Bryan Danielson battles Davey Richards in tonightâ€™s main event, but earlier tonight Bret â€œThe Hitmanâ€ Hart was signing autographs!
MATCH #1: The Young Bucks vs. Cheech & Cloudy
Cheech and Cloudy are collectively known as Up in Smoke. Dave Prazak and Chris Hero are once again calling the action. Matt Jackson and Cloudy will start the contest. I expect a lot of fast-paced, high-flying action in this one. After some of that, each man makes a tag to his respective partner. They quick, choreographed looking stuff continues with these two. The Bucks take over on Cheech and go to work on his arm. Cheech comes back with a snap mare and a dropkick, and then tags in Cloudy. Their control doesnâ€™t last too long before Nick makes the tag to Matt. They beat up on Cloudy for a while, until Cloudy hits a missile dropkick and makes the tag. Cheech goes to work on Matt, locking on a no-hands Sharpshooter. Matt is isolated in the Up in Smoke half of the ring for several minutes. He makes the comeback with a Twisting Diamond Dust, and both men are down. Nick gets the tag and takes out both Cheech and Cloudy. The math breaks down to a brawl, with all four men coming in and out of the ring. The Bucks hit their patented Tope Con Hilo, and the fans are behind them. Back in the ring Cheech and Matt get tags, and the Bucks go for More Bang for Your Buck but Cheech avoids it. Moments later the second attempt at More Bang for Your Buck is successful, and the Bucks get the win at 12:11. The easily impressed crowd chants â€œThat Was Awesome,â€ but I think â€œThat Was a Decent Openerâ€ would be a more appropriate chant.
MATCH #2: Sonjay Dutt vs. Delirious
It takes about a minute for Dutt to bust out the Jarrett strut, which is just about the most annoying thing anyone in ROH does these days. Delirious comes back with a strut of his own, which is a bit disturbing. They engage in some chain wrestling, and Delirious comes out on top with a headlock. Dutt escapes and sends Delirious to the floor. Delirious crawls under the ring, and Dutt is so stupid that he allows Delirious to sneak up behind him from the other side. Dutt takes a powder and Delirious follows him out, but Dutt slides back in the ring and weâ€™re right back to where we were a moment ago. Delirious once again crawls under the ring, and this time Dutt goes to the other side to meet Delirious. But the masked man is one step ahead, and he comes out the same side and hits a clothesline off the top rope for two. Dutt once again takes a powder and uses Daizee Haze as a shield to take the advantage. Back in the ring Dutt continues to control the action. Delirious fires back with a flurry of offense. They trade the advantage back and forth with a series of offensive maneuvers. Delirious hits the Panic Attack and goes up for the Shadows over Hell, but Dutt gets his knees up and hits an Asai DDT. Dutt rolls that into a Camel Clutch, which Delirious escapes and locks on the Cobra Stretch, and Dutt escapes that. Delirious tries a backslide for two, and Dutt comes back with a dropkick and goes for a La Magistral cradle, but Delirious counters that with a cradle of his own to get the pin at 11:05. Once it got going it was pretty decent, but I wish that after over five years in the company they would make something more out of a guy as talented as Delirious is than just a comedic mid-card act. Dutt attacks Delirious after the bell, and then turns his attention to Haze, pulling her into the ring for a lip lock. Haze responds with a slap to the face, so Dutt throws her down to the canvas and puts her in the Camel Clutch! Delirious recovers and goes crazy, and the locker room empties as well to chase Dutt off. Now thereâ€™s some good old fashioned woman bashing to ignite a feud, and I have no problem with that. Maybe weâ€™ll get Red Delirious!
