BG says: The Video Wire for this weekendís shows starts off with Rebecca Bayless catching up with Delirious in a field in Florida for an interview. Delirious says something about Roderick Strong, but itís actually a less coherent rambling than usual. Also included in the wire are stills from theRespect is Earned PPV, clips of Kevin Steen & El Genericoís tag team dominance, Deliroius looking around the FIP locker room for Roderick Strong, hype for Jay Briscoeís title shot against Takeshi Morishima (including clips from the Briscoes tag title defense against Morishima & Nigel McGuinness) and a promo from Jay Briscoe in Florida promising to win the World title. Mark talks about getting revenge on Kevin Steen and having nothing to lose. They also promise to beat the Kings of Wrestling in two straight falls in their 2/3 falls match and donít seem to be worried about facing Steen & Generico at the next PPV taping. The Video Wire wraps up with Delirious finding Strong in the FIP locker room and attacking him. Babyface Sean Davis pulls him off. Nice to see original footage back in the Video Wire.
Rebecca is going to talk to ROH wrestlers tonight about their thoughts on being on PPV. I never thought someone could make me miss GMC, but here Bayless has done it.
JZ says: Rebecca Bayless welcomes us to Philadelphia. She promises a huge night of action, and mentions how ROH taped its first pay-per-view event. She says that tonight we will hear how some of the ROH wrestlers feel about being on PPV.
MATCH #1: Matt Sydal vs. Hallowicked
BG says: They lock up and Sydal puts Hallowicked in the corner. He gets a headlock takedown but Hallowicked counters to the head scissors. They fight over an armdrag and Hallowicked wins. Sydal hits an armdrag and a leg lariat for 2. He hits a pair of bodyslams and pulls on the stem. He gets a roll up for 2. He hits a side slam and an elbowdrop for 2. He puts on the bow and arrow but Hallowicked rolls over. Sydal quickly hits a legdrop for 2. He puts on a chinlock but Hallowicked comes back with a hurricanrana. Hallowicked hits a big boot and an Iconoclasm off the second rope for 2. He hits a neckbreaker for 2. He hits a backbreaker and climbs the ropes. Sydal cuts him off and brings him down with a hurricanrana. He hits a clothesline and his corner combo. He climbs the ropes but Hallowicked catches him coming down with a dropkick. Hallowicked goes for another Iconoclasm but Sydal counters to a head scissors takedown. Hallowicked pops up and hits a big boot for 2. Hallowicked gets a roll up for 2. He misses a dropkick and Sydal rolls him up for 2. Sydalís standing moonsault hits knees and Hallowicked hits the Rydeen Bomb for 2. He goes for the fisherman bomb but Sydal counters to a DDT and hits the shooting star press for the win. After an awkward start this turned into a fun little opener. After the match Sydal says heíll put down anyone in a mask.
JZ says: This is a good choice for an opener. Sydalís mannerisms as he comes toward the ring and the things he says are (I think, anyway) unintentionally hilarious. I really like the guy but unless WWE is planning on bringing back the Spirit Squad (Matty!) I canít imagine what they have in mind for him. They start off surprisingly slowly, with some mat wrestling. They soon take to the air and Sydal is able to control the flow of the match. Every time Hallowicked tries something Sydal has a comeback. The masked man finally makes a comeback and gets a sort of Iconoclasm for two. Sydal comes back and they trade chops. Sydal winds up taking the advantage but gets caught coming from the top rope. Hallowicked tries another Iconoclasm but Sydal counters with a headscissors. A big boot from Hallowicked gets a near fall. They trade maneuvers for another minute or so until Sydal hits a sort of DDT and the Shooting Star Press to get the pin at 9:18. That was a decent opener, and the crowd got into it.
MATCH #2: Lacey vs. Daizee Haze
BG says: Before the match Lacey says sheís started a new chapter in her life and so she just wants to have a straight wrestling match with Haze. After having sex with Jacobs sheís all about love you see. Haze puts Lacey on the mat to start. Lacey comes back with a guillotine but Haze catches her with a reverse bow and arrow. She puts on a headlock but Lacey counters to a stranglehold. Haze hits an armdrag into an armbar and then gets a roll up for 2. She puts on a headlock but Lacey comes back with a Boston crab. Haze counters to a roll up for 2. Haze dropkicks the back and hits a clothesline. She hits a bodyslam for 2. Lacey bails and rams Haze into the apron repeatedly. Back in the ring she tosses Haze around by her hair. She hits a neckbreaker for 2. She chokes Haze in the ropes and hits a side slam for 2. He hits a knee to the back but Haze returns fire with a sunset flip. Haze hits a facebuster for 2. Lacey hits the lungblower with one minute remaining. It gets 2. Haze hits the heart punch and the Mind Trip. Lacey bails and Jacobs keeps her from getting back into the ring and the time limit expires. Decent enough match, even without a finish.
