Arena Reports 9/15 ROH in Chicago Ridge, Ill: Complete PPV taping results (Briscoes vs. Steen & Generico Ladder match)
Sep 16, 2007 - 3:37:20 PM
PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO BOOKMARK US & VISIT US DAILY
ROH live event/PPV taping report
September 15, 2007
Chicago Ridge, Ill
By Torch VIP Member JSIN
A huge crowd witnessed the taping of ROH's 3rd Pay Per View (alleged to be entitled “Man Up”, which is another in a long line of terrible show titles) at the Frontier Fieldhouse in Chicago Ridge, IL on Saturday. As usually, it was a very good show and the PPV portion should be great, but the line up for the 2nd half was somewhat weak so that hurt the overall show.
Pre-show action saw Rhett Titus team with Bobby Dempsey to take on Ernie Osiris and AAWs' Silas Young. Really good pre-show match. Dempsey has improved so much both in ring work and personality since he debuted a few years back. Good for him.
The show started with a 4 corner survival match and Naomichi Marufuji making his entrance. After he was already in the ring, Dave Prazak gave us the PPV pep talk and counted down from 10 to the open of the PPV. As Nigel made his entrance, Prazak & Leonard stood in front of the ring and were filmed for PPV talking about the big matches of the night (think early Monday Night Raw’s) when Nigel grabbed the mic and said that his quest for the World title is not over and it begins again with a win tonight. As the announcers continued to talk, Claudio made his entrance and he too grabbed the mic and said that he was targeting Chris Hero during that match. Chris Hero then made his entrance and his “agent” Larry Sweeney grabbed the mic and went on and on about the PPV world was about to be awed by their first glimpse of Chris Hero. If this sounds like it was really long and drawn out, it was. They just wasted about 5-10 minutes of precious PPV time for no reason, while Marufuji stood there in the ring the whole time. I have a feeling this is going to come off badly on PPV. A poor choice to start the show in my opinion.
(1) Nigel McGuiness defeated Naomichi Marufuji and Chris Hero and Claudio Castagnoli. Lots of near falls and a long match. Naomichi did some great acrobatic counter wrestling with Nigel to start things off, including walking the ropes at one point. The crowd is relatively hot, but not PPV level hot. That changes when Hero gets dumped into the crowd and Nigel dives from the top rope into the crowd on him. Hero was up to his antics with his lengthy acrobatic display of random somersaults and leaps over the top rope and back into the ring. Claudio hit a bunch of European uppercuts and Marufuji hit a lot of kicks. Claudio hit a long Giant Swing on Hero (I counted 9 rotations) for a near fall. Marufuji was about to go for the coast to coast dropkick but Nigel crotched him on the rope, hit Hero with a huge lariat, then went to the top and hit a doomsday lariat on Marufuji who was still prone on the ropes, and then turned around and got caught by Claudio with a missile dropkick. Great sequence. Claudio hit the Ricola Bomb for a near fall. Hero hit a cravat buster off the 2nd rope for another near fall. Lots of near falls, but it seemed like no tags were being made and pinfalls were being allowed anyway, so that really hurt the match for me. The finish came after a big lariat from Nigel. Great 4 corner survival, but I have a lot of issues with how long it took (after it was all said and done 35 minutes had passed on the PPV that still had 5 more scheduled matches) and the non-enforcement of the rules. I also have a problem with wasting Marufuji in an opening 4 way match. He deserves better.
The Resilience and the No Remorse Corps. factions were brought out for the singles challenge series and the No Remorse Corps. won the coin flip which meant that the Resilience had to announce their participants first, meaning the NRC got to send who they thought matched up the best against that particular person. I liked that idea. It kind of reminded me of The Ultimate Fighter.
(2) Rocky Romero defeated Matt Cross. This match never really got going too much and will be the weakest match on the PPV for most. I am a huge fan of Romero and he didn't really get much of a chance to shine here. They went maybe a little over 5 minutes (why did that opening segment and match need over 30 minutes again?) so not much of a story was told, other than Rocky being superior to Matt and being a very cocky heel. Rocky finished Cross off with a kick to the temple (think Tajiri's WWE finisher).
