Ring of Honor: Christopher Daniels – The Fallen Angel


Disc One

Low Ki vs. Christopher Daniels vs. Bryan Danielson
“The Era of Honor Begins” – Philadelphia, PA – 2.23.2002

This is the main event of the first ever Ring of Honor show. Ki and Danielson take down Daniels so they can fight it out amongst themselves. Daniels dropkicks them while they’re in a lock-up. A strike exchange occurs between all three competitors, leading to a stand-off. Daniels breaks another Danielson/Ki lock-up. Ki dropkicks Danielson as Daniels drops down. Daniels puts Danielson in a tree of woe. Ki dropkicks him. Ki gives Daniels a Koppu Kick and a few kicks to the chest. Danielson goes for Cattle Mutilation on Ki but Daniels breaks it. Daniels ties them up in a Boston Crab/Camel Clutch combo momentarily. Danielson kicks away at Daniels’ arm. Ki Kawada kicks Danielson. Daniels hits a leg lariat on Ki. Daniels gut wrench suplexes Danielson for two. Ki wins a chop battle with Daniels in the corner. Danielson chops both guys. Danielson puts Daniels in a modified Muta Lock. Ki kicks Danielson’s leg to stop him. Ki kicks Danielson while Daniels’ legs are still locked. Danielson Northern Lights suplexes Ki for two. He then turns Daniels up to his shoulders for another two count. Danielson back elbows Ki for two. Danielson arm whips Daniels to the mat. He twists Daniels’ fingers until Ki kicks him in the back. Danielson and Ki take turns kicking each other in the back. They both kick Daniels in the back as well. Ki and Danielson accidentally kick each others’ shins. Daniels gives both of them a neckbreaker. Daniels puts Ki in a Liontamer. Daniels DDT’s Danielson and gives Ki a neckbreaker at the same time. Both men kick out of his pin attempts. Ki and Danielson throw Daniels off the top rope. Danielson Kawada kicks Ki. Ki kicks Danielson in the head from the apron. Daniels belly-to-belly suplexes Ki for two. Ki tilt-a-whirls from Daniels into a tornado DDT on Danielson. Ki hits Daniels with the Tidal Wave for two. Danielson fights Ki off the second rope. Daniels puts Danielson in an abdominal stretch on the top rope. Ki shoves Danielson down and puts Daniels in a dangling Dragon Sleeper. When he releases, he manages to get a two count. Daniels goes for Last Rites. Ki fights out of that. He kicks Danielson into a Blue Thunder Bomb from Daniels. Danielson kicks out. Danielson goes to superplex Ki. Daniels joins them for a tower of doom. Danielson suplexes Daniels. He hits a Dragon suplex and Ki breaks the cover. Ki puts Danielson in a Dragon Sleeper. Daniels breaks it. He gives Ki an STO and calls for the BME. He hits it but Danielson breaks the cover. Daniels turns Danielson inside out with a lariat. Ki cartwheel roundhouse kicks Daniels in the corner. Danielson elbows Ki to the floor. He puts Daniels in the Cattle Mutilation. Ki breaks it with a Phoenix Splash on Danielson! Ki gives Daniels the Ki Krusher for the pin at 20:04. I am totally impressed with how well this match holds up. It was a gutsy move to main event ROH’s first show with this match instead of Eddie Guerrero and Super Crazy, but it turned out to absolutely be the right move. Not only was this match incredible, but it helped set the foundation for ROH right away. What an impressive debut main event. ****1/4

After the match, Daniels tells both guys to go to hell. He says he would have easily beat either of them in a singles match. He challenges both guys to singles matches on the same night. Ki and Danielson accept. Daniels refuses to shake hands, breaking the Code of Honor right off the bat.

Christopher Daniels vs. Bryan Danielson
“Round Robin Challenge” – Philadelphia, PA – 3.30.2002

Daniels throws some right hands and gets a one count with a leg lariat. Danielson responds with a forearm strike. He goes for a sleeper but Daniels gets to the ropes. He tries pushing Daniels’ shoulders to the mat in a double knuckle lock. Daniels reverses it. Dnielson switches into a crossface. Daniels rolls over for a pin attempt. Danielson kicks out and applies a side headlock. Daniels escapes a few times but Danielson goes right back to it. When Daniels escapes for good, Danielson delivers a dropkick. Daniels responds with a Saito suplex. He drops a knee onto Danielson’s face before trying multiple pin attempts. Daniels works over Danielson’s neck. Danielson suplexes Daniels to stop his onslaught. He throws forearms in the corner. He gets two with a diving headbutt. Daniels counters a rolling forearm with an STO. He nails the BME for two. He and Danielson trade strikes until Daniels delivers a clothesline. He goes for a palm strike. Danielson goes for Cattle Mutilation, but settles for a Rings of Saturn due to his hurt neck. Daniels gets to the ropes. He gives Danielson a piledriver for two. Last Rites leads to a cross face. Danielson taps at 14:23. They did a good job of playing up Danielson’s injured neck, but it never got all that interesting, which for these two guys still makes for a pretty good match. ***

