Ring of Honor Weekly

Last week I went over my #20-11 on my Best ROH DVDs Ever list. This week, along with all the news and views, we’ll be counting down from #10 to the single best ROH DVD.

News of Honor

The sixth ROH PPV Take No Prisoners debuts tonight at either 8 or 10pm. Check your cable provider and don’t miss it!

The replay times on this suck so be sure to check it out the first showing. Also, be sure to check back here for live coverage and all the views you could want on the PPV as a whole. The show has both a **** match and a **** ½ match, so it’s surely worth seeing. Check out the Cool Kids Preview of the Show and other great indy coverage.

The PPV deal for ROH has been extended, with 6/7/08 in Philadelphia being a PPV taping, as well as July 26 in Detroit

The PPVs being continued means that they are having at least some positive affect on the company. At the very least, the attendance of these shows will go up due to them being PPVs. The June 7 show looks stacked, with Nigel defending against Go Shiozaki in what is sure to be a great match, a Fight Without Honor between Erick Stevens and Roderick Strong to cap their amazing rivalry, and Bryan Danielson and Austin Aries reuniting Team Work to face respective rivals Tyler Black and Jimmy Jacobs.

ROH DVD ‘Stars of Honor’ can be found in Best Buy thanks to ROH fans calls for it

If you can, be sure to buy this. It’s a very good DVD, but even better is Bloodstained Honor, so continue to call and e-mail Best Buy or go check that out at FYE.

There’s FIP this weekend!

I’d say more, but we have a new column up later in the day that should quite take care of that. Be sure to check back with www.Pulsewrestling.com for David Wells’ column. All I have to say besides is Jerry Lynn vs. Roderick Strong vs. Austin Aries is already booked.

Be sure to check News of Honor next week for a preview of the Hartford Tag Title Tournament and what we can expect from the PPV taping that Saturday.

The Top 10 ROH DVDs Ever

10. Supercard of Honor, 3/30/06

This show is rated lower for me than it is for many, but it’s still a simply great show that merely suffers from too much filler. What works here works amazingly. AJ Styles and Matt Sydal facing Austin Aries and Jack Evans managed a **** ¼ – **** ½ near classic that is badly overshadowed by the match that immediately follows it. That match is a ***** must-see classic by Dragon Kid, Genki Horiguchi, and Ryo Saito against CIMA, Naruki Doi and Masato Yoshino. This is an absolute five star, must see classic.

Besides another chapter in the CZW feud, the only other match really worth seeing is a ROH World Title match between Bryan Danielson and Roderick Strong. As great as this is, it goes quite long and drags badly to me, which is why I only have it at ****. Many disagree and have it much higher. Your mileage may vary, but their Vendetta encounter is generally considered better, though on a much inferior show. How you rate this match will essentially determine how highly you’d place this DVD.

9. First Anniversary Show, 2/8/03

This is the single most underrated ROH show ever and if anything I’m underrating it. The undercard features a **** match between Jay and Mark Briscoe, a very good Punk vs. CW Anderson match, a *** ½ early Samoa Joe vs. Bryan Danielson match, and a memorable riot based around Homicide vs. Steve Corino.

All of these encounters are great, but what really makes this show shine is the awesome three-way between (and get a hold of this!) Paul London vs. AJ Styles vs. Low Ki that checks in at **** ½. This is immediately followed by the single best ROH World Title match of Xavier’s run. This show is a hidden gem that is stacked and must see.

8. Glory by Honor VI Night 2, 11/3/07

This show is very good and can be top three… if you don’t mind skipping around the DVD. There’s a lot to love here, starting with a very special encounter between Misawa and KENTA for the GHC Title. That’s a surprising **** – **** ¼ match and Misawa in a great match in ROH is enough to make this must see alone.

Of course, however, that isn’t all. There are two other **** matches in Claudio Castagnoli vs. Naomichi Marufuji and The Briscoes vs. Jimmy Jacobs and Necro Butcher, plus two more *** ½ matches with Chris Hero facing Austin Aries and The NRC vs. The Vulture Squad. Add in living legend Harley Race and you have a show that barely edges what came before.

