Other PPVs CALDWELL'S ROH BITW PPV REPORT 6/19: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of Briscoe vs. Lethal Title vs. Title, Bullet Club vs. The Kingdom, ROH Tag Title match, more
Jun 19, 2015 - 10:50:21 PM
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ROH Best in the World PPV Results
June 19, 2015
New York City
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
The traditional cable PPV started with a video package on the Title vs. Title main event - ROH World champion Jay Briscoe vs. ROH TV champion Jay Lethal (with Truth Martini). When no other challengers remain, who's left? Each other.
Live from New York City, ROH showed scenes from NYC before going inside Terminal 5 for the nightclub atmosphere and opening comments from the announce duo of Kevin Kelly & Steve Corino.
The PPV opened with Truth Martini's music, which produced Donovan Dijak. Mark Briscoe, joined by ODB, was out next to book-end the Briscoes vs. House of Truth theme on tonight's PPV. Code of Honor ... between Truth and Dijak, then the opening bell sounded.
1 -- MARK BRISCOE (w/ODB) vs. DONOVAN DIJAK (w/Truth Martini)
Dijak dominated early on, using his Cody Hall-like size to take control. They built to a spot where Dijak just chucked Briscoe right over the top rope onto the padding, nearly throwing him into the barricade on the fly. Martini went nuts for his client's feat of strength, but Dijak was unable to secure a pinfall back in the ring. Briscoe made a comeback, drawing in Martini, but ODB equalized him and ripped up the Book of Truth. Martini could only lament the crumbled pages. Mark then dropped Dijak on the floor with a running neckbreaker off the ring apron, but he could only get a nearfall back in the ring.
Mark tried to follow up with a brainbuster suplex, but he sold injuring his sore back, so Dijak was able to escape. Dijak then flew off the ropes with a big splash. He tried to follow with a suplex into a facebuster across his knees - the Feast Your Eyes move - but Mark kind of blocked. Perhaps a missed spot. Briscoe regrouped with a suplex into the top-rope Froggy Bow for the pin and the win.
WINNER: Mark at 8:58. The match story was probably better than the action, as they had some sloppy sequences at the end. But, this was exactly what an opening match should be - create an early visual like Dijak chucking Mark clear over the top rope to set the tone for the rest of the match, draw in the audience, play off the early visual for the rest of the match, and go to the finish. They didn't blow out the audience for the rest of the show and made a relatively soft match-up memorable, plus ODB ripping up the Book of Truth was a memorable moment. Nicely done. (**1/2)
In-ring: The Decade's music played to bring out B.J. Whitmer, Adam Page, and Steve Corino's son, Colby. After The Decade roughed up their young boy, Kelly tried to find a silver lining in this situation. A.C.H., then a heavily-bearded Matt Sydal were out next to face The Decade.
2 -- A.C.H. & MATT SYDAL vs. THE DECADE (B.J. WHITMER & ADAM PAGE w/Colby Corino)
The crowd offered a very salty chant at Whitmer as soon as the bell sounded. "Hey, J.R. told me to lay out sometimes during a good crowd chant," Corino dryly noted. Kelly declined to fill in the blanks. Sydal and Page fought early on after Page refused to wrestle A.C.H. because of jealousy issues. Sydal sold a leg injury, but made it to the corner to tag in A.C.H., who initially took control on Whitmer, but Whitmer cut him off. Of course with the face down and out, Page decided to enter the match to work on A.C.H. with power offense.
More salty chants aimed at Whitmer when he returned to the ring, but the heels were unable to put away A.C.H., who made a tag to Sydal. Sydal hit trademark high-flying offense on Page, including a standing Shooting Star Press, but Whitmer broke up a pin. A.C.H. KO'ed Whitmer with a punt kick, then Sydal climbed to the top and hit the Shooting Sydal Press, but Colby broke up a pin at one. The match continued despite the interference. Then, A.C.H. took out Whitmer, but Page hitting his Rite of Passage finisher on Sydal for the pin.