(3) Austin Aries defeated Davey Richards. When Aries was announced, Roderick Strong got up on the apron and was psyching himself up, and then Davey went in against Aries instead and Roderick scurried off to the floor. Classic heel move. After the crowd was somewhat deflated by the previous match, Aries and Richards brought them back into it very quickly. Crisp match with good action. Aries was over huge, but I expected him to be even more over. Still, this match was a good showcase for him and will follow what happened at the 2nd PPV nicely for PPV-only viewers. I am of the opinion that Davey Richards as a heel doesn't quite work and that he should be turned back face. Plus Davey can't be trusted to not go too far in attempts to get heel heat. At a recent Manhattan show, he reportedly used the Crossface to get heat, which is definitely going too far, and he has also used racial slurs against Asian opponents before. There are reports out there saying he used the Crossface again Saturday, but I saw no such thing. I guess it is possible I just missed it, but I know a few others that did not see it either. Either way, Davey's reputation precedes him and he should stay away from the appearance of things like this. Back to the match, Davey mockingly went for Austin's pendulum elbow, but Aries moved and eventually hit it himself. He also hit a bunch of his combos, such as the launching spinning splash and quebrada. Davey went for the DR driver, but Aries countered and hit the kick to the head, brainbuster, 450 combination for the win.
(4) Roderick Strong defeated Erick Stevens with a Gibson Driver. This match surprised me with how good it was. Slowly but surely, Stevens is coming along. Haircut aside, he is putting in some good performances. This was designed to be a heavy hitting striking contest and it delivered in a big way. Lots of brutal chops, and at one point late in the match they had a full fledged chop battle. Stevens hit some impressive power moves, including a press slam and catch with power slam combination. Stevens also hit a powerslam off the 2nd or top rope which was very nice looking. Strong hit the double knee gutbuster, and then a top rope Outsider's Edge, and finished Stevens off with a Gibson Driver. Impressive, hard hitting match.
(5) ROH World Champion Takeshi Morishima defeated “American Dragon” Bryan Danielson via referee stoppage. This match was slightly disappointing in that it didn't have anywhere near enough time to have a chance to come close to matching their Manhattan Match of the Year contender from a few weeks prior, but the length of the match made sense for a lot of reasons that I will get into in a bit. Dragon came out to a hero's welcome. Agree with his decision to wrestle so soon after a serious eye injury or not (I definitely disagree), but the guy has balls of steel and is simply the best there is. There was an odd buzz throughout the crowd as fans were legitimately worried about his eye. Morishima came out to almost all boos, as the crowd was solidly behind Dragon and believed a title switch was eminent. As soon as the bell rang, Dragon immediately bum rushed Morishima and pounded away with stiff forearms and then started trying to take him down by his leg. Morishima was able to throw him. Danielson again charged him and went after his leg again with the same result. Morishima got the better of Dragon and went for the butt splash but Dragon moved out of the way. Morishima, who promised on Rohwrestling.com that he was going to maintain his honor and not go after Danielson's injured eye, broke that promise and started delivering stiff shots to Danielson's face in the corner. It wasn't quite his eye, but it was close and gave the illusion of it being his eye. The crowd was all over Morishima with huge boos. Tons of heat for this. Dragon fought back with equally stiff shots and the crowd was eating it up. Danielson hit a dive to the outside and was on fire. He went for a school boy roll up, but Morishima sat down with a butt splash. Great stuff. He hit a backdrop driver on Danielson but it was too close to the ropes and Dragon got the pin broken. Dragon came back and was a man possessed. He hit a tiger suplex (which didn't have a lot of impact because he couldn't get the big guy up too high) and then the Cattle Mutilation, which Morishima was able to escape. Danielson, who's eye patch slipped to the side on more than one occasion during the match, started in with the MMA elbows to the side of the head, but Morishima was able to stand up with it. Danielson then did a new version of it where he grabbed both of Morishima's hands and used repeated brutal foot stops to the forehead hoping for a ref stoppage. Finally, he locked in a triangle choke and started raining elbows down on Morishima's head. Total UFC stuff here. Morishima was able to pick Dragon up with one arm and powerbomb him, releasing the triangle choke. He then hit another huge backdrop driver, but instead of going for the pin and most likely winning the match, he got on top of Danielson and started going right after his injured eye (again, more like near the eye, but on DVD/PPV it will look like the eye itself)! The crowd exploded in anger at Morishima. The ref eventually stopped the match, fearing too much damage to Danielson's recently injured eye wasn't worth it. The crowd was pretty furious with the finish, not only because of how despicable of a heel act it was, but because they expected another match of the year contender like Manhattan got and instead only got a really great 10 minute or so match. Obviously, ROH didn't want Dragon to be in the ring too long as he really probably shouldn't be wrestling again yet. Also, after specifically saying he wouldn't target the eye and then going the dishonorable route and brutalizing it, Morishima will now be over huge as a villain (you can't accuse him of being a tweener anymore) and people will love watching Nigel or whoever eventually take the belt from him. Great match, though disappointing that it wasn't given more time but I am fine that they didn't.
