People come, people go, but Ring of Honor has always remained.
Ring of Honor COO Joe Koff recently spoke to CBS Local Sports where he talked about the relationship Ring of Honor has forged with New Japan Pro Wrestling, saying that it benefits both sides of the world when it comes to bringing in fresh talent, and they have tremendous respect for one another:
Well, we’ve gotten a tremendous boost and I might have said this in another publication — that everyone says, “It’s New Japan, it’s New Japan.” The one thing that I don’t know is if they say in Japan, “It’s Ring of Honor. It’s Ring of Honor.”
This is a very, very strong relationship, and it benefits both sides of the world, because they are bringing in Ring of Honor talent, which is basically the talent that they use — American talent. We’re bringing in Japan. Part of the mystery is you don’t get to see these guys on a regular basis. They make appearances or they come in for a week or two. So it’s special. It works because we work so well together in that regard. The respect for both organizations from each organization is immense, and it is collaborative — how we use the talent, when we use the talent — what’s the outcome for the talent. Is there any way we can make storylines within both organizations, whether it be championships held on either side of the – you know East and West – in their respective counties and areas.
Koff also brushed aside criticism that New Japan was getting far more out of the relationship than Ring of Honor. When he was asked if the company is putting too many eggs in the New Japan basket, he replied in the negative, saying people always leave, and they always manage to find ways to build new talent:
I don’t think so. You know, when you tour, you’ve gotta bring new kinds of things to that audience and to make them want to come back. Chuck, I gotta tell you, everyone will ask me, “Well, what about when this guy left, and what about when this guy left?” You know, we’re a pretty resilient organization. And while I have no inkling that the relationship is going to change, when it changes, if it changes, then we’ll deal with it at that time. I mean, we’re pretty resilient.
One of the next big New Japan vs. Ring of Honor matches will take place in January. ROH champion Cody Rhodes will battle Kota Ibushi with the title on the line at WrestleKingdom 12.