Rant of Honor 2.2.13 (Tag Gauntlet, Strong, Elgin)

The Glimpse:

A tag team gauntlet match involving SCUM, The American Wolves, Fish and O’Reilly and The Bravados.

The Top Prospects Tournament continues!

The Action:

Match 1:  Antonio Thomas vs Tadarius Thomas, Top Prospect Tournament Round 1

Winner:  Tadarius Thomas, via pinfall

TD, ROH’s resident Capoeira master in action.  Truth Martini is on commentary as he has been so far in the tournament; safe to assume he’ll try to recruit the winner or other participants.  Antonio comes out very aggressive, tossing TD around the ring and hitting a big cradle suplex early on for two.  He transitions to an abdominal stretch that TD counters with an over the top rope triangle lock then lands a big Capoeria kick from the mat to even things up.  TD heads to the top rope but Antonio meets him up there, only to suffer a swinging neckbreaker from the top.  TD blocks another abdominal stretch attempt into a short-arm kick to the head and it’s good for the three count.

Match 2:  Grizzly Redwood vs Roderick Strong

Winner:  Roderick Strong via submission

Mike Mondo is on commentary for this one.  He’s great for a sound bite, but extended speech out of him can be painful.  Before the match starts, Kevin Kelly throws to a video package on Grizzly Redwood and his pinning QT Marshall at Final Battle.

Roddy follows the Code of Honor, albeit sarcastically, then grabs a mic before they can tie up.  Short jokes ensue and Redwood comes out swinging, only to get pressured in the corner by Strong.  Redwood’s speed helps him take some control back with a low dropkick and a headscissors transitioned to an abdominal stretch.  Roddy tosses Redwood to the apron then wraps him up for a butterfly backbreaker from the middle rope.  Redwood hits a Mysterio style senton from the top rope then runs into a powerslam for a nearfall.  Long series of counters ends in a sunset flip and small package from Redwood, then a tornado DDT for two.  Mondo goes into actual cheerleader mode as Redwood gets tossed into the turnbuckle like a lawn dart.  Death by Roderick, but it’s only good for a nearfall.  Roddy wants the suplex backbreaker and Redwood rolls out of it, only to suffer yet another backbreaker from Strong and the Stronghold.  Redwood gives it up.

Strong won’t release the hold and Michael Elgin hits the ring for the save.  Roderick runs away rather than take Elgin on face to face.

Match 3:  Michael Elgin vs Mike Bennett

Winner:  Michael Elgin via pinfall

Elgin decks Brutal Bob on the apron to start things off on the right foot and immediately tries a Crossface on Bennett, who escapes and runs into a big powerslam.  Bennett calls for Jerry Lynn’s Cradle Piledriver but gets back dropped to the floor.  Diving shoulder from Elgin to the floor keeps control in the hands of the Canadian.  Bennett escapes a slam into the post and delivers a spinebuster, landing Elgin right on the ring apron.  Bennett settles into the first rest hold of the night but runs into a belly to belly from Elgin, who follows with a corner body attack, corner clothesline and the sidewalk slam.  Bennett wants a Photo Finish TKO, but Elgin gets his feet down and lands a pair of elbows and an enzuigiri, but ends up running Bennett’s TKO anyway, resulting in a very near fall.

Bennett wants the Cradle Piledriver again, but Elgin fights out, and hits a big elbow and boot, then a Death Valley Driver into the turnbuckle.  Bennett gets a shoulder up at two and rolls to the apron, into prime position for the middle rope deadlift superplex.  Maria says no and ends up help for it herself, but Brutal Bob saves her.  Bennett hits a middle rope Box Office Smash in the confusion but Elgin still gets out.  Cradle Piledriver attempt number three is backed into the corner, which Bennett answers with a boot, then jumps into a clothesline.  Elgin hits a bucklebomb and the 360 sit out Powerbomb for the win.

Inside Ring of Honor

Jay Lethal campaigns for his shot at Kevin Steen.  His final gambit – Confront Steen himself face to face and goad him into a fight.  Lethal tells Steen that he isn’t S#!T until he can beat Lethal.  It’s enough to convince Steen to accept the challenge at the 11th Anniversary show.

BJ Whitmer pours his heart and soul out after losing to Adam Cole.  Whitmer says he’s not done in ROH, not by a long shot.

