Ring of Honor – Hate Chapter II Review
-Ross over at Ring of Honor was nice enough to send me a couple DVDs to review for you guys and hopefully I will get them all done in the next week or so. You can pick them all up over at www.rohwrestling.com.
-Ring of Honor is something that I’ve been wanting to get into for awhile because you know me and my opinions on workrate. Unfortunately, I don’t get HDNet on my cable (but hey, you can watch 17 different Fox Sports channels!) so I was at the mercy of DVDs and highlights online. But enough out of me, let’s get to what you really want…
-Taped on July 23, 2010 in Collinsville, IL (home of Michael Stipe)
The Bravado Brothers vs. The House of Truth
Christian Able and Harlem Bravado start it off as Christian looks to have raided Brutus Beefcake’s wardrobe. Harlem uses an armdrag to set up a monkey flip and controls the arm so he tags in Lance for a double kick and two count. Able forces Lance to the corner and tags in Raymond but he runs into a leg lariat for a near fall. More double teaming from the Bravados gets a pair of two counts but Raymond gets a cheap shot on Harlem to draw the referee over and then tags in Able for some strikes in the corner and a fistdrop for two. Good double teaming from the heels (even throwing in a middle finger to Harlem in the process) and Raymond gets some advice from manager Truth Martini during a chinlock…funny stuff. Lance hits an unimpressive belly to belly on Raymond and surprises an incoming Able with a small package for two for a hope spot but Able holds Lance for a Josh Raymond springboard moonsault in a nice spot for a near fall. More heel double teaming as Able powerbombs Raymond on top of Lance, forcing a Harlem save on a pinfall. Sloppy suplex reversal leads to the hot tag to Harlem who is, indeed, a house of fire and he unleashes a reverse DDT on Raymond for two. Raymond gets cracked with a Lance kick to the head into a Harlem german but it only gets two. Match breaks down with all four guys in but the heels hit an inverted version of Le Bombe de Rougeau for the win.
Winners: The House of Truth
-Fine for waking up the crowd at the beginning of the show but the inexperience of the Bravados really showed as the House of Truth carried pretty much everything and the faces were just along for the ride **.
Grizzly Redwood vs. Erick Stevens
Grizzly is built pretty good for a smaller guy but the gimmick is pretty ridiculous. Redwood tries to stick and move but gets cut down (see what I did there?) with a shoulder block. Grizzly trips up Stevens but Prince Nana gets involved and Erick uses the distraction to send Redwood into the ringside railing. Stevens tosses Grizzly into he apron in a painful spot and throws him around the ring to establish that, yes, he is stronger. Delayed vertical suplex is countered by a Grizzly sleeper but that just pisses Stevens off and he slams Redwood for two. Grizzly fights out of a bearhug (oh, the irony) and he makes his comeback with a bulldog and and victory roll for two. Tornado DDT from the corner gets another near fall and they head to ringside where Stevens tastes the ring post. Grizzly climbs the buckle to attempt to take out both Prince Nana and Stevens but Necro Butcher runs in and hits Redwood with a chair.
Winner by DQ: Grizzly Redwood
-Grizzly Redwood clearly has a curtain-jerker gimmick and Stevens has the look of a serious upper card heel, meaning he shouldn’t need Butcher’s help to beat the guy. I understand them wanting to put Redwood over as a plucky underdog but you can do that through selling and hope spots…call it *1/2 for the effort. Rasche Brown saves Grizzly from the beat down and we have an IMPROMPTU MATCHUP!!
Necro Butcher vs. Rasche Brown
The referees try and break them apart but they get loose and Brown tees off with chops. Grizzly takes out an interfering Prince Nana but Butcher gets rid of the mountain man and grabs the ring bell. Brown sees it coming and slams him off the apron to the floor (ouch) and Necro heads for the hills.
-Post-match, Brown chucks Grizzly halfway up the entrance ramp on top of the heels to bring the crowd to it’s feet. Even though it’s advertised on the box, this isn’t a match, just a brawl…1/4* for the bump off the apron.
Roderick Strong vs. Colt Cabana
You probably know Roderick from TNA and Cabana had a cup of coffee in WWE as a jobber on Smackdown. Cabana stalls and goofs around before the match but, unlike most people, is actually funny. Colt pisses off Strong with more shenanigans and they wrestle to a stalemate until Cabana gets dumped (complete with girly scream). After some advice from fans, Cabana works a very dramatic headlock before switching to the arm. Roderick fights out and bails for some advice from Martini and they exchange armbars until Truth sneaks in behind the referee’s back for a cheapshot and allows Strong to take over. Hard chops hurt Colt but he fires back equally hard, earning himself a kick to the gut and a trip to the floor. Strong sends him into the ring railing and slams Colt on the floor, trying to earn the count out, but Cabana crawls in and Roderick hits a hangman’s DDT for two.
