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From JHawk's Beak: ROH A Night of Appreciation
Posted by Jared "JHawk" Hawkins on Apr 5, 2003, 10:39

From JHawk's Beak: ROH A Night of Appreciation
by Jared "JHawk" Hawkins

Usually I try to come up with some sort of witty inroduction here, but it took me about a week to actually review this entire tape, so everything I tried to put here was outdated by the time I got this far.

I do have one request though. If anybody reading this has the Vader-Cactus Jack match that led to Cactus missing four months, send an e-mail to the feedback address (located at the end of the article as always) immediately. I'd like to use it for a Today in Wrestling History column and we're about two weeks away from the tenth anniversary of that match.

I'll be doing match backgrounds like normal, but if you need to know who some of these people are, Dames and I have covered most of them in The Era of Honor Begins and Round Robin Challenge.

ROH A Night of Appreciation
April 27, 2002
from the Murphy Recreation Center in Philadelphia, PA

We open with Da Hit Squad hyping up the crowd for the third straight month. It's short this time.

Quiet Storm asks The American Dragon to once again teach Brian XL a submission hold. Elsewhere, Brian XL questions why he should even learn submissions when he's a high flyer. In comes Dragon to the room and puts him into a seated abdominal stretch.

Da Hit Squad is with Boogalou, when Tony DeVito comes in to make sure he's ready for tonight.

Frank Talent from the State Athletic Commission (who also used to ring announce WWF shows at the Philadelphia Spectrum. Buy yourself some porn if you knew that.) gives the entire roster the usual lecture and reminds them that all the top guys from the commission are there. And Eddy Guerrero is on his way to the then-WWF, so let's do it for him tonight. Spanky is on his Walkman and not paying attention, and Talent yells at him.

Your hosts are Donnie B and Steve Corino.

Before we can go to our opening match, Da Hit Squad has hit the ring. Ring announcer Stephen DiAngelis accidently bumps into them and runs for his life. DHS calls out The Christopher Street Connection, who stupidly come out even though DHS has already beaten the hell out of them at two straight shows. Mafia and Monsta Mack immeditately go to the floor, when Allison Danger, the CSC's manager who got power bombed through a table at show one, comes into the ring and starts yelling at them. Into the ring they go. She says it's going to be a three way dance.

Three Way Dance: Da Hit Squad vs. The Christopher Street Connection vs. Prince Nana and his servants

Nana's servants are Elax and Simply Luscious, and apparently Luscious is the official partner for Nana despite her wishes against competing. Basically a six person brawl. Mafia German suplexes both Elax and one of the CSC. Danger comes to the apron to play with Luscious' hair, which leads to a shoving match with the CSC and Nana's team...and here comes DHS with a four way spear. Monsta Mack hits a senton on Nana to send him out of the ring...and he deserts Simply Luscious. From here on out it's all DHS, and Luscious is pinned with the Burning Hammer in 3:51. Good to pop the crowd, but not good from an in-ring standpoint. 1/2* Postmatch, Elax tries to help Simply Luscious, but DHS beat the hell out of him before Monsta Mack legdrops him through a table.

Jay Briscoe tries to cut a promo, but his brother Mark Briscoe rags on him about his losing streak.

One fall: Jay Briscoe (w/Mark Briscoe) vs. Tony Mamaluke

The Story so Far: Jay lost to The Amazing Red at the February show and Spanky at the March show, and each time he's been berated by his brother because of it.

There's your prematch handshake and the bell. Extended wrestling sequence to start that only ends when Mamaluke tumbles to the floor. Another wrestling sequence, but this time some punches are thrown in the midst of the tumbling and countering. Go-behind by Mamaluke, and that turns into another wrestling sequence before Mamaluke locks in a headlock. Briscoe gets a counter into a hammerlock takedown and holds on to the hammerlock. Hiptosses by Briscoe, and a flying heel kick sends Mamaluke to the mat. Snap suplex. Another one and a cover for 2. They trade back suplex counters before Mamaluke locks in an armbar and drives Briscoe to the mat. More counters, and this time Mamaluke locks in a cross armbreaker. Mamaluke begins to focus on the left arm with some roughhouse tactics. Briscoe gets a roll up for 2 off of a moonsault counter sequence, but Mamaluke quickly gets a version of the octopus in. Briscoe avoids a superplex and counters with a gourdbuster off the top rope. They exchange chops in the center of the ring. Irish whip into a flapjack by Briscoe. Another counter sequence ends in Briscoe getting a roll up for 2. Turned into a Victory roll for 2. Mamaluke goes for a backslide, but Briscoe hooks the arms and counters into the J-Driller for the pin at 7:20 to end his losing streak. A bit short, but some good looking stuff here. **1/2 Postmatch handshake, but Mamaluke does the Italian hand-to-chin thing to show disdain. Can you believe that Jay hasn't even hit his 20th birthdy yet?

