SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
“The Villain” Marty Scurll: I know Marty Scurll won the ROH TV Title a few months ago, but to some ROH viewers in the U.S., Scurll is a relatively new face to wrestling fans. I like the fact that they put Scurll in the ring to face Johnathan Gresham. Gresham is a solid and talented wrestler. Putting Scurll in the ring against Gresham and having Scurll win helps build him as your ROH TV Champion. As far as the match goes, it was not the best I have witnessed from these two supremely talented wrestlers. More on that later from this week’s episode.
Jay Lethal and Jay Briscoe: We got a back and forth promo from Jay Lethal and Jay Briscoe that is spliced together nicely. Lethal addresses his quest to become a 2-time ROH World Champion. He then talks about how he’s now at round 2 where he is set to face Jay Briscoe. We then kick it over to Jay Briscoe where Briscoe responds. Briscoe questions Lethal’s credentials of being in the Decade of Excellence tournament as he tells Lethal that 10 years ago that he (Briscoe) was “blowing the roof off this sum b*tch in ROH while you (Lethal) was running around pretending to be the Macho Man.” It then goes back to Lethal where Lethal explains that he loves being in the ring with Jay Briscoe because it brings out the best of him. This back and forth splicing of promos ends with Briscoe declaring that he will not allow Lethal to defeat him for a third time. I have said this in previous articles but I think having these two meet at this point is great. I felt like the Lethal and Briscoe feud was cut a little short when Lethal initially defeated Briscoe for the title. I would’ve loved to have seen it develop further. This could be the rekindling of a feud of these two that would be great for ROH. Even if it is not the rekindle of a feud, it still will be a great semi-final/second round match in the Decade of Excellence tournament.
Christopher Daniels vs. Chris Sabin: I have said it numerous times but it bears repeating, Christopher Daniels is one of the most underrated talents in wrestling over the last 20 years. I have talked about how much it means if he were to win this tournament and get his shot at the ROH World Title. Daniels and Sabin put on a nice match. Nothing spectacular but still solid. It had a nice mix of outside the ring work and inside. In the end, Daniels hits his moonsault off the top rope and gets the victory on Chris Sabin which advances Christopher Daniels to the finals of the Decade of Excellence tournament. Daniels will face the winner of Jay Lethal and Jay Briscoe. I am looking forward to seeing that match no matter who Daniels faces in the finals.
Adam Cole and Kyle O’Reilly Clips from WK11: The clips shown during the hour of ROH TV from WK11 with Cole and O’Reilly tied nicely into the end of the show where Kevin Kelly gives us something to look forward to next week. Kelly lets us know that Cole and the Bullet Club will be on TV next week. What they will say or do is not known but it’s a teaser which is always good.
“The Willian” Marty Scurll vs. Johnathan Gresham: Look, I know what most people will say when they read this. They may say, “what was wrong with the match?” This was one of those matches where I feel I am spoiled. It was the opening match of the show so you do not expect them to tear the building down but it was one of those matches where I felt something was missing. What was missing you may asked? I don’t know but I just felt like these two guys are capable of so much more. As I say this, I do realize I do not know what match this was on the card during the taping and that could explain the basic match we saw. Again, nothing disrespectful to the talent here. These guys are two solid wrestlers and the match did serve its purpose of getting Scurll a win as your ROH TV Champion.
Dragon Lee vs. Will Ospreay vs. Kushida: I know this is not a big deal but with Kushida being the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion is the title on the line in this 3-way match? It’s never mentioned at the beginning of the match. As for the match, the crowd is probably into this match more than any other match throughout the hour of ROH TV. There’s plenty of high spots and flips that get the ROH crowd up on their feet. This match is one of those matches where if you love flips and high flying moves, you will love this. At one point Dragon Lee hits Kushida with a dead weight German Suplex that was impressive. And of course, Ospreay’s acrobatics and incredible athleticism is incredible. I respect the acrobatics of all three of these guys but it’s not the type of match I enjoy. We’re flipping and flying throughout the match but I have no emotional investment in what I am watching. Kushida gets the win when he hits Ospreay with a Fisherman’s DDT. Is this a good match? Heck yes! What these three guys did in this ring was outstanding. Did we get anything other than an “Oh Ah” factor, for me that answer is no.
I gave this episode a solid B rating. I really enjoyed the Jay Lethal and Jay Briscoe promo presentation. We advanced the Decade of Excellence tournament with Christopher Daniels moving to the finals. Even the misses weren’t necessarily bad things for the show. If anything, the 3-way match with Lee, Ospreay, and Kushida did give the show variety. Again, a solid B rated show from ROH TV this week.
(Mike Mills is the new PWTorch.com ROH TV Hits and Misses Specialist, providing his point of view on ROH TV weekly. You can follow Mike at @BTT_Podcast and @Mike504Saints on Twitter and e-mail him at BookingTheTerritory@gmail.com.)