SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
ROH MASTERS OF THE CRAFT
APRIL 15, 2018
COLUMBUS, OHIO AT EXPRESS LIVE
STREAMed LIVE FOR HONORCLUB
REPORT BY URSIN DEROCHE, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Ian Riccaboni & B.J. Whitmer
(1) Silas Young (c) vs. Cheeseburger – ROH TV Title Match
Cheese is on offense straight out of the gate with a dropkick sending Silas into the corner and then a series of stomps. Silas tries to fight back but Cheese takes him to the outside for a series of chops. Silas gets Cheese back into the ring but Cheese takes it back outside and hits Silas with a high cross and a flying stomp off the apron. Back in the ring Silas clotheslines Cheese, lays in some chops, and then locks in a chinlock. Cheese blocks a suplex as he attempts to fight back. Dueling suplex attempts are met by blocks. Cheese eventually wins the suplex battle. Springboard senton gets Cheese two. The Shotei palm strike gets Cheese another 2 count. Front Face DDT by Cheese as he goes for a cover but Silas gets his foot on the bottom rope. They trade blows before Silas gets a crucifix pin for the 3 count and a successful title defense.
WINNER: Silas Young
Ursin’s Analysis: I’m a fan of Cheeseburger but I don’t like when he’s used in this manner. It’s completely unbelievable that he would have any chance against Silas Young. I expected a squash. I really didn’t think Cheeseburger would get this much offense in. (*)
Post-Match: Bully Ray comes down to the ring and cuts a promo on cheese. Similar to his Supercard of Honor promo but a truncated version. He calls Cheese, “A piece of crap” and says, “You never paid your dues in the wrestling biz” but now Bully says Cheeseburger is going to pay his dues to Bully. Cheeseburger gets on the mic and says, “You’re not only a Bully but you’re an asshole.”
Bully Ray chokeslam to Cheese. Flip makes the save but both guys take a double clothesline from Bully Ray. Bully then flips off the crowd. On his way out he curses at some fans in the front row.
Ursin’s Analysis: Seems like they were trying a little too hard with this.
(Caprice out and Mandy Leon in on commentary for the next match)
(2) Deonna Purazzo & Tenille Dashwood & WOH Champion Sumi Sakai vs. Jenny Rose & Madison Rayne & Brandi Rhodes w/Bernard The Business Bear.
Tenille starts off with Madison. Series of standing switches then trading shoulder tackles. Schoolgirl gets 2 for Tenille. They tag out and its Jenny Rose in with Sumi. Sumi gets an inside cradle for 2. Sumi tags in Deonna and Jenny tags in Brandi. Deonna goes for a move but Bernard grabs her leg. Brandi hits a dropkick and some chops. Really sloppy looking slingblade by Brandi who tags in Madison. Madison with a very sloppy boot to the head. Jenny Rose tagged in for her team with a snap suplex that gets two. Brandi back in with a Facebuster for 2. Tenille kicks Bernard down. Deonna hits a cannonball off the apron. Sumi flies and takes out everyone then gets into the ring with Brandi and hits her rolling cutter finisher for the pin.
WINNER: Sumi & Purazzo & Dashwood.
Ursin’s Analysis: Sloppy and all over the place. But quick. (*)
Post-Match: Deonna calls out Kelly Klein who appears on the stage. Kelly says she will beat Deonna and Deonna calls Kelly a bitch. This was terrible mic work as both women were interrupting each other.
Mandy Leon out and Caprice back in on commentary.
(3) So Cal Uncensored (w/Shane Taylor) vs. The Young Bucks (w/Flip Gordon, Hangman Page)
Nice hometown pop for Shane Taylor who grew up a couple hours north of Columbus in Cleveland. Nice pop for Flip as a “FLIP” chant breaks out and then a huge pop for The Young Bucks as a “THE ELITE” chant breaks out. Heels powder outside the ring during the babyface entrance and go over the gameplan. Daniels starts with Flip. Daniels facelock then shoulder tackle then a spot where Flip ducks multiple clotheslines with his handspring move. Flip into a handstand then lands a dropkick. Tag outs to Page and Kaz who trade fists and then both collapse. Young Bucks hit the ring with their double team offense. Matt ends up in the ring with SHane who take out both Bucks. Shane hits a fall away slam to Flip. SPOT OF THE NIGHT WATCH: Everyone gets in the ring and triangle chokes each other forming a long line of bodies. No room left in the ring for Page to get in on the action so he grabs the last person in the line (Shane) by the legs and turns the entire line over into a liontamer! Page backdrop to Daniels. Now Flip is in with The Fallen Angel. Shane takes Flip out and hits the leg drop on the apron. Looked fantastic! Kaz is now in the ring with Flip. Snap Suplex only gets 1. Shane runs in with a leg drop to Flip. Shane elbows Flip and he bumps hard in the ring for it. Shane hits a bodyslam and then we get lots of combined offense from the So Cal team. Splash by Shane gets a 2 count. Kaz in the ring with Flip but Daniels tosses Flip out of the ring. Flip outside hits a springboard moonsault off the guardrail and takes out So Cal. Kaz gets Flip back in the ring in a half crab. Page in with a dropkick to Daniels and a standing moonsault for 2. Page hits a Shooting Star press on Shane. Slingshot Cutter to Page by Kaz and both men are down. Bucks in with Scorpio and Daniels for a sequence of too quick to call spots where The Bucks get a lot of their stuff in. Page hits the Buckshot Lariat. Daniels lands Angel”s Wings. But the Bucks Superkick everyone! Page misses a moonsault and everyone misses a series of top rope moves!!! Page hits a powerbomb on Shane. Bucks hit multiple superkicks and take everyone out again and then it’s time for Rite of Passage Super Meltzer Driver to Daniels for the win.