(6) ROH World Tag Team Champions the Briscoe Brothers defeated Kevin Steen & El Generico in a ladder war to retain the belts. This match was just incredible. Again, there was a bit of nervousness among the crowd as we knew some serious injures were possible in this one. Pre-match, the much hated referee Todd Sinclair tied the belts in a loop of black cloth. I mentioned aloud that it looked like he was tying it way too tightly. Keep that in mind. The match started with Mark and Steen fighting in the crowd on one side and Jay and Generico fighting on the other side. Obviously I don't have a lot to say about this part of the match, but I heard a lot of brutal noises. There is just too much to remember about this crazy match, but I'll mention some of the main ladder spots. A ladder was propped up in the corner, and the Briscoes hit a huge double hip toss on Generico through the ladder. Later on in the match, another ladder is in that same position and as Jay Briscoe is climbing the big ladder, Steen pushes the ladder onto the other and Briscoe was sandwiched in between. It looked amazingly brutal and he cut the back of his head open pretty deeply. A ladder was set up between the railing and the ring apron and Steen powerbombed Mark onto it. The problem is, he only hit the ladder with about half of his body and the other half crashed to the floor with a thud. Speaking of thuds, there was a sickening one when someone DDT'd someone else on the floor on the other side of the ring from me. Mark Briscoe hit a shooting star press onto a ladder and an opponent. The scariest ladder spot came on just a simple attempt by the Briscoes to pick up an already severely damaged ladder. The ladder just snapped and broke in their hands, and a small sharp metal piece of the ladder flew up and hit Mark in the throat. It looked like it scratched his throat but very little blood. Definitely not a planned spot. The most sick ladder spots came when a gigantic orange construction ladder was brought in and two normal ladders were placed from the middle of the big one across to two opposing turnbuckles. On one side, Steen gave Mark his already brutal finisher, the Package Piledriver, through the ladder to the mat. On the other side, Jay gave his finisher the Jay Driller to El Generico through the ladder to the mat. Jay and Steen fought on top of the ladder and Jay knocked him off and grabbed the belts for the victory... but Todd Sinclair tied them to the cloth too tightly. Jay gave an “oh crap” look to the crowd and continued struggling to get the belts down. This is always a danger when a smaller promotion does a ladder match finish. You never know what can happen with the belt holding device. Luckily, it only lasted about 40 seconds of awkwardness and Jay trying really hard to get the belts down. Steen was smart enough to not oversell his bump and decided to climb the ladder after Jay. Jay knocked him back down and finally got the belts free for a huge pop. That was an awesome, must see match. After the match, the Briscoes celebrated and Steen shoved Generico and walked off. Early reports are that Generico may have injured his leg during the match, which is really a shame.
After the match, a woman's blood curdling scream could be heard. The fans looked around confused and shrugged it off. Then again, and again, and about 5 more times. Suddenly a bunch of people in the crowd wearing black ski masks and black bandannas rushed the guardrail and began threatening the Briscoes. Now, ROH had been running an internet-based, “Viral”/”ARG” type angle for 2 months now, with a mysterious group leaving cryptic messages and warnings. Recently they said they would reveal themselves on this night and asked fans who support them to dress in black ski masks and/or bandannas. They had made it clear that their targets were the Briscoes. Confronted with these masked “fans” Saturday night, the Briscoes taunted them back and invited them in the ring. Suddenly Jimmy Jacobs and the debuting Tyler Black revealed themselves in front of the Briscoes. While the Briscoes stared them down, through the crowd on the other side came Lacey and the returning Necro Butcher, who attacked the Briscoes from behind. The four, now known as the Age of the Fall, brutalized the Briscoes for several minutes and took Mark out on the floor and restrained him. Necro pummeled Jay with his fist wrapped in barbed wire. They then proceed to hook Jay's foot to the device that held the belts up from the ceiling. A older gentleman who was part of the angle shoved me aside in the front row and yelled for the guy controlling the hook device not to raise it. Well, the guy must be a part of the Age of the Fall, because he raised it anyway.