MATCH #3: Four Corner Survival â€“ Chris Hero vs. Petey Williams vs. Claudio Castagnoli vs. El Generico
Eric Santamaria joins Prazak on commentary for this one. Castagnoli is accompanied by Prince Nana and Mr. Ernesto Osiris, and Hero is accompanied by Shane Hagadorn. Hero and Castagnoli both head to the floor, so Generico and Williams start the match by default. Generico decides to leap over the top rope and wipe out Castagnoli, so Hero takes that distraction as a chance to attack Williams. That doesnâ€™t last long as Williams slides to the floor and Generico hits a high cross body off the top rope for two. Castagnoli dispatches Williams and then gets in the ring to battle Generico. Whew, this match is moving very quickly. Castagnoli executes the Giant Swing on Williams and Hero delivers a dropkick to the head, which gets a two-count for Castagnoli. Hero and Castagnoli work as a team to dominate their smaller opponents. After several minutes of domination by the former Kings of Wrestling, some miscommunication allows Williams to take control. Williams goes for the Canadian Destroyer on Hero but Castagnoli breaks it up. Generico takes Castagnoli to the floor with a flying headscissors off the top rope. Williams hits the Canadian Leg Sweep for two. Hero dumps Williams to the floor, but a resourceful Williams lands a headscissors on Castagnoli! Back in the ring Generico hits Hero with a Blue Thunder Driver for two. The match completely breaks down, and Castagnoli and Hero stop working together with both guys trying to get the win. In all the chaos Castagnoli is left alone in the ring with Williams, and he hits a release Ricola Bomb to score the victory at 9:38. They sure packed a ton of action into a short amount of time, and it was a fun match. Claudio is my favorite wrestler in ROH right now.
Bret Hart Appearance
Hart reminisces about his history in the city of Boston, and even name drops Killer Kowalski. He keeps it real short and sweet, bordering on pointless really. The whole thing lasted about a minute.
MATCH #4: Anything Goes Match â€“ Eddie Edwards vs. Kevin Steen
Before the match Steen cuts a heated promo, talking about how Boston has been a good city to him in terms of his ROH career. He then finds Edwards backstage and starts the match on his own terms! They fight up in the bleachers right away. Edwards is wearing jeans, but Steen apparently didnâ€™t get the memo about street fights. Steen gets a hold of some Mountain Dew and sprays it in Edwardsâ€™s face. You just got citric acid in my eye! Youâ€™ll pay for that. They fight back towards the ring with Steen firmly in control. Hero rejoins the commentary table as Prazak recaps the match to this point for him. Meanwhile Edwards makes a comeback and kicks Steen in the face. He follows up by ringing the ring bell against Steenâ€™s ear. He uses a chair to subdue Steen, and then becomes the first man in the ring. Edwards tries a tope, but Steen waffles him with a chair on the way down, and judging by the way heâ€™s holding his elbow, Iâ€™d wager thatâ€™s when Edwards broke his elbow. What a stupid bump to take the night before Ladder War II. Back in the ring now Steen unloads on Edwardsâ€™s knee with the chair. Edwards avoids another shot and hits a chair-assisted superkick. He stalls by doing nothing, so Steen punches him in the gut and then pounds him down into the corner. He goes for the cannonball, but for who knows WHAT THE FUCK reason, the referee gets in his way to stop him. Steen throws Sinclair out of the way, and Edwards hits a low blow. Um, itâ€™s a STREET FIGHT, why do you have to throw the referee out before hitting a low blow? And WHY THE FUCK did Sinclair stop the cannonball? Iâ€™m done with this match. Alright itâ€™s been a few minutes and Iâ€™m calmer now. In the meantime Steen had introduced a ladder but Davey Richards came out and took it away. Edwards sets up four chairs in the ring and goes for a piledriver, but Steen counters with one of his own (sick) and thatâ€™s enough for the pin at 14:01. That was alright for a Street Fight type of match, but I still donâ€™t understand the spots with the referee in a street fight. And as Chris Hero pointed out, why would Davey only come for the ladder but not the chairs? I also think keeping these four apart the night before Ladder War II would have been more effective.
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MATCH #5: Dark City Fight Club vs. Alex Payne & Bobby Dempsey
DCFC attack right way, as Kory Chavis beats up Dempsey on the floor. Meanwhile Jon Davis goes to work on Payne in the ring. After some weak looking offense by Payne, Davis makes the tag to Chavis. Poor little Sugarfoot is just getting rocked here by both guys. Davis lands a huge spinebuster, which gets a two-count. After several minutes, Payne makes the lukewarm tag to Dempsey. Unfortunately the DCFC decide to sell for Dempsey, which makes me sad. The straps come down and Dempsey hits Davis with the Cannonball. Payne gets tagged back in and goes up top, but Davis comes back with a big Pounce on Dempsey, knocking Payne off the top rope. DCFC follow up with the Greater Good on Payne to get the win at 6:42. That was mostly a squash except for the inexplicable burst of offense from the clueless looking Dempsey. I wouldnâ€™t want to sacrifice two of my monsters to him if I was booking.
