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NJPW Road to Power Struggle results: IWGP Tag Team title match

road to ps 11 2 2020

Recommended matches --

  • Taichi & Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI

Report --

Tokyo's Korakuen Hall was again the venue for today's show. 

Gabriel Kidd defeated Yota Tsuji (7:44)

This was a nice little sprint to kick things off. 

They opened up with some mat work. They traded side headlocks. Kidd tried some shoulder tackles but Tsuji would not go down. Tsuji hit an uppercut forearm and dropped Kidd with his own shoulder block. 

Tsuji hit a slam and used a camel clutch. Kidd came back with a backdrop and another side headlock. Kidd landed some strikes and dropped a knee on Tsuji's chest for a near fall. After a striking battle, Kidd hit a senton for a two count. 

Tsuji hit a vertical suplex, a slam, a senton and a splash for a near fall. He locked on a crab but Kidd made the ropes to force a break. 

Kidd fought off a powerslam and used two quick cradles for near falls. Tsuji hit a sunset flip for a two count. Kidd reversed the sunset flip and escaped with the pinfall victory. 

Great-O-Khan & Will Ospreay (w/Bea Priestley) defeated Kazuchika Okada & Yuya Uemura (11:10)

I'm not sold on Great-O-Khan. I like his look but his offense doesn't look very good by NJPW standards. 

Okada and O-Khan began. Ospreay jumped in for the immediate illegal double team. Okada fought it off and hit O-Khan with a neckbreaker before tagging out. 

Ospreay tied Uemura up in the ropes, allowing O-Khan to go to work on the Young Lion. Ospreay sent Okada into the barricade on the outside while O-Khan established the advantage over Uemura. 

Ospreay and O-Khan cut the ring in half and used a series of quick tags in working Uemura over. Ospreay took the referee and Priestley joined in on the attack from the floor. 

Uemura finally avoided a charge into the corner from O-Khan and tagged out. Okada hit a running back elbow on O-Khan and hit an interfering Ospreay with a flapjack. 

Okada used a DDT for a near fall. O-Khan blocked an air raid crash and the two traded strikes. O-Khan hit some Mongolian chops. Okada then hit an air raid crash. 

Uemura tagged in and hit some tandem offense with Okada. Uemura went for a butterfly suplex but O-Khan blocked. Uemura used a crab while Okada and Ospreay fought to the floor. O-Khan powered out. 

O-Khan hit a uranage for two as Okada broke up the pin. Ospreay and Okada did some cool teases and misdirections before brawling to the floor again. 

O-Khan then hit the Dominator on Uemura and pinned him. 

**********

Okada and O-Khan got into it after the bell. Okada locked on the Money Clip. Ospreay broke it up and O-Khan hit Okada with the Dominator. O-Khan posed over Okada ahead of their match on Saturday. 

**********

Shingo Takagi, Hiromu Takahashi & BUSHI defeated Minoru Suzuki, El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru (12:15)

As you might expect, this was a chaotic brawl. 

They began fighting before the bell. Shingo and Suzuki went at it on the floor, as did BUSHI and Kanemaru. 

Hiromu and Desperado began in the ring and LIJ got the early edge. Shingo got a tag and again went after Suzuki on the apron. BUSHI ended up the legal man for LIJ while Shingo and Suzuki brawled outside. Suzuki sent Shingo into the barricade. 

Suzuki-gun worked over BUSHI. Suzuki no-sold a series of BUSHI's strikes and used a crab. Shingo broke the hold with a lariat to the back of Suzuki's head and they again fought to the floor. 

BUSHI hit a sloppy enzuigiri on Desperado and was finally able to tag out. Shingo and Suzuki brawled again, this time as the legal participants in the match. They proceeded to have an excellent exchange. 

Kanemaru tagged and and fell victim to tandem offense from Hiromu and BUSHI. Shingo then deadlifted him for a Last of the Dragon and the pin. 

**********

After the bell, Suzuki hit Shingo with a chair and a Gotch-style piledriver. He then used a Boston crab. Suzuki fought off the ringside attendants who tried to break the hold, then wrenched back on Shingo with a high-angle single-leg crab before posing over him with the NEVER title. 

**********

The Best of the Super Jr. 27 field and the return of the Super J-Cup were announced before intermission. 

BOSJ will be ten participants competing in a single block. 

The J-Cup will be a one-night tournament with eight participants held in the United States and broadcast on NJPW World on Saturday, December 12. 

The lineups:

Best of the Super Jr. 27 --

  • IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion Taiji Ishimori
  • Hiromu Takahashi
  • El Desperado
  • Yoshinobu Kanemaru
  • Ryusuke Taguchi
  • Master Wato
  • SHO
  • BUSHI
  • Robbie Eagles
  • DOUKI

Super J-Cup 2020 --

  • 2019 Super J-Cup winner El Phantasmo
  • Clark Connors
  • TJP
  • ACH
  • Lio Rush
  • ROH Six-Man Tag Team Champion Rey Horus
  • Blake Christian
  • Chris Bey

**********

Jay White, KENTA & Chase Owens (w/Gedo) defeated Kota Ibushi, Hiroshi Tanahashi & Tomoaki Honma (12:25)

There was a stretch earlier this year where Honma was working more regularly and had started to look better in the ring. That has not been the case the last two nights. 

White and KENTA pulled Tsuji into the ring before the match and menaced him into clapping for them during their introductions. 

Owens and Honma started out as the legal men while White and KENTA went after Ibushi and Tanahashi on the outside. Bullet Club then cut Honma off and worked him over for several minutes. 

