A2Z Analysiz: ROH Bitter Friends, Stiffer Enemies 2 (Colt Cabana, El Generico, Kevin Steen, Steve Corino)

Chicago Ridge, Illinois – April 24, 2010

It’s a cold open to the arena, the ROH-famous Frontier Fieldhouse. Dave Prazak and Joe Dombrowski are calling the action tonight as usual.

MATCH #1: Rasche Brown vs. Sami Callihan

Callihan surprises Brown with a missile dropkick before the bell! He unloads a series of strikes for barely a two-count. Brown powers back up with a clothesline, turning Callihan inside out. He boots Callihan down to the floor and follows him out. He throws Callihan around a bit, catching him off the guardrail and gorilla pressing him down onto the edge of the ring apron. Back in the ring Callihan catches Brown with a cross face chicken wing in the ropes, but then taunts Brown too long and gets caught by the throat and thrown across the ring. Brown goes for a Khali Slam but Callihan slips out and goes after the injured ribs. Brown fires up and drops Callihan with a spinning vertical suplex for two. He misses a big elbow drop and Callihan hits a splash off the top rope for two. Callihan charges right into a Chokeslam and Brown gets a two-count. Moments later Brown grabs Callihan with the Burning Hammer for the win at 6:31. I like Brown in the opener; he’s gotten himself over in a non-traditional (for ROH) kind of way.
Rating: *¾

MATCH #2: Dark City Fight Club (Jon Davis & Kory Chavis) vs. The Bravado Brothers

Chavis and Harlem Bravado start the match. Not surprisingly Chavis uses his power to knock Harlem down. Lance Bravado gets tagged in and Davis joins him in the ring. Davis aggressively attacks Lance, using his power to offset Lance’s agility. He hits an inverted powerslam, which is really cool. The Bravados gain an advantage, sending Chavis to the floor so they can double-team Davis. They can’t put him away though, and Chavis recovers and they double-team one of the Bravados. Davis Hits him with a huge POUNCE that sends him to the floor. Chavis throws that Bravado around ringside while Davis hits the other one with a powerslam. Davis unleashes a series of headbutts and the referee stops the match because the Bravado was no longer protecting himself at 5:41. That was a really fun squash match. Other than the House of Truth I think the Dark Cit Fight Club is my favorite team in ROH.
Rating: **

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MATCH #3: ROH World TV Champion Eddie Edwards vs. Metal Master

Of course this is a non-title match. Edwards is accompanied by Shane Hagadorn. Master gets aggressive right away and backs Edwards into a corner. He issues a clean break and they come back to the center of the ring for some chain wrestling. They actually wrestle to a standoff like they’re stuck in 2005 or something. Edwards goes after the arm but Master comes back with a flying headscissors, so Edwards tries a series of strikes. Master absorbs them and attacks Edwards’s previously injured arm. That doesn’t last too long before Edwards comes back with strikes and submission holds. Master comes back and knocks Edwards to the floor and follows him out with a suicide dive. Back in the ring Master hits a missile dropkick, which Edwards no-sells and hits a leaping Codebreaker for two. Edwards then slaps on the Achilles Lock but Master reaches the bottom rope. Master hits a modified DDT and a leg lariat. He catches Edwards in a powerslam for a two-count, and then puts on a Hammerlock Crossface. Luckily for Edwards he’s able to reach the ropes to break the hold. Master gets a quick inside cradle for two, and several other pinning combinations, including a jackhammer, for more two-counts. He goes up and tries another missile dropkick but Edwards catches him in the Achilles Lock and Master taps out at 10:49. That was decent but I don’t get what people see in Eddie Edwards at all. There was no real story to the match, just a series of moves and a finish.
Rating: **¼

MATCH #4: The House of Truth (Josh Raymond & Christin Able) w/ Truth Martini vs. Erick Stevens & Shawn Daivari w/ Prince Nana

Able and Daivari start the match, and this is another odd heel versus heel matchup for the House of Truth. Not much happens and Daivari tags out, then Able follows suit. Raymond engages the much larger Stevens in a test of strength and holds his own before getting shoved into the corner and elbowed in the gut. Daivari interferes from the apron and Able responds in kind. You know, tit for tit. Raymond takes control of Stevens, and the same is true when Daivari tags in. Able comes in and the HOT double-team Daivari to keep him grounded in their half of the ring. Raymond goes for a quebrada but Stevens pulls the rope and Raymond crashes down hard on the canvas. That allows Daivari to take control of Able. Stevens tags back in and continues to wear Able down. Nana gets his shots in as well. After several minutes Able makes the hot tag and Raymond is on fire. He hits Daivari with a series of maneuver culminating in a springboard X-Factor for a two-count. The HOT once again try the elevated quebrada and this time they hit it. Stevens gets back in the ring and breaks up the cover, then throws Able to the floor. He throws Raymond to the floor and then follows him out with a dive. Able then hits Stevens with a dive of his own. Then for some reason Truth Martini gets in the ring and hits Daivari with a headscissors right in front of the referee. After waiting several moments to figure out what to do, the referee calls for the bell at 13:19; Stevens and Daivari win by disqualification. What the hell was that? Beyond the bizarre and obviously unplanned finish, I couldn’t figure out what, if any, story this match was supposed to be telling or who it was supposed to get over. This was just bizarre.
Rating: *½

