AEW Rampage Recap and Comments (April 22, 2022): Jade 30-0

AEW rampage (April 22, 2022) from Petersen Events Center in Pittsburgh, PA. The show featured Jade Cargill defending the TBS Championship, Adam Cole cheating to qualify for the Owen Hart tournament, and Hook threatening Danhausen.

Let’s start right off with a recap of the show, followed by reactions.

Excalibur, Taz and Ricky Starks commented. Justin Roberts fulfilled the duties of the ring announcer.

Owen Hart Tournament Qualifier: Adam Cole vs. Tomohiro Ishiic

Orange Cassidy and Rocky Romero were ringside. The story was that Cole underestimated Ishii’s ability to absorb attacks. Several times Cole thought he was ahead, but then Ishii took the strength to hit back. Ishii’s big moves were a power slam and superplex. Cole relied on variations of neck breakers as his ace in the hole. Ishii nearly scored the win on a sliding lasso, but Cole kicked out on the cover. Finally, “Switchblade” Jay White ran down to punch Romero in the ring staircase. That distraction opened the window for Cole to hit Ishii with a low blow. Cole lowered the boom to win.

Adam Cole defeated Tomohiro Ishii.

Security blocked the Jericho Appreciation Society from entering the building, under the stipulation of a ban for Daniel Garcia vs. Eddie Kingston. Garcia was convinced he didn’t need reinforcements.

Hook walked in and saw Danhausen breaking chips across the floor. Hook shoved the gremlin against the wall. ‘You wanted my attention? You have it now.” Hook got out and Danhausen was terrified.

Lance Archer vs. serpetico

Shawn Spears was on commentary to hype Archer against Wardlow Dynamite† The Murderhawk monster dominated his opponent. Blackout deserved the win.

Lancer Archer defeated Serpentico.

Afterward, Archer mocked the powerbomb symphony by waving his hands for multiple chokeslams at Serpentico.

Mark Sterling will take Tony Nese straight to the top. Sterling lines them up and Nese turns off their lights.

Daniel Garcia vs. Eddie Kingston

Garcia and Kingston engage in a gritty battle. Kingston overwhelmed the action early on, after which Garcia used a stick and move strategy to take Kingston apart. Whatever Garcia threw at him, Kingston had a heavy blow at the ready. Ultimately, Kingston relied on an eye prick to set up suplex and explode. A spinning backfist sealed the deal.

Eddie Kingston defeated Daniel Garcia.

After the game, Kingston was due to belt Garcia, but he decided to spare the young man as a message of what’s to come for Chris Jericho.

Keith Lee wants to destroy Team Taz. Swerve Strickland said there will be payback in the blood. Go to the commentary table with Ricky Starks assisted by Will Hobbs. Starks has a check to cash Lee and Swerve.

Toni Storm was dismissive of Dr. Britt Baker DMD and Jamie Hayter.

Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler want to wrestle each other in a qualifying tournament to respect Owen Hart. It will be physical and it will get heated.

Mark Henry interviewed the main event participants. Jade Cargill wasn’t worried about Marina Shafir. She was already planning the victory party. Shafir didn’t care about Jade’s plans. Enough talk. Henry concluded with, “It’s time for the main event!”

TBS Championship: Jade Cargill (c) vs. Marina Shafiro

Cargill was brash as a superior athlete, so Shafir got to work with leg kicks. Jade had some trouble with a guillotine choke, but she used a powerful blow to escape. Jade took the lead with suplexes until Shafir locked himself in a knee bar. Jade reached the ropes before the break.

On the outside, Shafir threw Mark Sterling to the ground.

Shafir was distracted by the Baddies and ate a pump kick from Cargill. Jade followed by choking Shafir and hitting the timekeeper’s table. In the ring, Cargill pinned Shafir with one foot to the chest and a biceps flex. Shafir grabbed Jade’s leg as he worked for a submission. Jade kicked Shafir several times in the face as he tried to break free. Shafir wouldn’t let go of her grip and screamed passionately at the champion. Jade continued up the stairs, eventually hitting Shafir loopy. Jade finished with Jaded to preserve gold.

Jade Cargill defeated Marina Shafir.

Money exploded from the corners and balloons fell from the ceiling in honor of Jade’s 30-0 record.

The main event between Jade Cargill and Marina Shafir was good enough considering their level of experience. The story was told through attitude and wrestling style to provide interesting moments. I like that Shafir brings a touch of realism with leg kicks and submissions. Her game plan was exactly what you would expect from a wrestler with her skills. Jade showed strength and personality.

One thing I would like to see Jade improve on is her second gear emotion. Shafir had a tough outburst towards the end as he screamed defiantly. Jade didn’t really change her facial expression or visually increase her level of aggression. She stayed cool under pressure. I don’t know if that was by design or not.

Eddie Kingston and Daniel Garcia put on a slobber-knocker in their own way. Garcia brought the strategy and technical skill, while Kingston brought the heart and tenacity. This was the most exciting match of the show.

Kingston’s sloppy physical presentation detracts from the story. To say the least, his stomach was hanging out and his pants were sagging. The reason I bring this up is because comments often pointed to Kingston’s cardio problems. It doesn’t please Garcia when he can’t beat an out-of-form club fighter. It also puts a ceiling on Kingston’s greatness. How am I supposed to buy him as a potential top executive if he accelerates during competitions? That’s what I mean in the story. In reality, Kingston seemed good enough to wrestle the match as intended.

I have a decision on Adam Cole. He is a first class jabrone. That is not a reflection of his skills. It’s more of an indictment of how AEW handles its match. This was Cole’s chance to refresh after losing the world title feud to Hangman Page. What do we get? Cole relies on outside interference to cheat. Same old sloppy jaloppy, and it’s dull as a finish. That definitely doesn’t make me interested in seeing Cole fight again.

As for the match, credit to Cole for playing his part perfectly as a grubby jerk who puts on Ishii’s fiery comebacks. It was really nice to see Ishii power chop Cole. It worked well because of the way Cole acts and reacts.

The scene with Hook and Danhausen brought the laughter. The way Hook leaned over and licked his lips had a strange air. I thought there was a chance he would kiss Danhausen. Hook does have a smooth voice. I can imagine him doing a sultry rap for the slow jam album Team Taz R&B.

Grade B-

Maybe I was just in a tired mood, but I didn’t feel this show. It seemed like a lot of things that didn’t amount to much. On the plus side, the effort to entertain was as good as ever. If there’s only one thing to watch from this episode, I’d pick FTR’s mini promo.

Share your opinion about rampage† How do you rate it? Who stole the show?

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