Thought Zero – This is the last hour of Ring of Honor television before their Best in the World pay-per-view, so let’s see how they hype up their big event.
1) We are still pulling from the War in the Worlds tapings in Toronto, so we get the bonus of seeing some of New Japan Pro Wrestling’s stars. The first match is Gedo versus Dalton Castle. We are reminded that Dalton Castle has a TV title match against Bobby Fish at Best in the World, so it would make sense for him to go over here. Personally, I think a Bobby Fish/Dalton Castle match could be really fun, so I am looking forward to that.
2) Gedo’s confused look at Dalton Castle’s antics are hilarious and the crowd loves it. Then Gedo attacks the Boys to get all sorts of heel heat. That’s quality work, right there.
3) Nigel McGuinness continues to highlight Dalton Castle’s amateur background, which is a nice contrast to his over the top mannerisms. After Gedo gets a little bit of offense, Castle picks up the win with Bangarang.
4) We go through a recap of the BJ Whitmer/Steve Corino feud and it makes it seem like it has only been going on for a couple months. In reality, we know this feud has been going on since the beginning of time and will never end, no matter what ROH tries to sell us about a Match Without Honor. This feud is the eternal damnation of our souls, which will are forced to endure so we may suffer for our sins.
5) Next up is Will Ferrara versus Tomohiro Ishii. I do not think this will end well. Kevin Kelly makes a point that Ferrara trained with Tazz early in his career. At that point, you would think that Kelly would make the obvious comparison between Ishii and Tazz, but instead he talks about some of Tazz’s mean streak runs through Ferrara? Um, wha? That is not where I would have expected the conversation to go with a mention of Tazz.
6) The first several minutes of this match have Ferrara in control which stretches the suspension of disbelief a little too far. Eventually Ishii has enough, clothesline Ferrara a few times and then drops him with the brainbuster. I would chalk that up as a bit of a waste of Ishii.
7) Weird little promo by the Briscoes to hype today’s main event. They will be teaming with Jay Lethal and Roderick Strong to take on the Bullet Club (Young Bucks and the Guerillas of Destiny). The promo ends with Jay Briscoe calling himself and Mark the “Monkeys of Sandy Fork” and they are “bad ass monkeys that are going to eat your face off.” That was some 80’s style substance-fueled crazy right there. Heck, I’d be afraid if someone says they are going to eat my face off. I mean, it’s not Charlie Day level of brillance, but it’s close.
8) Oh dear Lord… Here comes Steve Corino to the ring to talk even more about this flaming pile of garbage storyline. Corino gives an impassioned promo, but one line sticks out. He said, “BJ Whitmer, I’m already in a special place in hell, and there is no turning back. But I’m going to take you with me.” He was speaking to BJ Whitmer, but deep down, we all know he was speaking to everyone watching.
9) Main event time. Instead of the Young Bucks, we get Mark Jackson and Kenny Omega along with the Guerillas of Destiny on one side. Jay Lethal gets the last entrance as he should, being the ROH champion. Cool moment early on when Omega tags in wanting to go after Strong, but Jay Lethal tags in and is waiting for him. Omega then tagged right back out. Nice tease for a future challenge perhaps? In fact, we do get a little of Lethal versus Omega soon after, and the crowd eats it up.
10) I think it should be noted that the Briscoes are wearing black pants today instead of their normal camouflage. Is that because the Guerillas of Destiny are wearing camo? Did they flip a coin backstage to decide who would not be visible from the waist down? Might as well sub-tweet a bit.
10A) Very fast paced match with everyone flying around and hitting cool looking spots. The end comes when Jay Lethal sacrifices himself to allow Jay Briscoe to hit the Jay Driller on Tanga Roa. Fun and exciting match.
10B) It is hard to stand out sometimes in matches like this, but a couple people did and it is no surprise who they are. Tama Tonga again impressed me with his speed and crispness in the ring. This time, he moved back and forth past the very quick Mark Briscoe twice and Briscoe couldn’t catch up to him. Then he hit a Roll the Dice/CrossRhodes move which looked harsh. I really need to try to watch more of Tonga. The other standout in this match was Jay Lethal, especially when he and Kenny Omega were squaring off. Very fast pace, good strategies, better reversals, hard hitting, and super fun. My hope is ROH keeps the belt on Lethal and build up to a Lethal/Omega blowout.
And that’s all for another week of Ring of Honor television. They did an okay job at hyping Best in the World, but I actually thought they did better at it last week. Maybe part of that is because I just don’t care about BJ Whitmer and Steve Corino fighting. But Ring of Honor did something at the end of this week’s program which was so awesome, I am going to add another thought.
11) The last couple minutes of TV time were taken up by promos being given by all the participants in the title matches at Best in the World. The promos were edited to bounce back and forth between competitors, and escalated in emotional charge as they went. First Dalton Castle and Bobby Fish talked up the ROH TV title. Then The Addiction complained about no respect while the Motor City Machineguns stated their claim of being the best. Finally, Jay Briscoe and Jay Lethal fired back and forth in their respective promos, alternating between begrudging respect for each other, healthy competition, dislike, and fire displayed to be the best. This two minutes or so hyped the PPV so darn well, every other promotion should take a look at it. Seriously, I am psyched about Best in the World now. Why Ring of Honor couldn’t promote Global Wars like this still shocks me, but they have done a very, very good job in trying to get fans to order this event.
Tags: bullet club, Dalton Castle, Gedo, Guerilla's of destiny, Jay Briscoe, Jay Lethal, Kenny Omega, Roderick Strong, Tomohiro Ishii