Ring of Honor – March 30th, 2016

Howdy!

Let’s get the preliminaries out of the way here….

Nothing this week, folks. I head out to Dallas in less than 24 hours, so we’re going to get this thing done and my wife and I are hitting the road.

Let’s watch some wrestling, shall we?

Ring of Honor TV – 3/30/16

We are TAPED from Sam’s Town Live in Las Vegas, Nevada! Your hosts are Kevin Kelly and Steve Wrestling Corino 3. Tonight, Jay Lethal will defend the ROH World title in the main event against Hirooki Goto! But we’re starting off with some 4 corners action! Roderick Strong is out first, followed by Adam Page, Moose, and Matt Sydal. Let’s get this party going!

Roderick Strong vs Adam Page vs Moose vs Matt Sydal

Code of Honor is sort of followed by various people. Not a joke, the camera cut away through it, but I’m pretty sure that Strong and Page refused at least one or two of them. Two guys in the ring at the same time, two guys on the apron. They can tag in whenever they want, and if a wrestler gets tossed from the ring, they can take the place of that wrestler and become legal in the match. Strong and Sydal will start us off. Lockup, and they trade armwringers, Sydal with a hammerlock and headlock takeover. Roddy breaks with the headscissors and gets a takeover of his own. Sydal gets back to his feet and shoots him off, Strong running through him with a shoulder. Sydal with a leapfrog as Strong runs the ropes, then Strong with a cartwheel over an on the mat Sydal, Matt finally gets a move with a spin kick. Very nice sequence there. Kicks from Matt, but he sends Strong cross-corner and eats an elbow coming in. He tries another spin kick on Strong, but Roddy catches him and gets a backbreaker over the knee. Matt Sydal is wrestling really, really well right now, probably the best I’ve seen from him in awhile. That gets two for Strong. Sydal flips out of a Strong suplex, but he staggers to the corner and Page tags in. Adam goes wild with fists and chops, Strong goes over a Page charge in the corner but eats a back elbow from Adam. Adam follows with a boot to the face and a dropkick from the second rope for two. Page sends Strong to the corner and wipes his face with forearms. Suplex by Page is countered as Strong hangs him on the top rope, sending him to the outside and here comes Moose. Strong fires forearms, but tries a fireman’s carry and Moose elbows out of that. Moose charges Strong in the corner, but eats a few kicks from Roddy. Strong goes up, but Moose chokes him and brings him down with a power bomb. That gets two before Page makes the save. Page and Moose now, Page with fists. Page off the ropes, Moose with a big standing dropkick on Page. Page rolls out, so Sydal decides to make a go of it. Sydal tries a headscissors, Moose counters, Sydal slips out and sends Moose to the floor. Matt tries to follow him out with a ‘rana, but Moose catches him and powerbombs him on the apron. This has been literally non-stop action so far. Roddy comes through the ropes with a dropkick to send Moose to the barricade, and Page follows that with a Shooting Star from the apron to Strong! He almost missed that, but he grazed him enough to send him down. Page sends Roddy back in, and we’re out for these ads!

