ROH Nowhere To Run: May 14, 2005-Chicago Ridge, Illinois
ROH … Nowhere to Run … May 14, 2005 … Chicago Ridge, Illinois
Review by Brad Garoon and Jacob Ziegler
BG says: Bryan Danielson woke up this morning hurting from his cage match against Homicide, but he’s proud of himself for winning the best of five series. Everything he’s done in ROH, from the first ROH show ever to now, has lead up to him beating Austin Aries for the ROH title tonight. Alex Shelley comes up and asks Danielson to partner with him tonight against Generation Next. Their mutual fondness for beards and the airplane spin doesn’t impress Danielson, as he’s focused solely on the ROH title.
James Gibson is very disappointed after not winning the ROH title last night. But he’s ready to get back on his horse. Maybe he’d be more comfortable if it was a lawnmower. He’s going to become some kind of champion in ROH, and he doesn’t care which belt he gets. Shelley comes up and asks Gibson to be his partner. He apologizes for costing him the extra five minutes against Austin Aries back at Stalemate. Gibson isn’t over it and declines. I’m glad that paid off somehow.
Generation Next gets a promo in front of the blue wall too. Aries is going to beat Danielson tonight and tomorrow he’s going to beat Super Crazy in Mexico. Roderick Strong and Jack Evans are ready to finish Shelley off once and for all. Who’s Shelley gonna get?!
JZ says: Bryan Danielson’s beard is really truly awesome. He’s proud of the fact that he beat Homicide in the best-of-five series. He says his title match tonight is all that he cares about now. Alex Shelley busts in and tries to get Danielson to be his partner tonight, because they have so much in common.
James Gibson says last night was a big disappointment, but he’s going to get back on his horse. Okee-dokee then. He says he wants any title in ROH, he just needs to be a champion. Shelley busts in again and apologizes to Gibson for what he did to him in Boston, and asks him to be his partner. Gibson obviously refuses.
Generation Next is here, and I think that Jack Evans is the only one of the three that looks totally comfortable in promo situations. Aries puts over his title reign, the fact that he beat Samoa Joe in their ROH World Title rematch in February.
MATCH #1: James Gibson vs. BJ Whitmer
BG says: Whitmer pounds Gibson to start. He hits a bodyslam for 1. He hits a back elbow and Gibson rolls to the floor. He grabs Whitmer’s leg and rams it into the post. Back in the ring Gibson goes to work on the leg. He puts on a leglock but Whitmer fights out. He dropkicks the knee and then butt splashes it on the bottom rope. He goes for the original Trailer Hitch but Gibson tosses him to the floor. Gibson climbs the ropes but Whitmer rolls through the crossbody and hits a brainbuster for 2. Whitmer hits a backbreaker for 2. The crowd gets behind Gibson as Whitmer puts on a sleeper hold. Gibson fights out and hits a crossbody for 2. He gets a sunset flip for 2. Whitmer comes back with a forearm and rubs the feeling back into his knee. He catapults Gibson into the bottom rope and then chokes him on the second rope. He forearms Gibson down for 2. He puts on a cobra clutch but Gibson sends him into the turnbuckle to escape. Gibson blocks a blind charge but Whitmer goes to the eyes. Gibson comes back with a dropkick for 2. He bits a pair of forearms and a neckbreaker for 2. He goes for the tiger driver but Whitmer blocks. Gibson hits a knee to the head for 2. He hits a vertical suplex and climbs the ropes and hits a legdrop for 2. Whitmer comes back with a vertical suplex and a northern lights suplex for 2 but Gibson rolls back and puts on the Trailer Hitch. Whitmer makes the ropes. Back on their feet he puts the hold back on. Whitmer forces him to the turnbuckle and hits an exploder for 2. He goes for the wrist clutch exploder but Gibson reverses to a roll up for 2. Whitmer comes back with a clothesline for 2. He sets Gibson on the top rope and tries the wrist clutch exploder from there but Gibson turns it into an inverted bulldog from the top for 2. He puts on the Trailer Hitch when Whitmer kicks out and gets the win. Started a little slow and the leg work went nowhere, but it picked up considerably by the end. Perhaps Gibson and a partner get a shot at the tag titles now?