Backstage, Briscoe's parents congratulate him, but Mark goes "You almost lost". Damn, it's not like he'll be taking a Pedigree on Raw next week. Calm down dude.

Also backstage, James Maritato tells Mamaluke to drop the comedy act and, with it, the FBI gimmick. Of course, Maritato is now Nunzio in WWE and doing the FBI gimmick. Don't you hate it when irony bites you in the ass?

Christian York and Joey Matthews cut a promo to discuss their match with Divine Storm.

Tag Team Contest: Divine Storm (w/Brian XL) vs. Christian York and Joey Matthews

Quiet Storm and Matthews start it off. Matthews works a hammerlock, and Storm reverses. An arm wringer leads into a counter sequence and a series of quick two counts. Matthews gets in a quick right hand. Tag to York, who hits a missile dropkick for a two count. Storm elbows out of a waistlock and takes York down with a spinning headscissors. Rana. Dropkick. Tag to Chris Divine. Divine counters a wheelbarrow suplex with an armdrag takedown, but soon gets caught in an snap slam. York locks in a pendulum, and I love that move! Divine gets in a spinebuster for a count of 2. Tag to Storm. Divine with a dropkick while Storm takes York down with a Rock Bottom! WOW! Dropkick by Storm and a tag to Divine. Corner whip, avalanche by Divine, but York springboards off of Divine's back to clothesline Storm. Damn! The brawl goes to the floor, and Brian XL dives onto York. That, however, violates point two in the Code of Honor (no outside interference), and Divine Storm is pissed and sends XL to the back. Back in, and Divine apparently wants a superplex, but York counters with an inverted atomic drop. HOT TAG to Matthews. He cleans house on both of his opponents. Duck under neckbreaker to Storm. Divine is backdropped over the top rope. Matthews and York grab Storm...Full Effect (which is almost a double burning hammer except the opponent lands flat). Divine in for the save. York and Divine tumble to the floor, and Storm comes fighting back with forearms to Matthews. Matthews counters the Storm Cradle Driver, but Storm further counters and rolls into an ankle lock with a leg scissors...and Matthews taps out at 8:46. A huge upset! **

Backstage, James Maritato cuts a promo to put over his match tonight.

Scoot Andrews also hypes his upcoming match.

Three Way Dance: Xavier vs. "Black Nature Boy" Scoot Andrews vs. James Maritato

The Story so Far: Xavier upset Andrews at the Era of Honor Begins. The rematch was supposed to be at the Round Robin Challenge, but Andrews was hurt and replaced by Maritato, who was promptly beaten by Xavier. Both men want their revenge and get the chance at it here.

The "A.C. Slater" chants start for Xavier before they even have the prematch handshake. Maritato and Andrews tie up, but they don't want Xavier to play and kick him away from it. Scoot and Maritato go through a sweet counter sequence that ends with Andrews clotheslining Xavier and Maritato getting Scoot with a roll up for 2. Xavier goes for a spinning headscissors, but Andrews counters with a reverse power bomb for 2. Xavier takes Maritato down with a flying punch to the back of the head for 2. Nice knee strikes by Xavier in the corner. Maritato catches Xavier with a dropkick, and Andrews immediately wants the Force of Nature, but Maritato pulls Xavier off the shoulders to prevent it. Xavier goes for an Exploder superplex to Maritato, but Andrews prevents it with a power bomb. Great move! All three men exchange punches. Maritato sets Xavier up for a slingshot suplex, but Andrews catches Xavier and takes him down with the Force of Nature, and only Maritato's forearm to the back can prevent the pin. Andrews and Maritato exchange blows. Andrews with a powerslam for 2. Maritato ducks a discus punch and gets a back suplex for 2. Maritato goes for a sunset flip, but Andrews doesn't go down and turns it into a reverse DDT for 2. Andrews has Xavier up top, but Maritato takes Andrews down with a super Russian legsweep for 2. Xavier jumps...right into Maritato's Fujiwara armbar for the submission at 6:24. Short but a LOT of action. **1/2

Simply Luscious finds Rob Feinstein and begs for something to do besides working with Prince Nana. Feinstein says she'll like what they have in mind for her next month.

