Date: March 16, 2022
Location: Freeman Coliseum, San Antonio, Texas
Commentators: Excalibur, Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone
It’s time for another major show with St. Patrick’s Day Slam and we actually have a rematch from last year’s edition. This week will see Thunder Rosa challenging Britt Baker for the Women’s Title inside a cage following their classic war last year. Other than that, Wardlow gets his TNT Title shot so let’s get to it.
Jurassic Express/Hangman Page vs. Adam Cole/ReDRagon
Jungle Boy hurricanranas Cole down to start but gets sent into the corner so Fish can come in to crank on the arm. That doesn’t last long as it’s off to Luchasaurus, who sends the villains outside but gets kicked off the apron. Fish posts him to take over and it’s time to work over the leg back inside. O’Reilly twists the knee around but Luchasaurus fights his way out and the hot tag brings in Page to clean house.
A sitout powerbomb gets two on Fish and Jungle Boy hits a big flip dive over Page to take out all three villains. Back in and the good guys go up top and it’s a triple moonsault off the same corner (Luchasaurus from the apron, Page from the top to the floor and Jungle Boy from the top onto Fish) for the big wipe out crash and a near fall. Back in and ReDRagon is back up with the running strikes in the corner to Jungle Boy and we take a break.
We come back with Luchasaurus coming in to clean house with kicks and chokeslams. What looks to be a Doomsday Device is broken up though and O’Reilly gets a kneebar on Luchasaurus. Page is caught in a guillotine but drives it into O’Reilly for the save. It’s off to Page vs. Cole for the strike off until Page hits the Deadeye. Everything breaks down and Jungle Boy hits a double Doomsday Device for two as Fish has to make the save. Back up and Cole hits the Boom on Jungle Boy for the pin at 13:49.
Rating: B. This is the match that you should have been expecting from these guys and it was quite the showcase as a result. Cole getting the pin makes sense and at least it was in a six man instead of in a regular tag match so it doesn’t hurt Jungle Boy as much. I’m not sure why we are setting up Cole vs. Page again but it should make for a good main event on a big Dynamite.
Team Taz mocks Keith Lee and tell him that he’ll get another beating if he shows up on Rampage this week. Lee threatens to punch out Ricky Starks again and says he’ll see them on Friday.
Bryan Danielson/Jon Moxley vs. Chuck Taylor/Wheeler Yuta
William Regal is on commentary. JR: “William Regal, can you control these two?” Regal: “Of course not.” As Regal has Danhausen explained to him, Moxley and Danielson jump the two of them to start fast. Yuta gets kneed in the ribs and Moxley adds a suplex for two. Some choking in the corner keeps Yuta down and Danielson comes back in to stomp on the arm as Regal talks about selling jam.
Yuta manages to get over for the tag to Taylor for some house cleaning, including a single leg crab on Danielson. The tag brings Moxley back in anyway and a kick to the face gets Danielson out of trouble. Danielson comes back in to grab an Indian deathlock on Taylor and a superplex gets two. We take a break and come back with Yuta hitting a dropkick and running forearm on Moxley, who runs him over with a clothesline. A Hart Attack gets two on Yuta but he fights back, only to get suplexed back down. The bulldog choke finishes Yuta at 11:46.
Rating: C+. It was mostly a squash, but it was longer than it needed to be as Moxley and Danielson should be running through people. Yuta got to fight a bit and that is a good thing, though at the same time it didn’t exactly make Danielson and Moxley look dominant. The two of them will be looking for some bigger competition soon though and that is what will matter most.
Post match Regal gets in the ring and Yuta offers to join up, earning a slap in the face. Yuta stares at Regal, who says something to him and Yuta leaves.
FTR seems happy to have fired Tully Blanchard but the Young Bucks come in to say it doesn’t matter who manages FTR because they’re just not that good.
The Acclaimed is ready for Keith Lee but Team Taz cuts them off for a pep talk. Shane Strickland comes in and says he’ll steal Ricky Starks’ spotlight. Strickland leaves and Caster wonders if Strickland was supposed to be a rapper.
Here is the Jericho Appreciation Society, with the fans still singing along with Judas. Matt Lee asks if the fans love singing that song and says that if it were up to him, there would be no song or singing, but Jericho is a better man than him. That is why Jericho deserves to be praised, for his contributions as a human being.
Jericho says the earth has been around for 4.5 billion years and you are lucky enough to be around during his era. We hear about some of the things he has done (including angles and promos (his words)) and how he has helped build companies, just like AEW. Instead of praising him though, people have said some very hurtful things about him on social media. Eddie Kingston was mean to him by making him tap out at Revolution but he isn’t coming out here.
Jericho isn’t a wrestler but rather a sports entertainer. Daniel Garcia grabs the mic and says he is one too. Jericho talks about a car crash on January 6, 2019 when a bunch of wrestlers were in a car crash so he donated thousands of dollars to help them. One of those men was Garcia, who was starting to get better.
As for 2.0, it’s a bad name from bad creative, so they are now using their real names: Angelo Parker and Matt Mirand. His former best friend Kevin asks Jericho to put them on Talk Is Jericho so they could hopefully get a job. Jericho saw the passion in them and helped them get to AEW. Then there is Jake Hager, who is Jericho’s ride or die man. Hager says they beat up pro wrestlers, with Jericho saying this is the start of the era of the Sports Entertainer. This felt more like the Jericho I was hoping to see, but him running another heel stable isn’t the most interesting thing.
