July 17, 2003
From the Rex Plex in Elizabeth, NJ
Your hosts are Ray Murrow and Chris Levy
CM Punk is backstage. He says it is the most important night in his life. He calls Raven no better than the dog a collar goes around and promises to end the feud tonight as it has gotten way too personal. He talks about choking out Raven at Wrestlerave and gloats that he gave Raven a flashback of his horrible life then talks about a time when his dad came home from work drunk then puked as he was asleep and turned blue then watched the light fade away but tipped him over so he could breathe again and regrets doing that ever since as he wanted the misery and pain to end. He now cannot figure out why he let Raven live as he is better than him because he has saved lived while all Raven has done is ruin them. Colt Cabana then walks in to interrupt as Punk pins him up against the wall and says how he is sick of his “Tom Foolery and shenanigans.” He walks away then Cabana looks into the camera and attempts to be funny as he claims that fans say they remind them of a “modern day Dave Coulier” before saying he has a serious side because he cried during the film “My Girl.” Cabana closes by saying we should wait until the night is over so we can take him seriously.
Before the show we see Special K having a rave at ringside. Elax has even made his return, to the joy of no one.
Backstage, Gary Michael Cappetta approaches Samoa Joe and asks him about his match against Paul London, who is having his last match in the company tonight. Joe then runs down other special moments and says that it won’t be one for Paul London tonight as this is his night and he will retain his RoH World Title. Cappetta then gets notified off camera that Homicide and Julius Smokes are here so he runs off to find them.
Back to the ring as the Special K rave continues. Becky Bayless was smoking hot here.
Cappetta talks to Homicide and asks what happened at the closed door meeting between Low Ki, Julius Smokes and himself after Wrestlerave. Homicide calls Cappetta a dumb ass for suggesting that he is now in a feud with Ki as Smokes and another one of Homicide’s thugs call Cappetta a “bitch-ass wigga” and does not care that Steve Corino refuses to come back to RoH because of him. Homicide then tells Cappetta to tell Corino that he is challenging him to a Strong-Style match in RoH and that he will leave his guys back in Brooklyn.
Back in the ring as the show is starting with the rave continuing in the ring. They then start to mess with ring announcer Stephen DeAngelis. Now, the Christopher Street Connection come down to the ring with Ariel as they have interrupted the rave. A “you suck dick” chant is aimed at the CSC as they tell Special K that they do not like their raves but rather disco music as they dance briefly until Special K jumps then from behind. The CSC get destroyed until Low Ki comes out and he looks pissed. Special K all back away from him as Ki first excuses himself for interrupting but that he is not here to see anyone dance and that he came here for a fight. The bell then rings as Deranged, Cloudy, and Hijynx all plead with Ki, who slaps down Cloudy. Hijynx laughs as Ki laughs with him before taking him down with the Dragon Clutch as the bell rings again. The rest of Special K leaves except for Deranged, who hits Ki with a low blow then mocks Ki as we now have a match.
Deranged vs. Low Ki
This is Ki’s first match in RoH since returning from injury. Deranged lands a bunch of shots then hits a tilt-a-whirl armdrag. Deranged then snaps off a hurricarana then gets two off of a spin kick. Deranged chokes him on the mat then targets the injured shoulder of Ki. Deranged doesn’t look half bad here. He kicks Ki in the face before going back to the arm as Levy tells us that Ki is only at 75%. Ki gets sent through the ropes with a dropkick then Deranged takes him out on the floor with a springboard moonsault. They head back inside as Deranged hits Ki in the back of the head with a springboard dropkick. He then tries a handspring move but Ki catches him and just slams him down in a clunky-looking sequence. Ki is now viciously kicking Deranged in the face as he grabs him by the hair. He then drills him with a rolling Koppu Kick in the corner as he is just brutalizing this kid. Deranged sells like he is dead on the mat as Ki yanks him up so he can chop him in the corner. He then hits Deranged with the Tidal Crush as a few of the Special K goons distract Ki so Slugger can run out and grab Ki as the ref does nothing because this is not a match with honor from what Levy said. We then see that Ki is grabbing Slugger by the dick as he has the big man down. Deranged moves in for the attack but Ki picks him up and hits a pair of Krush Rushes before hitting the Ki Krusher then gets the win with the Dragon Clutch (6:34) **.