We’re back with Page in control over Strong. He dropkicks Roddy into the buckles for two. Page gets Strong up, but Roddy gets to the apron and shoulders Adam in the mid-section. Moose gets up the apron, but he eats a Strong enzuigiri, followed by Roddy suplexing him onto the apron. Back in the ring, it’s Sydal and Page, and Matt gets a rollup for two. Page and Sydal exchange holds, Roddy comes back in, but Sydal blocks a Strong clothesline and gets a combination jawbreaker/Final Cut on Strong and Page. Standing moonsault on Adam by Sydal! 1,2, no! Seriously, just put Matt against Lethal right now. He’s on a roll. Crowd chants for Sydal as Moose comes back in, so we’re onto Sydal and Moose. Matt charges, but runs right into a Moose headbutt, then a shoulder. Strong comes in and Moose fire punches, Strong fires back with chops. Moose regains the advantage, but he stops to wind up the discus and Strong is back on the chops. Strong off the ropes, but Moose gets the Discus clothesline to put Roddy down. Moose with corner splashes on Page and Sydal, and he hoists Page to the top rope. Headbutt to Page to keep him there. Sydal charges, but Moose catches him and puts him on top with Page, then dropkicks both of them to the floor! Moose is so damned athletic, I just wish he could put together a match a little better. Keep putting him in there with good workers, though, and that problem should solve itself. He turns around right into a charging Strong, and Roddy nails him with a jumping knee. Strong puts him on top, but Moose headbutts him to put him down. Moose is still on the top, though, and Matt comes back and ‘ranas him off, right into a gutbuster by Strong and then a clothesline from Page, who’s also back in. Page avoids a leaping knee from Strong and gets a jumping DDT that SPIKED Roddy’s head on the mat. Sydal back in and he avoids a Page kick and goes upside the head with one of his own, but Page counters with a go-behind into a release Dragon suplex on Sydal! That looked sickening. Page goes out to the apron for no real apparent reason….except that now he can’t see BJ Whitmer running out from the back. Whitmer grabs the leg of Adam, stopping him from flipping into the ring. Page finally does, but he misses a clothesline on Sydal by a mile and eats a jumping kick to the face from Matt. That sequence was really awkward, to be honest. Strong goes after Sydal now, but Sydal blocks in the corner and gets a kick to the face of Roddy. Sydal with a jumping knee of his own to Page and he goes up, shooting star press from Matt! 1, but Roddy pulls him off and gets the suplex into the backbreaker across the knees on Matt, followed by a jumping knee to the face of Adam Page to get the 1,2,3. (Roderick Strong over Adam Page, Matt Sydal, and Moose, pinfall, 8:19)

WORTH WATCHING? All action, no resting. YES, this was the typical good stuff you can expect from ROH these days. There was some awkwardness, especially with the Page/Whitmer stuff, but overall this was a good showcase for everyone. I would have preferred that Sydal go over, as he’s on a serious roll right now, but Strong is fine for a match like this. No complaints here.

Post-match, Strong celebrates as we’re told that up next, we’re going to hear from Adam Cole! But that won’t happen until after these ads!

We’re back to the music of Adam Cole, bay-bay! “Who’s ready for storytime with Adam Cole, bay-bay?” Much like Corino, I certainly am! He says that you might expect that he’d be out here to talk about the ‘downward spiral’ that Adam Cole has been on, what with his recent loss to Sydal or his failure to win the ROH World title, but he’s here to tell you that Adam Cole is still the best damn pro wrestler on the planet! In fact, Kyle O’Reilly doesn’t deserve to be in the same ring with him, he didn’t deserve to be in the World title match with Lethal, and he’s going to continue to beat Kyle O’Reilly over and over again! This prompts an “O’Reilly!” chant from the crowd, as I continue to marvel at how amazing Cole is at getting not just himself but Kyle over just by talking. Seriously, Cole is one of the best talkers on the planet at this point. He promises that Kyle will NEVER be the ROH World title, and he also promises to be the man to dethrone Jay for the World title, and one on one, Lethal doesn’t stand a chance. He talks about how while Lethal has the House of Truth and Kyle has Bobby Fish to watch his back, Adam Cole is without his Kingdom; but no worries, because he will be the ROH World champ!

And there’s the music of….the Kingdom? Hmmm….ah, there’s Matt Taven! Still on crutches, he comes out to the ring, and Cole looks happy to see him, and there’s the big hug! Taven: “For the first time in 2016, the Kingdom is back on Ring of Honor television!” The crowd seems okay with this. Taven says that the Kingdom is going to pick right back up, dominating pro wrestling and winning gold, not just here, but in Japan…..except for Adam Cole! Cole seems upset by this, but Taven tells him that he had two chances to win the ROH World title, and he blew them both! And to think, Taven joined the Kingdom because he looked up to Cole, but Adam got hurt and Taven had to prop him up! Matt Taven was the biggest star in the Kingdom! Cole tells him that he has a lot of nerve, but Matt stops that right away and points out that the last time they were in the ring together, COLE was the one that was saying that Taven dropped the ball! Well, Matt blew his knee out one minute into a match but kept wrestling, and it probably cost him part of his career. But the thing is, Adam – this is the end. The Kingdom will be rebuilt in the image of Matt Taven, and the only thing finished with the Kingdom….is Adam Cole. Now, if they shoot for a double turn of some type down the road where they put Kyle O’Reilly in the new Kingdom and have him go over a face turned Adam Cole, that’s a pretty nice storyline that I can get behind. I can also get behind you watching these great ads!