A.J Styles cuts a promo for his match with Low-Ki! Fuckin' A!

One fall: "The Phenomenal" A.J. Styles vs. Low-Ki

AJ's first ROH appearance, and Low Ki has been in three ROH matches that were all in the running for match of the year already. Wrestling sequence to start with Ki getting in a side headlock. Styles into a headscissors, but Ki turns it into a cradle for a count of 2. Test of strength, and Styles gets Low Ki's shoulders down for a series of two counts. Ki simply kicks away from it to break. Kick exchange now. That ends with Low Ki getting in a leg dive. Front facelock, Styles floats over into a cover, and Low Ki turns things around into a triangle choke. Counter into a front facelock by Styles, which is countered by Ki, and into another series of counters. Styles into a rear chancery, and he gets a series of covers with Low Ki continually bridging out of it. Back to their feet they finally go. Lockup, Low Ki kicking and chopping out of it, and again they work it to the mat. Low Ki goes for a small package, but Styles reverses it for 2. Kick to the face by Low Ki! Ouch! And one to the back of the head this time, and another one to the face! Stlyes nips up into a rana, and he gets in a lariat for 2. Forearms to the back. Styles lifts Low Ki into a vertical suplex position and turns it into a reverse neckbreaker for 2. Hard right hand. Corner whip, but Low Ki catches him coming in with a side kick to the face! Backbreaker. Corkscrew elbowdrop for 2. Both men exchange chops. Low-Ki takes a fall to the floor, and Styles follows him and catches him with a Low Ki-esque roundhouse kick! Back into the ring. Brain buster for 2 as Donnie B and Corino discuss the Biblical aspects of this match (Low-Ki means "Beelzubob", while Styles is a born-again Christian). Low-Ki with a Yakuza kick to send Styles out to the floor. Low-Ki rolls him back onto the ring apron and goes for the Ki Crusher, but Styles backdrops Low-Ki into the ring...but Low-Ki hangs on and locks on a tarantula dragon clutch. That's in the ropes and thus illegal, so Low Ki has to break. Low-Ki goes for the Ki Crusher in the ring, but Styles counters it into a DDT. Wow! Styles goes for a suplex, but Low-Ki rolls through it into a dragon sleeper. Styles with an Asai moonsault into a reverse DDT for 2. Where do they come up with this stuff? Styles goes for a rana, but Low-Ki counters with a power bomb into a cradle for 2.99999999 that Donnie B thinks was called a pin even though it wasn't. Series of kicks to the face by Low-Ki. Corino: "Jesus, God, stop kicking him!" More kicks to the face. Corino: "I don't think they're going to church together tomorrow." Cover for only 2. Whip, reversal, Ki with a tiger suplex into a rolling cradle for 2. Styles finally gets a lariat in. German suplex, roll through, inverted power bomb for 2. Each man counters a suplex until Low Ki gets in a gourdbuster for 2. Handspring roundhouse kick by Low Ki (there's a name for that move, but I can't remember it). Low Ki up top...Phoenix Splash, but Styles gets the knees up. Styles sets up for what appears to be a splash mountain, but he turns it into a piledriver, and THAT only gets 2. How the hell did he get up from that? Styles up top, but he misses the Spiral Tap. Exchanging blows in mid-ring until Low Ki gets another stiff kick in. Styles blocks the Ki Crusher and goes for that splash mountain piledriver thing again, but Low Ki counters it into a small package for a questionable pin at 18:13. What an incredible match! ****1/2

Christopher Daniels is finally happy with Ring of Honor, because this time he gets to wrestle with Donovan Morgan, and they're a lot alike.

Tag Team Contest: Dunn and Marcos vs. The Carnage Crew (Loc and DeVito)

The Story So Far: At The Era of Honor Begins, H.C. Loc was the referee who got beaten down by The Natural Born Sinners. So Loc made a phone call to former Baldy Tony DeVito to help him out. This is their first match in ROH.

