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AEW RAMPAGE TV REPORT
DECEMBER 2, 2022
AT INDIANA FARMERS COLISEUM IN INDIANAPOLIS, IN
AIRED LIVE ON TNT
REPORT BY PATRICK MOYNAHAN, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Excalibur, Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone, Chris Jericho
Ring announcer: Dasha Gonzalez
– The opening of Rampage aired, and JR welcomed us to the show. Ross was joined by Excalibur and Tony Schiavone.
(1) COLE KARTER (w/Nick Comoroto) vs. DARBY ALLIN (w/Sting)
Sting had left after accompanying Darby to the ring. Darby attacked Comoroto with a bat before the bell rang. Darby flew through the ropes onto Karter, then rammed his left hand into the steel steps. The match finally started as Darby continued his offensive onslaught. Darby hit a running dropkick which sent Karter to the outside. Darby climbed to the top rope but Karter pushed him off and onto the floor.
Karter hit a powerbomb across the apron, then threw Darby back into the ring. Karter threw Darby hard into the turnbuckle as he maintained the advantage. Karter followed up with a running powerbomb into the turnbuckle, then hit a standing dropkick which rocked Darby to the outside. Karter followed Darby to the outside and threw him hard into the steps. Both men were back inside as Karter drove his knees hard into Darby’s ribs. [c]
Karter missed a splash in the corner but quickly followed up with a high knee to Darby’s face. Darby returned fire with a shot to the back of Karter’s knee. Karter came right back again with a big elbow strike that stopped Darby in his tracks. Darby fired up and hit a flurry of offense on Karter, including a Code Red for a close count. Darby made his way to the top rope but Karter again knocked him down, then hit a Falcon Arrow off the top for two.
Karter went to the top and missed a 450 splash, which allowed Darby to lock in an arm bar, then rolled into a Scorpion Death Drop. Darby went to the top again and hit the Coffin Drop for the win.
WINNER: Darby Allin in 7:30
(Moynahan’s Take: A good opener with a lot of offense for Karter, who easily had his best TV match since arriving in AEW. With that in mind, I’m surprised Darby gave up so much offense to Karter.)
– Renee was backstage with Keith Lee as Shane Strickland appeared. Strickland said that the business between him and Lee was far from over, then challenged him for a tag match at Final Battle. Swerve appeared, and with only a smile, seemed to suggest he should be Lee’s partner. Lee questioned whether he could count on Swerve, then walked away. [c]
(Moynahan’s Take: An extremely random build for a tag match at Final Battle.)
– A video package aired recapping 10’s turn on the Dark Order. Alex Reynolds said he would soon realize he made the biggest mistake of his life.
– Renee was in the ring and introduced The Acclaimed and Daddy Ass to the ring. Renne asked what was next for The Acclaimed, but Anthony Bowens cut in and talked about Jeff Jarrett and Jay Lethal recently cutting them off while trying to scissor. He said they must want a shot at their titles but they couldn’t cut the line and they’d have to wait. Bowens said there was a tag team that has waited a very long time to get a shot at their titles. Before Bowens or Caster could name the team, as the crowd clearly chanted for FTR, the Gunn Clubb’s music hit and they made their way to the ring. Austin said they were the best tag team in the world as Jarrett’s music hit. Jarrett, Lethal, Satnum Singh, and Sanjay Dutt came out next.
Dutt was speaking as Billy Gunn cut him off. Billy said they all misunderstood, and restated that The Acclaimed wanted to face the best. FTR’s music hit as they made their way out. FTR walked past the other two teams and went right to the ring and shook The Acclaimed’s hands.
(Moynahan’s Take: A drawn-out segment for sure, but I am glad we got FTR in the end because neither the Gunn Club nor JJ/Lethal deserve anywhere near a title shot at this time.)
– A video package aired recapping the feud between Shida and The Bunny. Shida challenged Bunny to face her for her Regina Di Wave championship. Bunny accepted.
(2) JAY LETHAL & JEFF JARRETT (w/Satnum Signh & Sanjay Dutt) vs. PRIVATE PARTY (Marq Quen & Isaiah Kassidy)
Lethal and Kassidy started things off but Jarret made a quick tag in. Jarrett kept up the offense on Kassidy while mocking him throughout the effort. Lethal attacked Kassidy behind the ref’s back. [c]
Kassidy showed signs of life as he fought off Lethal and Jarret enough to tag in Quen. Quen took out Lethal with a dropkick, then flew through the ropes onto Jarrett. Private Party hit Silly String, then Quen went to the top but missed a 450. Jarrett came in to help with a double team on Quen, which allowed Lethal to hit the Lethal Injection for the win.
WINNERS: Lethal and Jarret in 7:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Although he is Jeff Jarrett and I’ve been watching him for nearly 30 years, he has aged quite well and looks amazing for being over 50. This felt like the match never really got going before it was over.)
