Featuring the ROH debuts of three Japanese superstars...
ROH – Dragon Gate Invasion – August 27, 2005 – Williamsville, New York
Review by Brad Garoon and Jacob Ziegler
JZ says: I've been using the top 5 as voted on by the ROH message board. Board member Lonewolf runs the top 5, and he does a fabulous job. After each show (or double shot weekend), go to The ROH Message Board and vote for the top 5.
ROH WORLD CHAMPION: James Gibson (since 8.12.05)
ROH PURE CHAMPION: Samoa Joe (since 5.07.05)
1) Austin Aries
2) Colt Cabana
3) Roderick Strong
5) CM Punk
BG says: Colt Cabana starts the show off talking about his winning streak and ROH World Championship shot tonight. But it's time for Good Times, Great Memories to make its big return. He wants to rekindle the magic of his first show with J-Train by having Homicide on as his guest. He tries a little too hard to relate to Homicide's thuggish life and, while being funny in the process, upsets the Notorious 187. It's incredibly scary to me how much Cabana's story mirrored my childhood. I'd like to see some feedback if anyone else had this spoiled Jewy childhood memory. But Cabana goes a little too far to try to fit in and Homicide feels disrespected. I smell trouble.
JZ says: We open with Good Times, Great Memories. Our host Colt Cabana has been on a major role since coming back from England. He's defeated Spanky, CM Punk, and Nigel McGuinness en route to his World Title shot against James Gibson tonight. Homicide is Cabana's guest tonight. Cabana tells a hilarious story about his childhood that he thinks Homicide will understand. Cabana crosses the line when he calls Homicide his "nizzle." He calls Cabana a joke.
MATCH #1: Ricky Reyes vs. Puma
BG says: These two had a match in PWG that I really liked, so I hope they can get that going here. Puma takes Reyes to the mat with an armbar but Reyes comes back with a cravat. Puma hits a hurricanrana and a dropkick. Reyes bails and Puma follows him out with a suicide dive. Back in the ring Reyes hits a knee to the gut and a gut wrench suplex for 2. He hits a stiff kick to the back and a snap suplex for 2. Puma comes back with a flurry of strikes and sets Reyes up in the Tree of Woe. He hits a dropkick to the face and Reyes bails. Reyes pulls Puma out of the ring and throws him into the barricade. Back in the ring he hits a back suplex for 2. He hits a bodyslam and climbs to the second rope. Puma gets his foot up and both men are down. Puma hits a back heel kick and a tombstone piledriver for 2. He hits a bodyslam and climbs to the top. Reyes gets out of the way and reverses a hurricanrana to a powerbomb for 2. Puma gets a quick roll up for 2 but Reyes counters to his own for 2. He hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker and a fisherman's buster for 2. He goes for a turnbuckle powerbomb but Puma reverses to a modified Sharpshooter. Reyes makes it to the ropes. Puma gets a roll up for 2 but Reyes floats into a dragon sleeper for the win. Solid opener, but nothing memorable.
JZ says: Dave Prazak and Lenny Leonard are the hosts. Puma outsmarts Reyes and takes advantage with his fast-paced style. This is a pretty good exhibition for Puma, who gets a ton of offense in. The action heats up and Reyes hits a fisherman's buster for two, and yells "crap" loudly, and it was funny. Puma puts on a leglock that resembles a sharpshooter, but Reyes reaches the ropes. Puma goes for an Ohkana roll, but Reyes reverses it into a choke (just like Punk and Joe from All Star Extravaganza II) for the win at 7:28. That was a solid little opener.
BG says: Nigel McGuinness and his amazing new T-shirt pines over the fact that he hasn't stepped up to the next level. He doesn't want to be a mid-card guy for the rest of his life, so he's challenged Samoa Joe to a match for the Pure title. The time for promos is over; he's going to win his match tonight.
JZ says: Nigel says that tonight is a big night for him in many ways. He says he doesn't want to be in the midcard forever, and beating Samoa Joe is the perfect way to move up the card.
