Hope you are well. I am a fairly new subscriber but have got to say I love the site, the audio and the newsletters, keep up the great work. I was hesitant to pay the subscription with all the free content available out there but it really is a bargain for all the quality content you produce and have in the archives.
Below are my brief thoughts on the iPPV that just finished.
Thumbs in the middle. (Would have been down if not for the main event)
Show felt very flat, no doubt this was not helped by the crowd which remained dead for most of the show outside of the main event. It was never going to be easy to follow up the Jan 4th show but even comparing this to the 2012 iPPV offerings from New Japan it just did not feel up to their standards, which to be fair are insanely high after a great run of iPPV events. Still I couldn't help but feel a bit disapointed after getting up at 5.45am on Sunday, I would recommend people watch the main event but not to go out of their way to watch the rest of the show. You can decide if one match, albeit a very good one, is worth $25.
YUJI NAGATA & MANABU NAKANISHI & TAMA TONGA & JUSHIN LIGER & TIGER MASK VS. TAKASHI IIZUKA & TORU YANO & TOMOHIRO ISHII & YOSHI-HASHI & JADO
HIROSHI TANAHASHI VS. KARL ANDERSON FOR THE IWGP HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE
This really was a fantastic match. It didn't quite hit the same highs for me as it did for some other people as for some reason I just couldn't believe Karl Anderson had a chance of beating Tanahashi on this show. Still a likely MOTYC come the end of the year and it did a fantastic job of bringing the crowd to life as well.
That main event!!! The Tokyo Dome Wrestle Kingdom 7 event overall was a better show, but this main event was spectacular! Completely bought Karl winning the title 2-3 times and with Tanahashi teasing a new finisher and working over the leg the entire time lead to even better psychology throughout. Tanahashi is doing a great job making people believe that anyone could potentially beat him for the title so once someone does it will be special. I think they did a great job last year having Okada beat him to set this precedent up. The Shinsuke/Kengo and Suzuki/Okada matches were also tremendous but nothing like the main.
Thank you NJPW for airing your PPVs over the internet so anyone possibly disenfranchised with pro-wrestling today can enjoy some high-caliber quality from the best company in the world.
I'd give this show a thumbs up. Although not as good the dome show I still felt like I got my moneys worth. Especially compared to WWE and TNA's latest offerings.
Hard to pick a best match but I guess I'd go with Okada vs Suzuki. Although Tanahashi/Anderson and Nakamura/Mashimo were also great they were hurt by the fact that the finish was a bit predictable.
Lance Archer coming out to challenge Nakamura for the intercontinental belt was kind of a surprise to me. The finish of the Sakuraba Shibata/Goto Inoue match made it look like Saku had adapted to the flying knee finish so I wonderered if they were teasing a rematch between those two. But apparently not.
I guess if I had to pick a worst match, it'd be the opener. But it wasn't terrible. Just your standard New Japan multi man tag match which I'm not a big fan of.
Anyway Dave, thanks for covering the Japanese stuff. I really enjoy it!