live & let die

Ohio Expo Center – Columbus, OH – Saturday, June 8, 2013

Kevin Kelly and Steve Corino are on commentary.

MATCH #1: Adam Cole vs. Caprice Coleman

They start with some friendly chain wrestling. Cole knocks Coleman to the floor but doesn’t have time to follow up with the dive he wants to. Back in the ring Coleman knocks Cole to the floor and goes for a five, but he can’t connect either. Cole hits an enziguiri that knocks Coleman off the apron, and then finally connects on the dive. Back in the ring Cole begins the wearing down process. Coleman refuses to go down without a fight. Cole hits a neckbreaker for two, and then covers twice more for more two-counts. He tries to keep the high-flying Coleman on the ground. When Coleman resumes verticality the momentum shifts back in his direction. Coleman sends Cole to the floor and hits a gorgeous Asai Moonsault … from inside the ring. That’s awesome. Back in the ring Coleman hits a high cross body block from the top rope for two. Coleman lands a high knee to the face and the super rana for a near-fall. He slams Cole down and goes for an Asai Moonsault but Cole gets his knees up. Cole hits the vertical suplex into a neckbreaker and then the Florida Key to get the pin at 7:19. I expected it would go longer but they packed a lot of action into that short time. Good choice for an opener.
Rating: **¾

MATCH #2: Roderick Strong vs. “God’s Gift” Q.T. Marshall

They start slowly, and Marshall is proud of himself when he backs Strong into a corner. Strong doesn’t sweat the small stuff though, and he backs Marshall into the corner and fakes a chop. Mind games right there. He takes control and next time lands a chop for real. Strong hits some more chops. Marshall comes back by dumping Strong to the floor. Back inside Marshall hits a neckbreaker for two. For some reason Marshall tries the People’s Elbow and Strong moves out of the way. Strong gets a rollup for two. Marshall cuts him off and goes right back to work. Strong is all like “oh wait it’s just Q.T. Marshall” and he starts to fight back. He lands the big dropkick for a two-count. Strong hits the Angle Slam for two. Marshall backdrops his way out of a Gibson Driver attempt. He sort of hits a tilt-a-whirl slam for two. Marshall goes up top and Strong drills him with an enziguiri. Strong hits a superplex and Marshall is able to cradle the legs for a near-fall. Marshall hits a flapjack and a lariat for another two-count. Strong comes back with a knee to the face and the Death by Roderick. He locks on the Stronghold for the submission win at 9:25. I make fun of Marshall and stuff, but he’s perfectly fine in his role and this match was perfectly acceptable wrestling. It’s hard to have a bad match with Roderick Strong.
Rating: **½

Adam Cole comes out and apologizes for not shaking Strong’s hand after their match at Honor in the Heart of Texas. He challenges Strong to a rematch at the upcoming Best in the World iPPV in Baltimore, and Strong accepts.

MATCH #3: “American Wolf” Davey Richards vs. Cedric Alexander

They chain wrestle right from the start, and Alexander keeps up with the vaunted Richards. The match stays on the mat until Alexander knocks Richards to the floor, stunning the American Wolf. Back in the ring the exchange of holds continues, and both men are looking evenly matched here. Momentum shifts back and forth several times, as both men are trying to set the tone. Richards takes the first sustained advantage but Alexander shows early on he won’t go down without a fight. Alexander dumps Richards to the floor but when he goes for a dive Richards avoids it. Richards hits the running kick from the apron and Alexander is out on the floor. Back in the ring Richards goes up top and lands the diving headbutt for two. Richards continues to control, even using a Texas Cloverleaf briefly. Alexander is able to his own momentum to send Richards to the floor, and this time he lands the dive to wipe Richards out in the aisle. Back in the ring Alexander is a house afire, unleashing a flurry of offense. Alexander hits a split-legged moonsault for two. He tries a springboard move but Richards dropkicks him to the floor. Richards tries the running kick but Alexander avoids it. Back in the ring Alexander hits a flying clothesline off the top rope and a full nelson facebuster for two. Alexander tries a suplex but Richards slips out. They trade strikes and Richards puts on the Ankle Lock. Richards turns that into the Texas Cloverleaf and Alexander rolls that into a small package for two. Back on their feet Richards hits the Alarm Clock and Alexander no-sells that to hit a leaping enziguiri from the second rope. Both men are down. They rise up and trade strikes again. Richards gets the better of it with a series of kicks. He slams Alexander down and goes up top. Alexander tries to stop him but Richards ends up hitting him with a release German Superplex! Richards hits a big lariat and a bridging German Suplex for two. He goes up top but misses a double stomp. Alexander hits a reverse rana, a boot to the face, and another reverse rana. He follows with an IED and the Brainbuster but it only gets two. Alexander goes up top for a Frog Splash but Richards gets his knees up. Richards delivers a knockout kick and goes up top to hit the double stomp. Once again Alexander kicks out! Richards lands more kicks to the head but again only gets two! Finally Richards locks Alexander in the Cloverleaf for the win at 18:13. I don’t recall Richards working much on the legs or back leading up to that submission. Aside from that this was a terrific match and a great showing for Alexander, his first great singles match in the company.
Rating: ***¾

