#ROH Is The Worst Part XIV

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Scarlett Johansson can get away with a mullet. Michael Elgin can not.

“Unbreakable” Michael Elgin got mic time to address the Ring of Honor World Title Tournament. They ended up bringing out four of the favorites for the tournament. The other three were Kevn Steen, Mike Bennett and Tomasso Ciampa. I would imagine ROH would call these guys the face of ROH. I’m going to break down why this segment stunk and why each of these guys wouldn’t even be given a B+ from HHH.

Michael Elgin’s look is terrible. Mullets are just a bad hairdo. Trust me, if you look hard enough I’m sure there’s a picture of me with one floating around the internet. Once I got out from under my parent’s roof, it was gone. That was in 1994. Elgin feels differently though and has been letting his mullet grow out. To make matters worse, he’s going bald and you can clearly see his bald spot coming in. You’re not Donald Trump, you can’t get away with a whacky hairdo that is unexplainable. Shave your head and be done with the charade of a hair cut you have. His shirt is even worse than anything the WWE puts out, which is saying something. First off, on the front of the shirt is a skull with chains surrounding it. The design looks like a rough draft for what the shirt should look like, not the final product. At the bottom is Elgin’s slogan, #Elginmode, which would be fine if I had heard about it before he was sporting this shirt on this week’s program.

Kevin Steen was the next one out. I do like the his “Guilty” shirt but his look is still terrible. HHH made fun of Daniel Bryan’s physique (at least according to WWE.com is 5′-10″ and 210 lbs.) for being scrawny and small. What would he say about Kevin Steen who judging by his shirt (Because ROHwrestling.com only has his weight) is 6′-0″ and 240 lbs? And trust me, I understand that HHH wouldn’t be running down Bryan’s physique if he weren’t as over as he is. He’d do it to Steen to see if he was “Tough Enough” to take the verbal beating in public. Or maybe Michael Cole could give him the “Ferrari engine in a tank’s body” moniker since Bray Wyatt is now following buzzards all day which has got to slim his physique a little bit. Though Steen has mic skills, he seems to waste them. Steen makes similar jokes to John Cena which makes it even funnier that “smart” wrestling fans cheer for him. Another display of wasting his mic skills was his utter apathy to trying to turn the fans against him when he was trying to get Jim Cornette out of the company. The fans were hanging on his every word yet he did nothing to try and make them turn against him like a logical story line would dictate.

Mike Bennett was the next out and talks about all of the opportunities Elgin & Steen have been given by management. If he had been paying attention, he would see they weren’t handed opportunities. Steen was, as already noted, raging against the machine known as ROH with Jim Cornette at the helm. Elgin on the other hand had to subvert the entire House of Truth just to cash in his opportunity from Survival of the Fittest to get his title shot. I wouldn’t call either of those situations “having it handed to them multiple times by management”. He could be the future of ROH but his look has gotten worse during his re-imaging. One would think with a looks driven model like Maria Kanellis at your side, you would make better decisions. Trade mark hair? Let’s shave it all. Pretty boy look? Let’s get some terrible tattoos. I’ve revamped the rest of my look so naturally you’d change your trunks, right? Why would my fashion designer girlfriend not design me a pair? Nope, let’s keep them shiny silver and purple and the same cut. Ugh.

Tomasso Ciampa was the last one out. He has an awesome look. He exuded his “Sicilian Psychopath” attitude by going nose to nose with the rest of the competitor’s before saying “Your next ROH World Champion, Tomasso Ciampa” then stomping out of the ring. His underdeveloped mic skills makes him ripe for manager but he had a way too short feud with R.D. Evans (who booted him to the curb for his real life ACL surgery) and Q.T. Marshal so Evans is not an option. Prince Nana got unceremoniously unseated by R.D. Evans in his own Embassy Faction so Ciampa could go back to him but Nana is nowhere to be found these days. Ciampa could help re-build the House of Truth but he’s too busy pushing Hoopla Hotties and Matt Taven to be worried about adding to his stable. So Ciampa’s got to depend on under-developed mic skills which might be one of the reasons he got released from WWE Developmental.

So, if Daniel Bryan is a solid B+, let’s figure out HHH’s final grade for this quartet. Michael Elgin is in shape, strong as an ox but looks worse than Billy Ray Cyrus twerking on a stuffed animal – Grade C. Kevin Steen is out of shape, short, can’t wrestle all that well and has mic skills – Grade C+. Mike Bennett – Good physique, solid mic skills and overhaul-able looks AKA the Randy Orton tattoo special AKA covering up bad tattoos a la Fire Crotch on Tattoo Nightmares – Grade A. Tomasso Ciampa – Good look, good demeanor and terrible mic skills – C. That is ROH’s top 4 for their World Title. ROH is the Worst. – Kevin

#ROH Is The Worst Part VII

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From upfitness.com

It absolutely drives me batty that Ring of Honor feels the need to push Roderick Strong as being in fantastic shape. When I punched fantastic shape into Google, that image above was the first one. Arnold may have been doing some stuff to his body to enhance it, but he was clearly doing some work to look that way. Over the course of the past year plus of watching ROH, Strong has been consistently defended by whatever announcer happened to behind the desk. Kevin Kelly leads the charge. In this episode, Nigel McGuinness touted his strength and endurance. I’ve changed to doing core and endurance training over the past five years. I have had a much easier time losing my stomach because of it. Which brings us back to Strong. Is he fat? Not even close but the guy has a bit of a gut. If he is in such fantastic shape, why does he have no muscle tone and a baby gut? It’s all to cover up for the fact that Roderick is clearly done being in shape. I Googled pictures of him and he had plenty of muscle tone in the past.

Roderick Strong is in an organization that reveres him or at least it seems that way with all of the announcers slobbering all over him. But they don’t see him suited to do anything. He’s not had his teeth sunk into a good story line in the same period of me watching. Sure, him and Michael Elgin temporarily feuded when the House of Truth broke up but they didn’t put much gusto behind it. I’d make an argument that Truth Martini’s break down got about as much attention. Which leads me to say, maybe I don’t blame Roderick for mailing it in and keeping his mediocre slot. ROH is the worst for turning their own celebrated wrestler into his own personal Ground Hog’s Day. -Kevin

Edit: After talking to my Prime Wrestling partner in crime Dan Kuester on ye olde Twitter, I realized I had forgotten an aspect of this hyping. Dan said “They aren’t going to say “Strong is kinda plain looking!” I don’t expect an announcer to undersell any of their wrestlers. The announcers do it so much though, I feel like they’re compensating for Strong’s lack of physique. If you mentioned it during one of his matches, fine. But they mention it multiple times in matches, this week included. Kevin Kelly & Nigel made comments before the commercial break then Nigel revisited the topic after the break. It’s too much. Knock it off or make Strong actually train. -Kevin

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