Powell’s Ring of Honor TV Review: Jay Lethal and Matt Taven captain the annual Christmas Surprise ten-man tag match, Britt Baker and Madison Rayne vs. Twisted Sisterz

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

Ring of Honor TV
Taped November 4 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at Stage AE
Aired in syndication on December 15, Mondays on the FITE TV app

Jay Lethal delivered a backstage promo while standing behind a Christmas tree and a bunch of gifts. He said it was his favorite time of year because of the annual Christmas surprise that he and Matt Taven will captain. They cut to The Kingdom. Matt Taven vented about how he hates Christmas and said the only thing he needs is his real world title belt… The opening montage aired…

The broadcast team was Ian Riccaboni, Colt Cabana, and Caprice Coleman. They were all wearing festive hats, and I believe Colt’s was Mr. Hanky… Bobby Cruise delivered introductions for the opening match…

1. “Twisted Sisterz” Holidead and Thunder Rosa vs. Britt Baker and Madison Rayne. Baker immediately superkicked one of the Sisterz. Rayne ended up tagging in and was isolated by the Sisterz heading into a break. [C] Cabana spoke about how 2019 could be a new era as he put over the upside of the Sisterz. Baker took a hot tag and worked over Rosa.

The Sisterz came back and performed a nice sequence of double team moves on Baker, which led to a two count. Baker and Rayne came back with Rayne performing an ice cutter. Baker accidentally caught Rayen with a kick. The Sisterz took advantage and Rosa performed a double stomp from the top rope to the back of Baker and pinned her…

Twisted Sisterz defeated Britt Baker and Madison Rayne.

Powell’s POV: The double stomp to the back looked tame, but I like the Sisterz in-ring work overall. They had some nice double team moves and I hope we see more of them. If so, I hope they will get a chance to develop their personas to explain what their look is all about. Riccaboni did his usual good job of discussing their history as wrestlers, but it strikes me as a gimmick that requires some explanation.

Jay Lethal and Matt Taven were shown in separate shots opening gift boxes that apparently contained the names of their partners. Lethal was happy while Taven threw a fit while yelling Melvin… Footage aired of Jeff Cobb pinning Punishment Martinez to win the ROH TV Title… [C]

Backstage, Lethal was down when Caprice Coleman showed up and asked what was wrong. Lethal said he gets Cheeseburger on his team every year and it bothered him, but now he’s grown on him and he didn’t get him on his team. Coleman asked if he checked under his desk. Lethal found a gift box and asked if Coleman put it there. “Merry Christmas, man,” Coleman said. Lethal opened the box and excitedly yelled “Cheeseburger!!!”…

The Kingdom were out of presents. Taven spotted a stocking on the tree and pulled out a name… The broadcast team checked in again and Cabana acted embarrassed by his hat…

Cruise delivered introductions and explained that the team captains drew their names randomly. Matt Taven was out first. Brian Milonas made his entrance from the building’s bar area and wore a headband with reindeer antlers. Jonathan Gresham came out with a Santa hat, beard, and big belly. Beer City Bruiser emerged from the bar with a keg and some tinsel. Marty Scurll was the final teammate and he wore some tinsel as well… [C]

A 2018 flashback aired of Jay Lethal winning the ROH Championship… The ROH pulse video played briefly… Ring entrances for Lethal’s team took place with Lethal out first wearing Christmas glasses. Cheeseburger came out wearing an elf hat. Rhett Titus wore a Christmas Snoopy hat. Riccaboni noted that Will Ferrara hasn’t been heard from lately. Vinny Marseglia made his usual entrance. Jeff Cobb came out wearing a Christmas hat… [C]

A 2018 flashback showed Frankie Kazarian and Scorpio Sky winning the ROH Tag Titles… Before the match, the captains traded Marseglia and Gresham, but referee Todd Sinclair said no trades were allowed…

2. Jay Lethal, Cheeseburger, Rhett Titus, Vinny Marseglia, and Jeff Cobb vs. Matt Taven, Brian Milonas, Marty Scurll, Jonathan Gresham, and Beer City Bruiser in a 10-man tag match. Lethal dropkicked a seated Bruiser, and Taven tagged himself in going into a break. [C] Coming out of the break, footage aired of Sumie Sakai winning the Women of Honor Championship.

Back to the match, Taven called for Cheeseburger, and Lethal played to the crowd before tagging him in. Taven tagged in Milonas. Cheeseburger fired up the crowd over facing the much bigger man, the tired him out with is speed advantage. Taven and Marseglia ended up in the ring. Marseglia brought his hatchet into the ring. Scurll started with a big candycane before trading it in for his trusty umbrella, but then tagged in Taven.

Taven and Marseglia agreed that Marseglia would tag out. Marseglia tried, but his partners dropped to the floor. Taven tried to tag out and his partners did the same. They squared off and then ran the ropes and slid to ringside and fought with the other wrestlers. Bruiser went up top and performed a big dive onto the pile and didn’t get a lot of his fall broken. Taven smiled because he was the only man who avoided being dove on. [C]

Lethal caught Marseglia with a superkick. Taven handed Lethal a present, but Marseglia knocked it away. The other wrestlers returned to the ring. The Bouncers performed corner splashes on Lethal. Most of the wrestlers went back to ringside while Lethal threw his teammates at Taven in the corner. Lethal’s team all covered Taven, but Gresham broke it up. “Johnny Wrestling coming in just in the nick of time,” Riccaboni said. Cabana immediately replied, “Nope, different show, Ian.” Funny. In the end, Cobb performed a Tour of the Islands on Bruiser and pinned him…

Jay Lethal, Cheeseburger, Rhett Titus, Vinny Marseglia, and Jeff Cobb defeated Matt Taven, Brian Milonas, Marty Scurll, Jonathan Gresham, and Beer City Bruiser.

After the match, Riccaboni said we would be best of ROH, awards, and Women of Honor over the next few weeks. He said the next shows would come from Philadelphia. The broadcast team exchanged holiday greetings, then Riccaboni thanked the camera operators, editors, producers, and the sound team. Cabana mentioned the ring crew. “Happy holidays and happy wrestling, everybody, we’ll see you next time,” Riccaboni said to close…

Powell’s POV: The wrestlers had fun with the holiday theme and the live crowd enjoyed it. This was a lot more fun than some of the ridiculous things we’ve seen on WWE holiday week shows over the years. Taven was a good grinch, Lethal had a lighthearted charm, Scurll was a total hambone, Cheeseburger provided his usual fun, and Cobb had the impressive show of power at the end. It worked just fine for what it was. I also liked the way Riccaboni took a moment to thank the crew.

The overall show is completely missable in terms of storyline developments if you are short on time, but it was also an entertaining hour if you’re in the mood for a good women’s tag match and some holiday fun. Haydn Gleed will be by later today with his audio review of this episode.

Check below for the new Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Konnan, who discusses his return to the ring for MLW and shares the crazy story of how he started in pro wrestling.



Readers Comments (1)

  1. “1. “Twisted Sisterz” Holidead and Thunder Rosa vs. Britt Baker and Madison Rayne.”
    “Twisted Sisterz defeated Britt Baker and Mandy Rose.”

    When did Madison Rayne morph into Mandy Rose?

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