SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
AEW RAMPAGE TV REPORT
MARCH 31, 2023
RECORDED AT THE CHAIFETZ ARENA IN ST. LOUIS, MO.
AIRED ON TNTREPORT BY PATRICK MOYNAHAN, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Jim Ross, Excalibur, Chris Jericho, and Tony Schiavone
Ring announcer: Dasha Gonzalez
– The opening of Rampage aired, and JR welcomed us to the show. He was joined by Excalibur, Chris Jericho, and Tony Schiavone.
(1) SAMMY GUEVARA (w/Tay Melo) vs. KONOSUKE TAKESHITA
Sammy hit a corkscrew dropkick early on to take Takeshita off his feet. Jake Perry was shown looking on in the back. Takeshita took Sammy down with a flying clothesline, then played to the crowd. Darby Allin was then shown looking on from the back. Sammy draped Takeshita across the top rope, then came off the top with a senton leg drop. Takeshita flew over the top rope with his own senton to take out Sammy. Takeshita perched Sammy on the top and tried for a German suplex but Sammy fought it off. Sammy hit Takeshita with a running dropkick to the face. [c]
Takeshita hit a brainbuster after reversing Sammy’s attempt. Sammy and Takeshita both went for a knee strike that canceled one another out. Takeshita rocked Sammy with a huge lariat. Takeshita caught Sammy off the ropes and dropped him to the mat. Sammy reversed a deadlift attempt into a pin for two. Sammy went to the top but Takeshita moved in time. The two went back and forth until Sammy hit a Destroyer. Takeshita fired right back with a Blue Thunder Bomb for two.
The two found themselves on the top rope. Takeshita hit a release German suplex off the top, then hit a lariat for two. Tay Meloa distracted Takeshita which allowed Sammy to hit a knee strike, then a GTH for the win.
WINNER: Sammy Guevara in 10:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Awesome back and forth opener to start things off. A somewhat surprising win for Sammy but they are pushing him as part of the Four Pillars storyline.)
– The latest QTV segment aired.
(Moynahan’s Take: Please make it stop.) [c]
– Matt Hardy and Ethan Page were interviewed backstage about an upcoming match between Ethan Page and Hook. Hardy said he took care of the contract for the matchup. Page signed as Hardy looked into the camera. The two will face off on Dynamite.
(2) BEST FRIENDS (Chuck Taylor & Trent Beretta) vs. KINGS OF THE BLACK THRONE (Brody King & Malakai Black w/Julia Hart)
Trent and Black kicked things off. Trent took Black down with a double knee stomp but Black came right back with a stiff kick. Taylor tagged in and went toe-to-toe with Black. Black nailed Taylor with a knee to the midsection. King made the tag and immediately took out Trent from the apron. King and Black double teamed Taylor who was able to fight back until meeting a clothesline by King. House of Black took things to the outside. [c]
Taylor and Black were going at it in the ring until Trent made the tag. Trent took it to both Black and King, and hit Black with a spinning DDT. Trent followed up with a senton over the top rope, then came off the top with a shotgun dropkick on Black for two. Taylor tagged in but was caught coming off the top. Best Friends gave the people what they wanted until King broke things up. Trent forced King to the outside, then flew through the ropes and was caught by King in a chokeslam.
Taylor was powerbombed through the timekeeper’s table. Trent hit King from behind with a chair but then Black nailed him from behind. The ref called for the DQ to end the match.
WINNERS: Best Friends by DQ in 10:00
– Orange Cassidy came out to help his friends but Buddy Matthews attacked him from behind. House of Black laid waste to all members of the Best Friends.
(Moynahan’s Take: A solid match with a surprising outcome, including a rare DQ plus a House of Black loss. The post-match beatdown leads me to believe this feud is just getting started.)
– A video aired looking at the rivalry between Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland.
(3) TAYA VALKYRIE vs. MARINA SHAFIR
Both women locked up in the early going. Jade Cargill and her crew made their way to the ramp to look on. Shafir had an arm lock in place until Valkyrie took her down and hit a knee strike to the face. Shafir hit a chop, then focused on Valkyrie’s legs before taking her to the mat. Shafir went for a submission but Valkyrie did her best to evade.
Valkyrie hit a knee strike to take down Shafir, then went for Road to Valhalla for the win.
WINNER: Taya Valkyrie in 3:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Your Rampage Squash of the Week. That said, Shafir did get some solid offense early on.)
– After the match, Mark Sterling sent his legal processor to the ring, who served Valkyrie with a lawsuit. Valkyrie hit Road to Valhalla on the legal processor. Cargill flipped out and ran toward the ring but Sterling and Grey held her back.
– Anna Jay was interviewed backstage about her attack last week on Julia Hart. Jay said she would choke Hart out. [c]
– Mark Henry previewed the main event via a video package. Henry announced that it was “time for the main event.”
– Excalibur previewed this week’s Dynamite, where Tony Khan will have an important announcement. New matches included Hook vs. Ethan Page and House of Black vs. Orange Cassidy and Best Friends for the Trios titles.
(4) JUICE ROBINSON vs. ACTION ANDRETTI
Andretti went for a quick rollup from the start but Juice kicked out. Andretti ducked a clothesline and came off the top with an arm drag which took Juice down. Juice fired back with a back elbow then laid in a few chops. Andretti took Juice down with a spinning headscissors. [c]
Juice maintained control throughout the commercial break. Andretti was whipped hard into the corner as Juice jaw jacked with the ref. Andretti fired away with a big right hand but Juice cut him off with a knee to the midsection. Andretti hit an elbow strike, then another. Andretti then hit a back elbow to rock Juice to the outside. Andretti hit a springboard moonsault off the top onto Juice, then hit a flying clothesline.
Andretti nailed Juice with a DDT for two, but was hit with a leg lariat. Juice then hit The Juice is Lose for the win.
WINNER: Juice Robinson in 11:00
– Ricky Starks hit the thing to run off Juice as the show went off the air.
(Moynahan’s Take: A fine main event that showcased Juice before his Dynamite match with Ricky Starks, while also giving some shine to Andretti.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: A much better show this week over last. You really can’t go wrong with anything on this show, but go out of your way to watch the opener if nothing else. Until next week, stay safe everyone!
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