Colt tries a comeback but is stopped with a dropkick for two and Roderick locks on a seated abdominal stretch. Cabana fights out and nails Roderick on a charge, triggering the comeback and a flip, flop, and fly. Ass bump in the corner sets up a running clothesline for two and Colt shows nice athleticism with a rollup but a hard enzuigiri sets up a side slam for two. Roderick locks on the Stronghold but Cabana rolls him up for two. Colt is now bleeding from the mouth from one of the strikes…SOMEONE GO TO A WIDE SHOT!! I CAN’T SEE BLOOD, I’M A WRESTLING FAN!! They head up top and Colt drops Strong from a fireman’s carry onto the top turnbuckle and tries for the Colt 45 but Strong fights out and a nice wrestling sequence commences. The referee has to duck out of the way of the wrestlers and that allows Truth Martini to smack Colt with his Book of Truth and Strong hits a gutbuster and a kick to the face for the win.
Winner: Roderick Strong
-The first couple minutes were definitely entertaining but really were meant for the live crowd, so it could have been cut. It took awhile to get going but I was digging the reversals towards the end and Martini’s interference was perfectly timed and made sense within the context of the match so huzzah ***.
The Young Bucks vs. American Wolves
Max and Jeremy announce that they are superstars now that they are in TNA and are known as Generation Me from now on. Davey Richards counters with a nice little synonym for homosexuals that the crowd appreciates. Max does the heel thing for a bit until Richards hits a HARD kick to the gut and both guys tag out. HOLY SHIT chops from Eddie punish Jeremy and Davey locks in a modified Texas Cloverleaf that could easily be a finisher. Jeremy forces Davey into the heel corner for some cheating and Max slugs away until Davey simply stops selling and dumps Buck to the floor. The Wolves double team Max on the floor and Eddie gets two back inside..good selling from Max as well. Davey hits a diving headbutt from the top for two, saved by Jeremy, and kicks the shit out of Max.
Edwards comes in for more stiff chops and a delayed vertical suplex gets two. Richards checks in for more stiffness but Max finally gets desperate and goes low to tag in Jeremy. Davey plays face-in-peril over in the heel corner but Richards kicks the hell out of Jeremy and a cheapshot from Edwards allows for the hot tag. Overhead belly to belly and a snap suplex sets up a missile dropkick and an F5 before a running kick gets two. Richards returns and stereo suicide dives bring the crowd to it’s feet. Back inside, Edwards locks a single-leg crab on Max, who goes to the eyes and tags in Jeremy for a moonsault on Davey and a high cross body on Eddie for two. Cutter gets two for Jeremy but he takes too long going up top and Eddie brings him off with a very nice superplex for the double KO.
Hot tag to Davey but Max is ready for him and they launch into an AWESOME wrestling sequence that leads to a back suplex from Richards for two. Edwards takes out Max with a Codebreaker so Jeremy returns the favor with an echoing superkick for both Wolves and a tombstone piledriver gets two. Edwards returns and takes out Jeremy and Richards composes himself long enough to apply and ankle lock. Jeremy breaks it up with a superkick and it breaks loose with everyone stiffing the hell out of each other and a reverse hurricanrana (wow) hits on Davey but Richards does the AJPW delayed sell and both men are down while the crowd is up…that was quick as hell.
Edwards squares off with Jeremy and they have a slugfest until the crowd catches on and does the “yay-boo” thing. Jeremy forgets where he is for a second and falls victim to a double team german for two and Davey heads outside to take care of Max. Edwards and Jeremy head up top but Jeremy gets rid of Eddie, allowing Richards to charge in and hit a ridiculous german suplex off the top rope. Edwards hits a double stomp from the top for two but Max intervenes and Jeremy takes out Davey with a somersault plancha from the apron. Max hits an overhead stunner from the top rope on Edwards and it only gets two because the legal man (Jeremy) has to slide in for the cover…nice touch. Davey returns to fight off both heels but eats a superkick and is only saved by the return of Edwards. Generation Me tries for More Bang for Your Buck but Eddie catches Jeremy in a nice display of power and the Wolves hit the Lungblower. Eddie locks on the single-leg crab and earns the tap out for his team.
Winners: The American Wolves
-Was this an awesome match? Absolutely. It was fast-paced, stiff as hell, and these four worked their asses off. Now, was it a perfect match? Not quite. Davey’s selling kind of bothered me because he would just decide randomly to make his comeback instead of waiting for an opening. Also, these guys hit moves that would KILL someone normally in the context of a match but (as is the custom in these kind of matches) they only get near falls here. These certainly are minor points because these guys rocked the ring with spots and, this is important, they actually hit them perfectly. This match is definitely worth checking out and all four guys bring the noise ****1/4.