JZ says: Dave Prazak welcomes us to Chicago Ridge, along with CM Punk. Punk starts putting over tonight’s main event, featuring himself of course against Jimmy Rave in cage match. Gibson goes to work on the legs to try and neutralize the size differential. Whitmer and his Tag Team Championship partner Jimmy Jacobs successfully defended the titles against Punk and Ace Steel in Dayton last night, and they both have singles matches tonight. I can’t remember the last straight one-on-one singles match Whitmer had, but it has to have been a while. The crowd is giving both men good face reactions. Whitmer goes to work on Gibson’s arm, since both of his finishers require the arm. That’s solid psychology from both men in this one. Whitmer goes for a slam off the ropes and Gibson gets a near fall, but reverses that into the front guillotine choke to get the win at 13:06. The psychology was good and the crowd was hot, and both of these guys are good. Sounds like a sweet opener to me.
The Embassy Promo
BG says: The Embassy come down to the ring for some promo time. The ring had actually broken just before this, and when you need to stall there’s nobody better to call on than Prince Nana. Jade once again forgets to footstool it for Rave. This girl is just awful at her job, no wonder Nana gets upset with her. The crowd hates the Embassy, and start booing them so loudly that I have a hard time hearing Nana. Rave says that Chicago doesn’t deserve a cage match. Nana agrees, but tonight is business and Rave HAS to finish off CM Punk.
JZ says: I wonder if I’ve ever said that Prince Nana is the best thing going in ROH. I just might have. Nana abuses Jade Chung for forgetting that she is the footstool for Jimmy Rave. He insults Chicago. This is all a time-killer while the ring crew fixes the ring, by the way. I almost would have rather seen the crappy four-way match that took place after this but didn’t make the tape. Just because I like matches.
MATCH #2: Chad Collyer vs. Jimmy Jacobs
BG says: Jacobs was originally scheduled to be in a meaningless four way that didn’t make the DVD, but Samoa Joe’s untimely injury caused a shuffle in the card that thankfully gave Jacobs a more meaningful match. He tends to benefit from card changes. The crowd congratulates Jacobs’ win over Eddie Guerrero that occurred on the Smackdown prior to this show. Jacobs grabs a headlock but Collyer reverses out. Collyer hits a fireman’s carry and a knee to the gut for 1. He gets a single leg takedown and comes up with a wristlock. He turns it into a headlock but Jacobs comes back with a dropkick and an armbar. He drops a leg on the arm and goes back to work on it. He gets a roll up for 2 and hits a crossbody for 2. He hits a pair of Hussing jabs and an inverted lung blower. The crowd starts Hussing along with all of Jacobs’ moves, including a vertical suplex for 2. He hits a series of double stomps and a senton for 2. Collyer comes back with a backbreaker for 2. He hits a bodyslam and an elbow drop for 2. Jacobs tries to come back with headbutts to the gut but Collyer hits a German suplex for 2. He hits a northern lights suplex for 2. Jacobs gets a roll up off of a hurricanrana for 2. Collyer cuts off the come back with an elbow drop and a Canadian backbreaker. Jacobs hits a spear and jabs away. He hits a springboard flying forearm and Collyer bails. Jacobs follows him out with a suicide dive. Back in the ring Jacobs climbs to the top rope but misses a cross body. Collyer climbs the ropes and his crossbody is met with a dropkick. Jacobs goes for the Contra Code but Collyer blocks it and goes for the cloverleaf. Jacobs reverses to a roll up for 2. He hits a neckbreaker but misses the top rope senton. Collyer puts on the cloverleaf for the win. This was so much better than I remembered it being when watching it live. Not bad for a match that was thrown together at the last minute. Perhaps Collyer and a partner get a shot at the tag titles now?
