Kevin Steen vs. El Generico headlines the Final Battle 2012 iPPV.
Ring Of Honor ends the year by signing a deal with Ooyala to be their new online video platform starting with the Final Battle iPPV on Sunday. Hopefully, this means that ROH's technical difficulties, which blighted their whole year, will become a thing of the past.
Well, this is hopefully a welcome piece of news. Earlier today, Ring Of Honor (ROH) sent out a press release saying they have signed a deal with "Ooyala" to be their new online video platform for all their video hosting, live iPPVs and on-demand streaming services, with immediate effect.
Ooyala call themselves "The Leader in Online Video Analytics, Monetization and Video Hosting", and have an impressive list of customers including Dell, ESPN, Rolling Stone, TV Guide and many more national and international media giants. On paper, this sounds like a dream deal that should make ROH's technical difficulties a nightmare of the past.
With the new iPPV provider, ROH are promising faster load times, the smoothest, highest quality steams on all devices, with no more buffering, live DVR functionality, and instant availability of replays. It certainly sounds like a huge step up.
The only fear is that they may have rushed this agreement so that it can be in place for what is traditionally their biggest show of the winter, ROH Final Battle 2012: Doomsday, this Sunday afternoon before WWE's TLC pay-per-view.
You can't blame me for being a little skeptical when ROH similarly promised fans the moon when they took their iPPV production in-house and started streaming the show themselves on ROHWrestling.com, after the promotion severed ties with GoFightLive, when their Showdown In The Sun WrestleMania weekend iPPVs were blighted with streaming problems.
Unfortunately, the worst was yet to come, with both the Border Wars and Death Before Dishonor X iPPV streams being down for over half the show. Hopefully, history doesn't repeat itself here. With the market leader in video streaming involved in the distribution of Final Battle, it really shouldn't, but the proof as they say, will be in the pudding.
ROH needs a perfect viewing experience on Sunday, so they can end the year on a positive note and look forward to a brighter 2013. After a tumultuous 2012, a year which saw their creative head Jim Cornette demoted, before melting down due to burnout and all the frustrations he faced on the job.
If they can manage to pull that off, then it will finally seem like Sinclair Broadcasting is taking ROH in the right direction.