Ring of Honor RADICAN'S ROH TV REPORT 10/1 - Bennet's in-ring debut on Sinclair, ROH TV Champion El Generico vs. Jay Lethal
Oct 3, 2011 - 3:05:49 PM
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RADICAN’S ROH TV REPORT
AIRED OCT. 1, 2011
TAPED IN CHICAGO, ILL.
The show kicked off with highlights from Haas & Benjamin successfully defending the tag titles against Castagnoli & Hero.
Kevin Kelly introduced the show. A graphic of Kevin Kelly and Nigel McGuinness was shown. Kelly then previewed the main event featuring ROH TV Champion El Generico defending against Jay Lethal.
Jim Cornette introduced Haas & Benjamin for an in-ring interview. Cornette brought up the Briscoes as being the top challengers to Haas & Benjamin. Benjamin said they were no fluke and ran down a list of teams they’ve beaten. The audio wasn’t very good on the in-ring mic. Benjamin brought up the beating given to them by the Briscoes at “Best in the World.” Cornette said the Briscoes were fined by $5,000. Benjamin said, “Big deal.” Cornette told Haas the Briscoes refused to wrestler them unless the titles were on the line. Haas offered to defend the tag titles right now. Cornette said he wasn’t going to reward the Briscoes with a title shot. The crowd booed. Haas told Cornette they wanted the Briscoes one way or another. Nigel said this was a dilemma.
Radican’s thoughts: It was hard to hear Haas and Benjamin, but this wasn’t a bad start to launching a feud between Haas & Benjamin (WGTT) vs. The Briscoes.
An ad hyping live events in Sinclair markets aired with the Briscoes. The Briscoes said they wanted the tag titles. This was the same promo that aired last week, I believe.
Kelly introduced a “Focus on Mike Bennett” segment. Cornette said Bennett had been courted by major wrestling companies. Bennett was shown with Brutal Bob. Bennett said he was destined to be the next action star. He mentioned being better than the Rock. Bennett teased being headed to the movie screens. Cornette ran down Brutal Bob on commentary. Bennett said Bob had a rough life in Boston. Bennett said Bob trained him and would wake him up every morning and whoop his ass. Cornette called Bennett the best wrestler on the planet. Bennett said he came to ROH to prove himself. Cornette said Bennett was great, but he has an ego. Cornette said Bennett would be a future champion in ROH.
Radican’s thoughts: I don’t think Bennett is someone ready for this kind of a push this early in his career. He hasn’t proven that he can wrestle the ROH style yet. He’s not exciting in the ring and he hasn’t shown the ability to connect with the existing fan base. It will be interesting to see how far his push goes in the company.
Kelly and McGuinness hyped Bennett’s match coming up after the commercial break.
An ad aired for ROHWrestling.com
Jimmy Jacobs came to the ring accompanied by Steve Corino. McGuinness said they both had addiction issues in the past, but were on the road to recovery together. Kelly said Bennett was bound to be one of the hottest stars in wrestling and had visions of success beyond the ring. I can’t believe they’re comparing him to Rock. Kelly said Bennett was egotistical and self-absorbed.
They showed the tale of the tape graphic before the match began.
1 - - MIKE BENNETT (w/Brutal Bob) vs. JIMMY JACOBS (w/Steve Corino)
Jacobs offered a handshake and Bennett gave him a very loose handshake. Bennett dared Jacobs to hit him. Bennett gave Jacobs the worst pie-face in the history of wrestling. Bennett tried to pie-face Jacobs again. The crowd chanted “you can’t wrestle” at Bennett. Jacobs hit Bennett, but Bennett fired back and put the boots to Jacobs in the corner. Jacobs fired back and put the boots to Bennett in the corner. Bennett fired back and hit a back breaker on Jacobs. They introduced the “tweet of the week.” What a horrible thing to include on television. I won’t even repeat what the tweet was.
