By Sam Robinson, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@altaine)
Ring of Honor on HonorClub (Episode 6)
Taped April 5, 2023 in Long Island, New York at UBS Arena
Streamed April 6, 2023 on HonorClub
The show opened with a backstage promo by Christopher Daniels challenging Katsuyori Shibata to an ROH Pure Championship match…
Ian Riccaboni and Caprice Coleman, and Nigel McGuinness were on commentary. Bobby Cruise was the ring announcer…
1. Mark Briscoe, Rey Fenix, and Penta El Zero (w/Alex Aberhantes) vs. Shane Taylor, Anthony Henry, and JD Drake. Taylor and Briscoe started the match. Taylor showed off his strength and hit a shoulder block. Mark came back with redneck kung fu, and Taylor tags in Henry. Late in the match, Henry threw a dropkick and got cut off by Penta, who hit the double stomp in the corner. It broke down to every man hitting big spots in succession. The last man was Briscoe trying to suplex Taylor, but Taylor hit a Michinoku Driver. Henry and Drake hit a series of moves, which only resulted in a two count because of a Penta save. Penta hit a destroyer on Drake. Briscoe hit the Jay Driller on Henry for the pinfall.
Mark Briscoe, Rey Fenix, and Penta El Zero defeated Shane Taylor, Anthony Henry, and JD Drake by pinfall.
Robinson’s Ruminations: A fun showcase for the babyfaces, but not much more to it than that.
2. Katsuyouri Shibata vs. “Fallen Angel” Christopher Daniels for the ROH Pure Championship. The Code of Honor was adhered to. The wrestlers started off with some easy slow chain wrestling. Eventually, Sibata stomped on Daniel’s face. More chain wrestling before Shibata locked in a figure four. Daniels took a long time to work out of it before he used his first rope break. Daniels avoided a PK and hit Shibata in the back of the neck and then hit a neckbreaker for a two count. Daniels hit a Flatliner into the Koji Clutch. Shibata eventually rolled Daniels over to get a one count before the hold was broken. Shibata laid in with forearms and uppercuts. Daniels came back with a clothesline in the corner and some chops, but Shibata powered up and hit a shotgun dropkick in the corner. Shibata locked in a sleeper and fell down in a body lock. Daniels used rope break number two. Daniels hit an STO. Shibata popped right up and clotheslined him. Shibata threw some yes kicks and went back to the sleeper, but let it go to hit the PK for the three count.
Katsuyouri Shibata defeated Christopher Daniels to retain the ROH Pure Rules Championship by pinfall.
After the match, Shibata and Danielson sat down in the middle of the ring, shook hands, and bowed to one another…
Robinson’s Ruminations: My god this match was slow. The only thing that saved it was Nigel on commentary explaining all the rules and strategy to us.
ROH Champion Claudio Castagnoli was interviewed backstage by Dasha and asked her who could possibly next. Claudio ran down Eddie Kingston for having a foul mouth in his after match promo. He said he’s ready to defend against anyone who proves himself worthy.
3. Ortiz vs. Brian Cage (w/Prince Nana). The Code of Honor was adhered to. Later in the match, Ortiz tried to crossbody block Cage, who caught him and used him as a weight for reps before hitting a standing fallaway slam. Ortiz eventually came back with a diving-in DDT. Ortiz hit a lot of good sounding strikes, a jaw breaker, and a Death Valley Driver for a two count. Cage hit GMSI for a two count. Ortiz hit a terrible looking huracanrana to send Cage into the corner and worked him over. He ran the ropes to hit a move, but Cage superkicked him. Oritz hit a reversal powerbomb for a two count. Cage used his Drill Claw to get the three count.
Brian Cage defeated Ortiz by pinfall.
Robinson’s Ruminations: This was also a step slower than what I expected from these men, though not as bad as the Pure match. Ortiz showed some good babyface spirit and got a fair bit of offense and nearfalls.
