Ring Of Honor – October 20, 2023
By Thomas Hall on 20th October 2023
Ring Of Honor
Date: October 19, 2023
Location: Huntington Center, Toledo, Ohio
Commentators: Ian Riccaboni, Caprice Coleman
Things changed the slightest bit last week as the World Champion actually showed up. Eddie Kingston defeated Serpentico and then gave Angelico a title shot for the sake of he felt like it. Other than that, it’s likely going to be the usual free for all around here, which is up and down at best most of the time. Let’s get to it.
Gravity vs. Angelico
Gravity’s headlock doesn’t get him very far to start so they go to the mat with Angelico working on the arm. With that broken up, Angelico switches to the leg but Gravity sends him outside. The big flip dive drops Angelico again but he’s fine enough to tie Gravity’s legs up back inside. Gravity gets some boots up in the corner though and plants Angelico again for a double knockdown. Some rollups give Gravity two and a powerbomb gets the same. Angelico is right back with a spinning faceplant before something like Konnan’s Tequila Sunrise makes Gravity tap at 8:19.
Rating: B-. This was the opening high lying match that has worked in wrestling forever. Gravity is one of those stars who still has enough status that a win gives Angelico some momentum towards his title shot. The match was entertaining as well and will probably get more time than most tonight, which is a good thing as it served a purpose.
The Righteous talk about how they tore about Adam Cole and MJF and now are coming for something else.
Shawn Dean vs. Peter Avalon
Trish Adora and Ryan Nemeth are here too. Dean grabs a headlock takeover to start and then snaps off some armdrags. Back up and Dean sends him into the buckle a few times but Nemeth grabs the ankle. Adora chases him off but Dean fights Avalon off and grabs a DDT for two. Avalon’s superkick into a Death Valley Driver gets two more but Dean knocks him off the top. A top rope splash finishes for Dean at 5:05.
Rating: C. It wasn’t a bad match but there is only so much you can get out of two people who are so low down on the totem pole around here. The action itself was fine but at the end of the day it’s two low level stars having a five minute match on the secondary show. At least Dean won, as he’s certainly a bigger star than Avalon.
Mercedes Martinez vs. Marti Belle
Martinez headlocks her over to start and bounces out of a headscissors to slap Belle in the face. Some stomping in the corner sets up a ripcord lariat for two on Belle and Martinez knees her in the face. An anarchist suplex gets two and Martinez rains down some right hands. Martinez kicks and stomps away but Belle grabs a jawbreaker. A running kick to the chest gives Belle two but Martinez gives her a chokebomb. The OG Lock makes Belle tap at 6:44.
Rating: C. This was an extended squash as Martinez mostly wrecked Belle and shrugged off her limited offense. As usual, Martinez seems to be built up towards a title shot but at some point it has to actually happen. On the other hand, Belle was treated as something of a special return, only to have her get destroyed in a slightly extended squash.
Athena yells at the Minions In Training and wants Billie Starkz to be more violent tonight. Lexi Nair still isn’t impressed.
Tony Nese vs. Ethan Page
Nese, with Mark Sterling, says he has to beat up Page and can’t do his group training. We pause for Nese to pose, allowing Page to lounge on the top. A chase lets Nese slide back inside and do some jumping jacks, followed by a headlock. Nese gets scared out to the floor and Page knocks him into the barricade, where he grabs a fan’s “TONY NESE SUCKS” sign.
Back in and a shoulder puts Nese down but Sterling’s distraction breaks up the slingshot cutter. Nese ties him in the Tree of Woe and stomps away, setting up the chinlock. Page fights up and hammers away, setting up a powerslam for two. The cradle belly to back suplex sets up the slingshot cutter for two, leaving Page surprised. The Ego’s Edge is loaded up but Sterling offers a distraction, allowing Nese to grab a rollup with feet on the ropes for the pin at 9:09.
Rating: C+. Sure. Page has been built up for the last month or so as he seemed ready to get a title shot and then he loses to TONY NESE, who has been doing the exact same stuff for so long that I don’t even hear him talking most of the time. I’m sure Page will come back and win later, but egads man. It’s TONY NESE.
Post match Nese wants the Code of Honor but Mocks Page instead. Page goes after both of them but the villains escape.
Billie Starkz vs. Diamante
Athena and Mercedes Martinez are here too. Starkz sends her outside and hits a dive but Martinez offers a distraction. Back in and Diamante hammers away before sending Starkz into the corner. A neckbreaker gives Diamante two and a running dropkick to the back gets the same. Starkz manages a kick to the face out of the corner and a rollup gets the pin at 5:14.
Rating: C. Starkz gets another win as what feels like the eternal build towards what is likely Athena vs. Starkz for the title continues. We’re probably going to get a tag match between these four as the big match on next week’s show and it should be good enough, but this was just two people having a match. At least it likely sets up the next step, but it would be nice to get to something that feels important.
Post match Martinez and Diamante jump Starkz and Athena until the latter clears the ring with a chair.
Cole Karter gives Maria Kanellis-Bennett a shirt, which she’ll wear during Karter and Griff Garrison’s tag match.