Jay Briscoe was then raised and was hanging upside down at least 10 feet off the ring apron. Because he was hanging upside down, the blood rushed to his head and a sickening amount of blood drained out of the wound in his head. What followed is the single greatest visual I have ever seen in wrestling. Jimmy Jacobs, wearing all white, stood under the hanging Jay Briscoe, with blood literally raining down on him, and cut a promo. Quickly his outfit turned from pure white to dark red. Jimmy's hair was covered in Jay's blood, as was his face. Jimmy even did the unthinkable and tilted his head back, opened his mouth, and let Jay's blood drip into his mouth. Huge “you sick f*ck!” chants at that. As Jay hung there, Jacobs started by saying that this whole thing started on Day 4 of his series of dates with Lacey. Jimmy had worked almost 2 years to hear Lacey tell him that she loved him back, but on that date on Day 4 when she told him she loved him, he felt nothing. At this point of the promo, Jimmy pie-faced Lacey. Lacey, who was dressed in a dark almost goth way, looked momentarily startled but then gave a sick smile and nod like she liked it. Jacobs, the guy who for the last 2 years we watched tell us all that love was all that mattered, now says that he's learned that “Love doesn't save! Nothing saves!”. Jacobs then introduced Tyler Black and the Necro Butcher and asked why there was never a place for Necro in ROH and why Tyler could never even get a tryout. They retreated and Jay was finally let down after hanging upside down with massive blood loss for literally 4 to 5 minutes. Eventually the Briscoes were able to make it to the back, but not before almost coming to blows with a regular fan in the crowd wearing a black bandanna over his mouth. The Briscoes took exception to that.
All and all, an extremely well booked angle that has been building for not just the two months of the viral internet angle, but it turns out it also leads back to the Jimmy Loves Lacey story that took place in June. This was well thought out and performed perfectly by Jimmy Jacobs, who is one of the most developed characters I've ever seen at this point and one of the greatest promo guys in the business right now. There are a few nagging questions that need to be addressed though. Firstly, why didn't anyone come out from the back to help Jay? Second, why would the guy in charge of the belt hanging device raise it back up with Jay tied to it? I hope and actually think we'll get an explanation for the second thing, but I wouldn't hold my breath for the first thing.
Intermission time. Marufuji signed autographs.
(7) Mitch Franklin defeated Alex “Sugarfoot” Payne to retain the “Top of the Class” trophy.
The beloved-in-Chicago-only Sugarfoot had the crowd in the palm of his hand as usual. Mitch Franklin came out to “Live to Win” by Paul Stanley. So wonderfully cheesy. Pretty basic popcorn match.
Bobby Cruz then announced that the next SHIMMER DVD tapings were to be held on October 13th in Berwyn headlining with Amazing Kong getting her title shot vs. Sara Del Ray.
(8) Daizee Haze & Amazing Kong defeated SHIMMER champion Sara Del Ray & Lacey. Kong was making her ROH debut here. Those who knew her already knew she's great and those that hadn't seen her were eager to see what the hype was about. In the end, many people were very impressed and chanting “SHIMMER!”. Kong came out with Daizee sitting on her shoulder. Great visual. Despite being a part of the Age of the Fall angle less than an hour earlier, Lacey was wearing her usual ring attire and was acting the same personality wise. She was afraid to get in there with Kong, but Sara got right up in Kong's face. Lots of lariats and power moves from Kong including a powerbomb. She also hit a big splash and a top rope big splash. Big “Kong” chants from the crowd. Haze got the pin. They kept Del Ray strong here during the match which was smart.
(9) Brent Albright & B.J. Whitmer (w/ Shane Hagadorn) defeated Kenny King & Chasyn Rance (w/ valet) of the Young, Rich, & Ready For Action. This was probably the worst match of the night. King has a lot of charisma, but he and Rance did not look impressive. King botched a springboard move. Albright has a red tint to his hair now and Whitmer's new short bleached blond haircut is just terrible. Highlight of the match saw Albright hit a giant shoulder block that caused his opponent to fly across the ring. After the match, Whitmer cut a whiny promo about no one appreciating him, and said that Adam Pearce has shown him the light. He said he, Albright, and Pearce are the “Hangmen Three”. Just when I thought the faction names couldn't get any worse, they drop this bomb. The crowd groaned when they heard the name, and there was a “change your name!” chant.
