ROH TV Episode #369
Las Vegas, NV
Ian Riccobani, BJ Whitmer and Caprice Coleman on commentary
*I watch on Honor Club or FITE, so I dont always get the TV until it comes there a couple of days later… but am I to understand that the TV taping aired on Sinclair stations the same night as Glory By Honor? Does… does that make any sense?
We open with a recap of Death Before Dishonor, with Lethal retaining the ROH championship against Will Ospreay before getting jumped by The Kingdom, Gresham trying for a save but getting taken out, and Matt Taven debuting his purple ROH title belt, throwing down the actual title belt. Taven calls himself the REAL World Champion as we go to the opening package. And that takes us to…
SEGMENT: The Kingdom speaks
Taven stands royally in the middle of the ring as TK verbally accosts everyone in the ring who isnt The Kingdom (Todd Sinclair and Bobby Cruise), who cant seem to do anything right. TK is LOUD, saying that everyone will finally hear the Kingdom out. Vinny says the Conspiracy is dead. TK takes the mic and shoves it in Bobby’s hands, along with a list and says Bobby must read that list, NOW. He then reads a listing of Taven’s accomplishments, including a note that he is the real world champion, which Bobby tries to avoid but acquiesces under threat of physical violence. They then force Todd to raise Taven’s hand while holding the purple title belt. I like the Kingdom’s push so far.
VIDEO PACKAGE: Jeff Cobb
We get a package on Jeff Cobb DESTROYING the Top Prospect Tournament, facing down Punishment Martinez, and raising the TV title over his head. We get the note of the challenge Cobb is making for the TV title… next week… even though he’s already been seen on TV with the belt… just this past Friday at Glory By Honor, which… SIGH… come on y’all… someone had to sign off on that right? Cuz thats really not good storytelling. Like, at all.
CHASE OWENS vs KENNY KING
King comes down second, walking on red carpet with gold stars, his own personal Walk of Fame. We also see King stealing some wins as of late, pushing his heel turn. Code of Honor is adhered to, though.
Bell rings and they start sizing each other up. They lock up with Chase getting wrist control, King reverses but Owens able to turn it around into an armlock, transitioning into a hammerlock. King with a nice counter into an armdrag and kip up, lands another arm drag and grounds Owens. King looks for a hiptoss but Owens counters, they evade each others quickness for a nice exchange and back to center.
They lock up, King with a headlock, whipped to the ropes but King takes down Owens with the tackle. Owens leapfrogs but holds on, puts King on the apron and dropkicks him to the floor and nails a wrecking ball dropkick taking down crowd! Crowd cheers for Owens while King hits a nice forearm. Owens moves fast back into the ring and is able to catch King in a draping flatliner on his way in, covers but only 2 as we go to BREAK.
We’re back as Owens hits some strikes and a snap swinging neckbreaker to take down King, covers but only 2. Owens takes King up but King goes behind and hits jabs and strikes, whips Owens and takes his head off with a jumping spin kick. Owens to the apron, King Eddie Gordo’s him down and hits a running tornillo over the top onto Owens on the floor. Owens back in and King up top for a BIG crossbody, covers but only 2.
King stays on Owens for another 2 count and a chinlock. Owens powers up and fights out, hits a jawbreaker and a running forearm series and an enziguri to rock King. Running Euro uppercut in the corner and big seated knee to King’s face. Chops to King and a whip to the corner but King turns it into a sunset flip for 2. Neckbreaker into a faceplant by Owens on King and a cover, but King is out at 2. Owens calls for the Package Piledriver, but King counters out, they trade shots, Owens looks for a slingshot but King flips out of it but his knee gives way… EXCEPT KING CATCHES OWENS IN A SMALL PACKAGE and gets the 3 count and the WIN.
Kenny King defeats Chase Owens by pinfall after shenanigans and a small package
JAY’S RATING: 2.25 out of 5
This was a nice TV debut for Owens even in loss to King, who continues his success in his more heel-oriented push. However, this one also suffered from the chronology issues, as anyone who watched Glory By Honor, it then feels like this backtracks King from where he was in the closeout of the show… This might be a solid place for Owens to hang his hat though, with the NJPW relationship solid and his style (especially the striking) meshing well in the ROH environment. There wasnt too much to this match, but Owens is a fiend when it comes to execution and King is another reliable player on the roster, and that let this match showcase both just enough.
