By Jason Powell, Prowrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Ring of Honor TV
Taped September 29 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Orleans Arena
Aired in syndication on October 13 and Mondays on the FITE TV app
Highlights aired of Jay Lethal defeating Will Ospreay to retain the ROH Championship at the Death Before Dishonor event followed by The Kingdom attacking Lethal and unveiling Matt Taven’s “real world championship” belt… The ROH opening aired… The broadcast team of Ian Riccaboni, BJ Whitmer, and Caprice Coleman checked in on commentary and hyped the matches…
Matt Taven, TK O’Ryan, and Vinny Marseglia headed to the ring. Taven wore a crown and a purple jacket. O’Ryan said ROH had silenced The Kingdom for far too long. They handed referee Todd Sinclair their purple title belt and then ordered ring announcer Bobby Cruise to deliver a lengthy introduction of Taven.
Cruise’s forced introduction included a claim that he is the reason ROH sold out Madison Square Garden. Cruise said he wouldn’t read the next part, but he was strong-armed into introducing him as ROH’s real world champion. The Kingdom posed in the ring and then a shot aired of Kenny King warming up backstage… [C]
Powell’s POV: A decent segment, but one that didn’t generate much in the way of heat from what seems to be a small crowd. ROH creative really has their work cut out for them when it comes to selling ROH fans on the Kingdom as a top act. Taven is a talented guy, but I’ve never felt like this version of the Kingdom has connected. Hopefully they can make it work. If nothing else, it’s interesting that ROH seems to be working toward elevating a number of talents, perhaps due to the threat of Cody, the Young Bucks, and other wrestlers leaving at the end of the year.
A Jeff Cobb video package aired and focused on him taking out Punishment Martinez at the pay-per-view…
1. Chase Owens vs. Kenny King. Owens was introduced as a Bullet Club member. Riccaboni noted that he typically competes in Japan. There was a mid-match commercial. [C] Owens performed a nice neckbreaker for a two count.
Riccaboni hyped a championship week edition of the ROH television show for next week with The Briscoes vs. Coast 2 Coast for the ROH Tag Titles, and Punishment Martinez vs. Jeff Cobb for the ROH TV Title.
Late in the match, King was bounced off the top rope and he landed on his feet and immediately sold knee pain. Owens held off only to have King catch him in an inside cradle for the win. King danced and celebrated his win at ringside while Riccaboni complained that his approach to winning was unethical…
Kenny King beat Chase Owens.
Coast 2 Coast members Leon St. Giovanni and Shaheem Ali spoke about being undefeated this year and getting a title shot next week… [C]
Powell’s POV: King is another example of a guy who was spinning his wheels for a long time and is suddenly getting a push from creative, so it was logical for him to go over in this match. Plus, the idea is that King has wins over Bullet Club members Marty Scurll, Adam Page, and now Owens. While Owens is new to ROH, it is a bit tough to feel sympathetic for Bullet Club members being the victims of King cheating given their antics over the years.
Shane Taylor was shown shadow boxing backstage… Riccaboni set up a video package on the Bully Ray and Silas Young vs. Colt Cabana and Flip Gordon from the pay-per-view…
Ring entrances for the Taylor vs. Gordon match. Footage aired of Gordon clearing Taylor from the ring following his meltdown after losing a four corner survival match. Gordon entered the ring second and took a mic. Gordon said he had no problem facing Taylor, but there was something he needed to get off his chest. Gordon said Bully Ray put Cabana through a table at the pay-per-view and made sure the odds were stacked against him. Gordon said he still put both opponents through tables, but Ray couldn’t take it and screwed him over. Gordon asked what Ray wants.
“Do you know who I am?” Bully Ray could be heard asking. Ray walked out and said Gordon was supposed to face Taylor, but he was thinking about him. Ray pointed out that his team actually won the tables match at the pay-per-view. Silas Young entered the ring and low-blowed Gordon from behind. Ray told Taylor to let him have it. Taylor worked over Gordon with a chair while Ray mockingly called for help from the back. Young performed Misery on Gordon while Riccaboni complained that no one was coming out to help Gordon. Ray stood over Gordon and asked if he knows who he is… [C]
Powell’s POV: A decent segment that seems to suggest that Taylor is aligned with Ray and Young. Is this six-man tag title related? Riccaboni is great about selling the actions of the heels, but in this case he made the ROH babyfaces (and creative) look bad by questioning why no one came out to help Gordon. By the way, Colt Cabana continues to be missed on commentary.
Jay and Mark Briscoe delivered a brief backstage promo about facing Coast 2 Coast next week…
A video promoted the ROH and NJPW event that will be held at MSG. Jay Lethal spoke in the empty arena about how he gets goosebumps just thinking about it. Lethal said the little kid inside him is smiling from ear to ear because he’s wrestling at MSG. Lethal said the only thing that will make it better is if he enters MSG as the ROH Champion…
The Kingdom were shown preparing to leave the building. O’Ryan asked Taven if he had everything he needed. Taven looked at his title belt and said it was the only thing he needs… The broadcast team recapped this week’s show and added Chris Sabin vs. Marty Scurll to next week’s lineup… Ring entrances for the main event took place… [C]
2. The Young Bucks vs. Evil and Sanada vs. The Addiction vs. Best Friends in a four corner survival match. All four teams were fighting as the show returned from a commercial break. The teams fought and performed spots for a few minutes. Daniels and Beretta ended up in the ring together and the referee called for the bell to start the match. Even the broadcast team was surprised that the match didn’t start previously. [C]
Best Friends put on shades at ringside and then went to their corner. Chuckie T tagged in and they went for a double team move on Nick Jackson, who kicked Chuckie’s face and knocked the glasses off. Later, Chuckie performed a piledriver on Matt that led to a two count. The Bucks started throwing superkicks at everyone and then hit a Meltzer Driver on Berreta and pinned him…
The Young Bucks defeated Evil & Sanada, Best Friends, and The Addiction in a four corner survival match.
Riccaboni hyped next week’s show…
Powell’s POV: What was that? Sure, I get that it was a Bucks style, crowd pleasing spot-fest, but it was just thrown out there without any fanfare and no explanation as to what purpose it served. Riccaboni stating afterward that the Bucks have to be at the top of the No. 1 contenders list is as close as anyone came to explaining why this match even took place. ROH got nothing out of having Evil and Sanada on their show again, and it’s just lazy of creative to not present this match in a meaningful way. Overall, it was nice to finally move on to the new tapings, and everything other than the main event was fine. I can’t say I’m as sold on The Kingdom or Kenny King being moved up the card yet. We’ll see if that changes in the weeks ahead.
Check below for the latest Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Chris Harrington.