It’s Friday, you know what that means. It’s time for AEW Rampage and this week we have a live episode from California featuring a rematch from one of AEW’s finest tag team feuds, a TNT title match and potentially some huge news as CM Punk has said he’ll address the future of the AEW World Championship on tonight’s show. No idea what Punk has to say but I’m anxious as all hell so let’s not waste any time and get straight to the wrestling. Out commentary team tonight is Excalibur, Taz, & The Wizard Chris Jericho.
As is now custom for AEW Rampage shows, especially live ones, the entrances for the opening match are shown on YouTube so once we start the show, both teams are in the ring and ready to go. Adam Cole is on commentary for this opening bout and we begin with Penta vs Matt when the bell rings. The crowd is red hot as we begin and Nick and Fenix briefly enter the ring before the older brothers lock up but they soon retreat. We get a back and forth between Penta and Matt verbally before the match begins with multiple counters back and forth with both men avoiding disaster early before ending in a stalemate and both men make tags. Nick and Penta go back and forth with more reversals and counters and they end in a stalemate too. Nick offers a handshake and Fenix reluctantly accepts which lets Matt jump him from behind as the Bucks take over for the first time. They take Fenix out on the outside with a dive but they’re soon followed by Penta who hits the Tope Con Hilo before Fenix recovers to hit a Tornado too. Back in the ring, Matt locks in a Scorpion Death Lock whilst Penta locks Nick in an Abdominal Stetch in the ropes. Nick kicks Fenix and takes out Penta but Fenix takes him out and then takes Matt Jackson out with a cutter on the floor. They head back in the ring and Fenix’s splash meets Matt Jackson's knees and he tags out to Nick to send us to break. The Lucha Bros manage to take over and get Nick onto the mat to hit the Dropkick between his legs. Penta is legal and fires some kicks into Nick's hamstring. They set up for Fear Factor but Nick escapes with Superkicks and moves off the ropes.
We return as Nick tags out to Matt and Fenix gets a boot up but Matt catches his move into the Locomotion Northern Lights, three of them and a fourth with Penta too. Matt brings Nick back in and they hit a Double Team Senton Atomico for two on Fenix. They try another move but Fenix counters with a Hurricanrana and they take out Nick with an assisted DDT off the apron and then they do the same to Matt in the ring for a two count. Fenix hits a Tope Con Hilo to take out Nick and Penta hits Made in Japan on Matt before Penta hits a huge Frog Splash but somehow Matt kicks out at two. Fenix takes Matt off top and Matt fights him off but Fenix staggers him with an Enzuigiri before jumping onto Penta's shoulders but somehow Nick takes them both down with a Springboard Dropkick and then Matt hits the elbow drop for two. Matt tags Nick in and he battles Fenix with strikes and Fenix takes him down with a Back Heel Kick. The Lucha Bros hit a massive Splash onto Nick and Penta deals with Matt with a Destroyer but Nick still kicks out. Fenix tries a Black Fire Driver but Nick escapes and hits a Poisonrana before bringing in Matt to hit a Superkick Party on Penta and then they hit the BTE trigger on Fenix but he avoids it. He tries a Crossbody only for the Bucks to turn it into the Meltzer Driver and Penta still breaks it up! Matt takes Penta’s mask off and they hit him with double Superkicks before the BTE trigger puts Fenix away. What a match!
Team Taz enters and beat down their opponents who commentary doesn’t name straight away. They take out both men with ease and they get the easiest of wins. Now I have to find the names of the jobbers. Thanks, AEW.
Kiera Hogan enters, she’s accompanied by a Stokely Hathaway promo and then Athena enters with some bad ass wings that fold up on her back. We see Red Velvet, Jade and Stokely ringside and Kiera starts this match off hot by dropping Athena to her knees but Athena catches her crossbody and flips out of it before hitting her own Crossbody for a one count. Kiera bails outside to consult with the Baddies but Athena takes her down with a Shoulder Tackle from the apron to the floor. Jade and Athena argue and as Athena is coming back in, Velvet takes out Athena behind the back of the ref. Hogan hits a leg drop and stays on the attack to send us to break. Kiera continues to stay of the offensive throughout picture-in-picture and there’s no blackout tonight as we’re live.
