Never Say Die

Boston University – Boston, Massachusetts – Friday, May 8, 2009

PRESHOW MATCH: Ernie Osiris vs. Grizzly Redwood

Redwood charges the ring because he’s so angry that Osiris stole his boots and a piece of wood and burned them. No, I’m not making this up. I know a lot of ROH fans like to rag on WWE for the Chavo Guerrero versus Hornswoggle feud, but honestly this Redwood versus Osiris issue is no better. Anyway, back to the match, Osiris weathers the littlest lumberjack’s initial onslaught and goes on offense. Redwood responds by trying to chop Osiris down at the knees. Osiris appears to be going for a snap mare driver, but instead falls back with it. That was kind of cool. Redwood then makes the big comeback, hitting a flapjack. He misses a charge in the corner and Osiris hits a gourdbuster, but Redwood reverses the pin to a small package for the win at 3:24. Jimmy Rave comes out to attack Redwood, and Necro Butcher makes the save. I guess this stuff has its place on the preshow, but it doesn’t do anything for me.
Rating: ¼*

MATCH #1: Delirious vs. Ricky Reyes

Reyes hasn’t been on an ROH show since Battle of the Icons on January 27, 2007. They take it to the mat right away as Prazak recalls back in 2006 that Delirious had to defeat Reyes at the original Supercard of Honor in order to keep his roster spot. Reyes is aggressive, slapping Delirious across the face and spitting on him. They continue working the mat, and Reyes backs Delirious into the corner and slaps Delirious in the face once again. Reyes locks on a headlock, and Delirious breaks that and they criss-cross. Delirious gets an armdrag and locks on an armbar. Reyes breaks that and gets an armdrag and an armbar of his own. Delirious gets back to his feet and breaks the hold. He tries a sunset flip but Reyes blocks it and goes after the mask. Delirious is undaunted and this time gets the sunset flip, and then a dropkick for two. Reyes comes back with a swinging neckbreaker for two, and then locks on a body scissors. Delirious gets up again, so Reyes locks on a sleeper, which Delirious reverses into one of his own. Reyes escapes that, and they run into each other, clunking heads. Both men are back on their feet and Delirious hits a series of clotheslines, and then a neckbreaker across the knee for two. Delirious goes for Shadows over Hell, but Reyes blocks it and joins him up on the ropes. That proves costly for Reyes, as Delirious drops him face-first on the turnbuckle and goes for Shadows over Hell. Reyes avoids it and hits a Saito Suplex with a bridge for two. A sit-out powerbomb gets another two-count for Reyes. Delirious comes back with a head scissors and a drop toehold into the corner. That sets Reyes up perfectly for the Panic Attack. Delirious then goes up top and connects with Shadows over Hell to get the victory at 10:13. Reyes looked pretty good there and I wouldn’t mind him being around once in a while. The match was a reminder that Delirious can wrestle a mat-based style, and it works for him.
Rating: **¾

MATCH #2: Rhett Titus & Kenny King vs. The Super Smash Brothers

This is my first time seeing the Super Smash Brothers in tag team action. I’m glad Jim Cornette is joining a company that doesn’t support “Sports Entertainment.” King attacks Player Uno before the bell to take the unfair advantage. Uno doesn’t appreciate that, so he comes back with a couple of armdrags and a leg lariat before tagging in Player Dos. They make some quick tags and execute some fancy double-team moves. King comes back with a thumb to the eye on Dos, and both men make tags. Uno and Dos knock King and Titus to the floor and wipe them both out with stereo dives. Back in the ring Uno gets a cover on Titus for two. Dos gets tagged in for some more double-teaming. He throws Titus to the floor and goes for another dive, but King cuts him off with a knee to the face. Now it’s King and Titus’s turn for some double-teaming, as they take control of Dos. Titus uses the tag rope to choke him while King distracts the referee. King tags out to Titus, who continues to work Dos over in their half of the ring. After several minutes of abuse, Dos makes the tag to Uno, who is on fire. The match breaks down to a bit, with all four men in the ring. Referee Paul Turner has completely lost control. Amidst all the chaos, Titus and King are able to hit the springboard Blockbuster / Powerbomb combination (give that a name, please) to score the pin at 8:43. I’m not sold on the Smash Brothers, as a lot of their stuff seems pretty contrived, but it was my first time seeing them so I’m certainly not writing them off yet. King and Titus are really hitting their stride as a team. The match was overall pretty solid, and the crowd gives the Super Smash Brothers the “please come back” chant.
Rating: **½