Christopher Daniels vs. Low Ki
“Round Robin Challenge” – Philadelphia, PA – 3.30.2002

Ki lights up Daniels with chops when Daniels doesn’t shake hands. Daniels ducks the Tidal Crush but takes a roundhouse kick. Daniels kicks Ki from the mat, only to be met with a Koppu Kick seconds later. Ki puts on a Border City Stretch. When Daniels escapes Ki throws more kicks to his head. He puts on an armbar in the ropes. Daniels goes for the same approach he did in the first match; working over Ki’s neck with certain submissions and STO’s. He gets two with a suplex. Daniels legdrops Ki’s neck as he dangles on the top rope. He puts on a chinlock and then a Bow and Arrow. He misses the BME. Ki hits the Tidal Wave. Daniels hooks his neck for the Last Rites. Ki escapes but takes a palm strike. Daniels gives him a super snapmare for two. He hits the Angel’s Wings and gets two again. Ki comes back with the Ki Krusher. He hits the Tidal Crush for two. Daniels goes for the Last Rites. Ki turns it into the Dragon Clutch. Daniels taps at 11:00. That was a great follow up from the first match. Ki came in fresh, beat up Daniels from the start, and Daniels neck work didn’t work this time because Ki had seen him use it previously. It may have come across better with more time, but it was brilliant and fun nonetheless. ***1/4

We get a clip of Donovan Morgan defeating Christopher Daniels at “A Night of Appreciation” in April. After that, Daniels teases shaking his hand. Instead of doing that, he offers to watch out for Morgan so that ROH doesn’t stab him in the back. They would go on to team in a one night tournament to crown the inaugural ROH Tag Team Champions at “Unscripted.” They defeated The SAT in the first round.

ROH Tag Team Championship Semi-Final Round
Dick Togo & Ikuto Hidaka vs. Christopher Daniels & Donovan Morgan

“Unscripted” – Philadelphia, PA – 9.21.2002

After some back and forth, Togo drops Daniels with a tornado DDT. Hidaka and Morgan trade strikes. Hidaka gives him a flipping legdrop to the back of the head. Morgan pokes him in the eyes. They reach a stalemate after exchanging headlocks. Daniels attacks Hidaka from behind. Togo sends Morgan into the guardrails. Daniels comes off the apron with an elbow drop to Hidaka. In the ring he comes back with a spinwheel kick. Togo hits a slingshot senton. He and Hidaka take turns wearing Daniels down. Morgan breaks up a pin. While the referee takes care of him, Daniels gives Hidaka a low blow. This allows he and Morgan to turn the tide. Togo applies an illegal headscissors to Morgan during their isolation, which Daniels stops with a top rope elbow drop. Hidaka drops him with a springboard tornado DDT and legally tags Togo in. He gives Morgan an X-Factor and a rope-assisted DDT. He applies a crossface to Morgan which Daniels breaks. Daniels is sent to the floor and Hidaka tumbleweed moonsaults after him. Morgan strings a few fisherman’s suplexes and a Golden Gate Swing onto Togo. Hidaka breaks the cover. Togo lands a top rope senton. Daniels breaks the pin. He gives Hidaka the Angels Wings for two. The BME also gets two thanks to Togo. Hidaka puts on a Guillotine in the ropes. Upon release he hits a missile dropkick. He drops Daniels with a spinning powerbomb. Morgan makes the save. Daniels drops Hidaka with the STO. Morgan holds his foot, allowing Daniels to pick up the win at 13:55. The Japanese team came to play. Even though the finish was slightly unfulfilling, it plays right into the Prophecy’s characters and built towards the finals well. ***1/4

ROH Tag Team Championship Tournament Finals
Bryan Danielson & Michael Modest vs. Christopher Daniels & Donovan Morgan

