SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
Kelly Klein vs. Mayu Iwatani: From the start, Kelly Klein was one of my favorites in this tournament. She has been the powerhouse of the women’s division for a while. I was not surprised by the outcome here with Klein defeating Iwatani. I think it was a good match and good to see Klein get the victory as the top heel in the division.
Sumie Sakai vs. Tenille Dashwood: I realize that Sakai is a long-time veteran of the ROH Women of Honor division, but this result shocked me. I attended Supercard of Honor and could not believe that Sakai defeated Dashwood. Dashwood along with Klein and Purrazzo were my favorites coming into the tournament. That is not said to take anything away from Sakai. Sakai may have been my fourth pick to win it. I suppose a shocker is good from time to time. If that was the goal, then they certainly shocked me with this result. The other side of this is that leaves Dashwood without the title. I suppose there could be something there with her chasing the title in the future. I have no inside knowledge if she is going to be with ROH long term. I certainly hope so because she really helps to elevate the division. However, back to the match. Sakai wins and will move on in the tournament.
Women of Honor Finalist: After the Sakai and Dashwood match, Ian Riccaboni came out to congratulate both Sakai and Klein who are now finalist in the first Women of Honor Championship tournament. Riccaboni organizes a photo op with the two before their historic WOH final match. Riccaboni asked for the ladies to adhere to the Code of Honor prior to the match later in the night. The ladies shake hands, but Klein takes a cheap shot at Sakai and lays out Sakai. I liked this. Klein is a heel. Why not have her take a cheap shot. What are they going to do, ban her later from competing in the tournament final?
Sumie Sakai vs. Kelly Klein: The match started exactly as I hoped after seeing Klein take a cheap shot at Sakai during the photo op. Sakai never waited for the bell and went right after Klein. Watching this in the arena, I still do not ever remember hearing the bell ring to start the match. In any case, I thought these two gave us a decent final with yet again another shocking winner. Again, nothing against Sakai but as stated above she was probably my fourth pick to win this thing but, in the end, Sakai is our first WOH champion. Congrats on Sakai for winning the title.
Please see my Final Thoughts for the misses.
Stay with me here as I give my final thoughts. Overall, it is a positive that ROH gave us a WOH episode this week where the tournament semi-finals and final aired. I am all for the WOH division being given more TV time. However, I cannot “unsee” what I saw over two weeks ago at Supercard. Bear in mind what I am about to say, I would say the same thing if I were shown two to three men’s matches this week from Supercard of Honor. Here we are over two weeks later, and we are watching something many ROH fans already saw over two weeks ago. Even if viewers have not seen it, they have heard the results and know the winner considering this was a PPV that these originally aired on and not a “normal” TV taping.
Furthermore, by the time new content airs post Supercard, we will be more than three weeks removed from Supercard. I have been critical of ROH about this in the past. Yet, throughout 2017 I thought they did a good job of not waiting two to three weeks post PPV to provide new content for their weekly show. I feel like we live in a different world now that we have Honor Club. Ignoring some of the technical issues with Honor Club, which is another problem in itself, I believe more ROH fans are seeing ROH PPVs and now live events such as Masters of the Craft. If you tuned in this week to see some of the Supercard fall out, I feel that you will be very disappointed. Not disappointed because you saw WOH, disappointed because by the time fresh content is delivered via the weekly TV episodes over three weeks would have passed. Look, I am a fan of ROH and fully support the promotion. I want them to succeed and that is my only basis for my criticism of this week’s episode.
Check out Harley Pageot’s excellent breakdown of these matches from this week in his ROH TV Report.
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 and you can check out his old school wrestling podcasts at tinyurl.com/BTTPod
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: ROH HITS & MISSES 4/16: Kazarian vs. Hiromu Takahashi, Tag Team Gauntlet Match Determines #1 Contender