At Ring of Honor Final Battle: End of an Era, Shane Taylor‘s lengthy feud with Kenny King when the friends-turned-bitter rivals clash in a Fight Without Honor. This contest promises to be the most brutal one on Saturday night’s card, and it comes packed with plenty of history and bad blood. Taylor has been eagerly waiting to get his hands on King for almost 10 months after his former friend betrayed him during a match for the ROH World Championship. As a result, it’s fair to say that Taylor is looking forward to getting revenge at the pay-per-view.
In an interview with WrestleZone, Taylor shared his thoughts about his mindset heading into the match and noted that, in some ways, he wishes everything turned out differently. Instead, King’s betrayal put them on an inevitable collision course, and now “The Baddest of All Time” knows he must punish a man he once called a friend. He also explained that, in his eyes, this conflict started because King couldn’t accept the fact that Taylor outgrew him.
“As far as Kenny King goes, man there’s a part of me, and I’m not gonna lie, man, like there’s a part of me that wishes all of this could have turned out different,” said Taylor. “There’s a part of me that wishes it could just be me and my homeboy cutting up, talking trash, being who we were, more than likely…me defending the Ring of Honor World Championship in this moment, and understanding and appreciating the ride that we’ve been on.
“But unfortunately we don’t get to do that. Now it’s gotta go this route. So unfortunately, I’m gonna have to hurt my brother, I’m gonna have to hurt my friend. I’m gonna have to go out there and absolutely put Kenny on his ass, simply because he wanted to stand in the way of progress. He couldn’t understand or he couldn’t accept the fact that LeBron finally passed Kobe, you know what I mean, like he couldn’t deal with that.”
Taylor then pointed out that, right now, he and King are tied because they’ve beaten each other once. He made it clear that it doesn’t matter what King throws at him on Saturday because, as always, “The Baddest of All Time” will be unstoppable in their final battle. In doing so, he vowed to prove that he’ll have left a “bigger” mark in ROH when it’s all said and done.
“…Now here we are, Fight Without Honor, one of the most violent matches ever,” said Taylor. “We’ve seen Steen and Generico, we’ve seen The Briscoes go through ‘em, I wanna say with ANX, so Kenny has the advantage of being in one of these before. He understands what it’s gonna take, but I promise you that when he’s staring into my eyes when I come out of that curtain, he’s gonna understand right away that no matter what he says, no matter what he does, no matter what kind of pain he inflicts upon himself or me, nothing he’s doing is stopping me that night. I’m going to walk out of there as the winner of that match, but more importantly, the man with the bigger legacy at the end of our careers.”
— ROH – Ring of Honor Wrestling (@ringofhonor) December 8, 2021
The former ROH World Television Champion and reigning World Six-Man Tag Team Champion went on to emphasize the significance of competing in the Fight Without Honor. He compared it to playing in Madison Square Garden and expressed his desire to firmly cement his place in ROH history with “the best performance” he’s ever had, regardless of what comes next.
“This match is sort of the equivalent of playing in Madison Square Garden if you’re a ball player, right, big-time players have big-time games in venues like that, in moments like that,” said Taylor. “This is a big-time match, and people have cemented their legacies, they’ve created legends in this environment. So with Kenny and myself being in this, on this stage, with these eyes, with this opportunity in front of us, it’s absolutely gonna be one of those moments where you definitely have to take advantage of it.
“Just finished [being on] Busted Open and they were talking about this being sort of an audition for any other company as well. Which could very well be the case, but if I’m thinking about that, more than likely, I’m gonna get a chair wrapped around my head. So all I’m looking to do is put on the best performance that anybody has ever seen from me on this stage.”
While Taylor will be facing King by himself on Saturday, he will represent Shane Taylor Promotions, a group that’s widely viewed as one of the most impressive stables in the wrestling world today. In the interview, Taylor took a moment to describe his hope that the group’s success against all odds, launched off the platform of his own remakable rise, will remain his lasting legacy in ROH.
“I want people’s lasting memory of Shane T to be, ‘Holy s—-, this dude came in, was supposed to be nobody, was supposed to be an afterthought, [and] built this group from nothing,” said Taylor. “That wasn’t supposed to work. Marketing and the people above, the decision-makers didn’t want it to happen. And yet here we are, putting on the best matches of the night, absolutely crushing everything in front of us and leaving anybody watching at home or in that arena that night with undeniable proof that STP is the best faction in this goddamn sport, and individually you’ve got five main-eventers top to bottom who can absolutely do it all. That is my only focus, that is my only goal, and come the end of the night, I am sure we will have all achieved that.”
Likewise, “The Baddest of All Time” shared his confidence that Shane Taylor Promotions will go out with a bang by winning their respective matches on Saturday and proving that the stable reigns supreme.
“We are gonna walk in to Final Battle as the most dominant, the longest-reigning six-man champions of all time, and I have all the confidence in the world that when I see them in the back, that we are still going to be that, and I’m gonna be fresh off of whooping Kenny King’s ass, so there’s that too.”
Tune in to ROH Final Battle: End of an Era to see ROH deliver “the best wrestling on the planet” one final time on December 11. The show will be available for streaming on pay-per-view and HonorClub.
The card for ROH Final Battle: End of an Era is as follows:
- ROH World Championship: Bandido (c) vs. Jonathan Gresham
- ROH Tag Team Championships: The OGK (Matt Taven & Mike Bennett) (c) vs. The Briscoes (Mark & Jay Briscoe)
- Fight Without Honor: Shane Taylor vs. Kenny King
- ROH Television Championship: Dalton Castle (c) Joe Hendry vs. Rhett Titus vs. . Silas Young
- ROH Pure Championship: Josh Woods (c) vs. Brian Johnson
- ROH Six-Man Tag Team Championships: Shane Taylor Promotions (O’Shay Edwards and Soldiers of Savagery) (c) vs. The Righteous (Vincent, Bateman and Dutch)
- ROH Women’s Championship: Rok-C (c) vs. Willow
- Violence Unlimited’s Brody King, Homicide & Tony Deppen vs. Taylor Rust, Tracy Williams & Eli Isom
- The Hex (Allysin Kay & Marti Belle) & Chelsea Green vs. Miranda Alize & The Allure (Angelina Love & Mandy Leon)
- Dragon Lee vs. Rey Horus
- Hour One: Ten-Man Wild Card Tag Team Match
WrestleZone will have full coverage of ROH Final Battle: End of an Era when it airs on December 11.