TV REPORTS DEROSENROLL'S ROH TV REPORT 3/15: TV Title tournament continues with Davey Richards vs. Delirious, Cabana vs. Edwards
Mar 16, 2010 - 3:32:22 PM
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Ring of Honor TV Report
March 15, 2010
Taped Feb. 5 in Philadelphia, Pa.
Episode #51 - Second episode of Series 9
Report by Mike DeRosenroll, Torch ROH specialist
- ROH continues to do a good job of building up to their next pay-per-view by keeping the focus on the main event World Title triple threat match between Tyler Black, Austin Aries, and Roderick Strong. I like that ROH continues to make the World Title match an important focus of the show, without giving away too much of the three wrestlers getting their hands on each other, through the use of promos, video packages and simply having the announcers talk about it a lot.
- After an off-week last week, ROH came back with a strong and satisfying TV main event this week between Davey Richards and Delirious as part of the TV Title tournament. Consistently delivering high-quality in-ring wrestling is the main thing that makes ROH stand out from the other wrestling shows on Monday nights.
- I struggled with whether to classify Shawn Daivari’s debut segment as a positive or a negative for the show. Jim Cornette’s interaction with Daivari detracted from Daivari’s promo, but I still give the segment a slight thumbs-up just because it was a memorable and promising debut for a new character.
- Each of the two undercard matches were disappointing in their own way. The Colt Cabana-Eddie Edwards opener was hurt by the fact that it was obvious from very early on that Steve Corino was going to interfere and cost Cabana the match. Although it is good that ROH put two promising new talents out there in the second match, Tony Kozina and Kyle O’Reilly, the way they were sent out there with no character build-up and little time for their match is unfortunately reminiscent of how TNA has ruined the X Division (the six minutes they were given may be an eternity on Raw or Impact, but it is a short match by ROH standards).
- The show opened with highlights of last week’s announcement that the main event of the "Big Bang" Internet pay-per-view will by Tyler Black vs. Austin Aries vs. Roderick Strong for the ROH World Title. The highlight package focused on Strong flipping out and saying he was screwed out of a one-on-one title shot against Black.
- Mike Hogewood hyped two upcoming TV Title tournament first round matches on tonight’s show: Colt Cabana vs. Eddie Edwards and Delirious vs. Davey Richards.
1 – COLT CABANA vs. EDDIE EDWARDS (w/Shane Hagadorn) - ROH TV Title Tournament First Round match
The opening two minutes featured even back-and-forth action with Edwards hitting Cabana with a number of strikes and Cabana replying with his signature British-style chain wrestling. At 2:00, the camera cut to Steve Corino watching the match from the aisle. Cabana took Edwards to the mat with a headscissors at 2:30, then went out to the aisle to confront Corino. Edwards followed Cabana out but Cabana sensed him coming and threw Edwards back into the ring. Cabana followed Edwards in with a sunset flip attempt, but Edwards rolled out of the pinning predicament and countered with a corkscrew to Cabana’s leg at 3:00.
Edwards now went to work on Cabana’s leg with a series of stomps and leg stretches. Cabana mounted a brief comeback but prematurely went for his Colt 45 finisher at 5:00. Edwards slipped out of the Colt 45 and landed an enziguiri to go back on offence. For no apparent reason, Edwards switched the focus of his offence to Cabana’s back, deploying a series of stomps, a camel clutch and a backbreaker before locking in a rear bear hug. Cabana escaped the bear hug at 8:30 thanks to a series of palm strikes to Edwards’ face, then began a comeback. After Cabana landed a few of his signature elbow strikes and a running butt butt, Corino came down the aisle to ringside. This prompted Cabana to let up on Edwards of leave the ring to go after Corino at ringside. Corino ran away from Cabana and rolled into the ring. As Cabana chased Corino into the ring, Edwards grabbed Cabana by the leg and swiftly locked in his half crab submission finisher, forcing Cabana to tap out because of the damage done earlier to his back.
WINNER: Edwards in 10:00. Just an okay match. The wrestlers did a fine job, but it was obvious that the finish was not going to come until Corino got involved, which took away the drama of everything beforehand. The live crowd seemed to sense this, and didn’t get into any of the action.
