Ring of Honor: Killer Instinct


Rahway, NJ -10.6.2012

Championship Rundown
ROH World Champion: Kevin Steen
ROH Television Champion: Adam Cole
ROH World Tag Team Champions: S.C.U.M. (Steve Corino & Jimmy Jacobs)

Commentary is provided by Kevin Kelly and a rotating cast that includes Roderick Strong, QT Marshall, Jim Cornette, and Mike Bennett.

Michael Elgin vs. Mike Bennett

Truth Martini is in Elgin’s corner while Maria Kanellis is in Bennett’s corner. Elgin throws a forearm to send Bennett outside. Bennett’s shoulder block attempts are futile. He asks Elgin to hit the ropes. He does and catches Bennett with a powerslam for two. Elgin follows up with a delayed vertical suplex. Bennett shoves Elgin to the floor and misses a pescado. Elgin refrains from being tossed into the barricades. Bennett however is able to give him a spinebuster onto the edge of the ring. He follows up with some strikes in the ring but ends up crotching himself on the second rope. Elgin stomps him down in the corner. Bennett blocks a slam with a neckbreaker. Elgin throws a couple back elbows and drops Bennett onto his stomach. He gets two with a Boss Man Slam. Bennett backs him to the corner to block a spinning powerbomb. Elgin throws repeated clotheslines and a forearm before dropping him with a sidewalk slam. Bennett kicks out. Maria distracts Elgin on the apron. Elgin notices Bennett charging and drops the top rope to send him to the floor. Martini puts the boots to Bennett behind referee Todd Sinclair’s back. Elgin is displeased with this. Bennett puts Maria in his way. Elgin moves her, but this gives Bennett the chance to give Elgin the Box Office Smash on the floor. Elgin makes it in the ring right before the 20 count and kicks out of Bennett’s pin attempt. Bennett tries another Box Office Smash. Elgin elbows his way free and hits an enzuigiri. Bennett catches him with a spinebuster for two. Elgin comes back with a Backfist, a Buckle Bomb, and the spinning powerbomb for the pin at 11:59. This was a solid victory for Elgin heading into his title match with Steen next week. Bennett’s work has gotten better and got the chance to show that off two. This essentially was a nice showcase for two rising stars, with the more important of the two getting the win. **3/4

3.0 (Scott “Jagged” Parker & Shane Matthews) vs. The Bravado Bros. (Lancelot & Harlem Bravado)

This is 3.0’s ROH debut, though they have feuded with the Bravado Bros. in CHIKARA all throughout 2012. Despite their deep seeded hatred, the Code of Honor is followed. Lancelot and Jagged attack the opponents on the apron before trading blows with one another. Jagged nails a back elbow and knocks Harlem off the apron. Matthews tags in. He drop toe holds Lancelot into Jagged’s back elbow. 3.0 make some quick tags to maximize damage on Lancelot. Harlem knees Jagged from the apron. Lancelot gives him a gutbuster. For those who don’t know, the Bravados cracked Jagged’s rib in CHIKARA back in April during the “Unity” double header. The Bravados of course work over his mid-section in their half of the ring. Jagged eventually fights his way out with a rolling forearm and a leg lariat to Harlem. Matthews tags in. He dropkicks Lancelot, then headscissors both of them separately. He gives Lancelot a backbreaker and Jagged knees him in the side of the head. Jagged then pescado’s after Lancelot, which was not smart given his hurt ribs. Harlem gets Matthews onto the floor and moonsaults onto both members of 3.0. Lancelot levels Matthews with a lariat for two. Harlem gives him a Diamond Dust. He kicks Matthews into Lancelot’s German suplex. Jagged breaks the pin. Matthews throws them together. Jagged comes off the top with simulatenous dropkicks. Jagged then pops Harlem up for Matthews’ spear. Harlem kicks out. They go for the Sweet Taste of Professionalism. Lancelot pulls Jagged to the floor. Harlem rolls up Matthews and holds his tights for two. Harlem bicycle kicks Matthews. The Bravados drop him with the Gentleman’s Approach for the pin at 10:06. I of course love 3.0, and they could not have chosen a better team to debut against. I don’t know why they lost the crowd down the stretch because I thought they had a lot of energy and looked good. Those who are unaware of Jagged’s rib injury (most of the ROH audience) would not have appreciated the work put into them like I did, but even still I thought they told a good story. I hope 3.0 makes their way back to the “promised land” of ROH in the future. **3/4

