Ring of Honor made its return to the Rex Plex in Elizabeth, NJ last night before a crowd of 800 for a long, exciting, and exhausting night for fans. The dark matches started at 6:30 pm with the main event not ending until past 11:30 pm.
Amazingly the crowd stayed into things until the very end…a tribute to the quality of the product and the dedication of the fams, some of whom came from as far away as Michigan for the show.
Showcase card (dark matches)
# The Outcast Killas defeated Special K’s Lit and Cloudy.
# Luis Ortiz defeated Jose Perez in a rather unremarkable match. The two work for Chaotic Wrestling and other Massachusetts are promotions.
# Slyk Wagner Brown (with April Hunter) and the Grimm Reefer defeated Dunn and Marcos (still over as the cult heroes with the ROH crowd) in 7:02.
# Danny Maff (with Allison Danger) pinned Colt Cabana to set up a three-way tie between Danny Maff, Colt Cabana and BJ Whitmer for the promotion’s Field of Honor tournament.
Post-match, Samoa Joe and manager Jim Cornette jumped Danny Maff and Allison Danger. Fellow Prophecy member Christopher Daniels made the the save.
Cornette cut a promo about a “talent he would take to new heights”, and began to introduce who everyone assumed to be Samoa Joe… when The Briscoe Brothers came out. Cornette told them that if they wanted a piece of Joe, they could have one…tiptoed behind Joe, and then smacked him with the Tennis Racquet.
The Briscoes stomped Joe, and were announced by Cornette as his “talent”. Cornette stated that he “didn’t want to manage someone who was already champion when he could mold younger talent to become stars (not to mention a tag team)”.
# In an excellent technical match, Nigel McGinnis and Xavier defeated John Walters and Tony Mamaluke when Xavier pinned Mamaluke.
# Matt Stryker defeated Justin Credible by submisson (Credible was on early because he had another booking the same night elsewhere in New Jersey).
# Jay and Mark Briscoe (with Jim Cornette) defeated Special K’s Izzy and Dixie to become the new ROH Tag Team Champions
# Homicide pinned a bloodied BJ Whitmer in a “Fighting Spirit” match after a asick looking clothesline. Whitmer basically got the crap kicked out of him through the match, and kicked up out of several finishers, including Homicide’s CopKiller (Kudo Driver) finisher.
In the most specatacular match of the night, The Backseat Boyz defeated The Carnage Crew, the SAT, Special K’s Hydro and Angeldust, and The Hart Foundation 2003 of Teddy Hart and Jack Evans in a Scramble Cage Match.
The idea to have the platforms on each corner was to foster wild acrobatic moves. It did just that. Picture a Spanish Fly by the SAT to Hydro (aka Jay Lethal) from the top of the cage, or 720 degree moonsault (yes, you read it right) and Too Cold Scorpio-style tumbleweeds off the top of the cage.
Unfortuntately, Hart also decided post-match to showboat for the crowd, and stop selling the late match beatdown with flips off of the top of the cage, one after the other, to the point that he vomited in the ring after the bout. The Carnage Crew, legitimately saw this as disrespectful, and whipped Hart down so he’d sell, but Hart jumped up and the showboating one more time, causing bigtime anger in the locker room.
When Hart returned, he was set upon by Jim Cornette, Gabe Sapolsky, Rob Feinstein and a number of the workers in the back for his unprofessionalism. Mike Johnson of 1wrestling.com reported that it went so far as Hart being “thrown out of the locker room, bags and all”.
What’s sad is that Hart has incredible acrobatic talent…but has now worked himself out of another high-profile indy gig.
# CM Punk and Steve Corino were both named dual winners of a Four-Way bout when they simulataneously scored pinfalls on Christopher Daniels after about 30 minutes. Punk worked the match on a injured knee, obvious to the crowd later in the match. Mike Johnson’s report on the shows stated that Punk’s knee actually popped out backstage, and the ring crew had to stall taking down the cage after the last match so could get it back in place.
# AJ Styles defeated American Dragon Bryan Danielson in 24:17 of an excellent technical bout.
Amazingly, the crowd…after nearly five hours were doing dueling “Let’s Go, AJ…Let’s go, Dragon” chants.
Ring of Honor returns to the Rex Plex on Wrestlemania weekend March 13, 2004.