JZ says: The other ROH Tag Team Champion, Jimmy Jacobs is out for his singles match against Chad Collyer. The crowd loudly chants “You Beat Eddie,” in reference to Jacobs’s DQ victory over Eddie Guerrero on Smackdown the week this show happened. This match was kind of thrown together at the last minute, for what reason I can’t recall. I just remember that Jacobs was originally scheduled to be in the four-way that didn’t make the tape. Jacobs actually pinned Punk last night in their tag match, which is a huge win for him in ROH. Jacobs unloads the offense in the early going, and displays his newfound ability to throw an awesome jab. Collyer is playing heel here and the dynamic is working out rather nicely. The Chicago crowd is heavily into Jacobs; if he’s ever going to get a big title shot in ROH, Chicago is the place to do it. Collyer hits a nice looking German suplex to get a near-fall. Jacobs hits a nice hurricanrana a few moments later. Man, he is on tonight. Jacobs misses the big back senton, unfortunately for him. Collyer locks on the Texas cloverleaf and Jacobs taps out at 10:46. Very solid match from two guys that one might think wouldn’t gel together.
Alex Shelley’s Search Continues
BG says: Alex Shelley and his hip T-shirt reports from the bathroom that he just can’t find a partner and he’ll have to go it alone against Generation Next. He goes into a stall after his promo and finds Delirious, frozen with the pleasure that comes from a solid deuce. Shelley asks him to be his partner, and through some trickery gets Delirious to accept. Very funny stuff here. I did notice that Shelley left the bathroom without ever using the toilet.
JZ says: Well, he’s actually giving up the search, he says. He runs into Delirious in one of the stalls. Shelley tries talking to him, and Delirious gives him no response. Shelley gets Delirious to be his partner. That should be interesting.
MATCH #3: Doug Williams vs. Homicide
BG says: There are two kinds of wrestling fans, those who love Doug Williams and those who have no heart. Homicide gets a takedown for 1 to start. Williams comes back with a hammerlock but Homicide gets to the ropes and bails. Back in the ring Williams hits the chinlock but Homicide reverses to a front facelock. Williams gets a drop toehold and then hits a butterfly suplex. Homicide bails again and tosses some furniture around. Back in the ring Williams gets a double leg takedown and hits the chinlock again. Homicide gets out and jaws with the fans. Williams grabs a leg in awesome fashion and works an ankle lock. He ties Homicide’s appendages up and then lets him be. Homicide comes back with a back elbow and puts on the royal octopus stretch. Williams makes the ropes. He hits a series of knee drops for 2. He puts on a half nelson and then hits a neckbreaker. Homicide blocks the Chaos Theory and dropkicks Williams out of the ring and follows him out with a tope. Williams gets rammed into the guardrail on the floor but then does the same to Homicide. He hits a vertical suplex on the floor as well. Homicide tosses a chair at Williams’ face, seemingly in clear view of the referee. Williams gets back into the ring and Homicide climbs the ropes and hits a knee to the back. It gets 2. He hits a belly-to-belly overhead suplex for 2. He hits the chinlock but Williams powers out. Homicide cuts him off with a knee to the gut. He puts on a seated abdominal stretch and ties up the legs simultaneously. He lets go to drop a knee on Williams’ face. He goes back to the chinlock but Williams gets out with a jawbreaker. Homicide hits a back elbow for 2. He goes to the eyes and hits a knee lift. He rakes the back twice and gouges at Williams’ eye in the ropes. Williams blocks a blind charge but Homicide dodges a knee drop and hits a piledriver for 2. He calls for That Big Lariat but Williams blocks. Homicide gets a snap mare and a kick to the back and climbs the ropes. Williams follows him up and hits a gut wrench superplex for 2. He goes for the Bomb Scare but Homicide moves. He gets a pair of roll ups for 2. He blocks the Ace Crusher and hits one of his own. He climbs the ropes and hits the Bomb Scare for 2. That would have been a great finish. Williams hits a bodyslam and goes back to the top rope. Homicide follows him up and goes to the eyes and pulls him off with an Ace Crusher. He hits a TBL for 2 and it’s a good thing because he didn’t hit it well. Williams hits the Chaos Theory but his neck is messed up and he can’t cover. Homicide also rolls to the floor. The crowd chants for Doug to fly and he obliges. Back in the ring he hits a tiger suplex but his neck is too messed up to bridge for the pin. Homicide hits an exploder and goes for the Cop Killer. Williams reverses to a Chaos Theory attempt, but Homicide reverses that to a roll up for the win. This started a bit iffy but got increasingly awesome as it went on. I wish Doug Williams lived in America.
