A well-produced video package aired to kick off the show. This was a good video package, but not even close to the slick packages that were put together for the two previous PPVs this year.
Kevin Kelly introduced Steve Corino and the Spanish announced team. They held up signs not to break their table and asked for Kelly and Corino’s table to be broken, which was pretty funny. Kelly and Corino then ran down the lineup for the night. The Yong Bucks graphic got a huge pop from the fans. O’Reilly also got a good reaction when the graphic for the main event was shown.
Fish earned a TV title shot by winning a mini-tournament in Las Vegas a couple of months back.
(1) ROH World TV Champion Jay Lethal (w/Truth Martini) vs. IWGP Jr. Hvt. Tag Team Champion Bobby Fish. Both guys got a good reception during the formal introductions. Fish got a crossface early and then a knee bar. Lethal escaped and bailed to the floor both times before he managed to catch Fish napping from behind. Fish continued to work over Lethal’s leg, as he got another knee bar, but Lethal managed to get to the ropes. Martini tripped Fish from the outside and Lethal hit the Lethal injection, but Fish managed to roll to the floor. Lethal followed Fish to the floor and tossed him into the barricade several times before going back to the ring. Fish barely beat the 20 count and Lethal began working him over once he got back into the ring. Fish mounted a comeback and hit an exploder into the turnbuckles and the fans fired up. Fish went right back after Lethal’s leg. Lethal fired back and hit a big dive through the ropes. Lethal then hit a second dive and the fans wanted another. Lethal played to the fans, which allowed Fish to cut him off with a back breaker. Fish really went after Lethal’s leg and locked in a knee bar. Lethal struggled, but managed to get to the ropes. Fish countered the Lethal injection and got the knee bar again. Lethal ended up getting on top of Fish and he pulled him with a hand full of tights for the win. This was a really good opener. (***1/2)
(2) Silas Young vs. Dalton Castle (w/The Boys) – If Young wins, he gets The Boys. If he loses, he becomes one of Castle’s Boys. Corino says Silkin was overseas trying to bring lady midgets to Ring of Honor. The Boys distracted Young early and Castle went for a rollup, but only got a 2 count. Young got the upper hand and worked over Castle for a long period of time. Castle fired up and hit a suplex for a 2 count. Kelly said he was excited to see the mystery team that would face the Briscoes tonight. Young fired back and caught Castle with his signature back breaker/clothesline combination for a 2 count. The Boys tried to fan Castle as the fans fired up behind him. They went back and forth and Young eventually hit a twisting neck breaker on Castle, who had his feet on the top of the ropes. The fans fired up and Castle mounted another comeback with punches and kicks that sent Young into the corner. Castle set up a dive, but Young pulled The Boys together and Castle wiped them out. Young took off his knee brace, but the ref took it away from him. Castle hit his spinning face buster and had the pin, but Young grabbed the bottom rope. Young ended up hitting a low blow with the ref distracted trying to get rid of the knee brace. He followed up with misery for the win. This was another good match to begin the show, although the crowd sounded muted. (***1/4)
Young took off with The Boys after the match. The Boys looked very upset as Young screamed it was time for them to become men. Castle sold dismay in the ring and questioned the ref.
The Briscoes are set to take on a mystery team next. They went to a backstage promo with The Briscoes and Jay talked about his long undefeated streak. Jay said in the back of his mind he wanted the ROH World Tag Team Titles during that time. Mark said when you think of a tag team, The Briscoes are the standard. Jay said one thing remains a constant and that’s ROH having the best tag division on the planet. He said when The Briscoes are cooking, there isn’t a tag team in the world that can beat them. Mark said they’ve never lost their ability.
The Briscoes came out for their entrance to a good reaction from the crowd. The Decade came out and the crowd booed. Whitmer got on the mic with Page next to him and said he hates to disappoint, but they can’t be the Briscoes opponents. Whitmer said he was going to sit in on commentary. Oh joy! He told Corino to lay out. The fans chanted for Whitmer to retire. The fans then chanted AARP at Whitmer.
Romantic Touch’s music played and Kelly said he had been stalking the Briscoes lately. It clearly wasn’t Titus under the mask. Touch planted a big kiss on one female at ringside. Jay then wiped him out with a big forearm and Mark tossed him out of the ring.
An ANX graphic came on the screen and Kelly freaked out. Rhett Titus & Kenny King then made their way down to the ring. Titus gave Touch a running kick and the fans fired up.
(3) ANX vs. Briscoes. The importance of the history between these two teams was over exaggerated on commentary. The crowd was flat for the action. ANX won with a blockbuster/powerbomb combination on Mark for the win. ANX was a team that was good, but never quite reached their potential before King left ROH high and dry for TNA after his contract expired several years ago. (**1/2)
Page jumped The Briscoes after the match, but ANX made the save. Whitmer left for the back with Page after the match. ANX and The Briscoes shook hands after the match, which fired up the crowd.
