurinaitis was trending on Twitter for most of the night. Amazing line by Caster at the end there.
Bryan Danielson vs. Anthony Bowens (w/Max Caster)
Bowens did a couple of armdrag takedowns and celebrated after doing those. Bowens got a crucifix pin attempt for a two count. Bowens delivered some kicks, then he bounced off the ropes and Bryan kicked him in the chest. Bryan worked over Bowens with punches, kicks to the back and then they exchanged strikes. Bryan went for an armbar on the left arm, Bowens got to the bottom rope and Bryan kicked him in the back to knock Bowens out of the ring. Bowens had Bryan on his shoulders and then slammed him into the ring apron. Caster with a cheap shot clothesline on Bryan that the referee didn’t see. They went to a 90-second picture in picture break.
Bowens was in control after hitting an Angle Slam at the end of the break. Bryan got momentum going after running the ropes and hitting a running clothesline. The fans chanted “YES” for Bryan as Bryan worked over Bowens with repeated kicks to the chest along with a roundhouse kick to the head for a two count. Bryan with a running dropkick against the turnbuckle. Bowens avoided another corner kick, Bryan hit the turnbuckle and Bowens hit a twisting neckbreaker off the ropes called The Arrival for a two count. Bryan ran the ropes, dropkick took out Caster on the floor and Bryan hit a back body drop over the top on Bowens onto Caster on the floor. Bryan jumped off the turnbuckle onto both guys on the floor. Big pop for that. Bryan with a missile dropkick off the top on Bowens. Bryan held the wrists of Bowens leading to stomps to the head and then the LeBell Lock was applied. Bowens tapped out to give Bryan the win after nine minutes.
Winner by submission: Bryan Danielson
Analysis: ***1/4 A good match as usual any time Bryan is involved. He’s had many longer matches than this in AEW, so it was tough to be an elite match, but it was fun for what it was. Bowens is a talented worker with a mix of speed, power and technical wrestling skills. I’m glad he got to show off a bit in this singles match. The result was never in doubt here because they wanted to get Bryan a win going into Full Gear. I hope The Acclaimed gets a tag team push in the next few months because they’re fun to watch.
There was an interview shown from last Wednesday. Andrade El Idolo was shown with FTR with Tony Schiavone doing an interview. They laughed about how they beat Cody Rhodes. MJF was there to say they made a deal for two weeks for Andrade to use FTR and then Andrade’s assistant Jose gave MJF two envelopes with the idea that he gave him money. Dax Harwood challenged Pac to a match on Dynamite.
CM Punk made his entrance to a big pop as usual. Punk was in street clothes including an AEW sweater. They went to break.
CM Punk Goes Face to Face with Eddie Kingston
Punk was jogging around the ring and joked that he wanted people to think he was running around the ring for three and a half minutes. Punk said he’s supposed to go face to face with Eddie Kingston, so without further adieu, he wants to invite Eddie to “my ring.” Taz had a problem with Punk saying “my ring” there. Eddie’s music played, then he didn’t show up and Punk kept on talking, so Eddie ended up going down to the ring without his music playing.
Eddie got into the ring with Punk saying Punk wanted an apology. Punk said he understands that it sounds condescending when a man interrupts another man. Eddie admitted that he interrupted CM Punk and mockingly acted as if it was a big deal. Eddie apologized for being at home sick thinking he had Covid, having to get tested twice so he wouldn’t get his friend sick and get his kid sick, but that doesn’t matter because he has to apologize since you didn’t get the great CM Punk versus Orange Cassidy. Eddie said “I’m sorry” and played the world’s smallest violin on his finger saying it’s playing for his “little ass.” Eddie apologized. The fans booed a bit.
Eddie asked who CM Punk is. Punk said it didn’t sound like much of an apology. Punk said you know who Punk is and St. Louis knows who Punk is (cheap pop). Eddie said he’ll tell everybody the truth. Eddie said that Punk was once a hero of his along with guys like Samoa Joe, Homicide, Amazing Red and guys like that on the independents inspired him when he started. Eddie called Punk a “lowlife, scumbag, two-faced, narcissistic bitch” and the fans booed. Eddie said that Punk judged him. Eddie said that he came to that locker room to be free from his mental crap, from the streets, for brotherhood and all Punk did was judge him. Eddie said because he was fat, he ate a little bit, he didn’t play everybody’s game, he didn’t kiss ass or friends with the booker and bury other people to get his stuff in. Kingston told Punk he was wrong – that’s what Eddie knows.
Punk responded saying he hears Eddie lumping a lot of baggage on him on Punk. Punk said that the truth is it wasn’t just him, it was Homicide, Joe, Danielson and they held Eddie to a standard to the potential that they saw him. Punk told Eddie he’s the one that fell short of that mark. Punk said that you can lose in the middle of the ring to a guy like Bryan Danielson and you can try to blame Punk, but it is not Punk’s fault. Punk said he is not wrong in seeing greatness in Kingston 15 years ago, Punk said that he is a fool to hold Kingston to that standard and expect greatness because “you’re a bum.” Ouch. Kingston threw off his hat.