MATCH #2: Four Corner Survival – Chad Collyer vs. Davey Andrews vs. Jimmy Jacobs vs. Kevin Steen
BG says: Looks like they're finally starting to put the students into real matches, but I'm still not doing play by play for these things when nothing is on the line as a form of protest. Jacobs is lost without Whitmer, and chants his name on the apron. The commentators talk about Collyer's deplorable attack on Ace Steel in Chicago. Andrews looks solid as he chain wrestles with Collyer early in the match. Steen is not well liked by the Buffalo fans. I don't say a lot of nice things about him, but he has a nice somersault legdrop. The crowd is really only into the match when Jacobs is in the ring, which makes sense as Collyer and Steen are heels and Andrews is unproven. The sequence leading up to the double German suplex is pretty cool. Andrews tells Steen that Punk says hello and hits the Pepsi Twist. That was cute, as Punk talked Steen down on commentary all the time when he was around. Collyer picks up the win when he dodges a missile dropkick and puts Andrews in the cloverleaf. This actually turned into a good deal of fun at the end.
JZ says: Wow, this looks like the four-way from hell on paper. Jacobs is using his "You Got the Touch" theme rather then the generic rock that he and BJ Whitmer use as a team. Jacobs is one half of the Tag Team Champions, his partner is over in Japan on a tour of NOAH. Jacobs actually chants for BJ Whitmer anyway. What a goof. Collyer and Andrews start it off, with Collyer dominating. Jacobs tags himself in, and the crowd is into him, chanting "Huss Him Up, Jimmy, Huss Him Up!" Steen looks paler and fatter than last time I saw him on an ROH show. He really has a nice hurricanrana; no one ever seems to mention that. I just realized that I've refereed for three of the four guys in this match. Jacobs comes back in and throws his nice jabs. Andrews hits ridiculously hard. They do a neat sequence that ends with a German Suplex on both Steen and Jacobs from either guy. Then Steen manages to blow a missile dropkick. The crowd is chanting "Mr. Wrestling." They change it to "Huss" rather quickly. Jacobs takes a rather nasty spill on the floor and Steen joins him. That leaves Collyer and Andrews alone in the ring, and Collyer gets the win with the Texas Cloverleaf at 10:34. That was much better than I expected it to be. Steen hasn't been back since this match.
MATCH #3: Homicide vs. El Generico
BG says: The most purely entertaining match at Trios Tournament 2005 was the Rottweilers v. Ring Crew Express & Generico match, so I think this has a lot of promise. Homicide dumps Generico to the floor right away and tosses him into the barricade. He goes after Generico with a wooden chair but the referee persuades him not to use it. Back in the ring Generico gets a drop toehold and an armdrag. Homicide comes back with a hurricanrana but gets armdragged out of the ring. Back in the ring Generico grabs an armbar. Homicide goes to the corner to break. He chops Homicide and then runs from him 3 times. Homicide catches him with a German suplex and a stiff kick to the back. He drops a knee for 2. He pulls at the mask but the referee breaks that up. He puts on a chinlock but Generico fights out. Homicide hits a knee to the gut for 2. He hits the knee in the corner and kicks Generico in the back. He goes back to the chinlock and then hits a belly-to-belly overhead suplex for 2. He sets Generico on the top turnbuckle but Generico comes back with a sunset flip powerbomb for 2. Homicide blocks a blind charge but gets hit with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Generico hits a springboard dropkick and Homicide bails. Generico follows him out with a corkscrew body press. Back in the ring Generico comes off the top with a crossbody for 2. Homicide blocks the brainbuster but gets caught in a wristlock. Generico comes back with a tornado DDT for 2. Homicide hits an Ace Crusher from the second rope for 2. He hits a bodyslam for 2. He climbs to the top but Generico cuts him off. Homicide fights him off and hits the diving headbutt. He hits a pair of short-arm clotheslines and the lariat for the win. I didn't care for this at all, as it just dragged on forever without any convincing hope segments from Generico.
JZ says: The downside of Steen not being seen since this show is that neither has El Generico, who comes from the same neck of the woods as Steen. Generico pisses Homicide off, and gets his ass handed to him as a result. This is a lot of Homicide on offense and Generico making the plucky babyface comebacks. I like it. Homicide hits a huge Ace Crusher off the top rope, and Generico actually kicks out. A few moments later, Homicide gets the victory with the Lariat at 14:02. That was fun but probably could have stood to lose three or four minutes.
