Dalton Castle & Silas Young look to settle their feud once and for all in a Fight Without Honor!
Ring Of Honor TV
April 9th, 2016
Sam’s Town Casino – Las Vegas, Nevada
ROH World Tag Team Titles – War Machine vs. Roppongi Vice
Roppongi Vice won this title shot after emerging victorious in a tag team gauntlet match a few weeks ago on TV (which they did show a highlight of before the match). Romero comes out wearing his Black Tiger mask, which was pretty cool. For War Machine, this is their 4th defense of the ROH World Tag Team Titles. I have to say, their reign really hasn’t been that stellar thus far. It hasn’t exactly been bad, but they really haven’t had that one standout match yet as champions. Fortunately, they really picked things up here, and had the best match of their title reign to date against Roppongi Vice. War Machine showed off their power at many points, but Romero & Beretta kept fighting back. Those two are just so good together. I might be the only one who thinks this, but I hope Roppongi Vice do get a run with the ROH World Tag Team Titles at some point. They’ve been an infinitely more entertaining team compared to The Forever Hooligans. While I don’t think it’ll happen soon, the fact that Rocky Romero just signed a two year deal with New Japan gives me hope that there’s a chance it could happen. Back to the match, the second half was especially good. The match came to an end when Ray Rowe killed Beretta with a powerbomb on the ring frame, which was followed by Fallout on Romero for the pin.
Winners: War Machine ***1/2
Up next, we have Donovan Dijak coming out with Prince Nana. Dijak is wearing a Jay Lethal T-Shirt. Nana takes the microphone first, and teases the fans about the contents of the envelopes he had been handing out over the past few months (specifically to Caprice Coleman, Will Ferrara, & Donovan Dijak). He says people are wondering about “the enlightened”, as well as who Nana thinks will be the next ROH World Champion. A few people in the crowd actually shouted Jimmy Rave’s name, but Nana declared that he thinks Dijak will be the next ROH World Champion (A small digression: It would be really cool to see Jimmy Rave in ROH again, especially with all of the buzz he’s gotten recently through his work on the Southeast Independents). Dijak takes the mic, and says that for the last year, his only purpose in ROH was to protect Jay Lethal and the House of Truth, before tossing aside the Jay Lethal T-Shirt he was wearing with disgust. Before Dijak could say much more, Jay Lethal comes out with Taeler Hendrix and makes a beeline for Dijak! The two brawl in the ring, and a ton of security is needed to separate the two.
Now, I like the fact that Donovan Dijak is getting a pretty significant push, and I also like the fact that Prince Nana is on TV as a more active character again, but I’m not really sure who I’m supposed to be cheering for here. Theoretically, Dijak should be the babyface here, but in this segment, Lethal came out to a pretty positive reaction (as least, based on what I saw), and him going right after Dijak the way he did made him seem like he was the good guy here. To go along with all of that, ROH put out a video recently showing Truth Martini recovering at the hospital.
Of course, we’ve seen videos like this all of the time when a wrestler gets injured. The issue here, is that Jay Lethal, Truth Martini, and The House of Truth as a whole are heels, and have been for a long time. To me, it’s just really confusing, Dijak breaking away from The House of Truth was a babyface move, but just looking at how the storyline has developed, I feel like now we’re supposed to cheer for Jay Lethal, who’s looking to get revenge on Dijak for putting his best friend in the hospital (since sending someone to the hospital is usually a heel tactic). Combine that with the fact that Lethal is now feuding with the returning Colt Cabana (who is most certainly a babyface), and this whole situation gets even stranger. Again, I don’t mind the idea of a Lethal/Dijak feud, and I think the eventual match between the two could be really good. However, the story this far has been shaky, at best.
We get one more backstage from Dalton Castle before his Fight Without Honor against Silas Young. Castle says that his goals in previous matches with Young have been different, but tonight, he wants to hurt him. Another solid promo from Castle here. I especially liked the fact that he’s gotten more serious closer to the actual match.
ACH vs. Kenny Omega
Before this match, we got dueling merchandise promos from ACH & Kenny Omega, which was very appropriate. Speaking of with, I LOVE the new ACH T-Shirt, which is inspired by Dragon Ball Z, and goes well with his Dragon Ball Z-themed wrestling gear. I’ll definitely be getting that at some point. Omega is, of course, accompanied by The Young Bucks, who are wearing matching camo hoodies & sweatpants. They were a fair amount of comedy in the first part of this match. ACH was channeling his “Stone Cold” persona from PWG, pulling out a variety of Steve Austin moves. Later on, when ACH was taken out by The Young Bucks on the outside, one of the actually placed a banana peel on the ground to explain to Tiger Hattori (who was distracted by Omega during the interference) why ACH fell down. The second half of this match was more action-packed, with some really nice back & forth between the two. Omega would eventually outlast ACH, hitting the One-Winged Angel for the win. Personally, I thought this was a pretty entertaining match, though if someone didn’t like this match, I would totally understand why. It did have a PWG-esque vibe to it which, again, could be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on what you think of the comedy stuff. This wasn’t necessarily the amazing match that I thought it would be going into it, but for a TV match, this was still very fun.
