1. Even though the American Wolves never get booed by the ROH fans, despite being heels, it’s rare to see them get the kind of face reaction they got tonight. Richards and Edwards did a great job of playing off of the crowd by wrestling like faces in this match, but doing so subtly, and not in a manner inconsistent with their characters.
2. Wolves vs. Dark City Fight Club was a really fun opener, the best in weeks. The teams played the power vs. speed/athleticism match-up to perfection, and hit some really nice moves, probably none cooler than Richards’ handspring eniguri getting caught and countered into a Torture Rack/spinning out powerbomb.
3. Even though I still don’t care for his interviews, Rasche Brown’s squashes seem to have gotten him over with the crowd. It might have made sense to give him a manager to do the talking, but they seem to be teasing a solo run – maybe even as a face. ROH’s done a good job of building intrigue on how he’ll do once he starts mixing it up with guys higher up the card on a consistent basis.
4. Steve Corino may not look like a star, but he knows how to carry himself like one. Some of the less experienced ROH guys can definitely learn a thing or two from him. Kevin Steen’s heel turn seems to be catching on, and it’s in no small part due to Steen’s work, but Corino deserves a fair share of the credit.
5. I like Sara Del Rey, but I’m not sure what was the point of giving her promo time. If ROH actually gave TV time to a women’s division on a weekly, or even semi-weekly, basis, then the interview would have been a nice way to help establish her character. Given that we have no clue when we’ll see a women’s match again after tonight, wouldn’t that television time have been better spent on something else?
6. Why is the winner of the 1 vs. 8 match in the Television Title Tournament facing the winner of 3 vs. 6, instead of the winner of 4 vs. 5? Assuming the seedings really meant something (which is what ROH wants us to believe), and weren’t just picked at random, isn’t that the way it works?
7. ROH covered as well as possible for the fact that Black is supposed to be the ROH World Champion on this show, but since it was taped a week before the 8th Anniversary Show, they couldn’t make a big deal out of it in front of the live crowd. Still, it’s pretty disappointing that we’ve now had three weeks of televised shows since Black won the title, and not even a pre-taped promo, or more footage of his celebration.
8. Props to Dave Prazak for saying “Oh, Yeah!” in his best Randy Savage voice after Aries hit an axe handle from the top turnbuckle to the floor. Got a chuckle out of me.
9. Kenny King did a great job looking like he belonged with three ROH main event mainstays (Black, Aries, and Roderick Strong), and I applaud ROH having him pick up the pin. King looks like a bigger star after tonight than he did before, and now I’m not so sure he’s such a long-shot to win the Television Title Tournament.
10. A good main event tonight capped off a strong episode of ROH. All of the matches (even the “filler” ones in the middle of the show) were entertaining (or acceptable at worst), and several storylines progressed logically. Sure, there are a couple of things I could nitpick on, but very enjoyable overall.
Tags: 10 Thoughts, Ring of Honor, Roderick Strong, ROH, Tyler Black