Powell's 11/5 ROH Wrestling TV Coverage: Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas vs. Caprice Coleman and Cedric Alexander in a Proving Ground match, Michael Elgin vs. Shiloh Jonze
By Jason Powell
ROH Wrestling on SBG affiliates
Taped in Louisville, Ky.
[Q1] The show opened with a recap of the post-match brawl involving Davey Richards and The House of Truth from last week... The opening montage aired... Kevin Kelly and Nigel McGuinness introduced the show from the broadcast table. Nigel was slouching and appeared smaller than Kelly. They hyped the Proving Ground match...
Jim Cornette stood in the ring and hyped that Final Battle is the biggest ROH event of the year. He said they gave serious consideration to who will challenge Richards for the ROH Title at Final Battle. Cornette introduced Eddie Edwards as the challenger for Final Battle.
Edwards joined Cornette in the ring and discussed the match. Edwards pointed out that he won the first encounter with Richards, and Davey won the second. He spoke about how he knows the type of training that Richards does. He said he's worked on his own training and he has a brand new head trainer.
Cornette questioned who the trainer was. "In due time," Edwards said. "No today." There were some boos. Edwards apologized and quickly moved on to hyping their match.
Davey Richards came to the ring. He said they will fight with honor and will fight to the death. Richards and Edwards shook hands. Davey spoke about The House of Truth and called Truth Martini a Vince Neil rip off. Richards asked Edwards to join him in facing The House of Truth next week.
Edwards recalled the fans chanting "next world champ" during their matches. He said it was directed at Richards, but it was actually him who won the ROH Title first. He said when the fans chant it now, Richards will know who they are talking about. They shook hands again...
Powell's POV: The new trainer tease is a nice mystery to leave open. I assume this means Edwards will be turning on Richards. I hope it's not as simple as Eddie joining the House of Truth. Either way, Eddie is still soft spoken and has a long way to go on promos, so he would benefit from having someone talk for him.
Kevin Kelly interviewed The Briscoe Brothers regarding the Final Battle pay-per-view while standing in front of a set backstage. They said they are finally getting their shot against Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin. They vowed to become the seven time ROH Tag Champions... [C]
Powell's POV: There was nothing heelish about their promo. No wonder the fans cheer them. I wouldn't mind seeing a double turn at the pay-per-view since The Briscoes get more cheers than boos, and Haas and Benjamin could be fun as heels. Of course, that could be too many major turns if Edwards is also turning at the show. Heck, maybe Eddie, Shelton, and Charlie could form a faction of sorts.
Kelly and McGuinness spoke at the broadcast table. Kelly said Roderick Strong wanted the ROH Title match at the pay-per-view, but his loss to Edwards and other factors played a part. Kelly set up a video that focussed on Edwards beating Michael Elgin...
[Q2] Backstage, Truth Martini spoke into the ear of a seated Michael Elgin. Truth said it's his job to speak the truth even if it hurts. Truth said Elgin as in the car with his brother and could have taken the car away from him. Truth said Elgin's brother was hospitalized for a very long time.
Truth spoke about Elgin's father and his anger, and said Elgin let Roderick Strong down by losing to Edwards. Truth said he can take all of the guilt away from Elgin. He said Elgin knows what he has to do. He said it's said that God created all men equal. "They were wrong," Elgin said before standing up and walking away...
Powell's POV: A good piece that established what The Truth character is all about. My concern is that while it makes Truth look like a master manipulator, his crew of heels look somewhat sympathetic.
Shiloh Jonze cut a promo backstage. He said it's been two years since he moved to Louisville from Seattle. Jonze said Elgin's head is all screwed up, and beating Elgin would make him a star...
Powell's POV: A simple and effective way to establish who Jonze is. It gives the viewers a reason to get behind him rather than just view him as a jobber.
1. Michael Elgin (w/Truth Martini) beat Shiloh Jonze in 3:35. Elgin dominated the match aside from a couple of hope spots for Jonze, including a flying fist off the top rope. Elgin came back a spinning back fist and followed up with a powerbomb into the turnbuckle. Elgin performed a twisting sit-out powerbomb in the middle of the ring and scored the pin...
The announcers hyped the Proving Ground main event, and said Inside Ring of Honor was coming up after the break... [C]
The Inside ROH feature focussed on Kevin Steen taking Jim Cornette to court. Kelly set up video footage of Steen being surrounded by a team of layers in a legal office in Louisville. They said they just left a courthouse (video footage showed the courthouse).
