Powell's 5/13 ROH Wrestling TV review: Three Border Wars iPPV matches, thoughts on how to change the formula of post iPPV shows for the better
By Jason Powell
ROH Wrestling on SBG television affiliates
Taped in Toronto, Ontario at the Border Wars iPPV
[Q1] The opening video aired... Kevin Kelly stood in front of the ROH banner and welcomed viewers to a special "Road Rage edition" of ROH, meaning three matches from Border Wars would be shown...
Powell's POV: Chris Shore covered Border Wars as it aired live, so check out his report for the match by match breakdown in our ROH PPV section. I'll give a briefer than usual overview of the matches since they have already aired on iPPV.
1. Roderick Strong vs. Mike Bennett (w/Maria) from Border Wars. Kelly and Nigel McGuinness were on commentary for the match. [C] Late in the match, Strong had Bennett in a submission hold and he tapped, but the referee was distracted by Maria.
[Q2] Bennett took advantage of the distraction and hit a side slam for a two count of his own. Nigel stressed that he is the matchmaker, but the referee's decision is final. Ringside attendant Cheeseburger ran out and kissed Maria against her will, which distracted Bennett. Strong hit a Sick Kick and scored the pin...
Roderick Strong beat Mike Bennett.
Footage aired from a recent television show of Nigel McGuinness setting up the Jay Lethal and Michael Elgin vs. two members of SCUM match for Border Wars...
A backstage segment featured Steve Corino cutting a promo while three members of SCUM stood behind him... [C]
The Briscoes were featured in a spot offering a free picture campaign that would be sent via text... A video package recapped SCUM attacking Kevin Steen...
2. Rhett Titus vs. B.J. Whitmer in an I Quit match from Border Wars. The wrestlers brawled inside and outside the ring to start the match. [C]
[Q3] Late in the match, Whitmer tied Titus up in the ropes. Whitmer wound up with a chair. Steve Corino entered the ring and turned his back to Whitmer, then dropped to his knees. Titus screamed "I Quit" to spare Corino. Other SCUM members hit the ring and attacked Whitmer. Jay Lethal and Michael Elgin ran out for the save. Kelly said the ROH vs. SCUM match was on right now...
B.J. Whitmer defeated Rhett Titus in an I Quit match.
Powell's POV: The gimmick was that Corino would pick the two members of SCUM to face Elgin and Lethal. Did they previously announce that Jacobs and Compton were the team? I suppose it doesn't really matter at this point.
3. Jay Lethal and Michael Elgin vs. Jimmy Jacobs and Cliff Compton (w/Steve Corino). The teams fought while the participants from the previous match fought at ringside. [C]
Kevin Kelly hosted a spot to hype the Border Wars iPPV replay... A local spot aired for the Hopkins, Minnesota event on September 28...
The match had settled into a tag match after the break with Elgin and Compton in their respective corners. Elgin held Jacobs up in suplex position while the crowd counted to what sounded like 50. Later, Elgin and Lethal teamed up to perform a similar spot with both SCUM members held up for a suplex before they performed the move.
[Q4] Lethal sold a knee injury at ringside heading into the break. [C] Jacobs and Compton continued to work over Elgin after the break while Lethal continued to sell his injury. Late in the match, Kevin Steen ran out and took Lethal's place in Elgin's corner. The referee waved it off, but Steen pleaded with McGuinness, who gave his blessing as the matchmaker.
Steen took a tag and roughed up both opponents. Back inside the ring, Elgin performed a buckle bomb on Jacobs and went for a followup powerbomb, but Compton clipped his knee from behind. Steen went for a package piledriver on Compton, but Jacobs rolled up Steen and pinned him. Corino gloated over his team winning as Kelly explained that per the match stipulations, Corino is the new color commentator for ROH, and a member of SCUM will get a future ROH Title shot...
Jimmy Jacobs and Cliff Compton defeated Michael Elgin and Jay Lethal when Kevin Steen was pinned.
Powell's POV: I'm not a big fan of showing so many iPPV matches on free television the next week. I'd love to see them take the approach I grew up watching the AWA use in the Twin Cities. The week after the St. Paul Civic Center shows featured the usual studio squash matches combined with some footage from the shows and, more importantly, interviews conducted backstage at the Civic Center after the event concluded. Those were always my favorite television shows. It made those Civic Center events feel really important and helped set the stage for the next month's storylines.
ROH could easily take the same approach by taping squash matches that don't involve titles with overdubbed comments from the announcers done after the iPPV events (or even beforehand since they would have knowledge of the match finishes). Sprinkle in some match highlights and perhaps one full length iPPV match, and a heavy dose of the first-run iPPV backstage interviews and these shows could have that same effect that those old AWA shows did on me as a kid. This would help sell the replay more effectively than showing a few matches from the same show they are asking viewers to then purchase at full price, give those who ordered the iPPV events a reason to watch these post iPPV shows, and make future ROH iPPV events feel more important.
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