We are less than a week away from Final Battle, as ROH TV looks to put the cap on weeks of feud building and epic pre-PPV matchups.
Ring of Honor Television
Aired: December 12, 2015
Tennessee State Fairgrounds
Adam Cole takes on well-travelled 2015 indie standout Corey Hollis, as seen on NXT lately. This was a decent tune-up for Cole headed into Final Battle, with Hollis working well from under as he usually tends to do (especially in ROH, from every match of his I’ve watched thus far). The story told was that Adam Cole was one step ahead everytime, with veteran, slick actions that kept knocking Hollis down. Hollis would pop back up until the end, giving ATL elbows or delivering counters such as a Stunner out of nowhere as a chess move to Cole’s suplex variant. However, after hope spots and a near-fall for Hollis, his time was put to an end after a mid-air superkick counter and the finishing blow in his suplex neckbreaker. Hollis puts in work, gives a clean performance, and continues to venture around; where as Cole keeps doing his heelish things.
It’s storytime with Adam Cole bay bay. He’s here to keep this one very short and sweet. When he makes a promise, he means it. Friday at Final Battle, not only is Adam Cole going to beat Kyle, but he’s going to end Kyle’s career in ROH once and for all. Same as usual but it’s a consistent narrative to get across before a big grudge match.
It’s officially announced that at Final Battle, The Young Bucks take on The Briscoes & The All Night Express in a triple-threat #1 Contender’s match for the ROH World Tag Team Championship. Speaking of the tag division.
More Atlanta talent giving squash outputs here on ROH TV. Gotta love it. This was a literal squash. It was quite entertaining to see the Bullets get manhandled by Hanson & Rowe in different aspects, such as deadlift German suplexes and double team moves. One of the Bullets got put away with Fallout after the other was splashed by Hanson. Nothing much in terms of substance, but surely a fun little gig.
Oh boy. Before the match, Posey (P-Dog) did his shtick where he cuts a 2003 Cena rap promo trying to degrade his opponent. Fortunately, Dalton’s music hit to cut-off the purposely horrendous rap. The fondest memory of Posey I have is Elgin destroying him and his crew after one of them shouted “what are thoooooseeee?!” Yet another squash match, with a little bit more stuff going on than the last destruction. Posey got in some offense because of distractions from the crew, but eventually, The Party Peacock was more powerful than trailer trash lyricism. Posey tried jumping from the top rope but got caught in Dalton’s arms. He then chucked him onto The Get Along Gang outside. Bang-a-rang was hit for the win. Another primer for Final Battle, as he faces Silas Young.
Another post-match promo. Dalton says he’s the Aurora Borealis of wrestling. He goes on to put his own appearance over. You’ll never hear anybody say Dalton is a patient man. He wants Silas out this instant. Silas’s music actually hits, but out comes The Boys instead. I had a feeling this would happen. Misery was hit from behind, and Silas has full control of the momentum now. The Boys raise Silas’ hand as they stand over a hurt Dalton Castle.
Kevin Kelly is in the ring. We have a special guest appearing on the show this week (no, not Mr. Wrestling III). It’s former ROH World Champ Jerry Lynn. Kevin says thank you on behalf of fans. He wanted to give Lynn time to say whatever he wants about surgery. Lynn says there were promoters he’s worked for, wrestlers, and fans that helped him get through the patch. Kevin asks Lynn what he prediction is for the main event of Final Battle.
As he gets forced into an answer, Jerry is about to speak. However, the H.O.T.’s music hits and Lethal is out. Another legend being interrupted (Stevie Richards isn’t a legend by the way), as it seems like it’s something Lethal enjoys. He tells Kevin to shut up, and to speed up the answer on Jerry Lynn’s part. He isn’t the Jay Lethal that he used to know. He’s an arrogant prick according to Lynn.
Lynn’s pick: AJ Styles
AJ chants fill up the arena as Lethal has to take a pause in his words. Lynn is blinding following Styles according to Lethal, but Lethal doesn’t care about Lynn; and it’s time for Jerry to go because of his disrespect. Lynn shoots some more and provides parental context, as they wouldn’t be proud if Lethal were to lay a hand on the former champ. Jay contemplates, rips the mic out of Kelly’s hand, and reinforces his dominance over Lynn. He’s not going to put him on the ground however, as he needs Lynn healthy to console AJ Styles when he’s not healthy post-Final Battle. Lethal is professional wrestling, apparently. H.O.T. exits as Jerry manages to still stand tall, technically. At least I have more interest in this potential matchup than the Stevie one that actually happened. Most still don’t even know that happened.
Moose vs. Michael Elgin is officially signed for Final Battle. A video package is played for it. It plays up their quick squash competition trying to break records, as well as their correlation to Jay Lethal. They both think they’re the next Ring of Honor World Champion.
Alex Shelley will be providing guest commentary for tonight’s main event. He returned last week by revealing himself to be under the ghost K.R.D. alter-ego that was using all of Sabin’s moves.
A solid main event this week to continue the theme of tune-ups for Final Battle. Except, this was the most intense and longest of them all; featuring two of the best teams ROH has to offer clashing in the top spot. As aforementioned, Shelley was on commentary. Although his remarks were mostly okay for the position was in, his voice is brutal to sit through — making it feel like an unneeded chore. Worse than Honma’s. The match came just this close to feeling like a legitimate short match, but was structured as a long one to cover up for the amount of time they had. Sydal got worked over and a weird yet satisfying ACH tag was made (mostly because of the ‘stay there for me’ highspots). The finishing stretch was ironically the best work, with short build towards it the teams delivered. After putting his knees up on Sydal’s SSP, Beretta delivered the running knee to him yet the match continued via a desperation kickout. Sydal was set-up for Strong Zero, yet ACH saved the move from being hit in mid-air, derailing Romero. Sydal hits the Code Red to get the win on behalf of ACH. A neat main event to lead us into the biggest pay-per-view of the year.
Not the best edition of the show you’ll see, but a one that sold Final Battle to mostly maximum effect. There was no more TV title build, which sucks. But, the rest of the matches were built towards through squashes, promos, segments, and other matches. Hollis put in work vs. Cole to continue his solid worker rep, War Machine threw around near-midgets, Jay Lethal proved to Jerry Lynn that he’s the BITW Lynn used to be, Dalton defeated 2003 John Cena Jr. but failed to conquer the problems with The Boys, and last but not least, ACH & Matt Sydal continue their momentum as a duo, yet this time as partners headed into their 6 man tag at Final Battle. See you on Friday night for our live coverage of Final Battle 2015. This is the first of many ROH reviews to be published on this new platform. I will always appreciate the support.