Bobby Fish vs. QT Marshall

Marshall cuts a lazy, uninspired heel promo before the bell. Fish tries rolling him into a submission but Marshall gets the ropes before anything can be locked in. Marshall shoves Fish away. Fish throws a kick at his chest. He goes for the leg and again Marshall quickly makes it to the ropes. Fish sends him to the floor and follows with, fittingly, a pescado. In the ring he hits a diving headbutt for two. He lands on his feet when Marshall evades a moonsault. Marshall however catches him with a side slam. He gets two with a neckbreaker. Same with a powerslam. Fish comes back with a rolling sole butt. Some more kicks gets him a two count. Marshall overhead suplexes him out of the corner. Fish ducks a clothesline and forearms him in the corner. He brings him out with a suplex. Fish then nails a spinwheel kick for the pin at 8:07. I’m very surprised and happy by this result. Marshall has now become the most boring, useless guy on the roster and I have no interest in anything he is doing. Fish beating him is good not only for that reason, but because Fish is very worthy of a spot on the roster. This match was a total throwaway though. *1/2

ROH Tag Team Championship – Elimination Match
S.C.U.M. (Steve Corino & Jimmy Jacobs) vs. Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin vs. BJ Whitmer & Rhett Titus

Things break down with everyone in the beginning. S.C.U.M. go after Whitmer on the floor while Haas and Benjamin team up on Titus in the ring. Corino hassles Jay Lethal’s mother who is in the front row. Foreshadowing! He knocks Benjamin out of the ring before Titus knees him in the face. Whitmer knees Corino and Titus sends him out with a dropkick. Jacobs throws punches to Titus while Haas throws Corino into the barricades. Titus gives Jacobs’ the Snake Eyes. Haas bridges the ropes when Titus hits them. He suplexes Titus back first onto the barricades. Order is restored, now with Titus being worn down by both Haas and Benjamin and S.C.U.M. Titus catches Benjamin with a crossbody and gives Haas a neckbreaker so that he can tag in Whitmer. He gets two with a spinebuster on Haas. Haas drives him into the canvas with a knee strike. Jacobs comes in with a swinging suplex to Whitmer. He rolls up and delivers a headscissors. Whitmer comes back with an exploder suplex. Benjamin splashes Jacobs in opposite corners. Jacobs gives him an Ace Crusher and tags in Corino. Corino drops him with an STO, then a rolling clothesline. Titus blind tags in. He gets two on Corino with the Thrust Buster. Corino responds with the Colby Shock. Haas and Benjamin double team Titus again. Whitmer stops them from eliminating his partner. Corino fails at using a title belt as a foreign object. Whitmer and Haas fight over it. Jacobs splashes the belt, sending Haas and Whitmer into each other. Jacobs rolls up Haas to eliminate him and Benjamin at 14:25. Benjamin gives Pay Dirt to Whitmer. He superkicks Jacobs and distracts the referee unintentionally when Titus goes for a pin. From the floor, Haas hits Titus in the back with a chair. Corino then gives him a Saito suplex for the pin and the retention at 15:10. What a crappy finish to a boring match. The heat between these teams feels totally artificial and they just don’t have the right chemistry in the ring. The rapid eliminations were lame and the action was all over the place. I hate that the trend in ROH now seems to be throwing away tag team title defenses at the behest of pushing another feud. That needs to stop now. **1/4

