RADICAN’S ROH Death Before Dishonor PPV Review – Lethal vs. Cole for ROH Title, New Japan vs. ROH matches, more!

ROH "Death Before Dishonor" logo (c) ROH Wrestling.com


AUGUST 19, 2016

(1) Donovan Dijak (w/Prince Nana) vs. Lio Rush vs. Kamaitachi vs. Jay White in a ROH TV Title #1 Contender match. The action was fast and furious during the early going. White hit the Cesaro uppercut sequence at one point. Rush hit a series of dives until Dijak caught him on the floor. Dijak lifted him up, but Rush countered it into a poison hurricanrana! The action continued at a furious pace. Kamaitachi hit a meteora off the top on White for a near fall to end a big sequence and everyone was down. Kamaitachi hit a leg drop to the floor. That’s mental!

Dijak hit a big twisting dive to the floor a short time later and the fans fired up. Dijak went for feast your eyes, but Rush rolled him up for a near fall. Rush went for a one man Spanish fly on everyone. He connected on White and Kamaitachi, but Dijak blocked it. Dijak then hit a discus boot and feast your eyes for the win.

WINNER: Donovan Dijak to become the new #1 Contender to the ROH World TV Title

Star rating: (***1/2) – This was a great way to kick off the show with an incredible dose of non-stop action between four young stars on the rise. It’s good to see Dijak get a push.

Silas Young was shown cutting a promo saying the NJPW guys all come in and take all the best spots. Young said he beat a NJPW guy in an internet exclusive match earlier in the year. He said he was issuing a challenge to Shibata.

(2) NEVER Openweight champion Katsuyori Shibata vs. Silas Young in a non-title match. Shibata got a huge pop when he made his entrance. Unlike during most of the G1 Climax, he had his title with him. Shibata went for the PK during the early going, but Young ducked it. Shibata got his choke against the ropes, but was forced to let it go. Young fired back and hit a slingshot dive to the floor a short time later. Young went after Shibata’s shoulder, which was injured during G1. Young hit a light kick to Shibata’s head. Shibata told him to bring it. Young hit several forearms and a running kick, but Shibata once again told him to bring it

Shibata hit a big forearm and Young collapsed to the mat. Shibata went on the attack and the fans fired up. They went back and forth and Young hit his signature back breaker/clothesline combination. Shibata grabbed the choke, but Young got out of it and hit an ace crusher. He made the cover, but it was only good for 2. Young hit the headstand into a moonsault, but Shibata kicked out at the last second! The fans booed and chanted that was 3! Shibata went for a headbutt, but Young blocked it and hit a pair of slaps. Shibata grabbed a choke and Young began to fade. Shibata released the hold and hit the PK for the win.

After the match, both men slapped each other across the face before shaking hands.

WINNER: Katsuyori Shibata.

Star rating: (***1/4) – This was another good match. It served as a good introduction to Shibata and Young looked good in the process as well.

(3) Bullet Club (Yujiro Takahashi & Tama Tonga & Tonga Roa) vs. CHAOS (Trent Beretta & Rocky Romero & NOAH Hvt. Tag Team Champion Toru Yano). Caprice Coleman came in on commentary. Yano tagged in and they did some comedy with Tonga crawling after Yano until he asked for a break. Romero got attacked by Takahashi when he hung himself in the ropes. Takahashi then tossed Romero into the ring barrier as Bullet Club took control. Coleman yelled at Nigel about not being on the PPV. He said they had now been off two PPVs in a row. Romero took a sustained beating from Bullet Club.

Trent got the hot tag and ran wild. The action broke down. Takahashi ended up wiping out Trent with a big lariat. Yano got the tag from Trent and began undoing the top turnbuckle pad. Takahashi cut him off and nailed him with a sliding kick for a 2 count. Yano fired back and went after the turnbuckle pad once again. Romero gave him a pair of plyers to undo the pad. Yano undid it finally and Takahashi went head-first into the exposed corner. Yano wiped out G.O.D. and went to wipe out his own partners, but they convinced him not to.