Erick Stevens has something to say. Heís been getting beaten down by the No Remorse Corp and feels lost without Austin Aries. However, now that ROH is on Pay Per View he has to step up his game.
JZ says: Haze is ready to fight immediately, so Lacey bails and gets on the microphone. She says sheís started a new chapter in her life. She wants to have a straight up wrestling match with Haze, as the crowd chants ďwe want Jimmy,Ē referring to Jacobs, who accompanied Lacey to ringside. True to her word Lacey straight up wrestles Haze, as they exchange holds in the early going. Haze controls the action with a headlock. She then switches it up to the arm. Lacey comes back and tries going after the leg, but Haze recovers and goes back to the headlock. Lacey tries to utilize the splits but Haze is able to counter. Lacey continues to struggle so she seeks solace from Jacobs at ringside. Haze goes out after her and Lacey slams her back into the ring apron multiple times and then she chokes Lacey with her boot and tries to use Jacobsís cane. Back in the ring Lacey controls the action for a few minutes and then Haze comes back. Haze goes for the Heart Punch but Lacey counters to a lung blower for two. Haze goes for the Mind Trip but Lacey rolls out of it (sort of) and rolls to the floor. Jacobs holds Lacey outside the ring until the time limit expires at 10:00 exactly. The action in that was fine, but nothing worth going nuts over.
Erick Stevens is backstage to talk about how tough his short run in ROH has been thus far. He says now that ROH is on pay-per-view everyone has to step their game up, including him.
MATCH #3: Kevin Steen & El Generico vs. Mike Quackenbush & Jigsaw
BG says: Jigsaw and Generico start. They trade holds and Jigsaw tags out. Quackenbush puts on a knuckle lock and hits a monkey flip. He hits a northern lights suplex for 1. Steen and Jigsaw tag in. Steen grabs a headlock and holds his ground through a shoulder tackle. He hits an elbow but Jigsaw comes back with armdrags and a head scissors takedown. Generico tags in and Steen attacks Jigsaw from behind. Steen tags back in as Generico shrugs. Steen hits an elbowdrop and tags to Generico. Generico hits a bodyslam for 2. He hits a backbreaker for 2. Steen tags in and hits the somersault legdrop. Jigsaw kicks Steenís face and goes for a backslide. Steen counters to a backbreaker and a big senton. Jigsaw gets a roll up for 2. Steen keeps him from making the tag and tags to Generico. Jigsaw hits an enziguiri and a tornado DDT. Steen and Quackenbush tag in and Quackenbush takes control. He hits a diving butt splash and an elbow to the head. Steen goes for the package piledriver but Jigsaw blocks it with a superkick, getting 2 for Quackenbush. Quackenbush hits a DDT for 2. He climbs the ropes but Steen slams him down. Steen hits a powerbomb and Generico comes off the top for 2. Quackenbush hits a full nelson facebuster and tags to Jigsaw. Jigsaw comes off the top with a splash but it hits knees. Generico misses the Yakuza kick and Jigsaw hits a torture rack powerbomb. Quackenbush comes off the top with a Swanton Bomb and Jigsaw follows with a top rope legdrop. Quackenbush hits a double kneedrop off the top for 2 when Steen pulls Jigsaw to the floor. Steen drags Generico to his corner and tags in. He hits Quackenbush with a gutbuster and climbs the ropes. He misses the moonsault and Quackenbush sets him up top. Jigsaw tries to bring Steen down with a hurricanrana but Steen holds him and Generico hits a corner to corner dropkick. Steen follows that with a superbomb for 2 when Quackenbush saves. Generico dumps Quackenbush to the floor and dives out onto him. Steen hits Jigsaw with the package piledriver and rolls him into Genericoís brainbuster for the win. Fantastic match that made all four guys look great. This was the perfect match to show ROH fans that the new crop of wrestlers has a lot to offer. After the match Steen acts like a jerk and says that heís fat because heís full of talent.
Jake and Dave Crist say that the PPV announcement has lit a fire in them. They want ROH to give them one more shot to prove they belong on the roster. Yeah, good luck with that guys.
JZ says: This should be pretty good. The two masked men start it off with some mat wrestling. Generico has some different, bluer gear on tonight. Jigsaw soon tags out to quack and he and Generico do some interesting moves and counter-moves. Steen and Jigsaw are tagged in now. Steen uses his power to take advantage of the masked man who is not his partner. Jigsaw comes back with a headscissors, so Steen tags out to Generico. Steen takes a cheap shot and tags himself back in. He and Generico work on Jigsaw, going after his back. Jigsaw comes back with a swinging tornado DDT and he makes the tag to Quackenbush. Quack goes after Steen and is a house of fire. A DDT by Quackenbush gets two. Tags become a thing of the past at this point. The action is getting far too fast for me to follow. Quackenbush gets taken out outside the ring and that leaves Jigsaw prey to a Package Piledriver and a Brainbuster and Steen & Generico get the duke at 13:05. That started a bit slow but got crazy out of hand and was really enjoyable. Steen & Generico continue to roll towards the Briscoes. Steen actually throws Jigsaw out of the ring on the post match handshake, thus further cementing his current awesomeness.
