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The ROHbot Report: 2017 Global Wars Preview Edition

By James Bullock Oct 8, 2017 - 2:28 PM print


Welcome to another edition of The ROHbot Report – the only article you need for all the Ring of Honor news you have to know. ROH is gearing up for a huge four-night tour featuring stars from New Japan coming to the U.S. Even more exciting is the announcement of the final leg – Chicago – will air on iPPV while the Columbus & Pittsburgh shows will exclusively air live for Ringside Members (ROH’s paid subscription service) for free. Lets find out what will go down during the “Global Wars” tour.

“Global Wars: Buffalo” Preview; October 12th, 2017; Buffalo, NY

Suzuki-Gun (Minoru Suzuki & The Killer Elite Squad) vs. War Machine & Mark Briscoe
For the first time on United States soil three of the baddest members from Suzuki-Gun are coming together to do battle against foes in the United States thanks to this match. But it goes far beyond a simple first-time clash as the history between not only the opponents, but also partners run incredibly deep. Over two years, The Killer Elite Squad were ruling the roost of Pro Wrestling NOAH’s Heavyweight Tag Team division just as Ray Rowe & Hanson started setting their sights on international domination. To potentially prevent War Machine from usurping their status, Davey Boy Smith Jr. & Lance Archer initiated what would become a feud that would span two major promotions across two continents while titles were traded between War Machine and The Killer Elite Squad. Most recently The K.E.S. bested War Machine to end the team’s second reign as IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team champions to begin their third. In the corner of War Machine will be a man familiar with both Rowe & Hanson and The K.E.S. in the form of Mark Briscoe. Mark, alongside his brother Jay, took War Machine to another level as competitors during their wars in ROH that culminated on pay-per-view last years when War Machine successfully defended the ROH World Tag Team title for the last time thus far against The Briscoes. This has all the makings of being the hardest of hitting matches from the entire event, if not the tour with either Suzuki-Gun establishing themselves as the faction to beat when it comes to tag team wrestling in New Japan, or War Machine will put the men who dethroned them during “Destruction in Kobe” that they’re coming to get what was once theirs.

The Bullet Club (Kenny Omega & The Young Bucks) vs. The Kingdom
This time last year Ring of Honor was working toward crowning the company’s inaugural Six-Man Tag Team champions. For The Bullet Club it was just another example of them trying to dominate every title division. For The Kingdom it was meant to be a rebirth – the debut of a faction no longer in the image of its former leader and then-Bullet Club member Adam Cole. In the first and, up to this point, only clash between the two factions saw something of an upset as the debuting trio of Matt Taven, TK O’Ryan & Vinny Marseglia put The Bullet Club out of the tournament in the first round. The Kingdom used that momentum to become the first ROH Six-Man Tag Team champions. But it wasn’t all roses & sunshine for both groups as TK suffered a leg injury that subsequently ended the faction’s reign and The Bullet Club unceremoniously kicked Adam Cole out of The Bullet Club before The Young Bucks murdered him (leaving the ghost of Cole to haunt NXT). So it only makes perfect sense that The Kingdom, a trio trying to return to its past prominence, would challenge The Bullet Club in six-man tag action. But unlike their last outing, this iteration of The Bullet Club is coming in a lot stronger. First there’s the obvious replacement of Cole with Kenny Omega – the first IWGP U.S. champion. Most importantly, The Young Bucks aren’t entering this match following the barbaric Ladder War VI like they were when The Kingdom eliminated them from the tournament. This has all the makings of being an exceptional first-time bout that could set the stage for The Kingdom’s return to Six-Man championship glory or the recurring narrative that has become the norm when it comes to battling The Bullet Club’s Elite: no one is sweeter in that squared circle than The Elite.

Jay Lethal vs. Frankie Kazarian
The 2017 Honor Rumble was to be something of a redemption moment for Jay Lethal coming off a year of setbacks since losing the ROH World Championship. Every time it seemed Lethal was about to return to the mountaintop there was something or someone halting his progress. No better example of that happened in Atlanta during the Honor Rumble match where he fought hard enough to hang on until it was down to him and Frankie Kazarian. Kazarian, who spent a majority of the match avoiding the action, couldn’t stop Lethal from succeeding in his quest to win. Unfortunately for Lethal, the referee never saw his triumphant moment due to the interference of Christopher Daniels. Pulling a Steve Austin circa 1997, Kazarian reentered the ring to pitch Lethal into elimination after being eliminated himself; but Kazarian smartly did it when the ref was looking. Now Lethal has a chance to regain his footing in the ROH World title rankings potentially at the expense of “The Heavy Metal Rebel”. Though they’ve clashed in many promotions in the past, they’ve only had one singles match in ROH – a bout won by Jay Lethal. They have the chemistry of two men who have been around each other for years; establishing a style that is now considered mainstream. With Daniels lurking in the shadows there’s always the possibility Kazarian could pull off a big win over “The Franchise” in another great encounter for these two, but it’s hard to believe Lethal won’t get a win here to reestablish his status as a top contender.

