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NJPW Road to Power Struggle results: Super Jr. Tag League begins

NJPW returned to Korakuen Hall this morning for the opening day of the Super Jr. Tag League tournament. Here are the full results, complete with prelim matches.

Toa Henare & Tomoaki Honma defeated Jushin Thunder Liger & Yota Tsuji

- Henare pinned Tsuji with the uranage.

Tetsuya Naito, SANADA, Shingo Takagi  & EVIL defeated Minoru Suzuki, Zack Sabre Jr., DOUKI and Taichi

- EVIL submitted DOUKI with a scorpion deathlock.

Jay White, KENTA and Yujiro Takahashi defeated Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii and Karl Fredericks

- KENTA pinned Fredericks with the GTS.

They randomly announced participants for this year’s Fantasticamania cards, which take place in January. If anything, feels like a move to let everyone know the NJPW/CMLL relationship is still strong. People comiing in for the tour are Caristico, Angel de Oro, Niebla Roja, Titan, Soberano Jr. Stuka Jr., Flyer, Audaz, Guerrero Maya Jr., Fugeo, Ultimo Guerrero, Euforia, Sanson, Cuatrero, Forastero, Negro Casas, Barbaro Cavernario, Okumura, Luciferno, Tiger and Dulce Gardenia.

Super Jr. Tag League: Volador Jr. & Titan defeated Tiger Mask & Yuya Uemura

Things started off pretty slowly, but by the end this got pretty good. Uemura had Titan in a half Boston crab. He was given a lot during this match, and with the other young lions gone he shone in the spotlight. Volador broke it up. Tiger Mask took it outside with a big dive, wiping out Volador. Titan mounted offense on Uemura but he kept fighting back. 

Titan looked so fluid during his match. He grabbed Uemura, laid him out with a driver then pinned him with a springboard foot stomp. Really nice match.

Super Jr. Tag League: Ryusuke Taguchi & Rocky Romero defeated TJP & Clark Connors

Romero and TJP, who trained together at NJPW’s previous dojo in LA, pair off while Taguchi and Connors do the same. TJP applied the Muta lock at one point and targeted the arm while Connors kept Taguchi on the outside.

Taguchi came in with the hot tag and hit the three amigos on TJP. They tag in their partners, who go at it until Romero traps Connors in an armbar and he submits. Good, solid match. Connors looks real good at this stage of his career.

Super Jr. Tag League: El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated SHO & YOH

RPG3K wasted no time in starting the match with dropkicks and double tope suicidas to the floor. They had control for a bit, but the heels eventually gained control and took it out to the crowd, with Desperado beating up YOH with chairs. They teased a count out spot, but YOH made it at 19.

YOH mounts a comeback against Kanemaru in the ring but Despeardo is tagged in as they both work over YOH. SHO tags in and goes after Desperado before being cut off by a spinebuster. Desperado applies the stretch muffler. SHO breaks free and hits double knees on Kanemaru. 

SHO manages to avoid the whiskey mist spot as RP3K cleared the ring. They went for the 3K, but grabbed a chair as the ref was distracted and hit guitarra de angel on SHO for a nearfall. He applies the stretch muffler on SHO again and this time he submits. This was also a pretty good match.

Super Junior Tag Tournament: El Phantasmo & Taiji Ishimori defeated Will Ospreay & Robbie Eagles

The heels got the advantage early on, tagging in and out and working over Ospreay. Ospreay kept teasing tags to Eagles but was unable to until he hit a move that wiped out both Bullet Club members. Eagles tagged in and took them out with a crossbody off the top rope and some solid offense after that.

Ospreay tagged back in and went after ELP, who ended up wiping him out with a poison ran. Ishimori came in as they hit a codebreaker/moonsault combo for a near fall. Ospreay and Eagles rally back, trying to take out ELP with a double spanish fly. ELP counters, but the two counter right back.

Eagles hits a 450 splash on ELP’s leg and locked in a submission. Ishimori cuts him off as he and ELP hit a knee/airplane spin combo. Ospreay went to make the save with a springboard 450, but accidently hit Eagles. 

Eagles recovers and fights both men in the ring as Ishimori distracts the referee, allowing ELP to low blow Eagles and hit the CR2 for the win. You know what I never want to see in New Japan again? A ref distraction. That crutch is so old hat at this point and it was all over this show. Still, this was a good match with some brilliant spots towards the end.

Ishimori took the mic from ELP after the match. He said that since he is the only Japanese guy here, he might as well speak. There’s a lot of teams in this tournament. Roppongi 3K doing a three peat sounds boring. ELP was given the mic, saying he hates Korakuen Hall. He put over their abs, then themselves. He promises they will win the tournament and get their faces on the Wrestle Kingdom poster.

ELP takes the mic from Kevin Kelly and said that the junior heavyweights get no respect but when they win the tournament, they will be all over Wrestle Kingdom.

Current standings:

  • Volador Jr. & Titan - 2
  • Ryusuke Taguchi & Rocky Romero - 2
  • El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru - 2
  • El Phantasmo & Taiji Ishimori - 2
  • Will Ospreay & Robbie Eagles - 0
  • SHO & YOH - 0
  • TJP & Clark Connors - 0
  • Tiger Mask & Yuya Uemura - 0