ROH 15th Anniversary Review
Las Vegas, Nevada
Sam’s Town Live
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Ring of Honor presents ROH “15th Anniversary”, featuring Adam Cole defending the ROH title against Christopher Daniels, A Vegas Street Fight between the Young Bucks, Roppongi Vice and the defending champions, The Hardys. Lio Rush also gets a shot against Marty Scurll’s ROH World Television title and much more.
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Kenny King w/Caprice Coleman vs. Jay White
King was able to overpower White into the corner, surprisingly breaking cleanly before White used his quickness to gain the advantage. White’s dropkick sent King to the outside, but King thwarted an outside dive with a spinwheel kick. King was able to send White to the outside with a kick to the head, following with a plancha over the top rope. White was able to weather King’s offense and sent King to the outside, but Coleman absorbed the suicide dive. King found himself slammed on the arena floor after a uranage, but he was able to quickly gain control inside. The two traded stiff elbows, with King connecting with a picture perfect spinebuster. The two jostled on the top rope, with White eventually hitting a high cross body block that King rolled through King tossed White up in a fireman’s carry, but as he went to toss White up he was ensnared in an inside cradle.
Winner: Jay White
Spirited opener. The two had a nice little match here, albeit one that was unannounced and had no heat between the two going into it. King looking strong here is good for the Rebellion, but for a PPV opener, a more emphatic win would have served better to start off the festivities.
ROH TV Championship #1 Contender’s Match
Kazarian vs. Hangman Page vs. Chris Sabin vs. Punisher Martinez vs. Cheeseburger vs. Silas Young
Sabin and Kazarian started off, with Sabin quickly in control as Kazarian turned to too sweet Page. The two exchanged a series of quick roll ups, both kicking out at one repeatedly. Page came in for the double team, but Sabin fought them both off and Sabin hit a suicide dive. This triggered a series of each man flying over the top, with Punishment taking everyone out. Back inside, Martinez worked Sabin over in the corner,tossing him to the mat before hitting a springboard corkscrew. Kazarian and Page double teamed Martinez, clearing the ring of him, leaving them to face each other. The two too sweeted before Cheeseburger fly from the top and then was able to toss Kazarian from the ring before hitting a hurricanrana on Page. Young then attacked Burger and had his moment in the sun before Sabin and Martinez inserted themselves back in the match. Everyone had their moment in the sun here, teasing their finishers. Page went for a Rite of Passage on Burger on the apron, but Martinez stared him down before chokeslamming Page on the apron. Kazarian nearly took the match with a quick cutter, but Young was able to break up the pinfall. Cheeseburger seemed poised to win after a Shotei, but Kazarian hit the Ace of Spades for the pinfall victory.
Winner: Frankie Kazarian
Fun match here, everyone was able to get their spots in and commentary played its part in telling a great story with Martinez seeming to turn face a bit during this match. Having Kazarian walk away with the win here makes sense as it furthers the story of his split with Daniels.
Jay Lethal vs. Bobby Fish
The two exchanged wristlocks and side headlocks to start, showing how evenly matched the two are. Lethal was surprised by a Fish kick to the gut that launched him to the outside, eventually regrouping and heading back into the ring. Lethal connected with a cartwheel dropkick, but Fish rolled to the outside and took a breather of his own. Lethal held down the rope for Fish, only to be kicked for his kindness. Lethal tried to follow up with a suicide dive but Fish used Letha’s momentum to send him into the guardrail. Back inside the two traded control, with Lethal selling the effects of his missed dive the entire time. Fish laced Lethal with kicks across the chest, but in an attempt to outsmart Lethal he was floored on the ramp after a suicide dive. Both men rose slowly and made into the ring, trading forearms shots until Fish struck a number of vicious kicks. Fish’s saito suplex only garner a two count and he transitioned to an ankle lock that Lethal escaped with a cutter. Lethal followed with Hail to the King, but Fish rolled through with a crucifix before cinching in a kneebar. Lethal managed to make it to the ropes and hit a Lethal combination before successfully hitting Hail to the King. Fish absorbed a springboard cutter before blocking a Lethal Injection and locking in a knee bar that Lethal escaped again. A Lethal Injection later and Lethal walked away the winner via pinfall.
Winner: Jay Lethal
Both guys showed why they are considered to be at the top of the company. The two meshed well here and their competitiveness really came through during this match. Lethal looks stronger with the win, but Fish affirmed that he is a top challenger with his work in this one. Fish may not have one, but he has been on a roll in the last year in ROH.
ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championship
The Kingdom (Matt Taven, Vinny Marseglia, & TK O’Ryan) vs. Dalton Castle & The Boys
The Boys and Castle started off hot, tossed Marseglia and O’Ryan to the outside, with Dalton tossing Taven over his head with a German suplex. The Boys hit dueling topes and were in control until Marseglia yanked one of the Boys outside and slammed him on the apron. The Kingdom worked Boy 1 over but were distracted, allowing the the Boys to switch and almost score a quick win with an inside cradle. Castle was able to tag in and cleared the ring of the Kingdom, proceeding to toss Taven around the ring with German suplexes before the Boys helped him hoisted Taven up for a Bang-A-Rang. Taven was able to thwart it once, but not a second time, needing marseglia and O’Ryan’s interference to break the pin. The action spilled to the outside and O’Ryan hit a springboard moonsault that seemed to injure him. In the confusion Taven and Marseglia hit Rockstar SUpernova without O’Ryan, winning the match.
Winners: The Kingdom
A predictable match if nothing, but they really took some chances here and made it much more interesting than it was supposed to be. O’Ryan’s injury is a really terrible occurrence here. The Kingdom has been given the time and space to be an important group and O’Ryan took a chance to impress here, with disastrous results. Hopefully O’Ryan’s injury is not too serious.
ROH World Television Championship
Marty Scurll(c) vs. Lio Rush
Rush came out decked in White and Scurll was resplendent in a Game of Thrones-ish outfit. Rush started off the match on fire, quickly taking Scurll to the outside and hitting a hurricanrana, but Scurll was able to turn the tables using the ring skirt to trap Rush and followed with a kick to the face. Scurll brought the action to the inside, working over Rush’s arm, setting up for the chickenwing. Rush was able to battle back and hit a springboard elbow before connecting with a clothesline from the top. Rush spun around Scurll and hit a DDT that earned him a two count. Scurll reversed an irish whip and nearly tossed him through the turnbuckles, but Rush again used his speed to avoid Scurll and hit two double stomps, one outside and inside the ring, but still could only score a two count. Scurll went back to working on the arm and went for the chickenwing but took too long, allowing Rush to prevent the move from ever being applied. Rush absorbed three kicks from Scurll and ran back into the ring, seemingly impervious to the pain. Rush went for a handstand elbow, only to be caught in chickenwing. Rush was able to escape and after a tombstone back and forth, Rush went for a chickenwing of his own. Scurll was able to fight off the move, but could not avoid Rush hour. After Scurll kicked out again Rush grew frustrated and grabbed the TV title, but was conflicted about using it. Scurll went for a quick roll up, but Rush kicked out and then hit a Dragon’s Claw from the top rope, but that still wasn’t enough. Rush set up two chairs on the outside, right by a ring post and placed Scurll on the top rope. Scurll fought him off and hit a Tower of London before locking in the chickenwing again, earning the submission victory.
Winner: Marty Scurll
This match lived up to what the two are capable of. Rush showed a great deal more charisma and character during the match, showing a rookie mentality that eventually cost him the win. Rush has always impressed between the ropes with his ability and agility, hopefully this is the start of a more three-dimensional character moving forward. It goes without saying, but Scurll has been an absolute gem in ROH and continues to prove he was an excellent signing.
Bully Ray & The Briscoes (Jay & Mark) vs. War Machine & Davey Boy Smith Jr.
The match started off with all six brawling. Bully Ray started off against Smith, with Ray taking control early. The Briscoes teamed up to hit a Wassup headbutt and then Ray told them to get the tables, but that never came to fruition. Smith tagged out to Rowe who floored Mark before he tagged out to Hanson. Rowe slammed Hanson onto Mark before leaving the ring and then Smith came back in. SMith worked Mark over with a belly to back suplex and some strikes before he and his teammates continued to quick tag in and out. Smith held Mark up in a stalling suplex reminiscent of his father and knocked Jay and Bully off the apron before tagging out. Mark valiantly fought his way out and tagged Jay. Jay floored everyone before hitting a neckbreaker on Rowe, but his Jay Driller was blocked by Smith. War Machine tossed Jay up and powerslammed him down. Rowe and Smith squabbled, allowing Bully to tag in. Ray quickly took a Smith boot to the face and rolled to the outside as all hell broke loose. Bully Ray hit a high cross body to all three opponents before a Jay Driller and Froggy-bow seemed to spell the end. Smith did his best to regain control but a 3D by Bully Ray on Rowe later led to a three count.
Winners: Bully Ray & The Briscoes
The dissention between Dany Boy Smith jr.and War Machine added another layer of intrigue to this match and the post match activities really drove the point home. The match was particularly long or very exciting, but it was a change of pace from the rest of the night as it was essentially a brawl, with some Bully Ray nostalgia pieces thrown in for good measure.
