Wheelman for James Ellsworth
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: New England
Re: The 2012 MOTYC thread
Finally saw Richards/Elgin. Wow. I don't know if I'd go the full five stars for it, but if not, it's definitely still in the upper echelon of RoH matches. Easily the best match from both Davey Richards and RoH in general since Best in the World 2011, maybe the best match from both Davey Richards and RoH in general since the main event of Richards vs. Daniels. (I'm not as high on the BitW main event as I was at the time, mainly because knowing how abysmal the rest of 2011 was for the company has robbed it of its "Beginning of the Davey Richards Era!" excitement.) Elgin looked absolutely amazing; if RoH handles him right and nobody else snatches him up, they'll have another Samoa Joe on their hands. Davey responded to Elgin's greatness with his best performance in a long time; I know a lot of people hate his following up a superplex with an ankle lock, but it worked here. (Part of that is that he immediately went for a cover after the superplex, and only grabbed the ankle lock in frustration when it didn't work; I don't know if that grace note was there in earlier, less acclaimed matches where he did it. A bigger part is that Angle, Kanemoto, Shamrock and others have done a more than satisfactory job establishing the ankle lock as a hold that requires no setup, that can be locked on at any time in the match and be devastating.) As an actual wrestling match that I feel comfortable comparing to other actual wrestling matches, it's easily my MotY so far.
That's because Cena/Lesnar from Extreme Rules did not strike me as an ordinary wrestling match that can be properly compared to other wrestling matches. I won't say I felt the "magic" others described, but I knew watching it that I was seeing something very different from what I typically get in professional wrestling, and something very interesting. Surprised the finish is such a lightning rod for controversy; Cena has never looked less like "Superman" in battling back to win than he did here, and having him beat Lesnar (who is, after all, not going to be around much) is a far more defensible booking decision than having him lose to the Rock (who isn't going to be around at all). Both guys' performances were stellar, with Cena doing arguably career-best work, and Lesnar proving that he could actually "bring legitimacy back" to WWE if only the company was interested.