SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
This week’s ROH TV episode features The Briscoes facing All Night Express in a big tag team main event, plus Mike Metzger reviews the undercard and overall state of the ROH product…
ROH TV Report
Aired November 8, 2015 in syndication
To air November 11, 2015 on Dest. America
Taped 10/23 in Kalamazoo, Mich.
Report by Mike Metzger (@md0uble), PWTorch Contributor
The ROH TV opening aired.
Ringside: Kevin Kelly & ROH matchmaker Nigel McGuinness welcomed viewers to the show. Tonight, it will be an All-Star Extravaganza rematch between the Briscoes and the All-Night Express!
Cedric Alexander and Veda Scott were out first. Kevin Kelly spoke of Veda “having her eye on Nigel McGuinness,” referencing her recent threat to bring legal action against ROH due to “unsafe working conditions.” A.C.H. was out next, as clips aired from the first four matches between him and Matt Sydal. Kelly hyped that the final match of their best-of-five series would be taking place this coming Friday at Survival of the Fittest.
1 – CEDRIC ALEXANDER (w/Veda Scott) vs. A.C.H.
A.C.H. had a big smile on his face as he extended his hand for the Code of Honor. Cedric casually walked over and kicked his hands away. He went out for a quick strategy session with Veda, and then re-entered to start the match. Both men tied up in the center and broke into a chain wrestling sequence. Cedric got to the ropes and Veda loudly demanded that the ref break the hold. They tied up again and then traded arm drags. The jockeyed for position until A.C.H. hit a beautiful dropkick, which was good for a one count!
A.C.H. hit a nice snap suplex out of the corner, but Cedric kicked out of another pin attempt. A.C.H. missed an enziguri and then Cedric threw him down on the mat. Cedric immediately followed up by pounding A.C.H. on the mat. He methodically chopped A.C.H. a couple times, but A.C.H. came back with a kick to the head that sent Cedric to the floor! A.C.H. went for a running punt kick on the apron, but Veda got in the way. A.C.H. exchanged words with her, but the distraction allowed Cedric to hit an STO on the edge of the ring frame! The show then went to its first break at the 4:11 mark of the match.
Back at 6:41, both men were trading blows in the center. Cedric got the upper hand and then hit a two consecutive suplexes. He then stole a page from Jay Lethal’s book and refused to do a third. Instead, Cedric charged at A.C.H., but it was reversed into an STO in the corner! A.C.H. followed up with a series of chops and then a nice spinning kick. He turned Cedric inside-out with a clothesline that sent his opponent to the floor.
A.C.H. went for a baseball slide to the outside, but Cedric got out of the way. Veda distracted him and Cedric went for a dive, but A.C.H. side-stepped it, which put Veda directly in the way! Cedric was able to dodge his manager, but ended up putting himself in perfect position for an Air Jordan flip dive from A.C.H.! Back in the ring, A.C.H. ignored a distraction from Veda and hit a brutal Germansduplex into a bridge, but Cedric kicked out at two!
A.C.H. went for Get Over Here off the second rope, but Cedric caught him and reversed into an ugly-looking Michinoku Driver. Cedric held on for the cover, but A.C.H. kicked out at two! Both men got to their feet. Cedric went for the 540 Kick, but A.C.H. reversed with a superkick! Impressive sequence, but A.C.H.’s kick missed the mark. Both men were down until a count of eight. They jockeyed for position until Cedric connected with a 540 Kick. Cedric quickly followed up with a running dropkick in the corner. He slapped Veda five and went for a springboard move, but slipped off the top rope! A.C.H. hit a superkick and then a brainbuster. He went up top and hit the Midnight Star for the victory!
WINNER: A.C.H. via pinfall in 12:43.
After the match, Kevin Kelly asked A.C.H. what the fans should expect from him in Match 5 against Matt Sydal. A.C.H. said he was going to walk in with the same mentality he walked in with when he fought A.J. Styles and Samoa Joe. Only this time, he would be the one walking out with his hand raised.
ANALYSIS: Good match. These guys came up with some impressive spots, despite the execution being a tad off on a couple of the big reversals. Still, an efficient use of both wrestlers. A.C.H. got a big win and some mic time leading up to his finale against Sydal, while Cedric’s slip should further Veda’s case against Ring of Honor. (**1/2)
Ringside: Veda Scott was verbally berating Nigel McGuinness. Cedric was also there, pacing back-and-forth with an ice pack. They both blamed the rope for causing Cedric the match and putting him in danger. Nigel told her to calm down and that they would settle things in private. Veda would not relent, saying that Nigel did not execute his due diligence in inspecting the ring and that “this would not continue.” They finally walked off, as the next match was set to begin.
