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ROH Supercard of Honor XII
by Samoa Rowe
April 7, 2018
From the UNO Lakefront Arena in New Orleans, Louisiana. Our hosts are Ian Riccaboni and Colt Cabana. There's about 6,000 fans in attendance, as they're in town for Wrestlemania 34.
Chuckie T (with Trent) vs. Jonathan Gresham
Bell rings and Gresham rolls out of a wristlock. Gresham annoys Chuckie by sitting against his leg as a counter and scores a head lock takedown, but Chuckie answers with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. They trade chops and Chuckie hits another backbreaker. Chuckie misses a moonsault and Gresham hits a head scissors takedown. Gresham almost lands on his head while delivering a wild dive. Trent saves Chuckie from an Irish whip with a hug. This allows a third backbreaker by Chuckie for a 2 count. Gresham hyperextends the leg and puts together a string of moves resulting in an ankle lock. Falcon Arrow by Chuckie gets 2. Gresham rolls through a sunset flip and stomps the softened knee. Tornado DDT by Gresham but Taylor reverses a leg submission into an inside cradle for the sudden win at 8:31. Deliberately paced back and forth opener, with the wrong guy going over, **˝.
Winner: Chuckie T
Punishment Martinez vs. Tomohiro Ishii
Martinez enters from a coffin. Ishii receives a nice ovation from the fans. Martinez has a comical size advantage over Ishii, and they trade hard shots. Martinez knocks Ishii down to boos. Sit out power slam by Martinez gets 2. Ishii fights through kicks to the face to hit a lariat, but Martinez blocks the Brainbuster. Ishii chops the throat and hits a vertical suplex. Ishii no sells a roundhouse kick so Martinez knocks him over with a spin kick and then delivers an insane dive over the ring post! Martinez follows with a somersault senton to the floor and the crowd likes him now. Flying spin heel kick by Martinez gets 2. Super rana by Martinez and Ishii is in trouble. Desperation German suplex by Ishii! Second rope vertical suplex by Ishii, but Martinez kicks out! Martinez blocks the low lariat by grabbing the throat but then runs into an Ishii clothesline for 2. Martinez hits a pretty good lariat himself and nails a chokeslam for the upset win at 8:26! All action and great intensity, plus a starmaking turn by Martinez, ***¼.
Winner: Punishment Martinez
Adam Page vs. Kota Ibushi
Crowd likes Page just fine (mostly for the Bullet Club logo) but adores Ibushi. Page scores a shoulder block but Ibushi pops right up. Page hits another shoulder tackle and they sprint through an exchange until Ibushi lights up the chest with a stiff kick. Page hits a neckbreaker in the ropes and aggressively punches the forehead. Page catapults Ibushi's neck into the bottom rope. Page cuts Ibushi's comeback short with a high flapjack and pump handle overhead suplex. Desperation dropkick by Ibushi! Crowd is behind Ibushi as he hits a standing moonsault for 2. Ibushi leaps into a rana and but Page blocks a top rope dive. Page misses a SSP off the apron and climbs onto the barricade, and Ibushi GERMAN SUPLEXES HIM OFF THE RAIL! Page took a horrific landing on his head. Crowd chants "This is awesome" as Ibushi hits the sprinting top rope moonsault! Page counters into a crushing piledriver for a good nearfall. Pele kick by Ibushi but Page counters into a back drop on the apron. Moonsault to the floor by Page and the BUCKSHOT LARIAT only gets 2. They trade quick nearfalls until Ibushi hits a dead lift German for another 2 count. They trade forearms and then open hand shots as their tempers flare. Golden Star powerbomb by Ibushi gets 2, as does a Straight Jacket German. Ibushi's Golden Knee finishes at 14:30. This was a tremendous piece of work, enhanced by a hot crowd that was eager for this kind of match, ****.