The main attorney accused Cornette of manipulating the outcome of a sporting event. He said the only acceptable resolution is Steen being reinstated. Steen said he's doing things Cornette's way. He recalled Cornette saying Steen could sue him if he wasn't happy. Steen said he's coming back to ROH, and the attorneys will make sure Cornette understands that. Steen said he's sick of not being in the best wrestling company in the world...
Powell's POV: I'm not sure that newer viewers who started watching the product when the TV show began airing will be into this story. That said, they did a good job of making the lawyers look sleazy as hell, especially the heavyset guy with the greasy hair rubbing his hands together.
[Q3] Kelly said there is a controversy brewing over the recent ROH TV Title match between Jay Lethal and Mike Bennett that ended in a draw. Video footage showed Bennett saying he didn't run away by declining the additional five minutes that were offered. He said he already won the match as far as he was concerned and had no interest in continuing the match with that particular referee.
Bennett said he wanted a rematch with a different referee. Referee Todd Sinclair said Lethal did not submit. He said he doesn't care whether Bennett has a problem with him. Lethal said he covered up and waited for the one chance he needed. He said he replied "No" when the referee asked if he had enough...
Powell's POV: They did a good job of explaining the story coming out of the match than they told while the match was taking place. It's fine if they are trying to set up a TV rematch, but it's not much of a hook for a pay-per-view match between the two.
Highlights aired of The Briscoes defeating All Night Express to earn the tag title shot at Final Battle... The announcers plugged Final Battle at their table... A video was shown of Jim Cornette explaining the Proving Ground format...
Powell's POV: I think we just saw this video last week. Couldn't they just have the announcers recap it? I understand that as the executive producer, Cornette is the commissioner-type in ROH, but we're seeing way too much of him on television.
Cedric Alexander and Caprice Coleman made their entrance for the main event. Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas headed out to a solid pop from the fans in the building. The ring announcer handled the in-ring introductions... [C]
More Jim Cornette. He hyped Final Battle and interviewed Haas and Benjamin about the pay-per-view...
Powell's POV: Does Dana White interview fighters during UFC events? Cornette is a great talker, but it's odd to see the commissioner-type handling the backstage interviews. ROH is a sausage fest and could use some females on the show, so why not bring in the right female backstage interviewer to kill two birds with one stone?
2. Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas defeated Cedric Alexander and Caprice Coleman in a Proving Ground match in 11:00 of television time. Shelton opened the match for his team.
[Q4] Shelton tagged in Haas after an exchange that received nice applause from the live crowd. Haas was in control of one of his opponents when the show went to break. [C] Highlights aired from during the break of Benjamin and Alexander exchanging punches. Benjamin was back in control of the offense when they went back to the match.
Coleman hit a nice leg lariat on Benjamin for a near fall at one point. The live crowd didn't believe he was going to win, but it was a nice move. He came back with a nice huracanrana that flipped Shelton off the ropes. The young team got a flurry of offense. The ring announcer noted that there were three minutes remaining.
Haas hit a German Suplex on Coleman, and then Shelton superkicked Alexander. The tag champs followed up with the leap of faith spot on Alexander. They followed up with Wrestling's Greatest Finisher on Coleman and then Shelton got the pin. The teams shook hands after the match.
The Briscoes music played and they walked to ringside. Jay sarcastically congratulated Haas and Benjamin for beating the biggest greenhorns in the company. He said it won't be that way at Final Battle...
Kelly hyped The American Wolves vs. The House of Truth for next week's television show...
Powell's POV: I like the way the champions are working against the clock, as the challengers in the Proving Ground format can earn a title shot with a time limit draw. Kelly continues to do good work on play-by-play, while Nigel isn't contributing much at this point. The overall show was solid. It was talk heavier than you'd expect a Jim Cornette show to be, but they did a good job of setting up both matches and the Final Battle pay-per-view.
They did a better job of making this feel more episodic this week. There was followup to the House of Truth and Davey Richards brawl from last week, and we'll get to see the match that stems from that brawl on next week's show rather than waiting several weeks.
RECOMMEND THIS ARTICLE:
READ OUR INSIDER NEWS BEFORE ANYONE ELSE! BECOME A MEMBER FOR JUST $7.50 A MONTH (or less with a year-long sub) - GET THE FIRST LOOK AT EXCLUSIVE INSIDER DOT NET NEWS, TONS OF EXCLUSIVE AUDIO CONTENT, MEMBER MESSAGE BOARD ACCESS, START YOUR OWN BLOG, AND VIEW THE SITE WITHOUT ANY ADVERTISING: SIGN ME UP (or MORE INFO)
RELATED ARTICLES FROM MGID AFFILIATE SITES...