The Mayhem Crew welcomed Cary Silkin to the show to run down the year that was 2008 in Ring Of Honor from the mother of all holiday vacation destinations: Puerto Rico. With the previous weekend’s All-Star Extravaganza IV and Final Battle 2008 shows rounding out ROH in 2008, The Big Mosh asked Cary what his thoughts were on how good of a job those two shows did to close out the year.
Cary said that he loved “The American Dragon” Bryan Danielson vs. Jerry Lynn from the “solid” Philly IV show, with a great card at The New Alhambra Arena. As far as “Final Battle ’08,” Cary said not only was it one of the best shows in Ring Of Honor history, and the first weekend with their new production setup and camera crew, but it also had the largest crowd in ROH history. He added that his favorites from that show were Nigel McGuinness vs. Naomichi Marufuji (for the Ring Of Honor World Heavyweight Championship), as well as Danielson vs Takeshi Morishima (Fight Without Honor).
The expansion of ROH into new states and countries was then talked about, with Ring Of Honor debuting in markets such as Toronto, Ontario, Montreal, Quebec, and Orlando, FL. Cary said that the Toronto shows, as well as the recent Montreal show were all great, with a lot of awesome fans in attendance, which is why they will be returning in April. He said the Orlando shows the weekend of WrestleMania XXIV with guys from Dragon’s Gate and the rest of the ROH crew were very successful, and they will be returning to Florida in February. Cary then mentioned that while nothing has been announced officially yet for this upcoming year’s WrestleMania XXV weekend shows, he expects some legends and foreign talent to be there along with the rest of the Ring Of Honor roster. Cary also added that ROH will not be running head to head against the WWE Hall Of Fame this year with a 3PM start time on Saturday, because he “wants to go to the Hall Of Fame too.”
Mosh shifted gears, mentioning Gabe Sapolsky’s recent departure from the company, to which Cary touched on briefly. Cary said that Gabe could have a record for how long he was a booker (with over six and a half years in Ring Of Honor alone). “He did a great job, but business is business, and there were some changes that had to be made, but it was a rough year for all business in general due to the economy.” Mosh also asked what, if anything, they would’ve done differently looking back, but Cary said that everybody in general is struggling, and it is just going with the times, but they are “very happy where we’re at now…We’re moving on. He wishes Gabe the best of luck in his next projects.
Blade then mentioned how people used to go to ROH shows just to enjoy them, without knowing all of the “in’s and out’s,” but now everyone seems to want to know who is writing what. Cary went on to say that after last weekend’s shows and the past couple of months, the stories are becoming “compelling,” while the action is “off the charts,” — saying guys like Kenny Omega, Erick Stevens, Tyler Black, among others are “climbing the ladder quick.”
More is contained this 30-plus minute “Ring Of Honor: Year In Review,” with Silkin’s thoughts on the worldwide release of the critically-acclaimed Darren Aronofsky/Mickey Rourke movie, “The Wrestler,” future on Ring Of Honor’s television future (and the rumors of HDNet), the likelihood of Paul London returning to ROH in 2009, in addition to a present from Cary to The Mayhem: special live MNM appearances from “Bushwhacker” Luke Williams and Sweet ‘N’ Sour Inc’s Larry Sweeney.
Check out www.ROHWrestling.com for the latest Video Wire, plus all of the details on the upcoming ROH events this month in Manassas, VA, Edison, NJ, Detroit, MI, and the next Pay-Per-View taping in Chicago, IL.