Winner: Kota Ibushi
Women of Honor Championship:
Kelly Klein vs. Sumie Sakai
Sakai goes right after Klein, after suffering a cheap shot earlier on Facebook Live, but Klein cuts her off with a German suplex. They exchange whips into the buckles. Klein drops Sakai onto the ropes with a stun gun. Klein dominates with a snap suplex into a choke on the floor. Sakai comes back with a powerbomb out of the corner but Klein counters with a fallaway slam. Fisherman suplex by Sakai but Klein reverses a wheelbarrow into another German. Other members of the WOH roster show up to watch Klein and Sakai exchange forearms. Big boot by Klein gets a cold 2 count. Sakai kicks out of a Northern Lights suplex and hits a Fisherman brainbuster. Sakai hits a glancing moonsault and hits a messy DDT for the win at 7:45. Total disaster, as they couldn't maintain the intensity of the opening minute, and the crowd tuned out, *½.
Winner and first ever Women of Honor Champion: Sumie Sakai
Sumie's title win is so momentous that they cut right to graphics for the Six Man Title match. Production comes to their senses and we get to see Sakai celebrating with the other women.
ROH Six Man Tag Team Championship (Ladder Match):
SCU © (Christopher Daniels, Frankie Kazarian, and Scorpio Sky) vs. The Young Bucks (Nick and Matt Jackson) and Flip Gordon
The doesn't take long for the Young Bucks to shows off with a corkscrew senton to the floor. They lift a ladder to avoid Sky's basement dropkick, but Sky surprises with a dive. Daniels accidentally clotheslines Kazarian over the ropes and they take a dive from Gordon. The crowd is popping for all the big moves as the Bucks hit spears at ringside. All six guys take turns racing up the ladder. Gordon and Kazarian springboard to the top for a punchfest. Kazarian hits a cutter off the ladder! Bucks and Gordon hit a triple suplex, and set Daniels on a bridged ladder, and Bucks launch Gordon into a makeshift 450 splash! Gordon bounces off his back to avoid Kazarian's ladder swings, and the Bucks return to assist with a SUPERKICK PARTAY! They then catapult a ladder into Sky's face. SCU gain some footing by triple teaming Gordon. SCU cuts off saves by both Jacksons and seem more interested in destruction than victory. Gordon comes back and monkey flips Kazarian into a ladder before wiping Daniels out with a dive. The Young Bucks run wild in the ring with tandem offense. Nick either has a hurt back or he's much better at selling than he gets credit for. Daniels sets up two new ladders in the ring, but NIck superkicks him. Kazarian throws a fourth ladder to knock Jackson down. Kazarian accidentally rana's Daniels on a miscue, and Gordon hits a somersault senton on one foot off the ring post! Nick hops off all four ladders to get across the ring and hit a springboard dive onto SCU! The Bucks are about to win when red balloons signal the arrival of The Kingdom! They put Gordon down with "Rockstar Supernova." The Kingdom then turn on SCU and beat them up too. TK O'Ryan goes for the titles but the Bucks and SCU tip him off onto Taven and Marseglia. SUPERKICKS by the Bucks, but SCU cut them off with stereo cutters. All six guys climb 3 ladders. Gordon reaches for the gold and takes a terrifying bump head first onto the top of the ladder on his way down. Everyone bumps down for the obligatory ovation. Gordon brings in a bigger ladder but Kazarian cuts him off with a Codebreaker. SUPERKICKS by the Bucks, and Nick misses a dive and lands on the Kingdom instead. Matt hits a DDT but Sky catches him with a springboard cutter onto the apron! Gordon then hits a double blockbuster off the apron onto the field! SCU members are placed on ringside tables and Gordon and Nick hit stereo 450 splashes off the top ropes! Daniels finds himself alone in the ring and makes the climb. Matt springs up to meet Daniels and whips him with his weight belt. They tease a suplex but Daniels instead tips Matt off and he crashes through Marseglia on a ringside table! Daniels retrieves the gold at 24:09! Man, when the Young Bucks go supernova like this, there's no better spectacle in all of wrestling, ****½.
Winners and still Six Man Tag Team Champions: SCU
The Kingdom ambush Daniels and run off with the Six Man titles.
