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 January 14, 2017 at Center Stage in Atlanta, GA
Aired February 1, 2017 on Comet TV, and previously in ROH syndication
We got the opening video, which still has Steve Corino and Kyle O’Reilly in it. Odd. Kevin Kelly and Colt Cabana checked in to call the show.
Match #1 – War Machine vs. Punisher Martinez and BJ Whitmer ended in a no-contest.
They ran footage of the recent brawl between the teams. The match started with all four men brawling, with War Machine getting the edge as Rowe slammed Hanson onto Martinez. Colt heeled on commentary, talking about how he wrestles, podcasts, and doesn’t need Kelly’s help.
War Machine focused on Martinez as Kevin Kelly noted that Kevin Sullivan was conspicuous by his absence. Martinez kicked out of a cover by Rowe at one. Whitmer caught Rowe with a kick while the official was distracted, and Colt complained saying that the official should have seen it. Odd for the heel color guy.
Hanson fired up on both heels with running clotheslines in opposite corners, and the fans mimicked his yelling but cheered as he finished the sequence. Martinez came back with a stomp on Rowe then hit a running elbow on Hanson. Whitmer shoved Hanson into a spinning kick from Martinez.
War Machine came back with a pop-up slam on Martinez followed with a nice belly to belly suplex by Rowe on Whitmer. Whitmer came back moments later with a German suplex. Whitmer hit Rowe with an exploder suplex, and both men sold. The fans cheered.
Whitmer grabbed a table and looked to the fans, who cheered. Again, odd. Whitmer set the table up and Colt complained about it…again, odd for a heel. The official ended up counting out both teams as they brawled on the floor. The fans booed. The brawl continued and Hanson hit a suicide dive on Martinez. He stayed on his feet and flexed, then the teams kept trading punches.
Bill Says: I would love it if ROH did a better job of protecting Martinez, green as he might be. He’s got a great look and seems to have a lot of upside that he could be a rising singles star. Tag matches do help, and he might be learning a lot from Whitmer, but that gimmick does hurt a bit. The brawl was good though, and it seems like there’s more to come between the teams.
Kelly hyped up a six-way scramble match to determine the new number one contender to the ROH TV Championship.
Match #2 – The Kingdom (Matt Taven, TK O’Ryan, and Vinny Marseglia) def. Corey Hollis, Joe A’Gau, and John Sklyer;
Early, Taven hit a powerbomb on A’Gau at ringside while Marseglia and O’Ryna helped slam him down. Cabana called it “a bit uncalled for” (again, odd…).
Taven took out Hollis by throwing him into the ring post. The heels focused on Skyler as his partners sold out on the floor. Taven hit him with a backbreaker for two. Skyler looked to the corner and saw no one. Hollis recovered and took the tag from Skyler, who worked on O’Ryan. Skyler tagged back in and hit a nice spear through the ropes on Marseglia.
Hollis went top rope to set up a double team, but Taven shoved him down and Marseglia bit Hollis. The Kingdom teamed up for a triple powerbomb to win.
After, Taven told all the melvins to take a long look because they are the best and only six man champions ROH would ever have. He said the belts would never leave the Kingdom. Dalton Castle’s music hit and he came out with the Boys. Taven asked what Castle and “the mini melvins” would do to the Kingdom.
Castle said “show ’em, boys.” They shoved Castle back and forth and one punched him in the gut. Castle blocked a shot from the other. “Next time, they’re going to do that to you.” The fans cheered. Taven said nothing was between them but air and opportunity, and said they could do it now. Castle and the Boys headed to the ring but Cabana got up and took out the Boys. Kelly got worked up and told Cabana he’s a commentator. “How dare you!” Cabana left for backstage, and Taven said the initiation is over and “it’s time to be one of us.”
Bill Says: The match was fine and the approach of the Kingdom taking out one man to get an advantage was done well. Skyler at one point did a good job of working on his own and looking to the corner while no one was there. The post match with Cabana taking a shot at the Boys then laughing as he headed to the back was pretty well done also.
Kelly hyped up the tag team main event.
They showed a video of Cody Rhodes sitting in a chair, smoking a cigar. He said fans know him as the grandson of a plumber and the prince of darkness, and a star that left them in the dust. He asked if the world is ready for the next chapter of the story. “Is the world ready for the American Nightmare.” Cody put the cigar out on the ROH logo as a voice-over said “Bullet Club for Life…”
Bill Says: This is a well-done video, on par with the video work they’ve done for Marty Scurll of late.