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MATCH #6: Nigel McGuinness vs. Roderick Strong
Apparently this is a Special Challenge match. These two met a almost exactly one year ago in Boston at the Driven 2008 pay-per-view, when McGuinness successfully defended the ROH World Title against Strong. They lock up fiercely and jockey for position. McGuinness goes for the arm and takes Strong down to the mat. Strong escapes and hits a leg lariat and a backbreaker for two. He starts hitting chops and McGuinness fights back with a hard forearm. McGuinness goes right back to the arm. Strong makes a brief comeback but McGuinness cuts him off with the headstand mule kick, which the crowd greets with â€œsame old shit.â€ That seems to energize Strong, as he hits a nice dropkick. Strong now hits a series of strikes and a pumphandle backbreaker for two. McGuinness comes back with the kick to the back/clothesline combo in the corner, once again prompting a â€œsame old shitâ€ chant. Strong comes back with a Falcon Arrow, and then he goes for the Stronghold but McGuinness reaches the ropes. The battle spills to the floor and McGuinness whips Strong arm-first into the barricade. Back in the ring McGuinness hits a short-arm lariat for two. McGuinness then locks on the London Dungeon to no reaction, and Strong reaches the ropes. He gets Strong up on the top rope but misses the Lariat. McGuinness doesnâ€™t miss the Tower of London though, and Strong kicks out at two. The problem with McGuinnessâ€™s style over the years is that none of his finishers are over anymore. He goes for the jawbreaker lariat but Strong rushes over and traps him in a Boston Crab in the ropes. Thatâ€™s a cool spot. They go back to the floor and Strong hits a torture rack slam on the ring apron (sick) and that gets two. Back in the ring Strong goes for a superplex but McGuinness counters with a sunset bomb. McGuinness once again locks on the London Dungeon but Strong reverses to a cradle for two. He tries another headstand, but Strong counters with an enziguiri, a gutbuster, and a running Yakuza kick for two. A Gibson Driver gets two, and Strong immediately follows up with another one to get the pin at 16:46. That was a fun offensive minded matchup, but knowing that McGuinness was on his way out made the conclusion a little flat. McGuinness cuts a quick thank you promo before heading to the back.
MATCH #7: Austin Aries & Rhett Titus vs. Colt Cabana & Kenny Omega
Aries cuts a promo about how this show is a B-show, and then knocks both of his opponents. Cabana and Titus start the match for their respective teams. They have an issue based on Cabana busting Titusâ€™s head open last week. Cabana of course gets the first advantage and they do some comedy. Omega gets the tag, and Titus gets a tiny bit of offense in. Of course it doesnâ€™t last long, since heâ€™s Rhett Titus. The comedy tour continues, and I wouldnâ€™t really mind if it wasnâ€™t involving the ROH World Champion the semi-main event. Aries and Titus try to force the issue and make this a serious match, and they take over on Omega in their half of the ring. Omega tries the Stop-Sign Bullshit but Aries slaps him in the face. Thatâ€™s awesome. Omega just kicks Aries in the head anyway, and then makes the tag to Cabana. The match pretty quickly breaks down to a brawl, with bodies flying around in an out of the ring. Back in the ring Cabana and Omega take over. Omega hits the Croytâ€™s Wrath but Titus breaks up the pin. Both men make tags and Cabana is all over Titus, hitting the Flying Apple and locking on the Billy Goatâ€™s Curse. Aries tries to break that up with the belt, but Sinclair stops him and puts the belt back outside the ring. While Sinclairâ€™s back is turned Aries hits a low blow and a kick to the head, allowing Titus to roll Cabana up for the win at 13:27. Once they got over the comedy it turned into a solid tag match, but Iâ€™m not super into either Cabana or Omega as top contenders.
