We’re back with a slightly shorter recap of the most recent ROH TV due to some unexpected time constraints. I typically watch each episode twice for my review and my second viewing here is admittedly late. BUT it let my initial thoughts simmer for a couple days and so there’s more commentary then play-by-play – at least until we get to the much anticipated main event.
Want to hear more about ROH TV here at Place to Be Nation? Be sure to check out every episode of This Week in Wrestling. It’s a heckuva 1-2 punch for Ring of Honor coverage.
ROH TV #238 – original air date 4/9/16. From Sam’s Town – Las Vegas, NV
This is the fourth and final episode from the post-14th Anniversary show tapings in Las Vegas.
ROH World Tag Title Match: Roppongi Vice vs. War Machine
RPG Vice won this shot in that episode-long tag team gauntlet match four weeks ago. They were the last team in the match after reDRagon and the Bucks carried the load. Despite that, I like the booking to give War Machine another big name to go over before the Briscoes. Now, both Hanson and Rowe are friends of the site and they have an awesome hoss gimmick that they back up in the ring, but man (and I get it – fourth week of tapings, but more on that…) is the crowd kind of indifferent to them. I partially blame their entrance music. Sure, ROH has the bigger entrance video displays now so that may cue the crowd better in the future, but these guys need some serious metal riffs to pop the crowd.
They cut an entire control sequence on Trent with a pretty early commercial. I feel like more people should duck enziguris like Rowe did. The surprise back-kick is a great counter after. Crowd is uncomfortably quiet and Hanson gets NO reaction for his tag. RPG Vice DOES get cheers so the crowd isn’t totally checked out.
Rhetorical question time. So can this be fixed before the big changing of the guard with the Briscoes? Is this a one-off (I admittedly haven’t seen the 14th show yet)? War Machine aren’t going to be heels, and really shouldn’t be. Their story is about respect and finally overcoming a legendary tag team to establish themselves. I’m invested, but will the crowd in Chicago for Global Wars be?
Anyway, War Machine wins with their awesome finish in a perfectly fine TV match, although man it seemed like a lot was unfortunately cut.
Donovan Dijak is out with Prince Nana and both are looking smug. Nana teases the crowd about revealing the whole envelope thing but then refrains in the most elementary way possible, “…well, i’m not going to tell you”. Which is either deliberate to get some kind of go-away heat or he KNOWS its cringe worthy and that somehow makes it good. Personally, this has been going on for months, enough already. Crowd “What?”‘s Nana which is the fucking worst. Jay Lethal is out to fight and I appreciated Prince Nana cowering away from Taeler Hendrix.
ACH vs. Kenny Omega (with the Young Bucks)
The short story here: it’s a damn shame Kenny has the visa issues because he brings an awesome aura with him and I really enjoyed this. The banana peel gag was good wrestling comedy. They also cosplay The Rock and Stone Cold, including Stunner reversals and Omega parodying the Rock’s flip bump off the Stunner when he finally takes it. Match gets a “This is awesome” chant and one could certainly argue that is accurate.
Note: before a commercial break during the Omega match we get an Adam Cole promo on Matt Taven. Pretty spirited too. Taven has to be months and months away but maybe he rebuilds the Kingdom sooner than later and Cole works through that group before finally putting Taven away.
Fight Without Honor: Silas Young vs. Dalton Castle
MONSTER pop for Dalton. This whole thing is getting more play-by-play given the elements and stakes. “He won the boys in a match-up” – a real thing said by KK on syndicated television. There is no feeling out here, as there shouldn’t be. Dalton struts but then hits a wicked dive through the ropes and just slams Silas what seems like three rows into the crowd. Silas is a mad bumper in this whole match. Dalton slams his hand on the ring post HARD, this sounded tremendous. But really outside of the immediate follow-up by Silas, he doesn’t go back to working it – and Dalton doesn’t sell it, but does he really need to? He shook it off. It looked wicked enough to build a whole match around though.
Back from a break and KK voices over that a bunch of things have been introduced, namely a ladder. Outside, Dalton goes for a rana off the apron but Silas holds him up and powerbombs him onto two chairs. Ouch. Victory roll inside for Silas gets two, and then he slaps on a STF. This works since there are no rope breaks – he’s trying to choke out Castle to just end this thing. Silas goes up for his finish but Dalton moves and Silas hits the ladder.
We alternate punches and Silas’ breaks out a back rake which only angers Dalton more. Misery (TKO) from Silas gets two though. He grabs a garbage can lid and gets on the mic. This draws out the Boys but Silas disposes of them to the outside. It’s enough time for Dalton though and he hits a series of big leaping knees in the corner, before missing the last and toppling to the outside (nice bump). The Boys push Dalton out of the way and eat the splash by Silas, which is nice storytelling givne the build. Another dive by Castle sends Silas into the rail. Dead-life german gets two and a big DALTON CASTLE chant.
Bang-o-rang setup by Dalton but Silas has the ropes. Dalton opts to just flip Silas over to the outside where there is a table set up and he breaks the table with his friggin’ HEAD. Big time crash and burn which elicits a “You just killed him” chant. Both guys have thrown caution to the wind here in this match. I LOVE that Dalton immediately rolled him in the ring for the cover. Like, he raced to get him in the ring – which you seldom if ever see. Real life urgency = good psychology. Somehow this only gets two and Castle soaks in the crowd chanting. The boys slide in a chair, but Silas hits a huge low blow for a decent near fall. Given all his losses in the build-up, you almost thought that could do Dalton in here. Off the ropes, Dalton catches him for the Bang-o-rang onto the chair and there’s your payoff as he wins the Fight Without Honor. Awesome match.
Final thoughts: A great finale to the Sam’s Town tapings with two excellent matches. The Dalton/Silas story playing out across ROH TV for months is capped nicely with the right stakes and in a spotlight main event.