We’re back with Dalton Castle! “I’ve never been a big fan of the rules!” He doesn’t like speed limits, he’s a clothing optional man! Okay, that might be more information than I needed there, Dalton. Anyway, he’s relaxed about it now, now that Silas Young has agreed to a Fight without Honor, where Young won’t be protected by….the rules.

Kelly and Corino recap the previous promo, with Adam Cole getting fired from the Kingdom. And there’s the music of Cheeseburger. Joy. His opponent for this match hails from the hometown that still wants a champion to call their own, “Already in the ring”, and his name is Foxx Vinyer! And he looks like an extra from a Rob Zombie movie, complete with creepy facepaint.

Cheeseburger vs Foxx Vinyer

Code of Honor is followed….but no, Vinyer with a kick to Cheeseburger during the handshake, and we’re underway. Foxx with a double axehandle, but Burger gains control with strikes. Cheeseburger with a kick and he runs the ropes, but Vinyer catches him with a huge overhead powerslam for two. He charges Cheeseburger in the corner, but Burger moves and hops to the apron, then springs back in with a glancing knee. Cheeseburger loads up the palm strike, but the All-Night Express of all people charge the ring, pulling Vinyer to the floor and causing a DQ. (Foxx Vinyer over Cheeseburger, disqualification, 1:24)

WORTH WATCHING? NOPE.

Post-match, ANX get a double powerbomb to the apron on Foxx, and ANX grabs mics and hit the ring. Titus: “Whoa, whoa, whoa! Be easy, Cheesy!” He tells Burger that they aren’t out there to beat him up; they like Cheeseburger! He’s one of them, not one of the crowd! King tells Burger that the fans don’t care about him, they just care about seeing him get beat up! King gives a pretty decent promo about how his daughter was in the front row and saw him get tossed through a table and bent over a ladder, and he couldn’t even tell her he was okay, but the fans don’t care! ANX continues to tell Burger that he has more heart than the fans in his skinny, skinny bicep than any of the fans in this arena. But the same fans that popped champagne with them don’t care about them anymore; look what they say about them now! And now, King tells us that we’re going to see a segment called ‘Wrestlers read mean tweets’ as King pulls out a phone and reads off a couple of mean tweets, then call out fans in the crowd who they think sent them. Anyway, ANX is still the same guys; he’s still Kenny King, he’s still Rhett Titus! Titus takes off his shirt to show off his abs as King has to stop him from taking off his pants as well. Then Kenny King says this:

“But you would rather cheer for 140 pound spot monkeys with tassels on their legs, those superkick suckers, the Young Bucks!”

Alert Kenny Reigns; I’m now on the ANX bandwagon.

Titus then calls out the rednecks hillbillies, the Briscoes, or the guys who look like they smell, War Machine! Hell, you all like Cheeseburger more than us! The crowd agrees with this and start a loud “Cheeseburger!” chant. This doesn’t seem to sit well with Kenny, who asks Cheeseburger to read the ANX catchphrase off the back of his shirt. Burger does, and when he hits the part of ‘against us’, Kenny says that he must be against them, and here comes the beatdown. Man, I may not love Cheeseburger, but he takes a whuppin’ pretty well. ANX brutalizes him in the ring until The Briscoes and War Machine make the save. ANX taunts the teams from the ramp and leave, but War Machine dropped the tag belts when they hit the ring….and the Briscoes just picked them up. This could get good. War Machine turns around and grab the belts from the Briscoes, and now the teams are chest to chest, so here comes the gaggle of referees to put a stop to this as we’re going to put a stop to the show and watch these ads!

We’re back with the Lethal/Truth promo from last week hyping up the main event tonight. And that main event is taking place….right now! Hirooki Goto is out first, as the announcers talk about the chances that Goto has had for the IWGP championship up to this point, and will this night be the night that he wins a World title? And there’s the music of Jay Lethal, and he’s out with Truth Martini and Taeler Hendrix! Time to see ourselves a title match…..after these ads!

We’re back and the belt is high in the air!

