ROH Best in the World on iPPV
Aired Live from New York, NY at The Manhattan Center
The show opened with Dave Prazak, Kevin Kelly and Jim Cornette in the ring. There was a minor freeze right as they went live, but the feed is solid. Cornette said it was the biggest crowd ever, and combined with those watching on iPPV, the most watched in history. Cornette said those who didn't think ROH was going to set the world on fire could kiss his white butt. He said it was time to get the party started and Colt Cabana's music hit as ring introductions occurred for the opening match…
1. Tommaso Ciampa (w/The Embassy) defeated Colt Cabana at 6:59. No code of honor to start. Cabana worked some comedy spots to start and stomped on Nana's fingers on the mat. Ciampa dropped Cabana over the top rope and hit a drop kick through the ropes to take control and end the comedy. Ciampa hit a running knee to the face in the corner for two. Colt tried a surprise standing moonsault, but Ciampa hit a cool knee lift to stop it. Colt still came charging right back and hit snake eyes in the corner.
Colt hit his shake, rattle and roll strikes and hit a butt bump for a two count. Ciampa shoved Colt into the corner and hit a bridging German suplex for two. Colt kicked out and reversed a lift into the Billy Goat's Curse, but Ciampa made the ropes. Colt tried a splash in the corner. Ciampa missed and Colt landed on the top. Ciampa scooped him up and hit a powerbomb lift into a backbreaker on the knees for the win…
Shore's Slant: Terrible match. It looked scripted and forced. Ciampa's finisher was one of the weaker moves of the match to boot. Just a bad finisher and the live crowd was dead for it.
2. Jay Lethal defeated "The Prodigy" Mike Bennett (w/"Brutal" Bob Evans) at 9:43. Lethal got a great pop and "Welcome back" and "F--- TNA" chants. A "Randy Savage" chant broke out and Lethal played it up a little. Bennett broke the first lock up clean but punked Lethal a little. That led to them running the ropes and Lethal getting the best and taking initial control. He hit a flying head scissor, followed by a suplex that spilled Bennett to the floor. Lethal immediately hit a dive to the floor to get the crowd super-hot.
Lethal rolled Bennett in the ring and Bennett kicked him away. Brutal Bob grabbed Lethal and hit a side slam on the apron. Bennett hit a clothesline from the apron on the floor and rolled Lethal back in the ring. Bennett worked the back with strikes and rest holds. Lethal had a moment of hope and went to the top for the elbow, but Bennett distracted the ref and Bob grabbed Lethal to stop him. Lethal shoved Bob down, but Bennett ran up and hit a top rope superplex. Bennett went to the top for an elbow, but Lethal moved and hit one of his own for the win. Post-match, Lethal slapped the ROH letters in the ring while the crowd chanted with him…
Shore's Slant: A much better match. I'm a little surprised by the Lethal win, but not completely. Bennett looked very good here and gets better every time I see him. Lethal has a big future in ROH if he chooses to stay around.
Homicide made his entrance and took the mic. He said NY was the greatest city in the world and to f--- Michigan (where Rhino is from). Rhino made his entrance and slid into the ring to start the match…
3. Homicide defeated Rhyno (w/The Embassy) in a Barrio Street Fight at 10:16. The men brawled to start and Homicide spilled Rhino to the floor. Homicide hit a suicide dive and rolled Rhino in the ring for two. Rhino lifted Homicide and dropped him on his face. He kicked Homicide in the gut and Homicide rolled to the floor and Rhino tried a dive. Homicide moved and Rhino crashed to the floor. Homicide tried to put Rhino to a table, but Rhino reversed and sent Homicide through the table.
Rhino tossed a ladder in the ring and went back to work on Homicide. Homicide escaped and went after Nana, but Rhino drove him into the railing and then rolled him in the ring. Rhino hit Homicide with the ladder and setup for a suplex on it. Homicide reversed the suplex onto the ladder. Homicide set the ladder in the corner, but Rhino reversed the whip and tossed Homicide onto the ladder. Homicide landed awkwardly on his arm and Rhino worked that until he gorilla pressed Homicide and dropped him gut first on the ladder.
Both men worked rapid back and forth offense with nobody staying in control for more than two or three moves. Rhino hit a piledriver for two. He tried for the gore, but Homicide hit a kick and an Ace crusher for two. Homicide got a table from the ring and started to set it up. Rhino made his feet and attacked Homicide. He propped the table in the corner and hit a belly to belly and lined up for a gore into the table. He charged, and Homicide hit a sunset flip on the gore for the win.
