Ring of Honor
Episode 200
July 22, 2015

Honestly, I usually grade Ring of Honor Television on a curve. In part, I believe constant negativity turns off readers. In part, I know not everyone wants the same things out of a weekly wrestling show. But, at least for this week, that stops now.

This was one of the most mind-numbingly stupid uses of an hour of television in the history of episodic wrestling. ROH is still early in their new deal with Destination America to broadcast their weekly show, which means they are introducing their product to a potentially new audience. They are coming off an episode that saw the show’s ratings fall through the floor. They have an internet pay-per-view, Death Before Dishonor, coming on Friday, two days after the airing of this episode. Presumably, they also want to attract people to their live shows.

And with all that on the line, I swear to God they aired a clip of a match between Lance Storm and Michael Bennett. How can anyone at Ring of Honor possibly explain that? How could that match possibly bring one more viewer to their television show? One more iPPV buy? One more ticket bought for a live event?

I understand this was the 200th episode and this episode was to celebrate the longevity of the show. But NOBODY CARES. You have a product to sell. Don’t pat yourself on the back, especially by showing a collection of matches that mostly meant nothing. If I watched this episode thinking it was a recap of the greatest events from the first 200 episodes of ROH TV, I’d wonder why I should waste time watching any more of this crap.

Yes, I’ve cherry-picked the worst clip they used. Here are the other exciting moments from ROH’s 200th episode:

  • The Addiction winning the ROH World Tag Team Championships in the payoff of the Knights of the Rising Dawn angle, which they’ve basically acted like didn’t exist since about two weeks after this match;
  • A 2013 Steel Cage Warfare match, from which five of the nine participants are no longer with the company and only one participant is even booked for Friday’s iPPV;
  • A recap of the boring 2015 Top Prospect Tournament, the winner of which isn’t booked for the iPPV and has been involved in zero major programs or matches;
  • Matt Sydal & ACH vs. reDRagon. Well, at least these teams are facing each other at Death Before Dishonor. No, actually, Matt Sydal won’t be there and ACH and reDRagon are in completely separate matches with no common thread; and
  • An AJ Styles vs. Hanson match that reminds us that one of the biggest stars in the world won’t be on the show on Friday.

When it started with the clip of The Addiction vs. reDRagon, I thought that was the lamest possible way to start a go-home show but it seemed that they at least were going to use clips to enhance some kind of build toward the event for which they want you to pay $19.95. NOPE. Here’s just a bunch of random crap with no rhyme or reason and certainly not the very best stuff we have to offer to at least try to hook you on our television show. It’s like they spun a wheel to pick clips and ended up on the Coal Miner’s Glove match every time.

There was one new match to close out the episode. But I’m not even going to bore you with a traditional review of it. The match was Jay Lethal, Donovan Dijak, J. Diesel & Truth Martini vs. The Briscoes, Roderick Strong & ODB. In the match’s defense, it does feature the combatants for the main event of Death Before Dishonor. It also features four people who aren’t booked and two guys who are in an a tag match but whose opponents are not involved in any way. And because this show is just one long stream of piss onto anyone who would take the time to watch it, the match ends with ODB spitting whatever’s in her flask into Truth Martini’s eyes and rolling him up to win. Go to hell.

The main reason I’m skeptical that WWE is consciously doing anything to try to undermine ROH through NXT is WWE has to know that ROH is an amateur organization. They don’t get live shows up on VOD in a reasonable amount of time, even when it’s the highly-anticipated ROH/NJPW supershows. They misled their customers about the online availability of their television show when they got on Destination America. This site spent a solid week trying to figure out if their last PPV, Best in the World, was going to be available on ROH’s website and ROH either ignored or refused to clarify the issue. It’s a second-rate company, which is made painfully obvious by its decision to air a clip show on national television two days before an iPPV. Why would anyone buy that show? Why would anyone watch another week of this meaningless television product?

If you haven’t watched this episode yet, please don’t. And not just because it’s bad. But because Ring of Honor is stupid for airing it and they don’t deserve one more hit on their website or one more view on their syndicated broadcasts. I want this company to succeed because I love wrestling. And I want people to watch their show and read these reviews because I enjoy writing them. But I can’t pretend like we aren’t all enabling ROH’s incompetent management.