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NJPW Road to Power Struggle results: The Super Junior Tag Tournament begins

New Japan returned today with Super Junior tag action, as well as some matches that will lead us to Power Struggle on November 5th. Tonight’s card took place in Korakuen Hall.

They announced that due to visa issues, Ricochet would not be wrestling tonight. He and Finlay will face Ospreay and Gedo on October 25th, with the winners advancing to the semifinals.

Yuji Nagata, Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan defeated Teruaki Kanemitsu, Hirai Kawato & Tomoaki Honma

Nagata got the win for his team after submitting Kawato with the Boston crab. Decent opener, not much to talk about. Both of the young boys have really bulked up in the last year, and it’s becoming more noticeable.

Yoshitatsu & Manabu Nakanishi defeated Bone Soldier & Yujiro Takahashi by DQ

Not a good match at all, as all four seemed completely off their game. Nakanishi was slow, Yujiro and Yoshitatsu were just there, and Bone Soldier didn’t show anything in this new role. Of course, Yoshitatsu wanted to take on Bone Soldier, but Solider wasn’t interested.

Bone Solider and Nakanishi did not work well together. Yoshitatsu eventually did get in with Boner Solider, but it didn’t last long before Bone Soldier started choking Yoshitatsu with rope. When the referee tried to stop it, he was thrown out and the ref disqualified him.  

YOSHI-HASHI, Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & Kazuchika Okada defeated Guerillas of Destiny, Chase Owens & Kenny Omega

YOSHI-HASHI won the match for his team with the Karma sit-out piledriver. Good, solid match with a lot of fast-paced action. YOSHI-HASHI is coming off as having some real star quality with his work and new appearance. It seemed like based on recent pairings they’re totally going with Ishii and Goto as a tag team, probably a team to look out for at the end of the year tag league tournament.

Tetsuya Naito, EVIL, SANADA & BUSHI defeated Juice Robinson, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Togi Makabe & Katsuyori Shibata

EVIL and Shibata immediately went at it as they are entrenched in a feud. Another pretty good eight-man tag. There was a spot where everyone ran in and laid each other out. EVIL stood tall, and along with Naito honed in on Robinson. He made a fiery comeback, but it was two-on-one and Naito quickly took him down with the Destino for the win.

Will Ospreay defeated David Finlay

Good match. Crowd reacted to Ospreay and to his big spots, but not much else. Ospreay has dyed his hair blonde and now looks a lot like Okada with the new gear and hair. Ospreay looked great as usual, doing all the great transitions along with some cool spots, including the Sasuke Special to the floor.

Ospreay controlled pretty much all the match, with Finlay getting some offense but not a lot. Even though he’s improved a ton, Finlay just felt like a guy here next to Ospreay, who got the win with the springboard cutter.

Roppongi Vice defeated Angel de Oro & Titan in a tournament match

Another good match. It’s clear that the crowd came today to see the tournament as they woke up for this match as time went on. Angel de Oro looked really good in spots, as did Titan and their offense got over with the crowd really quickly. They did a cool spot where Oro jumped off Titan’s shoulders for a crossbody and Titan followed soon after. Baretta managed to cut off Oro and pin him with the dudebuster, allowing RPG Vice to advance to the next round.

There was some tension after the match between Romero and Baretta, but they smoothed things over before high-fiving each other as they made their exit.

Fuego & Ryusuke Taguchi defeated Jushin Thunder Liger & Tiger Mask in a tournament match

Fuego is easily the most charismatic junior they bring in. Add him with Taguchi and it makes sense. They had a pretty good match, with the crowd loving Fuego and Taguchi providing some good action with Liger, who got trapped in the ankle lock and submitted, advancing Fuego and Taguchi to the next round.

This makes RPG Vice vs. Fuego & Taguchi the first semifinal match on the October 30th show.

Taiji Ishimori & ACH defeated The Young Bucks in a tournament match

Ishimori wiped out the Bucks early with a big moonsault to the floor. Bucks managed to isolate Ishimori and worked on him. ACH made a hot tag and did a great suicide dive, sending Nick into the crowd. Bucks took him out with a great Doomsday Device spot except Nick superkicked him instead of a clothesline. He recovered, and along with Ishimori went for double 450 splashes but they missed.

Bucks were going for the Indytaker but ACH cut off Nick with a cutter and after Ishimori laid out Matt, they pinned both Bucks with their stereo 450 splashes. That win advances them to the second round, and they'll face the winners of the Ricochet & David Finlay and Gedo & Will Ospreay match.

Final thoughts:

Top three matches were pretty fun. The rest was okay. Actually, aside from the second bout there wasn't anything bad on this show at all. Crowd could have been better, but otherwise a fun show.