SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
Frankie Kazarian Speaks for Christopher Daniels: After a brief recap of Cody defeating Daniels last week, Kazarian heads to the ring to speak to the ROH fans. In summary, Kazarian takes a dump on the fans of ROH and proceeds to tell them they won’t be seeing Daniels for a long time since they’re all a bunch of Bullet Club marks. Those weren’t his exact words but they encapsulate Kazarian’s words during this segment. This was another solid promo by Kazarian and I really like what they are doing here with Daniels and Kazarian after the way Daniels was treated at Best in the World.
Flip Gordon vs. Punishment Martinez: Generally, I don’t like non-stop flips and dives but when it comes to Gordon, I continue to enjoy his matches. Gordon finds a way to make most of his maneuvers, dives, and flips not look completely choreographed. This match contained its share of flips but I’ll be darn if it wasn’t also very hard hitting and believable. I highly recommend checking this match out if you normally read this column before watching the show. This was very good with a very good finish. Punishment Martinez finishes Gordon with a choke slam off the top rope. There was no kick out and no no-sell from this. Martinez gets the 1-2-3 and wins the match. After the match, as Martinez is heading to the back, Martinez is attacked by Jay White. Recall that there is still bad blood there with White and Martinez. Security breaks them up but that feud is still far from resolved. Good match and good ending to the opening match of the show.
Kenny King: Kenny King cuts a short promo building up his ROH TV title match at the end of this week’s episode. Nothing spectacular but a solid promo that did what was intended as we build towards today’s main event.
Cheeseburger vs. Rhett Titus: Rhett Titus defeats Cheeseburger rather quickly but this was after Cheeseburger actually has Titus on the ropes and it looks like Cheeseburger will be getting the victory. Unfortunately for Cheeseburger, Will Ferrara appears and gets involved. Rhett Titus hits Cheeseburger with a vicious boot to the face in the corner followed by a big dog splash off the top rope. Titus gets the win. I thought this was fine because two things were accomplished. They’re furthering the bad blood between Cheeseburger and Ferrara. Additionally, Ian Riccaboni teases something that may be missed while watching the end of the match/segment when he talks about where will Rhett Titus land after The Rebellion had to disband recently. Just something to think about as we move forward in ROH with Titus.
Dalton Castle and The Boys: Castle and The Boys come out looking so ridiculous that it is awesome. Cabana has been talking about getting his own set of boys and challenging Castle and his Boys to a match. Castle comes out and challenges Cabana and The Tempura Boyz. After a brief video package with Shane Taylor, Ian Riccaboni says that the challenge has been accepted and next week the 6-man titles will be on the line featuring Castle and The Boys vs. Cabana and The Tempura Boyz. Nice set up here for next week’s TV. I’m good with everything here.
Kenny King vs. Kushida for the ROH TV Title: For ten minutes, we got a great one on one match between Kushida and King. Things are moving along fine when out of nowhere Marty Scurll and Adam Page run in out of nowhere to start beating on King and Kushida. We go to commercial and when we come back King is on the microphone and is ticked off. King cuts an excellent promo. He states, “I’ve been waiting way too long for a shot at that title for it to be broken up by two members of the Bullet Club’s B team.” King then goes on to say, “Kushida, I’m willing to put this title shot on hold if you and I can put the beat down on these two.” The fans erupt and we have now moved to a match between Scurll & Page vs. Kushida & King. More on this below.
Colt Cabana Interviews The Tempura Boyz: There needs to be a category for “Not Sure Where to Put This.” This isn’t a miss but it also isn’t a hit and I’m not being disrespectful. I guess the point here was that we aren’t supposed to understand what the Tempura Boyz are saying? I don’t know but it was a strange interview. We’ll see if more comes of what this was down the line. For now, I don’t have much. As I say this, I do realize that the announcement was made later in the show with Cabana and The Tempura Boyz wrestling against Castle and The Boys next week. I just don’t think this promo was required or there probably was a better way to do it if you wanted a segment with Cabana and The Tempura Boyz. Again, not terrible but could’ve been done better.
Kushida & Kenny King vs. Page & Scurll: This is a good match. It was entertaining and had everything you would expect from these four very talented wrestlers. However, we advertised the ROH TV title match this episode as the main. I wish we could’ve just stuck with that plan. Now, if this leads to something bigger and better down the road in ROH I may be eating my words but for the time being while I did really enjoy the actual match I didn’t like that the ROH TV title match was interrupted for this. King & Kushida defeat Scurll & Page when King hits his finisher on Page. Again, very good match I just didn’t like how we got here this week. As I say that, I am also aware that the live crowd absolutely loved this.
Final Thoughts: One thing I didn’t mention to this point was the crowd. The crowd in this venue was electric. Maybe it was because we came off a few weeks where the crowd was small at the last set of tapings and this week this crowd was much larger. Even then, the crowd felt like it really added to this week’s episode. Despite the misses I mentioned, this was a good episode. Gordon and Martinez set the tone with the opening match. I also liked Kazarian’s opening promo. The main event that morphed into a tag match was also fine even though I didn’t like the path we took to get there. I’d definitely invest the 50 minutes or so minus the commercials and enjoy this week’s ROH if you haven’t already done so.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: ROH HITS & MISSES 8/5: Cody vs. Christopher Daniels promos, Silas Young, Bruiser, Jay Lethal shows up
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.