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NJPW Kizuna Road results: Super Strong Machine retirement ceremony


Here are the results from this morning’s Kizuna Road show, the last of the three live events on New Japan World. This morning’s show from Korakuen Hall featured the retirement of Super Strong Machine, Junji Hirata, who is retiring after 40 years in the business.

Yujiro Takahashi and Taiji Ishimori defeated KUSHIDA and Ren Narita

Not much to talk about here. Your typical match where the young lion is worked over but makes a comeback until he gets cut off. Takahashi pinned Narita with the pimp juice DDT.

Togi Makabe, Jushin Thunder Liger and Tiger Mask defeated Toa Henare, Tomoyuki Oka, Shota Umino

A bit more active here, but still just your typical six man tag team bout. Seemed to be a platform for Togi Makabe since he’s in the G1 this year. He picked up the win, pinning Oka with the king kong knee drop.

El Desperado, Yoshinobu Kanemaru and Taka Michinoku defeated Rocky Romero and Roppongi 3K

Another solid tag match. This was to get Desperado’s win back after last night’s loss. Romero was going for a sliced bread but Desperado escape. He distracted the referee long enough for Kanemaru to spray Romero, allowing Desperado to pick up the win with a modified cradle.

Lineups for all nineteen shows were announced. We will have a post later this morning with full cards, but highlights include Tanahashi/Suzuki and Okada/White headlining the first night, Okada/Suzuki on 8/2, Naito/Ibushi and Ishii/Omega on 8/4, Naito/SANADA on 8/8, Tanahashi/Okada on 8/10 and Naito/Sabre and Omega/Ibushi on 8/11.

Tomohiro Ishii and Toru Yano defeated Taichi and Takashi Iizuka

This was goofy and lame. It has just about every lame Suzuki-gun trope ever produced into one match. Iizuka’s gimmick is so old hat at this point, he detracts from everything he does. Iizuka and Taichi ganged up on Yano, but Ishii blasted Iizuka’s iron fingers of death with a lariat and Yano scored the pinfall with a low blow and roll up.

Before the next match, it was announced that Juice Robinson has a badly broken hand and was fighting against doctor’s orders. Per the referee, attacking the hand has been made illegal.

Kazuchika Okada, Jay White, Hirooki Goto and YOSHI-HASHI defeated Juice Robinson, Michael Elgin, Jeff Cobb and David Finlay

Early on, this was a showcase for Elgin, who took on both YOSHI-HASHI and Hirooki Goto. Same with Cobb, who went at it with Goto. Robinson and White went at it as well in the closing moments. Both teased their finish. White attacked the hand right in front of the referee, but nothing happened. He then pinned Robinson with the Bladerunner. Very good match overall.

It is now time for the Super Strong Machine retirement ceremony. I think part of it had Ryusuke Taguchi transform into one of the machines in between clips of his career. Shogun Ky Wakamatsu came out alongside Super Strong Machine once all the machines made their entrance.

Strong Machine Ace, Strong Machine Don, Strong Machine Buffalo, Strong Machine No. 69 and Strong Machine Justice defeated Tetsuya Naito, Hiromu Takahashi, EVIL, SANADA and BUSHI

There was one spot early where all of LIJ tried to unmask the machines, but to no avail. They built up to a big spot where they all chained together for a giant suplex, where all of LIJ were suplexed at the same time. No. 69 tried for the strong machine suplex, but BUSHI cut him off and isolated him.

Buffalo took Naito to the outside where Super Strong Machine took him out with a lariat. No. 69 then planted BUSHI with Super Strong Machine’s hammerlock suplex for the win. Not a great main event, but a fine tribue to the Strong Machine gimmick with a couple of good spots.

They aired a video featuring interviews with Shibata and Jushin Thunder Liger. Super Strong Machine then came out as Wakamatsu came out to give him flowers. Hiro Saito, Masahito Kakihara, Ryoto Chikuzen, Kazunari Murakami, Katsuyori Shibata, Watoru Inoue and Yuji Nagata all came out to give him flowers. More of the roster, including Liger, Tiger Mask and KUSHIDA and the participants from the main event came out for pictures.

After meeting all the young lions, Strong Machine cut a promo, basically saying that he wasn’t able to take bumps for the last few years and thus had this ceremony. He wants to relax, heal his body and venture onto new things after that. Before he left, he paid tribute to his wife, who passed away in January after battling cancer. From what it sounds like, very nice and touching way to close out the show.