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ROH gives all on Take No Prisoners
By JASON CLEVETT - SLAM! Wrestling


July will mark a year since Ring of Honor debuted on pay per view. Their sixth offering, Take No Prisoners features matches taped in Philadelphia on March 16th, as well as a tag title match taped in Orlando March 29th. As is typical with ROH shows, the action speaks for itself, and you get major bang for your buck.

Take No Prisoners features a bit of everything. One of the early highlights is a brutal anything goes tag match between The Briscoes and The Age of the Fall's Necro Butcher and former WWE star Joey Matthews. Mark Briscoe is busted open early on in the match with a shovel, leaving the viewer cringing many times at the blood pouring from the gash in his head. The match is a very old-school style, gritty brawl that culminates in Mark diving off of the entrance scaffolding onto Necro Butcher on a table. The Briscoes are one of the best tag teams in wrestling, because they can shift from two-out-of-three fall technical matches to hardcore brawls without missing a beat.

"American Dragon" Bryan Danielson and Austin Aries have wrestled over a dozen times in ROH in the last four years. It speaks to their skill level that they have created a different match each time, and for the first time together on pay per view, they likely had a lot of pressure to top previous matches. They succeed, as the match is everything I love about professional wrestling - creative counters, back and forth wrestling and a great story. If the result of watching this match is not that you have become a huge fan of both, you shouldn't be a wrestling fan.

There is frequently criticism of WWE and TNA on their inability to create new stars and make them feel important. That criticism can't be leveled at ROH, which due to the nature of the business has had a lot of talents come through the door, and thus have to make new stars. Such is the case of the main event, featuring Tyler Black, who in the opener won a four-way match to earn a title shot, against ROH champ Nigel McGuinness. Black, a member of the Age of the Fall, had largely been a mid-card tag team wrestler during his ROH run. Ring announcers Dave Prazak and Lenny Leonard do a fantastic job of commentary, putting over the 21-year-old as a Cinderella story. The match makes Black a star, as the crowd many times seems to think they are on the verge of a new champion. Black's refusal to go down and continuing to fight despite taking a pounding from McGuinness earned him respect in the eyes of the fans, and brought him to the champion's level. The match itself is great, and caps off the pay per view exceptionally well.

Ring of Honor continues to progress well with its pay per view events. There are still some minor technical issues - a spotlight on Prazak and Leonard at the opening of the show completely washed them out, for example; but from a wrestling standpoint, you aren't going to get this quality of a wrestling show anywhere else. Leonard and Prazak do a great job of filling in history that has happened between pay per view events, and there are video packages as well to keep the viewer up to date.

There has been an influx of pay per view events on the market in the last two months, so save some money and order this show instead. You won't regret it.

Match listing and ratings Take No Prisoners

  • Four Corner Survival Match - Tyler Black vs. Go Shiozaki, Delerious & Claudio Castagnoli. 6/10
  • Kevin Steen vs. Roderick Strong. 7/10
  • Briscoe Brothers vs. The Age of the Fall. 9/10
  • Erick Stevens vs. Brent Albright. 5/10
  • ROH Tag Team Championship - Davey Richards & Rocky Romero (c) vs. Ruckus & Jigsaw. 8/10.
  • Austin Aries vs. Bryan Danielson. 10/10.
  • ROH World Championship - Nigel McGuinness (C) vs. Tyler Black. 9/10.

    Overall event rating - 9/10.

    Jason Clevett is a freelance writer from Calgary, Alberta. He has been on the SLAM! Wrestling staff since 2003.