Never mind the bollocks, here's the Ring of Honor.
ROH – ANARCHY IN THE U.K. – BROXBOURNE, ENGLAND, 8.13.06
BG says: ROH reminds you to watch the ROH Video Recap on the main menu before watching the event. In it Jimmy Rave and Prince Nana talk about their excitement over the England tour. Rave is confident he’ll finally beat Davey Richards in Liverpool. Lieutenant Commissioner Adam Pearce mediates a meeting between Nigel McGuinness and Bryan Danielson and announces that their match in Liverpool will be a title vs. title unification match. Nigel is worried that Danielson will hold onto his belt via count out like he did the first time they met. Pearce assures us that a count out or a disqualification will result in a title change for both titles this time around. Danielson demands that there be no time limit and that a double decision of any kind will result in the match being restarted. One belt will change hands! Pearce then threatens Homicide and reminds us that he’s only in ROH to impress Jim Cornette. Roderick Strong and Austin Aries are going to beat the Briscoes in Liverpool and either Team NOAH or Team England in Broxbourne. Davey Richards rounds out the video by saying he’ll beat Rave to go 3-0.
Austin Aries and Roderick Strong come out to the ring and Aries apologizes for not being able to compete tonight. He gets very emotional while giving his speech and the crowd cheers for him. Bryan Danielson comes out and questions Aries’ character, saying that if he were injured he’d compete anyway. He calls himself the best champion in the world having just won the Pure Title. Strong takes offense to his comments and challenges him to a World Championship match. Danielson accepts even though he’s beaten Strong three times already. As he makes his way to the back SUWA attacks him with a kendo stick. I would have figured that Doug Williams would be more mad at Aries than Danielson for going down to an injury, but I guess ROH titles just don’t mean as much to him.
JZ says: ROH World Tag Team Champions Austin Aries & Roderick Strong come out. Aries says last night he broke his ribs and cannot complete tonight. He’s practically crying. I understand this is a big show and all, but he’s not retiring and he’s wrestled in the United Kingdom before. Perhaps that’s too callous of me, because at least it shows Aries has passion for the business. This brings ROH World and Pure Champion Bryan Danielson out, and he says he would never let an injury keep him from competing. He accuses Aries of milking the injury for a free payday. Roderick has finally had enough of Danielson talking shit about his friend, so he grabs the microphone. This should be funny. He verbally fellates Aries and challenges Danielson to a World Title match tonight. He balks at first, but then responds to the crowd egging him on, and we’ll have Danielson vs. Strong IV here tonight! Before Danielson can make it to the locker room, SUWA attacks him with his kendo stick. I was kind of hoping for Go Shiozaki vs. SUWA for tonight’s show, but that sadly doesn’t appear to be the case.
MATCH #1: Go Shiozaki vs. BJ Whitmer
BG says: They lock up and Whitmer powers Shiozaki to the corner. He hits a suplex and puts on a wristlock. Shiozaki puts on a leglock but Whitmer gets to the ropes. Whitmer hits a leglock and Shiozaki bails. Back in the ring they knuckle up and Whitmer stomps on Shiozaki’s hands. They trade chops and Shiozaki hits a dropkick for 2. He hits a kneedrop for 2. He puts on a chinlock and hits a knee to the gut for 2. He hangs Whitmer on the top rope and dropkicks him down for 2. Whitmer unloads with forearms but runs into a knee strike. It gets 2 for Shiozaki. Shiozaki hits another knee strike and a second rope kneedrop for 2. Whitmer comes back with an exploder and Shiozaki bails. Whitmer follows him out with an ugly suicide dive. Back in the ring Whitmer gets 2. He hits a snap suplex and a northern lights suplex for 2. He hits a brainbuster for 2. Shiozaki hits another knee strike and a fisherman buster for 2. He climbs the ropes and hits a dropkick for 2. Whitmer comes back with a forearm and a big boot but Shiozaki catches him with a superkick. He hits a sidewalk slam for 2. He hits a bodyslam but misses a moonsault. Whitmer comes back with a nasty German suplex. Shiozaki pretty much no sells it and hits a side suplex. Whitmer no sells that and they clothesline each other down. Shiozaki hits another knee kick but Whitmer comes back with a lariat for 2. He hits a dragon suplex for 2. Whitmer covers for 2 again. Hey, someone selling! Whitmer hits another lariat for 2. They trade forearms and Whitmer dropkicks the knee. Shiozaki blocks a running knee with a lariat for 2. He puts on a cobra clutch but Whitmer gets to the ropes. Shiozaki hits a German suplex into the turnbuckle and one straight up for 2. He hits a bodyslam and a moonsault for the win. The match itself was really good but I felt that it made the two-shot guest Shiozaki look very dominant over the recently heavily pushed Whitmer. I don’t quite understand the booking but like I said, the match was a lot of fun.