ROH World Tag Team Championship-Vegas Street Fight
The Hardys (c) (Matt & Jeff Hardy) vs.The Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson) vs. Roppongi Vice (Trent Beretta & Rocky Romero)
The match started with The Young Bucks hitting suck it poses as the Hardys Deleted chopped RPG. As the two sets of brothers went to face off, RPG came back into the ring with trash can lids and took everyone out. Nick came back in and hit a springboard facebuster on Trent and Matt quick hoisted Romero up for Meltzer Driver. Romero fought out and the Hardys quickly cleared RPG from the ring, standing face to face with the Bucks yet again. After dueling Deleted knife edge chops, the Bucks reversed rish whips and hit superkicks, but missed a pair of mocking swanton bombs.
The Hardy brought a ladder in the ring and took the Bucks out, but Romero drop kicked the ladder , teaming with Brent to take control and work over the Hardys. Jeff took RPG out with a garbage can but was rewarded with a superkick from Matt. Broken Matt powerbombed Matt and then ate a superkick from Nick. Nick scaled a ladder and was pushed outside, taking the opportunity to springboard senton onto everyone but Trent on the outside. A Nick 450 splash wasn’t enough to win, but enough for Broken Matt to go savage and bite him. Romero pulled out a sleeve covered in thumbtacks and hit forever clotheslines on everyone! RPG hit Strong Zero but Matt broke up the pinfall. Trent pulled out traditional thumbtacks but his superplex attempt was stopped and he took a facebuster into the tacks. Matt oured tacks into his mouth and Nick hit a superkick that sent tacks everywhere. Romero took a 5 Star Meltzer on the tacks next, but the Hardy broke up the pinfall and hit dueling Twists of Fate for a two count. The Hardys grabbed a ladder and a table, eventually setting Beretta up on the table. Jeff hit the swanton off the top and scored the pinfall victory.
Winners: The Hardys
Wow, some really insane spots here. The tack sleeve, the regular thumbtacks and tons of creative moves involving the weapons came off really well. Granted, it was gratuitous, but it was a street fight. The Hardys walking away with the Superkick Party titles adds more to their impending rematch and although this match did not measure up to ladder Wars VI, this was still
ROH World Championship Match
Adam Cole(c) vs. Christopher Daniels
Christopher Daniels came out with a new jacket, looked very snazzy. The two actually adhered to the code of honor, but that didn’t stop Cole from playing mind games from the outset, seemingly one step ahead of Daniels. Cole’s second attempt to hit his Bay-Bay pose lead to a brief Daniels flurry. Cole slowed things down but was dumped to the outside and floored after a springboard moonsault. Cole was able to recover quickly and superkicked Daniels’s head into the ring post before rolling into the ring. Daniels was busted open immediately and began gushing blood. Cole tossed Daniels into the post again, smirking as he admired his work. Daniels fought back, only to be knocked right back down time and time again, catching a particularly stiff looking shining wizard, barely kicking out at two.
Cole lorded over Daniels and as he went to hit the Bay-Bay pose again, Daniels caught him with an STO and locked in a koji clutch that Cole used the ropes to escape. Cole rammed Daniels’ head into the turnbuckle after trash talking Daniels’ wife, but the Almighty fought off the pain. The two then went at it with rights and Daniels followed with an STO and a renewed energy. A Daniels’ blue thunder bomb went for two and he followed with a BME that missed. Cole connected with a superkick that went for two and hit the Last Shot, but Daniels again kicked out at two.Daniels somehow hit a super hurricanrana, but he too only scored a two count. Cole prevented Daniels Angel’s Wings and both were floored afterward. Cole charged Daniels in the corner and was dropped on the top rope. Daniels went for a super Angel’s Wings from the top but Cole countered and went from a destroyer, but that too was countered. Cole then tried to beat Daniels with his own move Angel’s Wings, but again, a kick out at two. Daniels then hit a Last Shot, but Cole kicked out just before three. Daniels caught Cole and hit a Styles Clash, but Daniels was a moment too slow. Sinclair caught an errant superkick and rolled to the outside. Kazarian came down to ringside and held Daniels as Cole grabbed the title. Kazarian dropped Daniels and begged Cole to hit Daniels. Kazarian tossed the title to the outside and ripped off the Bullet Club shirt, revealing Daniels’ Destiny shirt before giving Cole the finger. Daniels then hit three BME’s before winning the match and his first ROH Championship!
Winner and NEW champion: Christopher Daniels
The end to this match was superb and the arc of Christopher Daniels’ story came to a fulfilling and fitting end at the 15ht Anniversary show. The main event was emotional and saw tons of close calls.
Final Reaction: A-
It’s hard not to weigh the end of the event and grade this in accordance with the excitement of the end of the night. The event really built to the crescendo of this match and every match played its part on the night. The 6 man match was unfortunate due to O’Ryan’s injury, but some important narratives ended here, like the Daniels victory, while others, such as the Hardys/Bucks and even the Smith/War Machine issues grew legs. Most certainly worth your time and a genuine feel good moment.