The Irish Airborne is backstage to talk about pay-per-view, for some reason. They couldnít look any more like random Indy wrestlers than they do right there.
MATCH #4: Matt Cross vs. Davey Richards
BG says: Richards puts Cross on the mat to start. Richards hits a shoulder tackle but walks into a dropkick. Richards goes to the floor so Cross dives out onto him. Back in the ring Cross hits a slingshot senton for 2. He puts on an armbar and gets a head scissors takedown. He hits a Japanese armdrag but Richards comes back with a firemanís carry into a headlock. He hangs Cross on the top rope and hits him with a bodyslam on the floor. Back in the ring Richards gets 2. He hits a clothesline for 2. He hits a snap suplex and puts on a chinlock. He kicks Crossís chest and hits a back suplex for 2. He sets Cross up top and catches him coming off the top with a gutbuster. He hits a German suplex for 2. Cross dodges a blind charge and hits a springboard double stomp. He hits a standing moonsault and gets a roll up for 2. He hits a hurricanrana off the second rope and a DVD onto his knee. He comes off the top with a twisting press for 2. Richards bails so Cross follows him out with the Space Flying Tiger Drop. Back in the ring Cross climbs the ropes. He misses a shooting star press and gets rammed into the post. Richards hits a tombstone piledriver for 2 before putting on the 14:59 for the win. Pretty good match that let Cross showcase his skills while also keeping Richards very dominant.
After the match Roderick Strong and Rocky Romero run in and beat on Cross. Erick Stevens and Delirious make the save, leading to a match between Romero and Delirious.
JZ says: Richards tries to attack right away but Cross avoids him. They go back and forth to start and Richards bails to the floor. Cross fakes a dive and Richards thinks heís out of the woods, and thatís when Cross hits the dive. Back in the ring a somersault senton gets a one count. The action is going fast in this one, with neither guy gaining a sustained advantage. Richards suplexes Cross stomach first on the top rope, and Cross tries to catch his breath on the floor. Richards follows him out and abuses him. Back in the ring Richards continues to pound on Cross. Richards Irish whips Cross into the corner, and that allows Cross to make a comeback and hit a double stomp and a standing Moonsault. A cradle only gets two. Cross continues the high flying assault, but Richards is able to nail him with a tombstone piledriver. Cross kicks out but Richards is able to grab him in the Kimura Lock and Cross taps out at 10:12. That had a good dynamic, though Iím finding that Iím not nearly as interested in any of the NRC as singles guys as I am when theyíre all together.
The NRC attack Cross after the match until Delirious and Erick Stevens run out to make the save. Stevens chases off Strong and it looks like the Delirious vs. Romero matchup is on now.
MATCH #5: Rocky Romero vs. Delirious
BG says: Delirious goes for the Panic Attack to start but Romero blocks it and hits a dropkick off the second rope. If Lenny Leonard tells the fans that azucar means sugar one more time Iím going to freak out. Delirious knocks Romero the floor and dives off the top onto him. He tosses Romero into the crowd and hits him with a chair. Romero throws a chair back at him so Delirious tosses Romero onto the bleachers. Romero rams Deliriousís head into the wall and sits him in a chair before hitting a crossbody. Delirious comes back with a chair shot to the head. Back in the ring Delirious drop toeholds Romero into the corner and hits the Panic Attack. He climbs the ropes but Romero counters the Shadows to a cross armbreaker. Delirious gets to the ropes. Delirious slams Romero to the mat and hits the soccer kick. He hits another soccer kick and a leaping clothesline for 2. Romero hits a knee kick and comes off the second rope with a DDT for 2. He goes back to the cross armbreaker but Delirious gets to the ropes again. Romero hits a knee in the corner and sets Delirious up top. Delirious blocks the Diablo armbar and hits the Shadows for 2. He grabs Romeroís arm while heís kicking out and puts on the Cobra Stretch. Romero counters to a tiger suplex for 2. Delirious ducks the buzzsaw kick and rolls Romero up for the win. The match never really clicked and the brawl through the crowd was really weak.
After the match Romero hits the buzzsaw kick and the NRC attacks in full force. Stevens and Cross try to make the save but Strong, Richards and Romero are too much for them.
