ROH Death Before Dishonor IX
September 17, 2011
-From New York, NY. Your hosts are Kevin Kelly and Dave Prazak.
Rhino and Tomasso Ciampa (with Prince Nana and The Embassy) vs. Homicide and Jay Lethal
Lethal is Homicide’s surprise partner. Ciampa and Lethal kick things off by trading shoves. They trade holds with Lethal outmaneuvering his larger opponent along the way. Rhino tags and Lethal could be screwed. Lethal manages to keep up against the intimidating Rhino. Homicide tags and brings the fight to the Manbeast. Ciampa tags and pummels Homicide into the corner. The referee misses some interference from the Embassy at ringside. Lethal tags and assists Homicide in double teaming Ciampa. Ciampa drop-kicks Lethal off the apron into the barricade, where Rhino continues the assault. Back to the ring, Lethal teaches Ciampa how to throw a chop. Ciampa drop-kicks the shin to retake control. Lethal becomes the isolated baby face as the Embassy cut the ring in half. Homicide gets a luke-warm tag and goes to work suplexing Ciampa. Ciampa attacks but Homicide takes a moment to wipe out Rhino with a suicide dive. Homicide kicks out of Ciampa’s Northern Lights suplex. Ciampa delivers some unprotected running knee shots to the head but Homicide rebounds with an Ace Crusher. Lethal dumps Rhino to the floor with a hurricanrana! Ciampa blocks the Gringo Killer and nails Project Ciampa for the win at 10:14. Cookie cutter opening match, but the work was crisp, **½.
Winners: Rhino and Tomasso Ciampa
-The Embassy put the boots to Homicide after the match. Lethal chases everyone off by wildly swinging the Television Championship belt. The Embassy appear to be proud of themselves.
“The Prodigy” Mike Bennett (with Brutal Bob Evans) vs. Shelton Benjamin
The crowd chants “Fuck you, Bennett” as the bell rings. I hope ROH isn’t mistaking Bennett’s “X-Pac heat” as genuine heat. Bennett hides in the ropes from an aggressive Benjamin. Bennett is hapless as Benjamin wrestles circles around him in the early going. Bennett punches his way into the contest but Benjamin throws it right back. The crowd chants homophobic slurs at Bennett as he stalls for time. Brutal Bob distracts Benjamin, allowing Bennett to gain the advantage. Bennett follows up by slamming Benjamin onto the apron. Cue the chinlock! Benjamin counters a suplex with a neck breaker. Benjamin wins a punching contest and delivers a back body drop. Bennett survives some near falls and counters with a back breaker. Bennett goes high risk with a bad missile drop-kick. Overhead release German suplex by Benjamin! Brutal Bob puts Bennett’s foot on the ropes. Benjamin chases Brutal Bob and takes down both adversaries. Pay Dirt finishes Bennett at 10:53. Average match here, though I’m concerned that the Bennett experiment is not paying off, **.
Winner: Shelton Benjamin
Three Way Elimination match:
The Bravados are eager to fight and interrupt the Young Bucks making fun of Booker T. Future Shock assist the Bucks in dumping the Bravados to ringside and then in turn leaping onto them. Harlem Bravado sneaks back in and moonsault onto his enemies. Kyle O’Reilly hits a nasty missile drop-kick off the apron into the corner barricade. Why, yes, this is a spot-fest. We settle into Lancelot Bravado in the ring against O’Reilly. Future Shock and the Young Bucks continue to be in cahoots as virtually no one likes the Bravados. Harlem knocks Cole into Matt Jackson, which could signal the end of the happy union. They set up a nifty electric chair spot on the floor. Adam Cole nearly eliminates Lancelot with a flying cross body. Future Shock double team Harlem to eliminate the Bravados at 6:42. The match restarts with Future Shock slugging it out with the Young Bucks. The Bucks have the experience advantage and overwhelm Cole and O’Reilly with some nasty double team maneuvers. O’Reilly hits a double leg screw and counters a splash. Future Shock lock on stereo submission holds but the Young Bucks hold on. Super kicks and clotheslines are dished out until all four men are down. The Bucks deliver More Bang for Your Buck to finish Cole at 10:49. Ten years ago, this probably would’ve been my favorite match ever. Still, a spot-tacular spot-fest, ***½.
The Bravado Bros. vs. Future Shock vs. The Young Bucks
Winners: The Young Bucks
-Future Shock look for handshakes but The Young Bucks blow them off. Jerks.