Richards of course gets on the microphone and puts Alexander over, telling everyone that Alexander is going to be a World Champion someday. See, the match says that itself, with Davey having to literally verbalize it. I don’t understand his obsession with doing that.

MATCH #4: Proving Ground Match – ROH World Tag Team Champions reDRagon (Bobby Fish & Kyle O’Reilly) vs. Adrenaline RUSH (ACH & TaDarius Thomas)

Thomas and Fish start the match with some chain wrestling. They feel each other out for a bit and then make tags. Kevin Kelly keeps up with the ridiculous assertion that ACH has wanted to wrestle Jay Lethal since he was eight years old. Or in other words, when Lethal was 11. I don’t think Lethal was wrestling at 11, so SHUT UP KEVIN KELLY. O’Reilly and ACH go at it now, and O’Reilly targets the arm. ACH comes back using his incredible agility and makes the tag. Thomas hits some kicks so O’Reilly tags out. Fish goes after the leg and Thomas makes the tag. Momentum has shifted back and forth several times in the opening minutes as both teams try to establish their dominance. ACH and Thomas focus on Fish and try to keep him from making a tag. O’Reilly is able to get a tag and the Champions take control on ACH. Fish and O’Reilly focus on the arm and keep the high-flying ACH on the mat. After several minutes of abuse ACH is able to grab Fish with a Stunner. Tags are made. Tomas is a house afire, kicking reDRagon any way he possibly can. He hits Sling Blade on O’Reilly for two. ACH tags back in, but he probably should have taken more of a breather after the beating he took. Adrenaline RUSH use some unique double-team moves to keep O’Reilly on the mat. Thomas goes for a dive but Fish cuts him off and pulls him to the floor. ACH hits O’Reilly with a bridging Regalplex and Fish breaks up the cover. All four men are in the ring, as the referee has completely lost control. ACH dumps Fish to the floor and goes for an Asai Moonsault. Fish avoids that and drives ACH hard into the guardrail. Thomas and O’Reilly fight on the apron and Fish takes his leg out. O’Reilly hits ACH with the missile dropkick off the apron (such a babyface move). The Champs then hit Thomas with Chasing the Dragon out on the floor! O’Reilly throws ACH back in the ring and covers but only gets two! ACH makes a valiant effort but he’s all alone. O’Reilly hits a bridging Regalplex (with a knee to the head by Fish for good measure), but ACH kicks out again! Thomas recovers but it’s not to last, as Fish takes him to the floor and hits a Samoan Drop. Meanwhile ACH goes up top and tries an awesome 450 but O’Reilly gets his knees up. O’Reilly then puts on an armbar and ACH has to submit at 20:36. That was pretty good and all, but whoever decided they need have to keep Proving Ground matches with a 15-minute time limit is insane. It can create moire drama and make the matches feel different. On its own this one was pretty good but would have been tighter and more exciting if it was shorter.
Rating: ***

