Ring of Honor: Homicide – The Notorious 187

Disc One

Homicide vs. Steve Corino
“One Year Anniversary” – Queens, NY – 2.8.2003

Corino is accompanied by “The Group” – Samoa Joe, CW Anderson, Michael Shane, and Simply Luscious. Members of Homicide’s crew are in the audience. Homicide low blows Corino and yakuza kicks him for two. He gets two again with an exploder suplex. He goes for an STF. Corino grabs the bottom rope quickly. Corino gets a belly-to-back suplex in. Corino rolls Homicide into a STF, but Homicide’s foot is on the ropes. Anderson is getting into a verbal debate with some of Homicide’s crew. Corino snap slams Homicide. Homicide drop toe holds Corino into the corner and gives him the facewash kick. Homicide notices the confrontation between the two units as he climbs to the top rope. Homicide gives Corino a super Ace Crusher for two. Corino boots Homicide in the corner. Homicide nails a lariat for two. Corino goes for the Old School Expulsion. Homicide turns it into a reverse DDT. Corino’s boot kicks referee Paul Turner low as he falls. Homicide nails a Shining Wizard off of Paul Turner’s back for two. Homicide pitches Corino to the floor. He throws a chair at Corino’s head. Homicide misses a tope con hilo and crashes through a chair. Gabe Sapolsky and Rob Feinstein are yelling at CW Anderson for being ringside since Anderson “wasn’t booked.” Homicide’s earlier mistake only gets Corino a two count. Corino hits Old School Expulsion and only gets two again. Same goes for his Northern Lights Bomb. Homicide gets the ropes to break a Cobra Clutch. He reapplies it with a bodyscissors. Homicide’s arm drops three times, giving Corino the win at 12:11. Not the most exciting match in the world. There was a lot of focus on what was going on outside of the ring, meaning nobody cared that Homicide kicked out of so much of Corino’s key arsenal. It was okay for what it was, but as we will see, the match itself is not what’s memorable about this contest. **

After the match, Corino reapplies the Cobra Sleeper while The Group laughs. Homicide’s crew bum rushes the guardrail and jumps in to fight. A big brawl breaks out while staff and management tries to calm the situation down. The locker room also empties to try and get them to break it up. This brawl was pretty crazy, I could see how it could come off as legitimate to some people who were in the building.

#1 Contenders Trophy Match
Homicide vs. CM Punk

“Retribution: Round Robin Challenge II” – West Mifflin, PA – 4.26.2003

Julius Smokes is in Homicide’s corner while Lucy (Daffney) is in Punk’s. The winner of this match gets an ROH title shot at “Do or Die” in Philadelphia. Homicide goes for a STF early, but Punk grabs the ropes immediately. They quickly trade front facelocks until Punk gets the ropes again. The match reaches a stalemate after another mat exchange. Punk snaps off three armdrags and bars Homicide’s arm. Homicide comes back with an exploder suplex. He nails a yakuza kick and knee strike in the corner. Punk blocks a Manhattan Drop with a Shining Wizard that sends Homicide to the floor. Punk suicide dives after him. In the ring Punk strings a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker and the Pepsi Twist together. Punk baseball slides Homicide while he is in a tree of woe. Punk gets two with another backbreaker. Punk misses a slingshot senton. Homicide kicks him multiple times in the back. Homicide puts on the Romero Special. Punk escapes and applies a STF. Homicide rolls Punk into a seated hammerlock Octopus. Punk gets his foot on the ropes. Punk fights out of a suplex and hits a Northern Lights suplex of his own. Homicide kicks Punk to the floor when Punk attempts a figure four. He follows with a tope suicida. Punk overheard suplexes Homicide on the floor. In the ring, Homicide discreetly kicks Punk low. He gives him a Saito suplex for two. Homicide huracanrana’s Punk off the top rope. Punk catches Homicide on the second rope. He hits the Super Pepsi Plunge! Homicide somehow kicks out. Homicide blocks a clothesline and hits an Ace Crusher. A lariat gets him two. Punk blocks another lariat. He gives Homicide a hammerlock DDT for two. Punk kicks out of a nasty looking scoop slam. Homicide sets up for the Cop Killer. Punk slides out. Homicide escapes a German suplex. Punk finally gets a Death Valley Driver. Homicide puts on an Alejandro Lock for the submission at 15:30. This got pretty exciting towards the end. Really strong wrestling from both guys, but some of the things they kicked out of was a bit ridiculous. A second rope Pepsi Plunge is just sort of shrugged off? Not cool. ***1/4

