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ROH TV Episode 321: Best Friends, Old Villains

By James Bullock Nov 17, 2017 - 7:09 AM print

Last week: The Motor City Machine Guns retained their ROH World Tag Team Championship over War Machine thanks to some unintended help from The Addiction.

ROH TV Episode 321
Philadelphia, PA

Last week, Dalton Castle confronted Cody with the intent of becoming the next ROH World champion. Though Cody tried to convince Castle otherwise, Dalton unleashed the Bang-A-Rang to put down the champ.

ROH World Television Championship Contender Match: Punishment Martinez vs. Josh Woods
The winner will be one of three men to challenge for the TV title at “Final Battle” in a Four Corner Survival match. An audible, “Punishment!” chant rang out before the tie up where Woods showed no fear during the break. Sidestepping a big boot, Woods caught the leg and tossed him in position for the clothesline to put Martinez on the floor in preparation for a flying forearm. Woods’ intended follow up saw him run into a leaping stomp. As if that wasn’t enough, Martinez slammed “The Goods” in position for the springboard somersault senton as the show entered a commercial break.
The show returned and Woods had Punishment in a sleeper. Martinez muscled Woods into the air; freeing himself while setting Josh up for the falcon arrow. Woods used his speed to save himself again, sidestepping and throwing his opponent before diving off the ropes with a forearm. This time Woods was able to start a running series of strikes topped off by the spinning suplex into a neck breaker. Martinez took a page out of Woods’ book by using the sidestepping technique to catch Woods and set up that super spinning heel kick. Punishment wanted the South of Heaven choke slam, but got yanked into an arm bar. Martinez used his long legs to push off the mat and almost pin his opponent. Woods got up quickly, looking for combinations to attack victory when Martinez broke “The Goods’” grip he was able to kick Woods in position for South of Heaven to pin his fellow former Top Prospect.

Mark Briscoe was in the promo area to state that he had earned his TV title shot that he will use tonight. Jay Briscoe entered the scene to tell his little brother that he’ll be in Mark’s corner for this one.

Jay Lethal was in the ring to tell the world that his career has taken a downward spiral thanks to people constantly getting in his business any time he’s focused on becoming the World champion again. Lethal also wanted to remind Cody that he had the last laugh the last time they fought one-on-one. The lights went out to apparently signal the arrival of Cody when Marty Scurll’s music hit to bring out the fellow from ROH World Television champion. Scurll formally introduced to Lethal before telling the former World champ about his goals of wrestling the best ROH has to offer including Jay Lethal. According to Scurll, the Lethal that stood in front of him tonight wasn’t the one he aspired to wrestle when he signed with ROH. The Lethal Scurll admired was the one that was, “…somewhat villainous.” Lethal didn’t appreciate Scurll’s statements inferring that they were alike. In Lethal’s opinion, Scurll needed to cheat to win. Scurll took exception to Lethal’s words, telling him that he was a World champion when he was a villain and if he didn’t want to revert back to his old ways then he might as well find the machismo, dig it! Lethal wanted to verbally retaliate, but “The Villain” stopped him to show off the reality that the crowd were now all about The Bullet Club and wanted to see Marty beat up Jay Lethal at “Final Battle”. Lethal didn’t hesitate, accepting the match before telling “The Villain” he might show the rule breaker some new tricks.

The Bullet Club was in the promo area to warn Dalton Castle that Adam Page was coming for “The Peacock” next week with his big ol’ rope in hand.

ROH World Television Championship: Kenny King (c) vs. Mark Briscoe w/ Jay Briscoe
Mixed reaction for the champ before the, “Man up!” chants began and both men followed the Code of Honor. As they circled around the ring, Jay Briscoe suddenly tossed in the towel. Reasonably upset, Mark ran up on his brother to ask him what he was doing. Mark left in a huff. Punishment Martinez suddenly jumped the guardrails, using a spinning heel kick on King. Shane Taylor entered the fray, followed by Jonathan Gresham, Silas Young and Cheeseburger. Martinez almost knocked Cheeseburger’s head off after feeling a Shotei. Everyone but King were fighting on the floor when a fired up champ jumped over the top to wipe out everyone to a bug ovation.

