Michael Bennett is still claiming that his piledriver is the best in wrestling and to prove it, he dumped Kevin Steen on his head before a match just a week ago. How will this develop moving forward and how will Steen respond?
Match 1: Mark Briscoe vs Silas Young
Winner: Silas Young via pinfall
Young has been bested by Mark twice and he’s none too happy about it. It’s a “Man’s Man” match tonight. The fact that Mark’s signature chant is “Man Up” gives him an advantage…I think.
Immediate lock up and tumble to the floor. Young back drops Mark on the mats then yanks him off the barricade and boots him. Mark suplexes Young onto the ring apron and rolls in to hit a wild dropkick between the ropes. Mark heads to the second rope for a moonsault to the floor and tosses him back in. Headbutts from Mark and a belly to back slam. Mark hits a jumping elbow drop and gets a two count on The Last Real Man. Mark wants Redneck Kung Fu but Young cuts him off with a boot. Mark reverses a whip and clotheslines Young in the corner. Mark sends him to the opposite corner and gets backdropped over the corner itself right onto the camera man. It’s a shame he hit the camera man; it means he missed an awesome shot.
Young takes over and pulls Mark back into the ring. Briscoe resists a suplex but gets cornered then they exchange chops midring. Young hits a sitout gourdbuster for two to win the exchange but not the match. Young hits a Bubba Bomb next then a sliding lariat for two (there’s that Hansen blood showing). Young sits Briscoe on the top but he fights away and flips over Young followed by a t-bone suplex for two. Mark’s turn to put Silas up top – He wants an Iconoclasm but Young fights out and hits a DDT to his own knee. Briscoe answers with a boot but runs into a backbreaker/lariat combo for two. Back from a commercial, Young gets kicked off the apron. Briscoe hits a Cactus Jack elbow and wants Redneck KungFu back in the ring. This time it’s successful. Young runs into a cartwheel DVD and Mark heads up top. Young cuts him off and grabs a schoolboy (With his leg on the ropes!) and pins Briscoe.
Brisoe pounces on Young after the decision, but Young hits a huge low blow then steals Todd Sinclair’s belt to give Mark a whipping.
A vignette with Maria likely talking up Bennett and his piledriver plays, but funny enough, there’s no sound. Can’t imagine how this made it past production. The background music was there, just her speech was non existant.
Match 2: Adam Page vs Jimmy Jacobs
Winner: Jimmy Jacobs via pinfall
After working so hard with SCUM to destroy ROH, it’s kind of “dumb fan syndrome” for everyone to cheer him so vehemently.
Page isn’t too friendly to Jacobs and doesn’t want to shake his hand, given the last year. Jacobs with a quick arm drag and a reset. Knuckle lock that Jacobs gets the better of, but Page throws him off to get the reset back. Page shoulders Jacobs down repeatedly and hits a dropkick. Jacobs rests in the corner to consider some strategy. Test of Strength that Jacobs manages to counter into a headscissors, then he clotheslines Page to the floor. Jacobs wants a dive but Page meets him with a kick right in the face then the standing shooting star to the floor leaves them both down. Jacobs is counting his teeth before Page rolls him back in. Page heads to the top for a cross body but only gets a two count. Page chops Jacobs loudly in the corner then takes him to another corner for more. Page with an arm wrench and a roll to navigate into a Rings of Saturn. Jacobs nets the rope with his foot to force a break. Jimmy tries to fight back but runs into a dropkick for another two and a commercial break.
Back to action, Page has Jacobs grounded. Jimmy resists a whip and they grapple in the ropes a bit. Page boots Jimmy, who no-sells and hulks up for clotheslines and a neckbreaker (Jacobs is way too skinny to pull that bit in my opinion). Jacobs gets a boot up in the corner then hits a tornado snap suplex for two. Page is backed into the corner and whipped, but Jacobs runs into a boot when he tries a Spear. Page with elbows and a knee lift but Jacobs gets a boot to the gut then runs into a powerslam for a two count from Page. Jacobs dodges in the corner and hits a springboard cutter for two. Jacobs wants Sliced Bread but Page hits a falcon arrow instead. Page takes Jimmy up for an Alabama Slam but Jacobs rolls him up for two. Page tries a quebrada but eats knees instead. Jimmy gets his Sliced Bread this time but it’s only good for two. Jacobs puts Page on top and wants a Frankensteiner. Page holds on so Jimmy tumbles to the mat. He tries another springboard cutter but gets dropped and Page hits a standing shooting star for two. Page heads up top and Jacobs gets to his feet to land an elbow. Page fights off a superplex and tries a sunset flip powerbomb – Jacobs grabs the top rope and Page slides out. Page chases Jimmy up top again and wants a belly to back, but Jacobs fights out and lands a sloppy looking Super Sliced Bread for the win.