ROH World Championship
Samoa Joe (Champion) vs. Homicide

“Do or Die” – Philadelphia, PA – 5.31.2003

Joe’s left elbow is taped up. Homicide and Joe work on each others’ arms. They retreat to opposite corners when they take each other down with headlocks. Joe kicks Homicide in the chest. Homicide takes out his knee and dropkicks Joe to the corner. He drop toe holds Joe and goes for a STF. Joe lunges to the bottom rope. Homicide yakuza kicks and knee strikes Joe in the corner. Joe blocks a splash with the STJoe. Homicide suplexes Joe onto his head, which causes Joe to roll to the floor. Joe evades a baseball slide and shoves Homicide into the barricades. Homicide blocks the running boot but gets suplexed onto the floor. Joe successfully kicks Homicide into the barricades. Joe hits it again, caving the barricade in. Joe gets a two count back in the ring. Joe bites Homicide’s head which busts him open. He suplexes Homicide a few times onto his head and gets two. Homicide boots Joe from the corner. He tornado DDT’s Joe who wisely rolls to the floor afterwards. Julius Smokes sets up a table against the barricades. Homicide grabs Joe’s neck while going for a tope suicida, sending Joe through the table with a Blockbuster. That was a cool spot. Joe kicks out. Joe powerbombs Homicide into the STF. He turns it into the Coquina Clutch. Low Ki makes his way ringside to encourage Homicide. It works, as Homicide escapes the Clutch and puts on his own STF. Homicide clotheslines Joe in the front and back of his neck. Joe knee strikes Homicide in the mid-section. Ki fires Homicide up by slapping him in the face. He slides out of the Island Driver and Saito suplexes Joe onto his head. Homicide hits the Ace Crusher. He double stomps Joe from the top rope for two. A battle for a suplex ends with Homicide giving Joe a brainbuster. Again Joe rolls to the floor. Officials check on Joe to make sure he is okay. They decide that the match should continue. Homicide brings Joe back in the ring for a two count. Homicide kicks Joe in the head a couple of times. Homicide brings Joe to the top rope as Low Ki and Julius Smokes argue on the floor. That distraction lets Joe take control and give Homicide a super Muscle Buster for the pin at 18:15. Really good story telling brought this match to a different level. Homicide got the best of Joe, moreso than anyone had before, and came within an eyelash of becoming the new champion. Joe happened to muster a little energy at the right time and snatch that victory away from him. They didn’t need the Ki/Smokes bit towards the end, but it didn’t detract from the match either. I think Joe was probably Homicide’s best opponent. ***3/4

Homicide vs. Steve Corino
“Bitter Friends, Stiffer Enemies” – Fairfield, CT – 8.16.2003

An intense collar and elbow tie-up starts us off. They go chop for punch. Homicide grapevines the leg. Corino reverses it, so Homicide takes Corino to the corner with headbutts and punches. Homicide pokes Corino in the eyes to stop his chops. Corino laughs after ducking a clothesline. Homicide slaps him in the face. Homicide smacks Corino so hard in the ear that he loses equilibrium and goes to the floor. Corino tries to bail, but Julius Smokes and others stop him. Homicide throws Corino into the ring post and barricades. Corino delivers a leg lariat back in the ring. Corino throws Homicide to the floor. Corino tries to throw Homicide into the ring post, but Homicide reverses and throws Corino into the barricades. Homicide pulls a strand of barbed wire from under the ring and digs it into Corino’s arm. He digs a fork into his arm as well. Homicide throws his arm across the top of the barricades. Back in the ring Corino hits a desperate clothesline. Corino busts open Homicide on the floor. He digs the barbed wire into Homicide’s cut. Corino gets two with a piledriver. Corino then piledrives Homicide through the timekeeper’s table! Homicide is an absolute bloody mess as Corino throws a punch. Homicide spits in his face so Corino pokes his eyes. Homicide delivers a tornado DDT. The Shining Wizard follows up. Corino rolls to the floor, so Homicide goes for a tope suicida. Corino moves and Homicide goes crashing into the crowd. Corino drags Homicide back into the ring for a two count. Corino puts on the Cobra Clutch. Homicide gets the ropes. Corino puts the Cobra Clutch back on. Homicide kicks Corino in the groin to break it. He yakuza kicks Corino and we get a close up of his bloody face. Homicide uses all his strength to climb to the top rope. Corino catches him with a superplex. Homicide kicks out. Corino forearms Homicide in the corner and climbs to the top rope. Homicide brings him down with a Hamachan Cutter. Corino kicks out of that. Corino blocks his offense and hits a Death Valley Driver for two. Homicide blocks a lariat. He gives him a scoop Michinoku Driver and gets a two count. Homicide nails a lariat for another two count. Homicide drop toe holds Corino into the STF. He pulls Corino to the middle of the ring when Corino is close to the ropes. Guillotine LeGrande, Corino’s corner man, throws in the towel to end the match at 23:46. This was quite the spectacle. Blood, violence, hatred; this brawl had every component it needed. I thought it went a little too long and the finish was a bit deflating, but it does not take away from how gruesome and awesome this match was. Not only did it feel real but it helped set up the next encounter on this very DVD. ***3/4

