ROH 12/24/17 TV Review: Christmas Surprise 10 Man Tag
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This week’s episode started with Cody informing us that there would be a special Christmas Surprise 10-man tag and that he would have his partners revealed by opening gifts, much to his dismay. Castle came into the shot and the both opened one gift, with Cody seeming frustrated and Castle appearing to be pleased with his. This week was the second episode from the set of tapings Lakeland, Florida. Ian Riccaboni and Colt Cabana were on commentary and welcomed everyone to show, wishing the viewing audience a Merry Christmas
First Match: The Dawgs (Rhett Titus & Will Ferrara) vs. Flip Gordon & Simon Grimm
Titus came down to the ring as Big Dawg Claus, festooned with Christmas lights and a Santa hat. His partner Will Ferrara seemed must less enthusiastic, as he was in a full Rudolph the Red Nosed Rein-dawg costume. Grimm and Ferrara started off; as Ferrara attempted to take the rein-dawg suit off, Grimm held him in a full nelson and zipped him back up. Ferrara continued to try to escape the suit, but Grimm kept him zipped up. Just as Ferrara seemed to be able to create some separation, Grimm reversed a wheelbarrow attempt into a rear naked choke. Grimm released the hold and tagged Gordon in, who graciously offered Ferrara help in taking the suit off, only to chop him repeatedly across the now exposed chest. Titus interfered and dropped Gordon on the arena floor, allowing Ferrara to finally escape the suit. Upon return from commercial, Rhett used Lil Willy as a weapon against Gordon, as per usual and the Dawgs stayed in control. Titus worked Gordon over until Gordon hit a springboard sling blade, allowing him to make the tag to Grimm. Ferrara shoved Gordon off the apron and into the guardrail as Grimm tried to roll Titus up, only for Ferrara to smashed him in the head with the gift the Dawgs brought to ringside. Titus then hoisted Grimm up for Who Let the Dawgs out, picking up the pinfall victory. A little bit of comedy, but some solid wrestling here and the right team one. Good opener for a Christmas themed show.
Winner: The Dawgs
Cody selected two more presents backstage, revealing two more partners, the second selection prompting him to ask if the guy even worked for the company
Cody and Castle selected their last partners, with Cody upset that he didn’t get any of his friends, while Castle was downright elated by his choice.
A Women of Honor recap aired next, highlighting the issues between Deonna Purrazzo and Kelly Klein first and how Purrazzo’s friend Karen Q turned on her friend, leading to a NO DQ match between the two. The viewing audience was then privy to footage from the match that saw Purrazzo win via Fujiwara armbar. The segment ended with Riccaboni voicing over that Purrazzo will look to continue her winning ways in 2018, against new stars like Brandy Rhodes and Stella Grey.
Main Event: Team Cody (Cody, Scorpio Sky, Josh “The Goods” Woods, Chris Sabin & Punishment Martinez) vs. Team Dalton (Dalton Castle, Silas Young, Warbeard Hanson, Jonathan Gresham & Marty Scurll)
Cody got on the mic and offered a gift to the fans before rescinded, reminding everyone how upset he is about this match. After everyone finally made their way to the ring, Gresham and Sabin started off with some fast paced scientific wrestling, finding each other both up to the task before they tagged out to Sky and Castle. Before Castle could lock up Young tagged himself in, forcing Castle to exit begrudgingly. Young was frustrated by Sky quickly, before Sky tagged Cody in and Castle was tagged in. Cody thought better of the confrontation and tagged out to Woods, much to Castle’s dismay. Woods and Castle engaged in a bit of amatuer wrestling before tagging out to the two Big Men, Hanson and Martinez. The two no-sold each other’s moves until Cody barked orders at Punishment, who chopped him, effectively tagging him in. Hanson tagged Scurll in, who refused to engage with Cody. The two Bullet Club members One Sweeted before Castle tossed Scurll into Cody, making the former champion think Scurll attacked him. Just as they seemed to lock up, the hugged instead, prompting everyone to rush into the ring. There were a number of dives to the entire crowd on the outside and later a number of finishers back inside the ring. In the end, Castle caught Sky with Bang-A-Rang to pick up the pinfall victory for his side. An action-packed Christmas match with little stakes, save the winner’s purse in this one.
Winners: Dalton Castle, Silas Young, Warbeard Hanson, Jonathan Gresham & Marty Scurll
Final Reaction: C-
A solid show for a Christmas episode overall. The opener had some fun comedy spots and the compulsory Christmas get-ups. The Women division recap was a good use of time, especially after the announcement of the WOH Championship tournament announced at Final Battle. The main event was a safe, low-stakes match meant to pop the crowd and that it did. The Lakeland crowd was really into this one, making it more enjoyable than one would think. Overall, the episode is skippable in terms of ROH canon, but if you’re hungry for ROH action between this holidays, this satisfies that requirement. The show closed with commentary reminded everyone that next week will be a best of episode, as ROH gives their wrestlers time off for the holidays.
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