Match 3: Michael Bennett vs Kevin Steen
Winner: Michael Bennett via pinfall
The battle of the piledrivers comes to a head before it can even get started. I figured this would be a program, but after sneaking in two piledrivers on Steen, Bennett faces him. They make it a point to explain that Maria “went face to face” with Lisa Marie/Tara/Victoria in her own restaurant, so perhaps we end up with a mixed tag between all four.
Bennett mockingly offers a handshake and Steen punches him for it. Steen tries a Package Piledriver early but Bennett scampers to the floor. Steen gives chase and gets outsmarted back in the ring. Steen reverses a whip and hits a drop toe hold followed by a flipping leg drop to the back of the head. Bennett bails to the floor again and meets Steen with a kick when he chases. Steen fights back and whips him into the barricade hard. Steen picks up Bennett and sends him to the opposite barricade. Steen crotches Bennett on the ring post and mocks Maria. Being a gentleman, he brings Bennett to the next ringpost by Maria for another. Bennett takes a third ringpost between the uprights and Steen contemplates his next move – He tells Kevin Kelly that he’s going to do it again! Bennett fights out of it and the crowd is pissed. Bennett bounces Steen off the barricade and now everyone is down. As they fight on the floor, it’s commercial time once again.
They’re still on the floor with Bennett in charge and laying in a boot to the face. Bennett teases diving on Steen and decides to just hop to the floor and punch Steen. He ends up getting ringpost number four for his efforts and Steen heads up top for a Swanton but dives into knees. Bennett hits his version of the Side Effect for a two count. Steen gets a boot up in the corner but runs into a spinebuster for another two. Bennett keeps the pressure on in the ropes and hits a back elbow. Steen kicks out at two yet again. Bennett wants his TKO but Steen tries to counter into the sleeper suplex. Bennett shrugs him off then runs himself into the ringpost. Steen hits a tornado DDT and gets two. Steen takes Bennett up for F-Cinq and ends up hitting a Codebreaker instead. Bennett boots Steen as he wants a cannonball then tries a piledriver but gets back dropped. Bennett hits a super kick off the ropes and Steen kicks out before three. Bennett wants the Photo Finish again, but Steen resists for the sleeper suplex again – Bennett counters yet again but ends up taking a pop up powerbomb and a senton for two. Steen wants the F-Cinq again but looks right at Maria before delivering a GTS. At two, Maria throws a boot into the mix which apparently confuses the bejeesus out of the ref. Steen gives chase and ends up running into the Photo Finish and a piledriver but Steen still gets the shoulder up. Bennett sits Steen up top for a superplex and Steen bites him. This time he hits the Swanton but it’s still just a two count. Steen wants the package piledriver but Maria distracts. Steen takes a swat at her then gets a low blow in the ropes behind the ref’s back. Bennett hits a piledriver that he manages to make look like a gutwrench suplex and pins him.
Bennett wants a piledriver on the apron but Lisa Marie shows up to tackle Maria. Bennett pulls her off which lets Steen get loose. It’s a donnybrook. They go off the air with Steen and Bennett still clawing to get at each other…no wait – Steen hits a flip dive off the top onto literally everyone and stands tall.
Damn, that was a fun match. Not too over the top, like ROH is wont to provide and just a touch of that Briscoe goofiness. The fact that The Last Real Man, in a Man’s Man Match, had to cheat to win is fodder for a rivalry. Curious to see if that whipping ends up in a strap match at some point. Young and Briscoe could be a fun feud, because Young is really good.
Page is a good pick to put Jacobs in the ring with as their styles match. We’ve seen this from Jacobs before – Back when he and Corino were “reformed” and apologizing for making Steen into a monster, he was being a nice guy. But we all know how that turned out. I really hope this isn’t a rehash of that and we see Jacobs with an actual leaf turned over moving forward. As for the match, it was fine but definitely not something that made me go “Ok, everyone has to see this”.
So I guess this rivalry must indeed continue. My prediction is Steen and Lisa Marie hitting stereo piledrivers on Bennett and Maria. This was one of those “do lots of stuff” matches. If it’s not the blow off of the rivalry, I don’t think it’s necessary for both guys to kick out of every move the other guy has. It just gets to be too much and that’s why we get apron piledrivers that end careers. Another one that didn’t really require a call home to gather folks around the TV. Curious to see if there’s more in between now and the blow off. Final Battle is in a month and Steen isn’t slated for a title match, so that’s a possibility.
Roderick Strong takes on Paul London and Jesse “Damn you, Zima Ion” Sorenson debuts against Tommaso Ciampa.
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!
Tags: Jimmy Jacobs, Kevin Steen, maria kanellis, Mark Briscoe, Mike Bennett, Ring of Honor, ROH, silas young