NJPW Power Struggle live results: Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Kota IbushiBy Joseph Currier | @josephcurrier | Nov 5, 2017 1:48 am
NJPW's biggest remaining stop on the road to the Tokyo Dome takes place tonight as the Edion Arena in Osaka hosts Power Struggle.
The show will be headlined by Hiroshi Tanahashi defending his IWGP Intercontinental Championship against Kota Ibushi, who beat him when they matched up in this summer's G1 Climax. The winner will be virtually guaranteed to defend their title in one of the top matches at Wrestle Kingdom.
In the show's other title matches, Trent Barreta will have his biggest test at heavyweight yet as he challenges for Kenny Omega's IWGP United States title, there will be another match in the Will Ospreay vs. Marty Scurll rivalry as they face off with the IWGP Junior Heavyweight title on the line, and Minoru Suzuki will defend his NEVER Openweight title against Toru Yano in a bullrope match.
The show's undercard has the finals of this year's Super Junior Tag Team Tournament (with Sho & Yoh taking on Ryusuke Taguchi & ACH), a Chaos vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon tag match, the reveal of the wrestler who has been billed as "Switchblade," and more. Join us for live coverage starting at 2:40 a.m. Eastern time.
David Finlay defeated Katsuya Kitamura
This was a pretty basic pre-show match. Finlay missed two shows on the road to Power Struggle tour due to a shoulder injury, and Kitamura focused on his shoulder when he was on offense.
Finlay tried to take Kitamura down with shoulder blocks but was knocked down before grabbing a headlock. Finlay hit headbutts into the corner, a corner splash, and got a two count.
Finlay went for a suplex but was blocked by Kitamura, who hit a suplex of his own as he took over with chops. Kitamura took Finlay down with a shoulder block until Finlay came back with a DDT. He went for a cutter, but Kitamura shoved him off and hit a spear for two.
Kitamura got the better of some strikes and focused back on the shoulder, but Finlay ended up hitting a backbreaker on his knee. He hit a cutter/stunner for the win. After the match, Finlay urged Kitamura to get up and they showed each other respect.
The Young Bucks defeated Dragon Lee & Titan
Good match that put the Bucks over pretty strongly. They won with a new submission, the Cease and Desist, which is a combination crossface/sharpshooter.
Dragon Lee and Titan motioned crotch chops to the Bucks prior to the match. Nick Jackson and Dragon Lee started off with fast-paced counters, with it ending when they went for simultaneous dropkicks and posed when they came back to their feet. The Bucks went for the Indytaker until it was foiled and Dragon Lee and Titan hit dives to the outside.
Dragon Lee and Titan used double-team offense until the Bucks took over. Matt Jackson locked in the Sharpshooter on Dragon Lee as Nick tried to keep Titan away. They used stereo Sharpshooters, but both got to the ropes. Matt went for a superkick, though he ended up hitting Nick. They recovered and hit a rope-assisted double-team senton, but it only got two.
The Bucks set up for the Indytaker again, with Dragon Lee giving Nick a hurricanrana off the apron to the floor. A big sequence ended with Titan hitting a springboard moonsault onto everyone on the outside. Matt caught Titan on a dive back in the ring. The Bucks hit The Indytaker and used a the Cease and Desist (combination sharpshooter/crossface), for the win.
KUSHIDA, Juice Robinson, Jushin Thuder Liger, Tiger Mask IV & Hirai Kawato defeated Zack Sabre Jr., Yoshinobu Kanemaru, El Desperado, Taka Michinoku & Taichi
Suzuki-gun jumped the faces at the the bell and Sabre went after Robinson on the barricade, going after his hair. El Desperado and Kanemaru focused on Liger and Tiger Mask’s masks on the inside.
Liger locked on the Romero special, though Kanemaru broke it up. He hit double DDTs on Kanemaru and Desperado, then tagged in Robinson. Robinson and Sabre went at it with strikes. Sabre locked on the Octopus hold, but Robinson was able to hit a gut buster and tag in KUSHIDA.
Michinoku gave KUSHIDA an eye poke, with Suzuki-gun going after the faces again after as it broke down into a brawl. KUSHIDA used the Hoverboard Lock on Michinoku until Sabre got one of his own on KUSHIDA. Kawato hit a big dropkick to break it up, the babyfaces got some shine spots (including a dive by Kawato), and KUSHIDA submitted Michinoku with the Hoverboard Lock.
Satoshi Kojima, Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Togi Makabe defeated Cody, Yujiro Takahashi & Chase Owens
Cody was wearing the ROH World Championship as the Bullet Club made their entrance. He offered Tenzan a handshake and wanted him to kiss his ring before they started, but Tenzan refused. Bullet Club attacked the faces at the start, but Tenzan and Kojima ended up using double-team offense on Owens. Tenzan had the upper hand on Owens until the Bullet Club used the numbers game to gain the advantage.
Bullet Club isolated Tenzan and made tags in and out. He was able to get a tag to Makabe, who ran wild with powerslams on all three Bullet Club members. He hit clotheslines to the corner and punches on Cody, getting a two count after a shoulder block. Cody made a comeback and hit the Disaster Kick. Tenzan gave Cody a lariat as both went down, with them making tags to Kojima and Owens.