JZ says: Come on Doug, move to America and join ROH full-time, I beg you. (UPCOMING ROH EVENTS: 6.12.05 NEW YORK, NY; 6.18.05 MORRISTOWN, NJ; 7.08.05 LAKE GROVE, NY; 7.09.05 NEW YORK, NY; 7.16.05 WOODBRIDGE, CT; 7.23.05 PHILADELPHIA, PA; 8.12.05 DAYTON, OH; 8.13.05 CHICAGO RIDGE, IL; 9.24.05 DORCHESTER, MA – ROHWRESTLING.COM OR CALL 215.781.2500 FOR MORE INFO!) Williams opens the match by being awesome, which is what he does best. Williams goes for the Chaos Theory, but Homicide sort of lands on his feet and ends up hitting the Tope con Hilo to the outside. The crowd LOVES Homicide. Homicide spends a lot of time working on the neck, which proves beneficial since Williams cannot hold the bridge on the Chaos Theory or a tiger suplex. Homicide gets a flash pin at 18:59. Nice way for Homicide to rebound after losing the best-of-five series to Danielson. The match was a little slow in the middle and perhaps a few minutes too long but these guys are both really good, and it was just a good, solid match.
Jay Lethal Update
BG says: An update on Jay Lethal tells us that he’s a bit paralyzed and it is unknown if he’ll ever wrestle again. Lethal himself insists that he’ll be back for revenge on the Rottweilers.
JZ says: An unidentified voice gives us an update on Jay Lethal’s status. Basically Lethal will be back and he has sworn revenge on the Rottweilers.
MATCH #4: Alex Shelley & Delirious vs. Jack Evans & Roderick Strong
BG says: A clip of Generation Next’s attack on Shelley’s arm on the last night of the Third Anniversary Celebration is shown before the match. Delirious once again loses his composure at the sound of the opening bell. Shelley and Strong start the match. Shelley gets a single leg takedown but Strong gets to the ropes and both men tag out. Evans tries to serve Delirious so Delirious claims that Evans pulled his mask. That’s quite a stretch. Delirious takes Evans to the mat but Evans takes over. Back on their feet Delirious gets a roll up for 2. He puts on an armbar and bites the hand. He tags to Shelley who comes in and goes to work on the arm. Delirious and Shelley do some nice double-team moves ending with a double knee shoving Evans onto Delirious’ knees. Shelley stretches Evans out but Strong makes the save. Shelley hits a bodyslam and puts on a very cool version of the camel clutch. Evans goes to the eyes to escape. Delirious tags in and gets 2. The referee screws up the match considerably by not knowing what is going on. Delirious gets the Banana Phone roll up for 2. Strong makes the blind tag and Evans kicks Delirious down. Strong hits a dropkick and has a spitting contest with Shelley. Evans tags in and robs Chicago of a high spot, opting instead for a double stomp. He hits a falcon arrow for 2. He hits a vertical suplex and tags to Strong. Strong puts on a bear hug and then hits an overhead suplex. Evans makes the tag and Strong suplexes him onto Delirious for 2. He hits a dropkick for 2. He hits a handspring elbow and rebounds into the ring with a kneedrop for 2. Strong makes the tag and hits a scary back suplex for 2. Good lord. He goes back to the bear hug but Delirious headbutts out. Delirious hits a clothesline and makes the tag. Evans also makes the tag and ends up hitting a high knee on Strong. Shelley dodges the handspring elbow and then cleans house on Generation Next. He hits a tornado DDT on Strong off of Evans’ chest. Strong bails so Delirious dives onto him from the top rope. Evans hits a fisherman’s suplex on Shelley and then robs Chicago of another high spot as Strong tosses Delirious into the guardrail. Shelley catches Evans and goes for the Shellshock but Strong runs in with a half nelson backbreaker and the Sick Kick for 2 even though he’s not legal. Delirious saves Shelley from another backbreaker and makes the tag. He dropkicks Strong into the turnbuckle and hits the Panic Attack. Strong blocks Shadows Over Hell and Evans hits a doomsday crossbody for 2. He tags in and goes for the crazy corner double stomp but Shelley blocks and puts Strong in the Border City Stretch. Evans breaks it up. An Evans moonsault hits boots and Delirious nails him with Shadows Over Hell for 2. Strong hits Shelley with the rib breaker. He hits Delirious with a knee to the face and Generation Next hit the crazy corner double stomp. Strong puts on the Boston crab and Delirious taps. Legal man issues aside, this was another awesome spot fest tag match from Generation Next. Shelley lays Strong and Evans out with a chair after the match.
