Shane Taylor has been on a roll as of late. Since Ring of Honor’s Final Battle 2020, the CEO of Shane Taylor Promotions has been unstoppable. Defeating Jay Briscoe at Final Battle in an excellent match along with securing a win for his promotion against The Foundation, a truly dominant Shane Taylor in ROH is coming and he’s coming now. Taylor is the number one contender for RUSH’s ROH World Championship in what promises to be a #MatchOfTheNight candidate. Ahead of his showdown against RUSH on February 27th, let’s take a look at the long hard road Shane Taylor had to go through to achieve everything he has today.
Path to Success
Shane Taylor grew up on the violent streets of East Side Cleveland, Ohio. The man has been fighting his whole life and he isn’t about to stop now. Taylor has channeled his intensity and anger into something positive and he treats his anger as a gift. Taylor would state, in one of his many interviews, that violence and anger is a form of art and a tool to drive somebody depending on who looks at it. It doesn’t have to be negative. “Violence at its finest,” he says. If one has the motivation and the passion for something, anyone can succeed much like the aforementioned “Notorious” one.
Taylor has traveled all over the globe in a quest to hone his craft. Aside from the US, he has competed in Mexico and Canada. Taylor even went on a tour in the UK which was a huge success for the powerhouse. Also in his early days in the business, he would compete for independent promotions such as WildKat Pro Wrestling as well as VIP Wrestling. His supremacy over the companies led him to win both promotions’ world championships.
Wreaking Havoc: Shane Taylor in ROH
Taylor debuted for Ring of Honor in 2014 and shortly thereafter started teaming up with Keith Lee. The team was dubbed the Pretty Boy Killers. They would have tremendous tag team wars with the likes of The Briscoes and War Machine. Taylor and Lee were incredible as a duo and quite possibly one of the best tag teams never to win the ROH World Tag Team Championship. Speaking of War Machine, Raymond Rowe was very instrumental in Shane Taylor’s career. Rowe was the one who trained Taylor and has been one of the greatest supporters in his career. Taylor considers Rowe as a close personal friend to this day and one of the main reasons why he is here today.
After Keith Lee’s departure from ROH, Shane Taylor would venture off on his own. He would be a muscle for hire with groups such as The Rebellion availing of his services. Only mere months later, the group would dissolve and Taylor was on his own once again. It proved not to be a problem at all, as Shane Taylor in ROH would tear through the locker room’s unwitting suspects. He beat the likes of Josh Woods and Cheeseburger. His undeniable dominance and hot streak would earn him a shot at the ROH World Television Championship.
But 2018 would be a tough year for Shane Taylor. He would earn title opportunities for the World TV Title, as well as the ROH Six-Man Championship, but was unsuccessful. In the same year, he would sign an exclusive contract with ROH. At this point in time, Shane Taylor was at a crossroads in his career. However, it didn’t take long for Taylor to dust himself off and take his future into his own hands. Taylor bet on himself and he would lay out bodies left and right to prove he is here and he’s not going anywhere.
Taylor’s Turning Point
In 2019, this path of destruction would lead him to War of the Worlds, a four-city, four-event tour co-headlined by ROH and New Japan Pro Wrestling. In this event, Shane Taylor would forever write his name in ROH’s history books. He defeated reigning champion Jeff Cobb, Brody King, and NJPW star Hirooki Goto. This win made him the 22nd champion in the title’s history as well as only the third African-American man to win the ROH World Television Championship.
“The Baddest of All-Time” was one of the most dominant champions in the title’s history. With “Shane Taylor Promotions” now in full swing, Taylor proved to be a fighting champion. Taylor would successfully defend the TV Title against some of the best ROH has to offer. This list included Bandido, Tracy Williams, and Flip Gordon, among many others. Shane Taylor would have one of the longest TV title reigns in ROH history. His authority was in full effect for most of 2019 until Final Battle of that year. Dragon Lee would defeat Shane Taylor and win the title, ending the Baddest One’s historic run.
A Bump in the Road for Shane Taylor in ROH
2020 was supposed to be Shane Taylor Promotions’ year. They were tearing through everybody that stood in their path. Shane Taylor would recruit the Soldiers Of Savagery, Kaun and Moses into the fold. He saw something in them that reminded Taylor of what he used to be back in his early days. They were hungry for success and will not wait any longer to get it; he was right, to nobody’s surprise. Kaun, Moses, and Taylor made ROH theirs in the early part of 2020. Nobody could stop these men from dishing out massive amounts of damage. Then, unfortunately, the world was hit with a global crisis that shut down ROH for a short time.
All the Gold?
There’s a light at the end of every tunnel and Ring of Honor returned in the latter half of 2020. Shane Taylor Promotions would pick up right where they left off. They ran roughshod over everybody, even earning themselves a shot at Six-Man Tag Team Titles against the champions MexiSquad. 2021 will be the biggest year in the group’s brief history. STP will face MexiSquad on February 20th for their Six-Man Tag Titles and the following week Taylor gets his opportunity at RUSH for the World Championship. What a hectic but fruitful two weeks for the collective that could be.
RUSH will have a tough time on his hands and better bring it against Taylor. Shane Taylor is one of the most unpredictable competitors of all-time. He could overpower an opponent with his striking power and strength one moment and the next he’s hitting a senton off the top rope. There is no way to prepare for a man with such an arsenal of moves. RUSH needs to keep his eyes open because Shane Taylor has a multitude of methods to beat him. Whether it’s drilling him with the Marcus Garvey Driver or planting RUSH with the Welcome to the Land, Shane Taylor will go for the kill when his opponent least expects it. Whatever happens on February 27th, rest assured that someway, somehow Shane Taylor will once again have gold around his waist sooner rather than later. The Baddest of All-Time is coming and he is coming hard.
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