Clips aired of Prince Nana giving an envelope to Caprice Coleman on a recent episode of ROH TV. Kevin Kelly wondered what was in the envelope. Caprice entered the ring and grabbed the mic. He congratulated Ferrara for working his way up from the ROH Dojo. He mentioned that Ferrara hadn’t talked to him recently, though. He went back to congratulating, giving kudos to Ferrara for his match against KUSHIDA. Cedric said he would have liked to wrestle KUSHIDA, though. Caprice continued the passive-aggressive comments by saying that he might have taught Ferrara a lot, but he “ain’t seen everything yet.”
2 — WILL FERRARA vs. CAPRICE COLEMAN
Both men shook hands and then the bell rang. They felt each other out for the first minute, until Ferrara hit an impressive series of arm drags. Ferrara followed up with an arm lock, but Coleman quickly made it to the ropes. They tied up again and Coleman grabbed a wrist lock. Ferrara tried to get up, but ate a knee from Coleman instead.
Coleman slammed Ferrara, dropped an elbow and then hit a leg drop at a methodical pace. Ferrara fought back by dropping Coleman’s arm over his knee. Caprice reversed with an STO into the bottom turnbuckle, followed by a quick dropkick in the corner. Ferrara kicked out of the pin attempt, however. Coleman came right back with a Shining Wizard and another nearfall. Ferrara tried to fight back, but Coleman held him off with some knees. Ferrara bounced off the ropes with a dropkick and then hit a running elbow into the corner.
They jockeyed in the corner and Ferrara hit a Tornado DDT, which was good for a two count. Prince Nana was shown at ringside, as the fans cheered on Ferrara. Coleman fought back with a scissor kick. He continued his methodical pace, but Ferrara rolled him up for a quick two count. Ferrara charged at Coleman, but missed and went shoulder-first into the turnbuckle hard. It looked like Caprice was going to give Ferrara a moment to recuperate, but heel-ishly threw Ferrara shoulder-first into the corner. Coleman hit an inverted side Russian legsweep and then applied a half Camel Clutch, a new finisher he refers to as Judgment’s Seat.
WINNER: Caprice Coleman via submission in 6:01.
Both men shook hands after the match, but Kelly and McGuinness questioned Coleman’s sincerity. Ferrara began walking to the back with an icepack on his injured shoulder. Nana approached Ferrara and handed him an envelope similar to the one he gave to Coleman a few weeks ago. The announcers didn’t know what to make of it.
ANALYSIS: Okay match that got across Coleman’s new heel persona. I’d personally like to see him keep his over-the-top positive personality, just in a heel-ish way. Nana’s mysterious envelopes are mildly intriguing, but the midcard heel turns are starting to feel repetitive. (**)
Inside ROH: Adam Cole took over the segment this week and introduced viewers to “Story Time with Adam Cole, bay bay.” Cole said that Ring of Honor wanted him to comment on some things. He first addressed O’Reilly and then referenced last week’s main event in which Cole pinned O’Reilly in a three-way between the former Future Shock partners and A.J. Styles. Clips were then shown of last week’s main event.
Cole then suggested a flashback- June 2012 in New York City. Cole called it the “breakout match” between him and O’Reilly. Cole said it should really be considered <i>his</I> breakout match, as he was the one who became a real star and the ROH World Champion afterward. Cole said he would have a scar from the match for the rest of his life, but he liked that it reminded him he was better than O’Reilly every single day. Cole threw to clips of Best in the World 2012 when a much younger Cole made O’Reilly submit to a figure-four leg lock.
Cole asked the viewers if they noticed a pattern. He said that every time O’Reilly walks out a loser every time he steps in the ring with him. Cole promised that O”Reilly would never win the ROH World Title as long as he was in the company. He then took it one step further by promising to rid ROH of Kyle O’Reilly once and for all.
ANALYSIS: Strong promo work from Cole, although I thought there could have been more clips, or at least longer ones. Still, he got the point across that O’Reilly has never beaten him. This segment really helped build anticipation for their upcoming blowoff match, presumably at Final Battle. But, I still think it was a tactical error for O’Reilly to already have gotten his hands on Cole last week. This promo was good, but it could have been so much better if fans were still anticipating O’Reilly’s revenge.
