wrestling / TV Reports

411’s ROH on HDNet Report 10.01.09: Castagnoli vs. Albright (09.28.09)

October 1, 2009 | Posted by Aaron Hubbard

Welcome to the ROH on HDNet report, which seems to be dependent on ROH Brazil’s decision of when to post the darn episodes. I’m actually looking forward to this one a lot, as Claudio Castagnoli is one of my favorites and Brent Albright has always had his working boots. Given that this is the payoff to a big rivalry, and is the first Cage Match on ROH TV, it could be something special.

Oh yeah, Dave Prazak and Mike Hogewood are on commentary.

But first….Tyler Black in an opening match? GASP!

“Addicted To Love” Rhett Titus & Kenny King vs. Jerry Lynn & Tyler Black
Kenny makes me laugh by doing an exaggerated “choking” pantomime in reference to Tyler Black’s inability to win the big one. Those two could have a pretty good singles match given the time. He also holds his back in reference to Lynn after shaking his hand. Classic. Rhett then puts his hand in his crotch before asking Tyler to shake it and Tyler kicks it away. King Titus use Rock-Paper-Scissors to decide who starts and Titus beats King with scissors beats paper. See, two minutes and they are so obnoxious you want them to lose. Lynn starts for his team and Rhett does the crippled mime this time. After some more taunting, they lock up and Titus gets an armdrag and swivels his hips. Lock-up again and Rhett hits a scoop slam. He mocks Lynn again and Lynn kicks him from the mat, and then returns the armdrag and scoop slam. Holy Personality Batman, Lynn starts gyrating!

Titus tags out to King and King tries to grapple Lynn but misses, and Lynn starts dancing again. Kenny gets a pair of kicks and an elbow to the back of the head. More taunting, Lynn comes in and hits a kick and elbow to the back of the head, and more dancing from Lynn. Okay, that can stop now. Fans start a “You got served!” chant. Kenny applies a top wristlock, Lynn counters to a hammerlock and segues to a headlock before tagging out to Tyler. Black hits a kick to the gut and grabs an arm wringer, which King awkwardly counters to a side headlock. They go into a leapfrog sequence and Kenny hits an armdrag, Tyler goes for one but King moves the arm the wrong way. Jeez….make no mistake, that was all King’s fault. Black has the wits to get a single leg takedown and keep the leg locked until the fans settle down. They lock-up and Kenny gets a few strikes and grabs a headlock. Tyler shoves him off and hits a hip block takeover before tagging out to Lynn. They whip Kenny, Lynn hits a drop toehold and Black hits a quebrada to the back. See, it’s nice because we don’t get the awkward moment of the non-legal man pinning the legal man, but it forces Lynn to turn King over before going for the pin, not to mention waiting for Black to get off. The pin only gets two, but honestly, it probably should have only gotten a one. So either Kenny is smart and waits the extra second, or he’s a wuss.

King hits a knee lift and tags out to Titus, who runs into an armdrag by Lynn. Lynn tags out to Black and they get double arm wringers before knocking Titus down with double chops, and then hit a double team elbow drop, and Black covers for two. He grabs a wristlock and tags in Jerry, who kicks the arm and grabs an armbar. He breaks to take out Kenny and then goes for the TKO on Rhett, but Kenny grabs Rhett to save him and then snaps Lynn’s throat across the top rope, allowing Titus to hit a dropkick for two. Titus tags in King and slams Jerry, and Kenny springboards off the bottom rope for another nearfall. Lynn tries to go to his corner but Kenny stops him with a headbutt, goes for a slam but Jerry counters to an inverted DDT. Titus runs over and pulls Black off the apron to prevent a tag. Kenny hits a clothesline on Lynn for two, and then puts him in the corner so Rhett can choke him with the tag rope.

Titus tags in and hits a stomp to the gut. He whips Lynn to the corner and jumps for a monkey flip…no, it’s the dreaded Crotcho Buster. Disgusting. Lynn gets a jackknife for two and runs into a clothesline. Rhett goes for the move again but Jerry moves and hits the slingshot sunset flip powerbomb, but Titus holds onto the ropes long enough for more crotch shots. Titus and Lynn both make tags, King ducks Black’s springboard clothesline and Black ducks his spinning roundhouse kick. Tyler hits a pair of clotheslines and a big spinebuster, goes for the quebrada again but Kenny moves, Black lands on his feet and hits the SSSP. It only gets two as King backs him into the corner. Titus goes to the top rope and does NOT jump into the inverted atomic drop. Sometimes you can take one for the team Titus. Black goes all Randy Savage with the neck snap across the top rope and follows up with an elbow drop. He opts not to pin and tags in Lynn, and they hit the sideslam/legdrop combination.

