Aichi was home to the B Block finals of the 24th Best of the Super Juniors tournament this morning.
Will Ospreay has made it to the finals for the second year in a row from the A Block -- with everyone in the opposite block at six points going into the last night of competition, anyone can wind up facing him in the finals on June 3rd.
Prelim matches --
- Taka Michinoku & Taichi defeated Hirai Kawato & Jushin Thunder Liger when Michinoku submitted Kawato with a crossface.
- SANADA, EVIL & Hiromu Takahashi defeated Ricochet, Dragon Lee & Juice Robinson when SANADA submitted Dragon Lee with the Skull End.
- Bad Luck Fale & Guerrillas of Destiny defeated David Finlay & War Machine after Fale hit Finlay with the Grenade.
- Yujiro Takahashi, Kenny Omega & Marty Scurll defeated Gedo, Will Ospreay & Kazuchika Okada following Takahashi hitting Gedo with the Pimp Juice DDT.
Tournament matches --
Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated El Desperado by countout
This was fine. It was full of the stuff you normally see in Suzuki-gun’s matches on this tour, but it was never bad.
Taka Michinoku cornered Desperado for this match, while Taichi decided to corner Kanemaru. They started off slow, but it soon became a brawl with Desperado attempting to use a chair on the outside. Kanemaru threw him into the crowd and body-slammed him on the floor.
Taichi teased the whiskey spot, but after some counters accidentally sprayed Kanemaru. Desperado built his momentum with a big suicide dive. He tried for a brainbuster on the concrete floor, but instead Kanemaru countered with a reverse DDT on the mat.
The referee started counting. Desperado tried to climb in to beat the count, but Taichi pushed Michinoku into Desperado, sending him to the floor. Kanemaru beat the count and won the match.
Desperado wasn't too happy about the result, even though everyone wanted to make up after the match. Desperado eventually obliged.
This eliminated ACH, Volador Jr., and El Desperado from contention based on tiebreakers.
Ryusuke Taguchi defeated ACH
Taguchi worked on ACH’s behind early. ACH countered that with two atomic drops and a cheap shot to the nether regions.
Taguchi came back and kept it on the ground, now working on ACH’s legs. He mounted a comeback until Taguchi connected with a knee. ACH tried to low blow him, but Taguchi used his thighs to block it. Taguchi continued to work him over, using a lot of butt-based offense.
ACH finally connected with a superplex. More back and forth and reversal after pin reversal followed until Taguchi countered one more roll-up with one of his own for the win. It was a solid match, but it wasn't anything special.
Taguchi, BUSHI, and KUSHIDA remained as viable block winners.
BUSHI defeated Tiger Mask IV
This was okay. There were a few good spots, but otherwise it was just kind of average.
Early in the match, BUSHI took a chair and tried to use it, but the ref stopped him. Undaunted, he continued to work over Tiger Mask, leveling him with a missile dropkick. Tiger Mask tried to mount a comeback, and despite BUSHI going after his mask, managed to take him to the floor with an arm drag.
Tiger Mask caught BUSHI in a waistlock sleeper-type move until he was able to get to the ropes. BUSHI managed to knock the ref down and dropkicked Tiger Mask in the leg. He got a chair, threw it at Tiger Mask, and landed a Codebreaker, but it didn't work. The MX, however, did.
That left it between BUSHI and KUSHIDA, which led us to the main event.
KUSHIDA defeated Volador Jr.
Great main event. These two worked really well together and it led to a great back-and-forth match with some great spots. At times it felt like a contest to see who could match who and that added to the excitement.
Some mat wrestling early led to some quick back and forth. KUSHIDA bailed to go to the outside -- wrong move as Volador met him there with a giant tope con hilo. Not too long after that, however, the tides were turned and KUSHIDA came back with one of his own.
KUSHIDA went for a charge, but Volador jumped over him, landed his knees on KUSHIDA’s back, and utilized a reverse monkey flip. Volador went for a dive, but KUSHIDA caught him with an armbar in mid-air. KUSHIDA went to attack Volador on the apron, but Volador instead hopped over him and met him on the floor with an Asai moonsault.
Volador looked to build momentum, but KUSHIDA caught him, sending him to the floor. KUSHIDA went for something off the top rope, but Volador met him there -- which gave KUSHIDA the opportunity to take him to the floor with a super rana. KUSHIDA went up, though again Volador Jr. met him there and landed a super rana of his own for a near fall.
Volador spiked KUSHIDA with a reverse rana, but KUSHIDA trapped him in an armbar -- only for Volador to counter. He went for a la magistral cradle, though KUSHIDA countered with a roll-up for another near fall. KUSHIDA landed the La Mistica and sunk in the hoverboard lock, then while still in the move hit Back to the Future for the win.
That makes it Will Ospreay vs. KUSHIDA in the Best of the Super Juniors finals on June 3rd.
Ospreay came to the ring to cut a promo. He said he’s out here to congratulate KUSHIDA. He knows that he can beat him and needs to prove it. As much as he respects him, he will not let him stand in his way. Please bring your best, because it won’t be enough and I will be back-to-back Best of the Super Junior.
KUSHIDA's response was simple: Let’s go crazy. The two had a staredown as Ospreay left. KUSHIDA said a few more words then left as the show went off the air.