JZ says: Dave Prazak and Jared David are tonight’s hosts. Prazak says this event has a bit of an “unscripted” feel to it. Does that mean CM Punk will show up?!? They chain wrestle to start, with Shiozaki targeting the arm. He then switches to the leg. Whitmer comes back with a leg lariat and Shiozaki bails. They engage in a test of strength that goes both ways. Whitmer unloads on Shiozaki, but he weathers those blows and they trade shots in the middle of the ring. Shiozaki puts on a modified camel clutch. He continues to dominate with some unique offense. They both get up and trade forearms again. Whitmer wins this one but eats a knee to the face for his troubles. He then nails a knee drop off the second rope for two. Whitmer recovers and hits an exploder and Shiozaki powders. Whitmer doesn’t let him rest and hits a big dive. Vertical/Northern lights suplex combo by Whitmer gets two. Brainbuster by Whitmer also gets two. Shiozaki counters with some strikes to the face and a wicked fisherman buster for two. A missile dropkick also gets two. They get up and trade kicks to the face, and Shiozaki hits a spinning uranage for two. He goes for the moonsault but Whitmer moves. He hits a nasty German suplex but Shiozaki counters with a nasty Saito. Then they get up and knock each other down with simultaneous clotheslines. Whitmer hits a big lariat for two, and a dragon suplex also gets two. He hits another huge lariat but Shiozaki is close to the ropes. They trade forearms once again, until Whitmer hits a dropkick to the knee. He tries to capitalize, but Shiozaki hits a lariat for a near fall, then locks on a cobra clutch, and Whitmer just barely reaches the ropes. Shiozaki hits a running knee and a German suplex onto the turnbuckles. A German with a pin follows and gets two. He tries the moonsault again and this time he hits it to get the win at 15:19. Well that was fun as all hell and an exciting opener.
BG says: Prince Nana and Jimmy Rave complain about the Liverpool fans throwing toilet paper at Rave. He wants to embarrass England now so he’s going to take on Doug Williams and then party all night long.
JZ says: Jimmy Rave and Prince Nana are pissed off about the toilet paper treatment he received last night. He’s so pissed at the whole country that he challenges Doug Williams. I like the idea of that match, although I like the idea of Doug Williams in a match, period.
MATCH #2: Jody Fleisch vs. Jonny Storm vs. Spud
BG says: I fear a train wreck. Storm and Spud hit cheap shots on Fleisch to start. Fleisch knocks them into each other and hits a crossbody onto both. Spud and Storm hit a stereo enziguiri on Fleisch sending him to the floor. Spud dives out onto him and Storm follows suit. Back in the ring Storm gets 2. Fleisch hits a dropkick to the back but misses a springboard double stomp. Storm knocks Fleisch off the ropes and powerbombs Spud into the barricade. He gets 2 on Fleisch. Spud gets a sunset flip on Storm as Storm hits a German suplex on Fleisch. Spud hurricanranas Fleisch into the turnbuckle and hits a dropkick for 2. Fleisch hits a second rope hurricanrana on Spud for 2. Storm hits a hurricanrana on Fleisch and follows up with a DDT for 2. Spud hits a DDT on Storm for 2. Fleisch hits an inverted Michinoku driver on Spud. He climbs the ropes and hits a shooting star press for 2. He hits an enziguiri on Storm but Storm comes back with a second rope Japanese armdrag for 2. Fleisch hits the 720 DDT on Storm for 2 when Spud saves. Storm dropkicks Spud to help him hit a DDT on Fleisch and then hits Spud with a half nelson Michinoku driver for the win. This was very short (although it kind of needed to be) and it really wasn’t my kind of match but nothing at all was botched and they did quite a few things I’ve never seen before, so credit goes where it’s due.
