ROH on HDNET 2/15/2010

ROH on HDNet – Episode 047 – 15th February 2010

Since it’s taped in advance I’m not sure how much the results of the 8th Anniversary Show (which took place two days prior to the broadcast of this episode) will be acknowledged here. However, since most of the last few weeks of TV have been dedicated to the build up of the 8YA event, tonight should mark a bit of a reset of sorts. Coming out of the big New York event proceedings, on HDNet at least, now turn towards the formation of a TV Title in the coming weeks. Mike Hogewood and Dave Prazak on commentary from The Arena

Erick Stevens and Necro Butcher discuss their feud in surprisingly eloquent and effective promos. Both explained their points of view and actually made me interested in seeing them wrestle (which is no small feat – these are two of my least favourite guys in ROH now).

In their studio, DP and Hog break the news that Tyler Black has been crowned the World Champion. No footage as yet but reacting quickly enough to get even the briefest of clips in is a good effort

Joey Ryan/Erick Stevens vs Necro Butcher/Eddie Kingston
Although this was taped beforehand, this now serves as a rematch the violent encounter we saw between these two teams in New York on Saturday. On that night it was Necro scoring the win by choking out Joey Ryan with a plastic bag – although The Embassy got the last laugh by attacking Necro and his mentor Gypsy Joe.

The babyface team quickly clear the ring and willingly get into a big brawl on the floor. Necro and Stevens in particular don’t waste any time in tearing strips off each other. Butcher pulls out the plastic bag again and goes after Ryan…but unlike New York this isn’t a No Rules Match so the official has to get involved. Instead Necro heaves Joey into the front row. Meanwhile Prince Nana distracts Eddie, allowing Stevens to shove him forcefully into the guardrail. Nearly five minutes in and a semblance of tag team normality is instated – with The Embassy working to isolate Kingston from his partner. After a couple of non-descript minutes with that King manages to drop Ryan with a belly to belly suplex then get a hot tag to Butcher. With the face team back in the ascendancy, once again the fight goes to the floor. Ernesto Osiris takes a swing at Necro with a chair but gets caught. Necro seizes the chair…and since he has a weapon The Embassy refuse to get back into the ring. They leave ringside giving Kingston and Necro a tainted count-out win at 10:23

Rating – * – The first few minutes when they were on the outside were really good – fought at a brisk pace with lots of chaotic action going on at the same time – and it sort of reminded me of their match from New York over the weekend. However, as soon as it became a regular tag match it got progressively worse, inexorably dull…and that finish was horrendous. The ring time was similar, but I can’t put into words how much longer this one felt than the 8YA clash

Kyle Durden asks Kevin Steen for his thoughts on his Pick 6 Series Match with Delirious, as well as the rapidly escalating situation with El Generico. Steen doesn’t to speak his name or have anyone say it in his presence ever again. He praises Steve Corino for his guidance in recent months…and leaves saying he’s going to do ‘horrible’ things to another masked wrestler tonight

Rasche Brown vs Christian Moreno
No idea if that’s how you spell the jobber’s name, and I don’t care. If this lasts more than 2 minutes I’ll be totally shocked. Skullkrusher has been murderising jobbers since he arrived on HDNet, and you’d expect another body to be laying in his wake within a matter of seconds.

Moreno looks as generic and bland as it gets in indy wrestling. Lousy physique, horrible haircut, ghostly pale, cheap ring attire, looks like he’s wrestling in sneakers too. Get this guy off my TV. Shane Hagadorn is out scouting Rasche just as Prince Nana was in his last match. Burning Hammer wins it for Skullkrusher in 00:29

Rating – N/A – Next time they throw Skullkrusher into a 1-minute squash I’m giving it a DUD rating. He’s been doing it for weeks and I’m officially bored of it now. I’ve given the last two the benefit of the doubt because the presence of Prince Nana and Shane Hagadorn as ‘scouts’ for his talent has meant that the squash has progressed an angle. However, it’s time to move his ROH career forward and find something meaningful for him to do.
NEXT WEEK – The Briscoes defend the ROH Tag Titles against the Young Bucks

Next there’s a video package highlighting the reformation of the Kings Of Wrestling. Good use of old ROH footage from 2006 when the KOW were last in the promotion. Hero and Claudio look SO different now.

Back from commercials with Jim Cornette. He hypes the Wrestlemania weekend shows in Phoenix, then ROH’s next iPPV in April. And his top announcement is the formation of the ROH TV Title – with a tournament starting in just three weeks time to crown the first ever ROH Television Champion.

