Friday 6 July 2012

Kenny X

At Best in the World on Sunday 24th June Kenny King and his All Night Express tag team partner Rhett Titus captured the ROH world tag team titles. On Thursday 5th July, less than a fortnight later, King appeared on a live episode of TNA’s flagship show IMPACT Wrestling, winning a tournament match that qualifies him for a shot at the vacant X Division championship at Destination X.

I’m disappointed that after years of waiting for an ANX title reign it ends before it gets underway. Ring of Honor should have switched the tag belts onto Titus and King a year ago. Both men were clearly ready for the spot then and crucially they were both under contract to the promotion.

Want to watch Kenny King wrestle? You'll have to tune in to IMPACT

I don’t blame ‘The Pretty Boy Pitbull’ for this situation. While there was still plenty left for him to accomplish in ROH (I believe he could have worked his way up to a prominent singles spot in the group over time) he will almost certainly be getting more money in TNA, and will be reaching a wider audience while he does it. His contract had expired and he was free to go elsewhere.

At least you’d think so. ROH has responded to King’s appearance for the competition with a news piece stating that King had signed a short term contract extension that would allow him to negotiate with but not appear for rival wrestling organisations. This sounds pretty flimsy, at best.

I’d like to know why Ring of Honor’s booking team of Hunter Johnston and Jim Cornette thought it a good idea to put the tag gold on ANX knowing that King’s contract was about to expire. They may have assumed he’d stay with the group but until he was under contract he should have been treated as a free agent. Basically, they should have held off the title switch until King re-signed.

Ring of Honor has stated they will no longer use Kenny King. I don’t think they have a choice in the matter: it doesn’t look like King is interested in appearing for them anymore.

The big loser in this situation appears to be Rhett Titus. He had waited patiently alongside King for a tag team title reign for over two years. I imagine that a replacement partner will be announced soon but whoever it is won’t do justice to fans of the All Night Express, such as myself, who have wanted to see them at the top of ROH for a long time. I wanted to see King and Titus enjoy a lengthy run together at the top. They’d earned it.

There is a bright side though. This could be used as a chance to instigate a singles push for Rhett Titus. Give him a microphone at the next live event or TV taping and let him vent his frustrations at Kenny King for leaving, TNA for signing him, and Ring of Honor for failing to re-sign him when they had the chance.

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