Editor’s note: This column originally appeared on http://slam.canoe.ca and was written by Matt Mackinder.
Three more quarterfinal matches in the Ring Of Honor world championship tournament are on the card for tonight’s show and even though we already know who won the tournament last Saturday night in Philadelphia, these three matches are worth watching as they truly showcase the talent level of ROH.
Kevin Kelly and “ROH talent scout” Prince Nana are ringside from the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City and we get right to the action.
Match #1 – “The Sicilian Psychopath” Tomasso Ciampa vs. Michael Bennett
Maria Kanellis is barred from the building by ROH matchmaker Nigel McGuinness for her attempt to interfere in the Bennett-B.J. Whitmer match two weeks ago.
Ciampa is played to the ring by Last Remaining Pinnacle, who play his theme “They Are Lost” live. I’m telling you – one of the best entrance themes in ROH.
It’s all Ciampa early, but then Bennett takes it to the floor. In the ring, Ciampa nails Go To Sleep, but hurts his injured left knee in the process. Back on the floor, Ciampa hits the Kryptonite Krunch, rolls Bennett in the ring and gets the three-count.
Winner via pinfall: Tomasso Ciampa
Ciampa advances to face Adam Cole in the semi-finals.
Match #2 – Roderick Strong vs. “Mr. Wrestling” Kevin Steen
Fantastic match. Just fantastic. Back and forth, high-impact moves – just a ridiculously great bout.
Steen gets the sleeper suplex on Roddy and then package piledriver for the duke as the crowd counts along. Just a main event-caliber match.
Winner via pinfall: Kevin Steen
Steen now moves on to take on the winner of our main event this week.
Match #3 – “Unbreakable” Michael Elgin vs. “Machine Gun” Karl Anderson
These two have faced-off before on ROH TV back on May 4 and Anderson won with an Ace Crusher out of nowhere.
Anderson absolutely creams Elgin with a top-rope Ace Crusher, but only gets a two-count. This match has definite intensity and the fans let the two grapplers know it. Elgin and Anderson’s match rivals the Strong-Steen match, in my opinion.
Elgin gets the crossface on Anderson, who makes it to the ropes. Elgin then lands the dead-lift superplex for two before hitting the buckle bomb and seeing the two trade kicks and knee strikes.
This is one of those matches that you don’t want to see end, but it does when Elgin hits a pair of spinning back elbows, another buckle bomb and the spinning powerbomb for three.
Winner via pinfall: Michael Elgin
Elgin and Steen in the semi-finals. Does it get any better, especially for Canada?
See everyone next week!
— Matt Mackinder is the biggest ROH slappy out there. Then again, he also watches reruns of the Global Wrestling Federation. Contact Matt at [email protected]