Loc and DeVito get the cheap shot during the prematch handshake. Basic squash for the Crew that features a handful of good double teaming, including a Doomsday Device with a dropkick replacing the clothesline. Comeback by Dunn as he gets a DDT in, and there's the tag to Marcos, who comes off with a missile dropkick, but it doesn't last long. DeVito with a Splash Mountain into a Loc reverse neckbreaker for the pin at 3:13. The double team move save this one. 1/2* Postmatch, Loc and DeVito do some damage by using the hubcaps off of Boogalou's car. Then they shake the hands of their unconscious foes so as not to break the Code of Honor.

Donovan Morgan cuts a promo where he says he has to prove himself to everybody in ROH.

One fall: Donovan Morgan vs. "The Fallen Angel" Christopher Daniels

The Story So Far: These men have met numerous times in Japan and California, but this is their first meeting in Ring of Honor. And remember, Christopher Daniels hates the Code of Honor and is hellbent on proving it a farce.

Daniels, of course, refuses the handshake. Go-behind by Morgan, reversal, drop toehold by Morgan, into a reversal and counter sequence. Daniels gets in a hammerlock and starts working on the left arm. Morgan grabs a leg to break free before locking in a headlock, then floats over into an early 2 count. Hammerlock, Daniels with a fireman's carry, and then Morgan turns it into a headscissors. Daniels to the ropes to break. Lockup, another reversal sequence, and Daniels is on top with an armbar. Into another reversal sequence, ending with Morgan locking in a leg split. Into a headlock. Corino explains the purpose of a headlock, which believe it or not is to wear an opponent down and NOT to bore the live crowd. Series of counters from the headlock until Daniels breaks it for good with a waistlock suplex. Daniels into the crevatte. Snap mare, kneedrop, cover for 2. Elbow to the back of the head. Hiptoss, legdrop, two count, and Daniels has apparently changed the focus to the neck. Backdrop, back suplex, cover for 2. Into another counter sequence, with Morgan finishing it with a swinging neckbreaker. Morgan using the ropes to help lock in a chinlock. Snap suplex with a floatover for 2. Snap mare into a dropkick, and Morgan drapes Daniels over the ring apron and drops a series of elbows. Now it's Morgan working over the neck. Another reversal sequence ends with Daniels getting a lariat. Flying heel kick for 2. Series of forearms. Sunset flip by Morgan, and into a series of counters into 2-counts. I love that type of spot. Morgan with a leg scissors, but Daniels reaches the ropes. HUGE suplex by Morgan for 2. Morgan with a series of forearms. Elbowsmash for 2. Corner whip, Daniels with an elbow, and he takes Morgan down with a belly-to-back suplex. Clothesline. Elbow. Modified neckbreaker for 2. Uranage with a legsweep, and into the springboard moonsault for 2. Daniels rams Morgan into the turnbuckle. Morgan is placed on top but comes off with a jumping front DDT for 2. Clothesline to the back of the head. Whip, reversal, Morgan with a roll up for 2. Daniels gets in a cross facelock but Morgan reaches the ropes. Daniels with a shouldberblock for 2. Roll up for 2. Hard forearm smash by morgan and a clothesline for 2. Sunset flip, but Daniels avoids it...but only long enough to get caught with a fisherman neckbreaker for 2 3/4. Reversal sequence, and this time Morgan holds the cradle after the fisherman neckbreaker to get the pin at 13:13. Really good match. ****

Postmatch, Daniels grabs the mic, and after three way matches and round robin tournaments, he's finally gotten his one-on-one match...and he lost. He offers a handshake, but he quickly rescinds it. He refuses to ever shake hands in this ring because the Code of Honor is a farce. But he'll do Donovan Morgan one better. He says he's proven himself in the locker room, so guys like Low Ki and American Dragon will come after him...from behind. So if Morgan needs someone to watch his back, Daniels is the guy.

Texas Wrestling Academy Gauntlet Match

The story so far: ROH had a poll on their website asking who the best recruit from the Texas Wrestling Academy was. American Dragon won by a landslide, but Spanky accused Dragon of voting for himself hundreds of times to win the vote. Rudy Boy Gonzalez then agreed to get this match put onto the show in order to prove who the best man was.

Before the match, Rudy Boy Gonzalez gives a pep talk, and pretty much everybody turns against Spanky since he's interrupting Rudy Boy's talk. Gonzalez says he'll determine the order everybody goes out there.