Thoughts: Fun match that was able to put Ki right back in the mix as a top guy for the company. Deranged did his part here too as this was a smart way to start the show.
Christopher Daniels is “backstage” at a New Japan show as he tells us that this is the biggest night in RoH history but that they never would have been in position to draw 1,200 fans tonight if it wasn’t for him and that the company was built on his shoulders. He then calls out Low Ki and how he will take him out just like he did with Corino, by getting close to those around him. He then says that he will challenge for the #1 Contender’s Trophy when he gets back to the states.
Jimmy Rave vs. Matt Stryker
These guys both trade hammerlocks to start. They are now fighting over a headlock as Stryker wins that battle then attacks the arm. Rave now takes control as he takes Stryker down with a Fujiwara armbar and that leads to a back-and-forth sequence that ends in a stalemate. Levy says that we will get some information about the “Field of Honor” as soon as tonight as Stryker has Rave grounded. Stryker targets the arm as this match has slowed down. Rave fights back and hits a backbreaker then follows that with a bridging suplex for a nearfall. Stryker comes back with a boot to the face but Rave counters a leg lock and puts on a rear chokehold. Stryker backs Rave into the corner but gets placed up top as Rave hits a Spider belly-to-belly suplex but poses for too long and that allows Stryker to hit a suplex of his own. Both guys are down then trade chops in a sequence that ends with Rave kneeing Stryker in the gut. Shining Wizard gets two. Rave ducks his head and gets booted in the face. Stryker then comes back with a leg lariat and gets two with a powerslam. Rave escapes from a Death Valley Driver attempt and goes for a headlock but Stryker hits a jawbreaker. Rave then uses a satellite headscissors to take down Stryker then puts on a STF. Stryker reaches the ropes then gets up and hits Rave with the Death Valley Driver for the win (8:45) **.
Thoughts: The action here was okay but they did not have the greatest chemistry and just a showcase for Stryker as a threat in the upcoming “Field of Honor” tournament. Stryker did not have anything to warrant a push, IMO.
Carnage Crew & Justin Credible & Masada vs. Fast Eddie & Don Juan & Hotstuff Hernandez & Rudy Boy Gonzalez
Match starts with a giant brawl outside of the ring. DeVito is smiling as he canes Fast Eddie. The action starts to spill into the ring where Hernandez crotches Masada on the top rope then he an Eddie mistime a double dropkick that draws a “you fucked up” chant. In the ring, Credible is chopping Juan in the corner then powerbombs him for a nearfall. The action is everywhere as Rudy Boy follows Credible into the crowd and it looks impressive as there is a decent sized crowd here. The camera work is shaky though. In the ring, Eddie hits Masada with a release German suplex, crashing his head off of a chair. Loc cuts him off the top then climbs up and hits a released German suplex that sends Eddie through a folding chair! That draws a well-deserved holy shit chant as that spot looked fantastic. The ladder is in the corner across the ropes as that is used as a weapon. These guys are just beating the shit out of each other now but its all action and come cool spots too. Juan DDT’s Masada off of the top rope and through a chair as DeVito breaks up that pinfall. Masada bounces the ladder off of Hernandez then Eddie sets it up in the corner. He climbs up but Loc is on the second rope and cuts him off. DeVito climbs up the ladder and takes Eddie down with a superplex after Juan takes Masada off of the apron and through a few chairs with a swinging neckbreaker. Christ, this match is brutal. Everyone slows down for a few minutes then the Carnage Crew put Juan through a table from off of the apron with a spike piledriver as Levy alerts us that Gonzalez and Credible are now brawling in the parking lot. Hernandez then flies out and hits a tope on Masada that gets a good reaction. Gonzalez comes out as Levy now tells us that Credible is hurt and unable to continue. Back to the match as Hernandez puts Masada through a few chairs with a crucifix powerbomb (8:04) ***1/4.