Tonga wiped out Yano with a turnbuckle shot. The G.O.D. then hit a tandem neck breaker on the pad. Takahashi made the cover, but Yano kicked out. The action broke down. Yano hit a low blow on Takahashi after a ref distraction and it was good for the win.

WINNERS: Trent Beretta & Rocky Romero & Toru Yano

Star rating: (*3/4) – This was a pretty forgettable match, but a welcome comedown of sorts after the first two matches.

After the match, Tonga and Roa jumped Yano. They hit Guerilla Warfare on Yano. Hangman Page ran down to the ring and was going to hang Yano, but Jay Briscoe’s music played and he ran down to the ring. Page went to the floor and the fans applauded.

(4) IWGP Hvt. Tag Team champion Jay Briscoe vs. Hangman Page in an Anything Goes match. Both men went head-to-head. They both went to the floor and got chairs. They had a chair duel, but Jay eventually tossed his chair right into Page’s head. Jay sent Page to the floor and wiped him out with a huge dive through the ropes and the fans fired up huge. Jay hit a suplex on the entrance ramp a short time later. Page finally fired back and tossed a chair right into Jay’s head. He didn’t bother to put his hands up. Page went after Jay with his noose against the ropes. They went back and forth and Page once again tried to choke Jay with the noose. This time he used the ropes for leverage and dropped backwards on the apron while choking Jay.

They went back to the floor and Page continued to work over Jay. He eventually powerbombed Jay through a chair. Page used the rope to tie Jay against the guardrail. Page then smashed a chair right over Jay’s head, but it was clear that it was safely done. Page set up a table before going back after Jay. Page tried to put Jay through the table from the apron, but Jay blocked it and managed to fall back into the ring. Jay caught Page coming off the ropes a short time later and hit a big DVD onto a chair.

Page spit in Jay’s eye as they exchanged blows from their knees. Briscoe smiled and fired up before hitting a neck breaker. Jay wrapped a chair around Page’s head and went for a neck breaker. Page blocked it, but Jay fired right back and connected with a neck breaker on Page, who still had the chair wrapped around his head. Jay wrapped the Noose around Page’s neck in the corner. He then tied Page’s head to a chair that was set up in the corner. Briscoe then caught Page with a huge running knee!

Briscoe got a running start and hit another running knee in the corner. The fans chanted one more time and Jay hit a third charge into the corner. WOW! It looked like Jay drove his own ribs into the chair when he charged into the corner, which was shown on a replay. Page ended up on the table on the floor, but he rolled off of it before Jay could do anything. Page hit his signature slingshot clothesline a short time later for a near fall.

Page tried to hang Jay over the ropes, but he blocked it. Jay got the noose off his head, but Page snapped his neck over the top rope and he fell to the floor. Page went for a SSP off the apron to the floor, but Jay nailed him with a kick and the fans fired up huge once again! The fans chanted man up as Jay went after Page on the floor. Jay set up for a Jay-driller through the table, but Page blocked it. Page then hit the rite of passage through the table. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? This is mental!

Page had a big gash on his knee after going through the table. Jay came up bleeding from the back. Page rolled Jay into the ring and made the cover, but he kicked out at the last second! Page then choked Jay with his noose as Nigel looked on in horror. Jay was really bleeding from the back. The fans chanted man up and tried to rally behind Jay. Page let go of the choke and hit rite of passage again and it was good for the win. WOW!

WINNER: Adam Page

Star rating: (****) – This was one hell of a war that was fitting of the feud between these two men. Jay Briscoe VERY rarely loses singles matches, so this was a huge win for Page. This is great to see from a creative standpoint, as this should launch Page towards big things going forward. Jay needs to get his hands up and protect himself from chairshots, which was a concern here, but other than that, this was incredible.

Dalton Castle and The Boys were shown backstage. The boys were playing with Okada money, which made Castle angry. He calmed down and said he knows the boys love NJPW. Castle said he loves Okada and NJPW. He said he loves dropping people on their heads more. Castle then ate the Okada money and arched his brow.

