Notes In Observance – ROH Wrestling 12/21/16: An Honored Champion

Image provided courtesy of Ring Of Honor.

By Nicholas Jason Lopez


“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.






(Aired 12/21/16)

An Honored Champion 

– The opening video recapped Final Battle 2016, so an immediate sigh of relief came about, since this promised new television that wasn’t a glorified repeat. The package played up the event’s biggest occurrence (no, not Broken Matt Hardy’s onscreen appearance) in Kyle O’Reilly’s big victory as he defeated Adam Cole to win the ROH World Championship. After all, the guy did it as he laid in thumbtacks. That has to be a first somewhere.

– The O’Reilly/Cole/Bobby Fish/Dalton Castle opening in-ring segment was great, as it established new World Title contenders while O’Reilly was met with a “Hero’s Welcome” from Philly. He got over his intentions to be a honorable Champion, a spit in Cole’s face, who did everything possible to keep him from the belt. That brought out Cole, who complained that he wasn’t ready for a No Disqualification stipulation and wasted his training. We were pleasantly surprised at Castle’s presence and he didn’t feel out of place and was over with the fans, the most important factor. Castle smartly brought up his pinfall over Cole when he was Champ, which mathematically laid out a future Title shot. Fish staked the same claim and had an accolade in being the 2016 Survival Of The Fittest winner. It was a nice edge as he was O’Reilly’s dedicated reDRagon partner. Cole finished with loud confidence as he promised to be a four-time Champion. O’Reilly got the last word as he expressed the belt’s importance and wished his future opponents good luck. Basic, but effective. It also set up the night’s main event.

– The Decade Of Excellence Tournament Round One match between Christopher Daniels and Mark Briscoe got the tourney off to an okay start. We applaud the tourney’s concept itself, since it shined a light on Ring Of Honor’s veterans and gave them a reward of a World Title shot. We also got pre-taped promos from each guy. Daniels boasted his 20 years of experience and yearn for another World Title reign, while Briscoe credited Daniels for his teachings and being under his tutelage 15 years ago. The angle of “Does Daniels still have it?” was nicely pushed by Commentator Kevin Kelly. Not a fan of the comedy to start, but given Briscoe’s quirky redneck in-ring style and Daniels’ recent attitude change, where else would you lean? All in all, an unspectacular match with some appreciated detail to psychology that saw Daniels get the win with the Angel’s Wings after Briscoe missed a Froggy Bow.

– The Lio Rush-Caprice Coleman match was another attempt to put the shaky Rebellion stable over with a brief spotlight on Rush. A new twist to Rebellion’s entrance as they laid out upside down ROH logos on two barricades onstage. The pre-match promo angle saw Rush turn down an offer to join them in the name of honor, but Coleman responded with an odd rambling that mentioned something about jail. He kinds lost us there. That said, the match lasted mere seconds as Rush pinned Coleman in a school boy pin. Funny. That set up the post-match angle where Jay White/Donovan Dijak saved Coleman from a further heel beatdown. We liked that because it tied back to Final Battle and helped Dijak get over as a babyface some more.

– The Six-Man Tag main event between Cole/ROH World Tag Team Champions The Young Bucks and Castle/reDRagon was the expected chaotically-paced, plancha-based superkick party. Philly was crazy hot for YB, as they soaked up the cheers and pandered at certain points. We applauded that they also took moments to be jerks and attacked the faces when it wasn’t necessary. They even superkicked The Boys at one point. We got our classic Bullet Club spots like the group plancha and apron powerbombs too. Some inventive spots, particularly where Nick Jackson repeatedly superkicked O’Reilly off the apron for Cole/Matt Jackson to catch him and throw him back onto the apron for another. They eventually ended that with Nick’s senton off the apron. The faces also did this nice simultaneous array of German Suplexes. The finish was cool, as we saw O’Reilly catch Nick from a top rope splash into the Triangle Chokehold to make him tap out, as Castle and Fish hit their respective finishers to prevent the submission from being broken up. Made sense to give O’Reilly the decision and to highlight the established contenders.






Quick Results

  • Decade Of Excellence Tournament – Round One – Christopher Daniels (w/Frankie Kazarian) def. Mark Briscoe via pinfall to advance ‘
  • Lio Rush def. Caprice Coleman (w/Kenny King, Rhett Titus) via pinfall
  • Six-Man Tag – Dalton Castle/reDRagon def. Adam Cole/The Young Bucks via pinfall

About Nicholas Jason Lopez

Just a 29-year-old Brooklynite. Nothing more, nothing less. Currently a freelance journalist with two websites - Pro Wrestling Opinion and The Music Bugle - he has also been published on sites such as The Bensonhurst Bean, Sheepshead Bites, Review Fix, College University of New York Athletic Conference, Dying Scene, Brooklyn News Service, All Media NY, and Yahoo Voices. He has also interned for The Home Reporter/Brooklyn Spectator based out of Brooklyn, NY.

Posted on March 11, 2017, in ROH and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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