ROH Border Wars
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Best Match: Davey Richards vs. Kevin Steen
Worst Match: Briscoes vs. Haas and Benjamin
I was one of the lucky ones who actually got to see Border Wars tonight and the first thing I noticed is that Ring of Honor's production is LIGHT YEARS ahead of gofightlive.tv. The video quality is superb, the sound is in sync and we didn't get any production snafus like not knowing how to do a replay. If the whole deal with the site going down didn't happen everyone would rave on how great this show looked from the technical side.
Didn't see the Eddie Edwards/Rhino match. Still was trying to get the stream working. I don't think I missed anything special.
ANX and TJ Perkins vs. Young Bucks and Mike Mondo. Fun 6 man that picked up near the end into a chaotic spotfest. Perkins looks amazing. 3 stars
Jay Lethal vs. Road Warrior Santa Clause err Tomasso Ciampa. This was Ciampa's best match he's had in ROH thanks to Lethal. Lethal looks like a star who should be in the main event scene now that he's ended Ciampa's undefeated streak. If it wasn't for Crimson in TNA, Ciampa would've had the worst undefeated streak ever seen. 3 1/4 stars, -5 stars for Ciampa's beard
Mike Bennett vs. Lance Storm. Good match. Wasn't as great as the Showdown in the Sun match was but it was good. Lance did a good job. 2 3/4 stars
Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin. Michael Elgin looks like a mega star and Adam Cole looks like the poster child of generic indy geeks. There was a spot in the match where Cole goes for a dive to the outside and overshoots Elgin and Elgin deadlifts him back up to his shoulders and slams him. Later he goes to the top rope and lifts Cole from the apron into the air and hits a super falcon arrow. Elgin continues to look like a main eventer in the making and Cole seems destined to be pushed down everyone's throats as something special which he's not. In the end they also hinted at Elgin breaking away from the House of Truth and Truth Martini. 3 stars
Fit Finlay vs. Roderick Strong. This was just two tough guys hitting each other as hard as they could. It was something different. Nigel McGuinness put over Finlay strong. Good match but the finish came out of nowhere with the Sick Kick. 2 3/4 stars
Briscoes vs. Haas and Benjamin Fight Without Honor. These guys just need to stop working with each other. This started out promising but turned into a cluster. The finish with an ether rag in 2012 just seemed so dumb and what made it worse was Kevin Kelly and Nigel McGuinness crying about how awful and over the line that was when it was a Fight Without Honor where ANYTHING GOES. A credit I give ROH is they don't kill stipulations (Kevin Steen aside) but they killed the Fight Without Honor tonight cause it just seems this feud will continue. 1 3/4 star
Davey Richards vs. Kevin Steen. It hit me that when Davey Richards isn't working with Eddie Edwards or Roderick Strong he is the Ric Flair champion where he makes his challengers look like mega stars and convince people that the challenger is going to win the title. Thought Steve Corino was going to be involved in the finish but instead they had Steen pin Davey clean with the package piledriver and win the title. Afterwords Corino hugged Steen and left together so it should be interesting what happens from here. It seemed like the right time to take the title off Davey. 3 1/2 stars
Thumbs Up, but not as high as they should be.
Best Match: Steen/Richards
Worst Match: Me/Cocomore Drupal
Missed half the show. That part was a living hell. However, all is forgiven. I didn't miss the thing that I paid to see. That was the loudest POP (more like BLAST) this living room has ever heard. A grand culmination of a great feud. Only saw the 3 title matches. Trying to avoid spoilers on the 1st half of the card. Very excited to see more Lance Storm & especially Rhyno, 2 guys who fit perfectly on the roster. Much like Finlay, who put on an even better clinic than last night's match up with Jon Davis. Weird title change with the WGTT, but I'm fine with it. It was a fight without honor and wrestling's best heel, Charlie Haas, proved without a shadow of a doubt that he has no honor what-so-ever. When I thought of it like that, I actually loved the finish for what it meant. As for the disastrous first 2 hours, GFL got scapegoated for the sins of a Black Out & previous Gorilla Position malfunctions. At least they finally got their proper due.
-- "Mad Dog" Joe DeCurso
I have to rate this show as a total thumbs down. I was unable to access
the Border Wars stream until 9:43p.m. eastern time despite having
ordered the show a day earlier. I saw the end of the Finlay vs. Strong
match, what I saw was okay, but I obviously missed much of the story so
this was a dud for me. Briscoes vs. World's greatest tag team was just
*3/4 match to me. Short match (for these teams) with very little real heat.
The title match was ** at most. The build up to this match was really
lacking compared to last year's Richards vs. Edwards match. Steen is in
my opinion not a very good worker and he showed me very little in this
match. Richards does not mesh well with Steen, he'd be way better off
working with the more technically oriented members of the crew who he
can make shine in the ring. There is no way Richards is going to be able
to make Steen, who is better suited to throwing around garbage cans and
cookie pans, look good in an ROH championship level match. I think Steen
will fade fast as champ, he doesn't have the skills in the ring to make
a long go of it, despite the effort to build the long term angle that
resulted in his win.
Now to the technical problems. The access problems have been addressed
to my satisfaction by giving me the next iPPV for free. If all goes well
on the next show, my faith in the process will have been restored and
all will be well. There is a lot for ROH to overcome in terms of the
broadcast itself. The monitor that the announcers were using went out
before the tag match and I guess was never fixed as Kevin and Nigel
couldn't see a lot of the action during the match and talked over a
replay prior to the championship match. Steve Corino was at ringside for
the championship match and was on mic, but his mic didn't work for the
entire match. I'm just guessing here (ha-ha) but I think he had a lot to
say that would have advanced the angle involving him and Steen. The next
iPPV will be a make or break moment for ROH. I will be getting the show
for free, but any access problems, or any more annoying distracting
broadcast issues will mean the end of my ROH viewing. I'm a fan who is
at the end of his rope with this promotion. I'm guessing I'm not alone
in this. It's the year 2012, if the Mutual Network could run live
wrestling in the early 1950's I see no reason why ROH can't overcome
live broadcasting issues now 60 years later, they better get it right
next time 'cause there is no second chance now.