Dalton Castle made an elaborate entrance with many boys.

(5) IWGP World Hvt. champion Kazuchika Okada vs. Dalton Castle (w/The Boys) in a Non-Title match. The fans chanted back and forth for both men before the bell rang. Okada smiled and didn’t seem to know what to do with Castle. They ended up shaking hands before going at it. Okada went for the rainmaker early, but Castle ducked it. Okada charged at Castle and fell backwards when Castle hit his pose. That was pretty funny. The Boys seemed smitten by Okada and they fanned him after he hit some offense on Castle. Castle tried to take advantage of the distraction, but Okada nailed him with a clothesline on the apron. Okada went up top, but Castle crotched him and hit a big knee strike and Okada collapsed to the mat. The fans chanted back and forth for both men.

Castle then went to work on Okada back inside the ring. Okada fired back and went for a charge in the corner. Castle got out of the way and they went back and forth until Okada hit his signature dropkick in the corner. Castle fired back and used the ropes to hit swinging head scissors takedown. Castle then hit a big dive through the ropes and the fans fired up behind Castle. Castle hit a pair of big suplexes. They went back and forth and Castle hit a dead lift German for a near fall! Castle had Okada in his clutches. Okada went to the ropes, but The Boys grabbed his hands and Okada dragged them back into the ring. Okada hit the air raid crash and yelled at the boys. He told them to fan Castle before he dropped an elbow on him.

Okada hit the rainmaker pose with the boys and the fans applauded. Castle suddenly popped up and hit the bang-a-rang, but Okada rolled to the floor! WOW! Castle went to the floor to break the count and tossed Okada back into the ring. Castle hit another unique suplex variation that almost looked like a uranagi for a 2 count. Castle went for the bang-a-rang again, but Okada grabbed the ropes. Okada caught Castle with the too awesome dropkick a short time later. He went for the rainmaker, but Castle ducked it. He went for the bang-a-rang, but Okada countered it and hit a tombstone. Okada signaled for the rainmaker and hit it. Okada made the cover and it was good for the win.

WINNER: Kazuchika Okada

Star rating: (***1/2) – There was a little too much comedy with The Boys, but this is the kind of match that will elevate a ROH talent. I actually believed Castle had a chance to win and this felt more like a match than an exhibition, which is a welcome departure from some of the other NJPW top guy vs. rising ROH talent matches the company has done in the past.

They went to a video package for Bobby Fish defending the ROH World TV Title against Mark Briscoe.

(6) ROH TV champion Bobby Fish vs. IWGP Hvt. Tag Team champion Mark Briscoe. Mark is coming into this match on a roll with victories over A.C.H. and Roderick Strong. Fish got the Fish hook during the early going, but Mark was right next to the ropes. Fish got the upper hand and went after Mark’s leg with a dragon screw. Mark fired back and sent Fish to the floor He went for a dive, but Fish got out of the way. Mark caught himself and they went back and forth until Mark hit a diving blockbuster off the apron to the floor. Mark hit the Cactus elbow to the floor and the fans fired up.

Mark sold his back after hitting the move. Mark went for a suplex and barely got Fish over, as he sold his back. Fish fired back with a dragon screw. Fish went on the attack and targeted the legs and back of Mark. Mark finally blocked a suplex and hit a Pele kick. Mark hit a big suplex a short time later. He hit a brainbuster, but Fish managed to kick out at 2. Briscoe hit a DVD and went up top. He went for a froggy-bow, but Fish got his knees up. Fish got a knee bar a short time later, but Mark managed to get to the ropes. Mark went for the froggy-bow again a short time later and connected, but Fish kicked out at the last second.

They battled up top, but Fish slipped under Mark and kicked his legs out from under him. Fish hit an exploder into the turnbuckles and hit a falcon arrow and it was good for the win! Both men shook hands after the match.

WINNER: Bobby Fish to retain the ROH TV Title.