Eddie: “I’m a bum!” Eddie mentioned that he main evented Full Gear, then he almost had to sell his house due to the pandemic and then he found his way in the “only professional wrestling company in the world today.” The fans cheered that. Eddie asked if that is a bum? Eddie wanted Punk to hear this. Eddie said nobody wants Punk here, they never wanted him here and that whole locker room is afraid to say it, but not him. Eddie told him to get out, stop smirking at Eddie or he’ll smack that smirk off his face. Eddie suggested that Punk fights him on the 13th at Full Gear. Punk reiterated Eddie’s offer. Punk said he didn’t intend to leave without fighting Eddie. Punk said that Full Gear is a high bar for him, so he was thinking something like Elevation or Dark. (Way to make fun of AEW’s Youtube shows not being a big deal.) Eddie laughed. Eddie called Punk a coward, then repeatedly said “fight me” and Punk put his hand on his chest. Punk asked St. Louis if they want to see the match at Full Gear, so the fans cheered right on cue. Punk: “I’ll see you on the 13th.”
Punk was about to leave. Eddie said he didn’t care about winning or losing at Full Gear. All Eddie cared about was beating up Punk and after he’s done beating up Punk, Eddie said: “Do me a favor, quit again and leave for seven years!” Punk with a headbutt! They got into a fight as they exchanged punches and went brawling into the turnbuckle. The AEW referees went out to try to break it up. The fight kept going. Some wrestlers and officials went into the ring to try to break it up. There were wrestlers in the ring attempting to break it up as well. Kingston tried to bite Punk during the brawl. They were separated with both guys looking intense and fans chanting “let them fight.”
Analysis: This was awesome! This was one of the best non-wrestling segments AEW has done in several weeks at least. I’m not sure when the last one was that was at this level. The promos from both guys were outstanding with Eddie taking some very personal shots at Punk for having a big ego in the past, Eddie saying that nobody in AEW wanted Punk there and then final line about how Punk should quit again for seven years. That crossed the line, so Punk hit him with a headbutt. It was a believable fighting situation because of the words exchanged. Eddie was a bit heelish, but I don’t think he’s a heel. I just think it was needed to rile up Punk and now Punk has his first true rivalry in AEW where you want to see him kick another guy’s ass. It’s not just a match. It’s a personal feud. I like it a lot. Eddie was outstanding here and Punk was terrific as well. If you missed it, check out the Youtube video I’ve posted in here because it’s worth your time.
The trio of Christian Cage, Luchasaurus and Jungle Boy were interviewed by Tony Schiavone. Christian called the Super Kliq part of The Elite “sad sacks of shit” and Jungle Boy threw out the challenge right now with those three guys against The Elite (Super Kliq) at Full Gear in a Falls Count Anywhere Match.
The Bunny entered for singles action.
TBS Tournament First Round: The Bunny vs. Red Velvet
Velvet ran to the ring and tackled Bunny with punches followed by a clothesline. Velvet with a spinning kick to the head. Velvet with a clothesline on Bunny on the floor. Jade Cargill was watching at ringside with Smart Mark Sterling. Bunny sent Velvet into the barricade. Bunny kicked Velvet in the back to send her into the steel steps. Back in the ring, Bunny with a dropkick into the turnbuckle. They exchanged forearms, Velvet with a kick and a running Stunner for a two count. Bunny avoided kicks, then did a rollup with tights and that got a two count. Bunny with a Death Valley Driver for two with Bunny slapping herself after the nearfall. Bunny was going for a reverse DDT like move, Velvet got out of that and hit a move called the Final Slice that was like the Playmaker that MVP used in his career where it’s like a leg drop to the back of the head with a neckbreaker thrown in. Velvet covered for the win after four minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Red Velvet
Analysis: *1/2 A short match to put over Velvet to have her move along in the tournament. Since Jade Cargill will face the winner of this match, they wanted to have the face win and then Cargill will probably beat Velvet easily in the next round. I like Bunny a lot, but they don’t ever seem to push her consistently.
There are eight women that have moved on in the quarterfinals of the TBS Tournament.
The main event was up next.
John Silver and Alex Reynolds were interviewed along with Adam Cole and The Young Bucks with Mark Henry conducting the interview. Silver wanted to call Cole “BUDGE” on the Being the Elite Youtube show that I don’t watch. Silver spoke about how he beat them last week when he was dressed like Bambi. Cole said two days ago on Dynamite he took a Conchairto to the head, but he’ll be okay. Cole said he’s not somebody to mess with. Mark said it’s time for the main event.
This Wednesday on Dynamite:
* Pac vs. Dax Harwood – Pac should win that.
* Dr. Britt Baker, Jamie Hayter & Rebel vs. Tay Conti, Anna Jay & Thunder Rosa – That will probably be Conti pinning Rebel.
* Matt Sydal & Lee Moriarty vs. Dante Martin & Lio Rush
* Bryan Danielson vs. Rocky Romero
* Kenny Omega and “Hangman” Adam Page will have an AEW World Championship contract signing.
