KELLER & POWELL FLAGSHIP (12/5)
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UK independent talent Mark Haskins, who is best known for his work in Progress Wrestling, has signed a contract with ROH and will debut in the near future. Haskins has also wrestled for PWG in the past. Dave Meltzer first reported his signing. Haskins has appeared in ROH previously and last competed in the ROH International Cup Tournament in August. He got a big push during ROH’s last tour of the U.K. winning the International Cup Tournament and getting a title shot against ROH World Champion Jay Lethal on Aug. 19 at Honor Reunited: London.
Haskins announced his ROH signing on Twitter:
Bandido has also signed with ROH. Bandido was part of the All In main event last September. He is best known for his work in the Dragon Gate promotion in Japan. He can still work for The Crash promotion in Mexico where he wrestlers with his tag team partner Flamita frequently. He is expected to finish up with Dragon Gate at the end of their current tour. The signing was first reported by thecubsfan.com and later was confirmed by ROH on Twitter. Bandido teamed with Flamita and Rey Mysterio to take on the Young Bucks & Kota Ibushi in the main event of “All In” back in September.
Bandido is scheduled to debut at ROH’s next set of TV tapings in January. He acknowleged ROH’s tweet announcing his debut with the promotion on his Twitter account:
Radican’s Analysis: These are two good signings for ROH. I’m not sure how much upside Haskins has under the direction of Delirious, but if they can flesh out his character and get him into a good program, he will be a valuable piece for the promotion. ROH is clearly high on Haskins, as he has appeared on all their UK tour dates this year and won the International Cup Tournament back in August during the Honor Reunited tour.
Bandido is a big signing for the company. He’s gained a lot of buzz this year competing in PWG and Dragon Gate. He also appeared in the main event at the “All In” PPV in January. This is the first wrestler from Mexico to sign a contract with ROH. Bandido works a high-flying and fast-paced style and is dynamite to watch, so for ROH to have him under contract is huge. I’m not sure what the political implications are, as ROH is affiliated with CMLL right now and Bandido and Flamita wrestle for The Crash promotion currently. ROH contracts allow their talent to take dates outside of the U.S. where they please, so it’s expected Bandido will still be able to team with Flamita in The Crash.
PCO and Brody King both debuted at the ROH TV tapings this past weekend and are part of a new stable called Villain Enterprises with Marty Scurll. They will be joined by Bandido and Mark Haskins as part of the new signings the company has made in the wake of the core cast members of Being the Elite leaving the company. One source close to the cast of Being the Elite told PWTorch that the group had been pushing ROH to sign new talent for a long time and the lack of new talent in the company was a source of frustration for the group. Now that the group is leaving ROH, the company is finally singing some names to freshen up the roster.
-Multiple sources have confirmed that Jonathan Gresham was held off the ROH TV tapings held in Philadelphia last weekend after leaving the building during Final Battle after his match with Zack Sabre Jr. Gresham was said to have been extremely upset after the match, but the main issue with him leaving the venue is that he was supposed to interfere in the semi-main event, which saw Jay Lethal successfully defend the ROH World Title against Cody Rhodes.
Gresham is currently getting the biggest push of his career with a spotlight match against Zack Sabre Jr. at Final Battle and a long-term feud with Jay Lethal that concluded with a standout MOTYC on ROH TV last September. Gresham had recently also began teaming with Lethal in tag team matches. Multiple sources tell PWTorch that Gresham is extremely difficult to work with when it comes to putting together matches and is difficult to work with. One ROH source told PWTorch he would have fired Gresham if it were up to him for leaving the building during the Final Battle PPV.
Radican’s Analysis: I was surprised to hear this news about Gresham, but when talking to various talent that has worked with Gresham and other independent promoters, Gresham has a reputation for being difficult to work with, especially when it comes to planning matches. Gresham was getting a big push in ROH and doing really well, as he had the best feud of 2018 in the company with Jay Lethal and got a spotlight singles match with Sabre at Final Battle.
There is no word on if there will be any further punishment for Gresham other than him being removed from the TV tapings in Phildelphia last weekend. Hopefully this all blows over and Gresham can continue to get a big push, as he brings something unique to the table for ROH.
-Jay Lethal will defend the ROH World Title next at “Honor Reigns Supreme on Jan. 13 agaist Dalton Castle. The match was made playing off of storylines completed at ROH’s TV Tapings last weekend. Dalton Castle most recently lost to Matt Taven at Final Battle 2018.
-Sources tell PWTorch the future of S.C.U. (Scorpio Sky & Frankie Kazarian & Christopher Daniels) with ROH is still undecided at this point. They turned down new contracts earlier this month, but based on the TV tapings it appears the door was left open for them to possibly return. All three men appeared on the tapings unlike the departing cast members of Being The Elite (The Young Bucks & Adam Page & Cody Rhodes), who only filmed a match for Honor Club and didn’t appear on the tapings otherwise.
This past week, on Jason Powell of prowrestling.net appeared on WKPWP and mentioned that ROH management originally did not want the group to appear at the tapings at all, but relented and allowed them to do a dark match. Powell also said the group was willing to work ROH dates going forward without a contract, but ROH management turned down that idea as well. Sources close to the Being the Elite cast tell PWTorch that the parting between both sides was amicable, but Powell noted on the WKPWP that ROH COO Joe Koff and GM Greg Gilleland left before their dark match went on.
Matt Jackson of The Young Bucks tweeted that they won’t be at the ROH/NJPW G1 Supercard during WrestleMania weekend this past week. Only Adam Page hasn’t publicly confirmed that he won’t be at the show, as Cody Rhodes has tweeted multiple times that he won’t be at MSG. Cody and The Young Bucks both appear in ROH’s G1 Supercard trailer that is posted on the official YouTube channel of the company.
You can see Jackson’s tweet here:
We will not be there, but I encourage everyone to still go. It’s a historic night for wrestling. https://t.co/kPVEjtTqIa
— The Young Bucks (@MattJackson13) December 20, 2018
Sources tell PWTorch there’s still a chance the group will work with NJPW going forward, but all signs indicate they won’t be doing ROH dates going forward.
You can see the original G1 Supercard trailer featuring The Young Bucks and Cody here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hXB6yDjT6cc#action=share