Ring of Honor heads back to one of its most frequent markets – Dayton – for another show. This was one night before the ‘9th Anniversary Show’ so was a ‘B’ show, as they often are in Dayton. Regardless, we have some great matches lined up. El Generico takes on Homicide as well as Eddie Edwards taking on Kenny King in a ‘Survival of the Fittest’ Finals rematch. There’s also a massive six-man main event; WGTT & Davey Richards vs. The KoW & Roderick Strong. ROH World takes a look at ‘World’s Greatest’:
Kyle O’Reilly vs. Jay Briscoe
They trade strikes to begin with and O’Reilly gets the advantage and hits two butterfly suplexes but Briscoe comes straight back with a kick to the face. They exchange some hard strikes in the corner and then O’Reilly sends Briscoe to the outside with a big boot. Briscoe goes over to the barricades and O’Reilly meets him with a missile dropkick off the ring apron. Back in the ring and O’Reilly hits another missile dropkick but Briscoe hits a big boot followed by a Michinoku driver for two. O’Reilly off the ropes but he walks straight into a Death Valley Driver for another two count. Bridging Dragon suplex gets O’Reilly two, Briscoe cuts O’Reilly off on the top rope and hits a superplex but O’Reilly rolls through for a near fall. Both men trade forearms and then hit a superkick each, Briscoe hits another and then floors O’Reilly with a big lariat for two. He gets O’Reilly back up and hits the Jay Driller for the win, Really fast paced opener, exactly the sort of thing that got the crowd going. A damn good 8 minutes of action too.
The Bravado Brothers vs. Steve Corino & Grizzly Redwood
Corino gets the mic before the match and says her hand-picked Grizzly as his partner because he’s such an inspiration. He then mentions the Bravados’ Grandma and they cheap shot him and Grizzly before the bell. Corino hits a dropkick and then goes for a second but misses and The Bravados take control. Grizzly gets tagged in and locks in the Abdominal Stretch but the Bravados then hit a double team suplex/neckbreaker to take control once more. After taking a lot of punishment, Grizzly hits a hurricanrana but Corino gets knocked off the apron, he finally makes the tag and Corino takes both Bravados out with DDT/Flatliner combination. Corino locks in the Abdominal Stretch and teases using the thumb but gets kicked in the head for two. Enziguri leads to a bridging German Suplex from the Bravados until Grizzly takes them both out with a double dropkick. Corino hits the Eternal Dream on Lance but Todd Sinclair is distracted by Grizzly. Harlem rolls up Corino and grabs a handful of tights for the win. This was mainly done for storyline purposes but as an actual contest, it wasn’t all that bad.
Mike Bennett vs. Mark Briscoe
Bennett has Brutal Bob in his corner but Briscoe takes control early on and hits a nice hilo over the top rope. Briscoe goes up top but after a distraction from Evans, he dives straight into a dropkick. Bennett whips Briscoe into the corner, hangs him on the second rope and hits a nice backbreaker for two. Briscoe reverses a back body drop and then hits a superkick as both men are down on the canvas. Briscoe off the ropes, ducks a clothesline and then hits a Northern Lights suplex for two. Briscoe slams Bennett down and then hits a senton off the top rope for another near fall. Exploder suplex from Briscoe but Bennett fights back with a big spinebuster. Big kick to the side of the had of Bennett, Briscoe climbs but Brutal Bob interferes again. Bennett low blows Briscoe with the ref’s back turned and then hits his patented side slam for the victory. I’m still not sold on Bennett and this wasn’t a great by any means. Constant interference by Evans slowed this down when it started to get better which was frustrating.
