By Jason Powell
Ring of Honor TV
Taped August 26 in Atlanta, Georgia at Center Stage
Aired in syndication over the weekend, Mondays on the FITE TV app
ROH TV opened with a recap of Frankie Kazarian winning the Honor Rumble to earn an ROH Title shot, plus Christopher Daniels cutting a post-match promo stating that Kazarian would win the title and take the title away from the fans… The ROH opening aired… The broadcast team was Ian Riccaboni and BJ Whitmer…
1. IWGP Tag Champions “War Machine” Hanson and Ray Rowe vs. “Coast 2 Coast” Leon St. Giovanni and Shaheem Ali vs. “The Tempura Boyz” Sho and Yo in a non-title Triple Threat tag match. The teams shook hands before the match. The broadcast team explained that all three teams would be in the ring at the same time due to the match being fought under “War Machine rules.” Rowe suplexed both Tempura Boyz simultaneously. [C]
Rowe continued to manhandle the Tempura Boyz by slamming one onto the other’s back. Yo performed an impressive suplex on Hanson. Rowe based him with a knee to the face. Ali performed a big flip dive onto multiple opponents. LSG performed his own flip dive off the ropes and onto opponents on the floor. Hanson went up top and performed a crowd pleasing flip onto a batch of opponents.
Late in the match, the Tempura Boyz performed a spike piledriver on Rowe for a two count. Yes, a near fall on a spike piledriver. In the end, Rowe slammed Yo with a powerbomb and then Hanson put him away with a top rope splash…
War Machine beat Coast 2 Coast and The Tempura Boyz in a non-title match.
After the match, Rowe took the mic and said it’s been over a year since they were screwed out of the ROH Tag Titles. Rowe said the last time they were given a shot against the Young Bucks, another team showed up just hours before the match and they were inserted into the match. Rowe said no more mister nice guy, and added that people won’t like this version of War Machine. Hanson took the mic and yelled about world domination…
A Flip Gordon video package aired complete with his cheesy entrance theme. A graphic noted that he was up next… [C]
Powell’s POV: A spot fest tag match. It was entertaining action, but the old school fan in me just rolled my eyes at Rowe kicking out of a spike piledriver given that the move was once treated as being devastating enough to be used in injury angles. Meanwhile, the Gordon video package more than telegraphed the finish of the next match.
2. Flip Gordon vs. Corey Hollis. Riccaboni spoke about how Gordon singing with ROH made national news. Huh? Riccaboni questioned whether that attention got to Gordon. Whitmer said Hollis is unsigned and that might be an advantage. Riccaboni also noted that Gordon was a mascot and gymnast in college. Whitmer said he wants to have a flip count graphic for Gordon. Hollis worked over Gordon’s arm and was in offensive control heading into the break. [C]
Gordon rebounded with a nice standing moonsault for a two count. Gordon caught Hollis on the ropes with a kick. Gordon used his knees to springboard off the ropes with a flip onto Hollis for the win…
Flip Gordon pinned Corey Hollis.
Powell’s POV: I’m not a big fan of the “flip count” that Whitmer mentioned. Gordon is an amazing athlete and he can do some amazing high spots, but less is more. I’ve become a bit numb to some of those spots in past matches because he overdid the flip antics. That wasn’t the case here as Hollis kept Gordon grounded for the majority of the match. It was a bit on the slow side, but I continue to feel that Gordon has a bright future.
Backstage, Frankie Kazarian delivered a promo about his title shot while Christopher Daniels stood by. Kazarian said he would win the ROH Title to piss off the fans and ROH officials. He said he wants Joe Koff to throw up all over himself because he’s so sick to his stomach. Kazarian said he would become Cody’s new nightmare… [C]
Powell’s POV: Koff sat in on color commentary once. Otherwise, he’s wisely kept himself off the television show. I know that ROH considers its fan base to be knowledgeable, but I wonder how many casual viewers seeing this show in syndication were left wondering who Kazarian was referring to since he didn’t mention Koff’s title.
Riccaboni spoke about the Women of Honor Wednesday on the ROH Youtube page. Riccaboni provided an update on what’s been happing with the women. He said Stardom has established itself as the best women’s group in the world and spoke about Mandy Leon competing there. He said Leon has been on a roll and will return to ROH soon. He also spoke about Stella Gray and Brandi Rhodes. Finally, he focussed on the feud between Kelly Klein, Deonna Purrazzo, and Karen Q, and Q’s recent turn on Purrazzo.
Klein crashed the set and said she’s the only one who knew from day one that she is on her own. She said she is ready to take down anyone in her path while Purrazzo and Q are fighting amongst themselves. Klein shoved Riccaboni and walked away…
At the broadcast table, Whitmer mocked Riccaboni for being shoved by Klein and then they set up the main event…
Powell’s POV: Women of Honor Wednesdays online is a nice idea, and it’s good to see this segment featured on the show. That said, I’d still prefer to see the women featured within the weekly television show.
Ring introductions for the main event took place. Ring announcer Bobby Cruise delivered in-ring introductions for the title match… [C]
3. Cody vs. Frankie Kazarian for the ROH Title. Cody was cheered by his hometown crowd and he kissed the mat before the introductions. Kazarian performed a huracanrana on the floor and then ran Cody into the barricade. Kazarian had Cody draped over the ropes and performed a springboard leg drop for a two count. [C]
Cody caught Kazarian on the top rope and arm dragged him from there, which led to Cody chants from the crowd. Kazarian came back with a cutter for a two count. Cody applied the LeBell Lock while the broadcast team questioned whether it was another message being sent (to Bryan Danielson).
Christopher Daniels came out and stood on the apron as Cody released the hold. Marty Scurll ran out to a babyface reaction, but Daniels ran him into the ring post. Cody scored a visual pinfall off a small package, but referee Todd Sinclair was busy bickering with Daniels. Kazarian ended up kicking Cody into Sinclair. REF BUMP!!! The crowd cheered.
Kazarian performed a Backstabber. Daniels hit Cody with the title belt. Kazarian performed the Unprettier and covered Cody, who kicked out at two. Kazarian went up top, but Scurll recovered and pushed him off. Scurll ran Daniels into the ring post and then inside the ring. Cody set up for his finisher, but Daniels escaped. Scurll ended up superkicking Daniels. Kazarian rolled up Cody and held the tights, but Cody kicked out and ended up hitting CrossRhodes for the win. Cody celebrated to close the show…
Cody defeated Frankie Kazarian to retain the ROH Title.
Powell’s POV: A well worked match. The issue is that while the hometown fans liked Cody, they just didn’t seem to take Kazarian seriously as a threat to take the title given the flat reaction to his near falls unless they were over the top such as the one with Daniels interfering. Still, it was a good main event. The presentation of the ROH Title match on television left a little to be desired as we only heard briefly from Kazarian and it didn’t feel any more special than a typical television main event, which should not be the case with an ROH Title match. Overall, a decent show. I will have more to say in my members’ exclusive audio review later today.