Ring of Honor TV – February 4, 2016: There’s Something Fishy Around Here

Ring of Honor
Date: February 3, 2016
Location: Cabarrus Arena and Events Center, Concord, North Carolina
Commentators: Kevin Kelly, Mr. Wrestling 3

We’re rapidly approaching the 14th Anniversary Show but we’re a few weeks back in the syndication run. The big story coming out of last week was Michael Elgin offering to bring in Hiroshi Tanahashi to team with him against the Briscoes in a dream match, though I’m not sure how many people were dreaming of it. Let’s get to it.

TV Title: Roderick Strong vs. Masada

Strong is defending and Masada is a death match guy. They go to the mat to start with Masada grabbing a knee bar to send the champ bailing into the ropes. Back up and they chop it out to take it outside with Masada taking over. That actually doesn’t last long as Masada sends him back inside for a knee to the face and a backbreaker onto the apron as we take a break.

Back with Masada chopping away but Strong slips out (or might have been dropped) of a powerbomb. Instead Masada grabs a Death Valley Driver for two but Strong starts cranking things up with another running knee and a belly to back for two of his own. Masada pulls out some weapon but gets it knocked away, meaning he has to settle for a powerbomb instead. That means it’s time for some bamboo but Strong is a wrestler so he hits his third knee to the head to retain at 8:16.

Rating: D+. Masada had some better moments in there than I was expecting but Strong was getting repetitive in there with the knees to the head. Like, throw a dropkick or something dude. I really don’t see why Strong had to turn heel in the first place as he’s lost some of his steam since the turn and isn’t as entertaining as he was before.

Post match here’s Bobby Fish to say he better move to another planet if Strong wants to be the best wrestler in the world. Apparently Roddy vs. the World is about Strong defending the title against anyone not named Bobby Fish. Strong things Bobby is having issues dealing with his age catching up with him but Bobby offers to go to war whenever the champ wants.

We look back at Elgin’s challenge to the Briscoes from last week.

Top Prospect Tournament First Round: Colby Corino vs. Punisher Martinez

Martinez is a good sized guy who towers over Corino. Colby tries some quick strikes and gets his head taken off with a clothesline. Some hard throws send Colby into the corner and an over the shoulder backbreaker gets two. A Liger Kick staggers Punisher and a middle rope Diamond Cutter gets two on the big man and a flip dive to the floor drops Martinez again. The fans are getting behind Corino here but Punisher gives him a Last Ride onto the apron for a SICK crash. Back in and a sitout chokeslam advances Punisher at 3:28.

Rating: C. Martinez looked good here and could have a future in this place. Colby is a good choice for a ragdoll and ROH is the kind of place that could go somewhere as size doesn’t mean as much around here. Nothing to see here but that Last Ride bump looked great and made up for some of the other stuff.

Post match BJ Whitmer gets in the ring to tell Colby that he did well but now it’s time for Steve Corino to take off that mask. Steve Corino is the man who spent Christmas with his new family while Colby was with Whitmer over the holidays. Wrestling 3 denies it again so Whitmer grabs Colby by the throat and yells at him for calling his father on Christmas. Colby is forgiven for that, but not for the sins of his father, meaning it’s time for another beating. Whitmer throws Colby in front of Wrestling 3 and tells the masked man that he’s proven what BJ has been saying.

We look back at the announcement of the #1 contenders match from last week.

Nigel McGuinness has replaced Mr. Wrestling 3 on commentary as the masked man helped Colby to the back.

ReDRagon vs. Adam Cole/Jay Lethal

Adam won’t come in for the pre-match handshake so it’s Lethal vs. Kyle to get things going. Cole actually offers to tag in but tags right back out after a quick circle of the ring. We get a standoff until Lethal grabs a headlock, only to get countered into a cross armbreaker. Lethal is too close to the ropes but it’s off to Fish to keep the champ in trouble. The announcers talk about the incoming New Japan guys as Kyle stays on the arm.

Cole finally comes in to face Fish but freaks out when Kyle is about to be tagged in. Lethal gets Fish to the floor and whips him into the barricade before the tag can bring in O’Reilly though, allowing the heels to take over. We take a break and come back with Lethal dropkicking Fish in the back of the head to set up some posing. Cole comes in and eats a clothesline, allowing the tag off to Kyle as things speed up again.

It’s back to Lethal who gets caught in another cross armbreaker as everything breaks down. Cole and Fish go to the floor so it’s time for Lethal and O’Reilly to trade their forearms, because that’s how you fight in ROH. Chasing the Dragon is broken up and the Lethal Combination sets up a Shining Wizard on Kyle for two. We take another break and come back with Lethal dropping a top rope elbow on Fish but getting caught in a dragon screw legwhip.

We finally get the showdown of Cole vs. O’Reilly, meaning it’s time to grab each other by the head and fire off forearms. Kyle, who can barely stand up, no sells a German Suplex and keeps hammering away, though he’s nice enough to sell a superkick. Lethal comes back in and kicks Kyle in the head but gives Cole the Lethal Injection by mistake. Chasing the Dragon puts Adam away at 16:55.

Rating: B. Nice long tag match here with the right ending as I can’t stand it when a makeshift team who doesn’t even like each other beats one of the best teams the company has ever seen. I’m still not wild on ReDRagon as singles guys but they’re a very entertaining tag team who work well together.

Overall Rating: C+. The main event more than carried this show, as is almost always the case with the tag division. The rest of the show worked more than well enough though with Corino vs. Whitmer shaping up quite well, even though I’m not sure how strong of a match it’s eventually going to be. I’m liking this show far better than I was expecting to and it’s really found its niche in recent months.

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