While they may not be able to compete on Sunday's Forbidden Door pay-per-view due to their affiliation with AAA, Andrade El Idolo and Rey Fenix will look to put on a show on Friday's AEW Rampage.
The two will square off in the night's featured match as Andrade low blowed Fenix in the recent Casino Battle Royal, costing him his opportunity. This is Andrade's first singles match since his April loss to Darby Allin in a coffin match.
Friday will see two preview matches for Sunday's co-promoted PPV with NJPW Hook will look to keep his undefeated streak alive against The DKC of the NJPW LA Dojo while Jeff Cobb takes on FTR's Cash Wheeler.
IWGP Tag Team Champions Cobb and Great-O-Khan will put their titles on the line against ROH Tag Team Champions FTR and Roppongi Vice in a winner-take-all match Sunday.
ROH Women's Champion Mercedes Martinez and Serena Deeb will continue their recent undefeated tag team affiliation as they take on two enhancement talents.
Taped from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Excalibur, Taz and “The Wizard” Chris Jericho were on commentary.
Andrade El Idolo (w/ Jose) defeated Rey Fenix (w/ Alex Abrahantes) (16:29 aired)
These guys were told to go out there and have a pay-per-view match (since they're not on the ppv because of NPJW/AAA/CMLL politics) and darned if they didn't go ahead and do that.
Both men exchanged arm ringers to start. Andrade shrugged off a side headlock and took Fenix down with a shoulder block. Both guys impressed the crowd with a lucha exchange that ended with Fenix catching El Idolo with a rana. Fenix ran into a boot from El Idolo, but Fenix came back with a hook kick. Andrande countered a fireman’s carry with a suplex, and then Andrade swiveled his hips and went for the three amigos. On the third suplex, Fenix countered with a knee to the head and hit his own version of the three amigos, punctuating the series with a brainbuster.
Andrade dropped to the floor, so Fenix came off the top with a double jump pescado. Back in the ring, Fenix hit a german suplex with a bridge for a near fall. Fenix went to the top, but Andrande quickly shoved him down to the floor. El Idolo demanded referee Aubrey Edwards count Fenix out as the show went to a split-screen break.
El Idolo hung up Fenix in the ropes for a top rope stomp for a near fall. Fenix caught El Idolo with a boot, then hit a double stomp. Fneix went for a cutter, but El Idolo countered. Fenix hit a double jump top rope dropkick for a near fall, then absolutely drove him through the mat with a cutter for another near fall. Fneix went for a frog splash, but El Idolo got his knees up and cradled Fenix for a near fall.
Both men exchange strikes. Fenix tried to walk the top rope, but Andrade tripped up Fenix. El Idolo went for a double knee on Fenix against the ringpost, but Fenix got out of the way and Andrande kneed the posts. Fenix came off the top with a double stomp to Andrade’s back on the floor, and the show went to a second split-screen break.
After the second break, Fenix hit a top rope Spanish fly for a near fall, but Jose got Andrade’s leg on the bottom rope. While Aubrey Edwards checked on Fenix’s injured knee, Jose snuck the iPad to Andrade. But Edwards caught Andrade with the iPad and threw it to the floor. That violates the terms of his Apple Care! Andrade went Fenix's injured knees, but Fenix caught him with a kick that sent El Idolo to the floor. Fenx followed up with a tope con hilo to the floor.
Back in the ring, Jose and Abrahantes got into a fight. With Andrade and Fenix still on the floor, Rush came up from behind and kick Fenix low. Hard. Back in the ring, the hammerlock DDT finished Fenix.
After the match, Rush and El Idolo put on their Los Ingobernables t-shirts (probably already available on ShopAEW.com) and took off Fenix’s mask. Penta Oscuro ran in with a shovel to make the save and ran off Los Ingobernables.
– Eddie Kingston promo. He’s focused on Blood and Guts and wants to see if Chris Jericho’s blood tastes like Kool-Aid. Ew.
– Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee cut a backstage promo. Strickland announced they had a tag match in Chicago with Yoshinobu Kanemaru and El Desperado of New Japan Pro Wrestling. Strickland is ready for another win, but Lee is concerned they aren't on the same page.
ROH Women’s Champion Mercedes Martinez & Serena Deeb defeated Sierra and Laynie Luck (3:25)
Deeb and Martinez are doing a partners that don’t really get along gimmick. Deeb had Luck tied up in a leglock, and Martinez chokeslammed Sierra onto Luck. That should have been the finish but this match kept going. Martinez and Deeb each locked one of their opponents in their submission holds and got a double tap out. This was a Dark match.
– Tully Blanchard Enterprises (TBE) was back on AEW (debuting on AEW?) after last showing up on the Supercard of Honor. ROH really needs a TV show. TBE is Brian Cage and the Gates of Agony tag team (Jasper Kaun and Toa Liona).
