Ring of Honor Final Battle 2016 Preview



On Friday, December 2nd, Ring of Honor presents their biggest pay-per-view of the year, Final Battle 2016! As usual, I’m here to take you through the card and try my hardest to convince you all to part with some hard-earned cash to check it out!

Let’s begin, shall we?

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3 questions

Hey Scott,

Few questions for you. First, who do you think takes the Rumble match this year? Also, if it was your call, who would you have win it?

​I think Roman Reigns wins it again because clearly they’re not giving up and there’s no one else anyway. Outside chance of John Cena winning to set up a challenge for Flair’s record, but I think he’s getting Undertaker this year if Taker is healthy.

If it’s me, probably Chris Jericho, where he can hopefully do some sort of running gag where he adds guys to the List every time they enter, so we can have SUPER BEST FRIENDS COLLIDE at Wrestlemania. But they really don’t need the title or the Rumble to get there and have people care. ​

Lastly, do you think any PPV trilogy can top Royal Rumble, No Way Out and Wrestlemania 17 in 2001?​

​Doesn’t seem likely these days. Especially since there’s even another show THIS WEEKEND and I didn’t even know about it until someone e-mailed me this morning about it. Those three shows were not only great, but really memorable. ​

Nitro’s success and the NWO

Yesterday you said that Nitro was a success the first year but really caught fire with the nWo angle. Do you think the nWo angle works without Nitro? Was the live nature of the show and the "war" between WWF and WCW central to the angle’s success, or where Hall and Nash so good in that role that they would have had an impact showing up and beating up geeks on Saturday Night?

​Oh, NO WAY it works without Nitro. The whole appeal was the dangerous, live, feel to the whole thing, and taping the segments would have immediately made it into a secondary concern. It was a unique combination of the show’s atmosphere combined with the personalities of the Outsiders that really set fire.​

Undertaker vs. Goldberg

If we get Undertaker vs. AJ Styles at the Royal Rumble, do you see a possibility of them pulling the trigger on an Undertaker vs. Goldberg WrestleMania main event? Sure, they both have AARP cards, but it seems like it would still draw.

​They seem to be pretty clearly moving towards Goldberg v. Lesnar again at WM, but Goldberg v. Undertaker also would have been an acceptable substitute.

Man though, can you imagine them doing another streak-gimmick with Goldberg and then putting it on the line against Undertaker’s WM streak? People would have been losing their MINDS. Oh well, at least they created a "Wrestlemania Moment", and that’s much more important than drawing money, I suppose.​

Matt Sydal/Evan Bourne: Worthless Degenerate or D

So with the recent news post about Matt Sydal/Evan Bourne doing time in jail in Japan for pot possession, I have to ask: What the fuck is wrong with him?

Was Sydal/Bourne ALWAYS a worthless degenerate pot smoking idiot and somehow only managed to fuck up with his drug addiction problem when he joined the WWE and had to start pissing in a cup? Or did he deevolve into degeneracy once he got into the WWE as far as his career dying before it even began after being king of the indies, to the point that Zach Ryder on his worst day had a better career than he did and having to watch fellow indie darlings like Daniel Bryan and CM Punk or legacy brat Cody Rhodes go on to have legendary careers while he rotted away as a jobber as far as becoming a degenerate pothead to cope with his career turning to shit as quickly and completely as it did?

​Wow, Jesse Baker bringing the HOT FIRE this morning.

The Japanese are a lot more intolerant of pot smoking than most cultures, in the same sense that Trump is more intolerant ​of Mexicans than most people, so his jail time might be a TAD overblown. That being said, he’s a guy who was well known for not only paying the "pot tax" in WWE frequently, but also getting Wellness’d for synthetic pot, which is an actual illegal drug. So you’d think he’d know better before booking trips to Japan and carrying his shit with him.

Impact Wrestling – December 1, 2016

Impact Wrestling
Date: December 1, 2016
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Josh Matthews, D’Angelo Dinero

We’re down to two regular shows left in the year and the big story tonight is the crowning of a new Knockouts Champion as Gail Kim has vacated the belt due to injury. That leaves Jade and Rosemary inside Six Sides of Steel for the title because it’s not like they have any better options at the moment. Let’s get to it.

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BoD Daily Update: December 1st, 2016

Young Bucks Update

The Young Bucks were presented with a new deal from Ring of Honor to remain with the company. Their current deal with the company expires on December 31st. The Young Bucks have other offers as well and will reportedly be making a decision on their future soon.



Smackdown Ratings



Matt Sydal Update

Sydal, who was incarcerated in Japan mid-October for possession of liquid cannabis, is expected to be released from prison on December 6th.

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Newsletter



Best character

Hey Scott – thought this might spark some healthy discussion after you recently covered his debut in the Observer flashbacks. Assuming the Undertaker is generally accepted as the best/most successful character – for this purpose I would define character as someone playing a role that isn’t just an extension of themselves – of all time, who else would you pick as some of the best/most successful? A guy like Slaughter would be pretty high on my list. Thanks.

​Yeah, Undertaker is definitely #1. I’d classify Slaughter as being mostly himself turned up to 11. ​

Wrestling Observer HOF Class of 2016


Sting and Daniel Bryan are FINALLY in the Hall of Fame. So now everyone can finally SHUT THE FUCK UP about Sting already. There you go, he got the 60% of the vote, he’s in, it’s done. Also, Mean Gene, which is long overdue. The more of these Observer Flashbacks I do, the less I agree with Sting being in there, but the people have now spoken.

Monday Night Raw – July 1, 2002

Monday Night Raw
Date: July 1, 2002
Location: Verizon Wireless Arena, Manchester, New Hampshire
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler

We’re starting the second half of the year as things aren’t exactly the most thrilling at the moment. The big story here though is Jeff Hardy challenging Undertaker for the Undisputed Title in a ladder match. Now this match is really, really fondly remembered but I wasn’t blown away when I saw it a few months back. Maybe another viewing will change that so let’s get to it.

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NXT – November 30, 2016

Date: November 30, 2016
Location: Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Commentators: Tom Phillips, Corey Graves

Now this should be interesting as this show was taped on the same night as last week’s Smackdown, meaning they’re in a big arena instead of the tiny Full Sail. I’m always curious to see how things translate when they go somewhere else, especially when it’s not an NXT crowd. Let’s get to it.

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205 Live

Hey, I also watched 205 Live and did a review for Sporting News:


For those who need snowflakes, opener was about **, nothing special. And why did Nese need to beat Cedric Alexander on RAW if this was his role here? Gallagher match was also about **, but Jack made himself into a star in one show, and the title switch was ***3/4 and well worth checking out. It also got the dead crowd to wake up and go crazy by the end, so extra points for that as well.

Monday Night Raw/Nitro

Were Monday Night Raw and Nitro instant hits for USA and TNT from the start, even before the Monday Night Wars officially started? Or did the networks have to wait awhile for them to become hits?

RAW did better than Prime Time Wrestling did in the same slot, but wasn’t what anyone would call a “hit”. It typically averaged around what RAW does these days, sometimes lower or higher, and it wasn’t until 1997-98 that it suddenly became the ratings juggernaut that was carrying USA.

Nitro was absolutely a hit from the start, especially by the low standards of TNT, although it traded ratings wins with RAW for the first year or so and then the nWo angle turned it into a mega-hit.