RING OF HONOR TV
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TAPED AT SAM'S TOWN LIVE IN LAS VEGAS NEVADA
This week's episode starts with a preview of the TV main event and hype for Friday's All Star Extravaganza PPV which will be covered here live on WrestlingInc.
"THE LAST REAL MAN" SILAS YOUNG VS TORU YANO
Great contrast of styles in this opening matchup. Silas Young is super serious almost to comedic levels. Never smiles, always ornery and threatening to hit fans on his way to ringside. Toru Yano is a notorious clown and trickster from New Japan Pro Wrestling. Has a long history of winning matches against major superstars by resorting to any and every cheap tactic in the book. Stuff like tying up wrestlers feet so that he can win by countout. Somehow he does it with such charm that he wins fans over despite having no integrity. The business has always been filled with comedy style wrestlers. Yano is one of the best.
Immediately, Toru Yano gets under Silas Young's skin by throwing water on him before the match even starts. This gets a Yano chant going from The ROH crowd in Vegas. An agitated Silas Young tries to go after Yano early on. Yano cowers and heads for the ropes and asks the ref for assistance. Then Yano apologizes to Young for being cowardly. So he goes over to shake Young's hand. Silas obviously hasn't bought the DVD's that Yano sells before his matches. Young falls for the gesture and gets rolled up for a 2 count.
Both men back on their feet. Yano tries to sell his sneaky tactic to Silas as just being a joke. Young ain't buying it and goes after Toru Yano. Yano once again heads for the ropes to get Silas to back off. Yano yells "break" every time he intentionally wraps himself in the ropes. The fans chant "Break" along with him. As Silas is complaining to New Japan Ref Tiger Hattori. Yano sneaks up from behind and slaps Young. This starts a game of cat and mouse with Yano running away from Silas. Yano wins this game by catching Silas Young with an inverted atomic drop that sends him to the floor. Toru Yano offers to hold open the ring ropes for Young to get back in and tells Silas that he is sorry. Young doesn't go for it and strikes Yano. As Silas is getting back in the ring, Yano kicks the middle rope that results in a low blow to Young. Yano starts admiring his handiwork a bit too much by showboating. Young rises up and hits Yano from behind. Silas on the offensive dropping 5 straight elbows on Yano and attempts a pinfall. Yano kicks out as the show goes to break.
Back from the break. Silas still in control wearing out Yano. Yano rallies and throws Young from the ring to the outside. He then attempts his signature spot of taking off the turnbuckles. ROH's turnbuckles don't come off easy. Different than the ones in New Japan that Yano is used to. So Toru goes under the ring and gets a tool to help him with his tactic. Yano gets the top rope turnbuckle off with this tool. Silas Young runs in and charges at Yano. Toru moves out of the way. Young stops short of hitting the exposed turnbuckle but when he turns, Yano hits Young with the turnbuckle pad. Both men start trading strikes in the middle of the ring. Yano of course wins the exchange by pulling Young down by his hair. More showboating by Yano. Young is back up, takes Toru down. Yano is on his knees begging for forgiveness and then attempts a low blow on Silas but he blocks it. Silas Young hits a cutter on Yano for a near fall. Young hits consecutive moves on Yano. A flying clothesline and a twisting spring board suplex for another near fall. Silas charges at Yano, He moves and Silas goes into the exposed turnbuckle. Yano rolls up for him a two count. Yano then grabs the ref to complain about his count. Silas comes up from behind, Yano hits a low blow on him and an inside cradle for another close fall. Two good false finishes in a row. The final sequence of this match sees Young hit a low blow on Yano. He throws him into the exposed turnbuckle and then rolls up Yano and holds the tights for the pinfall victory. Silas Young giving Toru Yano a taste of his own medicine.
SILAS YOUNG DEFEATS TORU YANO BY PINFALL
Post match. Silas Young is not pleased with his victory. Decides to beat up on Yano. Out comes The Briscoes to save Toru Yano from the beating. The Briscoes and Yano are scheduled to team up together in the opening round of ROH's Inaugural 6 Man Tag Title tournament. They will face Kushida, ACH and Jay White at the All Star Extravaganza pay per view this Friday night.
Kevin Kelly at ringside hypes Friday's Ladder War 6 match for The ROH Tag Team Titles and then intros a video that he labels as a heartfelt response by Christopher Daniels.
Great promo by Christopher Daniels in this video. Must watch. He talks about his career and how he realizes that he may be reaching the end of his road. Calls himself a horrible husband and father and that the only thing he is good at is wrestling. How he will do whatever it takes to hold on to his tag titles when he and Kazarian face The Bucks and The Guns. Great line about how an athlete suffers two deaths and how Daniels tells time to F off. How he will not succumb to history and clichés.