Thoughts: This was a lot better than I was expecting. No idea what happened with Credible here but he did look very good in this match. Some of these spots were absolutely brutal though as these guys beat the shit out of each other.
Outcast Killaz vs. The Purists
The purists are Tony Mamaluke and John Walters. They are both very intense during the pre-match handshake. Levy talks up the Purists as Mamaluke starts off the match by grounding Tortuga, who to his credit fought back well, as they end up tangled in the ropes. Walters and Santiago tag in as they also roll around on the mat. They are letting the Outcast Killaz look a bit credible here. Walters works the ankle as the announcers talk about the feud the Killaz have with Dunn & Marcos. The Killaz take control of the match and hit a few nice double-team moves. Walters clotheslines Santiago then puts both of the Killaz in a contrived double submission hold that does not even get that much of a response from the crowd. Mamaluke works a neck vise but that gets broken up with a jawbreaker. Mamaluke comes back with a knee to the gut then gets two with a flying knee smash to the face. Walters tags and chops down Santiago in the corner. Dropkick gets two. Santiago comes back with a blockbuster as both men are down. The crowd rallies behind Santiago, who makes the tag. Tortuga then runs wild on Mamaluke and puts him in a stretch after elevating him in the wheelbarrow position as Santiago dropkicks him down. Walters comes in and dumps Santiago on the ropes then sends him to the floor with a dropkick. Mamaluke then powerbombs Tortuga as Walters stretches him out while Mamaluke puts him in a leg lock and they get the win (8:31) **1/4.
Thoughts: A decent way to showcase the new Purists team. Also, they let the Outcast Killaz shine a bit here and they did fine.
After the match, Dunn & Marcos come out and mock the Killaz. Then, Xavier makes his return as he walks down the aisle and stares at the duo, who are doing their routine. Xavier is not amused as he takes them both out with a double clothesline. He hits Dunn with a Cobra Clutch suplex then hits Marcos with the Kiss Your X Goodbye but not before kneeing him in the head three times. Gary Michael Cappetta then comes out and asks Xavier why he has returned. Xavier said that he cannot believe RoH would hold a tournament with the eight best wrestlers without inviting him and says that all he wants is respect and will go through seven other guys to get some. He closes by saying that he is back and better than ever. Decent promo from Xavier but the sound was not too good here.
Tom Carter vs. Doug Williams
Match starts with some back-and-forth action on the mat that the crowd appreciates. Carter works the arm for a bit as Levy puts over the matwork featured in RoH and how they respect it, unlike “other” companies. Williams fights back and hits a pair of European uppercuts before using a figure-four neck lock. Carter escapes and from that puts Williams in a bow-and-arrow hold. Williams then fights back and hammers away. Neckbreaker gets two. Carter is able to put Williams in an armbar then continues to work on the arm for a while. They go back and forth with Williams trying to act aggressive as Carter counters by targeting the arm. Williams rolls outside and sells his shoulder but drags Carter outside then sends him into the guardrail. Back inside, Carter blocks a suplex attempt but Williams eventually gets him up in a delayed vertical suplex that gets two. Tornado DDT gets two. Williams kneedrops Carterin the head before placing him up top. Williams tries for a German suplex but Carter reverses and has him in a hammerlock. Williams tosses him off as both men are down on the mat. Carter comes back with a moonsault block that gets two but Williams sends him into the corner and hits a pair of knee smashes. He then hits a top rope kneedrop that gets two. Williams targets the head but Carter comes back with a Flatliner and a pair of Shining Wizards but is unable to put him away. He heads up top but Williams cuts him off. Williams tries to take him off but Carter counters with a swinging DDT. He heads back up top and hits a beautiful frog splash that gets two. Carter uses an armbar but Williams lifts him up off of the mat and tosses him into the corner. Williams then hits the Chaos Theory but sells his arm and is unable to cover. He gets up and tries a suplex but Carter reverses the hold and rolls him up for the win (14:21) ***1/2.
