It's been over nine years since July 19, 2003 when Ring of Honor first set-up shop at the Rexplex in Elizabeth, NJ to present the first ever “Death Before Dishonor” event! That night CM Punk & Raven clashed in an epic Dog Collar Match, Paul London challenged Samoa Joe for the ROH World Title on his final night in the company, and Jeff Hardy made his infamous appearance in his only ROH match.
Fast forward ten years, the landscape is different, the faces are largely different, but what has not changed is that ROH always presents the top-shelf, absolute best professional wrestling you will find anywhere on the planet!
We continue that tradition of excellence this weekend when we return to Chicago Ridge, IL THIS Saturday night for “Death Before Dishonor X” live on iPPV! Every title will be on the line, new tag team champions are guaranteed to be crowned, new blood looks for opportunity, and Matt Hardy returns to the ROH scene for the first time in 7 years! Here's a look at the full line-up:
ROH WORLD TITLE MATCH
ROH World Champion Kevin Steen defends against "The Man Beast" Rhino
Since capturing the ROH World Title in May, Kevin Steen has defeated Davey Richards, Roderick Strong, Eddie Edwards, Mike Mondo, Eddie Kingston, Homicide, and Cedric Alexander in title defenses. That is a fact that has pushed ROH Executive Producer Jim Cornette to his breaking point and as a result, he took one devil in favor of another...that is the best way to look at this bout. It is true that he made Rhino earn this opportunity in a match against Eddie Edwards on “Ring of Honor Wrestling” TV, but the fact that he gave another member of the HoT the opportunity shows a great deal about the sense of desperation Cornette feels and just why this event has been dubbed “A State Of Emergency”. To his credit, Rhino has decimated pretty much everyone put in front of him, sending Eddie Edwards to Pro Wrestling NOAH with some serious rib damage after he was on the receiving end of a Gore for example.
Now these two behemoths will collide with the ROH World Title on the line and the fight got underway last weekend on “Ring of Honor Wrestling” TV in the fallout of the Adam Cole/Michael Elgin TV Title match. This is truly a case of the immovable object and the unstoppable force colliding and despite his tremendous fortitude, Steen must beware because if any manuever in ROH could be considered a “one shot kill” it would be The Gore. This will be a test unlike any Steen has faced thus far in his ROH World Title reign, and as for the man who made this possible, Jim Cornette will have to wait and see if his bargain with the devil that is Truth Martini is any better or worse than the devil of Kevin Steen...
**NEW** ROH World Tag Team Champions will be Crowned!!
-S.C.U.M. (Jimmy Jacobs & Steve Corino) vs. Cedric Alexander & Caprice Coleman
-Rhett Titus & Charlie Haas vs. Jay & Mark Briscoes
The ROH World Tag Team Titles were stripped from The All Night Express following Kenny King's departure from Ring of Honor and a tournament was quickly established to crown new champions. Of the eight teams that started, these are the four remaining...and yes, you read that right, Charlie Haas and Rhett Titus are competing as partners. With Shelton Benjamin suspended when the tournament began, and both Haas & Titus given spots in the tourney provided they find partners, an tentative agreement was reached for the pair to unite to get the titles and then worry what to do afterwards. They survived as a duo in their 1st round victory over The Guardians of Truth, but with Shelton Benjamin working the corner this weekend for the duo, it will be interesting to see how they continue to co-exist against the Briscoes.
The pairing of Titus & Haas left a door open for another team to enter the field and the S.C.U.M duo of Jacobs & Corino jumped at the chance, but Cornette would only allow them in on one condition: if they do not win the tournament, they lose their ROH careers. They scored a victory over The Bravados in the 1st Round to keep their title aspirations, and their careers, alive but they now face a team hungry for success in Caprice & Cedric, a duo that will certainly test their mettle.
C&C, still owed a future Tag Title shot from winning a Proving Ground bout months ago, entered into the tournament against opponents many people thought were odds on favorite to win: The Young Bucks. Yet it was Coleman & Alexander who bucked the odds and defeated Nick & Matt to advance to the 2nd Round. And while they face the two men with the most to lose in this tourney, C&C are not falling back on the fact that they are owed a title match in the future. They aim to be the champions after this weekend, not challengers.
As for Jay & Mark, they are the foundation of ROH's tag team division and with 7 reigns to their credit, they are undoubtedly also the most dominant team in the history of Ring of Honor. They define tag team wrestling, they are one of the reasons it is such an integral part of ROH, and their constant drive to reclaim the titles regardless of their track record only goes to show how important those belts are. Their victory over the impressive BLKOUT duo of Ruckus & Jeez only further showed that Dem Boys are never ones to rest on their laurels and when taking on one man they hate in Charlie and another they respect, but love to fight, in Titus, it will be quite the knockdown drag-out in Chicago Ridge.