Video on Serena Deeb vs. Hikaru Shida.
TNT Title: Wardlow vs. Scorpio Sky
Sky is defending and has Dan Lambert and company with him. Wardlow gets taken into the corner to start but Wardlow powers out and heads outside for a staredown with Paige VanZant. Paige’s husband gets in his face so Wardlow loads up the powerbomb, allowing Sky to hit a basement dropkick as we take a break.
Back with Wardlow in trouble but Sky has to punch his way out of a powerbomb out of the corner. The TKO is countered into a spinebuster and there’s the first powerbomb. Two more powerbombs make it worse but a distraction breaks up the fourth. Sky rolls to the floor but here is Shawn Spears, complete with some chairs, to offer a distraction. The referee yells at Spears, allowing MJF to come in with the Dynamite Diamond to knock Wardlow silly. That’s enough for Sky to retain the title at 9:20.
Rating: C+. I was expecting to see Wardlow win the title here but this is hardly some terrible decision. Wardlow getting to wring MJF’s neck should be fine and it will likely take place after MJF brings in a few hired goons to try to slow Wardlow down. I can also go with Sky getting a longer run with the title, as he is a bit different than most of the champions so far.
Post match Wardlow goes after MJF but gets chaired down by Spears, allowing VanZant’s husband to choke him out. Spears adds a chair to the head and MJF adds the Dynamite Diamond punch.
Jade Cargill and Mark Sterling want someone to step up to be her 30th victim.
Hardys vs. Private Party
Matt cranks on Quen’s wrist to start and it’s off to Jeff (strong reaction) and the Hardys hit their double elbow and Poetry In Motion. The chinlock goes on before it’s back to Matt, who gets taken into the wrong corner. A double elbow takes Matt down and a legdrop/standing shooting star press combination (mocking the Hardys’ sequence) gets two. Matt gets sent outside for a crash and we take a break.
Back with Kassidy hitting a running flip dive tot he floor on Matt, followed by an assisted boot to the face for two. Kassidy mocks Jeff with his own dance and Matt is over for the tag to Jeff a few seconds later. Jeff comes in and cleans house, including the middle rope splash for two on Kassidy. Everything breaks down and the Silly String is broken up, leaving the Hardys to hit stereo Twists of Fate. The Swanton finishes Kassidy at 12:17.
Rating: C+. The Hardys got a big reaction but it was just a Hardys match. I get why the team was put back together for a (or another) nostalgia run, but that’s about all it is. I’ve been watching the Hardys for almost twenty five years now and it isn’t like they haven’t been together in the last ten years or so. It was nice for a bit of a smile, but I’m not likely to get this excited over a team that I’ve seen together so many times.
Post match the AFO comes out to threaten the Hardys but Sting and Darby Allin make the save.
Red Velvet is ready for Leyla Hirsch on Rampage.
Women’s Title: Britt Baker vs. Thunder Rosa
Rosa, the hometown girl, is challenging in a cage (more like the Cell, as there is room on the floor) and gets played to the ring by a live band. Baker is in Scott Hall style gear and it’s a feeling out process to start. Rosa gets in a kick to the face and a clothesline and rakes Baker’s face into the cage. Some not very great right hands in the corner have Baker busted open and they head outside. Baker manages to send her into the cage for a breather and we take a break.
Back with Baker missing a chair shot so Rosa sends her into the corner for a running dropkick. The referee gets bumped though and it’s the Fire Thunder Driver for no count on Baker. That’s not enough to hold Baker down as she comes back and makes a pile of chairs. A super Air Raid Crash onto the chairs rocks Rosa as another referee runs in to count the delayed two.
With Rosa mostly done, Baker piles up six chairs (two on top of four) but Rosa sends her into the cage, sending her crashing onto the chairs. Baker busts out a superkick and grabs a bag of thumbtacks (in the match’s required call back, though JR wondering why those are there is funny).
Rosa loads up a powerbomb but gets backdropped onto the tacks, meaning she can try Lockjaw. That’s broken up with a bite to the hand before Rosa slams the other hand into the tacks. A powerbomb (with Rosa kind of falling) sends Baker into the tacks but she gets in a chair to the head. Rosa shrugs it off and hits the Fire Thunder Driver onto the tacks to win the title at 17:34.
Rating: B. It was another violent match, but this comes at the end of a story that felt like we were just sitting around waiting on this since last year when Rosa beat her in the first place. That has been the problem with all of Baker’s reign, as it has been a countdown to Rosa beating her again to get the title. As for the match itself, it was a brutal fight, though having so many violent and bloody matches in the last few months takes away some of its impact.
Confetti falls and Dustin Rhodes comes in to celebrate with Rosa to end the show.
Overall Rating: B+. Another good show, though it was still missing a little something to take it up to the next level. I don’t know if that’s the show focusing on a pair of rematches or something else, but it was only very good instead of great. Still though, I can certainly live with that as this was another awesome show with the opener and main event being more than enough to carry things.
Adam Cole/ReDRagon b. Hangman Page/Jurassic Express – Boom to Jungle Boy
Jon Moxley/Bryan Danielson b. Wheel Yuta/Chuck Taylor – Bulldog choke to Yuta
Scorpio Sky b. Wardlow – Pin after a Dynamite Diamond punch from MJF
Hardys b. Private Party – Swanton Bomb to Kassidy
Thunder Rosa b. Britt Baker – Fire Thunder Driver onto tacks
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