MATCH #3: Jay Briscoe vs. Necro Butcher

These two have had several one-on-one matches over the years, and they’ve been a total mixed bag in terms of quality. It’s funny now that they’re both good guys they’re buddies, but Necro did have a part in hanging Jay from the ceiling of the Frontier Field House back at the Man Up! pay-per-view. They start off with some boxing, and Jay lands the first shot. Necro lands the next one, a shot to the ribs. They fight up against the ropes, and Jay escapes, only to run right into a bare foot to the face. Jay briefly regroups on the floor. Back in the ring Necro throws more punches, and Jay gets a quick schoolboy rollup for two, and then grabs a front facelock. Necro escapes and goes for another foot to the face, but Jay avoids it and hits a leg lariat, sending Necro to the floor. Jay suplexes Necro back into the ring for a two-count. He stays in control as the match turns more into wrestling than the fighting it was before. Necro avoids a charge in the corner and unloads with chops and punches in the corner, and comes out with a bulldog and a La Magistral cradle for two. Back on their feet Necro hits a chokeslam and rolls that into a Tiger Driver attempt, but Jay blocks it by driving Necro into the turnbuckles. Jay hits a series of forearms and two running clotheslines for a two-count. He hits a double stomp and goes up top, but Necro knocks him down. Necro tries the Necrocanrana, but Jay avoids it and hits the Cena legdrop for two. Jay hits a superkick for another two-count. He tries the Jay Driller but Necro reverses it to the Tiger Driver and Jay kicks out at two! They take it to the floor and Necro slams Jay’s face into the timekeeper’s table. Necro goes to the top rope, but before he can jump off the Embassy runs down out of nowhere to brutalize Necro for the disqualification at 10:16. It’s four-on-one but Necro is able to fight off Jimmy Rave, Claudio Castagnoli, Prince Nana, and Ernie Osiris. Jay then tosses Rave back into the ring for a Necro beating, but Rave sacrifices Osiris to the cause. Necro hits a stunner on him as the rest of the Embassy looks on from the entrance ramp. The official result is a no-contest. The match was actually pretty fun, as they were going for a different kind of vibe than the other matches on the show and I appreciate that.
Rating: ***

MATCH #4: Anything Goes Match – Davey Richards vs. Kevin Steen

Richards is accompanied by Shane Hagadorn, and his World Tag Team Championship belt. Steen runs down the aisle before he’s even introduced and attacks the American Wolf. Hagadorn also gets cracked in the mouth, just because. Steen clears out the announce table and suplexes Richards right through it. He gets on the mic and asks Davey if he’ll marry him, and then says “oh wait, I forgot, you’re a bitch and I hate you!” Usually I find Steen funny but that was just weird. Richards recovers and sends Steen over the guardrail and they fight into the crowd. Steen takes the advantage out there, and when they get back to ringside Richards tries to take a time out, but Steen delivers a cannonball up against the guardrail in lieu of granting the timeout. Steen goes under the ring and produces an exceptionally tall ladder, and also a table. Back in the ring Steen is toying with Richards now. Lenny Leonard is oddly off-topic in this match – promoting the main event and talking about Tyler Black’s injury while stuff is going on. Steen brings in a bunch of chairs and abuses Richards with them. He goes up top and Hagadorn grabs the leg, allowing Richards to pop right up and throw a chair in Steen’s face. Richards then goes up and superplexes Steen onto a pile of chairs for a two-count. Hagadorn gives Richards a chain, which he uses to choke Steen. He then wraps it around his boot and hits some Kawada kicks, busting Steen open. Richards takes a chair and bashes Steen in the knee with it a couple of times and then locks on the Texas Cloverleaf. Steen reverses that to a small package for two, and then catches a charging Richards with a powerbomb through the table that was set up in the corner for a two-count. He goes outside the ring and sets up two tables, with the help of some ring crew guys. I hate that – wrestle the match on your own. Steen tries to powerbomb Richards over the ropes and through said tables, but Richards avoids it and kicks Steen in the head. Richards and Hagadorn set up another table between the ring apron and the steel barricade, and put Steen on it. That doesn’t last long, as Richards climbs the ladder, but Steen gets off the table and joins Steen on the ladder. Steen goes for a suplex off the ladder, but Richards knocks him down and Steen crashes through both tables. Richards rolls Steen back in the ring and goes for a cover, but Steen kicks out at two! He takes Steen to the apron to try a DR Driver through the table, but Steen reverses it and hits the Package Piledriver instead. Steen rolls Richards back in the ring and gets the three-count at 18:27. Eddie Edwards comes out immediately to attack Steen, which goes on despite Alex Payne’s attempts to help out. The match was brutal and fun in a lot of ways, but it was also one of those matches where they kicked out of too much stuff. But overall I still liked it.
Rating: ***¼

