Skip to main content

ROH's "End" Deserves More


It's only right that I start this post with the code of honor...

:::handshake:::

The wrestling world was delivered a blow the likes of a Nigel Mcguiness European uppercut when Ring of Honor Wrestling (ROH) let the world know via a Tweet that it would be ceasing operations for the foreseeable future. While the "taking time to reimagine itself" line offered more cryptic thoughts than reasons for optimism of a revamped product - because well, who shuts down for several months and releases all of its talent? - the random announcement felt more like the final punctuation period on what surely will be an entity that deserves more for it's contribution to pro wrestling. 

That final punctuation felt as flat, as emotionless, and as sudden as the kind of statement that rings true, but is so cold in its delivery - basically, dead upon arrival.

But, that's ROH. Well at least for me. It's history. It's legacy. It's memory. Full of so much impact and history, yet, forgotten. This is the company that was a certain style and expectation of pro wrestling BEFORE it became commonplace on your weekly television to sounds of "This-is-Awesome!" and chants of other company's acronyms. 
ROH inspired so many companies. It brought a form of the strong-style influence perfectly wrapped and presented to an American audience that hadn't been seen, nor appreciated for a widened audience before. It gave us the likes of Bryan Danielson, Nigel McGuinness, AJ Styles, Takeshi Morishima, Samoa Joe, Tyler Black, and so, so, so many more. 

I can romanticize about ROH, and yes, it's part of what wrestling fans do. Because, it was during this time in history when WCW was thrown in a closet and ECW suddenly became the kick-ass underground band that was now appearing on your local pop radio station, there was NWA-TNA (now Impact Wrestling) and ROH for this pro wrestling fan. They were alternatives. True difference-makers, in every sense of the word. 

Both companies, who have had such star-crossed paths, yet, irrevocably-bound history, I always thought needed one another - only to see both of their stubborn ways and leadership prevent them from doing so. If only the "forbidden door" had a slight ajar in it during this time. 

TNA and ROH working together always made too much sense to me. Maybe, it was just me. Call me crazy, but I would love for Anthem to purchase the library if possible.

Yet, for all of the awesomeness and memorable matches from ROH (Bryan Danielson vs. Nigel McGuiness at ROH Driven in 2007 being my favorite), and for all that it did in not only saving pro wrestling during a dire time but launching it into a new chapter, it ended like this. With a soulless, emotionless Tweet. 

It's sad not because of not just how it ended, but because for the last 5-6 years, this one time ROH fan couldn't tell you anything about the product. Once Sinclair purchased it, and a host of other moves were made, ROH quickly became a caricature of itself, settling for an identity that felt more like one of being used by everyone and everything else, rather than the brand that created a standard that differentiated itself through its style, it's serious rules and it's intense focus on in-ring quality. 

Despite the announcement for a return in April, whatever form ROH returns in - if at all, the chapter is closed. One of the most important components of wrestling history over the last 25 years - and my fandom - is gone. And sadly, it left us without having the type of celebration, recognition, or yes, dare I say - the HONOR it deserved. 

ROH deserves to be more than just a footnote in pro wrestling history. It deserves so much more. Unfortunately, this is how it ends. I only hope the library ends up somewhere where it will be honored (see what I did again), and allowed to be expressed as revolutionary as it was. 

Recent Favorites

2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs Keeps Me Casual on Hockey

It's been a long time since I've talked hockey on this.  Wait! Huh? Come again? Yes, hockey. In fact, the last time I posted anything, I was mesmerized by the 2014 Stanley Cup Finals between the Los Angeles Kings and the New York Rangers.  Fast forward to 2024, and my hockey fandom took another step forward. For years I've been the admitted casual. And you know what, I'm okay with that. Unfortunately, my unconditional love fandom for my New York Knicks presents a conflict that will forever curtail anything serious from happening between hockey and myself.  Nonetheless, I felt like this post-season heightened my hockey fandom to another level. Hockey is amazingly awesome. I very much enjoyed the Stanley Cup Playoffs, caught myself choosing Rangers games over early April Yankees baseball, and overall, found myself playing NHL 24 on the ol' Playstation 4.  Yeah, I fell hard. But before I shelf my spring fling with hockey until April 2025, here are just a few quick pon

Wanting the Alternate Route For Bronny James

Welcome to the NBA, Bronny James!  In what was the worst-kept novelty of a storyline in the sports world in LeBron and Bronny one day gracing the NBA together, we're finally here!  First, congrats to Bronny! Entering the NBA is incredibly difficult, especially more than ever considering its global reach. Regardless, he is now part of the fraternity and amongst the elite in the game. Haters will say what they want, but he's there.  And second, congratulations to LeBron and Savannah James. What will be lost in all of this is that they raised a strong young man who yes, took advantage of his access and genetics, and is now at this point in his life - his ultimate goal. Bronny at the core, had no reason to want this - none. He easily could have rested, relaxed, and enjoyed the spoils of this birth lottery. Instead, he wanted what h knew would be the shadow of a massive legacy - and still did the work. That takes guts.  I commend the kid for not resting on Dad's name and wealth.

Thoughts on First 2024 Presidential Debate

It’s the most unwanted rematch likely in history. Biden vs. Trump What we saw tonight was exactly what many moderates expected and solidified what we didn’t want to say out loud - we have to have better options than these two, no? There isn’t much to say about this debate, especially from this debate nerd. This was the absolute shits in regards to inspiring a nation for an upcoming election season, which in many ways, still resonates with political fatigue from 2020. But you know that, already. You knew that ten minutes into the debate. The two best quotes I’ve come across to wrap up my overall feeling are the following: On one side it’s hell no, and on the other, it’s oh no. It’s who we shouldn’t have be President vs. who we can’t let be President A few more quick thoughts on last night 1st Presidential Debate:  - For me, this format was the biggest positive of the night and a very good baseline for where future political debates need to go. In a world of “takes” and who shouts the lo