Preview by Josh Nason
For the first time since February 2020, New Japan Pro Wrestling returns stateside with fans in attendance for Resurgence, live from The Torch in Los Angeles, California.
Lance Archer will look for the second defense of his IWGP U.S. title when he faces Hiroshi Tanahashi who will be looking for his first U.S. title reign.
Former U.S. Champion Jon Moxley will be in tag action with a mystery partner against The Good Brothers as their rivalry spills over from the rings of AEW.
NEVER Openweight Champion Jay White will defend the title against one half of FinJuice, David Finlay. The feud intensified on Impact Wrestling where both men have spent time the last month.
The show will also feature Tomohiro Ishii vs. Moose; a ten-man tag that will see Team Filthy (Strong Champion Tom Lawlor, JR Kratos, Danny Limelight, Jorel Nelson and Royce Isaac) against VLNCE UNLTD's Brody King and Chris Dickinson, Lio Rush, Fred Yehi and Yuya Uemura; and more.
Our live coverage kicks off at 11 p.m. Eastern time.
Show Report --
Karl Fredericks defeated Alex Coughlin (10:47)
This was billed as part of Coughlin's "Challenge Match Series."
Coughlin starched Fredericks with a stiff chop, leading to a forearm exchange before Coughlin took Fredericks down with a shoulder block. Fredericks hit one of his own for a quick one-count. He dominated with a targeted attack on Coughlin's midsection until Coughlin came back with an overhead throw. Coughlin hit a gutbuster and a gutwrench suplex for two.
An enziguiri from Fredericks led to a double down. Fredericks laid in forearms in the corner followed by a running dropkick and a back suplex. His signature elbow drop got two. Fredericks hit a spinebuster and then locked on an STF, and after a long fight, Coughlin reached the ropes.
Coughlin fought out of Manifest Destiny and hit a big chop. Fredericks came back with an over-the-back backbreaker, but Coughlin hit a uranage for two followed by a bridging fallaway slam for another two. A hard lariat from Coughlin got yet another two-count.
Fredericks fought out of a German suplex and slapped Coughlin across the face. They battled for suplex position until Fredericks hit the Manifest Destiny for the win.
Ren Narita, TJP, & Clark Connors defeated Fred Rosser, Rocky Romero, & Wheeler YUTA (11:42)
The interactions between Narita and Rosser were the highlight here.
YUTA and TJP started the action off with some nice technical exchanges. TJP got control with a dropkick and tagged in Connors, where they hit a double team suplex for a quick two-count. YUTA tried to fire up but Connors cut him off with a suplex. An opening allowed YUTA to tag in Romero, who attacked Connors' left arm.
Romero went for the Forever! clotheslines, but Connors stopped him in his tracks with a shoulder tackle. Romero used evasive maneuvers to force Connors between the ropes, allowing him to hit a diving dropkick for two. Rosser tagged in and hit a seated splash for two more.
The Rosser team maintained control for a period with frequent tags and double teams. Eventually, a pounce from Connors gave him the chance to tag in Narita. Narita went right after Rosser, who wasn't the legal man, then hit a bridging vertical suplex on YUTA for two. A YUTA enziguiri allowed him to tag in Rosser.
The rivals, Rosser and Narita, fought on the apron, where Rosser hit a nasty back suplex for two. Narita's team cut Rosser off and triple-teamed him until an overhead suplex from Narita nearly got the win. Rosser's team ran interference and he and Narita were left alone in the ring, where a battle of big boots led to trading big moves. Simultanous forearms led to a double down after that nice exchange.
Romero and Connors tagged in and Romero hit a running hurricanrana. He went for the Forever! clotheslines again but was again cut off by Narita. We got a parade of big moves, concluded by a Connors spear on Rosser. Romero set up both TJP and Connors in the corners and got started on Forever! clotheslines followed by a double hurricanrana. Sliced Bread #2 was next for a near fall.
Connors countered another Sliced Bread into a backdrop and TJP hit a diving crossbody for the mildly anticlimactic victory.
A video package recapped NJPW's history of running shows in the United States and concluded by thanking the American fans.
Chris DIckinson, Fred Yehi, Lio Rush, Yuya Uemura, & Adrian Quest defeated Team Filthy (Tom Lawlor, JR Kratos, Danny Limelight, Royce Isaacs, & Jorel Nelson) (13:01)
Brody King was originally supposed to be in this match but could not make the show due to "unforseen circumstances." This was a really enjoyable tag match nonetheless featuring a big win for Uemura.