Thoughts: Really good match. This was also the last appearance of Carter in RoH. No idea what happened here but it made no sense to have him win this and blow off joining the Prophecy if he was planning on never returning to the company. His wife did give birth several weeks before the match so maybe he just decided to quit wrestling. Does anyone know what happened regarding his departure?
After the match, Allison Danger meets Carter in the back and asks him to join the Prophecy because Daniels wants him in the group. Carter doesn’t say anything then walks away. This was the last time Carter was in RoH.
#1 Contender’s Trophy Match
Colt Cabana vs. BJ Whitmer vs. Homicide w/ Julius Smokes vs. Dan Maff w/ Alison Danger
After some blind tags, Whitmer and Homicide start off the match. They go back-and-forth in a decent sequence. Colt blindly tags Homicide and tries to attack Maff from behind but that fails. Colt has been doing his comedy schtick the whole time. Maff hits a suplex but misses a diving headbutt. Cabana comes back with a lariat. Whitmer and Homicide tag in and go at it for a bit. Whitmer goes outside and Homicide flies out with a tope as he crashes into the guardrail. Back inside where Whitmer catches Homicide with a powerslam then hits a Northern Lights Suplex as Cabana breaks up the pin. Cabana is now in as Homicide chops him in the corner. Cabana comes back with a suplex-type move that ends up as a butterfly lock but Whitmer tagged himself in and targets the back and neck of Homicide, who then returns the favor as they trade kicks to the back in a “Strong Style” sequence. Maff then yanks Homicide to the floor. Whitmer charges and Maff backdrops him outside then Maff pauses and look back and forth before flying out with a tope that he overshot and wound up in the front row. That looked quite painful. Cabana then takes out the other two with a quebrada. In the ring, Maff and Whitmer trade chops until Homicide pokes Maff in the eye. They all trade various suplexes. Whitmer is getting destroyed in the corner as Cabana is back in with the action too fast to call. The crowd goes nuts as Maff hits Cabana with a German suplex as he hit Homicide with a fisherman’s buster. Everyone is down on the mat as Colt is up first. He tries to hit Whitmer with the Colt 45 but Whitmer floats over and hits an inverted DDT. Whitmer gets flattened by a clothesline courtesy of Homicide. Maff hits Homicide but misses a cannonball. Cabana hits Homicide with a draping Ace Crusher then Maff hits Cabana with the Burning Hammer and covers but Whitmer breaks that up. Whitmer hits a Saito suplex for two that Homicide breaks up. He boots Whitmer in the face then sends Maff to the floor. Homicide places Cabana on top but takes too long as Whitmer takes him off with a German Suplex. Whitmer then goes up top and hits Cabana with an Exploder for the win (13:45) ***3/4. After the match everyone shakes hands except for Maff, who spits at Homicide then leaves after telling everyone to fuck off. Maff and Smokes then get into it as Maff yells at Smokes to “go back to the projects.”
Thoughts: Awesome stuff. All four guys busted their ass too. They are doing a fine job with the Homicide storyline of him trying to get away from his thug past to provide for his kid yet needing protection and having Smokes and his thugs with him, with everyone hating Homicide for bringing Smokes into the company. They are also giving Whitmer a push and although he was fine in the ring here, he did not really stand out other than being taller and having a better physique than most on the roster. See, even in RoH that can be the case as that is something not just unique to the WWE but rather accustom in all of professional wrestling.
