SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
Wake the pets and call the neighbors. It’s time for our semi-monthly ROH pay-per-view preview column!
DISCLAIMER: Projections are made by myself and for myself with absolutely no assistance from Joe Koff, Nigel McGuinness or The Man With The Lizard Face. Projections are not predictions, because this is the column where everything’s made up and the points don’t matter. This preview has been sealed in a mayonnaise jar on Funk & Wagnall’s porch since noon today. Closed captioning is provided by America Online. Some of our departing contestants will receive a supply of Winter Garden neighborhood vegetables. Winter Garden brings you neighborhood vegetables from all across America. Neighborhood vegetables frozen garden fresh. That’s Winter Garden. Remember, this is only an exhibition. This is not a competition. Please, please, no wagering. This lineup is based on the best available information as of this writing. These predictions are based on what the columnist would do if he had creative control over ROH, unless a better one-liner comes along.
Two things have stood out in the build for this show. First, the ROH fanbase seems more interested in who the company can grab from a potential TNA fire sale than in the main storylines for All-Star Extravaganza. Second, Christopher Daniels cut a hell of a promo on last weekend’s Ring of Honor television show to promote tonight’s ladder match.
Before we look at tonight’s show, let’s roll right into this month’s Wrestling History Lesson. Twenty years ago, on September 14, 1996, Extreme Championship Wrestling held its semi-monthly show at the ECW Arena in South Philadelphia. The show kicked off with The Gangstas defending the ECW World Tag Team Titles against the Full-Blooded Italians of J.T. Smith and Salvatore Bellomo. Joey Styles had the call.
And, as your free gift for viewing this column, let’s take you back to September 15, 2006 for ROH’s “Glory By Honor V – Part 1” show from East Windsor, Connecticut. This match is part of the ROH Video Wire and therefore has no announcers, but it is Chris Hero & Claudio Castagnoli teaming up against The Ring Crew Express. Enjoy.
Some of you may be wondering how this month’s “RoH Reloaded” tour went. Well, we have Women of Honor action for you from two weeks ago in Pittsburgh. Let’s see what happens when Kelly Klein, Britt Baker & Veda Scott team up to fight Faye Jackson, Mandy Leon & “Crazy” Mary Dobson. Ian Riccaboni & Taeler Hendrix have the call.
On with the projections!
EVIL vs. Will Ferrara vs. Silas Young: I know that Silas Young won the last Honor Rumble to earn a shot at the ROH World Title next month in Florida, and I know that his opponents…didn’t. Projection? The Last Real Man hits Ferrara with Misery to grab a sweet pre-show victory.
All Night Xpress vs. Colt Cabana & Dalton Castle vs. Shane Taylor & Keith Lee vs. War Machine (Four Corner Survival):: The winners of this match are supposed to receive a shot at the ROH World Tag Team Titles in the near future. Usually, when Ring of Honor does a match like this, you look for the team who hasn’t had a title shot yet. Projection? The Cabana-Castle duo entangle their opponents with comedy, before pinning Keith Lee with a Cabanaramabangarang combo.
ACH, Jay White & Kushida vs. Jay Briscoe, Mark Briscoe & Toru Yano (ROH Six Man Tag Team Tournament): It’s the six-man tag team tournament, and both teams are pretty over, so who the heck knows? Projection? It’s hard to go wrong by picking the Briscoes, so let’s say Mark Briscoe pins ACH with the Froggy Bow.
Kyle O’Reilly vs. “Hangman” Adam Page: You never want to guess who the next Ring of Honor World Champion will be, but Kyle O’Reilly’s work has been great, and he’s certainly over enough to headline. Plus, he has a ready-made feud with Adam Cole, which is nice. Projection? Time to make somebody tap. O’Reilly wins by submission with the anklelock.
Dragon Lee vs. Kamaitachi: I’m not sure, but I think more people will be watching this show to see Dragon Lee than to see Kamaitachi. Projection? Dragon Lee wins with the Phoenix Plex. Go, Dragon Lee!
Jay Lethal vs. Tetsuya Naito: You’d think this would be an opportunity for the former champion to bounce back after his loss at Death Before Dishonor last month. Maybe it would be somewhere else, but this is Ring of Honor. Projection? The IWGP Intercontinental Champion looks strong, beating the former Black Machismo with the Destino.
Bobby Fish vs. Donovan Dijak (ROH Television Title): We’re five months in to Fish’s run with the television title, and this is about the point where the title usually changes hands. But tonight is already going to be a lean night for the babyfaces. Let’s not make it any worse. Projection I think we’re due for Dijak to get locked in the Fish Hook Deluxe, and the Infamous One pulls out another victory.
Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin (ROH World Title): Seriously? After all the trouble Ring of Honor went through two years ago, you think Michael Elgin will get the title now that he DOESN’T work for Ring of Honor? Oh, man. Projection? Maybe the champ gets to bust the Panama Sunrise on Elgin. No, scrap that. But Cole definitely wins, while Steve Corino goes nuts at the commentary table.
The Addiction vs. Motor City Machine Guns vs. Young Bucks (ROH World Tag Team Titles – Ladder War): It seems like a shame to change the titles after that impressive Christopher Daniels promo, until he remember that the Fallen Angel is doing what he’s supposed to do. It would also be great to see Shelley and Sabin back on top for a major promotion. I suspect the Powers That Be have other plans. Projection? The entire Bullet Club interferes, allowing Matt & Nick to climb the ladders and capture the championships. The superkick party gets underway, until Kyle O’Reilly and The Briscoes lead a veritable army out from backstage to put a stop to it.
Aftermath: Final Battle is December 2nd. I can’t really see that far ahead. By that point, the main event might be Adam Cole vs. Ethan Carter III. As for tomorrow in Lowell, we’ll take The Addiction over the Briscoes, and Shelley & Sabin for the win over Naito & Evil.
Pat McNeill of Greenville, South Carolina has been a Torch columnist since February 2001. He’d take the Stanford Cardinal to defeat the Washington Huskies in tonight’s big college football game. You know, if gambling were legal.