or the first time ever SmackDown was scheduled to go head to head with Rampage tonight, at least for Rampage’s first thirty minutes. Never one to pass up a battle of pettiness, wrestling’s McCoy fired a retalitory shot at Hatfield by going live at 9 p.m. EST with the Rampage “Buy In” So I’m left with two hours of Rampage to rank tonight so let’s get to it!
Honorable Mention: Minoru Suzuki: The 53 year old more than held his own against maybe the best bell to bell guy in the world today. You can see Suzuki is having a blast on his latest U.S. tour and I hope he sticks around a bit longer.
5: Ruby Soho: She continued to rebound from the Baker loss a few weeks ago by adding another win to her resume, this time by beating The Bunny without a lot of trouble.
4: Bobby Fish: The least exciting member of the former Undisputed Era continued to improve his stock with another solid, albeit surprisingly short match with rising phenom Lee Moriarty. This was the technical and strike based match you’d expect from these two while it lasted and Fish ultimately won with a kick to set-up (by the time you’re reading this) tonight’s night’s clash on Dynamite and he gave us a reason to at least think he can hold his own in that match.
3: The Men of the Year and American Top Team: We went off the air with Santana & Ortiz making the save and the full Inner Circle in the ring together for the first time in a little while. However the damage had already been done as Scorpio Sky was able to roll up Jericho after Jorge Masvidal landed his super necessary knee to the Fozzy frontman while Sky was locked in the Lion Tamer. Dos Santos didn’t do a lot but he did take a table bump off a uranage from Hager. ATT on a whole gets credit here because Lambert is my favorite manager on the mic today, Paige VanZant gloating in the ring taking selfies with a beaten down Inner Circle always makes me laugh and they wouldn’t have gotten the win without the help of “Street Jesus” himself.
2: C.M. Punk: It amazes me that this is already Punk’s fourth match in AEW and this was another solid one. Not as good as the Darby or Daniel Garcia matches to me but on par, if not better, than his clash with Hobbs. The best part of this was the fact AEW managed to get footage of a previous meeting between Punk and Sydal from IWA Mid-South to show during The Buy In. The finish here came with a nice looking counter as Punk stopped Sydal’s crucifix attempt and nailed a GTS to improve to 4-0 in All Elite Wrestling.
1: Bryan Danielson: Every match The American Dragon has had in AEW thus far feels like the final match in “The Wrestler” I’m waiting for the screen to fade to black before the pin because I’m never totally sure if he’s going to make it to the final bell but somehow he does. This was no different. It didn’t quite hit the highs of yesterday’s classic with A-Kid and Ilja Dragunov but considering Suzuki is older than both of those men combined this still wound up being great. Bryan’s too big of a star to stand at every door these days but he did make me smile when his blood hit the floor after a shot from Suzuki opened a cut on his cheek and convinced me for a half second that Bryan might have really been out. There was one spot I liked here where they were doing the typical “eat a kick and no sell” spot but then Bryan collapsed after the last kick but on a whole this match was about just exchanging shots and Bryan going for submissions. A running knee eventually got the win for Bryan but these two guys kept the crowd hot for nearly 20 minutes and got a “this is wrestling” chant for a lock-up so I had no choice but to give Danielson the #1 spot this week. With a contest with Bobby Fish less than 24 hours later he may just grab the #1 spot in the Power Rankings for two shows in a two day period.