September 27, 2009
Cornette returns to ROH as Danielson, McGuinness depart
By PATRIC LAPRADE - For SLAM! Wrestling
NEW YORK - The old saying goes "They come and they go." On Saturday night in a sold-out Manathan Center's Grand Ballroom in New York City, Ring of Honor fans saw two of their favourites leave and one major player come back.
Everyone knew the show was a chance to say goodbye to Bryan Danielson and Nigel McGuinness. But what people didn't expect was the return of none other than Jim Cornette.
After an Austin Aries versus Petey Williams match, the announcer Bobby Cruise was about to get going with the next match, but he was interrupted by an unknown music. After a few seconds, people in New York City were delighted to see Cornette come off the curtains as they chanted "Welcome back!"
Cornette started by saying he "had some free time and thought he'd drop by," which lead to a huge "F*** TNA" chant.
He obviously spoke about the rumours that said he yelled at Vince Russo, denied it adding that if it was true, "the video would already be on Youtube."
"Terry Taylor and Dixie Carter called me and told me that they were releasing me because I didn't back TNA," said Cornette in the ring.
After telling him that in fact, he wasn't 100% behind the creative team, Cornette told Carter and Taylor he wasn't certainly not 100% behind Vince Russo, which got a huge "F*** Vince Russo" chant from the live crowd.
The next day, Cornette got a call from ROH promoter Cary Silkin.
"I always was a fan of ROH," said Cornette, ripping at the same time on some of WWE angles. "It's the place where stars are made, he said, because they let them wrestle."
"Danielson and McGuinness are leaving. Now it's gonna be the time for guys like Tyler Black, the Briscoes and a bunch of them to step up."
After stating he was fed up with sports entertainment and with actors instead of wrestlers, he did his big announcement.
"As of this afternoon, I am the executive producer of ROH on HDNet."
And the new executive producer had one more thing to say to the fans.
"Ring of Honor will be the place of the biggest pro wrestling action seen anywhere."
On the other hand, ROH fans were in New York to celebrate the departure of two of the best wrestlers the company ever had.
In a last match before they both leave for WWE, Bryan Danielson and Nigel McGuinness gave it really all they had as they were facing each other one more time -- but one last time for Ring of Honor.
The finish saw Danielson winning the bout with his elbow strikes, but the winner didn't matter for their fans, as they chanted right after the bell rang "Thank you both" and "We will miss you."
All the roster came at ringside to be part of that special moment.
"I'll always be proud to have been part of Ring of Honor," said McGuinness after the match before thanking everyone.
"If you look at last year's best matches in ROH, I'm not there," said an humble Danielson, before putting over guys like The American Wolves, Roderick Strong and Austin Aries.
"No matter where I go, I want you to support this company," said Danielson to his fans.
But he had one last request. "Can you play my favourite song for one last time?" he asked the DJ.
So while the fans could hear Europe's Final Countdown one last time in a ROH show, Danielson and McGuinness were getting their final countdown of hurray in a ceremony they will never forget.
Here are the results of the show:
Patric Laprade has been involved on the Quebec indy scene for eight years, mainly as an announcer and writer. He is currently in the process of writing a book on the history of Quebec wrestling -- www.quebechof.com -- and he's running a French blog on wrestling and MMA -- www.attitudeqc.com -- as well. He can be reached at email@example.com or on his Facebook page.