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Arena Reports
2/13 ROH in New York City: Detailed report on Tyler Black's ROH Title victory, Brian Kendrick vs. Roderick Strong, Richards vs. Generico

Feb 15, 2010 - 11:01:16 AM
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Ring of Honor 8th Anniversary show report
February 13, 2010
New York City
Report by Nicholas Bonanno, Torch reader


Before the show, Jim Cornette and Brian Kendrick had separate meet-and-greets with the fans. Kendrick wasn't out for very long, as he was set to wrestle the opening match of the show.

(1) Roderick Strong beat Brian Kendrick. A small "welcome back" chant greeted Kendrick as the match began. This was Kendrick's first ROH match since leaving WWE last year. After a slow start, Strong chopped Kendrick's chest with fury, causing the latter's upper torso to resemble ground beef in its bruising. The match was pretty formulaic, with not many outstanding spots, save Strong catching a back kick and turning it into one of his backbreakers. In the end, Roderick Strong pinned Brian Kendrick clean with a modified Gibson Driver. Good effort by these two men, but not a show-stealer.

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(2) Kings of Wrestling (Chris Hero & Claudio Castagnoli w/Sara Del Rey and Shane Hagadorn) beat the Bravado Brothers. KoW entered the Grand Ballroom with their smug air of old. Sara and Shane held up two plaques that commemorated the team somehow. I assume they were awarded these on the successful tour of Japan the KoW just wrapped up. The Bravado Brothers came out next, looking very unthreatening. They wore tights sporting the Psychic Energy symbol from Pokemon and were last seen jobbing to Dark City Fight Club on ROH on HDNet. The Bravados were not very physically built in that they were (and are) the size of small wrestlers, but look stuck in between cruiserweight and middleweight and therefore just look flabby. Sorry guys.
This one was expected to be a squash, but the Bravado Brothers did manage to get a fair amount of offense in, including a double team on Hero that involved spinning him around in a standing position by one boot and passing him between the two men. Everything that KoW did looked great. Props to the Bravados in that sense. The crowd was very behind Hero and Castagnoli. KoW picked up the win following their double team finisher. Good match to keep the KoW in play and looking strong.

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(3) Necro Butcher & Eddie Kingston beat Erick Stevens & Joey Ryan (w/Prince Nana) in a No Rules match. Stevens and Ryan entered first accompanied by Nana. The Prince from Ghana, West Africa got on the mic and instructed his clients to "kill somebody." Butcher and Kingston came out next accompanied by an elderly man wielding what appeared to be a music stand. This one was a wild brawl that was mostly on the outside of the ring. This what I caught of the match:
all four men were dressed in brawling clothes (t-shirts and non-wrestling pants, mostly jeans, but Ryan sported khakis). Necro Butcher, who usually wears cut off jeans and wrestles barefoot, was wearing full-length jeans, shoes, and socks. It is possible that the New York Sporting Commission mandates that all competitors wear shoes, as this is not uncommon in other sporting events. Just because Butcher walked to the ring in shoes does not mean he kept them on. Almost immediately, he removed one of his sneakers and beat it into the head of Joey Ryan all around ringside.

Kingston and Stevens battled with foreign objects on the opposite side of the ring until trading partners. By the time someone actually got into the ring (they did! I swear!), Necro Butcher and Joey Ryan were bleeding from the forehead. Butcher removed the sock from his shoeless foot and pulled it over his hand. One of his opponents came at him and was met with the Socko Claw. Erick Stevens and Eddie Kingston fought on the ring apron, trading blows before Stevens powerbombed Kingston through the time keeper's table. Butcher placed a plastic grocery bag over Ryan's head and jumped on his back for a rear naked choke of sorts. Ryan either tapped or passed out and the Necro Butcher and Eddie Kingston were awarded the match. This was a fun match and added variety to the night. Afterwards, Prince Nana, Ryan, and Stevens beat down Butcher and Kingston.

