Picture Credit: Adam Leavelle
Doors opened at 18:30. There was a meet and greet with a few of the wrestlers before hand, I went to my seat and skipped the meet and greet. Show started exactly at 19:30. We opened up with an Adam Cole promo, he mentions that his doctors and ROH officials didn’t want him to compete tonight; Cole shouts out “fuck them” to a loud reaction from the crowd and heads to the back.
Gedo vs Delirious
A pretty much nothing match, short; just something to get the crowd hyped. Pretty cool to see the bookers from ROH and NJPW go at it but the match wasn’t anything to write home about. Gedo got the win. Time: 6:50 *1/2
Kushida vs Roderick Strong
Both men get a good reaction. From the very beginning of the match, these two went at it, a great back and forth match. Strong got the upper hand about 7mins into the match and took control of it for a good 4mins after, Kushida gained the momentum and the match went into another level. Both men kept hitting each other harder and harder. Stiff shots one after another, by this point we aren’t even half way through the match and the crowd starts chanting “This Is Awesome” as the match started heading towards the end, the action picked up even more. Strong picks up the win. This match was Fucking Awesome, from top to bottom. This match was arguably Match of the Night and a legit candidate for Match of the Year. Words do not do this match justice, you must go out of you’re way to see this. Time: 16:40 ****3/4
Jay Lethal vs Takaaki Watanabe
Watanabe comes out to an okay reaction, followed by The House of Truth. Lethal plays to the crowd a bit, match gets started with Watanabe knocking around Lethal. Jay gets the upper hand and pretty much takes control over the match until the end. Lethal picks up the win, match was good. I don’t know what it is but Watanabe just doesn’t seem to be clicking and when you look up and down the New Japan Roster, he’ll more then likely get lost in with all the great talent. Time: 11:42 ** 1/2
The Young Bucks vs The Kingdom vs The Addiction
If you’ve never been to an event with the Young Bucks and seen just how over they are, you definitely need to. Nick and Matt were the most over guys in the match and probably the second or third most over all night(Which you’ll find out later in the review) match starts off with a huge Young Bucks chant as Nick starts off with Taven. Pretty good back and forth match, Bennett got worked on for the majority of the match before making the tag into both Bucks. The match then became the usual awesome spots from the Bucks, everyone got s super kick (including the Ref) match ended with the Bucks hitting the Meltzer Driver, which popped the crowd huge and seeing that move live is definitely a must. This match was fun and it was awesome seeing the Bucks live again. I was there for they’re first match in ROH back in 2008 at Contention in Manassas, Va and too seem them now, they are definitely the best tag team in the world. Time: 15:40 *** 1/4
We then had an intermission and at this point, it was already 10:00 and me and a few others were questioning why they were taking an intermission so late; with it being a weekday and people had to work in the morning and I myself had to drive back to Va and work in the morning.
We come back from intermission with Moose making his way to the ring. The entrance is money and with the crowd doing the arm motion every time they say moose. Stokley Hathaway gets on the mic and says that Moose deserves a shot at Jay Briscoe, Veda Scott then takes the mic and runs down Stokley and tells the crowd that Moose will become the next world champion. As she’s speaking the crowd starts a loud “Shut The Fuck Up” chant.
Michael Elgin vs Tatsuyo Naito
Elgin makes his way to the ring, to literally no reaction (The fans did not care for him) Naito makes his way out to a positive reaction. Match starts off a little slow, with them playing to the crowd a little bit. Elgin takes control of most of the match until Naito gets fired up and does the comeback. Elgin hit his turnbuckle bomb followed by his spinning powerbomb. Naito kicks out and Elgin looks in shock, Naito wins with a roll-up. Another good match but the crowd only cared about Naito, Elgin was just plan boring and I personally do not want to see him in New Japan. Time: 12:11 ***
ReDRagon vs Hiroshi Tanahashi & Jushin Liger
All four men get a big reaction. A Liger and Tanahashi chant gets started as the match starts. Liger starts off with O’Riley, the two go at it before Liger makes the tag into Tanahashi, while O’Rilley tags in Fish. The two go at it, one thing about Tanahashi is that you could see he is definitely hurting as he didn’t do much but did a lot more then what I expected him to do, since he’s taking it slow until the G1. Redragon picks up the win in a fun match; after Liger and Tanahashi raise the arms of Redragon, which gets a huge reaction. I said earlier that the Bucks are the best tag team in the world but Redragon is right on they’re tail. This was great too see two Japanese wrestling legends but it’s also great that ReDRagon picked up the win. I read a stat somewhere that since coming to New Japan last year, ReDRagon has only lost one match; which goes to show that not only does ROH want to keep them strong, so does New Japan. Time: 12:16 ***
AJ Styles vs Adam Cole
Cole makes his way to the ring, followed by AJ. The match starts and the crowd starts a “Fuck’em up AJ, Fuck’em up” chant. These two have great chemistry, hands down the second best match of the night. These two were going at it, AJ hit an amazing Pele kick; Cole tried to go for the destroyer twice but it was blocked. AJ caught Cole in the clash but instead gave him two piledrivers from in the clash position and following the second piledriver, he clinched him tighter and hit the clash. AJ picks up the win and goes to shake Coles hand but Cole walks off. The after match ended up like they’re last one did, not sure if they might be building to an AJ/Cole feud down the line or what. Time: 17:20 *** 3/4
Shinsuke Nakamura & Kazuichika Okada vs The Briscoes
Okada makes his way too the ring too a big reaction, second biggest of the night. Then we get what I’d say 95% of the people were waiting for all night…….Nakamura. He comes out, does his usual entrance. Before the Briscoes come out, Nakamura chants flood the arena. Briscoes come out too, from the start you knew that all we cared about was Okada and Nakamura. A dueling Okada/Nakamura chant gets started, Okada starts off with Mark, they go at it; Okada tags in Nakamura. Mark starts doing his redneck Kung fu, which Nakamura does a little bit of his own, Jay makes the tag in and just watch him work in person, you can tell Jay is extremely physical in the ring, everything looks snugged and rough. Nakamura looks like he’s about to hit the knee and gets cut off by Jay. They tease going for the doomsday but it gets blocked and Okada hits the drop kick on Mark in the corner. Nakamura and Jay spill too the outside, Okada hits another drop kick(Which is a thing of beauty in person) to Mark; then signals for the Rainmaker and crowd is on they’re feet. Okada hits Mark with the rainmaker for the win. Very good match, Okada and Nakamura played two the crowd after; which they could have done that all night and we would have eaten it up. Time: 19:40 *** 1/2
Overall I’d give the show a B+, it was an awesome show with a lot of fun stuff that happened. I’ll say this, if you have an opportunity to go to an ROH event please do and if you have an opportunity to see wrestlers from New Japan in the States, go see them because you’ll truly understand it when you do. Hoped you guys like my review.