Will Ospreay vs. Punishment Martinez
The former ROH World Television champion Will Ospreay has made 2017 an amazing year for him by not necessarily reaching champion status, but establishing himself as one of the definitive premier junior heavyweights in the world like never before thanks to his success in this year’s Best of Super Juniors tournament where he fought Kushida in a classic encounter that he lost. Before that Ospreay was seen in ROH besting Jay White in a ROH Match of the Year candidate. Ironically enough, it was White the proved to be the reason why Ospreay crossed paths with Punishment Martinez. Fuming over a loss to White, Martinez attacked both the man responsible for his anger and an individual who just so happened to be around – Ospreay being the latter. “The Aerial Assassin”, though not vocalizing his want for revenge, obviously never forgot what Martinez did that night in New York as he requested his first match back in ROH be one with Punishment. While Ospreay is coming for vengeance, “The Messiah of Pain” is looking to continue the path of destruction he first formed in New York that night that eventually moved to “Death Before Dishonor” where he defeated White in a barbaric Street Fight. If Ospreay has any intention of regaining champion status in ROH a win over someone the stature of Martinez will give him a lot of leverage. For Martinez this is another chance to prove his superiority over a class of men physically inferior to him when standing side-by-side. If Ospreay wants to win this bout he’ll not only have to hit & run, but also study what helped White in the past: flash pinning combinations following many hard strikes and an avoidance of the match-ending South of Heaven choke slam. This has all the makings of being a must-see David vs. Goliath style encounter.

CHAOS (Yoshi-Hashi & Toru Yano) vs. Bullet Club (Cody & Marty Scurll)
With the ROH debut of Yoshi-Hashi comes the chance for him to not only impress in singles competition, but also as a tag team competitor. So who better to team with than a trickster who has amassed quite a few Tag Team championships like Toru Yano? The Bullet Club’s most recent members come together with the credentials of world-class stars featuring world-class abilities. With Hashi getting an IWGP U.S. title opportunity during the tour this will be a great opportunity for him to send a message to Kenny Omega by defeating a member of Omega’s faction. In the scope of ROH, Hashi could pull off a victory that secures him a future ROH World title shot just like he did by besting Adam Cole in tag team competition. It’s hard to believe this won’t be the most hilarious match of the night, if not the entire tour with The Bullet Club more than likely picking up a nice win over their most consistent rival faction.

Kushida vs. Adam Page
So much has changed in the lives & careers of Kushida and Adam Page since 2013. The man known as “The Hangman” joined The Bullet Club in 2016 and embraced a vicious side of him unexpected when he first debuted in ROH as a fresh-face youngster just hoping to earn his spot in the company. In an effort to accomplish his goal, Page gladly took on the man looking to becoming New Japan’s top junior heavyweight in his first ROH appearance, Kushida. What was once a rarity to see a New Japan talent in a ROH ring was the precursor to Kushida becoming one of the most consistent New Japan imports for ROH competition. Not surprisingly, Kushida overcame Page on that night, but the eventual master of the Rite of Passage wasn’t deterred and eventually became a deadly competitor by literally hanging opponents with a noose. Thankfully during their subsequent tag team encounters Kushida hasn’t suffered the same fate as Chris Sabin and Jay Briscoe by proving he can overcome Page still to this day. “The Hangman” will be looking to change that fact with a victory in ROH’s return to Buffalo that could catapult the Six-Man Tag Team champion into the position where he’s challenging for the TV title again. Kushida, who has a ROH World title shot happening after this event, would send no better message to Cody that he’s ready for more ROH gold than beating the faction’s enforcer in definitive fashion like it’s 2013 all over again.

Christopher Daniels vs. Hiromu Takahashi
At “Best in the World ‘16”, the man known as “Kamaitachi” found himself on the same side of the ring with Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian when The Addiction’s problems with The Motor City Machine Guns spread to attacking Alex Shelley’s protégé Jay White – a rival of Kamaitachi. What came from this unlikely pairing of a New Japan young lion turned CMLL star and a veteran tag team moved beyond a single problem with three like-minded adversaries. Kamaitachi actually helped The Addiction retain the ROH World Tag Team Championship and seemed to be a perfect partner for Daniels & Kazarian if The Addiction decided to go after the ROH World Six-Man Tag Team title. But the honeymoon period between The Addiction & Kamaitachi quickly faded after Daniels & Kazarian lost the Tag Team title in Ladder War VI. Seeing failure mounting in this partnership, Kamaitachi abandoned The Addiction to return to his home promotion of New Japan where he re-embraced his name to start a war over the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight title against Kushida that resulted in shocking title changes & encounters including a successful two-minute defense by Hiromu Takahashi over “The Time Splitter”. But Takahashi wasn’t the only one winning titles in 2017 as Daniels ended a twenty-plus year drought to finally become a World champion during ROH’s “15th Anniversary”. Eventually both men lost what made their respective 2017 so great, but not the passion to return to the mountaintop. How ironic is that en route to get back to glory would mean having to go through someone who was once considered an ally? This could be a great clash of styles or something very old school in nature. But if there’s one thing for certain it’s everyone in attendance will be happy to see Daryl.

