by Paul Fontaine, WrestlingObserver.com
The Big Takeaway – Not much in the way of ROH’s usual solid in-ring action in this show, mostly just stuff to advance angles for the PPV in two weeks. Dalton Castle v Jushin Liger was a fun spectacle though.
The Addiction kick off the show with a promo hyping up tonight’s main event title defence against ReDRagon. Daniels says “You have us right where WE want you. You saw what we’d do to win these championships, what do you think we’ll do keep them?”. Good stuff.
It’s another show from the combined ROH/New Japan shows in Toronto and Kevin Kelly opens up telling us that Bobby Fish was attacked in the parking lot and the main event might be in jeopardy. The Addiction come out for an in-ring promo to kick off the “live” action.
Daniels informs the crowd that Bobby Fish has been deemed medically unable to compete. Their contract states that they are defending against Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish, not Kyle O’Reilly and a suitable opponent. If they can’t compete, then they go back in line with other contenders such as the Mulkeys and the Conquistadores.
This brings out Kyle O’Reilly, sans his partner and the match is one.
Handicap Match for the ROH World tag team titles – Champions The Addiction (‘Fallen Angel” Christopher Daniels/Frankie Kazarian vs Kyle O’Reilly
O’Reilly ran roughshod over both guys to start but the numbers game quickly caught up with him. O’Reilly got a couple of brief hope spots but every time, the champs would use double-team moves to get the advantage back. O’Reilly did take turns beating on both of them outside the ring at one point, including sitting them both on the same chair and hitting the diving double knee stomp onto them while they were sitting.
O’Reilly took Kazarian back into the ring and managed to get an armbar on Kazarian, who never even took his shirt off during the match. Daniels did a run in with the title belt to cause a DQ.
WINNER: KYLE O’REILLY by DQ, but The Addiction retain the tag team titles
The champs double-teamed O’Reilly after the match before ACH and Matt Sydal made the save. After a commercial break, we got highlights of last week’s Briscoes/House of Truth main event, which led into a Mark Briscoe promo hyping up his match at Best in the World against Donovan Dijak. “We about to do this thing and I’m gonna whip yo’ ass in New York City. Most people wouldn’t take a chicken in a bird fight but they ain’t takin’ into account that this is the SUSSEX COUNTY CHICKENNNNNNNNN!”
Dalton Castle w/his manservants vs Jushin “Thunder” Liger
Yes, this match happened. Castle’s ring entrance is direct rip-off of “I Want It All” by Queen, which is great for the character and he even says to the camera during his entrance “I WANT IT ALLLLL”. Crowd loves this dude, showering him with streamers and chanting DALTON CASTLE all through his ring entrance.
And as much as they loved Castle, they loved Liger even more. Corino brings up Liger motorboating Maria at the iPPV, which may be the greatest thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Thunderous JUSH-IN LIGER/DAL-TON CASTLE duelling chants as they adhere to the Code of Honor in a way only Dalton Castle can. Kelly feels the Code Line is more important than the first minute or so as the match. Either Dalton Castle or Cheeseburger wants to take on Silas Young. Young/Castle would be something else.
THIS IS AWESOME chants a minute in. Normally I hate that but this is a spectacle. The match was fine…good even. Castle can go in the ring and has his character down pat. Liger took the opening part of the match but Castle hit a rana off the ring ropes outside the ring just before a commercial break and then celebrated with his boys.
Back from break and Castle takes some time to strut, which allows Liger to take the advantage and he hits a CRASH AND BURN and then calls in Castle’s boys and poses with them. Castle is not too pleased with this and admonishes them. THAT WAS AWESOME from the crowd. Yes it was.
Castle gets kind of serious after this. He hits three standing body presses, which get a two. LIGER chants during the time Castle is in control. A double-clothesline takes both guys down. Liger’s up first and hits a top rope rana for two. Follows up with a top rope splash but Castle gets his knees up. Castle hits an upside down Airplane spin for two. More LIGER chants.
Liger Bomb gets two for Liger. Follows up with a brainbuster and gets the pin.