JZ says: We get clips of the Third Anniversary Celebration Part 3 on 2.26.05 when Generation Next injured Shelley’s arm, causing him to miss the March shows. Delirious goes nuts when the bell rings, getting a big pop from the crowd. Shelley and Strong start, building off their match the previous night in Dayton. Delirious and Evans were both in a four-corner survival last night, so there’s lots of building from last night going on here. And this match is also very good, though the referee is bothering me by looking lost and making mistakes. The referee should not be noticeable in a match whatsoever. Shelley and Delirious look good as a team, and Evans and Strong are their usual awesome selves. Evans breaks out the fisherman buster, proving that he adds to his offense all the time; unless he’s done that move before, in which case I’m just stupid. Strong murders Delirious on the outside of the ring, leaving Shelley alone. Strong gives Shelley a huge backbreaker and a leg lariat for a near fall. Strong eventually gets Delirious in the Boston crab to get the win at 16:34. That was a super-fun tag team match. Shelley hits Strong and Evans with a chair after the bell.
MATCH #5: Nigel McGuinness vs. Colt Cabana
BG says: This friendly rivalry started getting personal when Nigel used a low blow to beat Cabana at Manhattan Mayhem. Nigel claimed it was an accident, but Cabana didn’t buy it and took to name calling as a result. Jimmy Bower joins the commentary team so that Punk can prepare for his match. The first portion of the match goes just like their previous two matches went, with a lot of mat wrestling and awesome reversals and roll ups. At one point Nigel attempts to violate Cabana’s manhood but Cabana thankfully puts a stop to it. At around the six minute mark Nigel hits a key lock takedown and starts going to work on the arm. The match takes a more traditional turn as Nigel hits a big clothesline for 2. He puts on a hammerlock and uses the ropes for leverage. He hits the rebound clothesline for 2. Cabana gets a backslide for 2 and another roll up for 2. He then gets probably the coolest roll up I’ve ever seen for 2. Nigel hits a shoulder block and Cabana’s leg pops off the mat and accidentally kicks Nigel in the berries. Uh oh. He apologizes and lets Nigel have some time to recover. Nigel has none of it and NAILS Cabana with a headbutt for 2, busting him open. Now they’re angry and they trade forearms. Cabana hits a clothesline for 2 and climbs the ropes. He hits a missile dropkick for 2. Nigel goes off and starts pummeling Cabana. Cabana hits a shoulder block and Nigel, very intentionally, kicks Cabana in the baby-maker and gets a roll up for the win. This match wasn’t nearly as fun as the last two, but it did a lot to establish Nigel as a heel in the feud and move it out of a friendly realm. My lower rating reflects somewhat my disappointment in the match not being as unique as their previous encounters, but it was completely necessary and I could see others liking this more.
JZ says: Cabana gets some streamers, being that he’s from Chicago and all. This has been one of the best feuds in ROH, both in terms of match quality and booking. Jimmy Bower has joined Prazak on commentary, as Punk gets ready to murder Jimmy Rave in the steel cage. Samoa Joe will join the commentary team at the beginning of the next match. Unfortunately he cannot wrestle tonight. Nigel slyly introduces some heel tactics into his repertoire. This match isn’t quite as smooth as their other encounters, for some reason. You think that they’d get better with each match. It’s still good though, I don’t want to give the wrong impression. Nigel and Cabana get pretty aggressive with each other, as Nigel busts Cabana open with a headbutt. Then they trade slaps. This gets pretty crazy until Nigel hits an intentional low blow and a small package to get the win at 13:32. It wasn’t as good as their other matches, but it adds a new wrinkle with Nigel acting like a heel, so I’m all for it.