"THE PUNISHMENT" DAMIAN MARTINEZ W/KEVIN SULLIVAN & BJ WHITMER VS CHEESEBURGER
Depending on your point of view. This can be seen as another comedy match on this show. Cheeseburger is ROH's resident cult hero and comedic figure. Sullivan and Whitmer have introduced a supernatural storyline type element to ROH. A company that has steered clear in the past from this form of wrestling entertainment. Added intrigue in this match is the chief rival of Sullivan and Whitmer, Steve Corino at ringside doing commentary. Damian Martinez is no longer being billed as The Punisher but as The Punishment. There is a joke to be made there but I'll let it go.
Martinez and his leaders enter the ring complete with spooky music and flashing red lights. Kevin Sullivan comes over to the broadcast table. Sullivan joins commentary and immediately, He and Corino go into story mode. Corino says after 33 years, The "Haze" came from the water in the form of Martinez and he asks his "father" Sullivan why he gave him to BJ Whitmer. Kevin Sullivan tells him that he never understood after all these years that you can't circumvent Evil. That Corino never understood how to accept and use Evil. Sullivan says that Corino has failed because after 30 years, He has never accepted being evil. Corino says he has changed and that he has a family. Meanwhile in the ring, Cheeseburger tries repeatedly to mount offense on Martinez but none of his offense has any effect on him. Cheeseburger sells hurting himself whenever he would attempt to strike "The Punishment".
Corino at ringside complains to his "Father" Kevin Sullivan. He is upset with Sullivan that he chose Whitmer over him. Sullivan says he chose Whitmer instead of Corino because of how Whitmer gave him the reincarnation of Purple Haze in Martinez. As this drama is unfolding. Damian Martinez makes quick work of Cheeseburger hitting a jumping chokeslam on him for the victory.
"THE PUNISHMENT" DAMIAN MARTINEZ DEFEATS CHEESBURGER BY PINFALL
Sullivan and Corino continue to argue at ringside. Sullivan refers to Corino as "Mookhan". I am not even sure if that's how it's spelled but it's supposedly Corino's real spiritual name..... In the ring. Whitmer enters and Martinez holds up Cheeseburger while BJ chops him repeatedly. Sullivan challenges Corino to go in the ring and help Cheesburger. Questions "MooKhan" why he isn't doing anything. Will Ferrara runs out to the ring to save his friend Cheeseburger but he gets hit with a jumping chokeslam by Martinez. As the show cuts to another promo for The All Star Extravaganza pay-per-view.
This is followed by a backstage promo by Adam Cole. Cole hypes this show's main event and he calls Tanahashi and Elgin, "Wishful Thinking" because both men wish that they can be ROH world champions. Cole will defend his ROH title vs Michael Elgin this Friday. He then says that The Bullet Club will make an example out of both Hiroshi and Elgin tonight.
Back to ringside, We are at the broadcast table. Steve Corino has in his hands, The Golden Spike that was used against him at Best In The World. Corino is staring at the spike with a sad look on his face. Kelly asks him why Whitmer would give that to him. Corino laughs about having to meet Whitmer in the desert. Kelly then says that during the break. BJ Whitmer went on a diatribe in the ring. Footage is then played of Whitmer's post match promo. Whitmer tells Corino to forgo his name and become the evil spirit that he is intended to be. That they are Corino's salvation and that he could be theirs as well.
Kevin Kelly then transitions to running down The entire All Star Extragavanza lineup this coming Friday. Promoted is The Ladder War match with The Addiction vs The Guns and Young Bucks. The start of the 6 man title tournament. A 4 corners #1 contenders tag match. A Bobby Fish promo airs hyping his TV Title defense against Donovan Dijak. Fish tells Dijak that he is going to be filled with regret the day after ASE. This is followed by hype for Jay Lethal's match with Tetsuya Naito. A Jay Lethal promo airs where he talks about his climb back to the top of ROH and the revenge he seeks vs Naito. Finally a Adam Cole promo airs where he talks about his history with Michael Elgin going back to their starts in Ring Of Honor in 2010. Cole talks about how he used to respect Elgin until Elgin beat him for The ROH Title. Adam Cole touts how he stayed in ROH and reclaimed his rightful spot on the top while Elgin held the ROH title for a cup of coffee and how Elgin ran off to New Japan. Adam Cole promises to remain ROH World Champion.
