Wrestling Night in America Reunion: PWTorch columnist Greg Parks is joined by former PWTorch columnist Pat McNeill for a full match-by-match preview of WrestleMania 36
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Cody Promo: Cody cut a short promo at the top of the show and he eluded to what seems to be a rematch between he and Christopher Daniels on next week. This would make sense considering the way the show kicked off last week with the two of them brawling at the beginning.
Coast to Coast (Shaheem Ali & LSG) & Flip Gordon vs. Dalton Castle & The Boys: Ian Riccaboni mentioned upfront that it was a non-title match which felt weird when I heard it but more on that shortly. There’s tons of action as you would imagine in this 6-man tag match. I continue to be impressed with LSG and Shaheem Ali. They’ve grown on me as a tag team in the last few months. I’m not saying they should or will be ROH tag champs in the near future but they’re building into a good team. Flip Gordon also continues to impress with his agility and moves. Nowadays in wrestling, almost everyone is flipping and diving but Gordon has so much natural athleticism that he finds unique ways to incorporate his flips, moves, and offense into matches that are different. His leap to the top rope during the match where he then front flips to the floor and takes everyone out is just a small example of what I am talking about. There’s a good bit of back and forth offense from these 6 throughout the match. As we work towards the end of the match, Dalton Castle nails his finisher on LSG and the champs get the victory. I’m glad the champs won in their first TV match since winning the titles. I was worried that the champs would lose. Why was I worried? As the match was starting, Ian Riccaboni mentioned that the match was a non-title match. Over the last couple of years, whenever I hear “non-title” at the beginning of a match, I always get worried because some companies have conditioned us into believing that means the champ(s) will lose. Thankfully there was nothing to worry about as the new 6-man champs win the match even though it was not for the 6-man titles.
Recap of Jay Lethal vs. Silas Young at Best in the World: This segment showed some incredible highlights from the match with Lethal and Young along with Beer City Bruiser. As most know, Lethal defeated Young at Best in the World. But in defeat, Young really turned it up a notch at the end of the match when he planted Lethal on Bruiser’s beer keg. Lethal also was splashed in the corner with his stomach facing the beer keg and Bruiser splashing him with Lethal in between Bruiser and the keg. And finally, Bruiser hits a splash off the top rope to the floor where Lethal was destroyed as he was laid across a table. The crowd chanted “You just killed him.” After the recap, they show Young outside of the hospital where Lethal was taken and Young is gloating how Lethal may have won the battle but Young is leading in the war between the two. It appears nothing has ended in the feud with these two and I think that is fantastic. These are two of the best that ROH has. I look forward to more of this feud between the two.
Matt Taven (accompanied by Kingdom members Vinny Marseglia & TK O’Ryan) vs. Ultimo Guerrero: I am a fan of The Kingdom. I felt like I was one of a few who liked them as 6-man tag champs. I feel like the only reason that they lost the 6-man titles is because of TK O’Ryan’s terrible injury. Unfortunately, that bad break felt like it took the steam out of The Kingdom. When this match started, I thought to myself, this one is going into the Misses category this week. I realized these two were involved in a tag match at Best in the World and this was a follow up to that match where Taven’s team lost. There’s also history with these guys from the 6-man tournament. But on this week’s episode, I just couldn’t get into this match early on. That’s taking nothing from Taven and Guerrero. It was just the early portion of the match felt like it was moving too slow. But as the match progressed, I really got into it even though I wasn’t invested in the story between these two. By the time Taven hit his finisher, I had been converted and thought these guys put on a solid match for this week’s TV as Taven pinned Guerrero. This was a very good match between these veterans.
Silas Young Promo: Aside from the clips from Best in the World I spoke of earlier, Young cut another great promo about how he’s put Lethal out and how Lethal hasn’t appeared on ROH in 15 days now. Young is one of the best heels in professional wrestling. This wasn’t a loud promo with a guy screaming and yelling. This was just a great heel talking about how “The Golden Boy” Jay Lethal has been out 15 days now and that as long as Young is in ROH Lethal will never be safe. Strong and very effective promo by Young as usual.
War Machine vs. Motor City Machine Guns: This wasn’t the best match you’ll see either of these two teams ever have, but, it was still a good match. The names of the teams and guys in this match is what made this match part of the hits for me. The crowd was exceptionally quiet most of the match until WarBeard Hanson broke out his corner to corner running lariats. I still would love to know where Hanson hides the gas tank because for a big guy, he can surely go with the best of them. Rowe also displays some of what makes him great with a nice double belly to belly overhead suplex on Shelley and Sabin. Things get wild at the end where Hanson misses a dive through the ropes and hits hard on the outside. Sabin and Shelley hit their finisher on Rowe. And the Motor City Machine Guns get the win. This match started slow but the crowd got into it halfway through. Good match to end this week’s TV.
Far from a perfect show and there were a couple of things that almost made me mention a few things in the misses category but, to be fair, I left this blank this week.
This was one of those ROH shows where nothing was spectacular. At the same time, I thought it was solid. If you’re looking to be wowed by this week’s show, you will be disappointed. But, if you are just looking for a good hour of wrestling, I think you’ll be happy with this week’s episode. Additionally, check out this week’s “Booking the Territory” where Ian Riccaboni joins me for a two-part discussion Thursday July 13, 2017 on ROH and his journey to the lead announcer. You can access the show at tinyurl.com/BTTPod or search “Booking The Territory” wherever you get your podcasts from. I feel Riccaboni has done a solid job this year as he has taken over the lead announcer role in ROH. In a year of transition where we’ve seen Kevin Kelly take on a limited role, Nigel McGuiness and Steve Corino depart, I think Riccaboni has excelled next to Colt Cabana and a host of other guys he’s been in the booth with.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: ROH HITS & MISSES 7/1: Best in the World fallout, Daniels confronts Cody, Young Bucks in four-corners match, Cheeseburger
Mike Mills is the 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.