Team Filthy attacked at the bell, but Dickinson quickly got the better of Lawlor and hit a butterfly suplex for two. Kratos and Yehi replaced Lawlor and Dickinson and had a nice exchange. The next pair was Isaacs and Quest. Quest hit a tornillo and sent Isaacs to the floor. Limelight and Rush came in and Rush used some really impressive quickness until Lawlor cut him off.
Lawlor and Quest traded strikes until Lawlor countered a springboard dive with a rising knee. Quest hit a headscissors takedown and went for a dive, but Isaacs turned it into a powerslam for two. Team Filthy isolated Quest with frequent tags and double teams. Kratos and Limelight hit a nice assisted double stomp and Lawlor locked on a rear naked choke, but Yehi broke it up.
A lungblower from Quest allowed him to reach Uemura for the tag. Uemura ran wild on everyone with forearms and hit a running dropkick on Limelight in the corner. A back suplex from Uemura got two. Dickinson and Lawlor exchanged strikes in the ring until a modified tombstone from Lawlor send Dickinson packing.
Quest hit a top-rope Asai moonsault to the floor. Kratos and Rush faced off in the ring, and Kratos turned a hurricanrana into a press slam onto the pile out on the floor. Kratos climbed the ropes, but Uemura turned it into a powerbomb. Limelight hit a diving stomp on Uemura and a destroyer on Quest. Rush hit his awesome spinning heel kick on Limelight followed by the Rush Hour, then Uemura hit his overhead suplex bridge for the win.
– After the match, Uemura grabbed a mic and said "Nice to meet you, USA. I'm Yuya Uemura." He said he'd get stronger at the LA Dojo and brought out Katsuyori Shibata. Shibata said "come with me," and handed Uemura an LA Dojo T-shirt. They hugged.
Juice Robinson defeated Hikuleo (8:58)
Juice put on a hell of a side headlock for about a minute at the start. Hikuleo shrugged off some shoulder tackles and landed a ridiculous back suplex before laying in grounded strikes. Juice baited Hikuleo to the floor and landed a plancha, but Hikuleo came back and dropped Juice over the guardrail.
Back in the ring, Hikuleo landed a corner splash and a delayed vertical suplex for two. After a long bear hug, Hikuleo hit a powerslam for two more. Juice fought out of a corner attack but couldn't find his footing on the top rope, allowing Hikuleo to take him down. They fought on the top turnbuckle until Juice slid out and hit a powerbomb.
Juice started his comeback with a cannonball in the corner. He hit repeated right hands and the Left Hand of God followed by a lariat, but Hikuleo popped up and hit one of his own. Juice fought out of the Samoan driver to roll Hikuleo up for the win out of nowhere.
– After the match, Hikuleo attacked Juice and flattened him with a chokeslam.
A NJPW Strong tour with stops in Dallas/Fort Worth, Philadelphia, and Riverside was announced. Jay White, David Finlay, Taiji Ishimori, and Ryusuke Taguchi were announced for the tour.
Additionally, NJPW will return to the Bay Area this fall. Jon Moxley, Jay White, David Finlay, Tomohiro Ishii, & Lio Rush were announced for the show, called Battle in the Valley.
Tomohiro Ishii defeated Moose (16:17)
This match was fantastic. It had to have been the best performance of Moose's career.
The size discrepancy here was remarkable as Moose is legitimately a foot taller than Ishii. They had a strong style shoulder block and forearm exchange at the start, with Moose overpowering the smaller Ishii. Ishii staggered Moose with a shoulder tackle, but Moose fired up and took him out with one of his own.
Moose was just smashing Ishii in the corner with chops. He hit two running dropkicks and sent Ishii to the floor. Ishii moved out of the way of a running attack, sending Moose crashing into the barricade. Back in the ring, they traded chops in the corner. Ishii wanted the brainbuster, but Moose fought out and hit a big forearm smash.
Ishii leaned into some more forearms and starched Moose with one of his own followed by a delayed vertical suplex. Moose regained control with another shoulder tackle. Ishii fought out of a powerbomb and fired up enough to hit a backdrop suplex. Moose popped up and they clotheslined each other, leading to a double down.