The American Wolf Davey Richards Returns to ROH
The former ROH World Champion surprised everyone last weekend at “Caged Hostility” when he showed up and addressed the crowd. He surprised Kyle O'Reilly and Adam Cole even more when he came out to ringside during their Proving Ground match and inadvertantly played a part in Cole's loss. Now he has promised to be in Chicago Ridge this weekend to address his future in Ring of Honor. Richards is not one known for pulling punches or mincing words so it will be quite interesting to hear what he has to say...
ROH World TV Championship Match
ROH World TV Champion Adam Cole defends against "No Fear" Mike Mondo
As seen a few weekends back on “Ring of Honor Wrestling TV”, “No Fear” Mike Mondo earned himself a shot at the ROH World TV Title at “Death Before Dishonor X” with a victory in a Six Man Mayhem over Mike Bennett, TJ Perkins, Roderick Strong, Jay Lethal and Tommaso Ciampa! Mondo captured the victory after catching Bennett with a Double Arm DDT (Mondo's second victory over Bennett in the last few months). Now, for the second time since June when he faced Kevin Steen for the ROH World Title, Mike Mondo will challenge for an ROH championship...
“Jim Cornette took a risk and gave me a chance against Kevin Steen.” said Mondo to ROHWrestling.com, “It was a risk that didn't pay off the way he or I had hoped, but it gave me a feeling for what being a champion in Ring of Honor would be like. Now, after winning that Six Man Mayhem, I've got that feeling again. It's goose bumps from anticipation and it's a high that I will be riding all the way to Chicago Ridge when I face Adam Cole. I know Cole is a hot prospect right now, that he's got the world on the tip of his fingers, and that becoming the TV champion was a dream come true for him but holding that title is a dream that I share too. I know he's going to give me a fight, but it's a fight I'm looking forward to and I'm sure Cole feels the same way. See this is the kind of competition that makes Ring of Honor great, the kind you won't see anywhere else, and I will be damn proud to represent as the TV Champion after Death Before Dishonor.”
Cole is coming off a loss, hard-fought as it was, but a loss nonetheless to Kyle O'Reilly at “Caged Hostility” as well as a brutal fight against Michael Elgin on “Ring of Honor Wrestling” TV over the TV Title. What condition is Cole in after these two fights? We will see on Saturday night!
ACH makes his ROH Debut vs. Kyle O'Reilly
ACH is a name that is becoming increasingly familiar to the hardcore wrestling fanatics as he has slowly been building a name for himself since starting his career in 2007. Now, at 24 years of age, he has come onto the radar of ROH officials and will make his debut live on iPPV when he pits his intense high-flying style against the intense hard-hitting one of Kyle O'Reilly. Kyle himself has been in this position of looking to impress and earn his stripes in ROH but that was a different Kyle, one who was respectful and honorable, not the one who has reared his head in recent months.
To say Kyle was less than enthused with this match would be an understatement and he simply said he would break ACH into ROH the hard way. Coming off a Proving Ground victory over Adam Cole that earned him a future ROH World TV Title match, O'Reilly's confidence (or is it arrogance?) is at an all-time high and he looks to make short work of ACH.
Survival Of The Fittest Tournament Qualifier Match
Tadarius Thomas vs. Silas Young
Tadarius Thomas has been quite impressive recently, particularly in his bout against QT Marshall on “Ring of Honor Wrestling” TV. Now this expert in the martial art known as Capoeira will be put to the test against another fresh face to ROH: Silas Young. To be fair, Young has a great deal of ROH experience, in the past having competed against the likes of Austin Aries, Davey Richards, and Nigel McGuinness, but disappeared from the ROH scene for several years until his return at “Brew City Beatdown” this year where he went toe-to-toe with Michael Elgin. Despite that loss, ROH officials were quite impressed with Young's development in his time away and were quick to sign him for a return date. Now these two warriors looking to make ROH their home will square off at “Death Before Dishonor X” hoping to impress and to the victor will go a spot in the “Survival of the Fittest 2012” tournament taking place on 9/22 in Baltimore. Someone will be one step closer to getting a shot at the ROH World Title after this one...
Special Challenge Match
Jay Lethal vs. "The Notorious 187" Homicide
As seen on a recent episode of “Ring of Honor Wrestling”, Jay Lethal showed that killer instinct Jim Cornette said he was looking for in a potential World Title challenger when he laid out both his opponent as well as the official in his bout with Matt Taven. Lethal than looked right into the camera, microphone in hand, and made it known that his actions were a direct message to the ROH Executive Producer when he said “Jim, how's that for...what did you say...killer instinct?”
