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Dark Pegasus Video Review: Ring of Honor — Sixth Anniversary Show

April 28, 2008 | Posted by J.D. Dunn
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Dark Pegasus Video Review: Ring of Honor — Sixth Anniversary Show  

Ring of Honor — Sixth Anniversary Show
by J.D. Dunn

Wow. Has it been six years already? They’re almost at the age of reason.

  • February 23, 2008
  • From New York City, N.Y..
  • Your hosts are Dave Prazak and Lenny Leonard.

  • Rebecca Bayless catches up with the Vulture Squad who are getting a pep talk from Julius Smokes.
  • Opening Match: Delirious vs. Human Tornado.
    Tornado opens with a dance-off, which confuses even Delirious. Tornado’s music plays throughout like a cool 1970’s version of NuJack, but the Age of the Fall do the run-in and attack Tornado for insulting Lacey the previous night. (1:44) [N/R]

  • Daizee Haze hits the ring to clear Lacey out, and the ref turns the whole thing into a tag match.
  • The Age of the Fall (w/Zack Gowan) vs. Human Tornado & Delirious.
    Tornado and Delirious isolate Tyler Black until Delirious gets tossed to the floor. Gowan takes a cheapshot at him with the cane, and the Age of the Fall take over. They work his leg for a bit. Delirious dives for the tag, but Jimmy catches him in a half-crab. Tyler cuts off another tag, but Delirious headbutts him out of the air and tags Tornado. Tornado is a house of fire! He bodyscissors Black to the floor and hits a somersault plancha. HUGE HEAT for Tornado. Jimmy eats an enzuigiri, but Black makes the save. Black blocks the Cobra Stretch and dropkicks Delirious to the floor. He powerbombs Tornado into the buckle, allowing Jacobs to finish with the End Time at 9:52. Hot formula opener. Tornado gets a standing ovation for his performance existence. Hopefully, he gets more matches with better opponents that allow him to grow because he’s got a ton of charisma. ***

  • Nigel McGuinness comes out to brag about his physical condition. However, he’s still worried about his concussions. He claims that he *is* Ring of Honor, and therefore, he might have to drop out of his match with Bryan Danielson tonight in order to preserve his health and continue not to defend it at later dates. The crowd doesn’t like that, so he drops the title and says maybe he won’t defend it at all anymore since he’s not appreciated.
  • Bryan Danielson storms out and he is PISSED. He tells Nigel not to disrespect what they’ve built over the past six years, not to disrespect the belt, and not to disrespect past champions. He offers not to kick Nigel’s head in or do the elbows as long as Nigel puts up the belt. He feels he doesn’t have to.
  • Gee, if I didn’t know any better, that sounds almost exactly what I said they were setting up in my Glory By Honor and Final Battle reviews.
  • Brent Albright (w/Shane Hagadorn) vs. El Generico.
    Albright steamrolls over Generico early, but Generico dropkicks him off a press and hits the Tornado DDT. Albright catches him with the Wheelbarrow Suplex to take over again. The crowd chants “Jim Belushi” at him. Yeah, I can see that. He gets mad at them, so they switch it to “Toga! Toga!” See, if you’re going to do chants, be clever with them. Albright takes his anger out on Generico, suplexing him on the floral carpet. Back in, Albright goes up, but Generico Yakuza Kicks him to the floor. Back in, Albright clubs him down, but Generico grabs him for a backdrop suplex for two. Albright catches him with a snap powerslam and sets up for a superplex. Generico counters to a sunset flip bomb for two. The Yakuza Kick sets up a Brainbuster attempt, but Albright counters to a Half-Nelson suplex and knees Generico in the head until the ref stops the match to save Generico at 13:06. There’s nothing really wrong with the match except for the fact that “generic wrestler” is a gimmick for one guy and a lifestyle for the other. **1/4

  • The Larry Sweeney Show

    Sweeney’s special guest is Allison Danger. He introduces her as the patron saint of ROH women wrestlers, but he doesn’t want to talk about that. He wants to talk about the rumor that she is a slut. She gets offended and tries to walk out, so Sweeney knocks her out with the microphone and tells Bobby Dempsey that he finally has a shot at losing his virginity if he takes advantage of her. Bobby refuses, so Sweeney knocks him out too, and he lands (gently) on her. Sweeney then puts his foot on Bobby’s back like some 19th-century pioneer reaching the top of a large peak and announces a hostile takeover of Ring of Honor by Sweet ‘n’ Sour Inc.

