It's my 29th Birthday today, and I'm actually in a giving mood! I'm giving you The Honor Roll today!
We are one day away from the Boiling Point iPPV, taking place LIVE tomorrow, Saturday, August 11th from Providence, RI. As I mentioned before, yours truly will be there front row with wifey in tow. Eight matches have been signed, and while this show may not be big on storyline advancement like the Tenth Anniversary Show (ROH has already taped another set of tapings setting up matches for the September PPV, Death Before Dishonor X), it has all the makings of a fantastic night of wrestling that will easily be worth the money you drop down for the show. And the last PPV, Best in the World, went off technically without a hitch.
So let’s continue the tradition and analyze each match, with my prediction at the end.
Four Corner Survival: Matt Taven vs. QT Marshall vs. Antonio Thomas vs. Vinny Marseglia
You’ve seen Marseglia on ROH TV get plowed over by Rhyno. Taven, of course, has impressed greatly in matches against Mike Mondo and other ROH stars, and would be the clear favorite to win this match. But I’ve heard rumblings that Taven was signed to a developmental deal by WWE, and this might be one of his last independent bookings. So with the other three guys in need of a victory, and ROH in need of a new fresh face on their core roster, somebody needs a big victory here. I’ll go with…oh say…Marshall. Just call it a hunch. But don’t be surprised if I’m proved right! Predicted Winner: QT Marshall
Proving Ground Match: Adam Cole vs. Brutal Bob Evans
The booking of this match makes sense given what happened when Cole teamed up with Eddie Edwards to face Brutal Bob and Mike Bennett a couple weeks ago on ROH TV. With Cole feud-less at the moment, why not give him Evans in a short little match? I don’t expect Evans to go over in any conceivable scenario, except possibly with Bennett interference. But Cole’s got too much momentum to lose to a guy whose first occupation is trainer/manager. Cole’s got this in what will be a surprisingly fun match. Predicted Winner: Adam Cole
Special Challenge Match: Roderick Strong vs. Mike Mondo
I’m REALLY looking forward to this match! Mondo’s wormed his way into a soft place in my heart after putting on some great performances and has also earned a spot on the full-time ROH roster. Strong is treading water until the inevitable split and feud with Michael Elgin, so this is a great opportunity for both men to showcase their stuff. I expect a competitive match that will get a decent amount of time (and a good candidate to open the show). Surprisingly, I’m going to pick Mondo to win this one. The win will help him more than the loss will hurt Roddy. Predicted Winner: Mike Mondo
2 out of 3 Falls: Jay Lethal vs. Tomasso Ciampa
The placement of this match on the PPV card is odd, as it seems their issue has fizzled and has been replaced with Ciampa’s beef with the Embassy and their collusion with the House of Truth. Still, the issue was never properly resolved, and the 2 of 3 falls stipulation has an old-school wrestling feel for a blowoff. Predicting the winner for this one is the hardest decision of the card for me. Both guys need the win. I’m going with Ciampa only because I have a lot of babyfaces winning and I need a heel victory to balance things out. But if Lethal pulls it out, I certainly won’t be surprised either. Still though, this should be a good match, and a sleeper candidate to steal the show. Predicted Winner: Tomasso Ciampa
The Briscoes vs. Jimmy Jacobs and Steve Corino
It’s worth noting that on this week’s ROH TV show, they announced that the Briscoes would be facing the All Night Express for the tag team titles on this show. Obviously, that’s not going to happen anymore, so this is the replacement match. This one is being booked as part of a house show angle that hasn’t made it to TV yet. For those that haven’t kept track, in Milwaukee last month, the Briscoes faced Kevin Steen and Jimmy Jacobs in the main event. I don’t recall who won, but after the match, Steen and Jacobs attacked the Briscoes along with Steve Corino, and Rhett Titus made the save. This issue will culminate in a Steel Cage match with Jay and Mark teaming up with Rhett to face all three members of the group called S.C.U.M, Steen, Corino and Jacobs. So in the intermediate, we have this tag team match. I haven’t seen Jacobs and Corino team up before, but I’m sure their antics will be amusing, and the Briscoes are still one of the best acts in the company, so this should be fun. Again, I’ll side with the heels, because this will help build toward the cage match in Charlotte (that I hope will be aired on ROH TV). Predicted Winners: Jimmy Jacobs and Steve Corino
Death Before Dishonor IX Rematch: Charlie Haas vs. Michael Elgin