Star rating: (***1/2) – This was a really good match. Mark really sold his leg and back well throughout the match and got a believable near fall late. The way Fish was working over Mark’s legs and back, I figured this would end by submission, but I was fine with the falcon arrow.

They went to a video package for the ROH World Tag Team Championship in the match.

(7) ROH World Tag Team champions The Addiction (Frankie Kazarian & Christopher Daniels) vs. IWGP IC Champion & CMLL Liga Elite Champion Michael Elgin & Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. L.I.J. (Tetsuya Naito & EVIL) in a Three-Way match. Matt Taven came in on commentary. How long until they send him to CMLL?

Naito teased a five to the floor on Daniels and hit his pose. Daniels ran into the ring and tried to hit an elbow, but Naito got out of the way. Naito continued to outsmart the champions until he tagged in EVIL. Elgin tagged in a short time later and the fans chanted Big Mike. Daniels tried to break up a vertical suplex on Kazarian. He kicked Elgin, but he held onto the suplex. Daniels finally broke it up and The Addiction went for a double suplex, but Elgin countered it into one of his own. Tanahashi tagged in and avoided a double team attempt as Kazarian ran right into Daniels. Tanahashi then went to work on Kazarian.

Naito and EVIL distracted Tanahashi on the apron, which allowed Kazarian to attack him from behind. Daniels and Kazarian then went to work on Tanahashi with a series of double team maneuvers. Naito tagged himself in and the fans fired up for his signature corner dropkick on Tanahashi. Naito teased trying to make peace between EVIL and The Addiction, but then he sucker punched Daniels.

Tanahashi finally fired back and tagged in Elgin, who hit a big belly-to-belly on Kazarian. Elgin hit a double German on The Addiction at one point to fire up the crowd. He then hit a double overhead throw on L.I.J. before hitting Naito’s pose and the fans applauded. Everyone ended up going at it on the floor and Elgin hit a big flip dive that fired up the crowd huge! WOW! The pace picked up and Tanahashi eventually hit a twisting neck breaker on EVIL. He then gave EVIL to Elgin, who was on the turnbuckles for a powerslam.

Elgin then slammed Tanahashi onto EVIL, but the pin got broken up. The fans fired up with Elgin and Tanahashi in control. Kamaitachi ran down to the ring and distracted the ref. Kazarian accidentally got hit by Daniels during the confusion. EVIL hit a DVD into a spinebuster on Tanahashi, but he kicked out at the last second!

Tanahashi hit a slingblade on EVIL. He went up top, but Daniels made a blind tag. Tanahashi hit the high fly flow, but Daniels rolled on top of Tanahashi with a bridging double pin!

WINNERS: Frankie Kazarian & Christopher Daniels to retain the ROH World Tag Team Titles

Star rating: (***1/2) – This was a really good high-octane dose of tag team wrestling. They put together some great sequences leading into the finish. I really liked the finish that they put together for this one, as Daniels and Kazarian got the cheap win and Tanahashi was cheated out of winning the ROH World Tag Team Titles. I wasn’t a fan of Taven’s commentary as it distracted from the match.

A video package for Lethal vs. Cole aired.

(8) ROH World champion Jay Lethal vs. Adam Cole. Lethal has held the ROH World Title over 420 days. Lethal came to the ring alone. Both men went face-to-face and Lethal played with Cole’s hair. Cole reached into his tights and pulled out Lethal’s hair. Lethal fired up and they began trading blows. I’m surprised this didn’t start with Lethal just going right after Cole. There was a ton of security surrounding the ring to prevent interference. Kelly said there was also security backstage to prevent people from coming out to interfere.

Lethal kept his anger in check and went after Cole on the floor a short time later. He hit some big chops to Lethal’s chest. Lethal fired back on the floor and went looking under the ring for something. He finally got a table and set up near the apron. They went back and forth on the floor and Lethal caught Cole with a cutter. The fans fired up and chanted for Lethal. Lethal set Cole up on the table and went up top. He went for hail to the king, but Cole got out of the way and Lethal went flying through the table. Cole tossed Lethal into the ringpost.

