By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
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ROH Road to G1 Supercard
Baltimore, Maryland at UMBC Event Center
Streamed live on HonorClub
Ian Riccaboni and Colt Cabana were on commentary…
1. Rush defeated Tracy Williams. Rush hit his Bullhorns (running dropkick) on Williams and scored the clean pin. After the match, Dalton Castle and The Boys made their entrance. Castle told him to bring the same intensity when they meet at the G1 Supercard. Castle said he would beat Rush and then go home and write something really mean on his Facebook wall. Castle told Rush that he will smash his face at Madison Square Garden. Rush laid in the ring and motioned for Castle to bring it, but Castle went backstage to end the segment.
Rhett Titus joined the broadcast team brief. Riccaboni said Titus would be in the Honor Rumble at MSG.
2. Cheeseburger, Eli Isom, and Ryan Nova defeated Colin Delaney, Leon St. Giovanni, and Shaheem Ali. Delaney and Coast 2 Coast set up for a triple Coast 2 Coast move on Isom that was broken up by Cheeseburger. A short time later, Cheeseburger double stomped Delaney from the top rope as he was held up by Isom and Nova, which led to Nova performing a DDT on the way down. Isom scored the pin.
3. Mark Haskins defeated Silas Young. Young blew off Haskins’ pre-match handshake offer. Riccaboni noted that he and Cabana will host the G1 Supercard, Caprice Coleman will be involved, and Kevin Kelly will sit in for the New Japan Pro Wrestling matches. Late in the match, the wrestlers fought on the apron. Back inside the ring, Young tried to pin Haskins while holding the ropes. Referee Todd Sinclair kicked Young’s hand off the ropes and he was rolled into a pin by Haskins.
Bully Ray came out and confronted Sinclair afterward and backed him into a corner. Ray told him that his job is to count to three. He asked why he kicked Young’s arm off the ropes and if he even knows what his job is anymore. Ray ordered Sinclair to reverse the decision and threatened to take it out on Haskins if he didn’t comply. Sinclair said he couldn’t do it. Bully told Young to get the tables. Ray set up for a powerbomb, but Lifeblood ran out and chased off the heel duo. Robinson took the mic and said two on one was fine, but apparently three on two wasn’t good enough for the heels. Bully started to leave. Robinson called him back by mocking him. Robinson called for Ray to enter the ring, which he did. Once Bully was in the ring, Robinson said, “It’s me and you at MSG.”
Powell’s POV: It was wise to reveal the identity of Bully’s mystery opponent. Speculation had run wild with fans speculating that it could be anyone from CM Punk to Tomohiro Ishii to Minoru Suzuki. Robinson is a good opponent for Bully, but there was a chance of fans feeling let down if the company had waited until just before match time to introduce him as the mystery man.
4. Kris Stadtlander & Tasha Steelz defeated Sumie Sakai & Jenny Rose and Gabby Ortiz & Karissa Rivera in a three-way tag. Cabana noted that Stadtlander was trained by Pat Buck. Sakai performed her Smash Mouth finisher on Stadtlander, then backed into a corner and was tagged by Ortiz. A short time later, Stadtlander blasted Ortiz with a knee to the head and the followed up with a Big Bang Theory into a pin. The referee pointed out that Ortiz’s shoulders weren’t down, so Stadtlander adjusted her and scored the pin.
After the match, Kelly Klein headed to the ring. She grabbed a mic on the way. Once in the ring, Klein helped up Ortiz and told her that she’s come a long way. Klein said she’s proud to be part of Women of Honor. Cabana said she hasn’t always acted like it. Klein said she respects Mayu Iwatani and noted that she has pushed her further than anyone has. Klein said she will walk into MSG, reclaim the WOH Championship, and then she will be a fighting champion. Klein said that once she wins the title the other women in the ring merely need to ask for a title shot. Cabana said that’s bold considering that she hasn’t won the title. Sakai took the mic and said Klein needed five matches because Iwatani is so much better than Klein. She said Iwatani will beat Klein at MSG. Klein held her hand out for the mic, but Sakai left without giving it to her. Riccaboni pointed out that Klein and Iwatani are 2-2 against one another.
Riccaboni and Cabana recapped footage of PCO and Brody King defeating The Briscoes to win the ROH Tag Titles at the 17th Anniversary show. Riccaboni said tonight’s match would be the contractually obligated rematch.