King breaks up the pin at two and Jerry hits an awkward TKO on Rhett (Rhett’s fault). King hits a blue thunder bomb on Lynn but Black takes him out with the Pelé Kick. Tyler looks to powerbomb King onto Titus but Rhett comes out and hits a nice swinging neckbreaker. Black hits some forearms on Titus and hits the ropes but Kenny trips him up from the outside. Titus hits a leapfrog Rocker Dropper and sets up for the powerbomb/blockbuster combination, but Lynn takes out King with a springboard dropkick. Black hits a hurracanrana on Titus that sends him to the floor, and the faces dive onto King Titus. Back inside, Black and Lynn look to set up for the vertical suplex/crossbody combo, but King breaks that up. Black hits a gourdbuster on Titus instead but gets dumped to the floor. King wants a superplex on Lynn, Jerry shoves him off but King backflips onto his feet and hits the leaping enzugiri. Titus leaps to the top rope for a super x-factor, but it only gets two.

Titus does his inverted atomic drop that never hits and ducks so that Kenny can hit a clothesline, but Lynn kicks Titus in the face and King clotheslines him partner. I should mention that Kenny noticeable stopped before hitting the clothesline. Black hits the springboard clothesline on Kenny and Lynn drills Titus with the Cradle Piledriver for the win.
Match Analysis: Lynn and Black tried, and to their credit, so did King and Titus. But this just had way too many execution problems. Even without the execution problems, it was a Reader’s Digest version of a good match. *1/2

Brent Albright says you can’t prepare for a cage match, you just have to be ready for it. Right up there with “Weapons aren’t only encouraged, they’re allowed.”

Sara Del Ray vs. Nikki Roxx
YAY! Nikki Roxx! Sadly, the “impact” of her showing up is a little lost now. We start with a shoving match and Sara slaps Nikki, Roxx shoves her and then hits a dropkick. Nikki hits a stiff shot in the corner and whips Del Ray, ABESIGIRI BY SARA! KAWADA OFFENSE! Sara throws Nikki around and hits a suplex for two. Del Ray applies a surfboard stretch, Roxx gets to her feet, and Del Ray pulls her back down by her hair. A kneedrop gets two for Sara and she whips Nikki, who stays in the ropes to avoid a big boot, and then we get double big boots. Nikki hits some forearms and Sara grabs her by the throat, but Roxx stops that with a double axehandle to the ropes. She hits some elbows and a roaring elbow, but follows that up with an ugly atomic drop. Roxx hits a modified exploder suplex for two. She goes for the Barbie Crusher but Sara hits a kick to the head and a big roundhouse kick to the head, and finishes with the Royal Butterfly.
Match Analysis: More hard-hitting than the average woman’s match on TV. I marked for the abesigiri and things were smooth for the most part, but can we get one decent atomic drop tonight? *1/4

Claudio says that while Brent can’t prepare for a cage match, HE can, because he’s so much smarter. He says that a while ago, a TV Executive told him what he could and could not do to the American Flag. Nobody is going to tell him what he can and cannot do to Brent Albright in the cage match. Even with CC saying “fatom” instead of “fathom”, this was a much better promo.

Sonjay Dutt vs. Alex Payne
Dutt applies a headlock, Payne applies a top wristlock, Dutt counters to a hammerlock and then goes back to the headlock. He switches to an arm wringer and Payne rolls him to the floor but Sonjay gets the ropes before Payne can apply the STF. Alex applies a side headlock and then hits a football tackle. Sonjay tries a hip block takeover but Payne counters with a rana. Alex follows with a side headlock takeover, and Dutt powers him to the ropes. Alex gives him a clean break but Sonjay hits a kick to the gut and some jabs. Dutt whips hip to the ropes and hits a spinning back elbow for two. He stomps a mudhole into Payne, snap mares him and applies a sleeper. Payne gets to his feet, shoves Dutt off the ropes and applies a headlock, and then lands on his feet when Sonjay tries a backdrop. Payne hits a pair of clotheslines and a dropkick, but misses a corner charge. Dutt runs into a boot and Alex hits a rough version of the blockbuster stunner. It only gets two and Dutt hits a chinbreaker and an arm-wrench hook kick. Payne counters the Asai DDT and gets a schoolboy for two, STF! Dutt gets the ropes and goes to the corner, Payne misses a corner charge and Sonjay hits the seesaw kick. Dutt hits a springboard missile dropkick and then pummels Alex from the mount position. The Camel Clutch gets the anti-climactic victory for Sonjay.
Match Analysis: Actually, this was pretty solid. Payne was very impressive. I must say I never thought I’d see a Sonjay singles match where his opponent hits the first headscissors move, but hey, there’s a first time for everything. Match of the night so far, not that this is much of a compliment. **

Kyle Durdan says that he’s noticed that Dutt is a lot different since coming to ROH. He says ROH is like his sideburns: they are aggressive, they are accurate, they are on point, and they have swagger. What? That means that he has swag and surf, and now he’s going to target Delirious. Last time, Delirious pinned him, but next week, he’ll pin Delirious. That may have been the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen.