WINNERS: The Decade at 9:06. Heat on the heels, A.C.H. got to shine in defeat, and unfortunately Sydal just seems to be a legacy star filling a spot on the card. There has to be more to his ROH run than this. (**1/4)
Big Announcement: New Japan stars are returning to ROH in August. The dates are August 21 in Philadelphia and Aug. 22 in Brooklyn and ROH is advertising the top stars in the company. That's quite the travel after finishing the G1 Climax tournament.
In-ring: Silas Young was introduced first for the next match. The polar opposite Dalton Castle was out next in a peacock Elvis suit flanked by his servants.
3 -- SILAS YOUNG vs. DALTON CASTLE
Silas roughed up Castle in the early going. Kelly noted that Silas is popular in his hometown of Milwaukee, but people hate him everywhere else. The crowd tried to rally behind Castle, prompting his servants to lead an interesting rallying cry making rudimentary peacock noises. They've obviously never studied at the Arcadia Arboretum, where peacocks outnumber people. Speaking of California, Corino said he's not sure where Catalina Island is.
Dalton woke up the crowd making a comeback by pulling down Silas's pants, exposing his crack. Dalton almost pinned him with a sunset flip, then Silas kept wrestling with his pants down. The crowd chanted for him to pull up his pants, he obliged, and the crowd chanted, "Thank you Silas." They went back and forth until Young sent Dalton head-first into the corner turnbuckle. Castle sold losing consciousness, so Silas tried to wake him up. Castle fired back with a kick strike, but Silas smashed him with a spear off the ring apron, putting both men on the ground. Silas tried to send Dalton back into the ring, but Dalton nailed a rebound huracanrana.
Back in the ring, Young kicked Dalton in the back of the head, but Dalton answered with a deadlift German Suplex for a close two count. Castle wanted to end the match with a top-rope move, but Young pushed the ref into the ropes, crotching Castle. Referee Todd Sinclair refused to make a count for Young, prompting Young to yell and scream at Sinclair. This allowed Dalton to low-blow Young and roll him up from behind for a three count.
Post-match, Silas picked up one of Dalton's servants and angrily dropped him with his Misery airplane spin finisher. Young left the ring as Dalton and the other servant checked on their injured compadre.
WINNER: Dalton Castle at 11:11. Dalton showed flashes in the ring, but the act seems to limit Castle as he tries to stand out from the crowd of younger ROH talent. He has time on his side to eventually break out as a strong singles act. (**1/2)
Exterior Shots: New York City. And they return to Terminal 5 for tag action.
In-ring: Caprice Coleman and Cedric Alexander were introduced to the ring, teaming as a tag team for the first time in a while. Their opponents, War Machine, were out next.
4 -- WAR MACHINE (RAY ROWE & HANSON) vs. CEDRIC ALEXANDER & CAPRICE COLEMAN
C&C quickly blasted War Machine with fast-paced offense. They did not waste any time taking control of the match. But, they started to show some cracks in the alliance, allowing War Machine to isolate Coleman. And, the cracks turned into a bit chasm when Coleman went to tag Alexander, but they argued over Cedric wanting to bring a wrench into the ring. So, War Machine continued to work over Coleman until hitting their tag-team finisher, Fallout, on Coleman for the win.
Post-match, War Machine posed and said they're taking over, then Cedric approached Coleman to hit him with the wrench. But, he thought better of it and simply told Coleman that they're done. Cedric left the ring, leaving Coleman to contemplate the end of their tag team with Alexander "turning to the darkside," as Corino put it.
WINNERS: War Machine at 3:30. Felt like a TV match advancing Cedric Alexander's heel turn, while serving as a bridge to the first big match of the show...
Next up: The #1 contender match for the ROH World Title. Out first was Michael Elgin to a very light reaction. Dudes were on their phone during Elgin's ring entrance. Once in the ring, Elgin caught the one streamer thrown his way and tossed it back toward the crowd. Moose was introduced next with several cheerleaders, Veda Scott, and Stokely Hathaway. Moose, the former NFL player, emerged on the stage in shoulder pads and a giant helmet with colors reminiscent of the XFL uniforms. From a light pop to a medium pop to a ... strong pop for Roderick Strong out last. "Let's Go Roddy / Mooooose" chant as Elgin just hung out in the corner feeling left out.