JZ says: Delirious starts the match on fire, so much so that he doesnít even remove his vest. Romero makes a brief comeback (Azucar~!) but Delirious tosses him to the floor and hits a dive from the top rope right onto Romero. He next tosses Romero over the barricade and hits him with a chair. They fight up into the bleachers and Delirious gets his face tossed into the concrete wall. Delirious fights back by throwing chairs at Romero. They finally get back towards the ring and Delirious lures Romero into the Panic Attack. Romero fights back with the Diablo Armbar but Delirious reaches the ropes. They continue to go back and forth and Romero goes for the Armbar again and Delirious again reaches the ropes. He comes back and hits Shadows over Hell but Romero kicks out, right into the Cobra Stretch. Romero escapes and hits a release Tiger Suplex and goes for the big kick. Delirious ducks and gets a school boy for the pin at 9:02. That was decent for a brawl but Iím generally not into those kind of impromptu matches.
Romero hits the kick after the bell and the No Remorse Corps are dismantling the masked man. Cross and Stevens come out and make the save and they brawl for a few minutes.
BG says: A shirtless Larry Sweeney has a lot to say about ROH being on PPV. Heís excited about the exposure that Sweet Ní Sour Inc. is going to be getting on Pay Per View. Thereís no stopping them now.
JZ says: Larry Sweeney is backstage and shirtless, talking about how pay-per-view is great for Sweet ĎNí Sour Incorporated, since it will give them more exposure and more money. Sweeney promos are great.
MATCH #6: Four Corner Survival Ė BJ Whitmer vs. Brent Albright vs. Erick Stevens vs. Jimmy Rave
BG says: Like the night before this is for a shot at Takeshi Morishimaís title at Death Before Dishonor Weekend, and like the night before the commentators sort of gloss over that fact. Rave wipes his hand off on his pants after shaking each opponentís hand. This guy is the king of the small touch. Albright and Stevens start. Albright puts on an armbar and dodges an armdrag from Stevens to punt his ribs. He hits an overhead suplex and a delayed vertical suplex. Whitmer and Rave tag in and Whitmer takes control. Rave hits a cheap shot but runs into an exploder. He bails and Whitmer follows him out with a suicide dive. Whitmer gets onto the apron so Stevens knocks him off and hits a forearm off the apron. Albright dives out onto everyone off the top. Back in the ring Albright tags in and trades blows with Rave. He hits a back elbow and a bodyslam. He hits a senton for 2. Stevens tags Rave out and elbows Albright down. He goes up top but Albright knocks him to the floor. He sets Stevens on the apron and kicks him front and back. He hits an overhead suplex on the floor and gets 2 back in the ring. Rave tags in and stomps on Stevensís face. Albright tags back in and hits a backbreaker for 2. He puts on a chinlock and rams Stevensís head into the turnbuckle. Stevens tags out to Whitmer who knocks Rave off the apron and hits a leg lariat on Albright. He hits a spinebuster for 2. He hits a big boot on Rave but Albright catches him with a German suplex. Albright slaps Stevens across the face and hits a neckbreaker. He hits the 908 knee on Rave and another German suplex on Whitmer. He rolls through and hits another German for 2. Whitmer pulls Albright to the floor and rams him into the barricade. Stevens chops Rave around and hits the Choo Choo avalanche. Rave hits a back heel kick but Stevens catches him with a powerslam. He tosses Whitmer to the floor but Rave grabs him with the heel hook. Whitmer breaks up the hold with a knee to the head. Whitmer hits a brainbuster on Rave and an exploder on Stevens. The referee tells Whitmer that heís not the legal man, infuriating him. Whitmer goes after the referee allowing Albright to catch him with the half nelson suplex for the win. It was nice to see the referee enforce the legal man rules as well as see them integrated into Whitmerís character development. The match was pretty good but nowhere near as excellent as the four way from the night before.
JZ says: The thing Albright wears over his face is pretty lame. Even so, he starts the match with Stevens and actually dominates the younger, less experienced Stevens. Albright executes an impressive stalling suplex. Stevens needs to regroup so he tags in Whitmer, and Rave blind tags himself in at Albrightís expense. Prazak claims that Rave and Whitmer have had most matches in ROH (I assume he means among active competitors), and Iíll let Brad get back to you on that one. Rave and Whitmer take the fight to the floor and Stevens and Albright decide to join them. Albright and Rave are in the ring now and Albright beats him up for a minute until Stevens comes in. Albright continues the beating on Stevens and Rave comes back in at an opportune time and beats goes to work on Stevens now. Rave and Albright are almost working as a team though not outwardly so. Stevens finally tags out to Whitmer, who has wanted to get his hands on Albright since last nightís singles match. This one breaks down with everyone going back and forth between the ring and the floor, but referee Paul Turner is able to keep track of the legal man. Rave puts the Heel Hook on Stevens but Whitmer breaks that up. Whitmer catches Stevens with an exploder but Whitmer canít pin him because heís not legal. Whitmer thinks Turner is being unfair to him so h e tries to slug him and Albright takes the opportunity to hit the Half Nelson Suplex to get the pin at 12:54. That was not unlike most ROH four-ways, except at least Albright gets a title shot now.