“Unscripted” – Philadelphia, PA – 9.21.2002

The winning team becomes the first ever ROH tag team champions. Modest controls Daniels in a hammerlock. Daniels shoulder blocks him to the mat and tags in Morgan. Morgan snapmares him into a shoulder kick. Modest does the same. Modest tags in Danielson after a shoulder block. Danielson stretches out Morgan’s back. He gets two with a crucifix pin. Morgan shoves Danielson to the corner so Daniels can tag in. Daniels dragonscrews Danielson to the mat. He and Morgan go to work on Danielson’s leg. Danielson enzugiri’s Daniels and makes a tag, but the referee doesn’t see it and makes Danielson continue to fight. Daniels puts Danielson in a crab in the ropes. Morgan whips Danielson into the guardrails twice. In the ring, Danielson gives Morgan a Saito suplex so he can finally tag Modest in. Modest huracanrana’s Daniels off the top from a headstand position. Modest gets two with a diving headbutt. Daniels whips Modest to the corner. All four men are knocked down from a series of strikes. Modest whips Morgan into the guardrails. Daniels Arabian presses onto both men. Danielson suicide dives onto Daniels and lands on his bad knee. In the ring, Modest gives Daniels and exploder suplex for two. Same goes for a fisherman’s buster, thanks to Morgan breaking the pin. Morgan gives Modest the Golden Gate Swing. Modest clotheslines him in the back of the neck. Danielson works over his neck some more before deliver the Regalplex. He hooks on Cattle Mutilation, but with his bad leg in the air. Daniels breaks it. Morgan gives Danielson a super Rydeen Bomb. Daniels hits the BME and Morgan covers him for two. Daniels also gets two with a Blue Thunder Bomb. Danielson chops Daniels in the neck. Daniels drops Danielson with a Complete Shot into the Koji Clutch. Modest breaks it and Morgan attacks him in the corner. They go to the floor. Danielson enzuigiri’s Daniels for two. Morgan grabs Danielson’s leg as he goes for a superplex. He falls off, and Daniles hits the Last Rites for the pin and the titles at 14:42. This really felt like Daniels and Danielson did all the work while Morgan and Modest put in a minimal effort. It’s a good thing Danielson and Daniels are tremendous, or otherwise this could have failed miserably. Although this didn’t feel like a big time match-up, it was solid enough and set up the Prophecy as the major heel stable in ROH. ***

Christopher Daniels vs. Doug Williams
“Glory By Honor” – Philadelphia, PA – 10.5.2002

If Daniels wins, Williams can no longer shake hands in ROH. The opening exchange ends in a stand-off. Williams goes after Daniels’ right leg. Daniels turns that into an armbar. Williams escapes. Daniels goes to the floor. He’s able to catch Williams and suplexes him in from the apron. Williams goes back to the leg but Daniels grabs the ropes immediately. Daniels takes over and keeps control for awhile. He blocks a tornado DDT with a Manhattan Drop and a neckbreaker for two. Daniels manages to counter the Chaos Theory twice, but succumbs to a tornado DDT. Williams pulls off the three knee combo for two. He also gets two with a fisherman’s buster. Daniels elbows his way out of the Chaos Theory and drops Williams with an STO. He follows up with the Blue Thunder Bomb. The BME gets him two. Both men switch waistlock positions ending with Williams finally hitting the Chaos Theory. Daniels is in the ropes though. He then Graham Crackers Williams for the pin at 12:29. This was pretty good, but clearly they were holding back either knowing they had a rematch or because the finish was cheap. **3/4

ROH Tag Team Championship
Christopher Daniels, Donovan Morgan & Samoa Joe vs. Low Ki, Homicide & Doug Williams