No Rope Barbed Wire Match
Homicide vs. Steve Corino

“War of the Wire” – Framingham, MA – 11.29.2003

Homicide is in his Natural Born Sinners gear. Aside from the barbed wire wrapped around the ropes, a table wrapped in barbed wire is also present in the ring. Both men are tentative when going to lock-up. Corino actually falls out of the ring, under the wire. Homicide mounts Corino and goes after the ear he smacked at their previous match. Both guys avoid being thrown into the wire. Homicide goes for some quick roll-ups. Corino throws Homicide armpit first into the wire. Corino digs a barb into his forehead. Corino bites the open wound. Corino slingshots Homicide into the wire. Corino picks up a barbed wire bat. Homicide ducks it and hits Corino with a chair. He DDT’s Corino onto the chair. Homicide pulls out a fork from his boot and jabs Corino in the forehead repeatedly. On the floor, Homicide punctures Corino’s ear with the fork. In the ring Homicide stomps the bat into Corino’s face. Homicide rakes his forehead into the wire. Homicide swings the bat across the top of Corino’s head. Corino monkey flips him into the wire! From the floor, Corino puts Homicide in a tree of woe in the wire. Corino punches Homicide in the crotch. Homicide sends Corino to the corner. He knees Corino into the wire, but also gets caught in it himself. Corino gets two with a body slam. He puts on a Cobra Clutch. Homicide backs Corio through the barbed wire table to escape it. Homicide then gets two with an Ace Crusher. Homicide throws a guardrail in the ring which hits Corino in the head. Corino whips Homicide leg first into the wire. Corino’s crew set up the guardrail on top of four chairs. Julius Smokes chases them off. Corino suplexes Homicide through the guardrail. Roger kicks out Corino’s leg and hits a Shining Wizard. He puts on the STF. Guillotine LeGrande pulls out a bottle of rubbing alcohol and throws it in Homicide’s face! Corino felt some of that too. While they’re recovering, LaGrande and Julius Smokes get in a fight. Corino gets one with a clothesline. He gives Homicide two piledrivers. Corino puts on some protective gloves and applies a barbed wire assisted Cobra Clutch. Smokes thinks about throwing in the towel. Homicide tells him not to just as Corino puts on a bodyscissors. Smokes throws in the towel at 20:52, giving Corino the win. I dig the symmetry between this and the “Bitter Friends” finish. They didn’t do the best job filling all twenty minutes even if the spots were cool. This was only the slightest step down from their previous match, which given the stipulation is slightly disappointing. Side note: the commentary team should be commended for portraying the brutality of the match and the hatred between the two men. ***1/2

Homicide vs. Satoshi Kojima
“Final Battle 2003” – Philadelphia, PA – 12.27.2003

Kojima overhand chops Homicide in the corner. Homicide does the same. Kojima shrugs off Homicide’s shoulder blocks. Homicide dropkicks him to the floor and fakes a dive. Back in the ring Homicide works Kojima’s arm on the mat. Kojima and Homicide get in a chop battle. Kojima thumbs Homicide in the eyes. Kojima gets on Homicide’s face in the corner. He tells the referee he can’t understand the referee’s warnings because he is Japanese. Homicide kicks and chops Kojima to take control. Homicide kicks Kojima in the back after a snapmare. Homicide slips out of a German suplex. He dropkicks Kojima out and tope suicida’s after him. Kojima belly-to-belly suplexes Homicide on the concrete, partially landing on his head. Homicide clotheslines and knee strikes Kojima back in the ring. Kojima whips Homicide to the corner. Homicide gets his boot up for a two count. Kojima comes off the top with an elbow drop. Homicide kicks Kojima to block a corner attack. He gets two with a tornado DDT. Kojima lands a modified spinebuster for two. Homicide blocks a lariat with a DDT. He follows up with the Ace Crusher for two. Kojima blocks a clothesline with the Koji Cutter, his name for the Ace Crusher. When that doesn’t get the pin he calls for a lariat. Homicide kicks the arm and again delivers an Ace Crusher. Kojima cuts Homicide off with the lariat for two. Another lariat gets Kojima the pin at 13:11. That was actually pretty mundane. The finish came out of nowhere because neither guy kicked it into another gear. It wasn’t bad, but not worth flying Kojima over for. **1/2

ROH World Championship
Samoa Joe (Champion) vs. Homicide

“Reborn: Stage One” – St. Paul, MN – 4.23.2004

Homicide jumps Joe. Joe reverses a hip toss and snaps off an armdrag. They each go for an early STF but both guys break the hold quickly. Homicide angrily rolls to the floor so he can calm down. Joe throws forearms at Homicide’s face on the mat. Joe puts him in a Stump Puller. Homicide chop Joe against the ropes. It does nothing. Joe and Homicide get into a slap fight. Homicide’s headbutt does nothing while Joe’s headbutt knocks Homicide off his feet. Joe breaks a wristlock in the corner. Homicide bites Joe’s ear to break a lock-up. Homicide puts on a headscissors. Joe grabs the ropes. Homicide elbows Joe in the corner. Joe forearms him in the opposite corner and sets Homicide up on the top rope. Homicide jumps off but gets caught with an STJoe. Joe hits an elbow suicida after Homicide rolls to the floor. Joe backdrops Homicide into the audience then back to the ringside area. Joe puts on a Boston Crab back in the ring. Joe gives Homicide a couple facewash kicks once he grabs the ropes. Homicide comes off the second rope with a knee drop to the back of Joe’s neck. He gets two with a Rude Awakening. Homicide puts on a Dragon sleeper. Joe gets his foot to the ropes. Homicide sends Joe to the floor and hits his signature tope suicida. Joe throws Homicide to the barricades and kicks his head into them. In the ring Homicide gets his feet up to block a corner attack. He delivers a tornado DDT for two. Joe overhead suplexes Homicide into the corner. He powerbombs Homicide for two. Homicide blocks the STF transistion. Joe catches a boot, slaps Homicide, dragonscrews him to the mat, and then locks on the STF. Homicide grabs the ropes. Homicide ducks a clothesline and gives Joe an Ace Crusher. He hits a lariat for two. Joe goes for a sleeper. Homicide rolls up Joe and counts the pin. It seems like a three, and the bell rings. Referee Paul Turner assures the timekeeper and Homicide that it was only a two count. Homicide is so upset that he hits Turner. Joe gives Homicide a boot. The lights go out. Homicide throws a fireball into Joe’s face! The bell rings at 19:00 as referees check on Joe. The fireball thing was pretty cheesy, especially with the goofy reaction the commentators had to it. I guess it was somewhat creative and made for a nice moment, but to do it in front a brand new ROH crowd may not have been the best idea. I give Joe and Homicide credit for working hard until that point. ***