Lethal came up bleeding from the back and the head, which could have been from going through the table. Cole worked over Lethal inside the ring for a long period of time. The fans did the standard back and forth chant for both men. Lethal hit a DVD and then an inside out dropkick to send Cole to the floor. Lethal went for a series of dives to the floor. The fans fired up after he hit two. Lethal glared and hit two more dives to the floor. The fans fired up and Lethal set up for a fifth dive and connected. Lethal went for yet another dive, but Cole side-stepped it and Lethal went flying into the guardrail. WOW!

Cole pie-faced Lethal several times inside the ring and Lethal began to fire up. They began trading blows again. Cole spit at Lethal, who fired back with some big forearms. Cole fired back and decked Lethal with a big kick for a 2 count. Cole set up for a superkick, but Lethal avoided it and decked him with a big lariat. Lethal set up for the Lethal injection, but Cole blocked it. The ref got distracted and Lethal went for it again, but Cole hit a low blow and then a neck breaker over his knee. Lethal managed to get his foot on the bottom rope at the last second! Cole faked out Lethal and hit a superkick to his leg. Lethal then surprised Cole with an inside cradle when he went for a figure 4.

They went back and forth and Cole jumped into a guillotine. Kelly pointed out that he was using one of O’Reilly’s moves after Cole promised he would never get a title shot. Lethal ended up getting out of it and hitting the Lethal combination and both men were down. Lethal finally rolled over on top of Cole and got a 2 count. That was one hell of a counter out of the guillotine. Lethal held on and hit three belly-to-back suplexes. He went up top and hit hail to the king for a 2 count. They went back and forth and Lethal hit a big jumping kick, but Cole fired right back with a superkick and both men were down!

Cole set up for the panama sunrise, but Lethal blocked it and hit a cutter! He went for the Lethal injection, but Cole hit a superkick to the back of his head! Cole then hit the panama sunrise. He followed up with another neck breaker over knee, but Jay kicked out! OMG! Cole called Lethal a bitch and slapped him across the head. He continued to taunt Lethal and spit in his face. Lethal ducked a superkick and hit the Lethal injection! He made the cover, but COLE KICKED OUT! MY GOD! The fans went nuts and chanted this is awesome.

Cole flipped off Lethal and then ducked a superkick. Cole rolled him up for a near fall. He then hit a third neck breaker over his knee and a shining wizard. Cole hit a fourth neck breaker over his knee for the win! WOW! What a match.

Kelly and Nigel sold shock as Cole was crowned the two time ROH World Champion.

Winner: Adam Cole to become the new ROH World Champion.

Star rating: (****1/2) – Amazing championship bout. The intensity was lacking a little during the early going as Lethal was trying to not let his emotions get the better of him, but then both men really turned things up and set the crowd on fire with some fantastic back and forth action.

Afterward, Cary Silkin got into the ring and Cole grabbed the belt from him and blew him a kiss. Silkin waved Cole away and left the ring. Cole was announced as the winner, but he turned around into a raging Kyle O’Reilly, who wiped him out with a HUGE clothesline. O’Reilly hit a brainbuster and kneeled over Cole with the ROH World Title held high.

The show closed with an ad for All-Star Extravaganza VI live on PPV on September 30.

Overall Score: (8.5) – This was one of ROH’s best cable PPV offerings I can recall off the top of my head. Every match connected from top to bottom outside of the six man tag. Page-Jay Briscoe and Cole-Lethal are both must-see matches. From a production standpoint, this was a huge improvement over the last string of ROH PPVs that were plagued by the crowd noise being muted. That wasn’t the case here, as the crowd was into just about anything. Thumbs up effort all-around from the crew, but the key will be in how they follow-up with All Star Extravaganza in September and then Final Battle in December.

This show is still available for replay on PPV. You can also purchase it on VOD at ROHWrestling.com for 50 percent off this weekend with a ringside membership or 25 percent off with a general account.

Contact Sean via email at PWTorchSean@Gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @SeanRadican.

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