One week after the super-sized episode of ROH had 19 matches, this week’s episode went back to a more common 11 matches. Of those 11, three were title matches.
The first title match was Zack Sabre, Jr. putting his NJPW Television Championship on the line against Rocky Romero. Romero clearly did his homework, as the veteran had an answer for everything the champ had for him. They took action outside of the ring a few times. Although Romero brought his A-game, it wasn’t enough to dethrone the Tekker.
Prior to his match, ZSJ was backstage with Samoan Joseph. Sabre was listing their similarities when Joe told him that it was crystal clear who was better. They teased finally wrestling each other one-on-one.
The double main event featured two more title matches. The penultimate match was student versus teacher. LA Dojo graduate, Alex Coughlin challenged his former teacher, Katsuyori Shibata for the ROH Pure Championship. Shibata didn’t take it easy on his protégé and probably went harder because of their prior relationship.
Coughlin was unfazed and went toe-to-toe with one of the best to ever do it. His unreal strength was on full display. Shibata forced Coughlin to use all of his rope breaks. As impressive as his student was, he could not beat his mentor.
Athena faced Keira Hogan in the third title match of the night. This marks the fifth time that Athena has closed an ROH show.
Early in the match, Hogan seemed to injure her shoulder. It forced her to use her legs for offense for the remainder of the match.
Hogan gave it her best shot, especially considering she was injured. She was no match for Athena, though. After the match, Hogan let her frustrations out on her opponent. Her injured shoulder didn’t stop her and she attacked the champion from behind. Both women took turns throwing the other into the barricades.
Athena took out a security guard while trying to dropkick Hogan. Hogan took out another security guard while going for Athena. The women were finally separated by referees and Hogan was seen being checked out by Doc Sampson. On the way out, Athena may have picked herself up a fine and/or suspension.
ROH’s champions are fighting champions and defend their titles often. The promotion has done a good job showcasing their champions and making them seem important. Bringing in talent from New Japan solidifies those reigns even more. We are still in the early days of the latest era of ROH, but they’re on the right track.