MATCH #4: International Dream Match #1 – Curry Man vs. Shingo Takagi
BG says: Christopher Daniels was originally scheduled to wrestle Takagi, but for some reason he was unable to make it. ROH doesn't like to let heir fans down so they flew in Curry Man to make his stateside debut. Takagi had a fun entrance, but Curry Man's puts it to shame. Takagi gets a takedown and does some pushups. He hits an armdrag and does some more as the commentators reveal that he's only been wrestling for 10 months. Curry Man takes Takagi to the mat but gets caught in a wristlock. They do dueling pushups and Curry Man gives first. Takagi grabs a headlock and takes Curry Man to the mat. Curry Man gets out with an armbar. Takagi makes it to the ropes. Curry Man grabs a headlock but Takagi overpowers him with shoulder blocks. Curry Man does a little dance and dumps Takagi. He follows him out with a dropkick and a crossbody. Back in the ring Curry Man comes off the top with a shoulder block. Takagi comes back with a vertical suplex. He hits a back elbow for 2 and puts on a sleeper hold. He pulls on the curry and the referee calls for a break. Takagi hits a pair of bodyslams and a kneedrop for 2. He hits a clothesline in the corner as things slow way down. He hits a powerslam for 2. Curry Man comes back with jabs but gets hit with a clothesline. It gets 2 for Takagi. Takagi puts on a crossface but Curry Man gets to the ropes. He climbs to the top and pulls Curry Man with him for a powerbomb but Curry Man blocks and slams Takagi off. Takagi gets right up and they trade forearms. Curry Man hits a back bodydrop and a clothesline. He hits a springboard back elbow and calls for the finish. He hits a blue thunder bomb for 2. Takagi hits a gutbuster and a DDT for 2. He hits a clothesline for 2 and puts on the Manriki. Curry Man makes the ropes. He hits an enziguiri and a uranage. He hits the triple jump moonsault for 2. He calls for the Spicy Drop but Takagi comes back with a roll up for 2. He gets a backslide for 2. Curry Man hits a flatliner and the Spicy Drop for the win. Not the most exciting match for the most part, but it really picked up at the end. Takagi was very impressive for a guy still in his rookie year.
Curry Man gets on the microphone and says that his partner Bryan Danielson turned him on to ROH and he'd wanted to wrestle there for a long time. He says that Takagi showed everyone what Blood Generation is all about and he asks him to please come back. He goes for a handshake and Takagi accepts. Curry Man does a little dance on the way out, and it makes me wish he'd never spoken.
JZ says: I know nothing about Takagi, this is my first time ever seeing him. He has really cool music. A referee comes out to announce that Daniels will not be here tonight. The crowd boos. Dance monkeys, dance. The replacement opponent is the legendary Curry Man. The crowd cheers. Dance monkeys, dance. Takagi does pushups. Curry Man does pushups. They do some wrestling too. Takagi looks good. Curry Man kind of reminds me of Christopher Daniels. Isn't that weird? Curry Man eventually gets the win with the Spicy Drop at 12:10. That was good and all, but not really "dream match" good. Curry Man points Takagi over, and leads a "please come back" chant. Then he dances.
MATCH #5: ROH Pure Title Match – Samoa Joe vs. Nigel McGuinness
BG says: Joe has beaten Nigel twice in ROH, at It All Begins and at The Future is Now. Nigel got this title shot based on his dominance over Cabana in their feud, despite not actually winning the thing. Both men are all business and go for holds immediately. Nigel grabs a headlock and goes to a wristlock. Joe reverses to a legvice but Nigel flips out of it. They trade kicks and Joe obviously gets the better end of the deal. Nigel punches Joe in the face but the referee misses it. Joe comes back with a headbutt. He puts on a headlock but Nigel comes back with a punch that the referee misses again. He puts on a headlock and takes Joe to the mat. Joe fights out and again Nigel punches Joe out of the referee's view. Joe loses his temper and punches back, drawing a warning. He hits an atomic drop and a big boot. He hits the Big Joe Combo for 1. They trade strikes and Joe counters the rebound clothesline to a powerslam for 2. He puts on a cross armbreaker and Nigel uses his first rope break. Joe dodges a crossbody and hits a senton for 2. He hits a high knee in the corner but Nigel bails when Joe goes for the face wash. Joe goes to follow him out with a suicide dive but Nigel hits him with a chair and is penalized a rope break. Iron man type psychology there, sacrificing a point to gain a strong advantage. He puts on TAS and Joe uses his first rope break. Nigel puts on an armbar but Joe fights out. Joe tries to reverse the rebound clothesline to the powerslam again but Nigel stops short and puts on an armbar. Joe uses his second rope break. Nigel stays on the arm and puts on a hammerlock. Joe reverses the hold but loses his temper when Nigel kicks him in the face and loses his last rope break because of punching, having already been warned. That entire segment was brilliant, as Nigel acted dastardly to outwit Joe and put him at a huge disadvantage. He goes back to the arm and hits a superkick. Joe comes back with the STJoe. Nigel goes to the handstand and puts on an armbar in the ropes. He takes Joe to the mat but Joe reverses a hammerlock DDT. Nigel goes back to the handstand and gets kicked in the face. Joe's arm is too messed up for the Thousand Hand Slap, so he settles for five hundred. He goes for the muscle buster but his arm gives out. He does hit an enziguiri but crotches himself on the top rope when he misses the high knee in the corner. Nigel hits the Tower of London and Joe gets his foot on the ropes. However, he has no rope breaks left and Nigel wins the title. Joe couldn't use his power to beat Nigel in this one because his arm was busted up and Nigel knew how to use his Samoan temper against him. He just wrestled the better match, and did what few others have done in beating Joe.
