It’s Friday, you know what that means. It may be at a different time this week but the duration doesn’t change as it’s time for the fastest hour of professional wrestling (and Sports Entertainment too I guess, thanks Jericho), AEW Rampage. As always, the card is packed full of matches so with Excalibur, Taz, Ricky Starks and the afore mentioned Jericho on commentary, let’s not waste any action and get straight to the wrestling!
We start off with both competitors in the ring and the bell sounds whilst commentary let us know how this match came about. Darby’s speed comes into play early but soon the Butcher has him isolated in the corner and lays in some big shots to send Darby to the outside. He patrols the ring to try and keep Darby out but it can only last so long as Darby hits his Tope Suicida like a bullet and flies into The Butcher. He tries to hit a Coffin Splash back in the ring but Butch stops him and then gets a two count from a big slam. Darby bites into the hand of the Butcher to give himself a chance but Butcher just continues to beat Allin down and doesn’t slow down. He hits a big Lariat out of the corner for another two count. He swings Darby around by his neck and then follows him out the ring when Darby rolls out for a breather. He continues the attack with another huge lariat on the outside as Sting watches on. The Butcher sees him and squares up to the icon as we head to break. The barrage of The Butcher continues throughout the commercials as he hits multiple running splashes and lariats in the corners to keep Darby on the mat.
He goes to the well one more time and Darby catches him as we return but Butcher counters a Dropkick to lock in a Texas Cloverleaf and force Darby to make the ropes but when he gets near, he hits a Powerbomb and locks the hold back in. Darby does make it to the ropes eventually and rolls to the outside but he’s stalked again and Butcher goes for a Deadlift Powerbomb on the apron and Darby counters with a desperation Sleeper hold but Butch escapes using the ring post before Darby is swung headfirst into the barricade and ring steps. Darby counters using the ring steps and then hits a Coffin Drop to the outside but both men are now down on the floor. Darby somehow makes it back inside first and The Butcher can’t make the count. Did we just see our first count out win in AEW?!
After the match, Andrade hits the stage when his music plays and this distracts Darby enough for Private Party and The Blade to jump him and Sting and Andrade joins them to beat them down until The Hardys music hits and they run down to make the save like Darby and Sting did for them on Wednesday. Matt grabs a mic and challenges the AFO to get back in the ring and fight but they leave after teasing they were going to go 4 on 4 with the babyfaces standing strong in the ring so Matt says that they need an 8-man Texas Tornado match in Austin next week. The Hardys, Darby & Sting vs The AFO.
Sky says that people keep making excuses why he beat Wardlow but only losers make excuses whilst Lambert adds that he’s the co-TNT-Champion whilst Paige Van Zant says she looks better than the women and fights better than the men in AEW.
Both women make their entrances ahead of this grudge match between former friends and Leyla meets Red on the ramp whilst Velvet is entering but Velvet counters Hirsch’s suplex on the ramp with one of her own before the bell. Velvet almost wins immediately with a Moonsault but Leyla kicks out at two and then turns the tables in the corner, laying in some chop. Red flips her round and hits some nice body strikes then tries the punches to the head in the corner but Hirsch escapes, drops her from the ropes and lays in some kicks before getting a one count as we head to picture in picture with Leyla clearly in control. She continues to wear out Red Velvet on the mat throughout the break, using the ropes and turnbuckles alongside her vicious kicks, strikes and holds. She begins to work over the arm for her Juji Gatame and goes for a suplex whilst picture in picture blacks out for the usual 60 seconds or so.
When we finally head back to the ring, Velvet shows some life and hits some lovely strikes before hitting a short Bulldog and then a more traditional version for a two count. She goes for a Superkick but Leyla just grabs her and hits an Overhead Cradle Throw and a German Suplex before locking in the Juji Gatame. Velvet fights it off whilst she makes the ropes to force the break and manages to knock Leyla to the outside but Leyla guillotines her arm over the bottom rope and then grabs her Turnbuckle Hook to attack Velvet. Kris Statlander appears from nowhere to grab it out of her hand and Velvet hits a Corkscrew Kick to get the surprise victory. Statlander has changed up her look and the goth alien vibe hits just right in this reporter's humble opinion.