MATCH #5: Three Way Match – Bryan Danielson vs. Sonjay Dutt vs. Eddie Edwards

Dutt is making his first ROH appearance since Death Before Dishonor IV on July 15, 2006, when he challenged Danielson for the ROH World Title. I’m curious to see what he can do. Edwards ignores the handshakes and earns the ire of Danielson for doing so. Dutt and Danielson double-team the American Wolf and send him to the floor, and then turn their attention towards each other. It doesn’t take long for Dutt to work in the Camel Clutch, and that’s when Edwards re-enters the ring and kicks him in the face. Edwards then hits Danielson with a snap suplex for two. He thwarts Danielson’s offense attempts and sends him to the floor. Meanwhile Dutt has recovered and he delivers some flippy armdrags and a headscissors, and then for some reason does the Jeff Jarrett strut before going for a cover. Oh yeah, because TNA fired him, I get it. That’s cute. Actually, it’s not cute, it’s fucking irritating. Edwards recovers and hits a Code Breaker off the second rope, and then knocks Danielson off the ring apron with a kick to the face. He gets a two-count on Dutt, and follows up with a back elbow to the face and a kick to the back for another two-count. Once again Edwards knocks Danielson back to the floor and continues to focus on Dutt. Danielson tries to fight back on the apron, but Edwards withstands the attack and kicks him to the floor once again. Dutt avoids a belly-to-back suplex and hits a cool bulldog into the turnbuckles, and then a kick to the face. Danielson finally rejoins the ring with a flying knee strike off the top rope, and Dutt follows with a splash off the top rope. They double-team Edwards, and Danielson locks him in the surfboard while Dutt hits a running dropkick to the face. Dutt goes for a cover, much to Danielson’s chagrin. He won’t back down from the ROH legend, and they have a back and forth exchange while Edwards recovers on the floor. Danielson sends Dutt to the floor and goes for a dive but Edwards stops him and hits a dragon screw on the ropes. Edwards then tries to use a chair, but Kevin Steen comes from out of nowhere and takes it from him. Danielson joins Edwards on the floor, and Dutt hits a suicide dive to wipe them both out. Dutt and Danielson are the first two back in the ring and Dutt hits a standing Sliced Bread No. 2 on Danielson for a two-count. Edwards rejoins the fight and knocks Dutt to the floor, and then hits the backpack chinbreaker on Danielson for two. He follows up with Danielson’s signature elbows, so Danielson gets pissed and locks on the triangle choke for the win at 10:17. That was a fun sprint of a match, but I almost think Edwards should have gone over on Danielson to build more heat for the Tag Title match tomorrow.
Rating: ***

MATCH #6: Colt Cabana, Erick Stevens & Brent Albright vs. The Embassy (Jimmy Rave, Claudio Castagnoli & Joey Ryan)

The Embassy is accompanied by Prince Nana and Ernie Osiris. As far as I know or remember, there has been nothing on any Ring of Honor DVD that would inform me why Joey Ryan was teaming with the Embassy in his ROH debut. The good guys charge down the aisle and attack right away, with Ryan getting the worst of it. I think it’s funny that Albright is wearing a backwards baseball cap, as if that somehow makes him cool. Cabana is in control of all three opponents, clotheslining all of them to the floor, and then Stevens and Albright join in the fun with simultaneous slingshot dives to the floor. The referee has no control of the match in the opening minutes, as all six men are going in and out of the ring as they please. They finally settle it down with Cabana and Ryan in the ring, and Cabana controls the action and tags Stevens in. Albright also gets a turn to abuse the Sleazy one. The babyfaces are totally in control for the first few minutes. Ryan makes a tag to Castagnoli, who exchanges holds with Cabana. Stevens gets tagged in and goes to work on the Most Money Making Man. Albright gets the next tag, and he unloads on his hated rival with some slow paced offense. Way to sell that feud, Brent. Castagnoli charges into an Albright powerslam for two, and then Stevens gets tagged in. The Embassy triple-teams Stevens as the match breaks down, with Cabana and Albright trying to help their partner, and then just giving up for no apparent reason. Stevens gets isolated in the wrong half of the ring, as Nana and Osiris even get involved by trash talking Stevens. Stevens comes back with an enziguiri on Rave, but Ryan and Castagnoli pull Albright and Cabana off the apron, thus preventing the tag. Eventually Stevens makes the tag to Cabana, and he’s all over everyone in the Embassy with his usual stuff. Cabana then tags Albright, who hits an Air Raid Crash on Ryan for two. Ryan comes back with a chinbreaker, and Albright makes the tag to Stevens, who tries the Doctor Bomb but Ryan escapes and tags Castagnoli, who takes a release German suplex. Rave illegally enters the ring, so Cabana comes in to even the odds. The match breaks down even further, with everyone throwing out their big moves. Stevens hits Castagnoli with the elevated clothesline, and then switches his focus to Ryan. The referee gets distracted and Castagnoli hits a low blow on Stevens to get the pin at 14:56. Nana’s celebration after the match is pretty great, but the match itself was anything but. It was all over the place, and I really only care about one guy (Castagnoli) of the six. They did almost nothing to build the Castagnoli versus Albright feud, and the whole match just ended up being nothing much.
Rating: **

