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post #1617 of (permalink) Old 05-08-2011, 12:46 PM
Learning to break kayfabe
Join Date: May 2010
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Re: Official Indy DVD Thread

Ring of Honor has promised a revolution when they head up north, just seven days after MMA was revolutionized in Toronto in front of 55,000 fans. Although the arena will be smaller, the warriors in the ring a little less famous and the fans a tad more cynical, a quiet uprising could take place in the bowels of Canada’s most famous city. Over the past few years, the Philadelphia-born promotion has evolved and progressed into something of an internet phenomenon in the lexicon of wrestling fans, emerging as a true alternative to the sports-entertainment on TV. As Ring of Honor heads towards their biggest show in company history in June, their revolution for pro wrestling (ironically) is not to change what they’ve been doing but to continue bringing the best pro wrestling in the world to cities across the globe, converting new fans and inspiring old ones. With a promising card that includes two Championship matches among a wealthy amount of other promising match ups, can Ring of Honor keep their promise?

For comparisons sake, I gave Fate of an Angel II (somewhat controversially) a 56/100 and Death Before Dishonor VIII a 98/100. So, there’s the spectrum. The intro was written before the event and any errors or changes in the card will be reflected in the body of the review. Please do not personally attack each other in my review threads as some have been locked as a result. Thanks.

Format: Easy star ratings, breakdown of what I hated, liked and loved as well as a final show rating out of 100.

Rock & Roll.

-Kyle O'Reilly vs. Claudio Castagnoli (***1/4)
-Steve Corino vs. Mike Bennett (**1/4)
-Double Danger Scramble: Tomasso Ciampa vs. Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin vs. Andy Ridge vs. Grizzly Redwood vs. Rhett Titus (***1/2+)
-Davey Richards vs. Kenny King (***1/2)


-Colt Cabana vs. Delirious (N/R)
-El Generico vs. Christopher Daniels (***3/4)
-Ring of Honor World Tag Team Championships: Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin (c) vs. The Briscoes (***1/2)
-Ring of Honor World Championship: Eddie Edwards (c) vs. Chris Hero (**** - ****1/4)

What I hated:
-No return date. I don't know how RoH can't set a date for their 2nd biggest market. Let's hope it's a venue problem and not one that runs deeper.

What I disliked:
-The crowd. There seemed to be more people concerned with standing out than enjoying the wrestling. The "list" guys in the main-event were especially annoying. They were eerily quiet for some matches (such as Davey/King, too).

What was meh:
-Ring of Honor World Tag Team Championships: Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin (c) vs. The Briscoes (***1/2)

I wasn't the biggest fan of their match in Chicago but I have to say that this one fell short of that bout. For their 1st Championship match, I thought Haas & Benjamin would've tried for an epic but the match ended just as it was picking up steam. The ending left a lot to be desired as the ANX distracted the Briscoes allowing WGTT to retain.

What I liked:
-Kyle O'Reilly vs. Claudio Castagnoli (***1/4)
This was a good opener with the classic story of speed vs. power. O'Reilly was crisp in his leg shots and Claudio worked the crowd for a good opener. I would've liked to have seen this go a bit longer for O'Reilly to truly break out but I was satisfied with both performances.

-Steve Corino vs. Mike Bennett (**1/4)
You're as surprised as I am. Corino did a great pre-match promo explaining his absence and foreshadowing the return of Kevin Steen. As for the match, Corino had the crowd in his hands and they did the best that they could given both competitors styles. I was surprised at the length of this (16-17 mins? Around the same time as the tag title match) but the partisan crowd loved it.

-Double Danger Scramble: Tomasso Ciampa vs. Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin vs. Andy Ridge vs. Grizzly Redwood vs. Rhett Titus (***1/2+)
This exceeded my expectations greatly. Although the rules of the match are slightly convoluted, (guys were tagging to get out, jumping to the ring floor to get out) and the action resembled any multi-man match at the end with wrestlers coming in to break up pins, this was good for a few wrestlers. Titus and Ciampa showed off their prowess by getting pins while Cole delivered the spot of the night with a super Canadian destroyer on Elgin (!). Speaking of Elgin, he was absolutely on fire tonight, dominating the match with power but also showing great agility for a big man. My rating might be a tad conservative for such a fun bout.

