Thanks to WrestlingINC.com reader Joseph Gerard for the following spoilers from last night's Ring of Honor TV tapings from the WesBanco Arena in Wheeling, West Virginia:
Hi, I got back from Wheeling, West Virginia over an hour ago where Ring of Honor was holding a TV taping for a month's worth of shows at WesBanco Arena. Just wanted to give the results and some feedback at the arena.
Kevin Kelley and Nigel McGuinness on commentary. No Steve Corino tonight.
Jay Briscoe cuts a promo before being interrupted by Adam Cole. The two almost come to blows.
RD Evans & Moose vs. Red Scorpion and Grey Wolf, The Bloodbound Warriors managed by Prince Nana. They dominated most of the match, with Evans and Moose getting the win after Veda Scott pulled Todd Sinclair out of the ring in the middle of a count. (Nevertheless, Evans and Moose were babyfaces in the match.) Evans "streak" is now 154-0.
Honor Rumble: 20 participants including Jay Lethal, ACH, Mark Briscoe, all five members of the Decade, Caprice Coleman, Brutal Bob, Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Kyle O'Reilly, Cheeseburger (who surprisingly lasted pretty long in the match), the Romantic Touch, Hanson, and Michael Bennett, among others. Tommaso Ciampa tried to enter the match, but Nigel McGuinness and security blocked his attempts. Bennett won the Honor Rumble after eliminating Briscoe. Cole, who had been eliminated by Briscoe moments before, didn't look too happy.
Kelley and McGuinness, with Caprice Coleman doing parts of the show on commentary in place of McGuinness.
Hanson defeated the Romantic Touch. Really nothing much to say here, but I did get to give Hanson a forearm bump after the match. (I was sitting at ringside.) Despite Rowe not being there due to recovering from his motorcycle accident, there were several "War Machine" chants.
Adam Page vs. TaDarius Thomas in a no DQ match. Ended in a no-contest after Thomas decided to use a chair on Jimmy Jacobs instead of giving Page another shot with it, turning face in the process and quitting The Decade.
Adam Cole vs. Cedric Alexander. Very back and forth match. Cole ends up winning after hitting Cedric with a Twist of Fate. Personally, despite doing the job here, Cedric seems to be in line to be the next big babyface for the company.
Kelley and McGuinness again.
ReDragon vs. The Decade (Jimmy Jacobs & Roderick Strong) for the ROH World Tag Team Championship. ReDragon played babyfaces in this match. Very back and forth. Adam Page wanted to hand Strong a chair while BJ Whitmer had the referee distracted. Strong chose not to use the chair, which backfired. RedDragon retained tag titles. Afterwards, Strong and Page get into it before Jacobs has to play peacekeeper. The three veterans hug it out, but Strong shows no respect for Page.
Jay Lethal vs. Will Ferrera for ROH World Television Championship. Truth Martini is without Saleezia tonight. Lethal is facing the guy who eliminated him in the Honor Rumble--surprised, since I expected him to face ACH, who aside from the Honor Rumble didn't appear tonight. (Most of the Honor Rumble participants still had matches later on in the night.) Lethal dominated and retained easily.
Jay Briscoe vs. Michael Bennett for the ROH World Championship. Very back and forth, Briscoe's head got cut open, so I'm not sure if that will be edited out or not. Briscoe retains, only for Adam Cole to jump Briscoe. Mark Briscoe comes out to even the odds, only for Matt Taven to make a surprise return and jump the Briscoes. He then takes off his dress shirt to reveal a Kingdom tee. I guess his face run didn't last very long. There were a lot of "You sold out!" chants at Taven afterwards.
Kelley and, strangely enough, Truth Martini on commentary, even though Jay Lethal doesn't appear during the final episode taped.
Mark Briscoe vs. Caprice Coleman. Back and forth match, Briscoe wins. The two then honor the Code of Honor afterwards and hug in the ring. As Briscoe is leaving the ring, he stops and sees the Book of Truth sitting on the commentary table before walking to the back; even Truth Martini had to make a double-take. Is there a possible Briscoes split down the road, with a heel turn for Mark and a feud with his brother?
Nigel McGuinness comes back out with the entire referee crew and calls out Tommaso Ciampa. Ciampa comes out and the two air their grievances at each other. McGuinness reinstates Ciampa under the condition that he can't touch another non-wrestling official, or else he's fired. (He actually botched this, as he said Kevin Kelley and "that guy over there" before remembering it was Bobby Cruise; that'll likely be edited from TV.) Ciampa says he couldn't wait until next week to face Jay Briscoe for the championship, which McGuinness responds otherwise. Briscoe comes out and the two nearly brawl, with McGuinness stopping it by threatening to fire Ciampa on the spot. After Ciampa leaves the Kingdom comes out and attacks Briscoe, with Matt Taven now wearing matching ring gear as Adam Cole and Michael Bennett. Mark Briscoe tries to save his brother but the Kingdom overpower both.
Brutal Bob & Cheeseburger vs. The Decade (BJ Whitmer and Adam Page). The Decade wins easily, with Brutal Bob carrying Cheeseburger to the back. Jimmy Jacobs goes on commentary for the match. Roderick Strong didn't come out for this segment.
Matt Sydal vs. AJ Styles. Arguably the match of the night. The crowd wanted a rematch after Styles won. The two men embraced in the ring afterwards, with Styles going to the back and letting Sydal have the moment to himself.
AJ Styles, Matt Sydal, Jay Lethal, and Michael Bennett & Maria Kanellis were available for autographs before the start of the show. I had Kanellis autograph my issue of Playboy with her in it. (She said she has signed a ton of those for fans over the years.) I talked to her and Bennett for a minute and wished them congratulations and good luck on the upcoming wedding. Both were very nice people. I didn't get autographs with anyone else, but Styles and Lethal had their respective title belts available for fans to pose with.
For an arena that housed the WWE debut of Earthquake, the WCW re-debut of Kevin Nash on Nitro, and is still used by WWE at least once a year, ROH actually made pretty good use for it. Granted, it wasn't filled, but it had more people there than a typical TNA house show. The floor part was filled and many fans were sitting in the regular arena sitting (which wasn't initially available for purchase online), 3-4 people even sat in the upper section. Although some workers at the arena thought it was rather light, according to some ROH workers, it exceeded the company's expectations for attendance.
It was my first time at WesBanco Arena, and while the concessions were nothing spectacular there, they were actually reasonably priced. Can't say that for any of the major facilities in Pittsburgh.
An ROH worker who was sitting in the audience asked fans before the tapings started how many people had been to an ROH show before. About 97% of the people there had never been to an ROH show before, while the other 3% (myself included) had gone to ROH shows in other cities. That same worker later helped the fans make chants, and gave everyone streamers to throw into the ring.
After Sydal left the ring, Bobby Cruise thanked everyone for attending.
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