7. Death before Dishonor, 7/19/03

The biggest and best show of early ROH was headlined by Paul London’s last ROH match against Samoa Joe, a **** match that’s underrated due to a lack of death defying stunts. This is hardly the only enduring match of this show. CM Punk and Raven had a dog collar match that is old ECW style perfection at **** ½, a match where both men bleed hatred.

There are no other **** matches here, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing else to see. The show opens with a Special K rave being interrupted by Low Ki, which ends in one of the cooler moments in ROH history, along with Jeff Hardy’s lone (terribly) ROH match where he is booed out of the company. Tom Carter (Reckless Youth) and Doug Williams put on a memorable *** ¾ technical exhibition and at about the same rating, AJ Styles and the Amazing Red finished their feud with the Briscoes in the most story-filled of their encounters. If you can deal with early ROH’s bad production, you must get this show.

6. Glory by Honor V Night 2, 9/16/06

This is an immensely top heavy, but historically important show. It is the show that features the ***** ROH World Title match between Bryan Danielson and KENTA, a technical classic where Danielson must strive to overcome a badly injured shoulder, but also the first ROH GHC Title defense, with Marufuji defending against Nigel McGuinness in a **** ¼ – **** ½ match.

While those are clearly the class of the show, the Manhattan Center debut also features the Kings of Wrestling taking yet another title, this time from Aries and Strong in a *** ½ match. In another lively *** ½ tag affair, The Briscoes took on former enemies Samoa Joe and Homicide for the first time. The last *** ½ match was the opener which saw Jack Evans and Davey Richards get the hot crowd going. Important angles were advanced in the Jimmy Jacobs vs. Colt Cabana vs. Chris Daniels match, while Shane Hagadorn joined Adam Pearce in his match against Delirious. We also get a great Jim Cornette promo and an appearance by Bruno Sammartino, as well as Takeshi Morishima’s first ROH appearance. Get the damn show.

5. Man Up, 9/15/07

The best ROH PPV so far, Man Up, is up next. The main event of the PPV is the stuff of legends, a nearly impossible to rate train wreck, feud ender between The Briscoes and Kevin Steen and El Generico in a Ladder War. After this match, the Age of the Fall debuted in memorable fashion. That’s not even surely the best match on the card as Bryan Danielson returns with a broken eye socket to challenge Takeshi Morishima for the ROH World title. This memorable and real match had me at the edge of my seat as much as the ladder war. The PPV featured yet another **** match, where Erick Stevens and Roderick Strong had their first ROH match, right after a *** ½ Davey Richards vs. Austin Aries match. Also at about that rating is Nigel McGuinness vs. Claudio Castagnoli vs. Chris Hero vs. Naomichi Marufuji.

The post-PPV portion of the DVD lacks the stellar matches of the first half but still has the first Age of the Fall match against the Irish Airborne and Jack Evans, a good SHIMMER match featuring Amazing Kong and Daizee Haze vs. Lacey and Sara Del Rey, and the very last Matt Sydal match in ROH as he faced longtime rival Delirious. Whether you’ve seen the PPV or not, this one is must buy.

4. Better than Our Best, 3/30/06

Would four very different **** matches be something you’d be interested in? On one show? Well, if it is, then check this one out. The first great match, **** ¼- **** ½, Jimmy Rave, Alex Shelley, and Masato Yoshino vs. Dragon Kid, Genki Horiguchi, and Ryo Saito they mixed Dragon Gate and mat wrestling to great effect. After this we have a **** Samoa Joe vs. AJ Styles vs. Chris Daniels vs. Jimmy Yang match where they put on a spot filled, story based match. One of the top tag matches in ROH history occurred as Austin Aries and Roderick Strong had a **** ½- **** ¾ match with CIMA and Naruki Doi. A brawl round out the **** matches as Homicide and Colt Cabana finish their feud with a final street fight.

Added to these great matches is a *** ¾ technical affair between Bryan Danielson and Lance Storm, a match Storm considers one of the best of his career and a huge pop for Delirious earning his ROH spot against Ricky Reyes. All together, this show is loaded.

