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Ring of Honor: Expect the Unexpected March 15, 2003

March 15th, 2003

From the National Guard Armory in Cambridge, MA

Your hosts are Ray Murrow and Chris Levy

Christopher Daniels, Xavier, and Alison Danger are backstage. Daniels congratulates Xavier for retaining his title against Paul London at the "First Anniversary Show" then goes on about how everyone thinks he will lose the belt but he has beaten everyone he has faced then says that it does not matter who wins the 4-way #1 Contender's Trophy match as they will get "X'ed out." Daniels is pissed that RoH made him defend the Tag Team Belts with Donovan Morgan in Japan then laughs at RoH because the people pay to see him, not the company itself and that he will continue to take down the Code of Honor. He even puts over new wrestlers and teams, like the Brisco Brothers. Guess they are tagging together now.  Danger threatens to reveal all of the secrets about her brother, Steve Corino. This was long winded but more than that, it was showing how RoH was pushing all of their new talents.

Matt Stryker vs. Chad Collyer

This is a rematch from "Revenge on the Prophecy" when Collyer made Stryker tap to the Texas Cloverleaf. These two go back and forth, both on the mat and while standing up. The announcers make fun of Stryker's unibrow as Collyer steps on his hand. Collyer works the arm on the mat as Stryker tries to break the hold then reverses into a crossface. Collyer catches Stryker with an armbar after a hiptoss attempt but Stryker reverses it into his Stryker Lock but Collyer reaches the ropes. Collyer works the leg for a bit as Stryker is now limping. Collyer boots him down then stretches him out as the crowd applauds. Stryker reaches the ropes as Collyer had him in a single leg crab then fights back but misses a flying knee strike in the corner and Collyer puts him in the Texas Cloverleaf but he is able to reach the ropes. Collyer uses a suplex for a nearfall then stretches him out again on the mat. Stryker fights out and chops Collyer hard but Collyer kicks his leg then hits a shinbreaker for two. Stryker fights back again and catches Collyer with a backdrop. He kicks him a few times but Collyer blocks a hurricarana and gets two with a rollup. They trade rollups then Stryker catches Collyer in an ankle lock. Collyer breaks then Stryker puts it back on for a bit. Stryker chops Collyer in the corner and tries a sunset flip off of the top rope but Collyer rolls through and puts Stryker in the Texas Cloverleaf and Stryker eventually taps out (15:05) ***

Thoughts: Good action. It felt more like a mat wrestling exhibition more than anything else but it was good to watch at least. These two had zero personality though but made for a solid choice as opening match guys in this promotion.

Backstage, Low Ki and Da Hit Squad arguing over who is going to cut the promo as Mafia is jealous of Ki, calling him "Mr. Ring of Honor" and how they are just a couple of midcarders. Ki then cuts a promo on Special K but Mafia cuts him off at the end. They are teasing a heel turn of Mafia here.

Slim J vs. Amazing Red

Red just came back from a tour of All Japan. They work the standard fast-paced sequence that ends in a standoff to get the fans going. Slim kicks Red after a handshake and they work another sequence that ends with Red turning Slim inside out with a clothesline. Slim rolls outside and Red flies out and hits him with a running flip dive. Red knocks down Hijinx as the action goes back into the ring. Levy alerts us that London had emergency sinus surgery thus will not team with AJ Styles tonight but that Red will be his replacement. Slim uses some innovative offense to work on the neck of Red then gets two with a suplex. Red counters an electric chair drop with an inverted hurricarana. They go back and forth for a bit until Slim hits Red with a cradle DDT that gets two. Sweet move. Slim hits a springboard inverted DDT for two. Slugger grabs Red by the leg as Slim hammers away on Red. Red boots Slim off of a charge then gets two with a leaping swinging STO. Red hits Slim with an F5 but that only gets two. Slim hits Red with a low blow then heads up top for a moonsault but Red catches him with a cutter in midair. Red escapes from the electric chair drop again then kills Slim with a few kicks. Red Star Press gets two. Slugger tries to trip up Red again but gets booted in the face and a reversal sequence ends with Red hitting Slim with a sitout piledriver (12:03) **1/4. After the match, Slugger hits Red with the Body Bag.

Thoughts: Some nice moves here but not much more than that. Slim was only 18 years old and looked like Eminem here and grabbed his crotch between moves. Slugger attacking Red would have an effect on the following match.