5 -- RODERICK STRONG vs. MOOSE (w/Veda Scott and Stokley Hathaway) vs. MICHAEL ELGIN -- three-way #1 contender match to the ROH World Title
As the match started, Kevin Kelly relayed news that the new #1 contender will face the Lethal-Briscoe winner at Death Before Dishonor on July 24. Dusty Rhodes was tributed early on, then Elgin splashed both opponents on the outside. Elgin posed for a disinterested crowd, then yanked away a front-row fan's replica mid-2000s ROH World Title from the Samoa Joe era. He posed with the faux belt to boos, then returned to the ring with Moose to score a two count. Elgin then lifted Moose high in the air for a delayed vertical suplex that the crowd counted along, reaching 30. The crowd applauded, then Elgin smashed Strong off the middle rope.
Elgin wanted a top-rope superplex against Moose, but Strong broke it up. Strong then suplexed Elgin across the ring apron. Strong lit up both men, then delivered consecutive top-rope superplexes, but he only scored a two count on Moose. A series of moves unfolded in favor of each man. Eventually all three men fell to the mat and sold the effects of the fast-paced match.
All three men recovered and Elgin went for a Bucklebomb on Moose, but Moose exploded out of the corner with a spear for a two count when Strong broke up the pin. So, Moose smashed Strong with the Monty Brown Pounce. Strong and Elgin recovered on the outside, so Moose showed impressive agility by running onto the top turnbuckle and flying down onto both men, splashing them on the floor.
Back in the ring, Moose measured Strong for a spear, but Strong leap-frogged to avoid. Elgin then caught Moose with a pop-up powerbomb into an impressive lift-up slam. But, he didn't make the cover. So, Strong caught Elgin with the Sick Kick into a suplex backbreaker. Strong then dazed Moose with strikes into the Sick Kick to pin Moose for the win.
Post-match, Strong asked Moose for a handshake. Moose obliged, which Veda Scott took exception to. Veda slapped Moose again, then Cedric Alexander suddenly ran into the ring and knocked down Moose and Stokely Hathaway. Cedric handed over his wrench to Veda, who smiled at this development. Cedric ranted and raved that he should have been in this #1 contender match. And, apparently he has selected Veda's services for his heel run.
WINNER: Strong at 13:02 to become #1 contender. This made sense with Strong having a lot of momentum right now. Moose taking the fall instead of Elgin was interesting - does it mean Moose's days in ROH are numbered? Or, just the start of a face turn to counter Cedric's heel turn? We'll go with the face turn to rebuild him after taking consecutive losses. Oh, and there was Michael Elgin, whose character seems as lost as Sydal's at this point. (***1/4)
Up Next: The big six-man tag of The Bullet Club vs. The Kingdom, popping the live crowd.
In-ring: The Kingdom was introduced first with IWGP World tag champions Matt Taven & Mike Bennett, with Maria Kanellis, plus Adam Cole. The familiar sounds of The Bullet Club then played to bring out IWGP World Hvt. champion A.J. Styles and IWGP Jr. Hvt. tag champions the Young Bucks. No sign of the tag belts, though. Lots of streamers for the Bullet Club's entrance.
Before the match started, everyone held up their respective titles for a gold-off. The crowd chanted "A.J. Styles, Young Bucks, Too Sweet, Super-kick, and A.J. Styles" again before the opening bell. Big pre-match showdown, then the bell sounded.
6 -- BULLET CLUB (IWGP World Hvt. champion A.J. STYLES & IWGP Jr. Hvt. tag champions YOUNG BUCKS - NICK & MATT JACKSON) vs. THE KINGDOM (IWGP Hvt. tag champions MATT TAVEN & MIKE BENNETT w/Maria Kanellis & ADAM COLE) -- six-man tag match
Just a ton of action early on with all six men involved. They eventually settled into The Kingdom isolating Matt Jackson, including involving Maria with a kick to the chest on the outside. A.J. Styles got a hot tag, setting off another round of six-way action. Bullet Club eventually isolated Adam Cole, who blocked the Styles Clash. Corino brought up the neck injuries, then half-joked that he would like to see Styles wrestle B.J. Whitmer.
