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Ring of Honor
DEROSENROLL'S ROH TV REPORT 5/3: ROH Title match hype for Saturday, Austin Aries vs. Delirious, Delirious injury angle (w/VIDEO)

May 5, 2010 - 9:53:40 AM
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Ring of Honor TV Report
May 3, 2010
Taped Mar. 6 in Philadelphia, Pa.
Episode #56 - First episode of Series 10
Report by Mike DeRosenroll, Torch ROH specialist


STRENGTHS

- Despite the lack of a strong centerpiece match, this was an entertaining show, aside from the Necro Butcher match (see weaknesses below). The Colt Cabana Art of Wrestling segment was an entertaining change of pace for ROH (even if it did not do much for Colt Cabana as a centerpiece babyface in the promotion), the Austin Aries interview segment was great, and the show closing angle was a strong setup for an Aries-Delirious feud. It also furthered the Jerry Lynn-Kenny King feud.

- The hype for the main event of this weekend's live event in New York City - Tyler Black vs. Roderick Strong for the ROH World Title - was well-done with old school hype for a World Title match. Tyler Black's promo toward the end of the show was exactly what it needed to be - earnest, but showing determination to retain the title. The only detracting point of the hype job was the Strong did not look like as much of a threat as he could have in his match with Joey Ryan, but Dave Prazak's commentary made up for that somewhat.

WEAKNESSES
Necro_Torch_1.jpg

- The Jim Cornette-Necro Butcher angle degenerated into ridiculousness very quickly. It only took Necro 30 seconds in his return match after Cornette un-suspended him to break two of the conditions Cornette set out for unsuspending him. Yet, this was not mentioned and there seemed to be no consequences. Even worse, making all of Necro's matches Butcher's Rules matches from now on is a terrible booking decision that will water down Necro's signature gimmick match. Watching Necro destroy an enhancement talent in a hardcore squash match was beyond ridiculous. Once protected by the booking and only used for important grudge matches, the hardcore match in ROH was reduced to a parody-of-itself level of Hardcore Title match in WWE in the early 2000s. The fact that a squash match even took place under hardcore rules is TNA-level bad.

DETAILED RECAP

- The show opened with a video package recapping the Tyler Black-Roderick Strong feud over the ROH World Title. A graphic on the screen hyped the Black-Strong match scheduled for the live event in New York City this weekend.

[Opening Credits]

1 - RODERICK STRONG vs. JOEY RYAN (w/Prince Nana and Mr. Ernesto Osiris) -- Pick 6 Contenders Series match

Nana jumped on the apron right after the opening bell, giving Ryan an opening to cheap shot Strong and take an early advantage. Strong rolled outside at 1:00, but Nana and Osiris landed some more cheap shots while Ryan distracted the referee. Strong rolled back inside and Ryan continued to work him over heel style for another few minutes, using a number of chokes and distracting the referee to allow Nana to get some shots in from ringside. Strong made a comeback at 5:30 by catching Ryan with an elbow as Ryan charged him in the corner and following the elbow with a quick back suplex.

As Strong began to get some momentum, Nana jumped on the apron to distract the referee while Osiris entered the ring from the other side. Strong knocked Osiris out of the ring but turned his back on Ryan to do so, allowing Ryan to schoolboy him into a pinning predicament with Ryan's feet on the ropes for leverage. The referee counted two but stopped when he noticed Ryan's feet on the ropes. Ryan hit Strong with a low blow out of the referee's line of sight, then followed it with a superkick, but Strong kicked out of Ryan's subsequent pin attempt at 7:00. Ryan then lifted Strong onto the top rope in the corner and called for his "Moustache Ride" finisher, but Strong knocked Ryan to with a pair of chops and quickly followed up with the Strong Hold submission finisher, forcing Ryan to tap.

WINNER: Strong in 7:30. A solid basic match but nothing special. It was really just a reason to get Strong on TV ahead of his title shot against Black this weekend in New York, although it did little to make Strong look like a real threat to Black with Ryan on offense almost the whole time. Dave Prazak helped the situation on commentary by talking about how this showed that Strong just needs a small opening to make his opponent tap to the Strong Hold.

- In the studio, Prazak and Mike Hogewood hyped the Black-Strong ROH World Title match in New York this weekend, then threw to a video package on last week's final of the TV Title tournament.

- Extensive highlights aired of Eddie Edwards's TV Title tournament victory over Davey Richards in the final. I normally do not like long highlight packages, but I make an exception for this one because it was a great match.