Homicide vs. Bryan Danielson
“Reborn: Stage Two” – Chicago Ridge, IL – 4.24.2004

Danielson twists up Homicide’s leg. Homicide grabs a wristlock, which Danielson reverses. Danielson escapes a chancery attempt by throwing Homicide’s shoulder to the canvas. Homicide goes for a neck-tie headscissors. Danielson switches into a crab, but Homicide grabs the ropes quickly. Homicide freaks out ringside, flipping over the timekeeper’s table and almost getting a chair interjected into the bout. Homicide calms down and gets in a double knuckle lock. It’s broken in the corner. Homicide rams his shoulder into Danielson’s mid-section and snapmares him into a headscissors. Danielson turns that into a Muta Lock. Danielson pulls at Homicide’s face. He gets two with a bodyslam. Homicide forearms Danielson against the ropes. He takes him back down in a side headlock. Homicide digs his elbow into Danielson’s back. Danielson breaks a key lock submission by grabbing the ropes. Danielson puts on a straight jacket choke. Homicide escapes and gives Danielson a knee strike off the second rope. He delivers a neckbreaker for two. He slingshots Danielson’s throat into the bottom rope. Homicide puts on a chinlock. Homicide pokes Danielson in the eyes to stop his chops in the corner. He fakes a dive after throwing Danielson to the floor. Instead he whips Danielson into the barricades. He jabs Danielson in the neck with a chair. Homicide goes for a punch and accidentally hits the barricade. Danielson immediately goes after Homicide’s hurt hand. Homicide begs off and asks for a truce back in the ring. Danielson looks like he’s going for a handshake, but kicks Homicide in the head instead. He puts on a leg capture hold while pulling on Homicide’s fingers. Danielson works over the hand until Homicide enzuigiri’s him to the floor. The tope suicida follows. Homicide misses a diving headbutt back in the ring. Danielson jams Homicide’s arm and nails a rolling forearm for two. Danielson airplane spins him into a Finlay roll. Danielson connects with his diving headbutt. Homicide kicks out. Homicide crotches him on the top rope. He brings Danielson down with a Frankensteiner. Danielson blocks the lariat. Both men knock each other down with simultaneous clotheslines. After a series of uppercuts, Danielson forearms Homicide in the corner. He gets two with a Northern Lights suplex. Danielson rolls Homicide up in a modified O’Conner roll for two. Homicide boots him for his own two count. Danielson catches him with a superplex. Danielson only gets two. He goes for a suplex, but Homicide reverses into a piledriver. Danielson kicks out just in time. Homicide puts on the STF. Danielson crawls to the ropes. Danielson blocks a lariat. He drags Homicide down for the Cattle Mutilation. Homicide kicks Danielson’s knee once he gets to his feet. Danielson slips out of the Cop Killer. Homicide grabs referee Paul Turner to kick Danielson low. He nails a lariat for the pin at 29:46. There was no reason for this to almost go a half hour. They could have made the match half the length, told the same story and not had it drag on too long. The working over of the arm/neck kind of got lost amongst the other stuff they did to fill time. You could tell they wanted this to be some sort of classic due to how they were discussing the match on commentary. Even with that criticism, it was still a very good match. ***1/2

ROH World Championship
Samoa Joe (Champion) vs. Homicide

“Death Before Dishonor II, Part One” – Wauwatosa, WI – 7.23.2004

The Rottweilers are in Homicide’s corner. They interfere like crazy in the opening minutes, so the referee ejects all of them from ringside. Although they are not happy with it, they agree when Homicide tells them to listen. He and Joe then get in a strike battle. Joe throws three headbutts and a hard forearm to take Homicide off his feet. Joe gives him the facewash kick. Joe drops a knee across his throat. Joe delivers a delayed vertical suplex. Homicide rakes Joe’s face from the apron. A few boots get him a two count. Joe throws some chops after taking a back rake. He punts Homicide in the head a few times, firing Homicide up. He pokes Joe in the eyes. After a few bots Homicide goes for the STF. Joe rolls to the ropes expediently to prevent it from being applied. Homicide just chokes him instead. Joe slaps and kicks Homicide silly. Homicide pokes his eyes again. Homicide leg drops him on the ring apron. Homicide brings Joe back in the ring. One chop fires Joe up. He unleashes some chops and takes Homicide to the corner. Joe misses a splash in the opposite corner. Homicide kicks his legs out and gives him a running knee strike. Homicide baseball slides Joe into the barricades. Joe reverses an Irish whip into them. Even after more strikes Joe is only able to get a two count. Homicide snaps Joe’s neck across the top rope. He comes off the top with a knee to the back of the head. Homicide pokes Joe in the eyes to stop his slaps, but Joe is still able to sweep his legs. Homicide pulls Joe by his trunks to send him to the floor. Homicide fakes a dive, but it backfires as Joe enzuigiri’s him from the floor. Joe goes for his kick. Homicide drop toe holds Joe to counter. Homicide goes for the kick himself and ends up getting suplexed onto the floor. Joe successfully boots Homicide’s head intot he barricades. He stomps the barricade onto Homicide’s head. Homicide gets thrown back in the ring first. Joe is slow to follow up, giving Homicide time to recover. He goes for a choke as Joe rolls back in. Joe gets whipped to the corner. He blocks Homicide’s oncoming attack with the STJoe for two. Joe sends Homicide to the apron. Homicide snaps his neck across the top rope. He misses a diving knee strike, and Joe powerslams him for two. Joe powerbombs Homicide for two. He gets two with an immediate Tiger Driver as well. Homicide elbows Joe in the corner. He gives Joe a modified blockbuster, a Rude Awakening and a piledriver. Homicide’s back is too worn out to go for a cover. When he does, it’s only good enough for a two count. It takes three lariats for him to get another two count. Joe gives Homicide a Cobra Clutch suplex for two. Quite remarkably, Homicide kicks out of the Muscle Buster too. Joe scoops him up for the Island Driver and again only gets two. A couple Kawada kicks lead to the Coquina Clutch. Homicide passes out at 24:00. The last few minutes were really hot, they did a good job building to the drama and got the interference nonsense out of the way quickly, so I consider this a success. It was certainly a worthy bout to end their four match series (their “Generation Next” match was left off this collection) but not exactly memorable in the grand scheme of ROH. ***3/4

