Ring of Honor is arguably the third major professional wrestling company in North America (after WWE and TNA).Founded in February 2002, ROH began as a company to take the place of ECW for RF Video - the supplier's main stream of revenue. In 2004, thanks to dramatic Real Life happenings, RF Video and ROH went through a messy divorce, leaving the company with Cary Silkin as owner but leaving Gabe Sapolsky as booker/writer. In October 2008 Sapolsky was replaced by former ROH in-ring wrestler Adam Pearce. Pearce was later replaced by a team led by the wrestler Delirious and longtime wrestling booker Jim Cornette. In 2011, ROH was acquired ... but not by another promotion. They were instead, acquired by Sinclair Broadcast Group, who bought it mainly to give themselves weekend programming on its large and growing chain of The CW and MyNetworkTV stations (though other Sinclair stations with a big four network also carry it).Placing more importance on in-ring action than promos or storylines until recently, ROH is the alternative to TNA's alternative. It is also a breeding ground for new talent for TNA and WWE - World Champions Samoa Joe (TNA), CM Punk (WWE), Bryan Danielson (Daniel Bryan) (WWE) and Austin Aries (TNA) all initially found fame in ROH, and a host of other names did the same. A number of ROH wrestlers have done tours in Japan with other promotions as well as vice versa; 2005 had the famous Joe vs. Kenta Kobashi match, which led to Kobashi's home company Pro Wrestling NOAH working with ROH for over three years, some ROH wrestler tours in NOAH, and eventually even a few ROH shows in Japan.The dedicated Internet fanbase are either affectionately or mockingly named ROHbots.ROH's former sister promotion, by way of sharing a booker, was Full Impact Pro, based in Florida. The FIP title has been brought to and defended on ROH events. As Gabe Sapolsky, the booker for each promotion, left both companies in October 2008, the relationship wound down, and FIP is now running pretty much on its own.As of 2011, ROH has been bought by Sinclair Broadcasting and now has a weekly TV show, which is then broadcast online a few days later.The all-women promotion SHIMMER is featured off and on as ROH's play-by-play announcer Dave Prazak is SHIMMER's founder.As an addendum, Ring of Honor was prominently featured in The Wrestler as the promotion for Randy "The Ram" Robinson's 20th Anniversary rematch with The Ayatollah, and the match itself was filmed at a Ring of Honor show.
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