10 Thoughts on … Ring of Honor April 2, 2016 (reDRagon, Kazuchida Okada, Kushida versus Adam Cole, The Addiction versus Motor City Machineguns)

Thought Zero – Time to take a little rest stop from the Road to WrestleMania and see what Ring of Honor has for us this week. Let’s begin, shall we?

1) Before the opening theme, we get a recap of the end of last week when Donovan Dijak interrupted the House of Truth and “broke” Truth Martini’s neck. Ring of Honor World Heavyweight Champion Jay Lethal cuts a quick and quietly intense promo on Dijak saying he isn’t worthy of a title shot, but he has his attention and he’s coming for him. Lethal ends the promo by stating directly, “You’re not gonna survive this one,” which has a lot of potential to be a catchphrase for someone if they jump on it.

2) First match proper is reDRagon versus Gedo and Kazuchika Okada. Awesome week for wrestling. Gedo and Okada eschew the opening handshakes and reDragon appear to have some cool new matching tights. Just a couple of random bonus observations. Also, Gedo is playing a pretty effective old school heel here and it is a nice dynamic piece to the match.

3) Bobby Fish hit a pretty cool Exploder suplex on Gedo straight into Okada, using Gedo’s own body as a weapon. I am sure I have seen something similar before, but it was still pretty cool. And after an entertaining several minutes, reDRagon wins with Chasing the Dragon on Gedo. The match was not a classic by any means, but it was good for what it was – a television tag team match.

4) Last thought on this match. I know a lot has been written about Okada and his future (most of it by people much smarter than me), but let me say this. Everything else aside, I would be COMPLETELY shocked if Vince McMahon did NOT back up a money truck carrying two banks for Okada to join WWE one day.

5) Hey, more awesomeness as Kushida takes on Adam Cole. All of the New Japan folks are getting a very nice reception from the ROH crowd, which is nice to see. Someone ought to talk to Kushida’s barber though because I am not sure what is supposed to be going on up there. And in a split second (see what I did there? The Time Splitters? ha), I think Kushida might have crushed Adam Cole’s skull. It looked like he went for a seated dropkick, but wound up hitting more of a running double stomp to the face. Ouch.

6) The action picks up and Kushida hits a top rope dive to the floor on Cole leading to a pretty loud Kushida chant. And a little later a “This is Awesome” chant. Nice pinfall reversal sequence with Kushida holding onto the hoverboard lock. I like little things like that. They really add to a sense that these two guys are trying to win, not just hit cool moves for the crowd.

7) Interesting finish as Adam Cole wins with a superkick to the back of Kushida’s neck followed by a neckbreaker to the knee. I say the finish was interesting because the match was very back-and-forth, but it seemed Kushida was the one in charge, driving the action. So Cole taking the victory makes him look like he hung around and eventually outsmarted Kushida. Like I said, interesting. Also, someone should tell Kushida I don’t think that watch drawn on his wrist tape really tells time.

8) Main event time brings the reunited Machine Guns versus The Addiction. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I saw Sabin wrestle, but this should be fun. And the reunited Machine Guns are another solid addition to the ROH tag team ranks. The match breaks down immediately in a way that was pretty awesome. As soon as Sabin and Daniels locked up, Kazarian took the opportunity to charge in the ring and club Sabin in the back. The Addiction is supposed to be super pissed at Sabin, so it made sense that Kazarian wouldn’t just wait around to be tagged in.

9) I am glad this is not a true recap column because Shelley and Sabin work so fast it would be hard to keep up. Once The Addiction takes over, they begin the standard tag formula with Shelley the face-in-peril. The Machine Guns pull out the victory and I am glad they just didn’t swerve us and put Sabin back with The Addiction. The Addiction attacks after the bell and are saved by Kushida and Matt Sydal. But here come the Young Bucks to jump into the fray and everyone is after everyone. The faces end up standing tall in the ring, and I definitely want to see the eventual Machine Guns versus Young Bucks matchup.

10) Loaded card for next week as they announce three matches – Tag Team Championship match between War Machine and Roppongi Vice, Kenny Omega versus ACH, and Dalton Castle versus Silas Young in a Match Without Honor. This has been a sweet few weeks for ROH television.

Thank you for your time this week. We now return to your regularly scheduled WrestleMania hype.


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