The Big Takeaway: Flip Gordon and EC3 took on The Briscoe Brothers in a fun TV match, while PCO answered Brian Johnson’s open challenge. Also, Quinn McKay made her ROH debut.
The broadcast began with Ian Riccaboni checking in from the ROH Studio, rather than Quinn McKay. This is obviously because McKay headlines tonight’s show against Angelina Love. Riccaboni also notes that the ROH board of directors teamed up Flip Gordon and EC3 to take on The Briscoes for tonight’s show.
Flip Gordon and EC3 defeated The Briscoes (12:38)
Note: This match was filmed before EC3 was hospitalized with an infection. Best wishes go out to Ethan and I hope recovery is going well for him.
EC3 and Jay started the match out. Commentary put this over because of their phenomenal encounter at the 19th Anniversary show, which is currently in my top 5 matches of the year.
Both men grappled for a minute and exchanged a few head scissors, eventually coming to a stalemate. EC3 sent Jay to the other side of the ring where Gordon cheap shotted him. EC3 questioned Gordon’s antics, to which Gordon responded by tagging himself in.
Jay came in on a blind tag and sent Gordon to the mat with a headbutt. The Briscoes did a great job keeping in the fresh man in this match. Mark came in and started choking Gordon with his bandana. Gordon eventually was able to tag out to EC3, which sent us into a commercial break.
Back from the break and EC3 was in control of Jay until Gordon tagged himself in. EC3 stared him down for a few moments before stepping out of the ring. Gordon tried a springboard stunner but Jay shoved him down in mid air. Mark got a hot tag and demolished Gordon with the help of Jay. EC3 tagged himself in and got hit with the redneck boogie, but Gordon broke up the pin.
In the final sequence of the match, referee Joe Mandak was distracted by a chair that Mark Briscoe had introduced to the match. Gordon took advantage of this and punched Mark with a chain, letting EC3 hit his inverted DDT for the win. EC3 didn’t see Gordon hit Mark with the chain.
Brian Johnson had his best promo of his career before his open challenge. Johnson touched on how faction heavy ROH is, and boasted himself for standing alone. Johnson whined about not getting talked about and said he would do whatever it takes to get noticed, even if it included “bankrupting the Mercenary, mocking the narrative, cooking the Octopus into calamari, lassoing the Bull, ending the Purple Reign or making The Franchise fall.”
Another great quote from the promo: “Before you say the names Danielson, Punk, Nigel or Joe, Aries, Black, Richards, Cole, Lethal, Briscoe, Cabana or Steen; you better clear your throat and say the M.E.C.C.A. Because i don’t care who you are or who you align with, it’ll always be Mecca vs Everybody.”
PCO defeated Brian Johnson (6:57)
PCO accepted Johnson’t open challenge. Danhausen came out and said since he’s beaten Johnson multiple times, he has a gift for him. PCO came out.
Johnson tried to jump PCO before the bell but to no avail. PCO came back with fiery chops and sent Johnson over his head with a back body drop into a commercial break.
Back from the break and PCO back body drops Brian Johnson over the barricade. PCO started to “malfunction” as commentary put it and ran around ringside before launching himself into a barricade. Johnson took advantage of this and threw PCO into the barricade himself.
Johnson slid PCO back in the ring and went to the top rope. Johnson hit a great splash, but PCO sat up immediately after and “malfunctioned” again. Johnson was sent to the mat with a few punches while PCO climbed to the top rope and hit a PCOsault. Johnson surprisingly kicked out.
PCO chased referee Joe Mandak out of the ring and then returned to the ring, where he started ripping Johnson’s jaw apart. It was played off as a submission and Johnson submitted.
Angelina Love (w/ Mandy Leon) defeated Quinn McKay (8:01)
Love and McKay started the match with a lock up, which is a weird choice after having a almost year long feud. Love sent McKay to the mat with a wrist lock and then walked on her back. This sent us into a commercial break.
Back from the break and Love is bashing McKay’s head into the mat. Love eventually picked up McKay and nailed her with a flat liner, followed by locking in a Koji Clutch. McKay fought to get a rope break but was on the verge of passing out when Love let her go. Leon exclaimed at ringside that it wasn’t gonna end like that.
Love was showboating when McKay took advantage of an opportunity and hit a stunner. McKay followed it up with a great running powerslam that opened the door for her to get back in the match. McKay then locked in a standing cobra clutch, which Love didn’t really sell at all.
McKay still had the clutch cinched in when Leon stood on the apron and started yelling at McKay. McKay let go of the hold and entertained Leon’s bickering, allowing Love to recover and nail McKay with the “Botox Injection” kick for the win. As a stipulation of her winning, Love will get a first-round bye in ROH's Women's World Championship tournament this summer.
Final Thoughts: A lot to unpack here on a very eventful and newsworthy episode of ROH TV. The Briscoes and EC3/Flip Gordon had a great match. Briscoes lost again though, and I'm sticking with my theory that they are headed for a split.
Brian Johnson had the best promo I’ve ever heard from him personally and the best promo on ROH TV in some time. But then he loses to a 53 year old PCO. that hasn’t been on TV in months and has no general direction. It was an awful decision in my opinion, and had the results been reversed could have done a lot for Johnson.
Quinn McKay and Angelina Love was short, but sweet. In roughly 8 minutes they told a great story without giving away too much action. With the distraction finish, it’s clearly a story ROH wants to continue and have a bigger payoff for in the future, which is great, if it ends with McKay standing tall.