The Dawgs (Rhett Titus & Will Ferrara) vs. Coast to Coast
When Will Ferrara turned on his tag team partner Cheeseburger it appeared he was on the road to singles success if he could start building up big wins against a variety of opponents. But it seemed Ferrara had other reasons as to why he needed to boot Cheeseburger – something that became completely clear when Rhett Titus helped him assault their fellow ROH Dojo graduate on ROH TV. From that moment Titus & Ferrara embraced their out-of-the-ring friendship and plans to turn it into a champion quality tandem. In reality, the reason for The Dawgs coming together is similar to why Coast to Coast are a unit. Two former Top Prospect competitors in Shaheem Ali & Leon St. Giovanni decided to let their friendship fuel a potentially successful tag team. Though CTC haven’t gained that big win just yet, they’ve impressed in every match they’ve been a part of on ROH TV. This could easily be the beginning of big things for either team as they try to start a roll of momentum in a match perfectly made to welcome everyone from intermission in fast & furious fashion.

Mandy Leon vs. Jenny Rose
When it comes to the latest iteration of the Women of Honor division, the early version of Mount Rushmore would consist of Kelly Klein, Deonna Purrazzo, Taeler Hendrix and, of course, Mandy Leon. Probably the most known ROH graduate since Rhett Titus and Cheeseburger, Leon has impressed against a variety of opponents in the division including a No Disqualification match where she fell short to Hendrix. But before Leon was one of the faces of a division she was being taught how to survive in the ring courtesy of Jenny Rose. Rose, someone who too has learned in the ROH Dojo, took Leon under her wing and even was a part of Mandy’s first professional match – an unsuccessful one for Leon thanks to the experience of Rose overcoming “The Exotic Goddess’” raw talents. Since that night these two have found themselves on both sides of the ring – as tag team partners and most recently as opponents. This continued rivalry won’t reach its zenith or anything like that here, but will continue a rivalry centuries old – the story of teacher vs. student where the student tries to prove she knows enough to finally overcome one of her mentors in the division she hopes to rule.

“Global Wars: Pittsburgh” Preview; October 13th, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA

The Bullet Club (Cody, Kenny Omega & Marty Scurll) vs. CHAOS (Will Ospreay, Yoshi-Hashi & Toru Yano)
During May’s “War of the Worlds: Dearborn”, the old rivalry between The Bullet Club & CHAOS produced another fantastic encounter as a majority of each faction found themselves in the same ring at the same time. On that night CHAOS pulled off something of a surprising win that topped off the show-stealing performance by Will Ospreay. But it wasn’t long after that night that things drastically changed. Adam Cole was kicked out of The Bullet Club, replaced by Marty Scurll. Since then it’s been tumultuous for both factions as the gold attained in 2017 has been lost including the ROH World Tag Team title while new champions like Cody has risen. While this latest iteration in the rivalry won’t have as many men involved at one time compared to the aforementioned bout in “Dearborn” it will feature the previous match’s MVP in Will Ospreay. By “The Aerial Assassin’s” side will be the ROH-returning Toru Yano – a man who has big wins over Bullet Club members including a IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team title victory – and the ROH-debuting Yoshi-Hashi – someone who almost became the ROH World champion during “Honor Rising” earlier this year. On The Bullet Club’s side of the ring will be three men who have a distinct connection both in the ring & out as the pairings of Omega-Scurll, Omega-Cody & Cody-Scurll have proven to be successful in both New Japan and Ring of Honor. This match could easily prove to be no different for The Bullet Club as they try to avoid the illegal activities of Yano, Ospreay’s aerial offense, and Hashi’s Butterfly Lock. This one might not reach the level of excellence as its predecessor, but definitely looks good on paper.

ROH World Tag Team Championship: Motor City Machine Guns (c) vs. The Kingdom (TK O’Ryan & Vinny Marseglia) vs. The Young Bucks
History was made at “Death Before Dishonor XV” and vindication was had when The Motor City Machine Guns finally won the ROH World Tag Team Championship. The men who reinvented junior heavyweight tag team wrestling for a new millennium tried to turn every chance in ROH into championship glory, but came up short until that summer’s night in Vegas. But challengers are lined up and knocking at the door, literally. With a baseball bat and axe respectively, TK O’Ryan & Vinny Marseglia have turned their initial intentions to regain the ROH World Six-Man Tag Team title into a brand new goal: become the new ROH World Tag Team champions. But not to be outdone are the former Tag champs & current Six-Man titleholders The Young Bucks. Matt & Nick Jackson have accepted the fact they will be forced to fight for the title they lost in Las Vegas in a Triple Threat match, but one must remember it was the chaotic environment of the Triple Threat Ladder war that saw them become three-time Tag champs. They’ve succeeded in typical Triple Threat matches, Ladder War, Guerrilla Warfare matches, and been apart of the unexpected in the past. But The Kingdom are champion-level wrestlers as well; having become the first-ever Six-Man tag Team champions in ROH history. Though they took nearly a decade to succeed in their journey to become ROH Tag Team champions, it’s hard to believe The Machine Guns aren’t prepared to do everything in their power to retain the gold. As if this tour couldn’t look any better, here’s another match with the potential to steal the show; and potentially the entire tour with the chance of new champions being crowned in the process.

