ROH on HDNet – Episode 073 – 13th September 2010
So the Ring Of Honor landscape inexorably altered over the weekend with the crowning of a new ROH World Champion, the departure of the former title holder and the emergence of Wrestling’s Greatest Tag Team. Tonight in HDNet-land we have another Aries/Delirious grudge match to tide us over. Lets head to the former ECW Arena in Philadelphia, PA. Mike Hogewood and Dave Prazak call it
The show opens with Austin Aries recruiting Grizzly Redwood to help him out in the Lumberjack Match, since he’s the only ‘professional’ lumberjack on the ROH roster. Grizz declines since it’s against the ‘Lumberjack code’…so A-Double beats him up.
Rhett Titus vs Christopher Daniels
This is a big match for Titus as he gets a chance to test his skills and prove himself against one of the best wrestlers of recent years. Daniels, meanwhile, comes into this (technically) off the back of a victory over Rhett’s manager Austin Aries at Glory By Honor. Can Rhettski pull of a major upset and get some revenge for his mentor in so doing?
Titus actually manages to hold his own in an exchange of holds, much to the frustration of the Fallen Angel. He shows that anger by stomping Rhett’s FACE into the canvas. He tries to go to the top rope but Titus gets such ELEVATION on his standing dropkick that he’s able to rattle Daniels’ jaw and knock him all the way out of the ring. Once he’s back in Titus gets 2 with a swinging neckbreaker. Sleeper hold applied…but that’s the mistake Daniels has been waiting for. He counters Rhett straight into the running STO. Angel’s Wings blocked…so Fallen Angel goes for a flying headscissors and nearly kills himself in the process. Koji Clutch wins it for Daniels…but the referee doesn’t see the tap as Austin Aries is on the apron. Titus nearly wins with a Rydien Bomb…then Daniels blocks the Muff Driver into the urinage slam. BME wins it again at 07:34
Rating – ** – Had there been a better finish to this match we could have been talking 3* on it. The bulk of the match did an excellent job of making Titus look good, it’s just a shame the ending had to be so sloppy and rushed. Decent start to the show though.
Josh Raymond/Christin Able vs Ricky Reyes/Aiden Chambers
The problem here, as I see it anyway, is that ROH want to get Raymond and Able over as credible heels, and credible support acts to new World Champion Roderick Strong. However, they are never going to be more hated by an ROH crowd than Ricky Reyes who never fails to irritate and/or bore the live Ring Of Honor audiences. Nevertheless, a victory is a must here for the House Of Truth.
Chambers botches an Irish whip spot in the first 30 seconds…that can’t be good. He’s quickly put on the mat with the quebrada/spinebuster combo from the HOT. He does manage to roll through both opponents and get the hot tag to former ROH Tag Champion Ricky Reyes. He nearly puts Raymond with an Orange Crush…and as predicted the fans are loudly cheering for House Of Truth now. They win with that elevated facecrusher move at 02:47. That move really needs a name…
Rating – DUD – Since I want to say something nice, I’ll focus on the positive and say that the right team won, and in an appropriately brief match-time. Still doesn’t mean I wanted to see it or that this had any place taking up five minutes of television time.
After commercials ROH on HDNet re-runs the intermission footage from Glory By Honor 9, featuring Jim Cornette’s interview with Davey Richards. If you missed it – he’s not retiring after Final Battle.
American Wolves vs Super Smash Bros.