Match 4: SCUM vs The American Wolves vs Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly vs Bravado Brothers, Tag Team Gauntlet

Winners:  Fish and O’Reilly via pinfall

A tag gauntlet for a shot at the Briscoes and the ROH Tag Titles.  The Wolves draw number one and come out, ready for a fight.  Out next are the Bravados.  Kelly and Seltzer hammer home that team one is at a greater disadvantage than number two, which makes about as much sense as saying drawing number one is worse than two at the Royal Rumble.  Charlie Haas walks out to ringside, beer in hand and heads to the announce table.

Once the cameramen focus on the ring, Edwards hits a powerslam and Richards hits a diving headbutt.  The Bravados turn it around but Richards tags in and locks in the arm trap Cloverleaf.  Harlem tries to break it up but Richards holds on and Edwards pulls on him for more pressure.  Edwards tags back in for a snap suplex, only to get backed into the corner of the Bravados.  Haas is playing up being a belligerent drunk, which I can only assume isn’t too much of a strain on his acting chops.  Harlem hits a diamond dust jawbreaker from the apron as Richards tries to take on both Bravados alone.  Surprise superkick from Edwards and a kick/chop combination from the Wolves for two.  Richards wants an Ankle Lock and Edwards locks in an Achilles Lock, both of which are countered into roll ups.  Richards counters the Bravados’ leg swinging enzuigir into a grapevined Ankle Lock to advance.

Haas continues to declare everyone “crap” as SCUM enters in slot three.  SCUM gets kicked off the apron and the Wolves hit stereo suicide dives.  Belly to back facebuster and a top rope dropkick from the Wolves for two and Corino hits a sneak attack lariat on the apron.  Richards tries to kick Corino on the floor and ends up speared by Jacobs on the apron.  Corino into the ring and a low blow on Edwards, then he wants the Eternal Dream lariat, but Edwards grabs him in a crucifix for a quick pin to advance once again.  Corino grabs the ring bell and knocks Richards out, then Jacobs lands a cutter on Edwards, which Seltzer calls a Diamond Dust (about seven minutes and a tag team late for that one, buddy).  Corino hits the $10 punch with the roll of quarters as Fish and O’Reilly enter.

Back from a commercial, Fish and O’Reilly have the American Wolves grounded as Haas continues to explain why everyone is crap.  The Wolves start to fight back and Richards gets the hot tag, kicking both men in the corner.  Richards continues to pummel his opponents, but runs into an O’Reilly bicycle kick, which he answers with a head kick, German suplex and a lariat for two.  Richards and Reilly start the usual slap fight and Fish runs interference from the apron.  Edwards blind tags in, resulting in the Alarm Clock, belly to back face buster, a kick to Fish on the floor and both Wolves on the top rope.  Edwards hits a double stomp to the back and Richards with one to the gut.  Edwards with a jackknife pin and O’Reilly still kicks out.  Fish kicks Richards’ foot out from under him and this allows Reilly to fight back.  Edwards suffers Fish and O’Reilly’s version of Total Elimination and kicks out.  Combination head kick and brainbuster gives the win to Fish and O’Reilly as Edwards is laid out and Richards subdued.

The Reaction:

Expected a TD win, as he’s been a fan favorite for months and ROH has leaned on him for quite some time on the weekly TV shows.  Typical face/heel dynamic with TD getting beat up for 90% of the match then hitting the hot come back.  With guys like Davey Richards and Roderick Strong throwing kicks that rock people’s jaws, TD’s connection on his finishing kick was a tad dull.  Nothing wrong with the match, just nothing stellar.  Not necessarily a bad thing.

Typical match…

Good show of power…

Cluster-F of action, but well done…

The Rant:

This one is truncated, kids.  Life gets in the way occasionally, but we’ll be back shortly with ON TIME, revamped reviews for you.

In the interest of getting results up to date, this week is cut a tad short, but moving forward, the Rant of Honor will be revamped to an easier to read (and write!) Review of Honor.

The Preview:

The Top Prospects tournament continues and eight man tag action:  Cedric Alexander and Caprice Coleman team up with ROH Tag Team Champions The Briscoes to take on SCUM.

The Shill:

As always, if you like what you read here, let me know in the comments or on twitter @sbfantom.  I sincerely would like to hear what people think and strike up some conversation!

Come on over to The Geek Asylum – we’re currently on hiatus, but we’ll soon be back for extended Raw and Smackdown reactions.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,