TV Championship Proving Ground Instant Reward: Television champion Kenny King vs. Adam Page vs. Kushida vs. Josh Woods vs. Matt Taven vs. Punishment Martinez
During ROH’s “War of the Worlds” tour in May then-ROH World Television champion Marty Scurll found himself in a very similar situation as the new TV champ Kenny King will be involved in come Pittsburgh. No offence to the competitors involved in the “War of the Worlds” version of this match, this iteration is loaded with champions, former champions, Top Prospects, and quite a few men that are greatly connected to King’s most recent past. First there’s the most recent former TV champion Kushida. The IWGP Jr. Heavyweight champion was bested by King in the champ’s hometown in front of a sold-out crowd and thousands watching at home live on pay-per-view. Before King proved his superiority over Kushida, Adam Page fell to the future TV titleholder in subsequent matches – one tag team bout and a singles match. After winning the TV title, King successfully defended it against the 2017 Top Prospect winner Josh Woods. Matt Taven was a man responsible for keeping gold away from King when Taven was one-third of the Six-Man Tag Team champions and King was a part of The Rebellion. Martinez is really the only man in this match King is unfamiliar with in the ring. But that doesn’t mean Punishment has any chance better than the champ or his fellow hopeful challengers who, by the rules of the match, will battle for the gold immediately after if anyone but King gets a pin or submission victory. If King can pull off the statistically impossible, he’ll push back five potential title opponents early in his reign. This should be an exceptional multi-man match no matter if King wins to end a potential title match before it happens, or unintentionally sets up his next defense.

Silas Young vs. Minoru Suzuki
They are two of the angriest men to ever grace a wrestling ring, but presence alone isn’t enough for someone to win in the competitive worlds of ROH and New Japan. Look no further than “Death Before Dishonor XV”. Minoru Suzuki made his first U.S. appearance in over a quarter of a century in hopes of becoming the new ROH World champion. The IWGP NEVER Openweight champion couldn’t overcome Cody that night, finding solace in teaming with a man of similar nature the next night in Las Vegas. On that evening, Suzuki found himself standing on the same side with a battered Silas Young who one night prior won his feud with Jay Lethal courtesy of a Last Man Standing match. This first-time partnership between Suzuki & Young didn’t pan out as planned as the pair alongside Beer City Bruiser failed to defeat The Hung Bucks to become the new ROH World Six-Man Tag Team champions. Frustrated with two losses in a row, Minoru blamed Young and Silas reciprocated; leading to a fistfight that saw both men having to be separated. Now this match many were hoping to see when it was announce Suzuki would be a part of “Death Before Dishonor XV” weekend happens in “The Steel City” – a place that has produced some of the greatest wrestlers of all time. “Hard-hitting” won’t be an appropriate way to describe just how rough this match is going to get. Both men also have backup so there’s always a chance a winner won’t be declared until someone not scheduled for the bout gets involved illegally.

War Machine vs. The Killer Elite Squad
In 2015, War Machine was just getting started as a potential top tier tag team following the return of Ray Rowe following a catastrophic motorcycle accident. The Killer Elite Squad of Davey Boy Smith Jr. & Lance Archer had the privilege of not only wrestling the pair when they believed they had the potential of becoming a great tag team, but also taking Hanson & Rowe to another level when it came to embracing who they were and would eventually becoming as a tag team. As the years progressed these two teams have been involved in clashes in both Ring of Honor and Pro Wrestling NOAH before The K.E.S. made their triumphant return to New Japan. The rookie team that pushed Smith & Archer further than any gaijin team in history had turned into one of the definitive teams to beat in Japan’s top wrestling promotion. Due to a back injury, Archer had to wait alongside his partner as War Machine eclipsed them in the rankings and eventually became the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team champions. But what better way to make a comeback than by dethroning a team that has done its worst to you in hopes of proving their superiority? That’s exactly what happened only a few short weeks ago as The K.E.S. became the New Japan Tag champs at War Machine’s expense in another great clash between two bruising teams. The IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team title won’t be on the line for this one, but that won’t stop either team from tearing into one another with the potential of either gaining a future title shot (War Machine) or pushing back impending challengers (The K.E.S.) in another barbaric bout to come to Pittsburgh.

Jay Lethal vs. Jay White
For the first nine months of his ROH tenure, Jay White went undefeated while having impressive matches with a variety of opponents up & down the card including former IWGP Jr. Heavyweight champion Himoru Takahashi to former two-time ROH World champion Jay Briscoe. Though Jay Lethal doesn’t have the same type of impressive win streak in his career, the one claim to fame Lethal has that White doesn’t is holding & defending his home promotion’s top two titles at the same time. While White had no qualms of facing anyone on the ROH roster and Lethal has gladly accepted his position as the “Franchise of ROH” these two men haven’t had the chance to wrestle. Both men are coming off big losses from “Death Before Dishonor XV” that saw them go through brutal matches. While a win for Lethal would definitely help him regain some much-needed momentum, for White it would prove to be the biggest victory of his career as he would’ve defeated the face of ROH.