WINNERS: Young Bucks.
Ursin’s Analysis: Great stuff from start to finish. Everyone looked really good. The match of the night and probably what most fans paid for. They got their moneys worth. (****)
(4) The Briscoe Brothers (c) vs. “The Besties In The World” Mat Fitchett & Davey Vega – ROH World Tag Team Title Match
We’re told by the commentary team that the opponents for the Briscoes won a #1 contender match eearlier in the night that was taped and would be shown on TV at a later date (????) Briscoes double attack at the bell and the squash ends via submission.
(5) Jay Lethal vs. Jonathan Gresham
They trade holds at the beginning. Gresham with a cradle but Lethal slides out. Gresham with a crucifix for 2. Gresham with a hammer lock goes for a pin and gets 2. Basement dropkick by Lethal. They trade chops and forearms. Lethal dropkick to the knee and Gresham goes outside. Lethal goes to work on the knees. A pin attempt gets 1. Gresham fights back and works Lethal’s arm. Both fight for a suplex but Gresham goes back to the arm. Lethal gets Gresham up in a suplex but both men tumble over the top rope and out to the floor. They trade chops and blows on the outside. Back in the ring a Gresham enzuigiri and German suplex gets 2. Lethal Combination gets 2. Lethal Injection misses. Gresham fights to lock in the Octopus Hold. Lethal slips out of it and locks in a Figure Four. Gresham reverses into an armbar. Lethal makes it to the ropes. They go back to trading blows. Gresham hits a snap German. Lethal tries the Lethal Injection but falls. Gresham goes for a pin but Lethal rolls through for a pin of his own and the 3 count.
WINNER: Jay Lethal
Post-Match: Lethal cuts a promo putting over his and Gresham’s ring work. Gresham challenges Lethal to another match and Lethal accepts with a handshake.
Ursin’s Analysis: Fine technical match but lacked the super strong selling a match like this needs to really get over (***)
(6) Matt Taven vs. Cody – First Blood Match
Cody gets pops and “CODY” chants which is strange since he was the biggest heel ever in New Orleans just one week ago. Tells me the fans really don’t care about Matt Taven. TKO Ryan is at ringside. Cody punches him and busts him open with “The Ring of Honor.” Codu hits a disaster kick on Taven. Taven bails as Cody tries to call him back into the ring. Taven back in for Cody to hit a release suplex and toss him outside where Cody goes to wrok draggin Taven’s face along the guardrail to try and draw blood. Cody then throws Taven through the guardrail. Taven gets hold of the “Ring of Honor” and jacks Cody with it and takes control. Cody fights back and hits a float over powerslam. Cody gets a chair but Taven hits Cody with a roll of quarters. They then begin a series of spots where they throw the chair at each other’s head. Taven sets up a table in the ring. Cody tries a top rope move but Taven dodges and Cody goes through the table. Taven breaks off a piece of the table. Cody hits a jawbreaker. Both are down. Vinny Marseglia appears…with an axe. Yes, an axe. Taven gets the axe and tries to cut Cody with it but Brandi low blows Taven, grabs the axe, and chases Vinny out of the building. Cody hits Cross Rhodes on Taven’s NWA World Historic Welterweight Championship belt…but Cody’s hand is cut open.
WINNER: Matt Taven
Ursin’s Analysis: Really bad (DUD)
(7) ROH World Champion Dalton Castle vs. Beer City Bruiser vs. Marty Scurll vs. Punishment Martinez.
In what I can only describe as one of the most overly confusing stipulations in pro wrestling history, this is single elimination. Whomever wins is guaranteed a title shot. Whomever is pinned last can never get a title shot as long as Dalton Castle is the champion. If you pin Dalton Castle you don’t win the belt. If someone pins Dalton Castle but then gets pinned themselves, they get nothing. It’s like the Pandora’s Box of wrestling stips.
All the guys jump Dalton. Marty and Bruiser go after Martinez. Marty and Castle are left in the ring to trade blows. Bruiser runs in with a double clothesline. Now it’s Martinez and Bruiser’s turn in the ring to trade punches. Martinez with a spinning heel kick that takes out Bruiser. Dalton and Scurll work together to beat up Martinez then work together to take it to Bruiser.Marty cradles Castle for 2. Martinez climbs to the top rope …with absolutely no one around him…??? Castle runs over and knees him. Marty is in the ring chopping away at Bruiser then hits him with a tornado DDT. Castle hits a deadlift German on Bruiser. Martinez hits a spinning heel kick to Castle from the top rope. Bruiser hits a top rope splash to Castle for 2. Martinez powerbomb to Bruiser and Castle. Scurll hits a brainbuster on Martinez. Brian Milonas enters the ring and we go through a segment where he taunts Dalton and The Boys. Everyone ends up doing moves to each other for the big car crash pileup spot outside the ring. Martinez hits the South of Heaven chokelsam to Bruiser. Beer City Bruiser is eliminated. Martinez curbstomp to Scurll who rolls out of the ring. Martinez Psychodriver to Dalton gets 2. Dalton is up and hits the Bangarang to Martinez for 3. Punishment Martinez is eliminated. Only Castle and Scurll are left. Scurll does the finger break spot getting “YOU SICK FUCK” chants from the crowd. Castle goes for Bangarang but Marty rreverses it into a pin for 3.
WINNER: Marty Scurll
Ursin’s Analysis: Wrestlers running around lost, overbooked spot in the middle of an already confusing match. The booking of this show was a problem. (**)
FINAL THOUGHTS: This show was not booked well and suffered because of that. However, definitely find the time to check out the Young Bucks match!