ROH 15th Anniversary Show
By Big Red Machine
From March 10, 2017
JAY WHITE vs. KENNY KING (w/Caprice Coleman) - 6.5/10
Apparently The Rebellion are shaking hands now. This went by without any sort of comment from any of the three men on commentary (Kevin Kelly, Ian Riccaboni, and Colt Cabana). This was a solid opener with very good psychology. They did a great job of either showing you that a move was dangerous before building to a spot where it would be countered, or, I the case of Kenny's big spinebuster, teasing it to show us how important it was before delivering on that promise.
KAZARIAN, ADAM PAGE, & THE YOUNG BUCKS BACKSTAGE - totally pointless.
SIX-MAN MAYHEM MATCH FOR A SHOT AT THE ROH TV TITLE:
Adam Page vs. Frankie Kazarian vs. Punishment Martinez vs. Chris Sabin vs. Silas Young vs. Cheeseburger- 6.75/10
So Jay White, who we were just told has gone his entire ROH career without being pinned or made to submit, doesn't get a place in the #1 contendeship match but f*cking CHEESEBURGER does?
The match was a really fun, crowd-pleasing spotfest. Kazarian won clean with his new finisher, the Ace of Spades.
JAY LETHAL PROMO - said absolutely nothing of any usefulness.
BOBBY FISH PROMO - a good promo, but it still shouldn't have happened for an undercard match on a freakin' PPV.
JAY LETHAL vs. BOBBY FISH - 8/10
They're claiming that this is a "top contenders" match. What have either of these men done to be considered "top contenders" since their most recent title matches loss? Hell... ROH HASN'T EVEN PUT ON A SHOW since Fish's loss. The only possible explanation is that Fish didn't lose cleanly, but if that's the case, THEN THE ANNOUNCERS NEED TO SAY SO.
The match itself was awesome. They told a great story with the work on Lethal's knee and did a great job ramping things up in a way where it felt like they were building up animosity, but not hatred.
ROH SIX-MAN TAG TEAM TITLE MATCH:
The Kingdom(c) vs. Datlon Castle & the Boys - 4.25/10
Has there ever been a more punchable face in ROH than that of Vinny Marseglia?
The Boys used the twin switch. You know... like heels. Even worse, they did it despite purposely having different hair in order to make it easier for the announcers to tell them apart, so not only are they acting like heels, but they're acting like very stupid heels. Kevin Kelly first plays along with this cheating, then claims that his monitor went out. You know... like a heel announcer would. Because Kevin Kelly is also very stupid.
I'm pretty sure this one ended earlier because TK O'Ryan appeared to completely destroy his shins on the guardrail while hitting an Asai Moonsault. He had to be carried to the back, and you could tell by the look on Taven's face that this was quite serious.
ROH TV TITLE MATCH:
Marty Scurll(c) vs. Lio Rush - 7/10
I was really liking this up until the point where Lio went to the outside to grab the title belt. That whole sequence felt completely forced and unnatural. Before that they had been doing a good job of both having Lio play the underdog babyface getting his arm worked over and also of playing into the finish of the non-title Lio Rush victory that set this match up.
THE BRISCOES & BULLY RAY vs. DAVEY BOY SMITH JR. & WAR MACHINE - 6.25/10
I really liked that they kept the dissension between Davey Boy Smith Jr. and War Machine to an absolutely minimum, as opposed to the over the top way we normally see and only had the full-blown argument after they had lost the match (i.e. when there was something to really be upset about). It made them not look like total idiots that way that guys often do when doing a "partners who don't get along" angle.
STREET FIGHT FOR THE ROH WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES:
The Hardys(c) vs. The Young Bucks vs. Roppongi Vice - 8.75/10
Instead of an entrance the Hardys just magically teleported to ringside. On the ROH Anniversary Show. This is all so wrong.
The match was one hell of a violent street fight. The thumbtack spots were all a level beyond what I enjoy seeing, although they kept it to enough of a minimum where that bit of pushing me out of my comfort zone actually made the match better for me because it felt more violent and it will be more memorable.
The story of the match was basically that Roppongi Vice kept preventing us from getting the Hardys vs. Young Bucks match that we're going to get at Supercard of Honor XI. Also, lots of excellent weapons spots. The other positive in this match (aside from the quality, obviously) was that it has helped me warm up to the Hardys' presence. I was quite worried that they would be all gimmick, but they were pretty much their "broken" selves wrestling like Hardy Boyz of the late 90's and early 2000's that we all knew and loved. I still don't think they should have the belts, but I'm certainly more accepting of their presence now.
Speaking of belts, the Hardys walked off with the Young Bucks' "Superkick Party Tag Team Title" belts.
CHRISTOPHER DANIELS PROMO - I thought the crying was a little too over the top.
ROH WORLD TITLE MATCH: Adam Cole(c) vs. Christopher Daniels - 8/10
Lots of emotion in this match, and they did a fantastic job of playing that up as much as possible. I know people are expecting me to hate the Kaz thing, but I don't, and here's why: The Kaz thing isn't a Russo swerve. In hindsight, Kaz coming out here was clearly meant to prevent Adam Cole from taking advantage of his ill-gotten advantage via low blow, and he did that.
POST-MATCH CELEBRATION - great! I totally marked out for Cary presenting Daniels with the original ROH World Title match.
An excellent show from ROH! The build-up to it may have been terrible, but this was one hell of a wrestling show. Check it out!