Josh Woods vs. Pat Buck
Pure Rules. Woods grabs a wristlock to start but Buck slips out. The threat of the Gorilla Lock sends Buck over to the ropes and Buck’s attempt at a leglock makes Woods do the same. A rollup is broken up with Woods’ second rope break so he punches Buck in the face for his official warning. Woods has had it and gutwrench powerbombs Buck, setting up the Gorilla Lock for the tap at 3:58.
Rating: C. It wasn’t quite a squash but Buck was brought into Woods’ world last week and then taps out in less than four minutes. This was the latest part of Woods’ incredible slow climb back to a Pure Title shot. Odds are that’s at Final Battle, so we only have to wait about two more months to actually get to the point.
Griff Garrison/Cole Karter vs. Myron Reed/Ren Jones
Karter knocks Jones down to start but he elbows Karter in the jaw. A brainbuster gives Jones a fast two but Garrison comes in with a discus forearm. Garrison decks Reed on the apron as Karter hits a spinning DDT so Garrison can get the pin at 2:07. Total squash.
Dalton Castle’s slow descent into madness continues as he wants to give the fans what he deserves.
Allysin Kay vs. Kiera Hogan
Hogan starts fast by sending her throat first into the ropes for a running hip attack. A kick to the head misses for Hogan so Kay takes her down and hammers away. Kay misses a charge though and Hogan kicks her into the corner for another hip attack. Now the kick connects for two but Kay is back with the AK47 for two. Not that it mattes as Hogan hits a shotgun dropkick into Face The Music for the pin at 4:02.
Rating: C. Here’s the latest match on the show that came and went rather quickly without much of note. Commentary was hyping up Hogan as a potential title challenger, even though we’ve done that multiple times and it was only ok. Kay is someone who could add a lot to the division if she was around full time, but maybe she is too busy elsewhere to do anything. Granted it won’t matter if she is added into the endless loop of people fighting for a title shot that they never get.
Righteous vs. Kevin Matthews/Rod Lee
Autumn Sunshine finishes Lee in 48 seconds.
Lady Frost vs. Zoey Lynn
Lynn rolls her up for two and is kneed in the ribs as a result. Frost unloads with stomps in the corner and a spinning kick to the face makes it worse. Frost Bite finishes at 1:37.
Komander vs. Metalik
Metalik starts fast with a boot to the mask in the corner and the reverse Sling Blade. The rope walk dropkick puts Komander down again and Metalik strikes away in the corner. Komander is back up with a rope walk anklescissors and Metalik is knocked to the floor. Back in and a Code Red gives Komander two, followed by a top rope hurricanrana for the same. Metalik snaps off a springboard hurricanrana into the Metalik Driver for two. Komander is right back with a fireman’s carry gutbuster, followed by the rope walk shooting star press for the pin at 4:50.
Rating: B. Yeah it was short but man alive did they pack a lot of stuff in there. This was the kind of match where they were told “you’ve got five minutes, go totally nuts”. It was entertaining, action packed and the kind of fun high flying stuff that is what you would want to see here. Awesome stuff.
Darius Martin/Action Andretti vs. Gates of Agony vs. Workhorsemen
Drake chops Martin to start but a dropkick gets Martin out of trouble. It’s off to Andretti for a high crossbody but some shots to the arm don’t work very well. Henry comes in but Toa runs Henry and Andretti over at the same time. Martin comes back in and hits a double DDT on the Gates. Andretti gets to forearm away at Henry, followed by a springboard Downward Spiral to give Martin two on Drake. Everything breaks down and the double standing clothesline gives Kaun the pin on Henry at 4:16.
Rating: C+. There’s only so much you can get out of a match with six people getting just over four minutes. What they did was fun and fast paced, but it was a three way match for the sake of having a three way match. There’s no feud here and nothing on the line, which doesn’t make for the most interesting match.
Overall Rating: C+. This was a show where two or three matches bailed out an otherwise uninteresting show. Final Battle has been officially set for December and all that means is we have two more months of this meandering show with one or two stories. The other problem is how many matches will be put on the Final Battle card with no major story from this show, making it feel all the more like a waste of time. Some of the matches were worth seeing here, but even cutting off about half an hour from the previous few weeks’ runtimes, the show had too many points where I was wondering why a match was taking place.
Angelico b. Gravity – Arm trap half crab
Shawn Dean b. Peter Avalon – Top rope splash
Mercedes Martinez b. Marti Belle – OG Lock
Tony Nese b. Ethan Page – Rollup with feet on the ropes
Billie Starkz b. Diamante – Rollup
Josh Woods b. Pat Buck – Gorilla Lock
Griff Garrison/Cole Karter b. Myron Reed/Ren Jones – Spinning DDT to Jones
Kiera Hogan b. Allysin Kay – Face The Music
Righteous b. Kevin Matthews/Rod Lee – Autumn Sunshine to Lee
Lady Frost b. Zoey Lynn – Frost Bite
Komander b. Metalik – Rope walk shooting star press
Gates Of Agony b. Workhorsemen and Action Andretti/Darius Martin – Double standing clothesline to Henry
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