This Friday night is Ring of Honor’s annual Best in the World PPV, which includes 8 matches with huge stakes bound to change this company for years to come!
Looking at this company’s history and the way this PPV has been presented it has been proven that they see this as one of their biggest of the year so we are bound to see some exciting moments.
Who will stand tall? Who will spit in the face of the establishment? Most importantly, who will prove themselves as the best in the world?
Austin Aries vs Kenny King
Over the past few months on Ring of Honor television and various live events, there has been a desire for former protégé of Austin Aries, Kenny King to prove himself as a viable contender to the singles championships here in ROH. Throughout this journey, he has had clashes with the likes Of Silas Young, Kushida, Chuck Taylor and many more.
However, on the other hand, Austin Aries has been trying to not only revitalize his own personal wrestling career after his release from WWE last summer, but somewhat more importantly he has been trying to revitalize a promotion that used to be on death’s door known as IMPACT Wrestling. Successfully killing two birds with one stone by becoming the “belt collector” and winning the IMPACT World Championship two times.
Eventually though, as fate would have it, time brought these men back together after over 8 years, when Kenny King had inadvertently disqualified Austin during his Television Championship match against then-champion Silas Young. Kenny tried to apologize but Austin was having none of it responding to that apology by kicking him in the groin and locking him in the last Chancery, which Kenny has been using as a tribute to his mentor over the past few months.
My pick For this match is Austin Aries, because I feel like this is the beginning of an IMPACT and ROH relationship starting up again for the first time since 2012. I feel like ROH has been light on the heel side recently so keeping Austin strong would be an ideal situation heading into the fall and winter months.
Sumie Sakai, Jenny Rose, Mayu Iwatani and Tenille Dashwood vs. Kelly Klein and Oedo Tai (Hazuki, Kagetsu, and Hana Kimura)
Recently ROH has joined the rest of the USA and began a women’s movement with their Women of Honor division. Crowning their first champion WrestleMania weekend at their annual Supercard Of Honor event. This match showcases some of the top women in the division along with various Stardom competitors ( a Japanese women’s wrestling company ).
I personally am excited about this match because I feel like there are a lot of unique avenues that it can take for setting up storylines for some of the women wrestlers going forward regardless of who wins or loses. I really hope this match is given time to show what these women can do.
My picks for this match are the heels after some slight miscommunication from the Babyface side because I believe that if the Kelly Klein squad wins that could set her up as a major championship challenger to Sumie, which is good because the belt needs plenty of them since it is still in its infancy.
Flip Gordon vs Bully Ray
This is honestly the match that I am least excited for and it’s not necessarily the fault of the wrestlers. I just think that this story had a lot of potential for a multi-layered viewing experience using the unique backgrounds and histories of both characters. But it has slowly deteriorated and just turned into just the traditional “ old guy hates Modern wrestling “ story archetype.
However, this should still be a solid performance despite the bad writing since Bully has the experience to tell a nice in-ring story and Flip has the in-ring athleticism to carry Bully into a solid PPV outing despite his recent decrease in mobility.
My pick for this match is Flip Gordon because he really needs this win in order to break himself out of the mid-card purgatory that he has been stuck in over the past few years. He can give ROH a fresh popular main event talent that they can rely on.
Jay Lethal vs Kushida
Over the past few months Jay lethal has been in a rut because of his characters recent lack of direction making him not as important as he once was. Though the company has tried to rectify that with a “road to redemption” storyline where he is trying to defeat everyone that has a victory over him in the past.
Looking at things from an in-ring purest perspective I believe that this could very well be the Best match on the card in terms of work rate, thanks to these men’s pasts which is littered with great matches with a variety of opponents.
But I certainly do hope that regardless of the result we start to get a storyline explanation as to why Jay has been so aggressive at certain times, including cheating to beat Marty Scull in a match. Because I was really interested in that potential slow burn heel turn before they decided to drop it with no explanation.
My pick for this match is Jay Lethal because I could see a win setting him up for a rehash of his rivalry with Silas Young from last year. Seeing as he is one of the men that has a victory over him going back to last September in that terrific last man standing match.
ROH SIX MAN TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS:
The Kingdom (Matt Taven, TK O’Ryan, and Vinny Marseglia) (c) vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (Bushi, Evil and Sanada)
This match should be a really intriguing clash of styles because, on one hand, you have the slimy but calculated Kingdom that has no problem using various technicalities to keep their titles. Which they have proven by being the first ever 2 time 6 man tag team champions in this company’s illustrious history. Versus the ever popular and extremely athletic Los Ingobernables de Japon faction with a list of accolades that are a mile long since the group’s inception in 2015.
