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NJPW on AXS results: Hirooki Goto vs. Tetsuya Naito; IWGP tag title match


This week's show was part two of AXS TV’s look at WrestleKingdom 10, which took place on January 4th, 2016.

Togi Makabe welcomed us to the show.

The Briscoes & Toru Yano defeated Yujiro Takahashi, Bad Luck Fale & Tama Tonga to win the NEVER Six-Man titles

I'm still not sure why NJPW needed another set of titles, let alone ones with the NEVER brand, but hey, here we are. This was fine, but just felt like something was missing. It was clear the Briscoes were the best workers in the match, but the crowd didn’t know them so they only reacted for big moves. Yano hit Tama Tonga with a chair and the Briscoes executed the Doomsday Device for the win.

Hirooki Goto defeated Tetsuya Naito

This was one of those matches that was pretty good, and pretty heated, but not all that memorable in the grand scheme of things. There was the usual ref bump that allowed LIJ to run in, but didn’t last long as Goto warded them off and hit the Shouten Kai not too long after that for the win. It's tough to remember what I thought of this match earlier this year, so in the end this was pretty good, but nothing memorable.

After the match, Goto said it was a refreshing victory because it was the tenth WrestleKingdom, mentioning how he’s never headlined a show. He wants to make this a turning point, to become one of the top wrestlers. This year, he will become the face of NJPW.

Makabe put over Honma, saying he is always over even without a belt. It was honorable to have won the Tag League with him. He has nothing to say about Gallows and Anderson. They have power and height, particularly Gallows. They have that X factor.

Great Bash Heel (Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma) defeated Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows to win the IWGP Tag Team Championship

Anderson and Gallows dominated a lot of the match. It wasn’t that interesting, to be honest. They were always decent to okay in New Japan, very rarely was there anything out of this world. Once Homna started making the comeback, things got better and the crowd picked up a bit. Honma got the win for his team with the Kokeshi headbutt. Nice storyline conclusion for Honma -- he was always the underdog in NJPW, and he’s gone from getting his first big win to winning gold.

Makabe said now that we have a belt, it’s just the beginning. We must show the fans a dramatic fight. Honma said it's been his dream since he was little, this is a dream come true. He is happy he won with Makabe and he plans to be champions with him for a long time. 

In a post-match interview, Makabe said his opponents were incredible, but he won the honor and the belt. It was great that we got the result we wanted. Where we go from here is up to Honma. He shouldn’t be a show off, but he can be a show off and get results. 

This week was pretty okay, but nothing special. These three matches weren’t bad by any means, but not the best on this card.