JZ says: This is an interesting three-way, with three British high flyers. You don’t see that every day in ROH. Spud and Storm double team Fleisch, but he is able to outmaneuver them. The battle spills to the floor and Storm hits the first dive. There’s action both in and out of the ring, and Storm knocks down both of his opponents. A cover on Fleisch gets two. It breaks down with all three in the ring hitting moves on each other. Fleisch hits a nice shooting star press on Spud but Storm breaks up the cover. Storm and Spud fight for a minute, until Storm hits the springboard DDT, and the cover is broken up by Spud. Storm is able to land the half-nelson Michinoku Driver on Spud to get the win at 6:34. That was about the appropriate length, and boy did they pack a lot of spots into it.
MATCH #3: Colt Cabana, Nigel McGuinness & Robbie Brookside vs. Chris Hero, Claudio Castagnoli & Chad Collyer
BG says: After the match the Kings of Wrestling and Chad Collyer attack all three competitors. Hero talks about how much the three of them hate ROH and make fun of England in general until Nigel McGuinness and Robbie Brookside chase them out of the ring. Nigel puts Brookside over huge and challenges the Kings of Wrestling Plus One to a fight. The numbers catch up to our British friends until Colt Cabana runs out to even the odds and challenge the bad guys to a proper match.
There are three Double Cs in this match! Brookside and Hero start. Brookside grabs a wristlock and crotches Hero on the top rope. Claudio and Cabana tag in. Cabana hits an arm wringer and Claudio bails. Collyer tags in and grabs a headlock. Cabana escapes and tags to Nigel. It’s so sad to see Beer & Girls on opposite sides of the ring. Collyer gets a headlock takedown but Nigel gets to the ropes. Nigel gets a roll up for 2. Hero tags in and asks for Brookside. Brookside tags in and they knuckle up. Brookside puts on a modified Neutralizer and Claudio breaks it up. Collyer tags in and hits a back elbow. He hits a back suplex for 2. Claudio tags in and hits a European uppercut for 2. Brookside gets a roll up for 2. Hero tags in and goes after the leg. Collyer tags in after his team uses some shady tactics and Cabana loses his temper. Hero tags in and puts on an STF. Claudio tags in and the Kings of Wrestling make a wish on Brookside for 2. Collyer tags in and puts on a half crab. Hero tags in and Brookside gets triple-teamed. Hero goes after the ankle but allows Brookside to tag to Nigel. Nigel hits a lariat for 2. He hits the handstand kick for 2. Claudio comes in with a cheap shot and a diving European uppercut. He hits a falling knee for 2. Nigel sets Claudio up top and tags to Brookside. Brookside hits a Tree of Woe dropkick and the Iconoclasm for 2. Collyer tags in and hits a powerslam for 2. He hits a brainbuster for 2. Brookside comes back with a dropkick and tags to Cabana. Cabana opens up with elbows and hits a moonsault press for 2. Nigel tags in and Collyer gets triple-teamed in the corner. Nigel hits the Tower of London but Claudio catches him with the Alpamare Waterslide. Brookside hits Claudio with a Regalplex. Hero hits Brookside with a cravat neckbreaker. Cabana hits Hero with a capture neckbreaker. Collyer hits Cabana with a German suplex. Nigel comes back from a leg lariat to hit the rebound lariat on Collyer for the win. Brookside’s face-in-peril segment was a little boring but once he tagged to Nigel things picked up in a big way.
