This Thursday night, Ring of Honor returns to the Fort Lauderdale area for the first time since November 11, 2017's THE ELITE event that is now available on Honor Club! This Florida event hosts another Proving Ground match with ROH Women's World Champions Athena facing Angelica Risk, Rocky Romero faces Lee Moriarty in a Pure Rules rematch, Claudio Castagnoli puts his ROH World Championship on the line against TMDK's Robbie Eagles, and one of the biggest rivalries in modern wrestling reignites when Christopher Daniels challenges Samoa Joe for the ROH World Television Championship!
The bouts get underway at 7pm ET/6pm CT exclusively on Honor Club, your home for more than twenty years of Ring of Honor history, as well as new episodes of the most influential wrestling company of this century dropping every single Thursday night! There's no better bang for your buck in wrestling than an Honor Club subscription!
ROH WORLD TELEVISION CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH...
Samoa Joe(c) vs. Christopher Daniels
It has been eight years since the last time Samoa Joe and Christopher Daniels stepped into a ring as foes, June 20th of 2015 to be exact, and that night it was a tag team affair with Joe and AJ Styles defeating Daniels and Frankie Kazarian. As for their last singles collision, rewind time another two months to April 9th of that year, and an event in Halifax, Nova Scotia where “The Fallen Angel” scored a victory over Samoa Joe.
But that victory was just a drop in the bucket of their larger story; 19 one-on-one matches dating back to 2001, Joe with a commanding lead of 14-4-1, and that's just their head-to-head collisions. Look at the whole of their careers, and they've shared the ring in at least 69 different scenarios, with 14 of them taking place under the auspices of Ring of Honor. Thus it is quite appropriate that their first battle in nearly a decade takes place in ROH considering it was Christopher Daniels who first brought Samoa Joe into the fold back at GLORY BY HONOR on 10/5/02 as The Prophecy's Hired Assassin.
Over the course of their ROH careers, Daniels would challenge Joe unsuccessfully for the ROH World Title at GLORY BY HONOR II, he would unsuccessfully challenge Joe for the ROH Pure Championship at NIGHT OF THE GRUDGES II, and it would only be in their final singles ROH collision at DRAGON GATE CHALLENGE that Daniels would actually defeat Joe. So the history within ROH leans heavily in the favor of the defending World Television Champion, their history away from ROH also tilts tremendously in the favor of Joe, but Daniels knows this, he said as much in his interview embedded above. He knows Joe has spilled his blood on plenty of occasions, at one point years ago Joe even wore a towel to the ring that was soaked with The Fallen Angel's dried blood, but that has never stopped Daniels from fighting before, and it won't stop him now.
In this new era of honor, there are few men who know Samoa Joe as well as Christopher Daniels, much less one like CD who know him from the days before Joe earned the moniker of ROH Legend, or etched his name in the history books as the longest-reigning ROH World Champion of all-time. Will that familiarity be the necessary ingredient to ending Samoa Joe's chokehold on the ROH World Television Champion? Or will Daniels suffer the same fate he did the two previous times he challenged Samoa Joe for a ROH championship title?
Rocky “Azucar” Romero vs. The Firm's Lee Moriarty
Big Bill absolutely swayed the outcome of the clash between Rocky Romero and Lee Moriarty last week in Pittsburgh, but this week things will have to be a little different for The Firm as “TaigaStyle” will meet “Sneaky Style” in a Pure Rules bout!
While neither man has ever stood as challenger for the Pure Championship, both have competed in Pure Rules matches before, albeit not in Ring of Honor in the case of Moriarty. Still, the fact he brought those rules to another wrestling company on the independent scene is testament to the style of professional wrestling that Moriarty loves, or at least did before Stokely Hathaway and The Firm sunk their teeth into his neck. As for Rocky, he was part of the 2020 tournament that saw the ROH Pure Championship reborn, although he was ousted in the first round by David Finlay, but that didn't stop him from competing in other Pure Rules matches in ROH during 2021, even without a championship on the line.
Romero hit the nail on the head when he said Lee Moriarty was an example of the kind of talent Ring of Honor was built on, and the style of wrestling the Pure Division offers is at the heart of what ROH represents, so if the master of TaigaStyle can step up his game against the former multi-time ROH World Tag Champ this Thursday, well then ROH Pure Champion Katsuyori Shibata better start paying attention to Moriarty as well!
ROH WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP PROVING GROUND MATCH...
“The Fallen Goddess” Athena(c) vs. Angelica Risk
Twenty-one consecutive victories in Ring of Honor competition, and it does not look like “The Fallen Goddess” Athena is going to be stopped anytime soon! She's topped Miyu Yamashita twice in championship fights, as well as women such as Yuka Sakazaki, Emi Sakura, and Marina Shafir when the title's been on the line, and that says nothing of her Proving Ground dominance over hopeful challengers like Lady Frost, Brooke Havok, Ashley D'Amboise, and a plethora of others.
This week on Honor Club, the increasingly confident, increasingly arrogant Athena will open up the Proving Ground once again, this time to young Nightmare Factory graduate Angelica Risk. Now Risk has had numerous opportunities on DARK and DARK: ELEVATION, and even got a shot on RAMPAGE once when facing Serena Deeb's Rookie Challenge, but it is her experiences beyond the AEW realm that could serve her well against Athena. Angelica may “only” have 50 matches under her belt, but she's gotten world class training, and been in there with world class athletes, and she's going to have to tap into every bit of knowledge she's picked up in order to survive the onslaught of Athena for ten minutes. That's all she has to do to earn a future championship match, not even beat “The Fallen Goddess”, just survive her for 600 seconds...
ROH WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH...
Claudio Castagnoli(c) vs. TMDK's Robbie Eagles
Those were the words Claudio Castagnoli shared with the world following his last championship defense against Metalik several weeks ago, and no one within Ring of Honor has stepped up to challenge “The Swiss Superman” since the message was delivered.
But clearly others were listening, others outside the auspices of ROH, because this Thursday night one of New Japan Pro Wrestling's top Junior Heavyweights is returning to the fold for the first time since 2019 to take on Double C in singles competition with the ROH World Championship at stake!
Robbie Eagles, now a member of the TMDK faction alongside Zack Sabre Jr, Mikey Nicholls, Shane Haste, and others, is coming into this fray having recently challenged Hiromu Takahashi for the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship. The native Australian is also freshly off a return to his home for a pair of NJPW TAMASHII events before coming back to the States for the first time since August 2022 for this fight with the reigning ROH World Champion!
Will Robbie Eagles be the man to answer Claudio's plea for someone to step up to his challenge?
-Action Andretti, Top Flight's Darius Martin, The Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent Beretta), & Dark Order's Stu Grayson vs. The Varsity Athletes (Ari Daivari, Josh Woods, & Tony Nese) and The Kingdom (Matt Taven & Mike Bennett) & Tony Nese
-LFI's Preston Vance vs. Rich Adonis
-Skye Blue vs. Robyn Renegade
-ROH World Six-Man Champion Brian Cage vs. Brock Anderson
-Willow Nightingale vs. Steph De Lander
-Komander vs. The Spanish Announce Project's Angelico
ROH ON HONOR CLUB premieres every Thursday night at 7pm ET/6pm CT and this week features two championship matches, a Proving Ground contest, a wild ten man tag, and plenty more for your $9.99/month! The weekly episodes are exclusively available with an HONOR CLUB subscription, one that not only includes the latest episode every Thursday night, but also classic content from ROH's rich history including 2005's MANHATTAN MAYHEM, CREATING EXCELLENCE: KEVIN STEEN, 10 QUESTIONS WITH STEVE CORINO, and more!