Daniels is shown backstage from “Japan” as he is talking to Danger on his phone. He tells her to watch the show and call her as soon as the title matches end. He then gets off the phone and says that Xavier’s return was planned all along then tells Maff that he stole the show and made a mockery of the “Code of Honor.” He then addresses Tom Carter and tells him he needs his answer soon as its better to be with the Prophecy then against them.
Cappetta is backstage with Low Ki. He asks him about hurting Special K tonight as he tells Cappetta that they have disrespected the Code of Honor since the company began and will teach them lessons until they stop breaking the code. He calls out Maff for betraying his family before closing by saying he will be the RoH World Champion again. Cappetta then asks him about his meeting with Homicide as Ki tells him that it is not of his concern and to do his job and listen as he tells him he will be the RoH Champion once again.
We are shown a clip from Wrestlerave when Special K put the Backseat Boyz through a table.
Mikey Whipwreck & Hydro & Angel Dust & Brian XL vs. Backseat Boyz & Spanish Announce Team
Hydro and Joel start off the match with a nice little sequence. Hydro in particular looked good. Angel Dust then comes in and hands a pill to Kashmere, who shoves it back down his throat and hits him with a few chops. Kashmere then spears Angel Dust and applies a figure four. Brian XL flies in with an elbow as he and Jose work their usual botch-filled sequence of highspots. Whipwreck hits Acid with a facebuster then this heads to Special K getting suplexed in a lame spot. Acid and Hydro anre in the ring and its clear that they are the best two in the whole match. The SAT’s then take down Hydro as Jose puts him in the Camel Clutch and everyone else hits him in the face with dropkicks repeatedly. Angel Dust springboards in to hit Jose with a blockbuster that gets two. The match breaks down then Jose drops Angel Dust as both men are down. Joel then hits the Maximo Explosion on Brian XL as now Trent Acid runs wild then this leads to the SAT’s hitting Hydro with the Spanish Fly. Joel then holds up Mikey for Acid but misses and gets hit with an enziguiri as Whipwreck then gets the Whippersnapper on Acid for the win (8:22) *1/4. After the match, the Backseat Boyz destroy the SAT’s as the crowd applauds.
Thoughts: These scramble matches were a lost cause and this match pretty much sucked. A majority of the Special K guys were useless and the SAT’s fucked up all the time. And fat Mikey Whipwreck is just awful in every single way. And he trained these guys too.
Krazy K vs. Joey Matthews vs. Jeff Hardy
A few fans start a “Fuck you Hardy” chant as he came to the ring in a goofy mask doing some of his terrible dancing. Hardy had a few vocal fans here at the start then a loud “You Got Fired” and a “We Want Matt” chant breaks out just before the match. Matthews beats on both guys to start. Hardy fights back as the fans boo then he takes off his mask as the girls in attendance scream. Hardy clotheslines Matthews to the floor then works one of the worst sequences I have ever seen with Krazy K. My god, wrestling school students in their first week could have done a better job. Hardy is still wearing his coat here too. Matthews comes back and tosses Krazy K to the floor. He follows him out and orders the fans to get out of the way then teases throwing him over the guardrail before tossing him back inside. Hardy comes out and brawls with Matthews then Krazy K flies out with a twisting plancha as Hardy doesn’t ever bother to catch him. Even the announcers are noting how Hardy isn’t giving a shit out here. Krazy K and Hardy team up on Matthews until Krazy K goes for a quick rollup. Hardy comes back with a powerbomb then takes forever to climb up and gets shoved off by Matthews as the crowd cheers. Matthews then hits Krazy K with an inverted DDT for two as the fans are completely shitting on this match and rightfully so as it is awful. Hardy and Matthews fight up top as Hardy shoves him off then hits the Swanton Bomb. Hardy now goes after K and gets the win with his double leg drop rollup (6:15) DUD.
