Ring of Honor: Dragon’s Reign


Belle Vernon, PA – 5.11.2013

Championship Rundown
ROH World Champion: Jay Briscoe
ROH Television Champion: Matt Taven
ROH World Tag Team Champions: reDRagon (Kyle O’Reilly & Bobby Fish)

Commentary is provided by Kevin Kelly and Steve Corino. Larry Legend is also the ring announcer for the evening.

The American Wolves (Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards) vs. QT Marshall & ‘Barrister’ RD Evans

Marshall shoves Richards after backing him to the corner. Richards catches him with a dropkick off the ropes. He trips him into an Oklahoma Roll for two. He holds onto Marshall’s arm after an armdrag and gets Edwards to stomp on it. The Wolves deliver a tandem backdrop for two. Edwards sends Marshall out with a Frankensteiner. Evans boots Edwards in the stomach then runs around the ring in celebration. Richards goes to kick him, but he catches Marshall with it instead. With Marshall knocked down Edwards suicide dives onto Evans. Edwards slams Marshall and Richards comes off the top with a headbutt for two. Richards goes to attack Marshall in the corner. Evans cuts him off, allowing Marshall to give Richards a back suplex. He kicks Edwards to the floor so he and Evans can work over Richards in their half of the ring. Richards escapes by giving Marshall an enzuigiri and rolling Evans to the corner. Edwards lights Evans and Marshall with chops. He overhead suplexes Marshall and suplexes Evans into a facebuster. Edwards superkicks Marshall for two. Marshall clotheslines both Wolves down. Evans tries it himself but eats the Alarm Clock instead. Edwards superkicks him into Richards’ German suplex for two. Evans almost gets Richards with a handful of tights. Marshall gives him an inside out suplex for two. Edwards kicks Evans to the floor. Richards backslides Marshall for two. The Wolves attack Marshall and Evans in opposite corners. Edwards stomps Marshall’s back. Richards gives him a traditional double stomp for two. He then applies the ankle lock. Edwards rolls Evans into the Achilles Lock. Marshall taps at 12:52. This was a terrific opener. The Wolves let their hair down and just had fun with Marshall and Evans, who were entertaining in their own right. The crowd was hot for everything and it got the show off on the right foot. Perfect opening match. ***

Tommaso Ciampa vs. Vinny Marseglia

Ciampa’s new entrance is awesome. It’s something you would expect in one of the big league companies. He takes Marseglia off his feet and works over his left arm. He applies a Japanese stranglehold and elbows Marseglia in the head. Marseglia knees Ciampa in the head to escape. He delivers a few dropkick. Ciampa’s knee gets hurt in a leapfrog. Ciampa however Catcus clotheslines Marseglia to the floor without issue and drives him back first into the barricades. He drapes Marseglia on the barricades and drives his knee into the side of his head. Ciampa continues to control Marseglia back in the ring. Marseglia gets in a few strikes in the corner after throwing Ciampa into the barricades. He drops him with a tornado DDT and a side Russian leg sweep to earn two separate two counts. Ciampa knees Marseglia and O’Conner Rolls him. Marseglia sends him to the floor and suicide dives after him. He missile dropkicks Ciampa back in the ring for two. After a strike exchange, Ciampa boots Marseglia down in the corner. Even though Marseglia fights free at first, Ciampa takes him back down and gives him three running knee strikes. He comes off the second rope with the Air Raid Crash for the pin at 11:57. I’m surprised (but not in a bad way) at how much offense Marseglia got here. Ciampa has that main event aura to him now and I hope ROH takes advantage of that.. He calls out Michael Elgin after the fact which is a match I am very much looking forward to. **¼

