Maybe its the fact that this show is taking place in Toronto, but this PPV has a real Death Before Dishonor XVIII feel to it.
That was the first iPPV I ever ordered from ROH and I couldn't wait to see it. It was the first time in years that I looked forward to a PPV that much. Everything from the Newswires to the superb videos from ThatWrestling Show made me so pumped to see it.
Border Wars feels like the same to me. Although ROH today just doesn't have the same vibe as it did in 2010, it's still a PPV that I cannot wait to see. While Davey Richards was the hungry challenger to Tyler Black's title at Death before Dishonor XVIII, he is now the champ, with Steen being the one that wants to capture the gold.
Like DBD XVIII, the card is stacked with some promising matches, but it's the main event that everyone wants to see. Davey Richards vs. Kevin Steen is simply the must-see match on the Indie Circuit, and a match everyone seems to be talking about. This PPV has a big night feel about it, a feel that I haven't felt since Best in the World last year.
Here's to hoping that the main event, and the whole show for that matter, lives up to everyone's expectations.
Six Man Tag Team Match
The Young Bucks & Mike Mondo vs. All Night Express & TJ Perkins
I constantly wonder to myself whether TJ Perkins deserves better. I know for someone who only signed last year that this is a way for him to work his way up the ladder, but you also got to wonder why such a talented wrestler is caught in the midst of tiny feuds like this.
Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with being involved in a storyline with The Young Bucks, but it still feels like its just thrown together. And as for Mike Mondo? Well, I don't think anyone deserves to be paired up in a feud against him.
The match should be fun however. The Young Bucks are consistently good, Mike Mondo is an interesting prospect and TJ looks like he's well adapted to working tag team matches. Really, the only people who I'm not pushed on seeing are ANX. As good as they are together, they just seem to have fallen off the mark since their Ladder War against The Briscoes last year. Maybe its because of Rhett's injury, or maybe its because their blow off feud with The Briscoes never went anywhere for them. Whatever the reason, they just don't seem to have that spark that they once had.
Winners: All Night Express & TJ Perkins
Jay Lethal vs. Tomasso Ciampa
Although Jay Lethal losing the TV Title to Roderick Strong has kind of degraded this feud, it's still a match that I'm looking forward to seeing, well, depending on what Tomasso Ciampa shows up.
If it's the Tomasso Ciampa that faced Lethal at the 10th Anniversary Show then it will probably be a disappointment. However, if its the Tomasso Ciampa we saw two weeks ago against Matt Taven then it surely be an entertaining match. If who haven't seen that match yet then do yourself a favour and watch it, because I think THAT is the Tomasso Ciampa we all want to see.
If that Tomasso Ciampa shows up, then I don't think he will look very weak in defeat (which I think will happen).
Winner: Jay Lethal
Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin
The man who pinned the World Champion Davey Richards at the 10th Anniversary Show vs. the man who pushed the same man to the limit at Showdown in the Sun. To up and comers who are sure to put on an entertaining bout.
Seriously, while Steen vs. Richards is the main attraction, this is match that could be hugely enjoyable as well. Their styles may be different, but these are two people that could get the best out of one another.
Winner: Michael Elgin
Eddie Edwards vs. Rhino
Really, this is the only match (as well as the 6-man tag maybe) that just feels like a filler more than anything else.
I don't know how these two will work together, but regardless of all that I still expect it to be an OK match. Maybe. Eddie is absolutely fine, and can get a good match out of many wrestlers, but Rhino? I'm not sure the same can be said for him. He's good against lighter opponents of course, but against someone like Eddie I think he may be a bit limited.
Winner: Eddie Edwards
Mike Bennett vs. Lance Storm
Mike Bennett hasn't had many good matches in ROH, but at Showdown in the Sun he had his best against the man he's facing tonight in Toronto.
With Lance Storm facing retribution after the post-match attack by Bennett, expect a different style of match from the Canadian. Although Lance's work his more ground based, he can still work a hard-hitting match.
As for Bennett, well, he just needs to let Storm carry the match again. He also needs to use his heel persona against the what will probably be hostile Toronto crowd, because in my view that could make the match very entertaining, and all without Bennett doing an awful lot or work.
Tough one to pick here. The obvious choice is that the younger talent goes over the veteran yet again, but for me I see Lance getting the win and showing Bennett some tough respect.
Winner: Lance Storm
ROH World Television Championship
Roderick Strong vs. Finlay
While many people were disappointed that Finlay was wasn't booked against Michael Elgin, I think the second best option is Roderick Strong.
No, Roddy doesn't NEED this match against Finlay, because he's already an ROH veteran in his own right, but there's no denying that this will be a fun match to watch. While Finlay is obviously the better wrestler (even at 53 years old), Roderick Strong his still fairly similar to him in many ways. Like Finlay, Roderick Strong is a hard hitter and a well versed technical wrestler (even if he doesn't use that style too often), so to have these two face off against each other is still a good move.
Because (yes, I'm starting a sentence with the word “because”, College has made me lazy) this is a TV title match, it means this is a 15 minute time limit. So, with that said, lets just hope it's 15 minutes of both men beating the crap out of each other.
Winner: Roderick Strong
ROH World Tag Team Championship
Fight Without Honor
The Briscoes vs. Wrestling's Greatest Tag Team
I was there at Best in the World last year when The Briscoes attacked WGTT after their match. Who knew that after nearly a year these two teams would still be in a feud together.
I really haven't enjoyed any of this feud. Between the total mess at Final Battle 2011 to the annihilation of Jay Briscoes genitals at Showdown in the Sun, this feud just hasn't been very good at all.
What's there left to say here? The feud really should have ended months ago. Hopefully this Fight Without Honor gives us a happy ending to this feud, even though it doesn't exactly deserve one.
Winners: The Briscoes
ROH World Championship
Davey Richards vs. Kevin Steen
It's been such a long wait, and now we're just hours away from this massive main event.
While I was delighted to see Davey win the World Championship last year, and while he's only recently gotten into his groove as champion over the past few months, Steen needs to win the title tonight.
After all he's been through, after all the support that he's gained along the way, Kevin Steen needs to win the ROH World Championship in Toronto. Just think of how magical it could be to see Steen get his arm raised in victory. Davey Richard laid out while a shocked and livid Jim Cornette looks on at ringside.
Jim Cornette. Jim could play a huge part in this match tonight. As the storyline goes, Jim doesn't want Steen to win the World Championship, and will probably do whatever it takes to ensure that doesn't happen. Whatever happens tonight, expect Jim to get involved. Whether he'll cost Steen the title, or whether his attempt to do so will backfire and cost Richards is yet to be seen. My guess is on the second option. Cornette looks to interfere, distracts Richards in the process, gets knocked off the apron and is then followed by a Package Piledriver on Richards. One. Two. Three. New Champion.
Winner: Kevin Steen