My, how things have changed since the last time these two bulls met. Back in September, nearly a year ago, Haas was a beloved tag team champion and Elgin was still sewing his oats in ROH. A year has passed, and Haas is one of the most despised wrestlers in the company, and Elgin has been having breakthrough match after breakthrough match. Last year’s match was pretty good, but I think given the higher placement on the card this year, they’re looking to go out and top it, stealing the show. I’m going to give the nod to Elgin because he needs the win more. He needs to stop having great match and start winning great matches. Predicted Winner: Michael Elgin
Intergender Tag Team Match: Mike Bennett and Maria Kanellis vs. Eddie Edwards and Sara Del Ray
This match got some serious build on the TV show and should deserve second-to-last billing on this show. Maria’s slightly capable in the ring, so I expect her to hold her own, relying more on flash and cowardice to get the match over and make it fun. The place will certainly go crazy when Del Ray finally gets her hands on “The First Lady of ROH.” Edwards and Bennett (who is improving steadily in the ring) should provide the workrate for the match as well. I’m actually looking forward to it as much as any match on the card. I think the babyfaces will pull it out. Predicted Winners: Eddie Edwards and Sara Del Ray
ROH World Championship: Kevin Steen © vs. Eddie Kingston
Let’s get one thing out of the way: Steen will retain. They’re not going to put the belt on a guy who isn’t full time with the company. So the drama of the possibility of a title change isn’t going to be there. But I think this is going to be a fantastic brawl, as you have two guys who are more than willing to sacrifice their bodies for the good of the show. I expect weapons, I expect blood, I expect violence, and I expect my wife to run for the hills. But make no mistake, Steen is leaving with the belt. Predicted Winner: Kevin Steen
Now let’s get into this week’s show!
Match 1: The Briscoes vs. The Guardians of Truth
Before the match, clips are played of the match the two teams had at Best in the World. The Briscoes came out on top, but the Guardians attacked after the match. So now they have a rematch on TV. This was a standard tag team contest, and neither team really pulled out anything memorable. The Briscoes won again with another rollup (they haven’t beaten this team decisively in two matches). **1/4
Winners: The Briscoes
After the match, Roderick Strong and Rhyno come down and attack the Briscoes, but Adam Cole, Jay Lethal, Caprice Coleman and Cedric Alexander make the save.
In Ring Promo with Eddie Kingston
Kevin Kelly calls Eddie Kingston out. Kingston cuts an emotional promo about everything he lost in his personal life for the sake of pursuing his dream of becoming a professional wrestler and a world champion. He guarantees that he’ll beat Steen (yeah, okay).
Inside Ring of Honor with…
…Kevin Kelly as he recaps last week’s saga of Tomasso Ciampa attacking Prince Nana. Kevin says that RD Evans is still in possession of Ciampa’s contract and will continue to accompany him to the ring.
Kelly also notes that Shelton Benjamin has been suspended indefinitely for hitting Kenny King in the head with a steel chair last week, and if he does it again, he’ll be terminated. This is a nice way of writing Benjamin off the show while he competes in Japan.
Finally, a recap of Adam Cole winning the TV title is shown.
Kevin also runs down the Boiling Point card, and as I mentioned earlier, he announced that the Briscoes were going to face the All Night Express for the Tag Team Titles. It would have been nice to edit that out considering King will be off the show in a couple weeks.
Main Event: Lance Storm vs. Mike Bennett
I liked both of their previous matches better. This one didn’t really tell much of a story on what Bennett learned from Lance during their first two matches. They just went out there and had a match. Don’t get me wrong, they were doing good stuff, but none of it really had a rhyme or reason to it. It was nice to see Bennett counter the roll-through by Storm that leads to the single-leg crab, and then also lock Storm in his own move. When Maria distracts Lance, Brutal Bob slides a chair in the ring, and Bennett his the Photo Finish TKO on the chair to get the victory over Lance. *** Winner: Mike Bennett
After the match, all three heels start to beat up on Storm, but Eddie Edwards and Sara Del Ray save the day.
This show wasn’t as good as the previous two weeks, with the surprisingly good Mondo vs. Steen match two weeks ago and the Cole/Strong TV title main event last week. Still though, Storm vs. Bennett was as good as any match you’d see on TV this week, and the show is worth checking out. Plus, the Kingston promo sets up the title match at Boiling Point nicely.
Next week, Jay Lethal teams with the All Night Express to take on Kevin Steen, Jimmy Jacobs, and Steve Corino (S.C.U.M.). That should be a fun six man main event.
Enjoy Boiling Point, and follow me on Twitter @PocketSeagull!