Disc Two

Homicide vs. Samoa Joe vs. CM Punk
“Scramble Cage Melee” – Braintree, MA – 8.28.2004

Armdrags for everyone! Punk and Joe try go after Homicide together. They backdrop him and then exchange strikes with one another. Punk rolls up Joe for two. The Rottweilers help Homicide cool off while Punk tries some shoulder blocks on Joe. Homicide trips Punk from the floor after Punk takes Joe off his feet. Punk slaps the back of his head. Homicide introduces a fork which he and Punk fight over. Joe stomps on both of their hands and clothesline them down. Joe puts the fork in his knee pad. Homicide throws Punk into the barricades. Joe takes control of Homicide in a strike battle. Punk pulls Joe out and throws him to the barricades. He gives Homicide a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker and Homicide’s own running knee strike. Joe tosses Punk onto Homicide. He then suplexes Punk. Homicide bulldogs Joe to no effect. Joe gives him a powerslam and puts on a cross armbreaker. Homicide gets his foot on the bottom rope. Joe headbutts him to the floor and hits an elbow suicida. Joe kicks his head into the barricades. Joe uses the fork and jabs it into his head. Joe goes for another kick, but Punk comes out of nowhere to pounce him into the barricades. He brings Homicide back into the ring and targets his open wound. Homicide takes him down with a couple dragonscrew leg whips. He puts Punk in a figure four. Joe drops a knee on Homicide’s bloody head to save the match for himself. Homicide ducks a clothesline and gives Joe a Saito suplex. Homicide and Punk fight to the apron and just kind of fall through the timekeeper’s table. Homicide gives Punk a piledriver on the broken table. In the ring, Joe blocks Homicide’s boot and delivers the STJoe for a two count. Joe powerbombs him into a fork-assisted STF. Joe digs his fingers into the cut on his head. Homicide catches him with an Ace Crusher. Punk hits Homicide with a springboard dropkick. Joe drives Punk’s knees into the mat. Homicide boots Joe and eats the Shining Wizard from Punk. Homicide rolls through a double clothesline. He drops Punk with a hammerlock DDT. Joe gives Homicide the Ace Crusher. Punk throws a series of knees at Joe’s head before trying to put on the Coquina Clutch. Homicide double stomps Punk to break it. Homicide and Punk fight on the ropes. After Homicide knocks Punk off, Joe slaps Homicide. Joe escapes a swinging DDT and kicks Homicide in the head. Punk gives Joe the Pepsi Plunge. Homicide then lariats Punk and pins Joe at 17:48. This was fine, but I thought they relied too much on the “two guys wrestle while another guy disappears” scenario. Even the using of each others’ moves got old pretty quickly. I did think the finish was clever, and the action pretty much kept at a good clip, so it’s a thumbs up overall. ***1/4

Ghetto Street Fight
Homicide vs. Colt Cabana

“Fourth Anniversary Show” – Edison, NJ – 2.25.2006

This match actually starts with Cabana whooping Homicide down the aisle. He throws Homicide into the barricades and into the audience. When Cabana brings Homicide into the ring the match officially begins. Homicide hits a jumping back elbow. Cabana delivers a boot and reigns down with punches. Homicide dropkicks cabana to the floor. He throws Cabana head first into the barricade. Cabana jabs him in the mid-section with a chair. Homicide shoves Cabana into the ring post. Again Cabana goes head first into the barricades. Homicide throws a chair at Cabana who is now busted open. Homicide throws a barricade sheet on him as well. He sets the metal barricade sheet in the corner back in the ring. Julius Smokes hands Homicide a razor that he digs into Cabana’s head. He whips Cabana into the barricade sheet. Cabana throws some chops but gets promptly poked in the eyes. Homicide misses a corner splash, allowing Cabana to hit the Flying Asshole. Homicide elbows Cabana and hits a tornado DDT. Cabana refuses to tap out in an arm-capture half crab. Homicide misses a diving headbutt. Homicide slips out of the Colt .45 but eats a clothesline. Cabana put on a modified straightjacket choke. He releases and heads up top. He misses a moonsault. Homicide hits the lariat. Homicide puts him in a Camel Clutch. Julius Smokes then tosses him a coat hanger. Homicide chokes him with it! Even though Cabana refuses to give up, referee Todd Sinclair mercifully calls for the bell at 11:15. Homicide and Smokes are celebrating in the aisle when Cabana grabs the microphone. He says he never gave up and that Homicide better kill him if he wants the match to end. He re-starts the match, ringing the bell himself. Homicide can’t believe this, but goes back anyways. Homicide gives him an Ace Crusher. Homicide goes for the Cop Killer. Cabana drives Homicide’s shoulder to the mat to block it. Cabana bites and claws at Homicide’s shoulder. Julius Smokes distracts Cabana so Homicide can smack him in the back with a chair. Smokes, Homicide and Ricky Reyes tape Cabana in the corner so that he is helpless. Homicide throws a chair at him and slaps him across the face. Sinclair calls for the bell at 4:10 after Homicide throws the chair again. Cabana once more grabs the microphone once he is freed. He tells Homicide to come back and finish him off. Cabana fights of Smokes and Homicide. He and Homicide fight on the apron. Smokes pours a bottle of rubbing alcohol on him. Homicide piledrives Cabana through the table and the bell is called for again at 1:08, officially putting this match to rest. This was a fantastic way to elevate this feud to the next level. Cabana looked like a glutten for punishment who would do anything to defeat his rival. Homicide on the other hand looked like a monster who was happy to give Cabana what they wanted. This was a tremendous set-up for the rest of the feud. ***1/2

