By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Ring of Honor TV
Taped December 15, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at 2300 Arena
Aired in syndication on January 19, 2019, Mondays on the FITE TV app
The ROH opening aired and then the broadcast team of Ian Riccaboni, Colt Cabana, and Caprice Coleman checked in during entrances for the opening match. Riccaboni hyped Rush vs. TK O’Ryan and the beginning of the tournament to determine the number one contender to the ROH TV Title…
1. Facade vs. Eli Isom (w/Ryan Nova) in a first round tournament match to determine the No. 1 contender to the ROH TV Title. Isom performed a suicide dive, overshot it a bit, and both he and Facade tumbled into the barricade at ringside. Isom was right back on his feet heading into the first commercial break. [C]
Facade came back with a nice springboard into a flip dive onto Isom at ringside. Facade performed a Neon Hammer and a missile dropkick for a near fall. Isom came right back with a clothesline and a brainbuster for the win. The wrestlers shook hands and hugged afterward..
Eli Isom defeated Facade to advance to the finals of the tournament to determine the No. 1 contender for the ROH TV Title.
Powell’s POV: It’s a four-man tournament, so Isom will face the winner of the Beer City Bruiser vs. Silas Young match in the finals. I like Isom and Facade, but I wish we had been given a better explanation as to why they were selected for tournament slots. I can’t remember the last time Facade won an ROH television match (even though I would like to see the company do more with him). That said, it was a solid match with some flashy offense.
Kelly Klein cut a promo and said she will defend the Women of Honor Championship whenever she wrestles a singles match…
A video package recapped the formation of Marty Scurll, PCO, and Brody King as Villain Enterprises… [C]
ROH Champion Jay Lethal held his title belt and spoke about how every wrestler in the world wants it. Lethal said he will cross paths with Matt Taven and he will get what he has coming to him…
The broadcast team spoke about Taven “running around with a fake title belt” and then hyped the Road To G1 Supershow events that will air on HonorClub. They also set up footage of Villain Enterprises debuting last week. Riccaboni announced The Kingdom vs. Villain Enterprises for the ROH Six-Man Tag Titles for next week’s show…
Powell’s POV: Forget the tournament, what has Villain Enterprises done to earn a title shot? They haven’t even worked a match together yet. I can only work up so much frustration, though, as I just don’t care about the company’s six-man tag title belts.
2. Rush vs. TK O’Ryan. Riccaboni hyped Rush as one of the biggest stars in the world. A fan wearing a similar mask met Rush on the ramp and they fist bumped. Rush removed his own mask once he was in the ring. O’Ryan offered a handshake, but Rush kicked his hand away. Riccaboni noted that there was bad blood between Rush and The Kingdom stemming from Rush’s feud with Matt Taven in CMLL. There were actually dueling chants for the wrestlers. Rush clapped along with the “TKO” chants at one point. Oops.
Rush had to be censored as he slapped O’Ryan and then apparently cussed at him in Spanish. Rush caught O’Ryan with a kick and then a forearm heading into a break. [C] Rush did his lay down pose and then went to ringside where he ate a punch from O’Ryan, who then posed for the crowd. Later, O’Ryan performed a nice spinebuster for a near fall. Rush came back with a superplex. Rush performed a splash in the corner, put the boots to O’Ryan, then posed for the crowd before performing a running dropkick on a seated O’Ryan before pinning him.
Rush defeated TK O’Ryan.
After the match, balloons floated into the air. Vinny Marseglia entered the ring and jawed at Rush until Matt Taven hit him from behind. Marseglia performed a reverse DDT. Marseglia placed Rush’s head between two chairs and then the Kingdom members all slammed the chairs down onto the top chair. Taven posed with his “real world championship” belt…
Powell’s POV: Rush is a very nice addition to the roster and this was an entertaining match. I have no idea where the O’Ryan crowd support came from, as the Kingdom members never get cheered. I was also surprised to see O’Ryan get as much of the match as he did, and Riccaboni really put him over for hanging with Rush as long as he did. This match was taped before Rush signed with the company. I wonder if it would have been a different match if he was signed going in? Then again, the post match angle gives Rush something to avenge now that he has signed, so it’s hard to say.