They traded chops. Moose hit an incredible step-up moonsault crossbody followed by a powerbomb for a great near fall. Moose propped Ishii up on the ropes and hit a remarkable standing dropkick, followed by a one-armed spinebuster for another good near fall.
Moose went for a ripcord forearm, but Ishii fought out. Moose downed him with a tackle, but Ishii kicked out at one. Ishii landed a lariat, but Moose kicked out at zero. Moose then hit yet another Okada-level dropkick. Ishii avoided a spear and hit a German. Moose shrugged off a lariat and headbutted Ishii, but Ishii hit another running lariat for two.
Ishii set up for the vertical drop brainbuster, but Moose powered out and hit a uranage. Ishii countered the ripcord forearm and hit an enziguiri followed by the sliding lariat for two. He tried to power Moose up for the vertical drop brainbuster, and after a couple tries, finally hit it for the win.
Will Ospreay Promo
Will Ospreay's music played and he walked to the ring as a surprise. He grabbed a mic and said he wasn't happy to be here. He just needed to make the announcement that he's medically cleared. He teased joining this year's G1 Climax before saying he wouldn't even go back to Japan at all.
He worked his ass off and broke his neck for NJPW, and they stripped him of his IWGP World Heavyweight Championship. He gets it, but Jon Moxley had the US belt for a year and didn't defend it once –– and NJPW didn't strip it from him.
Ospreay then addressed Shingo Takagi and called him a "p*ssy." He said Shingo's an "interim" champion and Ospreay's the real world champion. He pulled out the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship and said he would defend it against anyone, anytime, any place before cutting off an "AEW" chant.
In the meantime, Ospreay will focus on NJPW Strong, because they need a big star right now beyond those LA Dojo jobbers. Karl Fredericks and Clark Connors walked out and tried to start a fight. TJP came out to cool them off. Ospreay teased putting TJP over but ultimately called him a "b*tch." TJP got in Ospreay's face, but just as he, Fredericks and Connors were about to walk out, Ospreay taunted them once again and fled.
The Good Brothers (Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows) defeated Jon Moxley & Yuji Nagata (10:33)
Nagata was Moxley's mystery partner. Moxley got control of Andeson early on before being cut off by Gallows, but Moxley was able to reach Nagata for the tag. Nagata teased a test of strength but was sent to the floor by Gallows. A fireworks show broke out and was really distracting for a long time –– unfortunate for the talent.
The Good Brothers isolated Nagata until he reached Moxley for a tag. Moxley hit a tope suicida on both Good Brothers. He grabbed a chair from under the ring and tossed it at Anderson before doing the same to Gallows. Back in the ring, Moxley hit a dragon suplex and bit at Gallows' eyes, allowing him to hit a German.
Moxley hit a release suplex on Anderson for two before going for the Bulldog Choke. Anderson got the ropes, but Moxley hit a straight piledriver for two. Gallows stopped Moxley from hitting the Paradigm Shift on Anderson, leading to both men hitting clotheslines.
Nagata tagged in and laid in kicks on Anderson followed by a big boot and an enziguiri. He hit an exploder on Gallows and applied Nagata Lock II on Anderson, forcing Anderson to fight to reach the ropes. Gallows grabbed Nagata's leg, allowing Anderson to take him down with a forearm.
Moxley took out Gallows and set up more chairs on the floor. He was cut off by the Good Brothers, who hit the Magic Killer on a chair. They isolated Nagata in the ring, who fought out of the Magic Killer and took down both opponents. Eventually, the numbers advantage was too much, and Anderson hit the Gun Stun followed by the Magic Killer to win.
– After the match, Gallows grabbed a mic and said no matter what country or continent, the result is the same: Magic Killer, 1-2-3, and "Too Sweet." Anderson said he knows everyone came to see the Good Brothers. Anderson's mic stopped working.
The Guerrillas of Destiny walked out. The two teams faced off in the center of the ring before the Good Brothers walked off. G.O.D. hit the Too Sweet to end the segment.
NEVER Openweight Championship: Jay White (c) defeated David Finlay (22:59)
White did his typical stalling techniques at the start, going right for rope breaks. Eventually, Finlay got a double-leg takedown and laid in strikes. He hopped to the second rope but White pushed him off, sending Finlay crashing to the floor. White then suplexed Finlay onto the apron.
Back in the ring, White hit a backbreaker for two. He dominated Finlay for an extended period, repeatedly sending him to the floor. Finlay started a comeback with a running uppercut followed by a plancha. A side slam from Finlay got two. White cut him off and hit a DDT to regain control.
