ROH house show report 5-18 Richmond (updated)




I attended the Richmond TV taping for Ring of Honor.

The crowd started out very hot and died throughout the show, but we were persistent and should come off well for the television airings.
Before the taping started, we were told to hold back on the profanity and needless chants for irrelevant wrestlers and topics (ie. CM Punk, TNA, etc.) which they worded as, "It doesn't matter who the best in the world is..."
1 - Michael Elgin def. Kyle Matthews with the Elgin Bomb in a very good back and forth opener. The fans loved Elgin and it'll come across great on TV. Matthews got a lot more offense than I expected. Elgin battled back and hit the majority of his signature moves. They did two or three near-falls that were really good. In the end, Elgin picked up a good win.
2 - Adam Cole def. Adam Page in 09:57 with the Florida Key (X-Plex) in probably the best match on the show. Cole got one of the best reaction from the crowd and nearly all the females went crazy for him. He directed some glances towards Steve Corino (who was on commentary), but didn't do much with him. This had a ton of near-falls and high spots. Matthews at one point won over the crowd by doing a Shooting Star Press off the apron onto Cole. At that point the fans were chanting "This is awesome!".
3 - Mark Briscoe def. Roderick Strong in 16:09 after a volley of pinning combinations. Briscoe was somewhat over, although I feel like his Redneck Kung-Fu (which had multiple chants in favor for) was what won over the fans rather than his presence. The match was solid, although it lost heat during rest holds which happened often. The finish saw them go pinfall after pinfall (Sunset Flip into reversal into reversal) until Briscoe ended up getting a lucky three-count. Side-note, a very old man sitting next to me asked me if Mark was related to Jack and Jerry Briscoe. I said he wasn't, and the man proceeded to run down the history of the classic Briscoes which was awesome.
4 - Tommaso Ciampa won a very quick squash against Chris LaRusso. The crowd didn't react to this well since it happened so quickly. Ciampa did his running knee twice before hitting another move and that was that. In hindsight, that probably made Ciampa look bad since it was so rushed.
5 - American Wolves (Richards & Edwards) def. S.C.U.M. (Rhett Titus & Cliff Compton) in 13:41 with a simultaneous submission (Ankle Lock and Half Boston Crab). Corino before the match hyped his selection for the stable tonight as the opponents weren't revealed ahead of time. Titus and Compton soon came out through the crowd and the match was underway. The Wolves looked great with the crowd once again alive. You might hear some rather annoying chants on TV that one particular person was starting in the audience. Corino didn't interfere once again instead looking very flustered on commentary. They did a couple of very good near-falls, but overall it was probably third best.
Intermission.
6 - A-1 (Jeff Early & Zak Hilton) def. Adam Chambers and Brandon Day in a match that started with no heat, but later got a tremendous response from the crowd. A-1 got really over with the crowd. No idea if this is going to air (although the cameras were recording), however it should make A-1 come across like stars on television. At one point, A-1 did two back to back Crossbody dives off the turnbuckle to the ringside area on their opponents. I'm not sure who, but the one who went first fell right to the floor as no one caught him. The thud echoed off the walls here.
Steve Corino entered the ring and cut the usual promo about S.C.U.M. killing the company and their mission in wrestling. He also dropped that Matt Hardy would be receiving his ROH World Championship match at the June 23rd TV taping in Baltimore. Corino later teased the possibility of him being booker of ROH which continues to hint at a possible Corino vs. McGuinness (who wasn't there) match.
7 - Caprice Coleman & Cedric Alexander & Jay Lethal def. ROH World Tag Team Champions Red Dragon (Kyle O'Reilly & Bobby Fish) & ROH World Television Champion Matt Taven in 15:11 in the second best match on the show. Lethal curiously took a lot of offense to build to a hot tag to Alexander. It looked like they were really pushing C&C. O'Reilly at one point did the running man to...gain heat? Fish looked great, as did Lethal who did an excellent job at playing up the crowd. Lethal was also one of the most over stars in Richmond. Nearly everyone around me knew him and had the cardboard pictures of him. During the final couple of minutes, they ran through the action like crazy (at some point the match fell apart) but it was good frenzied action and the fans loved it. A lot of babyface wins on this show.
8 - Kevin Steen vs. Jimmy Jacobs ended in a DQ at around 1:10 when Jacobs choked out Steen with a chain. Crowd died instantly. Steen then grabbed the mic and said that this wasn't going to end this way, bringing up their past history. Steen said he wanted No DQ. Ringside officials came out to separate the two. After a short while, someone ran out with a phone to give to referee Turner who basically was given instructions to restart the match under No DQ rules. At this point the fans were going bananas with Steen fighting through the officials and tossing Jacobs into each barricade. They brawled until Jacobs got the advantage and brought in a piece of the barricade. They traded holds until Jacobs tossed Steen onto the barricade. They used a steel chair and Steen later hit the F-5 onto the mat. Steen eventually hit the Package Piledriver on Jacobs onto the barricade for the pin in 10:38. It should be noted that Steen's knees looked wrecked and it took a lot of effort for him to get to his feet. After the match, Steen gave Jacobs an F-5 onto an unfolded steel chair.
9 - Jay Briscoe def. BJ Whitmer in 20:32 to retain the ROH World Championship as Whitmer passed out to a headlock (if I remember correctly). Not at the level of main-events people hoped for which needed to happen since neither Jay nor Whitmer were that over with the crowd. The fans here tried to start dueling chants which didn't really pick up until the 15 minute mark or so. Briscoe at one point hit the Jay Driller only to get a near-fall which was great. Towards the end, Briscoe arm dragged Whitmer out of the ring who then crashed through the table which had the belt and bell on top of it. Ringside officials soon ran over to Whitmer and they treated it like a legit injury (although it wasn't). Jay then came outside and brought Whitmer back into the ring. Jay kept kicking Whitmer in the head who asked for more punishment until he collapsed. Briscoe then applied what looked like head lock or choke hold and Whitmer passed out for the submission victory. That was a bit of a flat finish. After the match, Eddie Edwards, Richards, Lethal, Coleman and Alexander came out to apply ice to Whitmer and help him up. Whitmer and Briscoe shook hands and hugged to close out the program. The post-match was well-received by the fans.

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