- Hogewood hyped the ROH World Tag Team title match coming up at The Big Bang between the Briscoes and the Kings of Wrestling. He referred back to the Kings’ post-match attack on the Briscoes after the Briscoes won the titles from the American Wolves at Final Battle 2009. Hogewood said that the Briscoes have been waiting months to get revenge for that attack.
- Backstage, Kyle Durden interviewed the Briscoes about their upcoming pay-per-view match with the Kings of Wrestling. Mark said he has lost count of how many times they have beaten the Kings of Wrestling called Claudio Castagnoli a "bald-headed Swiss cheese bastard" that they are going to beat all the way back to Switzerland. Jay ranted about beating Hero in the South. Durden’s facial expression was great. Solid promo from the Briscoes that got across their eagerness to get their hands on the Kings of Wrestling.
- In the studio, Hogewood and Dave Prazak hyped the World Title triple threat match scheduled for The Big Bang and threw to comments from Roderick Strong.
- A pre-taped UFC-style sit down promo from Roderick Strong aired next. Strong said that his purpose at The Big Bang is to win the ROH World Title, which he called rightfully his. He said he is sick of being used by Tyler Black and Roderick Strong, and now he is going to use them. He said Black is worse than Aries because Black lied to Strong about giving him the first title shot after Black won the title.
- In the ring, Jim Cornette introduced the newest member of the ROH talent roster: the debuting Shawn Daivari. Daivari came to the ring wearing an Arab head scarf. Hogewood said controversy has followed Daivari wherever he has been. Prazak emphasized that he can hold his own in a fight. Cornette asked Daivari what his goals are in ROH. Daivari ripped off his head scarf and started to say that he wanted to be what no “Hillbilly wrestling promoter” has ever seen him as before. He paused as some idiotic fans chanted “USA! USA!” (Memo to the Philadelphia fans: Daivari is an American.) Daivari looked into the camera and said, "I am not a Sheik. I am not a terrorist. I am a professional wrestler."
At this point, Daivari started to heel on the fans. He said that, unlike the people in Philadelphia, he would never accept a welfare check and, unlike the people of the United States, he would not accept a government bailout. He said the fact that he has earned his American dream makes him more American than all the fans. Cornette said that Daivari incites a lot of animosity by always “calling racism.” He asked why he won’t stand up and be his own man. Daivari said he is going to be his own man and "no network, no writer and no hick promoter" is going to stop him.
Daivari looks ridiculously jacked up and needs to slim down to look more like a real fighter and less like a bodybuilder. Cornette asking Daivari why he won’t be his own man made little sense, since Daivari had just been saying that he was his own man on account of having earned his American dream without anyone’s help. Daivari’s promo delivery was good, and hopefully ROH will let him put his Arab terrorist character from TNA and WWE behind him.
- Hogewood again hyped the upcoming Delirious-Davey Richards TV Title tournament first round match, then threw to comments from Austin Aries about the upcoming match at The Big Bang.
- A pre-taped Austin Aries promo aired. Aries said he may not be the most physically strong participant in the match, but he is the most mentally strong because Black and Strong are distracted by their animosity for each other. Then he started piling superlatives on top of each other about how great the match at The Big Bang is going to be; he said “Blood will be spilled, bones will be broken, kids will be eaten, it’ll be crazy.” Aries’ promo was entertaining as usual, but the promo did not give fans much of a reason to want to see him get beaten up at The Big Bang.
2 – “TORNADO” TONY KOZINA vs. KYLE O’REILLY
The announcers called O’Reilly an up-and-coming talent and Kozina a tough veteran, then Prazak segued into hyping the Mexican luchadors who will be part of The Big Bang. As the announcers talked about other thing, Kozina and O’Reilly had a nice opening exchange of chain wrestling, strikes and counters, including some innovative blocks and dodges of strike attempts. At 1:30, O’Reilly used an arm lock to force Kozina into position for a pair of double underhook suplexes. This was a great sequence by O’Reilly, but unfortunately the crowd did not react at all, likely because both wrestlers have only been used as enhancement talent so far in ROH.
