Thought Zero – We’re back with another week of Ring of Honor television. Unfortunately, it will be one of the last ones commentated by Kevin Kelly. News came down this week that Mr. Kelly has decided to move on from Ring of Honor and place his focus elsewhere. Frankly, this is a big loss for ROH in my opinion. In the past couple months, Ring of Honor has now lost three members of their announce team – Steve Corino, Nigel McGuinness, and now Kevin Kelly. If you think good announcing with a respected voice doesn’t affect the programming, look no further than early Michael Cole or late Tony Schiavone. It is still unknown who will take over the booth, but hopefully ROH has someone ready to go.
1) We start with the odd little Godfather-esque Cody Rhodes promo before the opening theme. The American Nightmare is a good enough nickname to go with, and it makes sense for his character, but for someone who has tried hard to establish himself as his own performer, Cody sure loves invoking his dad every chance he gets.
2) The first wrestler with an entrance is Hangman Page. He is facing someone named Mike Sells. Let’s see if he lives up to his name and makes Page look strong. Hey, Mark Briscoe is on color commentary today for the full hour. Love it. I’ve said it before, but Mark Briscoe is wonderful on the mic and never fails to make me laugh when he’s on commentary.
3) Just like that, Page gets the victory. He looked completely dominant in this squash, which is exactly what Page needs to push him further and further. Post-match, and prior to Page hanging Sells with his bullrope, The Young Bucks, Adam Cole, and Cody Rhodes all hit the ring for a talk segment. Cody quickly gets the crowd to boo him with some effective mic work. Rhodes then calls out Jay Lethal. Lethal attacks Rhodes and the Bullet Club attacks. Lethal is saved by the odd grouping of Bobby Fish, Jay White, Alex Shelley, and Lio Rush. And a commercial break interrupts the chaos.
4) What was billed as the main event gets started right away with Jay lethal and Bobby Fish versus Cody Rhodes and Adam Cole. It feels weird seeing Bobby Fish teaming with someone other than Kyle O’Reilly, but what are you going to do? Such is professional wrestling. Fish makes a nice move as he chases Cole around the ring – knowing Cody was lying in wait around one of the ringposts, Fish slid into the ring and then back out the perpendicular side to continue chasing Cole. I love it when pro wrestlers show awareness like that. It hurts credibility when a wrestler falls for the same tired trick time and again. Another case in point, Seth Rollins ignoring Triple H’s distraction music during his match with Sami Zayn.
5) Bobby Fish is playing soon-to-be WWE Hall of Famer Ricky Morton. Very effectively, I might add. Hot tag to Lethal who goes to town on the Bullet Club members. Lethal even hits a very nice Lethal Injection on Adam Cole, but Rhodes is the legal man. Now all four men are in and are acting like this match has been going on for 45 minutes instead of 15. Back from break and everyone is hitting big moves. Adam Cole takes way too love to trash talk Bobby Fish and gets pulled into a kneebar. Cole taps out and the good guys win.
6) They’ve changed the main event to The Rebellion versus Dalton Castle and the Boys. Castle and the Boys are very excited about this. Kevin Kelly takes a moment to hype next week’s main event – Jay Briscoe versus Christopher Daniels. Mark Briscoe talks about how his brother is ready and he has all the confidence in the world in him. They then cut to Frankie Kazarian talking about how this tournament is Daniels’ last chance. Kazarian says this is a must-win for Daniels, a back-against-the-wall mentality. They sure are pushing this as a final rodeo for the fallen angel.
7) Back from break and Mark Briscoe tells Kevin Kelly that he forgot to mention he has a match right now. So Mark Briscoe starts throwing chairs and climbs into the ring to face his opponent Sal Rinauro. Rinauro appears to be one weird dude doing an even more lecherous Disco Inferno-ish gimmick. Kevin Kelly mentions that Rinauro is a former ROH tag team champion. Definitely must have been before I started watching ROH. It also shows that ROH has not always had the best tag teams. Rinauro shows a little bit of offense, including a nice Michinoku Driver, but for the most part it is a Briscoe squash match. Two squash matches already in this show? Not a good ratio there, guys.
8) Now we have a little personal sit-down with Bobby Fish. Fish mentions how he and O’Reilly were dominant as reDRagon and their record speaks for itself. He then says that he and Kyle both decided to do something different. Fish went on to choke out Ishii for the ROH TV title, and O’Reilly got to hold the world belt for a coffee break and then go away. (Okay, so he didn’t say that last part, but it doesn’t make it less true.)
9) Kevin Kelly now has Silas Young and the Beer City Bruiser at the commentary desk with him. I could see where that might cause someone to quit the company. It’s time for the newly-named main event between The Rebellion and Dalton Castle with the Boys. I would be super surprised if Vince McMahon didn’t try to sign Castle just for the sheer spectacle of it. I’d love to see what Castle could do on a big stage. However, since he is here, let’s get a Castle challenge for the ROH TV title held by Marty Scurll. I would love to see that match.
10) Colt Cabana makes his way out to the ring with a six-pack of beer for the Bruiser while trying to get into the head of Dalton Castle. After the break, Cabana has taken over for Bruiser at the commentary desk while Bruiser sits off in the corner to drink his beer. Ignoring the match, Silas sort of goads Cabana into a 2-on-1 handicap match against the boys at a future date. It would be funny is Silas was trolling Cabana and setting him up. This match is basically a 3-on-1 with Castle doing the best he can. Eventually, The Rebellion overwhelm one of the boys and are set up for a future 6-man title opportunity. The Kingdom makes their way out to the ramp to slow clap for the winners. And we’re out…
Today’s scorecard shows one very good match, one decent match, and two squashes. You’re better than that, ROH. But I am looking forward to the Daniels versus Briscoe match next week, so there is that. Until next week…
Tags: Adam Cole, Beer City Bruiser, Bobby Fish, bullet club, Cody Rhodes, colt cabana, Dalton Castle, Frankie Kazarian, Hangman Page, Jay Briscoe, Jay Lethal, kevin kelly, Mark Briscoe, silas young, The Rebellion