MATCH #6: ROH World Title Match – Bryan Danielson vs. Austin Aries
BG says: I really love Danielson’s new music. Clips are shown from Survival of the Fittest and Testing the Limit, the last two times these two locked up (aside from their tag match in Dayton). Samoa Joe joins the commentary team as Aries tosses Danielson around by his beard. Danielson shows he’s not above dirty tactics by tossing Aries around by his ears. Danielson gets a single leg takedown and puts on a toehold. Aries makes the ropes. Aries tries to take Danielson down with a knucklelock but can’t break the bridge. Danielson monkey flips over and gets a series of pin fall attempts for 2. He puts on an aggressive chinlock but Aries reverses to a wristlock. Danielson goes for a dropkick but Aries moves. Aries goes to the beard to keep Danielson locked in a headlock for a good amount of time, eventually letting go to hit a dropkick. He goes back to the headlock but Danielson powers out and hits a dropkick. He hits a kneedrop for 1. He puts on a strangle hold and shoves his knees into Aries’ back. Aries rolls back and puts on a strangle hold of his own. Danielson goes to the turnbuckle to escape and hits a bodyslam. He hits another and then hits an earthquake splash. How odd. He puts on a dragon clutch and gets a crucifix pin for 2. Aries comes back with a shinbreaker and then back suplexes Danielson to the floor. He hits a suicide dive and then works him over with kicks and choking. Back in the ring Aries goes for the airplane spin but Danielson starts to elbow out. Aries responds by driving Danielson’s elbow to the mat. He ties Danielson’s arm in the ropes and hits a running knee. He hits a hammerlock side slam for 2. He hits a hammerlock bodyslam but a second is reversed to the Cow Killer. Aries immediately goes to the arm to reverse. He hits explosive elbow #2 on the arm for 2. He wrenches in the hammerlock and then puts on the Cow Killer himself. Danielson quickly counters out and hits an enziguiri. He goes to work on Aries elbow and hits a butterfly suplex for 2. He slaps Aries around and hits another enziguiri for 2. Aries hits explosive elbow #4 but Danielson comes back with a powerslam for 2. Danielson climbs the ropes and hits the diving headbutt for 2. He goes for the airplane spin but Aries reverses to a sunset flip for 2. He gets another roll up for 2 but Danielson kicks him to the floor. Danielson hits a baseball slide and then comes off the apron with a flying forearm. Back in the ring he sets Aries on the top rope. Aries fights him off but misses the 450 splash. He hits a pair of dropkicks in the corner and gets 2. Danielson blocks the brainbuster and hits an atomic drop. He puts Aries back on the top rope and hits a back superplex for 2. Aries’ sell of that move was awesome. Danielson puts on the Cow Killer and then rolls over for 2. He goes for the airplane spin but Aries reverses to a sloppy crucifix bomb. He hits a roaring forearm and a brainbuster. He hits a 450 splash and picks up the win. Danielson is capable of doing some amazing selling, but here he forgot about his arm injury down the home stretch. This match did however do a lot to make Aries look like a credible champion in my eyes and I’m now really excited to see his next defense against Spanky.
Danielson refuses to shake Aries’ hand after the match. Aries celebrates anyway until Samoa Joe makes his way to the ring. Joe tells Aries that he’s done a good job of living up to the fans expectations of a champion. However, Aries will never live up to the standard that Joe set for that title. Because of that, Joe vows to make the Pure title the top title in ROH. Aries thinks that he himself is the top wrestler in ROH, but he doesn’t want trouble so he’ll just shake Joe’s hand. He does however crotch Joe as he’s leaving the ring and start to put a beating on him. The injured Joe catches Aries on the top rope and gives him a muscle buster to end this little squabble.