JZ says: This is Nigel's second shot at Joe's Pure Title. They show a helpful clip of that match from The Future is Now. Nigel earned this title shot due to his past series of wins over Colt Cabana, despite losing the Soccer Riot match last week. Nigel goes to work on the arm of Joe early on. Joe comes back with hard kicks, which Nigel stupidly tries to match. Nigel is able to sneak in some closed fists behind the referee's back. Joe fires back, but right in front of the referee, costing him his warning. Joe goes for a dive but Nigel waffles him with a chair, which costs him his second rope break. But he did some good damage to the arm, so it was a good move. Nigel hits Joe with the Tower of London, and Joe has his foot on the ropes but he's all out of rope breaks and Nigel McGuinness is the NEW Pure Champion in 14:46. That was better than their previous two ROH matches, and Joe made Nigel look really good.
BG says: S to the S to the P asks Chad Collyer how he feels. Collyer wants to retire from wrestling because nobody can beat him, and he thinks it's funny how much he made Ace Steel bleed. Homicide walks by and asks Sugar Shawn where Cabana is. He's really pissed and tells Price to follow him with the camera, because he's going to give him a story.
JZ says: Sugar Sean is with the winner of the Four Corner Survival from earlier, Chad Collyer. He challenges Ace Steel to a rematch. Homicide comes out to interrupt, he's looking for Colt Cabana.
MATCH #6: Dunn & Marcos vs. Shane Hagadorn & Matt Turner
BG says: A clip is shown of Dunn & Marcos versus Shane Hagadorn & Matt Turner from a dark match earlier in the night. The Ring Crew Express wins with the Super Stacker Senton on Turner. Christopher Daniels comes down to the ring after the match and apologizes for missing his match. Apparently nobody told him that Curry Man took his place because he wants to wrestle Takagi. By the looks of things this is at least the second time Curry Man has stolen his spot on a show. Hagadorn takes offense to Daniels' presence in the ring during his segment and pushes him. Daniels nails him with the Angel's Wings. Hmm, don't see the point of that.
JZ says: This isn't the actual match, just some clips with Jimmy Bower doing a voice over. The Ring Crew Express beat the students. Shane Hagadorn is in the ring, and Christopher Daniels comes out to challenge Takagi. Hagadorn says that it's his time to shine and shoves Daniels. So Hagadorn gets the Angel's Wings, of course.
