Coming from one of Ring of Honor’s biggest markets – Chicago Ridge, Illinois. We have some awesome matches lined up: Davey Richards vs. Roderick Strong; Tyler Black vs. Chris Hero for the World Title and a Street Fight between Steen & Corino and Generico & Cabana. I’m expecting some good things from this show so let’s crack on, ROH World takes a look at ROH Bitter Friends, Stiffer Enemies 2:
Sami Callihan vs. Rasche Brown
This is “The New Horror” versus “The Skullcrusher”, should be an interesting contest! Callihan starts the match on the front foot as he attacks Brown before the bell with a dropkick. To the outside now and Brown whips Callihan into the steel barricades, he follows up with a bodyslam onto the ring apron. Brown has some bandaging covering his stomach and rib area. Callihan rips the bandages off and goes to work on the ribs of Brown but “Skullcrusher” comes back with a spinning brainbuster. Callihan goes after the ribs again and hits a splash off the top rope. Callihan hits a couple of big slaps to the face and then tries to go for a lariat but is cut off by Brown who hoists him up and delivers the Burning Hammer for the victory. A glorified squash match really that made Brown look pretty dominant. A few nice moves made this a decent enough opener.
Dark City Fight Club vs. The Bravado Brothers
Both of these teams were trying to establish themselves in the Ring of Honor tag team division. Jon Davis and Lance Bravado start it out and exchange chops. Lance tries to get some offense going with a dropkick but Davis hits back with an inverted powerslam. It’s pretty obvious that this will be a power vs. speed match-up. Nice backbreaker/legdrop combo from the Fight Club keep Lance grounded, Kory Chavis hits an Ace Crusher but Harlem comes in to brake it up. Harlem gets tagged in and both Bravado Brothers take out Jon Davis. They hit a dropkick/Russian leg sweep combo but it doesn’t get them the win. Chavis back in and they take out The Bravados, Davis hits a massive pounce on Harlem. He follows this up with a running powerslam and a running knee to the face. Chavis has Lance down on the outside and keeps slamming his face into a steel chair. Davis hits a number of headbutts on Harlem and the referee stops the contest as he can’t defend himself. Another squash match that was done in the right way, The Bravados showed glimpses but in the end, The Dark City Fight Club just overpowered them. I liked DCFC and would like to see them again in ROH. Anyway, this was a decent match, similar to the opener. After the match, DCFC bring Lance into the ring and hit the Project Mayhem (neckbreaker/powerbomb combo).
Eddie Edwards vs. Metal Master
You might know Metal Master as Chad Collyer, he has wrestled for ROH under his real name. Eddie was TV Champion at this point but it’s unaware if this is a title match or not (I’m guessing it isn’t). The first couple of minutes of this match were very even, some nice mat wrestling followed by an arm drag by both men, they then both went for the dropkick for the same time. Master hits a nice spinning head scissors followed by a bulldog. Edwards dominates the next couple of minutes with a variety of strikes and then hits a big kick to the back of the head of Master for a two count. Edwards off the ropes and Master hits him with an overhead throw which sends Edwards out of the ring, Master follows up with a suicide dive which sends Edwards into the steel barricades. Master hits some nice moves to Edwards and then hits him with a powerslam. Master hits a Jackhammer for a near fall and then goes for a diving move which Edwards turns into the Achilles Lock and Master has no chance but to give up. This one never seemed to get into fifth gear, it showed glimpses of being awesome and I think if they had been given another 5-10 minutes, it could have been very good. Saying that, it was a nice ten minute match between two guys who seemed to have chemistry in the ring.