JZ says: Danielson has too many intros in his theme song, but the Darth Vader theme is badass. We see some highlights from last year’s Survival of the Fittest (6.24.04), and their 75-minute encounter from Testing the Limit (8.7.04). This is quite a different situation though, as Aries is now an established star and the World Champion. Aries biels Danielson by the beard. That’s just not nice. If Aries wins tonight, he will defend the title in Mexico tomorrow night against Super Crazy. These two have a really good scientific style match to start off. These are two of the best ROH has to offer. Danielson busts out the Earthquake splash, which I frankly feel is pretty stupid. There’s not a lot for me to say about this match that isn’t covered by play-by-play. It’s very good though, I can say that. Aries gets the win with the 450 Splash to retain the title at 24:26. That was a very good match that proved there was no reason for them to ever go 75 minutes. That was Aries’s seventh successful title defense (without counting the ones that happened outside of ROH), by the way. Danielson refuses to shake hands after the match. Samoa Joe comes out to confront the World Champ. Aries gives Joe a low blow after saying he wouldn’t attack him. Joe counters with the muscle buster. Well, that was pretty pointless actually.
BG says: Dave Prazak is with James Gibson in front of the blue wall. Gibson says that with his victory tonight he’s probably in line for a tag team title shot. He wants Spanky to be his partner, and they’re going to win the belts! Chad Collyer interrupts and says that he and Nigel McGuinness should just be handed the belts. Collyer loves having belts handed to him. Gibson of course takes offense.
The blue wall is really popular tonight. Alex Shelley wants the war with Generation Next to come to an end. I don’t, as the matches in this feud have all been great.
Prazak catches up with Bryan Danielson and asks him why he wouldn’t shake Aries’ hand. Danielson says that everything he’d done up until tonight was leading to his ROH title win, and since that didn’t happen he’s just going to quit. You know, I’d be upset too if I grew a beard that big and it didn’t pay off.
JZ says: The steel cage is being set up as Dave Prazak is backstage with James Gibson. Gibson says Spanky would be happy to be his partner, and they will challenge Whitmer & Jacobs. Chad Collyer interrupts and says he and his best friend Nigel McGuinness will challenge for the belts. Collyer thinks they should just be handed the belts. Collyer rules.
Alex Shelley cuts a promo about being ambidextrous. He’s fantastic.
Bryan Danielson is walking out of the building and announces that he quits.
CM Punk vs. The Embassy Feud Recap
BG says: The Punk/Embassy feud is recapped in a pretty cool video package. The only problem I saw was that the term ‘Flammable to the eyes’ doesn’t make any sense. Let’s run down the feud. Punk had just wrestled and lost to Spanky when the Embassy entered the picture. They offered Spanky a spot in the group and he declined. Punk laughed at them and a tussle occurred. Because of this, a match was signed between Punk and Jimmy Rave. Rave won the match by spraying what turned out to be a very harmful bug spray in Punk’s eyes. He also hit the Rave Clash on Punk’s girlfriend, putting her out of ROH permanently. The two feuded for the next two months in matches that saw Rave and the Embassy get victories due to constant interference. Now Punk finally gets his hands on Rave, in a steel cage where the Embassy can’t get in and Rave will have trouble getting away. The winner of the match gets a shot at the ROH title at Death Before Dishonor III on June 18.
JZ says: We get a really good video package detailing the history of one of the other best ROH feuds, CM Punk versus Jimmy Rave.