  • I had a big rant here basically amounting to “That was it?!” but apparently the segment was clipped down quite a bit. It doesn’t really show, and although Ari Berenstein has a point about ROH clipping for content being a misstep on their part, keeping this short actually helps the flow of the show.
  • Kevin Steen vs. Joey Matthews.
    Steen casually no-sells Matthews’ blows and smacks him around. Matthews distracts the ref and tosses Steen to the floor to take over. Back in, Matthews grounds Steen with a facelock. Steen comes back with a Cradle Neckbreaker. Steen goes for the Sharpshooter, but Matthews blocks. Steen kicks away at Matthews’ legs and goes for the Swanton. Matthews gets the knees up and blocks a packaged piledriver. Steen goes for a Super Packaged Piledriver, but Matthews reverses to a rana. Steen rolls through that and applies the Sharpshooter for the submission at 11:07. This was really all Steen outside of the few cheating moves and counters Matthews could muster. The elevation of Kevin Steen has quietly been one of Ring of Honor’s best moves this year. **1/4

  • Daizee Haze talks about going after the SHIMMER title tonight.
  • Austin Aries vs. Go Shiozaki.
    Nice mat wrestling to start as Aries debuts a new way to get out of the headscissors. He comes out with his own, so Go slips out and tries a chop, but Aries ducks it. Good stuff there. Aries tries to pick things up, but Go chops him into next week. They chop it out, but Aries senses he’s losing, so he backdrops Go to the floor. Aries hits the Olè Knees on the outside. Back in, Go slows things down a bit, boring the crowd. Cool spot as Aries gets caught in the tree-of-woe but fights Go off and turns it into a chinbreaker. Aries hits his suicida, but Go avoids the punt to the head and hits a German Suplex for two. Go hits a Super Swinging Uranage, but Aries is able to get his foot on the ropes. Aries can’t finish with the Horns of Aries because Go makes the ropes. Go gets two off the Orange Crush and uses FIGHTING SPIRIT to no-sell a clothesline and hit his own. Awesome sequence as Go lifts Aries up for a brainbuster, but Aries starts kneeing in the head to get out of it, BUT Go fights through and maintains the hold. Go hits a hard chop and sets up for the Burning Lariat, but Aries counters to the Crucifix Bomb, punts him in the head, and finishes with the Brainbuster and 450-splash at 20:03. Ah, *now* I see the big deal about Shiozaki. Granted, he’s still very green, but there are so many flashes of greatness in there that he’s able to have good matches with great opponents. If Go is the Benoit to Kobashi’s Dynamite Kid, the future looks very bright for NOAH. ****

  • The lights go down during Aries’ celebration, and when the spotlights come up, Tyler Black, Lacey and Jimmy Jacobs are in the balcony. They offer Aries a spot in the Age of the Fall. Tammy Sytch interrupts (to AC/DC’s “Back in Black”). She offers Aries her own deal, but Austin says he’ll have to think it over. Lacey accuses her of using her fake tits and cottage-cheese ass in order to win Aries over, and Tammy tells her that it usually works.
  • Rebecca Bayless catches up with The No Remorse Corps. Davey Richards realizes he left his title belt at the hotel. Sadly, this did not lead to an angle with Rocky Romero teaming up with some random concierge.
  • SHIMMER Title: Sara Del Rey vs. Daizee Haze.
    Del Rey takes Haze down into a headscissors, but Haze takes her down with a rana and dumps her over the top. Haze comes off the top with a flying crossbody. Back in, Daizee ducks a few blows and gets in her own forearm jabs. Daizee blocks a superplex and hits a missile dropkick. She gets two off a backslide, but Del Rey slips out and hits a sick Axe Kick to the back of Daizee’s head. That sets up the Royal Butterfly at 8:29. This was the usual between these two. Not bad, but they need to start showcasing more SHIMMER talent in ROH because it’s starting to get repetitive with only Del Rey, Lacey and Daizee representing the promotion. **1/4

  • ROH World Tag Titles: Davey Richards & Rocky Romero vs. Ruckus & Jigsaw (w/Julius Smokes & Mercedes Martinez).
    It’s all spots, all the time until Richards slides out of the ring and distracts Jigsaw long enough for Romero to come in with a springboard dropkick. The NRC takes over, isolating Jigsaw. Rocky goes after his mask. Referee Todd Sinclair misses a cover by Romero, so Rocky spits on him. Jigsaw gets out of trouble, tossing Richards and Romero. Ruckus gets the hot tag and cleans house with his Superball offense. The Vulture Squad hits their Rolling Fisherman’s Suplex into a powerbomb move, but the NRC hit their doubleteam DDT. Richards hits a running forearm but charges into a superkick. That sets up the Jig and Tonic from Jigsaw, but Romero saves. Ruckus gets shoved off the top to the floor, and Jigsaw gets nailed with a kick while going for a suicida. That allows Richards to get two off a powerbomb. A series of kicks and a Ligerbomb finally finish off Jigsaw at 11:15. This was nothing but action and never let up. Thankfully, they let Jigsaw do most of the wrestling and only let Ruckus in to do the things he could do. ***1/4

