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New Japan Road results: IWGP Junior Tag tournament finals set

nj road 9 9 2020

Today's show was held at the Sendai Sun Plaza Hall.

Satoshi Kojima defeated Yota Tsuji (7:35)

This was simple and well-worked as usual.

After some early chain wrestling, Tsuji was knocked down with a shoulder tackle. Tsuji eventually fought back with Kojima's own machine gun chops, but Kojima turned it around with chops of his own.

Tsuji hit a big overhead suplex and surprised Kojima with an inside cradle for a near fall. After a forearm battle, Tsuji locked on a crab but Kojima reached the ropes.

Tsuji hit some stiff strikes which Kojima countered into the Koji Cutter. Kojima's lariat finished the match.

Kazuchika Okada, SHO, Toru Yano, & Gabriel Kidd defeated Tomohiro Ishii, Hirooki Goto, YOSHI-HASHI, & Yuya Uemura (14:36)

On Friday's upcoming show from Korakuen Hall, these two teams (sans the Young Lions) will face off for the NEVER six-man belts. This was a very good preview for that, as most of these CHAOS vs. CHAOS matches have been over the last couple tours. 

Yano and Goto started off, and the former immediately removed a buckle pad but was met with a shoulder tackle. Kidd tagged in and faced off with Goto.They performed some chain wrestling, but Kidd took advantage when Yano distracted Goto. Uemura ran in and fought Kidd, and he and the champions maintained the advantage on Kidd for a while. 

YOSHI-HASHI entered the match, and he and Ishii hit a double team move. Ishii put Kidd in a single-leg crab but SHO ran in to break it up. Ishii then tagged in Uemura, which gave Kidd a chance to tag out to Okada after a dropkick.

Okada ran wild on YOSHI-HASHI with his signature offense. Okada attempted the air raid crash neckbreaker but YOSHI-HASHI fought out and hit the bunker buster and the headhunter.

Ishii tagged in and laid in strikes. Okada countered into the Cobra Clutch and the neckbreaker.

SHO tagged in and ran wild on Ishii with strikes and a spear. Ishii fired up and they continued to stiff each other with forearms. Ishii eventually took control with a German suplex, and the three champions hit some combination offense.

The finish came when Ishii tagged in Uemura. Uemura locked on a crab but Kidd broke it up. After a great dropkick, Uemura hit his overhead suplex but SHO kicked out and applied the cross armbreaker for the submission.

**********

Post-match, the two teams (especially Ishii and SHO) faced off as the champions held their belts. SHO put Ishii in an armbar and the challengers stood tall.

Kota Ibushi, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Yuji Nagata, & Tomoaki Honma defeated Minoru Suzuki, Zack Sabre Jr., Taichi, & DOUKI (13:53)

Suzuki-gun attacked before the bell. The legal men worked out to be Suzuki and Nagata, who battled with strikes. Nagata hit an exploder suplex and tagged in Honma, whose multiple attempts at Kokeshi headbutts were foiled when Suzuki rolled out of the way. Suzuki put Honma in the rope-assisted triangle and the two teams brawled on the floor.

Honma made it back into the ring at the 19 count, but was leveled with a Suzuki forearm. Suzuki-gun continued to beat down Honma, with all members of the team getting involved. Honma eventually countered Sabre's Cobra Twist attempt into a Cobra Twist of his own, followed by a Kokeshi headbutt and the hot tag to Tanahashi.

Tanahashi ran wild with dragon screws. His flipping senton got a nearfall, but Sabre applied the octopus hold. The two continued to battle, but Tanahashi got the better of the exchange with an inverted dragon screw. 

Taichi and Ibushi tagged in and peppered each other with kicks. Ibushi hit his striking combination followed by the standing moonsault for two. Taichi locked in a modified dragon sleeper and tagged in DOUKI, who hit a lariat, a slingshot DDT, and Suplex de la Luna for a few near falls. We then got the parade of big moves, capped off with a slingblade from Tanahashi. The kamigoye finished off DOUKI after a better-than-usual Suzuki-gun multi-man match.

**********

G1 Climax Participant Announcement

The blocks are as follows:

Block A

  • Kota Ibushi
  • Kazuchika Okada
  • Tomohiro Ishii
  • Shingo Takagi
  • Yujiro Takahashi
  • Taichi
  • Minoru Suzuki
  • Jeff Cobb
  • Will Ospreay
  • Jay White

Block B

  • Hiroshi Tanahashi
  • Hirooki Goto
  • Toru Yano
  • YOSHI-HASHI
  • SANADA
  • Tetsuya Naito
  • EVIL
  • Zack Sabre Jr.
  • Juice Robinson
  • KENTA

This is a great lineup, even with the inclusion of Yujiro. Block A, in particular, looks fantastic. I can't help but think that SHO, despite being a junior heavyweight, is a big absence from this tournament. Slotting him in Block A over Yujiro would have led to even more great matches.

I'm more than ready to see Ospreay, White, KENTA, Juice, and Cobb return to NJPW. Just about every major NJPW heavyweight has returned at this point; the only notable absences I can think of are Bad Luck Fale, David Finlay, and, of course, Jon Moxley.

*****Intermission*****

Tetsuya Naito, Shingo Takagi, & SANADA defeated EVIL, Yujiro Takahashi, & Dick Togo [10:19]

Bullet Club attacked before the bell and SANADA and Togo were left in the ring. SANADA was sent outside and beaten down by his former tag partner EVIL.

