Dak Draper def. Austin Gunn in the Finals of the 2019 Top Prospect Tournament
I haven't followed this year's Top Prospect Tournament much at all outside of what's been shown on the weekly ROH TV show, so I wasn't really rooting for one guy over the other. I know Gunn is the son of WWE Hall of Famer (and current AEW producer) Billy Gunn, but that's about it. This event was riddled with technical issues (both on HonorClub and on FITE), so I was only able to see parts of this match. What I did see was fine but nothing special. With the win, Draper has earned himself a spot on the Ring of Honor roster as well as a future shot at Shane Taylor's ROH World Television Championship.
Dalton Castle def. Mark Haskins in a Final Battle No. 1 Contender's Tournament Quarterfinal Match
I can somewhat understand ROH having issues with airing the event during the first match, but the problems persisted during this matchup as well. Absolutely unacceptable. I honestly didn't care about the Top Prospect Tournament finals, but this was actually important and I was disappointed to miss most of it. From what I gather, it was good, but I can't speak to the rest of it without watching it in full. I was slightly surprised by the outcome (which wasn't shown), if only because Haskins is the superior athlete of the two, but I guess they're trying to build Castle back up. He'll battle PCO in the semifinals.
Jay Lethal def. PJ Black in a Final Battle No. 1 contender's Tournament Quarterfinal Match
Lethal was originally supposed to face Bandido, but apparently an injury kept Bandido (likely suffered at Death Before Dishonor the night prior) prevented him from competing. I was bummed to hear that because that bout could have been a show-stealer. That's not to say this was bad by any means, as they ended up having a quality contest. However, I never once thought Black could realistically beat Lethal, especially since he hasn't won a meaningful singles match in forever. By the way, why was Black put in this spot over virtually anyone else?
Kelly Klein Confronted The Allure
Angelina Love gloated for a few minutes about how she's defeated everyone in Women of Honor coming off her WOH World Championship win at Death Before Dishonor (which I think we can all agree was terrible). Klein confronted her to let her know that she's cashing in her guaranteed championship rematch at Glory by Honor in New Orleans on October 12th. This was a pretty forgettable segment that only drove home how few women ROH has. Klein is talented, but Love hasn't evolved at all since her last title reign a decade ago.
Bateman def. Jake Atlas
I've heard of Atlas from his participation in BOLA but had never seen him wrestle until now. Bateman, on the other hand, was totally unknown to me. This was supposed to serve as a showcase for both men in front of a bigger audience, so it worked in that way. The match was well wrestled, though I thought Atlas was the more impressive of the two. Despite that, Bateman won. Weird.
Josh "The Goods" Woods, Jeff Cobb, Kenny King and Brian Johnson def. Silas young, Cheeseburger, Rhett Titus and Joe Hendry in a Wild Card Match
We were told that the eight competitors were chosen at random (similar to what WWE did at Survivor Series 1995). I like stuff like this because it switches things up every so often and furthers feuds in unique ways. It also gives us some cool matches we've never seen before. With all of that being said, Young's team sucked. In all seriousness, this was an entertaining outing where everyone got to shine at one point or another. The best part was Woods pinning his "mentor" Young for the victory. Their post-match reactions were great, too.
Tracy Williams def. Flip Gordon in a No Disqualification Match
Apparently this match wasn't advertised in advance whatsoever, which is strange seeing as how it has been one of the better built feuds in ROH in recent memory. It feels like we see hardcore matches on every ROH show these days (what is this, IMPACT circa 2014?), but this was a really fun match with both guys putting forth a hell of an effort. I assume Williams winning decisively spells the end of their rivalry with Williams now moving on to something involving Bateman. I can't say that's a storyline that overly excites me.
Matt Kingdom Addressed His Future with Ring of Honor
Taven has been in the news in recent months, and no, not because of his lackluster reign as ROH World Champion (well, that too). Rather, his ROH contract was set to expire this Tuesday, October 1st, and although WWE was reportedly interested in bringing him in, he announced in this segment that he's sticking with ROH. It's been rumored that ROH offered him way more money than he'd be making in NXT, so he opted to stay. He came across like a total babyface here, so I'm interested if this is a permanent move or he'll be back to being a heel on the next show. Let's not forget he shook Rush's hand at the end of Death Before Dishonor, so it's possible.
ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Champions Villain Enterprises def. Dragon Lee and ROH World Tag Team champions The Briscoes
Lee teamed with his brother Rush a few months ago and defeated The Briscoes on an episode of ROH TV. Why The Briscoes agreed to partner up with Lee here was never explained. From an in-ring standpoint, this was a nice main event, but there was never any doubt that Villain Enterprises were retaining their titles. There were some innovative spots, but the drama and suspense wasn't really there for me. Villain Enterprises are excellent yet those six-man tag titles continue to be a total waste.
ROH should be embarrassed by this event. I'm not talking about the action itself or the results but rather its atrocious production value with no one being able to watch it live. What's worse is that I watched it well after it originally aired and I still had a ton of issues with it on every platform I tried. As I said earlier, that's inexcusable. For all the crap TNA used to get back in the day, even they had their stuff in order when it came to their televised shows, at least ensuring you could properly watch them back later. Avoid this event for that reason alone. The highlights will be up on upcoming episodes of ROH TV, anyway. Truth be told, there wasn't a lot to watch for outside of the main event and Williams vs. Gordon.
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