SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
AEW RAMPAGE TV REPORT
JANUARY 13, 2022
RECORDED AT THE KIA FORUM IN LOS ANGELES, CA
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. He was joined by Excalibur, Tony Schiavone, and Chris Jericho.
(1) DARBY ALLIN vs. JUICE ROBINSON – TNT Championship
Darby and Juice were already in the ring as the show kicked off. Juice took Darby down then slapped him around a bit before Darby made it to the ropes for the break. Darby synched in a headlock and wouldn’t let go as Juice tried his best to work out of it. Juice got out of it but missed a follow up senton.
Excalibur mentioned Juice’s background in New Japan and his recent IWGP U.S. Heavyweight title that he had to relinquish months back. Darby went outside and Juice quickly followed. Juice whipped Darby hard into the new barrier on the outside, then the steel steps. Juice draped Darby across the steel steps again. [c]
Juice fired away with a series of right hands as the crowd chanted him on. He took Darby down with a stiff chest chop but Darby fired back and took Juice to the outside. Darby flew through the ropes with a kamikaze dive. Darby went for a back dive off the middle rope but Juice hit him with a clothesline, then covered for two. Juice hit a standing senton and got another close count. Juice went to the middle ropes but missed another senton attempt as Darby moved away in time. Juice hit Darby with double knees to the stomach for yet another two count.
Juice missed a running senton in the corner and Darby followed up with code red for two. Darby climbed the ropes for a Coffin Drop but Juice cut him off. Juice laid in a few chops, then nailed Darby with a huge clothesline off the middle rope. Juice hit a jackhammer for two. Juice perched Darby on the top rope but Darby countered a superplex attempt into a Scorpion Death Drop. Darby came off the top with the Coffin Drop for the win.
WINNER: Darby Allin in 11:00
– After the match, Sting came to the ring to celebrate with Darby. Their upcoming match with Great Muta was hyped by Excaibur.
(Moynahan’s Take: Solid opener, that felt slow in spots but picked up toward the end. It’s still early days for Juice in AEW but I have to say it’s been a slow start thus far.)
– The next chapter of the Book of Hobbs aired. [c]
– Renee interviewed The Acclaimed and Billy Gunn on the stage. She announced they would receive a new star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame as The Acclaimed came to the stage. Anthony Bowens mentioned living in Los Angeles, then asked the crowd for a favor. He asked if they could all throw their scissors and signs into the air, then said they were about to cement their legacy. They all walked up the ramp and started to place their hands in the cement that was on the stage as part of the Walk of Fame ceremony but The Gunns interrupted. The Gunns said the only reason The Acclaimed were popular is because they stole their dad away. Billy took the mic and said The Gunns were right and allowed them to make their own mark in the cement. As The Gunns went to do so, The Acclaimed pulled their pants down and pushed them, butt-first, into the cement.
– Renee was backstage with Swerve and The Mogul Affiliates. He said Mogul Affiliates would be the most violent AEW group in 2023.
(2) KINGS OF THE BLACK THRONE (Malakai Black & Brody King) vs. EDDE KINGSTON & ORTIZ
Kingston and Ortiz were clearly not on the same page as the match kicked off. Ortiz and King kicked things off, with King gaining the early upper hand. Ortiz hit a few dropkicks which took King down. Kingston tagged in and quickly tried for the half and half suplex but King got away. Black tagged in and he and Kingston quickly locked up. Kingston leveled Black with a huge chest chop that stopped Black in his tracks. The two dropped down and stared at one another as Kingston mocked Black. [c]
King hit a senton in the corner on Kingston, then covered but Ortiz broke up the pin attempt in time. Kingston took his time to get to his feet but was met with a clothesline from King. It didn’t slow Kingston down the second time, as Kingston popped right up and took down King. Both men were down as they each slowly went to their respective corners for a tag. Kingston took longer and seemed to second guess a tag into Ortiz. Ortiz hit Black with a DDT, which allowed Kingston to follow up with an exploder for two.
Black hit a rising knee strike on Kingston, then hit Ortiz coming off the top with a knee to the face. Kingston fired away on Black with a clothesline, then nailed King, which drove him to the outside. Buddy Matthews and Julia Hart hit the ring but Matthews was cut off by Kingston. Kingston grabbed the chair Matthews brought in, and turned around and nearly swung it at Hart. Ortiz ran in to question what Kingston was thinking which allowed Black to nail Kingston and pick up the win.