Chicago Street Fight
Homicide vs. Colt Cabana

“Better Than Our Best” – Chicago Ridge, IL – 4.1.2006

Homicide fails at jumping Cabana at the bell. Cabana chokes him with his ring jacket. He throws Homicide to the floor where he keeps control. Back in the ring, Cabana punches Homicide to block a hip toss. He misses the Flying Asshole but connects with a boot. Cabana pounds on Homicide in the aisleway. Back in the ring Homicide leg lariats Cabana. Back on the floor he whips Cabana into the barricades. Homicide brings back the coat hanger for the 4th Anniversary match. This time around however it’s Cabana who does the choking. Homicide throws Cabana to the floor and tope suicida’s after him. Cabana takes control on the ring apron. He brings a ladder out from under the ring. Cabana waterwheel slams Homicide before see-sawing him into the ladder in the corner. Cabana dumps the ladder on top of him. Homicide recovers and gives Cabana a tornado DDT onto the ladder. On the floor Homicide sends Cabana into the ring post. Cabana lands on the timekeeper’s table. Homicide splashes Cabana through the table. Julius Smokes gets in his own headbutts. Homicide pulls out a barbed wire board from under the ring and slides it into the ring. Homicide slams the ladder onto Cabana. Cabana suplexes Homicide onto it, bending the ladder in half. The fight over who will go into the barbed wire board. Nobody does…for now. Cabana becomes fired up from Homicide’s punches. He throws his own punches while Homicide covers up. Cabana pulls Homicide’s fork out of his boot and digs it into his forehead. Cabana wipes some of his blood on his face. He even goes after Homicide’s eye. Homicide manages to pitch Cabana to the floor. He grabs Draino from under the ring, which he poured in Cabana’s throat at “Final Battle 2005.” Cabana sees it and begins throwing punches to Homicide in the corner. Cabana gives him a rope-assisted TKO. Cabana pours rubbing alcohol into Homicide’s wounds, causing Homicide to lose his mind on the floor. Homicide begs for mercy when he gains his bearings. Cabana refuses, so Homicide kicks him low. Homicide tells the fans to throw their chairs in the ring, causing the ring to be filled with them. Both guys stupidly get hit with chairs. Cabana brings Homicide to the top rope. Cabana superplexes him into the sea of chairs for a two count. Back on the top rope they go. Homicide gives Cabana the Pepsi Plunge onto the chairs. Cabana kicks out. Homicide gets two with a lariat. Homicide holds Cabana for Julius Smokes. Smokes ends up body blocking Homicide. Cabana takes Smokes down and suplexes Homicide. Smokes gets tied to the ring ropes. Both Homicide and Cabana brings tables into the ring. Cabana sets his up on top of the barbed wire board. Homicide throws a chair at Cabana. He brings Cabana to the top rope. Cabana blocks a Frankensteiner and powerbombs Homicide through the table and onto the barbed wire board! Homicide kicks out. Cabana gets two with a lariat also. The Colt .45 puts Homicide away at 26:33. That was a perfect finish to this blood feud and one of my favorite ROH rivalries of all time. This had elements from all their other matches, including Cabana using some of Homicide’s old tactics against him. I personally thought the powerbomb through the table should have been the finish but Cabana winning with his own move was pretty nifty too. Definitely one of my favorite ROH street fights. ****1/4

Julius Smokes and Ricky Reyes try to hang Cabana from the ropes. Oddly enough, Homicide stops them. The war caused Homicide to gain respect for Cabana, and he offers a sincere handshake towards him. Although hesitant, Cabana accepts the offering.

Homicide vs. The Necro Butcher
“Ring of Homicide” – Edison, NJ – 5.13.2006

Homicide comes to the ring after Samoa Joe’s “match” with the Necro Butcher. He and Butcher are left to do battle once the rest of the ROH/CZW guys have battled to the back. Homicide throws a flurry of right hands and tosses Butcher to the floor. He brings a piece of the barricade sheet metal into the ring. He whips Butcher into the barricades. Butcher gives Homicide a chair assisted slam on the floor. Butcher throws a bunch of chairs at Homicide in the crowd. Homicide suplexes him into a bunch of cleared out seats. Homicide throws Butcher in the ring. He instructs the fans to throw their chairs at him, and the ring fills with chairs ridiculously quickly. Butcher is buried in the rubble. Homicide finds Butcher in the heap and gives him a piledriver for two. Butcher gives him a Tiger Driver onto the chairs for two. Homicide tosses Butcher off the top rope. They fight for control on the apron after Butcher delivers a neckbreaker. Homicide suplexes Butcher to the floor on top of a lot chairs. It seems as if they were aiming for the timekeeper’s table and missed. Regardless, Homicide splashes Butcher through the table anyhow. Back in the ring Homicide only gets a two count. Homicide kicks Butcher in the nuts and gives him a lariat for the pin at 10:25. The crowd was absolutely bonkers for this match which really brought the energy up. Clearly this was pure spectacle, but a fun one at that. ***1/4

Ring announcer Bobby Cruise announces Homicide as the winner of Ring of Honor. Homicide disagrees with that. He says that he won the match for himself and welcomes everyone to the Ring of Homicide.

