Match 1: Dax Harwood vs. Cash Wheeler (Owen Hart Foundation Tournament Qualifier)
The hype was certainly through the roof for this first-time competition between longtime tag partners Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler, and it certainly did not disappoint.
With the winner heading on to advance to the Owen Hart Foundation Tournament, the pressure was on for both men to see who would get the win.
Dax and Cash entered together for their match, and soon found themselves on opposite ends of the ring for the first time in their respective careers. What followed was a technical classic that did both Owen and Bret Hart proud.
Dax would pick up the victory after taking advantage of some hesitation on Cash’s part to apply the Sharpshooter on an already-injured opponent. Dax rolled up Cash for the one, two, three.
As Dax and Cash had a moment of friendship after the match, CM Punk headed to the ring after the announcement was made for Double or Nothing to be headlined by Punk taking on AEW World Champion “Hangman” Adam Page for the prestigious title.
Page himself was not in the arena for Dynamite due to recovery from COVID-19, but that didn’t stop Punk from starting to build towards this dream match. For the time being, the feud just seems to be built on “who’s the best” and nothing more.
In a short promo, Punk said that he would be betting on himself when he takes on Hangman at Double or Nothing, and that he’d keep fighting even if he can’t promise us a victory.
Ladder Match Hype
Backstage, we got words from Scorpio Sky, who was accompanied by Dan Lambert. Scorpio boasted about his accomplishments and run as TNT Champion. He said that he got screwed out of the title and that the Philadelphia fans came to see him beat Sammy Guevara’s ass for the TNT Championship.
Match 2: Blackpool Combat Club (Bryan Danielson, Jon Moxley and Wheeler YUTA) vs. The Factor (QT Marshall, Nick Comoroto and Aaron Solo)
Named as a last-second addition to Dynamite an hour prior to the show (likely to cover for a Hangman Page/CM Punk segment that had to be scrapped due to Page’s aforementioned COVID-19 diagnosis), this was another showcase for William Regal’s rugged Blackpool Combat Club to indulge in a little violence as a treat.
Hometown hero Wheeler YUTA was far and away the star of this trios match. True to AEW’s penchant of booking hometown wrestlers to look as good as possible, Wheeler had his moment to shine.
Enduring the worst of Nick Comoroto’s powerhouse offense, YUTA would take advantage and ultimately pick up the win after trapping Comoroto in a seatbelt-style pin, while Moxley and Danielson kept QT and Solo at bay with their respective submissions.
It’s nice to see the BCC continue to look strong, but it might soon be time for the trio to get themselves in a key storyline, as it seems that whatever tensions with The Best Friends over Wheeler’s initiation into the group has been put on the backburner. Perhaps a potential showdown with the sports entertainment-obsessed Jericho Appreciation Society is waiting in the wings – especially given the BCC’s strong emphasis on wrestling and violence.
A Jurassic Loser?
We’re backstage with Christian Cage, Jungle Boy, and Luchasaurus as J.B. talked about how he could’ve won against Bobby Fish last week. Christian said that J.B. was talking like a “loser”… but that won’t happen again before challenging any of the top five teams in AEW to face the World Tag Champs. Ricky Starks & Powerhouse Hobbs appeared to answer this challenge.
Match 3: Wardlow vs. Lance Archer
Continuing the thread of MJF employing the services of the biggest and baddest wrestlers on AEW’s roster to hurt Wardlow, this week saw Lance Archer step up to the plate.
The match didn’t take too long to get started on the hot foot as Archer launched himself onto Wardlow and the security guards who were removing his handcuffs. From there, we got even more big meaty men slapping meat – and taking flight on a few occasions, too. Wardlow busted out an impressive hurricanrana on Archer, and later landing his own version of a swanton bomb successfully. The fact that he was able to do these kinds of moves without them looking too out of place from his usual repertoire really shows
Archer himself had some moments where it looked like he’d get the job done, including hitting his Blackout finishing maneuver for a very close near-fall.
As the match concluded, however, it would be Wardlow who would win the day, much to MJF’s dismay. The victory came for Wardlow after he hoisted Archer up for a Powerbomb Symphony of four to pick up the win.