MATCH #5: Pick 6 Series – (4) Davey Richards vs. (1) Roderick Strong

Dombrowski calls this “unequivocally a must-win match” for both guys, but if you think about it, whatever the result is doesn’t mean much. If Richards wins he moves into the #1 spot in the Pick 6 and Strong moves down to #2, which is still a pretty good position; and if Strong wins both guys stay in the same spot. I’m just sayin’.

They engage in an intense lockup right off the bat. They chain wrestle and everything is done with great intensity and aggressiveness. Strong seems to have the upper hand but Richards stays step for step with him and they wrestle to a standoff complete with the applause of the Chicago fans. Richards wins the next exchange with a spinning heel kick to take Strong down and then goes to work on his leg. Strong tries to counter with the Stronghold but Richards counters to an STF and Strong again reaches the ropes. Richards unloads with kicks and forearms. He tries a back suplex but Strong slips out and hits a leg lariat. The Wolf seeks solace on the floor but Strong follows him out and unleashes a chop to the chest. Back in the ring it’s all Strong. He uses various strikes and submissions to wear Richards down. Richards briefly reverses a submission hold to one of his own and even gets a quick rollup for two, but Strong kicks him right back down. Finally Richards decides that he’s sold enough so far and comes back with strikes out of nowhere and the handspring spin kick. Richards hits a missile dropkick for two. Strong similarly comes back with strikes and then a falcon arrow for a two-count. He catches Richards in a Half Nelson Backbreaker for two, and then rolls it over into the Stronghold. Richards reaches the ropes and crawls to the apron. When Strong steps through the ropes to grab him, Richards catches the leg and executes a dragon screw leg whip. A series of reversals ends with Richards locking Strong in an Ankle Lock. Strong kicks out and they wind up in the Fish out Of Water Spot. Richards blocks a Gibson Driver and turns it into the Texas Cloverleaf. This time it’s Strong reaching for the ropes. The crowd chants “this match rules,” which is new for me. Strong spits at Richards, so the American Wolf backs him into a corner with slaps and brutalizes him with a series of kicks to the chest. The referee breaks it up for some reason. They trade enziguiris on the apron and Strong’s sends Richards to the floor. Richards catches Strong with an Orton DDT to the floor. He tries to follow up with the unsafe dive but Strong moves and Richards crashes into the crowd. Richards barley makes it back into the ring by the count of 20. Both men rise and exchange strikes. Strong hits a gutbuster, Richards comes back with an Alarm Clock, and Strong comes back with the sick kick for two. Richards comes back and hits two Alarm Clocks and a big lariat for two. A German Suplex with a bridge gets two, and he hangs on and hits a release German. He drills Strong with a kick to the dome and the bell rings at 20:27, or just 20 if you ask Giuseppe di Lorento.


However I do give props for not giving the finish away by announcing when there was one minute left, I hate that. The audience and Richards both want five more minutes but Strong wisely turns him down because he has a title match in two weeks. I like it when a wrestler does the smart thing. The match was fun in the way that every Davey Richards match is fun – nobody sells anything and they hit each other really hard. The live crowd gets into it and that makes it enjoyable to an extent, but there’s just no story to the match for a DVD viewer to get invested in.
Rating: ***¼

MATCH #6: Rhett Titus vs. Petey Williams

Earlier tonight Rhett Titus was backstage working out, and talking in that way he talks. I’m not sure what people see in him. Williams dominates in the early going so Titus takes a powder. Back in the ring Titus shoves Williams and then they engage in a sequence that looked extremely choreographed. Williams hits the springboard Codebreaker for two. Titus comes back by sending Williams to the apron and then dropkicking him to the floor. He follows Williams out and throws him into the guardrail. He sets Williams on the ring apron and delivers a kick to the head. Back in the ring Titus goes on offense and the crowd has almost no reaction. After what seems like forever, Williams fires up and hits a clothesline followed by a flurry of offensive maneuvers. Williams tries the Canadian Destroyer but Titus reverses it to a rollup for two, and then Williams rolls through that into the Sharpshooter. Titus reaches the ropes. Williams slingshots Titus to the floor and follows him out with the springboard hurricanrana. Back in the ring Titus counters a headscissors by catching Williams and delivering a modified Snake Eyes. Titus follows up with the Rocker Dropper and then a wicked looking knee to the head from the top rope. That was awkward looking. It gets a two-count. Titus sets Williams up top but Williams comes back with a sunset powerbomb for two. Williams tries the Canadian Destroyer again but Titus falls on top and uses the ropes for leverage to get the pin at 12:10. I’m sorry but Rhett Titus just is not very good. They had a solid structure for the match but the personalities just made it all duller than dishwater.
Rating: **