Proving Ground Match
Matt Taven vs. Tadarius Thomas

If Thomas is able to defeat Taven or last the time limit, he will earn a shot at the ROH Television championship. Truth Martini, Scarlett Bordeaux and Seleziya Sparx are in Taven’s corner. The opening exchange sees Thomas kick Taven in the back. Taven charges and gets armdragged twice. Taven goes for a moonsault. Thomas avoids it and kicks him in the chest. Truth Martini’s distraction does nothing as Thomas just gets in some more kicks. Taven goes for the Headlock Driver early. Thomas headstands to avoid it and overhead suplexes Taven for two. Thomas gets caught up trying to avoid being hit by the Book of Truth and gets kicked off the apron by Taven. Taven drives Thomas’ back and face into the apron. He misses a twisting senton. Scarlett distracts Thomas so Taven can recover and deliver a spinwheel kick. He gets two with a springboard senton and again with an enzuigiri. Truth chokes Thomas on the ropes behind Brian Gorie’s back. Gorie does catch Sparx tripping Thomas and sends the entire HOT backstage. While Taven is going nuts, Thomas rolls him up for two. He then hits a modified Slingblade for the same result. Same goes for a half-nelson suplex. Taven dropkicks Thomas as he goes to the top rope. He brings him down with a rolling neckbreaker for two. Thomas gets his knees up to block a frogsplash. Taven stops Thomas’ pump-handle maneuver with the Headlock Driver for the pin at 13:07. Taven got a chance to look really competent without his crew in the end and Thomas got some excellent backing from the crowd. There were still some flubs from Taven in the beginning but at least he seems to be getting better. If he can have better matches without loads of gaga I’m all in favor of that. **¾

Michael Elgin vs. ACH

Elgin’s size is too much for ACH in the early going. ACH is able to take him down with a headscissors. When he goes for a Frankensteiner, Elgin catches him. He tries sitting down on him but ACH moves. He kicks Elgin in the back and the head for a one count. ACH fails to pick him up for a slam. Elgin delivers a right hand. ACH drops the top rope to send Elgin to the floor. He misses a split-legged moonsault but takes Elgin down with a headscissors. Elgin catches his suicide dive and overhead suplexes him onto the floor. He then whips ACH into the barricades and kicks him into the crowd. ACH makes it back into the ring before 20. Despite him trying to fight, Elgin stomps him down. He gives ACH a delayed vertical suplex. He tries for it again, but ACH is able to suplex him first! He enzuigiri’s Elgin from the floor and axe kicks him from the apron. Elgin spills to the floor and ACH follows with Michael Jordan. Elgin catches ACH’s crossbody. ACH however Rolls the Dice for two. Elgin responds with the Boss Man Slam. He drives ACH into the corner with a Death Valley Driver. ACH grabs the rope to break the pin. Elgin clotheslines his back and chest. He delivers a rolling elbow. ACH nails an enzuigiri and a bicycle kick. Elgin bicycle kicks him right back. ACH catches him with an Ace Crusher. He goes for one from the apron but Elgin dropkicks him. He deadlifts ACH into a second rope Falcon Arrow! ACH jackknife pins him for two. Elgin drops him with a uranage. He misses a tumble weed senton. ACH throws some kicks and drops Elgin with the Lightning Spiral for two. ACH misses a 450 splash but rolls through. Elgin backfists him and gives him a Buckle Bomb. ACH counters the Revolution Bomb with a spike reverse Frankensteiner! He hits the 450 splash and Elgin kicks out! Once they’re both up, Elgin nails ACH with a rolling elbow the back of the head. Another backfist, Buckle Bomb, and a successful Revolution Bomb give Elgin the win at 20:03. This right here is undoubtedly ACH’s best match in ROH thus far and almost a breaking out party for him. Elgin made him look like a million bucks and got to still look like a monster in the process. The commentators and fans losing their minds created an awesome atmosphere that’s hard to replicate. This match is worth seeking out. ***¾

Dalton Castle vs. Jimmy Nuts

The Party Peacock (Castle) getting an ROH gig makes me happy. Both he and nuts wrestle for IWC out of the Pittsburgh area. Nuts back’s Castle to the ropes and gives him a pair of armdrags. Castle hops to the apron to avoid an attack but gets elbowed in the face. Castle drops some double axe handles to Nuts’ back. He gets two with a pump-handle suplex. He catches Nuts coming off the ropes and gives him another suplex. He deadlifts Nuts up but Nuts elbows his way free. Rhett Titus runs out to attack Nuts and Castle, leading to a No Contest at 2:28. Obviously this was nothing more than a set up for Titus’ run in. Kevin Steen’s music hits, leading to our next match.

