8/18 Gutteridge's ROH TV Review: Kevin Steen's final night in ROH sees him take on Steve Corino in the main event, and former Adrenaline Rush partners ACH and Tadarius Thomas collide


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ROH TV Reports


8/18 Gutteridge's ROH TV Review: Kevin Steen's final night in ROH sees him take on Steve Corino in the main event, and former Adrenaline Rush partners ACH and Tadarius Thomas collide
2014-08-19 10:02:30


By Darren Gutteridge

Ring of Honor TV
Taped July 19, 2014 in Dearborn, Michigan
Aired August 18, 2014 on the ROH website

Before titles, Kevin Steen was shown backstage. He said when he was 11 years old, his Dad put in a VHS tape of wrestling, and from that moment on, all he ever wanted to be was a wrestler. He stated that he had been in Ring of Honor for 7 years, and had accomplished many things.

Steen then moved on to talking about Steve Corino, who he first met 10 years ago. He said Corino had always tried to help him, taking him under his wing. He quickly recapped their relationship throughout ROH history, both side by side and on opposing sides of the coin. "Steve, I picked you as my last opponent, and I couldn't be more honest than I am being right now - I am honored, but don't think I'm going to take it easy on you, because I'm leaving with a win"...

Gutt Reaction: A succinct and to the point promo from Steen. For those looking for an example of a typical Steen promo, here it is. It had all the hallmarks - the subtle delivery, the blurring of lines of kayfabe, and the intensity at the end. It's going to be one big Steen Shindig tonight, and this was a good way to start (though I do hope we get a farewell speech in the ring).

After titles, Kevin Kelly introduced himself and Nigel McGuinness. Kelly said tonight was all about "Thanks, Steen, Thanks"...

The Decade's music blared, and Jimmy Jacobs, TaDarius Thomas and Adam Page came out. ACH was out next, and Kelly said this would be the first meeting between the former Adrenaline Rush partners (ACH and Thomas)...

1. ACH vs. TaDarius Thomas. As the two men went to shake hands, Jacobs spat a cloud of water in ACH's face.  The early going was all smooth chain wrestling and beautiful acrobatics, but the crowd sounded dead (this is their 4th show of the taping). They perked up once they started landing hard hitting kicks. TaDarius took control when he hit ACH with a stiff kick as ACH dove through the ropes to the outside...

A highlights package aired of Kevin Steen vs. Nigel McGuinness from Northern Navigation 2008. Good Lord, McGuinness' hair is awful. They took some truly sick bumps. This was followed by the finish of Steen vs. Davey Richards for the ROH Title at Border Wars 2012, when Steen won the title...

Both men exchanged control rapidly, but the crowd were ghostly quiet. They perked up when TD threw ACH with an overhead suplex, and ACH landed right on the top of his head. TD only got a two count, and responded by kicking ACH in the mouth. ACH stubbornly took each one of TD's kicks, eventually spitting in his face and telling him to bring it.

The two started ducking and diving over each others moves again, with ACH coming out on top thanks to a double foot stomp. He was shown bleeding from the mouth, and the camera zoomed in to what looked like a blood covered tooth on the mat. ACH went to the top rope, but Jacobs threw a water bottle at him, distracting him long enough for TD to cut him off and bring him down with a swinging neckbreaker for another two count.

Jacobs told TD to "break his jaw". TD leaned ACH up against the ring post, and charged at him down the apron. ACH moved, and TD crashed. He fell outside, and ACH took him out with a backflip splash over the ropes. TD ended up back in the ring flat on his back. and ACH went for the 450, only for TD to move. He was quickly back on his back however, and ACH hit the 450 at the second attempt for the 1-2-3...

ACH defeated Tadarius Thomas in 12:20.

ACH split quickly as BJ Whitmer ran out to join the rest of the Decade in scolding TD. He and Jacobs slapped TD and Page around, until eventually the "Young Boys" squared up to them. It came to nothing however, as TD and Page quickly backed down and held the ropes open for BJ and Jacobs...

Gutt Reaction: They really need to explain why TD and Page are being so obedient. They have said before that they want to "Show respect" to the veterans, but it's becoming farcical at this point, as they both seem like dickless chums right now. Speaking of farcical, TD's capoeira kicks - they don't so much break my suspension of disbelief, as shatter it. Otherwise, a great technical showcase, almost ruined by a spent crowd.

A video recapping the Decade's feud with Cedric Alexander aired, focussing primarily on his interactions with Roderick Strong. At the end, it was announced that Alexander, thanks to his victory in the Golden Gauntlet a few weeks ago, would be getting his ROH title shot against Michael Elgin in two weeks time...

