Survival of the Fittest is a professional wrestling tournament held by Ring of Honor (ROH). The inaugural tournament took place in 2004, and - with exceptions (2008, 2013, 2019–2020) - has become an annual tradition in ROH ever since.[1]

Format

Wrestlers compete in a variety of "qualifying" matches, usually either singles matches or tag team matches, with the winner(s) of each match advancing to an elimination match where the last remaining competitor would be deemed the Survival of the Fittest winner, and receive a future ROH World Championship match (except the 2023 tournament winner will be crowned ROH World Television Championship).[1]

History

The tournament setup is based on Maryland Championship Wrestling's Shane Shamrock Memorial Cup, as ROH was to continue the Shane Shamrock Memorial Cup following the shutdown of MCW in 2003. However, following a controversy with ROH's owner in early 2004, MCW dropped their association with Ring of Honor, and ROH renamed the already scheduled tournament "Survival of the Fittest".[2][3] [4]

In 2019, it was announced the event would take place on November 9 and 10, but the shows were ultimately cancelled.[5]

List of winners

Championship match for winner

  – Championship victory
  – Championship match loss
  – Championship match draw/no contest
# Winner Event Year Championship match
1 Bryan Danielson Midnight Express Reunion 2004 Danielson unsuccessfully challenged Samoa Joe for the ROH World Championship.
2 Roderick Strong This Means War 2005 Strong unsuccessfully challenged Bryan Danielson for the ROH World Championship.
3 Delirious Honor Reclaims Boston 2006 Delirious unsuccessfully challenged Bryan Danielson for the ROH World Championship.
4 Chris Hero Glory By Honor IV - Night 1 2007 Hero unsuccessfully challenged Nigel McGuinness for the ROH World Championship.
5 Tyler Black Final Battle 2009 Black wrestled ROH World Champion Austin Aries to a sixty-minute time limit draw. Black defeated Aries in a rematch to win the ROH World Championship at the 8th Anniversary Show.
6 Eddie Edwards Manhattan Mayhem IV 2010 Edwards defeated Roderick Strong to win the ROH World Championship.
7 Michael Elgin Showdown in the Sun - Night 2 2011 Elgin unsuccessfully challenged Davey Richards for the ROH World Championship.
8 Jay Lethal 11th Anniversary Show 2012 Lethal unsuccessfully challenged Kevin Steen for the ROH World Championship.
9 Adam Cole Final Battle 2014 Cole unsuccessfully challenged Jay Briscoe in a Fight Without Honor for the ROH World Championship.
10 Michael Elgin (2) All Star Extravaganza VIII 2015 Elgin unsuccessfully challenged Adam Cole for the ROH World Championship.
11 Bobby Fish Manhattan Mayhem 2016 Fish unsuccessfully challenged Adam Cole for the ROH World Championship.
12 Punishment Martinez Ring of Honor Wrestling (February 10, 2018) 2017 Martinez unsuccessfully challenged Dalton Castle for the ROH World Championship.
13 Marty Scurll G1 Supercard 2018 Scurll challenged Jay Lethal in a three-way ladder match for the ROH World Championship, also involving Matt Taven. Taven won the match.
14 Bandido Best in the World 2021 Bandido defeated Rush to win the ROH World Championship.
15 Kyle Fletcher Final Battle 2023 Survivor of the Fittest for the vacant ROH Television Championship. Fletcher defeated Komander, Lee Moriarty, Bryan Keith, Dalton Castle and Lee Johnson to win the championship.

Tournament results

2004

ROH's first Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on June 24, 2004 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[3][7]

2005

ROH's second Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on September 24, 2005 in Boston, Massachusetts.[7][8]

2006

ROH's third Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on October 6, 2006 in Cleveland, Ohio.[7][9]

2007

ROH's fourth Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on October 19, 2007 in Las Vegas, Nevada.[7][10]

2009

ROH's fifth Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on October 10, 2009 in Indianapolis, Indiana.[7][11]

2010

ROH's sixth Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on November 12, 2010 in Dearborn, Michigan.[7][12]

2011

ROH's seventh Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on November 18, 2011 at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in Dayton, Ohio.[13][14]

2012

ROH's eighth Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on September 22, 2012 at the Du Burns Arena in Baltimore, Maryland. The tournament was recorded in a single day for Ring of Honor's television show, and aired on a taped delay over the span of several weeks.[1][6][15]

2014

ROH's ninth Survival of the Fittest tournament took place on November 8, 2014 at the Seagate Convention Center in Toledo, Ohio. The tournament took place over a span of 2 days.

