The biggest show of New Japan’s fall season is upon us, as King of Pro Wrestling is set to take place tonight at Sumo Hall. Kevin Kelly and Steve Corino of ROH will be providing English commentary for the event on New Japan World.
The show will feature a big interpromotional match as Pro Wrestling NOAH’s Naomichi Marufuji looks to take the IWGP Heavyweight title from New Japan’s Kazuchika Okada. With Okada losing in their first bout on the opening day of the G1, he looks to gain a measure of revenge tonight by retaining the championship.
In other key title matches, we’ll see Katsuyori Shibata (who is battling some injuries, which may play into tonight’s match) defend against Kyle O'Reilly, the IWGP Heavyweight tag team titles will be on the line as The Briscoes defend against the Guerillas of Destiny, and IWGP Junior tag champions the Young Bucks defend against Ricochet and David Finlay.
We’ll also see Kenny Omega defend his championship opportunity at WrestleKingdom 11 as he takes on Hirooki Goto in a rematch from the G1 finals.
Our live coverage kicks off at 3 a.m. ET.
Tiger Mask W defeated Red Death Mask
This all seems to promote the new Tiger Mask anime that just premiered. The new Tiger Mask has a mask that doesn't look comfy at all, and he adjusted it several times throughout the match. Not sure who is under either mask. Tiger Mask actually dished out Ibushi's Golden Triangle moonsault to the floor. Actually, he did several of Ibushi's moves. I guess we have to get that rumor mill starting. Tiger Mask got the win with a delayed tiger driver that somewhat resembled a last ride powerbomb. Make your own conclusions but I'm pretty sure I have mine.
Will Ospreay, Tomohiro Ishii and YOSHI-HASHI defeated Yujiro Takahashi, Bad Luck Fale and Adam Cole
Pretty good, heated match. Your usuual six man with everyone pairing off and working with one another. Ospreay and Cole together worked great, especially Ospreay who does a great job of being the highlight reel in the match. I wish they had their match in front of this crowd as they were way more receptive to this match than their singles match a few weeks ago. Ospreay does a great dive to the floor that wipes out everyone except Ishii and Yujiro, who go at it for a bit before Ishii pins Yano with a brainbuster.
Great Bash Heel, Ryusuke Taguchi and Bobby Fish defeated Jado, Roppongi Vice and Toru Yano
Announcers were pushing at the start of the match the dissention that Baretta and Romero showed at the Road to from a few weeks ago. Anothe pretty good match, another atypical New Japan eight man tag. They seemed to set up a tag title match down the line with GHC Hevyweight tag champions Yano and Marufuji against Great Bash Heel. Like in his last match, Romero took the pinfall after Honma's kokeshi from the top rope connected. Baretta didn't look happy with Romero after the match.
Go Shiozaki, Maybach Taniguchi, Katsuhiko Nakajima and Masa Kitamiya defeated Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Satoshi Kojima, Yuji Nagata and Manabu Nakanishi
This got really good twoards the end. It's another eight man match! The New Japan team looked good throughout a lot of it. Nagata got in the white eyes armbar until Kitamiya stopped him. Nakanishi and Shiozaki had a intense chopping battle .Nakanishi had Shiozaki trapped in the torture rack but Tanaguchi interfered, so Nakanishi threw Shiozaki on him. Shiozaki got the advantage and hit the lariat for the win.
New Japan guys were mad after the match and jumped the NOAH guys. That wasn't nice! All the NOAH and NJPW young guys came in and eventually broke it up, so this NJPW/NOAH feud must continue.
The Young Bucks defeated David Finlay and Ricochet to retain the IWGP Jr. Tag Team titles
Good match, not an out of this world match or anything but plenty of cool spots throughout. Ricochet looked great, doing a great flosbury drop that took out both Young Bucks. Lots of good back and forth. The faces blocked both a Meltzer Driver and a Indytaker attempt but it still wasn't enough to get the win. One of the bucks wiped out Ricochet on the outside, then followed with the win after the More Bang for Your Buck.
No one challenged after the match. Seems like the next challengers will probably be whoever wins the annual Junior tag team tournament, usually held in the next couple of months.
Guerillas of Destiny defeated The Brisoces to win the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team titles
Okay match, the last few minutes helped pick this up. GoD came out and didn't get much of a reaction. Briscoes looked great in their offense. while GoD was just kind of there. Not bad, but not really doing anything to get me into the match. Briscoes hit a big powerbomb neckbreaker and went to do te Doomsday device on Tama Tonga but Loa came in and broke it up. Loa broke up another Doomsday Device by grabbing onto Tonga when the Briscoes hit their finish.Loa drilled Loa with a powerbomb, Tonga hit the gun stun and hit the Guerilla Warfare for the win.
Guerillas of Destiny, along with the Young Bucks, took care of the Briscoes after the match. Ishii tried to make the save, but was laid out by GoD. Seems whatever the next tag team title program will be will revolve around him.
