Archive for the ‘Ring of Honor’ Category

For Ring of Honor fans anxiously awaiting what’s next for the promotion, a new report suggests that you may not have to wait much longer.

An announcement regarding the next big Ring of Honor event “should” be coming in the next few days, according to “PWInsider“. The seeds for a potential main event for the show were planted on this past Friday’s AEW “Rampage” when Tully Blanchard teased that his faction, Tully Blanchard Enterprises, is gunning for ROH World Champion Jonathan Gresham. It appears that Jonathan Gresham defending against Brian Cage will slowly be built up for a match.

The report also notes that the announcers for ROH will likely remain the same with Caprice Coleman and Ian Riccaboni staying in the commentator’s booth for the foreseeable future.

Since Tony Khan purchased Ring of Honor back in March, only one event under the banner has occurred in that time, which comes as little surprise seeing as the Founder and CEO of AEW has eyes on his roster and a big partnership with New Japan Pro Wrestling hitting a climax at Forbidden Door this weekend. Since SuperCard of Honor in April, ROH fans have been anticipating what the next big move is for the promotion. A recent report echoed what “PWInsider” mentioned, stating that another Ring of Honor PPV, Death Before Dishonor, may be running on the weekend of July 23.

Death Before Dishonor would take place in Lowell, Massachusetts, where several ROH shows have taken place in the past. This would line up with AEW’s schedule too, as “AEW Dynamite” is scheduled to take place in Worcester, Massachusetts on July 27.

For the time being, there is still no update on ROH’s return to TV.  Khan has emphasized in recent interviews that he wants ROH to find its own identity and ‘stand on its own feet’, apart from AEW.

“I’m not saying Ring of Honor is a subsidiary of AEW or secondary in any way. And I think that’s one of the things that made [Supercard of Honor] a really compelling event [is] you didn’t feel like it was a developmental show or a secondary show. You got great matches on the card, it was a very well-received card and one of the best-reviewed shows of the year, critically. And commercially, it was a massive success. Is Ring of Honor as big as AEW right now? No. Is it selling as many PPVs? No. But that was incredible growth for Ring of Honor, a company that has over 20 years of history now.”

With last night’s AEW Dynamite seeing Hiroshi Tanahashi confront AEW World Champion CM Punk – seemingly setting up the two to do battle at this month’s Forbidden Door – there’s now an update on who IWGP Heavyweight Champion Kazuchika Okada will be facing at this huge crossover PPV.

As per Dave Meltzer on the latest episode of Wrestling Observer Radio, the tentative plan is for Okada to defend New Japan Pro Wrestling’s top prize against ‘Hangman’ Adam Page at Forbidden Door.

While Page wasn’t featured on Dynamite this week, it was announced that Hangman will be going up against NJPW’s David Finlay on next week’s outing for AEW’s Wednesday night flagship. Of course, the Cowboy is coming off the back of losing the AEW World Title to CM Punk at Double or Nothing.

In terms of Okada vs. Page, the pair have only ever wrestled once before, with the Rainmaker picking up a win over Hangman during the 2018 G1 Climax. Obviously plans can change across the next few weeks, but right now the plan is for the former AEW World Champion to step up and challenge for the IWGP Heavyweight Title.

Emanating from Chicago’s United Center, AEW X NJPW Forbidden Door will take place on Sunday 26 June.

Colt Cabana’s current sparse usage rate on All Elite Wrestling television is because he has been earmarked for the Ring Of Honor brand in the future.

Per Dave Meltzer in the latest Wrestling Observer Newsletter, this is where Cabana will be stationed if, and when, Tony Khan’s oft-discussed reboot of the cult independent group kicks in. The AEW president and founder confirmed his ROH purchase in March, doing so on a live episode of AEW Dynamite.

The report notes that Cabana’s situation may be related to his well-known issues with CM Punk. Colt and Punk’s relationship has turned sour in recent years, with a seemingly un-bridgeable rift opening between the former best friends stemming from a court battle over legal fees following Punk’s civil lawsuit against WWE doctor Chris Amann.

AEW officially announced Colt’s signing in February 2020. The veteran recently signed an extension, writes Meltzer, which is something that The Young Bucks pushed for.

Despite re-upping, Cabana has not been at any AEW tapings since then. His last appearance came at the company’s 4 March Dark tapings in Orlando, Florida, where he and Dark Order ally Alan Angels faced The Butcher and The Blade.

A dream match is set to take place at “AEW Dynamite” next Wednesday as FTR accepted the challenge from Roppongi Vice from last Wednesday’s “Dynamite”.

The show featured a backstage segment with Trent Beretta and Rocky Romero. Beretta said that the two were back for good. Romero said he wanted the ROH, AEW, and IWGP Tag Team Titles, and Beretta then issued the challenge.

On “Rampage” Friday night, FTR responded to the challenge. Backstage with Tony Schiavone, Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler said they agreed to defend the titles on this upcoming Wednesday’s edition of “Dynamite”.

ROH Women’s World Champion Deonna Purrazzo will be making her AEW debut on next week’s Dynamite.