WINNERS: Kings of the Black Throne in 10:00
– After the match, House of Black swarmed Ortiz and Black told Ortiz he did well. Inside the ring, Ortiz and Kingston continued to have problems.
(Moynahan’s Take: Eh. The match was fine but the storyline is ridiculous. Ortiz and Kingston have no reason to have issues and it all seems manufactured.)
– Lexy Nair was backstage with Jade Cargill, and asked her what was going on between her and Red Velvet. Cargill shrugged it off and said she wanted to talk about her upcoming 50th win.
– Renee interviewed Paul Walter Hauser inside the ring. She brought up his recent Golden Globe win. Hauser talked about his love for acting but said he loves nothing more than pro wrestling. He said he loved to get in the ring and said you never know what could happen in AEW. Danhausen came to the ring and said he won his own award; being the number one merchandise seller. He asked for his own award, and said Hauser should give him his Golden Globe.Hauser asked the fans if the award should be called Golden Globe-Hausen.
Jeff Jarrett, Jay Lethal, Sonjay Dutt, and Satnam Singh came out. Hauser quickly cut them off and said this was his turf then made fun of each of them. Hauser was attacked and Jarrett hit him with his guitar. Lethal took the Golden Globe just as Orange Cassidy and Best Friends hit the ring to even the odds. [c]
– A preview video for the main event aired. Mark Henry then announced that it was “time for the main event.”
(3) WILLOW NIGHTINGALE & RUBY SOHO vs. TAY MELO & ANNA JAS – Street Fight
Willow and Ruby attacked Tay and Anna as they made their way to the ring. Willow and Ruby were dressed like the Dudley Boys. Ruby told Willow to get the tables and she obliged. The four women battled their way toward the ring as Anna threw Ruby hard into the ring post, then rammed her face into the ring bell. Tay jumped off the apron on Ruby who had a trash can placed across her face. Ruby was busted open [c]
Anna took out Willow with a trash can, then covered for two. Chairs were set up in the ring as Tay brought barbed wire into the ring. Anna took the barbed wire and fit it around her arm, then locked in Queen’s Slayer on Willow. Ruby came to Willow’s aid with a chain-wrapped fist. Tay hit Ruby from behind with a trash can lid. Ruby was perched on the top rope as both Anna and Tay went for a double suplex. Willow came over and powerbombed all three of them down. Anna took a nasty bump across the ring as Willow set her up in the corner. Tay hit Willow in the back with a chair, but Willow hit a spinebuster, then hit a senton on Anna in the corner.
Anna kicked out of a pin attempt as the crowd cheered the four women on. Willow hit a DVD on Anna on the apron. She tried to follow it up with another move but Tay hit her again with a trash can lid. Ruby came to Willow’s aid. Ruby and Tay fought near the ring as Willow and Anna fought up the ramp. Willow powerbombed Anna off the stage through a table. Back by the ring, Tay hit a piledriver on Soho off the apron through a table.
Tay went for a cover back inside the ring but Ruby somehow kicked out. Tay went under the ring and pulled out a bag of thumbtacks. She sprinkled them all over the mat, then went for another piledriver. Ruby kicked out but Tay then tried pushing Ruby’s face into the tacks. Ruby used one hand to pull a bunch of tacks up and throw them into Tay’s face. Ruby hit Destination Unknown on Tay into the tacks for the win.
WINNERS: Willow Nightingale & Ruby Soho in 12:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Dang! What a battle, as Excalibur proclaimed. This was sloppy in parts but in a match like this, you can get away with it. All four women took a beating, and due to all the blood, Ruby certainly looked like she took it the worst.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: A fine hour of wrestling, but not as great as last week’s live edition which was hard to beat. That said, it’s been a few weeks since I came away disappointed from watching one of these episodes, so the show has continued to perform much better as of late. Go out of your way to watch the main event for a fun, messy ten minutes of action. Outside of that, check out the opener between Darby and Juice and The Acclaimed segment was good fun as well. Until next week, stay safe everyone!
CATCH-UP: 1/6 AEW RAMPAGE TV REPORT: Darby Allin vs. Mike Bennett, BCC vs. Top Flight, more
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