El Generico vs. Jimmy Jacobs
The Code of Honor is followed! We are treated to a clean, competitive match in the early going. Jacobs takes a “Little Jimmy” chant in stride. The match is a little too clean for the bloodthirsty fans in attendance, I guess this is why you shouldn’t book baby faces against each other. Jacobs connects with a spinning head scissors. Generico answers with a tirt-a-whirl backbreaker. Standing moonsault by Generico gets 2. The match is so slow, I can’t imagine Kevin Steen not running in. Generico chops but Jacobs responds with some lariats. Neck breaker by Jacobs. Generico misses a Yakuza Kick and ends up on the receiving end of a suicide dive. Snap suplex by Jacobs only gets 2. They block finishers with Generico hitting a Michinoku Driver. Jacobs survives a Half Nelson suplex and counters a Yakuza Kick with his End Times submission. Ace crusher by Jacobs gets 2. Yakuza Kick by Generico but Jacobs blocks the Brainbuster. Spear on the apron by Jacobs! Generico catches Jacobs on the top but Jacobs counters with a top rope Tornado DDT! It’s about this time that Kevin Steen jumps the guard rail and grabs a microphone. I’d say the match is a no contest around the 12 minute mark. The match was pretty heatless, as the fans were anxious for the inevitable Steen run-in, but the work was solid and unpredictable in the late going, **½.
-Steen says he’s never going away and sarcastically leads an “ROH” chant. They cut Steen’s mic as his ranting becomes vulgar. Security and students surround Steen but Jacobs attacks! Steen power bombs Jacobs on the apron! Generico dives onto the entire group, hitting everyone but Steen in the process. Cary Silkin enters the ring and tries to offer Steen a deal. Steen tries to hit a package Piledriver but the students make the save. Jim Cornette joins the party and tries to take a swing at Steen. Everyone wants a piece of Steen, but no more than El Generico, who has to be physically restrained. The Steen saga continues it’s slow build.
Michael Elgin (with Truth Martini) vs. Charlie Haas
I’m surprised that Elgin follows the Code of Honor, I take this to indicate there will come a day when the House of Truth will no longer be able to control him. Slow start with Haas and Elgin feeling each other out. Haas delivers some arm drags and works the arm. Butterfly suplex by Haas gets 2. Martini blocks a springboard from Haas, allowing Elgin to nail a clothesline. Truth lures Haas into a flying shoulder block from Elgin. Elgin delivers another flying shoulder tackle to further establish his control. Both men are down after double clotheslines. Haas wins a slugging contest and delivers rolling German suplexes. Elgin runs into a power slam for 2. Elgin fires back with running clotheslines. Elgin plants Haas but can’t get the pin. They spill over to ringside where Elgin violently whips Haas into the steel barricade. Haas counters with a back drop onto the guard rail! They battle on the top rope with Elgin delivering a superplex. Haas surprises Elgin with a German suplex off the turnbuckles! Haas hits a lariat for the win at 12:42. This was a mostly average match, elevated by some MOVES! ***.
Winner: Charlie Haas
This is a 2/3 falls match. The first fall is pinfall only, second fall is submission only, and the third fall is a 15 minute Iron Man match. This could be a long one. Strong offers an insincere handshake, unless he’s really confused about what his disposition is supposed to be. They start off with some fancy chain wrestling. They avoid each other’s chops and Strong takes a ringside breather. The match restarts with some quick exchanges. Edwards scores with a suplex, the first bump of the match. They trade chops. Strong hits a suplex of his own. Edwards absorbs quite a bit of punishment as Strong unloads his stiff offense. Edwards nails a desperate release suplex. Missile drop-kick by Edwards connects. Strong reverses with a slam. Flying Code Breaker by Edwards but Strong shakes it off and delivers a backbreaker. Strong win the first fall at 12:00. Strong kicks off the second fall by spitting his water onto a still weakened Edwards. Strong gets creative with his submission work, including fish-hooking the mouth. Strong uses a backbreaker to weaken Edwards for the Strong Hold. Edwards nails a desperate face buster. STF by Edwards! Strong retreats to ringside and dodges a dive. Strong tosses Edwards onto a chair in the barricade corner. Roderick is feeling nasty and suplexes Eddie onto the standing chair. Strong leads Edwards back to the ring for the Strong Hold! Edwards escapes and engages Strong in a chopping contest. Gut-buster by Strong but Edwards counters a back breaker. Achilles lock by Edwards! Strong taps at 20:20! Edwards kicks off the third fall with a suicide dive! Edwards uses his second wind to punish Strong with some hard offense. Martini distracts long enough for Strong to catch Edwards with a pair of