Cary Silkin has been a major figure with Ring of Honor almost from the very beginning. He was the sole owner of ROH from 2004-2011 and has remained with the company as an ambassador. With ROH’s 17th Anniversary pay-per-view coming up on Friday, we asked Silkin to share his favorite ROH moments. The following is written in his own words:
5. BRUNO SAMMARTINO COMES TO ROH
(Glory By Honor; Sept. 16, 2006; Manhattan Center; New York City)
Bruno was one of my childhood heroes, so him being there was so special. The place went crazy and the autograph line for him was huge. When he came out, the crowd gave him a sustained standing ovation. He said he was overwhelmed. I remember his opening line: “Most of you weren’t even born when I retired in 1981.”
4. BRYAN DANIELSON, NIGEL MCGUINNESS LEAVE ON SAME NIGHT
(Glory By Honor; Sept. 26, 2009; Manhattan Center; New York City)
Bryan and Nigel wrestled each other in the main event and it was the last match in the company for both of them. How can this be a great moment? It certainly wasn’t great that they were leaving, but it turned into a great moment. I was able to get ahold of Jim Cornette, who had just gotten fired from TNA, and former ROH World Champion Homicide, who hadn’t been with us for a number of years. They were both surprises, and they blew the roof off the place. So instead of putting a fork in us, it was like an oxygen tank was attached to us.
3. BRISCOES BECOME 10-TIME ROH WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPS
(Final Battle; Dec. 14, 2018; Hammerstein Ballroom; New York City)
Jay and Mark Briscoe are like the Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig of ROH. They’ve literally been here since Day One and have been so important to the company. Winning the titles for the 10th time (over SoCal Uncensored’s Frankie Kazarian and Scorpio Sky) further cemented their legacy.
2. JAY LETHAL’S PHENOMENAL ROH WORLD TITLE DEFENSE
(Final Battle; Dec. 18, 2015; 2300 Arena; Philadelphia)
Jay Lethal was coming to ROH shows as a fan in the very beginning. He’s gone on to become a great talent and the heart and soul of ROH. He’s also become one of my best friends in the business. This match stands out to me because it took place on the big Final Battle stage and Lethal defeated another ROH legend in AJ Styles, one of the men who helped establish ROH. Lethal was only several months into his first title reign, and defeating Styles was a defining moment for him at that point in his career.
1. SAMOA JOE FACES KENTA KOBASHI IN DREAM MATCH
(Joe vs. Kobashi; Oct. 1, 2005; The New Yorker Hotel; New York City)
The match between Samoa Joe and Kobashi had a big fight feel like an Ali-Frazier fight, and it certainly lived up to the hype. The New Yorker Hotel is part of the Hammerstein Complex, but at that point, we couldn’t afford Hammerstein Ballroom or Manhattan Center. The capacity was supposed to be 500 people but we had like 800 people in there.