Ringside: Kevin Kelly was with Prince Nana. Kelly asked about the mysterious envelope that he first gave to Caprice Coleman, and now to Will Ferrara. Nana simply called it the “edge of the enlightenment.” Nana went on to say that the envelope contained the “steps to life, the keys to making it.” Nana said there would be “big things” for Coleman and Ferrara if they followed the steps. He closed the interview by promising Kelly that he was “far from done” in ROH.
Kelly then threw to a video package that featured highlights from Briscoes-ANX at All Star Extravaganza in September. ANX won after they hit their One Night Stand finisher on Mark.
3 – THE BRISCOES (JAY & MARK BRISCOE) vs. ALL NIGHT EXPRESS (RHETT TITUS & KENNY KING)
Both teams shook hands, while the fans chanted “man up!” Mark and Kenny started the match. They wrestled on the mat for about 30 seconds until King hit some arm drags. Kevin Kelly referenced the violent history between the two teams. King tagged Titus, who came in and hit a gutwrench suplex on Mark for a nearfall. Mark fought back with a belly-to-belly suplex and then tagged his brother. Jay entered, but Titus made a blind tag to King, who came in and clotheslined Jay hard to the mat.
King worked the arm before slamming Briscoe and tagging titus. ANX hit a leg drop/splash combo, but Jay kicked out of the pin attempt. Titus applied a chin lock to Jay. He broke free and then both men traded boots. Jay tagged Mark, who was a house afire against both his opponents. He dodged a charge by Titus and then hit a flip dive onto King on the outside in one fluid motion! Back in the ring, the Briscoes double-teamed Titus, but Rhett kicked out of another pin attempt.
Mark stomped Titus in the corner and tagged his brother. Jay came in and stomped Titus some more. Jay hit Titus with a headbutt and then tagged Mark, who broke out some Red Neck Kung Fu. Titus fought out of the corner with a boot and then hit a huge tilt-a-whirl hot shot over the rope! Titus tried to make the tag, but Jay ran in illegally and broke it up. Mark got to his feet and hit a side Russian legsweep, which was good for another nearfall. Jay tagged back in and hit a dropkick, but Titus kicked out again as the show cut to a break at the 7:00 point in the match.
Back at 8:00, Jay was still in control of Titus. Mark tagged back in and chopped Titus hard. Titus rolled away from Mark, though, and was able to make the hot tag to King! Kenny hit a kick and then an exploder suplex on Mark. He went for the cover, but Mark kicked out at two. King followed right up with a clothesline in the corner. He tried to follow up with a superplex, but Jay broke it up. King fought him off and then hit a jumping enziguri to Mark on the top turnbuckle and then immediately dropkicked Jay off the apron! Titus then ran in out of nowhere and hit Mark with a top-rope facebuster! King went for the cover, but Mark kicked out at two!
ANX double-teamed Mark in the corner, but he fought back with an exploder on Titus. King ran over and hit a spin kick on Mark. Jay reappeared and hit a roaring forearm on King and then a neckbreaker on Titus. Mark snuck in with a jackknife cover, but Titus kicked out at two. The Briscoes went for the Doomsday Device, but Kenny broke it up. Titus dropkicked Mark out of the ring and then ANX went for the One Night Stand on Jay, but Mark broke it up! Jay clotheslined Titus to the outside and then hit a dive. On the other side of the ring, Mark hit a Blockbuster on King off the apron. Back in the ring, Jay hit the Jay Driller on Titus, followed by Froggy Bow from Mark for the victory!
WINNERS: The Briscoes via pinfall in 11:46.
ANALYSIS: This started out slow, but really picked up in the final three minutes. The match was fine, but I think it was hurt by ROH’s over-crowded tag team division. Here, you had two babyface teams going at it, with nothing on the line except The Briscoes needing to get a win back. (**3/4)
Next Week: The Kingdom defends the ROH Tag Team Titles against former champs The Addiction!
FINAL REAX: Okay show that mostly focused on the undercard. The biggest thing that stuck out to me was how similar a lot of the matches were. Three matches in a row started out with the same chain wrestling sequence, followed by some armdrag takedowns. I know its a common way to start a match, but perhaps ROH could have swapped in a different match in post-production.
The storylines also seemed a little repetitive, with Caprice Coleman being featured as the latest conflicted babyface. It feels like his partner Cedric Alexander just went through the same thing earlier this summer. This is the same Cedric Alexander that stole Jay Lethal’s “cut off your own trifecta at two moves to piss off the crowd” spot tonight, something Lethal came up with when he turned heel last year. For more of my thoughts on the recent ROH TV product, VIP members can check out the latest edition of Radican Wrestling Community Audio!