WINNER: JUSHIN LIGER by pinfall
The Boys fanned Castle after the match, while Liger’s awesome music played. They did a normal handshake after the match and then Castle bowed in respect to him and they embraced. Castle raised his hand afterward. Probably the only time he’s broken character in ROH.
“Earlier today” Jushin Liger wished Cheeseburger luck in his match tonight in a taped segment. They then traded hard slaps and embraced.
“Brutal” Bob Evans aka RudoBon vs Cheeseburger
The battle of former tag team partners here as the Brutal Burgers EXPLODE. Burger is well-known as Jushin Liger’s favorite American wrestler, as Corino reminds us. The match quickly goes to the outside and Evans misses a shoulder tackle, crashing hard into the barricade. Cheeseburger then hits a senton splash off the barricade and they go back to the ring.
They trade slaps on the ring apron, which Cheeseburger actually gets the better of. Corino puts this over as Liger teaching him the palm strike. Evans hits a shoulder tackle for an apparent three but pulls Burger up at two. LETS GO CHEESEBURGER/BRUTAL BOB duelling chants.
Burger turns it around with a springboard dropick but Evans catches Burger off a dive and gives him a flying sideslam through a ringside table, which takes out both guys. Ref quickly calls it off. A team of officials comes out to check on them as the fans chant REST IN PEACE. They cut to commercial as Evans is getting to his feet.
MATCH ENDS IN A NO-CONTEST
Lethal cuts a backstage promo hyping up next week’s contract for the champion vs champion match at Best in World. Truth Martini says Jay Briscoe will be signing his own death warrant.
Mandy Leon is back with another episode of Inside ROH. She talks about the “Biggest match in ROH history”, as they’re billing the main event at Best in the World between Jay Briscoe and Jay Lethal. Various clips show the evolution of this feud over the last several month. Very good segment. Another promo hyping up next week’s contract signing, this time from Jay Briscoe. He’s just waiting for Jay Lethal to try something stupid cause he’s ready for him. Kevin Kelly informs us that ReDRagon will get their title rematch against the Addiction at Best in the World.
The Kingdom (Michael Bennett/Matt Taven w/Maria Kanellis) vs The Bullet Club (Doc Gallows/”Machine Gun” Karl Anderson)
The Kingdom proudly display their IWGP tag team titles but this is a non-title match. The Bullet Club are crazy-over and Kelly takes some time during their ring entrance to plug the Code Line. Can barely hear him over the BULLET CLUB chants. Red Shoes from New Japan is the ref and they do not adhere to the Code of Honor.
Anderson goes after Maria as the match starts which leads to a brawl with Bennett on the outside. Taven thows Gallows outside and does a CRASH AND BURN dive on both of them. Kingdom have their way the BC outside the ring and mock them with crotch chops to the crowd. Taven misses a dive to the outside and then Gallows powerbombs Bennett onto the ring apron as we go to break.
Back from break and the Bullet Club is working over Bennett as he calls for Maria. They are pretty freely double-teaming the ref is not even trying to get one of them out of the ring. Taven hits a top rope splash out of nowhere and then hits a top rope dropkick on Gallows to knock him out of the ring. Gallows tries to get back in the ring and then is hit by a double-dropkick from the Kingdom to knock him back out again. I guess this is a scramble match?
Superkick by Taven onto Anderson into a spear by Bennett but they don’t go for the cover. Taven hits what I think was a 450 splash to the outside onto Gallows while Anderson and Bennett are slugging it out in the ring. Ref tries to break it up and is tosses aside by both guys three separate times. Meanwhile Taven and Gallows are having a brawl outside the ring. Ref finally calls for the bells
MATCH ENDS IN A NO CONTEST
Bullet Club sets up two chairs in the ring and are about to do something to Bennett involving the chairs when Maria gets on the apron. Gallows grabs her by the hair and they’re about to do to her what they were planning for Bennett but Bennett saves. Taven comes off the top rope with a cross body but Gallows catches him. Bullet Club throws Taven into the chairs and poses to end the show.
Last two matches were atypical for ROH and I gotta say that this wasn’t one of their stronger shows. But it’s hard not to like a show with Jushin Liger and Dalton Castle on it.