Winner: Kenny Omega ***1/2
There was an Adam Cole promo that they showed during the commercial break in the ACH/Kenny Omega match, where Cole talked about his recent encounter with Matt Taven. He says, with regard to Taven kicking him of The Kingdom, that the pain medication Taven was on after his surgery must have made him crazy. Cole says that he alone created The Kingdom, and that Matt Taven & Michael Bennett were jokes when he was out with an injury last year. He says that Bennett & Taven were “Bullet Club rip-offs” that nobody took seriously (I can’t say that’s a lie). By contrast, Cole says that everyone took him seriously because he was a former ROH World Champion & ROH World TV Champion, adding that Taven kicking him out was fine, as he was holding him back anyway.
A fantastic promo from Adam Cole here, as always. He’s easily one of the best promo in the company, and I think one of the more underrated promos in wrestling. It’s easy to forget just how good of a promo Cole is. He can make you care about any feud he’s involved in, including this one (and I say that with the feeling that there are some that probably don’t like the idea of a Cole/Taven feud). Also, a lot of what Cole said in this promo has truth to it. When it came to The Kingdom, there was a general dislike for Matt Taven/Michael Bennett tag team (especially during their run in New Japan, which wasn’t that good), and as a whole, it was Cole’s involvement in the group that helped Bennett & Taven. I mean, the fact that Bennett & Taven also used “The Internet Darlings” as their tag team name is just eye-rolling.
Speaking of Matt Taven, here’s a promo from him that was just put up a few days ago. It wasn’t on the TV show itself, but I thought it would be good idea to pair it with Cole’s promo. Plus, Taven continued to tease recreating The Kingdom in his own image (which he mentioned a few weeks ago during his in-ring segment with Cole), which is a direction that I’m really intrigued by for a few different reasons.
Fight Without Honor – Dalton Castle vs. Silas Young
This was built as the first time that a Fight Without Honor has been happened on ROH TV during the SBG Era. It’s crazy to think that this feud has been going on for about nine to ten months. Look, I really liked the concept of this when it first started, just because these are two characters that are just naturally opposed to each other. With that being said, the feud has gone on much longer than I think anyone expected, or wanted. I don’t necessarily have an issue with them having this match, as technically both men each had two victories over the other. A fifth match was necessary, but they could have done this Fight Without Honor at Final Battle 2015.
With that being said, I thought this was a really good match, as easily the best match these two have had. Was it the greatest Fight Without Honor in history? No, but I thought it was perfectly fitting for what was essentially a midcard feud. Both guys worked very hard here, using a variety of different weapons. Chairs, Trash Can Lids, Tables, and Ladders all came into play. I also liked how Dalton Castle carried himself in this match. He showed here that was able to drop some of the more flamboyant and comedic parts of his character when a serious situation called for him to do so. The best example of this was that he came out without his usual entrance rope, and had The Boys stay in the back for most of the match. There were a lot of cool spots in this match, including one towards the end where Young took a nasty looking backdrop through a table. Maybe this is just me, but there’s a little bit of a soft spot in my heart for these ROH hardcore/plunder matches (one of my favorite ROH DVD Compilations is actually the Ring of Hardcore compilation). Sure, a fair amount of those matches can suck, but sometimes they’re really good, and the latter was the case here. In the end, Dalton Castle would give Silas Young the Bang-A-Rang on a steel chair for the win. After the match, Castle celebrated with The Boys as confetti flew through the air to close the show.
Winner: Dalton Castle ***3/4
Final Thoughts: While this show didn’t have the incredible match like last week’s episode, I thought this was still, for the most part, a very solid edition of Ring of Honor Wrestling Television. The only questionable thing on the show was the Dijak/Lethal, but that was more of a critique on the creative end, and not necessarily on the performers themselves. From a match quality perspective, this show was very consistent. Again, you opinion on this episode as a whole may vary depending of what you think of ACH vs. Kenny Omega and Dalton Castle vs. Silas Young, but I thought every match on this show was very good, with Castle/Young in a Fight Without Honor being the best of the three, in my opinion. On the whole, this was a very easy and enjoyable show to watch.