AEW continues their run of October live editions of Rampage with a show from Jacksonville, Florida, that features three title matches.
In the headliner, AEW Tag Team Champions The Acclaimed will defend against The Varsity Athletes (Tony Nese & Josh Woods) where if Max Caster & Anthony Bowens win, they take the "scissor me" trademark Mark Sterling owns and refuses to let them use.
In a match made Thursday night, AEW All-Atlantic Champion Orange Cassidy will defend against both Rush and Preston "Ten" Vance. Originally just Rush vs. Vance, Cassidy inserted himself into the situation and offered to put the title up in doing so.
The FTW title will be on the line as the undefeated Hook defends against Ari Daivari of the Trustbusters who recently offered to buy the belt for $50,000 but was rebuffed.
In singles action, fan favorite Willow Nightingale will face Penelope Ford.
Our live coverage kicks off at 10 PM Eastern.
Live from Jacksonville, Florida, with Jim Ross, Excalibur and Tony Schiavone on commentary.
The Varsity Athletes and Mark Sterling made their entrance on YouTube while the good Wonder Woman movie was finishing up on TNT. Sterling wore a hot pink suit decorated with scissors. Schiavone complained about too made trademark lawyers in wrestling.
The Acclaimed (w/ Billy Gunn) defeated The Varsity Athletes (w/ Mark Sterling) to retain the AEW World Tag Team Championship and win back the “Scissoring” Trademark (8:06)
Of course, Max Caster brought up AEW winning the ratings war on Tuesday in his rap, but Sterling cut off Anthony Bowens before he could say “Scissor Me, Daddy!” This triggered a brawl between the two teams that eventually settled into Bowens whipping Josh Woods into a powerslam from Caster for a near fall. Also in the commentary, it’s mentioned a deal has been brokered to keep Jade Cargill from taking the show hostage. Disappointing.
Woods dumped Caster to the floor and drew Billy Gunn in the ring, and the referee ejected Gunn from ringside. (Upon watching a second time, Woods flopped near Gunn in the ring, then claimed Gunn tripped him, and this is why the referee sent Gunn to the back.) Woods hit Caster with a neckbreaker to take control as the show went to a break.
After the break, Caster hit Woods with a crossbody off the top rope, and tags were made on both sides. Bowens took the fight to both Woods and Nese. Bowens drove Nese down from a standing position with a leaping legdrop to the back of his neck. Nese and Woods made a comeback. Nese sent Bowens off the middle turnbuckle into a kneestrike from Woods. The Varsity Athletes hit their angle slam/neckbreaker combo on Bownes for a near fall. Caster caught Woods with an inverted death valley driver, but Nese came back with a superkick on Caster. Bowens rolled through a sunset flip attempt from Nese and connected with a knee strike. Bowens took out Woods with a superkick, hit Nese with the Arrival and Caster came off the top with the Mic Drop for the pinfall.
It's amazing how great The Acclaimed have gotten in such a short time.
After the match, Sterling held up the trademark paperwork and claimed just because his team lost, it didn't mean he was losing the trademark. Gunn returned and dumped Sterling into the ring. The Acclaimed destroyed Sterling while Gunn tore up the trademark, which I'm sure in wrestling makes it legally invalid. The tag champs and Billy Gunn scissored to the crowd’s delight.
– In a pre taped segment, Tony Schiavone interviewed Jade Cargill. Penelope Ford is injured, so Leila Grey will replace her in the match against Willow Nightingale tonight. In exchange, Nyla Rose will get into the ring for a confrontation with Cargill so she can get her TBS belt back. Cargill doesn’t care about Rampage, she just wants her belt back. She's a professional woman who keeps her word, just like Schiavone!
– In the back, Ortiz and the Lucha Brothers try to stage an intervention with Eddie Kingston about his temper. PAC interrupted and told Kingston to listen to them, since they’re all champions. PAC then chastised Kingston for his behavior at Grand Slam. This upset Kingston, but Ortiz managed to keep him calm.
Hook defeated Ari Daivari (w/ Jeeves K) to retain the FTW Title (2:47)
Daivari tried to pay off Hook with a stack of cash for the belt before the match, but Hook slapped the money out of Daivari’s hands. “I’ll be right back.” – JR.
Daivari actually did well against Hook... for about a minute. Hook fought back with body punches and a fisherman’s suplex. Jeeves K the Butler interfered and Daivari got a near fall with a suplex. Hook dodged a charge that sent Daivari onto the apron, where Hook locked on the Redrum and he pulled Daivari back into the ring for the submission. Hook then grabbed Jeeves and choked him out as well.