MATCH #7: Jimmy Rave & Spanky vs. Austin Aries & Roderick Strong
BG says: Having already turned heel, Spanky was an easy bribe for the Embassy. Nana isn't around, so Spanky holds the dog collar and has Jade lead him around on a makeshift skateboard. Shelley is there two, and the three men dance to Spanky's music in the ring. Partying like its 1979 indeed. Spanky & Strong start. Spanky immediately tags out and ridicules a fan's parenting skills. Rave dodges a clothesline and tags to Spanky. Spanky tries to tag out again but Rave jumps off the apron. Nobody wants a piece of Strong I guess. Spanky grabs a hammerlock but Strong reverses to his own. Spanky monkey flips out of the hold. They knuckle up and Strong gets a series of 1 counts. He stomps on Spanky's fingers and hits a northern lights suplex. He puts on an armbar and chops Spanky into oblivion. Spanky immediately tags out and rolls to the floor. Rave dodges Strong's chop and celebrates. Strong dodges one of Rave's and tags him with one, sending Rave to the floor. Back in the ring Rave puts on a headlock and tags to Spanky. Spanky jabs at Strong's ribs and Strong fires back with chops. Aries tags in and Generation Next hits a Hart Attack for 2. Aries grabs a headlock but Spanky reverses to a legvice. Aries gets out with a basement dropkick. Strong tags in and hits a dropkick for 2. Aries tags in and hits the corner dropkick for 2. Spanky goes to the eyes and tags to Rave. Rave punches Aries in the face and chokes him in the corner. Aries hits the corner elbow and rams Rave into the turnbuckle. Rave baits Aries into a forearm but gets tossed to the floor. Aries follows him out with a baseball slide. Strong rolls him back into the ring and Aries gets 2. Strong tags in and chops Rave down. Aries tags in and hits a senton for 2. Strong tags in and hits a kneedrop. Rave comes back with a knee to the gut and tags to Spanky. Strong tries to chop him down but the Embassy double-team him to neutralize it. Aries clotheslines Spanky from the apron. Rave stops the half nelson suplex and Spanky hits a flatliner. Rave tags in and hits a vertical suplex for 2. He puts on a chinlock. Jimmy Bower comes out of nowhere and joins commentary to bother me. Rave hits a back elbow for 2 and tags to Spanky. Spanky puts on a sleeper hold but Strong fights out. Aries gets the tag and hits the Power drive Elbow for 2. He hits a back bodydrop and Spanky bails. He dumps Rave onto Spanky and hits both with a suicide dive. He comes back in the ring with a splash for 2. Strong runs in with the Sick Kick and Aries gets 2 when Rave saves with the running knee. He makes the tag and goes for the Rave Clash but Strong saves. Rave blocks a brainbuster and hits a northern lights bomb for 2. Strong hits him with the half nelson backbreaker and Aries climbs the ropes. Spanky crotches him and Rave hits the Rave Clash for 2 when Strong saves. Strong hits Spanky with his gutbuster and they fight to the floor. Aries blocks Ghanarea in the ring and gets a roll up for 2. Shelley hits Aries in the face with a chair and Rave gets a roll up for the win. Not nearly as good as the previous matches between these teams have been, as the heel/face dynamic was weird here, the crowd was dead, and Spanky didn't hold up the kind of excitement that Puma provided. I should note that this was Spanky's last ROH match.
Aries gets on the microphone after the match and says that if the Embassy wants to escalate the war between the factions then it's time they have an anything goes match. This wouldn't happen for a while.
JZ says: Jimmy Rave and Alex Shelley doing Spanky's little dance before the match is quite possibly one of the funniest things I've ever seen. Especially when Jade Chung tries to do it too but Shelley reprimands her. This would be Spanky's last match in ROH, with no fanfare about it whatsoever. He was on Velocity later in the week if I remember correctly. The crowd is disturbingly quiet through the early going. Roderick just kills Spanky with chops, which he desperately tries to avoid. Jimmy Bower comes in and interrupts once again, taking a break from his beer and food (his words, not mine) to complain about Nana's treatment of Jade Chung. The heels take a little heat on Roderick for a while, until he can make the hot tag to Aries. Man, Gen Next is just dominating here. Roderick is basically untouchable here. An Ohkana roll reversal leads to Shelley nailing Aries in the head with a wooden chair, allowing Rave to get the pin at 18:43. That was good but not as good as last week's. The Embassy finally gets a win, but I still think that Gen Next is looking just a tad too dominant in this feud. Maybe that will change when Abyss comes back. So long Spanky. Aries gets on the microphone and says that the war will now be escalated. Dude, you retained enough of your heat.