Match #1: Paul London vs. John Hope

John Hope was one of the Academy's original students when Shawn Michaels began training wrestlers. This match is clipped to about 15 seconds, and London wins with a shooting star press. No rating. Is this uncut on the DVD? Anyone who has the DVD should e-mail me ASAP.

Match #2: Paul London vs. Michael Shane

Simply Luscious has joined the commentary team. Wrestling sequence to start, and Shane counters a power bomb with a faceslam. You can't power bomb Michael Shane? HARD Enzuigiri to the face gets 2. London counters a power bomb with a rana, then gets a dropkick for 2. Waistlock, Shane elbows out, but London gets in a Northern Lights suplex for 2. Roll up for 2. Shane with a spear for 2. Corner whip, but London sunset flips over a charging Shane. Shane rolls through and turns London into a version of Eddy Guerrero's Lasso from El Paso. Back suplex, but London floats behind, locks in a double chickenwing, and takes Shane down face-first. London up top for the shooting star, but Shane rolls out of the way. Shane up top...Picture Perfect Elbow for the pin at 3:39. Short but energetic. *1/2

Match #3: Michael Shane vs. Spanky

Spanky won the ROH contract at the Era of Honor Begins, and it royally pissed off Shane, so they finally get that one-on-one match against each other. Shane refuses to release the handshake and piefaces Spanky, so Spanky slaps him. Let the chopfest begin! Spanky slides out of the ring to stop Shane from leveling him. He tries to reenter the ring with a flying bodypress but gets met with a dropkick. Meanwhile, Corino hits on Luscious bigtime until she gets pissed and leaves. Corino: "But I've got an eleven-inch..." The brawl goes out to the floor, where Spanky begins to take control. Shane gets sent into the guardrail and is busted while open. Corino blames Rudy Boy for cutting Shane open. Spanky rolls Shane into the ring and begins to focus his attack on the open wound on Shane's forehead. Shane comes back and clothesline Spanky out to the ring, and Shane follows. Spanky gets sent into the guardrail. Back into the ring they go. Shane goes for a high cross body, but Spanky pulls the top rope down and sends Shane to the floor. Spanky follows him back to the floor. Spanky punches away at the cut and rolls Shane back into the ring. Spanky covers for 2. Vertical suplex with a floatover for 2. Spanky into a crevatte. Shane fights back with right hands. Spanky with a corner whip and charge, but Shane catches him with an elbow, followed by a form of the Whisper in the Wind. Spanky is up first and he starts punching away at Shane. Shane comes back with a series of clotheslines. Flying forearm. Spanky gets some space with a kick. He charges, Shane backdrops him, Spanky holds on and tries to float back in, but he is met with a huge dropkick on his way back in. Ouch ouch ouch ouch ouch. Shane over the top rope with a halo onto Spanky. Both men back into the ring. Spanky misses an enzuigiri, and Shane rolls him into a magistral cradle for 2. Spanky comes back with a form of the Acid Drop (NOT the Sliced Bread #2) for 2. Spanky wants a superplex, but Shane sends him down to the mat...but the loss of blood causes Shane to lose his balance and fall off the turnbuckle. Spanky goes for the Sliced Bread #2, Shane counters, misses a superkick, ducks another move, and this time hits the superkick. A reversal sequence leads to Spanky getting the Sliced Bread #2 for the pin at 10:06. A bit too much brawling on the floor, but it wasn't out of place given their history. **3/4