With Ring of Honor returning to New Jersey on October 6th for the first time in several years, Lethal was dead set on challenging for the ROH World Title in front of the fans in his home state. Cornette had stated that he was looking for a challenger with that killer instinct, a man willing to sink to the level of Kevin Steen if need be, in order to reclaim the ROH World Title. Lethal, the man that fans on Facebook voted as their top choice for that Rahway title match, was obviously intent on showing JC that he has that evil inside him.
“I will give you killer instinct Jim Cornette.” said Lethal to ROHWrestling.com at the time, “If that is what it takes to get the title match I want, I will dig down into the pit of my stomach, into the depths of my heart, and bring out every bit of evil I can find in myself. It doesn't come easy, it certainly won't come without a price, but if that's what you feel you need to see in a challenger Jim Cornette, than that is what you will see in Jay Lethal. I almost feel like I should apologize in advance to my opponents but there's no room for apologies until after I become the ROH World Champion.”
After that, when we hit Charlotte for “Caged Hostility”, Lethal made a statement when he first beat Adam Page early in the night then took on all three members of S.C.U.M by himself. It was enough for Cornette as he immediately awarded Lethal the 10/6 opportunity but before he gets there he has a match with an opponent that will no doubt pull out every drop of killer instinct Lethal may have: “The Notorious 187” Homicide! These two individuals have quite a history, largely one painting them as adversaries, but most recently they partnered up at “Death Before Dishonor IX” when they faced Tommaso Ciampa & Rhino.
“I know Jay Lethal.” said Homicide, “I known that kid since he was cutting his teeth in dirty Jersey just trying to get noticed. He's tough, no doubt, you gotta be to hang around as long as he has, but man Jay you ain't got nothing on the Notorious 187. You ain't got that darkness in you, you ain't got no demon riding on your back just waiting to get unleashed. Jay, I been in that the ring with Kevin and tried to take that belt, and I dropped the ball. But man I learned something about what Kevin Steen's all about right now and Jay you gots a long way to go be ready for that. You want to get tested? You want to prove to Jim Cornette you can be a monster? Then step on up son, cause the original Rottweiler is always looking for a fight.”
Can Lethal maintain that killer instinct and survive the onslaught of Homicide? Or will it be the former ROH World Champion who shows why he deserves another shot at greatness?
Tag Team Attraction
The House of Truth ("Unbreakable" Michael Elgin & Roderick Strong) w/ Truth Martini vs. The Irish Airborne (Jake & Dave Crist)
The tensions within The House of Truth reached an all-time high at “Caged Hostility” in Charlotte last Saturday night when Michael Elgin, standing inches away from the action, chose to let Charlie Haas apply the Haas of Pain to Roderick Strong rather than break up the painful submission hold, forcing his partner to tap out. In all fairness to Elgin, this came after Roderick slapped him earlier in the bout and bailed on his partner when Elgin attempted to make a tag.
The rumblings around Ring of Honor are that Elgin has had little contact with Martini or Roderick since last Saturday night, which should make this Saturday very intriguing since Elgin & Roddy are supposed to unite to face The Irish Airborne live on iPPV.
As for the Airborne, the duo from Ohio last saw ROH activity in 2009, at “Stylin & Profilin” where they lost to The All Night Express, but have in fact challenged for the ROH World Tag Team Titles in the past when they were held by Austin Aries & Roderick Strong. The pair have been looking increasingly impressive in the years since their last ROH excursion, garnering that valuable experience around the country, and they are more than eager to come back to the ROH ring and show why they deserve to be a part of the best tag team division in professional wrestling.
MATT HARDY RETURNS TO ROH!!!
Matt Hardy will be in the house THIS Saturday night at “Death Before Dishonor X” in Chicago Ridge, IL for a special pre-show autograph signing.
We recently found out ROH officials received an e-mail from Hardy and ROHWrestling.com was able to confirm the content of said e-mail. The jist of what we were told is that Matt Hardy has expressed a vested interest in a very specific match taking place this Saturday and will do color commentary on that contest live on the iPPV broadcast!
We aren't sure which match it is that Matt Hardy will join Kevin Kelly & Nigel McGuinness at the commentary table, your guess is as good as ours, so make sure you join us live on the iPPV broadcast to find out when we do.
“Death Before Dishonor X” takes place THIS Saturday 9/15/12 live at the Frontier Fieldhouse in Chicago Ridge, IL! The event will be broadcast live on iPPV right here at ROHWrestling.com and for those of you making the trek to the Windy City area, tickets will be available AT THE DOOR on Saturday night! Make sure you're there early though because, in addition to Matt Hardy, both Roderick Strong & ROH World Champion, Kevin Steen will be available for autographs! Also, at intermission, Delirious will join the ROH merchandise table to sign copies of his newly released DVD set “Delirious: Masked Insanity”!!!