MATCH #7: 2 out of 3 Falls ROH World Tag Team Title Match Ė The Briscoe Brothers vs. Chris Hero & Claudio Castagnoli
BG says: The handling of the Claudio/Hero relationship has been so badly bungled in ROH it makes me sad. Because of Claudio and Matt Sydalís good showing against the Briscoes on the first PPV they were both allowed another tag title match against the Briscoes with a partner of their choosing in a 2/3 falls match. Claudio chose Hero. This is also a rubber match as the two teams exchanged wins in December in fantastic non-title matches. Jay and Hero start. Jay grabs a wristlock but Hero bounces around to escape. He bounces around some more and slugs Jay before putting on a headlock. He does a cartwheel but walks into a big boot from Jay. Claudio and Mark tag in and Claudio grabs a headlock. They trade holds and Jay tags in. Jay hits a back elbow and a seated dropkick for 1. Mark tags in and Claudio gets double-teamed. Hero rushes in and shoves both Briscoes down. Mark and Jay come back with the double shoulder tackle to both opponents. Mark hits a vertical suplex on Claudio for 2. Claudio hits a gutwrench suplex and Hero hits a boot to the face on the apron. Claudio hits the crabwalk elbow for 2. Hero tags in and hits a chinbreaker. Claudio tags in and Hero launches him into a spear for 2. He hits a full nelson slam for 2. Hero tags in and the Kings hit a double big boot on both opponents. Hero puts on a chinlock and tags to Claudio. Claudio hits a delayed vertical suplex for 2. Hero tags in and boots Mark off of Claudioís shoulder for 2. He puts on a half crab and tags to Claudio. Claudio hits a bodyslam and a legdrop for 2. Hero tags in but Mark fights the Kings off and tags to Jay. Jay hits Claudio with a hurricanrana and a dropkick. He hits a superkick on Claudio and a powerslam on Hero for 2. He hits a stunner on Claudio and clotheslines him to the floor. Hero hits him with a big boot but Jay comes back with the Jay Driller to win the first fall.
Thirty seconds later the second fall starts with the Briscoes double-teaming Claudio. Claudio dumps Mark to the floor and hits Jay with a second rope European uppercut for 2. He hits the giant swing on Jay until Mark stops him with a chop to the head. Claudio ducks a kick and hits the giant swing on Mark until Jay stops him with a boot to the face. Mark hits a Manhattan drop and Jay hits a neckbreaker for 2. Mark tags in and hits the yelping splash for 2. Jay tags in but Claudio knocks the Briscoes together and hits them both with facebusters. He hits the Match Killer on Mark and a spinebuster on Jay. He finally hits a full giant swing on Jay and follows up with a European uppercut for 2. Jay hits a chinbreaker and tags to Mark. The Briscoes hit the double toss and Mark hits a climbing dropkick. Jay hits a Yakuza kick, getting 2 for Mark when Hero saves. Claudio hits another diving European uppercut on Jay and tags to Hero. Hero hits a neckbreaker and a cravat cutter off the second rope for 2. Mark hits him with a diving forearm and tags to Jay. Jay hits an elevated legdrop for 2. Hero goes to the eyes and hits a chokeslam. Claudio tags in and brings Jay off the top rope with a head scissors takedown. The Kings hit a superkick/bicycle kick combo and Claudio hits the Alpamare Waterslide for 2. Mark whips Hero into the barricade and goes for the spike Jay Driller with Jay but Sweet Ní Sour block Mark and Claudio hits a backdrop on Jay. Mark dives onto Sweeney and company as Claudio hits a springboard European uppercut and the Ricola Bomb on Jay for 2. The Briscoes come back with the springboard Doomsday Device on Claudio for the second fall and the win. Heroís convalesce, taking five minutes to recover from the Jay Driller, was great. It really reinforces the devastating nature of the move. The fact that Jay rarely breaks it out helps too. This was every bit as good as the fantastic match from Final Battle, and the Briscoes look completely unstoppable. For his part Claudio looked great too. Hero forces Bobby Dempsey to carry him to the back.
Daizee Haze is VERY excited about ROH on PPV. Sheís really pumped to show a PPV audience that the Women of Honor are the best womenís wrestlers in the world. Lacey comes out of nowhere and wipes Haze out and then celebrates with Rain. We all know by now that ROH is three PPVs deep and there is yet to be a womenís match to air.
