Hammerstein and The Infinite Sadness

So Hammerstein is over. What’d you guys think?

Apparently from the reaction at the ROH boards, the majority of you walked out of the building with your heads down, sulking at the bittersweetness of the show you had just experienced. Well too bad I didn’t experience that because unlike you folks, I had my expectations in check. Sucks to be you I guess. I knew what was coming and I’d been bitching on the ROH boards for a while that Hammerstein was going to be a run of the mill show and I was right. It was a run of the mill NYC show.

It looks like the plan was to let the novelty of running Hammestein sell out as much of the show as it could, rather than truly pulling out all the stops and putting on a blockbuster event. Gabe has been doing a bait and switch in terms of workrate in NYC and this was the second time it’s happened in 2008. The first great bait and switch was Dragon/Nigel from 6th Anniversary Show where the match wasn’t allowed to be anywhere near as good as it should have been just so Nigel could turn heel.

Basically the potential of Dragon/Marufuji and Morishima/Necro and Nigel/Claudio was tremendous and it’s what sold people on the show. However when the time for the matches come, they are done extremely slowly with forgettable chain wrestling that no one wanted to see. It happened with Claudio/Ibushi in Edison and it happened last night in the Dragon and Nigel matches. Both times the chain wrestling had a story to tell – with Dragon and Marufuji’s being “anything you can do I can do better” – and with Nigel’s being the absolute breakdown of Claudio’s arm setting up for the finisher – but the crowd just didn’t care for it because they were looking for something more exciting. I was too.

A sucker is born every minute and last night New York City was played for a fool. Ring of Honor has now grown to the point in NYC where they can sell 2000 seats based on the their name and not the quality of show they put on. The sooner people come to understand that, the sooner they’ll be able to place their expectations in check. Business will dictate the talent we get. Business will dictate the quality of show we will get. Business will dictate the workrate we get. It’s the reason we didn’t see Alex Shelly, Chris Sabin, or Kota Ibushi in New York City last night. It’s the reason we didn’t get a classic match of the year candidate last night. It’s the reason the majority of you walked out unfulfilled last night.

And so to everyone reading this.

Called it.

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