The Bouncers (Beer City Bruiser and Brian Milonas) vs. The Motor City Machine Guns (Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin) vs. Luke and PJ Hawx
Luke and PJ are a father and son team, and Cabana reports this is PJ's fifth professional match. PJ starts against Shelley, and seems to hold his own in a chain wrestling sequence. Sabin tags himself in and chops the chest, but PJ hits some dropkicks. Luke tags in and counters Shelley with combination backbreakers and a power slam for 2. Bruiser gets a tag and cleans out the ring and kills PJ with a Samoan Drop. Milonas hits a falling back senton on PJ for 2. The Bouncers sandwich PJ with a splash, but Shelley breaks the pin. The Bouncers double team Shelley with a head kick/power slam combo. Milonas smashes his significant rear end into Sabin's head in the buckles. Bruiser misses a rolling cannonball on PJ, and Father Luke gets the hot tag. Sabin gets involved with a dive through Shelley's legs, and PJ hits a top rope dive, but then building explodes for Bruiser's senton off the apron onto the field! Milonas superplexes PJ into position for Bruiser's frog splash and it's over at 6:19. This might go into the Popcorn Match Hall of Fame, **¾.
Winners: The Bouncers
ROH Tag Team Championship:
The Briscoes © (Jay and Mark) vs. Jay Lethal and Hiroshi Tanahashi
Jay Briscoe and Lethal, who know each other well, engage in a tentative feeling out process. They quicken the pace until Mark tags himself in, and Lethal backs off. Tanahashi enters to a big pop and locks up with Mark. Tanahashi mocks Redneck Kung Fu and Mark spits in his face. The disrespect earns Mark a beating from Lethal and Tanahashi as they make quicker tags. The Briscoes get back into it, with Jay holding Lethal in place for Mark's dropkick off the apron. The Briscoes enjoy some dominance by isolating Lethal in their corner, as is expected in every tag match ever. Tanahashi disrupts Jay at ringside and Lethal nails a dive. Lethal applies a figure four and tags in Tanahashi for a kick to the back. Power slam by Tanahashi, followed by an elbow drop and back senton for 2. Lethal tags in and trades uppercuts with Jay. Tanahashi tags for a slugfest with Jay. Match feels a bit aimless right now. Tanahashi takes a turn getting isolated by the Briscoes. Desperation sling blade by Tanahashi buys some time. Lethal gets the allegedly hot tag and trades blows with Jay Briscoe. Lethal Injection by Lethal, but Jay blocks Hail to the King. Lethal's cutter gets 2 so he applies a Figure Four! Mark tries to toss Tanahashi, who skins the cat for a rana to ringside. Mark knocks Tanahashi off the top rope and breaks Lethal's Figure Four with a froggy elbow drop. Fisherman Buster by Mark gets 2. Tanahashi hits a slingblade on Jay and neckbreaker on Mark, and then dives onto Jay. Meanwhile, the Lethal Injection only gets 2 on Mark! Crowd totally bought that false finish… and so did I. Jay goes on an uppercut spree and avoids Lethal's Electric Chair and nails a vicious German suplex. The Briscoes hit the Doomsday Device on Lethal to retain at 19:40. Despite a slog in the middle portion, this ended on a hot note, ***¼.
Winners and still ROH Tag Team Champions: The Briscoes
Austin Aries makes a surprise appearance, wielding several championship belts over his arms. He's the "Belt Collector" and would like to add the ROH TV title to his collection, so he issues a challenge to the winner of King vs. Young before joining commentary.
ROH Television Championship (Last Man Standing):
Kenny King © vs. Silas Young
Young fills the ringside area with plunder, including a table. Bell rings and they go right into a brawl, with King hitting a back suplex and backbreaker. King cuts off Young's comeback with a swinging backbreaker. King uses a Last Chancery to send Aries a message on commentary (Aries: "He doesn't even have the right technique!"). Young survives and slams King over the ropes and through the ringside table! Young repeatedly sends King into the guard rails and King is in big trouble. King takes some abuse and comes back with a sidewalk slam onto the top turnbuckles. King follows with a nice blockbuster off the apron. Spinebuster by King, but his back is too hurt for the Royal Flush. Young answers with Misery on the apron. Young brings some weapons into the ring, King blocks a suplex onto a chair, but Young recovers with trash lid shots. King missile dropkicks a chair into Young's face and hits the Royal Flush onto a trash can. Young nearly can't make the count but rolls onto his feet off the apron, which is the first time the stipulation has been used well. King sets Young on a ringside table, but the Beer City Bruiser runs in. King fights him off with a trash can, but Young ambushes him from behind. Young sets up a ladder, presumably forgetting that there was already a ladder match held on this very card, and King cuts him off with a belly to belly onto the ladder. King sets Young on the table again but this time connects with a top rope SSP! JIMINY H. CRICKET! King is then unable to stand up, as someone grabs his legs from under the ring and ties him up. That finish is so awful, it's actually hilarious. This took a while to get going and really embrace the stipulation, but had some cool stunts along the way, but again, the finish is so awesomely terrible, I'm surprised we didn't see it at some point in a mid-2000's Smackdown PPV (or maybe we did and I've finally blocked it from my memory), ***.