Best Friends vs. The Addiction
The Best Friends of Beretta & Chuck Taylor burst onto the ROH scene shortly before “Best in the World” resulting in them picking up a big win over The Bullet Club prior to the pay-per-view. But like Christopher Daniels failing to successfully defend the ROH World title against Cody, The Young Bucks held back the Best Friends from achieving champion status. Since that night Beretta & Chuckie T. have stayed focused on picking up wins and rising up the ranks while The Addiction have turned on the same fans who cheer the Best Friends any time they enter an arena. With The Addiction declaring war on the ROH fans, they plan on destroying anything the crowd loves including opponents like the super popular Best Friends. Knowing the styles of both teams this could prove to be incredibly old school with a lot of moments were miscommunications & illegal shots turn the tides for their respective teams.

“Global Wars: Columbus” Preview; October 14th, 2017; Columbus, OH

ROH World Championship: Cody defends against Kushida
Three years ago, Kushida found himself standing across from the ROH World Television champion with the intent of achieving a goal few very have ever fulfilled by being a champion in two different mainstream promotions heralded as companies containing a roster of the best currently offered in all of wrestling. On that night during the inaugural “War of the Worlds” event Kushida came up short. But, as seen in a ROH ring as well, Kushida’s loss that day didn’t stun him as he continued proving himself as the best junior heavyweight in the world by reigning New Japan’s stacked Jr. Heavyweight division. In May, Kushida returned to ROH with a goal unfulfilled: become a ROH titleholder. In a shocking moment, Kushida defeated Marty Scurll to become the new ROH World Television champion and would go on to defend the gold against former champions and those unfamiliar with success as a singles star alike until Kenny King ended his reign at “Death Before Dishonor XV”. Rather than see the loss as a setback, Kushida took this as an opportunity by answering an open opportunity.
With Cody becoming the ROH World champion, the owner of the Ring of Honor ring decided the best way to ensure everyone sees him as the greatest ROH World champion of all time by putting out an open contract for any potential challenger to step up and test their luck. Kushida, no longer focused on defending, looks to prove himself worthy of ROH champion status at the expense of a Bullet Club member. While fans have been pretty divisive in regards to their enjoyment of Cody as champion due to a mixed bag of match quality (his stellar match with Jay Lethal at “Supercard of Honor X” compared to his disappointing clash with SANADA in the main event of “War of the Worlds: Liverpool”), this should easily be a fantastic outing with the potential of a surprising title change happening just it did the last time Kushida challenged for a ROH championship. This is also a chance for Cody, win or lose, to prove why he’s worthy of being called a “great” not simply because of his stolen last name.

Motor City Machine Guns vs. Silas Young & Beer City Bruiser

“Death Before Dishonor XV” will go down as one of the most historic nights in ROH’s existence thanks to two major victories: Silas Young defeating Jay Lethal in a Las Man Standing match, and the Motor City Machine Guns becoming the new ROH World Tag Team champions. Rather than use his win over Lethal to continue his singles success, Young has refocused alongside Beer City Bruiser on finally winning the ROH World Tag Team Championship – something that alluded Alex Shelley & Chris Sabin for ten years. These two teams aren’t unfamiliar with each other as they’ve done battle almost a year ago to the day of this event where the Machine Guns were victorious. This could be the same result here, but “Milwaukee’s Worst” have shown they can’t be underestimated and can beat some of the best teams ROH has to offer on any given night. A victory here for Young & BCB won’t just be out of the realm of possibility, but will also shoot them up the ranks to a future title shot. Their first battle was really good and this one should be no different.

The Bullet Club (Kenny Omega & The Young Bucks) vs. The Best Friends & Flip Gordon
“Welcome to Ring of Honor!” is a phrase that’s haunted Flip Gordon since his joined the ROH roster full-time courtesy of The Bullet Club. On various episodes of “Being The Elite”, Gordon’s good nature has been used against him as The Bullet Club have tricked, choked and, of course, super kicked him whenever it seemed like they were simply welcoming him to ROH or playing a “harmless rib.” Another pair of individuals who have witnessed the “hazing” first-hand is none other than two men who have a big victory over The Young Bucks in Beretta & Chuck Taylor, the Best Friends. Unfortunately for the Best Friends they couldn’t turn a six-man tag victory into championship glory when they were injected into the ROH World Tag Team title match at “Best in the World”. With one of the most impressive athletes on the roster by their side there’s a good chance the Best Friends could get back in the ROH Tag Team title picture be it the two-on-two division or even the Six-Man Tag ranks. But as good as Gordon, Beretta & Taylor are, there’s arguably no one better today than Kenny Omega. The IWGP U.S. champion has been a part of several classic matches this year alone including bouts that have broken the Meltzer rating scale. This is the greatest showcase for Gordon in his entire time working for ROH thus far, but he might be in for more than he can bargain for in a match that could easily steal the show when very few expect it to accomplish this goal.

Suzuki-Gun (Minoru Suzuki & The Killer Elite Squad) vs. CHAOS (Will Ospreay, Yoshi-Hashi & Toru Yano)
Suzuki-Gun, under the intense leadership of Minoru Suzuki, once ruled Pro Wrestling NOAH. In January of this year, the faction that made waves in NOAH saw new challenges & goals in New Japan that needed to be accomplished. In the path of destruction caused by Suzuki-Gun when the stable arrived that night at “New Year Dash” saw multiple members of CHAOS feel the pain that was to come for anyone who held the championships they wanted. Though Kazuchika Okada held back the challenge of Suzuki when the IWGP Heavyweight title was on the line, Suzuki was fine taking something else of value from CHAOS when he defeated Hirooki Goto for the NEVER Openweight title in a brutal match. Knowing what Suzuki-Gun is all about, the CHAOS contingent will come in out for blood even though Toru Yano is a part of the team (those uncovered turnbuckles can do some serious damage). This could become one wild brawl topped off by a Yano Special if someone isn’t prepared.