After the break. Kyle O'Reilly has joined the commentary team for The TV main event.
ROH TV MAIN EVENT
ADAM COLE & HANGMAN PAGE VS HIROSHI TANAHASHI & MICHAEL ELGIN
Prior to the match. O'Reilly is told by Kelly to not get physically involved despite his issues with Adam Cole. Corino reminds Kyle that he was suspended for 1 year on commentary for getting physically involved and that Kyle should choose his actions carefully. Kyle O'Reilly is asked about the possibility of Michael Elgin winning the ROH title. Kyle admits that he is rooting for Adam Cole because he wants to be the one that takes the ROH world title away from him.
Hangman Page and Michael Elgin start things off. Elgin over powers Page early. He then gets the crowd to count down a 30 second vertical suplex on Page as the show goes to break..... Back from the break, Tanahashi is now in the ring with Hangman. All 4 men get involved. The action spills to the outside. Page hits a running moonsault off of the ring apron onto both Elgin and Tanahashi. Back in the ring, The Bullet Club corners Tanahashi and works him over for the next few minutes. Adam Cole mocks Tanahashi by playing air guitar. The crowd chants for Hiroshi to try and get him to rally and he eventually does. Tanahashi reverses a suplex attempt by Page and hits a neck breaker on him. He then tags in Michael Elgin. Elgin goes on the offensive taking out both Page and Adam Cole. Showing off his power and agility. Which O'Reilly puts over on commentary. Elgin then hits Hangman Page with a Falcon Arrow for a close fall. He then proceeds to pound away on Page with stiff strikes. Elgin attempts another Falcon Arrow but this time, Page counters and hits a DDT for a 2 count. The show goes to it's final break. When it returns, Adam Cole is in the ring with Elgin. He attempts to hit Elgin with The Destroyer but Elgin gets out of it. Elgin then hits Adam Cole with a german suplex right into the top turnbuckle. Tanahashi is tagged in. He hits a senton on Adam Cole for a 2 count. Both Adam and Hiroshi start trading strikes in the middle of the ring. Each man taking turns giving the other their best kicks and chops. Tanahashi wins the exchange by taking Cole down with The Sling Blade.
Both men tag out. Michael Elgin is in with Hangman Page. Elgin over powers Page and gets a power bomb on him. Cole breaks up the pin attempt. All 4 men in the ring. Elgin and Tanahashi win the exchange. Tanahashi gets on Elgin's shoulders and Michael tries to slam Hiroshi on top of Page but he moves out of the way. Final sequence of the match. Elgin takes out Cole. He then buckle bombs Page and then hits a sit out powerbomb on him for the victory.
MICHAEL ELGIN & HIROSHI TANAHASHI DEFEAT ADAM COLE & HANGMAN PAGE
The show ends with a post match stare down between Adam Cole and Michael Elgin. Cole hands up the ROH world title in Elgin's face as Kevin Kelly wraps the show by hyping their main event title match at ASE this Friday.
SHOW CLOSING THOUGHTS
I have no doubt that the in ring action at All Star Extravaganza should be great. With ROH, It almost always is and I am very much looking forward to The Ladder War match with The Addiction vs The Young Bucks and The Machine Guns. Christopher Daniels promo on this show sold me on that match being more than just a spot fest. Lethal vs Naito should be terrific and Cole vs Elgin should be as well. However, All Star Extravaganza has not had the same type of great build that Death Before Dishonor did. The build towards DBD was great wrestling TV. Adam Cole's mission to injure O'Reilly and take him out of the world title picture. Then the humiliation of Lethal to force the world title match was great episodic television. Some of the best by any promotion this year.
The problem with ASE this coming Friday is that it feels like a transitional pay per view. We have been seeing that a lot nowadays especially with The WWE's split pay per views. ROH's big shows should never have the feel of a transitional pay per view. They can never afford to do a bridge pay per view. Kind of like stalling until the bigger stuff happens. Something the WWE always does. Every ROH PPV has to hit a grand slam. It can never be just another good show. A promotion like ROH has to reward the fans who invest their time and money in buying their shows and create buzz and positive feedback for the promotion. Make others wants to purchase future pay per views. In order to get more attention and keep the fans coming back for more. ROH has to knock it out of the park with their pay per views. Just getting a single and getting on base is not good enough. That's not to say that the matches on ASE Friday are not of pay per view quality. They are and most likely will be. Very talented and underrated ROH roster combined with New Japan. The in ring action will be stellar no doubt about it. The pay per view this coming Friday has to be special. The build for it hasn't been.