reclamation 2

Ford Community & Performing Arts Center – Dearborn, MI – Saturday, July 13, 2013

Kevin Kelly and Steve Corino are on commentary.

MATCH #1: Special Challenge Match – Kyle O’Reilly vs. “T.D.” TaDarius Thomas

O’Reilly is one half of the ROH World Tag Team Champions. His chest is still all red from his battle with Eddie Edwards last night. They take it to the mat to start, and appear to be pretty evenly matched. The back and forth continues with both men playing to their strengths but neither being able to take an advantage. Plenty of strikes and kicks are coming from each competitor as they attempt to wear each other down. T.D. controls for a brief period but O’Reilly cuts him off with a flurry of kicks and now the Tag Team Champion is in control. The hometown crowd stays behind T.D. and help him get back into it. T.D. hits a series of kicks and a half nelson suplex for a two-count. O’Reilly fights back with a jawbreaker and a belly-to-back superplex. A Regalplex gets a two-count. O’Reilly locks on the triangle choke but T.D. flips over into a cover for two. They get up and take turns blocking each other’s kicks, but even that causes them pain after a while. O’Reilly calls for no more kicks, but quickly balks on that when T.D. is foolish enough to take his word for it. T.D. has the last laugh though, as a series of reversals ends with him scoring a schoolboy rollup and flipping over for more leverage to get the pin at 11:56. That was a rock solid opener with some unique action. Good start here.
Rating: ***

MATCH #2: Women of Honor Four Corner Survival – MsChif vs. Athena vs. Jenny Rose vs. Leah Von Dutch

Athena and MsChif start the match as a reprise of their encounter last night, where Athena picked up a huge upset win. Before any contact can be made, MsChif aggressively tags Jenny into the match. Athena gets in MsChif’s face and almost gets herself pinned with a rollup. Jenny and Athena wrestle briefly, and then Athena tags Leah. The back and forth continues and Jenny steals a bit from Sumie Sakai. Athena comes back in and takes it to Leah, who seeks comfort in the ropes. MsChif and Athena continue playing mind games with each other, and the referee loses control. All four women are in the ring and they work in a four-way submission spot. MsChif, Leah, and Jenny end up on the floor and Athena wipes them all out with a dive. Back in the ring Athena targets MsChif but the other two women make their way back in and once again the referee has zero control of this match. Offense is coming from all over the place and lots of pins are attempted but someone is always there to break it up. Eventually MsChif and Leah are left alone in the ring, and MsChif hits the Desecrator to get the pin at 9:58. This was pretty sloppy all around, and really failed to capitalize on the match MsChif and Athena had last night and their issues stemming from it. Disappointing match here.
Rating: *

MATCH #3: Silas Young vs. “Sicilian Psychopath” Tommaso Ciampa

Young comes out while the women are still in the ring and tells them to get the hell out. They start off aggressively, both guys wrestling like they’ve got something to prove. It’s a back and forth chain wrestling battle, and Ciampa seems to have the upper hand in the early going. Young survives the early onslaught and is able to drop Ciampa’s midsection across the top rope. That puts Young in control. It doesn’t last long, as Ciampa cuts him off with a hard clothesline for a two-count. Momentum continues to shift between these two tough-as-nails competitors. Ciampa uses his knee strikes to score another near-fall. He goes for an Air Raid Crash but Young counters with the backbreaker / lariat combo for two. Ciampa is able to get Young up on the top rope and he brings him down with an overhead belly-to-belly superplex. Both men are down. Back on their feet they start throwing bombs. A series of reversals ends with Ciampa clotheslining Young over the top rope and both men tumble to the floor. Ciampa sets Young in a steel chair next to the barricade and hits an Ole Ole Knee. He throws Young into the barricade and pulls up the ringside mats. Unfortunately for Ciampa, it backfires when Young hits a release German Suplex on the unprotected hardwood floor. Three referees are on the floor trying to herd these men back into the ring. Young is able to grab the timekeeper’s hammer and hits Ciampa with it out of sight of all the referees. That’s enough for Young to get the pin at 13:06.

But wait! ROH Matchmaker Nigel McGuinness saw the whole thing from ringside, and he wants the match to start again. Ciampa regains his feet and unloads on Young. He hits Project Ciampa to get the pin at 0:27 (total match time 13:33). I hate matches that restart like that and then end in such quick fashion. I don’t see how it helps anyone. Before the silliness of the finish I was digging this, as I think their styles mesh well together.
Rating: **¾