Match #4 of 4: Spanky vs. The American Dragon

Dragon immediately starts off with some amateur takedowns before going into a top wristlock. Spanky maneuvers into a headscissors. Dragon tries to slip out but gets dropped on his head. Dragon eventually turns it into a Texas cloverleaf, but Spanky makes the ropes for the break. Test of strength, and Spanky gets the advantage, but Dragon holds a bridge. Dragon begins to work the arm, but gets rolled up for 2. Test of strength, and Spanky gets Dragon's hands on the mat and stomps on them. Dragon quickly gets an arm wringer takedown and locks in a headscissors. Spanky moves out into a front facelock. Hard chop by Dragon in the corner. Dragon with a bodyslam and a series of corkscrew elbowdrops for 2. Release German, but Spanky lands on his feet and drapes Dragon's throat over the top rope. Spanky tries to springboard in, but slips and falls crotch first onto the top rope, and Dragon gets the advantage. But it's short lived, as Spanky backdrops him to the apron and knocks him off the apron. Spanky follows him outside, gets a few shots in, and sends him back into the ring. Dragon begins to fight back, and he gets a sunset flip for 2. Spanky regains the advantage. Spanky locks in a crevatte to weaken the neck for the Sliced Bread #2. Dragon uses the turnbuckle to break the hold, then grabs in a crevatte and suplexes Spanky over! Dropkick by Dragon as Corino points out that Spanky's pants have split open. Spanky to the top rope, but he gets met with a forearm. Series of chops and forearms, and a reversal sequence ends with Dragon getting a back suplex for 2. Spanky gets in a jumping heel kick for 2. Dragon somewhat blocks a suplex, but lands awkwardly, and Spanky covers for 2. Running knee strike. Snap suplex into the multiple cover spot. Dragon avoids the Sliced Bread #2 and struggles to get the release German in, but he finally does hit it and gets a delayed cover for 2. Series of forearms, Spanky avoids the roaring elbow, but Dragon gets an enzuigiri for 2. Yakuza kick for 2. High angle power bomb for 2. Spanky blocks a German suplex and hits the Sliced Bread #2, but Dragon kicks out! Dragon hits a charging Spanky in the face with a boot, then hits the roaring elbow. Dragon suplex for 2. Dragon places Spanky on the top turnbuckle for a back suplex, but Spanky turns it into a top-rope Sliced Bread #2 to win the gauntlet in 13:39. Excellent finish to a pretty good little matchup! ***3/4

Postmatch, Dragon has still been knocked silly, but Spanky is impatient waiting for the postmatch handshake anyway. Spanky calls this match the first step on the road to the Ring of Honor Championship and officially declares himself the Show Stopper. Dragon says this is only the first time Spanky ever beat him. Dragon declares himself to be in the title tournament, and in comes Christopher Daniels. He says they shouldn't concern themselves with the ROH Title tournament, since he'll be in it, and he'll win it. In comes Scoot Andrews, and not only does he put his hat in the ring for the tournament, he challenges Daniels to a first round match. Daniels: "Don't get your afro in an uproar, pal." Daniels says it's up to the bookers whether that match is signed, and in comes Xavier. And he says it would be his honor to be in the tournament. Do you see a pattern forming here? In comes Jay Briscoe, and he wastes no time entering the tournament. Out comes Prince Nana (Corino: "He's wearing my shower curtain."), and...wait for it...he enters the tournament as well. This is quite a long speech and the sound quality isn't great, so I have no clue what else he's saying. And out comes Low Ki, and as he enters the ring, Daniels hops out to the apron. Nana taunts Low Ki with a finger to the face, and there's a slap. He goes for another, but Low Ki knocks him silly with a hard forearm smash. It's Low Ki's turn to talk, and he not only enters the tournament, but he puts over the other men in the ring. With two minor exceptions. He simply laughs when he gets to Spanky. And then he gets to Daniels. He says everybody else has honor and respect, which are qualities the ROH Champion will have, so Daniels won't win the title. "The only way you'll be the Ring of Honor Champion is over my dead body." On June 22, we'll separate the men from the boys.

Tag Team Main Event: The SAT vs. The Amazing Red and Eddy Guerrero (WWF Intercontinental Champion)

The story so far: At the Era of Honor begins, Red was eliminated by Jose Maximo during the Fatal Six Way match. Mikey Whipwreck, who trained Red, the SAT, and Quiet Storm, set up a three team elimination match for the next show. Then at the Round Robin Challenge, the SAT won that three team match after Red and Brian XL (who is not one of Mikey's students), argued over who should get the fall, which led to Joel pinning Red. To stop the argument, Mikey told Red "I'll find you a goddamn partner." That partner is Eddy Guerrero, who has just rejoined the World Wrestling Federation, but is honoring his Ring of Honor commitment before taking on the full-time WWF/E schedule.

