Wednesday night was a wild one in the Windy City as more matches for FORBIDDEN DOOR 2023 came together, the brackets for the 2023 Owen Hart Memorial Foundation Tournament were announced, the first team for the Tag Team Blind Eliminator Tournament was set, and a whole lot of chaos reigned over AEW!
In what is undoubtedly one of the most jam-packed weeks in AEW’s history, the journey to FORBIDDEN DOOR 2023 continues on Friday night with the newest edition of RAMPAGE! The action gets started at 10:00PM ET/9:00pm CT on TNT, as well as at AEWPlus.com for our international audiences, and features an eight-man pitting United Empire and Swerve against CHAOS, plus the first match in the Women’s Owen Hart Foundation Tournament between Anna Jay A.S. and Chicago’s own Skye Blue. Plus Jack Perry, ahead of his IWGP World Heavyweight Championship clash against SANADA on Sunday will collide with another Just 5 Guys member, and we will also hear from Adam Cole, as well as MJF’s first-ever RAMPAGE appearance!
So before the night begins, be sure to drop by the official AEW YouTube channel for highlights from recent episodes of DYNAMITE and RAMPAGE, as well as the latest editions of ROAD TO, THE CONTROL CENTER, and much, much more!
“Jungle Boy” Jack Perry vs. Just 5 Guys’ DOUKI
In just two days, “Jungle Boy” Jack Perry will have the opportunity of a lifetime when he challenges IWGP World Heavyweight Champion SANADA for the most prestigious prize in Japanese professional wrestling. For a young man who has never even traveled to Japan, much less competed over there, it is a huge chance to make history both in the United States and in Japan. Tracing the lineage of the title back to its IWGP Heavyweight Championship roots, a title that first came to be on June 12, 1987 and existed until its unification with the IWGP Intercontinental Title on March 4, 2021, the last American to hold the title was AJ Styles from 2/11/15-7/5/15, so “Jungle Boy” could be in rarified company by Sunday night.
But before he can get to that point, this Friday night on RAMPAGE he has to deal with one of SANADA’s brothers in the Just 5 Guys Stable, the llave-stylings of DOUKI! Making his NJPW debut in 2019 during the BEST OF THE SUPER JUNIORS XXVI, DOUKI became a member of SUZUKI-GUN alongside Minoru Suzuki, Lance Archer, and Zack Sabre Jr. to name a few, and remained a part of that unit until its disbanding at the end of 2022. January 2023 saw the formation of Just 4 Guys with DOUKI, Taichi, TAKA Michinoku, and Yoshinobu Kanemaru, followed by the addition of SANADA in March 2023 after he left Los Ingobernables de Japon (LIJ) prior to winning the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship. It is SANADA’s alliance to that unit that has brought about this bout here as DOUKI essentially plays gatekeeper for the champ, looking to wear out JB prior to his championship fight on Sunday.
There’s a lot of pressure riding on Jack Perry, the opportunity to be the first American to hold this exact championship, the chance to represent AEW as the top guy in NJPW, but he has to remained focused on topping DOUKI before SANADA can enter his brain. One day at a time, one match at a time, all in the hopes of fulfill the dream to become a singles champion by the end of 2023!
SCISSORING IN CHICAGO…
The Acclaimed and Daddy Ass had themselves a grand old time on COLLISION, scissoring with Tony Schiavone in the middle of the United Center on a Saturday night, but this Friday they are getting right back into Trios action as they pursue another shot at the titles currently held by The House of Black! There might be an Open House as far as those championships are concerned, but after experiencing The House once, The Acclaimed and Daddy Ass have to make sure they are ready for a return trip, that they aren’t just jumping right back into the fire, hoping not to get burnt.
It’s always a good time for the fans when these three men hit the ring, but usually a bad one for those standing across the ring, and we shall see on Friday night if that continues to be the case in Scissor City!
OWEN HART FOUNDATION WOMEN’S QUARTER-FINAL…
The J.A.S’ Anna Jay A.S. vs. Skye Blue
With the brackets for the Owen Hart Foundation Tournaments announced on Wednesday night, the Women’s tournament officially begins this Friday night on RAMPAGE, and it kicks off with a first-time bout! They’ve been partners in the past, foes in tag matches, and participants in a Four Way Championship bout during HOUSE RULES: HUNTSVILLE, but this will be their first one-on-one bout!
