4/15 AEW RAMPAGE TV REPORT: Howard’s “alt perspective” on Adam Cole challenging Hangman for AEW Title, plus Blackpool Combat Club, Butcher, Ruby, more

By Ryan Howard, PWTorch contributor

Full AEW Rampage results and analysis

SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...

AEW RAMPAGE TV REPORT
APRIL 15, 2022
RECORDED AT CURTIS CULWELL CENTER IN GARLAND, TEX.
AIRED ON TNT
REPORT BY RYAN HOWARD, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Announcers: Excalibur, Taz and Ricky Starks

Guest Commentators: William Regal & Shawn Spears

Ring Announcer: Justin Roberts

-Excalibur, Taz & Ricky Starks on the call, welcoming us to the show.

(1) BLACKPOOL COMBAT CLUB (Jon Moxley, Bryan Danielson & Wheeler Yuta w/William Regal) vs. GUNN CLUB (Billy, Austin & Colten)

William Regal accompanied Yuta out instead of Danielson before he joined the commentary trio. Loud chants for Yuta, who started with Austin, who hit a nice sliding leg sweep. Austin tried a somersault neckbreaker, but Yuta countered and wrenched at the wrist. Austin got a cheap shot off a rope break to allow Colten to tag in and he quickly missed a dropkick. Yuta unleashed some ground and pound then tagged Danielson. Colten was trapped in a Romero Special before he made a tag to Billy. There was a brief face off with Billy & Danielson before Billy missed a corner splash and hit the post. Danielson lit up the elder Gunn, but Billy wiped out Danielson charging with a back elbow. [c]

Danielson remained isolated over the break and ran into a dropkick for two by Colten. Austin mocked Moxley with a Roman Reigns scream, but ran face first into the corner as a result. Moxley made the hot tag and cleaned house on everyone named Gunn. Colten was set up in the corner and planted with a superplex. Both Austin & Colten were planted with a double DDT, as Billy made the tag, but was met with a bounce back lariat from Moxley that turned Billy inside out. Yuta made the tag and hit a high cross body off the top for two. Charging knee by Danielson and a Cutter by Moxley sent Austin & Colten to the floor. They teased a double dive, but Billy took both men out with a double clothesline. Yuta & Billy had a face off, as Yuta was planted with the One & Only cobra clutch slam, but Yuta kicked out. Billy missed the Fameasser and Yuta got an O’Connor Roll for the victory. [c]

WINNERS: Blackpool Combat Club in 9:00

(Howard’s Analysis: This was a fun opener with the trios undefeated streak of Gunn Club officially over at the hands of Wheeler Yuta. They highlighted everyone very well in this match, but especially Yuta, which makes sense. To say they’ve done a masterful job building Yuta up to hang with the big boys would be a tremendous understatement. He fits in well with this group and the crowd loves him as a result.

(2) THE BUTCHER vs. BARRETT BROWN

Shawn Spears joined commentary for the match as Brown tried a missile dropkick at the bell, but bounced off Butcher, who no sold everything. A big time corner clothesline and powerbomb stacked up Brown for the easy victory.

WINNER: The Butcher in 1:00

(Howard Analysis: Just a quick dominating performance from Butcher ahead of his clash with Wardlow next week on Dynamite.)

-Dustin Rhodes cut a promo backstage talking about how he has been on one last ride for some time. He took Lance Archer out of the Top 5 and he knows the war isn’t over. Dustin said something more important, tonight he is issuing a dream match challenge to CM Punk for Dynamite next week.

(3) RUBY SOHO vs. ROBYN RENEGADE – Owen Hart Foundation Women’s Tournament

Robyn pie faced Ruby to the corner; trash talked and slammed Ruby down by the hair. Ruby had enough, fired off strikes and foot sweep. Ruby tried her head trapped driver in the corner with her legs, but Robyn had it scouted and hit a superkick for two. Camel Clutch applied by Renegade in the middle of the ring as they went to break. [c]

Ruby made a comeback during picture in picture, but was cut off with a backstabber from Renegade for two. Ruby hit a back suplex to create some distance and hit a big combo of offense that ended in a charging kick to the head. The second try, Ruby hooked Robyn’s head and drove it into the corner as referee Bryce pulled her off. This allowed Robyn to switch with her twin Charlette, who was under the ring. Excalibur called it the Killer Bees switch. Ruby went for a huge senton off the top, but Charlette got the knees up. Charlette talked too much trash and Ruby clobbered her with a No Future kick to the floor. This let Robyn come back in for a school girl to get a close two. Ruby again fought back and hit a gnarly spinning neckbreaker that sort of looked like Sister Abigail for the victory.