Kojima hit his Machine Gun chops and was in control until the heels again got the upper hand. Makabe hit a double lariat on Cody and Yujiro, with Kojima getting the win for the faces with a lariat of his own.
Sho & Yoh (w/ Rocky Romero) defeated Ryusuke Taguchi & ACH to win the Super Junior Tag Team Tournament
This was a really good match and a fitting tournament final. The story of it was that ACH was trying to overcome a rib injury that Sho and Yoh kept focusing on. He was able to fight through the pain at times while selling his ribs, with Taguchi trying to play hero when he was left alone.
It was hyped up on commentary that Sho and Yoh were trying to become the first team to win the tournament while junior tag champs.
At the start, Taguchi kept hitting hip strikes on Sho and Yoh in opposite corners as ACH urged him to keep going, Sho and Yoh then gained control, hitting separate dives on the outside.
Back in the ring, they worked over ACH and focused on his injured ribs with strikes and holds. ACH briefly had the advantage with chops until Sho was tagged in and went back to work on his ribs. He used an abdominal stretch, with Yoh coming back in and hitting a dropkick to the ribs. ACH hit a double stomp and finally made the tag, with Taguchi coming in and using more hip attacks.
Taguchi ran wild with a plancha, another dive to the outside, a springboard hip attack, and an ankle lock. He went for the Three Amigos, but Sho countered. They exchanged strikes, Taguchi hit an enzuigiri, and Yoh was tagged in.
Taguchi hit a hip attack and made the tag to ACH, who wasselling his ribs heavily. He struggled to get to the top rope and missed a frog splash, further hurting his ribs. Yoh used strikes until ACH came back with some of his own. They traded some more strikes before Sho and Yoh hit stereo jumping knees. ACH countered and fought both off briefly. They focused back on ACH, but Taguchi came in for the save.
Taguchi and ACH used more hip attacks, Taguchi hit the Dodon, ACH connected with the Midnight Star, but the pin was broken up. Taguchi and ACH tried to finish it before Sho made the save. Sho and Yoh took back over on offense. ACH tried to make a comeback but was hit with a lungblower, a shotgun dropkick, and Roppongi 3K's tag team finisher for the win.
- With no apparent challengers for the Tokyo Dome show, The Young Bucks came back out and challenged Sho and Yoh after they had received their trophies. Matt Jackson called them young boys while saying the Bucks are the best tag team in pro wrestling and want the junior heavyweight tag titles back. Romero got on the mic to accept the Bucks’ challenge.
Kazuchika Okada, Tomohiro Ishii, Hirooki Goto, YOSHI-HASHI & Gedo defeated Tetsuya Naito, SANADA, EVIL, Hiromu Takahashi & BUSHI
They had a fairly standard tag match that further built to Okada and Naito's Tokyo Dome main event. Naito hit Okada with bodyslams on the entranceway, they later went at it in the ring, and Okada hit a tombstone on Naito before pinning BUSHI.
Ishii and EVIL started off by trying to knock each other down. They kept charging into each other, exchanged strikes, then EVIL finally knocked Ishii off his feet. YOSHI-HASHI and Takahashi took their turn in the ring next before things broke down on the outside and Naito laid out Okada with the bodyslams on the entranceway.
Back in the ring, BUSHI worked over YOSHI-HASHI before tagging in SANADA. YOSHI-HASHI fought off SANADA and Naito before getting the tag to Goto. Goto went to work, hitting a Saito suplex on SANADA for a two count. He fought off the Paradise Lock went for the GTR as they battled back and forth, They made tags to Naito and Okada (who had recovered) as those two faced off in advance of their main event at Wrestle Kingdom.
Okada had the advantage until Naito started to focus on his neck. Okada came back with a neckbreaker and tried to get the tag to Gedo, but BUSHI cut him off after getting the tag from Naito. All of Los Ingobernables focused on Okada, hitting him with a triple-team dropkick.
Okada dodged the MX and Chaos regained control. Okada went for a tombstone, with BUSHI getting out of it before being hit with a dropkick and an elbow drop. Naito tried to attack Okada, but Okada took him out with a tombstone and pinned BUSHI with the Rainmaker while doing Naito’s eye pose.
- NJPW announced a return to Long Beach on March 25th, 2018 at Walter Pyramid.
NEVER Openweight Champion Minoru Suzuki defeated Toru Yano in a bullrope match to retain his title
For better or worse, they had the match you’d expect. They brawled and used the bullrope a lot, Suzuki-gun interfered, and Suzuki retained with a delayed Gotch-style piledriver while the rope was around Yano’s neck.
Commentary explained the bullrope stipulation by saying it would keep Yano from doing his outside-the-ring-antics and would prevent Suzuki from using chairs and other foreign objects, but that didn’t end up happening. Yano attacked Suzuki before this started, choking him with the rope until Suzuki-gun came into the ring to stop him.
