Northern Aggression Preview

Ring of Honor makes it return to North Carolina Sunday Dec. 5 when it makes it Greensboro debut at the Greensboro Coliseum. The Greensboro Coliseum has been the venue for many historic events, including the original Starrcade, and Ring of Honor is looking to add to the legacy of the coliseum with “Northern Aggression.” The event is only scheduled to have five matches, but the main event may be one of the biggest in company history. Let’s take a closer look at each match.

8 Man All Star Elimination Tag Team Match – Special 2 Hour Time Limit
ROH World Tag Team Champions Wrestling’s Greatest Tag Team (Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin), Eddie Edwards and El Generico
vs Mark and Jay Briscoe, Roderick Strong and Michael Elgin with Truth Martini

When Ring of Honor fans think of the best wrestlers on the roster, these eight wrestlers will be among the first named. All but one of the wrestlers in the match has held ROH championship gold at one point in their careers. The only one who hasn’t is Michael Elgin, who won Survival of the Fittest in November to earn a future ROH World Title match. The two-hour time limit is going to ensure there is a winner in this match, even though it’s unlikely the match will go that long.

The outcome of this match depends on two factors. The first is if Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin can keep their composure and focus and not try too hard to get revenge on the Briscoes in this match. They have been wanting to get their hands on the Briscoes since “Best in the World” in June, and this will give them that opportunity. If they get too focused on just that, however, it will ultimately hurt the team.  The other factor is Truth Martini, which is always the case when he is at ringside. If the team of Haas, Benjamin, Edwards and Generico don’t let him distract them too much, then they have a good chance at winning. If they do allow him to get into their heads, then it’s going to be a long night for them. Fans should expect a long, physical match out of these eight wrestlers. This is a match that has the potential to go down in Ring of Honor lore as a classic.

Proving Ground
Jay Lethal vs Adam Cole

Adam Cole is looking to do what Roderick Strong accomplished at “Glory by Honor X,” which is to walk out of Greensboro with a future ROH World TV Title match. Unfortunately for Cole, Strong is the only wrestler who has successfully competed in the Proving Ground, so history is not on Cole’s side. Cole has been very impressive in his Ring of Honor career thus far, especially as one-half of Future Shock, so it would not be a surprise to see him earn a title shot. Lethal has yet to be beaten in a one on one match and is more focused than ever, which only further stacks the deck against Cole. This match has the potential to be the most fun match of the show with both participants willing to put their bodies on the line to pick up a victory. Lethal may be the favorite to win this match, but Cole is going to impress  more than a few people in Greensboro, even if he loses.

Tag Team Challenge
The Young Bucks (Nick and Matt Jackson) vs Caprice Coleman and Cedric Alexander

Caprice Coleman and Cedric Alexander have faced the top teams in the toughest tag team division in wrestling during their short time in Ring of Honor. They’re not getting a break from the tough competition at “Northern Aggression” when they wrestle the Young Bucks. The Young Bucks have recently returned to Ring of Honor and have looked better than ever. A win over Coleman and Alexander would only further solidify Nick and Matt Jackson as one of the premier teams in Ring of Honor. A win for Coleman and Alexander would be one of the biggest upsets in recent memory and would catapult the young team into the thick of the title scene. This should be another fun match that will feature two of the most athletically-gifted teams in wrestling.

Special Challenge Match
“The Prodigy” Mike Bennett vs TJ Perkins

Bennett is as cocky as they come and is calling himself the ROH World TV Champion despite not being able to defeat the champion Jay Lethal. He is looking to further prove his worth for being a champion when he wrestles TJ Perkins. Perkins has looked great since he officially signed with ROH. If he can beat Bennett at “Northern Aggression,” then he would solidify himself as a top wrestler in ROH and put himself right in the middle of the already crowded ROH World TV Title picture. Bennett has the size advantage, and he is going to have to use that to his advantage if he is going to beat Perkins. Perkins has to avoid Bennett’s strength advantage and use his strikes and submissions to win the match.

Tag Team Action
The All Night Express (Kenny King and Rhett Titus)
vs The Bravado Brothers (Lancelot and Harlem Bravado)

The Bravados were recently informed by ROH officials that if they do not begin winning more matches soon it could end up with an indefinite hiatus. That’s going to be difficult for the Bravados to do, especially since they are scheduled to face the All Night Express. King and Titus are coming off an unsuccessful title match and they are looking to get back into title contention. That may be enough motivation for the All Night Express to win the match. The Bravados have just as much, if not more, motivation to win this match so that they can remain on the roster. The Bravados also want to walk out of their home state winners, so that adds a little extra incentive. This should be a fun match between two very talented tag teams. Fans shouldn’t be surprised by the outcome either way, especially if ROH has lit the fire under the Bravados like they have intended to.

“Northern Aggression” takes place at the Greensboro Coliseum Sunday Dec. 4. The bell time is scheduled for 4 p.m. There is a meet and greet before the show featuring Wrestling’s Greatest Tag Team, Eddie Edwards and El Generico.

Jon Shumake

Jon has been with ROHWorld since March 2011. The American Bearded Nightmare is one half of 'Team America' on ROHCast, which is available every week on ROHWorld, iTunes and Stitcher.