Honma finally came back on KENTA with a DDT before tagging out to Tana. Tanahashi hit a series of strikes, a flying forearm and a dragon screw on KENTA. Tanahashi tried for a cloverleaf but Owens broke it up. Owens got hit with a dragon screw for his trouble. 

KENTA hit Tanahashi with a powerslam, a swing DDT and a top rope clothesline. Tanahashi hit a slingblade after a striking battle. 

Ibushi and White tagged in. They exchanged blows. White hit a DDT and a DVD for a near fall. Ibushi came back with a snap rana before tagging out. 

White got hit with a triple team from Tanahashi, Ibushi and Honma. Honma hit a bulldog and kokeshi. White blocked a lariat and hit Blade Runner for the pin. 

**********

White and KENTA laid out Ibushi and Tanahashi with briefcase shots after the match. Ibushi had to be restrained from going after White by Kidd and Tsuji after he recovered. 

**********

Tetsuya Naito & SANADA defeated EVIL & Yujiro Takahashi (w/Dick Togo) (11:23)

Naito and SANADA tried a jumpstart at the bell. Naito pulled EVIL to the floor and sent him into the barricade. Back in, Naito choked EVIL with his sweatshirt. Naito tagged out. SANADA hit a rana on EVIL but missed a plancha. Bullet Club took over from there. 

EVIL sent Naito into the barricade and hit him with a chair. Togo took the referee while Yujiro posted SANADA. SANADA got whipped into an exposed buckle. EVIL twice sent SANADA into the barricade and knocked over the ring announcer Abe on the other side. 

SANADA made a comeback. He avoided another whip into the buckle and sent EVIL into it instead. Naito tagged in and hit some signature offense on EVIL. Togo tripped Naito, which allowed Yujiro and EVIL to hit tandem offense on the champion. 

SANADA jumped in and hit EVIL with a dropkick. EVIL and SANADA brawled outside, leaving Yujiro and Naito legal. Yujiro tried to hit Naito with his pimp cane but Naito ducked the shot. Yujiro hit an Olympic slam for a two count. 

Naito ended up with a bloody mouth after taking a hotshot over the top strand from EVIL. 

Naito and Yujiro were in for a very clunky closing sequence. Naito avoided Miami Shine. SANADA entered to double up on Yujiro. Naito hit Gloria and a Destino and got the pin. 

IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championship match: Taichi & Zack Sabre Jr. defeated Hirooki Goto &  YOSHI-HASHI to retain the titles (34:50)

This went about ten minutes too long but everyone worked hard. It felt like they reached the pinnacle of the match, then kept going and couldn't get it back to the peak. 

Taichi and YH started off by locking up. Taichi backed into the ropes to force an immediate break. He repeated the spot before tagging Sabre. Sabre took YH down right away and began manipulating his arms. YH came back with a hurricanrana and a tackle. 

Goto tagged in for some tandem offense on Sabre. Taichi entered for an illegal double team but Goto fought it off. Sabre went after Goto's neck, twisting it with his legs. Taichi pulled Goto to the floor and choked him with a camera cable. 

Goto got worked over for several minutes. He eventually avoided a Taichi backdrop suplex and hit a lariat. YH and Sabre tagged in and went back and forth. Sabre continued attacking YH's arms. He then went after YH's legs with a sweep and a series of ankle locks, heel hooks and kneebars. 

Goto got a tag. Sabre avoided a misdirection lariat and used an octopus. Goto fought out and went for an ushigoroshi but Sabre slipped to a guillotine. Goto hit a vertical suplex to end the sequence. 

Suzuki-gun doubled up on Goto after fighting off interference from YH. Sabre hit a PK on Goto for two. Goto fought out of Zack Mephisto. Sabre hit a DDT and used a triangle. They did a long submission tease before Goto reached the ropes. 

Taichi tagged in and went for a last ride. Goto fought out of it. Sabre and Taichi tried a tandem dragon screw but YH intercepted it. Goto and YH hit the GYR on Taichi for a two count. 

Goto hit a mid kick, no-sold a backdrop suplex and hit a lariat to Taichi. YH tagged in and hit a lariat for two. YH fought off a Black Mephisto, no-sold a lariat and hit a powerbomb for a near fall as Sabre broke it up. 

YH hit a senton bomb for a two count. YH used a butterfly lock. Sabre tried to break it up but Goto intercepted him. YH transitioned to a sleeper. Taichi grabbed the ref and hit a low blow. Taichi used a clutch hold for a near fall. 

Sabre got in and Goto hit him with an ushigoroshi. All four guys were down and exhausted by this point. 

Taichi and YH traded strikes. YH hit a superkick, a dragon suplex and a lariat for a near fall. He hit a brainbuster for another two count. Goto and Sabre got back in. Goto got hit with Zack Mephisto. YH hit a meteora on Sabre. 

In the closing sequence, YH hit a lariat and used a stack cover for two. Taichi blocked Kharma. Sabre got in. Taichi and Sabre hit YH with Zack Mephisto and Taichi covered for the pin. 

**********

They shot an angle after the match. There was a stark contrast in the tone of the long battle for the titles that we just saw and the total comedy that followed. 

Toru Yano jumped up from the commentary table and climbed into the ring. He took off all four corner pads. He cut a promo and said that Sabre pisses him off because he always tries to put the pads back on when Yano takes them off, so their KOPW match on Saturday will now be a no corner pads match. 

Sabre then sent Yano into an exposed buckle. Yano went backstage. Yano could still be heard shouting from backstage as Sabre and Taichi tried to cut their end of show promo. Sabre went backstage with a chair and returned a few seconds later. 

Taichi then closed the show with a promo.