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AEW Rampage recap & reactions (Feb. 2, 2024): Forbidden Door satisfaction

AEW Rampage (Feb. 2, 2024) emanated from UNO Lakefront Arena in New Orleans, LA. The show featured CMLL luchadores showcasing their skills, Sammy Guevara with a focused mission, and more.

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

Excalibur and Tony Schiavone were on commentary. Justin Roberts handled ring announcer duties.

Private Party vs. Top Flight

Action Andretti was on the outside to prevent funny business, and his presence paid off to disrupt Marq Quen grabbing the ropes on a roll-up, exactly how Quen won the first match. Private Party kept focused for a Silly String to Dante Martin. Quen landed a shooting star press, but Darius Martin broke the pin with a jumping stomp.

Top Flight took control through divide and conquer. Darius eliminated Isiah Kassidy from the action with a suicide dive. Top Flight double-teamed Quen, and Dante finished with a half nelson swinging slam. Afterward, Top Flight offered a handshake of respect. Private Party responded by patting Top Flight’s heads like little children. Commentary brought up the idea of a rubber match in the future.

Top Flight defeated Private Party.

Sammy Guevara is medically cleared to compete. His target is Will Hobbs for robbing the tag team titles from him, which in turn would have provided a better life for his daughter from increased monetary opportunities as champion. For that reason, Sammy declared that his fight with Hobbs is personal. He won’t be waiting for a match though. Sammy teased attacking Hobbs anytime anywhere.

Jay Lethal was ready to lead team practice, but nobody wanted to participate. Lethal called it off, then Jeff Jarrett exploded with anger. Jarrett stated that Lethal is the problem on the team, because he is too nice. They were brought together as ruthless sons of bitches. Lethal needs to get that edge back.

Ricky Starks & Big Bill Morrissey vs. Dark Order

Tag team title eliminator match. Dark Order earns a future shot if they win. Darby Allin was seated on commentary, but he had no role in the match. Dark Order bum-rushed Starks for early control. Hot tag to Bill cleaning house. Dark Order used speedy teamwork to drop the giant. Bill rebounded for a Boss Man Slam. Tag to Starks to style and profile in front of his home crowd. Absolute speared trifling Evil Uno on the floor. He fought off John Silver to finish with the Roshambo.

Ricky Starks & Big Bill Morrissey defeated Dark Order.

Will Hobbs laughed off the threats from Sammy Guevara. The big man warned that Sammy better hope he doesn’t see him first.

Willow Nightingale vs. Queen Aminata

Kris Statlander and Stooley Hathaway were ringside to cheer for Willow. Competitive bout. Willow gained control in the end when she dodged a running hip attack from Aminata. Willow hit a cannonball in the corner, a Death Valley Driver, and a Doctor Bomb to win. Willow paid respect to the queen afterward. Stooley reluctantly joined his team for boogie woogie dance moves in celebration of victory.

Willow Nightingale defeated Queen Aminata.

Roderick Strong interrupted Orange Cassidy’s time. Adam Cole mocked Chuck Taylor being injured, then he proposed a trios match for next week.

The Outcasts approached Willow Nightingale. Harley Cameron bit Stokely Hathaway. Big Stoke stood up to protect Willow by saying only he can insult her. Kris Statlander proposed a tag team bout for next week.

Enough talk. It’s time for the main event.


The sides were Daddy Magic, Cool Hand Ang, Christopher Daniels, and Matt Sydal against Mistico, Hechicero, Volador Jr., and Mascara Dorada. The luchadores rocked the ring with a quick pace to start. The AEW squad focused on grinding Mascara Dorada to take control. Hot tag to Hechicero. The match broke down into moves all around. Volador Jr. landed a suicide dive on Cool Hand, Mistico hit a flying crossbody on Daddy Magic, and Mascara Dorada leaped for a corkscrew dive onto Sydal. Hechicero trapped Daniels in a precarious position to roll around the ring for a roll-up victory.

CMLL defeated AEW.

Grade: B-

Good action all across the card. There wasn’t much mystery about the results. The promos were a delight. This episode falls into that realm of easy satisfaction if you watched, but you wouldn’t have missed much if you skipped out.

The main event displayed a sweet lucha libre showcase for the CMLL talent. All those flips were hot. It gave just a taste of what they can offer when rolling solo. If Daddy Magic wasn’t on the other team, I bet the CMLL performance would have made his nipples hard. There wasn’t much drama in this bout, and that was to be expected. The purpose was to hype their future appearances on AEW television. Mission accomplished. You got to love how AEW utilizes the Forbidden Door concept to dish out special treats from time to time. I know I do.

Top Flight and Private Party put on a nice rematch to set up round three. The Martin brothers were scrappy. They took this fight personal to make a statement. I like how when Top Flight hits moves they connect with extra oomph. They drive home the impact. Private Party wrestled hard, but they were also clowning around at times. There is an angle to say they overlooked Top Flight, however, their behavior could also be viewed as natural for their characters. The rubber match should be entertaining.

Ricky Starks and Big Bill Morrissey handled business. The result was never in doubt as they prepare to defend the tag team titles against Sting and Darby Allin. This match was effectively a warm-up to stay loose.

Willow Nightingale and Queen Aminata wrestled a solid outing. Aminata made a costly mistake, and that’s all it took for Willow to seize victory. It is amusing to see Stokely Hathaway slowly warming up to Willow, even if it is unintentional. Also, Harley Cameron is a lunatic, and it brings me great laughs.

Sammy Guevara provided purpose for his next feud. He was already going against the Callis Family, but now Will Hobbs is singled out. Hobbs rightly reacted without fear. Sammy is a sneaky one. I’m looking forward to seeing how he attacks out of nowhere. The possibilities are endless. Jeff Jarrett brought the fire getting down to the problem with Jay Lethal. I like how this storyline has been slowly developing Lethal’s drama to move him past going winless in the Continental Classic. Renee Paquette was a hoot channeling Orange Cassidy’s lackadaisical energy.

Share your thoughts about Rampage. How do you rate it? What were your favorite moments from the show?

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