This Is Wrestling – Part 5

“Let’s go Elgin, kill Steen kill!” The rampant crowd at the International Centre in suburban Toronto battled with each other over who they wanted to win the ROH World Title match. It was total chaos.

Seeing any wrestling show live is an amazing experience but seeing Ring of Honor live is something else. It’s astounding to me that, with a miniscule crowd compared to TNA or WWE shows, ROH manages to dish out the single best atmosphere in professional wrestling. Do the fans have something to do with that? Damn right, they do. Ring of Honor fans live and breathe pro wrestling. What about the talent? Right again. Risk equals reward and ROH wrestlers perform by that motto. It’s reasons like these why ROH creates a live experience that you won’t find anywhere else in professional wrestling.

Glory by Honor XI had a lot riding on it. Recent ROH iPPV’s were ridden with terrible technical issues, causing people who bought them to miss entire events. This forced ROH to refund money they can ill-afford. They needed to make it up to the fans – and boy, did they ever.

I attended this show with both my dad and my good friend, Mason. We got there early to buy tickets for the next ROH show in Toronto, scheduled for May 2013. Turns out they weren’t going on sale until intermission. Oh well. We killed some time by making a visit to the merchandise table and I was really happy I did. I scored a sick Michael Elgin T shirt (he’s currently my favorite wrestler in Ring of Honor) and I got to meet the best manager in ROH history, Shane Hagadorn. He said “I’m a little banged up” and is working behind the scenes for now. Get him back on the show as soon as possible, ROH. Please and thank you.

After that, they were hosting an autograph session with Kevin Steen, Steve Corino, Jimmy Jacobs and Maria. I thought it was a little ridiculous charging 10 dollars per talent for an autograph and picture but I decided I had to get at least one; hello Ring of Honor World Champion, Mr. Wrestling, Kevin Steen. I shook his hand, got an awesome picture with him and even got to hold the infamous ROH World Championship title belt. I felt honoured to have been able to carry that on my shoulder. After the picture was taken, I just stood there, staring at the title belt in my hands. Steen was probably thinking “OK kid, hand it over.”

Once Glory by Honor XI got underway, it was nonstop action. There wasn’t one match that didn’t have a wow moment and it was stacked, top to bottom. We had second row seats near the entrance way which is an amazing spot for not only getting to high five the wrestlers as they walk down the aisle, but also to be on camera. I watched the iPPV at home afterwards and saw that the camera guy zoomed in on my face as I was chanting “Elgin, Elgin, Elgin!” Sweet. Not to mention I saw that awesome Mondo spot perfectly when he jumped off the top of the entrance truss to the floor and onto Mike Bennett.

It’s safe to say that Ring of Honor live is the single best wrestling experience out there and I can’t wait until they come back in May.

On a side note, TNA’s biggest event of the year, Bound for Glory, was also this weekend as it took place on Sunday night from Phoenix, Arizona. First things first, the GCU arena looked great and is the perfect size for TNA pay per views. Also, it turned out to be a solid show with a rather big swerve thrown in. Roode and Storm was by far the match of the night and they put on street fight as it should be, hardcore and bloody. Jeff Hardy beat Austin Aries for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship in a predictable outcome. And last but not least, Devon, yes, Devon, was revealed to be the man behind Aces and Eights. Huh, it’s been a while since I was actually really surprised with something in pro wrestling.

What a fun weekend. Thanks for reading.