Roderick Strong vs. Kyle O’Reilly

Truth Martini is in Strong’s corner. Strong goes after O’Reilly’s left arm. O’Reilly transitions into a headscissors which Strong pops out of. They shove each other after reaching a stalemate. Strong tries an O’Conner Roll and then hits a leg lariat. He chops O’Reilly in the corner. O’Reilly comes back with a flurry of strikes and a leg sweep. He clutches at Strong’s nose and drops a knee across his back. He misses a yakuza kick. Strong takes his leg and pulls him into a backbreaker. He throws a flurry of chops and gets two with a slingshot Falcon Arrow. O’Reilly boots Strong to the floor. He comes off the apron with a dropkick that sends Strong into the barricades. In the ring he gets two with a tornado DDT. Strong tries for the Stronghold. O’Reilly counters into a prawn hold for two. He kicks Strong in the side of the head. Strong responds with an enzuigiri and the Death by Roderick. O’Reilly kicks out. He breaks out of the Tiger Driver. After some more strikes he gets two with a Regalplex. Strong gives him the Orange Crush Backbreaker for the pin at 10:16. These are the types of competitive matches O’Reilly should be having. Even in losing, he stood toe-to-toe with a former ROH World champion and came out looking really, for lack of a better word, strong. Strong of course usually delivers when there isn’t a lot of hoopla involved. ***

Davey Richards vs. Mike Mondo

This is a rematch from “The Nightmare Begins.” Mondo charges right at the bell, only to be caught by the Alarm Clock. Richards clotheslines Mondo to the floor and kicks him in the chest from the apron. He whips Mondo to the barricades, following in with a yakuza kick. A second kick sends Mondo into the crowd. As they come back in, Mondo gives Richards a neckbreaker in the ropes. He holds onto the ropes to evade a dropkick. He gives Richards a bulldog and dropkicks him back to the floor. Mondo follows with a slingshot corkscrew splash. Richards takes control on the floor. They fight on the apron where Richards drives Mondo’s arm into the ring frame with a divorce court. Of course Richards works over Mondo’s arm back in the ring. He hits a diving headbutt for two, then goes right for a cross armbreaker. Mondo gets the ropes to break it. He gives Richards a spinebuster. He throws a series of jabs before dropping Richards with a snapmare driver for two. They trade punches on the top rope. Mondo clotheslines Richards in the back of the head. He comes off the top rope, stomping Richards head into the mat. Richards manages to kick out. Mondo throws knees at his head and Richards throws some Kawada Kicks. Richards blocks a sunset flip with a double stomp. Richards kicks the tar out of Mondo’s chest. He superplexes Mondo, then picks him up for another suplex. Mondo kicks out. Richards puts on a cross armbreaker. Mondo rolls out and applies an ankle lock. Richards reverses it. Mondo kicks Richards away. He blocks the Alarm Clock and puts the ankle lock back on. Richards turns it into a sharpshooter. He stomps Mondo’s head repeatedly while holding onto his arms. He puts on a cloverleaf and Mondo taps out at 14:47. Mondo’s work has gotten so much better since he first showed up in ROH. I was thoroughly impressed with both him and Richards, who has also been a lot better since his hiatus. This was a fantastic back-and-forth match where both guys put in a great effort and got the fans behind them. ***1/2

The Briscoes (Jay & Mark Briscoe) vs. Eddie Edwards & Adam Cole

Mark gets the ropes when Edwards gets the best of him on the mat. Edwards tries suplexing his way out of a side headlock but Mark holds on. Cole tags in when Edwards shoves Mark to the corner. He kicks out Mark’s knee and gives him a running knee strike to the face. Jay stomps down Cole in the corner. Cole reverses Mark’s suplex and tags Edwards back in. Edwards enzuigiri’s Mark to the corner. Mark boots him down. Jay throws some uppercuts. Edwards backs Jay to the corner. Cole tags in and back elbows Jay for one. Cole places Jay on the top rope so that Edwards can gamengiri him from the apron. Cole knocks Mark off the apron. Edwards dropkicks Jay in the tree of woe while Cole at the same time hits a delayed dropkick. Cole and Edwards wear down Jay in their corner. Mark blind tags in and springboard dropkicks Cole. Edwards gets knocked off the apron so that the Briscoes can beat down Cole. Cole fights out of a double team predicament, booting Mark and giving Jay an enzuigiri. Edwards comes in with a top rope dropkick to Mark. He does an admirable job fighting off both Briscoes himself. He spinewheel kicks Jay to the floor. He brings Mark out of the corner with the Chin Checker. Cole follows up with a splash for two. Mark catches Edwards with a rolling Death Valley Driver. Cole and Jay throw forearms at one another. Jay knocks Cole down with a rolling variation and gives him a neckbreaker for two. He also gets two with a Falcon Arrow. Jay drops him with a reverse DDT. Mark hits a split-legged tumbleweed senton. Cole kicks out. The Briscoes hit a Death Valley Driver/Froggy Bow combo. Edwards makes the save. He sends Mark to the apron. Edwards pops up Cole, and Cole DDT’s Mark on the ring apron. He enzuigiri’s Jay from the floor. Edwards double stomps his back. Cole gives Jay a brainbuster across his knee for two. He puts on a figure four. Edwards rolls Mark into a Half Crab. Mark chops Cole while in the hold to break his submission, then rolls out of Edwards’. He suplexes Edwards, causing Edwards to roll out. Mark super snapmares Cole off the top. The Brisoces put him away with the Doomsday Device at 16:39. This was another good match with solid back and forth wrestling. The crowd did not get into it almost at all, which hurt some of the drama, but I’ll be damned if all four guys didn’t put in a heck of an effort. ***1/4