Thoughts: What a fucking disaster this turned out to be. If not for Matthews, this would have easily reached negative star territory as Hardy and Krazy K were fucking horrible. The crowd hated Hardy, who looked every bit as strung out as he did before getting canned by the WWE. Krazy K was never seen in RoH again and for good reason. Its almost worth seeking this out because of the trainwreck factor.
We are shown a recap of the Punk/Raven feud.
Punk taunts the crowd before the match about how the building does not sell alcohol and that they were led down the wrong path as they start a “shut the fuck up” chant back at Punk, who says he feels sorry for them because Raven led them down the road to ruin. Punk then compares Raven to his “lousy, drunk father” as the crowd starts an “alcohol” chant. He then rips on Danny Doring, who is shown chugging a beer in the crowd as the fans start an “ECW” chant. Security prevents Doring from coming out to the ring as Punk again rips on the crowd until Raven comes out for the match. Punk was truly great here.
Dog Collar Match
CM Punk vs. Raven
A few in the crowd start a “CM Pussy” chant. They get chained together as Punk tries to escape but Raven yanks him back then uses the chain as a weapon. The action heads outside where Raven sends Punk into the post then crotches Punk with the chain before sending him into the guardrail with a Russian leg sweep as Punk is already busted open with his forehead painted red with blood. Raven continues the assault as he rolls Punk back inside. He sets up a table in the corner but Punk hits him with a low blow. Raven comes back with a kneelift but Punk reverses an Irish whip and sends Raven through the table as he now takes control of the match. He beats on Raven outside of the ring then chokes him out with the chain then busts open his forehead. Punk sends Raven into the guardrail a few times before sending him into the crowd. Punk steps back to take a breather but Raven yanks the chain as Punk flies into the guardrail. Both men are brawling through the crowd as this match is pretty fucking good right now. Raven knocks Punk through a few chairs then they head through to the other side of the crowd where Raven hands a fan a chair to hold so he can bounce Punk’s head off of that. Raven heads up to the bleachers but Punk yanks him down as Raven takes a hell of a bump. Punk now whips Raven with the chain as they head back towards the ring. Punk brings a garbage can ringside then rolls Punk into the ring. He hits Raven with a back elbow smash as Punk hurt his arm on that move. Punk then drops a knee on Raven as he has a microphone and calls Raven an “old timer” as he beats on him some more. He hits a suplex then a step-up enziguiri before he climbs up top and talks into the microphone but Raven yanks him off. Punk gets back up and taunts Raven by calling him “Flamingo” but Raven fights back. He clotheslines Punk down several times and gets two with a kneelift. He sets up a chair and sends Punk into it with a drop toehold for two. He then spits on Punk before grabbing a chair but Punk ducks as the ref gets hit with the chair. Raven then yanks Punk down then hits the Raven Effect but the referee is down. Colt Cabana runs into the ring and hits him with a low blow before hitting a DDT onto the chair. Cabana then taunts the crowd but Danny Doring comes out from the crowd and takes him out with a clothesline as they brawl outside but in the ring Punk rolls on top of Raven as the referee awakes and gets the win (18:22) ****. After the match, Punk tapes Raven’s wrists to the ropes as he is on the floor. Punk then grabs the mic and tells Raven that he is better than him and all that is left to do now is to send Raven back to rehab as he cracks a beer and pours it down his throat. Punk then calls Raven an addict as someone screams “I can’t believe you gave him a fucking beer.” Tommy Dreamer then comes out from the crowd to whack Punk with a chair as the crowd starts an “ECW” then a “Dreamer” chant. Dreamer then ties Punk to the ropes as the crowd chants “fuck him up Dreamer, fuck him up.” Dreamer then unties Raven, who can barely stand then they hug as the fans applaud. Raven then grabs the mic as he welcomes Punk to his worst nightmare as he cracks a beer then pours it down Punk’s throat, who is spitting it out. Dreamer when pulls a Sandman and smashes the can against his head as Punk is flipping out. Raven pours another beer on Punk as Dreamer struts around. They leave as the referees untie Punk, who flips out and tosses them down as he heads to the back.
