Ring of Honor television from this past week featured the continuation of the Decade of Excellence tournament, The Young Bucks superkicking a drone out of the air, and Bull James being swerved and then beaten down in an angle on the show.
The current episodes airing are from the tapings in Philadelphia and are lame duck shows in one way. Taped the night after Final Battle but before Wrestle Kingdom in the Tokyo Dome, Kyle O’Reilly was still ROH World Champion at the tapings in Philly, but he lost the title to Adam Cole at the Dome.
This past weekend, ROH taped TV at Center Stage in Atlanta. Until those shows begin to air, expect little mention of the ROH World title on TV with no mention this past week.
The show opened with a recap from “last week,” meaning the last episode that aired from the tapings in Philly. The previous week was a 2016 retrospective and the week prior to that was a special from the UK. Nevertheless, the recap showed Christopher Daniels advancing in the Decade of Excellence tournament.
Daniels cut a promo saying it was his legacy to win the ROH World title. Despite being in ROH for more than a decade, Daniels said there was no expiration on legacy.
Someone else associated with ROH for more than decade, Jay Briscoe, also cut a promo about the tournament hyping himself up.
Jay Briscoe defeated BJ Whitmer (w/ Kevin Sullivan and Punishment Martinez) to advance in the Decade of Excellence tournament
It started with old school psychology with Whitmer as the dastardly heel raking the eyes and using underhanded tactics to cut off the fiery babyface. Sullivan tripped the leg of Briscoe at one point, and Briscoe jumped out of the ring to confront him.
Martinez squared off with Briscoe for a brief standoff that was broken up when Whitmer blindsided Briscoe. Later on, Martinez and Sullivan interfered when they posted Briscoe. Nevertheless, Briscoe fought back and dove through the ropes with an elbow suicida. Fans chanted “man up” as Briscoe began to dominate.
Whitmer begged for more, then he cut off Briscoe with an exploder suplex for a near fall. Sullivan yelled at Whitmer to forget the pinfall and “sacrifice” Briscoe. Whitmer grasped a golden spike that was handed to him and prepared to apparently unleash horrific violence.
Mark Briscoe ran down to storm the ring and make the save. He never touched Whitmer so that he wouldn't get brother Jay disqualified. Chicken just distracted Whitmer and did a dive onto Martinez. Briscoe delivered the Jay Driller to advance in the tournament.
Afterwards, Whitmer gave a cryptic message about finishing something next week with a sacrifice of some sort.
Silas Young & Beer City Bruiser defeated Alex Reynolds & Jon Silver
Bruiser finished his pre-match beer before he and Young heeled on their opponents during the Code of Honor. They attacked Reynolds and Silver at the outset and began to pummel them.
Young and Bruiser worked over Reynolds before Silver cleaned house after a hot tag. After failing to do so earlier in the match, Silver suplexed Bruiser and popped the crowd. The underdog babyfaces ran wild briefly before being overtaken. Bruiser squashed Silver with a Banzai Drop and Young scored the pinfall.
Young got the house mic and basically said he and Bruiser were looking for a third drinking buddy and tag partner. He introduced Bull James, much to the dismay of Bruiser.
Young was putting over James before they swerved him. Young and Bruiser attacked James to administer a beat down that ended with Bruiser jumping off the top rope with a mighty frog splash.
Six-Man Tag Team Champions The Kingdom defeated Cheeseburger, Joey Daddiego & Will Ferrara
Much like the previous match, babyface Cheeseburger was attacked by the heels during the Code of Honor handshake. Kingdom signaled for their triple-team finisher, but Daddiego and Ferrara made the save. Through a commercial break, The Kingdom began working over Ferrara.
Eventually, Cheeseburger ran wild after a hot tag. From there everybody began jumping in. Cheeseburger dropped Vinny Marseglia with a palm strike. Cheeseburger then went to hit TK O’Ryan with the same, but O’Ryan instead used a pumphandle into a tombstone. Marseglia immediately leapt off the top with a senton bomb. Matt Taven then climbed up for a frog splash and he covered Cheeseburger for the pinfall.
Following a recap of the Broken Matt Hardy angle from Final Battle, ROH World Tag Team Champions The Young Bucks addressed the audience during an in-ring promo. Matt Jackson first off apologized for being hoarse, and attributed it to screaming for joy after signing supposedly the most lucrative contract in company history. “Thanks for staying,” the crowd chanted in response.
Nick Jackson claimed them retaining the tag titles at Final Battle proved they are the best team in company history since they defeated the Briscoes, which is the longest tenured team in ROH. Nick then brought up the Hardy angle.
“These two spot monkeys can’t be broken, and we won’t be deleted,” Nick said.
The lights in the building suddenly went dark. In the darkness, a drone flew to the ring and, with the lighting having returned, it hovered around Nick and Matt.
The Young Bucks superkicked the drone and it crashed to ringside. Speculation was the drone was Vanguard 1, meaning it was sent by Matt Hardy.
Chris Sabin defeated Colt Cabana to advance in the Decade of Excellence tournament
Sabin’s MCMG tag team partner, Alex Shelley, provided guest commentary alongside Kevin Kelly and Nigel McGuinness. In the match itself, Cabana showed he is very much underrated in terms of his psychology in this entertaining match.
Sabin was getting the better of Cabana when Cabana positioned himself so he could deliver a closed fist punch without the referee seeing him. He then sent Sabin out to ringside, and moments later he also taunted Shelley.
Cabana maintained the advantage until climbing to the top turnbuckle and missing a splash. Sabin made a comeback. After some near falls, The Boys ran down to ringside and began fanning Cabana. Distracted and irritated, Cabana turned his attention to The Boys. Sabin caught Cabana with a tornado DDT and transitioned into an inside cradle for the pin.
On the next episode of ROH (#278), the debut of Cody (Rhodes) the American Nightmare on ROH TV. Plus, Jay Lethal and Jushin Liger meet in a singles match. The episode is available on various streaming platforms throughout this week and airs Wednesday night at midnight ET on Comet TV. That channel on its website has a live stream for online viewing.
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