By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Ring of Honor TV
Taped January 11, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia at Center Stage
Aired in syndication on February 16, 2019, Mondays on the FITE TV app
The ROH opening video aired and they cut right to the ring for a six-way match while the broadcast team of Ian Riccaboni, Colt Cabana, and Caprice Coleman checked in…
1. Flip Gordon vs. Luchasaurus vs. Chris Sabin vs. Rhett Titus vs. Shane Taylor vs. Kenny King in a six-man mayhem match. There was an early exchange between King and Titus, and the broadcast team was quick to point out their history as the All Night Express. Taylor joined them in the ring and they spoke about the trio being part of the defunct Rebellion faction. Taylor went after his former stable mates, but they fought him off. King and Titus pushed and shoved until they were both taken out by a missile dropkick from Gordon. All six men were down going into a break. [C]
Sabin was favoring his knee coming out of the break. Titus ducked a clothesline from Sabin and performed a flip dive onto a couple of opponents. Meanwhile, Sabin rolled ringside on the other side of the ring. Taylor took out King and Titus with a cannonball from the apron to the floor. Luchasaurus followed that up with a springboard flip dive onto multiple opponents.
Gordon went to a low balcony and did a running dive onto all of his opponents. Gordon rolled Taylor back inside the ring and performed a 450 splash for a near fall. Gordon ran the ropes for a springboard move only to have King hit him with a chair. Referee Paul Turner passed along word to ring announcer Bobby Cruise, who announced that King had been ejected for using the chair. Titus performed a Samoan drop on Taylor and went for a running kick, which Taylor stuffed. Taylor performed a running knee on Titus, hit his finisher, and scored the pin.
Shane Taylor defeated Rhett Titus, Flip Gordon, Luchasaurus, Chris Sabin, and Kenny King in a six-man mayhem match.
A graphic listed The Briscoes vs. Best Friends for the ROH Tag Titles as the main event… [C]
Powell’s POV: A well worked match. Taylor got the win, and Gordon was showcased nicely and had an out for losing. Sabin was actually injured during this match and didn’t return after rolling to ringside shortly after they returned from commercial. He was already favoring the knee going into that sequence, so we didn’t see what actually caused the injury on television unless I missed something. Unfortunately, Sabin suffered a torn ACL and will be sidelined for 8-12 months. Gordon was injured the day after this taping and was expected to miss at least a month with an MCL sprain. Here’s wishing both guys the best in their recoveries.
The broadcast team noted that Trent Barreta had a family emergency and would not be able to wrestle in the main event. Riccaboni said Chuckie T found a suitable replacement for the match…
2. “The Bouncers” Beer City Bruiser and Brian Milonas vs. Marcus Kross and Griff Garrison. The enhancement duo did a little dance by waving their arms. The cameras cut to the broadcast table, where Riccaboni and Coleman were mimicking the arm waving. Funny. Garrison performed a cool move early on when he went from the top rope onto his opponent’s arms and then performed an elbow drop on Milonas. The Bouncers came back and performed their Last Call spot on Kross, which resulted in Bruiser pinning him… [C]
The Bouncers defeated Marcus Kross and Griff Garrison.
Powell’s POV: A fun match with Kross and especially Garrison getting over with the live crowd for their brief moments of offense.
Ring entrances for the tag title match took place. The Briscoes were out first. Chuckie T came out to the Best Friends entrance music and stood on the stage with a mic, where he announced that while he may not have his best friend, he has someone who is a “really, really good friend of mine.” Colt Cabana’s music played. Cabana stood up at the broadcast table and removed some clothing to reveal his wrestling gear was underneath. The live crowd loved it…
3. Jay Briscoe and Mark Briscoe vs. Chuckie T and Colt Cabana for the ROH Tag Titles. Cabana and Chuckie went right at the Briscoes. The champions came back and isolated Chuckie heading into a break. [C]
The Briscoes continued to work over Chuckie coming out of the break.
Cabana took a hot tag. Chcukie checked back in fairly quickly and performed Sole Food and Standing Sliced Bread on on Jay and got a two count. The teams fought to ringside. The Briscoes seated Cabana on a chair and then Mark performed a Blockbuster off the apron. [C]
Chuckie rolled up Jay for a near fall. Chuckie kicked Jay, then ran the ropes and ate a clothesline. Jay performed the Jay Driller on Chuckie and pinned him clean.
The Briscoes defeated Chuckie T and Colt Cabana to retain the ROH Tag Titles.
