Ring of Honor live on Pay-Per-View this weekend — June 22 at 8pmET! Do you enjoy pro wrestling? Not the usual parade of microphone monologues, cartoonish characters and over-the-top storylines that make up today’s industry-dominating programming from the WWE and TNA Impact Wrestling (not that there’s anything wrong with that). I’m talking about hard-hitting, athletic action that is all about what happens once the bell rings. If you prefer your “sports-entertainment” to be heavy on the “sports” side, we’d like you to meet the newest kid on the pay-per-view block: Ring of Honor.
If you are a casual rasslin’ fan, Ring of Honor has likely never crossed your radar. However, if you are a student of the game, you know that ROH is actually a 12-year-old company that started out by promoting occasional shows in South Philadelphia, conceived as a showcase of the most exciting “free agent” talents in pro wrestling. Hardcore wrestling fans not only came to the shows in droves — they also bought and traded tons of videotapes and DVDs. Before long, ROH began running shows in New York … then Boston. And then they were touring most regions of the country and earning the distinction of being the top wrestling company not on national TV.
Over the years, ROH survived a variety of ownership changes, flirtations with television exposure, and financial highs and lows. Along the way, they developed and cultivated many of the young talents who would eventually become worldwide superstars. WWE main-eventers like Daniel Bryan, CM Punk, Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Cesaro and many others may be household names today, but they first cut their teeth in front of ROH’s faithful, rabid fans.
Now, with a fresh crop of top-level combatants, Ring of Honor makes its biggest leap yet, as it prepares to broadcast its first live event on pay-per-view through all major cable and satellite carriers … a move that may come at just the right time. Over the past two years, Impact Wrestling has decreased its number of annual live pay-per-view events from 12 to just four. Meanwhile, the WWE is putting its steam (and former pay-per-view exclusives) behind its new streaming network. If fans are looking for a no-nonsense product to fill that void — and if ROH’s mix of established stars, buzzworthy young talent and relatively low price point carry enough appeal to the masses — then pro wrestling may have just earned a new lease on life in the pay-per-view world.
ROH debuts live on Pay-Per-View Sunday, June 22 at 8pmET.
What do you think of ROH coming to PPV? Sound off below!