Post-match Nana hit the ring and attacked Homicide. Homicide got the better and punched Nana, but he turned around and got gored through the table. The ROH staff hit the ring immediately and checked on him. Homicide sold his ribs being damaged and was helped from the ring by several people…
Shore's Slant: Very good match. I'm not the biggest Homicide fan as he seems to phone it in sometimes, but that was not the case here. I was partially right in my prediction as I expect that gore to keep Homicide away until his contract with Urban Wrestling ends. We are flying through this card. The top matches must be going for forever.
Steve Corino and Jimmy Jacobs made their ring entrance. Kevin Kelly said Corino bought a ticket for Kevin Steen, but ROH officials said he could not attend. Corino cut a promo as the crowd chanted "We want Steen." Corino said he and Jacobs had been getting better each and every day after they changed their lives. He said there was one other person who wanted to make a change. He apologized to Cornette and the new owners and introduced "Mr. Wrestling" Kevin Steen.
Steen was in the upper deck of the venue and the place went nuts. He ran down to the floor and tried to climb the rail, but ROH security and staff ran out. Cornette came out and appeared to tell Steen he could stay, but he had to stay in the crowd. Steen shook Cornette's hand and went to his seat. The crowd chanted "Bullshit" at the top of their lungs. Elgin hit a slingshot elbow over the top rope to start the match…
4. Mike Elgin (w/Truth Martini) defeated Steve Corino (w/Jimmy Jacobs) at 8:38. Elgin and Corino traded strikes and Corino scored the Thumb in the Bum. Corino broke and Elgin charged. Corino pulled the rope down and Elgin fell to the floor. Corino dove through the second rope and Elgin caught him. Elgin slammed him into the railing and then hit a powerslam to leave Corino laid out on the floor. Kevin Kelly said that Steen had not returned to his seat but had been escorted from the building. No mic on Cornette so I guessed.
Corino dragged himself into the ring and Elgin tried for a package piledriver, but Corino hit a backdrop instead. Jacobs called Elgin an asshole for trying Steen's move, but Elgin slammed Corino in the corner and hit two clotheslines. Corino came back with a lariat, but Truth swept his legs. Jacobs chased Truth and grabbed him, but Elgin grabbed Jacobs. Corino tried for a rollup, but Elgin kicked out and hit a superkick before suplexing Corino from his knees. He did not cover, but hit a powerbomb. Corino kicked out…and my feed froze. I did not see the finish, but Elgin won.
Post-match, Elgin attacked Corino again. Jacobs ran in for the save, but Truth hit him with the Book of Truth. Elgin and Truth beat down both men. Kevin Steen ran in and made the save. He hit a popup powerbomb on Elgin, and then a superkick that spilled Truth to the floor. ROH staff hit the ring and Corino begged them to stop on the mic. He said Kevin wanted to speak and they should hear him.
Cornette agreed and Kevin said he wouldn't be long. He said he wanted everyone to know…F--- ROH! He hit Jacobs with the mic and then a package piledriver on Corino. He ripped open his shirt and had a red shirt underneath. The graphic appeared to be blurred out, but it could just be the feed. Security dragged him to the floor and over the rail. He crowd surfed while flipping everyone off. Corino sold it like he was shot, and the show went to intermission…
Shore's Slant: Well color me surprised, I really thought he was coming back as a babyface. I don't think this is the last we have seen of Kevin Steen, but expect a mask at least for a while. I guess at least. I'm not really sure how this works. Perhaps Corino begs to have him re-instated to face him. It will be interesting to see. As far as the match. Well, it wasn't as rough as the first, but it wasn't very good either. Steen was what that match was all about, and when he wasn't around, the match suffered.
5. El Generico defeated Christopher Daniel to win the ROH Television Championship at 19:29. Daniels went right at Generico at the bell. Generico came back and worked his arm drag series. Daniels rolled to the floor and Generico hit a drop kick through the ropes. They battled on the floor and Generico hit a moonsault off the barricade to get the crowd hot. He rolled Daniels back in the ring and Daniels begged off in Spanish. He asked Generico to shake his hand. Generico did and slapped him.
Generico went for the ten punches in the corner, but Daniels raked the eyes and dropped him on the ropes. Daniels went back and forth between working on Generico and getting the ROH crowd involved. He did the Jeff Jarrett strut and the crowd went nuts against him with another "F---TNA!" chant. At 10:20, Daniels charged and Generico pulled the rope down. Generico followed with his suicide dive and took control.
Generico hit a flying cross body and a spinning, sitout powerbomb for two. Daniels came right back with a Koji clutch in the middle of the ring. Generico rolled and got his foot to the ropes to cause the break. Daniels went for Angel's Wings, but Generico back dropped out. Daniels hit another move as someone walked in front of the camera for two. They traded reversals and strikes for almost 30 seconds before Generico hit the yakuza kick and brainbuster for a great near fall.