(4) Moose (w/Stokely Hathaway) vs. Cedric Alexander (w/Veda Scott) in a No DQ match. Good back and forth action. Highlight was Moose hitting a big dropkick up top into a chair. Scott interfered late, but Moose managed to counter Alexander and send him into a ladder in the corner. Hathaway interfered late and hit Alexander with the bigger wrench and Moose speared him through the table for the win. This was good at times, but the crowd wasn't especially hot for this action. The unprotected chairshots were extremely disappointing to see as well. This match was more about the big spots and the manager interference than the issue between Moose and Cedric, which does neither man any favors. (**1/4)
(5) ACH vs. Matt Sydal - Match 3 of 5 in Best of 5 Series. The series is tied at 1-1 with this match taking place in ACH's hometown. This wasn't a particularly exciting match at times as they tried some technical stuff with Sydal targeting ACH’s leg. ACH hit a brain buster late and followed with the midnight star for the pin. ACH has now won 2 in a row in the series and leads 2-1. (**1/2)
(6) ROH Tag Team Champions The Addiction (Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian vs. The Kingdom (Matt Taven & Michael Bennett) vs. The Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson). They built up to a huge collection of spots capped by Matt hit a super kick on Taven that fired up the fans. Daniels punched Maria in the face when she got up on the apron. Someone in a red KRD mask came down and hit Sabin's signature moves on The Addiction. The finish saw the YB hit the Meltzer Driver on Kazarian, but Taven rolled up Matt for the win after making a blind tag. The action was good until the end with a dreadful finish with Maria getting punched by Daniels and suddenly tag rules suddenly mattering. (**)
(7) Strong vs Cole vs Elgin vs Styles in a ROH World Title #1 Contender match. Fun fast-paced action, but crowd sounded flat. Strong hit end of heartache on Cole, but Elgin broke up the pin late in the match. Styles then pinned Cole with bloody Sunday and a Styles clash to end a fun match. Elgin looked impressive here, but crowd just wasn’t up for this. (***1/2)
(8) ROH World Champion Jay Lethal (w/The HOT) vs. Kyle O'Reilly (w/Bobby Fish). O'Reilly fended off the Lethal injection three times and applied an arm bar to counter the third one. Lethal escaped and went for a roll up with a hand full of tights for a near fall, which is how he beat Fish. Truth got ejected late. The ref got bumped. Fish ran down to help O'Reilly. Then Dijak ran down and he wiped out
Fish with the tile. Come ran down and teased helping O'Reilly, but then he super kicked him. Lethal then hit the Lethal injection for the win. This was a really great match and O’Reilly was quite good here, but the finish really took it down several notches, especially when you take into consideration all the interference and overbooking on the rest of the show. (**3/4)
The Kingdom came out and stood over O'Reilly with Cole after the match. They then put a beating on O'Reilly and nailed him with a triple superkick.
Quick overall thoughts: (5.0) – There was some fantastic wrestling on this show, but as good as the wrestling was, the booking was equally as bad. There was interference and lame finishes up and down the card from start to finish. The show started out promising with a couple of really good matches with Fish-Lethal and Castle-Young filling their slots well, but then things came off the rails.
Where is the evolution of characters in ROH? Why can’t Delirious book this extremely talented roster in matches that will make people care about them? The undercard is especially concerning, as by the end of the night it seemed things were right back where they started with some of the stalest acts on the roster. The Addiction had a promising heel turn and then nothing was done to follow up on it after they revealed themselves as the KRD along with Chris Sabin.
ROH TV was booked to make fans want to see Young Bucks vs. The Addiction, so the Kingdom ends up winning the match. It just doesn’t make sense.
Adam Cole goes on a losing streak and seems like he’s done with The Kingdom, so what does he do on this card? Well, he takes another loss in the #1 contender match and rejoins The Kingdom in the main event after turning on O’Reilly. Did Delirious forget he already did a losing streak gimmick with Cole last year? Are people supposed to be excited that Cole is back with the group that he never really left? How are people supposed to care that a loser turned on O’Reilly in the main event?
A perfect example of one of the biggest problems with Delirious’s booking was the Moose vs. Alexander No DQ match. Nobody in the crowd cared about the feud between these two men. They only got excited when the managers got involved and there were big car crash stunts. It really is a shame that ROH allows its talent to take unprotected chairshots in 2015, especially with the potential concussion-related lawsuits coming at the NFL.
There were some bright spots as I mentioned. The first two matches on the card were really good. Although the crowd was muted the Four-way #1 contender match was quite good as well. Several matches on the card were on the way to being really good, but this show was overthought and hopefully Delirious can go back to the drawing board and fix the booking issues that are hurting this company.
Please click HERE; and click “like” to join the Radican’s Wrestling Community Facebook fan page.
Follow Sean on Twitter at Twitter.com/SeanRadican
Email Sean at PWTorchSean@Gmail.com
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**