MATCH #7: Austin Aries & Kenny King vs. Jay & Mark Briscoe

Aries cuts his customary promo before the match, denying that there are any issues between him and Kenny King. Jay and Aries start the match. They stall for a bit to start, and then the chain wrestling begins. Aries takes advantage with a headlock and then tags his partner. King continues the headlock, and then knocks Jay down with a shoulderblock. Jay comes back with a high hiptoss and then tags his brother. The Briscoes go for the double football tackle but King avoids it and shoves the Briscoes into each other. King recovers and tags Aries while the Briscoes yell at each other. Mark beats Aries into the corner and then the Briscoes double-team him. More Briscoe miscommunication leads to a shouting match, much to the delight of Aries and King. But alas, it was all a ruse! Oh, those clever Briscoes. They knock King off the apron and hit Aries with a double hiptoss. King eats the double football tackle. The match spills to the floor and the Briscoes maintain the advantage. Back in the ring the same is true. Aries distracts Mark from the apron, allowing King to make the tag. Now Mark is getting worn down in the Aries/King corner. Jay and King make hot tags, and King flattens Jay with a spinebuster. Aries and King reclaim control and wear Jay out. After a few minutes Mark makes a hot tag and it’s Kung Fu Briscoe! Aries tries going up top but Mark yanks him down with an Iconoclasm for two. The Briscoes goes for a double-team move on Aries but King pulls Jay to the floor. Mark throws King to the floor and the Briscoes hit Aries with a neckbreaker/splash mountain combo for two. King tries to low-bridge Jay and it doesn’t exactly work out, but he still goes to the floor and Aries follows him out with the Heat Seeking Missile. Back in the ring King hits Jay with the shotgun knees and then Aries follows in with an IED for two. Aries cinches on the Last Chancery and Mark has to break it up. King blast Mark with a spin kick to the face and everyone is down. Jay makes the comeback and they set up for the Spiked Jay Driller but Aries breaks it up. All four men brawl in the ring, and the Briscoes trick King into giving Aries the Coronation! Jay then blasts King with the Jay Driller. The Briscoes follow up with the Doomsday Device on Aries to get the win at 14:20. They never really established a rhythm but there was very little resting and the last several minutes were quite fun.
Rating: **¾

Aries and King argue with each other after the match, both blaming the other for the loss. Rhett Titus comes out to try and make peace. Aries first offers the hand and King decides to hug it out.

Somewhere outside, the Dark City Fight Club is outside bragging about their win over the Bravado Brothers tonight. Kory Chavis and Jon Davis are targeting the American Wolves next. Hey, if you don’t like it, do something about it. They dare you.