“All Star Extravaganza” – Philadelphia, PA – 11.9.2002

The Prophecy teases attacking, only for their opponents to actually do it. The Prophecy bails to the floor. Joe and Ki are gearing up to wrestle when Daniels blind tags in. He then tags in Morgan. Ki puts him in a crucifix lock. Morgan rolls out of it. Joe and Williams trade holds. Joe kicks him and goes for an ankle lock. Williams goes for his leg and Joe kicks him. Joe gives him a headbutt. Morgan fights his way out of the Prophecy corner and tags in Homicide. He ends up fighting off all of the Prophecy even though Daniels is the legal man. Ki snapmares Daniels into an elbow drop for two. Williams throws a few different knee strikes. Homicide and Ki yakuza kick Daniels simultaneously. Williams almost has Daniels and Morgan in stereo submissions when Joe kicks him in the head. That kick allows the Prophecy to take over and isolate Williams. He eventually has everyone down from some forearm shots. Homicide cleans house upon tagging in. He hits Daniels with a Hamachan Cutter for two. Williams comes in to fight of Morgan. He ends up on the floor where Daniels delivers an Arabian Press. Homicide goes for a tope suicida and gets caught. Ki however dives onto Daniels and Morgan after that. Joe dive onto everybody. He Dragon suplexes Williams back in the ring for two. Williams fights out of the Island Driver. Morgan Saito suplexes him. He gives Homicide the Golden Gate Swing. Ki breaks the pin. Homicide dragon screws Morgan into an STF. Daniels breaks it with a double axe handle. Daniels rolls through Homicide’s super Frankensteiner. Ki chops him up in the corner. He gets two with an O’Conner Roll. He misses the Tidal Crush. Daniels brings him off the second rope with a high speed prawn hold. Joe stops Homicide from giving Daniels the Cop Killa. Williams saves Homicide from the Island Driver. Ki puts Morgan in the Dragon Clutch. Daniels picks up and with Morgan gives him a neckbreaker/powerbomb combo. Williams breaks the pin. He gives Daniels the Chaos Theory for two. Morgan Golden Gate Swings Williams. Homicide makes the save and gives Williams a brainbuster. Joe remains steadfast from Homicide’s lariats. Homicide kicks him low and tries for the Cop Killa. Joe rolls him into the Coquina Clutch and gets a submission victory at 23:35. They actually kept the “cast” rotating enough so the match never felt long. I liked Joe’s roll in the Prophecy at the time; not agreeing with their morals, but taking their payment to help out and doing a damn good job of it. Ki, Homicide and Williams were a fun trio and everyone blended together really well. ***1/2

FWA Championship & #1 Contenders Trophy
Christopher Daniels (Champion & Trophy Holder) vs. Doug Williams

“Night of the Champions” – Philadelphia, PA – 3.22.2003

In addition to the title and trophy, Daniels says that Williams can shake hands again if he wins. Williams nails a shoulder block causing Daniels to hit the floor. When he comes back in, Williams goes for a series of quick pin attempts. Frustrated, Daniels goes back out. Williams does some damage to Daniels’ arm and neck. Daniels softens up his neck as well. Williams suplexes out of a chinlock. He goes back to wearing Daniels’ neck down. Daniels sends him to the floor and delivers a baseball slide to his mid-section. After ramming Williams’ stomach into the ring, Daniels focuses his attack on the mid-section back in the ring. Daniels blocks a sunset flip with an elbow drop. He drops Williams stomach first on the top rope and leg lariats him to the floor. After a strike exchange, Daniels digs the bottom rope into Williams. Williams nails Daniels with some knee strikes to mount a comeback. He mows him down with a lariat after blocking a boot to the stomach. He gets two with a fisherman’s buster. After some struggle he hits the tornado DDT. Daniels drops him with a Complete Shot in a moment of desperation. He calls for the BME. Williams puts him in a crossface before he can do so. Daniels gets the ropes. He fights Williams off and hits the BME for two. Daniels again drops him with a Complete Shot and puts on the Koji Clutch. Williams escapes and goes for the Chaos Theory. Daniels escapes. Williams snapmares out of a Last Rites attempt. He swings Daniels in a Cobra Clutch. He comes off the top rope with a knee strike to Daniels’ neck. Williams escapes the Angels Wings. He hits the Chaos Theory for the win at 18:13. I absolutely loved this. The work put in by moth men was amazing. Not a single move was wasted. They had their goal, went for it, and Williams ended up being the better man. Tremendous match and one of the best matches ROH had in 2003. ****

Christopher Daniels vs. The Amazing Red
“Retribution: Round Robin Challenge II” – West Mifflin, PA – 4.26.2003

Red goes for a quick roll-up. Daniels pounds on his back and stomps him on the mat. He gives him a release suplex and a slam for two. Red takes Daniels to the floor and slingshots into a Frankensteiner. Back in the ring he hits a missile dropkick for two. Daniels responds with a lariat. Allison Danger chokes Red on the bottom middle rope after Daniels does so. Red flips out of a German suplex. He kicks out Daniels leg and Magistral Cradles him for two. He also gets two with a British huracanrana and a springboard Complete Shot. Daniels blocks a huracanrana and hits an enzuigiri. He applies a chinbreaker. Red escapes and gives Daniels a modified British Falls DDT. Red hits the 718. He gets two with a springboard huracanrana. He nails a tornado kick for two. Daniels comes back with an STO. He hits the BME for two. Red snaps him off the top with a huracanrana for two. Red maneuvers into the Code Red for two. Daniels shoves the referee into the ropes to crotch Red on the top. Daniels gives him Last Rites for the pin at 11:08. Although Red was off in some moments, the crowd really loved watching him come from behind and got into all of his nearfalls. It actually may have been better in this instance that Daniels cheated to win because it had him save a little face and didn’t feel too cheap. **3/4

