With Full Gear rapidly approaching, the feud between The Elite and Dark Order will continue on Friday's live AEW Rampage from St. Louis as Adam Cole will face John Silver for the first time ever.
Both men will be making their Rampage in-ring debuts as well when they square off at the Chaifetz Arena in St Louis, Missouri. One of the storylines for this match was made on the BTE YouTube show as Silver has been trying to give Cole the nickname "Budge."
CM Punk and Eddie Kingston will come face-to-face following their troubles that began on last week's Rampage. Kingston interrupted Punk's promo backstage after losing to Bryan Danielson in an AEW World title eliminator tournament match. That led to Punk calling out Kingston for a confrontation during a promo on Wednesday's Dynamite ahead of what many assume to be a match at Full Gear.
The TBS Championship Tournament's first round will conclude as The Bunny takes on Red Velvet. The winner moves on to face Jade Cargill, who has a bye, in the second round.
In a late addition to the card, Bryan Danielson will take on Anthony Bowens of The Acclaimed ahead of the former challenge of Miro at Full Gear.
We are live from St. Louis with Excalibur, Taz & Ricky Starks
Bryan Danielson defeated Anthony Bowen (w/ Max Caster) (9:04)
Danielson adjusted ring announcer Justin Roberts’ tie before the match. Caster’s rap included the line that The Acclaimed “ends careers faster than your [Danielson's] father-in-law” and everyone on commentary lost it at that line.
Bowens actually kept up with Danielson on the mat early, and got a near fall with a crucifix. Danielson floored Bowens with a high kick and backed him in the corner for chops and kicks. Bowens came back with chopes of his own, and Bowens responded with forearms. Bowens went for a vertical suplex, but Danielson caught him with a knee to break that up, and went for the cross arm breaker. Bowens got to the ropes, so Danielson kicked him out of the ring.
Danielson went for a kick on the floor, but Bowens blocked the kick, then dropped Danielson face first on the apron. Caster clotheslined Danielson on the floor and the show went to a picture-in-picture break.
Back from the break, Danielson hit Bowens with a series of forearms and a flying clothesline. Danielson followed up with the yes! kicks for a near fall. Danielson missed a dropkick in the corner, and Bownes caught Danielson with “the arrival,” an inverted DDT with his opponent tied up in the ropes. Danielson came back and backdropped Bowens out on top of Caster on the floor. Danielson then flew off the top ropes with a crossbody block on both members of the Acclaimed on the floor. Danielson with a top rope shotgun dropkick, the big stomps and then the LeBelle lock forced Bowens to tap out.
- After a recap of the FTR/Andrade/Cody angle from Wednesday on Dynamite, Andrade is shown in the back paying off MJF for the services of FTR for the next two weeks. Dax Harwood challenged PAC for next week.
CM Punk/Eddie Kingston confrontation.
Punk entrance started before the commercial, then when they returned from break Punk was jogging around the ring. “I just wanted everyone at home to think I was jogging for three and a half minutes.” Punk called out Kingston, and Kingston’s music played but he didn’t come out right away. So Punk taunted him a bit and Kingston stormed out and you could just feel this was going to be awesome.
“You want an apology? Answer me when I’m talking to you!” Punk and Kingston started out in opposite corners along the diagonal of the ring and the additional distance between them added something to the promo. But by the end of this, they were both in each other faces. Kingston blamed his absence on Wednesday on needing COVID tests because he didn’t want to potentially make anyone (or their kids) sick. Kingston apologized to the fans, but didn't have an apology for Punk. Kingston looked up to all the independent stars in the locker room like Samoa Joe, the Amazing Red and Homicide when he first started out. But CM Punk always looked down Kingston and judged him. Kingston felt like Punk held him back, but Punk said Kingston couldn’t live up to the high standard Punk -- and Homicide, Samoa Joe, and even Bryan Danielson -- set. “Because you’re a bum.”
“Would a bum main event Full Gear?” Kingston told Punk no one in the locker room wants him in AEW, and Kingston challenged Punk for Full Gear. Punk was thinking Kingston was more suited for a match on Elevation or Dark, which only enraged Kingston further. “Fight me! Fight me! Fight me at Full Gear!” Punk asked the crowd (who obviously approved) and agreed to the match at Full Gear. Just when it looked like Punk is going to leave, Kingston told Punk after the match he could go away for seven more years. Punk headbutted Kingston and the fight was on. It didn’t take long for the referees and officials to run in to try and break up what turned out to be a massive pull apart brawl in the ring. Just when it seemed like the first wave of officials got them apart, Kingston broke free and lept back at Punk, and more officials poured out. Then when it looked like ordered was established again, Punk dove over everyone trying to restrain him and got back at Kingston again.