JZ says: After the three-way, Chris Hero, Claudio Castagnoli, and Chad Collyer come down and deliver a beating to all three. Spud takes the very dangerous looking KRS-One. Hero gets on the microphone and the crowd just doesn’t want to hear it. The fans are wasting a lot of their toilet paper. Hero sticks up for Collyer, because no one else seemed willing to do. This brings out two of the UK’s own, Nigel McGuinness and FWA Champion Robbie Brookside. They clear the ring, but then the Kings of Wrestling realize they have a one man advantage and they attack. Colt Cabana comes out to even the odds. He challenges them to a six-man tag team match, which they reluctantly accept. It starts off kind of slowly, but I maintain that anyone who doesn’t like Chad Collyer is nuts. Speaking of nuts, the crowd really, really likes Nigel McGuinness here. He comes in and outsmarts Collyer, who doesn’t take too kindly to it. He tags out to Hero and Nigel tags out to Brookside, who is also extremely over. The Kings of Wrestling soon take over on him and go to work on the leg. Claudio taunts Cabana, who comes in the ring after him, and Claudio hilariously avoids him. Back in the ring Brookside is still being dominated by the Kings. Brookside finally rolls over and tags Nigel. He’s a flat on fire and hits a lariat on Hero for two. Claudio cuts him off however. The match breaks down and Cabana comes in to hit some cool stuff on Collyer. Nigel is tagged in and Claudio comes in to hit the Alpamare Water Slide on him. Everyone comes in and hits big moves on everyone. Collyer almost kills Cabana with a German Suplex. Nigel ends up pinning Collyer with the Rebound Clothesline at 15:38. That picked up in the last two minutes or so but was insanely boring during the middle portions.
The Coolest Guy Ever
BG says: Doug Williams is happy to be back in ROH, especially now that they’re in the United Kingdom. He’s heard that Rave challenged him and he accepts. He wishes him the very best of British luck, something I have never heard of before.
JZ says: Doug Williams is backstage being awesome, and he happens to accept the challenge Jimmy Rave laid out for him earlier.
MATCH #4: ROH World Title Match – Bryan Danielson vs. SUWA
BG says: Bobby Cruise announces ROH’s return to England in March of 2007. Danielson interrupts to complain about SUWA’s attack on him. He baits SUWA out with an ROH World Championship match and says that he’ll beat him and defend against Strong later on in the show.
Danielson has finally met his match as far as dickishness goes. They brawl around ringside to start. Danielson tosses SUWA into the crowd and rams him into a wall. Back at ringside we see that the side of Danielson’s head has been busted open. They get into the ring and the opening bell is sounded. They trade strikes and SUWA goes to the eyes. He wipes Danielson’s blood on the referee and steps on Danielson’s face. He hits a shoulder tackle for 2. He puts on a chinlock and hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. He sits on Danielson’s back for 2. He hits another backbreaker and keeps the pressure on. He hits a series of headbutts and a fistdrop. He drapes Danielson over his shoulder and flips him onto the mat for 2. He chops Danielson down and hits a spinebuster. He puts on a Boston crab but Danielson gets to the ropes. Look for Strong to take advantage there later. Danielson hits a diving European uppercut and an enziguiri. He hits a running forearm and a superplex. He climbs the ropes and hits a diving headbutt for 2. He puts on the crossface chicken wing but SUWA gets to the ropes. SUWA hits a side suplex and a flapjack for 2. Danielson ducks a dropkick and blocks the FFF to hit a German suplex for 2. They trade strikes and SUWA hits a lariat for 2. They trade headbutts and Danielson hits a roaring forearm. SUWA hits a jab but Danielson comes back with a roll up for the win. I would have preferred a match to see who could be a bigger jerk between the two of them as they are both great heels, but instead we get a short match with SUWA dominating with his jerky tactics and Danielson squeaking out a victory. I have a feeling that had Aries not gotten hurt this match would have gotten more time since Strong and Aries would have faced Williams and Fleisch in the main event.