Kevin Steen vs. Rhett Titus

Steen sends Titus into the barricades. He even cannonball sentons Titus into them. Corino distracts Steen long enough for Titus to attack him. It doesn’t last very long as Steen is able to send Titus crotch first into the ring post. Steen goes for a powerbomb on the apron. Titus shoves him into the barricades and rams his head into them repeatedly to block. In the ring he whips Steen back first to the corner. Steen takes him down and delivers a senton. He misses a cannonball senton. Titus kicks his head into the ring post. He boots Steen in the corner. Steen kicks his hamstring and spits on Corino. Titus snapmares Steen for a zero count. That would have been stupid if it got a nearfall, so good on you Steen. Titus ends a strike exchange with a dropkick. The fight on the floor. Steen gives Titus the F-Cinq onto the ring apron! He hits a Swanton Bomb back in the ring for two. Titus comes back with the Thrust Buster. He gets two with a frog splash across Steen’s back. Steen pops him up into a powerbomb. Titus blocks the Package Piledriver and F-Cinq. Paul Turner misses Titus’ low blow to Steen. Steen manages to kick out of it. Steen kicks the rope into Titus’ groin. While Turner is yelling at him, Steen discreetly kicks Titus in the groin again. He gives Titus the Package Piledriver for the pin at 13:45. It seems as if Titus has been totally inconsequential since losing Kenny King. It’s a shame but what can you do? At least this match served its purpose in Steen’s series of matches against the members of SCUM. Steen hits two more Package Piledrivers on Titus because. **¾

Adam Cole vs. BJ Whitmer vs. Roderick Strong

A three person overhand finger lock sees all three men circle around the ring. They eventually all break free. Each guy tries some quick pins. Strong dropkicks Whitmer out and Cole leg lariats Strong. Cole suplexes Strong for two. Whitmer powerslams Strong and back suplexes Cole. Whitmer tosses Strong in an exploder suplex into Cole in the corner. Strong rolls Whitmer into a jackknife cradle. Whitmer sends him to the floor and follows with a suicide dive. Cole then suicide dives onto Whitmer. Cole goes for a crossbody on Strong, but Strong catches him mid-air with a dropkick. Strong throws some strikes in the corner before giving him the Angle Slam. Whitmer fisherman suplexes Strong twice. Cole breaks up his pin attempt. He hits Whitmer with the enzuigiri and Shining Wizard for two. Strong gets two on Cole with Death by Roderick thanks to Whitmer breaking the cover. Whitmer gives Strong an exploder suplex. He goes for one on Cole who turns it into a brainbuster onto his knee. Strong superkicks Cole. He tries pinning him and Whitmer to no avail. Strong enzuigiri’s both Whitmer and Cole in opposite corners. He superplexes Whitmer. Cole tries stealing the pin but Strong stops him. A series of superkicks and strikes leaves Strong laying. Whitmer then gives Cole an exploder suplex for the pin at 9:46. This really was just three guys thrown together for no rhyme or reason, but at least Whitmer got a nice win before challenging Jay Briscoe for the World Title. I also like that this didn’t fall into the trap of one guy bowing out as two guys wrestled. It was a refreshing take on the three way match even if it was totally random. **¾