  • After the match, Julius Smokes goes off on Jigsaw and tells him the mask screwed him all up. Smokes throws a tantrum all the way to the back.
  • Kevin Steen and El Generico interrupt the celebration and lay out a challenge for the tag titles. Richards tells them to bring it and then runs away.
  • FIP World Heavyweight Title, No DQ, No COR: Roderick Strong vs. Erick Stevens vs. Necro Butcher (w/Lacey).
    Strong and Stevens tore the house down in their FIP match where Strong won back the title. Stevens charges Strong and attacks, but Strong chops his way back. Necro gets involved, trying to suffocate Stevens with a plastic bag. He sideslams Stevens on a chair, so Strong runs in and chops him to save the title. The brawl spills to the floor where Necro rolls up a crowd barrier panel and beats Stevens with it. Strong attacks Necro and goes for the Tiger Driver, but Necro headbutts him in the balls and lifts him up by the junk. To the ring, Strong NAILS Necro with a chairshot. A big chop battle ensues, and the fans start an “FIP” chant. Necro nails Stevens with a right cross and tosses the crowd barrier panel on him. He delivers a senton for two, but Stevens hulks up and hits the Choo-Choo Avalanche. Stevens charges again, but Necro tosses a chair at his knees and delivers a DVD through the chair. Strong rushes in to save Stevens from the pin. He takes Necro to the floor and delivers a botched Tiger Driver through the table (more of a Pedigree, as Prazak notes). Back in again, that sets up a Tiger Driver ’91 at 17:07. FIP was really on a role in the first few months of 2008, having a near MOTYC at Redefined and following it up with this. It will be interesting to see how FIP handles the latter half of the year. ***3/4

  • Nice ROH video package detailing ROH’s first six years with heavy emphasis on the last year or so.
  • ROH World Title: Nigel McGuinness vs. Bryan Danielson.
    This was the usual fantastic match between these two, although not quite on the level of Driven. They open with their counter of a counter of a counter of a counter sequence. Danielson targets the leg quite a bit and incites the crowd to get under Nigel’s skin with a “U.S.A.” chant. Nigel goes for the corner handstand, but Danielson dropkicks him in the chest (avoiding the head, as per their agreement). He adds a suicide dive and a backdrop suplex, drawing a protest from Nigel. The ref says he can’t do anything about it, so Nigel decks him and starts to walk out. Austin Aries, Delirious, Kevin Steen and Roderick Strong block his exit though and tell him that he’ll have to go through them to escape. ROH President Cary Silkin restarts the match, and Danielson opens a can of the ass-whip. Nigel roars back, clubbing Danielson and zeroing in on his arm. Danielson ducks a lariat attempt and hits a lightning legline. To the floor, Danielson tosses Nigel into the crowd and hits his springboard plancha. Back in, Danielson applies the Triangle Choke but doesn’t add the elbows. Nigel slips out and hits a lariat, drawing a “Same ol’ shit!” chant from the crowd. That gets two, and Nigel cuts off a suicide dive with an uppercut. Nigel adds the Tower of London. Back in, Nigel uses Danielson’s own Cattle Mutilation against him. Danielson slips out and ducks the Jawbreaker Lariat, but his legline is ducked. Danielson crotches himself on the top rope and sets himself up for the flying clothesline off the second rope. That sets up the Tower of London for two. Nigel grabs the London Dungeon, but Danielson is in the ropes. Danielson hits the Chaos Theory for two and a belly-to-back superplex. That sets up Cattle Mutilation. Danielson sets up for the elbows but decides to keep his promise and elbows Nigel in the ribs instead. Nigel weathers the Triangle Choke, but Danielson fires off body blows and tells Todd Sinclair to count him down. Nigel recovers and headbutts Danielson in his damaged eye socket. That’s an awesome heel move. Danielson can’t see, so Nigel measures him for the lariat and finishes with Danielson’s own trapped elbows and the London Dungeon at 31:38. Superb match, highlighted by Nigel turning into douchebag emeritus over his head ouchie. In many ways, it’s superior to their 2007 Match of the Year at Driven. Little storyline elements like Danielson’s unwillingness to go after Nigel’s head and Nigel’s tendency to be a dickhead streamlined this match and made it a little more storybased. The #1 contender’s match gets the edge in intensity, but this one is right up there too. ****1/2
  • The 411: The Sweeney controversy overshadowed what is another in a long line of excellent Manhattan Center shows. Outside of the SHIMMER match, which was about average, the latter half of the show was incredible. If I had a complaint about the show, it's that (like many ROH shows) it was just too damned long at nearly 3 1/2 hours. Sometimes, you can have too much of a good thing. Highly recommended.
    411 Elite Award
    Final Score:  8.5   [ Very Good ]  legend

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