Mike Mondo vs. Rhett Titus vs. Andy “Right Leg” Ridge vs. Colt Cabana
Is it me or has Cabana been in every single four corner survival match ever?! Titus and Mondo get sent to the outside immediately, Cabana sends Ridge out with them and then hits a plancha to take out the other three men. Cabana hip tosses Mondo onto Titus who is the legal man and he gets the two count. Titus and Mondo start to work together and they send Cabana out of the ring. Titus holds Ridge down on the mat which allows Mondo to hit a flying headbutt off the top rope. Mondo does the same for Titus as he hits the double knees on the prone Ridge. Ridge finally tags Cabana in as he takes Mondo and Titus out with some elbows. Flying ass takes out both Mondo and Titus and then he hits a springboard moonsault for two on Mondo. Mondo gets a two count on Cabana after a top rope neckbreaker and then he and Titus argue which allows Ridge to take them both out with a diving crossbody. Titus hits a dropkick to Cabana and then gives Ridge the Snake Eyes. Titus tries to cut Cabana off on the top but Cabana holds on and then drops him down on the turnbuckle. Mondo tries to roll Cabana up but he holds on and locks in the Billy Goat’s Curse and Mondo is forced to tap. This was a fun four way match, they usually are. Nothing outstanding but it was a nice fast paced match-up following on from the slower Bennett match.
Christopher Daniels vs. Michael Elgin
This is a non title match between these two and Elgin is accompanied by Truth Martini. Elgin dominates the early goings of the match with his strength until Daniels sends him to the outside and follows up with a baseball slide and then the Arabian moonsault. Daniels gets distracted by Martini on the apron and Elgin takes advantage with a Samoan drop. Elgin keeps him grounded with a couple of clotheslines and some hard strikes. Elgin takes him to the outside and then locks on a Boston crab on the outside, he follows that up with a body slam. Elgin puts Daniels in the Boston crab again on the outside and uses the 20 count to his advantage. Back in the ring and Elgin hits a boot to Daniels’ chest but Daniels comes back and tries to hit a Tornado DDT until Elgin blocks it and gets sent into the corner. Another Arabian moonsault by Daniels – this time inside the ring – gets him a two count. Elgin fights back and hits a Falcon Arrow for a near fall and then gets another after a big lariat. Daniels ducks another lariat and hits an enziguri but Martini distracts him again and Elgin drives him down with a spinning side slam. Martini tries to give Elgin some advice from the apron, he goes for a powerbomb but Daniels reverses it into a rollup for the win. Elgin attacks Daniels after the match but El Generico makes the save and he clears Elgin out of the ring. Daniels takes the Book of Truth that was left in the ring and we all know what happened from there… This was a very hard-hitting match with great ring psychology. It was a bit slow and when it was just starting to get into second gear, it ended. Had the potential but was just stopped a bit too soon.
El Generico vs. Homicide
They trade holds to begin with as Homicide mocks Generico and then bites his hand after Generico had him in a headlock. They go for a sequence of arm drags but Homicide botches not one but two of them and they look really sloppy. Generico goes for the ten punches in the corner but Homicide bites his knee and then throws him to the outside. Homicide whips him into the steel barricades and then tries to use a chair but Generico throws him into the barricades. Homicide goes crazy and just tries to get as many weapons as possible, he reverses an attempted suplex on the outside and delivers a neckbreaker. Homicide hits two suplexes back in the ring but Generico fights back with a Tornado DDT for a two count. Homicide off the ropes and walks straight into a Michinoku driver for another two count. Homicide cuts off Generico who went to the top rope and then hits a top rope hurricanrana for a two count of his own. Generico reverses the Ace Crusher and Kop Killa but then gets hit with a big lariat for two. Generico catches Homicide and then hits an exploding suplex into the corner for two. Homicide hits a running knee but Generico fights back with a Yakuza Kick and then he goes for a top rope brainbuster which Homicide blocks by raking the eyes. Generico has trouble seeing and Homicide takes advantage to hit the Ace Crusher for the victory. I’m just not feeling Homicide’s latest ROH run, he seems very sloppy and sluggish which is unlike him. Generico tried to infuse the match with some much needed fireworks but it wasn’t to be. Disappointing.