As the crowd chanted "let them fight!" Excalibur announced Tony Khan made CM Punk v. Eddie Kingston official for Full Gear.
At different points in the promo, both Punk and Kingston were cheered and booed. This was an excellent promo segment and did an amazing job setting up the Punk/Kingston match at Full Gear.
- And in the back, Jungle Boy, Christian and Luchasaurus challenged The Young Bucks and Adam Cole for Full Gear in a Falls Count Anywhere match.
Red Velvet defeated The Bunny (3:34)
Velvet charged the ring and attacked The Bunny before the bell. When The Bunny dropped to the floor, Velvet followed her out with a clothesline. Jade Cargill and Mark Sterling watched from seats in the front row. Bunny sent Velvet headfirst into the steps. Bunny did that ugly, contrived spot where she dropkicks her opponent in the back while their neck is wedged against the middle turnbuckle.
Velvet came back with a leg lariat and a stunner for a near fall. Bunny got a near fall after a death valley driver. Bunny went for Down the rabbit hole, but Velvet countered that into the Final Slice neckbreaker and got the pinfall.
Velvet will now take on Jade Cargill in the next round of the tournament.
Mark Henry moderated the face-to-face with John Silver and BUDGE, uh, sorry, Adam Cole. Silver is just trying to help the new kid on the block, but Cole is having none of it.
Rundown for upcoming shows:
Next week's Dynamite:
- Pac v. Dax Harwood
- Thunder Rosa, Tay Conti & Anna Jay vs. Dr. Britt Baker, Rebel & Jamie Hayter
- Matt Sydal & Lee Moriarty v. Dante Marin & Lio Rush
- Bryan Danielson v. Rocky Romero
- The World title match contract signing for Full Gear between Adam Page & Kenny Omega
And added to Full Gear, Eddie Kingston v. CM Punk and the Jurassic Express/Christian v. Superkilq falls count anywhere match.
Adam Cole (w/ The Young Bucks) defeated John Silver (11:03)
While Cole had the Bucks with him, Silver sent the rest of the Dark Order to the back and came out for the match on his own. Excalibur recapped the BTE storyline between SIlver and Cole (that Silver wants Cole to be his manager, change in name and cut his hair) and the other commentators ran down how stupid all that sounds.
But I mean, no one in charge of creative for a wrestling company would ever come up with something that dumb.
Anyway, Silver mimicked Cole’s “Bay-bay!” taunt and got a big boot. Silver came back with a gorilla press slam, dropping Cole on the top rope, and beeling him across the ring. They fought out to the apron, and Cole snapmared Silver onto the hardest part of the ring. On the floor, Cole locked Silver in a camel clutch so the Young Bucks could kiss his cheeks, and the show went to its last picture-in-picture (sorry Lance Storm, that’s what Excalibur is calling it) break.
Back from break, Silver is coming back with kicks. Cole went for a rana, but Silver blocked the move with a sit-down powerbomb for a near fall. Cole and Silver exchanged forearms. Cole and Silver exchanged fast kicks. Silver went for a suplex, but Cole countered it into the suplex/neckbreaker where he drops his opponent on his knee for a near fall.
Cole charged into a lariat from Silver, and Silver hit a german suplex. Silver went for a cover after a punt, but Matt Jackson put Cole’s foot on the ropes to stop the count. The Dark Order ran out to confront the Bucks, which distracted the ref. Cole went for a low blow, but Silver blocked it and hit Cole with a low kick of his own, then Silver dropped Cole with a spinning Liger bomb for another near fall. Silver went for a superplex, but Cole fought out of it. Cole went for a panama sunrise, but Silver overpowered Cole and backed him in the corner. Silver charged, but Cole caught him with a pair of superkicks. Cole lowered the boom on Silver and got the pin.
Great match, which the crowd was very into by the end.
As the kids say, this episode of Rampage slaps. The Danielson and Cole matches were very good, and the CM Punk/Eddie Kingston segment was an all-timer.