Kozina took control at 2:00 by luring O’Reilly into charging him and then tripping him. After working over Kozina with a series of strikes, Kozina went to the top rope and landed a very impressive headscissors that took O’Reilly over the top rope to the floor at 3:00. This move finally woke up the crowd. Kozina threw O’Reilly back in the ring, then went back to the top and attempted a cross body, but O’Reilly rolled through the move and ended getting a near fall on Kozina. O’Reilly now went back on offence with strike combination, drawing a small “O’Reilly, O’Reilly” chant. The two wrestlers exchanged strikes for a little while, then began exchanging high spots. Unfortunately, there was little selling of the impact of the moves. The finish came when O’Reilly lifted Kozina up for a standing suplex, Kozina countered with a knee to the head and small package, but O’Reilly reversed the small package into a small package of his own for the three count.
WINNER: O’Reilly in 6:00. The first half of the match was great and both wrestlers impressed with some very innovative and realistic-looking action. The second half of the match was too rushed and hurt by the lack of selling high spots. It would be interesting to see what kind of story these guys could tell if given more time to draw it out and sell for each other’s moves.
- A pre-taped Tyler Black promo aired. Black called both of his opponents at The Big Bang intense competitors. He said that Strong has gone off the deep end and that makes him dangerous, possibly more dangerous than Aries. He said he tried his best to honor his promise to give Strong the first title shot but that, regardless of whether anyone believes him, The Big Bang will be the first successful title defense of what will be a long and dominating reign as ROH World Champion.
3 –DELIRIOUS (w/Daizee Haze) vs. DAVEY RICHARDS (w/Shane Hagadorn) - ROH TV Title Tournament First Round match
After a good opening exchange of chain and mat wrestling, Delirious took the first advantage at 2:00 by grounding Richards and landing a series of running back splashes. Delirious tried of a roll-up at 2:30, but Richards countered impressively into a shoulder lock to turn the tables. Richards then went to work on Delirious’s shoulder with a combination of his trademark strikes, stretches and suplexes. Delirious made a comeback at 5:30 with a series of strikes, and tossed Richards over the top rope to the floor at 6:00. Delirious then went to the top rope and landed a flip dive on Richards on the floor.
Delirious pressed his advantage back in the ring until, at 8:00, he went back to the top rope and Richards managed to grab his leg and yank him to the mat. Richards went back on offence and, at 9:00, locked in his Kimura stretch hold to do further damage to Delirious’ shoulder. Delirious made it to the ropes to break the submission, but Richards continued working over Delirious’ shoulder. Delirious mounted another comeback and hit the Chemical Imbalance II for a near fall at 10:00. Delirious again tried going to the top rope, but Richards climbed up after him and they struggled on the ropes until Delirious head butted Richards down to the mat at 11:00. Delirious tried for his Shadows Over Hell finisher, but Richards got back to his feet too quickly and caught Delirious with an alarm clock kick.
After another stiff series of strikes and suplexes, Richards tried for his cross armbreaker submission at 11:30, but Delirious countered it into a cobra stretch. Richards struggled to his feet while still in the hold, so Delirious transitioned from the stretch into a cobra suplex for a near fall. After the kick out, Delirious tried for the cobra stretch again, but Richards was able to use his body positioning to put Delirious’ shoulders against the mat at 12:30, forcing Delirious to release the hold or be pinned. Delirious tried to press his advantage by charging Richards in the corner, but Richards moved so Delirious’ injured shoulder smashed into the ring post. This enabled Richards go to the top and drop kick Delirious’ arm, then finish Delirious off with a pile driver, a Kimura and finally a cross arm breaker to force Delirious to submit.
WINNER: Richards in 13:30. Very good match. Like the O’Reilly and Kozina earlier in the show, Richards and Delirious showed a lot of impressive striking, high-flying and counter wrestling but, unlike O’Reilly and Kozina, they were given the time to tell a logical story leading to Richards’ clean win with an arm and shoulder submission after wearing down Delirious’ arm throughout the match.
- The show closed out with a video package hyping the main event at The Big Bang. It recapped the Black-Aries rivalry going into the 8th Anniversary Show, including Black promising Strong the first title shot if Black won the title from Aries. It also included highlights from Black's title victory over Aries and the resultant rise in tension between Black and Strong, leading to Strong losing his mind when Cornette made the main event a three-way with Austin Aries in the mix.
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