Flip Remains Silent; Kenny King Angry About Lethal's Title Shot; Scurll To Reveal Who Faces Aldis

By Kevin Eck

Here’s the latest ROH news and notes:

Why, Flip, why?

That’s what fans have been asking since Flip Gordon shocked the wrestling world by double-crossing LifeBlood and joining Villain Enterprises on the Best in the World pay-per-view a few weeks ago.

Gordon has yet to offer any explanation for his actions. I’ve always had a good professional relationship with Gordon, but he has ignored repeated calls and texts from me.

I’ve been told via a third party that Marty Scurll, the CEO of Villain Enterprises, will speak publicly about his acquisition of Gordon in the near future.

I’m still a bit stunned that Gordon decided to join Scurll’s group, as he seemed like a perfect fit for LifeBlood. That said, the addition of Gordon certainly raises Villain Enterprises’ stock, which already was soaring. …

Speaking of Villain Enterprises, Scurll is expected to reveal at Manhattan Mayhem on Friday which member of the group will challenge Nick Aldis for the NWA Worlds Title at Summer Supercard on Aug 9 in Toronto.

At ROH’s international TV taping in Philadelphia a few weeks ago, Aldis told Scurll that he will defend the title against a member of Villain Enterprises -- including Scurll himself -- but Scurll will have to be the one to decide who gets the shot.

Manhattan Mayhem will stream live for HonorClub from Manhattan Center’s Hammerstein Ballroom at 8 p.m. Eastern. ... 

Kenny King has made it clear that he isn’t happy about Jay Lethal getting a title shot against ROH World Champion Matt Taven at Manhattan Mayhem. King, who isn’t signed to compete that night, said he will be at the show to “get this little matter squared away.” 

King’s beef is that Lethal shouldn’t be getting a title shot before him since he just defeated Lethal in a best-of-three series. King earned his title opportunity by winning the Honor Rumble at G1 Supercard in Madison Square Garden in April.

What King isn’t taking into consideration is that Lethal, who lost the ROH World Title to Taven in a Triple Threat Ladder Match at G1 Supercard, is contractually owed a rematch. After winning Honor Rumble, it was King’s decision to target Lethal rather than immediately cash in his title opportunity.

It will be interesting to see what King has planned for Manhattan. King has been on the best roll of his career, so whenever he does challenge for the title, it wouldn’t shock me if he won it, regardless of who the champion is. …

It’s great to see Alex Shelley back in ROH after a year-long hiatus. While King -- and presumably others in the locker room -- resent the ROH Board of Directors granting Shelley’s request to compete for the ROH World Title against the winner of the Taven-Lethal match, I certainly don’t blame Shelley for, as he put it, “playing the veteran’s card.”  

Shelley appears to be in great shape, and he’s had a year to fully heal his body. Whoever steps into the ring as champion to face Shelley at Summer Superard would be wise not to underestimate him. ...

Much like King, The Kingdom’s TK O’Ryan and Vinny Marseglia also believe they are being treated unfairly in regard to title opportunities. They’re upset that The Bouncers (Beer City Bruiser and Brawler Milonas) have an ROH World Tag Team Title shot against the winner of Saturday’s New York City Street Fight in Manhattan between current champions The Guerrillas of Destiny and the Briscoes at Mass Hysteria in Lowell, Mass., on Sundaty (streaming live for HonorClub at 7 p.m. Eastern).

Also like King, The Kingdom members are misguided. Marseglia and O’Ryan contend that because they defeated The Bouncers the last time the teams met in a straight-up tag match, they should get the title shot in Lowell. 

However, the night after The Kingdom beat The Bouncers last month in Kent, Was., The Bouncers defeated The Kingdom to win a No. 1 Contender’s gauntlet match in Portland, Ore. Another Kingdom conspiracy debunked. …

The destruction caused by Maria Manic in her first two appearances in ROH during Best in the World weekend reminded me of Jeff Cobb’s ROH debut last year, when he single-handedly wrecked the Top Prospect Tournament.

After watching Manic manhandle a group of male security members on consecutive nights, it’s clear to me that in addition to “Maneater” being tattooed on her midsection, Manic has star written all over her.

Will Manic make her presence felt in Manhattan and Lowell? I can’t wait to find out. …

Congratulations to Taven, a lifelong Boston Red Sox fan, for getting the opportunity to live out a childhood dream by throwing out the ceremonial first pitch before the Red Sox game at Fenway Park earlier this week. It’s good to be the king. …

Impressive newcomers Karissa Rivera and Tasha Steelz each have a scheduled Women of Honor World Title match. In a match at Manhattan Mayhem that will be taped for a future episode of “Ring of Honor Wrestling,” Rivera will face WOH World Champion Kelly Klein, who continues to make good on her vow to take on all comers. Steelz will challenge for the title at Summer Supercard. Rivera and Steelz will both appear at Mass Hysteria. …

Klein told Newsday this week that she’s proud of the strides WOH has made and continues to make.

“I look back and remember, when we first started, we were not getting representation on every single show, let alone TV or pay-per-views,” she said. “We were lucky to get a pre-show match on occasion. … We really have come a long way and that’s encouraging, because that means we could do more and keep moving forward.” ...

Soldiers of Savagery (Kaun and Moses) will make their HonorClub live debut at Manhattan Mayhem. During their short time in ROH, SOS has shown that they know how to make an impact. …

The first match-up announced for the Top Prospect Tournament pits Dante Caballero against Joe Keys at Mass Hysteria. These two are no strangers to one another. They trained together at the MCW Pro Wrestling Training Center in Maryland and have been partners -- they are two-time former MCW Tag Team Champions -- as well as bitter rivals. The first-round match will air on a future episode of “Ring of Honor Wrestling” and HonorClub. …

Bullet Club’s Chase Owens and two CMLL stars to be announced are signed for Saturday Night at Center Stage on Aug. 24 in Atlanta and Honor for All on Aug. 25 in Nashville. …

Master and Machine (Marcus Kross and Griff Garrison), who had a good showing in defeat against Coast 2 Coast recently, are signed to compete in Atlanta. 

I’d be remiss if I concluded this column before mentioning the changes ROH is making to its TV tapings. As announced earlier this week, in an effort to provide HonorClub members with the maximum experience, the company will now offer live streaming from all of its TV tapings, beginning with Manhattan Mayhem.

In addition to providing more exciting live event content for HonorClub, the change also will enhance the experience for fans in attendance at the tapings and make the weekly “Ring of Honor Wrestling” TV show more compelling and entertaining than ever. 

Kevin Eck is a veteran pro wrestling journalist who has worked for The Baltimore Sun, WWE and WCW before joining ROHWrestling.com.