Bennett sent Jacobs to the outside. The crowd noise sounds distant again, as it did last week. Bennett hit another back breaker inside the ring before slamming Jacobs. McGuinness called Bennett a natural in the ring and compared him to Kurt Angle. Oh, brother. Jacobs fired back and hit a neck breaker. McGuinness talked about Jacobs’s signature moves. Jacobs went to the second rope and jumped over Bennett. Bennett caught him off the ropes with a spinebuster, but Jacobs kicked out. Jacobs ducked under Bennett and caught him with a springboard ace crusher for a nearfall. Jacobs went for a senton off the top, but Bennett got his knees up. Bennett hit the box office smash for the pin.
Winner: Mike Bennett. I just don’t see it with Bennett. This was a fine match for television, but the praise given to him by the announcers was above and beyond what he showed in the ring from a charisma and in-ring ability standpoint. Comparing Bennett to Rock and Angle is really going have a lot of eyes rolling across the Sinclair markets.
A replay of Bennett’s finish played after the match. Bennett taunted Jacobs after the match and offered a handshake. Bennett shook hands with Jacobs before rubbing Corino’s hair.
Another ad for ROHWrestling.com aired hyping the “Best in the World” iPPV release.
Nigel McGuinness was in the ring. He asked a fan who he thought was going to win between Jay Lethal and El Generico. The fan said Generico would win. These segments are a waste of time.
Kevin Kelly introduced “Inside ROH.” Kelly said many people wanted to know how Eddie Edwards got the nickname “Die Hard.” Edwards said his moniker came from his dedication to the sport. They showed highlights from an Edwards match in 2009 where he broke his elbow. Interestingly enough they managed not to show Kevin Steen, who was his opponent. They showed highlights of Edwards wrestling in a Ladder War the next night against the Briscoes. Edwards said after the match, he had a plate put in his arm. Edwards said the doctors told him it would take 6 months to recover. Edwards said he came back to the ring 9 weeks later. Edwards said he started hearing the “Die Hard” chants after coming back. Edwards said it built up his character. They showed a shot of Edwards holding the ROH World Title. Kelly said Edwards is a former ROH World Champion.
Kelly talked about the upcoming ROH World Champion Davey Richards vs. Roderick Strong match next week. Richards said he doesn’t like Strong. Richards talked about Strong’s manager, Truth Martini. Richards said Martini gave Strong confidence that he didn’t have before. Richards said Strong was going to get hurt when he got in the ring with him.
Strong was shown and he said he’s smartass. Strong said he parties and has women. He then said Richards was jealous of him. Strong said Richards wants to kick his ass, but he can’t. Strong said he’s going to d--- Richards out of the World Title. They bleeped Strong with a ring bell. Oh, brother.
Jay Lethal came out for his match against TV Champion El Generico. Kelly said the hottest free agent in wrestling had landed in ROH. El Generico then came out to a nice pop.
Bobby Cruise did the formal introductions for the main event.
An ad aired hyping Haas & Benjamin coming to a town near you. They said there’s no way anyone would take the titles from them.
The “tale of the tape” was shown.
2 - - EL GENERICO vs. JAY LETHAL – ROH TV Title match
The crowd was hot for the start of this match. The announcers said Generico doesn’t speak much English. In fact, they don’t hear him speak much at all. Generico took down Lethal with a headscissors early and the crowd applauded. Lethal fired back and took down Generico with a headscissors and they came to a stalemate. Lethal offered a handshake and helped Generico to his feet. Lethal took control and hit a hip toss into a dropkick for a 2 count. Lethal took Generico down and locked him in a nasty looking submission. Lethal’s shoulders were clearly on the ground while holding the submission, but the ref didn’t count it. Lethal let go of the hold and covered Generico for a 2 count. The crowd applauded as Lethal grabbed a front face lock on Generico. Generico fought back with some punches, but Lethal took him down with a dropkick.
Both men traded blows in the middle of the ring. Generico hit a series of arm drags that sent Lethal to the outside. The crowd went nuts as Generico set up a dive. Generico got a running start and hit a big flip dive to the outside to wipe out Lethal before a commercial break.
Back from commercial, Lethal was back in control. They went to a double box with highlights of the action from the break. The boxes should have been bigger in the replay graphic. Lethal caught Generico with a sunset flip into a pin for a 2 count. Generico fired right back on Lethal and took control as the crowd applauded. Lethal fired back with a handspring elbow that left both men down on the mat. Both men traded punches again in the middle of the ring. Lethal drove Generico into the corner to break a waist lock. Lethal shoved Generico off and hit a missile dropkick for a 2 count. Cruise announced there were three minutes left in the time limit. A clock was shown on the screen with the time remaining in the match. Lethal hit a neck breaker variation, but Generico kicked out at 2 with two minutes left in the match.