White dropped Finlay over the ropes and hit the Bladebuster for two. Finlay fought back by forcing White into the corner and hitting repeated uppercuts. The crowd was way more in to White than Finlay at this point. White dropped Finlay over the ropes yet again.
They fought on the apron, where White tried to suplex Finlay to the floor. Finlay escaped and hit a back suplex on the apron. Back in the ring, White suplexed Finlay over the ropes to the floor. White then hit a uranage for two. He brought Finlay to the top rope, where Finlay fought out of the attack and hit a superplex.
They traded forearms in the ring, where Finlay hit one that sent White all the way to the floor. White turned a lariat attempt into a flatliner and hit a German suplex. Finlay escaped the Blade Runner, White fought out of a stunner, and Finlay hit two Blue Thunder Bombs for a near fall.
Finlay locked on an STF before transitioning to an over-the-shoulder crossface, forcing White to fight to get to the ropes. White countered a suplex and pushed Finlay into the official, allowing him to hit a low blow. White pushed down the official again, but Finlay hit a low blow instead followed by the Trash Panda for a good near fall.
White hit a sleeper suplex. Finlay countered the Blade Runner into a Prima Nocta, then rolled White up for two. Finlay hit two half-and-half suplexes. White countered the Acid Drop and hit the Blade Runner for the win.
– After the match, Tomohiro Ishii walked out. White dismissed him. Once Ishii left, White called him an "undersized little b*itch" and talked about all the championships Ishii hasn't won, including the IWGP US Championship. He said it doesn't matter what ring he's in, NJPW, Impact, or AEW, he could challenge everyone. "It is still my era."
IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship: Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Lance Archer (c) (19:26)
This was an excellent main event and the match of the night. Archer came across like a big star and Tanahashi was, well, Tanahashi.
Archer immediately sent Tanahashi to the floor. Tanahashi dropped Archer over the ropes and went for a body slam, but Archer easily fought out. Tanahashi escaped a body slam and chop-blocked Archer before kicking out his leg. Tanahashi went after Archer's leg more, but Archer locked on a claw submission until Tanahashi waas forced into the ropes. Jon Moxley was shown at ringside as Tanahashi was clotheslined for the floor.
On the outside, Archer hit a cannonball senton. He attacked the referee to stop him from making his full 20-count before repeatedly chopping Tanahashi against the barricade. Back in the ring, Tanahashi briefly gave himself some space, but Archer took him out with a pounce for a two-count.
Archer continued to dominate with repeated back elbows in the corner. He demanded that Tanahashi hit him before downing him with a forearm smash. Archer continued to taunt Tanahashi until the latter fought out of a chokeslam attempt and hit a dragon screw legwhip.
Tanahashi hit a flurry of offense but only got a one count. A flipping senton followed for two. Archer cut Tanahashi off with a big boot and chokeslammed him on the apron. He landed his rope-walk moonsault for two and then hit Blackout, but Tanahashi barely got his foot on the rope.
Archer went for another Blackout, but Tanahashi turned it into a modified Sling Blade. They traded forearms until Tanahashi hit another Sling Blade. Archer popped up and Tanahashi hit Twist and Shout followed by a third Sling Blade for two. Tanahashi set up for the High Fly Flow but was cut off by a forearm from Archer.
While the official checked on Tanahashi, Archer removed the corner turnbuckle pad and hit Tanahashi with it. He brought a chair into the ring and propped it up in the corner, but Tanahashi fired up and sent him into it. Archer popped up and hit a lariat followed by a black hole slam for two.
They fought on the top rope. Archer went for a superplex, but Tanahashi hit repeated slaps followed by a standing High Fly Flow. Tanahashi then hit High Fly Flow to Archer's back. Finally, Tanahashi hit the High Fly Flow to Archer's front to win the match and the championship.
– After the match, Archer addressed Tanahashi and said "You truly are the Ace of New Japan." It always hurts, but he respects Tanahashi, and he always has, even since all the way back in 2011 from his first G1 Climax. Archer said it's about time Tanahashi came to AEW, and whenever that happens, Archer wants his title rematch.
Tanahashi promised Archer that that would happen. He turned his attention to the crowd and thanked them for coming. He's the new IWGP US champion, so promised to come back soon. Tananashi serenaded the crowd with some air guitar to close the show.