We kick off this week’s show with a look back at last week’s ROH World Title match between Davey Richards and Jay Lethal. We see a quick recap of the action and the finish, where Lethal was hit by Adam Cole via Michael Elgin thus allowing Richards to retain his title.
Kevin Kelly and Nigel McGuinness are in the ring and they tell us that tonight’s main event will determine who will face Richards at ‘Shodwown in the Sun: Day One’, it will be Eddie Edwards v Roderick Strong.
We hear from Mike Bennett who talks about his match against Lance Storm at Showdown in the Sun. He said he can’t wait to kick the crap out of a legend and show why he is better than the best. We then hear from TJ Perkins who says Bennett should be focusing on their match tonight and that nobody knows when they’re going to get hit by lightning until it’s too late.
TJ Perkins vs. Mike Bennett w/Brutal Bob & Maria
Kevin Kelly says that TJP is looking to introduce a new submission hold to his arsenal to combat his lack of wins. TJP hits a hurricanrana followed by a back body drop and then locks in an arm drag. Bennett gets sucked in by TJP and misses an attack and falls to the outside but Maria and then Brutal Bob interfere to give Bennett the advantage. TJP fights back and hits a dropkick off the top which knocks Bennett to the outside again before TJP takes out both Bennett and Brutal Bob with a dive off the apron.
Sit-out powerbomb by TJP gets him two before the pair exchange near falls. TJP goes for the Detonation Kick but Bennett blocks it but then sees the Box Office Smash reversed. TJP locks in a modified STF but Maria grabs Bennett’s arm and TJP lets the hold go. With TJP distracted, Bennett waits for him to turn around and hits a TKO for the victory.
Winner by pinfall: Mike Bennett
ROHWorld.com’s thoughts: This was a decent opening match without being anything too memorable. I feel Bennett has lost a bit of momentum recently and TJP really needs to start getting some wins – his impressive performances will only get him so far. I think Bennett should be getting some clean wins, tainted victories will only get him so far but he definitely gets a fair deal of heel heat.
We go to the back where Veda Scott is with Prince Nana, Tommaso Ciampa and RD Evans. Ciampa says in New York, he has nothing to lose. He tells Lethal that he has everything to lose; his confidence, his TV title, his health and his career is in his hands. He says by the end of the night, he will leave undefeated and be the first and only undefeated champion in Ring of Honor history.
Guy Alexander vs. Tommaso Ciampa w/The Embassy
Oh dear, the tale of the tape seems to think that Guy Alexander is Cedric Alexander when in fact, they look completely different – Guy isn’t black for one…
Ciampa slaps Alexander’s hand and hits a German Suplex followed by several kicks. He continues to go to work on his opponent’s back, which is surgically repaired according to Kevin Kelly. Snapmare by Ciampa followed by a running knee keeps Alexander grounded as Ciampa throws him to the outside. Ciampa hits an openhanded slap and then whips Alexander into the barricades and then the side of the ring several times.
Ciampa gets Alexander in the corner and then rolls down his knee pad and hits six running knees before Paul Turner ends the contest
Winners by referee stoppage: Tommaso Ciampa
ROHWorld.com’s thoughts: I really like the way they are building up Ciampa on the TV show – he’s arguably been the star of the show recently. His psychopathic gimmick is really coming over and these referee stoppages help as it shows how ruthless he is. A squash match but it made Ciampa look dangerous ahead of the TV title match at the 10th Anniversary Show.
Now on to this week’s ‘Inside Ring of Honor‘ where Kevin Kelly goes through the 10th Anniversary Show line-up.
After that, he talks about the ‘Showdown in the Sun’ events. On Day One, Davey Richards will face the winner of tonight’s main event and Mike Bennett will go up against Lance Storm.
Also, in a unique ‘Dual Duel’, the All Night Express and Young Bucks will face off on both shows. Rhett Titus says while being out injured all he’s thought about is taking out the Bucks. ANX asked for a Street Fight on Day One and the Bucks asked for a tornado tag match on Day Two. Both matches have been accepted and will go down in Ft. Lauderdale.
Kelly talks about CHIKARA and tells us about the company – he also says Chikara wrestlers will feature at ‘Showdown in the Sun’.
Roderick Strong w/Truth Martini vs. Eddie Edwards
They exchange holds to begin the match before Edwards gets the advantage. Strong soon fights back and keeps Edwards in the corner with numerous chops. Edwards however gets Strong in a Tree of Woe and he hits two dropkicks, one in the ring and one from the outside. Edwards blocks a suplex attempt and then hits a back suplex of his own for two followed by a running knee for another near fall.
Back from the commercial break and we see that Strong got the advantage thanks to interference from Truth Martini. They exchange some nasty looking chops in the middle of the ring before Strong hits a variety of strikes until Edwards ducks and hits a German suplex. Fisherman buster from Edwards gets him two before another near fall just after. Strong goes for a suplex but throws Edwards down on the top rope for two.
Couple of running forearms from Strong before a backbreaker and gutbuster gets him two. Strong tries to go for a Gibson driver off the top rope but Edwards counters and hits a hurricanrana before hitting the backpack chinbreaker for another near fall. Strong manages to escape the Achilles Lock and then Edwards hits a drop toe hold which sees Strong go face first into the turnbuckles. Edwards goes to the top but Martini grabs his leg which prompts Adam Cole to come out and superkick him. Michael Elgin then comes out as Edwards hits a suicide dive to take him out.
Strong uses the distraction to put something on his boot and then hits the Sick Kick on Edwards for the victory. However, Paul Turner comes out and says he saw what Strong did, Edwards gets up and hits the Die Hard which takes out Todd Sinclair in the process. Turner counts the three and we have two winners. Turner and Sinclair argue as to who has won. Jim Cornette comes down and says that on Day One of ‘Showdown in the Sun’ Davey Richards will defend against both men in a triple threat match.
Roderick Strong and Eddie Edwards fought to a no contest
ROHWorld.com’s thoughts: It’s a shame that this match was overshadowed by the awful finish. It was an absolute mess that reminded me of watching another wrestling promotion based in Orlando. Despite the terrible ending, this match was good and was really building towards something before it was cut short. The decision to make it a triple threat match at Showdown in the Sun is the right one but they could have achieved it in a better way.