McGuinness said this is the time you hate when you’re a wrestler. He said you’ve got to suck it up and get it done. Lethal set up for a powerbomb, but Generico countered it into a tornado DDT for a nearfall with close to one minute remaining in the match. Generico fired up as the crowd chanted “ole,ole” for him. Generico hit a blue thunder powerbomb for another nearfall and the crowd groaned. Lethal blocked a yokuza kicked and got a rollup for a nearfall with 15 seconds left. Both men exchanged counters in the middle of the ring as the time limit expired.
The crowd chanted for five more minutes. Cruise announced the match as a time limit draw. Generico tried to talk to the ref about getting more time. Jim Cornette came out. He said they have three minutes left in TV time. Cornette asked if they wanted it and both men agreed. Lethal and Generico exchanged blows as the fans went nuts. Lethal hit a big clothesline in the corner, but Generico caught him with a yokuza kick and half-nelson suplex for a nearfall and the crowd went nuts. Generico set up for the top rope brainbuster, but Lethal countered it into a suplex. Lethal went up top and went for an elbow, but Generico got out of the way. Generico set up for the top rope brainbuster, but Lethal pushed him off and hit a top rope elbow. The crowd counted along with the ref, but Generico kicked out at the last second. Generico caught Lethal with a suplex into the corner. Generico went for a yokuza kick in the corner, but Lethal caught him with a superkick. Lethal then hit the Lethal injection for the win.
Winner: Jay Lethal to capture the ROH TV title. This was a really good TV match. It started a little slow, but the last five minutes and the overtime were excellent. The crowd was really into the match and it left a lasting impression of what a good ROH match can bring to the table for new fans watching in Sinclair markets. ROH would be wise not to do the extra time gimmick too often, as it was just used at the “Death Before Dishonor IX” iPPV recently in the Strong vs. Edwards match. To be fair, that iPPV has been totally ignored on TV so far.
Kevin Kelly asked if lightning strike twice when Richards defends the ROH World title against Strong next week on TV to close the show.
Overall score: (6.0) Once again the show was a mixed bag. The tweet of the week and asks a fan segments have to go. They come across as low-rent, especially the tweet that was showcased this week. Asking a random fan who they think is going to win a match doesn’t get anything over on the show. The ring bell sound effect used to bleep Strong during his interview segment was also terribly low rent and a real turnoff.
The Mike Bennett segment was unreal in many ways. The idea is to put him over as a future movie star. Cornette, Kelly, and McGuinness all put him over as a huge deal. They said Bennett had been courted by other wrestling companies. Bennett was compared to the Rock in the ring and as an actor. McGuinness later compared Bennett to Kurt Angle as well. I don’t know if this is designed to get under the skin of ROH’s existing fan base that rejected his push before ROH got on Sinclair TV. It’s crazy to think Bennett could carry a main event or hold a title in ROH, but Bennett was put over bigger than anyone I’ve seen in the company in a long time.
The segment featuring Eddie Edwards was well-done. He came across like someone important and it was a good idea to use old footage to show how tough Edwards is and how he got the “Die Hard” moniker. It wasn’t a good idea to for Edwards to reference his character during his interview segment. If ROH is going to present itself as a true
I also liked the Richards and Strong interview segments to set up Richards defending the ROH World title against Strong next week. They gave fans a reason to tune in next week and set up Strong’s new arrogant heel personality well.
The Lethal-Generico match was really good. It’s too bad that Generico was an afterthought in all of this because he’s one of ROH’s most dynamic performers in the ring. Generico’s personality can reach a lot of demographics for ROH and the passions the fans have for him showed during this match. Generico didn’t have a long reign with the ROH TV Title, but he was certainly impressive here. I’m hoping he’s on Sinclair TV going forward, as he missed the most recent set of tapings this past weekend.
I can’t help but wonder if the company is alienating new fans with Bennett segment going forward. It’s going to be interesting to see where this goes.
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