– ROH World Champion Jonathan Gresham and Lee Moriarty were being interviewed when Tully Blanchard interrupted, looking for an ROH World title match for his guys. Is this ROH Rampage? This led to Gresham and Moriarty against someone in Tully Blachard’s crew at some point later.
Hook defeated The DKC (1:40)
DKC is from the New Japan LA Dojo. Hook got a kneebar early which DKC escaped via rope break. Hoo k battered DKC with body blows, but DKC came back with chops. Hook took DKC down with a high suplex, then locked in the Redrum to get the tap out. This was just about the best sub-two minute match you’re gonna see.
Rundown of Forbidden Card:
- New! Buy In: QT Marshall & Aaron Solo v. Hirooki Goto and Yoshi-Hashi
- New! Buy In: Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland v. El Desperado and Yoshinobu Kanemaru
- AEW Interim World Title: Jon Moxley v. Hiroshi Tanahashi
- IWGP World Title: Jay White v. Kazuchika Okada v. Adam Page v. Adam Cole
- ROH & IWGP Tag Team Titles: FTR v. Great O-Kahn & Jeff Cobb v. Roppongi Vice
- Zach Sabre Jr. v. A Mystery Opponent
- AEW All Atlantic Title: Pac v. Malakai Black v. Miro v. Clark Conners (replacing an injured Tomohiro Ishii)
- AEW Women's Title: Thunder Rosa v. Toni Storm
- IWGP US Title: Will Ospreay v. Orange Cassidy
- El Phantasmo, Hikuleo & The Young Bucks vs Sting, Darby Allin, Shingo Takagi & Hiromu Takahashi
- Winning Team gets Blood and Guts Advantage: Chris Jericho, Minoru Suzuki & Sammy Guevara v. Eddie Kingston, Wheeler Yuta and & Shota Umino
Jeff Cobb defeated Cash Wheeler (10:55)
Caprice Coleman joined the commentary team for the main event. And Jeff Cobb was named Jericho’s Sports Entertainer of the Week!
After some mat wrestling to start, Cobb propelled Wheeler into the top rope throat first, then followed up with a swinging back suplex. Both guys brawled on the floor during the split-screen break, with Cobb dominating the exchange. Back in the ring (still in the split screen), Cobb hit a standing moonsault and a long delayed vertical suplex. It’s not exaggerating to say a good four minutes of this match happened in the split screen.
Back to full-screen, Cobb had Wheeler in a body vice. Wheeler slipped behind Cobb and locked in a sleeper. Cobb escaped and both guys struggled to get a backslide. Wheeler worked over Cobb with body shots and uppercuts. Wheeler slipped behind Cobb and clipped his knee, then sent Cobb out to the floor.
Wheeler followed Cobb out with a slingshot plancha. Cobb tried to suplex Wheeler into the ring from the middle rope, but his knee was too weak. Wheeler came out of the corner with a sunset flip into a Liger Bomb for a near fall. Cobb missed a second standing moonsault. Wheeler went for a spinning DDT, but Cobb threw him off. Cobb went for the Tour of the Islands, but Wheeler countered with a cradle. Cobb went for a Doctor Bomb, but Wheeler countered with a rana into a cradle for another near fall. Cobb hit a release German suplex, then finished Wheeler with the Tour of the Islands. This was the exact finish they should do if they're planning on putting FTR over at the ppv. Good for what I saw, but it felt like half of this match took place in the split-screen.
After the match, Great O-Khan came out to celebrate with Cobb, but Dax Harwood ran out and triggered a wild brawl. Will Ospreay came out with the rest of the United Empire, and so did Orange Cassidy and Roppongi Vice. Eddie Kingston came out of nowhere and attacked Jericho. He grabbed a pen from the desk and tried to gouge Jericho with it. Everyone brawled all over the arena and Coleman on commentary really added something to the brawl with his energy.
Kingston and Jericho brawled through the crowd while FTR, the Best Friends and the United Empire brawled all over the ringside area. Jericho wound up at ringside and Trent Beretta caught him with a chair. Harwood hit Kyle Fletcher with a pliedriver in the ring. Everyone brawled for a chaotic finish to the show.
The first match was great and the ending was good enough, but the middle was kind of a mess with the ROH stuff. I don't mind the ROH stuff since they're hoping for a TV deal and keeping the ROH crew visible makes sense. But this show should have been a hard sell for Forbidden Door, and segments on Blanchard's crew and Jonatham Grisham were a waste of time. They introduced (or reintroduced) five new players that aren't on the ppv which already features has a bunch of new players coming in.
And the match that would have done the best job of selling Forbidden Door, half of it took place in a little split-screen window!
The brawl to end the show was a great hard sell though. But overall the show should have been way more focused on selling the pay-per-view.