An ad aired for the Elite’s final match and the uncensored aftermath being available on HonorClub… [C] Rhett Titus joined the broadcast team on commentary for the main event…
Ring entrances for the Beer City Bruiser vs. Silas Young match took place. Bruiser took the mic and recalled Young saying their friendship meant nothing and was just a business approach to help him climb the ladder. Bruiser said he finally realized that Silas sucks. Bruiser said they needed to have a fight and called for a No DQ match, which Young agreed to…
3. Beer City Bruiser vs. Silas Young in a No DQ match and first round tournament match to determine the No. 1 contender to the ROH TV Title. Titus mocked Bruiser’s body while talking about how great his own body is. Bruiser performed a neckbreaker from the apron while Young was seated on a ringside chair. [C]
With a table set up in the corner, Bruiser performed a cannonball that drove Young through it. A short time later, Young dodged a charging Bruiser, who crashed into a chair that was wedged into the corner. Young worked over Bruiser with a chair at ringside. Bruiser caught Young on the ringside barricade and suplexed him onto the floor.
Bruiser placed Young onto a table at ringside and went to the ropes. Young cut him off. Bruiser ended up performing a hip toss from the top rope, then body slammed Young onto a chair for a two count. [C]
Coming out of the break, Bruiser had Young lying on four chairs set up in the ring. Bruiser went up top and was once again cut off by Young, who slammed him from the ropes and onto the chairs, which led to a two count. Young grabbed zip ties and tied Bruiser to the top rope. Young hit Bruiser with a chair a few times. The broadcast team logically questioned how Young could actually win with Bruiser tied to the ropes.
Bruiser’s tag team partner Brian Milonas ran out and worked over Young. Milonas cut Bruiser free and then placed a chair over Young. Milonas went to the ropes, but Young recovered and hit him with a chair before dumping him from the ropes and through a table at ringside. An ECW chant broke out. Bruiser caught Young with a kick and followed up with a clothesline.
Bruiser placed a chair over Young and then leapt off the middle rope with an elbow drop for a two count. Bruiser set up a table in the middle of the ring. Bruiser grabbed the keg he brought with him to the ring and hit Young with it. Bruiser placed Young onto the table and then went up top. Bruiser went for a frogsplash, Young moved, and Bruiser crashed through the table. Young performed his Misery finisher and scored the pin…
Silas Young defeated Beer City Bruiser to advance to the finals of the tournament to determine the No. 1 contender for the ROH TV Title.
Riccaboni said Young will face Isom in two weeks to determine the No. 1 contender to the ROH TV Title. He also hyped Juice Robinson vs. PJ Black with NWA Champion Nick Aldis on commentary, and The Kingdom vs. Villain Enterprises for next week…
Powell’s POV: Good effort from both men. The crowd reacted to the big spots or stunts, but they were also quiet for portions of the match, presumably because both men usually work as heels and the fans didn’t have much of an incentive to cheer for one many over the year.
The Rush debut was entertaining. It was billed as the main event by Riccaboni at the top of the show even though it aired in the middle of the show, so perhaps they opted to change the order. It was a decent hour, though nothing major occurred from a storyline standpoint aside from perhaps setting up a Rush vs. Kingdom feud in ROH. It would have been nice to hear from Marty Scurll this week following the formation of Villain Enterprises, but I guess we’ll have to wait for next week. Haydn Gleed will be by on Tuesday with his members’ exclusive audio review of this show.
Check below for the new Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and WOW head writer and lead voice Stephen Dickey discussing his career and the launch of the weekly WOW television series that airs Fridays at 8CT/9ET on AXS TV.