Hoopla Uncut with CHEESEBURGER

Truth Martini makes his way out with Scarlett Bordeaux and Seleziya Sparx, among other random hotties. Apparently the randoms are there to audition for a spot in the House of Truth. Martini quickly sends the randoms backstage to prepare for part two of the audition. He brings out his guest for the evening, the one and only CHEESEBURGER. Martini was impressed when CHEESEBURGER kissed Maria Kanellis at Border Wars 2013. He wants to know how it felt. CHEESEBURGER says “it felt good.” Martini presses further and CHEESEBURGER admits it was the greatest moment of his life. The leader of the House of Truth invites CHEESEBURGER to participate in A Night of Hoopla next month in Chicago, and the invitation is quickly accepted. Martini has one more question. He asks CHEESEBURGER if kissing Maria gave him a boner. CHEESEBURGER reluctantly admits that yes, yes it did. That bit of honesty earns CHEESEBURGER a lap dance from Scarlett and Seleziya. CHEESEBURGER asks if he can kiss the Hoopla Hotties. Martini says yes, as long as CHEESEBURGER takes his pants off. For some reason RHINO and Steve Corino come out and RHINO cuts CHEESEBURGER in half with a Gore! That leads directly into the next match. Boy that segment just went on forever, and I’m not sure what I was supposed to get from it.

MATCH #5: Grudge Match – “Mr. Wrestling” Kevin Steen vs. RHINO

These two had a heck of a match back at Death Before Dishonor X: Stage of Emergency last September. Steen charges into the ring and unloads on RHINO. He dumps the Man Beast to the floor and follows him out, only to get tripped and land face-first on the apron. RHINO takes control from there, hitting a suplex on the floor. Steen fights back and takes RHINO out with a cannonball off the apron. Back in the ring RHINO hits a nice spinebuster. RHINO goes to work now, overpowering Steen and keeping him on the mat. Steen reverses a whip to the corner and then they collide with each other, knocking them both down. Back on their feet Steen hits a dropkick, and then goes to the second rope to hit another one. Steen hits the Cannonball in the corner for a two-count. He goes all the way up and hits the Swanton but again only gets two. RHINO comes back and hits a belly-to-belly suplex. He goes for the Gore but gets kicked in the face. Steen hits his own Gore and then the F-Cinq to get the win at 8:04. This was short but sweet, with both guys sticking to their strengths and keeping the crowd into it.
Rating: **¾

Matt Hardy comes out to attack Steen, and with the help of Corino is able to hit the Twist of Fate. The crowd is none too pleased with Hardy or Corino about that. Steen will get a chance to avenge that loss when he faces Hardy at Best in the World 2013.

MATCH #6: ROH vs. S.C.U.M. Match – Mark Briscoe vs. Matt Hardy

Mark charges out of the back and away we go. He scores a series of knockdowns and Matt bails to the floor. Matt isn’t safe though, as Mark wipes him out with a dive. Corino tries to distract Mark but fails. Mark whips Matt into the ring post. Back in the ring Mark goes up top and Corino distracts him while Matt distracts the referee. That allows Matt to catch Mark with the Side Effect for a two-count. Matt is totally in control, wearing Mark down. Mark breaks out of a sleeper with a chinbreaker. Corino grabs his leg to distract him. Matt hits yet another neckbreaker for two. He goes up to the second rope and Mark pulls his leg out from out of his leg and Matt crashes to the mat. Mark unloads with Redneck Kung Fu. He hits a Finlay Roll and looks to go up top but Corino distracts him again. Mark goes back up top but Matt has recovered. Matt slams Mark down to the mat and follows him down with the elbow to the back of the head. He goes for the Twist of Fate but Mark reverses to a Sleeper. Rhett Titus and Kevin Steen come running out, distracting the referee. Neither Titus nor Steen touches anyone, so there is no DQ. Jimmy Jacobs and Cliff Compton come out to make matters worse. Corino sneaks in and hits Mark with a foreign object, allowing Matt to hit the Twist of Fate for the pin at 8:13. That seemed short but in this case I’m fine with that. Matt got the right kind of win for his character.
Rating: **½

S.C.U.M. beats on Mark after the bell, while Steen and Hardy battle on the floor. Michael Elgin, Jay Lethal, and BJ Whitmer come out to make the save and start our next match.