2015

Main article: Survival of the Fittest (2015)

2016

Main article: Survival of the Fittest (2016)

2017

Main article: Survival of the Fittest (2017)

2018

Main article: Survival of the Fittest (2018)

2021

ROH announced the tournament would return in 2021, taking place throughout the month of June on ROH's flagship TV program Ring of Honor Wrestling, and their online show ROH Week by Week.

There were 12 participants competing in six qualifying matches, with the winners advancing to a six-way elimination finals (aired June 26 on Ring of Honor Wrestling) where the winner received an ROH World Championship match at Best in the World.[16]

Participants:

Qualifying matches:

Finals:

Order of Elimination:
  1. Bandido pinned Flamita
  2. Rhett Titus pinned Brian Johnson
  3. Chris Dickinson defeated Titus by submission
  4. Bandido pinned Dickinson
  5. Bandido defeated Eli Isom by submission to win the tournament

Note - In late 2021, ROH was sold to Tony Khan, the owner and general manager of All Elite Wrestling (AEW), and with that ROH was then effectively absorbed into AEW.

2023

On the November 8, 2023 episode of AEW Dynamite, Samoa Joe, who had held the ROH World Television Championship for a record 574 days, voluntarily vacated the title to concentrate on pursuing the AEW World Championship.

Tony Khan announced a week later on Ring of Honor Wrestling that Survival of the Fittest would return, and be used in crowning a new champion. Qualifying matches took place on ROH Wrestling, leading up to the six-way finals on December 15 at Final Battle, with the winner becoming the new ROH World TV Champion.[17]

Qualifying matches:

Finals:

Eliminated Wrestler Eliminated by Decision Notes Time
1 Lee Johnson Lee Moriarty Submission Submitted after being locked in the Border City Stretch 8:46
2 Dalton Castle Pinfall Pinned after a flatliner 11:20
3 Lee Moriarty Bryan Keith Pinfall Pinned after a Tiger Driver 15:38
4 Bryan Keith Kyle Fletcher Pinfall Pinned after the Grimstone 16:52
5 Komander Pinfall 25:54
Winner Kyle Fletcher

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "It's "Survival of the Fittest 2012!" This Weekend!". Ring of Honor. Retrieved 2013-07-16.
  2. ^ "ROH Year Three Archive: Looking Back at Ring of Honor's Most Controversial Year". PWInsider.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  3. ^ a b "Dark Pegasus Video Review: Ring of Honor - Survival of the Fittest 2004". 411mania.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  4. ^ "ROH - Survival of the Fittest, June 24, 2004, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania". 411mania.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  5. ^ "ROH pospone Survival of the Fittest por un 'conflicto operacional'". 29 October 2019.
  6. ^ a b "ROH TV results". Ring of Honor. Archived from the original on 2013-01-24. Retrieved 2013-07-16.
  7. ^ a b c d e f "Past events". Ring of Honor. Archived from the original on 2013-03-22. Retrieved 2013-07-16.
  8. ^ "Dark Pegasus Video Review: Ring of Honor - Survival of the Fittest 2005". 411mania.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  9. ^ "Ring of Honor - Survival of the Fittest". Online World of Wrestling.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  10. ^ "Survival of the Fittest 2007". Online World of Wrestling.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  11. ^ "What's All the Hubbub: ROH Survival of the Fittest 2009". 411mania.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  12. ^ "Ring of Honor Survival of the Fittest 2010 Live Report". PWInsider.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  13. ^ ""Survival of the Fittest 2011" - Dayton, OH". Ring of Honor. 20 September 2011. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  14. ^ "ROH Survival of the Fittest 2011 DVD Review: The Largest Field in SOTF History Vies for a Shot at th ROH World Title, Steve Corino's Road to Redemption Continues as He's Finally Ready to Face El Generico, a Champions' Challenge with All Four ROH Champions in One Match, and More". PWInsider.com. Retrieved 2013-07-26.
  15. ^ "ROH Survival of the Fittest 2012 DVD Review: Twelve Men Vie for a Shot at the ROH World Title, Rhett Titus and His New Partner Get One Over on Haas & Benjamin, the Guardians of Truth Reveal Their True Identity, and More". PWInsider.com. Retrieved 2013-07-16.
  16. ^ ROH reveals bracket for Survival of the Fittest tournament - Fightful.com
  17. ^ Defelice, Robert. "6-Way Survival Of The Fittest To Crown New ROH World Television Champion Set For ROH Final Battle". Fightful.com. Retrieved November 16, 2023.