The House of Truth (Josh Raymond & Christin Able) vs. The Embassy Erick Stevens & Shawn Daivari
This one is a battle of the stables. Truth Martini and Prince Nana are at ringside supporting their teams. Nana gets in an argument with a guy at ringside, as always. Stevens gets distracted by Able on the outside and even Martini gets in a cheap shot. Daivari gets tagged in but receives the same fate as he is on the end of a nice double team move which sees Able powerbomb his own partner onto the back of Daivari. Able is sporting a very strange attire, he seems to be wearing fishnet stockings… The House of Truth continue to dominate and Stevens gets a pep talk from Nana on the outside. Stevens grabs the feet of Able from the outside and it turns the tide of the match. Stevens dominates Able for a good couple of minutes with a variety of ground moves and then Daivari gets tagged in. Martini and Nana exchange some words as The Embassy are firmly in control of this one. Stevens keeps Able down in the corner but he’s able to dodge an attempted big boot and tags Raymond in as he takes out both Stevens and Daivari, the latter with a springboard X Factor. HoT get a double team on Daivari but Stevens breaks it up, he messes up though and he and Daivari collide. After a struggle, Stevens sends Raymond outside and hits a suicide dive to take him out. Able comes off the ring apron to floor Stevens as Truth Martini comes into the ring and hits Daivari with a nice looking head scissors. Martini goes to the top rope but Nana cuts him off as the referee rings the bell. After some confusion, we’re told The Embassy are the winners by disqualification. This was a nice match with some great double team moves, especially from the HoT. They were meant to be the faces but didn’t receive much backing from the crowd which sort of ruined the hot tag. The Embassy played their roles well and I’m always impressed with Stevens. I enjoyed this match despite the screwy ending.
Davey Richards vs. Roderick Strong
This is a pick 6 series match-up; Richards is number 4 whilst Strong is numero uno. They both test each other’s strength and following a nice sequence, Davey gets in a snapmare and a kick to the back as he the two men exchange submission holds. Davey takes control of the match-up with a nice head scissors submission hold. Strong goes for the Strong Hold but Davey reverses it into an STF which takes a lot out of Strong. Strong gets back into it with a jumping heel kick and the pair go to the outside where Strong hits a number of vicious chops. Both men trade shots but it’s Davey who gets the advantage with a handspring enziguri, that was crazy. Davey walks into a big boot and a jumping knee and then Strong hits the Falcon Arrow for a two count. Strong follows up with a half nelson backbreaker and locks in the Strong Hold but Davey gets to the ropes. Both men get some offense in and then they trade a series of two counts with some innovative covers. Davey gets up first and hits a dragonscrew leg-whip and locks in the Cloverleaf but Strong breaks the hold. Strong spits in Davey’s face and he replies with a flurry of forearms and kicks followed by an enziguri but then he eats one from Strong. Davey grabs the legs of Strong whilst he’s on the outside and with him prone on the ring apron, Davey DDTs him onto the arena floor. Baseball slide from Davey and then he goes for a hilo at an insane speed but Strong gets out the way, Davey’s back hit the edge of the steel barricade, that had to hurt. Both men just beat the count out and then trade blows inside the ring; chops, forearms, kicks, they did it. Davey hits a combination of kicks followed by the Alarm Clock but then runs into a big boot by Strong. Davey hits yet another Alarm Clock and then a lariat for a near fall. Bridging German suplex by Davey for the two but he holds on and hits another German. Strong gets to his knees and Davey hits a lethal kick straight to the face as the bell is rung. This was given twenty minutes but ended up in a time-limit draw. Crowd chant “five more minutes!”, Davey gets on the mic and says he wants five more minutes but Strong says he’s after the title and he’s focusing on that. Really good match-up from these two, you wouldn’t really expect anything less. I quite liked the finish as it kept Strong looking like a legitimate title challenger with Davey lurking in the wings. Both men got some nice offense in and the match kept building and building as the time went on. I totally forgot about the time limit as the action was so good.
Rhett Titus vs. Petey Williams
Some nice mat wrestling to begin with which sees Petey get on top with a nice reverse figure-four leglock. Titus gets Petey up but too much posing and he gets out of it and hits a dropkick to the back of the head. Nice reversal from Petey sends Titus into the turnbuckle and then he hits a slingshot codebreaker for the two count. Titus gets back into it and launches Petey into the barricades at ringside. Petey goes for a sunset flip from the apron but Titus reverses it into a Northern Lights suplex in mid-air, that was nice. Titus is really in control here as he grounds Petey and then hits an elbow drop, kneedrop and a standing splash. Petey gets back into it due to too much showboating from Titus and hits a German Suplex followed by a bulldog. Titus reverses a Canadian Destroyer attempt but Petey turns it into a sharpshooter which Titus eventually gets out of. Petey sends Titus out of the ring and then he follows it up with a slingshot hurricanrana on the outside which looked great. Back in the ring and Titus back on top and hits the Thrust Buster followed by a knee drop off the top rope for a near fall. Titus sets Petey up on the turnbuckle but he reverses it and goes for a Super Canadian Destroyer but Titus blocks and Petey holds on for a powerbomb. Petey gets him up again and yet again goes for the Destroyer, Titus blocks it again and falls down on top of Williams, he then uses the ropes for leverage as he gets the win. I really liked Titus in this one, showed he can back up his posing with his performances inside the ring. I was disappointed with Petey’s run in ROH, always felt like he was holding something back. Regardless, nice match.