It’s a while since we’ve seen the SSB’s in ROH. Player Uno spent some time on the shelf through injury, but they made their return at these HDNet tapings. Their Tag Wars 2010 qualification bout with the Bravado Brothers was somewhat cruelly left on the cutting room floor, but this is a real chance to impress against former ROH Tag Champions. Bearing in mind Uno and Dos beat another set of former champions (Kevin Steen and El Generico) last summer, it’s not that unfeasible that they could win…
Uno starts with Eddie, looking a little slimmer than he did during his last ROH outing. STEREO SUICIDE DIVES by the Smash Bros. leaving the Wolves on their backs and very much on the back foot in the early going. Davey is put down for a nearfall after a back suplex/springboard DDT combo. He then punts Player Dos in the chest before diving into a missile dropkick on Uno. Credit to the SSB’s though, they hit back with a moonsault/fist drop combo on Edwards. The TV Champion retaliates by putting a double stomp through Uno’s spine for 2. P1 tries to trade strikes with Richards and is promptly mauled in the corner. But Richards goes for a running elbow and gets CAUGHT in a flatliner. Impressive strength from the masked Smash Brother there. Dos gets the tag and matrixes into a DOUBLE PELE KICK on both Wolves. Dragon suplex on Richards gets 2. MOONSAULT OFF THE APRON FROM UNO TO EDWARDS! He then COUNTERS Davey’s Handspring Enzi into a German suplex for 2. GORY SPECIAL BLOCKBUSTER GETS 2! Eddie flies in with the CLIMBING WIZARD to save his partner. Doi 555 then a running enzi kick on Dos. Flying headscissors countered TWICE into the Achilles Lock but P2 escapes. DOUBLE ALARM CLOCK! SUPERKICK GERMAN SUPLEX! UNO SAVES! Uno saves his partner from the Doomsday Blockbuster too and Dos drops Davey with a reverse rana. HALF NELSON SUPLEX from Uno gets 2. Dos misses the Five Star Frog Splash and is hit with a powerbomb/lungblower combo from the Wolves. ACHILLES LOCK! Finally Player Dos taps out at 10:24
Rating – **** – I’m DEFINITELY over-rating this since it was nothing more than a spot-fest, but I wanted a rating to reflect what a star-making performance that should have been for the Smash Bros. They are the second coming of Steen and Generico, and since those two aren’t a team anymore, there should be a spot for them – but of course it wasn’t to be. I feel like these two teams could have an even better match if you gave them more time, but given ten minutes to go out and throw spots around this was pretty much as good as it could be. Great effort by all concerned.
Austin Aries vs Delirious – Lumberjack Match
This match was technically scheduled for a few weeks ago, but Aries managed to get out of it by faking an illness. That night he managed to help his client Kenny King beat Delirious after blowing pipe smoke in the Lizard Man’s face. With a hoard of people at ringside to ensure Aries can’t pull any funny business, will tonight be Delirious’ night to get revenge for the injuries he’s suffered, and the vile harassment of Daizee Haze?
The Lumberjacks are mostly jobbers, but The Embassy are there, as are DCFC, Bobby Dempsey, Skullkrusher and even Slyk Wagner Brown who worked a few ROH shows years ago. Delirious is in the Red Poison attire this evening. He tries to go after Austin’s throat from the bell, planting chops right across that body part in the first minute. Aries comes back like a street-fighter with lots of punches and kicks. Delirious tries to apply the Cobra Stretch so Aries bails…and is surrounded by the heel lumberjacks who let him catch his breath before returning. He then throws Delirious out…whereupon all the babyface lumberjacks let him have a rest too. Aries goes on offence for the next few minutes, pausing only to wonder whether he has rabies from an errant bite by Delirious. HEAT SEEKING MISSILE connects with Delirious and a few lumberjacks as well. Back in the ring he nails the IED just as Delirious starts thinking about the Panic Attack. Swinging neckbreaker from the lizard man instead, which leaves both men down. Aries throws him out of the ring again…and thinks about the Randy Savage Axehandle only for Grizzly Redwood to throw him back inside. Aries isn’t happy and argues with Grizz…allowing Delirious to hit a torpedo headbutt to the chest. Redwood then throws A-Double back in the ring when he tries to leave. Cobra Clutch Suplex from Delirious, followed by a Panic Attack. SUICIDE FLIP TO THE FLOOR! All the lumberjacks start fighting each other…and in comes Rhett Titus for a big knee drop. Aries hits a THROATBREAKER to win at 11:09
Rating – ** – There were some entertaining aspects of this main event, but too much was boring and slow-paced. This whole feud has really seen Aries in auto-pilot mode (workrate wise at least) and he was noticeably working within himself here. This feud needs to conclude quickly
NEXT WEEK – It’s Aries vs Delirious one more time – and it’ll be a Steel Cage Match.
Tape Rating – *** – There was enough good wrestling on this episode to justify a 3* rating. Wolves/Smash Bros. will rightly get most of the plaudits, but the opening and closing matches weren’t bad either. Throw in the Davey Richards interview (which, although technically a re-run, won’t have been seen by those that didn’t order the iPPV) and a morale-boosting win for the House Of Truth too and this was a fun little show. Wolves/SSB is on Volume 8 of the Best Of ROH on HDNet DVD series if you want to check it out.