Christopher Daniels vs. Paul London
“Retribution: Round Robin Challenge II” – West Mifflin, PA – 4.26.2003

London mocks Daniels’ crucifixion pose. Daniels almost bails he’s so angry. London schools him on the mat which further frustrates him. He gets on the mic and tells London if he doesn’t start showing him so respect that he will kick his ass. London asks for a handshake if Daniels wants respect. Daniels uses that to bait him into a kick to the stomach. London dropkicks him to the floor and follows with a pescado. He gets two with a slingshot Oklahoma Roll. He also gets two with a dropsault. Daniels knees London in the stomach, thus beginning his targeting on London’s mid-section. London dodges a corner attack and leg lariats Daniels in the face. Daniels dropkicks him in the ribs for two. London dodges another corner attack and schoolboys Daniels. Daniels gets up and connects with a lariat. He hits the Angels Wings for two. He continues to target London’s mid-section against the ropes. London desperately hits a springboard forearm strike. He hits an enzuigiri for two. He misses a slingshot quebrada which further hits his mid-section. Daniels brings him off the top rope with an Iconoclasm for two. He misses the BME. London goes for a sunset flip but Daniels drops an elbow to block it. They fight on the top rope. London drops Daniels and hits the London Star Press. However, he’s too hurt to make an immediate cover giving Daniels some time to recover. When he does go for a pin Allison Danger hops on the ring apron. London sends Daniels to the floor onto her! London suicide dives onto Daniels. In the ring he gets two with a DDT. Daniels drops him with a Complete Shot and hits the BME for the pin at 19:54. These guys are terrific storytellers and made the most out of working over London’s ribs. It was the second match of the night for both of them so I’m curious how they would have done on a full tank of gas. Even still this was very good and a strong victory for Daniels’ towards his inevitable title match with Joe. ***1/2

Disc Two

#1 Contenders Trophy
Christopher Daniels vs. Xavier

“Bitter Friend, Stiffer Enemies” – Fairfield, CT – 8.16.2003

This is Xavier’s first match back in ROH since losing the title to Samoa Joe. They shove each other to the mat. Daniels gets the ropes to escape a cross armbreaker. Xavier gets the ropes to escape a crossface. Daniels jaw jacks with some fans in the front row. Daniels and Xavier switch control on the mat. Xavier sneaks in a haymaker when Daniels leapfrogs over him. Daniels fires back with a punch of his own. This ends up with them throwing furious punches on the mat. Daniels catches Xavier with a spear and drops him stomach first on the top rope. Xavier sends Daniels to the apron. He snaps his neck across the top rope and dropkicks him head first into the barricades. Xavier follows with a springboard Arabian Press. In the ring he targets Daniels’ neck. Daniels drops an elbow to block a sunset flip. He can’t get a suplex because his neck is too hurt. Xavier locks him in a modified Octopus before getting two in a crucifix pin. Daniels knees Xavier in the mid-section, which he has also been focusing on. Xavier escapes an abdominal stretch and drops Daniels with a reverse DDT. He hits an enzuigiri for two. Daniels spears him again. He ends a flurry of offense with a Complete Shot. Xavier pulls Daniels off the second rope and into a lariat. He drives the back of Daniels’ head into the canvas. Daniels goes back to Xavier’s ribs. He drops him with a uranage but misses the BME. Xavier hits a 450 splash. His ribs are too hurt to go for an immediate pin. When he does go for it, Daniels puts his foot on the ropes. He catches Xavier with a knee to the gut. Xavier jackknife pins him to escape the Angels Wings. They clothesline each other down simultaneously. Xavier backslides Daniels with his feet on the ropes. The referee catches him. Daniels O’Conner rolls Xavier and holds the tights for the pin at 22:24. This was a lot like the Williams match with really sound storytelling. The dynamic was different here with both guys being heels and former teammates and it was fun to watch. It felt a little long and the finish wasn’t great, but I still enjoyed this quite a bit. ***1/2