Eddie Edwards vs. Kenny King
This is a ‘Survival of the Fittest’ Finals rematch, Eddie won that one and went on to become World Champion. Some nice mat wrestling to begin with which includes a lot of reversals, both men go for a dropkick and hit a stalemate. Edwards hits some hard chops but then gets crotched on the top rope by King who then hits a spinning kick that knocks him out of the ring. King follows up with a legdrop on the outside and then throws Edwards into the barricades. King continues to pick apart Edwards with a series of different strikes until Eddie fights back with a flying knee. King cuts Edwards off on the rope and then hits a big jumping kick to the head, Edwards blocks a Royal Flush attempt but then gets suplexed into the corner for two. Edwards hits some kicks that sends King down on the apron and he follows up with a double stomp as both men fall to the outside. King goes for a springboard move off the barricades but Edwards shoves him into the crowd and then hits a crossbody off the barricades. Missile dropkick by Eddie back in the ring followed by a superkick and a face wash in the corner. Edwards hits a lungblower off the second rope and then delivers a bridging Tiger suplex which gets him a two count. Edwards goes for a running move but walks straight into a leg lariat as both men trade forearms. Bicycle kick by King but then he gets hit by a big lariat and both men are down on the canvas. King hits the running knees in the corner but only gets two, the two fight on the top until Edwards shoves him off and hits a double stomp to King’s back. Dragonscrew leg whip by Edwards and then he puts King in the Achilles Lock and he taps out. Now we’re talking. These two had great chemistry in the ring and this match panned out very nicely. They didn’t go overboard with the false finishes either so another match between these two is a real possibility. Nicely done.
Wrestling’s Greatest Tag Team & Davey Richards vs. The Kings of Wrestling & Roderick Strong
Strong was still ROH World Champ at this point and The Kings were Tag Team Champs. The beginning of this match was mostly about selling merchandise! Davey stole the new Kings t-shirt off Claudio and threw it into the crowd. Now onto the match… Richards and Claudio start off and there’s some really nice mat wrestling until Strong comes in and then Benjamin is tagged in for his team. Haas begins to work on the arm of Strong until he turns the tide and The Kings start to pick Haas apart. Haas fights back with a headscissors and a gut wrench suplex which allows him to tag in Benjamin. Benjamin takes a bit of punishment from Strong including a dropkick and then tags in Claudio. Claudio gets Benjamin in an arm bar and then lifts him up with one arm, crazy strength. Shelton takes a lot more damage but then tags in Richards who hits Claudio with about 25 kicks in the corner! Richards fights off both Hero & Claudio but then gets kicked in the head by Hero as he falls to the outside. Roderick Strong follows up and throws him into the steel barricades at ringside. Strong hits the Danielson style elbows on Richards and then tags Claudio in to continue the punishment.
The champs continue to wear down Richards and Claudio catches Richards going for a springboard elbow and hits the UFO for a near fall. Richards kicks Hero off the apron and then hits a missile dropkick on Claudio which allows him to tag in Benjamin. Shelton lands on his feet after an attempted monkey flip by Hero and then hits a spinning kick to take him out. Samoan Drop to Strong takes him out and then he gets a two count with a bridging German Suplex on Hero. Hero hits the rolling boot and tags in Claudio as they hit the big swing/dropkick combo but Haas breaks the count up. Chokeslam by Claudio on Shelton gets him a near fall, Haas gets tagged in and he cleans house as Claudio gets superkicked in the face. Haas locks in the Haas of Pain on Claudio as Richards hits a diving headbutt but Hero manages to break it up. Shelton ducks an elbow and hits a jumping flatliner which leaves Strong and Haas as the only men standing up. Haas tags in Richards who hits a big kick to the side of the head followed by a bridging German for two. The Kings save Strong once more and Haas takes Hero out on the outside. The Kings are then chased to the back by Benjamin & Haas and this is now a singles match! Strong gets two after an elbow and a belly-to-back suplex. Gutbuster followed by the Sick Kick gets Strong another very near fall, the two brawl on the top rope but Richards knocks Strong down but his dropkick gets reversed into the Strong Hold. Richards reverses it into a pin but Strong kicks out, Davey locks in the armbar but Strong escapes and then gets hit with the Alarm Clock and a running forearm and knee. Tornado DDT and a Falcon Arrow into the armbar makes Strong tap out. Haas & Benjamin come out to congratulate Davey who then proceeds to put them over on the mic. This was an awesome match-up which actually exceeded my expectations. I’m not normally a fan of six man matches but this was done the right way and was very effective in making Davey look like a monster. The fact that they had the champion lose clean was a bit strange though. Very entertaining main event regardless.
Considering this show was the night before the ‘9th Anniversary Show’, I don’t think anybody was expecting a classic event but this was a bit lacklustre by Ring of Honor standards. The last two matches are good and none of the others are bad but they’re not must watch matches either. At least the Main Event delivered. I’d wait for a sale to pick up this one.
Overall Score: 6/10