A highlight package aired of Steen vs. El Generico (Sami Zayn) in a Ladder War match from Final Battle 2012. It ended with a terrifying Package Piledriver on a ladder wedged between two other ladders. It was followed by Generico and Steen beating the Age of the Fall (Jacobs and Tyler Black/Seth Rollins) for the ROH Tag Team Titles in 2008. The final move was a Package Piledriver, rolled through to a Brainbuster...

Gutt Reaction: I know it's a long, long, LONG shot, but can you imagine the pop that tag team finish would get if it happened in WWE some day? I got goosebumps just thinking about Steen and Zayn teaming together on the big stage. While a feud between them would be a great thing to watch, I think I want to see these two best friends get a WWE Tag Team Title run just as much.

Corino came out first to a nice pop. They built the tension by dimming the lights before Steen's music finally hit. Steen came out to a monster pop. McGuinness pointed out that he looked slightly solemn as he came out in an ROH t-shirt.

He hit the top rope, and there was an avalanche of streamers. Steen dove into them, making snow angels, before standing up and pulling them on top of him. Kelly called him the "Abominable Kevin Steen" as Steen spread his arms wide. After the streamers had been cleared, and the fans had stopped chanting "Mr. Wrestling", both men were given in-ring introductions.

As Bobby Cruise started, Corino interrupted him and handed him a sheet of paper. Cruise said that tonight, they honour a ROH legend as he journeys out into the great unknown. He said he would take the ROH fighting spirit with him. But the other man in the ring was fighting another battle - a battle for one more day in the sun. "67 titles, 4 World Titles, 13 Countries, and no convictions. Fighting out of the Emerald Isle, North Carolina. Weighing 253 pounds? (Corino gave a "Ehhh, ish" hand movement) The King of Old School, Steve Corino!". When Steen was introduced, he gave a little bow. We cut to a commercial...

Gutt Reaction: Wow. I didn't think anything would beat Steen's entrance at Best in the World vs. Shinsuke Nakamura, but that topped them all. You have to see this entrance, pure and simple.  It also just occurred to me we won't be hearing "Unsettling Differences" for long time. I implore you all to air guitar and head bang along as I did.

2. Kevin Steen vs. Steve Corino. After the handshake, Corino cheap shotted Steen. They brawled to the outside, where Corino got shot into the barricade. Steen grabbed an El Generico mask off of a fan at ringside, and the camera showed he had "Ole!" written on his wrist tape. I guess he really is going to help Generico with the orphans in Mexico. He hit Corino with two Helluva kicks before taking the mask off and rolling Corino back inside.

The homages carried on back in the ring, as both men tried to imitate Colt Cabana. They eventually ended up back outside, where they took each other out with clotheslines. Both men just about beat the count, rolling back in at 19. We cut to the final commercial...

Corino was in control when we returned, until Steen dropped him with a rope hung DDT. He followed up with a senton splash from the top for a two count. Corino rallied with a reverse STO for a two count of his own. Steen battled back with the F-Cinq (F5), and then backed into the corner. He said sorry as he approached Corino, but seemed reluctant to finish the job.

When Steen did go for the Package Piledriver, Corino escaped with a back drop. A superkick and a sliding lariat brought him another two count. He put Steen on the top rope and called for a Brainbuster, but Steen slammed him back down. He went for the Package Piledriver again, but Corino jackknifed out of it. Steen popped up quick, and the two men started hitting each other with clotheslines, to no avail.

Corino hit a superkick and hit the ropes, but Steen popped him up for a powerbomb. He rolled Corino back up, and one Package Piledriver later, the curtain came down on Steen's ROH career...

Kevin Steen defeated Steve Corino in 11:21.

Both men seemed on the verge of tears as they hugged and steamers filled the ring. Jimmy Jacobs ran out, and stared at both of his former S.C.U.M. cohorts for a moment, before jumping on Steen for a wrap around hug. The three men had a group hug as Strong and Whitmer slid in the ring. As the three men let go of each other, The Decade attacked.

Steen ducked a double clothesline, and took Whitmer and Strong out. Jacobs rolled to the outside as the locker room emptied. Jacobs shouted "I love you, but you're walking out on us just like everybody else". This brought ROH to a close...

Gutt Reaction: Negative first - thats how you close Steen's last appearance? No goodbye speech, no lifting on to shoulders, just a jab from Jacobs and his limp-dick stable? Whoever cut this show together made a truly terrible decision.

Positives - while this wasn't a great match or anything, you wouldn't want to change it. Corino gave it his all, and can be proud of his efforts if this turns out to be his ROH swansong too. Outside of one last Steen promo, this was a hell of a send off. They did Steen a great service in showcasing him so strongly on his way out the door. Lets hope it's a real sendoff, and not just a "See you in a few years" wave goodbye.

Thanks for reading. If you have any thoughts or opinions on this article, add me on Twitter - @DazatheG . You can also check out my website, www.thegutteridgelog.co.uk

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