– Renee sat down with Saraya. Renee asked how she was feeling after her first match in more than five years. Saraya said it was such an emotional moment since she never thought she’d even get back into the ring again. Saraya mentioned her brother being there at ringside and said he’s been there for her career since day one. Saraya said Full Gear was such a special moment for the Women’s Division, and said she was proud of Britt Baker and Jamie Hayter for their matches at the PPV. Saraya said she would be going for the Women’s title just as much as all of the women in the division would be.
(3) ATHENA vs. DANI MO
Athena attacked Mo right from the start and didn’t let up. She hit multiple suplexes, then planted her again for a quick pin attempt. Athena pulled Mo up before the three count. Mo hit a roundhouse kick but Athena shrugged it off. Athena knocked Mo down, then planted her with a boot to the face. Athena knocked Mo out, then covered her for the win.
WINNER: Athena in 2:00
– After the match, Athena continued to beat down Mo, and sent her crashing to the outside. Athena followed her out and continued her assault as she called out Mercedes Martinez’s name. Athena hit a running knee to the face of Mo, who was sitting against the steel steps.
(Moynahan’s Take: Typical squash match for Athena as she gets ready for her ROH Women’s title match at Final Battle. I did expect to see Martinez appear but perhaps next week?)
– A video package of Juice Robinson aired. He said he was issuing a challenge to Samoa Joe for his ROH TV Title at Final Battle.
– Mark Henry was backstage with participants from tonight’s main event. Best Friends and Danhausen were dressed as actual lumberjacks as Cassidy asked if they were allowed to bring real axes to the ring. Henry said no, then announced that it was “time for the main event.”
– Excalibur announced that The Acclaimed would face FTR for the Tag Team Titles on Dynamite.
(Moynahan’s Take: That’s it? That’s the build we get? Sigh)
– Darby Allin was shown backstage. He challenged Samoa Joe to the TNT Title, with both Wardlow and Sting banned from ringside. He said he would not leave Dynamite without the title.
– Shida vs. The Bunny for the Regina Di Wave championship was announced for next week’s Rampage.
(4) ORANGE CASSIDY (w/Best Friends & Danhausen) vs. QT MARSHALL (w/The Factory) – Lumberjack match for the AEW All Atlantic Championship
Before the match, Excalibur announced that Juice Robinson had officially signed with AEW.
Best Friends and Danhausen brought their axes to the ramp, which were taken away by the referees. Cassidy began with his hands in his pockets, and knocked Marshall to the outside. Marshall got back in pretty quickly, and knocked Cassidy to the outside. Marshall followed but Cassidy threw him into the barrier. Back inside the ring, Marshall caught Cassidy coming off the top and hit a backbreaker, then a second. After Matt Hardy helped out Cassidy, he and Ethan Page faced off on the outside. Page told Hardy to leave since Hardy had to obey Page’s orders. [c]
Both men were down on the mat, with Cassidy getting to his feet first. The Factory hit the ring but Best Friends came in and fought them off. Marshall hit a kick to the face of Cassidy, but Cassidy countered into a Stundog Millionaire. Marshall blocked a DDT attempt, then blocked Beach Break. Marshall went for a powerbomb but Cassidy reversed it and hit a tornado DDT. The Factor pulled Marshall out before Cassidy could go for the Orange Punch. Marshall hit Cassidy as he climbed to the top. As Marshall went for a move on the apron, Danhausen jumped up and cursed Marshall.
Things broke down from there among the lumberjacks. Cassidy hit Beach Break on Marshall on the apron, then took out the lumberjacks as he jumped over the top rope. Penelope Ford came out to distract Cassidy. Kip Sabian attacked Cassidy from behind, which allowed Marshall to hit a Diamond Cutter. Marshall got a close count but Cassidy kicked out. Cassidy followed up with a Beach Break and an Orange Punch for the win.
WINNER: Orange Cassidy in 10:00
– After the match, Cassidy attacked Sabian as the two fought all the way up the ramp. The lumberjacks continued to fight around the ring as the lights went out. When they came back on, House of Black was both inside the ring and on the ramp. They attacked what was left of the lumberjacks as the crowd cheered them on. Malakai Black didn’t allow Brody King or Buddy Matthews to attack Ortiz, who was allowed to leave the ring. Black ended up kicking Ortiz after the fact anyway.
(Moynahan’s Take: A fun, albeit fairly typical, Lumberjack match. The most random lumberjack of them all was none other than Kevin Thorn, also known as former WWE wrestler, Mordecai. And yes, he was decked out in his Mordecai gear. Very strange. The House of Black post-match appearance was a good show closer but the whole thing about not attacking, then attacking, Ortiz was very weird.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: A good, not great, episode of Rampage. We did get at least two new matches for the ROH Final Battle event, which I guess is good but also annoying in the way they’re just booking random matches with no build. Why does it have to be so difficult? That said, we did at least get confirmation that Juice Robinson was officially All Elite. Can’t wait to see him on the next few shows and then gone for months. Until next week, stay safe everyone!