Hirooki Goto vs. Dalton Castle was a very good match. Castle is being built well, but not rushed, which I appreciate because his fan boys are out of hand. For me to sit and watch Goto inside a ROH ring while the majority of the crowd chants for Dalton Party peacock Castle, makes me feel like I’m in the freaking Twilight Zone. The match ended as it should have, with Goto taking Castle apart and nailing him with his finisher for the one, two, three.
Grudge Match: Adam Page vs. BJ Whitmer was an okay match, but the dead crowd made it seem worse than it was. ROH fans despise Whitmer, but they seem neutral about Page, meaning they don’t seem to care about him at all. That’s odd, because you would think that anyone beating up the man that they hate so damn much would lead to that man getting a ton of support, but it didn’t happen. Of course it’s not going to help Page when he loses the match, even though only doing so after Whitmer nails him in the balls when the ref isn’t looking. I suppose this feud continues.
Alex Shelley vs. Christopher Daniels was a solid wrestling match that saw Kazarian intervene far too often, but many of us knew that was happening to lead to the obvious conclusion of Chris Sabin coming to the rescue of Shelly, and reforming the Motor City Machineguns. I’ll admit I popper for that, and I hope they can bring their magic back.
Hiroshi Tanahashi & Michael Elgin vs. Mark & Jay Briscoe was an excellent match up that I really enjoyed. All four men “got their shit in,” but they did it in a very smooth, good, way. Several false finishes along the way made it exciting, and you really had no idea who would pull of the win, but keeping to the clear theme of the night, the New Japan stars got the victory here. Kelly and Mr Wrestling III mentioned Big Mike and Tanahashi challenging for the ROH tag titles. Now that would be interesting!
Kazuchika Okada vs. Moose was what I expected. A very solid performance from both men. I could tell that Okada was driving the match, as it should be, but it was so obvious that it was a slight distraction for me. However, I am not saying that Moose isn’t the real deal, because he is. This guy is going to be a big deal before too long. After a lot of back and forth, Okada finally took control and won with the Rain Maker. Who does Moose face next? I certainly hope it’s someone near the top of the card, and that Moose can go over.
NEVER Openweight Six Man Title Match: Champions Kenny Omega & The Young Bucks vs. ACH, Matt Sydal & Kushida was match of the night, by far. The “Elite” deserve every bit of that name, as they are always amazing to watch. Inserting Omega in AJ Styles spot doesn’t miss a beat, and even as a big time Styles fan, I must say that the Bucks and Omega may be a touch better than the Bucks and Styles, simply because they mesh better. Omega just seems like a third Young Buck. As great as ACH, Sydal, and KUSHIDA are, they just didn’t compare to Omega and the Bucks who are out of this world. The Elite could make these Never Open Weight Six man titles mean a lot, and I hope they do just that.
ROH TV Title Match: Champion Tomohiro Ishii vs. Roderick Strong vs. Bobby Fish actually opened the show, and while it was good, it wasn’t nearly as good as I expected. You could tell this was a last minute match up decision, as none of the men seemed to really click all that well together, and Fish, as is too often the case, was an afterthought, as he never seemed a legit threat to win the title. Thankfully Strong wasn’t dominated by Ishii, as he was over in Japan, but he was soundly defeated by him once again. Where does leave Roddy? Aimlessly wondering in the midcard again it seems. I suspect Fish will challenge for the TV title in a one on one match against Ishii, which should be great if that is what happens.
No DQ ROH Tag Team Title Match: Champions War Machine vs. Kenny King & Rhett Titus was the match few really wanted to see, but was pretty good. At this point in the card having a “fight without honor” was what was needed for a little bit of a change in style, and pace. It was a brutal match, with chairs, tables, and ladders frequently being put to use. Kenny King kicked out of the Fall Out, and no one in this odd crowd cared one bit. ANX has been pushed pretty strongly by ROH, but they lost rather handily tonight, as they should have. I’m anxious to see who the next challenge is for War Machine and as stated earlier, I hope it’s Elgin and Tanahashi.
ROH World Title Match: Champion Jay Lethal vs. Kyle O’Reilly vs. Adam Cole was as great as I had hoped it would be, but still not as great as the Elite’s match. Kyle, Adam, and Jay gave it everything they had, and this was another match where you had no clue who would walk away as the winner. The suspense made the match even better than it was, and it was refreshing to see Martini stay out of it completely. Cole and O’Reilly could face each other for the next six months and I wouldn’t complain once, but they couldn’t overcome Lethal as he finished them both off with a double Lethal Injection, further cementing himself as the best wrestler in the world today. I really don’t see any serious challenger for Lethal outside of Okada. Can that match be made? It’s a dream one for sure, but the only way I see Lethal losing any time soon. My second choice is to bring Kenny Omega home to Ring of Honor with a shot against Lethal.
Over all this show was solid. I’d give it an 8/10, with the Eltie match, Moose/Okada match, Elgin and Tanahashi vs The Briscoe’s match, and the main event all being solid reasons to buy the replay if you didn’t catch the live event. Shockingly NJPW simply dominates ROH every time they get together, another reason I see challengers for most ROH title’s coming from New Japan. I’m not complaining though, because NJPW is amazing, and I love them working side by side with ROH, and would love to see it become a full time thing.