It was time for another edition of “Coleman’s Pulpit” and the guest was Shane Taylor. Coleman didn’t understand why Shane had taken the role of a hired gun since The Rebellion disbanded. Taylor didn’t have any problems being a hitman because it pays. When Caprice questioned how Taylor could be so dishonorable, Shane told him he wasn’t waiting for his opportunity like so many honorable people have in the past and come up short on reaching their potential. Sweating profusely, Taylor admitted his reason for working the way he does: to make a better life for his daughter and trying to get her far away from the dangerous environment that made him.

ROH World Tag Team Championship Number One Contender Match: The Addiction vs. Best Friends
Pearl Harbor job by The Addiction to catch Chuckie T. off guard, but Beretta was there to help his partner double team back drop Christopher Daniels after knocking Frankie Kazarian out of the ring. Best Friends were as fired up as the crowd as Chuckie pulled off the slowest senton splash ever. Kazarian stopped Best Friends from hugging, only to be knocked down again. On the top of the entrance ramp sat The Kingdom watching as Beretta took his eyes off the prize by attacking Daniels, only to be taken down with a Kazarian slingshot hurricarana on the floor after Beretta caught “The General” with a baseball slide. Beretta found himself on the wrong part of town, taking a slingshot leg drop from Kazarian that almost ended this one prior to a double team sequence that concluded with Daniels’ caperana into the disrespectful pin topped by “The Fallen Angel” spitting on Chuckie before the commercial break.
The show returned with Kazarian mouthing off at Beretta before reversing an Irish whip to send Beretta flipping up the turnbuckles. Beretta came out of the corner with a lariat that allowed him to tag out to a fired up Chuckie & his left hands. Falcon arrow connected for Chuckie on Daniels, but didn’t end this one. Just when Chuckie got rolling again, he ran into a double team power bomb-neck breaker combo. Beretta came flying into the ring, helping his partner turn the tides with some Irish whips to set up two running attacks in the corner. Big Best Friends hug didn’t turn into a finish, but did allow Beretta to tornado DDT Kazarian in position for a somersault plancha to the floor on the exiting “Heavy Metal Rebel”. Daniels used the commotion to grab a chair without the referee’s knowledge, only for War Machine to arrive for the distraction. Daniels couldn’t avoid the Awful Waffle by Chuckie that allowed T. to pick up the pin for his team.

Overall: This week’s episode definitely followed the formula set from last week by having the opening & closing matches go at least one commercial break in length with the middle portion being dedicated to storyline advancements & promos. The main event, just like last week’s tag bout, stole the episode from an in-ring perspective as the crowd really made it come across better than one would’ve expected from the sound of the opening bell. The ending made perfect since considering what happened last week and it seems things are falling into place in a major way for a pair of tag bouts at “Final Battle”. Punishment Martinez and Josh Woods also fought in a top contender’s match that was solid encounter with both guys really going all out from bell to bell. The big fracas that happened later in the episode involving the TV champ’s potential future opponents was a fun piece of business that definitely added something to the other upcoming matches. But as good as the action was, the promos did so much more to push forward several narratives. The most obvious ones were Cody’s warning for Dalton Castle, the best “Coleman’s Pulpit” yet as it gave Shane Taylor some true character definition to back up the commentators’ claims for the last few month any time he steps into the ring, and, most impressively, the in-ring confrontation between Lethal and Scurll. Scurll came across as a main event talent and looked perfect standing across the arguable current face of ROH. In one segment they really did a wonderful job building anticipation for Lethal-Scurll. Not the most amazing episode, but one that hit all the checkmarks and did what was necessary – effectively build toward “Final Battle”.

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