Last week: Bully Ray & The Briscoes defeated the sudden contingent of Matt Taven, Vinny Marseglia & Silas Young to become the new ROH Six-Man Tag Team champions following TK O’Ryan’s injury the night prior.
ROH TV Episode 291
Las Vegas, NV
Chris Sabin vs. Caprice Coleman w/ Kenny King
No Code of Honor to start this one as Coleman quickly went from grappling to punching his opponent in the mouth. Sabin fought through his precarious predicament, picking up the pace to set up an enzuguri topped by a face plant & that running kick off the apron when Coleman tried to find haven at ringside. King got between Sabin & Coleman, distracting Sabin by throwing up the Rebellion hand gesture that saw Coleman perform the smoothest eye poke in history by sliding his hand through King’s elevated arms to complete the illegal maneuver. The show headed to a commercial break just as Lio Rush ran out to confront King about getting involved.
The show returned with Sabin trying to start a comeback, but felt the Trinity instead. When Sabin kicked out of the pinning combination Coleman prepared, Sabin rolled through and kicked his opponent in the chest. Sabin was on fire, landing kicks aplenty incoming a missile dropkick. Doing the deal courtesy of a falcon arrow, Sabin came close to ending this one. Sabin had something off the middle rope in mind when Coleman caught him with the frankensteiner capped off by the Mindtrip … that gave Caprice a two count!
Sabin was ready, avoiding the Sky Splitter before using a failed back body drop to wipe out King on the floor. Sabin wanted to follow up with the sunset flip, but King was there to hold Caprice’s arms to save him from falling down. Rush ran across the apron, kicking The Rebellion members’ clasped arms to help Sabin complete the sunset flip and gain the subsequent three count.
There was a video recap of everything that went down in the main event that saw The Briscoes & Bully Ray become the new Six-Man Tag Team champions.
Roppongi Vice vs. Cheeseburger & Will Ferrara
The fans wanted Rocky Romero and Rocky wanted Cheeseburger. Cheeseburger was the first to throw a strike, leading to an exchange both of strikes and shoulder blocks. Cheeseburger got the momentum from to ropes to help assist him, giving Ferrara a chance to get involved and try to perform Vice’s on double team running knee against them. Little did Burger & Ferrara know, Vice was loading up the knee as well, overwhelming their opponents before the commercial break.
Romero had the never-ending series of clotheslines in mind, but Cheeseburger had other things in mind by countering before tagging out. Ferrara met the legal Beretta and the illegal Romero, knocking both men down before almost pinning the former “Trent?”. Beretta missed a shoulder ram, falling to the floor that gave Ferrara the chance to tope him. When a celebrating Ferrara turned around, Romero almost took his head off courtesy of a running knee off the apron. As if that wasn’t enough, Vice’s rope-assisted double team dropkick and Beretta’s running knee didn’t end this one. Thanks to Cheeseburger’s Shotei, Ferrara didn’t feel the Strong Zero. Knocking Beretta into the crucifix was Cheeseburger with the Shotei … that ended in a near fall thanks to Romero’s interference!
The fans believed it was a three count, but the match was still going on as Ferrara tried to put Beretta’s lights out. German suplex by Ferrara gave him idea to go for a tornado DDT. Beretta caught him and countered, putting Ferrara in position for the Strong Zero; and the pin fall was elementary.
Ferrara refused to follow the Code of Honor, leaving Cheeseburger behind.
There was a video recap of how Josh Woods and John Skyler became the finalists in this year’s Top Prospect Tournament that concludes next week.
Wildcard Tag Team match: Jay Lethal, Silas Young, Adam Page & Jay White vs. Bobby Fish, Colt Cabana, Lio Rush & Hanson
Each team was picked a random with the winning quartet getting a chance to fight for the number one contender spot for the World title in the future. Cabana and Rush were the first to have problems, resulting in Lio interjecting himself in the opening minutes of wrestling against Jay White. The grappling exchange evolved into the two try to kick the other’s head off, but coming up short as the fans showed their approval. Silas Young entered the ring to mock the fans and demand a real man take control. Blind tag from Hanson put Young on the back pedal. When Lethal called Young out for not wanting to fight “War Beard”, Silas chopped his own partner. Thing were breaking down as Lethal and Young started throwing hands on each other as their partners tried to stop them before the commercial break.
The show returned and everything fell apart for Lethal’s team as everyone started fighting. In the ring, Cabana had the former World champion to himself until Hanson tagged in for a little face wash action by using his beard. Bobby Fish took his opportunity to pay Lethal back for the loss at the “15th Anniversary” by kicking and slamming Lethal until he went for an Irish whip. An illegal knee by Silas was topped by Page’s clothesline from the apron. Lethal was infuriated by the illegal activity, but Page & Young had swung the tides in their team’s favor. The less-than-honorable pair were working over Fish while purposely not letting the likes of Lethal or White enter legally as the show entered a commercial break.
The story was the same as the show returned as Young sent Fish to the floor for Page’s shooting star press off the apron. Pitching Fish into Young’s clutches, Page almost set up a three count off Silas’ Finlay roll. The pair got a little too predictable, resulting in Fish utilizing the northern lights suplex to send Page into Silas before tagging out to Hanson. Hanson was clotheslining anything that moved thanks to the assist from Cabana that saw him knock White and Lethal into the ring. Tagging in Rush, Hanson wanted Lio to slam “War Beard” atop a prone Page. In an impressive show of strength, Rush completed the task to a standing ovation as things started breaking down again. Lethal was the recipient of four big maneuvers, having to kick out of Rush’s pin attempt following the tornado DDT. Ducking a clothesline off the reversed Irish whip, Rush somersaulted on top of everyone fighting at ringside. Everyone slowly recovered, entering the ring to land a big maneuver on whomever was the only man standing. Cabana found himself in the ring with his old rival, taking the Lethal Combination to end the sequence as the fans began to chant, “This is awesome!” Lethal looked up to see Page as the only partner left to help him. “Hangman” refused to tag in, leaving his partners behind. At the top of the ramp, Frankie Kazarian attacked Page as Rush almost pinned Lethal with the surprise cradle. Power bomb by Rush gave him the chance to scale the ropes. Lethal got his knees up at the last moment to stop Rush’s frog splash, executing Lethal Injection seconds later to pick up the pin for his team.
Overall: While the last couple of weeks of ROH TV haven’t been too connected to the major storylines, there have been consistent stories solely dedicated to the televised product to ensure most everything mattered. This week really didn’t have too many intertwining stories outside of the opening contest as Sabin fought a Rebellion member after they supposedly attacked Alex Shelley – a claim that has yet to be confirmed true on ROH TV or elsewhere. Sabin vs. Coleman was solid as solid can get; with two men fighting to gain the undivided attention of an exhausted crowd. Not to be outdone were the follow up tag team bouts with the first being surprisingly fantastic and a reminder just how underrated the likes of Cheeseburger & Ferrara is as a unit (though it appears that team might not last much longer). Then there was main event – a match type I’ve always been a fan of since the days of WCW’s Lethal Lottery. This was a great example of the concept and, even better, there was a prize than just some random team being forced to work together. By the match’s end the fans were rightfully going crazy and it just proved how diverse the current ROH roster is and can be. If there was one flaw in this episode it has to be the question as to why Lethal was involved in the match considering he won a top contender’s match at the pay-per-view over Fish. What should’ve been essentially a throwaway episode proved to be anything but thanks to a highly entertaining main event and two really good undercard bouts.