After a controversial ending to the Global Wars PPV, ROH & NJPW come to Dearborn, Michigan for night one of War Of The Worlds ’16!

ROH/NJPW War Of The Worlds 2016: Night 1
May 9, 2016
Ford Community & Performing Arts Center – Dearborn, Michigan
Bell Time – 7:30 PM

Before I get into the matches for tonight’s show, one of the things that immediately caught my attention as this card was being announced was the fact that Bullet Club (The Young Bucks & The Guerrillas of Destiny) were listed as appearing but had no announced matches. I figured that they would insert themselves in some fashion into one of the other matches on this show (I’ll get to that in a minute), but with the reveal of Adam Cole as the group’s newest member, I think that’s even more likely. Additionally, there are a number of people who could feasibly still make it onto this show (Colt Cabana & The Addiction are on the show poster, while Adam Page, Kamaitachi, Juice Robinson, & Cheeseburger all worked the PPV last night). They could also throw a bunch of these guys against The Bullet Club in a Ten-Man Tag. We’ll have to wait and see what happens, but don’t be shocked if (at least) one of these matches gets changed around a little bit.

The Briscoes vs. The Motor City Machine Guns

While the advertised Main Event of this show doesn’t have any New Japan talents, it’s still one of the most fascinating matches of this entire tour. These two teams actually have a long history with each other in ROH. Their first encounter, which was won by The Briscoes, took place back at Good Times, Great Memories in April of 2007, back when Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley were still known as The Murder City Machine Guns. Their second encounter, which was won by Sabin & Shelley, took place at Return Engagement one year later, in April of 2008, meaning the series is tied 1-1 heading into tonight’s match. I expect this match to be really good to great. While they’re not peak-MCMG, Sabin & Shelley have still proven themselves during this run that they can still go, and The Briscoes are always a fun team to watch, so this has the potential to be an awesome match. However, if there’s any match where I think we’ll see a Bullet Club attack, leading to an Eight-Man Tag or a Ten-Man Tag, it’ll be this one. As far as the result goes, it can really go either way, but since this show is taking place in the Detroit area, I think I’ll go with Sabin & Shelley here. Prediction: The Motor City Machine Guns

reDRagon vs. Jay Lethal & Tetsuya Naito

I know this card has a lot of tag matches, but a number of them have the potential to be really good. Case in point, this match right here. During the Honor Rising shows in Japan back in February, Jay Lethal & The House of Truth formed an alliance with Los Ingobernables de Japon. Having the ROH World Champion and the IWGP Heavyweight Champion on the same team is pretty cool. What’s really interesting about this particular match is that, after last night, Kyle O’Reilly is the only participant who isn’t holding a championship, as Bobby Fish won the ROH World TV Title last night. As for the match itself, it has the potential to be great. Seeing these guys work together should be a lot of fun, and it could be one of the better matches of the entire night. It’ll be really interesting to see who takes the loss here. O’Reilly might be the obvious choice, since he doesn’t have a title, but I think the option that would make the most sense is O’Reilly beating Jay Lethal. It would put O’Reilly right back into title contention, redeem his loss (in some ways) to Naito at Global Wars, and continue the story of O’Reilly having Lethal’s number (which has been the story for the past year). Prediction: reDRagon

Moose (with Stokely Hathaway) vs. Tomohiro Ishii

Out of all of the ROH vs. NJPW matchups on this year’s tour, this is definitely one of the most intriguing matches. We all know that Ishii is a beast who can beat the crap out of anyone he gets in the ring with, but it’ll be interesting to see him go up against someone who’s much bigger than him in the form of Moose. I’m just fascinated to see how it turns out. It could be disappointing, but it could also be a lot better than people might think. Unfortunately for Moose, I think Ishii will be getting the win here. Prediction: Tomohiro Ishii

War Machine vs. Kazuchika Okada & Gedo

It seems like Okada always ends up in a tag team match with Gedo on at least one of these shows. So I think it’s blatantly obvious to everyone that War Machine will be hitting Gedo with Fallout to score the win, but I’m actually pretty excited for these interactions that Okada will have with Hanson & Ray Rowe. It won’t be a stellar match by any means, but it has the potential to be very solid. Prediction: War Machine

Roderick Strong vs. Jushin “Thunder” Liger

It’s hard to believe that this is a first-time ever match. I think this has the potential to be one of the standout matches of the entire tour. Strong is always fantastic, and Liger has proven time & time again that he’s still capable of putting on great matches. This should be a lot of fun to watch when the show eventually comes out on VOD. As for the winner, I think Strong has to take this one. Prediction: Roderick Strong

Hiroshi Tanahashi & “Unbreakable” Michael Elgin vs. The All-Night Express

I know it’s a little disappointing that Tanahashi isn’t in any singles matches on this entire tour, but on the bright side, his tag team with Michael Elgin is such an entertaining team to watch. Here, they’re taking on Kenny King & Rhett Titus. While I’d say this was on the lower end, in terms of excitement, compared to some of the other tag team matches on this card, this still has the potential to be a very solid match. I’m intrigued to see the interaction Kenny King in particular has with Elgin & Tanahashi. Once again, the winner of this match really isn’t in question, but it should still be a good match. Prediction: Hiroshi Tanahashi & “Unbreakable” Michael Elgin

KUSHIDA vs. Dalton Castle

Here we have another match on this show that has the potential to be great. KUSHIDA is such an amazing talent in the ring, and Castle is one of the most entertaining acts on ROH’s roster. If anything, this match will be a lot of fun. Now a lot people like to make light of ROH’s win-loss record when it comes to matches against New Japan guys, but KUSHIDA is definitely someone who we know can lose during these tours with ROH (he lost matches to Roderick Strong & Michael Elgin on last year’s tour, and lost to Adam Cole on ROH TV a few months ago). In that regard, I think it gives this match a little more drama as far as the winner is concerned, but for a prediction, I’m still going with KUSHIDA here. Prediction: KUSHIDA

ACH & Matt Sydal vs. Silas Young & The Beer City Bruiser

To be honest, when I saw the card for this show, this match stuck out like a sore thumb. I understand that they may want to get Silas Young & The Beer City Bruiser on at least one of these shows (and to be fair, they are a very solid mid-card tag team), but it does feel like a bit of a waste of ACH & Matt Sydal. Still, I’m sure this match will be fine. With both guys having some big singles matches coming up in Toronto (Sydal vs. Okada) and NYC (ACH vs. Naito), I would expect ACH & Matt Sydal to get the win here. Prediction: ACH & Matt Sydal