BACKSTAGE: Coast 2 Coast
We hear about C2C getting a tag title shot and join them backstage as they are pumping each other up, with Ali talking about how they are undefeated in ROH all year. Short, sweet, but not overly scripted and C2C feels confident going into next week’s title match. Decent work on this one.
And that takes us to BREAK.
We’re back and we see Shane Taylor shadowboxing before his match with Flip Gordon. We see a clip from Death Before Dishonor of Bully and Colt taking chairs to each other, and Ian egging on Colt. Bully then overtakes Colt, pushes Ian and bombs Colt through the table at ringside. And that takes us to…
SHANE TAYLOR vs FLIP GORDON
We see clips of tensions between Taylor and Flip as Taylor and Flip make their entrances. So I guess Flip/Bully is over then? I’m really having trouble keeping track of who is pissed at who these days. Flip comes out with a much more serious energy than usual, and he grabs a mic. Flip says he has no issue fighting Shane, but first he needs to get something off of his chest. He talks to Bully. Guess not. He says Bully put his partner through a table, with Bully stacking the deck against him, and he still put both of them through a table. But Bully couldnt handle that and cheated, and screwed Flip over. Flip asks what Bully wants? What kind of match next? TLC? Street fight?
We hear “Do You Know Who I Am?” and Bully makes his way to the ring. Bully says Flip is supposed to wrestle Taylor but he’s more concerned about Bully. Bully asks if he’s under Flip’s skin? Because he keeps kicking Flip in the balls? Flip says he beat Bully, but Bully says the refs call is all that matters. Shane Taylor then slidesd into the ring with a chair, and Flip has his focus split which allows Silas to come up from behind and low blow Flip.
Bully says, “oh no, IT HAPPENED AGAIN.” Bully runs down Flip as he’s on his knees, and Shane lays into him with a chair shot. Bully, Silas and Taylor stand over Flip, and Bully pushes Todd Sinclair down. Bully mocking calls anyone out to help Flip, while having Taylor hit Flip again. Bully calls out Ian, Bobby Cruise, but no one comes down and Silas downs Flip with Misery.
Shane Taylor versus Flip Gordon goes to a No Contest due to interference from Silas Young and Bully Ray
JAY’S RATING: Not Rated
I just dont know where this is going anymore. It feels like the same wheels are getting spun, with very little new information or development. Oh look, Flip got kicked in the balls again. The only new info was Shane Taylor aligning with them, which I can see working… but that in and of itself isnt enough. The story still feels exactly the same. Something in the actual narrative needs to evolve, because this is just wearing out its welcome and feeling really redundant, especially because the focus then keeps shifting away with Silas challenging Lethal, Bully and Gresham’s program, etc. Focus is needed here, and ASAP.
And that takes us to BREAK.
VIDEO PACKAGE: The Briscoes
The Briscoes say that C2C doesnt stand a chance. Yeah. That was about it. That’s all that happened. They created a TV spot for that.
VIDEO PACKAGE: Madisen Square Garden
We get a video about the MSG show with NJPW, and Lethal gets some time talking up how amazing it is that they sold out MSG. He says the little kid inside of him is smiling, knowing that he gets to wrestle in MSG. The only thing that could make it sweeter, he says, is if when they get to April, he is still ROH Champion. Jay says we had better believe that the ROH title will still be on his shoulders. Lethal is amazing. He elevates everything he is given. Constantly.
We head backstage and see The Kingdom, who walk out of their dressing area and talk about getting the hell out of Vegas.
The announcers recap the night so far.
Four Corner Survival Tag Match
THE ADDICTION vs BEST FRIENDS
LOS INGOBERNABLES DE JAPON vs THE YOUNG BUCKS
We get a BREAK after the entrances, and come back to brawling chaos in the ring as all 4 teams go it it. Nick Jackson wipes out a group with a crossbody, and the Bucks hit great double teams on both members of The Addiction. They line up Best Friends, but they evade the Bucks and land an enziguri and tossing double cutter. They go for the hug but LIJ breaks it up. LIJ takes down the Best Friends with EVIL nailing a senton across both of them. Addiction back in it though and double team EVIL, and hit double moonsaults on SANADA. Kaz goes over the top to take out EVIL with a Rana on the floor, SANADA then jumps over onto Kaz, but SANADA eats a suicide dive from Daniels who gets taken out with a wrecking ball dropkick from Matt, and finally Nick gets his twisting dive wiping everyone out but Matt. Trent looks to dive but Chuckie intercepts for the hug, then they both dive over the top and take out everyone!