MATCH #8: International Dream Match #2 – AJ Styles vs. CIMA
BG says: CIMA chops at the camera man on the way to the ring. They fight to the mat and CIMA grabs a legvice. Styles slips out. CIMA grabs a hammerlock but AJ reverses to his own. CIMA comes back with a headlock but AJ goes to the corner. Styles gets a single leg takedown but CIMA reverses to a roll up for 1. They knuckle up and AJ powers CIMA down into a pair of 2 counts. CIMA comes back with a northern lights suplex for 1. AJ gets an awesome armdrag and gets another into an armbar. CIMA gets a mini hurricanrana to escape. Styles dropkicks him to the floor but gets tripped and CIMA hits a senton. Styles bails and catches CIMA with a Styles Clash attempt. CIMA blocks and AJ ends up running shoulder first into the post. CIMA gets back into the ring and hits a suicide dive. Back in the ring CIMA hits a dropkick in the corner. Styles comes back with the nip up hurricanrana. CIMA hurricanranas him into the turnbuckle and hits a nasty double stomp to the back. He slingshots Styles into the bottom rope and puts on the Mark Nulty Special. Styles makes it to the ropes. AJ hits the spinning backbreaker and a traditional backbreaker for 2. He hits a back suplex for 2. He puts on the Mutalock but misses the moonsault DDT and CIMA dropkicks his knee. AJ comes back with a leg lariat. CIMA hits a stun gun and both men hit simultaneous crossbody blocks. CIMA hits a dragon screw and a double knee strike in the corner. He hits the Perfect Driver for 2. AJ dodges another double knee strike and CIMA blocks the moonsault DDT. Styles hits a springboard forearm and puts on the torture rack. He hits a powerbomb out of it for 2. He climbs to the top but CIMA cuts him off and hits Venus. He hits a superkick and the Tokarev. He hits Venus again and then hits the Iconoclasm. He climbs to the top but his frog splash hits knees. CIMA hits a superkick but AJ comes back with the Pele kick. He goes for the Styles Clash but CIMA has won the crowd and they cheer him on to block it and get a roll up for the win. Solid action, with some crazy offense from CIMA.
JZ says: This is CIMA's American debut. The crowd is way into both guys. Prazak says that CIMA is the biggest star from Japan to come to ROH since Jushin Liger, and they use that as a way to rip on Dragon Soldier B (Kendo Ka Shin). I honestly hadn't heard of him before he was signed for this show, but I like what I've seen so far. CIMA does a nasty double stomp, rivaling the one Low Ki does. AJ tells a fan to "shut up, faggot." What a hick. The crowd thinks this is a really cool thing to do though, so they chant his name. Then he calls the camera man a faggot, I think, or maybe he was talking about CIMA. Either way, he's still a hick. Both guys are busting out all their high impact stuff. CIMA actually hits a missile dropkick from one corner onto AJ Styles all the way in another corner. Then he hits the Iconoclasm and Frog Splash, but AJ gets his knees up. They do a reversal sequence that ends with CIMA getting an inescapable cradle to get the win at 16:57. That was a super fun match that the crowd was way into.
BG says: Samoa Joe says that he's learned twice that being a champion doesn't last forever. People say that he's losing a step, getting slow and complacent. Now he can do one of two things. He can continue to be complacent and slow or he can get better, more aggressive, more intense. His era of dominance can only last so long, but an era of viciousness can last forever. The world will know that he is pro wrestling. Great promo.
JZ says: Samoa Joe has heard that being a champion doesn't last forever. He says he's learned that lesson twice now. He says that his viciousness will last forever. He is Samoa Joe, and he is pro wrestling.
