ROH’s year-end PPV is here. Final Battle takes place tonight (Dec. 13) from UMBC Event Center in Baltimore, Maryland. The card has three title matches, two grudge matches, and one hoss fight supreme.
Before we get to the event preview, let’s cruise through episode 429 of ROH Wrestling. It was heavy on video packages to recap feuds for Final Battle. There were three ‘live’ segments.
Mark Haskins was in the ring to call out Bully Ray. Bully hesitantly remained on the apron. Whack! Flip Gordon attacked Haskins from behind with stick shots. Bully paid off the mercenary with cold hard cash. Bully then powerbombed Haskins through a table. They’ll have a street fight at Final Battle.
Bateman defeated PJ Black. For the finish, Bateman shook the ropes to knock Black down off the top turnbuckle. Bateman picked Black up out of the corner and delivered a tombstone piledriver to finish the match.
That was a surprising result. This was Bateman’s debut on ROH television, but I still wasn’t expecting Black to lose.
Shane Taylor was in the ring for a promo. He has had 11 defenses of the ROH World Television Championship. That makes him 9th greatest TV champ of all-time. Now will be his 12th defense.
ROH World Television Championship: Shane Taylor defeated Danhausen. This was mostly a comedy match to showcase Danhausen’s oddball antics. At one point, he poured a vial of human teeth into Taylor’s mouth then hit a running knee. In the end, Taylor won without too much difficulty. He clobbered Danhausen with a big knee, package piledriver, and sitdown piledriver to win.
Also of note was Dak Draper standing on stage during the bout. He has a future TV title shot due to winning the Top Prospect tournament. His presence was a mild distraction but nothing Taylor couldn’t overcome.
Taylor continues to impress with his victory. This was my first time witnessing Danhausen, and I want more. Danhausen is a real treat. He’s in that Orange Cassidy realm of unique fan favorite. Those two need a showdown, if they haven’t already.
Time to break down the Final Battle full card with the aid of several supplementary videos. I’m still new to the ROH world, so I may miss a story detail here or there.
ROH World Championship: Rush vs PCO
The story is undefeated champion superstar against resurrected monster veteran. PCO earned the opportunity by winning a #1 contender tournament.
Prediction: Rush. Tough call. The fans will cheer for either victor. Rush makes sense as the future of the company. PCO makes sense as a feel-good moment of finally reaching the pinnacle. I’ll go with Rush’s words, “Even monsters DIE!!!”
ROH World Tag Team Championship: Briscoe Brothers vs Jay Lethal & Jonathan Gresham
Lethal and Gresham went through a friend drama of reuniting, and it feels so good. Their focus is on becoming tag champs. They ignited this feud via chairshot to the head of Dem Boys.
Prediction: Briscoe Brothers. Fan pick. I’ve always liked the Briscoes even though I haven’t viewed much of their work.
ROH World Television Championship: Shane Taylor vs Dragon Lee
Power vs speed. The champ Taylor is focused on becoming the greatest ROH champion ever.
Prediction: Shane Taylor. By any means necessary.
Street Fight: Mark Haskins vs Bully Ray
Bully Ray insulted Haskins’ wife and children then powerbombed him through a table. I’m not sure why Bully picked on Haskins, but he did and here we are for a street fight.
Prediction: Mark Haskins. Wrestling bullies are made to be taken down.
Matt Taven vs Vincent
This is the most confusing feud of the bunch. Taven and Vincent were both in the Kingdom faction. Apparently, Vincent faked his own attack as a plot to target Taven. Vincent wants the spotlight to become a god.
Prediction: Vincent. Matt Taven is the real Melvin.
Marty Scurll & Flip Gordon vs Bandido & Flamita
I don’t think this bout has any story. None has been mentioned in the past month of ROH TV. Probably just a cool match for the sake of having a cool match.
Prediction: Bandido & Flamita. Luchadores for the win!
Jeff Cobb vs Dan Maff
Maff returned to ROH after fourteen years away and is looking to make a statement. I believe this match was put together because ROH recognized their fans wanted a hoss fight delight. Sit back and enjoy.
Prediction: Dan Maff. I envision bigger things for Maff in the form of battling PCO.
Angelina Love vs Maria Manic
I’m not fully up to date on this feud. It seems that Manic is a maniac powerhouse looking to wreck some pretty faces. Love is first up.
Prediction: Maria Manic. Being a non-title bout for Angelina Love’s Women of Honor World Championship leads me to believe it will be squash city.
Rhett Titus vs Kenny King
These two were championship tag partners as the All Night Express in 2012. King was sad to see his buddy struggle as of late, so he attempted a tough love motivational speech. Calling Titus a coward was rough, but being called the Marty Jannetty of their duo was going too far.
Prediction: Kenny King. King seems to be cooking something on the side with Rush and Dragon Lee, so he’ll need a win to look strong in their eyes.
Dalton Castle & Joe Hendry vs Silas Young & Josh Woods
Castle and Hendry are a prestigious pair as an unlikely tag team. Young and Woods have a mentor/protege relationship. The matchup was put together after a dispute of entertainment and kicking butt.
Prediction: Silas Young & Josh Woods. Tough choice with both as potential burgeoning squads. Castle and Hendry don’t seem on the same page quite yet, so I think a bit of miscommunication will cost them the win.
ROH’s Final Battle can be viewed through Fite TV, discounted with HonorClub, or on traditional PPV. The main show begins at 8 pm ET, Dec. 13. The pre-show starts at 7 pm ET.
What are your predictions for Final Battle? Which matches are you looking forward to most? Which bout will steal the show?