Generico tied Daniels to the tree of woe and hit a front flip coast to coast for another great near fall. Generico dragged Daniels to the apron and tried to lift him for the brainbuster. Daniels shoved him to the floor and onto a photographer. Oops! Daniels hit a suplex on the floor and grabbed the title belt. He climbed in the ring, put it on, and started playing to the crowd and telling the ref to count Generico out. Generico made it back at nine, and Daniels slammed him. He went for Best Moonsault Ever with the belt on. Generico got the foot up and followed with the yakuza kick and the top rope brainbuster for the win.
Shore's Slant: Unbelievable match. Daniels had the crowd eating out of the palm of his hand by the end, and they were crazy hot for the title change. If Daniels is done in ROH, he did Generico and the company a solid on the way out the door. Nice work and a great title change. Oh yeah, and BRAIN BUSTAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!
The rules for the match were explained. The team that eliminates a team decides which team goes in next. But they can tag anyone they want during the match. What a cluster this could be. Cody B. Ware performed the Kings of Wrestling theme live as they made their entrance. The other three teams had normal entrances…
6. Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin defeated The Kings of Wrestling, The Briscoe Brothers and The All Night Express in a four way elimination match to retain the ROH World Tag Team Championships at 40:09. Haas and Titus started. I'm going to tell you now, this is going to be a mess with people everywhere so you get the high spots. If you want to see it all, buy the damn show. Haas and Titus showed out and then both tagged in their partners.
Benjamin and King put on a reversal clinic that finished in ended in a botched cross body from Benjamin on King. Claudio blind tagged Benjamin and attacked King. Hero tagged in and he and Titus struggled to figure out a whip to the corner in an ugly spot. Titus tagged in and Hero got a blind tag to Claudio, who hit a European Uppercut and worked Titus's ear that has to have surgery for a chronic ruptured ear drum. Hey, it's what Kevin Kelly told me. Blame him.
The Briscoes tagged in and all hell broke loose. Everybody ended up on the floor except for Hero and King, who were not legal. Hero hit a running moonsault from the ring to the floor in a very, very cool spot. King climbed the turnbuckle and Claudio ran up to fight with him. Benjamin ran in from nowhere and tossed both men to the floor in a scary spot. The Briscoes ran in and attacked Benjamin and order got restored as Mark and Benjamin worked.
The teams generally tagged their own partner, but Hero tagged the Briscoes at one point so he could drink some water in the corner. Does that help or hurt his chances with WWE? The KOW went to the floor and just hung out while the others worked. ANX and the Briscoes ended up in the ring and King was taken out with a pro-team neckbreaker. Titus managed to stay alive and he and King hit a backbreaker, knee drop from the top combo to pin Jay and eliminate the Briscoes. The Briscoes were eliminated at 24:12.
ANX picked the Kings to start with them and Claudio and Hero tried to attack Titus from behind. Titus was wise to it and he and Kenny ended up taking out both Kings. Somehow Benjamin was tagged in and Benjamin took a beating from ANX and then the KOW. Benjamin made the hot tag to Kenny King who took out Claudio, and then Hero with a leg suplex. Titus tagged in and started to take out Claudio. Sara Del Rey distracted the ref and Hero hit the loaded rolling elbow to eliminate ANX. The All Night Express was eliminated at 34:30.
Haas ran in and snatched the elbow pad off Hero and tossed it in the crowd. He took out Hagadorn who jumped up on the apron. That allowed Hero to hit a regular rolling elbow for the Kings to take control. Haas got the hot tag to Benjamin and the WGTT worked their offense on Hero. Hero hit a rolling ick on Haas and tagged Claudio. Claudio did a long UFO spin, but Benjamin broke the count. Haas reversed a powerbomb lift into a hurricanranna on Hero that also drove Claudio to the floor. The WGTT hit a double Alabama Slam on Hero for the victory.
Post-match, the Briscoes hit the ring with chairs and beat-up the WGTT while the KOW just watched from the corners. The ANX ran out with milk crates, a kendo stick and what appeared to be a javelin to chase off the heals. ROH and staff helped WGTT to the back as Haas and Benjamin sold the hell out of the beatings…
Shore's Slant: A 40 minute match. Hell, even I'm exhausted. I'm worried about this crowd for the next match. They might be burned out. But I have to say, I have a real problem with the match because it didn't really advance a storyline. The action was very good, and not nearly as gimmicky as I thought it might be. They did a nice job. But I don't have a feel for who to like coming out. Certainly the champs, but who else? Who do I want to see them face? They didn't really give me a direction here at all.
A video recapped the world title feud and ring introductions occurred…
7. Davey Richards defeated Eddie Edwards to become the ROH World Heavyweight Champion at 35:59. They shook hands and hugged before the match and the crowd started competing chants. So much for my worry. Davey broke the first lockup clean, but Eddie and he traded blocked strikes on the next one. Both men attempted to hook their submission finisher, and then each took a turn working the other's back with rest holds.