Jose and Red start. Reversal sequence to satart, before Red gets in a rana, a couple of armdrags, and a scissors kick in. Jose quickly comes back, but Red tags in Eddy, and he sets Eddy into a tornado DDT position to turn it into a satellite headscissors on Jose (and he doesn't even have to DDT Eddy. Nice spot). Eddy and Joel in now. Wrestling sequence, and Eddy quickly goes to work on the left arm. Joel with a headlock. Rope running sequence, and Joel gets in a rana for a 2 count. Sunset flip, roll throuhg, and Eddy executes a scorpion deathlock. Series of stomps and forearms, followed by a back suplex. Eddy with the hilo (tm Tazz) for 2 before locking in the reverse chinlock. Joel dropkicks Eddy. Both men in, and they do their dragon sleeper/surfboard combination. Jose is tagged in, and he locks in a reverse chinlock. German suplex for 2. Northern Lights suplex for 2. Up top, but Eddy follows him and does the Dynamite Kid superplex. Tag on each end, and Red gets Joel with a backspin DDT before hitting the Red Star Press for 2. Red goes for a rana, but Joel counters into a sitout power bomb. Tag to Jose. Vertical suplex for 2. Tag to Joel. Snap mare into a dropkick for 2. Double team, into Joel's "wheelbarrow Ocean Cyclone suplex", and Jose covers for 2. Joel locks in a pendulum, and Jose slingshots in with a legdrop, which enables Joel to cover for 2. Nice little move. Joel jumps off the top, but Red gets in a spinning enzuigiri to the face. tag on each end. Eddy just dominates Jose with punches and chops. Short knee into the brain buster for 2, and the entire locker room (sans a few) are in the arena to watch the finish. Nice touch. Eddy levels Jose with a clothesline and goes up top, but Joel prevents the Frog Splash. The Maximos set up the Spanish Fly, but Red stops it. Eddy tries for a rana, but Jose blocks it. Eddy blocks a tornado DDT and springboards Red into a top-rope rana. Red then dives over the top onto Joel (look Ma! No hands!), and that's the opening Eddy needs to go up top. Jose moves, Eddy rolls through, and Eddy takes Jose down with a splash mountain to get the pin in 13:22. If you've only ever seen the SAT in NWATNA, you might be surprised at how good this one was. ***1/4

Postmatch, they exchange handshakes, and in comes Brian XL, who throws a hissy fit about not getting the match with Eddy. Eddy: "You're that Bow Wow guy they're talking about." That starts the "Li'l Bow Wow" chants. Eddy accepts XL's challenge.

Impromptu Match: Eddy Guerrero vs. Brian XL

Eddy simply tosses XL into the air and down to the mat, then hits a power bomb, a brain buster, and the Frog Splash for the pin in 36 seconds. DUD, as if you had to ask.

The Maximos dump XL out of the ring, and it's speech time for Eddy as the chants begin. Eddy seems legitmately touched by the reception, including the chants of "We will miss you." Unfortunately, the sound quality is pretty bad, so I can only understand bits and pieces of this speech, but as best as I can tell, Eddy thanks God for his life turning around. When he steps into the ring, he's happy, and the boys in the back are like his brothers. He then thanks the fans for all their support, saying that it doesn't matter if they cheer him or boo him, the point is that they're there and they're wrestling fans. He even puts over Rob Feinstein as a promoter, and then he soaks up the "Eddy" chants as much of the roster shakes his hand and shows him respect. I really wish I could have heard this more clearly.

Backstage, Low Ki and American Dragon are happy with the respect that Eddy was shown, but someone was missing...Spanky. Low Ki is pissed that he didn't show respect. Spanky: "People don't pay to see Eddy Guerrero. People pay to see Spanky." Into the room come Donovan Morgan and Christopher Daniels. Daniels asks "Are you girls done marking out for Eddy Guerrero?" This starts a brawl. The brawl ends, and Spanky throws a fit about Daniels and Morgan getting involved. Daniels: "See what I'm talking about? If I still had hair, this place would make it go gray." And we're out.

Overall a terrific show, as is the norm for Ring of Honor. A lot of really good matches, what wasn't good was kept pretty much short, and a great show of respect for Eddy Guerrero caps off the evening. Be sure to get these shows off of RF Video whenever you've got the money if you're a wrestling fan. If you've been spoon-fed nothing but a steady diet of WWE, you might not get it, but if you like action, you have to get thgese tapes.

Pimping mode off.

I'll cover the next show, Road to the Title, in a couple of weeks.

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 " The Gravel Pit "
 From JHawk's Beak: Insomnia Edition
 Searching For Gold In The Age Of Plastic: Depression