ROH Killer Instinct Live Report
i Just wanted to send along a recap of the ROH Killer Instinct show from Saturday. This was my first time seeing ROH in Jersey after seeing them in Hammerstein and Philly numerous times. I have seen PWS at this location in Rahway several times and they actually drew a larger crowd than ROH. This could be attributed to PWS bringing in legends on a regular basis, but to be fair ROH hasn't ran this area recently. I'd say there was 250-300 in attendance.
The cool thing about the night was that there was a live band outside the ring, and they played in Elgin, along with Eddie Edwards later on. It was a unique thing to see, but my only issue with the band was that they only played in two wrestlers with themes that not everyone is familiar with. It's much different to have Cody B. Ware play out KOW in Hammerstein than to have a metal band play two themes that the crowd does not know as well. If they played Steen's popular theme maybe I could see why they were brought in, but it did seem random to only have the band play in two wrestlers.
The first bout was Elgin vs Mike Bennent. Elgin is a beast, plain and simple. He held up Bennent for a suplex lasting about 45 seconds, with Truth Martini counting each second. He won after the buckle bomb followed by a spinning power bomb. There was again an issue teased between Elgin and Martini. Big pop for Elgin and Bennent had some fans as well. He's come a long way since being booed out of the building for being boring at Hammerstein.
Next up was Bravados vs the debuting 3.0. 3.0 got a nice sized pop, and the Bravados got their customary Justin Bieber chants. Surprised to see the Bravados go over with a double team Cross Rhodes, but 3.0 were over quite a bit and received a small "Please Come Back" chant toward the end.
This bout was followed by QT Marshall vs Bobby Fish. Both men looked good here with Fish surpisingly going over, especially after Marshall won a contract recently on iPPV. I was excited to see Fish, I know he was one of the few indy stars to face Danielson during his hiatus from WWE in 2010, and this bout delivered quite well. Good show for future players in ROH.
Next up was the triple threat between Titus/Whitmer, WGTT and SCUM. The match didn't really click, though again Haas plays the role of heel great. He came out wearing a "Haas Hole" shirt which seems to fit his personality quite well. SCUM won after a chairshot in the back to Titus from Haas. Not much of note.
Intermission saw an impromptu concert from the house band, who actually got booed quite a bit. The lead singer kept yelling at a fan in a Kanye West shirt, was bizarre to see.
The fifth match of the night went to Roderick Strong vs Kyle O'Reilly. Strong looked great here and was big time over. It actually seemed more that Strong was the face and O'Reilly was heel. Strong may have turned face recently? He NAILED O'Reilly with his suplex into backbreaker combo for the win to a huge pop.
Next up was an excellent match between Mike Mondo and Davey Richards. This was the best Richards looked in a while. Funnily enough my friend and I were sitting next to Mondo's parents as he is from Long Island, and they were rooting on their son big time. Towards the end of the match, Mondo got a nice ovation from the crowd and a dueling chant broke out between the two. Richards won and put over Mondo on the mic after. He bashed Sinclair a bit on the mic, but I think he mainly just wanted to say he wants ROH to return to the time of Joe, Punk and Danielson.
Match 7 was Eddie Edwards and Adam Cole vs The Briscoes. Not sure what happened to Mark Briscoe but wow he has gone off the deep end. Real funny the way he acts, and he has def distinguished himself from his brother. Very solid match which the Briscoes won via Doomsday Device. Edwards and Cole had words after, so it looks like a TV title feud is brewing.
The last match was the now infamous Jay Lethal vs Kevin Steen match. No prematch promo from Steen which was surprising. Lethal had tons of family in attendance, I would say the crowd was 80-20 for Lethal. Great start to the match with Steen faking out Lethal on the prematch handshake, and Lethal proceeds to superkick Steen out of the ring and then hit 4! suicide dives in a row on him. Insane to see live. It really was a very good match up, until the crazy ending. Steen kept screaming at Lethals parents in the front row, so Lethal's mom threw soda on Steen. Steen then spit on her, and Lethal went off and attacked anyone at ringside. He then escorted his parents out of the arena and Steen ran backstage, proceeding to tear down the back curtain from the ramp. Fans then littered the ring with bottles chanting "BS" and of all people Mark Briscoe was on the ramp smiling and waving to fans as we left.
I want to just address the ending, because as someone who paid a ticket for the event, I was fine with how it ended. Here are some reasons why:
1. We got the match between Lethal and Steen for 30 min. If the match started with the incident with Lethal's parents, I could see people being upset. However, we got a great match a super unique finish.
2. All in attendance got the next iPPV for free. We all got cards with a password for the next one for free, so as long as this angle is followed up on Saturday, we basically get to see an entire angle including the payoff for the cost of a ticket to the show in NJ.
3. Davey Richards and Cary Silkin sat at the exit of the arena and personally shook the hands of everyone leaving. Cary even apologized to fans walking out about the ending. So at least they faced the music to fans who were upset.
Regardless, I enjoyed myself at the show and thought it was quite well done. I understand the gripes some fans have since NJ does not get Sinclair and we do not see ROH on a weekly basis, therefore we do not know storylines, but the show was still very entertaining from beginning to end. I look forward to the iPPV this weekend and after this show, have high hopes for the rest of 2012 for Ring of Honor.