The Jericho Appreciation Society/LAX Sitdown
With the promise of no physicality between the two factions, the Jericho Appreciation Society and Eddie Kingston/Proud n’ Powerful basically boiled down into a tense verbal showdown.
While the J.A.S. flaunted the consequences of instigating a fight to Kingston and his allies, Kingston took the time to threaten Chris Jericho’s crew, promising that he would put Jericho in the ground when everything is settled.
Match 4: Hikaru Shida vs. Serena Deeb (Philly Street Fight)
The capstone to this bitter rivalry between Hikaru Shida and Serena Deeb came with the Philly Street Fight, where the two hated enemies went to war with one another, hoping to get the final victory in this collision.
While the buildup to this big blowoff match has been rather on-and-off due to the sporadic appearances the two have made on TV, this finale match was suitably brutal. Deeb got the win via the Serenity Lock after repeatedly punishing Shida’s knee by slamming it onto a chair set up in the ring.
Who’s Next For Wardlow?
MJF was backstage with Shawn Spears. He talked to someone on the phone, asking them if they’d like to make “six figures” fighting Wardlow next week. After the call ended, Max told everyone that this mystery person is someone taller and smarter than his old bodyguard, concluding by saying that “you can’t teach that”.
Return of the Fenix
The lights went out as we saw an unconscious Fuego del Sol laid out on the stage. The House of Black surrounded Fuego and looked to unmask him until they were interrupted by a robed man thought to be Alex Abrahantes. Malakai and crew went to confront the robed figure, but were interrupted by Penta Oscuro. Soon, PAC and the real Alex Abrahantes joined Penta as the robed figure revealed himself to be the returning Rey Fenix. A wild brawl ensued with the reunited Death Triangle getting the better of the House of Black on this night.
Match 5: The Undisputed Elite (Adam Cole, Matt and Nick Jackson, Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly) vs. Lee Johnson, Brock Anderson and the Varsity Blonds (Brian Pillman Jr. & Griff Garrison)
On the previous week’s Dynamite, Adam Cole promised a united Undisputed Elite front would be on full display, and he was proven right in his prediction as he, reDRagon, and the Young Bucks stood together and won their first ten-man tag match as a unit.
T.U.E. got the victory, as expected, and it seemed that the Young Bucks were onboard with Cole’s gamble for the time being, accepting Undisputed Elite shirts to wear.
In a very quick backstage segment, we saw the Jericho Appreciation Society once again getting the better of Santana, Ortiz, and Eddie Kinsgton, having beaten them down in the parking lot. To add insult to injury, Chris Jericho threw a fireball in Kingston’s face for a sports entertainment-style attack.
Match 6: Sammy Guevara vs. Scorpio Sky (Ladder Match for TNT Championship)
Wrapping things up on Dynamite was a spot-filled ladder match for the TNT Title as newly-heel-turned Sammy Guevara agreed to let Scorpio Sky have another shot at the title – on the condition of a mixed tag match between him and Tay Conti vs. Scorpio & Paige VanZant happening in the future.
While the match itself was more spot-heavy than anticipated, the fans were into this match for the majority of it. Notably, Sammy took a big risk with a diving splash from the top of the ladder that was nowhere near on target, which seemed incredibly ill-advised.
The fans were firmly behind Scorpio in this contest, and cheered when he finally put away Sammy – first by slamming him onto a barbed wire ladder, and then finally pushing off the ladder as he tried getting back up – allowing for him to retrieve the TNT Title for the win.
Frankie Kazarian came out to congratulate Scorpio on his big win, also serving as a reminder of the agreement made that he’d get the first shot at his SCU friend’s TNT Title. The show went off the air with Scorpio celebrating his victory.
4/29/22 AEW Rampage results
- Darby Allin def. Swerve Strickland via pinfall (10:00) to advance to the Owen Hart Foundation Tournament. The finish came when Ricky Starks tried to get involved, but was warded off by Sting. This caused enough of a distraction for Swerve to get pinned by Darby.
- Shawn Spears hyped up Wardlow’s mystery opponent for Dynamite, claiming that the still-unrevealed foe has “Pinnacle Potential”.