MATCH #4: Adam Cole vs. “The Buzzsaw” BJ Whitmer

They start with some chain wrestling. Things quickly escalate into a strike battle, which Whitmer ends with a spinebuster. Whitmer controls the action so Cole bails to the floor and hits a charging Whitmer with an enziguiri. Cole immediately targets the legs, locking on a Ring-post Figure-Four Leglock. Back in the ring Cole covers for one. Cole keeps Whitmer grounded for a bit. Whitmer fights back and Cole drills him with a superkick, but Whitmer has enough to take Cole down with a clothesline before falling to the mat. Back on their feet Whitmer hits a Big Boot for two. Whitmer catches Cole in a snap powerslam for another two-count. He charges into the corner and Cole catches him with two superkicks for a near-fall. Cole hits an enziguiri and the Death Valley Neckbreaker for two. He goes for a suplex but Whitmer fights out and hits a running knee, a vertical suplex, and a Northern Lights Suplex for a two-count. A series of reversals ends with Cole hitting a superkick to the knee. Cole puts on the Figure-Four Leglock and Whitmer reaches the ropes. Back on their feet Whitmer hits an exploder for two. After more reversals Cole hits the vertical suplex neckbreaker for a near-fall. Cole goes for the Florida Key but Whitmer avoids it and puts Cole on the top rope. The feisty Cole knocks Whitmer back and leaps off, but when Whitmer ducks Cole lands awkwardly on his knee and appears to be injured. Whitmer shows compassion for his opponent, and Cole traps him in an inside cradle to get the pin at 12:53. That was a standard back and forth contest with little of note happening until the finish. I do like how it furthers Cole’s character change, so it works on that level. Whitmer gets on the mic and promises that won’t happen in the World Title Tournament.
Rating: **½

MATCH #5: Michael Bennett vs. Andy Muscat

Bennett is accompanied by Maria Kanellis. I’m pretty familiar with the Michigan Independent Wrestling scene, and I’m not sure why Muscat was picked for this match. Bennett delivers a boot to the gut during the prematch handshake and he goes right to work. Muscat is able to take Bennett off the middle rope with a hurricanrana, and he skins the cat and hits a headscissors. He goes for a Monkey Flip but Bennett blocks it and hits a Spear. The feisty Muscat fights back and hits a cross body block off the top rope for two. Muscat slams Bennett down and tries a slingshot legdrop but Bennett avoids it. Bennett hits a Superkick, and then finishes Muscat off with a vicious piledriver at 2:58. That was an okay squash but Muscat got a little bit too much in.
Rating: *¼

Bennett goes for another piledriver at the behest of his girlfriend Maria, but RHINO comes out to make the save! RHINO wants to fight Bennett RIGHT NOW! Maria allows it and Bennett charges in for an impromptu match!

MATCH #6: “The Man Beast” RHINO vs. Michael Bennett

Fists are flying right away and RHINO scores with a hard clothesline. They spill to the floor and RHINO unloads with strikes. Bennett is able to throw RHINO into the barricade and kick him in the head. He goes for another boot but RHINO catches him and drops him nuts-first on the barricade a la Tommy Dreamer. Back in the ring RHINO goes to work and makes his way up to the second rope. Bennett shoves him down to the floor. Back in the ring Bennett goes to work, keeping The Man Beast grounded. RHINO blocks a whip to the corner and they bonk heads. Back to their feet they trade shots and RHINO wins the battle. RHINO unleashes a flurry of offense, including a shoulder tackle off the second rope for two. Bennett catches a charging RHINO with double boots to the face. He goes to the top rope and connects with a sunset bomb for two. RHINO fights back with a spinebuster. Maria slaps Bennett in the face to wake him up. RHINO goes for the Gore but Bennett kicks him in the face. Bennett delivers three superkicks and the Box Office Smash to get the clean pin at 8:12. Most RHINO matches are about the same, but this was a good win for Bennett as he’s really growing into a top level heel.
Rating: **½

After the match, Maria wants Bennett to further assault RHINO with a chair, but RHINO fights it off and chases Maria out of the ring. RHINO then cuts Bennett in half with a Gore. I understand making the crowd happy, but not everyone always has to get their heat back, and this hurt Bennett and did very little for RHINO, who has made very few if any appearances in ROH since this.

MATCH #7: Special Challenge Match – Bobby Fish vs. ACH

Fish is one half of the ROH World Tag Team Champions. It’s a feeling out process to start, with both men exercising some degree of caution in the opening moments. They take it down to the mat but don’t stay there long before ACH quickens the pace and starts flying around the ring. A high cross body block from the top rope gets ACH a two-count. ACH dropkicks Fish to the floor and tries to follow him out with a dive but Fish gets his knees up. Back in the ring Fish goes to work and starts wearing ACH down. ACH comes back with his high flying skills and they take it to the floor briefly. Back in the ring ACH hits a slingshot Ace Crusher for two. Fish cuts him off with a release Northern Lights Suplex into the turnbuckles. ACH fights back and sends Fish to the floor, but when he tries to go for a dive Fish gets in the ring and catches him with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Fish hits a beautiful moonsault for a near-fall. ACH responds by taking Fish down and going for the 450 Splash but he misses. Fish then catches ACH with a kick to the head to get the pin at 12:53. That was pretty solid, a nice styles clash and a good piece in the burgeoning rivalry between reDRagon and Adrenaline RUSH.
Rating: ***

