Last Week: Eddie Edwards and Mike Bennett gave their thoughts on their upcoming rematch following their “March Mayhem” qualifier ending with Bennett defeating the former ROH World champion thanks to Maria Kannelis’ interference.
ROH TV Episode 35
After talking about tonight’s main matches (Bennett vs. Edwards and The Young Bucks vs. The All Night Express), announcers Kevin Kelly and Nigel McGuinness sent us to some pre-taped comments from Edwards and Bennett.
Mike Bennett’s main focus tonight was to stop Eddie from getting his filthy hands on Maria before showing the rest of the world that he’s better than the best.
Elsewhere, Eddie Edwards didn’t care about Maria or “Brutal” Bob Evans interfering because he’ll take them out if need be before avenging his loss to “The Prodigy”.
Eddie Edwards vs. Mike Bennett w/Maria Kannelis & Bob Evans
The initial collar & elbow tie up ended in favor of the former ROH World champ. Bennett tried to raise the ire of Edwards, but only ended getting arm dragged and chopped. In an ode to Lance Storm, Edwards caught Bennett in the Maple Leaf for a short time until Bennett kicked Eddie away. Edwards was still one step ahead of Bennett, using the failed submission to sweep Bennett into a STF. “The Prodigy” saved himself via the ropes, trying to pick up the pace when he got up. Bennett ran into a dropkick for his trouble, falling to the floor. Edwards wanted to follow up with a plancha, only to be caught and side Russian leg swept back first against the barricades before we headed to our first commercial break.
Bennett was in complete control when we came back, but “The Prodigy’s” tendency to trash talk cost him as Eddie recovered between Bennett’s punches, firing back with a few of his own. Once again, it was Bennett rushing Edwards that cost him as Eddie sent Bennett careening to the floor for a moonsault off the apron to get the crowd on their feet. When the action returned inside, Bennett was hit with that backpack chin breaker, but refused to stay down. Thankfully for Bennett, Evans was there to stop Edwards’ Achilles Lock, but not the super kick. Bennett kept his balance, catching a running Eddie with the spine buster … for a two count!
“Die Hard” stopped the superplex, seeing Evans trying to enter the ring. Eddie double stomped Evans as he dangled between the ropes. When Eddie turned around, he countered Bennett’s pinning combination with a small package to avenge his loss from two months ago.
After the bell, Bennett jumped Edwards from behind after the mouth of Maria distracted Eddie. Evans wanted a piece of Edwards, using a slam into a backbreaker to lay Edwards out. With Eddie down, Maria stood over her man’s conqueror, giving an insulating slap to add to Edwards’ injury.
Grizzly Redwood vs. Kamel Dickenson
Before we could get the opening bell, The House of Truth came to ringside. Truth Martini grabbed the microphone with a proposition of a handicap tag match between the opponents and The HOT. For added incentive, Martini gave Redwood and Kamel $1000. Money talked as we got an impromptu match.
Michael Elgin vs. Grizzly Redwood & Kamel Dickenson
Kamel was having a horrible time in his ROH debut as Elgin slammed him around the ring before laying him out thanks to the Spiral Bomb. Redwood entered the ring when he realized Kamel was done for. Redwood used his speed to send Elgin to the floor, only to be choke slammed across the apron. Somehow, Redwood recovered, tornado DDT’ing Elgin when the action returned inside. Elgin shook off the effects of Grizzly’s attack, simply stomping a mudhole into Grizzly. Suddenly, former ROH TV champion Jay Lethal made his way to the ring, asking to be Redwood’s partner. The ref allowed it, giving us another handicap match.
After fighting through Elgin’s clutches, Grizzly tagged out to a red-hot Lethal. Jay used a series of kicks to set Elgin up for the handspring back elbow. Neither the big elbow drop nor a Lethal Combination could finish Elgin off, causing Lethal to scale the ropes for Hail to the King. Before Lethal could jump, Strong distracted him by pitching Grizzly into the barricades from the apron. In the ring, Elgin yanked the unsuspecting Jay off the top and sidewalk slammed the former champ. Elgin was about to finish Jay off when an excited Roderick entered the ring, beating up Lethal to disqualify his own HOT teammate.
As Elgin and Roderick argued, Jay struggled to his feet. Elgin sidestepped the incoming Jay, allowing Lethal to hit Roderick with the Lethal Injection. As Jay left the ring, Martini questioned Elgin’s intentions.
This week on Inside ROH, Kevin Kelly recapped what happened between The Young Bucks, TJ Perkins, Mike Mondo, and The ANX that brought about a six-man tag for “Border Wars” and continued the rivalry between The All Night Express and The Bucks.
The ANX spoke on tonight’s main event. Titus didn’t care how many times they wrestled The Bucks; it’s the need to hurt The Bucks like they did to him at “Final Battle 2011” that keeps this feud raging on. Kenny King promised The Bucks they’d play Santa early by giving those, “Ho, ho, hoes,” a season’s beating.
