Ring of Honor TV – April 20, 2016: I’ll Be Waiting Over Here

Ring of Honor
Date: April 20, 2016
Location: Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Attendance: 1,367
Commentators: Kevin Kelly, Mr. Wrestling 3

This is an interesting show as we’re taking a look at matches from Honor Rising 2016, which took place over in Tokyo….in February. Yeah instead of moving forward with the post Supercard of Honor tapings, we’re going back to a bunch of matches that really don’t mean much. I’m not sure why they would do this but in theory it’s to set up Global Wars in May. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.

Jushin Thunder Liger/Matt Sydal vs. Ryusuke Taguchi/Dalton Castle

Castle has the Boys with him, Taguchi has his own peacock style look and Sydal is half of the Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions. Castle and Liger get things going as the announcers talk about how exciting this will be even though it was filmed back in February. Liger takes him down to the mat and rocks Castle into a modified surfboard.

That means it’s time for some fanning but Castle would rather strut than dive onto Liger. As you might expect, Liger slides back in, chases Castle off, and poses with the Boys instead. Back from a break with Taguchi shoving Sydal away to break up a headlock. Taguchi can’t hit his hip attack so Matt gets in a spinwheel kick. Wrestling 3 to Kelly: “Now you’re a guy with strong hips.”

Liger comes back in and counters another hip attack into an atomic drop (smart move) but Castle lifts Taguchi up to drive him into Liger in the corner. Sydal fires off some kicks for two on Taguchi but it’s off to Castle for some running shots in the corner. A nice overhead release belly to belly gets two on Sydal as everything breaks down. Sydal kicks Castle down and hits the shooting star for the pin at 8:20.

Rating: C. Castle and Liger were fun but the rest of the match was just there. It’s another match with four guys who have no real reason to be in a match together save for some stuff that happened in another promotion, which of course Ring of Honor doesn’t feel the need to educate us on. That’s where these shows fall apart for me: you can have wrestling for the sake of wrestling, but it better be really, really strong to make up for the lack of stories.

Video on the set being built.

Delirious vs. Gedo

These guys are the bookers for the promotions and Delirious is insane. Delirious kneels in the corner and doesn’t respond to Gedo’s attempt at a handshake. The bell rings and Delirious goes nuts, as is his custom. After a half lap around the ring, Delirious comes back inside to do a quick wrestling sequence. Some rakes to the chest and back have Gedo in trouble and we take a break.

Back (after a video on Moose making his New Japan debut) with Delirious charging into two boots in the corner and getting caught in a figure four. That goes nowhere so Gedo punches him in the face a few times instead. A low superkick knocks something out of Delirious’ mouth as the announcers talk about a match taking place in two and a half months, or a week depending on which timeline you follow. Delirious misses a top rope splash and gets rolled up for two, only to come back with a crucifix for the pin at 7:53.

Rating: D+. As much as I hate to say this, yeah whatever and next please. It’s a match between the bookers which isn’t interesting on its own and again the wrestling didn’t do anything special for it either. Delirious is funny but there are so many other people who can’t make the show for the sake of booker vs. booker.

Roderick Strong is ready to defend the title when Bobby Fish pops up to say he’s going to win the title in Las Vegas. And I’m sure this months long story will reach a satisfying and fulfilling conclusion.

Long video on Dalton Castle in Japan.

TV Title: Roderick Strong vs. Tomohiro Ishii

Ishii, a very tough man, is challenging. Strong’s chop has no effect and Ishii scares him out to the floor. Back in and Ishii keeps hammering on him while no selling any of the champ’s strikes. With nothing else working, Strong stomps on the open toes and we take a break. Back with Strong dropping him spine first onto the apron for his first real offense.

In a discussion that gets very stupid as soon as you think about it, Corino says we need to watch Supercard of Honor to see a legend returning. Now of course he won’t say who it was because that would defeat the point of getting the show. That is of course TOTALLY different than watching a title match to see if there’s a new champion WHO ALREADY DEFENDED HIS TITLE ON THIS TV SHOW. Strong kicks him in the face again before staying on the back, meaning the chops have more of an effect this time.

An Angle Slam gets two for the champ but Ishii comes back with a powerslam. A Saito suplex on Strong takes us to another break and we come back with Strong suplexing Ishii off the apron and down to the floor. Ishii starts no selling strikes again and gets two off a big powerbomb. Strong comes back with a top rope superplex and the Sick Kick for two. Some jumping knees to the head don’t do much to Ishii as he headbutts Strong down and gets two more off that sliding lariat (I still don’t get the appeal.). A brainbuster gives Ishii the title at 20:07.

Rating: B. Good main event here even with the ending being spoiled in the first place. Strong is a good champion but I’m not big on Ishii with his toughman stuff. I know it’s insanely popular in Japan but it’s never been my style. There was some good selling here though as Strong found the weak spot with his back to make the match much better than I was expecting.

Overall Rating: D+. Hey, did you know New Japan is awesome? I don’t know if I made it clear enough that New Japan is awesome. Now that it’s clear that you know New Japan is awesome (because New Japan is totally awesome), maybe we can get back to some actual Ring of Honor stuff instead of showcasing how awesome New Japan is (because New Japan IS AWESOME!).

Kelly said we’ll be seeing more from this show “for the next few weeks”. Let’s assume that means two more weeks at least, meaning we won’t be getting back to fresh Ring of Honor stuff until May 11 at the earliest. That’s nearly six weeks after Ring of Honor taped stuff in Dallas, so unless they’re just not airing that stuff, we’ll probably be seeing fallout from Global Wars, meaning EVEN MORE New Japan stuff.

I get the appeal of the Japanese guys coming in but this has gone WAY too far as the promotion is basically beholden to whatever New Japan wants at this point. The thing is, that’s not what I watch RING OF HONOR for. I watch Ring of Honor to see the Ring of Honor guys and whatever stories they’re doing.

However, it seems that I’m going to be sitting here for the better part of a month before I get any of that because we need to see matches from two months ago which have almost no bearing on anything going on in Ring of Honor at the moment. They need to cut this stuff out but that doesn’t seem to be happening anytime soon, which is one of the most annoying things I’ve seen a promotion do in a long time.

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  1. Jeff says:

    I don’t get why wrestling companies keep doing talent exchanges. I have no reason to care about the guys from the other company. I will usually have no idea who they are. They will leave after a short amount of time and mean nothing.

    What does this achieve and who has it ever helped?

  2. ted says:

    It achieves a few things

    1. exposure to the wrestlers from both companies audiences.

    2. More money by being more well known and being booked on more shows.

    3. It helps the audience because now you can choose to learn about those wrestling organizations and watch their shows.

    it actually makes a lot of sense and helps everyone involved. The problem here seems to be the way they’re going about it.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    Having it every now and then is fine. Having it for a month with matches from February is a really bad idea. I don’t mind the New Japan guys showing up here and there but at this point ROH is a step up fromNew Japan’s developmental.