JZ says: The Briscoe Brothers have been champions since 3.30.07, and this is their fifth defense. These two teams had two excellent matches on back-to-back nights last December, so hopefully they can equal or surpass themselves here. Toland and Dempsey are hilarious on the outside of the ring, as usual. Hero and Jay start it off and Jay gets the upper hand. Claudio and Mark get tagged in and the crowd is hot already. The champions take over on Claudio with their unique double team offense. Hero comes in illegally and he gets the same treatment. Claudio and Hero soon take over with unique double teaming of their own, and Claudio hits the crab walk elbow off the second rope and tags out to Hero. They fall back into old Kings of Wrestling habits very quickly, and the crowd is equally supportive of both teams. The Kings continue to work on Mark, getting in a series of near falls. Mark finally makes the tag and Jay is in. He is a house-a-fire and tosses Claudio outside the ring. Hero celebrates a little too much and Jay hits the Jay Driller to pin him and go up 1-0. Now thereís a 30 second rest period between falls. Claudio starts off the second fall trying to wear down the Briscoes with Giant Swings, but he canít complete the maneuver. Jay and Mark work over Claudio and get a couple of near falls. Claudio finally gets the Giant Swing and a European Uppercut on Jay but it only gets two. Claudio gets an awesome looking springboard European Uppercut and tags Hero, who has recovered from the Jay Driller and he hits the front flip cravat out of the corner for two. Hero tries a chokeslam but Mark blocks it. A leg cradle suplex from Hero gets two. Hero does get the chokeslam and tags out to Claudio. Claudio and Hero both display some amazing athleticism and Claudio hits the Alparmare Water Slide on Jay, but even thatís not enough for a pin. He tries the Ricola Bomb but Jay blocks it and they try the spike Jay Driller but Sweeney, Toland, and Dempsey break it up. Mark thus hits a tremendous springboard Moonsault onto them. Claudio hits the Ricola Bomb but Mark breaks up the pin. A sweet looking sequence leads to the Briscoes nailing Claudio with the springboard Doomsday Device to win the second straight fall at 18:45. That was even a little better than their matches last December, as everyone in this match is operating at the top of their game right now.
Daizee Haze cuts a goofy promo about how excited she is to be on pay-per-view and how she can prove what a great athlete she is. However, her peripheral vision is not so good, since Lacey attacks her from the side and knocks her down. Lacey and Rain share a hug afterwards.
MATCH #8: ROH World Title Match Ė Takeshi Morishima vs. Roderick Strong
BG says: Morishima tries to attack Strong before the bell but Strong dodges the charge and chops away. Morishima runs through a chop and hits a shoulder tackle. Strong hits a leg lariat and Morishima bails. Strong follows him out with the Sick Kick off the apron. Strong stays in control on the floor and rolls the champ back in the ring where he gets 2. He hits an enziguiri but Morishima comes back with a sidewalk slam. He knocks Strong around and hits the butt lariat. He hits a bodyslam and stands on Strongís midsection. He hits a big boot in the corner and Strong bails. Morishima follows him out and whips him into the barricade. He hits the Olé Butt Splash and rolls back into the ring. Strong crawls back inside only to have is throat stood on in the corner. Morishima puts on a chinlock but Strong gets to the ropes. Strong dodges a blind charge but jumps into an overhead suplex. They fight to the apron and Strong hits a chop and goes for a sunset bomb. Morishima tries to sit on Strongís chest but Strong moves and Morishima lands on the apron. Strong hits a side slam on the floor and rolls Morishima back into the ring where he gets 2. He hits a clothesline in the corner for 2. He tries to set up for the gutbuster but Morishima blocks and hits a lariat. Morishima hits the handspring avalanche and climbs the ropes. He hits the big dropkick and a big boot in the corner. He slugs Strong down and tosses the referee away. Strong hits a clothesline and a pumphandle back suplex for 2. He goes for the half nelson backbreaker but Morishima blocks it. Strong sandwiches him with clotheslines but runs into a big one from Morishima. Morishima climbs the ropes again but Strong cuts him off and hits a superplex for 1. He hits the Sick Kick and the gutbuster. He hits another Sick Kick for 2. He goes for the tiger driver but Morishima blocks and sits on Strongís chest for 2. Strong hits a back heel kick but runs into the backdrop driver, giving Morishima 2. Strong hits a chinbreaker but Morishima catches him with the uranage suplex and a lariat for 2 and the backdrop driver for the win. Strong was getting squashed right up until the last couple minutes there but the match was a lot of fun and a slight step up from Morishimaís defense against Briscoe. Iím not wild about the way Strong abandoned his No Remorse mentality completely for this match, however.