No Disqualification
Jay Lethal vs. Jimmy Jacobs

Kevin Steen cuts a backstage promo before the match saying he’s not done with SCUM. The fight starts on the floor where Jacobs is sent into the barricades twice. He drops Lethal face first onto a propped up chair before throwing him face first into the barricades. Lethal see-saws Jacobs into the ring post. Jacobs shoves Lethal’s back into the ring frame. He tries a suplex and it gets reversed. Jacobs pokes Lethal in the eyes. He comes off the apron and gets superkicked in mid-air. In the ring Lethal drop toe holds Jacobs onto a chair. He bulldogs his face onto the chair back. Lethal goes for a back handspring maneuver. Jacobs stops him with a chair shot to the lower back. Jacobs utilizes the chair on Lethal’s face and throat. He comes off the ring apron with an elbow drop to the floor. He props up a chair in the corner. Jacobs busts out a spike but ends up getting it caught in the top turnbuckle. Jacobs goes for a spear and collides with the chair! Lethal hits him with a back handspring elbow. Jacobs tries introducing a trashcan but gets superkicked before it can be used. Lethal puts Jacobs in the trashcan and dropkicks it. He dropkicks Jacobs to the floor and suicide dives after him. Jacobs counters being thrown into the barricades by bouncing off and dropping Lethal with an Ace Crusher. In the ring he misses a top rope senton through a trashcan. Lethal has a chair as Jacobs pulls the spike out of the turnbuckle. The fight ends with Lethal hitting the Lethal Combination on his chair. Jacobs kicks out. Lethal sets up a table in the corner. Jacobs tries to spear him through it. Lethal moves and superkicks Jacobs onto it. Corino runs in and takes Lethal out with a clothesline. Kevin Steen then runs in. He sets up Corino for the Package Piledriver. Jacobs attacks him leading to a fist fight. Lethal accidentally superkicks Steen! Jacobs spears Lethal for the table and gets the pin at 21:50. It’s very rare to see Lethal in these types of matches but he does them very well. This did not feel long at all, they built the usage of weapons very well, and Steen and Corino’s involvement both made sense and added to the match. Jacobs and Lethal have been doing great things in 2013 and this was no exception. ***½

ROH World Tag Team Championship
reDRagon (Kyle O’Reilly & Bobby Fish) vs. The Briscoes (Jay & Mark Briscoe)

Kudos to the fan(s) who threw rainbow colored streamers at the Briscoes. This is a rematch from the “11th Anniversary Show.” BJ Whitmer is on commentary, scouting Jay Briscoe for their World Title match next weekend. O’Reilly and Mark wrestle to a stalemate. Fish forearms Jay to the corner. Jay throws some right hands and a big boot. Mark slingshots in with a senton. He suplexes Fish for two. The Briscoes lay him out with a double shoulder tackle. Mark throws some Redneck Kung Fu causing Fish to retreat. O’Reilly tries to kick him but Mark notices. Fish trips Mark from the floor. reDRagon take turns wearing Mark down. Mark flips out of a suplex from Fish. Jay throws more jabs and a boot to Fish. Jay tries fighting him and O’Reilly off. He sends O’Reilly to the floor so Mark can dropkick him through the ropes. Jay gives Fish a Complete Shot into the ropes. He drops him with a Death Valley Driver and Mark comes in with a corkscrew splash for two. O’Reilly breaks Jay’s schoolboy. Fish and O’Reilly then begin to target Jay’s injured shoulder. After a few minutes, Jay almost had the tag when O’Reilly pulled Mark off the ring apron. Fish knocks Mark off the apron too, but turns around into a spinebuster from Jay. Mark finally tags in and serves up some Redneck Kung Fu to O’Reilly. O’Reilly stops him from hitting a rolling Death Valley Driver. Fish is not so lucky. Mark goes for Froggy Bow. Fish kicks him to stop it. Jay throws some jabs with his bad arm. Fish catches him in an armbar. Mark uses the Froggy Bow to break up the submission. O’Reilly gives Mark a Saito suplex. O’Reilly comes off the apron and dropkicks Jay into the barricades. Mark and Fish go kick for chop mid-ring. O’Reilly tosses a tag title into the ring. While Sinclair is disposing of it, O’Reilly hits Mark in the back with the second belt. Fish kicks Mark in the side of the head for the pin at 18:53. While the finish wasn’t great, the action was. reDRagon did a great job working over Jay’s shoulders, which you can be sure will come into play later on. This win, along with their win against the American Wolves, has legitimized them and made them the team to beat. I look forward to seeing what’s next. ***½

The American Wolves make their way out. BJ Whitmer steps into the ring. Whitmer fights with the Briscoes while the Wolves fight with reDRagon! Michael Elgin watches all of this from the floor as officials step in to break up the fights. reDRagon head for the hills. Whitmer holds the ROH title. Jay snatches it back and says he will see him in Richmond. Jay is surrounded by his next four challengers: Whitmer, Davey Richards, Eddie Edwards, and Mark Briscoe. Elgin stares them all down on the ring apron. Quite an interesting scene to end the show.

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