Dirty Heels (Austin Aries and Bobby Roode) vs. The Young Bucks - House of Hardcore VIII - 5
This was the evening’s main event following a bloody Tommy Dreamer and Eric Young brawl. On a sidenote I really dig HoH. It has came closest to capturing the ECW zeitgeist and milieu. Dirty Heels’ t-shirts look like they were designed using Mario Paint. Aries was always known for his unbelievable speed and snap but as he’s aged he’s needed to rely more on craftiness. Both teams trade some perfunctory arm work to start. Not sure why you’d target the Bucks’ arms when their offense is mostly Superkicks and springboards.
You could call the Heels by the names Moe and Curly cause they’re Stooging. Has anyone ever definitively answered who’s the best Jackson: Matt, Nick, or Malachi? I’ve sometimes wondered is Roode a really measured worker or a habitually lazy one? Aries leans into some Matt forearms before going for a double-leg to stop the flurry like he’s trying to secure a spot in the TUF house so he can share a bunk with Julian Lane. “Let me bang bro!” Aries’ wobbly selling is camp.
I get Dreamer booking this on top wanting to tip his hat to the current era but this has felt like a pretty safe touring match that’s awfully self-contained. The Dreamer/Young deal with two mystery run-ins and blood felt way more appropriate as a finale (especially with Rey Mysterio shocking the crowd). Ref apparently letting this become a Tornado Tag as all four guys go at it in the ring. You’ve seen all of the Bucks’ Superkick tricks but I’ve got to point one out here as Matt nailed Aries who was flying in mid-air attempting an accelerated corner dropkick. Meltzer Driver ends Aries. A “5” on the patented NHO scale seems low for a main event but this was uniform and fairly pedestrian stuff. Post-match all four guys jerking each other off mid-ring felt especially deprecatory (like “yeah we’re four buddies that just but on a laissez-faire show for you”) then they started fanboy-ing out as Sandman’s music hit and the show faded to black.