MATCH #7: Steel Cage Match – Jimmy Rave vs. CM Punk
BG says: They finally film the crowd instead of the curtain during Punk’s entrance, and they couldn’t have picked a better time to start because Punk is massively over. Rave goes for the escape early but Punk pulls him in. Rave wants a handshake but Punk spits on him. Rave blocks a charge into the cage, but ends up getting his spine busted. Punk punches away and says it’s time to go to school. Rave goes face first into every side of the cage and bleeds. Twice Rave gets used as a battering ram into the mesh. Punk hits a seated dropkick and starts to leave, but instead he asks for a chair and returns. He smacks Rave across the back with it and then hits him in the chest. He sets it on the mat and rams Rave’s face into it. Punk goes to walk out and blocks Jade’s attempt to slam the door in his face. He does not block Nana’s powder to the eyes, however. Rave gets up and smacks Punk across the face with the chair. Nana tries to pull Rave out the door but Punk grabs his leg. Punk gets tossed face first into the cage and Rave works on the cut he made. Punk gets tied up in the ropes and Rave chokes away. Nana helps by pulling Punk’s hair through the cage. He is just so awesomely evil. Rave goes to climb over the top but Punk cuts him off. Rave goes for a side Russian legsweep off the top rope but Punk blocks and both men get crotched. Punk hits a clothesline and a heel kick. Rave hits a kick to the chest and tries to climb out but Punk catches him. They both wind up on the top rope where Rave hits the legsweep he was looking for. He uses his shoelace to choke Punk out, and this time it’s legal. Punk’s hand only drops twice and he fights to his feet. He kicks at Rave’s back and punches him across the face. He hits a stiff kick to the face for 2. He hits the Shining Wizard for 2. Punk climbs the ropes but Jade comes from nowhere and grabs his leg. Punk comes down and gets slapped. Jade mounts him but he pulls her off. Rave charges Punk but spears Jade and gets rolled up for 2. He comes back with the Rave Clash but can’t cover. Nana pulls Jade from the ring and then casually drops her on the floor. So evil! Rave gets to the top of the cage but Punk catches him. Punk goes to leave the cage but Rave catches his leg and goes for the Rave Clash. Punk kicks away but Rave catches him with a knee strike off the top rope. Nana wins my heart by messing with fans at ringside as Rave gets 2 in the ring. He goes for the door but Punk pulls him back in. Punk goes for the door but Rave pulls him back in. Rave goes for it again, this time with Nana’s help, but Punk stops him again. Punk hits Welcome to Chicago and then chokes Rave out with the shoelace. Rave punches out as Nana gets into the cage. He takes off his robe and shows off his much slimmer body. Punk nails him with a kick to the face and then kicks Rave as well. He rams Nana into the cage and punches him in the corner. Rave goes to escape but Punk catches him with what can only be called an ultra-plex from the top of the cage for the win. The opening minutes of the match with Punk in control were pretty uneventful, but once Rave started cheating the match got really fun. Like the cage match from the night before they played off their feud very well. It was emotionally charged and delivered a satisfying end to the feud. Punk and the Saints celebrate after the match for a good long time, and Punk tells Austin Aries that he’s coming for the title.
JZ says: The crowd is practically coming unglued before the match even starts. Their dog collar match on 5.07.05 is my MOTY in ROH so far this year, so I hope this can measure up. Punk is calm to start, which Prazak explains really well. I love having him on commentary, he actually enhances what’s going on rather than just sucking like Mark Nulty did. Nana and Jade on the outside of the ring finally figure out how to cheat, as Jade distracts Punk and Nana throws salt in his eyes. Rave then nails Punk with a chair to take the advantage. The crowd actually isn’t all that hot for the match thus far, which surprises me. They’re still being brutal to each other though, and both bleeding pretty badly. Chung tries to interfere, but Rave accidentally knocks her out. Nana pulls her out of the ring and just drops her on the floor in an awesome moment. Rave and Punk fight on top of the cage and Rave goes for the Rave Clash but Punk fights out of it only to get a huge knee in the face. Nana comes into the cage to interfere, and Punk outsmarts both Rave and Nana to take Nana out. Punk gets the win at 24:15 with a super-plex off the top of the cage. That was a great finish to the feud, and a great match to boot. Ace Steel and Colt Cabana are out to celebrate with Punk. Punk promises to come get Austin Aries.
BG says: Austin Aries. He’s finally starting to look comfortable in his role as the ROH champion.
JZ says: Alex Shelley, for having a very entertaining search for a tag team partner, then having an awesome and unique match with said partner.
You can pick up this show, as well as all other ROH shows at www.rohwrestling.com.
Check out our review of Manhattan Mayhem to make sure you’re all caught up! Coming soon will be a review of NEW FRONTIERS!!
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The 411: BG says: ROH bowls a turkey, as this is the third show in a row with no bad matches. I loved the Punk/Embassy feud, and since I assume many other ROH fans did as well I can give this a very strong recommendation. I'm definitely thankful the four way was left off the DVD. How can I be a cynical internet wrestling reviewer when I don't have any bad matches to complain about?!
JZ says: That was another awesome show, with nothing below ***1/4, and a **** main event besides. I can't say anything bad about this show, as it blew off feuds, continued feuds, and set up feuds/matches extraordinarily well.
|Final Score: 9.5 [ Amazing ] legend|