MATCH #7: ROH World Title Match – Jerry Lynn vs. Chris Hero

Hero is accompanied by Shane Hagadorn. Lynn has been the champion since 4.3.09, and this is his fifth defense. Hero dwarfs Lynn from a height perspective. Lynn dwarfs Hero from a being boring perspective. They take it to the mat right away, and approach each other cautiously. Hero tries an early rolling elbow and misses, and Lynn responds by faking on to try and get into Hero’s head. Lynn locks on a side headlock, which Hero reverses and takes Lynn down to the mat. They get back to their feet and Lynn escapes the headlock and gets a schoolboy rollup for two. Lynn follows up with a headscissors and then locks on a front facelock. Hero escapes that, and they just keep going back and forth, like most Jerry Lynn matches. Lynn blocks another rolling elbow attempt and hits one of his own for a two-count. Hero then tosses Lynn to the floor, and Hagadorn tries to get his shots in but Lynn shoves him off. Even so that’s enough to distract Lynn and Hero kicks him in the face and continues the assault on the floor. Hero “traps” Lynn under the ring mat and hits a senton. That seems like it would soften the blow, not accentuate it. Back in the ring Hero maintains control, stomping away at the champion and talking trash the whole time. The challenger hits a big boot to the face for a two-count. Lynn charges out of the corner with some punches, but Hero cuts him off with an elbow to the face for two. Hero tries a powerslam, but Lynn reverses it to an inverted DDT for two. Lynn hits a rana off the second rope and Hero bails to the floor. He follows Hero out and tries the somersault off the apron, but Hero catches him and slams him into the barricade. That was cool. Hero charges at Lynn, who moves out of the way but Hero is able to land on the guardrail, only to get pushed into the crowd. Lynn follows him out. Not much happens there and they make their way back to the ring. Hero hits a running elbow and a blockbuster for two. Lynn comes back and tries a tornado DDT, but Hero avoids it and hits the rolling elbow and Lynn kicks out at two. They trade Cradle Piledriver attempts, and it’s Lynn who winds up hitting a TKO for two. Hero comes back and hits another rolling elbow and the Liger Bomb for two. He tries another rolling elbow but an exhausted Lynn simply falls through the ropes to the apron. Hero takes the battle up to the turnbuckles, and Lynn suddenly gets energized enough to hit a dangerous looking rana all the way to the floor. That’s trust right there. Lynn pushes Hero back into the ring but doesn’t go for a cover. Instead he goes for the Cradle Piledriver, but has to settle for a regular one. Hero kicks out at two. Lynn goes for another one but Hero can’t even stand up, so Lynn goes for the cover and Hero kicks out again. He tries yet another Cradle Piledriver and Hero avoids it, but Lynn counters with a sort of Code Red for two. Hagadorn distracts the champion and Hero hits a wicked elbow to the back of the head, and Hagadorn even holds Lynn’s leg down, and the champion still kicks out. Hero gets the green elbow pad, but Lynn avoids it and gets a small package for two. Lynn removes the elbow pad, but Hero hits him with a rolling elbow anyway and Lynn still kicks out. Moments later Lynn hits the Cradle Piledriver to a chorus of boos and retains the World Title at 24:30. That was a little on the long side for a Jerry Lynn match for my liking, but Hero was able to make it pretty interesting. They had some really cool spots, but like a lot of Lynn matches he kicked out of way too much stuff in the continued effort of shoving him down our throats.
Rating: ***½

Advertisements