Six Man Tag
Austin Aries, Kenny King, & Rhett Titus vs. Tyler Black, Jerry Lynn, & Delirious
A huge brawl breaks out and all three heels miss their planchas simultaneously, allowing the faces to kick ass on the outside. Kenny King (who you might remember from Tough Enough season 2) goes flying into the ring railing and Black suplexes Titus on the floor. Finally, we head back inside and Tyler Black (currently being wasted on Smackdown) takes over on King before the faces switch off with chops. It’s good to see that Jerry Lynn still has the hair of a scarecrow…I was worried he’d shave it or something and deprive me of all my jokes.
Speaking of Lynn, he hits a Mr. Perfect necksnap and Delirious adds a running senton until a jawbreaker allows Rhett to come in and get his ass kicked by Tyler Black. Double flapjack puts Rhett down and a three-way dropkick gets two. Lynn hooks flying headscissors and takes out King and Titus with a bulldog-clothesline combo. Mr. JL gets trapped in the heel corner and an Aries dropkick allows to play the sympathy role and take a spinning kick from Kenny for two. The heels continue to switch off and King gets a clothesline for two before going to the resthold. Aries makes a cameo in the match and a nice three-way spot of slingshot, backbreaker, elbow gets two, saved by Delirious. Lynn takes a trip to the outside for some All Night Express (nice *wink wink*, Cornette) punishment and Aries gets two. Jerry finally counters a heel double team and gets the hot tag to Tyler Black, who cleans up the house of fire and a nice sequence leads a reverse suplex for two on Rhett.
A hard dropkick catches Black in the head for two and he manages to avoid the Express double team by firing off dropkicks and tagging in Delirious for the Shadows Over Hell on Aries for two. He locks on the Cobra Clutch but Aries fights out but Rhett Titus hits a Rocker Dropper and Jerry Lynn returns to take out Titus. Kenny King clotheslines Scarecrow on the top rope so Black takes the Express out with a somersault senton. Aries locks his own cobra clutch on Delirious in the ring but turns his attention to Daizee Haze and Delirious rolls him up for the win.
Winners: Tyler Black, Jerry Lynn, & Delirious
-A nice, tightly booked match but I didn’t like the finish, so that means it gets **3/4.
Kevin Steen vs. El Generico
The match breaks out after Steen attacks Tyler Black after the previous match and Generico makes the save. Generico hammers away on the outside and sends Steen into the ringside railing. El Generico is a generic, masked wrestler in case you couldn’t figure that out. Back inside, a moonsault gets two for Generico but Steen floors him and hits a somersault legdrop…that’s impressive for a guy his size.
The match immediately loses 1/2* because Steen takes his shirt off but he makes up for it with hard chops. Generico catches him with a belly to belly on a charge for two but Steen drags Generico to the floor and powerbombs him ON the apron…holy ouch, Batman. Steen gets involved with a fan at ringside wearing an El Generico match and runs Generico into the post. Back in, Steen goes all Tazz on our hero with crossfaces and slowly works him over. Corner clothesline is countered by Generico and a split-legged moonsault to the outside basically misses and Generico almost breaks his neck on the ringside railing…good Lord.
Steen tires to run away so Generico hits a tornado DDT on the entrance ramp. Back in the ring, Generico hits the Michinoku Driver for two but runs into a superkick and takes a HUGE moonsault for two. That was Bam Bam Bigelow-esque only with a moonsault that actually looked good. Nice looking suplex gets two for Steen but he takes his time going up top and both guys head up but Kevin fights him off and hits a fisherman’s buster from the top for two. Steen looks to finish but Generico no-sells a pair of superkicks (why?) and hits a brainbuster for two. Generico runs into a nice powerbomb but a Steen Swanton only hits knees and a dragon suplex sets up a dropkick that sends Steen to the floor. Steen gets desperate and grabs a chair, chucking it into Generico’s head Sabu-style and earns the DQ.
Winner by DQ: El Generico
-I didn’t like the no-selling of big moves but Steen can move really well for a big guy. Generico is a very indy gimmick, which is not good but the match was entertaining and fun. I’m sure some people liked it more than I did so hell, tell me why ***.
The Kings of Wrestling & Sara Del Ray vs. The Briscoe Brothers & Amazing Kong
You know Amazing Kong as the former Awesome Kong from TNA. This marks the first time a women have participated in an ROH main event and, speaking of which, Kong starts us off. The heels can’t decide who’s going to take her on until Castagnoli boots her in the gut and allows Del Ray to come in but Kong immediately kicks her ass. The heels take a breather and a brawl breaks out as violence against women is apparently encouraged here. Back inside, the faces destroy the King of Wrestling and the Briscoes trade off on Castagnoli. Hero tries his luck and suffers the same fate and Kong even gets some shots in. Jay gets a clothesline for two but a blind tag allows Castagnoli to get a big boot and a suplex for two.