.@callmekrisstat makes absolutely sure @LegitLeyla won't cheat her way into another win, and @Thee_Red_Velvet gets the victory with the corkscrew kick tonight on #AEWRampage ! Tune in to @tntdrama right now! pic.twitter.com/9iDXgg1mu5— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) March 19, 2022
QT says his mother called him after Hook beat him to ask if he’s okay and he says he’s proud of his prized student and QT says he’s giving Hook a certificate next week to congratulate him.
.@QTMarshall isn’t upset after his loss against @730Hook. In fact, QT invites his “prize student” #HOOK to receive the first-ever “QT Marshall Certificate of Accomplishment” next FRIDAY on #AEWRampage.— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) March 19, 2022
Tune in NOW to #AEW Rampage on TNT! pic.twitter.com/2bvz4s24FE
The House of Black make their epic entrance to face off with the men already in the ring for this Trios match. Malakai steps up to face Bear Bronson to start and he drops him with a leg sweep to start. He hits a Roundhouse kick to Bronson before taking out Fuego and Boulder too and then he isolates Bronson again. Matthews tags in for the house and he continues where Black left off and then allows Brody King his opportunity. He hits a Senton and sends Bronson to the outside whilst Fuego gets a blind tag and he gets flattened. Bear Boulder comes in and gets completely isolated by the house as they all take their turns hitting their moves on him to wipe him out. Fuego fires up and hits Brody King with a Dropkick before taking on the House all alone. He does excellent work, keeping all three men at bay, catching Malakai with an Enzuigiri to stagger him, that is until he gets caught with a knee strike that is almost like a V-Trigger by Matthews who turns that into a Pumphandle Death Valley Driver. Brody dives onto one Bear and Malakai moonsaults onto the other to allow Buddy to get the pin with ease.
Penta says thank you to the House of Black for changing the Death Triangle and he says he feels strongest in the Darkness that they inhabit and says that Death Triangle are inevitable. Thanks to Alex Abrahantes for the translation, I’m only on level two on Duolingo!
Max Caster says that he isn’t afraid of Keith and Bowens says Keith sounds like Henry the Eighth. Keith responds calmly and says he likes the Acclaimed but they're just a stepping stone for him and they should come bask in his glory.
Keith makes his entrance and then Max Caster comes out with a decent rap with some very relevant lines and a particularly entertaining one about Ted Cruz running from a snowstorm. Huge pop.
The crowd are firmly behind the home state hero as Keith Lee gets bask in his glory chants to start. Caster dodges Lee early on but when he gets caught, Keith holds wrist control and Max cries off. Max hits a Dropkick but Lee comes back with some shoulder tackles. Caster hits a right hand and some kicks but Lee comes back with a Leapfrog and a Dropdown and Caster stops himself before he just gets flattened with an Overhead Throw. Hobbs comes out to the apron as we go to break and the distraction gives Max Caster an opportunity to attack from behind. He tries to use the ring steps but Lee puts on the breaks and instead throws Caster into the apron and the barricade. Keith brutalises the rapper on the outside, following him round and not allowing him time to breath. That is until Bowens distracts him and Caster hits a Springboard Dropkick. He goes for the pin but it’s an emphatic kick out at one and Caster sells it. He tries to keep Lee down with some kicks but Lee won’t ever stay down for longer than a one count.
We return as Bowens gets involved behind the referee’s back and he lays in some Hook style cross face strikes to a floored Lee but the big man fires back to his feet with Caster on his back and then eats a chop from Caster like it’s nothing before he pounces him out of the ring to come back. He hits a huge Beell and goes to follows up with a second but Caster hits three kicks to stagger Lee. Caster tries to get Lee up but can’t and then Keith hits the Big Bang Catastrophe to get the win.
Lee stares at Hobbs so Powerhouse goes to the ring to fight him and all of a sudden, he’s joined by Ricky Starks from commentary and The Acclaimed as they lay into the big man, using the boombox. Eventually the save is made by Shane Swerve Strickland with a chair and he and Keith Lee stand tall to close the show.
Are we witnessing the beginnings of a new alliance here between @swerveconfident and #Limitless @RealKeithLee on #AEWRampage? What a night of action we've witnessed here tonight on @tntdrama! pic.twitter.com/pBwARmZc4H— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) March 19, 2022
The fastest hour lived up to billing and now we head to next week’s Dynamite. Join us back here for that, give me a follow on twitter @Knapphausen and have a lovely weekend. Adios.
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