MATCH #9: ROH World Title Match – James Gibson vs. Colt Cabana
BG says: Cabana beat Spanky, CM Punk and Nigel McGuinness to get his choice of title shot, and he chose this one. They lock up and Cabana powers Gibson into the corner. Gibson gets a single leg takedown but Cabana comes back with a wristlock. Gibson grabs a hammerlock and takes Cabana to the mat. Cabana splits his legs to get out and teases him while working the hold. He puts on a wristlock and splashes the arm. He gets a roll up for 1. They knuckle up and Gibson wraps his feet around Cabana's neck. Cabana slips out and puts on a headlock. Gibson gets out with a legvice but Cabana escapes and backs away. Gibson grabs a headlock and gets a series of 1 counts. Cabana slides out of that hold as well. He baits Gibson into a hammerlock and uses it to run him out of the ring. Back in the ring Gibson slaps Cabana so Cabana shoves him to the floor. Back in the ring Gibson gets really aggressive with strikes and hits a bodyslam. He hits a legdrop and an elbow drop. He puts on an armbar and drops a knee on the arm. Cabana gets a roll up for 2. Gibson puts on a cravat and shoulder blocks Cabana down. He goes for the tiger driver but Cabana blocks and tosses Gibson horrifyingly to the floor. Back in the ring he wrings Gibson's neck and Gibson freaks out and rolls to the floor. Back in the ring Gibson hits a neckbreaker. He hits a back elbow and puts on the Mark Nulty Special. He puts Cabana in the Tree of Woe and pulls on his head from the apron. He hits an elbow drop for 1 and puts on a sleeper hold. Cabana fights out but gets hit with a high knee. Gibson puts on a cobra clutch and yells at Cabana to quit. Cabana fights out and hits a neckbreaker. He hits a pair of elbows and a bodyslam. He goes for the Colt 45 but Gibson blocks. Cabana gets a roll up for 2. Gibson dumps him to the floor and follows him out with a suicide dive. Back in the ring Gibson hits a backbreaker and climbs to the top. Cabana crotches him and hits the whirly bird for 2. Gibson blocks a back suplex and hits a dropkick to the knee. He hits a German suplex for 2. Cabana blocks a blind charge and gets a roll up into a guillotine choke. Gibson makes it to the ropes. Cabana blocks a sunset flip and Gibson falls to the floor. Cabana follows him out with a huge Asai moonsault. Back in the ring Cabana hits a butt-butt. Gibson blocks a second attempt and gets a victory roll into the Original Trailer Hitch. Cabana makes the ropes. They fight to the top rope where Gibson hits a swinging neckbreaker for 2. He goes for the tiger driver but Cabana blocks. He goes for the Colt 45 but has to settle for a turnbuckle powerbomb for 2. Cabana goes for another powerbomb but Gibson floats into the Trailer Hitch. Cabana goes to the corner to escape but Gibson comes back with DDT into the hold for the win. The match was in first gear right up until the final few minutes, but what they did throughout the match was solid and all the neck work paid off.
JZ says: Gibson comes out tastefully draped in the Confederate flag. Cabana earned this shot by defeating Nigel McGuinness in a Soccer Riot match last week. Cabana has quite the size advantage on Gibson here. This is Gibson's third title defense, since he technically made two last week. They do some cool mat work to start. Prazak points out that Cabana has used the lariat to win several matches recently. I think Brad has most of this match covered in the play-by-play, there's not really much complicated going on; not that there's anything wrong with that. Cabana uses the front guillotine choke on Gibson, and the crowd chants "Tap." Gibson puts on a variation of the Trailer Hitch and the crowd chants "Tap." They clearly support both guys. Then they do a really contrived neckbreaker off the top rope. Cabana gives Gibson a sick corner powerbomb but it only gets two. Gibson gets the front guillotine choke and hangs on tight to get the win at 28:18. That picked up quite a bit by the end, but it really should have been closer to 20 minutes rather than 30.
BG says: Homicide takes Sugar Sean Price outside the building where he ambushes Colt Cabana from behind. He says a lot of nasty things and leaves Cabana laying. Sugar Sean makes the save, sort of.
JZ says: Homicide goes out to attack Colt Cabana, who is signing autographs in the parking lot, despite the discouragement of Sugar Sean Price.
BG says: I'm going to give it to Curry Man, as I was most entertained by this DVD when he was on my screen.
JZ says: Alex Shelley, for bringing a lot to a match that he wasn't even wrestling in, and filling Prince Nana's shoes admirably without trying to imitate him.
Coming soon will be our review of Glory by Honor IV!
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The 411: BG says: This show reminded me of The Future is Now in that it was filled with solid if unspectacular matches, and set up the next few months of story lines in the company. Homicide v. Cabana would become a big deal, Generation Next v. the Embassy got more intense as Aries promises here, Nigel's heel run kicks into high gear and Samoa Joe begins his era of viciousness leading to his matches with Kenta Kobashi. So this gets a recommendation as a set up to future shows, but not on it's own.
JZ says: August comes to a close with a lot of good stuff on the horizon, including Glory by Honor IV and this year’s installment of Survival of the Fittest. This show wasn’t a spectacular one, but everything was solid and the Christopher Daniels / Curry Man stuff was great. I’d also like to see more of both Shingo Takagi and CIMA.