MATCH #8: Non-Title Match – Matt Taven vs. “Mr. Wrestling” Kevin Steen

Taven’s ROH World TV Championship is not on the line here. He does have Truth Martini, Scarlett Bordeaux, and Seleziya Sparx in his corner. Steen dominates the early going, much to the delight of the crowd. Taven tries to fight back but Steen has an answer for everything, including a powerbomb on the edge of the ring frame. Steen destroys Taven for way longer than 20 seconds out on the ring floor, hurling him into the barricades repeatedly and just generally abusing him. Back in the ring it’s more of the same, with Steen dominating the World TV Champion. Eventually Steen goes up for a Swanton and Taven gets his knees up. I thought that would lead to more Taven offense, but Steen cuts him off with a pop-up powerbomb for a two-count. Steen hits the F-Cinq and surprisingly Taven kicks out at two. He goes for the Package Piledriver but Truth distracts him and Taven lands a superkick and an enziguiri. He goes for a Pedigree but Steen counters with an Alabama Slam into the Sharpshooter. Truth tries to interfere again but Steen kicks the ropes into his junk. Taven then scores a cheap schoolboy rollup to get the pin at 10:13. That was an extended squash with a cheap finish. I understand that Steen is awesome and everything, but what good does it do to have the TV Champion treated like a jobber?
Rating: *½

An angry Steen gets on the mic and insults all members of the House of Truth. Steen challenges Truth to get in the ring and catch the beating he deserves. Nigel McGuinness agrees and makes the match happen.

MATCH #9: Kevin Steen vs. Truth Martini

Truth is still outside the ring as the match has officially begun. He tries to bail and Nigel has to force him into the ring. Finally some contact is made and Steen dominates. The referee accidentally gets knocked out and Taven comes out to throw powder in Steen’s eyes. Truth hits Steen with the Book of Truth but only gets a two-count. He misses a charge in the corner and Steen crushes him with a Cannonball. Steen hits the Swanton and then dumps a charging Taven over the top rope. Finally Steen hits the Package Piledriver to get the pin at 4:40. That was just silly. Why not build up to Truth getting his ass kicked, make it a “win the match get five minutes with Truth” sort of thing instead of just throwing it out there with no buildup. I don’t get this at all.
Rating: DUD

MATCH #10: Tag Team Main Event – The American Wolves vs. “Unbreakable” Michael Elgin & Jay Lethal

Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards are former ROH World Tag Team Champions, while Lethal is a former World TV Champion and Pure Champion, so there’s a lot of gold in the history of these four men. Respect is definitely there between these four competitors, but there is a bit of tension evident as well. Lethal and Richards start it off, and they’ve had wars in the past, most notably at Glory By Honor XI: The Unbreakable Hope. They chain wrestle right away, and Richards gets the advantage so Lethal takes a quick powder to regroup. Tags are made and it’s Elgin versus Edwards now. Things quickly get heated between the two but it’s Elgin overpowering the savvy Edwards. Richards tags in and Elgin hits him with the delayed vertical suplex with Lethal cheering him on. That gets a two-count and Lethal tags in. Momentum swings back and forth between the two teams, but the Wolves show better teamwork, which makes sense given their experience as a unit. Elgin and Lethal fight back though with a surprising degree of synergy, working their solo signature spots into impressive duo maneuvers. They isolate Edwards for a bit and wear him down, but the Wolves aren’t out of it yet. Elgin gets beat up for a little bit but he’s able to make the tag and Lethal is a house afire. The referee loses control and all four men are fighting it out, with offense coming from everyone. Richards flattens Elgin with a double stomp off the top rope for a two-count. He repeatedly kicks Elgin in the chest but Elgin pops right up and starts trading forearms. Elgin catches Richards with a release German Suplex into the turnbuckles. Edwards comes in and knocks Lethal to the apron. The Wolves try to double-team Elgin but he is so strong that he fights them both off and hits the simultaneous Samoan Drop/Fallaway Slam. Elgin crawls over and makes the tag, something Richards and Edwards have done very little of. The Wolves unload on Lethal with kicks and go for more double-teams but Elgin comes to the rescue. All four men are in the ring again and referee Todd Sinclair has no control. The Wolves lock on dual submissions (Achilles Lock and Ankle Lock, respectively), both of which get reversed to cradles for near-falls. A superkick party ends with all four men on the mat. Everyone gets back up and resumes the fight, with all four men bringing out the big guns now trying to put their opponents away. We wind up with Elgin and Richards alone in the ring. They trade slaps to the face and Elgin wins that battle. Elgin goes for the Oklahoma Stampede but Richards counters to a Tombstone Piledriver with Edwards adding the kick to the head. Lethal sneaks in and schoolboys Richards for a very close near-fall. The Wolves hit the assisted Alarm Clock on Lethal, and Richards takes Elgin out with the running kick on the apron. They follow with a super assisted lungblower on Lethal for two, and then Edwards turns it into the Achilles Lock. Richards takes Elgin out again with a dive, and Lethal has to tap out at 23:33. That was the top-notch action you would expect from these four, with tons of action throughout and a hot crowd. It would have been nice if they had put a title shot on the line or something to make the match more meaningful, but on its own it was great fun.
Rating: ***¾

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