The heels switch off on Marc and Hero hits a senton for two. Triple team dropkick gets two and we get more switching off. Marc finally hits a neckbreaker and tries for a backslide but Castagnoli hammers away with forearm shots. Del Ray keeps taking cheap shots at Kong that you know are going to result in her getting destroyed. Powerslam gets two for Castagnoli and a discus punch gets a near fall for Hero. Sara basically makes a pest of herself and Castagnoli actually hits a bronco buster..interesting.
More heel shenanigans lead to a heel miscommunication spot and it’s finally a hot tag to Jay Briscoe, who destroys both guys and even drives Sara into Castagnoli’s crotch (in a non-sexy way). Death valley driver gets two but Claudio hits a springboard uppercut and a three-way heel spot triggers a brawl and a GIANT SWING (old-school, baby) from Castagnoli for two. The heels finally make a mistake and leave Del Ray alone with Jay and he takes her down before bringing in Kong for some pain.
The Kings refuse to tag Del Ray and Kong dominates her and hits a splash for two. Implant buster gets two, saved by the Kings, and Kong actually holds her own against the men. Del Ray gets a surprise rollup on Kong for two and stupidly tries a german so Hero has to save her with a big boot but Kong turns it into a backslide for two. Everyone takes each other out until Hero KOs Kong with an elbow strike..for two.
Kong fights back with her own strikes and the Briscoes return with a double-team powerbomb/neckbreaker into a Kong splash for two. Marc and Jay take on the heels on the outside and Kong leaps from the apron, taking out every one and probably some other small unseen mammals. The heels counter the doomsday device and the Kings hit their own but Marc saves his brother from another double team and Jay rolls up Hero for the win.
Winners: The Briscoes & Amazing Kong
-Well, it was a little long for me, clocking in at over 23 minutes, for the story that it told and there was a good bit of brawling around the ring that could have been left out. I did like the women’s participation but Del Ray manhandling Marc Briscoe was a little hard to believe. In any event, the crowd liked it and it was well worked so that means it gets ***1/2.
-BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!!
Matt Sydal & AJ Styles vs. The Briscoe Brothers
This is from the 100th show event in April 2006 and Matt Sydal is Evan Bourne in case you’re new to ROH. The Briscoes try to attack before the bell but fail and AJ catches Jay with a picture perfect dropkick. Styles avoids a Marc dropkick and Sydal tags in to hit a neckbreaker for two. Marc hits a HARD chop and a double shoulderblock gets two on Sydal. Matt gets trapped in the heel corner and he takes a vertical suplex for two. Sydal fights out of a fireman’s carry and hits a dropkick, enabling a hot tag to AJ and a back suplex for two.
Jay comes back with a neckbreaker and Marc comes in with a double stomp for two. Northern lights suplex gets another near fall but AJ shows impressive strength by getting flying headscissors while laying on his back and sending both Briscoes to the floor. Sydal and AJ send the crowd into a tizzy by both hitting ridiculously high dives to the outside. Marc goes low on AJ and the Briscoes LAUNCH Sydal in the air for a flapjack and a two count. Jay comes in with a dropkick for two and chops the shit out of Matt in the corner. Sydal is just a selling machine, no wonder WWE used him to put Miz over.
Sydal gets trapped in the heel corner through nefarious means and a ridiculous knee lift gets two. That was either stiff as hell or sold masterfully by Sydal. Matt manages to thwart a Briscoe double team and screws up a gutbuster but still hits a moonsault DDT and a nice german suplex combination. AJ looks for the Styles Clash but eats a dropkick so Sydal comes in for a neckbreaker/splash combo for two. Hangman’s neckbreaker almost literally breaks Jay’s neck but he still blocks a hurricanrana attempt and Marc flies off a springboard for a doomsday device…my God.
The Briscoes turn their attention to AJ and he gets turned inside out with a big boot. Sydal returns with a enzuigiri for Marc and hits a standing moonsault on Jay for two. In a ridiculous finish, Sydal gets caught from behind the Briscoes hit a spike Jay Driller to finally get the pin and end things.
Winners: The Briscoe Brothers
-Except for a brief resthold in the middle, the rest of this was non-stop action of the highest order. This kind of shit would suck even a non-wrestling fan in because of the athleticism shown by all four guys…loved it ****.
Well, you have two GREAT tag matches on here, so that’s reason enough to buy it right there. Plus, like I said, some people might really like the Generico-Steen match. Bottom lineis ROH is never boring and they always have at least one match on the card that blows everyone away. Needless to say, this one had stiff shots, a crazy pace, and a nice little gem in the extras…recommended for sure.