Kenny King & Mark Briscoe vs. The Bullet Club (Adam Page & Marty Scurll)
Shortly before “Death Before Dishonor XV”, The Bullet Club’s Adam Page & Marty Scurll staked their claims of deserving Television title opportunities before Kenny King while Kushida was the TV championship by attacking Kushida and King during a title defense on ROH TV. The men who were just having an honorable contest ruined by The Bullet Club decided to team up and join forces against Page & Scurll that resulted in the latter losing. Kenny King finally became a singles champion in ROH, resulting in a host of challengers to step up with the intent of doing to King what King did to Kushida by dethroning him; and one of those men just so happened to be Mark Briscoe – a man who has stated time & time again that it’s his destiny to become the face of ROH TV. The history between King and Briscoe goes back some six years where a tag team feud turned them into bitter enemies and helped elevate King in the eyes of fans & ROH management by losing to The All Night Express in Ladder War. Kenny King even made his return to ROH at The Briscoes’ expense two years ago. Now these two men who haven’t necessarily seen eye to eye will team to take on men who are friends in & out of the ring. This should be a very interesting battle with a potential tandem falling apart at the seams, or shocking everyone just like King & Kushida did by overcoming The Bullet Club.

Jay Lethal vs. Hiromu Takahashi
When Hiromu Takahashi arrived in ROH June of last year he was a former CMLL World Light Heavyweight champion known as “Kamaitachi”. There were flashes of his impending greatness including back-to-back victories during “Glory By Honor XV” weekend. Those winning ways continued for Takahashi when he returned to New Japan and became, arguably, the best junior heavyweight in the world. But before his reign in New Japan began, Takahashi’s paths crossed with the face of ROH, Jay Lethal. In a great bout, Lethal overcame Kamaitachi on that night in Lakeland, Florida; leaving Takahashi with a bad taste in his mouth that hasn’t been washed out with title wins and momentous matches alike. It’s amazing to think how much times have changed in a year as Lethal really needs a win here more than his opponent following his loss at “Death Before Dishonor XV”. Their first encounter was a good one that saw Takahashi start reaching into the depths of greatness he possessed that would catapult him to superstardom in Japan. This time ROH fans might bare witness to an undeniable classic.

The Addiction vs. Search & Destroy (Jay White & Jonathan Gresham)
“Best in the World ‘17” proved to be a turning point in the ROH careers of The Addiction and Search & Destroy. For the latter, Jay White & Jonathan Gresham helped end the feud between their faction and The Rebellion to not only remain a unit, but also disband The Rebellion in a thriller of a bout. Later in the night, Christopher Daniels entered an arena that should’ve cheered one of the founding father of Honor. Instead, the then-World champion was booed relentlessly en route to losing the ROH World Championship. Since that night, The Addiction have declared war on anything ROH loves; be it The Bullet Club or talent just getting their ROH careers started like White & Gresham. This is a huge opportunity for S & D as a win here would propel them near the top of the Tag Team title rankings thanks to a victory over the former two-time ROH World Tag Team champions. The Addiction are too gunning for gold, but not in the name of honor as more gold equals more power to take away what ROH fans enjoy seeing – some of the best wrestlers on the planet trying to attain championship glory in impressive fashion; and this should be one impressive match to state the least.

Josh Woods vs. Shane Taylor
The 2017 Top Prospect Tournament winner Josh Woods found himself in an interesting predicament following “Best in the World” as he awaiting his earned TV title shot, but didn’t want to get rusty by not working. One of those moments of work saw Woods compete in a Six-Man Mayhem bout. On a roll, Woods seemed to be on the verge of victory when Shane Taylor – fresh off losing an eight-man tag bout where his faction The Rebellion was broken up – attacked “The Goods” and cost him the victory. Several weeks later Woods got his revenge in a rough encounter for “The Goods” where he had to survive the bruising onslaught of a man who would be revealed as a paid assassin of QT Marshall. This time Taylor isn’t coming in with the idea of being a hitman, but a man wanting revenge for a big loss on ROH TV. Woods knows the formula to win against Shane, but that doesn’t mean Taylor doesn’t have the ability to switch things up and bring something to the table Woods won’t be expecting in this true clash of differing styles that, judging by the quality of their last match, should be really good.

Sumie Sakai vs. Holidead
Recently, ROH held its first all-woman tryout camp at the ROH Dojo that was also meant to give one wrestler the opportunity of a lifetime to wrestle for STARDOM – one of the premier women-only wrestling companies in the world that has produced women who people believe will not only be a part of WWE’s “Mae Young Classic” tournament, but also will get signed by the number one promotion in the world. Though she might not have the name of an Io Shirai or Kairi Sane, Holidead is synonymous with the company’s tag team division thanks to her partnership with Thunder Rosa. But Holidead has done exceptionally well by herself, taking competitors like Nicole Matthews, Ivelisse and the aforementioned Sane to the limit with the latter happening early in Holidead’s career. Sakai’s recent experience in STARDOM definitely opened her eyes to the talent that could prove that there’s a new generation ready to finally put her down for good. But never underestimate the heart and, most importantly, the experience of a pioneer in American joshi wrestling. This has all the makings of being one of the best Women of Honor matches since the division restarted in 2015.

