AEW’s Darby Allin wins first TNT title defense at Rampage

AEW Rampage delivered an exciting main event tonight as Darby Allin would have his first defense of the TNT Championship since taking over from Samoa Joe. First up was The Kingdom’s Mike Bennett, who set out to make a statement and take down one of AEW’s biggest fan favorites. Bennett backed off in the ring and penalized Allin on several counts, including a series of barricade blows that took its toll on the champion. However, Allin kept coming back, and he was able to string together an impressive string of rope moves that ended with a Coffin Drop and a thrilling win, retaining his TNT Championship.

Allin started by sitting in the corner with Bennett staring at him. Allin got up and got a nudge from Bennett, but then he quickly held on before they exchanged wrist locks. They continued to trade control with holds and then they traded chops, though Bennett would take a big punch if he kicked the inside of Allin’s leg and knee. Bennett capitalized by throwing Allin into the barricade, then made contact with a boot to his face.

Bennett threw Allin into the barricade again and followed up with another big boot to the face, and then Taven launched Bennett into Allin, but he ended up hitting the barricade. Bennett threw Allin into the ring, but a drop kick knocked Bennett to the ground. Allin then hit Taven with a dive between the ropes, but Bennett hit a Russian Leg Sweep that knocked them both to the ground.

Back in the ring, Bennett would slam Allin into the top turnbuckle, and Bennett would be in control for a while longer. Allin kept taking punches and punches and came back for more, and he seemed to be on the verge of a momentum shift, but Bennett cut it again and went for cover, though Allin kicked out.

Bennett lifted Allin and went to an armbar, but Allin was able to counter it and get his foot on the bottom rope to break it. He doesn’t often break things with the ropes, but he took the opportunity to smash Bennett’s head against the ring apron before throwing him into the barricade. Then Allin grabbed a chair and put the challenger in it before throwing some punches.

Allin went up and then hit a huge dropkick that sent Bennett flying to the ground, though it did some damage to Allin as well. Allin went upstairs again, but Maria Kanellis covered for her husband to protect him. Then, Taven used the referee’s distraction to hit Allin to the turnbuckle head with a kick. Bennett was going to cover for him, but Allin kicked out.

Bennett followed Allin up and set him up for a pile driver, but Allin stopped it and hit Bennett’s face against the top turnbuckle block several times, then hit an avalanche code red. Then he went back up and smashed the Coffin Drop into a lid, and he got the pin and the win. Allin is still your TNT champion.

What did you think of the match? Let us know in the comments and as always you can discuss all things wrestling with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!

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