R.D. Evans and Q.T. Marshall came down to the ring to protest not being included on the card. The crowd gave them major heat. Prince Nana then grabbed the mic, called them "cum-guzzlers" and announced that he had just signed a new tag team that would fight them right then and there. Creepy music plays and two clowns came down to the ring. Evans and Marshall refuse to shake their hands. The clowns remove their masks to reveal their identities: Eddie Kingston and Homicide.
Outlaws, Inc. (Eddie Kingston + Homicide) def. Marshall Law (Q.T. Marshall + R.D. Evans)
This was a terrible match. Kingston and Homicide looked lost and seemed really out of place on a card packed with some of the top indy guys in the business. At one point, Homicide clearly botched a running knee to the face. Evans was very awkward and ran the ropes without any coordination. This was the only match that was truly bad from beginning to end.
The next three matches were taped for the Ring of Honor Championship Tournament.
Tommaso Ciampa def. Michael Bennett (w/o Maria Kanellis)
Ring of Honor features a lot of quick guys that put on major spot fests. Ciampa and Bennett, however, delivered a very WWE-like match where took they took their time, worked the crowd and focused more on storytelling. The crowd was fervently behind Ciampaas the crowd screamed "You killed BJ" and "Where's Maria?" at Bennett at various parts of the match. Notable moments included Bennett's attempt to deliver a GTS to Ciampa, only to have Ciampa reverse and deliver the GTS to Bennett. Bennett also delivered a few piledriver teases, only to receive insta-hate from the crowd. At one point, Bennett went for a piledriver on the apron ring (similarly to how he gave BJ Whitmer a career-killing one recently), however, Ciampa revered out of it, slammed him into the ring and got the win. Ciampa is built like a WWE guy and looks huge, despite being only 5"11.
Kevin Steen def. Roderick Strong
Steen was massively over with the crowd and kept playing up to them in funny ways. I felt bad for Roddy as despite being a solid babyface and worker, there was very little he could do to get love from the crowd. However, he actually achieved that by picking the massive Steen up over his head on multiple occasions. Both guys looked great throughout the match. Roddy was fast, tactical and showed why he's one of the top indy technicians. Steen was entertaining, surprisingly agile and brutal. Steens wins with a piledriver. After the match, Steen found a El Generico mask-donned man and let the crowd in an "Ole!" sing-along. Roddy could be a WWE guy if he had more charisma and Steen is likely destined to be one of the indy kinds for years to come.
Michael Elgin def. "Machine Gun" Karl Anderson
There were points when the crowd was into this match, but I was bored by it. They just didn't have great chemistry in the ring together. Also of note, Michael Elgin might be the ugliest man in professional wrestling. It's not every day you see a balding guy with a mullet and a pair of trunks pulled up over his belly button. It was so ridiculous, that people kept making jokes about it and I had a hard time taking him seriously. I bought my Kevin Steen and reDRagon t-shirts during this match. That said, Elgin did deliver some nice slams throughout the match. One notable moment came when Elgin lifted Anderson in the air for a suplex and held him for 55 seconds (a fast count by the crowd). Elgin was likely going for the full 60, but his legs began quivering so he cut it short. Elgin won with a sit down powerbomb. Meh.
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