ROH Honorable Mention:TV Review (2/18/17)
The show this week was the fourth episode taped at Atlanta’s historic Center Stage theater. The show started with Decade of Excellence tournament video package. Kevin Kelly was on commentary alone to start the show.
First Match: Silas with Beer City Bruiser vs Bull James
Young offered his hand for the code of honor and James eventually accepted, pulling Silas in close. The Beer City Bruiser took the opportunity to distract James, allowing Young to start the match with an advantage. Young dominated a slow and methodical match early on, outsmarting James when he was in trouble by running outside and using BCB to buy himself some time. As James went to suplex Young into the ring from the apron, BCB pulled Young out of the move, unbeknownst to the referee Paul Turner. Young slid into the ring and went for Misery, but James was able to counter. Young reversed out of pedigree attempt by James and showed impressive strength by hoisting James up in Misery before scoring the pinfall victory.
Winner: Silas Young
Jay Briscoe promo. Spoke about being in ROH for 15 years, was there from day one and listed all of his accomplishments but ultimately said that his only focus was beating Christopher Daniels to earn a title shot so that he can become a three time champion.
Bobby Fish promo aired about winning Survival of the Fittest, with clips of his win against Rush as well as making Cole tap out during last week’s episode. Fish reminded everyone that he has always followed through on what he has set out to do and he plans on doing the same at Manhattan Mayhem.
Second Match: Colt Cabana vs. The Boys w/Dalton Castle
Castle in commentary. Cabana got in the mic and said things aren’t over and that he’s going to destroy the Boys. Very one-sided match with Cabana in control almost the entire time. This was really just more a vehicle to continue the issues between Cabana and Castle heading into their match at Manhattan Mayhem. Cabana hit a Chicago skyline on one boy and then applied the Billy Goat’s Curse on the other for the submission victory.
Winner: Colt Cabana
A Christopher Daniels promo aired during which he spoke about his desire to win the tournament and get his title shot, possibly winning the big one and not going down in history as one of the guys who never had a run with a world title.
Main Event: Decade of Excellence Tournament Finals
Christopher Daniels vs. Jay Briscoe
Mark Briscoe and Frankie Kazarian join Kelly on commentary for this one. The two adhered to the code of honor to start the match and the crowd was vocally evenly split in their support of the wrestlers. Briscoe transitioned to a side headlock and shoulder blocked Daniels down, taking Daniels down with a hurricanrana before going for an early Jay Driller. Daniels escaped and went for an early Angel’s Wings, but Briscoe escaped as well. After the break Daniels had Briscoe in a side headlock and then dropped Briscoe with a drop toehold, locking in the headlock again. Briscoe fought out and floored Daniels with a boot to the face and followed up with headbutt and strikes that forced Daniels into the corner.
Daniels fought back and hit a springboard moonsault from the second rope that went for a two count, then deciding to lock in a koji clutch and go for a submission win. Briscoe was able to break the hold by making it to the bottom rope. Daniels controlled Briscoe until Briscoe rolled out of the ring, Another commercial break and when the action resumed, Briscoe clotheslined Daniels over the top rope before connecting with a tope suicida. Daniels slowly dragged himself onto the apron and dodged Briscoe, sending him to the outside. Daniels quickly hopped off the top rope and hit a seated springboard moonsault. Kaz and Mark couldn’t take it and both ran from commentary to support their friends. Back inside, Daniels and Briscoe took each other out with simultaneous cross body blocks. The two traded punches and headbutts until Daniels dropped to the mat after a particularly strong forearm shot. As Briscoe went to pick Daniels up, the Almighty rolled him up in a small package that went for a very near victory. Daniels then hit Angel’s Wings, but only got a two count and then he was caught unaware by Briscoe who hit a Death Valley Driver. Briscoe positioned Daniels on the top rope, but Daniels fought him off and hit Angel’s Wings from the top rope, earning the pinfall victory and a title shot against the champion at the 15th Anniversary show.
Winner: Christopher Daniels
Final Reaction: B-
The first two matches were lackluster. James is in and out of ROH and it’s difficult to keep any consistent reaction or chemistry with the roster. Although the Cabana match played into his feud with Castle it felt as if this could have been accomplished in a different manner altogether. The entire episode basically worked off of the strength of the Decade of Excellence tournament finals. The atmosphere for the match was vociferous and made the match all the more engaging, especially once Daniels won the match. There seemed to be genuine fan support and his reaction, as well as Briscoes, added to the special moment. Nevertheless, looking at this as a full episode, it did not hit on all cylinders.
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