The winner of this one will face the winner of the Dr. Britt Baker/Ruby Soho battle going down on June 28th, that being a rematch of the 2022 Finals, and move one step closer to the Finals taking place in Calgary on July 15th!
Skye Blue has been on a roll as of late, first pinning Nyla Rose in a Four Way with Dr. Britt Baker and Mercedes Martinez to earn a shot at Toni Storm’s World Championship, then forced Toni to cheat to win to get out with her title, but followed it up by pulling a pin over Ruby Soho on the premiere episode of COLLISION in a tag team bout. Skye has certainly stepped up her game, and has aims to win the whole thing after losing in a Qualifier to Jamie Hayter last year. For Anna Jay A.S., this is a first time opportunity in the tournament, and she will be primed to choke someone out en route to winning the whole shebang!
CHAOS (Chuck Taylor, Rocky Romero, Trent Beretta, & YOH) vs
United Empire (Jeff Cobb, Kyle Fletcher, & Will Ospreay) & Mogul Embassy’s Swerve Strickland
Last week in Washington D.C., The United Empire trio bested the CHAOS contingent of Rocky, Trent, and Chuck, but this week on the 100th edition of RAMPAGE, they are going to run it back as a Four-on-Four fight, hoping the outcome will turn out a little different. While The United Empire will be adding Swerve Strickland to their numbers on Friday night, the members of CHAOS will welcome one of their own for his first AEW appearance. He is a former protege of Rocky Romero’s in Roppongi 3K, a 5-Time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Champion with SHO, a former NEVER Openweight Six-Man Champion with Hirooki Goto and YOSHI-HASHI, and 4-Time winner of the Super Junior Tag Tournament (3 with SHO, 1 with Lio Rush). He is YOH, and he is coming to All Elite Wrestling to help his CHAOS unit get one back over The United Empire!
Will YOH be a deciding factor that gives Rocky, Trent, and Chuckie T the boost they need to redeem their loss from last Friday night? Or will he be just another name added to The UE’s list of victims in All Elite Wrestling?
ADAM COLE AND MJF…
It was announced that AEW would host a Blind Eliminator Tournament with a shot at the AEW World Tag Team Championship as the prize for the victors; the key factor here though was that the partners would be drawn at random, and would remain unknown until the brackets were announced. Well Tony Schiavone and RJ City drew the first two names on Wednesday night, but instead of keeping it under wraps, Schiavone let the cat out of the bag that AEW World Champion MJF and Adam Cole would be forced into an alliance for this tournament!
Obviously this isn’t ideal for either man, but Cole at least took advantage of the opportunity to chide Maxwell about his refusal to fight Hiroshi Tanahashi at FORBIDDEN DOOR 2023, shaming the champ into actually showing up for the fight, just as he shamed him into fighting Cole in the first place last week in D.C. So with the knowledge that they’ve got to survive as partners in this Blind Eliminator Tournament, both Adam Cole and the AEW World Champion will be on hand this Friday night for RAMPAGE.
What truly makes his a historical occasion is that after 99 editions of AEW’s Friday night fights, episode 100 will be the very first time that Maxwell Jacob Friedman actually appears on RAMPAGE! He’s been on DYNAMITE countless times, fought on numerous pay-per-views, even appeared on the HOUSE ALWAYS WINS event in 2021, but not once has he “graced” the RAMPAGE ring with his presence (nor did he ever show up for a DARK, ELEVATION, or BATTLE OF THE BELTS either).
So what is bringing him to RAMPAGE this Friday? Why is Max choosing to “slum it”, as he no doubt considers anything but PPV or DYNAMITE to be? Does it have anything to do with Cole’s appearance that was previously announced? Tune into TNT beginning at 10pm ET to find out what The Devil has up his sleeve!
With FORBIDDEN DOOR 2023 just two days away, and the second edition of COLLISION tomorrow night, this is undoubtedly one of the most loaded weeks in AEW’s history, and it continues with RAMPAGE this Friday night! The bouts begin at 10:00pm ET/9:00pm CT, as well as at AEWPlus.com for AEW’s international fans, and feature the first match in the 2023 Owen Hart Foundation Women’s Tournament, Jungle Boy colliding with Douki from Just 5 Guys, The Acclaimed and Daddy Ass in the house, apparently MJF’s first RAMPAGE appearance, and so much more!
Before the show begins, make a point to visit the official AEW YouTube channel for highlights from this week’s episode of DYNAMITE, as well as the latest editions of ROAD TO, THE CONTROL CENTER, and much, much more!
Article source: allelitewrestling.com