CM Punk comes out to the ring and tells the crowd that he is straight-edge thus better than you as he runs down the crowd and city of Boston for being drug addicts. The crowd is all over him as a few start calling him a homo. He even tells the crowd that they stunk the place up more than Konnan did in Philly. He calls out Raven for not having the balls to show up. He then heads to the locker room but Raven busts through the curtain as Punk retreats. The fans give Raven a decent reaction but nothing too crazy. Raven says that while he is older now, he still will not be as bad as Konnan was in Philadelphia and they go back and forth until Raven challenges him to a "Raven's Rules" match and that he will even wrestle the standard RoH-style match for the first ten minutes. Punk then tries to jump Raven from behind but gets attacked then ducks outside as he heads up the ramp.

#1 Contender's Match for the RoH Tag Team Titles
Carnage Crew vs. Backseat Boys vs. AJ Styles & Amazing Red w/ Alexis Laree vs. SAT

This match is under scramble rules. AJ is actually alone for this match as Red is selling the effects of getting attacked by Slugger. Jose and Acid start off by going back and forth. Kashmere and Loc slug it out until Kashmere spears him in midair. AJ and Joel are in now as AJ is still without a partner. AJ sends Joel to the floor with an enziguiri then hits him with the Phenomenon from the apron. Jose takes out AJ with a tope and that triggers a dive sequence that ends with Devito taking everyone out with a top rope moonsault. Joel goes back inside then takes out everyone but AJ with a senton as AJ also headed back inside and quieted the crowd as he dedicated a Shooting Star Press to London. Back inside, the Backseat Boys double team AJ. Devito comes in and stomps Kashmere then the match breaks down. Acid pulls down the top rope on AJ as he dumps to the floor. The Backseat Boys hit Joel with the Dream Sequence then the Carnage Crew beat on Acid. The SAT's hit Loc with a really sloppy double team move then AJ hits Jose with rolling wheelbarrow suplexes. Now everyone is brawling as the Backseat Boys almost kill Loc with the T-Gimmick. Everyone is now outside except for AJ and Jose as AJ flattens him with a powerbomb then uses a bridge to get the win (12:15) **1/2.

Thoughts: Solid action here. No one in particular stood out but it was fast-paced and fairly enjoyable to watch.

The Outkast Killaz come out to confront the SAT's. They try to attack them but end up getting taken out as the SAT's hit Oman Tortuga with the Spanish Fly. Seemed just like an excuse to let the crowd see the Spanish Fly.

Dixie & Deranged & Angel Dust w/ Brian XL & Hydro & Slim J vs. Low Ki & Da Hit Squad

The Special K guys take out Da Hit Squad with dives before they enter the ring. They try another attempt but get caught and slammed. Inside, Ki is beating the piss out of Deranged. Mafia elevates Deranged as Ki destroys him with a kick in midair. Damn. Da Hit Squad take turns tossing around Deranged. Dixie tags and gets sent into the corner with a belly-to-belly suplex. Ki and Angel Dust are in as Ki chops him hard. Ki hits Angel Dust with a boot to the face as the fans chant his name. Ki misses a charge and Angel Dust gets a few kicks but Ki catches his foot then unloads on him various strikes. He uses the Hanging Dragon as the other Special K guys are begging for Ki to stop. Da Hit Squad comes in and they continue to brutalize these guys. Brian XL distracts the ref and that allows Hydro and Slim J to grab Mafia's leg as Deranged hits him with a spin kick. Deranged tosses Mafia outside and distracts the ref so the rest of Special K can beat him down. Mafia is now getting triple-teamed in the corner. Mafia fights back and hits a suplex as both men are down. He tags Ki who beats the shit out of Deranged. He takes Brian XL off of the apron with an enziguiri. Hydro comes in as Ki kicks him down. Da Hit Squad double-team Angel Dust then knock Slim J off the top rope as he had a chair. Monsta Mack climbs up top and hits Angel Dust with a Van Terminator headbutt that looked terrible. Deranged then whacks Mafia with a chair as the match has broken down and the ref calls for the DQ (12:37). However, Ki grabs the mic and says that he does not  want to win that way and orders the referee to restart the match. Da Hit Squad beat on Special K outside of the ring as Dixie offers Ki some pills and actually swallows it as some shitty music plays as Special K dances with him as Ki is on the mat tripping as Slim and Brian have his arm but the camera shows Ki stick is tongue out with the pill still on his tongue then takes them all out. He hits Dixie with the Tidal Crush then takes his Kangol as Da Hit Squad enters and they all hit their finishers and cover for the pin (18:01) **1/2.

