Full Disclosure: This is a review/report of the ROH broadcast that airs on a local Sinclair broadcast channel over the weekend. It is the same show that airs Wednesday night on the new Comet TV Network. Check your listings to see where Comet and/or your local Sinclair Network Affiliate is on your dial.
Ring of Honor Weekly Television, Taped On October 1 in Lowell, MA
Aired November 9, 2016 on Comet TV, and previously in ROH syndication
The show opened with Kevin Kelly and Steve Corino checking in to hype the six-man tag team tournament main event. They noted that Block A of the tournament has been wrapped up and the winner of the B block will get ACH, Kushida and Jay White at Final Battle for the six-man tag team championship. The winner tonight between Bullet Club and the re-formed Kingdom would face the winner of a match between Team CMLL and The Addiction which will take place on next week’s show.
Match #1 – Michael Elgin vs. Toru Yano:
The commentary team noted that Yano upset Elgin and cost him a shot at the NJPW G1 Climax tournament final. Yano did his normal comedy antics through this one. He threw water at Elgin when he entered the ring, and at one point he used the referee as a shield. He choked Elgin with the ropes at one point. Yano cut the turnbuckle cover loose and hit Elgin with it.
Elgin threw Yano toward the exposed buckle, but Yano stopped only to turn around into a powerslam. A bit later, Elgin called for the buckle bomb into the exposed corner, but Yano countered and slingshot Elgin to the turnbuckle he exposed earlier.
Later, Yano hit a low blow with a kick that the referee didn’t see, then cradled Elgin but he kicked out. Elgin hit a clothesline, then moments later hit the Elgin Bomb to win.
Bill Says: This was weird, but a good follow-up for New Japan fans. You end up with the super serious Elgin going against Yano as the clown. To their credit, the commentary team tried to tell the story of Elgin being haunted by the G1 tournament loss to Yano.
They ran a video package highlighting Dragon Lee’s performance against Kamaitachi at All Star Extravaganza.
Bobby Fish cut a promo, saying he has cracked ribs because of the recent attack by Hangman Page. He called Page an unproven commodity that has been misled by the Bullet Club. He said Page is not ready to face someone of his caliber.
Bill Says: A well delivered promo here, but the context ends up being questionable. If Fish wins, then it comes off as a match he was expecting to win over a lesser opponent. If Page comes off with the win, then this all works out great I suppose.
Match #2 – Bobby Fish vs. Dragon Lee; Proving Ground Match;
Fish had his ribs bandaged up to sell the beating from Page. Steve Corino asked on commentary why Fish didn’t just take the loss to save himself for next week when he’ll face Page for the ROH Television Championship.
Lee and Fish went hold for hold early, with Lee locking in a fujiwara arm bar. Lee picked up the pace, hitting a huracanrana then a tope dive to the outside which throws Fish to the barrier. Back inside, Lee continued to press with two northern lights suplexes and a brainbuster for a near fall.
Fish fought back and tries to hit a brainbuster of his own but his ribs wouldn’t let him pick Lee. In the end, Lee uses La Magistral to cradle Fish for the win. Fish sold sore ribs but showed respect to Lee with a handshake.
Bill Says: This played out on paper better than it did in the ring. I get the story of making Fish look vulnerable going into a match next week with Page for the title, I guess I didn’t want this to come at the expense of Lee. That said, the execution was fine and Lee looked good, and we’ll see him in a title match at some point.
Matt Taven cut a promo, saying that time had run out and after a year he is back and forming a new Kingdom in his image. He said tonight would be the beginning of the end for the Bullet Club.
They ran a video package to highlight the six-man tag championship tournament results to date. They hyped Team CMLL of Ultimo Guerrero, Hechichero and Okumura facing The Addiction with Kamaitachi on next week’s show.
Match #3 – The Kingdom (Matt Taven, TK O’Ryan, and Vinny Marseglia) vs. Bullet Club (Adam Cole and The Young Bucks); ROH Six-Man Tag Team Championship Tournament Match;
Before the match, two men dressed in royal garb came to the stage, one holding candles while the other read from a scroll. They introduced The Kingdom. O’Ryan and Marseglia are independent talents, with O’Ryan coming from New England and Marseglia from Georgia. Taven had a brace on his knee.
The Kingdom got the early advantage, posing on the apron going to break. Bullet Club came back with a triple superkick out of the break, then did their Terminator pose. The Kingdom used the moment to send them to ringside, but Bullet Club regrouped and hit a triple powerbomb into the ring edge. They did the Terminator pose again then hit triple suicide dives.
The Kingdom focused on Matt Jackson, working him over in their corner. Kelly noted that O’Ryan was a baseball prospect who lost his career due to injury which is why he came to wrestling. Matt tagged to Nick and he got the better of the two new Kingdom members. Nick then tagged out to Cole, who ended up in the ring with Taven.
Cole focused on the bad knee, then hit a shining wizard for two. Taven came back with a neckbreaker for two then told the other two that he needed help. They set up a powerbomb spot that came off sloppy when Marsegilia lost his balance. A bit later, the Bucks hit a double superkick on Taven, then followed with singles to the other Kingdom members. The Bullet Club set up for a big spot, but Marsegila broke it up. After a couple of low blows and other big spots, Taven pinned Matt Jackson to win.
Bill Says: The Kingdom reboot at the moment is really confusing. We know so little about the new guys that it’s hard to invest, and Taven mouths off at the fans and calls them Melvins, so I’m guessing we’re supposed to not like them? And I’ve vented about the Bullet Club face/heel dynamics before so I won’t rehash them. A very weird match in that regard, but the fans were into the Bullet Club antics.
A weird show, overall, just like this match was. Not every show will be a big hit though, and this was no exception. I’ll have more to say about this and all things in the ring tomorrow night on Around the Ring. See you then.