At 7:35, Davey tossed Eddie to the floor and then hit a kick from the apron. He jumped back in the ring and hit his dive to the floor to get the crowd hot again. He rolled Eddie in the ring and hit a drop kick to the back. He went to the second rope and Eddie hit a kick. Eddie tried for the chin breaker, but Davey reversed into the crossarm breaker. Eddie escaped, but Davey hit a top rope superplex that he rolled through into a suplex into another crowssarm breaker. Wow.
Eddie reversed into the Achilles's lock, but Davey reversed again to hook the arm. Eddie made the ropes and Davey tried for a handspring elbow. Eddie caught him and hit a back flip slam. Davey went for the alarm clock, but Eddie reversed into a fisherman driver for two. Davey tried hooking the crossarm breaker several times, but Eddie would roll up and stomp him in the face. Davey rolled to the floor and Eddie hit a moonsault. Eddie cracked his knee on the railing and continued to favor it.
Eddie worked more offense while trying not to hurt his leg. They battled to the apron and Eddie hit a 2K Bomb onto the apron that nearly brought my lunch back up. Oh my God did that look and sound sick. Eddie got in the ring and superkicked Davey onto a table. He hit the double stomp onto Davey from the top turnbuckle that crushed the table and had Eddie grabbing his leg again.
Both men battled and traded strikes. They ended up in the ropes again and Eddie had his bad leg stuck. Davey grabbed the leg for the corkscrew and hesitated. Eddie yelled at him to do it and slapped Davey. Davey did it and then hit a double stomp onto Eddie's chest for a great near fall. Davey put Eddie on the top turnbuckle and hit 145 head-butts. Eddie hit a super german suplex and then another bridging one for two. He followed with a powerbomb and twisted the kick out into an ankle lock.
Eddie reversed the ankle into the Achilles, and then Davey reversed back into the ankle until a rope break. Both men sold the match at 27:30 before standing on the ring apron near the announce table. Davey kicked Eddie twice. On the third, Eddie fell and Davey kicked the ring post so that both sold leg injuries. They climbed the turnbuckle on the outside and battled. Eddie dropped Davey on the turnbuckle and rolled in the ring. He climbed up from that side, and reversed a super powerbomb attempt into a scary looking hurricanranna.
Eddie hit several drivers and slams in the ring, finishing with a 2K bomb for two. He slid right into the Achilles lock in the middle of the ring and the crowd kind of died. Davey kicked away and they both just laid there for about 10 seconds to catch their breath. They made their feet at nine and stood face to face.
Eddie hit chops as Davey traded kicks to the chest until Davey hit a back kick and then a clothesline for two. Davey hit another lariat and Eddie kicked out on one. Davey hit about 350 kicks to the head and Eddie kicked out again. Davey hit one more running kick on a seated Eddie and covered for the win.
Post-match, referee Todd Sinclair check on Davey and called for help. A medic and Kyle O'Reilly ran in and checked on Davey. Cornette ran out and begged Davey to stay down. Davey kept fighting to get up and finally somebody checked on Eddie. They looked at his foot for a moment and then the two guys crawled to each other and hugged. They stood and Eddie put the belt on him. Davey took a mic and said he had no family and that the crew in the ring and all the fans were there for him when it was bad and he thanked everyone and said it meant everything to him.
He cried while talking and thanking Eddie for being there. Eddie took the mic and said Davey was always telling everyone how great they were, but it was time for him to stand up and receive the adoration he deserved. Davey stood and the fans cheered. He hugged his crew while Eddie sat dejected in the corner to end the show…
Shore's Slant: Well, there you have it. Almost every Davey Richards match has felt the same for me. There was very little drama in this match. They did not do a good job of playing up the friendship history or even the "final chance" stipulation for Davey. I never had a moment where I thought the match was ending. Even at the end! The finish was the lamest thing I have seen since…well, since the last Davey Richards title match where he just collapsed from a supposed concussion. And a lot of people on Twitter are digging the post-match emotion. But if felt fake and forced to me. I'm not saying it wasn't legit, but it didn't come across my feed that way.
Overall it was a good show, but not the show I thought it might be. The opening and closing matches left a lot to be desired, and the intermission killed a lot of momentum. Still, the other two title matches were very good to great, and the rest of the undercard was entertaining. I'll have more to say shortly in the Member's Exclusive Audio Review, and in tomorrow's hitlist. Thanks for watching along with me tonight.
Questions? Comments? Anyone, anyone? Let me hear from you. Email me at email@example.com or tweet me @the_shore_slant with whatever is on your mind.