ROH World Championship
Bryan Danielson (Champion) vs. Homicide

“Destiny” – East Windsor, CT – 6.3.2006

Samoa Joe is sitting ringside to watch this match. Homicide flips Danielson off instead of shaking his hand. Homicide shoulder blocks Danielson to the mat. He spits in Danielson’s face when Danielson trips him. Danielson is impressed with his own shoulder block. They trade control of each others’ arm before reaching a stalemate. Danielson gets the ropes to break Homicide’s STF. Homicide twists on his ankle until Danielson kicks him to the floor. Homicide gets a wristlock when he comes back in. Danielson rolls through and forearms Homicide to the corner. Homicide trips him into a modified STF, then into a pin for two. Homicide goes back to Danielson’s wrist. He hammerlocks Danielson’s arm around the ring post and almost uses the ring bell on him. The referee’s warning allows him to come to his senses. Danielson charges with a forearm and whips Homicide into the barricades. Homicide whips Danielson into them as well. Danielson suplexes Homicide onto the timekeepers table, but not through it. Homicide hits Danielson with the ROH title belt. Homicide leans the table against the barricades. After much fighting, Homicide ends up booting Danielson to the floor. He follows with a somersault senton. Danielson again suplexes Homicide on, but not through, the table. Danielson works on Homicide’s shoulder back in the ring. On the floor Danielson twists up his arm in the barricades. He slams a chair against the shoulder as well. Homicide pulls off a tornado DDT in the ring. When he goes for it a second time, Danielson throws him off and goes back to working on the shoulder. Danielson is fired up after a successful top rope dropkick. Danielson throws Homicide shoulder first into the ring post. Danielson puts on a Fujiwara armbar. Homicide transitions into a cross armbreaker. Danielson gets the ropes. Danielson throws Homicide in a hammerlock to the ring post and into the barricades. Homicide counters a superplex with an atomic drop. He dropkicks Danielson to the floor and gives him a neckbreaker. He hits an Ace Crusher for two. He misses a frog splash. Danielson misses a diving headbutt. Homicide wins a forearm and punch exchange. Danielson pulls out the Homicide trick of raking him in the eyes. Homicide still gets in a big boot. Danielson ducks a lariat and puts on Cattle Mutilation. Homicide gets his foot on the bottom rope. Homicide shoves Danielson off the top rope. He hits the frog splash for two. Danielson dropkicks Homicide and gets two with a Dragon suplex. Homicide kicks Danielson low to break a chicken wing. He lariats Danielson for two. Danielson blocks the Cop Killer. He crotches Homicide on the top rope when Homicide goes for a Shiranui. He superplexes Homicide for two. Danielson reigns down with elbows to the side of his head. Paul Turner stops the match at 25:42, for Homicide’s own safety. I loved the drama in this match. You could tell so many fans believed this is where they did the title switch. When they didn’t do it, it got the right kind of negative reaction, as the fans knew Homicide was “screwed” and could justify a rematch in the future. The work itself was also well done, with both men methodically going after their opponent to weaken their key offense. Very good stuff. ****

We then cut to “Death Before Dishonor IV” in Philadelphia, PA on July 15th, 2006. The match shown of course is the big ROH/CZW Cage of Death match, but jumps in where Homicide enters the contest. I actually wrote a lengthy review of the story of this match which you can check out here. Basically, the ROH team was down two members as Bryan Danielson purposefully took out Samoa Joe’s leg and Danielson left the match afterwards. Homicide made a grand entrance to make it 4 on 5. He ended up picking up the win by giving Nate Webb a Cop Killer onto a barbed wire board. After the match, ROH Commissioner Jim Cornette decided to grant Homicide the three wishes he demanded to receive if he in fact returned to help the ROH team. The first two wishes Cornette granted without question – another match with Steve Corino (which sucked and happened at “The Bitter End” in November of 2006), and a guaranteed ROH World Championship match before the year closed (more on that later). The one issue Cornette took umbrage with was Homicide’s wish for Low Ki to be reinstated into ROH. Cornette wasn’t going to allow that, since it was Ki knocking out Cornette’s tooth that got him banned in the first place. Homicide calls Cornette a liar and spits in his face. This causes Cornette to turn on Homicide and with Adam Pearce beat him down. This would set up a Cornette/Homicide rivalry for the remainder of the year.