JZ says: Morishima has been the champion since 2.17.07 and this is his ninth defense. This is Strongís eighth shot at the title. Iím not exactly sure what he did to earn this one, but it was probably something and I just canít remember what it was. Strong attacks the champion right away but Morishima basically shrugs him off. Strong knocks Morishima to the floor and hits a big kick to the face off the apron. Back in the ring Morishima hits a side slam and he goes to work on the challenger. Outside the ring they go and Morishima hits an Ole Butt. He slides back into the ring and waits for Strong. Thatís a badass champion, one who knows he can wait for his challenger to come back in the ring and still easily maintain control. They go back outside the ring and Strong finally makes the comeback and knocks the wind out of the champion and tosses him back in the ring for a two-count. Morishima comes back with a lariat and hits the cartwheel avalanche. The champ follows it up with a missile dropkick that Strong waited an awful long time to get hit with. The champion is in total control here. Strong tries to comeback but the champion is just not having it. Morishima goes up top and Strong stops him. Strong executes a superplex and Morishima kicks out at one. Strong hits a big boot, a gutbuster and another big boot but still only gets two. Strong tries a Tiger Driver but tends up getting Morishimaís ass on his chest instead. Strong tries a clothesline but gets caught with a Back Drop Driver instead. Luckily for Strong he happened to be close to the ropes so he escapes for now. Strong hits a chinbreaker and a chop but then gets hit with a uranage. Morishima hits a monster lariat for two. Morishima decides heís had enough and hits the Back Drop Driver to get the win at 13:13. That was a solid title defense, but didnít too often feel like a main event match.
FIP Heavyweight Title Match from FIP Bloodbath 5/27/06 - VS.
BG says: This is supposed to make up for the fact that the amazing Danielson vs. McGuinness match was removed from this DVD in favor of putting it on the Driven Pay Per View. FIP Bloodbath has yet to be released on DVD, so this is the first time this match has been seen by anyone but the live audience. Lethal hits a shoulder tackle to start. Danielson puts on a headlock but Lethal catches him with a hiptoss. They knuckle up and Lethal overpowers Danielson. Danielson kicks Lethalís gut to gain control. Lethal fires up so Danielson slaps him across the face. They lock up and Lethal ducks a cheap shot to slap Danielson back. Lethal hits a monkey flip so Danielson goes to the eyes. Lethal gets a victory roll for 2. He hits another hiptoss and a dropkick to the face. Danielson bails and uses a security guard as a shield to convince Lethal not to dive out onto him. Back in the ring Lethal counters a headlock to the head scissors. Danielson gets to the ropes. Danielson drops Lethal on the top rope and pitches him to the floor. Milo Beasley hits a flipping headbutt off the apron and Prazak rolls him back into the ring. Danielson works over the neck and hits a kneedrop. Lethal pulls down Danielsonís tights but thankfully Danielson has under-tights on. Unphased because his rear isnít exposed Danielson hits a vertical suplex for 2. He goes to the eyes and climbs the ropes to hit a double axe handle for 2. He hits another for 2. He puts on a chinlock and then hits a knee to the gut. He climbs the ropes but Lethal catches him with a punch to the midsection on his way down. He hits a clothesline and a leg lariat. He hits a back bodydrop and a spinebuster for 2. He hits another clothesline but Prazak trips him and Danielson hits him from behind. Danielson gets crotched on the middle rope so Lethal yanks it up over and over. Lethal climbs the ropes and hits a frog splash for 2. He climbs the ropes again but Prazak distracts him and Danielson hits a superplex for 2. Danielson climbs the ropes but misses a diving headbutt. Lethal gets a roll up for 2. He gets a backslide for 2. He cradles Danielson but Prazak distracts the referee and Beasley rolls them over giving Danielson the win. Cheap finish aside this was a very fun match and a good example of what Danielson was doing in FIP in 2006.