Jack Evans (in his wrestling gear) was introduced by Bobby Cruz. It looked like Jack was about to address the crowd, but he was attacked from behind by Tyler Black. The two brawled for a while until Necro & Jimmy Jacobs showed up with a chair and interfered. Out came Irish Airborne to make the save. Dave Crist said they were looking for an opportunity and asked if this could be a 6 man tag.
(10) Jack Evans & Irish Airborne vs. The Age of the Fall (Jimmy Jacobs and Tyler Black and Necro Butcher) went to a no contest. This was basically just a wild brawl with too much going on to keep track of. Most of it consisted of Jack & Necro doing crazy stuff in the crowd. Jack took a bad toss into the corner of where the guardrails meet and got his leg caught in between. It was right in front of me and looked nasty. Necro hit a backbreaker off the 2nd rope onto two chairs on Jack Evans. The match was thrown out when Necro punched the referee. Not sure why it wasn't thrown out during all the chair spots.
(11) Delirious defeated Matt Sydal (w/ Larry Sweeney) with the Chemical Imbalance II. By this point the crowd was quite exhausted and pretty much dead for Matt's last match before heading to WWE. Sweeney got the crowd into it at times, but at other times even he couldn't wake them up. To start the match, when the bell rang, Matt flinched as he awaited Delirious “losing his mind” at the sound of the bell. Instead Delirious stood up and calmly walked to the center of the ring and talked some gibberish and the match began. Good but not great match. These two have done better against each other. Delirious hit a somersault splash off the apron onto Sweeney at one point, which Sweeney sold for a long time. Sydal teased the top rope belly to belly that he has beaten Delirious with so many times in the past. He ended up hitting his perfect shooting star press. Someone yelled to Matt when he was recovering on the outside “Don't do steroids” (when you are in WWE). He replied “They're illegal!” which got a nice laugh. Delirious finished him off after the Panic Attack with the Chemical Imbalance II. Lots of “Thank you Matt” chants and people were calling for a speech, but he just nodded in appreciation slapped some hands, and went to the back to end the show.
THE TORCH REACHES MORE COMBAT ENTERTAINMENT FANS THAN ANY OTHER SOURCE
PWTorch editor Wade Keller has covered pro wrestling full time since 1987 starting with the Pro Wrestling Torch print newsletter. PWTorch.com launched in 1999 and the PWTorch Apps launched in 2008.
He has conducted "Torch Talk" insider interviews with Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Steve Austin, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Eric Bischoff, Jesse Ventura, Lou Thesz, Jerry Lawler, Mick Foley, Jim Ross, Paul Heyman, Bruno Sammartino, Goldberg, more.
He has interviewed big-name players in person incluiding Vince McMahon (at WWE Headquarters), Dana White (in Las Vegas), Eric Bischoff (at the first Nitro at Mall of America), Brock Lesnar (after his first UFC win).
He hosted the weekly Pro Wrestling Focus radio show on KFAN in the early 1990s and hosted the Ultimate Insiders DVD series distributed in retail stories internationally in the mid-2000s including interviews filmed in Los Angeles with Vince Russo & Ed Ferrara and Matt & Jeff Hardy. He currently hosts the most listened to pro wrestling audio show in the world, (the PWTorch Livecast, top ranked in iTunes)
REACHING 1 MILLION+ UNIQUE USERS PER MONTH
500 MILLION CLICKS & LISTENS PER YEAR
MILLIONS OF PWTORCH NEWSLETTERS SOLD
PWTorch offers a VIP membership for $10 a month (or less with an annual sub). It includes nearly 25 years worth of archives from our coverage of pro wrestling dating back to PWTorch Newsletters from the late-'80s filled with insider secrets from every era that are available to VIPers in digital PDF format and Keller's radio show from the early 1990s.
Also, new exclusive top-shelf content every day including a new VIP-exclusive weekly 16 page digital magazine-style (PC and iPad compatible) PDF newsletter packed with exclusive articles and news.
The following features come with a VIP membership which tens of thousands of fans worldwide have enjoyed for many years...
-New Digital PWTorch Newsletter every week
-3 New Digital PDF Back Issues from 5, 10, 20 years ago
-Over 60 new VIP Audio Shows each week
-Ad-free access to all PWTorch.com free articles
-VIP Forum access with daily interaction with PWTorch staff and well-informed fellow wrestling fans
-Tons of archived audio and text articles
-Decades of Torch Talk insider interviews in transcript and audio formats with big name stars. **SIGN UP FOR VIP ACCESS HERE**