ROH World Championship
Kevin Steen vs. Jay Lethal

Lethal embraces his parents who are ringside. Steen will not follow the Code of Honor. Lethal superkicks Steen right at the bell. He clotheslines Steen to the floor and suicide dives onto him four times! Lethal cartwheels him into a dropkick. He spears Steen in a few different corners. Lethal goes for a back handspring but is cut off with a dropkick. Steen then powerbombs him onto the ring apron. He rams Lethal’s back into the barricades and throws him into them a few times after that. Lethal is rubber legged as he tries to throw punches back in the ring. Steen throws forearms in response. Lethal boots him in the face and comes off the second rope with a leg lariat. He hits a back handspring elbow. The Lethal Combination only gets him a two count. Lethal misses a missile dropkick. He does however give Steen a back cracker for two. Steen pops him up into a powerbomb for two. Steen also gives him a pump handle neckbreaker across his knee, also for a two count. He sets up for the F-Cinq. Lethal slips out and tries for a Dragon suplex. Steen backs Lethal to the corner and throws elbows to the side of his head. Steen misses a cannonball senton. Lethal signals for the Lethal Injection. Steen counters with a sleeper suplex. Lethal kicks out. Lethal breaks out of the F-Cinq. He superkicks Steen, drops him with the Lethal Combination, then applies the Koji Clutch. Steve Corino and Jimmy Jacobs show up to support their teammate. Steen gets the ropes to break the submission. Lethal enzuigiri’s Steen before dropping him with a Death Valley Driver. He connects with his top rope elbow smash. He hits it a second time. He looks to go for it a third time but instead dives onto Corino and Jacobs. He Dragon suplexes Steen for two. They fight on the second rope. Steen brings Lethal down in a brainbuster but only gets two. Steen tries a Swanton Bomb. Lethal gets his knees up. Lethal superkicks Steen and then backflips into the Lethal Injection. Steen rolls to the floor so Lethal cannot pin him. Steen bites Lethal in the face right in front of his parents. Lethal’s father throws a drink in his face. This causes Steen to spit on his mother. Lethal throws forearms at Steen with reckless abandon. He shoves down referee Todd Sinclair and goes back to punching Steen. He shoves down two more referees as he and Steen continue to brawl. It takes multiple people to break apart their fight and to try and calm them down. Steen tears down the entrance ramp and heads backstage. The match devolves into a No Contest a little after the 20:00 mark, although the announcement isn’t made until much later. I really loved the action these guys put in. They did an amazing job making it seem like Lethal was actually going to win the title. I was aware of the finish beforehand, and while I can see why those who attended the show and even some watching at home could be pissed off by it, I thought it did a good job redefining Lethal’s character. This however brings up my point I made in the tag title match: throwing away title shots for the sake of building a character or storylines is unwise. You do not want to condition your audience to expect these kinds of finishes or else your title matches will be cheapened. Heck, the fans even chanted “Cornette sucks” afterwards. Having it cap off the show was not the best idea either. It’s too bad the angle wasn’t done under different circumstances because the wrestling itself was excellent. ***1/4

Lethal goes mad, hitting a ring post with a chair over and over. He makes sure his parents are safe. He promises that if anybody else ever spits on his mother that he will murder them. Cornette begins to head backstage and Lethal gives chase. A video put on ROH’s YouTube channel, that’s also included on the DVD, shows Lethal throwing Cornette into a nearby table.

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