Austin Aries & Kenny King vs. The Briscoes
Aries gets on the mic before and says he and King are fine. He tells us that The Briscoes has too much to drink last night and got in a fight with each other and thanks them for their help. Aries and Jay Briscoe start out and Aries gets the upper hand before King comes in and The Briscoes take charge. King pushes Jay into Mark and they share a brief word, looks as though they’re going to tease a breakdown between the brothers. They collide again and go head-to-head but take Aries out and launch him across the ring, King walks into two football tackles from both Briscoes as they begin to dominate the match. Some nice double team moves as The Briscoes utilise frequent tags but Aries serves as a distraction and gets his team the upper hand. Jay walks into a big spinebuster by King and then Aries hits a slingshot elbow-drop to Jay. King and Aries corner Jay and pick him apart with frequent tags but Jay eventually gets the tag to Mark who delivers some redneck kung-fu followed by a double DDT. Mark hits a straight jacket powerbomb off the top rope to Aries and after a brief interference by King, they hit a powerbomb/neckbreaker combo for the two count. King lowers the rope which sees Jay go the outside and then Aries hits the Heat Seeking Missile to perfection. Aries locks in the Last Chancery and King tries to refrain Mark from entering the ring but he can’t and he breaks the hold. All four men down in the ring and Jay reverses a double team move which sends Aries out of the ring. Jay goes for the Jay Driller which is interrupted by King and Aries, The Briscoes fight back though and King accidentally hits the Royal Flush on his own partner. Jay hits the Jay Driller followed by the Springboard Doomsday Device by both Briscoes for the victory. I like the way the promo by Aries tied in with the match and it was the miscommunication which led to the finish. This was a very solid match and it had some great double team spots in it. Very enjoyable match with some comedy stuff too, something for everybody.
ROH World Title Match – Tyler Black vs. Chris Hero
Hero comes to the ring with some gold of his own – the ROH World Tag Team Title. Shane Hagadorn is by his side and lets Hero take some sparring practice before the match starts. Black starts off the match on fire with a belly-to-back suplex and a jumping hurricanrana off the top rope. Hero gets back into it with an eye rake and dominates the next couple of minutes with some vicious strikes as Black is finding it hard to see. Hero distracts the ref and Hagadorn chokes Black behind his back. The pair spill to the outside and trade hard chops until Hero pushes Black into the steel barricades. Back in the ring and Hero hits a couple of knees to the face and then delivers a rolling elbow but Black kicks out. Black comes back but then get flipped onto the ring apron, Hero blocks an attempted enziguri and sends Black to the outside with another rolling elbow. Black backs up to the barricades and Hero hits another elbow that sends Black into the crowd, he manages to get back in the ring with the count at 19. Hero picks apart the champ with kicks and forearms and hits another hard elbow to Black who is being completely dominated. Hero lifts Black up but he slips out of it and then throws Hero out of the ring which he follows up with a hilo. Both men battle it out on the outside, Black goes for powerbomb and then a springboard moonsault which are both blocked; Hero goes for a springboard elbow but is met with a dropkick. Black goes for a moonsault but is caught and he turns it into the Paroxysm. Hero reverses another powerbomb and drives him down with a modified powerbomb of his own.