4. Darius Martin vs. Jay Lethal (w/Sonjay Dutt, Satnam Singh). Matt Taven and Mike Bennett sat behind the broadcast desk area while Maria Kanellis was on commentary. Later in the match, Lethal tried for a figure four and got cradled for a two count. Darius hit an enzuigiri and Lethal rolled outside. Darius eyed up Singh and Lethal ran back in the ring. On commentary, Nigel laughed at Taven’s Melvin jokes while the wrestlers jockeyed on the apron. Darius hit a DDT for two count. The men traded strikes in the middle and Lethal tried for Lethal Injection, but Darius followed him in. Lethal tried a cutter but Daruis blocked it with a handstand, and then performed standing Spanish Fly for a two count. Taven said he saw untied shoes and headed to the ring. Darius hit a baseball slide dropkick on Singh, who got on the apron. Taven threw a dropkick at Darius, and Lethal hit a Lethal Injection for the pinfall.
Jay Lethal defeated Darius Martin by pinfall.
Afterward, The Kingdom shared Satnam Singh’s Jacket and looked like idiots…
Robinson’s Ruminations: Darius was alone out here fending off three heels in the Lethal faction and then Taven came in too. This made no one look good. If they are going to leave Darius in the tag division, he’s going to need a new partner, if not, get him out of the tag division, it’s only dragging him down.
5. “LFI” Rush and Dralistco (w/Jose the Assistant, Preston Vance) vs. “The Infantry” Capt. Sean Dean and Carlie Bravo. Dralistico and Dean started it off. Dralistico adhered to the Code of Honor. The wrestlers traded arm drags and quick pins and kip ups. Dralistico offered a handshake. Dean took it and got a spin kick for his trouble. Bravo tagged in and then he and Dralistico traded chops and punches before Rush hit a knee to the back. Dralistico put Bravo in the heel corner. Rush tagged in and stomped Bravo in the corner. Dralistico tagged back in and performed double splashes, a superkick, a paintbrush, and struck the LFI pose. Dean ccame in to make the save but was tossed out. Dralistico hit a Gory Special into a knee strike for the three count.
“LFI” Rush and Dralistco beat “The Infantry” Capt. Sean Dean and Carlie Bravo. by pinfall.
Afterward, the heels all posed over the fallen bodies of The Infantry.
Robinson’s Ruminations: A quick, dominating squash for LFI. Hell, most of it was Dralistico. I want more for the Infantry, they’ve got something special, but you gotta build up some heels that can go toe to toe with the new tag team champions.
6. Daniel Garcia vs. “Hot Sauce” Tracy Williams. Garcia swatted away the handshake with his foot. Garcia threw some closed fist strikes while Nigel said this isn’t a Pure rules match. Williams fired back with some chops and a suplex. Williams tried a DDT on the turnbuckle, but Garcia knocked him outside and then jawed at the crowd. Garcia taunted the crowd about getting out a weapon, but gave them middle fingers instead. He kept taunting the crowd with dance moves as he kicked at Williams. Williams hit a high angle back suplex and hit his turnbuckle DDT for a two count. Williams locked in a crossface but Garcia got the ropes quickly. Garcia hit a DDT with knees for the three count.
Daniel Garcia defeated Tracy Williams by pinfall.
Robinson’s Ruminations: Garcia continued to build his entertainer character by taunting the crowd so much, but Williams looked good in defeat.
7. Willow Nightingale vs. Notorious Mimi. Caprice improvised some words to Willow’s entrance music, which was classic. They shook hands before the match. Willow made Mimi dance some do si do and then hit a shoulder tackle. Willow hit a double chop, body slam, and a senton. Willow followed up with a splash in the corner. Mimi tripped her and went for a trap pin that resulted in a one count. Mimi hit a terrible corssbody block for a one count. Willow hit a Pounce and a Dr. Bomb for the three count.
Willow Nightingale defeated Notorious Mini.