Up In Smoke vs Sonjay Dutt/Andy Ridge
There’s a whole lot of enhancement talent in the ring here. Up In Smoke are supposedly back and ‘better than ever’ now, which was apparently showcased when they withstood six minutes of non-stop punishment from the Briscoes before succumbing to a comprehensive defeat. No idea why Dutt and Right Leg are teaming together though. Prazak and Hog don’t offer one…

Dutt says he’s teaming with Andy Ridge to prove he’s so good (‘swagtastic’) that he can pick anybody, team with them and take them to the top. Hog says he has more swagger than Sonjay. Ridge looks totally lost so quickly tags out to Sonjay…who is promptly double teamed by Cheech and Cloudy. Flying elbow and pointless prancing/mincing around brings Dutt back into things. He and Right Leg make it to the same page, using multiple tags to isolate Cheech. Eventually Ridge accidentally knocks head with his own partner…and Cloudy capitalises with an Ace Crusher on Dutt for 2. Ridge accidentally kicks Sonjay next, leaving himself in position for the 619 Dropkick combo. CATAPULT somersault senton wins it for Up In Smoke at 05:16

Rating – DUD – Now I understand why Sonjay was ditched from the roster. That ‘swagger’ gimmick is beyond awful. This whole match was dead-air and wasted time that would have been better served doing ANYTHING else.

Sonjay continues chattering about swagger and puts the Camel Clutch on Andy after the match.

The Briscoes call themselves the greatest tag team in ROH history (Mark mentions swagger as well. WTF is with that??) and promise to avenge the defeat the Bucks scored over them at Glory By Honor 8

Kevin Steen vs Delirious – Pick 6 Series Match
Both these guys are now in the Pick 6 (Delirious joined Steen by defeating Kenny King at the 8YA) so this will be Delirious challenging for Steen’s higher ranking. Mr Wrestling has publicly said he ditched the team with Generico to focus on his own career and aspirations to be World Champion – so to do that he needs to beat another masked wrestler here.

Kevin Steen’s entrance music is the best thing about this episode thus far. Delirious does his usual freaking out gimmick…and nearly walks into the Package Piledriver. He blocks it, so Steen goes for the Sharpshooter instead. Having seen both his finisher’s blocked in the first 90 seconds Kevin leaves the ring and exchanges pleasantries with the front row fans. It’s a stalling tactic, as he continually slides in and out of the ring to break the count and avoid locking up with the lizard man. Delirious eventually does catch him, blocks that apron powerbomb spot Steen always does then whips the Canadian to the crash barriers. Mr Wrestling attacks the arm, wrapping it around the ringpost before pausing again to shout at more fans and the cameraman. The injury instantly impacts Delirious’ ability to take the fight to Steen – with Kevin then capturing him for a HAMMERLOCK Canadian Legsweep. He hoists him up again in a shoulderbreaker and scores the first significant nearfall of the match. The arm is grabbed again, Steen looking to use it to lift Delirious into a suplex…but Delirious somewhat inexplicably counters by lifting his much bigger opponent into a vertical suplex USING aforementioned injured appendage. SUICIDE FLIP levels Steen as he looks to leave the ring again. No-one home for Shadows Over Hell, but Delirious uses his bad arm again to hit a DDT instead. And after working the arm all match Steen then applies the Sharpshooter. Package Piledriver so Steen drops Delirious again with an armbar DDT. He goes for the Steen-ton but flip into the knees of his opponent. Cobra Clutch Suplex gets 2 for Delirious…and with Steen’s prospects in the match looking bleak out comes Steve Corino. The ensuing distraction allows Kevin to hit Delirious low. Cannonball misses anyway…Panic Attack by Delirious. Shadows Over Hell COUNTERED TO THE CRIPPLER CROSSFACE! Delirious has to tap at 13:55

Rating – ** – Most of that was painfully slow with Steen looking less like a deranged, merciless killing machine out there…and more like a cheap Adam Pearce tribute act. Delirious did little better – his selling of the arm was atrocious. Normally I don’t complain about things like this…but when they make Steen working the arm the FOCAL POINT of the whole match, only to have Delirious pop up seconds later and use to give a much bigger guy suplexes and DDT’s and cobra clutches…it’s just not realistic. In truth, had Steen not used the Crippler Crossface (i.e. a relevant submission hold) as the finish my rating for this would have been even lower.

Tape Rating – * – One of the worst episodes of ROH on HDNet ever. Lousy match content, no angles advanced at all – literally nothing of significance happened whatsoever. I understand they had to place it safe with this episode purely because they KNEW it would be the post-8YA show so had to make sure they didn’t give too many spoilers away at the pre-taped HDNet tapings…however this whole episode was a giant non-event.

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