- I dunno who made the call to have Ian and Colt standing in front of these screens with wires exposed and stuff, but it's not a great look
- ROH's show is lit really well for the most part, as is the crowd. That's a welcome change
Kenny King defeated Eli Isom
- Kenny King says that Eli Isom is just a commercial for the ROH Dojo.
- Kenny King stealing Tommy Dreamer's "skinny jean millennials r teh suxxors" gimmick.
- King attacks and goes a big corkscrew plancha. After a brief comeback, Isom gets his own.
- This seems like move after move without much of a story. Isom manages a belly-to-belly suplex in between King's Chin Checker, his inverted suplex Stunner, and other offense.
- Isom is beaten, but King picks him up to dish out more punishment. This backfires and Isom gets a Gory Special, but then King wins with Royal Flush.
- The fact that commentary couldn't even make sense of this match is telling. Kenny King's arrogance, Eli Isom's lack of urgency, was Eli overmatched or not? What?
- Isom should have won this, but my speculation is that ROH is like "who the hell are we gonna have next year?"
- King spits on Isom's hand instead of the handshake.
ROH World Television Championship
Jeff Cobb (c) defeated Adam "Hangman" Page
- Adam Page is a legit ROH star....just as he's likely about to leave. He looks like a main eventer.
- Cobb catches the shooting star shoulderblock with a belly-to-belly suplex.
- There's a lot of great battling back and forth. The crowd is insane for this match.
- Deadlift hanging vertical superplex only gets a one count -- but a great reaction for Cobb. He goes for a standing moonsault, but misses a standing star press.
- Page just deadlift fallaway slammed Cobb. Jesus. I can't believe I just saw that. Cobb is a MEATY sunsabitch. Adam Page is not a sirloin beef sunsabitch and just deadlift fallaway slammed a certified angus sirloin beef sunsabitch. https://twitter.com/totaldivaseps/status/1073752843201454081
- Page flies to the outside with a big moonsault to the outside. He follows up with two standing star presses for two.
- Cobb does a freaking seated Tombstone, which you almost never see these days. This was after a tease of the AthleticPlex.
- Page fires back with a Buckshot lariat, but walks right into a Cobb Helicopter. One of the closest nearfalls of all time happens when Page counters Tour of the Islands with a crucifix pin.
- Cobb finishes Page off with two Tour of the Islands. He throat slash motioned Page before the second.
- This was a must watch match.
- Elite is 0-1.
Women Of Honor World Championship
Kelly Klein defeated Sumie Sakai (c), Madison Rayne and Karen Q to win the title
- Madison Rayne has improved big time offensively in the ring. Selling, not so much. She has a couple of vicious cross body blocks though.
- Karen Q has Sumie and Madison in a double Boston Crab, before working with Klein to beat up Rayne.
- Klein and Karen get a little too competitive beating up Rayne, but you can see the miscommunication coming from a mile away.
- We get half of a Tower of Doom, but Sakai missile dropkicks Klein. Klein doesn't sell it very long, and gets up to fallaway slam Sakai right after.
- Karen Q is eliminated by Kelly Klein's K Power. Dat WWE interest tho.
- Sakai gets her ass broken by Madison Rayne, who is in DISBELIEF X2 that she didn't get the pin.
- Sakai got Smash Mouth on Rayne, but Klein got another win by stealing the pin.
- There is a ton of waiting around for the next spot here in this match.
- Klein kicks out of Smash Mouth and lands a deadlift falling powerbomb.
- Sumie Sakai kicks out of K Power, so Klein has to go up top and hit Super K Power, gets the wins.
- I figured Kelly Klein to hold the title by the summer, but she ends Sumie Sakai's reign at Final Battle.
- Will be interesting to find out if Sakai hangs around. She and Klein embrace.
- Sumie Sakai has made everyone she's worked with in ROH better, and several of those people she worked with needed to be a lot better to be on national TV.
Zack Sabre Jr defeated Jonathan Gresham
- The chain wrestling and transitions between these two are fantastic. I love ZSJ's use of elbows to block escape routes for so many holds, whether it's blocking hips or just being a dick.
- Sabre bumps a little late and wide on a Gresham dropkick.
- Sabre being able to hit the ropes and run right into an abdominal stretch is great.
- This crowd doesn't seem to appreciate this early, but that quickly changes when they gets more physical.