Winner and new ROH TV Champion: Silas Young
Austin Aries saves King from a two on one beatdown from Young and Bruiser. I guess Aries will face Young for the title, but I don't recall this going anywhere.
Cheeseburger and Eli Osom vs. The Dawgs (Rhett Titus and Will Ferrara)
The Dawgs attack Cheeseburger and Osom before the bell and quickly get chairs to destroy Osom's knees. Bully Ray arrives on the scene to restore order. Looks like the match is off, which is something of a relief considering this show's length. Osom is too hurt to compete so Ray orders Burger to find a new partner, and he chooses Ray! Looks like the match is on afterall, if it must. Ray and Burger dominate the early going. Burger hits Ferrara with a bulldog and Ray hits his patented jabs. Burger hits "Sho-Tay" and they give Titus the "WASSUP" diving headbutt. Ray does the "GET THE TABLE" shtick but then chokeslams poor Burger! OH NO, BULLY RAY IS EVIL NOW! Ray takes a mic and tells off Burger for daring to put him in this spot. Ray says "Burger and his kind" is what's wrong with the business, which the crowd takes as a racist thing, before Ray elaborates that it's a generational issue. Joe Koff arrives and Ray tells him off for signing guys like Burger. Flip Gordon runs in but hesitates when Ray threatens to piledriver Burger. Ray promises that the state athletic commision will shut the show down if Burger suffers a broken neck, so Gordon and Koff back off. Ray brags about his new WWE Hall of Fame ring and powerbombs Burger for good measure, and then flees before Gordon can do anything about it. I guess the match is a no contest at 8:00
, if you care about that detail.
Cody (with Brandi Rhodes, Bernard the Business Bear, and fake cops) vs. Kenny Omega
The fans HATE Cody here and give Omega a hero's welcome. Cody and Omega are fighting for control of Bullet Club. Fans chant "Holy sh!t" at the opening bell, so no pressure, guys. A staredown leads to a "F*ck you, Cody" chant (funny in retrospect, considering how Cody is the beloved leader of AEW in 2020). The fight begins and Omega quickly kicks Cody over the ropes but Bernard trips him to prevent a dive. Omega dropkicks Bernard's head off, which allows Cody an ambush. Cody directs the fight to the ring and hits a wild release suplex. Cody teases Shattered Dreams but flips the fans off instead. Cody counters a rana into a powerbomb and applies an American Death Lock. Omega gets the ropes but Brandi slaps him. Brandi blatantly tosses an item to her husband, which distracts the referee while Cody hits a kick to the groin. You can sense some anxiety creeping into the crowd as Cody continues to dominate. Cody draws some massive old school heat for spraying beer at some mouthy fans. Omega finally shows some signs of life but Cody seems to have all the answers, including a moonsault counter. Omega desperately hits a Frankensteiner, followed by a soaring plancha. Kotaro Crusher by Omega and cross legged brainbuster! V-Trigger is good and he jockeys into a pair of snap Dragons. Cody answers with a Disaster Kick. Cody blocks One Winged Angel and applies a Figure Four and wrenches it in with a crab walk. Cody refuses to let go despite a gator roll and they trade punches until Omega finally rolls over to reverse. Cody sets a table at ringside and teases a Cross Rhodes off the apron. Instead, Omega hits a full nelson suplex onto the ring frame. Omega tips the table onto it's side, which backfires when Codyslams him onto the sharp end! Cody steals the timekeeper's table but returns to the ring to try to finish Omega with his secondary finishers. Cody hits a Dragon Rush suplex of his own, but Omega pops up for a V-Trigger and reverse rana. Brandi distracts on the apron, and Omega V-Triggers her through the table! Omega is horrified by what he's done, allowing an easy Cross Rhodes for an excellent nearfall. Flip Gordon helps Brandi up. Cody doesn't notice or care what's going on with his wife and hits a superplex. Cue the "This is awesome" chants. Omega dodges a moonsault and delivers fiery knee strikes. Cody shields himself with the ref, spits in the face, and goes for the eyes, but Omega punishes him with a V-Trigger for another great nearfall. Cody blocks One Winged Angel and hits a Vertebreaker! OMEGA KICKS OUT! Fans chant "Fight Forever." Cody backs Omega into a ref bump and they both go down with double crossbody attempts. The Young Bucks come to the ring and seem unsure about who to help. They miss Cody with superkicks and take down Omega instead! Cody hits Cross Rhodes for the win at 37:11! This was an incredible piece of work, including (for lack of better words) an elite performance by Cody before he was getting credit for the quality of his ring work. That finish probably angered many at the time, but with the benefit of hindsight, I can appreciate it for extending a complex Bullet Club civil war story, ****½.
