Ring of Honor – February 7, 2018: A Good Villain

Ring of Honor
Date: February 7, 2018
Location: Nashville Municipal Auditorium, Nashville, Tennessee
Commentators: Ian Riccaboni, Colt Cabana

I’m actually looking forward to this show for once as the company has been more entertaining as of late. The World Title situation has been very fun in recent weeks, which I never would have guessed with Dalton Castle on top. Hopefully the rest of the show can be just as entertaining as we move forward. Let’s get to it.

We look at Matt Taven attacking Cody last week, seemingly turning Cody face in the process.

Opening sequence.

Tag Team Titles: Best Friends vs. Motor City Machine Guns

The Guns are defending. Sabin and Chuckie start things off and it’s an exchange of armdrags into a standoff. Both guys tag so it’s off to Shelley vs. Barretta with Shelley being taken down. The Friends load up the hug but Sabin breaks that up. Friendship hater. Everything breaks down in a hurry and the Friends score with running corner clotheslines. That’s enough for the big hug and we take a break.

Back with Chuckie powerbombing Sabin for two but missing a moonsault. Sabin’s tornado DDT/dropkick combination takes the Friends down, followed by the Dream Sequence. Shelley tries a double Sliced Bread #2 on the floor but gets reversed, setting up a toss into a cutter. Barretta is right back up with a big flip dive and we get another hug in the aisle, only to have the Briscoes run in for the DQ at 9:13.

Rating: C-. I’m not wild on either of these teams but it’s not like it matters with the Briscoes being right there waiting to destroy whomever they face at the pay per view. The Best Friends do the hugging spot too often (twice in the match, plus another failed attempt) and it feels more like they’re just having fun than trying to win a title. That’s not a good thing and it happens too often around here.

Post match the Briscoes beat the Friends down before zip tying Shelley to the ropes. Sabin eats a Jay Driller “onto” a chair.

Beer City Bruiser and Brian Milonas debut next week.

Video on Punishment Martinez, talking about his fighting background and growing on the streets. He has a good, menacing voice here as he talks about torturing Jay White and various other names. After winning the Survival of the Fittest, it’s time to come for Dalton Castle and the World Title. Good promo here as Martinez shows us a bit of a different side.

Shane Taylor vs. Marty Scurll

Taylor throws him around to start so Marty stomps in the fingers to get a breather. A trip to the floor allows Marty to score with some superkicks from the apron, only to get shoved into the barricade. Back from a break with Shane missing a sitdown splash so Marty can score with a missile dropkick.

The suicide dive is broken up and Marty hits a tornado DDT off the apron. For some reason Marty tries the Ghostbuster, meaning he earns the splash for two. A chokebomb gives Taylor the same and amazingly enough, Marty’s finger break is stopped as he takes way too long. Somehow Marty manages a suplex for two, only to have the chickenwing broken up with ease. Shane grabs the umbrella but has it taken away, allowing Marty to throw powder in his face for the pin at 10:57. Ignore the referee not seeing the cloud of powder, the powder on the mat or the powder on Shane of course.

Rating: C. Marty was in full on face mode here and it was really working for him. I’m starting to get my head around the idea that a villain can be a good guy as Marty’s talents are starting to show more and more every time. I could easily go for Marty vs. Castle at Supercard of Honor and it would be a good match, if nothing else because of the promos.

Post match Scurll calls out Martinez, who sneaks in through the crowd. Next week, Punishment gets a World Title shot against Castle and Marty wants the first shot at the new champ. Martinez nods and then chokeslams Marty.

We look back at Bully Ray’s retirement last week.

The Women’s Title tournament starts next week. It’s about time.

Matt Taven vs. Cody

Taven speeds things up to start but neither can hit an early finisher. A standoff takes us to a very early break and we come back with Cody being tossed to the floor. They switch places though and Cody hits a big dive onto all three members of the Kingdom. Taven sends him arm first into the barricade though, followed by a whip into the post. The Kingdom gets in a few cheap shots in a sequence that works so well that they do it again.

Back in and both guys try a springboard kick to the head, meaning it’s another double knockdown as we take a break. We come back again with Cody hitting an Alabama Slam for two of his own. Taven kicks him down but his frog splash hits knees. The Kingdom tries to interfere again and that means a double ejection. The distraction lets Taven grab his walking stick but Cody kicks him low and hooks the small package for a pin at 11:25.

Rating: C-. I’m still not feeling Taven but I’m not sure how much sense it makes to have Cody go over here. Cody is a much bigger star than Taven and doesn’t need the win here. Let Taven get a pin here, especially if it’s by shenanigans, and build him up a bit if that’s where they’re going. The match was fine, albeit with a lot of the usual Kingdom shenanigans.

Post match the Kingdom beats on Cody, including crushing his hand. Taven forces him to kiss the ring to end the show.

Overall Rating: C+. The roll takes a bit of a hit here but I still like what’s going on here more than most of the last year. There’s a great top of the roster here and that makes for a good show, especially with the Briscoes being as awesome as they’ve been in years to carry the tag division. Good show here as Ring of Honor has stopped being a chore to watch.

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