Kingdom suddenly exploded on the Young Bucks, then a Superkick Party broke out, with both teams landing kicks. Styles found himself alone with Adam Cole, who snapped off a Canadian Destroyer. He sat down on the mat to celebrate, then found a double superkick from the Young Bucks right in the mouth. Styles and Matt then set up The Kingdom for double Indytakers, and Nick came off the ropes with a springboard smash to complete the deal.
Suddenly, Maria got on the ring apron to yell at Styles and the Young Bucks. Maria started to back down, but Styles brought her into the ring. Maria slapped Styles, who took a step away, then hit a Pele Kick simultaneous to the Young Bucks hitting Superkicks for a triple combo on Maria. That felt wrong and unnecessary. Styles then aggressively ripped off offense on Cole, including Bloody Sunday from Prince Devitt's playbook, but Cole kicked out of a pin.
Taven, Bennett, and Maria were down and out, leaving Cole alone to take punishment until he escaped More Bang For Your Buck. Cole suddenly knocked down all three men all by himself, but he couldn't survive forever. The Young Bucks eventually hit another Indy-Taker, held Cole in place, flipped him over to A.J., and Styles nailed the Clash on Cole for the pin and the win.
Post-match, Bennett checked on Maria, who remained KO'ed on the floor. ROH replayed high points from the big tag match, then showed Bennett scooping up a lifeless Maria. Bennett stopped at the ringside area to sell frustration with Cole for allowing this to happen. Bennett then hauled Maria away from ringside while still shaking his head at Cole.
WINNERS: Bullet Club at 14:58. Perfectly fine exhibition match showcasing the top-flight skills and offense from Styles and the Young Bucks. There just didn't seem to be anything on the line here. Also, the attacks on Maria are getting old in Japan and the U.S., but perhaps the post-match issue between Bennett and Cole will move The Kingdom away from Bullet Club on ROH TV. Overall, definitely the best match of the show thus far. (***3/4)
In-ring: ReDragon was introduced for the ROH Tag Title match. Big reaction for the challengers. Christopher Daniels & Kazarian, who have been wandering in the desert since returning to ROH, were introduced next to a minimal reaction. Daniels was sporting a high-ranking military outfit to capture the idea of him being a "ring general."
7 -- ROH tag champions THE ADDICTION (FRANKIE KAZARIAN & CHRISTOPHER DANIELS) vs. REDRAGON (KYLE O'REILLY & BOBBY FISH) -- ROH Tag Title match -- No DQ, Texas Tornado-style match
Daniels was sporting new ring gear consisting of a singlet attacked to shorts, in the style of Ryback or Dr. Death Steve Williams. O'Reilly tried a submission in the opening seconds, but the tag champs escaped. All four men were allowed in the ring at the same time, creating a double-team situation for The Addiction. The match moved to the outside, where Daniels paired off with Fish and O'Reilly paired off with Kaz. The fight moved up the entrance steps to the top of the stage as one dude continued to sit on his phone while action was right next to him.
Back in the ring, ReDragon worked over Daniels in the ring, but they were unable to get a pin while Kaz was down. Kaz then returned to the ring and helped Daniels clear ReDragon to the floor. Kaz tried a springboard move onto the challengers, but they pushed Daniels in the way, causing Kaz to wipe out his tag partner. ReDragon then seated both champs on a chair, Fish held a second chair in front of the champs, and O'Reilly came flying at Daniels & Kaz with a dropkick into the chair, knocking the champs clear down to the ring.
Back in the ring, The Addiction responded with Daniels nailing sending O'Reilly through a chair with a uranage. Kaz slid a ladder into the ring, which led to the champs whipping Fish into the ladder as it was propped up in the corner. Addiction tied Fish to the ropes, then Kaz then left the ring to tear off a piece of the guardrail and set it up ringside. Addiction wanted a superplex out of the ring onto the guardrail, but O'Reilly blocked it. Daniels re-adjusted and went for Best Moonsault Ever, but Kyle caught him in a triangle choke on the way down. Kaz broke up the submission with a chair blow, then Addiction dragged O'Reilly to the outside and slammed him back-first onto the guardrail.