They did a rundown of some of the Full Gear PPV matches on Saturday, November 13:
* AEW World Championship: Kenny Omega (c) vs. “Hangman” Adam Page
* Falls Count Anywhere: The Superkliq (The Young Bucks & Adam Cole) vs. Christian Cage, Luchasaurus & Jungle Boy
* CM Punk vs. Eddie Kingston
That’s all they mentioned. The updated lineup is at the bottom of this post.
Adam Cole made his entrance for the main event with The Young Bucks joining him. Cole is 2-0 in singles matches, so he’s undefeated in singles just like Bryan Danielson and CM Punk are. Cole has lost in tag team action. Some fans had “BUDGE” signs, so I guess they watch the Youtube show. John Silver made his entrance with some Dark Order guys on the ramp and then he went to the ring alone. Silver liked the “BUDGE” signs as well. Silver wanted Cole to be his manager because it was based on “reports” that WWE wanted Cole to be a manager, but then Cole left for AEW. Whether those reports are true or not, I don’t know. Cole claimed he never heard that, so that’s why I question the validity of some of these things that get reported.
John Silver vs. Adam Cole
Silver did the Cole “Boom” pose and then Cole kicked him in the head. Cole was selling like he was dizzy a bit after taking the Conchairto on Dynamite. Silver press slammed Cole into the top rope followed by a running back elbow. Silver tossed Cole around the ring while Taz said that Cole was medically cleared, but still banged up. Silver tossed Cole across the ring again. Cole with a pump kick while Silver was on the apron. Cole slammed Silver over the head onto the apron on the floor. Cole held Silver in the Camel Clutch on the floor, so The Young Bucks kissed Cole on the cheek. They went to a picture in picture break.
Cole was in control with a headlock, Silver came back with punches and kicks to the chest. Silver with a back body drop followed by some flexing. Silver got a hold of Cole trying a leapfrog and Silver hit a sitout Liger Bomb for a two count. Cole and Silver exchanged forearms to the head, then Silver with kicks and Cole hit a suplex into the knee for a two count. Cole ran the ropes, Silver with a clothesline, a running knee to the head, a snap German Suplex and the running knee by the ropes. Nick Jackson put Cole’s foot on the bottom rope, so the referee saw the foot on the ropes and it was just a two count. The Dark Order guys went down to the ring. Cole went for a low blow, Silver blocked it, Silver kicked Cole in the groin (the referee was looking at the guys on the floor) and Silver hit a spinning sitout Powerbomb for a two count. The fans chanted “holy shit” for that nearfall. The fans chanted “this is awesome” as the wrestlers were on the turnbuckle. Cole knocked Silver down, Silver blocked a Panama Sunrise attempt and hit a jumping kick. Cole with a running elbow. Cole with two superkicks and the Boom knee to the head for the pinfall win after 11 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Adam Cole
Analysis: ***1/2 This was very good as a back and forth match. Cole is the bigger star, so it was obvious he was going to win, but I thought Cole did a tremendous job of selling the head injury and that allowed Silver to get a lot offense to look more credible. That nearfall spot after the low blow into the sitout Powerbomb was tremendous. The fans loved Silver, who is really fun to watch in terms of how he interacts with the crowd. Cole is so technically sound. There was that one cheap spot with Nick Jackson helping Cole kick out of a pin attempt, but other than that, it was a clean match. I liked this a lot.
Adam Cole celebrated the win. Excalibur plugged next week’s Dynamite, Rampage and then Full Gear takes place next Saturday, November 13. That was the end of the show.
Three Stars of the Show
1. Eddie Kingston
2. CM Punk
3. (tie) Adam Cole/John Silver
3. (tie) Bryan Danielson/Anthony Bowens
This Week: 8 out of 10
Last Week: 8
It’s another 8 out of 10 from me for the second week in a row. Some weeks the matches stand out the most, but that Eddie Kingston/CM Punk segment was f’n great, so that’s what I liked the most this week.
In terms of matches, the Cole/Silver match was the best just ahead of the Danielson/Bowens match. The women’s match was too short, which is common for AEW shows.
The next AEW pay-per-view is Full Gear on Saturday, November 13 in Minneapolis. Here’s what we know so far.
AEW World Championship: Kenny Omega (c) vs. “Hangman” Adam Page
AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament Finals: Bryan Danielson vs. Miro
AEW Tag Team Championships: Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero Miedo & Rey Fenix) (c) vs. FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler)
CM Punk vs. Eddie Kingston
Falls Count Anywhere: The Superkliq (The Young Bucks & Adam Cole) vs. Christian Cage, Luchasaurus & Jungle Boy
AEW Women’s Championship: Britt Baker (c) vs. Tay Conti
Darby Allin vs. Maxwell Jacob Friedman
Minneapolis Street Fight 5-on-5 Tag Team Match: The Inner Circle (Chris Jericho, Sammy Guevara, Jake Hager, Santana & Ortiz) vs. American Top Team (Ethan Page, Scorpio Sky, Andrei Arlovski, Junior Dos Santos & Dan Lambert)
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