Ring of Honor - Feburary 11, 2012
-From Baltimore, MD. Our hosts, as per usual, are Nigel McGuinness and Kevin Kelly. Tonight’s main event will be The Briscoes vs. Roderick Strong and Michael Elgin, with both teams putting up five thousand dollars. Also, Kyle O’Reilly faces Eddie Edwards.
-Kyle O’Reilly says that Eddie Edwards has grown a big head. O’Reilly is going to prove that he’s not a side kick or a stooge. Edwards responds that O’Reilly can’t see the truth about himself. Kyle started this whole argument so he’s going to take it upon himself to kick some sense back into him. I must say that these sports-like interviews really help make up for the fact that these guys don’t have “wrestling charisma.”
Kyle O’Reilly vs. “Die Hard” Eddie Edwards
They set the tone with a tense handshake. The match starts with some back and forth mat wrestling. They block stiff shots and both go for drop-kicks. They trade stiff shots all the while working a knuckle lock! O’Reilly drives a boot across the chest for 2. O’Reilly runs into a hard chop. Eddie tricks Kyle onto the apron for a jumping Yakuza kick. Edwards misses a double stomp and gets rolled up. Eddie counters into an ankle lock! Davey Richards shows up at ringside to cheer O’Reilly on. Eddie is bemused by this development as we head to commercial. After the break, Edwards is in the driver’s seat. Kyle answers Eddie’s chops with stiff kicks. Rolling butterfly suplexes by O’Reilly! Kyle applies a cross arm breaker! Top rope Codebreaker by Edwards! They both tumble to ringside, landing badly. Kyle dodges, causing Edwards to kick the ring post! O’Reilly smells blood and goes to work on the hurt ankle. Adam Cole shows up to cheer on Eddie as Kyle applies an ankle lock. Edwards scores with a suicide dive! Double stomp by Edwards gets 2. They engage in a hard slug-fest. Kyle loses his temper and spits! Edwards begins chopping the head! Eddie goes for a power bomb but it’s countered into a guillotine choke! They trade pinning predicaments, with Edwards scoring the pinfall at 11:30 (shown). This was an awesomely worked match. They threw in several clever, innovative spots, and successfully made me forget how bad the backstory to the match was, ***¾.
Winner: Eddie Edwards
-Richards checks on O’Reilly. Edwards points out that Davey doesn’t need him anymore. Eddie asks Adam Cole if he’d like to team up. Cole accepts and they throw an open challenge out to Richards and O’Reilly.
-McGuinness and Kelly are joined by Steve Corino, who will be the new color commentator on Ring of Honor DVD releases.
-We are treated to a video recap of last week’s Kevin Steen antics. I’m loving it.
Mike Mondo vs. Matt Taven
Holy crap, Matt Taven is getting a ROH television shot? This guy is a Boston-area local guy who frequently works dark matches for ROH and DGUSA. They sprint through a series of counters. They trade arm drags and both anticipate a third counter. Mondo attacks the head and takes control. Standing moonsault by Taven gets 2. Taven and Mondo both miss cross bodies and drop-kicks. The match is then interrupted by Kevin Steen with a live microphone. Steen is baffled that ROH found time for Mondo and Taven to have a match, but he has to wait for next week. Steen isn’t surprised, seeing as Matt Taven is in great shape and is a “cutie pie.” Steen was inspired by their hand shake and offers one to Taven. Of course, it’s a trap. Steen plants Taven. Mondo thinks he and Steen are friends, but he eats an F-5. The match is thrown out at 4:14.
-Steve Corino is really disturbed by what he’s just witnessed as Kevin Steen stands tall in the ring.
-Welcome to Inside Ring of Honor! The segment kicks off with a video recap of last week’s impromptu Briscoes/WGTT match for the ROH Tag Team Championship. It ended with a DQ when Benjamin hit Jay in the head with a chair. Haas and Benjamin are gloating about their accomplishment last week. Sure, they didn’t win the titles, but it felt good to make the Briscoes look stupid again. Benjamin says he refuses to pay any more fines so ROH will have to sue him. Haas says that the Briscoes are losers and any fan who supports them is a loser too.
-Jim Cornette addresses the WGTT/Briscoes situation. Cornette says that Shelton Benjamin will be suspended until he pays the $5,000 fine for using a steel chair.
-The Briscoes shout incoherently about how they are absolutely not losers. They’ll whup Haas and Benjamin’s asses again given the chance.
Roderick Strong and Michael Elgin (with Truth Martini) vs. ROH Tag Team Champions Jay and Mark Briscoe
There is a $5,000 side bet on this match because… well, why not? Strong starts off against Mark Briscoe. Jay saves his brother from a double suplex. The Briscoes dismantle Strong with a series of running kicks. Strong is trapped in Briscoe county as the champs make quick tags. Elgin finally gets a tag but a blind tag by the Briscoes keep the momentum going in their favor. Elgin absorbs quite a bit of punishment but still manages to kick out. Cue the commercial! Post-break, Elgin is isolated in the Briscoes’ corner. Elgin finally counters with a spinning sidewalk slam. Strong gets the much-needed tag and chops the life out of Mark. Elgin assists while the ref’s back is turned, slamming Mark after a chop from Strong. Mark blocks a back superplex and nails an enziguri. Jay gets the hot tag and cleans house on the House of Truth (no pun intended). Falcon arrow by Jay sets up the frog splash from Mark. Elgin prevents the cover. All four men are trading shots in the ring. Stereo big boots by the Briscoes! Elgin dumps Jay to ringside, where Martini throws powder in his face. Jay can’t see and leaves the arena! Jay returns with a baseball bat and cracks the ribs of Michael Elgin! The match is thrown out at 10:48 (shown). Good work from all involved, I wasn’t really into the stipulation, but they made it work, ***¼.
Winners via DQ: Roderick Strong and Michael Elgin
-Jay attacks Strong with the bat as well. The Briscoes lose the match, but retain their dignity. The House of Truth are celebrating their newly won $10,000, but it looks like the Briscoes are going to refuse to pay up.
Final Thoughts: This week gave us two very good, long matches, that moved storylines forward. What more could you ask for from a one hour program? Kevin Steen continues to be a force to reckon with. This show has developed a nice groove, check it out if you haven’t. Thumbs up.
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