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February 25, 2006 / TJ Hawke

AJ Styles and Matt Sydal vs. Generation Next (Austin Aries and Roderick Strong) from ROH’s Anniversary Show 2006


Recap by Alex Torres:

This match is for the ROH World Tag Team Championships. Sydal is also part of Generation Next; the story here the Sydal wants to challenge for the belts despite the connection. Commentary by Dave Prazak, Lenny Leonard, and Jimmy Bower.


The match starts off with some mat wrestling from all four men. Styles manages to lock in a headscissors, but Aries breaks out. Sydal manages a hot tag, hip toss for a two count. Knee to the head in the corner from Sydal, Styles tagging in. Styles gets a two count on Aries. Delayed vertical suplex from Styles for two. Aries gets Styles into the corner, tagging in Strong, both men attacking Styles in the corner. Backbreaker from Strong for one. Chinlock from Strong. Tag in Aries, who attempts to keep Styles from Sydal. Headscissors from Styles, but Aries tags in Strong who keeps Styles from tagging out. Styles manages to turn things around, but gets knocked down by a lariat from Aries. Twisting body press from Aries for two.


Strong and Aries take turns trying to wear down Styles, Strong hitting a delayed vertical suplex, Aries a northern lights suplex. A bicycle kick lets Styles get to his corner, tagging in Sydal. Standing moonsault from Sydal on Strong for two. Sydal hits a dropkick, sending Strong to the outside. Styles dives onto Strong, and Aries onto Styles. Moonsault from Sydal knocks everyone down. Sydal throws Strong in, getting a two count. Styles tags in, hitting a backbreaker on Strong for two. Delayed double vertical suplex from Sydal and Styles, getting a two count. Roll up from Sydal for two.


Sydal and Styles isolate Strong. DDT on Strong for a near fall. Strong tosses Sydal into the corner, managing to tag in Aries, who hits a drop kick on both opponents. Elbow for a two count. Aries reverses a ran into a powerbomb, Styles breaking up the pin attempt. Backbreaker from Styles. Strong breaks up a torture rack, Styles breaking away with a double inverted DDT. Sydal pins Aries for two. Twin enziguiris from Styles and Sydal. Strong hits a backbreaker on Sydal for two. Styles gets caught off a jump by Strong, Aries hitting him with a lariat. Aries hits a brainbuster for a nearfall. Sydal hits a shooting star press on Aries, who gets his foot on the ropes. Strong breaks up a Styles clash attempt. The champions hit a backbreaker-450 combo on Sydal to retain the titles.


This match showed off how a well oiled tag team has an advantage over two men who were just put together, no matter how good the wrestler- a lost art indeed. Sydal/Bourne is a wonder to behold, so agile, able to get such height off his moves. Aries and Strong are a phenomenal team, one that everyone should go out of their way to see. The men gelled well together, starting slow but going into a sprint toward the end which was a thing to behold. Fantastic match.


Thoughts from Murray Peterson:

This was one hell of a match. Probably the best match released by Ring of Honour so far. It was a bullet-train of non-stop action. So much athleticism from all four of the competitors makes for very few complaints from my wrestling heart. Knowing that there was a championship match that came before this one, only makes me wonder about its spot on the card. The one thing that stopped this match from being elevated further than it was, was the lack of desperation and emotion. Yes, Styles and Sydal wanted to win the tag belts, that I won’t dispute. There was still however something missing to really ice this delicious wrestling cake. Still, tonnes of fun.


Thoughts from Chris GST:

Always thought this match got lost in the shuffle when it came to great matches of ROH’s past. I would assume because of the TNA/ROH rift and the way the title had to be re-handled that it is why some just either don’t remember that it happened or care since the impact was lost.  Either way, this was a great match. It showcased the difference of the PURE title rules in a major way as well as the difference in psychology that could be utilized in these types of matches. ROH really should consider using this type of formula to separate their secondary title again. The TV title could mean a lot more and while it would be true that creative/talent could help do that, a different environment such as tweaked rules could do that as well. Given Punk and Styles are the two men in this match, I would think the viewers wouldn’t have much in the way of negative comments other than a few clunky transitions

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