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AEW Rampage recap & reactions (Nov. 19, 2021): Billy Gunn still BA

AEW Rampage (Nov. 19, 2021) emanated from the Chartway Arena in Norfolk, VA. The show featured Billy Gunn ragdolling Darby Allin, Jade Cargill and Red Velvet in a firefight, as well as Jungle Boy being a thorn to the SuperKliq once again.

Let’s jump right in with a recap of the show followed by reactions.

Excalibur, Taz, Chris Jericho, and Ricky Starks were on commentary. Justin Roberts handled ring announcer duties.

Darby Allin vs. Billy Gunn

It’s Sting! The Icon was ringside opposite Gunn sons Austin and Colten. Papa Billy took advantage of the size difference to toss Allin around like a child, especially on a super high back body drop.

Whenever Allin fired up, Billy didn’t fall for the usual routine. For example, Billy sidestepped a suicide dive to shove Allin crashing into the guardrail.

Down the stretch, Allin picked up momentum then did a Coffin Drop to the outside onto the Gunn sons. They were completely innocent as spectators, unlike Sting trying to intimidate Billy as a distraction to buy Allin recovery time. Billy regained control to rub it in with a Stinger splash. Allin dodged to hit an over-the-top stunner. He followed with a Code Red and Coffin Drop. Billy pressed Allin off him on the cover at the count of one, so Allin came back with another Coffin Drop to seal the deal.

Darby Allin defeated Billy Gunn.

Afterward, the Gunn sons pulled Sting off the apron and put the boots to Allin. Sting rallied with fire to eject his younger adversaries. Seasoned vet Billy turned the tables by clipping Sting’s knee. Billy laid in measured punches leaving Sting and Allin down on the mat.

QT Marshall issued a challenge to CM Punk for a match on Dynamite in Chicago. QT joked about putting Punk to sleep in his hometown.

Men of the Year sarcastically congratulated the Inner Circle for their street fight win at Full Gear. This beef isn’t over, and it’s not the last we’ve seen of American Top Team.

TBS Championship tournament: Jade Cargill vs. Red Velvet

The quarterfinals matchup kicked off with rowdy fisticuffs. Velvet used speed to pick her spots, but Cargill was too strong. Jade controlled the pace for much of the bout. Velvet would storm back only to be put down again from a power move. Velvet ran for a suicide dive, so Cargill clubbed her in the face. Cargill followed with a flatliner on the apron.

The intensity increased even hotter for a riveting finish. Velvet charged forward, but Jade leaped up over her opponent. A pump kick connected to Velvet. As Cargill picked Velvet up for her Jaded finisher, Velvet pushed off the ropes with her feet for a pinning maneuver. When Jade escaped, Velvet connected on a spear. Cargill kicked out on the cover. Cargill ducked the Final Slice to counter for Jaded to win.

Jade Cargill defeated Red Velvet.

Thunder Rosa will beat Britt Baker’s stooge in the TBS Championship tournament on Dynamite. Thunder Rosa plans to give Jamie Hayter an ass-kicking to remember.

CM Punk accepted QT’s call to arms. He believes QT bit off more than he can chew and will be shown up as a turkey the night before Thanksgiving on Dynamite.

Mark Henry interviewed the main event participants. Adam Cole is going to put an end to the charade of Jurassic Express. Christian Cage warned the Young Bucks not to interfere or else he’ll even the odds with a steel chair. The time for talk was over. Henry closed with, “It’s time for the main event!”

Adam Cole & Bobby Fish vs. Jurassic Express

Cole, Fish, and Jungle Boy worked most of the action leading to Luchasaurus running wild on a hot tag.

As the match progressed, Jurassic Express had the upper hand when Cole’s attempt at a Panama Sunrise on JB was countered into a powerbomb by the dino. Jungle Boy followed with a running elbow strike to the back of the head. Fish made the save on the pinfall. After JB nailed Fish with an overhead belly-to-belly suplex into the corner, the Bucks sauntered out on stage. Christian kept his word and chased them with a chair. Cole skedaddled alongside the Jackson brothers to leave Fish ripe for the picking. Jungle Boy locked in the Snare Trap submission for victory.

Jurassic Express defeated Adam Cole & Bobby Fish.

It’s official. Billy Gunn is still a badass. Oh, you didn’t know? You better call somebody. If you’re not down with that, then I’ve got two words for you. Icon Sting. Wait. Darby Allin. That’s not right either. Anyway, Billy was tons of fun with his performance by throwing Allin around in creative ways. Credit to Allin for taking the bumps. He has a knack for crashing to create delightful visuals. AEW is great at using legends. Billy has been on TV sparingly and he always leave me wanting more. They also served up a little dose of Stinger getting physical.

It was surprising to see the Gunn Club stand tall in the end, so perhaps this feud will carry on. Being that there are three Gunns, I wonder if Paul Wight will join up with Sting and Allin as revenge for Gunn’s heel turn a few weeks back. Or maybe the Gunn Club works the handicap advantage. It’s not like Austin and Colten are on the same level as Sting and Allin.

The women brought the thunder with Red Velvet as a spunky spitfire and Jade Cargill as an amazon powerhouse. The wrestling wasn’t the smoothest, but it darn sure was entertaining. The intensity and aggression fit the feud. It was nice seeing Cargill in a longer match. She widened her arsenal for a variety of slams and added sizzle by doing pushups in the ring. Velvet was cool with her speed to create openings for offense. These two work well enough together to be career rivals.

The main event offered plenty of rocking moments. Luchasaurus was over like rover with the crowd. I guess Virginia is for dinosaur lovers. The contest was peaking toward excellence, then it took a terrible nosedive when the Young Bucks showed up. The finish was cheap with Cole retreating to leave Fish alone. It was an unsatisfying wimpy cliche. After the match, everyone stood around with low energy for the closing minute.

Grade: B

Rampage lived up to its reputation for solid bouts. Get in, fight, get out.

Share your thoughts about Rampage. How do you rate it? Who stole the show?

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