Thoughts: Decent action here as well. The story was that the other guys were teaching Special K a lesson and that came across well as they really laid into them. They did not tease any tension between Da Hit Squad and Ki here.

Gary Michael Cappetta are with the Carnage Crew who have fun pissing people off as they have shitty jobs and ugly wives. More of the same from this team.

Raven is backstage and sees Trinity walk by and asks her to see him later.

Dunn & Marcos vs. Quiet Storm & Ghost Shadow

Storm is with a new partner after Chris Divine left the company, reportedly due to roughing up his girlfriend Trinity, but the announcers tell us that he is touring Puerto Rico. Marcos gets double-teamed until he snaps off a rana in a terrible spot. Ghost Shadow catches Dunn with a muscle buster then Storm takes out both guys. Shadow & Storm hit a few cool double-team moves then Storm makes Marcos tap with a modified Indian Death Lock (4:00) *.

Rating: Ghost Shadow looked good here but Storm seemed disinterested. The fact that his partner was gone and he was wrestling the ring crew guys probably were the reason for that as he must have seen the writing on the wall. Storm wasn't that bad in the ring and still wrestles in Japan for Pro Wrestling NOAH today but looked to be about 5'1.

Raven's Rules Match
CM Punk vs. Raven w/ Trinity

Punk starts the match with a hiptoss then mocks Raven. Punk frustrates Raven early but then gets caught with a pair of armdrags. Raven sends Punk to the floor with a dropkick then takes him out with a twisting pescado as Levy brings up Raven's shoot interviews. Back inside, Raven uses a neck snap then grabs a side headlock on the mat. Punk escapes and takes a breather outside as Raven grabs the mic and says that he is going to break out the "plunder" as Punk comes in with a chair then swings and misses as the chair catches Punk in the face after he hit the ropes. Punk then outsmarts Raven by going after Trinity then whacking Raven with a chair as he followed. Raven sends Punk into the guardrail then they brawl some more until Punk rolls Raven into the ring and hits a suplex. Punk grabs a chair and places it into the corner then rams Raven into it as the announcers acknowledge that Divine and Trinity are in a relationship. On the floor, Raven reverses a suplex as both men are down. Punk is up first and hammers away then slams him back in the ring. Punk misses a top rope leg drop as both men are down again. Raven is up first and hits a back suplex but Punk catches him in a sleeper as Raven is busted open after getting sent into the chair again. Raven now catches Punk in a sleeper but that get broken up with a jawbreaker. Raven fights back and hits a clothesline then a bulldog that gets two. Punk shoves Raven to the mat after a superplex attempt but Raven catches him coming of off the top and puts on a modified sharpshooter but Punk reaches the ropes. Raven heads outside and tries to bring a table into the ring but Punk kicks it into his face then tosses Trinity into the guardrail then runs back inside only to fly out and hit Raven with a tope. Trinity climbs up top and hits Punk with a moonsault as Raven now sets up a table but Punk knocks him down with a chair then puts Trinity on the table and puts her through with a leg drop. Back inside, Punk hits Raven with a Shining Wizard for two. He then puts Raven in the Devil Lock submission after hitting him with a DDT. Raven reaches the ropes as then Raven ducks a clothesline as Punk ends up hitting the referee. Punk sets up a chair in the ring but Raven reverses an Irish whip then uses his trademark drop toehold to drive Punk into the chair. Punk hits Raven wit a low blow then hits the Devil Lock as the referee comes back in as Raven taps out (28:52) ***1/2. After the match, Punk mocks Raven and the fans then tries to attack Punk but Raven fights back. Punk manages to slip out of the Raven Effect then after the ref yells at him, Raven takes him out with the move. Raven checks on Trinity after the match.

Thoughts: Good stuff and this instantly established Punk as a singles heel threat. Raven looked good here and 2003 was a great year for Raven as he was rejuvenated and wrestling in some of the best matches of his career. The ending was not the greatest but everything else was really good and Punk was great as a heel, pissing off the fans at every opportunity.