Robinson’s Ruminations: A squash win for Willow in her hometown. Willow is a fun, powerful babyface. She is really growing on me.
8. “The Righteous” Dutch and Vincent vs. “The Even Stevens” Steve Somerset and Stephen Azure. The announcers tried to chalk up the silent crowd to an eerie feeling coming over the crowd. Code of honor adhered to but Dutch hit a double clothesline right out of it. Dutch tagged in Vincent and then hit a big leg drop. Dutch back in with dragging clotheslines and an exploder suplex. Vincent tagged in, Dutch hits a black hole slam, Vincent hits Death From Above. They hit Autumn Sunshine for the pinfall.
“The Righteous” Dutch and Vincent beat “The Even Stevens” Steve Somerset and Stephen Azure by pinfall.
Robinson’s Ruminations: An absolute squash for the heels as the announcers tried to get over how creepy their cult is. Apparently they are going to feud with Dark Order and the announcers made it seem like more members are on the way.
9. Konosuke Takeshita vs. Tony Nese (w/Mark Sterling, Josh Woods, Ari Daivari). The Code of Honor was adhered to. Down the stretch, a middle rope senton got Takeshita a two count. Nese fired back with a superkick, but Takeshita hit a Blue Thunder Bomb. The heels pulled Nese out of the ring. Takeshita used a flip dive to take out all the heels at ringside. Takeshita dispatched Daivari and Woods and then tried to suplex Nese into the ring, but got hung up on the ropes. Nese hit a springboard moonsault. The men traded strikes in the center before Nese got the pump-handle, but Takeshita reversed and hit a Tombstone variant for a two count. Sterling grabbed Takeshita’s leg but it didn’t pay off. Nese hit a pump-handle slam for a two count. Nese looked for Running Nese, but Takeshita hit a rolling German suplex for the three count. Nese adhered to the Code of Honor on the backend…
Konosuke Takeshita defeated Tony Nese by pinfall.
Robinson’s Ruminations: Takeshita is a star. Nigel compared him to Okada and I can see it. Nese looked good in defeat here, but he’s stuck in an act that’s destined to go nowhere.
10. Athena vs. Miyu Yamashita for the ROH Women’s Championship. Both wrestlers adhered to the Code of Honor. Later in the match, Miyu hit an AA variant off the middle rope for a two count. Miyu threw a kick and got caught when she tried for a knee strike. Athena locked in a single leg crab. Athena dragged her back to the middle and locked in an ankle lock. Miyu rolled through, hit a kick, and set up for the Skull kick, but Athena grabbed the referee. Athena walked up the ramp, but Miyu chased her and they traded blows at the top of the ramp. Miyu hit a DVD on the stage and walked Athen towards the ring. Athena pushed Miyu off the ramp, but Miyu landed on her feet, so Athena hit a cannonball splash off the ramp. The announcers told us the ref was giving leeway on the count-out rules. Back in the ring, Miyu got a roll up two count. Miyu hits a skull kick to the back for a two count. Miyu tried again, but Athena locked in a crossface, and had to roll it back to the center. Miyu passed out.
Athena defeated Miyu Yamashta by Referee Stoppage.
Robinson’s Ruminations: Athena is a headline worthy act, and I hope they can find a challenger worthy of getting her the big pay-per-view main event she deserves. I’m very glad to see ROH main eventing TV shows with her for now though. They gave Miyu plenty of offense and let her pass out in the crossface, so I guess they protected her enough. She’s a big star in Japan. Athena didn’t get a whole lot of offense here, but did get to showcase a lot of good dirty heel tactics.
This show was slow to start, and pretty basic in getting some heat on the heels, and showcasing a few baby face acts that need a little redemption after Supercard. The main event was fun, but kind of short and pretty basic when everything was said and done. It didn’t quite get into third gear. My weekly ROH audio review will be available for Dot Net Members (including our Patreon patrons).