Suzuki immediately dragged Yano with the rope on the outside. He went for the Gotch piledriver on the entranceway until Yano fought it off. Suzuki choked him with the rope, shoved the referee, and threw Yano into the barricade as they fought on the outside.
Suzuki continued working on Yano in the ring. Kanemaru and Desperado attacked Yano on the outside while Suzuki distracted the ref, but Goto ran in for the save. Suzuki locked in an armbar and wrenched back while the rope was wrapped around Yano’s neck. Yano wouldn’t quit and got his foot on the ropes.
Takashi Iizuka made his way down the entranceway and drew the attention of the referee as Suzuki wrapped up Yano in the ropes. Suzuki tried to use a chair until the referee stopped him, with Yano knocking them down, using the chair, and hitting a powerbomb until the ref was pulled out of the ring. Iizuka and Taichi attacked Yano. Iizuka tried to use the iron claw, but Yano was able to counter and get a small package on Suzuki for a near fall.
For the finish, Suzuki choked Yano with the rope and hit a delayed Gotch-style piledriver while the rope was still around Yano’s neck.
Marty Scurll defeated Will Ospreay to win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship
They had a really good match that was constantly back-and-forth with a lot of spots. They always deliver when they wrestle each other and this was the biggest stage they’ve faced each other on.
For the surprise finish, Scurll caught Ospreay with a pin as they were doing pinning combinations. Ospreay was arguing about the finish after the match until KUSHIDA came down. KUSHIDA was there to challenge Scurll, but Ospreay told him to back off.
Hiromu Takahashi made his way to the ring to challenge Scurll as well, putting on a helmet and gloves in case things turned physical. Scurll said he would face all three of them in a fatal four-way match, presumably at Wrestle Kingdom.
IWGP United States Heavyweight Champion Kenny Omega defeated Trent Barreta to retain his title
Another strong match; probably the best on the show so far. In his biggest spot yet at heavyweight, Barreta was positioned as an underdog who was able to have a few moments where he seemed on the verge of upsetting Omega.
Omega was dominant for much of the start. He got out a table and suplexed Barreta on it (while it was upside down and not folded out). Omega then hit a foot stomp on the table with Barreta under it, then hit the Terminator dive to the outside.
Omega worked him over back in the ring until Barreta got his knees up on a moonsault. Omgea briefly regained control with a German suplex until Barreta hit a tornado DDT. Omega then backdropped Barreta on the apron.
They were teasing an emphatic win for Omega at this point, but Barreta came back and teased an upset. He hit a piledriver on Omega in the ring and another one on the apron. Omega was positioned on a table on the outside, Barreta went for a flip dive, but Omega moved and he went crashing through the table. Barreta barely made it back in, with Omega hitting him with dragon suplexes in the ring.
Barreta tried to fight back, but Omega hit a V-Trigger and a gutwrench powerbomb. Omega hit another V-Trigger and went for the One Winged Angel until Barreta countered and hit a lariat out of desperation. Omega hit another knee strike, but Barreta got a great near fall with a Dudebuster. Omega focused on the back with strikes. Barreta fired up, but Omega hit another knee strike and a reverse rana.
After Baretta got another great near fall on a crucifix pin, Omega hit the One Winged Angel for the victory.
- For as good as that was, it was entirely overshadowed by what happened after. Omega got on the mic, welcoming Barreta to the heavyweight division and calling out his next challenger. It was teased that there was no one left to challenge Omega. He bid everyone goodbye and goodnight, but a video aired with Chris Jericho saying he's the best in the world and challenging Omega to a match at Wrestle Kingdom.
Omega accepted, and 2018 is already shaping up to be quite a year in pro wrestling.
IWGP Intercontinental Champion Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Kota Ibushi to retain his title
Great main event. It topped Omega vs. Barreta for best match on the show. Tanahashi focused on Ibushi’s knee early, which played into the rest of the match.
Late in the match, Ibushi got a near fall off of an awkward looking rana off the top rope. He went for the Kamigoye, but Tanahashi fought him off until Ibushi hit a lawndart into the corner. Ibushi went for the deadlift German suplex after not being able to hit it earlier in the match, this time getting a near fall.
Ibushi went for a Phoenix Splash, but Tanahashi avoided it. Tanahashi went for the High Fly Flow, with Ibushi avoiding that. Both were down before getting to their feet and exchanging slaps. Ibushi no-sold a slap from Tanahashi, firing back with palm strikes. They traded stiff slaps, with Ibushi sending Tanahashi to the corner. Ibushi got a close near fall with a Last Ride and went for another one, but Tanahashi got out of it as Ibushi’s knee gave out. Ibushi connected with a kick to the head and was going for the Kamigoye, with Tanahashi countering into a sling blade. He hit a dragon suplex for two and two High Fly Flows to retain.
Tanahashi and Ibushi embraced after and Tanahashi closed the show with his usual air guitar routine until he was interrupted by Switchblade, who was revealed to be Jay White. White came down and confronted Tanahashi. They exchanged forearms and White laid him out.
With that, it appears that the top three matches at Wrestle Kingdom will be Kazuchika Okada vs. Tetsuya Naito, Kenny Omega vs. Chris Jericho, and Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Jay White.