We see the hilarious skit where Daizee Haze hires a judo trainer for Delirious.

We get an interview from Colt Cabana. He says his mom sees him as a nice Jewish kid from the suburbs. His friends see him as a stupid Jewish kid from the suburbs. But his opponents know that he loves pro wrestling, that he’s generous, and that he doesn’t take things too seriously. His buddy CM Punk was said that his life is one giant fart joke, and he doesn’t disagree with that. He likes to make jokes and doesn’t like to be too serious if he doesn’t have to be.

Next week, 8 teams will face off in an Honor Rumble.

We get a brief interview from Nigel McGuinness, who says that most of what he remembers in the last year is pain. But he’s not pandering to the fans anymore, so you never know what Nigel McGuinness you’re going to get.

Steel Cage Match: Brent Albright vs. Claudio Castagnoli
This show lives or dies by this match. Escape, submission and pinfall rules apply. Slugfest to start and both men avoid being driven into the cage. Claudio hits a knee lift and tries to escape but Brent stops that. He is unsuccessful at driving CC into the cage and Castagnoli hits a scoop slam. He starts to climb out but Brent gets up, and they brawl across the ropes until Claudio crotches himself. Brent hits a chop and CC whips him to the buckles, but Albright comes out with a big clothesline. They keep blocking themselves from being sent into the cage, go back to trading blows until Castagnoli hits a gutwrench suplex. CC crawls to escape but Albright grabs his foot. Ernie Osiris grabs his hands and we get a brief tug of war. Claudio grabs the tights and tries to send Albright into the door, but the door isn’t there. Prince Nana improvises by slamming the door on his head. Can nothing go right tonight?

CC smugly stalks a bloody Brent and throws him into the cage. A one-footed cover only gets one, so Claudio applies the surfboard clutch. Albright gets sent into the steel again and then Castagnoli catapults him in. Brent tries to fight back but Claudio hits a snapmare and grabs a chinlock. Albright escapes that and hits the ropes but gets thrown into the mesh once more. CC heads up top to try and escape but Brent grabs the legs, Claudio fights him off and hits a missile dropkick for two. Castagnoli hits a Very European Uppercut and grates Albright’s face in the steel and slams him into it again. Claudio tries the Alpamare Waterslide but Brent counters to a small package for two. CC hits the bicycle kick for two and then reapplies a chinlock. Brent fights off the hold, hits the ropes, CC tries to throw him in to the cage but Albright counters and slams him into the cage.

Albright slams Claudio into three sides of the cage, busting him open, and hits a flurry of punches before attempting to break the fourth wall. See what I did there? Brent goes for a catapult but CC pulls a Spider-Man, goes for a springboard European Uppercut, but Brent catches him, goes for the Air Raid Crash but Castagnoli avoids it and hits a sick elevated sideslam. Claudio starts to climb but Albright grabs a waistlock from the floor, GERMAN SUPLEX! It only gets two, so Brent sets him up on the top rope for a superplex. He punches him and smashes his head into the mesh again, climbs up top, but Claudio throws him off. CC tries to go outside, but Albright is back up, EXPLODER SUPERPLEX BACK INTO THE RING! ONE….TWO…THRE-NO! Brent wants the Half-Nelson Suplex but Castagnoli blocks it, goes for a kick to the groin but Brent sidesteps it and rams his head into the top turnbuckle. Albright hits some stiff shots but charges into a low blow. CC heads out, but no, he wants a steel chair and Ernie gets it for him. CC sets it up on top of Brent’s head for a stomp, but Albright avoids it, LOW BLOW! Brent sets the chair on Claudio’s head, stomps the chair, and that gets the three count.
Match Analysis: Well, they certainly didn’t reinvent the wheel. But it was a solid match. They had a rivalry, so they brawled and Claudio tried to runaway like a coward. Once he got an advantage, he turned sadistic and enjoyed punishing Albright, but they played off a spot to get Albright to slam Claudio into the cage. Lots of slamming the opponent into the cage but it did mean something every time. The Exploder was insane and the finish was a good payoff. ***

Avoid this show. The cage match is worth checking out, but not worth going out of your way to see unless you want to see the payoff. The first match suffered a lot and most of the promos were uninspired. When Claudio has the best promo on the show, it’s a bad thing.


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Aaron Hubbard

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