NJPW was in Hokkaido today for more B Block action. Tetsuya Naito and Taichi clashed in the main event in a rekindling of their feud from last year.
Here are the prelim bouts that took place prior to the B Block matches:
- Jushin Thunder Liger and Kota Ibushi defeated Shota Umino and Yota Tsuji
Ibushi submitted Tsuji with the half Boston Crab. Liger cut a promo after the match thanking the fans.
- SANADA, BUSHI and EVIL defeated Tomoaki Honma, Toa Henare and Ren Narita
BUSHI pinned Narita with the MX.
- Zack Sabre Jr., Lance Archer, Minoru Suzuki and Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi, KENTA, Clark Connors and Karl Fredericks
Kanemaru pinned Connors with the Deep Impact DDT.
- Kazuchika Okada and YOSHI-HASHI defeated Bad Luck Fale and Chase Owens
Okada pinned Owens with the rainmaker.
Shingo Takagi defeated Toru Yano
This was fine for what it was. I don’t think it was as clever as the Naito match, but this is different than the normal G1 fare and I’m into it as a result.
Shingo, realizing Yano’s shirt got him the victory against Naito, wanted the shirt off. Yano was unsure about this, but obliged. Shingo jumped him but Yano put the shirt over him, shoved him into the turnbuckle and rolled him up for a near fall.
Yano goes out into the crowd and sits down in one of the aisles, daring Shingo to do something about it. Shingo started to make his way towards Yano, and Yano responded by tripping him into the stairs and setting up a bunch of obstacles so he could get a count out win. Despite everything, Shingo made it in at 19.
Yano next went for the tape. Shingo took it away from Yano and struck him with it. The two ended up exchanging punches Shingo blocked a low blow but Yano countered the noshigami with a crucifix roll-up. Yano put the ref in Shingo’s line of fire as he introduced as chair. He threw it to Shingo and tattled on him to the ref.
BUSHI came out to ringside to I guess tell the referee what was going on. Shingo then threw the chair at Yano and pinned him with the pumping bomber.
Juice Robinson defeated Hirooki Goto
This was a solid match. The work was very good and the crowd got into it. Will probably be lost in the ether of tremendous G1 matches, but this was a nice, good match.
The two start off tentatively. At the five minute mark they are both looking for control. Juice finally gets something with a big flapjack that takes down Goto. He is resilient, however, as they both exchange back and forth strikes.
Goto went for the ushigiroshi but Juice escaped as they both hit a lariat. Goto struck with a lariat that connected and followed that with the ushigiroshi. Goto continued to pelt Juice with strikes until Juice cuts him off and hits a jackhammer.
Juice went for the pulp friction but Goto countered out of it Juice cradled him for a nearfall. The two exchanged strikes until Juice struck with the left hand then pinned Goto with the pulp friction.
Jon Moxley defeated Jeff Cobb
This was a really weird match. It never felt like it got going, then just ended abruptly out of nowhere.
Moxley gained the advantage early, taking Cobb to the outside and working on an arm, slamming it on the mat. He then took Cobb out to the floor and hit a tope suicida, wiping him out on the stage. He took Cobb further back, going for a powerbomb. Cobb tried to counter with a back body drop but Moxley retreated. They both end up hitting a double clothesline, taking each other out.
Moxley rolled Cobb back in the ring and struck Cobb with an elbow off the top rope. Cobb cut him off and started to connect with some offense but Moxley exposed a knee and hit a running knee strike for a nearfall. Cobb took Moxley to the apron and went for a suplex but Moxley blocked it and headed back in the ring, taking out Cobb with a knee and hitting a draping DDT for the win.
Tomohiro Ishii defeated Jay White
This got really great by the end of the match, easily the best match of the card up to this point. Crowd got into it big time too which helped.
As soon as the bell rang, White bolted out of the ring and tricked Ishii by going back to the ring when Ishii exited. Ishii got control soon after by whipping White across the barricades and getting a chair. Gedo distracted Ishii long enough for White to shove him into the ringpost, gaining control.
That didn’t last long however as Ishii hit White with a suplex and attacked him in the corner with kicks and chops. White hit a DDT then landed a suplex that sent Ishii back first into the post. Ishii soon fired back with some offense and hits a powerslam.
After Ishii got the better of White in a strike exchange, White took him out with a German suplex and goaded him with some kicks. Ishii encouraged him to do more and got right back up after a side suplex. Ishii attacked, taking him to the top rope and hitting a big superplex.
White cut him off after some lariat attempts and took him down with a uranage. He connected with a kiwi crusher for a nearfall. White hit the sleeper suplex but Ishii countered with a German suplex. Ishii built momentum again, hitting the stack up powerbomb. White avoids the sliding D attempt and grabs a leg as Gedo starts to distract.
Ishii falls for the bait momentarily which allowed White to go for the bladerunner but Ishii countered, took out White and connected with the sliding D. White escaped the brainbuster and tried for the bladerunner but Ishii hit a downward spiral. He followed that up with a lariat then a brainbuster for the win.
Taichi defeated Tetsuya Naito
I’m not too sure what to think of this match. I think Taichi has developed a certain type of style with his matches, and this was what you would expect. I guess it was fine, but nothing going out of your way to watch. A long stretch of this was kind of boring, but by the end there was some good drama. The iron fingers of death is such a weak item to use, though.
Taichi, of course, opted to stall once the bell rang. Naito practically laid down in the middle of the ring so he could engage. Taichi bought the bait and kicked out of a near fall. After Miho Abe distracted Naito for a bit, he entered the ring and got low blowed by Taichi.
After Taichi connected with some Kawada kicks, Naito responded by spitting at Taichi. Taichi continued to work over Taichi until he took out what he had been planning for a while: the iron fingers of death. However, Naito took out Taich with a dropkick to the knee. Naito went for a hurricanrana, but Taichi countered with a ganso bomb.
Taichi went for Black Mephisto but Naito countered, hit a poison rana and hit the Destino. Taichi kicked out. Naito went for another, but Taichi hit the air raid crash. The two went at it some more until Taichi put Red Shoes in their path, with Naito accidently blasting him with a forearm.
Kanemaru got on the apron for the whiskey shot, but Naito took him out and also foiled another iron fingers of death attempt. Taichi went for a superkick and grabbed the fingers again, this time succeeding. Taichi then hit the last ride powerbomb for the win.
Taichi mocked the crowd to close out the show, saying he’s in the G1.
Kazuchika Okada 4
Lance Archer 4
Bad Luck Fale 2
Will Ospreay 2
Kota Ibushi 0
Zack Sabre Jr. 0
Hiroshi Tanahashi 0
Tomohiro Ishii 4
Jon Moxley 4
Juice Robinson 4
Shingo Takagi 2
Hirooki Goto 2
Toru Yano 2
Tetsuya Naito 0
Jeff Cobb 0
Jay White 0