Grand Slam World Title Eliminator Tournament continues on Rampage on TSN+
Samoa Joe meets Jeff Hardy and Penta El Zero Miedo takes on Jay Lethal in a pair of Grand Slam World Title Eliminator Tournament quarterfinal matches. Plus, the Young Bucks are in action. You can catch AEW Rampage on Friday at 10pm et/7pm pt streaming on TSN+.
Grand Slam World Title Eliminator Tournament quarterfinal match: Penta El Zero Miedo (w/ Alex Abrahantes) vs. Jay Lethal (w/ "The Last Outlaw" Jeff Jarrett, Satnam Singh, Sonjay Dutt and Karen Jarrett) - Penta El Zero Miedo is a former AEW World Tag Team Champion (alongside younger brother Rey Fenix) and a former AEW World Trios Champion (with Fenix and "The Bastard" PAC), but he has yet to hold singles gold in AEW. That is not to say he isn't eminently capable of doing so because he's held titles in federations around the continent. Penta is a former Impact World Champion, two-time Lucha Underground Champion and AAA Latin American Champion among his many accolades. The Grand Slam World Title Eliminator Tournament is a quick way for Penta to earn a shot at Maxwell Jacob Friedman's AEW World Championship, but in order to get that match with MJF, he will have to go through three tough opponents beginning on Friday night on Rampage against Jay Lethal. In Lethal, Penta takes on a man with championship pedigree of his own. The savvy veteran is a Ring of Honor Grand Slam Champion, having claimed the ROH World Championship, the ROH World TV Championship, the ROH Pure Championship and ROH World Tag Team Championship (with Jonathan Gresham). Lethal is also a six-time X-Division Champion in Impact. He, too, is looking for his first title in AEW. Friday's match will be the first singles meeting between the two men, but not their first-ever bout. In a match for Northeast Wrestling almost exactly one year ago, Penta - under his Penta Oscura persona - was a victor over Lethal in a match that also included Matt Taven. Each man will hope to utilize any familiarity they might have to their advantage on Friday night. The winner of this match will move on to meet the winner of Friday night's other tournament match...
Grand Slam World Title Eliminator Tournament quarterfinal match: ROH World Television Champion Samoa Joe vs. Jeff Hardy - While all eight men who ended up competing in the Grand Slam World Title Eliminator Tournament are doing so to compete for the world title, for one man, this tournament has become personal. Samoa Joe undoubtedly wants to add the AEW World Championship to the already impressive array of titles he's claimed over the years, but he also wants to get his hands on the man on whose waist the title currently resides in Maxwell Jacob Friedman. After coming to blows at last Sunday's All Out pay-per-view, Joe and MJF made clear on this past Wednesday night's Dynamite where their enmity actually stems from - a WWE NXT show in 2019 when Joe disrespectfully shoved a young MJF. Evidently, neither has forgotten this and the duo finds themselves embroiled in a new feud. But before Joe can settle things in the ring with Friedman, he has to earn his way there and that means defeating three other men to do so and it won't be easy. Standing in his way on Friday night is the legendary Jeff Hardy who is no stranger to world titles. Hardy is a former WWE Champion, two-time WWE World Heavyweight Champion and three-time TNA World Heavyweight Champion. Hardy is also a five-time WWE Intercontinental Champion, to say nothing of the 12 world tag-team titles he's won alongside brother Matt Hardy. The daredevil veteran has yet to win a championship in AEW and hopes that will change shortly. Joe and Hardy know each other very well and have faced off numerous times including in WWE United States Championship matches. Neither man will surprise the other on Friday night. Can Hardy make his way towards more gold or will Joe get one step closer to a seemingly inevitable match with MJF?
The Young Bucks (Nick Jackson and Matt Jackson) (w/ Brandon Cutler) vs. Jericho Appreciation Society ("Daddy Magic" Matt Menard and "Cool Hand" Angelo Parker) (w/ Jake Hager) - Two teams in the midst of turmoil meet on Friday night when the Jackson brothers take on Matt Menard and Angelo Parker. While "Hangman" Adam Page won the Over Budget Charity Battle Royale at All Out last Sunday night, it hasn't been smooth sailing otherwise for The Elite in recent weeks. The team of Page, Kenny Omega and Kota Ibushi fell to Konosuke Takeshita and Bullet Club Gold ("Switchblade" Jay White and "Rock Hard" Juice Robinson) at All In before Omega was defeated by Takeshita in a singles match at All Out. As for the Young Bucks themselves, they failed to capture the AEW World Tag Team Championships for a third time at All In, losing to FTR (Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler), before teaming with FTR in a losing effort at All Out in a defeat to Bullet Club Gold (White, Robinson, Colten Gunn and Austin Gunn). The Bucks will be looking to turn their fortunes around on Friday night against Menard and Parker, who are still dealing with the fallout of Chris Jericho's brief dalliance with Don Callis. While Jericho and Callis's alliance ultimately fell through, it was enough to shake the Jericho Appreciation Society to its foundations and sow seeds of distrust among its members. Like the Jacksons, Menard and Parker will aim to use Friday night's match as a springboard to better days ahead. But only one of these two teams will put that plan into action. The Bucks and Menard and Parker haven't met in over a decade, but their last encounter was a consequential one. In February of 2013 at CHIKARA's While the Dawn Is Breaking Event, Menard and Parker defeated the Jacksons in a best-two-out-of-three-falls match to capture the promotion's tag titles. A lot has changed in 10 years, but what hasn't is that both of these teams need a victory.
Dr. Britt Baker, DMD, Hikaru Shida and Skye Blue vs. Anna Jay, The Bunny and "La Wera Loca" Taya Valkyrie - Six women with title aspirations and in different stages on their path towards gold meet on Friday night. On one side, two of the four women who competed in the AEW Women's World Championship four-way match at All In - Hikaru Shida and Britt Baker - take to the ring for the first time since Shida lost her title to Saraya and Baker failed to become a two-time women's champion. They're joined by Skye Blue, who came up short in an AEW Women's World Championship match earlier in the summer against then-champion Toni Storm. On the other side, Anna Jay and Taya Valkyrie, two other competitors who've been frustrated in their attempts to take the TBS Championship away from Kris Statlander, team up with The Bunny, still getting her sea legs back after spending a lengthy spell on the sidelines. While a win in a trios match won't necessarily put you in contention for another title shot immediately, losing one obviously won't help. Of interest in Friday's match will be the ability of Shida and Baker to coexist. Though the two have teamed on a number of occasions in recent weeks, the cracks in their foundation have been quite obvious and it's something that Jay, The Bunny and Valkyrie can use to their advantage. Which set of three women will have their hands raised on Friday night?
- After their victory over Aussie Open (Kyle Fletcher and Mark Davis) on Wednesday night's Dynamite, tensions between "The Spanish God" Sammy Guevara and "The Ocho" Chris Jericho spilled over and now Guevara will address matters on Rampage