The Young Bucks weren’t too concerned about The ANX because they are rock stars who know no bounds and do whatever they want; including putting Rhett Titus down for good tonight.
Next week, it’ll be another “Road Rage” edition of ROH TV featuring the ROH World title match between Davey Richards and Kevin Steen from “Border Wars” “in its entirety”.
During the commercial, Truth Martini settled things between Elgin and Strong, forcing them to shake hands.
Elimination match: The All Night Express vs. The Young Bucks
Before Bobby Cruise could complete the in-ring introductions, The ANX attacked their opponents prior to sending Nick Jackson to the floor and King setting up Titus’ clothesline on Matt Jackson. Nick jumped off the top, only to be inverted atomic dropped into King’s clothesline. When things finally settled, Titus found himself being double-teamed by The Bucks after an errant Irish whip. Titus took the extended session of abuse, using a simple jawbreaker to tag out. King was on fire until Nick super kicked him to the floor. Nick went for another super kick on Titus, but saw Rhett moving and stopped himself from flying over the top rope, to the floor. Titus turned to get X-Factored by Nick.
Instead of going for the pin, Nick leapt onto the apron for another springboard attack. Out of the corner of his eye, Nick noticed King approaching. Before Nick could do anything, King used those shotgun knees to send Nick sailing into the steel ring post. Springboard apron DDT by Matt Jackson stopped King from following up with something big. The Bucks were taking in everything they’d done until Titus somersaulted over the top rope, taking both Bucks down.
King recovered alongside Titus, looking to finish Matt off with the One Night Stand. Out of nowhere, Nick super kicked Titus down before double super kicking King for the pin and the first elimination.
Titus found himself fighting off both Jacksons alone as we headed to our final commercial break.
The first thing seen coming back from the break was The Bucks’ handstand dropkick double team. That wasn’t the only tandem maneuver The Bucks had in mind as they kept Titus grounded with double team combinations like a suplex by Matt into Nick’s somersault splash. It didn’t take long after grounding Titus did The Bucks hone in on the surgically repaired knee of Rhett. The Bucks got ahead of themselves, missing their double team enzuguri in the corner. Fisherman buster by Titus almost gained him the three count on Matt, but was double stomped in the abdomen by Nick. The brothers called for More Bang For Your Buck. As Matt ran for the Finlay roll portion of their finisher, Titus slipped off Matt’s shoulders, using the Nigel dubbed “Owen Hart roll up” to even the score.
Nick charged Titus full speed ahead, using a spin kick to gain a two count. Kenny King returned to ringside, cheering on his partner as Matt recovered on the floor before doing the same. Titus was still running strong, but his leg was bothering him after every attack. Matt tried to stop Titus’ momentum from the floor, but took a gourd buster on the apron for his trouble thanks to King. Nick was looking to take advantage of the distraction, only to get kicked in clotheslined in position for Titus’ swinging DDT. Rhett hastily made the cover, picking up the victory for his team and finally gaining some retribution against The Young Bucks.
Overall: Another solid edition of ROH TV. Once again, Mike Bennett and Eddie Edwards had a strong match that helped showcase how much Bennett has improved in the last year. In a lot of ways, this was their best match to date (maybe not as good as their “Survival of the Fittest 2011” clash). I also appreciate a feud conclusion on TV that features people the fans actually care about. The main event was smartly booked and worked well to tell the heroic story of Titus fighting through the odds and finally getting his revenge against the dastardly Young Bucks. While all signs point to The ANX finally moving to a feud with WGTT over the ROH Tag Team title, I hope ROH has a plan in mind for The Bucks’ future in the company as they are too valuable to waste doing absolutely nothing like fellow California TJ Perkins. The handicap match was more about pushing the dissension between Elgin and Strong than what happened between bells. I’m really interested to see how ROH pulls the trigger on The HOT splintering if that actually happens, and what side Martini chooses.
The only problem I have with this episode has nothing to do with the show itself, but the promotion for next week’s episode. ROH is saying if you tune in next week you’ll see one of the biggest main events in recent ROH history for free. While I understand it’s important to let the fans know what happen at “Border Wars” and give them an added incentive to buy the iPPV replay or the DVD, ROH is seriously letting their biggest draw from the show air for free just two weeks after people paid their hard earned money to watch it live or immediately after. That plain sucks. Undercard matches and semi-main events are one thing, but Richards-Steen I over the ROH World title is a whole different animal. It’s obvious ROH won’t get the same kind of backlash WWE or TNA receives for doing PPV rematches the show after their recent pay-per-views, but there’s no doubt there will be a lot of sore fans come next weekend.
But that’s enough about next week - this week was good and warrants a viewing thanks to the good opener and the smart main event.