Before the premiere episode of AEW Rampage aired last year, Tony Khan made the following promise about AEW’s third hour of weekly television:
“I promise Rampage isn’t going to be a secondary show. Rampage is going to be the partner of Dynamite, the equivalent to Dynamite.”
CM Punk’s return to pro wrestling was perhaps the biggest pro wrestling story of 2021, and it happened on the second ever episode of Rampage. It was a strong sign that Khan was trying to deliver on his word that Rampage isn’t a B-show like WCW Thunder.
Fast forward almost one year later, and this is the lineup of matches AEW has advertised for tomorrow night’s (July 29) Rampage:
- Matt Sydal vs. Lee Moriarty
- Orange Cassidy & Best Friends vs. Jay Lethal, Satnam Singh & Sonjay Dutt
- Leon Ruffin vs. Ethan Page
- Ruby Soho vs. Anna Jay
We can debate about the star power of wrestlers like Orange Cassidy, Ruby Soho, and Jay Lethal, and whether or not this lineup is worthy of a “B-show” classification. However, I don’t see how this lineup is equivalent to Dynamite.
Maybe Tony Khan agrees, because he later added new ROH World Champion Claudio Castagnoli to the card.
Saturday @ #ROH's Death Before Dishonor, @ClaudioCSRO captured his first singles World Title when he won the #ROH World Championship. This Friday night on #AEWRampage: #FightForTheFallen we'll hear from *NEW* ROH World Champ Claudio Castagnoli @ 10pm ET / 9pm CT & 10pm PT on TNT! pic.twitter.com/H1WTt1oNKK— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) July 28, 2022
Claudio will address the fans, who will likely gush over him finally winning the big one on pay-per-view over unhappy Jonathan Gresham last weekend. And if you can’t wait until tomorrow night at 10 pm ET to find out what happens, you can always read the Rampage spoilers right here.
Almost one year later, do you think AEW Rampage has lost its luster? Or is Khan correct when he says the show is roughly equivalent to Dynamite? Let us know in the comments below, Cagesiders.