AEW Rampage live results: El Hijo del Vikingo, Zack Sabre Jr. title defenses

July 2, 2023 0 By JohnValbyNation

Tonight's special "Championship Friday" edition of AEW Rampage will feature four title matches from three different promotions — none of which are AEW.

AAA Mega Champion El Hijo del Vikingo will look to extend his 500+ day reign as titleholder as he defends against Komander and Dralistico in a three-way. This will be Vikingo's fifth match in AEW.

Fresh off another title defense on ROH TV, inaugural NJPW TV Champion Zack Sabre Jr. will defend his gold against Action Andretti. Sabre Jr. bested Rocky Romero Thursday as his recent run in ROH continues.

Inaugural NJPW Strong Women's Champion Willow Nightingale will have her first title defense as she takes on Emi Sakura. Nightingale won the title by defeating Mercedes Mone last month in a tournament.

After his successful defense against Alex Coughlin on Thursday, ROH Pure Champion Katsuyori Shibata will look to fend off the title challenge of Lee Moriarty and earn his third title defense.


Taped in San Diego, California. Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone and Excalibur were on commentary for “Championship Friday!”

El Hijo del Vikingo vs. Komander defeated Dralistico (w/ Jose the Assistant) to retain the AAA Mega Championship (10:07).

Vikingo’s 500 days into his title reign, or halfway into a ridiculous celebration and his cousins turning on him. Dralistico got the first near fall of the match with a slingshot senton. The crowd was very into this match. Komander got hung up in the ropes, and Dralistico took him out with a double stomp. Vikingo then flew into the action with a moonsault to the floor, which popped the crowd. Vikingo hit an implosion hurricanrana, then followed up with a Phoenix Splash (started outside of the ring and facing the wrong way, no big deal). JR is so impressed with the action he will give the winner a barbeque sauce. He should throw in his seasoning, too. That stuff is great. 

During the split-screen break, Jose helped Dralistico set up a table on the floor. Well, Jose is an assistant.

After the break, Dralistico and Komander worked in the ring while Vikingo hid on the floor, continuing the pattern of two guys working in the ring while the third hid. Komander tried a crazy springboard hurricanrana, but it didn’t really work. Dralistico took a bump to the floor anyway. Komander followed his opponents out ot the floor with a rope walk moonsault to the floor. Badk in the ring, Komander hit a rope walk 450 for a near fall. Vikingo took Komander down with an inverted hurricanrana, then put him through the table with a 630 springboard senton.

Back in the ring, Vikingo countered a powerbomb from Dralistico with a hurricanrana and a cradle and got the pinfall.

Spectacular insanity. 

– Let’s go back to January when Aubrey Edwards made some fair calls that didn’t go Jeff Jarrett’s way. And then six months later, Karen Jarrett kept  Aubrey Edwards from doing the same thing at Double or Nothing by thwacking her with a guitar. Backstage, Mark Briscoe and Aubrey Edwards attacked Jarrett and his crew in the middle of an interview with Lexi Nair. 

Zack Sabre Jr. defeated Action Andretti to retain the NJPW Television Championship (10:15)

Crowd was behind Sabre. Andretti tried to hang with Sabre, but he was very clearly out of his depth on the mat. Sabre got a wristlock on Andretti, who tried four different escapes before one finally worked. Andretti hit a springboard tornio for a near fall, then sent Sabre to the floor with a springboard hurricanrana. Sabre tied up Andretti in the ropes with an armbar, then sent Andretti down to the mat by yanking down on his arm. Sabre continued to work over Andretti’s arm and leveled him with forearms in the corner. Sabre locked in a hammerlock and a body scissors, but Andretti was able to power Sable over with a suplex.

Andretti hit a springboard kick for a near fall. Sabre caught Andretti with a kick to the arm to regain the advantage. Andretti hit a jumping enziguri and an avalanche hurricanrana for a near fall. Andretti picked up Sabre in a torture rack, but Sabre countered by grabbing him in a choke. Andretti hit a superkick and a poisoned rana for a near fall. Andretti hit a shotgun dropkick and a spit-legged moonsault for a near fall. Andretti came off the ropes with a springboard, but Sabre yanked him out of the air with an armbar, then tied both of Andretti’s arms up with his legs and got the submission. Great match! 

Willow Nightingale defeated Emi Sakura to retain the NJPW Strong Women’s Championship (8:00 aired)

JR wished Mercedes Mone a speedy recovery on commentary. Both women fought over a suplex on the ring apron, but Sakrua used an eye poke to get the advantage. She sent Nightingale to the floor with a crossbody, then threw her into the barricade as the show went to break.

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After the break, Nightingale hit a shotgun dropkick off the middle rope for a near fall. Sakura hit a CrossRhodes variation for a near fall, then a twisting senton for a near fall. Nightingale hit a low crossbody for a near fall. Sakura tried for La Magistral’s cradle, but Nightingale powered out. Sakura hit a sitout Jay Driller, but Nightingale came back with a pounce and a cannonball. Nightingale finished off Sakura with a lariat and an awesome Doctor Bomb to get the pinfall. The crowd was very into this match as well. 

– New for Dynamite Wednesday: MJF makes an appearance, and Jungle Boy & Hook take on Dralistico & Preston Vance in a Texas Tornado match.

– The next Ring of Honor pay-per-view, Death Before Dishonor, was announced for July 21st in Trenton, New Jersey. 

Katsuyori Shibata defeated Lee Moriarty to retain the ROH Pure Championship (9:09).

The pure rules: a 20-count outside the ring, each competitor gets 3 rope breaks, and no closed fist strikes. 

Periodically a timer is shown on the screen. It's barely a minute into the match before Moriarty had to use his first rope break. Moriarty caught Shibata with a dropkick to the knee. Moriarty worked over Shibata's knee during the split screen break. 

After the break, Shibata had Moriarty locked in a figure-four, and Moriarty had to use his second rope break. Shibata hit a diving dropkick in the corner on Moriarty, then suplexed him out of the corner for a near fall. Moriarty used his third rope break (I don't think he meant to), but then locked in the Border City Stretch. Shibata countered with a cradle, then ran into a forearm. Shibata locked Moriarty in a sleeper. Moriarty faded, and Shibata finished him off with a PK kick for the pinfall. 

After the match, Daniel Garcia came to the ring and stood face-to-face with Shibata, who held his Pure Championship belt up for the crowd. 

Final Thoughts: 

This show was excellent in the ring and the crowd was into every match.