Friday, June 7, 2013

ROH 11th Anniversary Show Review

Kevin Steen and Jay Lethal face off once again for the ROH World Title....and S.C.U.M.'s numbers grow.

ROH 11th Anniversary Show
Chicago Ridge, Illinois 3/2/13

1.) Six-Man Mayhem – Silas Young vs. ACH vs. “God’s Gift” QT Marshall (with Barrister RD Evans) vs. Mike Sydal vs. Adam Page vs. Tadarius Thomas: ***1/4

All of these guys were participants in the recent Top Prospect Tournament held on ROH TV. This was a really fun match. Pretty much the perfect opener for an ROH iPPV. The highlights include the various dives to the floor as well as Silas Young suplexing RD Evans off the top rope to the floor on top of everyone else. ACH picks up the win in this wild match.

2.) Caprice Coleman & Cedric Alexander vs. S.C.U.M. (Steve Corino & Jimmy Jacobs): ***

C & C have been part of ROH's fight against some for a few months now, and have met Corino & Jacobs in the ring on a few occasions already. This was a pretty formula tag team match but still very entertaining...and this was the worst match on the show (which says something about how good this card was)! Corino & Jacobs hit a sick looking piledriver on Alexander for the win.

3.) No Holds Barred – “The Outlaw” Charlie Haas vs. BJ Whitmer: ***1/2

These two go at it right from the opening bell and this get wild very fast. This was a lot of fun. I'd say this was the best singles match Haas had in his entire ROH run. Their were some brutal spots and paid homage to their previous matches. The finish was kind of odd, as BJ gave Haas and Exploder through a ladder, which Haas kicked out of, and then won with repeated knees to the head. It should have ended with the Exploder, but that's my only real complaint.

4.) The American Wolves vs. Forever Hooligans: ***3/4

The Forever Hooligans are Rocky Romero & Alex Kozlov, who have both wrestled in ROH before (Romero more so than Kozlov). Kozlov sings the Russian National Anthem Pre-Match (which the Wolves surprisingly don't break up). The match itself might not have been as good as ROH had built it up as being (calling it a "Dream Match") it was still very good. They played up the long history of Richards & Romero as former members of the No Remorse Corps. Faction in ROH as well as recently teaming in Japan. Overall very solid action from both teams.

After the match, both teams shake hands & embrace.

5.) 2/3 Falls – Roderick Strong vs. “Unbreakable” Michael Elgin: ***3/4

Truth Martini is banned from ringside for this one. Elgin gets the first fall in the first 2 or 3 minutes, followed by Strong tied it up 1-1 before Elgin gets the third fall and the win. I'd say this was better than their match at Final Battle and was very good, but I think people were expecting a little better. I think it's difficult to do a 2/3 Falls Match on iPPV because ROH has a reputation of having very long 2/3 Falls, thus it really didn't feel like a traditional ROH 2/3 Falls Match. Still, it was very good regardless and Elgin finally gets a decisive win over Strong.

6.) ROH World TV Title – Adam Cole vs. Matt Taven (with Truth Martini): ***1/2

Before the match itself, Matt Hardy comes out and talks about his TV Title Shot against Adam Cole at the next day's TV Tapings and that this Matt Taven match was an afterthought. He then joins the commentary team at ringside.

Taven comes out in new, darker colored attire. Martini is wearing the strangest attire he's worn yet (needs to be seen to be believed) and debuts the now infamous "Take Your Pants Off" House of Truth music. The match itself was actually pretty solid. Cole & Taven seemed to work pretty well together in this instance. Martini hits Cole in the back with the Book of Truth when the ref wasn't looking, allowing Taven to hit a sick Modified DDT for the win and the title!! Matt Hardy is shocked and stumbles off speechless with his World TV Title Shot now in question.

7.) ROH World Tag Team Titles – The Briscoes vs. reDRagon: ****

reDRagon won this opportunity by defeating The American Wolves in the final leg of a Tag Team Gauntlet Match on ROH TV. This was a very exciting matchup. These two teams just seemed to click and it make for a very good match. The crowd was very much into it as well. We even saw a Doomsday Device on the floor! O'Reilly & Fish eventually hit Chasing the Dragon and claim the World Tag Team Titles. They then have the ref announce them as winners and have the ref & Cary Silkin strap the belts around their waits (ala MMA...I guess).

8.) ROH World Title – Kevin Steen vs. Jay Lethal: ****1/4

After convincing Steen to revoke the demands he made following the incident at Killer Instinct, Jay Lethal is finally able to cash in his title shot that he earned after winning the 2012 Survival of the Fittest Tournament. This was an awesome match, from the opening bell these two beat the crap out of each other and pulled out everything they had. Corino & Jacobs interfered at one point and again later in the match, but Kevin Steen called them off the second time, saying their help wasn't needed. Steen eventually wins this thriller of a match by hitting his former partner's finishing move, the Top Rope Brainbuster (which took a scary turn as Lethal didn't hit the turnbuckle and instead felt straight down to the mat head first).

After the match all hell breaks looks. Rhino hits the GORE on Jay Lethal, and Jacobs takes out the ref. The Briscoes come out but are quickly disposed of (I should note Jay injured his shoulder after he landed hard on it following a GORE from Rhino). Coleman & Alexander come out, but Jimmy Rave comes through the crowd with a S.C.U.M. shirt on and takes them out. BJ Whiter comes out along with his tag partner Rhett Titus, who hits Whitmer with a dropkick, ripping off his ROH T-Shirt to reveal his S.C.U.M. Shirt. Elgin comes out but Cliff Compton (better known as Domino from the Deuce 'n' Domino tag team in WWE) jumps the guardrail and throws powder in the face of Elgin. The Wolves come out but are unable to stem the tide. Adam Cole comes out but is assaulted by Matt Hardy as he reveals that he's wearing a S.C.U.M. Shirt. While all this was going on several ROH wrestlers were zip-tied to the ropes. Kevin Steen also was at ringside for all of this, but did not participate. He just stood off to the side and watched the chaos unfold around him in disbelief. Steve Corino then comes out to cut a promo. He introduces the new members and states that the mission has always been the same. Then then rip up an ROH flag and Corino concludes by saying that Honor has died.

Overall: 9.0/10

This was an awesome show. It fell just shy of Glory By Honor XI, which was itself a fantastic show. What really makes this show stand out was the overall match quality. While it didn't have a match near the quality of Richards/Elgin & Elgin/Steen, not a single match on this show fell below three stars, which makes it a must see for that reason alone. So much really good & great stuff on this show. It'll also be remembered for the angle at the end, which will probably go down as one of the most memorable moments in ROH history. In summary....this is a must see show, no doubt about it!

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