JZ says: Ring announcer Bobby Cruise announces that ROH will return to the UK on March 2, 2007. The ROH World and Pure Champion Bryan Danielson comes out to challenge SUWA, who doesn’t take long in accepting that challenge. Danielson has been the champion since 9.17.05, and this is his thirtieth defense. If he makes it past this challenge, he will officially have the highest number of successful ROH World Title defenses. They fight outside the ring and SUWA is able to bust Danielson’s head open. They trade blows in the middle of the ring and SUWA soon takes over by being a giant dick. He controls the match for several minutes, starting to work on the back. The champion fights back with headbutts, but is soon cut off. SUWA continues to dominate with hard chops. He hits a spinebuster and rolls it right into a Boston Crab. This match has been almost all SUWA; Danielson has had little or no offense. Just as I say that he starts to come back and hits a superplex. He follows that with a diving headbutt. SUWA soon comes back and hits a flapjack and goes for a Tiger Driver but it’s reversed to a German Suplex for two. They trade slaps and forearms. They switch it to headbutts again. SUWA then runs into a small package out of nowhere and Danielson retains at 10:08. That was short but full of energy and I really like SUWA.
BG says: Davey Richards and Matt Sydal don’t think there’s any way that the Briscoes can stand in the way of their new team. The microphone WILL be a roadblock for these two guys.
JZ says: Davey Richards and Matt Sydal combine to cut the most generic two promos I’ve heard in a great while. Seriously, I know they’re good athletes but damn if they’re not bland outside the ring.
MATCH #5: Doug Williams vs. Jimmy Rave
BG says: Williams puts Rave on the mat to start and grabs a front facelock. He puts on a wristlock and gets a headlock takedown. Rave takes a powder as the crowd questions his sexuality. Back in the ring Williams puts on a bow and arrow lock. He puts on a crossface and hits a splash on Rave’s arm. Rave bails again, only to get caught with a wristlock back inside. Williams ties him in a knot and rolls him up for 2. He gets another roll up for 2. He puts pressure on the arm with a hammerlock but Rave shoots him to the floor. Nana takes a few cheap shots and Rave tosses him into the crowd. He hits a running eye poke and rolls him back into the ring. He stomps on Williams’ face for 2. He hits a snaps suplex for 2. Nana hits another cheap shot but Williams comes back with a butterfly superplex for 2 when Nana pulls him out of the ring. Williams puts on an abdominal stretch but Rave returns fire with a back heel kick and Ghanarrhea for 2. He stomps Williams for 2. He puts on a chinlock and distracts the referee so that Nana can hit a butt splash. It gets 2 for Rave. Williams hits a gutwrench suplex for 2. He hits the Anarchy knee strikes but Nana stops him from hitting the Bomb Scare. Rave runs up and hits a superplex. Williams knocks Nana to the floor and hits a back suplex. He hits a top rope splash for 2. He hits an overhead suplex but Rave comes back with a spear. He hits a DDT for 2. He goes for Ghanarrhea off the second rope but Williams counters to a roll up for 2. Rave hits a knee to the face for 2. Williams gets another roll up for 2. He gets a jackknife pin for 2. Rave gets a roll up with his feet on the ropes for 2. He goes for Greetings from Ghana but Williams blocks and hits a lariat. He hits the Bomb Scare for 2. Rave puts on the crossface but Williams counters to an armbar. Rave gets to the ropes. Rave hits another spear and the running knee for 2. Williams counters Greetings from Ghana to the Chaos Theory for the win. For a while the crowd was more interested in coming up with cute chants than it was with enjoying the match. To their credit the wrestlers got them back into the match and went home with all the fire you’d expect from a pair of talented workers.
JZ says: Prince Nana is here to be awesome. Seriously, no one brings the awesome the way Nana does. I think they way they got to this match (due to reshuffling the card because of Aries’s unfortunate injury) was pretty clever. Williams and Fleisch should definitely take their Tag Team Title shot when ROH returns to the UK. Williams dominates early so Rave bails. The crowd is rabidly behind Williams, so he treats them by going after Rave’s arm. Rave powders again and the crowd just will not get off his case. Jimmy Bower comes in and says that he has been listening to the commentary in the truck out back, which made me spit my drink a bit. He says nothing of note, and Williams is still firmly in control. Jimmy Bower comes out to join the commentary team to put over the fact that ROH made it all the way from the Murphy Rec Center all the way to England. I’m not commenting on much in this one because I just can’t get into it. Nana interferes and the crowd gets on his case. Rave hits the awesome running eye poke on the floor. Back in the ring Rave is finally in control, and he uses cheap tactics. Williams comes back and uses his unique submission holds. Rave fights back and hits Ghanarea. Nana comes in and hits the running ass to the face. Rave tries a superplex but gets crotched. Williams hits a top rope splash and goes for Chaos Theory but it gets blocked. They do a nice sequence that ends in Rave hitting a big knee to the face for a two count. Williams comes back with a series of roll ups for near falls and attempts the Chaos Theory but its blocked again. Rave gets a rollup and tries to use the ropes but Williams escapes. Nana blatantly interferes in front of the referee and Williams is able to get him knocked off the apron. Williams hits the Bomb Scare for a near fall. Rave hits From Dusk ‘Til Dawn but Williams is able to escape and put on a hammerlock with a bridge. Another nice sequence leads to Williams hitting the Chaos Theory to get the win at 20:58. That got good at the end but took WAY too long to get going.