- Chris Jericho named himself “Sports Entertainer of the Week” for his fireball attack on Eddie Kingston. Santana and Ortiz attacked Jericho until security pulled them away. This, sadly, didn’t remove Jericho from commentary.
- The Baddies (Jade Cargill, Kiera Hogan, Red Velvet) def. Trish Adora, Skye Blue and Willow Nightingale via pinfall (3:00) after Jade pinned Adora for the win.
- Backstage, Darby Allin told Swerve Strickland that he would give him five more minutes due to how their opening match ended. Swerve said that he respected Darby and that he knew that Team Taz was behind the screwjob finish.
- Keith Lee def. Colten Gunn via pinfall (7:00) with the Ground Zero.
- We got remarks from The Hardys & Undisputed Elite ahead of Jeff Hardy vs. Bobby Fish in an Owen Hart Foundation Tournament qualifier match.
- Danhausen attempted to challenge HOOK to a fight, but tried to back out when confronted by him. Tony Nese and “Smart” Mark Sterling interrupted, but found themselves on the receiving end of HOOK’s suplexes. The heels backed away as Danhausen cursed them. The fans appeared to be all for the odd couple of “HOOK-Hausen”, showing their support by chanting their name. Danhausen tried to shake HOOK’s hand, but was rejected as HOOK walked off.
- Samoa Joe def. Trent Beretta via submission (10:00) to retain the ROH Television Title with the Coquina Clutch.
- Sonjay Dutt, Satnam Singh, and Jay Lethal interrupted the post-match interview with Joe as a big brawl broke out to end Rampage.
Apologies for the short recap, but I wish to be upfront with you about something that is quite near and dear to me personally.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month and those of you who know me on Twitter know that I’ve been quite open about the struggles I have with my mental health that I face everyday. I’m someone with ASD and I’m faced with having to deal with significant anxiety and self-confidence issues, and everyday becomes a challenge for me. Despite that, I’m proud of who I am and I’m thankful for the support network I have with my family and my friends.
How does being aware about mental health relate to wrestling, you may ask?
You don’t need to have stepped into a wrestling ring to know that professional wrestling can be something that’s taxing on a wrestler’s mental health. Not only can wrestling be hard on the body, it’s something that can wear on an in-ring performer mentally. The pressure of performing in front of large crowds and trying your best to entertain them is also something not to be taken lightly.
Last fall, wrestler Jon Moxley made the brave decision to check himself into rehab for alcohol abuse, even as he was in a key tournament storyline that would’ve led to an AEW World Title Match. Mox’s decision was one that was met with universal approval and support for making a significant choice in taking care of himself.
AEW also released the below video last November where wrestlers from the company were upfront about the mental health struggles they faced as in-ring performers and as everyday people:
This emphasis on being aware about your own personal mental health has also found its way into on-screen storylines in AEW, with Eddie Kingston being the most notable example of this. On more than one occasion, Kingston has spoken about his own anxiety struggles and having to take good care of himself, which has also informed his character in AEW.
Current AEW World Champion “Hangman” Adam Page is another big example of AEW portraying mental health awareness in its storylines, with his “anxious millennial cowboy” storyline. In a story arc that has lasted as long as AEW’s three-year history, Page confronted his personal demons, self-confidence issues and did so by finding belief in himself and a healthy amount of support from his friends in the Dark Order.
The point here is that being aware of your mental health is always important, and even those who risk their bodies every week to entertain you and me are aware of that fact. Take good care of yourself and your mind, because it’s the only one you’ve got.
In closing, I’ll leave you with this from friend of the show “Doc” Chris Mueller, as a reminder that there is help for you if you need it most.
‘Til next time, keep cool, gabagools, and remember that you never have to be alone to deal with whatever struggles you may face.
Marc Quill is the editor of RingCrashers, GateCrashers’ home for all your All Elite Wrestling and indie wrestling needs. He’s also the web novelist behind Skye Emery: Bluebird, which you can read here. You can chat with him about wrestling, comics, and stuff in general on @MarcQuill on Twitter.