ROH World Television Champion Dragon Lee def. Andrew Everett
This marked Everett's first Ring of Honor match in some time, as he was out with a knee injury for a while. I don't believe he's been officially signed by ROH as of now, but he should be. He looks a little bigger than the last time I saw him in IMPACT a few years ago, but he's still a hell of a hand in the ring and the crowd was into all of his offense. While I never bought into the possibility of him becoming the TV Champion here, he had an awesome performance, nonetheless. ROH was smart to put these two in the opener and kick off the show on a high note.
Bully Ray and The Allure Attacked Maria Manic
Bully Ray attacked Manic at Final Battle Fallout last month, so it looks like she'll be the latest person he targets. I don't feel too strongly about intergender wrestling either way, but I can't help but think that ROH is doing this because their women's division is depleted. Hell, the status of the WOH World Championship is still up in the air at the moment. To his credit, Bully generated a ton of heat here from the crowd, but I can't say I'm excited for this feud. It is odd that he's dating Velvet Sky (who was originally a part of The Allure), yet she hasn't been seen on TV in many months.
The Allure def. Sumie Sakai and Nicole Savoy
Angelina Love and Mandy Leon stuck around to face Sakai and Savoy in what was a really poor match. Unfortunately, this has been a trend with the Women of Honor for a while now. Sakai and Savoy are talented and they did their best to make this bearable, but I'm sorry, The Allure are awful. The most interesting thing about this was Sakai turning heel for the first time by attacking Savoy afterward. I'm more invested in that story than I am anything involving The Allure.
Dak Draper def. Jason Cade
Draper is set to receive his long-awaited opportunity at the ROH World Television Championship soon, so this served as a showcase for him. He had a solid showing and he appears to have all the tools necessary to be successful in ROH, but he's come across as bland so far. This was another match of his where his opponent looked more impressive than he did. Like Everett, here's hoping they bring back Cade in the future.
ROH World Tag Team Champion Jonathan Gresham def. Josh "The Goods" Woods by Count-Out
Gresham and Jay Lethal have been a terrific team these past six months, but Woods and Silas Young have become really good together as well. Woods and Young are undefeated as a unit, so it was fine for Gresham to outsmart Woods here and beat him by count-out. It was certainly different than everything else on the show due to its focus on mat-based wrestling and whatnot, but I enjoyed it for what it was and thought they utilized the time they had well.
The Brisoces def. Lifeblood and Jeff Cobb & Dan Maff in a Three-Way Tag Team Match
ROH is in the process of slowly but surely building back up their tag team division, which is encouraging to see. I doubt it will ever be what it once was when they had The Young Bucks, The Addiction, War Machine, reDRAGON, and The Motor City Machine Guns among other tandems, but it's better than it was even a few months ago with the addition of Young and Woods as well as Cobb and Maff. This was a very well worked three-way tag as the pace was kept consistent throughout and the final few minutes were a blast. Cobb and Maff will be competing for the ROH World Tag Team Championship in February, but The Briscoes winning makes some sense because of how they're still owed a rematch for the belts at some point.
Shane Taylor Made His Contract Demands to ROH COO Joe Koff
It was reported coming out of Final Battle that Taylor's contract was set to expire at the onset of 2020, so I like how they're incorporating that into the storyline. Based off all this talk about him leaving, I see him staying ultimately. He was one of the bright spots of ROH in 2019 and I don't think they can afford to lose him, even though I'm not sure what type of offers (if any) he's been receiving from other promotions. Basically, he made a bunch of outlandish demands to Koff in this segment and said he wanted an answer by Honor Reigns Supreme on Sunday. I'd be shocked if Koff gave him what he wanted, but like I said, I'd be surprised if he left legitimately. Either way, Taylor carries himself like a star.
Bandido, Flamita and Rey Horus def. Villain Enterprises to Win the ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Championship
I might be mistaken, but I believe Bandido, Flamita and Horus were already teaming elsewhere before they brought their team to ROH, as I've seen them referred to as Mexa Squad in various places online. I didn't hear them referenced to as such by the ROH commentators, but maybe in time they will be. Regardless, this was a super strong six-man tag team match and easily the best thing on the entire show. The ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Championship feel like a complete afterthought, but props to the two trios for making it feel important in this outing and the hot crowd helped with that. It should be noted that Flip Gordon filled in for PCO here which is why they were able to defend the six-man titles. It was definitely the right time to pull the trigger on a title change.
ROH World Champion PCO vs. Rush Ended in a No contest
I wasn't a fan of the first match PCO and Rush had in the main event of Final Battle and this wasn't much better. The effort was there from both guys and I appreciated their intensity, but I still don't think PCO as World Champion is the best idea if he's going to have matches like this. It ended up being more of an angle with La Faccion Ingobernable beating down PCO and Villain Enterprises making the save. Nick Aldis made a surprise appearance and rushed out of the ring as soon as he saw Marty Scurll. if the NWA and ROH are indeed working together again, both companies can benefit big time. Aldis vs. Scurll II is going to be great whenever (and wherever) it happens.
I don't think it's a stretch to say that this was one of the best shows ROH has produced in recent memory. They kicked off 2020 the right way with a strong show filled with top-notch wrestling. Granted, the main event was underwhelming and the stuff with the women was subpar, but everything else was entertaining and held my attention. I really hope this wasn't just a one-shot deal and they can actually maintain momentum coming out of this, they need it. It was nice to be left satisfied with one of their events for a change instead of feeling like I wasted my time.
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