They go back to footage from earlier in the night when Eddie Edwards broke his elbow. Thatâ€™s a real shame going into the Ladder War tomorrow night.
MATCH #8: Main Event â€“ Bryan Danielson vs. Davey Richards
They lock up and I think this one is going to get intense. Richards takes the first powder. Back in the ring they engage in a test of strength. They trade control, and when the hold breaks Richards shoves Danielson, who responds with a hard forearm. Richards tries to bring a chair in the ring but that doesnâ€™t go anywhere. They take it to the mat and Danielson locks on a bow-and-arrow. Richards escapes and gets a quick pin cover for two. Danielson goes for a surfboard and Richards scurries to the ropes. They continue to feel each other out, no one gaining a firm advantage in the early going. Richards goes up top but Danielson knocks him down, and Richards counters with a super Divorce Court! That sets up the first big advantage in the match, as Richards goes after the arm. Richards viciously attacks for several minutes until Danielson counters with a belly-to-back suplex. Danielson hits a dropkick and gets his bearings. A Northern Lights suplex gets two. They trade pinning combinations for two, and then Richards wisely goes back to the arm. Richards hits the handspring enziguiri for two. Danielson comes back with a running elbow and then a missile dropkick. He hits a running kick to the chest for two. Richards fights back with a top-rope rana. He goes for a running kick but Danielson grabs the leg and locks on an Ankle Lock, and Richards reaches the ropes. Richards goes for another handspring enziguiri but Danielson catches him and once again locks on an Ankle Lock. Danielson hits a German Suplex for two, and Richards reverses that to a Kimura Lock. They trade submission holds, and Danielson counters a Texas Cloverleaf with a small package for two. Richards hits a dropkick to send Danielson to the floor, and then he follows his opponent out with a suicide dive, landing in the crowd. They make it back to the ring and trade boots. Richards hits a German suplex with a bridge for two, and then locks on a Kimura Lock. Danielson reaches the ropes. The battle moves to the apron and Danielson hits a belly-to-belly suplex to the floor. Danielson hits a baseball slide dropkick that sends Richards back into the crowd. He follows Richards out with a â€œsideways hiloâ€ off the top rope. Richards barely makes it back into the ring at the count of 19. They exchange strikes and the sweat is flying. Danielson cinches in Cattle Mutilation and then rolls that into elbow strikes. Richards reverses that to Kawada kicks. He hits the Alarm Clock and the DR Driver for just two! Richards tries a super DR Driver but Danielson counters with a super belly to back suplex for two. Danielson hits kicks to the head and then locks in the Triangle Choke. He switches that up to the Cattle Mutilation, and then hits repeated elbows to the face for two! Danielson goes for a Tiger Suplex but Richards avoids it and rams Danielsonâ€™s shoulder into the ring post. Richards hits a missile dropkick and a Shooting Star Press for two! He then locks on the Kimura Lock and Danielson taps out at 36:06. That was a tremendous match, with both men giving their all and the crowd getting really into it. Iâ€™m going to miss this Bryan Danielson.
Richards gets on the mic and decries the â€œgood guy-bad guy crapâ€ that has made the entire wrestling business since the beginning of time. Danielson follows with a classy exit promo.
PRELIMINARY MATCH: Grizzly Redwood vs. Tommaso Ciampa
Iâ€™ve never seen or heard of Ciampa, but heâ€™s wearing disturbingly small trunks. Redwood dominates early on with his superior quickness. He hits bulldog for two. Ciampa fires back with a big clothesline for two. He follows up with a dropkick, and then stomps away at Redwood in the corner. He hits a running knee to the face and gloats about it. Then he locks on a type of crossface submission hold, but Redwood powers out of it. Redwood goes up top and hits a big axe handle and thatâ€™s seriously enough to get the pin at 3:15. Itâ€™s nice to see Redwood back where he belongs.
The Pulse: The main event is pretty much worth a purchase in and of itself, but I HATE Richardsâ€™s promo after the match. Other than the main event nothing is worth going out of your way to see, but damn, what a main event. You can purchase this show Right Here.
Tags: Bryan Danielson, Davey Richards, ROH