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*** Official ROH DVD Reviews by Brad Dykens ***
August 5, 2006 - FIGHT OF THE CENTURY - Edison, New Jersey

Samoa Joe cut a pre-show promo talking about the "Fight of the Century" and promised that he would knock out American Dragon tonight and when he woke up he would be fifteen pounds lighter. Dragon got equal promo time and bragged about what great shape he was in and said Joe would learn why he is the best wrestler in the World.

The Embassy made their way to the ring and got the traditional toilet paper treatment from the ROH fans. Thank God that Prince Nana is back in ROH for the time being, but Daizee Haze was sorely missed. Jimmy Rave was in street clothes and the Embassy's man-servant Salvatore Rinauro was booked against his former FIP tag team partner Colt Cabana. It started out as a comedy match, with Cabana playing many games with Rinauro until Jimmy Rave and Prince Nana began interfering and Rinauro briefly got the advantage. Colt Cabana proved that he was in a league of his own by putting Sal Rinauro away with an Inverted Boston Crab submission ( 6.5 / 10 ).

The next match was the DVD debut (I think) of ROH Student Bobby Dempsey, who looks like the adult version of Bobby Hill from King of the Hill. Bobby Dempsey incidentally has the greatest entrance music in ROH history. He was challenging Shane Hagadorn for the ROH Top of Class Trophy. While Hagadorn shook Dempsey's hand, he reached deep into his trunks and pulled out a set of brass knux and knocked Dempsey out cold and pinned him in 5 seconds! ( 5 / 10 ).

Adam Pearce showed up and congratulated Shane Hagadorn for winning the fastest match in ROH history. Shane Hagadorn sucked up to Adam Pearce and left the ring when he was told to leave. Adam Pearce called out B.J. Whitmer and asked Whitmer if he was "with him, or against him" in carrying out Jim Cornette's orders to take out Homicide. B.J. Whitmer said he respected Homicide, and then Steve Corino attacked Whitmer from behind!

The latest four corner survival match involved several big-time players in ROH and any one of them could have scored the win. It was Claudio Castagnoli vs. Jay Lethal vs. Christopher Daniels vs. Nigel McGuinness. Allison Danger is sticking with the white shirt and tie school girl look that she ripped off from Looney Lane on the west coast. She looks great so I'm not complaining! Claudio Castagnoli was custom-made for WWE, and I hope he finds his niche there. It ended up being a pretty good match, with everybody getting to show their stuff. One flurry of crazy offense resulted in the crowd erupting with chants of "ROH! ROH!" -- About 45 seconds later Nigel McGuinness nailed Claudio Castagnoli with a Lariat and scored the pin ( 7.5 / 10 ). The post match interaction between Claudio Castagnoli and Christopher Daniels was very heated and looks like it's going somewhere. Daniels and Lethal were the only ones left to shake hands.

For the second night in a row, ROH World Tag Team Champions Austin Aries and Roderick Strong were put to the test in a grueling "Ultimate Endurance" match. This unique contest includes four tag teams battling through three different matches, each ending with an elimination until only one team is left standing. The teams selected were Irish Airborne, Jack Evans and Matt Sydal, The Briscoe Brothers, with Austin Aries and Roderick Strong rounding out the pack. From the moment the bell rang, everybody started throwing punches and hitting spectacular moves left and right. In a shocking turn of events, it was the Briscoes were eliminated by Irish Airborne during the initial Tag Scramble portion of the match. The crowd was not happy! The next stage of the match was fought under Tap-out Rules and ended with the elimination of Irish Airborne (who may have become instant heels by eliminating the Briscoes earlier). It came down to Aries and Strong facing their old friends Evans and Sydal in a straight up Tag match for the ROH gold. In true Generation Next fashion, these four guys absolutely lit it up with some amazing action ( 8.5 / 10 ). Austin Aries and Roderick Strong retained their titles for the second night in a row, even though they are not in possession of the championship belts. Austin Aries demanded that whoever stole their ROH World title belts return them immediately.

During intermission, Colt Cabana was approached by Lacey to talk about the "rumors" circulating on the internet about them. Cabana played dumb, and Lacey ordered him to put a stop to the rumors!

Steve Corino and Adam Pearce came out for some mic-time and Corino turned on the heat with some vicious insults thrown out at several victims, oops I mean fans. Boys and girls, welcome to "How To Start a Riot 101," I am your instructor Mr. Corino - but you can call me the King of Old School! Homicide showed up and the match began as a handicap bout but eventually B.J. Whitmer hit the ring to even the odds. They threw punches and kicks and exchanged the occasional wrestling hold for the next fifteen minutes before the Briscoe Brothers showed up and attacked Homicide causing the disqualification ( 7.5 / 10 ). The Briscoes, who are apparently working for Jim Cornette, put Homicide's arm in a folding chair and stomped on it -- thus "injuring" Homicide's arm!

After coming out on the losing end of a tag team match the previous night, Davey Richards issued a friendly challenge to his mentor and tag partner KENTA in the spirit of competition. The fans were treated to the sleeper hit of the year, and a surefire match of the contender as both men put their heart and soul into delivering an incredible match for the ROH fans. Like many of the best ROH matches, it started slow and worked itself up to such a fever pitch. The fans became so emotionally involved in the match by the time KENTA nailed the Go To Sleep on his protege to win the match ( 9.0 / 10 ). The crowd showed their appreciation with chants "ROH!", "Thank you KENTA!", and "Thank you Davey!" Truly amazing match, but the best was yet to come.

Samoa Joe vs. ROH World Champion American Dragon; It was sixty minutes of intensity, aggression, excitement, passion, emotion, pain, suffering -- and I loved every minute of it! It didn't seem like a whole hour at all. The final moments of the match were quite possibly the most dramatic five minutes to ever take place in an ROH environment. The crowd was rabid and standing on their feet begging for the match to never end. When it did end in a 60-minute time limit draw, the crowd whole heartedly agreed that five more minutes were in order. The champion opted to take the draw and walk away with his title in tact ( 9.5 / 10 ).

Post match activities included KENTA blocking the entrance way for American Dragon. The Briscoes attacked KENTA from behind; then Homicide appeared and brawled with the Briscoes and eventually lost the advantage. Samoa Joe saw what was going on and ran back to the ring to save Homicide. They set up Homicide and Samoa Joe against the Briscoes in New York City.

Final Thoughts: It takes guts to do a 60-minute time limit draw in todays world of professional wrestling. Fans are so brain-washed into only wanting to see five minute matches on WWE television. It takes the most talented performer to maintain the attention of today's fans for a full sixty minutes. Ring of Honor is the only promotion that generates these kind of athletes.

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