Welcome to the first edition of the Ring of Honor Rewind! This new series will focus on the weekly HDNet shows, recapping the matches, offering my opinions on what happened and giving each shows an overall grade. There will also be a weekly ranking of the matches in order of quality, followed with a ongoing list of the top five wrestlers and tag teams! A lot to do, but ROH is worth it!
The show opens with a video package of the spectacular brawl that followed last week's main event of El Generico vs Davey Richards, followed by the introduction to the first ever Monday night show for ROH.
The announce team, consisting of Mike Hogwood and Dave Prazak, welcome us and begin to talk about the brawl, as well as hyping up the main event of Tyler Black vs. Nigel McGuinness. This leads directly into the opening bout.
Eddie Edwards (w/ Shane Hagadorn) vs Kevin Steen
From almost the second that Steen hits the ring, he and Edwards begin to brawl, throwing kicks and punches at each other. This is nice continuity from last week when they squared up in the finale fight, something you don't tend to see in WWE.
After a couple of minutes of this, Steen threw Edwards through the ropes to the outside, leading to Hagadorn distracting Steen.
In a very generic tag team move, Steen went after Hagadorn, only to be attacked from behind by Edwards.
This led to an absolute beating on Steen, with Edwards ramming him into the barricades twice, before leaving him on the outside, hoping for a countout victory.
Steen finally got back in the ring at the count of 18. (Side note: ROH doesn't work to a 10 count, but a 20 count.)
Edwards followed up with repeated kicks to the head, before Steen hit him out of nowhere with a sick flipping jawbreaker off the ropes and two successive cannonballs.
Just when it seemed like Steen was getting back in the match, Edwards stunned him with a running neckbreaker, before positioning him on the top turnbuckle for a Code Breaker, leading to a nearfall.
Edwards attempted an Irish Whip, but was countered with an impressive Pumphandle Neckbreaker, again only garnering a nearfall for Steen.
This led to Hagadorn distracting the referee, whilst sliding a chair in for Edwards to use. However, Steen beat him to it and proceeded to hit Edwards with two of the most sickening shots over the head I have ever seen.
After this, Steen took to the air with a Swanton bomb, leading to the three count and the win.
Winner: Kevin Steen via Pinfall (Around 10 minutes)
After the match, we were treated to a couple of promo's from Tyler Black and Nigel McGuinness regarding their main event match. This was very well set up, as it showed some video clips from over the past couple of weeks, starting when McGuinness distracted Black, leading to Black getting knocked out by Austin Aries. McGuinness finished up by saying that Tyler didn't deserve his reputation as a future champion.
Backstage, Kyle Durden interviewed the Dark City Fight Club. He said that he didn't know why they were here, considering Jon Davis (one of the members) wasn't medically cleared to compete due to an injured arm. Davis then rebutted, saying that "They don't need medical clearance to kick someone's ass."
Cheech and Cloudy vs Tony Kozina and Sal Rinauro
This match never even got out of the starting blocks, as about two minutes in, Dark City Fight Club ran down to interfere, causing the DQ.
Every wrestler bailed from the situation except for Kozina, who ended up on the wrong end of a DCFC beating.
No Contest via Interference (Two minutes 30)
To the backstage again, where Durden is standing by with "The original playa from the Himalayas" Sonjay Dutt, who talks about bringing colour and charisma back to ROH.
Coming back from commercial, we are greeted by the arrival of the Necro Butcher, signifying the start of the next match!
Necro Butcher vs Sami Callihan
Necro Butcher came out with his ankle wrapped in electrical tape, apparently to do with his recent run in with Jimmy Rave.
Butcher gained the early advantage over Callihan, attacking him with strikes and throws. However, Callihan was able to work his way back into the match by attacking Necro's damaged ankle with a series of well aimed shots.
This comeback didn't last long, as Necro went to attack Callihan with his signature Staple Gun. The referee intervened, but that didn't stop Necro, who finished off Callihan with a beautiful Tiger Driver for the three.
Winner: Necro Butcher via Pinfall (About six minutes)
At the end of the bout, Colt Cabana, Brent Albright and Grizzly Redwood came down to the ring. Cabana cut a promo praising Necro Butcher for all of his hardcore styling and skill. He then proceeded to ask him if he would become the fourth member of their team in the eight man elimination tag team match against the Embassy. Necro responded by putting a staple through Callihan's head, prompting Cabana to say: "A yes would've sufficed!"
Cutting to backstage, Durden is standing with the current ROH champion Austin Aries. Aries spent the time belittling Durden, before saying that everyone in ROH has taken their eyes off the prize by becoming focused on things like the main event and Jerry Lynn (who suffered a severe arm injury after a botched driver, leading to nerve damage). He ended the segment by saying that the ROH championship was the most important thing.
Back to ringside, where the announcers begin hyping next weeks main event of Austin Aries vs Roderick Strong, as well as an appearance by Jerry Lynn.
This leads to the main event.
Tyler Black vs Nigel McGuinness
After a very slow start to the match, consisting of many ringouts and taunts, Black began to build momentum by working over the leg of McGuinness.
McGuinness, however, began turning the tide in his favour with a series of Hammerlocks and armbars to weaken Black's arm, which was the beginning stages for McGuinness's Tower Of London finisher.
This led to the crowd loudly cheering on Black, urging him to come back and beat McGuinness.
Just as McGuinness set up for the TOL, Black countered with a dropkick, followed by a 360 flip to the outside and then a moonsault off of the ring barrier.
After rolling back into the ring, McGuinness began to build an advantage after a missed moonsault from the top. McGuinness then locked in the London Dungeon, but Black was able to force a ropebreak.
McGuinness, visibly frustrated, hit yet another TOL on Black, before attempting a second London Dungeon submission. This time, Black countered with a kick to the head.
This led to an incredible looking sequence where Black countered McGuinness's Jawbreaker Lariat into a small package for the pin
Winner: Tyler Black via Pinfall (17 minutes)
The announcers hyped up Black's victory by saying that he was now the logical number one contender for Aries's title.
This was an average episode of ROH, which was saved by the fantastic main event, which was by far the highlight of the night for me. Despite the hype over ROH's tag team division, they weren't shown to be the jewel in the crown after a missed opportunity for a fantastic match. The promo work was faultless this evening, with each segment being used to build up characters and rivalries to the point of perfection, a rarity in other promotions. With all the hype for next weeks main event, I can see it being a must not miss match that could surpass this weeks if done right. Trust me, with two fantastic athletes being showcased, that could be the case!
Show Grade: I'll give it a B. Good work, but could've been better.
1. Tyler Black vs Nigel McGuinness
2. Necro Butcher vs Sami Callihan
3. Eddie Edwards vs Kevin Steen
4. Cheech and Cloudy vs Tony Kozina and Sal Rinauro
Weekly Top Five
1. Tyler Black
2. Nigel McGuinness
3. Austin Aries
4. Necro Butcher
5. Colt Cabana
Until next time, this has been Hayley Graham and that was the ROH Rewind!