Preview: AEW Rampage (06/16/23) – United Empire vs. CHAOS

Match graphic for the June 16, 2023 edition of AEW Rampage.

All Elite Wrestling continues its sophomore trip to the nation’s capital for AEW Rampage at the Capital One Arena in Washington DC. It may be the second AEW Dynamite to take place in the venue, but it is Rampage’s first trek.

The venue, once very well known as the MCI Center, was a haven for World Championship Wrestling. Housing the four final editions of the company’s flagship event, Starrcade. Starting with the infamous Starrcade 1997 with the controversial main event of Sting defeating Hollywood Hogan for the WCW World Heavyweight Championship and all the shenanigans that went with that match.

Papa Briscoe And Aubrey Edwards Are #AllElite!

You’d kinda think this being Audrey Edwards’ first match in AEW would be the big thing. It is. But it also has Papa Briscoe making his own AEW in-ring debut! While surprising, Papa Briscoe has had a few notable scraps during the tenure of his boys, Jay and Mark Briscoe in Ring Of Honor. Including a match at Final Battle 2010 with all three of them facing off against then ROH World Tag Team Champions, The Kings Of Wrestling, Claudio Castagnoli, and Chris Hero alongside their manager, Shane Hagadorn.

But of course, this will be Aubrey Edwards’ first notable pro wrestling match. While she has been a referee in the independent scene since 2017, had appearances as a referee in WWE for the first Mae Young Classic and even their first and only all-women’s Premium Live Event, Evolution, she’s never had a match.

But their opponents are of course none other than AEW’s quirky squad of villains, Jeff Jarrett, Jay Lethal, and in her own AEW debut, Karen Jarrett alongside Sonjay Dutt and Satnam Singh. Can the Briscoes and AEW’s premiere referee get the job done?

The Door Opens

We finally get our first big inter-promotional match as Forbidden Door is clear on the horizon now. We saw Will Ospreay appear at the end of Dynamite this week, attacking his Forbidden Door opponent, IWGP United States Champion Kenny Omega.

Now, alongside United Empire members Kyle Fletcher and Jeff Cobb, the three take on the mix of New Japan Pro Wrestling and AEW that is Chuck Taylor, Trent Berreta, and Rocky Romero. The trio is billed as CHAOS, the well-known NJPW group.

Taya Returns To The Ring

While we’ve seen “La Wera Loca” not be pleased since her loss to Jade Cargill at Double Or Nothing, Taya Valkyrie has been spotted backstage constantly. We now see her get back in the ring as she takes on Trish Adora.

Student of the Dudley Boyz and the long-reigning Pan-Afrikan World Diaspora Wrestling World Champion, she’s appeared for the likes of Ring Of Honor, PROGRESS Wrestling, WWE NXT, and Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling. Let’s see if Taya Valkyrie gets back to her winning ways and may yet again chase the TBS Championship. Now in the hands of Kris Statlander.

International Clash

Two international young and bright stars are about to clash in what might just be a fantastic match. Former Ring Of Honor World Champion Bandido takes on the former KO-D Openweight Champion Konosuke Takeshita. While Bandido never fails to leave a spectacular mark, Takeshita himself as of late has been wowing people for different reasons.

As his and Don Callis’ betrayal of The Elite has led to a sweeping sea of boos any time the two just merely show their faces. This will be the first time we will see Konosuke Takeshita in action after said betrayal at Double Or Nothing. Meanwhile, Bandido has been keeping busy lately, teaming with the ROH World Tag Team Champions, the Lucha Bros. Penta El Zero Miedo & Rey Fenix as of late.

All that and more tonight, likely more announcements will be made for next week’s Dynamite and the debut of AEW Collision on Saturday. AEW Rampage Tonight at 10 pm ET on TNT.

Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world. As well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world.  You can catch AEW Dynamite Wednesday nights at 8 PM ET on TBS and AEW Dark: Elevation (Monday nights) and AEW: Dark (Tuesday nights) at 7 PM ET on YouTube. AEW Rampage airs on TNT at 10 PM EST every Friday night.