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My Take On 12.29.12: Looking at ROH on iPPV in 2012
Posted by Larry Csonka on 12.29.2012





WELCOME!
Welcome back to the latest edition of My Take On. It is that time of year when I use the column to take a look back at the year that was. A new thing I will be doing this year is looking back on PPV and iPPV I have watched during the year. I will give the listing of PPVs by the score, the top matches from the company's PPV and then look at some sub-categories before looking at an overall verdict for the year. I hope that this is something you will enjoy. I will be doing columns on the following companies and their PPV…

* DGUSA & EVOLVE < -- You can click that!
* WWE < -- You can click that!
* TNA < -- You can click that!
* Ring of Honor

AND NOW….



LOOKING at ROH on iPPV in 2012

THE PPV SCORES
THE PPVs:
* ROH Glory By Honor iPPV - 8.5
* ROH Border Wars iPPV - 8.0
* ROH Best in the World iPPV - 7.5
* ROH 10th Anniversary iPPV - 7.4
* ROH Showdown in the Sun: Night One iPPV - 7.4
* ROH Final Battle iPPV - 7.0
* ROH Boiling Point iPPV - 7.0

As a reminder, this is not a basic "how good was the show" number like a TV show, as I have always felt that a PPV is very different from a regular show. I have always judged PPV on how they built to a match, the match quality, crowd reactions to matches and angles, the overall booking, how the PPV leads into the future, PPV price and so on and so forth. I have added this in here for an explanation since so many have asked, and I have previously discussed it on podcasts. I understand that this may seem different, but that is how I grade. Obviously your criteria may be different.

THE BEST MATCHES
* From The ROH Showdown in the Sun: Night Two iPPV –ROH Title Match: Davey Richards vs. Michael Elgin [****¾]
* From The ROH Glory By Honor iPPV – ROH Title Match: Kevin Steen vs. Michael Elgin [****¾]

* From The ROH Glory By Honor iPPV – Jay Lethal vs. Davey Richards [****¼]

* From The ROH Best in the World iPPV - Hybrid Fighting Rules: Adam Cole vs. Kyle O'Reilly [****]
* From The ROH Final Battle iPPV – World Title Ladder War – Kevin Steen © vs. El Generico [****]
* From The ROH Showdown in the Sun: Night One iPPV – Last Man Standing Match – Kevin Steen vs. El Generico [****]

* From The ROH Glory By Honor iPPV – Adam Cole vs. Eddie Edwards [***¾]
* From The ROH Best in the World iPPV – ROH World Title Match: Davey Richards © vs. Kevin Steen [***¾]
* From The ROH Border Wars iPPV – ROH World Title Match: Davey Richards © vs. Kevin Steen [***¾]
* From The ROH Showdown in the Sun: Night One iPPV – ROH World Title Match: Davey Richards © vs. Roderick Strong vs. Eddie Edwards [***¾]
* From The ROH 10th Anniversary iPPV - Eddie Edwards & Adam Cole vs. Davey Richards & Kyle O'Reilly [***¾]
* From The ROH Final Battle iPPV – The American Wolves (Eddie Edwards & Davey Richards) vs. Kyle O'Reilly & Bobby Fish [***¾]


WORST PART OF THEIR iPPVS


While some would point to the booking issues first, and I wouldn't really disagree, but as far as their iPPV presentation has gone, the main problem they have had is the fact that some of the events have had colossal technical issues. The company has had numerous issues, first with acts of God, and then with problems being blamed on "Go Fight Live." They have had the business people in charge act like children, blaming GFL and then taking things in house. And then, when things were taken in house, the issues continued. And did they apologies and work to fix the issues? No, they danced around the issues, they tried to claim fan reports were inaccurate, and they had a stooge on ROHWrestling.com write a piece that completely insulted the fan base by claiming that the issues were overblown and that the tech support was perfect. Repeated technical issues (which is why I never went back and wrote about Showdown in the Sun: Night Two in full), inconsistency in the overall technology, passing the buck to anyone but themselves, and the fact that the company is run by SINCLAIR BROADCASTING and that they cannot get things right is pathetic. For the record, Sinclair owns and operates, programs or provides sales services to 74 television stations in 45 markets. Sinclair's television group reaches approximately 26.3% of US television households and includes FOX, ABC, MyTV, CW, CBS, NBC and Azteca affiliates. So why do they constantly have technical issues, and WHY does the ROH product look like 1980s Jim Crockett Promotions production wise? It is absolutely ridiculous, there is no excuse for it, and it is a big reason that the company is taking a step backwards. Some will say they are stagnant and have held course, but the fact is, when you're number 3, and a distant one at that (just like TNA is a distant second to WWE, and I am referring to North America), if you're not moving forward, you're moving backwards.


