AEW Rampage Preview For January 27, 2023
It was an extremely emotional night this past Wednesday when, in the main event of DYNAMITE, Jay Lethal and Mark Briscoe paid tribute to Mark's recently departed brother Jay Briscoe on what would've been his 39th birthday. Mark, wearing both his ROH World Tag Team Championship title and carrying his brother's, defeated Lethal for the very first time using his brother's signature Jay Driller, and there was not a dry eye to be found anywhere in the house. It was as emotionally raw as a professional wrestling match gets, and in the end, no matter the outcome, it was about Lethal and the younger Briscoe showing their love to Jay for all he meant to the world.
As for the rest of the evening, Brian Cage did his best to fulfill his obligations to MJF despite losing the battle with Bryan Danielson, “The Machine” doing the AEW World Champion's dirty work for him and injuring Danielson's arm ahead of his potential REVOLUTION 2023 clash with MJF.
In addition, after retaining this TNT Championship in a top-shelf clash with Buddy Matthews, Darby Allin was confronted via video by Samoa Joe, the man Darby defeated to become a 2-Time champion, and put on notice that the self-proclaimed “King of Television” wasn't done with him yet. Plus, The Acclaimed and The Gunns made a mess of their family therapy session, Ruby Soho topped Toni Storm in their first-ever singles match, and The J.A.S. bested Andretti & Starks in tag team action!
The excitement continues on Friday night as RAMPAGE kicks off at 10pm ET/9pm CT on TNT, as well as at AEWPlus.com for our international fans! And prior to the night's festivities, be sure to swing by the official AEW YouTube channel to catch up on the week's action with DYNAMITE highlights, as well as the latest episodes of AEW DARK: ELEVATION, AEW DARK, and the CONTROL CENTER with Tony Schiavone!
Adam Page vs.Wheeler Yuta
“Hangman” Adam Page and Jon Moxley are now 1-1 in their head-to-head collisions, and in the fighting world that means a rubber match needs to take place, and clearly Hangman is looking for it to go down in Dayton, OH next week. He wants to beat Mox a second time, this one in Jon's home state, just an hour from the 3-Time former AEW World Champion's Cincinnati home, but that will have to wait.
This Friday night on RAMPAGE, Hangman will have to contend with another member of The Blackpool Combat Club before he can get his hands on Mox: the 2-Time ROH Pure Champion Wheeler Yuta! Already a strong grappler, the growth of Yuta under the banner of The BCC has been exponential, but even before that, the wars he went through with Jon Moxley, with Bryan Danielson, with PAC, they all helped hone Yuta into a fearsome competitor who now thrives in the violence, isn't bothered by the bloodshed, and at times has come to crave it as much as his counterparts in The BCC.
In Yuta, Hangman Page is going to find an opponent who has become almost as willing as Moxley to get violent with his opponents, but also more than capable of breaking a foe down with technical precision. It's going to be a tremendous collision on TNT that opens up the night this Friday, can Yuta take down Hangman on behalf of his BCC brother?
TRIOS GRUDGE MATCH...
Jay Lethal, Jeff Jarrett, & Satnam Singh (w/ Sonjay Dutt)
vs. The Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent Beretta) and Danhausen (w/ Orange Cassidy)
The issues Jay Lethal's contingent have with The Best Friends, Orange Cassidy, and Danhausen have been going on for weeks now, and led to multiple bouts between the assorted members. Most recently, Jay Lethal attempted to take the All-Atlantic Championship from Orange Cassidy, but came up short in his bid when AEW was in Fresno.
This Friday night that rivalry will see a new chapter unfold when the two sides meet in Trios competition, and it will be the first-time either unit has competed together! Clearly Lethal, Satnam, and Jarrett are operating on the same page, nefarious as it may be, but are Danhausen and The Best Friends? They had their fair share of tension stemming from Beretta's All-Atlantic Championship challenge against Orange Cassidy at the end of 2022, but it feels like those have been smoothed out over the course of the last month. Is that actually the case or just appearances?