-Davey Richards vs. Kenny King (***1/2)
These two had a very physical match with great counters and exciting action for close to twenty minutes. However, this one had two glaring problems. Despite Richards working on Kenny's leg the majority of the match, he showed virtually NO signs of it and even nipped up after being in an ankle lock for a long period of time. The second was the horrible ending. Kenny King was on the top rope and Davey went to run the turnbuckles to deliver a german suplex but he slipped on the bottom turnbuckle, nearly fell to the ground and King just kind of fell off in a very sloppy spot. Richards then went immediately to the ankle lock (which Kenny tapped out to) and promptly left the ring without acknowledging the fans.

-Bravados Promo
The oblivious douchebag gimmick is fantastic. They were the biggest heels of the night (by far!) and cut a good promo about beating Cole + O'Reilly and their loss record. This lead to the young guns coming out and challenging the Bravados to a match. They politely declined due to their grandma not wanting them to wrestle in their sunday clothes. Awesome. Cole + O'Reilly eventually beat them down to a big ovation from the crowd.

What I loved:
-A Sweet & Sour Tribute (N/R)
Todd Sinclair doing Larry's signature strut while his music played was the highlight of the night. These two had a hilarious match with antics outweighing moves about 8:1. The crowd was extremely receptive and positive with "Sweet & Sour" chants ringing throughout the building. Absolutely awesome.

-El Generico vs. Christopher Daniels (***3/4)
El Generico is the best "good guy" in all of wrestling. He is universally loved, can muster up an unbelievable amount of sympathy and has an exciting move set to boot. Daniels provided a good foil, embracing his new character while complimenting Generico's style in the ring. Elgin came out to destroy Generico but Corino made the save allowing the generic luchador to brainbuster Daniels for the win. A tense stand off followed as Generico didn't know whether to trust Corino. Just as he was leaving, the HoT showed their dominance by destroying Corino. No complaints here.

-Ring of Honor World Championship: Eddie Edwards (c) vs. Chris Hero (**** - ****1/4)
Chris Hero out in Sweet & Sour garb is simply tremendous. This bout was polarizing for the people I went with. I loved it as it started off slow before building to an exciting conclusion while my buddy thought it dragged. In any event, it went 35ish minutes with Hero targeting Edwards' arm and neck with Edwards zeroing in on Hero's back. These two went all over the ring, using the apron to deliver big moves and a ringside table to crash through. For a defense with very little suspense, Claudio's interference and subsequent Ricola Bomb had the crowd believing that Hero might escape Canada with the belt. I can see some taking issue with how many elbows Edwards kicked out of but I thought it demonstrated the toughness of our new Champion.

This is a hard one to grade. On the one hand, I didn't dislike any match on the card with the Double Danger Scramble and Bennett/Corino greatly surpassing my expectations. At the same time, Davey/King left a sour taste in my mouth and the tag team match was pretty underwhelming. Ring of Honor promised a revolution (to keep bringing the best pro wrestling to cities across the globe) and I'd say they accomplished their goal.


Any questions or comments would be appreciated.

2011 Match of the Year Standings:
1. Ring of Honor Championship: Eddie Edwards (c) vs. Davey Richards (Best in the World iPPV, June 26th, *****)
2. Non-Title: Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin (c) vs. Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards (Honor Takes Center Stage Part 2 iPPV, April 2nd, ****1/2)
3. All Asia Tag Team Championships: Seiya Sanada & Manabu Soya (c) vs. Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi (AJPW, March 21st, ****1/2)
4. Pure Rules: Davey Richards vs. Christopher Daniels (Manhattan Mayhem IV, March 19th, ****1/2)
5. GHC Jr. Heavyweight Championship: Kotaro Suzuki (c) vs. Eddie Edwards (NOAH "The First Navigation", January 29th, ****2/5)
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