ROH World Championship
Samoa Joe (Champion) vs. Christopher Daniels

“Glory By Honor II” – Philadelphia, PA – 9.20.2003

Joe boots Daniels the moment the bell rings. He goes for an immediate pin and gets two. He stomps down Daniels and forearms him to the mat. Daniels snaps off a couple armdrags and nails a dropkick. Joe cuts him off with a clothesline. His combination gets another two count. Daniels gets two with an Arabian Press. Joe throws punches and chops in the corner. He ends with the facewash kick. Joe kicks Daniels in the back before applying a Boston Crab. Joe almost gives Allison Danger the facewash kick when she helps Daniels break the hold. Daniels cuts him and hits an Arabian Press on the floor. He sends Joe into the barricades. He goes for the Ole kick. Joe cuts him off and hits it himself. Joe rolls him in the ring in a Gedo Clutch. Daniels ducks a clothesline and German suplexes Joe. Joe however catches him with a powerslam for two. Daniels blocks a boot. He enzuigiri’s Joe twice and drops him with a Complete Shot. Daniels gives him a Samoan drop. He hits the BME for two. Joe drops him with the STJoe. He drives his knees into Daniels’ head and clotheslines him for two. Daniels drops him with a Complete Shot and puts on the Koji Clutch. When Joe escapes, Daniels hits the Blue Thunder Driver for two. He goes for an Iconoclasm. Daniels ends up bringing Joe down with a Frankensteiner. He hits the Angels Wings! Joe kicks out. The bell rings but it’s a false alarm. Daniels goes for the Last Rites. Joe reverses into the Coquina Clutch. Daniels gets his foot on the ropes. Joe delivers an enzuigiri before dropping Daniels with the Island Driver for the pin at 15:02. That was incredible. They had built a Daniels/Joe singles match for so long that the Philadelphia crowd was hot from bell to bell. The false finishes were executed perfectly and it made for a super enjoyable fifteen minutes. ****

All Japan Double World Tag Team Championship
The Great Muta & Arashi (Champions) vs. The Prophecy (Christopher Daniels & Dan Maff)

“Final Battle 2003” – Philadelphia, PA – 12.27.2003

Allison Danger is in the Prophecy’s corner. Arashi’s size wins out over Maff, who is sizeable himself. He avoids Arashi’s corner splash and tags in Daniels. He wants to tangle with Muta. They go after each others’ arms. Muta lightly kicks Daniels in the ribs. Daniels tries some mind games but is thrown off when Muta spits green mist into the air. Muta blocks a punch and hits one of his own. Daniels has trouble moving Arashi. Maff comes in to help back Arashi to their corner. The Prophecy take turns throwing punches while Arashi hangs out against the corner pad. Arashi catches Daniels with a clothesline and tags in Muta. He delivers his signature elbow drop. He heads up top for the moonsault. Danger distracts and Daniels forearms him from behind. The Prophecy chokes Muta on the ropes and then take turns attacking him. Muta finally escapes when he hits Maff with a dropkick. Arashi tags in and throws his own dropkick. He lariats Maff in the corner and gets two with a belly-to-belly suplex. Maff throws some strikes. Daniels tags in. Maff shoulder blocks Arashi into Daniels’ STO. Arashi powerslams Daniels and tags in Muta. Muta kicks out Daniels knees. He gives him a dragonscrew leg whip and locks on the figure four. Maff stomps Muta to break it. Arashi takes Maff to the floor as Daniels rolls up Muta for two. Maff hits Muta with a chair as he hits the ropes. Muta blows red mist into Maff’s face to block a chair shot to the face. Daniels uranage slams Muta. He misses the BME. Muta hits the Shining Wizard for the pin at 16:05. Arashi was too large to do much of anything. Muta got in his signature spots to pop the crowd and get their energy up while The Prophecy did a great job playing foils. This wasn’t anything memorable, but it gave the fans exactly what they wanted to see. ***

After this we get a series of clips. The first one is from “The Battle Lines Are Drawn” (1.10.2004) where Daniels’ Prophecy took on CM Punk’s Second City Saints in an over half hour long brawl. After the match, Punk put Daniels through a table via a second rope Pepsi Plunge. That match is actually shown in full on Punk’s “Second City Saint” comp. Daniels would not be seen in ROH until CM Punk won the ROH World Title from Austin Aries at “Death Before Dishonor III” (6.18.2005). Punk stated he was leaving ROH with the title and that no one could stop him. Cue Daniels emerging and jaw jacking with Punk. This leads to a brawl and Daniels challenging Punk for a title match right there. Punk turns him down. Daniels then cuts a promo about why he left ROH in 2004 and why he is back now. We then see a clip of Daniels vs. Colt Cabana from “Sign of Dishonor” (7.8.2005). Punk jumped in and accidentally leveled Cabana with a chain assisted punch. Daniels sent Punk to the floor and hit the BME to pick up the win on Cabana.