MATCH #8: ROH World Title Match – Tyler Black vs. Chris Hero w/ Shane Hagadorn

Black has been the champion since 2.13.10, and this is his fourth defense. Hero is the aggressor early on, beating Black down to the canvas and kicking him in the head. Black fires up with chops and kicks. He hits a dropkick and punches away. A back suplex keeps the challenger down. Hero fires back with a solid elbow to the face. That doesn’t last too long, as Black comes back with a hurricanrana off the second rope. He stomps on Hero’s chest, and then goes after the legs. That goes nowhere. Hero comes back with a rake of the face. He then hits a boot to the face for a two-count. He goes to work, wearing the champion down. He hits another kick to the face for two. Hagadorn takes cheap shots when the referee’s back is turned. Hero elbows Black to the floor and continues working him over. Black briefly makes a comeback but Hero quickly knocks him back down with a solid boot to the face. Back in the ring Hero continues the abuse. Black tries a cross body block but Hero rolls through to a cravat and then blasts Black with an elbow to the face and goes for the knockout, but Black makes it back to his feet. Hero hits another elbow and this time gets a two-count. Black fires back with clotheslines and that enziguiri from the ring apron but Hero blocks it and knocks him off the apron with an elbow strike. Hero knocks Black into the crowd. The champ barely makes it back in the ring before the 20 count, and Hero immediately kicks him in the face for a two-count! Hero takes Black down and tries another senton but Black gets the knees up for a two-count. Black gets an O’Connor roll and then rolls through it, dumping Hero to the floor. He follows out with a somersault dive. Hero tries to crawl back in the ring but Black stops him. Black blocks an elbow strikes and kicks Hero in the face. He looks for a Buckle Bomb into the barricade but Hero blocks it. Instead Black tries a moonsault but Hero moves, and then Black catches Hero coming off the guardrail with a dropkick to the chest. Back in the ring Black hits Paroxysm for a near-fall. Black tries the standing shooting star press but Hero catches him in a cravat! Hero wrenches the neck in a unique submission hold, and then drops him down in a modified power bomb for a two-count. They get back to their feet and Hero unloads with elbow strikes for a two-count. Black won’t stay down and he trades Hero shot for shot. He ducks an elbow and hits the F-5 for two. They take the fight up top and Black hits a leaping kick to the face and then the Warrior’s Way! That gets a two-count. Black tries a springboard but Hero catches him in a powerslam and both men are down. They get back up and Hero delivers a series of elbow strikes to the head but Black kicks out at two! Hero goes for the Liger Bomb but Black counters, and then Hero counters the counter, and then Black counters that counter into a Buckle Bomb! Black goes for God’s Last Gift but Hero gets out of it and hits a rolling elbow, and Black hits a superkick just before falling over for a two-count! Back on their feet Black lands another superkick for another near-fall. Black goes for God’s Last Gift and Shane Hagadorn jumps up on the apron, allowing Hero to land an elbow to the back of the head. Hero signals for the Death Blow but Black counters with a Pele Kick! Hagadorn jumps up on the apron again and Black Superkicks him down! Black then hits Hero with one more Superkick and God’s Last Gift to retain the title at 24:03. The World Champion then throws down Hero’s tag team title belt in disgust, which seems like an unnecessary shot at the tag team titles. The match was terrific, seeming a lot shorter than it was, and with awesome action for the last ten minutes or so. They went with the story of Black trying to hit God’s Last Gift and when he finally did he win the match. Simple, effective, and an excellent title defense for Black.
Rating: ****

MATCH #9: Chicago Street Fight – Colt Cabana & El Generico vs. Kevin Steen & Steve Corino

They waste little time in getting going here. Cabana is paired off with Steen while Generico is tangled up with Corino. Both duos battle through the crowd, rearranging the ringside chairs along the way. Cabana whips Steen into a security guard, who didn’t appear to be paying very close attention. Steen climbs up some scaffolding just to set up a spot. Generico runs through the scaffolding and traps Corino in a tornado DDT! Okay that was awesome. Generico joins Steen on top of the scaffolding and they trade right hands. Steen blocks a brainbuster and hits a Michinoku Driver! Back at ringside Cabana brings out a table. Generico is out, and Steen makes his way back to ringside, giving him and Corino a two-on-one advantage. Corino breaks a beer bottle and then hits Cabana in the head with it. Obviously Cabana is grossly busted open at this point. Cabana continues to fight but Steen bodyslams him onto a pile of chairs. Steen goes up top but Generico flies in from out of nowhere to throw Steen through the two tables set up at ringside. Generico blasts Corino in the head three times with a chair to knock him down. Corino is bleeding buckets now as Generico uses a ladder as a weapon. There’s blood everywhere, it’s quite gross. Steen is busted open now too. Corino comes back and tries a superplex but Cabana stops him with a ladder, and Corino falls perfectly into place for Generico to hit the coast-to-coast flipping dropkick into the ladder. Steen breaks up the cover at two. He superkicks a chair back into Cabana’s face, and then powerbombs Generico on the edge of the ring apron. Back in the ring Steen breaks a chair on Generico’s head. Cabana ties to stop another superplex but Steen hits him with a Sky-Hi Powerbomb right on the ladder. Corino then hits Generico with a superplex onto a pile of chairs. Steen goes under the ring and finds a barbed wire baseball bat. Cabana gets a hold of the bat and uses it to crack a chair back into Corino’s face. Steen then hits Cabana with a low blow and goes for the Package Piledriver. Generico rescues Cabana by hitting Steen in the back with the bat, and then hitting two half-nelson suplexes. Steen rolls to the floor and Generico hits Corino with the running Yakuza Kick before wiping Steen out with a dive to the floor. In the ring Cabana locks Corino in the Billy Goat’s Curse and Generico accentuates it by rubbing Corino’s forehead into the barbed wire bat. Generico then hits Corino in the head with a chair, knocking him unconscious at 20:00 exactly. The match was a pretty good street fight, but the finish was perfect in context of the feud and they didn’t give away too much Steen versus Generico, so the fans will still want to see them fight one-on-one.
Rating: ***¾


ROH Video Wire 4-28-10
Kevin Steen Post-Match

The Pulse: The last two matches are terrific and worth going out of your way to see. Strong versus Richards is pretty good, and most ROH fans will like it even more than I did. The same can probably be said for the Briscoes versus Aries and King match. The rest of the undercard didn’t do much for me but when you finish strong with two very good and different types of matches, that’s good enough for me. I would link to where you can buy the DVD, but the ROH website is in the process of being moved to a bigger server, so just check back there later I guess.

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