“Global Wars: Chicago” Preview; October 15th, 2017; Chicago IL

The Bullet Club( Cody, Adam Page & The Young Bucks) vs. Search & Destroy (Motor City Machine Guns, Jonathan Gresham & Jay White)
The Bullet Club loves to run deep – something Alex Shelley & Chris Sabin discovered in 2016 when Adam Page turned on ROH to join the “Biz Cliz” ranks. Hanging Sabin with a noose was only a precursor to what The Bullet Club had in mind when it came to tag team dominance in ROH. By the fall season of 2016, Sabin & Shelley made a call to arms – people sick of Bullet Club’s antics and men wanting to build up ROH as well as their careers have reach a new level could study under the impressive tree groomed by The Motor City Machine Guns. What came from Shelley & Sabin’s decree was the formation of Search & Destroy – a faction where mentors Shelley & Sabin helped the youth of Honor showcase their talents without relying on nefarious actions. Jay White, Lio Rush, Jonathan Gresham & Donovan Dijak saw the positivity of what The Machine Guns were offering in both wars with The Bullet Club &, most importantly to the faction, The Rebellion. The Machine Guns also profited from having a group of young competitors to keep them on their toes by having to lead by example. No better example of true leadership came at “Death Before Dishonor XV” when The Machine Guns ended a championship drought to become the new ROH World Tag Team titleholders. But that title loss by The Young Bucks has infuriated the brothers and because of that anger their Bullet Club brothers are on the hunt alongside them. Representing The Bullet Club in Chicago will be none other than the man who once strung up Sabin for the world to see and the ROH World champion who will take great delight in making someone kiss the ROH ring he has adorned his right ring finger with since ROH returned to Atlanta. This match has all the makings of being completely insane with potential championship implications in place to ensure the winning team either put themselves in title contention or prove that the days of The Bullet Club’s dominance are coming to an end thanks to brainchild of one of the most innovative teams in wrestling history.

IWGP United States Championship: Kenny Omega defends against Yoshi-Hashi!
This is big news considering the original announcement in regards to Kenny Omega was that he would only appear in Chicago for the tour’s final show and it wasn’t guaranteed he’d even defend the IWGP United States title during that show. After making it past Juice Robinson, Omega rolls into October with the type of momentum that will really make for some magical moments including his first title defense on American soil against an adversary from a rival faction in Yoshi-Hashi. Beyond their problems as men on opposing wrestling groups, both have been responsible for unexpected shortcomings for the other. Last year saw Yoshi-Hashi defeat “The Cleaner” in the G1 Climax tournament that Omega would eventually win, but only after being placed behind the figurative eight-ball due to his Yoshi-Hashi loss. Omega exacted some revenge a few months later when Kenny bested his adversary to retain his contracted match for “WrestleKingdom” & the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. They haven’t had a singles battle since September 2016, but have been in the ring with each other dozens of times in multi-man tag team bouts. Omega is reasonably considered one of the best wrestlers in the world today while Yoshi-Hashi is highly underrated and can easily hang with the best of the best. This should be a fantastic way to cap off the tour and maybe even feature a surprising title change live on iPPV.

Suzuki-Gun (Minoru Suzuki & The Killer Elite Squad) vs. Jay Lethal, Mark Briscoe & Kenny King
When Suzuki-Gun enters an arena it’s something of a spectacle – the sight of men not only flashy with personalities for days, but also tougher than tough. Suzuki-Gun is as legitimate as it comes, dominating in every promotion the faction’s been a part of since forming in 2011. On the opposite end of the spectrum, long-time ROH competitors Jay Lethal, Mark Briscoe & Kenny King have history not as partners, but opponents throughout various times & matches. King alongside Rhett Titus had a blood feud with The Briscoes in 2011 that culminated in The All Night Express winning the third Ladder War. Jay Lethal did a masterful job of keeping the ROH World Television & World titles away from Mark Briscoe when Lethal held the belts respectively. But this a chance for three men of discernable Honor to prove to a group who will gladly break any rule in the book to win what pure talent can bring to the table; and how it can result in victory. This is another bout that will be an interesting clash of styles where brawling, high flying grappling & maybe some illegal activities all come together to make for one memorable encounter.

Will Ospreay vs. Flip Gordon
Oh, this is the definition of “high-flying insanity” if there ever was a match. The former Television champion Will Ospreay was heralded as a great acquisition for ROH almost a year ago; proving his worth on his first night by becoming the TV champion. Though his reign as Television champion ended only two nights later, Ospreay continued to impress any time he entered a ROH ring. Though having the athletic ability of an Olympic gymnast, Flip Gordon didn’t enter ROH with the same type of buzz Ospreay gained over 2016. Instead, Gordon was given a chance and proved himself worthy of a ROH contract. Gordon has done well thus far in ROH against competition on his tier level, but Ospreay will prove to be on a completely different level – a man just like himself with more experience and having faced some of the best both ROH and New Japan have to offer in just the past year alone. “The Aerial Assassin” has also helped the likes of Jay White reach a new level in front of a crowd who didn’t expect so much from his opponent. This could be an early breakout moment for Gordon in what should be nothing short of the most awe-inspiring match of the evening.

