In his first title defense since winning the gold, Ring of Honor TV Champion Samoa Joe will put it on the line against Trent Beretta of Best Friends on Friday's AEW Rampage.
Joe won the title by defeating Minoru Suzuki two weeks ago, but was attacked afterward by Jay Lethal, Sonjay Dutt and the debuting Satnam Singh. Beretta recently had a battle with Bryan Danielson on Rampage from Boston.
In another Owen Hart Foundation Tournament qualifying match, old Pacific Northwest rivals Darby Allin and Swerve Strickland will go one-on-one.
TBS Champion Jade Cargill will team with her Baddies section of Red Velvet and Kiera Hogan against Skye Blue and both the returning Willow Nightingale and Trish Adora.
Keith Lee returns to singles action as he faces Colten Gunn.
Friday's lineup will also include a face-to-face confrontation between Hook and Danhausen as their eventual match continues to build.
Friday's show was taped after Wednesday's Dynamite in Philadelphia.
From Philadelphia, with Excalibur, Taz, Ricky Starks and Chris Jericho on commentary.
Darby Allin (w/ Sting) defeated Swerve Strickland in an Owen Hart Cup Qualifying Match (10:23)
The crowd was chanting “Swerve’s House!” early on. Allin worked over the arm of Strickland. Allin tried a hip toss, but Strickland flipped onto his feet. Allin worked a chinlock and transitioned into a side headlock, but Strickland escaped into a hammerlock, which Allin countered. Stickland countered by sending Allin out the floor. Strickland tried a tope, but Allin countered that into his flip stunner. Allin then went for his high speed suicide dive, but Strickland caught him with a knee strike. Allin slowly got to his feet, and Strickland just murdered him with a stomp from the apron to the floor. Referee Aubrey Edwards checked on Allin on the floor as the show went to a split-screen break.
Back in the ring, Allin caught Strickland with a knee bar. Strickland literally punched his way out of the hold and suplexed Allin for two. Strickland went for a top rope stomp, but Allin avoided it and caught Strickland with a code red for a near fall. Allin went for the Coffin Drop, but Strickland got his knees up. Strickland caught Allin with a kick to the back of the head for two, but Allin broke the pin attempt by reaching the bottom rope. Strickland suplexed Allin over the top rope to the floor which made a sickening thud on the floor.
As Strickland threw Allin back into the ring, Ricky Starks left the commentary table to try and interfere. Sting cut Starks off and chased him away. Back in the ring, Allin caught Strickland with a leglock and cradled Strickland for the pin.
– Shawn Spears cut a promo leaving more clues about Wardlow’s opponent for Wednesday. He’s seven feet tall! I’m not a big fan of the “War Piggie” taunt.
– Chris Jericho awards himself the Sports Entertainer of the Week for the fireball in Eddie Kingston's face last Wednesday on Dynamite. Santana attacked Jericho at the commentary table while Ortiz watched his back. The attacked was broken up by a gaggle of officials. After the break, Jericho annonced a match for him against Santana on Dynamite Wednesday.
Jade Cargill, Red Velvet, Kiera Hogan (w/ Mark Sterling) defeated Skye Blue, Willow Nightingale, Trish Adora (2:46)
Sigh, I guess my dream of Red Velvet and Skye Blue teaming up as Purple Fog is dead.
Cargill threatened to start off with Blue, but tagged out to Velvet. Willow Nightingale hit Velvet with a pounce that sent Velvet out of the ring. Cargill hit a pump kick on Trish Adora, Velvet hit Blue with a spear, Hogan took out Nightingale with a shotgun dropkick, and Cargill finished off Adora with the Jaded Slam.
– In the back, Tony Schiavone interviewed Darby Allin and Shane Strickland. Allin offered Strickland five more minutes, but Strickland turned him down. Strickland will use Starks interference as more motivation for his feud with Team Taz.
Keith Lee defeated Colton Gunn (w/ Austin Gunn) (5:57)
Crowd was hugely behind Keith Lee. Lee hit Colton Gunn with a double chop in the corner.
Three minutes of the match took place in split-screen. After a break, Lee beeled Colton across the ring. Lee charged in the corner, Colton ducked and Lee hit Austin instead. Lee went for a pop-up powerbomb, Colton escaped and went for the Famouser, but Lee countered that into the Big Bang Catastrophe (which the announcer still don’t call) to get the pin. This wasn’t much; most of it happened during a commerical.
– The Hardy Boys are interviewed. Matt and Jeff wonder out loud about all the potential dream matches Jeff could have in the Owen Hart Tournament once Jeff qualifies by beating Bobby Fish.
– The Undisputed Elite retort. Jeff “Hardly’s” days are numbered.
– Danhausen called out Hook. Danhausen had second thoughts, though, once Hook arrived. Before they could get into it, Mark Sterling distracted them from the stage ("Do you fans really want to see these two fight?") and Tony Nese ran in, attacking them both from behind. Hook sent Nese flying out of the ring with a suplex, and Hook and Danhausen sent Nese and Sterling packing. Danhausen offered Hook a handshake, but Hook shoved him aside and left.
HookHausen is going to be a thing, and it’s going to be awesome.
– Lexi Nair interviews the Gunns. The Acclaimed show up and make the offer to team for an eight man tag. The Gunns have to go talk to “daddy” first.
– Mercedes Martinez cut a promo for her match on Wednesday to unify the ROH Womens' Championships.
- Blackpool Combat Club vs. Angelico, Butcher & Blade
- Santana v. Chris Jericho
- Jeff Hardy v. Bobby Fish in an Owen Hart Qualifier
- Mercedes Martienz v. Deonna Purrazzo to unify the ROH Women's Championships
- Ruby Soho & Toni Storm v. Britt Baker & Jamie Hayter
- Hook in Action.
Ian Riccabani joins the commentary team for the main event.
Samoa Joe defeated Trent Beretta (w/ the Best Friends) to retain the ROH World Television Championship (9:57)
Joe went for a tope, but Beretta avoided it and hit Joe with a sliding knee from the apron to the floor. Beretta followed up with an Asai Moonsault and chops on the floor. Beretta went for a tornado DDT, but Joe tossed him, then caught him with a boot as the show went to break.
Beretta flipped out of a powerbomb attempt and caught Joe with a dropkick. Beretta caught Joe with a crossbody from the top rope to the floor. Back in the ring, Beretta hit a series of strikes and suplexed Joe. Beretta hit a tornado DDT for a near fall. Beretta went for Strong Zero, but Joe countered with a powerbomb for a near fall. Joe locked on a crossface, but Beretta got his foot on the ropes to force the break. Beretta slapped Joe, and Joe floored him with a stiff lariat. Joe went for a muscle buster, but Beretta countered into a sunset flip. Beretta charged Joe in the corner, and Joe caught him with an uranage. Joe slapped on the rear naked choke and got the win. After the match, the Code of Honor was observed with a handshake.
Tony Schivone tried to interview Samoa Joe in the ring, but Sonjay Dutt, Jay Lethal and Satnam Singh interrupted. Orange Cassidy confronted Singh with his high impact offense, but Dutt flew in and attacked. The Best Friends brawled with Singh and Dutt while Lethal got the jump on Joe in the ring. The gaggle of officials (including new hire Pat Buck) ran in to break up the fight as the show ran out of time.
A very good show, with Strickland/Allin worth seeking out. The HookHausen stuff continues to be awesome. At some point in these Owen Hart tournaments, a dark horse needs to get an upset win and go on a run.