- A new "HDNet exclusive" clip aired from last week's show right after the show ended. Kyle Durden hit the ring with his microphone and asked Edwards how it felt to be the first ROH TV champion. Edwards cut a promo saying that he and Richards took each other to the limit but all the people saying greed for the TV Title would be the end of the American Wolves were wrong. He said the hunt will never end, and he and Richards celebrated Edwards' championship in the ring together with their manager Shane Hagadorn.

2 - THE DARK CITY FIGHT CLUB (JON DAVIS & KORY CHAVIS) vs. CALEB KONLEY & PEE WEE

Davis started out against Konley and the DCFC dominated immediately. After a couple of their signature double teams, Chavis, who had tagged in, went for a pin but Pee Wee came in to break it up. Chavis deliberately allowed Konley to tag out to Pee Wee at 1:00. The DCFC punished Pee Wee for a while with strikes and power moves, then Chavis went for a pin at 2:30 only to have Konley break it up this time. Davis took out Konley by knocking him into the ringside barricade, then the DCFC landed their Project Mayhem double team finisher (simultaneous sit down powerbomb and neckbreaker) for the win.

WINNERS: Davis and Chavis in 3:00. Solid squash match with good selling from the enhancement talents to make the DCFC look dominant.

- Kyle Durden hit the ring and asked Chavis and Davis to respond to the question "on everybody's mind" - why they have not yet won the ROH tag team gold? Chavis said it does not matter if people think they are a second-rate tag team because they are going to be the next tag champs. Davis punctuated the point by attacking Konley, who was still in the ring trying to revive Pee Wee, and throwing Konley over the top rope to the outside.

- In the locker room, the Kings of Wrestling cut a promo. Chris Hero said the Briscoes may be demanding a shot at the ROH tag titles, but they have not earned it and have to go to the back of the line. Castagnoli said that he and Hero bring class to the ROH World Tag Team title. Hero said ROH has the best tag team division in wrestling and that he and Castagnoli sit atop the heap.

- In another part of the arena, the Briscoes confronted Jim Cornette in a corridor and demanded a re-match with the Kings of Wrestling. Cornette said he did not have time to talk just then, but told the Briscoes to have patience and he will make them as happy as he "possibly can."

- Hogewood indicated that Cornette was on his way to talk to the Necro Butcher, who has been suspended from ROH television since punching out the timekeeper a couple of months ago during a ringside brawl with the Embassy's Erick Stevens.

- The announcers then hyped the upcoming main event between Austin Aries and Delirious.

[Commercial Break]

- Colt Cabana introduced The Art of Wrestling with Colt Cabana. His guest was Sonjay Dutt, who said he was there to talk about the art of swagger. He introduced Peter Rosenberg, a New York City hip-hop DJ. Rosenberg and Dutt said Cabana has no swagger and said they would give him a makeover to "turn geek to chic." The ROH logo spun on screen like a turntable to indicate that time had passed, then Dutt reintroduced Cabana after his makeover. Cabana looked like a ridiculous parody of hip-hop style. Rosenberg told Cabana to say the phrase he taught him. Cabana said "slug the beats" and walked off the set looking confused. Rosenberg and Dutt laughed at Cabana.

This segment was an entertaining change of pace for the show and a nice way to give some personality to Dutt as a mean heel, but did not really help Cabana by making him seem like a geek and the butt of heel jokes. At least he can take it in stride and not lose any credibility since he's, well, Colt Cabana.

- Jim Cornette met with Necro Butcher in his office. He said he was willing to un-suspend Necro from television and make all his future matches under Butcher's Rules so long as Necro promises to keep the action inside the barricades and keep the fans, TV crew and ROH officials out of the action. Necro agreed. I really hope this does not lead to a return to a lot of dangerous chair shots to the head in future Necro Butcher matches. ROH has cut down dramatically on those kinds of unsafe spots in 2010 and I do not want to see them backslide on that.

- Back in the studio, Prazak was upset that Cornette is going to allow Necro Butcher to fight his matches under Butcher's Rules from now on. Hogewood then threw a continuation of last week's interview with Austin Aries.

- The continuation of Austin Aries's sit-down promo in the empty area from last week aired. In a monologue reminiscent of Jesse Ventura in his AWA heyday, Aries talked about how great he is. He claimed that HDNet bought new cameras and specially train a cameraman for six weeks to shoot him in order to capture his greatness. He said everyone thinks he is going to go after the ROH World Title, but he is not going to be like Tyler Black and Roderick Strong and demanded title shot after title shot. He said just when you think you know the answer, Austin Aries changes the question. He said he does not need the World Title to be the star of the show, and hinted that he has some plans in motion. This was a really great promo. It was an entertaining way to start the ball rolling on whatever Aries's new objective will be after losing the World Title to Black.