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(4) Davey Richards beat El Generico via submission. Emotions ran high for what was expected to be the show-stealing match. A steady pace was established early on, with the "Generic Luchador" speeding around Richards with a number of reversals. Richards worked over Generico's right arm, focusing on the elbow joint. After any hard hitting offensive move by Richards (and there were plenty), he would stand jump on the middle and bottom rope and yell "American Wolves!" to some applause. Davey Richards charged at El Generico, but Generico lifted him in a back body drop over the top rope to the floor. El Generico landed a senton to the outside in the first dive of the night.

Back in the ring, Richards took control, returning his attack to his opponent's right arm. Generico battled back and hit some rapid fire chops to Davey's chest. The rapid fire "Woooo!-ing" from the crowd literally sounded like an ambulance siren. Generico landed the Yakuza kick and lifted Richards into the corner. The men fought up to the top of the turnbuckle, teasing a few Super-Brainbustahs before Generico was knocked to the mat. Davey Richards missed a shooting star press and hit the canvas hard. Generico went for the cover, but Davey kicked out. And then he kicked some more. Ouch. Richards dropped Generico with a move that may have been the DR Driver. Davey Richards slapped on an armbar once again, El Generico could not get to the ropes and tapped out.

The crowd rose to their feet and applauded a stellar effort by both men. This match set out to steal the show and did just that. Spectacular. Afterwards, Davey pointed to Generico and motioned for him to meet him mid-ring. El Generico, who was nursing his elbow, walked up to Richards and slapped him with his elbow pad.

The ring announcer announced that ROH will return to NYC on May 8 and the Motor City Machine Guns from TNA will be featured.

(5) ROH World Tag Team champions Jay & Mark Briscoe beat the Dark City Fight Club (Kory Chavis & Jon Davis) to retain the ROH tag titles. This match went to the floor in the early going. DCFC talked a lot of game in promos leading up to this match and looked reputable against the Briscoes. The omnipresent "Man up!" chants were answered with "D-C-F-C!" calls from the crowd. The Briscoes picked up the win following a double team move on one of their opponents. When the bell sounded, the Kings of Wrestling and Sara Del Rey hit the ring to attack the champs. The three teams brawled. Sara Del Rey was narrowly saved from the Doomsday Device before the ring cleared.

[Intermission]

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(6) Delirious beat (4) Kenny King, Rasche Brown, and Steve Corino in a Pick 6 Series Four Corner Survival match to take the #4 spot in the Pick 6 Series. This match was one fall to a finish and no tags were necessary in order to enter the ring according to the announcer. Steve Corino received the warmest reaction from the crowd, which broke out in a "King of Old School" chant. Corino amusingly shook everyone's hand a la the code of honor before leaving the ring as to let the others tear into one another. For the first part of the match, pretty much only two men wrestled at a time and the other two came and went as they pleased. Delirious chewed on the streamers if he had nothing to do. He looked very small in the ring compared to King, Corino, and "Skullcrusher" Brown. Momentum changed hands repeatedly until Delirious hit Shadows Over Hell on Kenny King for the pin and #4 spot.

(7) Colt Cabana beat Kevin Steen via disqualification. For those who did not watch the most recent ROH Videowire, Steen and Cabana had the confrontation that they were scheduled to have in New York backstage in Los Angeles. Therefore, there was no need for a verbal confrontation at the Anniversary show and a match was booked between Colt Cabana and Kevin Steen. On Friday, February 12, ROH's web page posted an open letter from Steen addressed to Cabana describing how badly Cabana has treated Steen in the past. Cabana met Steen in the ring with a print-out of Kevin's letter. He spoke about it a bit to relay information to those in attendance. Steen said that he didn't want to hurt Colt, but he will.

Steen immediately went on the offense, not even allowing Colt to get his ring jacket off. Early on, a piece of gum fell out of Colt's mouth. In typical Steen fashion, Kevin picked it up and put it in his own mouth. After a few stiff punches from Cabana, the gum again fell to the mat from Steen's mouth. Of course, Colt put it back in his own mouth. This back and forth culminated in Steen literally pulling the gum out of Cabana's mouth with his fingers. After the bit of gross-out comedy, Colt Cabana went on a serious offense. Steen did not last long and bailed out of the ring shortly after. He uttered an insincere "I'm sorry" to Cabana and started to leave, claiming his knee injury was acting up.