- Both guys trade big strikes, which culminates in ZSJ escaping an ankle lock and hitting a PK.
- The finish comes with Sabre scoring a big no hands-bridge to an awesome reaction.
- ZSJ vs. Tracy Williams on ROH TV soon. Unless they have big, big plans for him, I really expected Gresham to win.
"Matt Taven's Real ROH World Championship"
Matt Taven (w/ Kingdom) defeated Dalton Castle (w/ The Boys)
- Seems like Taven is perpetually being prepared for an ROH Title match on PPV that never happens.
- Taven is now wearing gloves and AJ Stylish pants and gear. He puts his title on the line and spits in Castle's face.
- Castle does not look at 100 percent. He's braced up on his back and knee and is noticeably slower. A not 100 percent Dalton Castle is still exceptional.
- The Boys save Castle from being knocked off the apron. He misses turnbuckle and falls to the outside, and Taven goes after him with a suicide dive.
- Holy shit that Taven spot on the guardrail was GNARLY. He dove over the top rope and went chest first into the top. ROH guardrails are the undoing of the Kingdom. Taven continues. The balls on this guy.
- Taven not only continues, but sells (probably not selling) and regains control with a backbreaker and a DDT.
- Good luck telling that "Dalton Castle is in a ton of pain and Taven isn't" story now.
- The Boys get involved to a big pop, but Viny hits them with a double reverse DDT. He then disappears under the ring.
- TK distracts the ref, and Taven slugs Castle with the title belt, but it's not enough!
- Castle takes out TK and hits Taven with a Bangarang into the ring post! Castle has the match won, but TK throws one of the Boys into the pin to break it up.
- Another Bangarang lands, and Taven is too close to the ropes! Taven counters a third to win with Climax.
- Matt Taven has improved significantly in 2018
Winner Gets ROH World Championship Shot
Marty Scurll defeated Christopher Daniels
- Scurll vs. Daniels is getting the "we're going to call this softly and quietly because it's super important" treatment from the announce team.
- There's a lot of reversals and counters until Daniels chops Scurll's leg out from under him on the apron and hits an Arabian Press.
- Scurll gets the advantage at ringside and really works over Daniels. He hits a missile dropkick and a half and half suplex, but runs right into a Blue Thunder Bomb and STO.
- A series of reversals and counters lead to a Scurll Driver for two. Daniels rolls through a chickenwing attempt for a nearfall.
- Daniels busted out a Burning Hammer!
- Scurll gets a Tombstone and pins ala The Undertaker, but when Daniels gets the shoulder up Scurll breaks his fingers.
- Marty gets frustrated and can't finish off Daniels. He tries the chickenwing, tries to cheat, everything. He is able to kick out of an Angel's Wings, though. Graduation doesn't finish it for Scurll, either.
- Scurll stomps out Daniels' head and applies the Crossface Chickenwing. Daniels can't escape and he's forced to tap out.
- Now we get somber Ian. He's talking very softly to put over the moment, but he does it so much and brings it back to himself for some reason.
- We get a great farewell to Christopher Daniels, but Bully Ray shows up and punches Daniels in the balls.
I Quit Match
Flip Gordon defeated Bully Ray
- "That's Flip Gordon's girlfriend in the first row, she bought a ticket, that's not a complimentary ticket"- Who does that put over?
- Flip comes out waving an American Flag and hits a Van Daminator. Bully Ray turns the tides and beats Flip with a trash can.
- Bully pushes Bobby Cruise into the ring barricade. Todd Sinclair gets shoved down and Bully threatens Cary Silkin with a kendo stick. Christopher Daniels jumps in front of a cane shot to Cary Silkin.
- Bully grabbed Flip's girlfriend right out of her non-comped seat and threatens to powerbomb her.
- A bloodied Flip Gordon begs him to stop, but Cary Silkin hits Bully with a cane. Flip's girlfriend punches Bully RITP, and Flip kisses her.
- Flip Gordon applies a crossface with a flag, but Silas Young attacks and hits Misery.
- Cheeseburger tries to make a save, but gets hit with Misery, too.
- Colt Cabana is out with a chair to beat down Silas and Bully as they try to set a table on fire.
- The lights go out and The Sandman is there with a beer.
- Cane shot, Star Spangled Stunner. Sandman gives Gordon a cane and Flip beats Bully until he quits.
