ROH planning to run Madison Square Garden in 2019

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ROH planning to run Madison Square Garden in 2019

Post by cero2k » Jun 12th, '18, 13:09

Source: f4wonline.com

If they get their way, Ring of Honor is planning to run their first show in a WWE stronghold next year.

Sinclair CEO Chris Ripley told the Baltimore Biz Journal Tuesday that ROH will run a show at NYC's Madison Square Garden in 2019. The interview was done in relation to WWE's recent TV deals and the company's own prospects for the future.

There wasn't any additional detail or a time of year mentioned. Of note, WrestleMania is returning to the New York area next spring with the arena events running out of Brooklyn's Barclays Center due to the costs of running MSG.

ROH has run shows in New York City and the region since their inception, mainly focusing on smaller venues like the Manhattan Center and Terminal 5. This would obviously be a massive step in terms of size, scope, and costs.

However, the recent success The Young Bucks and Cody Runnels had in quickly selling out a 10,000 seat venue in the Chicago region without a card could be bolstering the company's hopes to sell out MSG with the right mix of talent (i.e. Bucks, Cody, Kenny Omega, etc).

Ripley said they have been scaling their production quality, but that "it's not quite there yet" to more aggressively bring their TV product off Sinclair stations.

In last week's Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer noted that AAA holds a September date for MSG.

"If this show does happen, it would be the first time since the early 60s when someone other than Vince McMahon or his father would have promoted a pro wrestling event in the world’s most famous arena. It’s also notable that this past week, as there were insiders who found out about this booking, that WWE added Undertaker to its 7/7 show in Madison Square Garden, which seemed unusual given tickets were selling well for the date."


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Re: ROH planning to run Madison Square Garden in 2019

Post by Big Red Machine » Jun 12th, '18, 14:10

People have been saying that ROH needs a bigger NYC venue for a while now and this is quite the ambitious step up. That being said, I could have sworn that, like with ROH and the Hammerstein Ballroom a few years ago, the reason WWE stopped running TV and PPV at the Garden was that MSG charged a very high additional fee to broadcast from there. Maybe that's gone now?
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Re: ROH planning to run Madison Square Garden in 2019

Post by Bob-O » Jun 13th, '18, 13:36

I'm not trying to be a dream killer, but I just don't see it happening. That's a 20,000 seat arena, and this isn't All In...

I could see AAA making it work because of novelty and ethnicity, but personally I don't feel like ROH can do it on their own. NJPW and ROH would have a shot, but the first part of that statement is the important piece of that statement. All In's success comes from the concept, not from the talent. They opened up with the concept, and marketed that they needed to sell 10,000 tickets to win a bet and prove a point... PLEASE BUY TICKETS was essentially all the marketing campaign they needed, as they'd made it "Us vs Them" and that's tried and true time and time again. Everyone buying a ticket to that KNOWS they're a part of something more than just another wrestling show. ROH doesn't have that. Cody and The Bucks aren't going to have it again, it's the kind of thing that only works once.

I'm not saying ROH won't draw, but there's a sweet spot with ticket prices vs attendance that I don't think they can hit to make it worth their while. I'd love to be wrong about this, but I just don't see it.
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Re: ROH planning to run Madison Square Garden in 2019

Post by Big Red Machine » Jun 13th, '18, 19:15

Bob-O wrote:
Jun 13th, '18, 13:36
I'm not trying to be a dream killer, but I just don't see it happening. That's a 20,000 seat arena, and this isn't All In...

I could see AAA making it work because of novelty and ethnicity, but personally I don't feel like ROH can do it on their own. NJPW and ROH would have a shot, but the first part of that statement is the important piece of that statement. All In's success comes from the concept, not from the talent. They opened up with the concept, and marketed that they needed to sell 10,000 tickets to win a bet and prove a point... PLEASE BUY TICKETS was essentially all the marketing campaign they needed, as they'd made it "Us vs Them" and that's tried and true time and time again. Everyone buying a ticket to that KNOWS they're a part of something more than just another wrestling show. ROH doesn't have that. Cody and The Bucks aren't going to have it again, it's the kind of thing that only works once.

I'm not saying ROH won't draw, but there's a sweet spot with ticket prices vs attendance that I don't think they can hit to make it worth their while. I'd love to be wrong about this, but I just don't see it.
Sell it out? Maybe not. But ROH could come close. They've got the All-In crew the rest of Bullet Club, plus other popular acts that are hard to see elsewhere (particularly the Briscoes, but also Dalton and Lethal). I don't think they'd need more than Omega and Naito to at least come close. Paying whatever it takes to get some sort of semi-rare attraction like WALTER to come in (which he'd likely be open to doing because it's just one show), or maybe someone slighty more out of the box like Ilja Dragunov or a decently big name from Mexico who they haven't used before (maybe Atlantis if he does well this weekend), or someone from New Japan who has a more nostalgic appeal like Yuji Nagata would also add an interesting dimension to it, too.
The interesting question to me is whether doing it Mania weekend will help or hurt. Basically, the question is whether the benefit of people already planning to fly in outweighs the competition of Takeover.
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Re: ROH planning to run Madison Square Garden in 2019

Post by Bob-O » Jun 14th, '18, 07:37

Big Red Machine wrote:
Jun 13th, '18, 19:15
The interesting question to me is whether doing it Mania weekend will help or hurt. Basically, the question is whether the benefit of people already planning to fly in outweighs the competition of Takeover.
I thought WWE did something to blackball shows within so many miles of 'Mania to keep the indies out of their weekend. I don't remember what it is, if it was a deal with the city or just dick-booking all the nearby venues to be empty (not that they could do that with MSG), but again I'm not sure.

For anyone interested, I found a really nice Deadspin article about ROH's recent surge under sinclair. I guess they drew 6000 over Wrestlemania weekend this year. But still, that's their RECORD. Records are meant to be broken blah blah blah, but even if they DOUBLED that they'd only be HALF filling MSG. Not saying that wouldn't be enough to justify the arena, but looking for weak WWE numbers from there I can't really find any (the last RAW they did from there was in 2009, and they sold it out).

That said, I'd be inclined to think they'd be better off doing their thing when Vince is as far away from NY as humanly possible. Especially Wrestlemania Weekend, while he might tolerate a couple of indy shows riding his coattails into "his" weekend, I really can't see him doing SOMETHING to make sure another promotion didn't succeed to THAT magnitude during his weekend... BUT, I'm second guessing my original statement, if Monday Night Raw sold it out on a school night, there really isn't a reason ROH couldn't on a weekend.
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