After the match, Mark set up a table at ringside. Jay put Chuckie on the table and then Mark performed Froggy Bow and drove Chuckie through the table. Jay looked into the camera and said, “That’s what we do.” He also added, “happy new year, boys”…
Powell’s POV: A fun brawl with a well received replacement in Cabana. This was the final appearance for Chuckie T in ROH, as he and Trent Barreta both signed with All Elite Wrestling.
A video package aired for The Bullet Club being destroyed by Bully Ray, Shane Taylor, Silas Young, and The Briscoes, followed by the formation of the Lifeblood faction… [C]
Riccaboni stood in the ring and introduced ROH Champion Jay Lethal. Riccaboni was politely excused by Lethal, who said he had a lot on his mind and it may take him a while. Lethal placed the title belt down and said he doesn’t even know where to begin. Lethal said there is so much pressure put on him other than being the ROH Champion. Lethal said the pressure includes watching the company he loves deteriorating in front of his eyes.
Lethal said Bully Ray and the Briscoes were causing chaos for no other reason than they can. Lethal said he wouldn’t stand for it anymore. Lethal said the worst part of it is that Matt Taven is walking around with a fake belt and claiming to be the real world champion. Lethal said a change will happen in 2019. Lethal was interrupted by someone talking over a mic from backstage.
The Lifeblood faction of Juice Robinson, Tenille Dashwood, David Finlay, Tracy Williams, Mark Haskins, and Bandido headed to the ring. Robinson apologized for interrupting, but said they feel the same way. Lethal said there are people in the back who feel the same way and that’s why he doesn’t want to join a group like Lifeblood. Robinson cut him off and said that with all due respect, there was never an invitation.
Lethal said he can respect that they are not asking for his help. He said he believes that they want respect for the company. Lethal said the wrestling business is in the blood of Finlay. Lethal said even he doesn’t have as much respect for the wrestling business as Finlay does. He said Finlay’s father must be proud because his son is one of the best. Lethal touted Williams as being one of the best wrestlers he’s ever seen, and said Williams and Jonathan Gresham tore the house down in Ohio with pure wrestling. “Even I learned something about technical wrestling,” Lethal said.
Lethal said Dashwood is one of the best and noted that she’s been wrestling since she was a teenager. Lethal said the only reason that Dashwood isn’t WOH Champion his that she had to take time off due to a shoulder injury and he knows that it’s only a matter of time before she wins it now that she’s healthy.
Lethal praised Haskins and recalled being taken to the limit by him when they met in the UK. Lethal referred to Haskins as one of the best. Lethal looked at Bandido, and the crowd chanted Bandido’s name. “Do I even need to say anything, Bandido?” Lethal asked. Lethal said Bandido is only 23 years old and the things he does in the ring are things that Lethal can only dream of doing.
Lethal turned his attention to Robinson and said he doesn’t need to tell him what he’s been through, what he’s done, and how they can put the company back on track. Lethal noted that Robinson is a two-time IWGP U.S. Champion. Lethal said they can help put the company back on the track that he feels it needs to be on. “I have tried and I can tell you that it’s not easy,” Lethal said. “All I can say to you guys is good luck.”
Robinson called Lethal back as he was starting to exit the ring. Robinson said it was time to stop talking about putting the honor back in the company and to just start doing it. Lethal said he had four guys with him, and if Lethal could find four likeminded men in the back then he should go get them and just do it.
Lethal spoke about how full his plate was, but then said “let’s do it.” He said that in honor of the tradition and foundations of the company, they could give the fans a match they could be proud of. Lethal told Robinson to bring Lifeblood next week and he would bring the heart and soul of the company. Lethal and Robinson shook hands and then Lethal left the show while Riccaboni hyped Lifeblood vs. Lethal “and four likeminded individuals”…
Powell’s POV: A solid segment to set up an apparent ten-man tag main event for next week. Lethal did a nice job of singing the praises of each member of Lifeblood. He did come off a touch whiney about the pressure of being champion and everything he has on his plate, but it didn’t come off like he was being intentionally heelish by any means.
Check below for the new Pro Wrestling Boom with Jason Powell and guest Mick Karch discussing the AWA Appreciation event on February 23, Paul Heyman’s role in helping Mick land a longtime hosting position, his friendship with Nick Bockwinkel, Billy Robinson slapping a fan on live television, and much more.
The Best of The Boom features Eric Bischoff joining Jason Powell in this March 20, 2019 discussion on whether there are similarities between Verne Gagne's booking during the AWA's dying days and Vince McMahon's WWE booking today, AEW, a Turner network shakeup, and more...