ROH World Champion
BG says: In the back Bryan Danielson gets the nasty cut on his head checked out. He’s the best wrestler in the world and he’s going to prove that he’s the best ROH champion of all time and that a cut like that can’t stop him.
JZ says: Bryan Danielson is having his bloody head looked at by a doctor. He reminds us all that he’s the best wrestler in the world, and the best ROH Champion of all-time.
MATCH #6: Jay & Mark Briscoe vs. Davey Richards & Matt Sydal
BG says: Sydal’s problems with the Briscoes date back to the beginning of the year while Richards has just recently got a chip on his shoulder by letting KENTA down when he was pinned in a tag match against them. Richards and Mark start. They trade holds until Richards gets a crucifix pin for 2. He puts on a wristlock and hits a kick to the arm. Sydal and Jay tag in and Jay powers Sydal to the corner. Sydal gets a roll up for 2. Jay puts Sydal on the mat but Sydal comes back with an anklelock. Jay gets to the ropes. Richards tags in and puts on a headlock. Sydal tags in and gets hit with a hurricanrana. Sydal comes back with one of his own and tags to Richards. He hits a kick to the chest and a snap suplex for 2. Mark tags in and puts on a headlock. Sydal tags in and hits a double stomp. He hits a dropkick and tags to Richards. Richards hits an elbowdrop and a legdrop for 2. Mark hits a chinbreaker and a back suplex. Jay tags in and hits a back elbow for 2. He hits another in the corner for 2. He hits a dropkick and tags to Mark. Mark hits a slingshot double stomp but walks into a lariat. Sydal tags in and hits a fisherman suplex for 2. He puts on a seated abdominal stretch and rolls Mark up for 2. Richards tags in and hits a back elbow. He puts on a chinlock but Mark comes back with a leg lariat. Jay tags in and hits a second rope Rocker Dropper for 2. Mark tags in but Richards fights them off and tags to Sydal. Sydal hits a running knee and a clothesline on Mark for 2. Richards tags in and hits a running powerslam. Sydal hits a second rope legdrop getting 2 for Richards. Sydal tags in and hits a dropkick. Jay keeps Mark from getting hit with a top rope hurricanrana and Mark hits a second rope kneedrop for 2. Jay tags in and they hit a huge double hiptoss. Jay kicks Sydal’s back and tags to Mark. They hit the double shoulder tackle and toss Sydal up in the air for 2. Sydal hits the top rope hurricanrana and tags to Richards.
Now things start to really pick up as Richards cleans house on the Briscoes. He hits Mark with a springboard dropkick and Jay with a suicide dive. He unloads with kicks on Mark and hits a German suplex for 2. He dumps Mark onto Jay on the floor but the Briscoes pull him out and dump him into the crowd. Sydal dives onto all of them from the top rope with a moonsault. Back in the ring Sydal gets the tag and hits an awesome standing moonsault off of Mark’s back for 2. Richards hits a backbreaker but Sydal’s second standing moonsault hits knees. Jay tags in and the Briscoes hit the power breaker for 2. Sydal hits an inverted tombstone piledriver for 2. He hits an enziguiri but Jay catches him with a DVD for 2. Richards hits a side suplex but runs into a backbreaker. Mark hits a guillotine kneedrop on Richards and a uranage suplex on Sydal. Richards hits the handspring kick on Mark and a capture suplex on Jay. Sydal hits a leg lariat on Mark but gets booted down by Jay. Jay goes for a big splash but Sydal gets hits knees up. Richards hits a gutbuster and a powerbomb as Sydal hits a leg lariat for 2. Sydal hits Jay with the overhead superplex for 2. Jay hits a screwdriver on Sydal for 2. The Briscoes hit the spike Jay Driller on Richards but Sydal keeps them from pinning him. He rolls Jay up for 2. The Briscoes put him down and Jay hits a top rope legdrop into a cutthroat driver from Mark for the win. They kept this long match fun the whole way through and the last ten or so minutes were out of this world exciting.