We return to the action and Athena is in real trouble as Hogan has been on top for a good five minutes but she fights back with a huge Shotgun Dropkick and more kicks ending in a Enzuigiri. She hits a Handspring Elbow in the corner then heads up top and has to fight Velvet off which lets Kiera back into the match. She hits a Hurricanrana from the top and a boot in the corner for a two count. Hogan misses a kick and Athena hits a huge rolling Elbow strike and goes back up top but Hogan cuts her off. She follows Athena to the top rope but is taken down and hits the Swan Dive Cutter for the victory. This was a really good debut and that finisher is money.
This is a welcome to Julia Hart.
Oh my god. I am anxious. Punk heads to the ring as commentary play up the fact that he seemed to have an injury on Dynamite. Punk has a limp as he heads to the ring and he’s passed the mic. The crowd chant his name and then wait with baited breath. Punk is visibly in tears in the ring before he speaks and when he does it’s with a shaky voice. He says he got here earlier and his body screamed at him to go home but his brain told him to stay and his guts told him the AEW fans deserved an explanation. Punk reminds us that he said he was going to give us everything till the wheels fell off and he has good news and bad news. Punk says he hopes thus far he hasn’t disappointed this and he’s loved being in an AEW ring. It’s been a gift he never thought he would experience again but the bad news is Punk is injured and needs surgery. He says he has many broken things including his heart but he says he can still fight and the wheels are still on but one of them is broken.
Punk says he’s felt better but also worse before swiftly moving onto the title and saying he doesn’t want to hold it up before naming potential champs that could replace him. Punk said he told Tony he wants to relinquish the title but Tony wouldn’t let him and Punk needed to hear that. Punk says sometimes he gets down on himself and doubt creeps in but he promises the crowd that the get back will be bigger than the set back. Punk says he’s the champ for a reason and he’ll be back again and prove why he’s the best in the world. It seems as though he does have to relinquish the title but it’s not 100% clear.
Dante Martin says he knows he’s better than Scorpio and now he has Matt Sydal in his corner. Matt adds on by telling Scorpio he has to kill Dante tonight. Ethan promises that they are killers and Dan calls Dante the best prospect in AEW but Scorpio promises to knock Dante’s teeth down his throat. Well, looks like we’ve had enough talk, it’s time for the main event!
The bell rings for this match to begin and Scorpio backs him into the corner to begin the match as the crowd chant SCU, much to Ethan’s chagrin. The two men lock up and Scorpio takes over with a Shoulder Tackle and then two more of them. Scorpio offers his hand but fakes out Dante but Dante takes over with some nice quick movements culminating into an Arm Drag to send us to break. Early in the break, Scorpio sends Dante to the floor off the apron and then follows him out there. Sky tosses Dante into the apron and Dante tries to fight back but Scorpio cuts him off. Sky rolls him back into the ring and takes him down with body shots which backs Martin into the corner where he slumps. Dante tries to fight back but Sky drops him with a Double Leg takedown but Dante fights back and both men roll around exchanging MMA style ground and pound. Sky pokes the eyes to get on top again and then locks in a Chin Lock. Dante fights to his feet but Sky drops him with a Snapmare and a kick and then goes back to working on the neck and shoulders with a more brutal Chin Lock.
We return back from the break and both men exchange strikes before Dante sends Sky outside with a Dropkick then follows with an insane Springboard Dive onto Sky. Dante rolls him back into the ring and heads up top for a Shotgun Dropkick from the top for two. Lambert distracts the ref and Ethan interferes behind the referee’s back and Sky looks to have Dante ready for the TKO but Martin escapes to hit his own for two. Dante tries a Crossbody but Sky rolls through with a Pin for two. Dante comes back with a Leaping Stomp for two. Sky comes back and hits the TKO out of nowhere and gets the win.
During the ending of this match, the AEW title picture was clarified further. CM Punk is still AEW champion and on Wednesday, Dynamite will begin with a Battle Royale. The winner of that faces the number one ranked Jon Moxley in the main event. The winner of the main event will go on to face someone else at Forbidden Door to become the interim AEW World Champion until Punk’s return. Got it? Good.
⚡ CM Punk Vacates AEW World Championship, Interim Champion To Be Crowned
CM Punk announced live on AEW Rampage that he is to vacate the AEW World Championship due to injury. Punk came to the ring with tears in hi [...]— Ben Jordan Kerin Jun 03, 2022 10:51PM
That show sure was eventful. What do you think of everything coming out of it, most importantly, the AEW world title picture?! Let us know in the comments below, let me know on Twitter @Knapphausen and have a great weekend. Adios.
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