By Jason Powell
Ring of Honor TV
Taped on February 11 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at Stage AE
Aired in syndication over the weekend, available Wednesdays on Comet TV
ROH TV opened with The Briscoes, Jay Lethal, and Bobby Fish backstage delivering a promo about their main event match with Bullet Club. Fish said they would officially end Bullet Club… The opening video aired… Ian Riccaboni and Dalton Castle checked in from the broadcast table…
1. Matt Taven, TK O’Ryan, and Vinny Marseglia vs. Kenny King, Rhett Titus, and Caprice Coleman for the ROH Six-Man Tag Titles. Castle asked Riccaboni if he has boys. Riccaboni said he has a son. Castle told him he doesn’t have boys. They took a break a couple minutes into the match. [C]
The Kingdom took out Titus and King. Coleman fought them off and crawled to his corner for a tag, but both partners were down. Lio Rush headed to the ring and stood on the apron and took a tag from Coleman. The fans booed. Rush worked over the Kingdom members and the referee didn’t seem to mind a bit. The fans went from booing Rush helping the Rebellion to cheering his offense. Castle questioned how this was allowed.
King performed a spinebuster on Marseglia and then played to the crowd. Rush hit King with an RKO. Fans cheered. Rush motioned to the Kingdom that they could have their way with King. The Kingdom hit their triple powerbomb finisher on King. Taven covered King for the win. Castle noted that he and The Boys will challenge The Kingdom for the ROH Six-Man Tag Titles at the 15th Anniversary pay-per-view…
The Kingdom defeated The Rebellion to retain the ROH Six-Man Tag Titles.
Powell’s POV: Rush was allowed to check in and make this a handicap match right in front of the referee. I expect better from ROH. I have no idea what they wanted from fans in general. Apparently, it was let the fans choose which heel trio to root for. The Kingdom actually could be babyfaces if Taven gave up on the “Melvin” talk (which is lousy even when he’s a heel), as O’Ryan is likable and Marseglia’s Eric Young wild man type of gimmick would play well.
Backstage, Jay White challenged Jay Briscoe to another match as highlights of their past encounter aired… Jay Briscoe delivered a response from his farm. Briscoe said White is dog food, and a graphic hyped their second match… [C]
Riccaboni spoke with Castle about the six-man tag title match at the pay-per-view. Castle said he’s happy that the Kingdom retained. Castle said the Kingdom put their hands on his Boys. Castle said he might go after the ROH Title in the future, but his Boys want tag titles and he’s going to do his best to bring home the six-man tag titles… A graphic touted the match for the pay-per-view…
2. Raphael King (w/Devyn Nicole) vs. “Kingpin” Brian Milonas in a Top Prospect Tournament match. Brutal Bob Evans replaced Castle on commentary for the Top Prospect Tournament match. King wore a fraternity jacket and was featured in a pre-match promo. Riccaboni noted that King and Devyn are married. Milonas was billed as 395 pounds and thus the biggest man ever in the tournament. He was also featured in a brief promo.
The wrestlers traded punches to start the match. Milonas got the better of it and threw more punches at King in the corner. King came back with kicks and eventually got Milonas down to one knee. Milonas came back with splashes in the corner and then performed a running cross body block. Rather than go for the pin, he stood up and jumped up and down in the ring.
Milonas went to the middle rope and went for a leg drop, but King moved. King performed a running kick to the head of a seated Milonas and covered him for a two count. Milonas kicked King away, and King awkwardly took a bump through the ropes. Devyn pulled King away from a charging Milonas. King kicked Milonas and then distracted the referee while Devyn took a cheap shot. King performed a uranage for a two count.
King went for the uranage again, but Miloas didn’t budge. Milonas performed a side slam and then performed a senton for the win. Milonas will face the winner of Josh Woods vs. Chris Lerusso…
Brian Milonas defeated Raphael King to advance in the Top Prospect Tournament.
Powell’s POV: This felt like an independent match. King has a decent look and gimmick, but he looked green. Milonas is a big guy who just looks like a big guy rather than a monster.
