Sunday, 07 April 2013 06:41
2. Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Akebono, Manabu Nakanishi, and Super Strong Machine beat Bob Sapp, Takashi Iizuka, Tomohiro Ishii, and YOSHI-HASHI in 10:00 when Nakanishi pinned YOSHI-HASHI after a diving chop off the ropes. This was a fun all-action match highlighted by the interaction between Sapp and Akebono which was basically them just running into each other clumsily. Sapp looked clumsy and awful. Everyone else looked fine. ***
3. CMLL World Tag Team Titles: El Terible and Tama Tonga beat La Mascara and Valiente to retain the belts in 8:57 when Terible pinned Valiente after a powerbomb. This was a fun match but had some sloppiness. So basically it was a CMLL match. Tama Tonga didn't do any of the fun "Snuka spots" that he does as a face and that's the best stuff he does. Without it he didn't stand out at all but did nothing wrong. Nothing bad so far but so far each match has been worse than the one before it so hopefully this turns around soon. **3/4
4. Masato Tanaka and Yujiro Takahashi beat Togi Makabe and Tomoaki Honma in 10:41. Another fun and exciting match. The finishing sequence saw Tanaka kick out after getting hit in the back with a stick while running the ropes, and then also kicked out of a stiff clothesline, and again after a brainbuster, before he turned things around and pinned Honma after the Sliding D. The last 2 minutes were really good. ***1/4
5. Minoru Suzuki pinned Toru Yano in 10:09 after the Gotch-Style Piledriver. A good brawl. Just before the finish, Taichi was on the apron setting up to hit Yano with his crutch, but Yano reversed and sent Suzuki into the crutch and then went for a quick rollup but Suzuki kicked out at two and hit the piledriver seconds later.
6. Coming back from intermission, Yuji Nagata and Hirooki Goto beat Kazushi Sakuraba and Katsuyori Shibata in 11:32 when Sakuraba got hurt after a Nagata suplex and the ref stopped the match. This looked legit. This was too bad because this was building to being the best match of the show so far and was by far the most heated. But Nagata threw a suplex where Sakuraba landed right on his head and then a minute later landed another one where Sakuraba appeared to have hurt his elbow. He couldn't get up and the ref stopped it. Nobody in the crowd booed as they knew this looked legit. Nagata looked really upset that they had to stop just as it was getting great. In the post-match, Shibata slapped Nagata and Goto twice hard each and they didn't retaliate. They tried to take Sakuraba out on a stretcher and he refused but walked out with an icebag on his elbow. ***1/2
7. NWA World Heavyweight Title: Rob Conway beat Satoshi Kojima in 14:24 with a swinging neckbreaker off the ropes which I think he calls the ego trip. This 14 minutes felt like 14 days on a New Japan show. Conway came out to no reaction. None. The match was what you would expect. It was nothing special and the crowd was bored. They used every shortcut and the crowd finally got into it with one minute left when Kojima had Conway pinned and the big stiff who was in his corner as his second pulled the ref out of the ring at a two count. Tenzan then attacked his second and got laid out just before the finish. Dead silence when Conway won. Maybe some very light booing. Worst thing on the show, but still average as the crowd does respond to Kojima and Tenzan. **
8. IWGP Intercontinental Title: Shinsuke Nakamura beat Davey Boy Smith Jr. in 18:04 after the Boma Ye (running knee strike). This was a great match and the best I've seen out of Davey Jr. so far. The finishing sequence saw Smith hit one move after another and Nakamura kept kicking out. He kicked out/escaped from a jackhammer, sharpshooter, stiff clothesline that Nakamura did a great flip from, powerbomb, and a tiger suplex. Nakamura hit a jumping Boma Ye off the ropes just before the finishing knee. Really good match as Nakamura continues to deliver. ****
9. IWGP Heavyweight Title: Kazuchika Okada beat Hiroshi Tanahashi in 31:41 to win the title with the Rainmaker. Not much to say. WATCH THIS MATCH. No words can do it justice. It will be impossible for any match this weekend to beat this match and to equal it, it will need to be five stars. This was the best match I've seen this year. There was a buzz in the crowd from bell to bell and this was the perfect match. Crowd going crazy for the last 10 minutes and exploded for the rainmaker and title switch. *****
All in all, a good show, with nothing below average and almost everything good to really good, and a main event that was outstanding. Tanahashi and Okada are truly two of the best out there today.