And yes, this is the big one. I don’t think there is any secret to the fact that Ring Of Honor is not in the best place at the moment. The company has felt beyond ice cold for a long time now and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. Maybe their biggest show of the year could make it a little bit better, but they still had a long way to go to make things better. Let’s get to it.

Pre-Show: Joe Hendry/Dalton Castle vs. Josh Woods/Silas Young

So what we have here is a team of wacky partners who didn’t like each other but then did against a team that could be challenging for the Tag Team Titles in the future. In other words, this should go one way to set up a feud between a team, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see them switch it up and go with the surprising result.

It’s a little complicated:

I’ll take Woods and Young to win as Castle and Hendry can’t get along. It isn’t an interesting feud, but their combined charismas alone should be enough to get them somewhere. That being said, it’s hardly enough to be all that interesting of a feud and this could only make it on the pre-show. Woods and Young could be fine for some short term #1 contenders, but they’re the best of a bad group of competitors and little more.

Pre-Show: Kenny King vs. Rhett Titus

We have a battle of former tag team partners here, albeit from a team that hasn’t been together in years. King has seemed like someone Ring of Honor has wanted to push for years while Titus is….well he used to be in a good team and that’s about all he has going for him. His deal is that he has a great physique and wins some lower card matches, so naturally we need this match on the show.

This is a long time coming:

Rhett Titus vs Kenny King At Final Battle

For the sake of sanity, I’ll take King to win here as there is zero reason to push Titus. King at least has a resume around Ring of Honor and has more charisma than he knows what to do with and that is enough to give him the nod here. This is a match that should have taken place years ago and now it feels more like they’re doing it because it was written down as a note years ago and they found it under a box.

Jeff Cobb vs. Dan Maff

You might not be familiar with Maff as he is someone from way back in the day for the company. He’s back now though and we have a hoss battle on her hands, with the big Cobb facing the even bigger Maff. Sometimes it’s ok to have a match where two big guys hit each other really hard and throw each other around, which is what we’re going to be getting here.

He isn’t a people person:

Cobb takes this of course because Ring of Honor hasn’t gone completely insane yet. Maff is there for the limited legendary status he can offer to the company and Cobb is someone who they could consider giving the World Title in the near future. This one should be the biggest layup on the card and it could be a rather entertaining fight if they keep it short enough.

Angelina Love vs. Maria Manic

This is a case where it isn’t clear what to expect because of one major factor. Over the last few weeks, there have been a series of messages and emails released showing just how bad things have gotten backstage. Manic has been the subject of some of those messages, with Ring of Honor management suggesting that they don’t see much value in her and that she is leaving soon. So what does that mean for this?

She seems rather angry:

I’m still going with Manic, as there is no logical reason to go with Love and I doubt those in charge of the company care enough to beat her on the way out. At the same time though, it wouldn’t shock me if they threw the Women of Honor Title on the line here and gave it back to Love, as the division really is bad enough that the Beautiful People is the best idea that they can come up with at this point. I think Manic wins, though I’m not exactly convinced that she will.

Mark Haskins vs. Bully Ray

This is the latest (out of FAR too many) instance of Ray being a jerk to some young, up and coming wrestler while shouting about being a legend and a Hall of Famer. Then the young guy feuds with Ray for months before going on to defeat him in the blowoff match. That’s the situation we’re in again here as Ray is the booker and therefore gets to do what he wants.

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before:

Hopefully I’m not insane by going with Ray to get even more comeuppance by losing to Haskins again here. Haskins is someone that Ring of Honor seems to like and given how their roster has been looking as of late, it would make a lot of sense for them to push someone new. I don’t know if Haskins is the right call to get the big push, but they have to go with someone so why not him?

Bandido/Flamita vs. Villain Enterprises

We may be seeing an out with the young and in with the new here as Marty Scurll seems ready to leave the promotion for AEW and Flamita is there to be a star. I’m not sure how this is going to go as a result, but the match should be entertaining due to Scurll’s talents and Flip Gordon being able to fly with just about anyone.