enziguris. Strong nails a backbreaker onto the turnbuckles! Double knee backbreaker by Strong only gets 2. Abdominal stretch backbreaker still isn’t enough. Strong delivers a Gibson Driver onto the entrance ramp! Strong returns to the ring at the 19 count. Edwards fights back with a chin breaker. They have a slapping contest until Edwards nails a stiff kick. They battle on the top rope and Edwards delivers a superplex. They counter pinfall attempts in creative fashion. Martini grabs Edwards’ foot to hold him in place for Strong to gain a pinfall at 34:25. Edwards chases Martini. Strong goes for a sleeper but Martini accidentally clocks his own man in the head with the Book of Truth. Edwards plants Strong to gain a pinfall at 35:12. There’s only 15 seconds left when the 30 second grace period is over. The 15 minute time limit of the third fall expires at 35:58. The match is declared a draw, but Jim Cornette storms out and asks both men if they’d accept a time extension. Cornette declares the match will continue all damn night if it needs to. The match restarts with Strong and Edwards exchanging a flurry of fists. Tiger Suplex by Edwards gets 2.9999. Strong viciously attacks the head. Gibson Driver by Strong gets another close near fall. Strong looks for a top rope move but Edwards counters into a hurricanrana! Double knee gut buster by Edwards! Double stomp off the top onto the apron by Edwards! Another double stomp to the back! A pair of power bombs by Edwards still isn’t enough! The Michinoku Driver finishes Strong at 42:42! My hat goes off to both men. I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of this one. ****¾ for a dark horse MOTYC.
Roderick Strong (with Truth Martini) vs. Eddie Edwards
Winner: Eddie Edwards
-Eddie Edwards struggles to his feet but still manages to bask in glow of his hard-fought victory. Edwards is basically the top contender for the World title now.
Ladder War III:
Kenny King and Rhett Titus spend a bit too long posing as the Briscoes jump them from behind. King finds himself alone against both Briscoes, but Titus fetches a ladder. The NYC ROHbots chant “We want blood” as Jay nails a drop-kick on Titus. All four men brawl on the floor. It doesn’t take long for the chairs and tables lying around the ring to come into play. Jay back drops King through a table! Titus and Mark brawl in the ring while Jay props a ladder on the ring and barricade. The Briscoes double team Titus with a chair. The Briscoes try to back drop Titus onto the ladder but it’s blocked. Titus suplexes Mark over the ropes onto the ladder! A bloody Titus over the ropes onto Jay. King is back on his feet and assists Titus in driving a ladder into Jay’s groin. The ANX have some fun dismantling Jay in a creative fashion. King dives to the floor but Mark shields himself with a piece of table. Jay is a bloody mess as the brawl continues. The camera misses Jay suplexing Titus on the ramp, but King hits a nifty moonsault off the barricade. The Briscoes launch King high into the air and he crashes down on a ladder. We get a close up of Jay’s forehead and he’s bleeding buckets all over the place. The Briscoes abuse King with a chair while Titus is out. Titus launches Mark off the top through a table! The ANX put Jay through a table with a power bomb blockbuster combo! Titus finally shows interest in climbing the ladder to retrieve the contract hanging from the ceiling. Jay drop-kicks the ladder, knocking Titus down. Jay wildly swings the ladder like a helicopter, making himself dizzy in the process. Jay drags a ridiculously huge ladder out and stands it at ringside. Mark climbs the gigantic ladder and dives off, putting Titus through a table! Holy sh(bleep)t! It’s down to Jay vs. King in the ring, with the giant ladder to the side. Shooting Star Press by King! Jay and King both climb the ladder and meet at the top. King knocks Jay off and gets the case at about the 27 minute mark. The Briscoes thrive in hardcore spot-fests and this was no exception, ****¼.
The Briscoe Brothers vs. The All-Night Express
Winners: Kenny King and Rhett Titus
-King uses Jay’s blood to sign the contract in the case. The All-Night Express are the new #1 contenders to the ROH Tag Team Championship. Titus climbs back into the ring and embraces with King. That’s a nice moment.
Final Thoughts: This ended up being a terrific show as the final two matches were fantastic. The problem with this show is that it was a lame duck iPPV, with virtually no promotion, and nothing that took place on this event seems to have had any consequences in the television continuity. DBD IX was taped after the initial television tapings but wasn’t released until after several episodes had aired, so it exists in kind of a gray area. Still, it’s a breezy show to sit through, as it clocks in under three hours and there isn’t a bad match on the card. Thumbs up, I say.
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