Saturday, September 19, 2015

ROH All-Star Extravaganza Review

Last night, Ring of Honor held All-Star Extravaganza live on Pay-Per-View from San Antonio. I got home a few minutes after it started, so I missed any opening video packages, but caught all of the matches. This review will be in the same recap vein of the Field of Honor review I did last month.

ROH World Television Championship: Jay Lethal (c) def. Bobby Fish in 14:04
This was the wisest choice for an opener, considering Jay Lethal had to also main event. Bobby Fish worked submissions, focusing on Lethal's leg. Lethal was aggressive, beating up Fish on the outside and wisely trying to leave with a countout victory. Fish continued to work the leg and submissions, while commentary even contemplated if Lethal should surrender the TV Title to preserve his World Title. That was a pretty good story to have throughout. Lethal retained after a rollup with a handful of tights. I felt like this was a strong opener that really played into hos desperate Lethal is. ***½

Silas Young def. Dalton Castle in 11:02
These two have been feuding for a while and have had some decent matches. It has been rather fun though and Dalton Castle is always enjoyable to watch. I particularly loved his performance at Field of Honor. This was the weakest match of the night but I wouldn't call it bad. Silas Young did a good job in showing how much he wanted to win, trying all sorts of things to win. He was finally able to do so and took Dalton's "boys" with him. This should lead to some really fun TV coming out of this. Decent enough. **½

The All-Night Express def. The Briscoes in 8:36
The Briscoes were scheduled to face a mystery team. After the Decade came out first to disappoint people and join commentary, the Romantic Touch showed up since he's been stalking the Briscoes. They beat him up and the lights go out before the letters ANX appeared on the tron. Kenny King and Rhett Titus appeared to a fun pop and worked a rather short but really solid match. Commentary continually put over the fact that ANX never lost the ROH World Tag Titles as they were stripped when King left ROH. They won following a doomsday blockbuster giving them momentum to join ROH's deep tag division. The Decade attacked the Briscoes after, but ANX made the save and shook the hands of their opponents. All in all, this was well done and I'm excited for more from the tag division. ***

No DQ Match: Moose def. Cedric Alexander 13:18
This was probably the most fun match of the night. The feud has lasted a while, featured Veda Scott turning and has seen Alexander knock out Moose with a wrench more than once so the fact that the match came off as very heated was perfect. They used the big spots like Moose front flipping onto a ladder very well. Veda was great throughout, looking fine while getting involved and bringing weapons into play. The finishing sequence was really cool as Alexander accidentally kicked Veda, got hit with the wrench and was then speared through a table by Moose. A really fun brawl here that should be the capper to this rivalry. I would also like to note that Moose has seemingly improved each time I've seen him. ***½

Match #3 in Best of Five: ACH def. Matt Sydal to take a 2-1 lead in 16:33
I think this match was perfectly placed on the card. Following a car crash like brawl, these two worked a completely different match, giving us a great change of pace. They started slow, building towards the bigger stuff. They played off of Matt Sydal being the veteran and trying to outsmart the hungry youngster in ACH. Sydal worked the leg, which ACH seemed to forget about during his comeback. He hit a 450 for the win in a good match that could have been great had he sold the leg more. Still, it was solidly worked and the series could do a fair amount for ACH's stock in ROH. ***½

ROH World Tag Team Championship: The Kingdom def. The Addiction (c) and The Young Bucks in 14:06
Maria Kanellis appeared and off came my pants. This was typical Young Bucks stuff as they got in all of their stuff. I don't like them, but I'd rather watch them in New Japan where I don't have to hear Steve Corino shout SUPERKICK every five seconds. The match was going decent enough until we got the big finisher rally with everyone hitting big moves. Maria got on the apron and Daniels decked her, so Michael Bennett charged and we got a ref bump. A man in a red mask came out, and is supposedly Chris Sabin, but he attacks the Addiction. He even hits Sabin's finisher. The Bucks hit their finish but Matt Taven blind tagged in and rolled up Matt I believe to steal the straps. I've grown tired of the Bucks style and the overbooking of the finish in this match just made this a whole lot of stuff I wasn't a fan of. While I was never big on the Kingdom, the heat they got for this was pretty great. My friend was there live and said the crowd LOATHED them by the end of the night. **½

No. 1 Contenders Match: AJ Styles def. Adam Cole, Michael Elgin and Roderick Strong in 14:35
Considering how much I love AJ Styles, this was one of the matches I was most excited to see. Early on, they did a good job of showcasing how much of a force Michael Elgin is. They worked at a hectic pace which was fun, but it did cause them to have a few hiccups and mess up a few spots. I totally bit on a near fall from Adam Cole following the destroyer. AJ Styles was able to score with the Styles Clash on Cole to pull this out. I was a bit surprised but happy with the result. While this was just barely my match of the night, I felt like it was missing something to make it great. Still, despite that, I felt like it was a really enjoyable time. ***¾

ROH World Championship: Jay Lethal (c) def. Kyle O'Reilly in 14:00
Right from his entrance, we saw Jay Lethal limping, to sell the leg work from the opener. Early on, he sells it very well, changing up his offense at times because it effected him. However, he seems to forget it about it later when going for the Lethal Injection and things like that. It had a good idea behind it, but he needed to be more consistent with it. O'Reilly was a blast, applying various submissions, hitting the Nigel, a brainbuster and brutally stomping on Lethal. Truth Martini got involved, so Nigel McGuinness physically ejected him. Lethal tried to use the belt after another ref bump, but Bobby Fish showed up for the save. Then Donovan Dijak ran out and THEN Adam Cole ran out. Reilly was near the win but Cole turned on him with a superkick. Lethal Injection hit and Lethal retained. Outside of Lethal's lack of selling towards the end, this was going very well until the overbooked finish. Another good match that was kept from being great by something. ***½

Overall: 7/10. This show came off similar to Death Before Dishonor in that nearly everything was good, but nothing was great. Looking at the show, the only two matches I didn't give three stars to were Castle/Young and the Tag Titles. Everything else falls between three and just under four stars. The overbooking in some of the top matches hurt because, while that works in some situations, it was a bit much here. This was a good three hours of wrestling that could have been great with a bit more.