#1 Contender's Trophy Match
BJ Whitmer vs. EZ Money vs. Samoa Joe vs. Homicide

Whitmer and Money start off the match by trading off a bunch of stuff is an alright sequence. Joe and Homicide are in now as they go at it until Joe flattens him with a uranage. Joe tags Whitmer and he gets two off of a high knee smash. Homicide takes control and destroys Whitmer in the corner. Money tags himself in and hits the Money clip on Whitmer then puts him in the pendulum swing. Money beats on Whitmer in the corner as these two are not working too well together. Joe tags and beats on Whitmer with kicks and chops before putting him a Boston Crab. Homicide breaks up the hold as Joe stares him down. Money tags and he rams Whitmer into the corner. Suplex gets two then Money stretches him out. Homicide tags but Whitmer is able to put him in a Dragon Suplex that gets two. Homicide sends him outside then flies out with a tope con hilo as Money and Joe are in as Joe flies out and hits Whitmer and Homicide then Money flies out with a body press onto everyone. That looked bad. Back in the ring, Homicide and Whitmer trade chops. Whitmer blocks a top rope hurricarana attempt then hits a Blockbuster. Joe levels Whitmer then trades slaps and chops with Homicide. Joe powerbombs Homicide, who tries to hold onto the arm but Joe kills him with knee strikes. Whitmer sends Joe down with a forearm then they work a ridiculous sequence when they trade suplexes. Joe comes back in and powerbombs Whitmer then puts him in the STF until Homicide breaks that up. Joe tags Money, who hits Whitmer with a few double stomps. Whitmer is able to get his knees up on a moonsault attempt then tags Homicide. Money wins a slugfest then tags Joe but Homicide is able to hit him with an Ace Crusher for two. Homicide hits a low blow then has Joe in a STF but it gets broken up as Money is in and hits Homicide with the Cha-Ching but Whitmer makes the save. Money snaps Whitmer's neck but fails to hit the Money Clip and Whitmer hits him with the Exploder 98. Joe comes in and clotheslines Whitmer then hits Homicide with a knee smash. Money suplexes Joe and tries it again but Joe blocks that and puts on the Coquina Clutch as Money taps out quickly (16:33) **1/2. After the match, Joe and Homicide start butting heads.

Thoughts: This was only good when it was Joe and Homicide going at it in the ring. Money looked bad tonight and had no chemistry with Whitmer. I don't think Joe winning was a surprise to anyone given who he was in there with.

After the match, there is another pull apart between the fans as the camera shows someone getting tossed outside as Sapolsky is screaming like a girl as Mafia swears at him. They are still trying to play off of the "riot" that happened at the "First Anniversary Show."

RoH Tag Team Title Match
AJ Styles & Amazing Red w/ Alexis Laree vs. Christopher Daniels & Xavier w/ Alison Danger

The Prophecy attacks Red & Styles right after the bell. AJ alley-oops Red as he boots both Xavier and Daniels outside. Red & Styles fly outside with running flip dives as Red winds up in the front row. Daniels & Xavier head up the ramp for a breather then yell at the crowd. Xavier gets back in the ring with Red and overpowers him but acts too cocky. Xavier laughs off a few kicks until he gets drilled in the head with a spin kick. Red hits a DDT off of a tilt-a-whirl that gets two. AJ tags and Xavier ducks outside to avoid a double-team move. Daniels is now in with AJ after a breather as the announcers try to sell that Xavier might have a concussion. They go back and forth on the mat for a bit then Daniels hits a dropkick and a shoulderblock. AJ comes back with a few armdrags then a spinkick. He tags Red and he hits the 718 then gets two after AJ hit a senton. Red gets two with a rana then tags AJ as he hits a back suplex that gets two. Xavier is in as AJ kicks him in the head then clotheslines him in the corner. Xavier fights back and hits a Cobra Clutch suplex then tags Daniels as they isolate AJ, targeting his neck. They hit him with some nasty double team moves but AJ comes back with a double dropkick as all three men are down. AJ makes the tag to Red, who hits a double missile dropkick then runs wild. Xavier blocks a monkey flip attempt by Red as he leaped on the apron and stunned Red off of the top rope. Red avoids a double-team move as Daniels knocks down Red then tags out. AJ hits an inverted DDT on Daniels that gets two. Neckbreaker gets two. Danger grabs the leg of AJ and he drags her in the ring and holds her up so Laree can spear her as they roll around on the mat. Xavier attacks AJ from behind and hits the Kiss Your X Goodbye but Red braks up the pin then hits the Code Red as Daniels breaks up that move. AJ tries to escape a Blue Thunder Driver attempt but Xavier runs in and hits a neckbreaker for two. They have multiple pin attempts that follows then AJ calls him a wobbly Xavier and they trade kicks. AJ hammers away with forearm smashes then catches him with a spinning heel kick for two. Brainbuster gets two. Daniels hits AJ with a STO then Red comes in and Daniels hits him with the Best Moonsault Ever until AJ breaks that up. Daniels puts AJ in the Koji Clutch then hits the Angel's Wings but Red breaks up the pin. Red gets two with a small package but gets caught with a clothesline. Daniels sets Red up for a superplex but AJ goes underneath and takes Daniels off and hits the Styles Clash and covers for the win just before Xavier could make the save. My god that finished looked horrible as it seemed clear that Xavier made the save and it looked like Red was going to hit him with a top rope move too. The fans were all confused until the bell rang (21:10) ***1/4.