MATCH #7: ROH vs. S.C.U.M. No Rules Six Man Match – “Unbreakable” Michael Elgin, Jay Lethal & BJ Whitmer vs. Jimmy Jacobs, Cliff Compton & Rhett Titus

There are No Rules in this one so I expect o have a bit of a time covering all the action. Team ROH withstands three simultaneous suplexes and pop up to give three very delayed vertical suplexes of their own. The battle spills to the floor and Team ROH is dominating. They fight all over the arena for a little while. Lethal and Jacobs are the first to get back in the ring, where Lethal hits the handspring back elbow. Jacobs tries the Contra Code but Lethal avoids it and hits a superkick. Titus and Whitmer take their turn in the ring next. Whitmer hits an exploder and Titus rolls to the floor. Compton takes Whitmer out with a Michinoku Driver, so Elgin takes Whitmer’s place. Elgin knocks Compton to the floor and then goes to the apron. Jacobs grabs Elgin for a Contra Code that ends up wiping everyone out. Back in the ring Jacobs hits Lethal with the leaping Ace Crusher, which Kelly calls the Contra Code. No, dude. Jacobs goes for the Senton and Elgin literally snatches him out of the air. Lethal and Whitmer kick Jacobs in the face and Elgin hits a big clothesline for two. Elgin picks up both Titus and Compton for the simultaneous Fallaway Slam/Samoan Drop. That’s cool no matter how many times he does it. Elgin goes for the Spiral Bomb on Titus but Jacobs cracks him with a chair. The Unbreakable one shrugs off the chair shot and takes it away. Compton kicks it back into his face. Whitmer goes after Titus and Jacobs sneaks up behind to hit him with a reverse rana. Lethal has to fight off all three men of S.C.U.M. and does a pretty good job of it. He goes for the Lethal Injection but Jacobs cracks him with a chair. For some reason the referee didn’t see it, but he really didn’t need to be distracted since it’s a No Rules Match. Anyway, Compton hits Lethal with the F-Cinq to get the pin at 10:30. That was good chaos and S.C.U.M. finally looked good in getting a win. It’s also good for S.C.U.M. to get s some momentum heading into Steel Cage Warfare.
Rating: ***

MATCH #8: **Main Event – ROH World Championship** – Jay Briscoe vs. “Die Hard” Eddie Edwards

Jay has been the Champion since 4.5.13, and this is his fourth defense. Bobby Fish joins Kevin Kelly on commentary. They start slowly, feeling each other out with some chain wrestling. Edwards seems to have the advantage there, and he controls the opening minutes. After a little while Jay is able to smash Edwards with a forearm. Jay goes to work now with his smash mouth style. Edwards knocks Jay to the floor and wipes him out with a dive. Back in the ring Edwards locks on an STF and Jay reaches the ropes. Edwards also uses a surfboard and rolls Jay’s shoulders into a cover for two. Jay fights back with punches and takes Edwards down. He goes for the Jay Driller but Edwards fights it off and hits the Chin Checker for two. Edwards rolls that into the Achilles Lock, and Jay counters to an inside cradle for a two-count. They trade some pinning combinations and neither man can get a three-count. Both men rise and start trading strikes. Edwards goes for a suplex right by the ropes and both men tumble to the floor. They get up and throw hands, and they barely make it back to the ring before the count of 20. Both men kick each other in the face at the same time, repeatedly. Neither is willing to go down. Edwards is able to put on the Achilles Lock again and this time he adds kicks to the head. Jay makes it to the bottom rope. Edwards traps Jay in the corner and hits Kobashi chops. Jay fights back with a flurry of offense and forces the Jay Driller on Edwards to get the pin at 19:58. I wasn’t much looking forward to this one at first, but they won me over by the end. While in many ways this was the requisite defense against Edwards and there was no chance of a title change, but they worked hard, beat the crap out of each other, and the finish was really cool.
Rating: ***½

Jay and Edwards are about to shake hands, but Steve Corino and S.C.U.M. come out to make a statement. Corino reminds Jay that if he can beat his own brother that he will have to face Matt Hardy, and Hardy will be the last ROH World Champion ever.

Advertisements