Hero continues the assault with four elbows for the near fall and then both men trade forearms. “That Young Knockout Kid” goes for another elbow but Black lifts him up and delivers an F-5 for a near fall. Both men start to struggle on the top rope and Black reverses a super powerbomb and then hits an enziguri which sends Hero into the Tree of Woe; Black climbs to the top and comes down with a double stomp onto the chest of Hero. Black goes for a springboard move but Hero catches him and drives him down with a powerslam. Hero hits a rolling elbow followed by a stomp to the head of followed by another rolling elbow but somehow Black kicks out! Black reverses an attempted powerbomb and then hits the Buckle Bomb and then goes for God’s Last Gift but Hero escapes and hits another elbow and then eats one from Black. Both men trade forearms and then a superkick from Black almost gets him the win. Hagadorn on the apron and Hero uses that to hit an elbow to the back of the had, he goes for the Death Blow but Black hits an enziguri. Hagadorn back on the apron so Black sends him to the floor with a superkick and then hits the God’s Last Gift on Hero for the win. Brilliant title match that made Black look amazing. He took a lot of punishment in the first 10 or so minutes of this contest but kept coming back fighting. Hero was great playing the heel roll but he too came out of the match looking great. Very entertaining and hard-hitting title match.
Kevin Steen & Steve Corino vs. El Generico & Colt Cabana
This is a ‘Come As You Are’ Chicago Street Fight but Corino maybe takes it a bit far and comes out in a white suit. They’re billed as being a combined weight of ‘none of your damn business’, awesome! Steen goes after Cabana and Corino gets attacked by Generico as all four men brawl straight into the crowd. Steen cuts off Generico as Cabana floors Corino with a flurry of punches. Steen and Corino throw their opponents back in towards the ring and bring chairs with them. Corino makes a mountain of steel chairs on the outside but gets suplexed onto them by Cabana. Generico hits a springboard hilo off the barricade to Steen in the crowd, insane! Steen and Cabana battle it out towards the back of the arena and a security guard gets clotheslined by Steen. Steen climbs on top of some scaffolding but Corino stops Cabana getting up there. Generico comes out of nowhere and hits a tornado DDT on Corino, looked very painful. Generico climbs up the scaffolding as he and Steen slug it out. Steen reverses a brainbuster into a Michinoku Driver onto the scaffolding, ouch! Steen gets back to the ringside area and hits Cabana over the back with a chair as he and Corino start to pick him apart. Steen launches one of the steel barricades at Cabana but he evades it and Colt sends Steen into the ring post. Corino breaks a beer bottle on the ring post and then smacks it over the had of Cabana and then rakes the glass over the lacerated forehead of Colt. Corino goes back to his ECW days and digs a fork into the forehead of Cabana. He tries to fight back but gets slammed onto some steel chairs in the ring. Steen puts some more chairs on Cabana and goes for a moonsault but Generico comes back and pushes Steen off the top rope through two tables set up on the outside!
Corino back in and he takes two chair shots to the head and comes back but falls after a third one. Generico brings in a ladder and throws it into Corino and then Steen, he then hits a Yakuza kick on Steen. Ladder set up in the corner, Generico hits a suplex on Corino onto the ladder but he somehow kicks out. Corino goes for a top rope move on Generico but ends up in a Tree of Woe. Cabana holds the ladder in front of the face of Corino and Generico hits the coast-to-coast dropkick. Steen breaks up the count and then hits Generico with a powerbomb onto the ring apron. Generico spits at Steen and but Steen breaks a steel chair over his head, it actually broke! Generico is on the top and Steen tells Corino to ‘break his back’. Cabana back in but runs into Steen who hits a spinebuster onto the ladder. Corino superplexes Generico onto some steel chairs but he still kicks out! Steen gets a barbed wire baseball bat and tries to piledrive Cabana onto it but Generico hits him over the back with it. Generico delivers two Dragon Suplexes to Steen and then hits a hilo to him on the outside. Cabana locks in the Billy Goat’s Curse on Corino, Generico comes back in and hits Corino with a steel chair and he looks like he’s been knocked out so the referee stops the match. Wow, what a brutal war. Awesome match with some really innovative spots and Generico manages to surprise me every time I see him! Steen and Corino were the sick heels and Cabana complimented Generico well. All in all, this was a terrific hardcore match between these four men, must see.
>Wow, that was some wrestling show. Every match delivered and I make it three matches getting four stars, that’s pretty damn impressive. Three other matches got other three stars so that’s six over three stars, that tells you everything really. I can’t recommend this event enough, I’ve only just finished watching it and I want to watch it again. You can pick upBitter Friends, Stiffer Enemies 2 here:http://www.rohstore.com/index.php
Overall Score: 9.5/10