Trent and Daniels are now in, and we suddenly get the bell and Trent gets a rollup but Daniels is out at 2. Daniels with a jawbreaker and SANADA tags out Trent and gets Daniels in the Paradise Lock. Kaz in but SANADA locks him up next to Daniels. SANADA lines them up and hits a double low dropkick to break them out, covers Daniels but only 2. SANADA tags EVIL, but Daniels tries to fight back. EVIL gets the advantage and is focusing on the back a bit, hitting a sideslam for a 2 count. EVIL grounds Daniels with a chinlock, and that takes us to BREAK.
We’re back but Daniels is able to get a counter on EVIL (with a Todd Sinclair assist), following that up with a facebuster before crawling to Kaz. The Best Friends pulls Kaz off the apron though and walk away, allowing LIJ to stay on Daniels. Daniels reverse with some quick offense, looks for a rollup and prety much denying the value of half your parenting. Daniels rolls away and tags Nick, who is the house of fire – Nick is SO FAST and SO GOOD. He hits classic Nick Jackson hot tag action taking down all of LIJ.
Brest Friends in wearing their shades, Matt gets a blind tag on Nick as Nick takes down both Best Friends and Matt hits Chuckie with the wheelbarrow facebuster for 2. They look for More Bang, but Chuckie out of it and he launches Nick into the corner with a suplex onto a seated Matt Jackson. Kaz then gets Chuckie set up for a slingshot cutter, but SANADA tries to lock him in Skull End. He cant quite get it but turns Kaz around and drapes him over the top rope for a snap swinging neckbreaker. Charge at Trent but Trent gets SANADA in the tornado DDT.
Trent and EVIL square off but EVIL uses Todd Sinclair to get control again, and then EVIL looks for the Magic Killer WITH TODD SINCLAIR – WHAT? – and lands it on Trent! Nick in with a superkick on EVIL, looks for one on Daniels but Daniels hits him with Angels Wings. Matt back in for a low superkick on Daniels though before getting stuffed with an Awful Waffle, covers but Matt out at 2! Best Friends are left standing, tag to Trent. Trent lines up Matt in the corner for a double team on Matt, and they look to set him up for Strong Zero. They hit it on Matt and cover, but Nick comes off the top and breaks it up with a Swanton onto Trent in cradle position! Everyone is down!
Nick and Trent back up trading shots, they both hit clotheslines, Daniels hits one on Trent but gets superkicked by Nick, superkick on Kaz, superkick on Chuckie, EVIL catches it though and looks for the STO but Matt gets Nick out of it and they hit double superkicks! SANADA up top but he eats double superkicks coming off the top. Nick takes out The Addiction at ringside, back to the apron and they have Trent up for the Meltzer Driver, hit it and cover for 3 and the WIN!
The Young Bucks defeat Best Friends, The Addiction and LIJ by pinfall after The Meltzer Driver
JAY’S RATING: 3.5
This was a really fun 4-team sprint to close out the episode, with everyone getting a chance to look good and competitive. I’m really hoping for a Best Friends title push soon, as they are consistently looking great and because they can be both fun and competitive can really work with just about anyone. I’m not sure the Bucks needed the win here as much as Best Friends or Addiction, but it didnt really take much away from the match for me. Lots of fun spots, nice pacing and an invested crowd, and this was a good way to end the episode.
We get the rundown for next week from Ian as we end the episode.
Ok look. There’s good stuff here, and stuff that starts building some new or evolved stories. The Kingdom is looking good in their current position, Chase Owens got a nice debut in spite of losing and the main event delivered fun action all around. But this booking scheduling is just plain a problem. They are doing post-DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR stuff when we have already had GLORY BY HONOR since then. We’ve seen Cobb both on ROH and NJPW programming already with a spoiler of some of next week’s programming. If ROH and NJPW are going to be partners they way they have and encourage their fans to follow both, then they MUST figure out this timetable and taping schedule issue, because it looks like sloppy programming and storytelling. ROH has never been in a better position to be real competition in this industry – but they MUST improve this aspect of their work is they are going to actually keep the momentum going for the long-term.