- How can Flip Gordon and Eddie Edwards be 2018 Tommy Dreamer if 2018 Tommy Dreamer is still 2018 Tommy Dreamer?
- This is very 1996 ECW. If you like that, this is a 7/10 instead of a 5.75/10.
ROH World Championship
Jay Lethal (c) defeated Cody (w/ Brandi Rhodes)
- Cody has camo gear, and takes to the mic and says it sounds like the crowd loves him, but if he loved them he'd be doing the Madison Square Garden show, so they can all kiss his ass.
- Jay Lethal says this is his company, and when this match is over, the shiny new toy will be dull and gone.
- Cody's knee "gives out," and he's playing possum to attack Lethal.
- Lethal regains control pretty early on, but Cody hits a powerslam and works on Lethal's wrist.
- Lethal works over Cody's leg, and does it for a solid five minutes.
- They tease a couple of ref bumps, and then Brandi spears Jay Lethal because she has a "bionic clavicle." It's not believable, but it's hilarious. Cross Rhodes is kicked out of by Jay Lethal.
- Lethal accidentally knocks over Brandi while Cody has the ref distracted and kicks out of Cross Rhodes # 2.
- Cody Rhodes has a Figure Four applied and Hangman Page comes out and rings the bell and hands Cody the title. Sinclair isn't buying it.
- Lethal gets a Cross Rhodes on Cody after a nice spladle pin attempt from Rhodes.
- Lethal hits five suicide dives, and can't win. This match isn't getting a lot of heat and isn't paced great.
- Cody doesn't win with a Vertebreaker. Still not a lot of heat.
- Lethal Injection and two Superkicks, then Lethal taps out Cody with a Figure Four. Whew.
- Marty Scurll comes out to the ring and snags the title belt from Lethal.
- We also see Nick Aldis and Kamilla on the ramp with the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship.
ROH World Tag Team Championships
The Briscoes defeated SCU (c) and The Young Bucks
- Matt Jackson does a cannonball chair dropkick onto Mark Briscoe. Kazarian with an inside out huracanrana that makes Jackson spear Briscoe. Scorpio finishes the sequence by getting a cutter on the apron on Nick.
- Jay Briscoe stomps Scorpio Sky through a table, and then they take out both teams with trash cans. Kazarian is already busted open.
- Mark Briscoe has a ladder superkicked into his face, then Jay gets powerbombed into a leaning ladder.
- The Bucks are paying homage to the Rockers with their outfits. They look like they're paying homage to road signs though.
- Kazarian springboards off the second rope, and yanks Nick off the ladder with a codebreaker. He's rewarded by having his leg back body dropped into the ladder.
- I really enjoy Caprice Coleman on commentary.
- Uranage on the ladder, super rana onto a ladder, back body drop over the top rope through the table, there are some good spots here. None better during this point than SCU doing an assisted slingshot cutter through a table.
- Jay Briscoe is bleeding and Matt Jackson has a sledgehammer. He throws it away and opts for a superkick instead. The Bucks catch Scorpio Sky with a pop-up spear.
- SCU do a merry-go-round DDT on Nick Jackson on the floor, but Mark Briscoe takes them out by throwing a damn ladder on them.
- A Jay Driller takes out Matt, and everyone is down.
- Kazarian ends up getting a Styles Clash on Jay Briscoe, which gets a big pop. He and Mark fight on top of the ladder. WOW. ROH Production completely missed an insane ladder bump from Mark Briscoe.
- Nick Jackson is sent from a ladder all the way to the floor, then Kazarian is knocked off through a table, and the Briscoes win.
10- Perfect, 9- MOTY Territory, 8- Excellent, 7- Great, 6- Good, 5- Average to above average, 4- Slightly below average, 3 or below: Poor
Each match starts at a 5 and slides up and down based on entertainment, execution, time, environment, reaction and stakes. The ratings are in no way an indication of a "star rating," which is a completely different system. A standard, non-offensive "TV match" lands at a 5.The gap between 5.75-6 is generally the largest, with anything reaching 6 being recommended viewing.
For additional premium podcasts, the Fightful Weekender podcast, members only podcasts, outtake and behind the scenes footage, retro shows, Q&A shows, dark match commentary, early access to interviews and segments, subscribe to Fightful Select! www.FightfulSelect.com