Background: During Ring of Honor’s annual “Death Before Dishonor” event, former ROH World champion (and future WWE World Heavyweight champion) Bryan “Daniel Bryan” Danielson took on CHIKARA Pro Wrestling founder and star “Lightning” Mike Quackenbush in one of Quackenbush’s few ROH’s appearances. Danielson won on that night, leaving many to wonder if a rematch would have the same result.
Steel City Clash
March 20, 2009
Bryan Danielson vs. Mike Quackenbush
This is the second time these two have faced off in ROH, with the last encounter happening a year and a half ago, which Danielson won. Seemed like Mike didn’t forget as he tried to quickly outwrestle Danielson to the mat. Quackenbush showed that lucha influence in his style, making Danielson smile even though he was the recipient of it. Bryan wanted to slow this thing down, tying Mike by his legs. Mike got free, getting caught in a rear chin look. Danielson was mesmerized by Quack’s free hand; allowing Mike to turn the tables, arm locking “Dragon”. When the trick didn’t work for Danielson, Danielson had to flip his way out of the hold. Lots of back and forth escape attempts, like the old days. Once again, Quack tried to pick up the pace, monkey flipping Danielson. Unbeknownst to Mike, Danielson landed on his feet, monkey flipping him when he turned around. Danielson tried to rush the rising Quack, but ended up getting back dropped over the top rope. “Lightning” dove over the top rope, taking down Danielson. Bryan was clutching his right knee as he rolled into the ring. Of course Quack went right after that leg. It didn’t help fully as Danielson turned Quack’s submissions in to some of his own. When it appeared Danielson was in a bad way, he powered off the mat, pushing Mike against the ropes. “Dragon” lured Mike in, kicking the left arm of Quack.
Like Quack, Danielson tried to keep his hurt limb away from his opponent while aiming for his opponent’s messed up part of the body. Danielson just twisted on the arm of Quackenbush in some very unusual ways. Danielson hammerlocked the arm before stomping on it. Danielson followed up with the surfboard to a great ovation. Quack tried to get free, but found himself in the crossface chicken wing. Mike was close enough to the ropes to break the hold. Quack used the ropes to springboard his way to freedom. Quack couldn’t whip Danielson because of that bad arm. Quack clipped the incoming Danielson with a dropkick to the legs. Quack felt good, using a hurricarana for a near fall. Another near fall happened after the victory roll by Quack. Danielson tripped Quack to the mat, putting him in Cattle Mutilation. Quackenbush rolled to his feet, back kicking Danielson on the left leg. A cradle Michinoku driver nearly got Quack the three count. Danielson was screaming out after being hooked in an inverted sharpshooter. “The American Dragon” somehow made it to the ropes, causing Quack to go to the top. Danielson avoided whatever Quack had in mind, hooking him in a cross arm breaker. Quack grabbed the ropes, leading to a forearm fight. Quack threw a spin kick after blocking one of Danielson’s, trying to pick up Danielson for something. Danielson used Quack’s leverage against him, small packaging Quackenbush to get the three count.
Winner: Bryan Danielson (16:40)
Is It A Classic: While not the classic a lot of people were probably expecting from these two, the match was crisp and rather awe-inspiring from a technical aspect. If you like mat-based action and chain wrestling, this is the match for you.