Falls Count Anywhere Elimination Street Fight
Homicide & Samoa Joe vs. The Briscoes (Jay & Mark Briscoe)

“Dethroned” – Edison, NJ – 11.25.2006

Things start out as an all out brawl. Homicide and Joe send the Briscoes to the floor and dive onto them. After throwing the Briscoes into the barricade, Homicide and Joe bring Mark back into the ring. Jay drags Homicide to the floor and gives Joe a big boot. The Briscoes dive onto both opponents. Mark and Jay use some tandem offense on Joe back in the ring. Homicide throws Jay into a ring post. Homicide and Joe double team Mark once again. Joe whips Jay into the barricades. Joe and Mark fight in the crowd. Joe Giant swings him through some chairs. Homicide and Jay have also made it into the crowd. Homicide slams Jay on the floor and throws a chair at him. Joe makes his way over to them. He and Homicide give Jay a conchairto. Since the Edison building is a hockey arena, Joe emerges with a hockey helmet and stick. He checks Jay into the boards. Joe lays a chair on Jay’s groin and slams the hockey stick against it. They fight towards the entrance way. Mark does a shooting star press off the entrance onto Joe and Homicide! Homicide gets thrown into some chairs and Mark moonsaults a chair onto Joe’s stomach. Homicide gives Jay a Hamachan Cutter back in the ring for two. Jay gets two with a Falcon Arrow. Jay gives him a backbreaker and Mark comes off the top with a knee strike. Joe takes both Briscoes down. Joe takes Jay to the floor. Mark ducks Homicide’s lariat and suplexes him onto his head. Julius Smokes lights a cigar. He hands it to Homicide so he can use it to burn Mark’s wrist. Homicide and Joe hit the Cop Killer/Muscle Buster respectively on the Briscoes to score simultaneous pinfalls at 12:43. This was a lot of crowd brawling, a sweet shooting star press spot, and not much else. **3/4

ROH World Championship
Bryan Danielson (Champion) vs. Homicide

“Final Battle 2006” – New York, NY – 12.23.2006

This is the title match Homicide was promised back at “Death Before Dishonor IV.” Homicide promised he would leave Ring of Honor if he is unable to defeat Danielson. Like Homicide did at “Destiny”, Danielson flips off Homicide instead of shaking his hand. Danielson suplexes Homicide out of a double knuckle lock. Danielson places Homicide on the top rope to break a headlock and slaps him in the face. Homicide goes for the knee while Danielson goes for the arm. Danielson puts on the Romero Special. He then stomps Homicide’s knees into the canvas. Danielson gets two with a slingshot suplex. Homicide puts on a straightjacket choke and sends Danielson to the floor. Homicide throws Danielson’s bad shoulder into the barricades. In the ring Danielson uses a chinbreaker to free himself from a chinlock. Danielson does some damage to Homicide’s bad shoulder. Homicide avoids an attack on the ropes. He uses the Three Amigos and heads up top. Adam Pearce and Shane Hagadorn run out, ending the match in a Disqualification at 10:50. The fans are livid as Pearce and Hagadorn continue to attack Homicide. Danielson smiles as he walks away with the title. Julius Smokes and some other people from Homicide’s crew take Pearce and Hagadorn out. Todd Sinclair changes his mind and re-starts the match.

Danielson is pissed by this call. Homicide knee strikes Danielson and gets two with an overhead belly-to-belly suplex. Danielson jams Homicide’s shoulder across his own shoulder. Danielson butterfly suplexes him into a cross armbreaker. Homicide escapes. Danielson gets two with a rolling forearm. He goes for a diving headbutt but gets caught with an Ace Crusher. Homicide suplexes Danielson to the floor and follows with a tope suicida. Homicide does more damage to the arm. He hammerlocks Danielson’s arm and suplexes him off the second rope. Danielson gets the ropes to break an armbar. Danielson boots Homicide away and nails an uppercut. Danielson flips off the crowd before hitting his diving headbutt. Homicide kicks out. Danielson German suplexes Homicide. Homicide not only kicks out of it, but reapplies the armbar. Danielson gets the ropes again. They go boot for forearm. Homicide’s spears Danielson to the floor. Danielson shoves Homicide into the crowd. He springboard sentons onto him. Back in the ring Danielson hits a dropkick off the top rope. Homicide turns mid-air to counter a superplex. Homicide goes up top and gets caught. Danielson successfully pulls of the superplex. Danielson is slow to cover and Homicide is able to kick out. Danielson repeatedly drives his elbow into Homicide’s head. Danielson puts on the crossface chicken wing with a bodyscissors. Homicide’s arm drops twice, but he grabs Sinclair’s foot when it’s about to drop the third time. Homicide grabs the bottom rope to escape the hold but Danielson won’t let go. Homicide fights out anyways. Danielson blocks a lariat. Homicide dragonscrews Danielson into the STF. Danielson rakes Homicide’s face to force the break. Danielson puts on the Cattle Mutilation. Danielson gives him a Tiger suplex and reapplies it. Danielson throws elbows at the side of his head and applies it one more time. Homicide climbs the ropes to turn it into a pin. Danielson kicks out. Homicide ducks a clothesline. He finally hits the Cop Killer but Danielson grabs the bottom rope to stop the pin. Homicide brings in the ring bell. As Sinclair disposes of it, Danielson kicks Homicide low. He small packages Homicide for two. Homicide lariats Danielson for the pin and the title at 18:34! This definitely felt a little long, but the false finish earlier really helped the crowd noise pick up. This also felt like a genuinely enormous moment for both the company and Homicide. They did a great job playing off their previous encounters and a lot of what Danielson did in his title reign as a whole. The crowds joy over the switch can’t be understated. ****

The DVD ends with an awesome video package covering Homicide’s ROH career from his debut up to his winning of the world title. Also included on the DVD is Homicide’s farewell speech from the “Respect Is Earned” PPV, never before shown anywhere.

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