CM Punk def. Powerhouse Hobbs
Did you know that Punk's last television match in January 2014 before this one was against Billy Gunn on WWE Raw? AEW should have run that back for his first TV match since then! Of course, I kid. Other than that one ugly botch in the middle, this was a fun opener. AEW was smart to tape this first while the crowd was still relatively hot. Punk once again looked good and fought from underneath while Hobbs was on offense throughout and also shined in defeat. Hobbs is improving at a rapid pace and is really putting all the pieces together, which is excellent to see. Hobbs loses nothing here. Does Punk have his sights set on Ricky Starks next?
The Super Kliq (Adam Cole and The Young Bucks) def. Impact World Champion Christian Cage and Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus)
It's been over four years since Cole and Young Bucks last teamed up and they haven't missed a beat. Their chemistry is still as strong as ever. This was your typical Young Bucks match in that it was fast paced and all action, so it won't be for everyone, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Cole just debuted and realigned with The Elite, so it was imperative that the heel trio win here. It was announced at the end of the night that Cole will face Jungle Boy this coming Wednesday on Dynamite, which makes me think Cole vs. Christian is what they're ultimately building to.
Men of the Year def. Inner Circle (Chris Jericho and Jake Hager)
I've been loving Dan Lambert's promos, but I'm curious what the endgame of the angle is going to be. Jericho and/or Hager taking on one or a few of Lamber's MMA guys might be cool (especially if that post-match angle was any indication), but it just doesn't pack a punch to me. At any rate, this was a perfectly solid tag team match. Men of the Year do nothing for me personally, but they're more of a team than Jericho and Hager, so them winning was the correct outcome.
AEW World Tag Team Champions The Lucha Brothers, Santana and Ortiz def. Private Party, The Butcher and The Blade
I knew Santana and Ortiz were the hometown boys coming into this contest, but I forgot that Private Party as well as The Butcher and The Blade also hail from New York. That's pretty cool. Much like the six-man tag from earlier, this was completely chaotic but in the best way possible. The H.F.O. do nothing for me personally, but even I can tell you that this was a blast of a bout. Needless to say, the right team went over as the slow build to Santana and Ortiz vs. The Lucha Brothers continues.
AEW TNT Champion Miro Attacked Sammy Guevara and Fuego Del Sol
The build to Miro vs. Guevara for the AEW TNT Championship next Wednesday on Dynamite, while slightly rushed, has been well done. This was another simple and effective angle with Miro laying out both Guevara and Fuego on the stage. Miro has been excelling in his current role as TNT champ (though I think he should be wrestling more than he has been), and although Guevara makes sense as the person to dethrone him, I don't think I'd pull the trigger on a title change this early in the feud.
Penelope Ford def. Anna Jay
I appreciate that we've actually had a secondary feud in the women's division for once, but if this is the best AEW can do, then why would they even think about debuting another women's title at this point? I'm not saying it wouldn't work eventually, but now does not feel like that time. This was a well-wrestled albeit basic bout with Ford picking up a necessary win to set up the tag team match also involving The Bunny and Tay Conti on Wednesday's Dynamite. I assume that will be the blow-off. It's possible AEW is burning through the rivalry quickly so either Conti or Jay can contend for the AEW Women's World Championship at Full Gear.
Jon Moxley and Eddie Kingston def. Lance Archer and Minoru Suzuki in a Lights Out Tag Team Match
There was a stretch where it felt like AEW was doing hardcore matches on a near-weekly basis, so I'm glad they've stopped doing them so often so this packed more of a punch. Archer and Suzuki reuniting alone was an attraction and the crowd ate all of this up, even though it was late at night when this was taped. They were especially behind New York's own Eddie Kingston. Suzuki and Moxley made up for their disappointing affair on Dynamite a few weeks ago and that surprise appearance from Homicide was awesome given his history with Kingston. Apparently there will be a rematch at a New Japan Pro-Wrestling event next month, though this may have been the last we'll see of this feud in AEW for now.
Pardon the obvious baseball pun, but both nights of Grand Slam on the whole were a home run. This edition of Rampage was definitely hampered by it being taped and the fact it had to follow a hot two-hour Dynamite, but it was still an above-average episode all things considered in the big venue. The second hour dragged, which is why I have no interest in Rampage permanently becoming a two-hour program, but there was no filler and the big matches delivered. Kudos to AEW on such a successful week. I'm anticipating the coming weeks to see how they follow up on it and what they do with the stacked roster they're now left with.