ROH Report for Feb. 3 - Tag Team Gauntlet Headlines
Brian Campbell / February 4, 2013 - 7:55pm
Truth Martini joins Kevin Kelly and Caleb Seltzer at the broadcast table as the Top Prospect tournament continues.
[Match #1]: Top Prospect Tournament Round 1: Tadarius Thomas vs. Antonio ‘the Promise’ Thomas
If ‘the Promise’ looks familiar, then you’re a bigger wrestling geek than me – he’s a former member of one of the WWE’s worst ever tag teams – the Heartthrobs. After both men adhere to the Code of Honor, the Promise cheap shots Thomas from behind and goes to work, dropping Thomas on the top of his head with a back suplex that gets a two count. He continues to control the match after a fisherman/Northern Lights suplex for 2 before Thomas fights back with some of his capoeira style offense, landing a big kick to the Promise’s head as both men go down. Thomas works his way to the top rope and gets cut off as the Promise now makes his way up, with Thomas eventually hitting a top rope swinging neckbreaker for a close 2 in a nice highlight spot. Punches and chops ensue between the two, before Thomas lands another capoeira kick to the head for the win.
Winner [via pinfall]: Tadarius Thomas
Mike Mondo joins the commentary team and the only thing to take away from his time at the broadcast table is that he hates Roderick Strong.
For some reason, we get a video package on Grizzly Redwood.
[Match #2]: Roderick Strong vs. Grizzly Redwood
The highlight of this match came via Strong on the mic before the match begins, with Strong cutting a bunch of hilarious short jokes on Redwood like “you know that me facing you is a small deal” and “not just in wrestling but also in life, you’re always going to come up a bit short.” This guy needs more promo time. Hell, he came to the ring with a towel around his neck and whipped the camera with it – priceless heel move. As expected, this match was essentially a squash as Strong fights off Redwood in mostly sloppy fashion with an ugly powerslam and a missed dropkick spot. These two didn’t have much chemistry and Mondo on commentary detracted more than it added to be honest. Redwood applied a modified abdominal stretch and hit a tornado DDT in his only offensive spots of note, but Strong fought back and hit a double knee gut-buster and slapped on the Strong Hold for the win.
Winner [via submission]: Roderick Strong
After the bell rang, Strong refused to let go of the Strong Hold, and Michael Elgin hit the ring to chase him off.
[Match #3]: Michael Elgin vs. ‘The Prodigy’ Michael Bennett (with ‘Brutal’ Bob Evans and Maria)
This was the match I was looking forward to the most as these two are two of my favorites in ROH. Elgin is distracted by Evans at the start, which allows Bennett to gain the advantage. He fights back and hits a powerslam for 2, before sending Bennett to the floor via a stiff backdrop over the top where Bennett landed on his face. Elgin follows him out with a shoulder tackle off the apron, and sends the Prodigy back in. After a set of running clotheslines and another powerslam from Elgin, Bennett regains control and hits the TKO for 2 and goes for a cradle piledriver, which is reversed by Elgin. Elgin scores with a Death Valley Driver into the buckle for 2 and props Bennett up for a superplex attempt but is stopped by Maria, who is up on the apron. Elgin grabs her for his unique superplex but Bennett catches him, and hits the Box Office Slam off the top for 2. Elgin counters Bennett coming off the top with a stiff lariat and hits a buckle bomb and a spinning powerbomb for the win.
Winner [via pinfall]: Michael Elgin
Next we head ‘Inside ROH.’
Last weeks’ Jay Lethal/Kevin Steen segment is recapped. BJ Whitmer is up next, and cuts a promo saying he’s not been 100% since 2001 and that the table he went through at Final Battle is going to cost him a neck surgery. He finished off by saying, “the best is yet to come” from him.
[Main Event]: Tag Team Gauntlet to Crown the No. 1 Contenders for the Tag Team Titles: American Wolves vs. the Bravado Brothers vs. S.C.U.M. vs. Bobby Fish & Kyle O’Reilly
The Wolves and Bravados start things off as Charlie Haas, for some reason, joins the commentary team. As with Strong-Redwood match with Mondo on commentary earlier, Haas highly detracted from this match with his commentary much in the same way Taz does in TNA, commentary which consisted of him saying that everyone and everything is crap and that he’s pissed. Please go away Charlie Haas. Richards and Harlem kick things off as Richards takes control with a diving headbutt that gets a quick 2. At one point, after the other Bravado, Lancelot, comes into the ring, the Wolves get a great visual where Davey applies a modified Texas cloverleaf and Edwards came in and pulled back on Davey’s head in an effort to increase the torque. This spot got the crowd really into this match, which was good because this match wasn’t given a lot of time. All four men are in now, as Harlem sends Edwards shoulder first into the ring post (which sounded great), but as the Bravados go to double team Richards, he reverses a double suplex with a pair of knee to the heads of both men. He gets the ankle lock on Lancelot, which gets reversed for 2, but continues to fight both men off, and gets the ankle lock on Harlem for the win.
Eliminated [via submission]: The Bravados
S.C.U.M. is out next, and there wasn’t a whole lot here, surprising given the fact that S.C.U.M. just dropped the belts last month. They quickly eat stereo kicks to the spine which send them to the floor off the apron as the Wolves then hit a pair of topes, where Kevin Kelly yells ‘soaring and scoring,’ perhaps his most annoying line of commentary. Back in the ring, Corino goes for a lariat but is caught by Richards and rolled up for the quick win.
Eliminated [via pinfall]: S.C.U.M.
After the pinfall, Corino lays out Richards with the ringbell and Edwards with a roll of quarters in his fist as the final team, Bobby Fish & Kyle O’Reilly hit the ring and we head to commercial. Back from break, Fish and O’Reilly are in total control, an advantage which doesn’t last long as Richards is able to fight back and stack both men in the corner and destroy them with a seemingly endless parade of kicks. The highlight of the match came as O’Reilly was placed in the middle of the ring as the Wolves ascended to opposite turnbuckles and both landed double stomps, Edwards to the back of his head and Richards to his chest, a spot that amazingly got only a 2. Fish gets back in and sends Richards out, which allows him and O’Reilly to land a head-kick/brainbuster combo to Edwards for the duke.
Eliminated [via pinfall]: The American Wolves
Winner [via pinfall]: Bobby Fish & Kyle O’Reilly
This was a decent show full of average, watchable matches. Tadarius Thomas looked good with his flashy offense, but this was definitely the most lackluster match of this tourney. Roderick Strong and Truth Martini continue to be utterly enjoyable though they’re mired in the mid-card, and even though Fish and O’Reilly won the gauntlet, I expect there to be a strong Wolves tag title push in the near future. Wolves vs. Briscoes would make for one hell of a title match for their 11th anniversary show. Charlie Haas is terrible and I shudder every time he gets a mic because his character is so cliché it’s painful. Dude, we get it, you’re pissed, now go away. There’s a reason that Team Angle broke up in the WWE, they hav Shelton Benjamin wrestling on Wrestlemania and doing high spots in Money in the Bank ladder matches while Haas was doing low mid-card comedy on Smackdown. ROH is on a nice little roll here with a few good weeks of TV, and hopefully they keep things rolling.
Announced For Next Week
The final first round match of the Top Prospect tournament, the Women of Honor are in action, Matt Hardy & Adam Cole face-to-face, and S.C.U.M (Steve Corino, Rhino, Jimmy Jacobs, Kevin Steen) vs. the Briscoes and Caprice Coleman & Cedric Alexander.