JZ says: Danielson has been the champion since 1.14.06, and this is his fifth defense. The crowd gets on Danielsonís case early on, clearly establishing Lethal as the babyface. Dave Prazak and Mr. Milo Beasly have accompanied the FIP Champion to the ring. Danielson stalls in the early stages of the match. Lethal gets as much as a hiptoss in and the champion bails again for more manly love with Prazak. Danielson really turns on the Larry Zbyszko here, continuing to stall. Danielson sells the Greco Roman knuckle lock like death. The champ continues to irritate the challenger and then avoid him. Lethal fires up and lands a monkey flip and Danielson begs off, only to rake Lethalís eyes and goes to work on him. Lethal comes back with a victory roll for two. The hiptoss-cartwheel-dropkick is enough to send Danielson to the outside once again. Lethal threatens to dive, so Danielson uses a security guard as a human shield. Back in the ring they continue the mat wrestling, with the crowd firmly behind Lethal. Danielson throws Lethal outside the ring and Beasly miraculously gets out of his wheelchair and hits a move of some sort on Lethal from the ring apron. Prazak throws Lethal back in and the FIP Champion is totally in control. Lethal tries a sunset flip and pulls Danielsonís tights down, but lucky for everyone Danielson learned a lesson from Martin Prince. Danielson continues to battle with his under-tights sticking out. He finally notices and is mad at Prazak for not telling him. Danielson hits a pair of double ax handles off the top rope but Lethal kicks out. Danielson tries a third but thatís going to the well once too often. Lethal comes back with a flurry of offense. Lethal hits a spinebuster but the Champion kicks out. Lethal goes to the ropes and Prazak grabs his leg. Lethal escapes his predicament and makes Danielson ride the horsey. Lethal hits a top rope splash but Danielson gets his foot on the ropes. Lethal goes up top again and Prazak stops him, allowing Danielson to hit the superplex. That only gets two. Danielson then heads to the top rope and promptly misses the diving headbutt. Lethal gets a school boy for a near fall, and a backslide as well. Lethal then uses a small package and Prazak distracts the referee and Beasly rolls Danielson over Lethal and the champion gets the pin to retain the title at 21:20. That was a lot of fun and itís always nice to see some FIP action on ROH DVDs just for a little something different.
PRE SHOW MATCH: Top of the Class Trophy Four Way Fray Ė Alex Payne vs. Rhett Titus vs. Mitch Franklin vs. Pelle Primeau
BG says: Titus looks less-than-confident with his gimmick. It looks as though he has a gimmick for the sake of having a gimmick. Keeping with the FIP theme of these bonus matches this is under FIP Four Way Fray rules, which means everyone is in the ring at the same time and itís under elimination rules. Everyone attacks Primeau to start but canít decide who will pin him. Thatís silly considering the rules. Titus starts to take over but spends too much time talking to the crowd and misses a legdrop. Primeau hits him with the Thesz press/double stomp combo for 2 when Payne saves. Stupid. Payne hits a dropkick for 2. Franklin hits Payne with a hurricanrana into the turnbuckle. Primeau hits a hurricanrana on Titus on the floor, badly hitting his head on the apron in the process. He dives off the apron with a dropkick onto Payne but gets caught by Franklin with a suicide dive. Back in the ring Franklin ties Payne up with a submission to eliminate him. Titus comes in and hits Franklin with a dropkick. He dropkicks Primeau to the floor and hits Franklin with a bodyslam. He climbs the ropes but misses a frog splash. Franklin hits him with a wheelbarrow facebuster to eliminate him. Primeau and Franklin stare each other down and Primeau gets a roll up for 2. Franklin gets a roll up for 2. He gets a legsweep for 2. He cradles Primeau for 2. He gets a backslide for 2. Primeau gets a roll up for 2. Franklin counters a sunset flip for 2. Primeau hits the stunner and rolls Franklin up for the win. The logic behind the first few minutes of the match was flawed but the action was great considering who was involved in the match.
JZ says: Primeau has held the Trophy since April 14, and this is his first defense. A four-way fray is an FIP staple, so Iím sure Garoon is pumped. All three challengers go after Primeau, but their teamwork canít last because they all want to be the one to pin Primeau. But itís elimination, so as long as Primeau gets pinned who cares? Thatís rookies for ya. Primeau continues to take a beating, as Payne does the beating. Payne then moves on to Franklin and they have a nice exchange. Primeau recovers and hits a nasty rana to the outside on Titus; he jacked his head on the apron on his way down. He then hits a sick dropkick to Payne on the floor. Franklin hits a dive onto Primeau, and now itís Franklin and Payne in the ring. Franklin gets a submission on Payne and he submits, and weíre down to three. Titus and Franklin go at it and Franklin hits a cool wheelbarrow into a faceplant to eliminate Titus. Itís down to the two sometimes partners now. Primeau hits the flying stunner and cradles Franklin to pin him at 5:40. That was surprisingly very entertaining, and I wouldnít mind if they included more pre show matches as bonuses on the DVD. I think much like the women, they are able to perform better on the pre show when there is less pressure.
BG says: The Briscoes get the honor this time around. I think this is the first time Iíve given MVP to more than one person at once, but theyíve been given the award the same amount of times in the past and it feels wrong giving one the advantage over the other at this point considering how great theyíve done as a team.
Coming soon will be our review of UNITED WE STAND!
The 411: BG says: Everything on the show hovered around or above the *** mark. The bonus matches kept that level of quality going and the tag title match was excellent. Itís mostly the tag match that makes this an easy show to recommend, even without the Nigel/Danielson masterpiece.
JZ says: The World Tag Team Title match is almost worth buying the DVD for itself, and thereís other good stuff through the show as well. The other best match on the show is also a tag match, so those who like tag team wrestling definitely need to get this show. It feels a bit like a placeholder for the pay-per-view taping the next night, but this is a solid show.