It was announced on tonight’s show that Purrazzo will wrestle ROH Women’s Interim World Champion Mercedes Martinez.

Purrazzo has reacted to the announcement via Twitter, as seen below.

My LONG awaited @AEW debut… #Virtuosa

Purrazzo and Martinez also engaged in a Twitter interaction later.

Ever since AEW President Tony Khan purchased Ring of Honor last month, Purrazzo has been teasing her arrival on AEW TV.

Last October, Purrazzo explained why she was eager to wrestle against or tag with Dr. Britt Baker, her best friend in real life.

“To have that crossover with women and possibly wrestle someone like Britt or tag with someone like Britt, who is my best friend in real life,” Purrazzo told  Busted Open Radio. “It would just be very special for us, I think as friends, but for women’s wrestling too. And that’s the whole point of all this. It’s to grow and evolve women’s wrestling. We haven’t had a lot of those firsts yet, so any time you can kind of get your hands on that and claim it as your own, I think it’s important these days.”

For what it’s worth, Purrazzo signed a contract with IMPACT Wrestling in October 2020. At the time, Josh Mathews revealed via Impact Press Pass that Purrazzo had agreed to a long-term deal with the company.

Deonna Purrazzo lost the AAA Reina de Reinas Championship to Taya Valkyrie at Saturday’s Rebellion pay-per-view.

The numbers for Supercard of Honor have made Ring of Honor’s new owner a very happy man indeed.

During an interview with TV Insider, Tony Khan had this to say when asked about ROH’s future:

“Now is a great time for Ring of Honor to make a comeback. We had great returns for Supercard of Honor. It wildly exceeded expectations and projections as far as ticket sales and pay-per-view buys.”

While there are still plenty of questions remaining about what Khan’s goals for the company are moving forward, the owner of AEW and ROH did offer some broad insight into his intentions.

“I think the end game is for Ring of Honor to have its own weekly TV and own distribution. Right now, there are so many great wrestlers in Ring of Honor that I think it makes sense to utilize them in our lineup of shows to keep those championship belts at the forefront and keep those champions in the spotlight.”

With this positive news in mind, the Khan era of ROH is starting off on the strongest foot possible.

New AEW signing Samoa Joe and AEW owner Tony Khan recently spoke with the media following Ring Of Honor’s Supercard Of Honor about the AEW women’s division.

Khan made it clear he’s interested in speaking with Maria Kanellis, who was previously working with the ROH women.

“I would be interested in talking to Maria, I think she’s a great wrestler and I’ve heard great things about what she did here. I do have staff and a direction in mind when I re-launch the show, I have a lot of talent in mind,” he said. “Including some people that have wrestled here before, and some people that haven’t wrestled here before. I was really excited to bring AQA in tonight, I was excited about bringing AQA in, in general.

“Ironically, I scouted AQA in a Toni Storm match. She wrestled Toni Storm on TV last year, and actually, I called Sonjay and I was looking for somebody to wrestle Jade. I called Sonjay, and I said, ‘I really like this Toni Storm vs. AQA match, and I like this AQA. She did really well, and Toni was great, do you remember this match?’ He said, ‘yeah, I coached this match.’ I said, ‘okay, great. Tell me about AQA,’ because she’d recently got released. She’s been excellent working with her. She’s worked on Dynamite, also on Dark and Elevation, now she’s working here in ROH.”

When it comes to other wrestlers on the card, Tony Khan discussed those that he worked with. He also discussed Deonna Purrazzo, stating that her situation is interesting at the moment.

“And there are more talents that have wrestled here in ROH before, and some that, like Willow is a great example, have recently been wrestling here in ROH. Mercedes is a legendary wrestler for ROH, and a legendary wrestler for the division, and now a great interim champion. Deonna is a little bit of an interesting situation because she is the lineal champion, but she also has other contractual obligations with other companies, so I don’t know when we will get to decide on the undisputed title. But there’s a lot of exciting stuff happening in the division.

Tony Khan also spoke in more detail about Maria Kanellis and what she could potentially offer. He wants to talk with her at some point, as he doesn’t know what she is like behind the scenes entirely.

“I would be excited to talk to Maria, and depending on what she did backstage, I don’t know exactly. For example, during the matches, was she on the headset? I don’t know exactly, is she a note-taking producer? I am not sure, it’s stuff I will maybe learn from her,” he claimed. “As far as the creative and stuff, I do have a plan which I think unfolded throughout the night, and played out pretty well. So, I had a lot of ideas, and I am always down to take ideas from other people.”

Wrestlers often like to pitch their own ideas, and Tony Khan revealed he gets around 100 per week. However, he turns down 80% of them, because everybody is pushing him to work with similar people, so he has to be organized.

“A lot of the ideas I eventually do, do come from other people, and I try and organize them and make them work with what I already have. But I do get pitched over 100 ideas a week, and most of them, I don’t do. So, who am I kidding, 80% of them I usually don’t do,” he said. “Because you get asked too many things, and how can you possibly do something when like five different people are asking to work with the same person?