Addiction rolled O'Reilly back into the ring looking for a pin, but Fish broke free of being tied in the ropes and broke up the pin. Fish fired up on the tag champs, then went for a kneebar submission on Kaz, only to have Daniels break it up. ReDragon made a comeback and hit Chasing the Dragon, but Chris Sabin suddenly showed up ringside and yanked the referee out of the ring, making an unscheduled appearance. The announcers said Sabin is not booked, but the match continues since it's No DQ. After Sabin's involvement, The Addiction nailed their tag team finisher, Celebrity Rehab, on Fish for the pin and the win. The crowd sounded dejected rather than upset at the heels for escaping with the titles.
WINNERS: The Addiction at 15:32 to retain the ROH Tag Titles. ROH needed a buffer or intermission or popcorn break or something in-between the six-man tag and this free-for-all Tag Title match, as the two matches were too similar and the crowd needed a breather after witnessing Bullet Club Action. The ending really fell flat with yet another false finish where the ref was pulled out of the ring to prevent a three count. (***)
Video Package: Jay Briscoe vs. Jay Lethal Title vs. Title main event.
Ringside: ROH matchmaker Nigel McGuinness was introduced to the commentary position to oversee the big title main event.
In-ring: The House of Truth music produced ROH TV champion Jay Lethal, flanked by Truth Martini, who was holding a new Book of Truth with his face on the cover and a completely different look than for the opening match. ROH cut to a shot of Lethal's family ringside cheering on the TV champion. Lethal took a long, slow stroll around ringside with Truth, J. Diesel, and Donovan Dijack following close behind.
After a pause, Jay Briscoe's music played to bring out the ROH World champion who has not been pinned in over two years. Briscoe, by himself, slowly walked around the ringside area before hitting the ring, sending the House of Truth scurrying from the ring. Ring announcer Bobby Cruise handled formal ring introductions, referee Todd Sinclair held up both title belts, both men came together in the middle of the ring, the Code of Honor was adhere to with uneasiness from both sides, they backed away, and the bell sounded.
8 -- ROH World champion JAY BRISCOE vs. ROH TV champion JAY LETHAL (w/Truth Martini, J. Diesel, and Donovan Dijack) -- ROH Title and ROH TV Title on the line -- 60 minute time limit
Just 30 seconds into the match, Dijack made a mistake taking a swipe at the ring, prompting ref Sinclair to send both Dijack and Diesel to the back. This left Truth Martini at ringside backing Lethal. The crowd comically put a stop to dueling chants by chanting "Let's Go Jay," drawing chuckles from the announcers. After feeling each other out, they ran the ropes and Briscoe suddenly popped Lethal with a hard back elbow smash. Lethal slid out of the ring to recover, then ROH showed Papa Briscoe and Family sitting elsewhere in the arena. It's ROH Family Feud.
Dueling chants of "Briscoe / Lethal" picked up again as both men traded control in the ring. The match quickly went back to the floor, where Lethal whipped Briscoe into the guardrail. Briscoe turned the tables, though, pounding on Lethal with right hand blows to the head right in front of Papa Briscoe. Mama and Papa Lethal were upset across the arena, then Lethal responded with a suplex on the floor.
The match returned to the ring, prompting Steve Corino to relay an update on Cary Silkin, who was supposedly on a scouting mission to South America to find new talent and therefore was not in his customary ringside seat. The action suddenly picked up in the ring, then Briscoe knocked Lethal back to the outside and landed a big splash. Both men sold the effects, especially Briscoe selling a shoulder injury.
