Another Monday morning, another week of killer matches to catch up on. This week in particular provided a couple classics. These will not be forgotten come December when folks are putting a list together of the best stuff of the year.
ROH: AJ Styles vs. Kyle O’Reilly – [Taped 8/22/14, Aired 9/13/14]
ROH: Young Bucks vs. The Briscoe Brothers – [Taped 8/22/14, Aired 9/13/14]
Couldn’t find this on YouTube or DailyMotion. Had to go to the RuTube for this one. This is the AJ Styles that we weren’t sure we would ever see again after the TNA debacle. Simply put, this is the best match on U.S. soil this year. It doesn’t stop there however, this is a 2 match edition of ROH television and the second match is a mind blower as well. Easily the best hour of professional wrestling this country has produced this year.
NJPW: Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Katsuyori Shibata – [9/21/14]
If this isn’t the Match of the Year, it’s at least Top 3. Better than their G1 match from this year. Better than their G1 match from last year. Best Tanahashi match since KOPW ’13. You can cut the real-life hatred with a knife in this one. The work is absolutely flawless and extremely clever throughout. Not to mention, the post-match is stunningly beautiful. If you know the back story, and then to read what was said between them mid-ring after the match, it’s something else. To say this one delivered is beyond an understatement.
CMLL: Ultimo Guerrero vs. Atlantis – [9/19/14]
Mask vs. Mask! This one was special. Two legends of the genre. CMLL’s biggest show of the year. The pomp & circumstance is on par with Wrestlemania and Wrestle Kingdom. This was the show live on television Friday night that the Meltz was going nuts for, and with reason. If you’re not a follower of the product, I wouldn’t suggest sitting through the whole match (2/3 falls). However, if you start it at the 27:00 mark, you’ll catch the last 2 minutes of a very good main event. That’s just where the fun starts though. One of these legends has to unmask, on the biggest stage of them all. The raw emotion is unlike anything you’ll see in the sport, and this one will be talked about for a long, long time.
So there ya go. There was also a rematch of the Ricochet vs. Uhaa Nation instant classic from March. Not as good as the first one, but more than suitable if you’re into Americans under age 30, tearing it up. Couldn’t find it in singular match form, but the EVOLVE 35 show as a whole is available for free (until it gets pulled down) by CLICKING HERE.