3 - NECRO BUTCHER vs. ROBBIE WOLFE -- Butcher's Rules match

Robbie Wolfe looks a lot like Dusty Wolfe, one of the regular enhancement talents who always lost squash matches on WWF Superstars in the 1980s. Necro came to the ring with a chair and started the match by chucking it at Wolfe. Wolfe bailed out of the ring but Necro pursued him and threw him into the fans. Apparently Jim Cornette's conditions on Necro's reinstatement were pointless because it took Necro 0:30 to break the ones about keeping the action within the barricades and keeping the fans out of it. Necro pulled the protective mats off the floor, pulled Wolfe back out of the front row, and bodyslammed Wolfe onto a chair on the bare floor. Necro beat Wolfe around the outside for a while, then took the action back into the ring where he bulldogged Wolfe face first onto a chair (Wolf subtly got his hand up to protect his head). Wolfe rolled back outside and Necro followed. The fans handed Necro the Section D sign, which Necro smashed Wolfe with. Necro then mercifully finished it by bringing Wolfe back inside and side slamming him onto two chairs to set up the pin.

WINNER: Necro Butcher in 3:30. Just a silly match. Necro got a good crowd reaction, but I suspect it was just a "welcome back pop" from the Philadelphia crowd because he has been off the TV tapings for a while. ROH needs to give Necro something to do because watching him destroy enhancement talents in hardcore squash matches is already old after one time. It totally demeans the concept of using gimmick matches to settle feuds. Hopefully, Necro Butcher will understand that he needs to protect his namesake gimmick match by keeping future Butcher's Rules matches mostly in the ring and using weapons sparingly, perhaps just for the finish. The silver lining of this match was that they avoided any unprotected chair shots to the head.

- Hogewood announced that next week's show will feature a six-man battle royal to fill the spot in the Pick 6 vacated by Claudio Castagnoli, who has apparently been stripped of his Pick 6 spot due to inactivity in singles matches. The contenders in the battle royal will be Austin Aries, "Skullkrusher" Rasche Brown, Eddie Kingston, Jerry Lynn, Joey Ryan, and Rhett Titus.

- Backstage, Durden interviewed Tyler Black about his World Title defense this weekend against Roderick Strong. Black said that Strong has gone crazy going after the title and that, while he hopes they can go back to being friends after this is over, Black will do whatever it takes to keep the title. This was a good, simple, old school promo hyping the main event of this weekend's main event in New York.

4 - AUSTIN ARIES (w/Kenny King) vs. DELIRIOUS (w/Daizee Haze) -- Pick 6 Contenders Series match
delirious_torch_1.jpg

The fact that Aries was just hyped for next week's battle royal for a spot in the Pick 6 seemed to give away that Aries would be losing his current Pick 6 spot to Delirious here.

After a brief opening chain and mat wrestling exchange, Aries tried to take off Delirious' mask at 1:00, prompting Delirious to bite Aries' finger to make him stop. At 1:30, King tripped Delirious as Delirious rebounded off the ropes, handing the advantage to Aries. His advantage did not last long because Daizee Haze returned the favour shortly afterwards by tripping up Aries. Aries went to the outside for a breather at 3:00 but Delirious came through the ropes with a missile dive to take out both Aries and King, then pressed his advantage back inside. At 4:00, Delirious cornered Aries but Aries backflipped him over the top to the outside. Aries then distracted the referee to allow King to attack Delirious and slam Delirious into the ringside barricade. King threw Delirious back inside and Aries continued to beat Delirious down heel style for a few minutes.

Delirious mounted a comeback at 7:00 when Aries got cocky and played to the crowd, giving Delirious an opening to hit him with a slap-inverted atomic drop combination. Now Delirious got a good spell of offense until, at 9:00, he went to the top and tried for Shadows Over Hell, but Aries got out of the way. Aries retaliated with a kick to Delirious neck to Delirious, the referee and Daizee Haze sold like it was a legit injury. Referees and ROH officials rushed to ringside to attend to Delirious. Aries and King appeared to be leaving the ringside area when they suddenly rushed the ring and Aries double axe-handled Haze from behind while King dragged Delirious to ringside. The referee called for the bell to disqualify Aries, I guess as a result of King dragging Delirious to the outside.

WINNER: Delirious in 10:00. A well-executed but fairly basic match that was just there to set up the post-match injury angle.

As the referee called for the bell, King held Delirious throat over the ringside barricade while Aries went to the top rope and came down with a forearm to drive Delirious's throat into the barricade. As Aries and King tried to flee the scene, Jerry Lynn came running to ringside with a chair. Lynn smashed Aries in the back with the chair, then chased off King.

The show closed with a shot of Lynn and the referees carrying Delirious to the back. HDNet has a video package on the injury angle, which is available for viewing below.



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