JZ says: I love how nerdy Sydal is. He has been on the wrong end of a Briscoe Brothers beating before, so let’s see how he does teaming with Richards for the first time, who has also been beaten by the brothers from Sandy Fork, Delaware. Davey and Mark start off with some mat wrestling. Sydal gets tagged in. Jay tags in as well. They trade some moves and Richards tags back in. Sydal quickly tags back in and the team is working over Jay’s arm. Jay comes out of it and puts on a headlock. That doesn’t last long and they’ve moving quickly with Jay hitting a rana and Sydal following with one of his own. The Sydal/Richards team takes over once again. They go to work on the leg now. Mark is in and he takes over on Richards and tags out to Jay. Sydal and Richards regain control and this one is moving pretty quickly all the time. The Briscoes take control with a sweet guillotine legdrop to the back of Richards’s head. He fights back moments later with a sweet STO and tags out to Sydal. He tries a top rope rana but the Briscoes use chicanery to block it. The Briscoes’ double-team offensive repertoire is pretty awesome. Richards gets the hot tag and unloads with his offense on the brothers. The fight spills to the floor, where the Briscoes soon take over. Back in the ring Sydal hits his awesome standing moonsault on the back. The action is still moving extremely quickly. Mark goes for the Cutthroat Driver but it gets reversed to an inverted piledriver for two. Jay hits the awesome military press into the Death Valley Driver for two. Richards comes in and dumps Jay on his head. More head dumping and hard strikes abound. Selling has also mostly become an option at this point, but the crowd is going ballistic. Sydal hits the moonsault belly to belly but the pin gets broken up. Mark actually hits the Steiner Screwdriver on Sydal. That is disgusting. Richards takes the spike Jay Driller and he’s out. That leaves Sydal prone to take the Doomsday Device but he escapes it. He can’t escape a Cutthroat Driver / Leg Drop combination that leads to his demise at 26:34. That was maybe just a tad on the long side, and there was no psychology and spotty selling. However, as a kick-ass spot-fest this was pretty cool.
MATCH #7: ROH World Title Match – Bryan Danielson vs. Roderick Strong
BG says: The crowd is behind Strong all the way. Being that this match was booked on such short notice I’m not holding out too much hope that it can live up to the incredible standard of some of their previous matches. They lock up and Danielson powers Strong to the corner before slapping him. He slaps Strong twice more and bails. Back in the ring he gets a headlock takedown but Strong catches him with a mini piledriver. Danielson puts on a bow and arrow lock but Strong powers out of the Mexican surfboard. Danielson bleeds and he stretches Strong with a legvice. Strong gets to the ropes. Danielson goes for another slap but Strong ducks and unloads with chops. He hits a backbreaker and an overhead suplex for 2. He goes for the Mexican surfboard but Danielson crawls away. They knuckle up and Danielson stomps on Strong’s hands. He tosses him across the ring by his head and hits a dragon screw. He hits the thigh stomp and slaps Strong down. He puts on a chinlock but Strong gets to the ropes. They fight to the floor Where Danielson rams Strong’s back into the apron. Back inside Danielson kicks the back. Strong hits a chinbreaker and chops away. He hits a dropkick and a falcon arrow for 2. Danielson puts on an abdominal stretch and uses the ropes for leverage. The crowd calls him a cheating bastard. Strong hiptosses Danielson to the floor to escape. He goes for a dive but misses and hurts his knee. Danielson gets back into the ring and hits a suicide dive. Back inside Danielson hits a top rope dropkick. Strong hits a back heel kick but jumps into the Cow Killer. Strong counters to a backbreaker and a tiger driver for 2. He sets Danielson up top but gets tossed down. Danielson misses the diving headbutt but gets a roll up for 2. They trade strikes and Strong hits the gutbuster. Danielson hits a forearm for 2. He sets Strong up top but Strong fights him off and hits a big boot off the second for 2. He puts on the Stronghold and the commentators make my day by bringing up that