Michael Elgin, Jay Lethal, Hiroshi Tanahashi and KUSHIDA defeated Tetsuya Naito, BUSHI, EVIL and SANADA
Naito straight up shoved the referee to the floor and didn't get disqualified. Elgin came in and did his big power spots. They also had KUSHIDA and BUSHI together since KUSHIDA's probably getting a rematch next month. There was a spot in the match where KUSHIDA went for a dive and landed badly on the guardrail. Lethal and Elgin isolated Naito as Lethal hit the Lethal Injection, then Elgin followed with the powerbomb for the win.
Elgin posed with the title after the match, indicating he wants the next IC title shot. Evil grabbed KUSHIDA after the match and laid him out with his chair spot. The rest of the Ingobernables laid out Lethal and Tanahashi as BUSHI laid out KUSHIDA with the MX. He cut a promo, challenging KUSHIDA for the next title match. KUSHIDA did a stretcher job after.
Katsyuori Shibata defeated Kyle O'Reilly to retain the NEVER championship
Excellent match! They built everything up nicely and had some really brilliant exchanges during the latter half of the match. Crowd helped make this special too as they were into everything. Sto
They traded stiff shots early. Shibata focused on one of Kyle's elbows, stomping on it. Kyle responded by working on Shibata's bad, taped up leg, wrapping himself around it and wearing him down. Kyle locks in a guillotine and manages to transition that into an armbar but Shibata immediately gets to the ring ropes. Back on their feet, Shibata gets in a sleeper then lands a Saito suplex. Back up on their feet they have a crazy suplex exchange, with Shibata ending it with a kick to the chest. Kyle blasts Shibata with the PK but Shibata kicks out. Shibata gets in the sleeper and hits the PK, then followes with a a sleeper. He tries to fight out of it, but passes out, giving the match to Shibata.
Suddenly who should enter the ring but Go Shiozaki. Shibata held the title high but Go stared him down. Shibata pushed him, but Go made clear he was next in line for a title match. But then, EVIL came in and laid him out with the STO, grabbing the championship. Kevin Kelly pointed out EVIL beat Shibata during the G1. He laid the title on Shibata as he made his exit.
It was made clear on commentary that the winners of the next two matches will be the WrestleKingdom 11 main event.
Kenny Omega defeated Hirooki Goto to retain his title shot at WrestleKingdom 11
Another awesome match, best of the show. Just a brilliant back and forth match and the crowd was white hot. Even in losing, Goto looked like a threat and it came off like Omega won, but just by a hair.
Goto decides he's just going to bring it early and lays out Omega with the briefcase then DDTs him on the briefcase, then wipes out the Young Bucks as the match began on the outside. Omega came back and foot stomped Goto on top of the table. Back and forth follows until the Young Bucks help Goto onto a table. YOSHI-HASHI comes out and distracts the Young Bucks to the back as Goto fights back against Omega and makes a comeback.
Finally Omega goes to springboard but Goto punches him, sending him flying through the table. Goto hits the ushigiroshi and tries for the GTR but Omega counters, only for Goto to hit the shouten kai but Omega somehow kicks out. Omega follows another GTR attempt with a rollup, then follows with a snap German suplex. Goto tries a comeback but Omega cuts him off, hitting two knee strikes then goes for the One Winged Angel but Goto fights back...only for Omega to hit it and score the win.
Kazuchika Okada defeated Naomichi Marufuji to retain the IWGP Heavyweight title
Really good match. I wouldn't say it's better than the previous match, or better than their G1 match but this was your normal great main event that had a lot of cool spots and good wrestling overall.
Marufuji dominated early, brawling around rinside. He settles on working on Okada's arm and applying holds. Okada came back with a dropkick that sent Marafuji tumbling to the floor. Okada countered back, hitting a huge dive over the barricade and into some chairs. But Marafuji soon countered back with a piledriver on the apron. Not really a fan of those spots when they really should be saved for a big angle, because immediately breaking a count out spot sort of invalidates it as a big move.
They do some more back and forth. Marufuji hits a superkick, but Okada immediately shoots back with a dropkick that sends Marufuji down. Okada misses a charge and walks into a big knee that sends him down. Marufuji hit the sliced bread but Okada kicked out. Marufuji went for another one but Okada blocked it and came back with a rainmaker. Okada holds on to him but Marufuji starts countering all rainmaker attempts. Okada counters back with a tombstone, hit a side slam then hit the rainmaker for the win.
That makes it Kenny Omega vs. Kazuchika Okada for WrestleKingdom 11. Gedo calls out Omega as he makes his way to the ring by himself. Omega says everything has been given to him by the company and by Gedo. He is the symbol of New Japan, he's protected Japanese wrestling. He's taken everything up to this point, and he will take everything that you treasure. He will win at the Toyko Dome and will treat him just like they did in America (refering to the TNA run). Okada said he'll see him at the Toyko Dome and they had a staredown as Omega exited, and Okada celebrated to close out the show.
This was a really good PPV headlined by three great matches. Actually top to bottom I don't think there was one bad match on the show. Lots of great wrestling and some strong buildup through the rest of the year and WrestleKingdom 11. Kinda goes to show that one big show is always better than three watered down events.