Suddenly, Truth Martini grabbed Jay Briscoe's foot from the outside, which drew a reprimand from Todd Sinclair, but not an exit from ringside. Lethal then went to work on Jay's injured shoulder. Lethal landed a series of uppercuts, but he was unable to take Briscoe off his feet, so Briscoe responded with a knock-down uppercut. But, Lethal grabbed a worn-down Briscoe for a chinlock. No matter for Briscoe, who broke free and hit a neckbreaker for a two count. Briscoe followed with a Full Nelson Slam, then he applied a mat-based submission.
Briscoe wanted the Jaydriller, but Lethal slipped out and nailed the Lethal Combination for a nearfall. ROH went to back-and-forth shots of the families sitting ringside as Champ and Champ recovered in the ring. Lethal then wanted a top-rope move, but he took too much time setting up, allowing Briscoe to crotch him. Briscoe wanted a superplex, but Lethal blocked. And a second time. Lethal eventually knocked Briscoe down to the mat, then came off the top with a Macho Man elbow drop for a two count. Lethal immediately slapped on a Koji Clutch on the kick-out, but Briscoe reached the bottom rope for a break.
Reset, then Briscoe measured Lethal for a move off the ring apron, but Truth Martini hopped on the ring apron to distract ref Sinclair, allowing Lethal to low-blow Briscoe. Nigel McGuinness had enough and kicked out Truth. Briscoe then reset his attack and delivered a Jaydriller right through the timekeeper's table down below, popping the crowd. High-impact right there. Lethal sold being KO'ed as Briscoe slowly recovered and tried to collect himself, perhaps to get a count-out win. Instead, Briscoe picked up Lethal and slid him back into the ring to go for a cover, but he only got a two count.
Reset at 24:00. Briscoe lit up Lethal with right hands, but Lethal answered with a desperation superkick. Lethal wanted the Lethal Injection, but Briscoe exploded on the TV champion with a big lariat. Lethal kicked out, so Briscoe emphatically picked up Lethal and smashed him with another huge lariat. But, Lethal kicked out again. The crowd freaked out for the back-to-back kick-outs. They showed Lethal's family pounding the barricade cheering on their son, then back to Papa and Mama Briscoe to show them encouraging the ROH Champ.
Reset at 25:30. Lethal wanted the Lethal Injection, and he connected. But, Briscoe kicked out just before three. "I am losing my mind!" Corino declared. Lethal could only hold his head in frustration in the corner. Lethal then slowly approached Briscoe looking for ... the Jaydriller, but Briscoe blocked. Big teaser sequence, then Lethal hit the Jaydriller. Lethal followed with a clean Lethal Injection and he covered Briscoe for the one, two, and three. New ROH World champion.
Post-match, Truth Martini returned to the ring to celebrate with Lethal, who received the ROH World Title belt and sold emotions over the outcome. Lethal held up both the ROH World Title and TV Title belts as streamers covered him. Ref Sinclair checked on Briscoe, then ROH replayed big moments from the match. Lethal then held up both title belts as his family celebrated ringside. In the background, Briscoe stood up and tried to collect himself in the corner.
Lethal turned to look at Briscoe, who hung his head in disbelief. The crowd quieted down as Briscoe walked across the ring toward Lethal and extended his hand. Lethal emphatically shook Briscoe's hand, then Briscoe left the ring. Lethal posed in the middle of the ring as the crowd chanted, "You deserve it!" Kelly signed off by noting that Lethal is ... best in the world.
WINNER: Lethal at 27:27 to capture the ROH World Title and retain the ROH TV Title. What a main event. Like the opening match involving the Briscoes and House of Truth, one memorable spot - the Jaydriller through the ringside table - really brought this match up to the next level and provided an avenue for Lethal and Briscoe to finish strong. Lethal as ROH World champion sets up a lot of new developments, first up being Lethal vs. Roderick Strong in what should be another very good PPV main event next month. Also, a potential new TV champion if Lethal relinquishes the belt. Overall, it was nice to see this end with a clean finish, as opposed to a potential Double DQ/outside interference-type situation to avoid titles changing hands. Well done. (****1/4)
The PPV signed off with a plug for the ROH World Title match at the Death Before Dishonor iPPV on July 24 from Baltimore. Also, a nod to Mahr Media in the PPV sign-off credits.
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