Thoughts: Excellent match and easily the best from Punk at this point in his career. Both guys beat each other and kept it heated throughout the entire time. The post match stuff was fun as well with Dreamer surprising everyone by running in and he had some fun with Raven as they tortured Punk. It also set them up to have another match to keep the feud going.
Paul London cuts a promo about his experience in Ring of Honor as this was his last show before heading to the WWE. He puts over his opponents like Michael Shane, Bryan Danielson, Low Ki, and AJ Styles. He closes by saying that he will not let the people down and has a special feeling tonight and has to win the Championship. Long-winded promo from London, who seemed genuinely emotional here. And came off a tad high as well.
The Briscoes vs. AJ Styles & Amazing Red w/ Alexis Laree
The stipulations here are that this is the last match between the two teams and no matter who wins, there will not be a rematch. Match starts with Jay and AJ beating the shit out of each other as they spill outside. Mark and Red fight in the ring then Mark misses a dive to the floor. AJ sends Mark into the guardrail but Jay sends whips him then rolls AJ back inside. Red tags in and hits Jay with the Code Red for two. Mark tags in as the Briscoes now attack AJ, who comes back with a lariat on Mark. AJ tries for the Styles Clash but that gets blocked as Red tags and they hit Mark with stereo enziguiris for two. Red kicks Mark in the back then hits a basement dropkick for two. AJ tags as the announcers bring up Red’s knee injury. AJ gets two off of a dropkick then a neckbreaker. Red tags back in as he chops Mark then gets a baseball slide for two. Mark comes back with a low dropkick onto the hurt knee of Red. The Briscoes take turns working over the knee of Red as Mark uses a single leg crab. Jay chokes out Red as the referee orders AJ back to the apron. Laree rallies the crowd behind Red as he gets taken down with a Dragon Screw. Red gets sent to the floor and gets roughed up briefly before getting rolled back into the ring. Mark and Red exchange chops until they have a sloppy reversal sequence that ends with Mark getting two with a powerbomb. Red then is able to come back shortly after that with a Kryptonite Krunch as both men are down. Red finally makes the tag as AJ beats on both of the Briscoes. Mark then hits AJ with a T-Bone suplex then hits Red with a Mafia Kick. AJ comes back with a slingshot crossbody and then this leads to a Tower of Doom spot with each team getting a nearfall. Jay hits Red with the Jaydriller but AJ breaks up the pin by tossing Mark at his brother. The Briscoes hit AJ with a springboard Doomsday Device for two as Red is down in the corner. AJ comes back with the Phenomenon on Mark then Red hits Jay as he tried the Jaydriller then hits a Shining Wizard and that leads to AJ hitting Jay with the Styles Clash for the win (14:27) ***1/2.
Thoughts: Good match. The story at the end was that Red sacrificed his injured knee in order to help retain the Tag Team Titles. The Briscoes were so damn impressive too, especially when they were both under 20 years old. The Tag Team Belts have not been focused on much, especially with Red having been out with an injury, but that will be changing going forward.
Jim Cornette is shown in a promo with the Ohio Valley Wrestling logo in the background. He says that he will be part of the RoH show on August 9th as he wants to see what RoH is all about as he smells money and wants to be a part of that. He closes by saying that his appearance will make news on the internet and the magazines. Not bad and it did the job in making you intrigued as to why Cornette will be appearing on a RoH show.
We see clips of the last few matches featuring Paul London and Samoa Joe. This lasts for several minutes.