A video package hyped the 15th Anniversary pay-per-view and listed the following matches: Adam Cole vs. Christopher Daniels for the ROH Title, Marty Scurll vs. Lio Rush for the ROH TV Title, Jay Lethal vs. Bobby Fish, The Kingdom vs. Dalton Castle and The Boys for the ROH Six-Man Tag Titles, The Young Bucks vs. RPG Vice (billed as being for the ROH Tag Titles). A narrator focussed on the Cole vs. Daniels main event at the end of the video…
Christopher Daniels replaced Evans on commentary for the main event… Ring introductions took place… [C]
3. Jay Briscoe, Mark Briscoe, Jay Lethal, and Bobby Fish vs. Adam Cole, Cody (Rhodes), and The Young Bucks in an eight-man tag match. All eight men fought early. There was a showdown moment with the Briscoes and Young Bucks. The Briscoes ate super kicks. Lethal checked in and he ate a double super kick. The fans cheered the heels(?). The Bucks did the Terminator pose and then dove onto everyone else who was brawling at ringside.
Jay Briscoe took his turn to perform a running dive over the top rope onto the herd of wrestlers on the floor. Jay went to the ropes. Cody caught him on the ropes and then superplexed him onto the group of wrestlers on the floor. Fans chanted “this is awesome” heading into the break. [C]
The match settled into an actual tag match with two wrestlers in the ring and the others in their respective corners. It didn’t last long as the Bullet Club members knocked the babyface crew to the floor. Lethal performed a suicide dive on Nick Jackson.
Lethal tried to do performed a suicide dive on Cody, but he ended up hitting Fish instead. Fish followed Lethal back to the ring and shoved him. Lethal tried to explain. Fish pie-faced him. They ended up fighting. Fish and Lethal fought out of the ring and into the crowd heading into the final break. [C]
Footage aired from during the break of Lethal and Fish battling through the crowd. In the ring, the Briscoes were facing the four Bullet Club members with some success as they scored a two count on Matt Jackson. They tried to follow up with a Doomsday Device, but the other members slowed them down. They eventually performed the move, but Matt landed on his feet. The Bullet Club members worked over the Briscoes in a four-on-two situation. Matt yelled for the Meltzer Driver, which they performed on Jay for the win…
Adam Cole, Cody Rhodes, and the Young Bucks beat Jay Briscoe, Mark Briscoe, Jay Lethal, and Bobby Fish.
After the match, Riccaboni and Daniels hyped the pay-per-view main event. Cole stuck around in the ring and played to the crowd with the ROH Championship. Daniels said this might be a good time for some party favors. Daniels left the broadcast table and headed to the ring where he ended up standing behind Cole and talking into his ear.
Cole and Daniels jawed and then traded punches. Cole kicked Daniels and tried to hit him with the title belt, but Daniels avoided it and then put him down with an angel’s wings suplex. Daniels opened a bag he brought to the ring and pulled out a razor and scissors. Cole backed away and tried to leave. Daniels caught him, but Cole elbowed him. Daniels performed an another angel’s wings suplex. “I’m going to cut your hair and then take your title,” Daniels told Cole.
Frankie Kazarian headed tot he ring and joined Daniels in mocking Cole. Daniels went to pick up the scissors and razor. Meanwhile, Kazarian removed his jacket to reveal a Bullet Club t-shirt. Daniels turned around and stopped in his tracks. Daniels didn’t believe it and tried to walk past Kazarian, who stopped him and knocked the scissors and razor out of his hand.
Daniels jawed at Kazarian while fans chanted Bullet Club. Kazarian held up the too sweet sign.When Daniels turned around, the rest of Bullet Club was back in the ring, and the Bucks caught him with a double superkick. Bullet Club stood tall over Daniels while Riccaboni hyped the pay-per-view main event and said Bullet Club never travels alone. Cole knelt over Daniels and told him he was going to kills his career…
Powell’s POV: A solid angle on the go-home show. It’s still odd to me that most of Bullet Club seeks out cheers rather than going for heat. There’s no doubt it works for them, but this is an example of it not working for the babyfaces they feud with. ROH should want fans to feel sympathy for Daniels heading into this title shot, not to cheer Bullet Club for attacking him. It also felt awkward that Daniels wants to cut the hair of Cole. Shouldn’t Jay Lethal be seeking for his own revenge? Speaking of Lethal, the meltdown between him and Fish right before their pay-per-view match felt a little forced and convenient.
Despite the issues mentioned, it was good to see ROH focus heavily on the pay-per-view. They haven’t done a good job on some of their past go-home shows of doing that, but everything other than the Top Prospect match felt focussed nicely on the pay-per-view. Meanwhile, Ian Riccaboni was thrown to the wolves on short notice with a collection of makeshift color commentators, but he’s making the most of the opportunity. Join me for live coverage of the 15th Anniversary show on Friday night. Dot Net Members will hear my audio review of the show afterward.