Marty Scurll vs. Hiromu Takahashi
The end of 2016 proved to be a turning point in the respective careers of Marty Scurll and Hiromu Takahashi. The latter spent a majority of his career as a New Japan young lion in excursion with CMLL & ROH. By the time ROH headed to the UK for its “Reach For the Sky” tour the man formerly known as “Kamaitachi” returned to his home promotion with a huge chip on his shoulder. Very similar to Takahashi upon entering essentially a new world, Marty Scurll made his ROH debut that would turn into one of the best successive nights of his career thus far as he ended the tour with the ROH World Television Championship in his possession. Not long after Scurll’s victory, Takahashi bested Kushida to become the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight champion to establish himself as one of the best in the world. But by the summer season of 2017 things had turned south for both men as the championships they used to catapult their careers were taken from them by a single man, Kushida. At “War of the Worlds: Liverpool”, both Scurll and Takahashi tried to avenge their losses to Kushida by ending his TV title reign in a Four Corner Survival match, but it wasn’t meant to be. In hopes of regaining champ status in their home promotions, Scurll and Takahashi will do battle for the first time in singles competition in what should be a great mix of hilarious action & technical acumen. The Bullet Club and Los Ingobernables haven’t seen eye to eye, but have also mostly steered clear from each other. This could also ignite a stable war no matter the winner in this battle of two incredibly villainous individuals.

Silas Young & Beer City Bruiser vs. Best Friends
Coming off the biggest singles win of his ROH career thus far, Silas Young has refocused on becoming a ROH champion alongside the only man in wrestling he gets along with, the Beer City Bruiser. But “Milwaukee’s Worst” aren’t the only men with ROH Tag gold in mind. After winning a six-man tag bout to formally introduce themselves to the ROH audience before “Best in the World”, the Best Friends of Beretta & Chuck Taylor put everyone on notice that they are a definitive team to beat if they want to move up the rankings. Young & Bruiser, though they haven’t reached champ status yet in ROH, are a very talented tandem that won the most recent Tag Wars series last year. For the Best Friends this is a huge chance to reassert themselves as a duo worthy of a title opportunity in the very near future. Though this one doesn’t have the same international flavor of the card’s majority, expect it to be a really good bout made to open the show.

The Addiction vs. Kushida & Cheeseburger
A little over a year ago, Cheeseburger got to live his dream by teaming with the legendary Jushin “Thunder” Liger” for a tag team encounter against The Addiction. Little did Cheeseburger know that his team was actually good enough to win, producing, arguably, the biggest upset of the year in ROH. The Addiction didn’t take kindly to the loss, attacking both men and actually injuring Liger. Over a year later another living junior heavyweight legend stands alongside Cheeseburger in an effort to ruin the night of two men who would love nothing more than to take Cheeseburger away from the fans who adore him so much. They could actually kill two birds with one stone by putting Kushida – a highly respected former ROH TV champion that fans truly enjoy seeing – out of action as well. With Kushida by his side, Cheeseburger could make it two for two against The Addiction in Chicago and might even have himself a new international partner that takes him to the Promised Land in either ROH or New Japan.

Colt Cabana vs. Toru Yano
Comedy, thy name is this match. In over twenty combined years when looking at the careers of Colt Cabana and Toru Yano one resounding thing connects the two in terms of style: hilarity. By embracing a style unlike any thing since in their respective home promotions during a time when everyone wanted to be strong style, Colt Cabana and Toru Yano stood out from the pack while attaining status in & out of the ring – both men even have producer credits to their names. But most importantly, championships are greatly associated with both men as they’ve captured many a Tag Team title. They’ve definitely found success by themselves including both picking up huge wins over the believed best their respective companies have to offer with Cabana pinning Jay Lethal before last year’s “Global Wars” and Yano gaining a point in the G1 Climax thanks to his Yano Special working well against Kenny Omega. This will be unlike anything excepted from a ROH-New Japan inter-promotional match, but will definitely leave a positive mark on the card by doing what both men are known for doing best – being different from its contemporaries.

Kelly Klein vs. Stella Gray


The Dawgs vs. The Tempura Boyz


Bryan Danielson vs. Steve Corino


And there you have it. Show that love, or like, for The ROHbot Report and Honor Nation on its Facebook page. Also, if haven’t already, make sure you listen to the latest FREE “Honor Nation” as I talk about The Shield reuniting and more (http://www.wewantinsanity.com/am2/publish/free_audio/Honor_Nation_The_Shield_Reborn.shtml). And don’t forget to send those questions in for the next “Honor Nation either through the comments section below, on Facebook (The ROHbot Report and Honor Nation on its Facebook page), on Twitter (@fasjab), or by e-mailing me at Bullock@wewantinsanity.com.
Here’s to a great week for you and yours; and as always, thanks for reading.

Till Then.



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