With Ring of Honor on its way to Cedar Rapids television in just a few weeks, the Examiner will spend a few weeks covering some of the highlights and lowlights of the promotion’s history.
Better Than Our Best often sits near the top of many long time Ring of Honor’s fans list of the greatest ROH shows of all time. It’s easy to see why just by looking at the card. Held in front of 1700 fans in Chicago on April 1st of 2006, the matches absolutely deliver on the hype heaped upon them by their fans.
The opening match is a high-flying dream match, a six way freestyle featuring some of the best flyers of the last decade. Jack Evans (recently seen on TNA’s Destination X pay-per-view) scored the win over Ace Steel (CM Punk’s trainer), Matt Sydal (WWE’s Evan Bourne), Jimmy Jacobs and the Irish Airborne.
Delirious, still early in his career, won the next match over Ricky Reyes. This marked his first ever singles victory in the company.
This weekend also marked the second appearance of many Dragon Gate stars in the United States and match three pitted the Do Fixer unit of Dragon Kid, Genki Horiguchi & Ryo Saito against the Embassy’s team of Jimmy Rave, Alex Shelley (now part of TNA’s Motor City Machine Guns) and one night only member Masato Yoshino.
TNA famously made stars out of AJ Styles, Christopher Daniels and Samoa Joe with amazing three way battles, but ROH booked their own version here with the addition of talented high flyer Jimmy Yang. Samoa Joe picked up the win in a blast of a match.
Austin Aries (recently signed to TNA) and Roderick Strong successfully defended their ROH tag team titles against the Dragon Gate team of CIMA and Naruki Doi (now the leaders of Blood Warriors) in a hard-hitting contest that showed why Ring of Honor puts so much focus on their tag team division.
The semi-main event featured then ROH World Champion Bryan Danielson (now WWE’s Daniel Bryan) defending his title against former WWE/WCW/ECW star Lance Storm. Though retired, Storm put on an absolute beast of a technical contest with Danielson, though he ultimately fell to Bryan’s indie finisher, the Cattle Mutilation.
The main event brought an end to a multi-month feud between Colt Cabana and Homicide in a Chicago Street Fight. Fans of the modern Cabana might be surprised to see Colt in such a serious role as the two indie standouts wrestled in a brutal, bloody brawl. After the fans hurled 100s of chairs in to the ring, it ultimately took a powerbomb through a table and everyone of his finishers before Cabana finally put Homicide down once and for all.
Top to bottom, Better Than Our Best is filled with great match after great match. Again this show is amazingly out of print at the ROH store, but can be purchased easily through Ebay.
Starting September 24th, ROH Wrestling will air on KFXZ-Fox (local channel 28.1) at 11:30 p.m. every Saturday night. It will also air at 3:30 a.m. on Saturday mornings on KGAN-CBS (local channel 2.1).