Background: After months of hounding Samoa Joe for ROH Championship opportunities, and eventually coming short, The Briscoes (Jay & Mark Briscoe) defeated the seemingly unbeatable Joe in three back-to-back tag team matches. Looking to avenge those losses, Joe offered Jay Briscoe one last ROH Championship title shot in a Steel Cage match.
At Our Best
March 13, 2004
Samoa Joe vs. Jay Briscoe
Jay tried to make a quick run to the door, but got caught between the cage and Joe. Joe just abused Jay’s arm to prevent any climbing from the eldest Briscoe brother. The was able to drop his imposing opposition, telling his brother Mark Briscoe that he’d rather stay in and make sure Joe couldn’t get up before leaving. Joe took in all the attacks Jay had, chopping his challenger’s chest red in retaliation. Joe powered Jay off the mat with a German suplex after his challenger missed an enzuguri kick. Once again, the ROH champion hoisted Jay from his horizontal position to pitch him headfirst into the cage. When Joe went to lock the door, Mark tried to stop him. Samoa Joe kicked the cage door into Mark’s face. When Joe returned to Jay, Jay’s head was split open. Joe decided to get a little disturbing after raking Jay’s face into the cage.
The champion couldn’t be any happier as he face washed the blood off Briscoe’s head. After two running boots to Jay’s face, Joe was having the time of his life. The challenger somehow came out of the corner with a rush of energy, kicking Joe in the face. Jay, through the proverbial crimson mask, made a climb. Joe ran up to meet him, belly to back superplexing Jay onto the back of his bloody head!
When Samoa Joe went for the cover, his challenger valiantly got a shoulder up to a huge ovation from the crowd. Once again, Jay used an energy surge to turn the tides long enough to make a climb. Joe scaled the ropes trying to stop Briscoe from escaping. Rather than be taken down, Jay pulled Joe off the top with an ace crusher. Several referees ran to ringside to make sure Jay could continue after losing so much blood. Jay proved he could, using a low blow to set up a clothesline that downed the champ. The battle went to the top rope again. Jay was able to kick Joe off the top, but slipped, catching his groin on the top rope in the process. Joe returned the kick with an enzuguri. Jay was stuck between the cage and the ropes. Joe rushed him with a boot to the face, ripping the side of the cage open. Joe didn’t notice the new escape route that his foot caused, going for another kick. Mark pulled the cage open, fighting for Jay to escape. Joe pulled his challenger back in, locking on the STF. Jay made it to the ropes to break the hold.
In one of the most disgusting sights ever witnessed in a wrestling ring, Jay‘s head rose off the mat to show strings of clotted blood hanging from his cranium. Jay somehow made it to his feet, hitting his finisher, the Jay Driller. Mark climbed the cage in hopes of helping his brother escape. ROH Pure Wrestling champion AJ Styles ran out, Styles Clashing Mark on the floor to prevent any further interference from Jay’s little brother. Back in the cage was Jay making a run up the steel. Joe grabbed him from behind, putting Jay in position for the Muscle Buster. Joe jumped off the top, executing a super Muscle Buster … for the three count!
Winner: Samoa Joe (14:16)
Is It A Classic: It’s, quite possibly, one of the sickest matches in ROH history (and possibly one of the bloodiest non-Death Matches since the turn of the millennium). But the blood wasn’t what made the match exciting. The fight Jay Briscoe gave made the fans really believed he’d do the seemingly impossible and trump the longest-reigning ROH champion to date. There are few words that can describe how incredible this match is and deserves a viewing by any wrestling fan that can stomach its brutality.