“Everyone’s like, ‘oh he never listens to my idea.’ Well, okay, but the person you’re asking to work with, there’s like five different people that came to me with an idea this week, ‘I want to wrestle this person.’ You can’t do it. So, that’s why being able to keep things organized, that’s why we have got a good flow of the shows. So as far as coaching, I am probably more interested in coaching right now than I am with booking.”

Tony Khan also talked about Trisha Adora, as another wrestler that he likes. The AEW President even considered using her for the interim title match at one point. He believes she did a great job when there were no fans in the arena.

“I like Trisha. She was on a shortlist of people for that interim match that I would have considered. I do like her, and the women we used I think are great. I brought in AQA from AEW, and Alize has been in Ring Of Honor before, I think she’s great. Obviously, I know Willow, and Mercedes very well,” he pointed out. “But I like Trish, and yeah, she was one of the people I considered for one of the spots. I’ve seen her on Ring Of Honor, mostly on the empty arena shows, and it’s hard to sometimes tell.

“But a lot of people learned from that and became better wrestlers. I know that when the fans came back at 25% capacity, on a bad night it was 6-700 people. And a good night it was 1200 people. It felt like anywhere from 5,000 to 25,00, because we were so used to not having them. So, I watched her and I really like her. I thought she was impressive that she was doing it in matches with no fans, connecting through the camera, which is a really good sign.

“Because that’s what a lot of the people, to your point, connected like her on Dark. She was good on there. But I probably saw her more and saw her connect more this past year in Ring Of Honor in some of the TV matches that they did with her. That’s one of the reasons that I did consider her for a spot here.”

Ring of Honor World Champion Jonathan Gresham was checked out for a concussion following his successful title defence at last night’s AEW Battle of the Belts 2.

There, Gresham retained his prize against former ROH World Champion Dalton Castle, forcing Castle to tap out to the Octopus submission.

As per Fightful Select, there was a check on Gresham after the contest, with him assessed for a concussion. The grappler wasn’t immediately cleared, and there’s no word as of this writing on his status. The belief is that the gutwrench sequence early in the match was the cause of this possible concussion.

In terms of Dalton Castle, it remains to be seen whether he’s officially signed with AEW, either to work on All Elite programming or to be utilised in Ring of Honor. As a huge favourite of ROH fans, there’s definitely the demand there to see Castle appearing for AEW and/or ROH, and the Party Peacock is believed to have had several meetings with Tony Khan in recent months.

Elsewhere at Battle of the Belts 2, Sammy Guevara defeated Scorpio Sky to become a three-time TNT Champion, whilst the main event saw Thunder Rosa successfully retain her AEW Women’s Championship against Thunder Rosa.

ROH World Champion & PROGRESS Unified World Champion Jonathan Gresham has reportedly signed with AEW.

After weeks of speculation, a new report from Fightful Select confirms that Gresham has signed an AEW contract that will also see him perform for ROH.

Gresham will make his AEW TV debut at Battle of The Belts II this Saturday night on TNT as he defends the Ring of Honor strap against ROH veteran Dalton Castle.

AEW has also signed “Gates of Agony” Kaun and Toa Liona to similar contracts, as reported earlier this week. Word is that there are other talents who are signed to these AEW/ROH contracts, and names should be confirmed soon.

Gresham became the Undisputed ROH World Champion by defeating Bandido in the main event of ROH Supercard of Honor on April 1, which was the first show booked by new ROH owner Tony Khan.

Gresham has worked for Impact Wrestling in recent months, and will face Eddie Edwards in a non-title match at the Rebellion pay-per-view on April 23. There’s no word yet on if this will be his final date for Impact.

Gresham has also worked several indie dates in recent months, but there’s no word on if this new AEW/ROH contract will allow him to continue taking those bookings. Gresham captured the PROGRESS Wrestling Unified World Title on March 20 at Chapter 130 by defeating Cara Noir. Since then he has retained over Malik and Warren Banks, but there’s no word on how the AEW/ROH contract will impact his PROGRESS run.

There was a notable title change on last night’s episode of AEW Dynamite, with Samoa Joe defeating Minoru Suzuki to become Ring Of Honor Television Champion in the main event.

A hardnosed, attritional battle played out towards the end of the night, with neither man giving an inch in a test to see which would crumble under the other’s barrage of chops and forearms first. With both men red raw by the end, Joe wound up scoring the pinfall after folding Suzuki into the Muscle Buster for the three-count.

Suzuki had only held the ROH Television Title for 12 days, having taken the strap from Rhett Titus at Supercard Of Honor 2022 on 1 April. Perhaps surprisingly, given his Ring Of Honor tenure, this is actually Joe’s first ever run with the belt too. The veteran has previously reigned as the cult group’s Pure and World Champion.

Considered by many to be the greatest ROH Television Champion in history, Joe’s former protege Jay Lethal has emerged as a potential first challenger in recent angles.

Joe has been with AEW since returning to ROH at Supercard Of Honor, after which it was confirmed he was #AllElite.

In Dynamite’s other title fight, Jurassic Express defeated reDRagon to retain the AEW World Tag Team Championships.