3. Fifth Year Festival: Finale, 3/4/07

I have this rated higher than most, but, in front of a rabid crowd, this is among the most complete ROH experiences ever. Every match is *** ½ or higher, except the Shimmer match, so with everything so great, let’s just begin with the start of the show.

The first match is Colt Cabana vs. Delirious in a memorable *** ½ comedy match that is among the funniest in ROH history. After the aforementioned Shimmer match we have a **** falls count anywhere with Jimmy Jacobs vs. BJ Whitmer. This huge brawl is followed by a high flying affair at *** ½ with Pac vs. Matt Sydal. The next match is a **** ½ stiff-fest with Jay and Mark Briscoe toughening each other up. We then go **** for a tag title match which is a mix of tag formula and Dragon Gate Style as Shingo and Naruki Doi defend the tag titles against Roderick Strong and Davey Richards. Then comes yet another memorable brawl, a Fight without Honor and Jimmy Rave’s best match against Nigel McGuinness at **** ½. The show finished off with a mere *** ½ match, but that was ROH Icon Samoa Joe’s last ROH match against friend and rival, Homicide. With a pure technical classic this would steal #1 or 2, but as is, it’s a must see DVD for sheer quality and diversity across the board.

2. Manhattan Mayhem, 5/7/05

This show is the show that until very recently all other ROH shows have been compared to. With four **** matches and memorable occurrences up and down the card, this show is truly special. The main event is likely the best of these as ROH Champion Austin Aries defends against former Generation Next leader Alex Shelley. Both men are out to prove they are the best here in a **** ½ must see technical match that adds emotion to every hold. The other big contender for match of the card at **** ½ is a Dog Collar Match between Jimmy Rave and CM Punk. This memorable brawl tore the house down as these men brought the hate to Manhattan. If you prefer great spotfests, Jack Evans and Roderick Strong battle Jimmy Jacobs and BJ Whitmer in a battle of teams that are very alike at ****, while James Gibson works with Black Tiger IV (Rocky Romero in another **** match, this a technical exhibition. We have two more matches that are nearly **** here as well, with Samoa Joe vs. Jay Lethal for the Pure Title doing a very good mentor teacher dynamic at *** ½, while a face-heel dynamic goes into the chain wrestling at *** ¾ Nigel McGuinness vs. Colt Cabana match. The finale of the show is *** ½ too, but is a surprise, so I won’t ruin it. This show is an all-time great for any company, particularly if you like technical wrestling.

1. Supercard of Honor III, 3/29/07

With five straight ****+ matches the newest ROH DVD release has got to be considered the single best ROH show ever. The opener is a *** ¼ – *** ½ match that mixes NOAH style and comedy as Go Shiozaki faces off with Delirious, while the next match plays off the YRR’s heelishness against the utterly random pairing of Bushwacker Luke, Dingo, and Alex Payne. This isn’t great, but is better than it has any right to be. From here, the awesome happens.

Roderick Strong and Erick Stevens have an insanely stiff brawl that isn’t technically a match, but besides the bell technicality, fits every storyline logic for one and is **** with ease. These two’s feud is must see in all iterations and this is no exception. Speaking of must see feuds, The Briscoes had an insane brawl with Jimmy Jacobs and Tyler Black of the Age of the Fall that has one of the coolest finishing spots around at ****- **** ¼. After this we mix Dragon Gate with tag formula as Kevin Steen and El Generico face New Hazard of the awesome Shingo and BxB Hulk, a **** ½ match. Unbelievably, the show gets better from there with a **** ½ to **** ¾ fast paced technical classic from Austin Aries and Nigel McGuinness that many (myself included) prefer to their heralded Rising Above classic. The finale of the show is the now traditional Dragon Gate Six Man, with CIMA, Ryo Saito and Dragon Kid battling Naruki Doi, Yokosuka, and Genki Horiguchi in a match that’s **** ¼ to **** ½ and plays off both the first and second Dragon Gate Six Man tags.

This show begins hitting and doesn’t stop with awesome matches in a variety of styles. It’s in front of one of the hottest crowds in ROH history and nary a moment feels wasted. This DVD is must buy. If you don’t believe me, check back next week for when I have a full review of it, but really, believe the hype, Supercard of Honor III is the best ROH DVD ever.

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