Kelly set up a video to establish the main event. Cabana tried to come back to commentary but Kelly told him he crossed the line. Cabana said he needed a break, but Kelly reminded him that there is a zero tolerance policy when you sit in on commentary. Cabana crossed the line. Cabana asked if he was serious or being a bitch, then tossed a pencil and walked off.
Bill Says: Good consistency dating back to when Corino was suspended for putting his hands on BJ Whitmer. They established him as being heelish and unacceptable here and that was smart.
The Tempura Boys came out, then footage of the Young Bucks mocking Sho and Yo and acting like their faces hurt from superkicks was run. The Bucks got their entrance and got cheered.
Match #3 – The Young Bucks (c) def. The Tempura Boyz to retain the ROH Tag Team Championship;
Kelly was on his own to call this. The Bucks had the early advantage, then they ran footage of action during the break of the Bucks hitting simultaneous suicide dives then powerbombing both men on the apron. Matt Jackson stopped by commentary to say that he hoped “Matt” is watching at home, then called him a dork. Kelly hyped Broken Matt and Brother Nero for the Wrestlemania weekend show.
The Bucks kept up the offense until Nick kicked Matt. The Bucks rallied back to control with some flashy offense from Nick. He hit a facebuster on one opponent, then rolled out to the apron and hit a moonsault on the other. Nick did “Delete” and “suck it” and the fans chanted along with it. Back in the ring, the Tempura Boyz teamed up for a double team move for two.
They did a cool spot with Sho putting the Boston Crab on Nick, then when Matt tried to break it Sho no-sold the punches. Matt tried a superkick, but Sho released the hold in order to catch him and put him in the Boston Crab. Well done. Nick hit a superkick, and Yo then threw forearms at both Bucks then a superkick of his own. Late, Matt held Sho over the ropes so Nick could hit the 450 splash for the victory.
After, Kelly hyped Broken Matt and Brother Nero vs. The Young Bucks at Supercard of Honor on April 1. The Bucks shook hands with the Tempura Boyz and raised their hands, but Adam Page ran out and waited for the Boyz to turn around, then took them out with clotheslines. Kelly hyped Page’s return and they cut away.
Bill Says: I was hoping that the Bucks would make the Boyz look really good here. I didn’t expect the Bucks to put them over, but I was hoping they’d lay the match out to make them look strong in defeat. They did set the Boyz up for the Page return spot.
They ran footage of Marty Scurll issuing his open challenge followed by the five men walking out. They ran a new Scurll promo where he talked about being the Villain and not caring who he faced. He made his entrance to join Kelly on commentary.
Match #4 – Donovan Dijak def. Alex Shelley, Chris Sabin, Lio Rush, Jay White, and Jonathan Gresham to become the new No. 1 Contender to the ROH Television Championship;
They did a group hug which drew some groans and a gag from Scurll. Scurll also gagged at the logic behind the aligned babyfaces as Kelly laid it out. He asked if they are X-Men or Power Rangers. Shelley pulled Sabin off of Rush then apologized. Sabin shoved Shelley, and Shelley returned the shove. They hugged to some applause.
Dijak hit a flip dive in a damn impressive spot for a guy his size. Scurll mockingly called Dijak the best. There was a scary moment next when Rush hit a reverse huracanrana on Dijak, who landed a bit awkwardly. The Rebellion hit the ring and attacked Gresham, fighting with all of the babyfaces. Kelly asked if they were saving Rush, who was in the ring but never got involved in the scrum.
Rush and Dijak were in the ring. Rush tried a frogsplash, but Dijak put his hand out and grabbed him in a chokeslam position. Moments later, Dijak hit Feast Your Eyes on him for the win. Kelly put the match over as one that the fans will be talking about for weeks (a bit of overselling).
They cut backstage, with War Machine fighting Whitmer and Martinez in a hallway to end the show.
Bill Says: I wasn’t a big fan of the big “kum-bay-yah” stuff with the men in the match myself. It ended up creating an atmosphere where fans didn’t have anyone to invest in either to cheer or hate. Also, it feels like they lost their way with the Motor City Machine Guns, who could be a real asset to the tag team division.
This show was a bit down from shows we have seen this year so far from ROH. It wasn’t by any means terrible with the in-ring action being solid for the most part. Previous shows have been better though, for sure.
I’ll have more to say about this show tomorrow night on Around the Ring. See you then.