– Lexi Nair interviewed Stokely Hathaway, Matt Hardy and Ethan Page. Hathaway sent Private Party to the Stokely Hathaway Wrestling Academy and they’re sending Matt Hardy to wrestle a match on Dark next week. Matt Hardy responded with a rap that left everyone confused.
Willow Nightingale defeated Leila Grey (7:51)
Nightingale clobbered Grey with a couple of short-arm clotheslines and a slam. Nightingale chased Grey out of the ring and got into it with Hogan on the floor. Hogan hit Nightingale with a superkick, allowing Grey to take control.
After a long commercial break, Nightingale got a near fall with a spinebuster. Grey countered a fireman’s carry with a Russian leg sweep, then went for CM Punk’s running knee in the corner into a bulldog out of the corner, but Grey countered the bulldog. Hogan tried to interfere a second time, but it backfired and Grey hit a kick, the the DoctorBomb (gutwrench suplex into a sitout powerbomb) for the pinfall. Push. This. Woman. Nightingale is fantastic and over with the crowd.
After the match, Tony Schiavone entered the ring and announced Nightingale is now officially #AllElite. The celebration ended abruptly when Jade Cargill came out with a chair to stage a sit-in protest in the ring, giving Nyla Rose a ten second countdown to return the belt. While the crowd counted down, Nyla Rose was shown in the parking lot stealing Cargill’s car. Rose took her crew out for a night on the town in Jacksonville. Cargill stayed in the ring while the Baddies ran to the back to try and catch the car (I don't think they're gonna have much luck on foot). Jade beat up the security guards who tried to remove her.
– They replayed the angle from Twitter that set up tonight’s main event. "Orange, I don't even have a mouth" cracked me up.
Orange Cassidy (w/ Danhausen & The Best Friends) defeated Rush (w/ Jose the Assistant) and Dark Order #10 Preston Vance(w/ -1) to retain the AEW All Atlantic Championship (11:53)
Cassidy tried to steal Mark Henry's line during the main event promo. Jose promised Rush would make Cassidy the shortest-lived champion in AEW, which isn’t possible since Cassidy has already outlasted Punk’s reign.
During this match is the first time the commentators mentioned that Adam Page is okay and resting comfortably after his match on Tuesday. Also, Schivone and Ross talked about the sudden passing of AEW Lead Video Engineer Brian Muster this week.
This triple threat match was perfect for Cassidy. He laid back in the opening and let Rush and Vance pound away at each other. When they turned their attention to Cassidy, he hit them with his "high impact" kicks. Rush nailed Vance with a forearm, Cassidy hit Rush with a shotgun dropkick, and the fight went to the floor where Rush took control. Rush dominated and brawled with both his opponents. He choked out Vance with an extension cord. Lots of fighting on the floor but it didn’t feel like much was happening.
Eventually Rush and Vance went back in the ring briefly, where Vance hit a series of clotheslines. They went back to the floor again. Cassidy tried to follow with a plancha, but Vance and Rush caught him and sent Cassidy through a ringside table.
After a long split-screen break, Vance hit Rush with a spear. Vance went for the full nelson on Cassidy, but Cassidy countered with a slumdog millionaire and spinning DDT. Cassidy hit the Beach Break on Vance for a near fall, broken up by Jose. Danhausen cursed Jose, then hit him low. Rush took out Danhausen and soaked in the boos from the crowd.
Cassidy charged at Rush and got belly to belly suplexed into the turnbuckles. Vance hit Rush with a pair of clotheslines, an inverted blue thunder bomb and the spinebuster. The crowd got behind Vance (cheering Vance! Vance! Vance!) and he hit a wheelbarrow suplex and a clothesline on Cassidy for a near fall. Rush twisted Vance’s mask around his face so he couldn’t see. Cassidy dumped Rush with the Orange Punch. Cassidy tried for the Beach Break on Vance, but Vance slid into a sunset flip. Cassidy sat down and countered into a cradle (like the Bulldog at Summerslam 92) and got the pinfall.
Fun match that really got going after the break, and everyone looked very good.
After the match, Rush and Vance and a brief staredown at the entrance ramp (which looked like they were reaching an understanding?), but -1 ran out, and 10 had to carry him off before he tried to knock out Rush. Which -1 could absolutely do. Orange Cassidy and the Best Friend celebrated in the ring to end the show.
– After the show closed, a very tasteful tribute to Brian Muster narrated by Excalibur aired.
Orange Cassidy and the Acclaimed brought star power to the show this week. The live (or nearly live) shows the last few weeks have been a real improvement.