RoH World Championship Match
Paul London vs. Samoa Joe (Champion)
This match gets the boxing-style ring introductions as London gets a great crowd reaction as streamers drop from the ceiling after its announced that this is his final night in the company. Joe takes down London after the handshake then grounds him on the mat. London fights out as they are both on their feet. London puts Joe in a side headlock then they work a fast-paced sequence that ends with Joe destroying London with a forearm smash to the face. Joe beats on London in the corner for a bit. London floats over and gets a quick rollup then sends Joe out of the ring. He sends him into the guardrail with a baseball slide then takes him down with a moonsault off of the guardrail. Back inside, London barely gets a two count off of a splash but gets caught with an uranage off of a charge. Joe targets the back of London then catches him off of a springboard and throws him across the top rope. Joe then puts London in the tree-of-woe but misses on a baseball slide. London flies out with a pescado but Joe caught him then slams London into the post. Joe puts London in the chair and hits him with a few running kicks. In the ring, Joe hits London with a missile dropkick then gets two with a German Suplex. Joe tries for the Island Driver but London counters with a rollup as that leads to a rollup reversal sequence. London hits the dropsault then fakes out Joe pretending that he is hurt as he hits the legsweep DDT. London then heads up top and hits the London Calling but Joe kicks out at two. That looked perfect by the way. Joe then ducks a swing and locks on the Coquina Clutch as he drags him back in off of the apron. London escapes quickly but misses a spinning heel kick. Joe gets two with a Dragon Suplex. London comes back with a quick backslide but Joe comes right back with a vicious lariat. Joe then murders London with all sorts of strikes then locks on the Coquina Clutch and after a struggle, London’s hand drops three times as Joe retains the title (14:13) ***1/4. After the match the entire locker room comes out as Whitmer and Williams hoist him up on his shoulders before they all say their goodbyes to him. London grabs the mic as the roster surrounds him with the entire audience now giving him a standing ovation. He thanks everyone here as he refers to them as family. He then thanks Rudy Boy and hugs him then puts over the RoH office for making this show possible. The crowd starts a “please don’t go” chant then London said that no matter what he will always have Ring of Honor in his heart. He then says goodbye to everyone in the ring.
Thoughts: Good match but not a classic or anything. It was missing something. The announcers telling the story that London was risking his WWE contract by taking this match as he could get hurt by Joe wasn’t the worst I have heard but no one seemed to buy that or the fact that he was going to win this match. They just seemed happy to see him for the last time and wanted to give him a good sendoff. The end with the locker room wishing London luck as he went to the WWE was great and he gave a passionate, from the heart speech to the fans and other wrestlers. That was a great moment.
Raven cuts a promo behind a chain link fence about how Tommy Dreamer could not beat him for 2.5 years but now he cannot beat CM Punk. He then says that payback is hell and that he does not think that Punk has suffered enough because he is an “arrogant piece of shit” as he challenges Punk to a cage match and guarantees victory as long as Punk has the balls to face him.
The Carnage Crew talk about their ugly wives and shitty jobs then tell Mikey Whipwreck is a crippled old man then run down Special K as Credible calls them a joke as they leave to head to the “nudie bar.” Credible wasnt that good here on the mic.
Daniels tells AJ & Red that the Prophecy is coming for those titles but his first priority is taking the RoH World Championship from Samoa Joe. The Prophecy has gotten better but they have been a weak stable for a long time. This act is not a favorite of mine.
Rob Feinstein approaches Colt Cabana and CM Punk, who he asked to cut a promo about the challenge issued by Raven. Cabana warns Feinstein to leave Punk alone but he does not listen then Punk shoves Feinstein down as he tells him how he does not care where the match happens and that he will not be held responsible for his actions and how no one does what Raven did to him. The Punk character was so, so much better than the other acts in this company. Quite frankly, no one else was close.
Final Thoughts: Even at 4.5 hours long, this show was incredible. This show had it all:hot feuds, memorable moments, and great action. Plus, the pacing was fantastic. There was minimal filler as they reestablished guys, formed new teams, and had a great sendoff for London. Even Jeff Hardy’s disaster of a debut was enjoyable in a way. Plus the action was good as RoH hit a home run for their biggest show to date. Definitely seek out this show because it is one of the best that RoH has ever produced and it is loads of fun.