By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
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Ring of Honor “Gateway to Honor”
St. Charles, Missouri at The Family Arena
Streamed live on HonorClub
The broadcast team was Ian Riccaboni and Caprice Coleman…
1. Marty Scurll, Brody King, and Flip Gordon beat Jay Briscoe, Mark Briscoe, and Slex. Gordon pinned Slex to win the match for his team. Slex was down after everyone else went to the back. Shane Taylor and SOS came out. Taylor went after Slex, who got the better of him. SOS entered the ring to help Taylor, but Slex slipped away.
2. Dan Maff beat Alex Shelley. Shelley hit Sliced Bread No. 2 for a late two count. Maff avoided a top rope double stomp and ended up performing the Burning Hammer and scoring the pin.
A PJ Black and Brian Johnson training video aired. Black asked Johnson if he had a finishing move. Johnson said he was working on it and was resistant to letting Black show him, so Black put him down. They continued to train with Black getting the better of Johnson and then coaching him on breathing techniques. Johnson used the breathing technique before performing a finisher. Black told him he earned his stripes. Johnson took a belt from him a was over the top happy. Black said he’s never seen someone so excited over a white belt.
3. Vincent and Bateman (w/Vita VonStarr, Chuckles) beat Silas Young and Josh Woods. Vincent and Bateman attacked Young and Woods during their entrance. The teams made it to the ring and Young’s heavily wrapped left knee was targeted. Brian Johnson came out and spoke over the mic, which distracted Young and Woods. Vincent took advantage of the distraction and hit his Acid Drop finisher on Young for the win.
4. Angelina Love (w/Mandy Leon) over Session Moth Martina. The Bouncers sat in on commentary for the match. Martina tried to spit her drink into Love’s face, but Love ducked and hit her with the Botox Injection for the win. Afterward, The Bouncers went to the ring and had a beer with Martina. She leapt into the arms of Bruiser and then said, “He loves me, he really loves me.” Bruiser said no. Milonas wanted a hug, but Martina blew him off and continued to act smitten with Bruiser.
5. Dalton Castle (w/Joe Hendry) defeated Kenny King (w/Amy Rose), Tracy Williams, and Jeff Cobb in a four corner survival match. Castle stuffed a Williams piledriver attempt by countering into a Bangarang for the win. The broadcast team noted that it was Castle’s first singles win in four months (he’s been teaming with Hendry). Riccaboni hyped that Castle and Hendry will face The Briscoes at the ROH anniversary pay-per-view.
Bully Ray came out and said he wasn’t playing nice with ROH anymore because he has an ironclad contract and can’t be fired. Ray said that if anyone could legitimately beat him then he would walk away from ROH. Ray taunted Bobby Cruise and said he’s never worked for another company because he sucks as a ring announcer.
Caprice Coleman left the broadcast table and walked to the ring. Coleman said he’s on to Ray. He knows he’s a puppet master. Coleman recalled Ray saying that he has dirt on every veteran in the locker room, but he doesn’t have anything on him. Coleman said Ray had the right man on the wrong day, then removed his jacket.
Ray told Coleman that he failed as a wrestler in ROH and management felt bad and gave him a job as a color commentator. Ray told him that the challenge was for any wrestlers who thought they could beat him. Coleman said he was fighting Ray on the spot and would put him out of ROH.
6. Bully Ray beat Caprice Coleman. Coleman worked in his dress clothes and speared Ray to start the match. Ray eventually came back and hit the Bully Bomb for the win. Ray was going to attack Coleman afterward. Cheeseburger ran out for the save and was fought off. Eli Isom ran out and speared Bully and then worked him over with punches. Isom grabbed a chair and slammed over the back of Ray. Bully came back and powerbombed Isom through a table.
Powell’s POV: I liked this segment. While Coleman did wrestle in ROH, he only recently became the full-time color commentator after spending a lot of time as the part-time third member of the broadcast team. This segment should help endear him to the fans and hopefully this will be shown on ROH television show. The bigger picture angle is Ray moving into a program with Eli Isom this weekend. I’m not sure if he’s transitioning away from Maria Manic or if this is something to keep Bully busy until she returns from injury. Isom has upside and it would be cool to see him break away from the Shinobi Shadow Squad and enter the singles mix.
7. Dragon Lee over Dak Draper to retain the ROH TV Title. Brian Zane replaced Coleman on commentary. This was the title match that Draper earned by winning the Top Prospect Tournament. Draper went for his Magnum finisher, but Lee countered into an inside cradle for a near fall. Lee followed up moments later with his Incineration knee (running knee) to the back of the head and scored the clean pin.
8. ROH Tag Champions Jay Lethal and Jonathan Gresham beat Bandido and Rey Horus in a Proving Ground match. Bandido sold a knee injury. Late in the match, Bandid went for a 21 Plex on Lethal, who held onto the ropes. Lethal wanted to hit Bandido with a tag title belt, but Horus took it away. Bandido went for a GTS, but Lethal countered into a figure four for the submission win. Riccaboni noted that Lethal and Gresham will defend the ROH Tag Titles against Marty Scurll and Flip Gordon at the pay-per-view.
9. Rush defeated PCO and Mark Haskins in a Triple Threat to win the ROH World Championship. PCO had Haskins pinned, but Rush pulled referee Todd Sinclair to ringside. While Sinclair was distracted by Rush, Nick Aldis entered the ring and hit PCO with the NWA Title belt. Aldis ran to the back. Rush smiled at ringside, then returned to the ring. Rush knocked PCO into the corner and hit his Bull’s Horns finisher and scored the pin to win the championship.
After the match, Dragon Lee, Kenny King, and Amy Lee came to the ring and celebrated with Rush. Riccaboni noted that the faction holds the ROH World Title and ROH TV Title. Haskins entered the ring and shoved Rush. The heels attacked Haskins and quickly put him down, then went back to celebrating to close the show…
Powell’s POV: The title goes back to Rush after the brief PCO title reign. Only time will tell whether the plan is for Rush to be the man or if he’s a transitional champion who will drop the title to one of the babyfaces sooner rather than later.
The Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell features Jake Barnett co-hosting the Boom and Dot Net Weekly combo show. Jason and Jake discuss Becky Lynch announcing her pregnancy, Alberto Del Rio being accused of sexual assault, WWE's IC Title tournament, Mike Tyson appearing at AEW Double Or Nothing, Undertaker's Last Ride documentary, AEW Dynamite and NXT TV thoughts, and more...