Thoughts: Another poor finish. The end of this match really picked up as the first half was fairly average. They got the belts off of the Prophecy, which was a good thing seeing how Morgan was always in Japan and they rarely got defended. The storyline with Xavier getting a concussion would not be forgotten about the next show.

Homicide is backstage as he tells Steve Corino that there feud is not over then alerts the rest of his stable that if they interfere, he will have his "Doghouse Crew" with him where ever he goes. Two guys, one of them the future Julius Smokes, comes in and cuts a promo as the other guys wonders why Low Ki is not down with them. The girl with them who does not talk and is barely on camera would go on to become Becky Bayless. Smokes was like the gangsta version of King Curtis on the mic.

The camera guy asks Quiet Storm where Christopher Daniels is as he has no clue and does not care as well. He sees Daniels in the back, who refuses to cut a promo, despite the camera guy saying he needs it to finish the tape. Daniels yells about constantly being screwed over by RoH the slams the door in his face.

CM Punk cuts a promo about how wrestling is his life and not some hobby. He then says that his hobby is crushing the human spirit and says that he picked Ace Steel as his tag team partner for next week and tells Raven by picking Colt Cabana, he has chosen a tag partner who he cannot trust. He finishes by telling Raven he will bury him in Philly then mocks his taunt.

Final Thoughts: Decent show. There was not a must-see match here but this was notable for Punk's heel turn as he was the highlight of the show. They are starting to tell better stories in the ring too, which is good. The roster was stabilizing a bit as they still had guys coming and going constantly and leaving for tours overseas but they were establishing the core and solidifying the Tag Team division, which had been horrible. RoH is starting to shape up but they are not quite there yet.


  1. Isn't Low Ki v. Special K basically a snuff film?

  2. He brutalized those guys in the ring. It was like 15 minutes of Special K getting their asses handed to them.

  3. Any relation to Becky Bayless?

  4. Nope. So I might have a chance at her then.

  5. She can change her name to Becky Bayless-Bayless.

  6. It's totally the opposite for tag team wrestling in ROH now. It's been by-far the most consistent part of ROH through the whole time I've been following them.

  7. These were the actual teams at this point in RoH

    Divine Storm
    Dunn & Marcos
    Da Hit Squad
    Carnage Crew
    Outkast Killaz
    Special K
    Backseat Boyz


  8. I loved the Backseat Boyz. I thought Trent Acid was the greatest.

    I also loved Dunn & Marcos as ROH's tag team version of Mikey Whipwreck.

  9. Loved Becky Bayless. Very attractive.

  10. I liked the Backseat Boyz and if Acid could have stayed clean, he would have had a good career.

  11. These days they have however many regular teams (reDRagon, The Decade, Briscoes, Bad Influence)
    and A healthy mix of occasional talent that are always credible contenders (Forever Hooligans, Young Bucks)
    And every now and then they debut a new team or throw two guys singles guys together (Moose and Evans) to keep things fresh.

    It all works very well

  12. That Raven/Punk match is great and it does not at all feel 28 minutes long. I read a recap after watching the match and thought there was no way it was 30 minutes long. Had to rewatch just to see if the recapper was wrong. Probably their 3rd best match behind Dog Collar and the Conclusion Cage match.

  13. I liked it a lot, except for the finish. It felt out of nowhere.


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