5. Jay Briscoe and Mark Briscoe defeated PCO and Brody King by DQ in an ROH Tag Title match. Ring announcer Bobby Cruise delivered in-ring introductions for the title match. Riccaboni noted that the match would be fought under normal tag team rules unlike the street fight at the 17th Anniversary show. At one point, Mark went up top for a move on PCO, but King pushed him off and through a table that was set up on the floor. PCO performed his cannonball through the ropes on Jay. King followed that up with a cannonball off the apron onto both Briscoes. PCO did his big summersault off the top rope only to have a Briscoe move, leading to PCO crashing and burning on the apron. Ouch. The Briscoes performed top rope splashes onto PCO and had him pinned, but King broke it up. A short time later, King hit Jay from behind with a chair, which led to the DQ. The Briscoes placed a bunch of chairs in the ring and then double suplexed PCO onto the chairs. The fans chanted one more time. The Briscoes obliged. Jay placed King on a table on the floor, then Mark performed a swanton off the top rope to put him through the table.
Powell’s POV: The usual insanity and hard work from everyone involved. The fans loved the match. There were some boos for the finish, but they were left satisfied by the post match violence. You can’t blame ROH for going with the DQ finish given that both teams will be in the four-way double tag title match at MSG. The broadcast team also told the story that the tag champs were in a rough spot heading into MSG.
A video package featuring several ROH wrestlers talking about the G1 Supercard aired.
6. PJ Black defeated Kenny King. Late in the match, Black picked up a couple of near falls and then went up top only to have King knock referee Paul Turner into the ropes. Black was crotched up top, then King performed his Royal Flush finisher and scored the pin.
King announced after the match that he signed a two-year contract with ROH. He said he was also rewarded with a spot in the Honor Rumble. King demanded to be the first entrant in the match and said he would run through everyone to win the match.
7. Marty Scurll defeated Shane Taylor for a spot in the ROH Title match at the G1 Supercard. Riccaboni explained that Taylor challenged Scurll to put his title shot on the line, and apparently Scurll agreed. Riccaboni said he was shocked and pointed out that fellow challenger Matt Taven took the night off. Later, Taylor performed a Baldo Bomb for a near fall. Scurll attempted to apply the chicken wing, but Taylor backed him into the corner. Taylor went for a splash from the ropes, but Scurll moved. Scurll did the finger break spot. Scurll followed up a short time later with a suplex of the big man for a nice pop. Taven walked to the ring and jawed with Scurll. Taven also bickered with referee Paul Turner. Taylor picked up a chain and hit Scurll below the belt and then punched him with it while the referee was distracted. Taylor pinned Scurll to win the match and was named the winner. Referee Todd Sinclair ran out and explained what happened. Turner restarted the match. Scurll applied the chicken wing and got the win.
Powell’s POV: I’m never a fan of babyfaces putting something valuable on the line and not getting anything in return. It makes them looks dim rather than noble or confident. I don’t think anyone really bought into the stipulation anyway, though there were some surprised faces when Taylor actually won the match. I guess this gives Taylor something to complain about and Bully Ray another reason to heel on Todd Sinclair.
8. Jay Lethal & Jeff Cobb defeated TK O’Ryan & Vinny Marseglia and Juice Robinson & Bandido in a three-way tag match. The broadcast team announced that Mark Haskins had been attacked backstage and said viewers could check social media for more details. Riccaboni said Robinson and Bandido had no idea this happened.
— ROH Wrestling (@ringofhonor) April 1, 2019
Late in the match, Bandido caught Cobb leaping from the second rope and slammed him, which woke up the crowd. Bandido performed a big corkscrew dive from the top rope onto a group of wrestlers on the floor. Riccaboni said Bandido isn’t the next Rey Mysterio, he’s the first Bandido. A short time later, Lethal hit the Lethal Injection on Marseglia and pinned him.
The broadcast team ran through the G1 Supercard lineup for Saturday’s event as Lethal celebrated. Taven entered the ring, then Scurll joined them. The three men jawed at one another, then Lethal held up his title belt while Riccaboni closed the show by saying, “We’re going to The Garden.”
Powell’s POV: The expected finish in terms of Lethal going over on one of Taven’s sidekicks in the Kingdom. I liked the broadcast team’s post match commentary in which they questioned whether Taven had the right strategy by taking the night off while Lethal and Scurll wrestled and won their matches. It was a good sports-like angle to take. The show was solid and there was some good final hype for the pay-per-view, though it was hype for an audience that’s already seeing the pay-per-view since they are HonorClub subscribers. The attendance seemed a bit light in that the main floor looked full, but there were a lot of empty seats in the lower bowl. That won’t be an issue on Saturday. Join me for live coverage of the G1 Supercard on Saturday night, and Dot Net Members will hear my exclusive audio review after the show.
Check below for the new Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest PCO, who discusses the ROH and NJPW G1 Supercard event that will be held on April 6 at MSG, taking crazy bumps at age 51, what he still wants to accomplish in pro wrestling, and much more.