Here’s what one of them can do:

That being said, I don’t think he can fly with Bandido and Flamita, who are two of the best in the world at the moment. This should be their big debut on the grand stage and that means we could be in for one heck of a spectacle. It wouldn’t surprise me if this is it for Scurll and that is one of the worst things that could happen to Ring of Honor at the moment. Flamita is awesome though, and seeing him fly around with Bandido for the time being should be great.

Tag Team Titles: Briscoes(c) vs. Jay Lethal/Jonathan Gresham

Lethal is one of the most successful wrestlers in the history of Ring of Honor but somehow he has never won the Tag Team Titles. He also just turned heel for the first time in years after getting frustrated with losing. Gresham is the one who drew him over to the side of evil so I think you know where this is going.

This could be great:

Of course I’m going with the Briscoes dropping the titles here because there isn’t anything else for them to do at the moment. Gresham and Lethal are at least a fresh pair to hold the titles as there is only so much that can be done when the Briscoes have dominated the Tag Team Titles for so long. It might be time to see what they can do as solo acts again because the lack of star power is really hurting things. Let Lethal and Gresham see what they can do with the titles, because the Briscoes need a break.

Matt Taven vs. Vincent

This is a feud that started a few weeks ago but we only just heard about it on television recently. Vincent is the former Vinny Marseglia, who helped make Taven World Champion. The act was beyond tired though and it was time to try something new, though I’m not sure how interesting Marseglia is going to be on his own. That being said, Taven’s title reign is partially why the company is such a mess so this could go either way.

The goon vs. the boss:

I’ll take Vincent to win here, likely through some shenanigans, as otherwise the feud is done here. Taven is a much bigger star and a win over him would mean something, but I’m not sure how high of a ceiling Vincent is going to have on his own. Hopefully we get a good, intense brawl here as the card is going to need something like that. But yeah, Vincent wins here for the sake of keeping things moving forward.

TV Title: Shane Taylor(c) vs. Dragon Lee

Taylor is someone who has turned into a dominant champion but having him be the champion for hire isn’t exactly thrilling. He’s been turned into the dragon for someone to slay and…well…he’s facing someone named Dragon so it kinds of balances out. Couple that with Taylor also being rumored to be gone from the company and I think you know how this is going to go.

This might be it:

Give me Lee to become the new champion, which is probably best for everyone. He’s a very fast paced guy and someone who could be a great focal point going forward. The fact that his brother is coming into the show as the World Champion helps quite a bit. There isn’t much of a point to keeping the title on Taylor other than for the sake of a surprise, so go with Lee as the new champion instead.

Ring of Honor World Title: Rush(c) vs. PCO

So here we are, with one of their biggest matches of the year and it’s going to be Rush, a total star, against a Cinderella/nostalgia/freak show challenger in the form of PCO. I really don’t know how much they can drag out of PCO but that’s what we’re getting here. His run back to Ring of Honor was quite the accomplishment, but going this far? That’s their best option?

The big one:

For the sake of sanity, I’ll go with Rush retaining here, though it would shock me if he is around the company all that much longer. Rush is someone who could be a top star in a major company for a long time to come and that means I can’t imagine him being in Ring of Honor that much longer. He’ll retain here, but I have no idea who they’re going to find to put the title on next. PCO getting here is so far beyond what anyone could have predicted for him and he can take a ton of pride in getting this far given everything about him. I’m not expecting much of a match, but Rush retains.

Overall Thoughts

I don’t even know how we got here but things are just such a mess around Ring Of Honor these days. Nothing sounds interesting, the television is a waste of time and there is little reason to believe things will get better. That being said, their big shows do tend to be good bell to bell and really, that’s all you can hope for from this company at the moment. The wrestling could carry things for a night, and that’s as much of a positive as you can realistically expect from them these days.

Thomas Hall has been a wrestling fan for over thirty years and has seen over 50,000 wrestling matches. He has also been a wrestling reviewer since 2009 with over 5,000 full shows covered. You can find his work at, or check out his- Amazon author page with 30 wrestling books. His latest book is KB’s Complete 2004 Monday Night Raw Reviews.

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