WORST PERFORMERS ON THEIR iPPVS



This is actually my least favorite part of these columns to write. While I am fine to write about what the company has done wrong, I do hate pointing out one or two people as the "worst part" of the shows. But it's the way I set up the columns, and here we go. As you can see in the image above, I have selected Mike Mondo. Mondo was one of Cornette's pet projects, a guy that washed out of WWE and has been hanging down in OVW, but Cornette always saw something in him and brought him to ROH. But not only that, they tried over and over to make the guy an important part of the show. But the facts are that he is a jacked up, horrible on the mic, sub-par in the ring worker. If they would have stuck him in a tag team or just low card stuff, I likely would have passed him by, but instead, they tried to make him a player, and it failed. I mean, when your biggest angle is a feud with Mike Bennett, which features Mondo constantly forcing himself on Maria in a totally sleazy way (Mondo was the FACE by the way) and his entire ROH run has been something that I wish I could forget. Mike Mondo is not a main event guy, he is not a big time player, and that has been solidified via his run in ROH. I wish him no ill will, and I hope he recovers well from his broken leg and continues to earn a living, but he has not been a bright spot of ROH iPPV in 2012.


BEST PART OF THEIR iPPVS



2012 was a rough year for ROH, and I do not think that that anyone would disagree with that. Besides the iPPV issues I discussed above, ROH has been shunned upon due to the creative direction they took under Jim Cornette. ROH didn't feel like ROH, and while I think we can agree once again that they do need to make changes to grow, the changes made hurt the one thing ROH had, the diehard fan base. So while there was much criticism of the product, which was deserved, the best thing about ROH iPPV in 2012 is that, at times, it felt like ROH. There are people that love various promotions for various reasons, which is what makes wrestling great. While ROH hit the slump, it had times where the product felt like the promotion that the fans fell in love with. We did have some great matches featuring guys like Richards, Elgin, Steen and more. Nigel McGuinness grew into a very good commentator before our eyes, and for the most part, the iPPVs have been good. But the biggest example of this was the ROH Glory By Honor iPPV. It was a great show from top to bottom, and one of the best PPV events of 2012. A show that felt different, more like ROH should, had some damn fine wrestling, and the tremendous tease at the end of the show with the delivery of the El Generico mask to Steen. This is why people love the product, shows like this and Border Wars when Steen won the title. Stay true to yourself ROH, get your fan base back, admit when you are wrong, treat the customer the way they deserve to be treated and start over in the growing process.


BEST PERFORMERS ON THEIR iPPVS



While I have been critical of some of he decisions that Davey Richards has made in 2012, in my opinion, he was consistently the best iPPV performer for ROH in 2012. Davey Richards clocks in with seven matches on the old list above, and not only were the matches good, he was just simply consistent. From his MOTY candidate with Michael Elgin and a great bout with Jay Lethal to two hart hitting outings with Kevin Steen, a three way with Strong and Edwards, and even tag team matches, Richards was able to work with a wide variety of opponents, in a wide variety of matches and deliver. While some do not like the guy, and often joke about the "jiu-jitsu jack-off" persona he often exudes, I don't care about that. As I said, personally, I am not a big fan of the guy, but for this, I am judging Davey Richards the wrestler. I don't think that he should be the guy in ROH, I don't think that he makes a good champion, but if you ask me to put people on PPV and or iPPV that will deliver good matches, and Davey Richards is a guy that I will pick without fail. Again, I feel that the ***¾ is a good cut off for upper tier matches, and when you deliver in the umber of matches that Richards did, they you should be recognized. Davey Richards may not be everyone's favorite wrestler, and not everyone will enjoy his style, but simply on the basis of his in ring performances, he delivered for ROH in 2012.


OVERALL IMPRESSION OF ROH iPPVS

AVERAGE PPV SCORE: 7.5 {Based on 7 Events} According to the 411 scale, which is what I use for grading the PPVs, that means for the year that the 7.5 gives Ring of Honor a middle ground "good" score for the year. NOTE: I did not go back and watch the entire ROH Showdown in the Sun: Night Two show. Due to all of the technical issues and my lack of time, it just never happened. I did not include the show in the overall average, just the shows listed above that I watched all the way though. Overall verdict: ROH iPPV had some stand out matches for the year 2012, unfortunately they also had some horrific technical issues to go along with that. For the year, and for what ROH charges, it is very much worth the money (especially when compared to TNA and or WWE). But until ROH iPPV technology locks in and starts to get constant reviews, I suggest the replay viewings to begins with, but the wrestling product is worth the money.

BEST PERFORMERS: While I did name my overall best performers, I do want to make mention of the overall best performers for the promotion. These men are the ones that have consistently delivered when appearing on iPPV. Besides Davey Richards, they are…

* Kevin Steen
* Eddie Edwards
* Adam Cole
* Michael Elgin

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