Omega refuses to hear excuses from the Young Bucks, who remain in the ring as the crowd chants "You f*cked up" at them.
ROH World Championship:
Dalton Castle © (with The Boys) vs. Marty Scurll
NWA World Champion Nick Aldis is watching from the front row. Scurll rejects the Code of Honor and it's on. The crowd applauds them wrestling to a stalemate. Castle reaches into his own tights and pulls out a middle finger, Scurll tries to break it, and Castle knocks him down with a closed fist. Scurll impulsively retrieves his golden umbrella but follows referee's orders to put it down. They engage in a vicious mat exchange, trading chops and punches while blocking submissions. Dead lift suplex by Castle, and they brawl at ringside. Neither man can get a clear advantage, though Scurll does connect with vicious attacks to the elbow and fingers. Just as the match becomes meandering, Castle begins to build some steam with consecutive suplexes and throws. Scurll manages to sidestep Castle through the ropes, but spends too much time showboating and Castle surprises with a nasty German suplex onto the floor. Scurll seems to no sell and hit an enziguri, but Castle recovers by dropkicking him off the turnbuckles. Scurll responds with a tilt-a-whirl DDT at ringside. They block finishers and trade stiff shots. There's a loud dueling chant, though I imagine a Manhattan Center crowd would have turned on this by now. Crowd pops for a superplex and Scurll buys time with a superkick. They brawl up the aisle and Scurll counters with a back body drop onto the steps! Scurll goes after the wrist with hammerlock thrusts into the buckles. Ghost Buster by Scurll gets 2. Scurll removes some buckle padding, but Castle comes back with desperate shots with his good arm. Dead lift German by Castle gets a good nearfall. Scurll no-sells for another flurry of offense, hitting a superkick to the head for 2. Scurll fails to find a particular item under the ring, and Castle slams him on the floor. Scurll finally finds a bag of powder, but Castle kicks it into his face. A blind Scurll snaps the referee's fingers. Castle takes advantage with Bang-a-rang, but the ref's hand is too injured to count to 3! That's the first thing the crowd has popped for in ages. Scurll hits a series of umbrella shots and hits the Boys too for good measure. Brainbuster by Scurll, but the new ref arrives too late and only counts 2. Castle initially blocks a Chicken Wing but Scurll tries again and locks on the hold. Castle breaks free with a back drop, but Scurll reapplies the hold! Scurll snaps the finger again and repeatedly stomps the head. Ref considers calling the match, but Castle counters another Chicken Wing, survives some superkicks, and hits Bang-a-rang for the win at 31:43. This was a total disappointment. It was 10 minutes too long, had to follow the hot Cody/Omega match, and was completely meandering and lacked any type of story or flow. The crowd reacted to the late shenanigans, but it was a bit too little too late, **.
Winner and still ROH World Champion: Dalton Castle
Final Thoughts: This is worth checking out as a prelude to All Elite Wrestling. It's cool to see ROH enjoy a full house in a small arena and the good stuff is very good. Sadly, the main event does not hold up, and there are a few questionable booking decisions and finishes that would cost them down the road.
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