There’s not necessarily a story to delve into here but I’m sure the ring action will suffice and be of the quality that we have come to expect from championship bouts in ROH over the years.
My prediction for this match is the Kingdom as a result of them just now getting their championships back, because if they lose now it would be extremely redundant and make no sense. Especially if the LIJ faction does not plan to stick around and defend the championships regularly.
ROH TV CHAMPIONSHIP:
Punishment Martinez (c) vs. Hangman Page
Now we have truly entered the big guns! Punishment Martinez and Hangman Page have had an extremely violent rivalry recently as they jockey for position In the ever competitive championship ranks of ROH. Using tables, chairs, and various other weapons, they have been constantly trying to one up each other in their thirst for violence in this rivalry.
Up until recently this match wasn’t supposed to be a championship match. The ever opportunistic Punishment Martinez shocked the world though by defeating Silas Young for the Television Championship in a 6-way match!
Thus changing this match from a personal rivalry with just pride at stake to an incredibly important championship match with the potential to set off a domino effect that changes them for the rest of their lives!
My personal pick for this match is Punishment Martinez. Because like I’ve spoken about in the previous match he literally just won the championship So him losing would not do anything favorable for the prestige of it.
I also think Martinez holding on to the championship with an iron grip would be a very interesting storyline down the road. With various popular babyfaces struggling to rip the championship away from the 6 foot 4 Monster, the title picture is a big one!
ROH TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP:
The Briscoes (c) vs. The Young Bucks
As I’ve spoken about before on my twitter and various social media platforms, the one thing I love about this company above all else is how they make the tag team championships feel important in a way that no other wrestling promotion does.
Currently looking at the lineage of the Ring of Honor World Tag Team Championships it is truly a who’s who of tag teams in modern wrestling history from the Hardy Boys and Red Dragon AKA two-thirds of the Undisputed Era Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly to the Kings of Wrestling, and many more. Every significant tag team of the past sixteen years has held these titles and this Friday night two more teams battle for this prestigious prize.
Those two teams are the Young Bucks and The Briscoes These two have had some of the best matches in ROH history as they clashed for the right to call themselves the best tag team on the planet and they are going to add one more to the list this weekend.
Strap yourselves in ladies and gentlemen this is going to be one hell of a ride and it may just steal the show! My personal picks for this match are the Young Bucks because while they don’t necessarily need the belts to remain popular among the fanbase I could see them carrying the belts into a titanic rematch at All In.
This would then truly set the bar for what these men are capable of in the biggest crowd that this company has ever seen this September.
ROH WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP:
Dalton Castle vs Cody vs Marty Scull
I’m honestly really excited for this three-way because all three of these men have proven in the past that they can go when the lights are on bright! Not to mention there are numerous storyline possibilities that could take place regardless of who wins here. Setting the stage for one of the most unpredictable championship matches in recent memory.
Dalton has had a great championship run so far turning back challengers such as Jay Lethal and Marty Scull himself among many others. But ever since Marty broke his hand WrestleMania weekend he has been on borrowed time and now heading into the biggest championship match he’s ever had, his back is against the wall against not one but two deadly challengers.
On one hand, you have the deadly villain Marty Scull who has made a career picking up championship after championship while metaphorically collecting the mangled bones of his opponents as he scores victory after victory. Yet on the other hand, you have the self-professed leader of the Bullet Club, the American Nightmare, Cody Rhodes.
Cody has used his sly mind games and creative in ring strategizing to pick up victories over opponents that may otherwise be physically more gifted than him. Look at his matches with Jay Lethal in his first ever ROH match and more recently the IWGP Heavyweight Champion Kenny Omega.
This truly proves that it could go any which way as three of the best in this sport battle to prove themselves as the top man in independent wrestling. But my pick for this match is Cody Rhodes. Despite already holding the championship once, I truly feel like having him as the face of the company heading into a event that he himself is promoting would be a very smart idea.
Though I wouldn’t be surprised to see it go any of the three ways that it could go because as I mentioned previously this is a truly unpredictable match up just like this entire night.
Because ROH has proven right when we think we know the answers they will change the questions. What surprises could they have in store for us Friday night? I can’t wait to find out! Thank you for reading this preview of Best In The World.
I am reviewing this event sometime in the near future for http://thewrestlingestate.com/ at their website,so you may check it out there if you like. I hope you all enjoy the show and feel free to comment your predictions I would love to hear them! 👍