WINNER: Ruby Soho in 9:00

(Howard Analysis: Ruby advances in essentially a handicap match and even she was surprised by the switcheroo the Renegade’s tried to pull. I liked the Killer Bees reference by Excalibur, so shout out to B. Brian Blair & Jim Brunzell.)

-Commentary runs down the card for Dynamite next week, which includes Britt Baker vs. Danielle Kamela, Jungle Boy vs. Kyle O’Reilly, Hook in action, CM Punk vs. Dustin Rhodes, Wardlow vs. The Butcher and Darby Allin vs. Andrade in a Coffin Match. Meanwhile, Daniel Garcia vs. Eddie Kingston and Jade Cargill defends the TBS Title vs. Marina Shafir next week on Rampage.

-Mark Henry has his signature side by side promo prior to the main event. Both men did their final trash talking before Mark Henry lets us know the time for talking is over and it’s time for the main event! [c]

(4) HANGMAN ADAM PAGE vs. ADAM COLE – Texas Deathmatch for the AEW World Heavyweight Championship

Commentary reminded us the only way to win is knockout or submission. The champion wasn’t playing games and brought some plunder to the ring, as he ripped a chair out of the hands of Cole to get in his face prior to the bell. Both men slowly picked up chairs at the bell and took swings at each other, with Page connecting first. After some ground and pound on the floor, Cole was launched into the guard rail and steps. The match spilled into the crowd and up the steps and when we went back to the ring, Hangman did a moonsault off the top with a chair in hand that wiped out Cole. As Cole regrouped outside, we see Cole is busted open and he beat the 10 count getting to his feet. [c]

During the break is when Adam Cole took control with a suplex on the stage and rammed Hangman into the steps. Back inside, Cole sat Page on the chair and hit a charging Shining Wizard. Cole tied up a chain on the top rope and stalked Page, who fought back. As Page ran, Cole hung up Hangman by the throat using the chain. Cole set two chairs up back to back, but Hangman was able to drop him with a Death Valley Driver onto the chairs. Hangman tosses about five more chairs into the ring and stacks them up, but took too much time.

Cole tried a Panama Sunrise, but Hangman countered into the Dead Eye. Both men go to their feet at 8, with Cole rolling to the floor. Hangman went to the top for his moonsault, but as he came down, Cole superkicked him in the head in an incredible moment. Hangman beat the count at 7, but rolled into the ring and planted with a Panama Sunrise, thankfully just missing the chairs he brought in.

Hangman rose to his feet as Cole went for a super Panama Sunrise off the second rope, but Hangman turned it into a massive super fall away slam. Cole crashed on the chairs clear across the ring. Hangman is bleeding from the chin from that superkick after his moonsault as both men were sitting in chairs and started a slugfest. Both raised to their feet with the crowd on fire, as Cole hit an enzugiri and cut off Hangman on the apron as he tried a Buckshot. Cole screamed to Hangman that he will never be Adam Cole or Kenny Omega, but as Cole turned his back, Hangman hit a Buckshot Lariat.

Page tied Cole’s arm on the top using his belt, went under the ring and got a barbed wire wrapped chair. Hangman had second thoughts and threw the chair away, opting to untie Cole. Once freed, Cole hit a quick low blow and multiple superkicks. Cole went for a home run, but was turned inside out with a lariat. Hangman wrapped his own arm up with the barbed wire as they spilled to the apron. Cole nearly got another Panama Sunrise, but Hangman clocked him with his wrapped arm. Hangman placed the barbed wire around the head of Cole and hit a Deadeye off the apron through a table. Hangman barely beat the count to stand to his feet at 9 and successfully defends his title.

WINNER: Hangman Adam Page in 20:00 to retain the AEW World Championship

(Howard’s Analysis: This was a wild main event that got plenty of time to get their moments in and the crowd was with them every step of the way. I was fine with the blood we got, as I don’t think Hangman’s was planned from taking that unreal superkick counter to the moonsault. It never felt rushed to me and was an excellent showing from both men. I’m also very happy there was no interference and this was a battle the entire time. Granted it’s fresh in my mind, but I’d say this was the most enjoyable stipulation match in quite a while for an AEW show.)

FINAL THOUGHTS: I very much enjoyed this show from start to finish. The opener helped solidify Wheeler Yuta with the warriors whose respect he earned last week in a star making performance. We had a monster squash from The Butcher to build Wednesday night. Ruby advances in a tournament and fended off twins. Then our main event had everything you could’ve wanted in a Texas Death Match. Both men put on spectacular performances and credit to the crowd for staying into it throughout. An excellent hour of programming from AEW.

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