SUWA had him in that hold earlier. Danielson gets to the ropes. Strong goes for the second rope gutbuster but Danielson fights him off and hits a dropkick. He hits a back superplex for 2. He puts on the crossface chicken wing but Strong gets to the ropes. Danielson sets him up top again but Strong fights him off and hits the second rope gutbuster for 2. He puts on a Boston crab but Danielson counters to a roll up for 2. Danielson hits a roaring forearm but Strong comes back with the Sick Kick for 2. Danielson unloads with the unprotected elbows and puts on the Cow Killer for the win. I think its safe to say that Strong, being put down four times, is no longer a contender for the belt. These two always bring the goods together and even though this was a lot shorter and happened on short notice it was still better than most of the matches I’ve seen this year.
JZ says: Danielson has been champion since 9.17.05, and this is his thirty-first defense (fourth against Strong, and second tonight). With his last title defense earlier on the show, he surpassed Samoa Joe’s record and became the most prolific ROH Champion to date. I hope the commentators mention this. We see some clips of their previous three title matches, which all ranked higher than four stars. It starts off quickly with both guys laying into each other. Danielson’s head gets busted open pretty early on. They both have a good idea of the other’s style, so the trade the advantage back and forth a few times. Danielson takes the first prolonged period of advantage and utilizes his totally mean offense, which I love. He teases the surfboard and then uses it a few moments later. Strong fights back with chops and a modified falcon arrow for a near fall. Danielson comes back and cheats to take the advantage. He’s such a great heel. He hits a nice tope through the ropes and his head is looking pretty gross. Danielson locks on the Cattle Mutilation and Strong gets out of it and hits a backbreaker and a Tiger Driver for two. He sets up for a superplex but gets tossed off and Danielson tries the headbutt and misses it. Strong goes for the big boot and Danielson gets a rollup for two. Gutbuster by Strong but Danielson comes back with a big forearm for two. Strong locks on the Strong Hold but Danielson escapes. Danielson eventually hits the super back suplex and locks on the cross-face chicken wing. Strong comes back with the super gutbuster but it only gets two. He goes for the Strong Hold again. Danielson gets a rollup out of that for two. A cool series of reversals leads to Danielson hitting the elbows to the face and Strong is able to escape it momentarily but Danielson is relentless and locks on the Cattle Mutilation and Strong is out at 20:07. That was a tremendous match between two guys that didn’t think they’d be working each other on this night. They both looked strong and the match was intense, as usual between these two. Prazak says that Danielson will defend his title in two straight two-out-of-three-falls matches, against Nigel McGuinness and Colt Cabana.
BG says: Bryan Danielson, for working with a nasty cut through an entertaining match and a great match. Honorable mention to the Briscoes, Sydal and Richards for tearing it up as well.
JZ says: It’s gotta be Bryan Danielson, for defending his World Title twice and in the process becoming the most prolific champion in ROH history.
Coming soon will be our review of EPIC ENCOUNTER II!
The 411: BG says: With all but one match getting three stars or more (and that one being very close to three) it’s easy to call this one of the better shows since the Milestone Series. The last two matches were both excellent. The tag match is up there with the better tag matches in the company’s history and Strong and Danielson tear it up as they always do. I could probably watch nothing but Strong/Danielson matches and be a happy camper. Unified had a better one-two punch to finish up and a strong MOTY contender, but this show was more entertaining overall. Get this one ASAP.
JZ says: This was another great show based on atmosphere alone, but there are some really good matches in there to boot and make the UK trek seem more than worth it. Danielson is an unstoppable machine and The Briscoes continue to look like the baddest muthas around.