Christopher Daniels vs. Matt Hardy
“Fate of an Angel” – Woodbridge, CT – 7.16.2005

Daniels sends Hardy to the floor with a leg lariat. Hardy comes back with a clothesline and controls Daniels by his wrist. Daniels flips over his back drop attempt. He goes for the Angels Wings. Hardy counters and tries the Twist of Fate. Daniels shoulder blocks him repeatedly in the corner to block it. He Complete Shots Hardy into the Koji Clutch. Hardy grabs the bottom rope to break it. Daniels hip tosses Hardy to the floor and follows with an Arabian Press. He misses a slingshot elbow. Hardy gets two with a legdrop. He also gets two with the Side Effect. Same goes for a crucifix bomb. Daniels takes him down with an enzuigiri. He kicks Hardy into an STO. He gets two with the Blue Thunder Bomb. Hardy meets him on the top rope and superplexes him. When Daniels kicks out he tries to do it a second time. He pulls it off but the result is the same. Two more superplexes wears himself out as well. They trade strikes. Daniels side suplexes Hardy off the top rope. Hardy misses a moonsault. Daniels hits the BME for two. Hardy gets his knees up to block a quebrada. He rolls Daniels up for two. He nails a lariat for two. Daniels pulls off a Death Valley Driver. CM Punk makes his way ringside and punches Allison Danger. Daniels shoves hardy into the referee to block the Twist of Fate. Punk punches Daniels with the chain. Hardy then hits the Twist of Fate for two. Hardy puts him in a butterfly lock. Daniels taps out at 19:36. They sort of went through the motions here, and even the story was on point, it never really held my attention. Really the Punk stuff was the only intriguing part. ***

Daniels would get his title shot at “The Homecoming” in Philadelphia (7.23.2005). We are shown the last fifteen minutes of the match, which ends in a 60:00 draw. Daniels would end up being a part of a four corner elimination title match at “Redemption” where James Gibson won the title from Punk. During that match however, Daniels and Joe re-kindled their old rivalry. (A clip of the four corner survival is not shown, but it is important to note for the next match.)

ROH Pure Title Match
Samoa Joe (Champion) vs. Christopher Daniels
“Night of the Grudges II” – Morristown, NJ – 8.20.2005

Joe goes for Daniels’ arm while Daniels goes for Joe’s leg. Daniels uses the ropes to flip out of a wristlock, which he is penalized one rope break for. Joe blocks a leapfrog with an inverted atomic drop. He kicks Daniels to the mat. The Combo leaves Daniels out of a breath. Joe knees him in the corner. He key locks the legs and pulls on Daniels’ face. He gets two with a delayed vertical suplex. Daniels comes back with a lung blower. He decides to continue doing damage to Joe’s mid-section after that. Joe uses his first rope break to escape an abdominal stretch. He throws knees and chops to try and turn the tide. When he goes for the facewash kick, Daniels kicks him in the stomach. He applies a bodyscissors which Joe escapes using his second rope break. Joe gets two with a powerslam. Both men get warned for throwing closed fists. Daniels use his final rope break to escape an STF. Daniels nails him with an enzuigiri and gets two with a quebrada. Daniels gives Joe a uranage and hits the BME for two. He locks on the Koji Clutch. Joe uses his final rope break to escape. He knocks Daniels down with a running boot. Joe puts on a Coquina Clutch in the ropes, which is now legal. Daniels taps out at 20:15. I liked this more than the silent crowd did. I thought they used the rope breaks in pretty clever ways and paid off the work they had put in by the end. It’s not as good as some of their other matches, but still good stuff. ***1/4

