It’s time once again for New Japan’s junior heavyweight division to shine.
Since 1994, each summer in New Japan starts with the Best of the Super Junior tournament, and this year is no different. Here are results from tonight’s opening day from Korakuen Hall, featuring talent from the A block.
B block action will kick off on tomorrow’s show, also from Korakuen Hall, with Marty Scurll taking on Hiromu Takahashi in the main event.
- Chris Sabin and Ren Narita defeated KUSHIDA and Shota Umino when Sabin defeated Umino with the cradle shock.
- SHO and YOSHI-HASHI defeated Dragon Lee and Tomoyuki Oka when YOSHI-HASHI submitted Oka with the butterfly lock.
- Minoru Suzuki and Desperado defeated Ryusuke Taguchi and Toa Henare when Suzuki pinned Henare with the Gotch piledriver.
- EVIL and Hiromu Takahashi defeated Marty Scurll and Chase Owens when EVIL submitted Owens with the Banshee muzzle.
A Block matches:
Tiger Mask defeated Yoshinobu Kanemaru
This was fine. Nothing exceptional but had some solid action, and the finish was cool. Tiger Mask took control early, grinding Kanemaru down and sending him to the outside. Kanemaru came back inside the ring and dropkicked Tiger Mask in the knee, gaining control.
Tiger Mask rebounded and hit the tiger bomb. He looked for the butterfly suplex off the top rope and connected. TM immediately followed with an armbar, but Kanemaru managed to escape.
Kanemaru escaped a tiger suplex and cradled TM for a nearfall. Kanemaru took him out of the ring and bodyslammed a young lion on top of him, then took another one on the opposite side and threw it at Tiger Mask, looking for a count out. He makes it in at 19 as Kanemaru takes him to the top rope and goes for a superplex. Tiger Mask shifts his weight, however, and rolls up Kanemaru for the surprise win.
ACH defeated Flip Gordon
Pretty good bout The highlight was some of Gordon’s incredible offense, but this was a pretty good match that played off on both guys’ skills, though I don’t think ACH was flashy as Gordon was here.
ACH controls early, stomping and chopping Gordon around the ring and outside. ACH goes to chop him again but hits the ring post instead. This gives Gordon a window to hit some offense, including a springboard slingblade. Gordon managed to hop from one side of the turnbuckle to the other and hit a giant tope con hilo to the outside. It has to be seen to be believed.
ACH mounted a comeback, taking Gordon to the outside and brawling around the ring. Gordon fights back and finds and entryway, jumping off with a giant crossbody that wipes out ACH. They get back to the ring where Gordon was going for something off the top rope, but ACH connected with a step up dropsault, sending him crashing to the floor.
Gordon attempted a comeback with a corkscrew splash, but ACH dodged and connected with a deadlift German suplex. He then followed with a cradle DDT to score the win.
YOH defeated BUSHI
Really good match, particularly the final few minutes. YOH was great in what he did and BUSHI BUSHI jumped YOH at the bell, but YOH fought back, connecting with a great springboard forearm and landed a tope con hilo, wiping out BUSHI on the outside.
BUSHI gathered himself enough to slow down YOH in the ring and grinded him with a headscissors on the floor. He started to mount a comeback when BUSHI stopped him and took him down with a big suicide dive to the floor. YOH came alive again back in the ring, but BUSHI gained control again, this time hitting a hurricanrana on YOH has he was tangled on the ropes.
YOH countered an MX attempt by BUSHI by planting him with a superkick as he came down to the floor. BUSHI took him down with a Canadian destroyer but when he went for the MX again, YOH instead countered with a cradle to score the shock win.
BUSHI jumped him after the match, I guess still thinking the match was still going on. The referee told him otherwise and BUSHI left.
Taiji Ishimori defeated Will Ospreay
This was great, but I felt like it should have gone a little longer. I think if this lasted a few more minutes it would have been really fantastic. Still, this was a cool match with a lot of hot moves on Ospreay’s part. Ishimori more than held up his own.
Ospreay hits a big machine gun dropkick in the corner to start things off, probably not too happy about what happened earlier this month. On the outside, Ospreay leaped up to a platform inside the audience then wiped out Ishimori in a really cool spot.
The two continued to fight in the ring. Ishimori cranked Ospreay’s neck and started to focus on that. Ospreay got caught in the second turnbuckle and Ishimori countered by giving Ospreay a German suplex that landed right on his neck. He sort of needs to stop doing that if he wants to do things like walk and move in the future.
Ospreay started to rally and make his comeback, including hitting the 619. Ishimori fought back and countered Ospreay’s every move until flipping Ospreay around and connected with a lung blower. Ospreay countered a submission move by Ishimori, deadlifted him and hit what looked to be an alley oop/reverse powerbomb.
Ospreay draped Ishimori on the top rope and hit a shooting star press off the top rope for a nearfall. Ishimori fired back with a reverse rana but Ospreay immediately countered with the spanish fly. Ospreay went for the Ozcutter, but Ishimori grabbed him and hit his new finish, a suplex into a lungblower he calls the bloody cross, for the win. People reacted huge to Ishimori’victory.