Cabana got back on the mic to call Steen out on the cop out. At this, Steve Corino emerged from the back to play father. "Get back in the ring, Kevin...You know what you have to do...do it for me, Kevin...Get back in the ring!" Corino picked up a chair and handed it to Steen, who had gotten back into the ring. Cabana held his ground, but El Generico ran out to keep his two friends apart. He took the chair from Kevin Steen and raised it above his head. Steen begged Generico to hit him, but he could not bring himself to do it. Let me remind you that the match is still technically going on. Steve Corino jumped Colt Cabana, cueing a DQ decision, and Kevin Steen went after El Generico. Steen hit his former partner across the side/back with the chair and the "Generic Luchador" went down. Steen and Corino left grinning.

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(8) Tyler Black beat ROH World champion Austin Aries via pinfall to win the ROH World Title. Despite there being smart fans who have been turning on Tyler Black since he failed to capture the title at Final Battle, Black was still pretty over in New York. The three judges for the match – Roderick Strong, Kenny King, and Jim Cornette – sat at ringside right in front of where I was sitting for the main event. The fans behind the judges heckled Kenny King throughout the match, focusing on his pink shirt. King turned around and teased two little boys who had walked up to talk to him. The crowd continued to heckle King, telling the boys not to fear him because he was wearing a pink shirt.

Austin Aries cut a quick promo before the match began. It kicked off at a high pace and stayed that way throughout the match. The action soon spilled to the outside with planchas a plenty. Aries attempted a suicide dive, but Black leapt out of the way, causing the ROH champion to go barreling head first into the crowd barrier. Back in the ring, the men fought to the top rope and Black landed a superplex on Aries immediately followed by an F-5 and a two count.
Austin Aries got himself together and started bringing it to the challenger. Several times he walked over to the judges and motioned for them to take notes. Good play of character. The action again spilled to the floor and "A-Double" was sent over the barricade into the crowd by the judges (also near my seat). Black mounted the nearest turnbuckle and hit a plancha onto Aries in the third row. Black actually hit more of a nearby chair than his opponent, but he covered a good distance in his flight. Crazy spot.

Back in the ring, Aries went on the attack, trying to capitalize on Black's fatigue after a big jump and hitting his chest on a fan's chair. The champion delivered two brainbusters in succession but got only a two count. Kenny King jumped up from his seat and slid into the ring. The referee held him off against the ropes, giving Roderick Strong time to get on the apron and deliver an enzuigiri to King. This kick hit with such force that Strong's loafer flew back into the crowd and came down directly above my head. As I ducked to get out of the way of the falling shoe, Cornette somehow had gotten into the ring and had been knocked out of it by someone (presumably Aries). With all the judges down, Tyler Black dropped Austin Aries by a turnbuckle, landed a 450 corkscrew splash and pinned his opponent to become the new Ring of Honor World champion.

Post-match: All of the babyfaces from the locker room fled to the ring to congratulate Tyler Black's victory. Roderick Strong got into the ring and got on the mic to remind Tyler Black that he had promised Strong a title shot. A fun show overall and two hours shorter than Final Battle. The crowd was not as on edge as at Final Battle, but not incredibly hot (the good hot). In defense of the Final Battle crowd, for many of those reviewers that have hated on them, that show was five hours long. That is a long time to sit watching anything, let alone something emotionally draining such as wrestling. On top of that, the blizzard that was occurring in the New York area during the show was cause for much concern for those in attendance who were sure if they if they would be able to make it home unharmed or at all. So when looking back on the DVDs, please take these into consideration.

Back to the 8th Anniversary Show. The best undercard match was definitely Davey Richards vs. El Generico. The main event was very well booked, with the match not having to go another hour (the match was about 30 minutes from entrances to bell), but still making use of the judges. I am interested to see how Tyler Black holds up as World Champion. His match with Roderick Strong will no doubt be an anticipated bout.


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