Christopher Daniels vs. Low Ki
“Tag Wars 2006” – Dayton, OH – 1.27.2006

Ki is a replacement for Samoa Joe. He puts Daniels in an armbar in the ropes. Daniels persistently keeps on a side headlock. Ki throws some forearms against the ropes. Daniels hip tosses him back to the mat and into a front facelock. Daniels drops an elbow for two. Ki sends him to the apron and dropkicks him into the barricades. He drives Daniels back into the barricades a few times, as well as his chest into the ring apron. As expected, that’s what Ki focuses on when he brings Daniels back into the ring. Ki puts on a bodyscissors. He stomps down Daniels. He shoves referee Todd Sinclair and grabs Allison Danger by her hair. Daniels O’Conner Rolls Ki for two. He goes for a sunset flip and Ki double stomps him. Daniels drives him into the mat with a Complete Shot. He gives him a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker and drops him with the STO for two. Ki goes for a lariat. Daniels catches him with a uranage. Ki grabs his legs to prevent him from hitting the BME. When he goes for it Ki crotches him on the top rope. He sets up for a double stomp while Daniels hangs in a tree of woe. Daniels shoves him to the floor and follows with an Arabian Press. In the ring he gets two with a high crossbody. Ki successfully pulls off the tree of woe double stomp. He misses a double stomp through the ringside table, injuring his own leg because of it. Daniels goes for a quick cover and gets two. He goes for the Angels Wings. Ki reverses it into a pinning combination for the victory at 20:49. Pretty good I guess, but you would expect these two do a lot better than their initial encounter four years prior. Instead, it ended up falling a bit short. ***

Daniels offers his very first handshake to Low Ki. Ki does not accept it, because Daniels did not accept his handshake offering in the main event from the first ROH show.

Christopher Daniels vs. Alex Shelley
“Best in the World” – New York, NY – 3.25.2006

Prince Nana and Daizee Haze are in Shelley’s corner while Allison Danger is in Daniels’. Shelley spits water in Daniels’ face. He slaps him in the face after avoiding a leapfrog. He bails to the floor so Daniels can’t reply. They exchange holds back in the ring. Shelley rubs Daniels’ bald head, so Daniels slaps him. Shelley shoulder blocks him from the apron and sweeps his legs. Daniels catches him with an inverted atomic drop coming back in. He controls Shelley on the mat. Shelley brings him to the corner and throws some chops. They fire Daniels up who throws some of his own chops back. He puts on a chinlock. They trade waistlocks. Shelley snapmares him into a boot rake across his face. Shelley dropkicks him in the back. After a neckbreaker he puts Daniels in a full body stretch. Shelley clotheslines Daniels into a bulldog for two. He gets two with a quebrada as well. He snaps Daniels throat across the top rope. Shelley goes for a slingshot move. Daniels catches him coming in, then nails an enzuigiri to buy some time. After a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker he gets two with an STO. Shelley leapfrogs out of the corner and superkicks Daniels. They roll each other into a few different pinning combinations. Shelley dropkicks Daniels on the top of his head. Daniels comes back with the Blue Thunder Bomb. He misses the BME but lands on his feet. Shelley gets his knees up to block the Arabian Press. Shelley goes for a Backslide. Daniels turns it into the Angels Wings for the pin at 14:36. Shelley is so incredibly entertaining. His personality shine through for the match’s entirety. He and Daniels had a super fun back and forth match and the finishing sequence was pretty stellar. ***1/4

Claudio Castagnoli vs. Christopher Daniels
“The 100th Show” – Philadelphia, PA – 4.22.2006

They both pose and get some “HEY!” chants from the crowd. Some arm work kicks off the bout. Claudio hip tosses his way out of a side headlock. Each guy snaps off an armdrag. Daniels sends Claudio out with one. When he comes back, Claudio puts on the Neutralizer. Daniels gets the topes and retreats to the floor. Daniels goes for a leg hold and Claudio gets the ropes. He lifts Daniels for over 60 seconds in a vertical suplex. He throws a few uppercuts before Daniels dropkicks his knee out. Daniels works over Claudio’s leg after that. Claudio hits an uppercut from the second rope, but the landing aggravates his knee. He hits the Match Killer for two. Daniels responds with a Death Valley Driver. The BME gets him two. He misses a knee strike. Claudio puts the Neutralizer back on. Daniels make it to the ropes. He goes for the Alpamare Water Slide. Daniels counters with an SOS roll-up for the pin at 15:54. The finish was a bit abrupt, but it followed a really strong back-and-forth wrestling match. It was cool to see one of ROH’s fore fathers battle one of the newer stars in the opener of the 100th show. ***

After the match, Daniels says that the 100th Show concludes a series of events called the Milestone Series. Tonight, he creates a milestone of his own, by making Claudio Castagnoli the first man whose hand he shook. He said he shook Claudio’s hand because he respects him and sees him as the future of ROH. Of course, Claudio would turn on ROH and join CZW later in the show.

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