And then there is Satnam Singh; the biggest human in All Elite Wrestling by far, for that matter he's one of the biggest men to ever enter a professional wrestling ring. How does someone even deal with that monster of a man standing across the ring from you? Be it one, two, or three men trying to take him down, his size makes it a near impossibility to put Singh on his back for a pinfall! We may have two first-time trios here, but one side having Satnam on theirs certainly sways the favor in one direction; which nascent trio will find their success this Friday night on TNT?
OPEN THE BOOK...
Powerhouse Hobbs in action!
The Book of Hobbs continues to be opened up one chapter at a time, with both Vinny Pacifico and Jaiden ending up on the painful end of the its reading. This week on RAMPAGE, Powerhouse Hobbs will introduce another foe to another chapter in his Book, and the rest of All Elite Wrestling better be paying attention to what's in-store for their future should they choose to open the book.
AEW WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATOR MATCH...
AEW Women's World Champion Jamie Hayter vs. Emi Sakura
Four years ago, under the banner of the Pro Wrestling: EVE promotion in England, Jamie Hayter and Emi Sakura collided for the very first time. At that moment, Hayter's career was barely four years old and while she'd wrestled quite a bit during those years, she had nothing on the twenty-four years of experience Sakura had under her belt at that point. After 16 minutes of combat, Sakura defeated Hayter, but the younger competitor certainly demonstrated to Sakura she was a force to be reckoned with.
Perhaps that's why, just a few months later when Emi was in pursuit of an AEW Women's World Championship at FULL GEAR 2019, she teamed with Hayter to fight then-champion Riho and her partner Shanna. Clearly it was a smart choice because Emi and Jamie were victorious in that tag team battle, leading to Sakura's unsuccessful championship bid against Riho just a few days later.
Fast forward to 2023 and the current landscape of All Elite Wrestling where Jamie Hayter has been embraced by the fans as a result of her hard work since returning to AEW in 2021 at the side of Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. While that relationship has had its tense moments, ultimately it has been a boon to both women's careers, and certainly played a part in Hayter's road to becoming the AEW Women's World Champion at FULL GEAR 2022.
As for Emi Sakura, since returning to the AEW landscape in the fall of 2021 she has been one of the most prolific performers in the entire company, be it in the men's or women's locker room, competing in the majority of her 87 matches since August 2021. She's done it in singles matches, tag team bouts, mixed tags, and trios bouts. She's shown a willingness to have some fun at her opponent's (and sometimes a referee) expense by having some tea time, but fans have also seen her mean streak come out.
So this Friday on RAMPAGE, Emi Sakura will have a huge opportunity when she meets Jamie Hayter in a Women's World Title Eliminator Match, meaning a victory over the champion will earn the 27-year veteran another chance to become the top women in All Elite Wrestling. A repeat of her success in 2019 will bring Emi a World Championship match, but this is not the same Hayter she faced in England, not in all the ways that count once the bell rings. Jamie Hayter is now the woman who has climbed to the top of the ladder in the best women's locker room in all of professional wrestling, she is now the measuring stick, and Sakura is going to have to fight with every bit of experience she's earned to stop the momentum Hayter has built.
As much as it's about Emi earning her shot, it's also about Jamie Hayter proving to Emi how far she's come since that first meeting in 2019. This one is going to hit hard!
RAMPAGE hits the airwaves at 10pm ET/9pm CT on TNT, as well as at AEWPlus.com and includes an AEW Women's World Title Eliminator fight between Jamie Hayter and Emi Sakura, Powerhouse Hobbs in action, Adam Page clashing with Wheeler Yuta, and Trios action between the Lethal Contingent and The Best Friends with Danhausen!! And before we get started, visit the official AEW YouTube channel to get ready for it all courtesty of DYNAMITE highlights, as well as the latest episodes of AEW DARK: ELEVATION, AEW DARK, ROAD TO..., and the CONTROL CENTER with Tony Schiavone!