Back inside, Togo hit a dropkick for two. EVIL tagged in followed by Yujiro as Bullet Club continued their beatdown of SANADA. SANADA gave Yujiro a taste of his own medicine by escaping a front chancery by biting his hand.

Shingo tagged in as he and SANADA stopped EVIL from getting involved. Yujiro raked Shingo's eyes and pulled his hair, followed by a flapjack into the ropes. Shingo fired back with lariats as Naito and EVIL were tagged in. 

Naito ran wild on EVIL, and concluded by applying a leg nelson. After distractions from Togo and Yujiro, EVIL took advantage by whipping Naito into an exposed turnbuckle and hitting a fisherman's suplex.

Togo tagged in and just straight-up shoved down the referee, but Shingo and SANADA stopped Togo and Yujiro before they could use their weapons.

The finish came after a cathartic beatdown of Togo. Shingo hit the Pumping Bomber followed by Naito hitting the Destino for the pin.

This was much better usual as these matchups have consistently been the least exciting part of this tour.

IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag title tournament match: Taiji Ishimori & Gedo defeated Ryusuke Taguchi & Master Wato (w/ Hiroyoshi Tenzan) (14:07)

This was the worst match of the short tournament. Instead of the engaged, high-octane heel mannerisms we got in their previous two matches, we got the worst of Bullet Club here -- plodding brawling with tons of cheating. The closing sequence with Ishimori and Wato was still entertaining.

Gedo baited Wato at the bell by confronting Tenzan. When Tenzan was about to get involved, Ishimori took advantage by attacking from behind. Wato and Taguchi fought back with some combination offense and Gedo insisted on a timeout. He then sent Wato to the floor, where Ishimori drove him into the barricade and Gedo whipped him with his belt. 

Back inside, Bullet Club continued their beatdown of Wato. Wato was sent outside again, but Taguchi stopped the whipping attempt by whipping Bullet Club with a towel. After an extended heat segment, Wato eventually reached Taguchi for the hot tag.

Taguchi hit hip attacks on both of his opponents, followed by the Three Amigos suplexes. Gedo fought out of the third, but Taguchi applied the ankle lock. Gedo attempted a low blow after pulling down the official, but Taguchi avoided it.

Ishimori tagged in and hit a running knee for two. After countering a sunset flip, Taguchi tagged in Wato. He and Ishimori performed some lucha followed by Wato hitting his running corkscrew plancha and a springboard uppercut for two. Wato missed a spinning back fist, and Ishimori hit the rebound enziguiri. 

Taguchi entered the match and set up for his team's finisher, but Gedo knocked Wato off the top tope. Wato fought out of the Bloody Cross and hit a cyclone kick.

Taguchi dispatched Gedo with a plancha, but Ishimori cradled Wato followed by the Yes Lock. Wato nearly reached the ropes, but Ishimori rolled him back to the center and Wato was forced to tap out.

Both teams finished 1-2 in the tournament.

IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag title tournament match: El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated Hiromu Takahashi and BUSHI (17:45)

This was a good but not great main event. The action was well-worked but a bit lifeless for a Hiromu match, and it broke down into ref bump mayhem at the end.

The story at the start was Hiromu and BUSHI getting into their opponents' heads with quick tags and attacking the non-legal man.

Hiromu immediately attempted a sunset bomb on Desperado, before he and BUSHI hit double team moves back in the ring. Suzuki-gun then took advantage with brawling outside. As Kanemaru distracted the official, Desperado hit Hiromu with the ring bell mallet.

Back inside, Desperado attempted to unmask BUSHI. Suzuki-gun continued to beat down BUSHI with frequent tags and double team moves. BUSHI was beaten down for a long time, but eventually tagged in Hiromu after a dropkick/bulldog combination.

Hiromu missed a dropkick after the hot tag, but maintained the advantage with a hurricanrana. Hiromu hit a running dropkick to the outside, driving Kanemaru into Desperado. Back in, Hiromu hit a Falcon Arrow for two. He and Kanemaru wrestled back and forth before Kanemaru hit a DDT and tagged Desperado.

Desperado maintained the advantage with a suplex, but a corner lariat attempt allowed Hiromu to backdrop him into the turnbuckle. BUSHI tagged in and hit a diving hurricanrana on the outside.

Back in, a DDT from BUSHI got a near fall. BUSHI attempted his swinging neckbreaker but Desperado fought out and the two continued to battle.

Kanemaru entered the match and he and Desperado hit some tandem offense before Hiromu broke up the pin. Hiromu and BUSHI performed some double teams of their own, but Desperado kicked out.

After Hiromu sent Kanemaru to the outside, it was just BUSHI and Desperado in the ring, where BUSHI hit a destroyer for a nearfall.

BUSHI set up for the MX, but Desperado escaped. Kanemaru controlled the referee and Desperado hit a low blow followed by the El Es Culero cradle for the win.

As both of these teams finished 2-1 in the tournament, they will meet in a finals rematch on Friday.

Final Thoughts

Even though the junior tag tournament matches weren't the best we've seen, the undercard really stepped it up for this show, providing good setup for Friday's NEVER six-man title match as well as the G1 Climax.

The highlight of the show was the G1 participant announcement, which should leave any NJPW fan thrilled for the tournament's start next Saturday.