Hirooki Goto vs Jay Lethal (w/ Truth Martini & Taeler Hendrix) – Ring of Honor World Title match

Code of Honor is almost followed, but Lethal can’t resist and he comes in with a kick during the handshake. He fires at Goto with forearms. He takes Goto to the corner and wears him out with kicks. Lethal with the Irish whip, but Goto ducks the clothesline and takes Lethal down with a shoulder. Off the ropes and Goto counters a hiptoss by Lethal with one of his own. Goto on the offense now, big back body drop, and he covers Lethal for a one count. Hirooki sends Lethal face first to the buckle, fires some fists, and does it again. Goto chops Lethal down a few times in the corner, but sends Lethal cross-corner and runs into a boot from Jay. Hirooki with a corner clothesline and he sets Jay on the top and they exchange shots. Goto looks to ‘rana Jay off the top, but Hendrix is on the apron, allowing Lethal to wiggle free and drop Goto face first on the top turnbuckle. Lethal tosses Goto to the outside and gets a running tope to send Goto to the rampway. Truth goes into the ring now, and gives us a Truth-a-roonie to pop the crowd; sigh. Look, I like Lethal just fine, but all this bullshit annoys me. Lethal tells the ref to count Goto out, but he gets impatient and goes out to the floor, sending him face-first into the apron, then sending him back in. Lethal covers for two. Lethal tosses him to the corner and stomps a mudhole in Goto, and this match is boring as hell. Jay with a snapmare and a chinlock, not helping things. Let’s take a break to get some No-Doz and watch these ads!

We’re back with Lethal in control. Lethal lays in with fists, but Goto is coming back and tells him to bring it on. Lethal runs the ropes, but Goto comes from behind and turns him inside-out with a clothesline. Forearms by Goto, he sends Jay to the corner and follows with a spinning kick to Hirooki. Lethal elbows out of the Saito suplex and goes for the Lethal Injection, but Goto kicks him in the back to block. Now the Saito suplex by Goto. 1,2, no! Goto with a fireman’s carry, but Jay elbows out and hits Goto with a right hand. Lethal goes for another one, but Goto NAILS him with a headbutt that Lethal sells like death. Good job, Jay. Fireman’s carry into the neckbreaker across the knee from Goto, 1,2, NO! Hendrix grabs Goto from the outside, but Hirooki stomps on her fingers! Jay sends Goto to the ropes, but Hirooki blocks a shot from Truth Martini and grabs the Book of Truth. The ref takes it away, but Goto turns around into a Lethal superkick, and the Lethal Injection will finish this mess. (Jay Lethal over Hirooki Goto, pinfall, 7:14)

WORTH WATCHING? This one was all over the place, and not in a good way. Jay Lethal should not have to cheat to beat Hirooki Goto. Period. At least 3 instances of attempted interference in this match was way too much, and the match itself wasn’t much to write home about either. NO, you can skip this one, as Lethal has had much better matches than this nonsense, as has Goto.

Post-match, Jay and Truth celebrate while Taeler holds her fingers in pain. Lethal poses with the House of Truth….until Donovan Dijak and Prince Nana hit the ring. Oh, Lord. The throbbing in my head is back. Dijak and Lethal go at it, with Dijak getting the better of it and sending Lethal over the top to the outside with a clothesline. Truth Martini decides that NOW is the optimum time to hit Dijak from behind with the Book of Truth, but Dijak no-sells that nonsense and turns around. Truth immediately backs off….into Prince Nana standing in the corner. The two managers jaw at each other, and Truth turns around into a big boot from Dijak. Martini hits the mat and convulses as Dijak poses on the buckles and the commentators call for some help for Truth Martini, and that’ll do it for this week’s ROH TV.

FINAL THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: Good lord, they couldn’t have turned me off more in that last 20 or so minutes if they tried. First half of the show was good stuff with the 4 corners match and a pretty good Adam Cole promo, but after that, yikes. Dijak makes Moose look like Nakamura and shouldn’t be anywhere near Lethal at this point in his development. The ANX stuff was fun, I suppose, but if you turn this one off before the main event, you aren’t missing much. We’ve seen better from ROH.

As always, thanks for reading this thing I wrote,
Rick Poehling
@MrSoze on Twitter