Night eight of the Road to Wrestling Dontaku tour took place today at Korakuen Hall.
The NEVER Openweight Six-Man Tag Team titles were on the line in the main event, with the CHAOS trio of Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii and YOSHI-HASHI defending against the Bullet Club team of KENTA, Yujiro Takahashi and Taiji Ishimori.
The tour continues with untelevised shows on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The next broadcast event will be a 5:30 a.m. Eastern time show on NJPW World on Monday, April 26.
Here are full results and a report on today's show:
Recommended matches --
- Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI vs. KENTA, Yujiro Takahashi & Taiji Ishimori
- Will Ospreay, Great-O-Khan, Jeff Cobb & Aaron Henare vs. Shingo Takagi, Tetsuya Naito, SANADA & BUSHI
Minoru Suzuki, El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated Tomoaki Honma, SHO & YOH (10:38)
This was a good opener. They didn't have enough time to kick it into high gear.
Desperado immediately got the upper hand on YOH with a series of strikes and by raking the face. YOH fired up and hit a flying forearm, then backed Desperado into the corner with strikes. Kanemaru pulled YOH off the ropes as he tried a springboard attack, then Suzuki-gun took control.
YOH was cut off. Desperado and Kanemaru worked on his left knee. Desperado used Numero Dos, but SHO made the save. Kanemaru and Suzuki used quick tags and continued to target the left leg. YOH managed a dropkick to Suzuki's left leg, then tagged Honma.
Honma hit a bulldog, but missed a kokeshi attempt on Suzuki. They traded forearm shots, then slaps. Suzuki used a heel hook, then an ankle lock, but Honma forced a rope break. Honma ended up bleeding from the mouth. Honma hit two diving kokeshis to turn the tide.
SHO and Kanemaru tagged in. SHO hit a series of kicks and scored a near fall. Kanemaru and Desperado doubled up on SHO, but YOH jumped in to even things out.
Suzuki and Honma brawled to the floor. SHO hit Kanemaru with a backstabber into a one-legged dropkick from YOH. Kanemaru avoided a 3K, then blocked a Shock Arrow attempt. Kanemaru sat down into a cradle and trapped SHO for the flash pin.
Tama Tonga, Tanga Loa & Jado defeated Taichi, Zack Sabre Jr. & DOUKI (12:33)
The Bullet Club side attacked before the opening bell. DOUKI and Jado dueled with their sticks. Loa hit a Boss Man slam to DOUKI to cut him off. Jado used a kendo stick on DOUKI on the outside. Bullet Club then isolated DOUKI in their corner and went to work.
DOUKI came back with something resembling a DDT on Tama, then tagged Taichi. Taichi ran wild, choking both members of G.O.D., then turned his attention to Jado. Jado got sent outside. Tama hit a dragon screw to Taichi.
There were some clunky spots between Tama and Taichi. Tama blocked an axe bomber and hit a Tongan Twist. Taichi blocked a Gun Stun and hit a gamengiri into a double down.
Sabre and Loa got tags and had a nice exchange. Sabre used a guillotine, then went to work on Loa's left arm. Bullet Club triple-teamed Sabre. Loa hit a back suplex for a near fall. Sabre fought out of a G.O.D. Magic Killer, but got hit with a tandem neckbreaker.
Jado took the referee as everyone jumped in. Tama used a title belt as a weapon on Taichi. Jado missed a kendo stick shot to DOUKI. DOUKI hit a plancha to Jado. DOUKI has improved and is working very hard on this tour.
Sabre used an octopus on Loa, but Loa reversed into Apesh*t and got the pin.
Jado used a kendo stick on DOUKI after the match. Loa cut a promo and said that if Sabre beats him fair and square in a one-on-one match, G.O.D. will defend the IWGP Heavyweight Tag titles against Sabre and Taichi, but if Sabre loses, they can never challenge G.O.D. for the titles again.
G.O.D. then hit a Magic Killer on Taichi.
Hiroshi Tanahashi & Toru Yano defeated EVIL & Gedo (w/Dick Togo) by DQ (6:34)
This was a cluster by design. The highlight was once again Gedo booing Tanahashi's abs as he took off his ring jacket.
Yano began as the legal man and was quickly cut off. EVIL exposed a buckle. Tanahashi got a tag and got whipped into the buckle. Tanahashi came back with a twist and shout on Gedo.
Tanahashi got a cloverleaf applied to Gedo. Togo jumped on the apron and took the ref. Yano put a hood on Togo. EVIL jumped in and hit low blows to Tanahashi and Yano. Gedo grabbed brass knuckles. Togo jumped in with his ligature and put a hood on Yano.
Gedo used the knuckles on Tana and the ref called for the DQ.
EVIL spray painted Yano's KOPW trophy black after the match. Yano sold this by crying.
***** Intermission *****
Will Ospreay, Great-O-Khan, Jeff Cobb & Aaron Henare defeated Shingo Takagi, Tetsuya Naito, SANADA & BUSHI (14:41)
This was a chaotic brawl from before the opening bell.
United Empire tried a sneak attack as LIJ did their fist bump before the match, but LIJ fought them off. All eight brawled to the floor. Empire got the best of the brawl. BUSHI and Cobb ended up as the legal men. BUSHI was cut off and Empire worked him over.
BUSHI managed a tag and Shingo came in all fired up. Ospreay tagged in as well. Shingo teased a noshigami, but instead hit a vertical suplex. Shingo and Ospreay traded strikes in the corner. Ospreay hit pip pip cheerio, then tagged out.
Shingo made a comeback on Henare with a dragon screw, then tagged SANADA. SANADA connected on a back suplex and a plancha. Henare answered with kicks and a suplex. SANADA blocked a tackle. They traded finisher teases. SANADA hit a magic screw into a double down.
Naito and O-Khan got tags. They traded forearm strikes. Naito hit a one-legged dropkick for a two count. Naito went after O-Khan's neck with back elbows. BUSHI jumped in for some tandem offense. Ospreay broke up a submission attempt. Shingo took out Ospreay.
Naito pulled O-Khan around the ring by his hair. O-Khan used a throw and a judo toss. Naito hit an enzuigiri and a basement dropkick to the right knee before tagging out.
BUSHI tagged in for a missile dropkick and a DDT. O-Khan blocked a swinging neckbreaker with a pump kick. O-Khan went for the Eliminator, but Shingo saved. Ospreay jumped in and did a crazy sequence with Shingo. SANADA and Henare entered for their own battle. Cobb and Naito jumped in. Cobb blocked a swing DDT and hit a spin cycle.
Cobb threw BUSHI to O-Khan. O-Khan used the claw to set up the Eliminator and got the pin.
NEVER Openweight Six-Man Tag Team Championship: Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI defeated KENTA, Yujiro Takahashi & Taiji Ishimori to retain the titles (20:14)
The closing stretch of this was very good. The match was all action.
KENTA teased starting off with YH, but stalled. He then tagged out. Ishimori and Goto began the match. Ishimori fired off some strikes, but Goto dropped him with a tackle. All six jumped in as Red Shoes lost control of the match in the opening minute.
Bullet Club turned it into a ringside brawl. Goto ended up cut off. KENTA tagged in and methodically worked on Goto with elbow drops. Bullet Club traded tags as they kept the pressure on Goto. YH tried to interfere, but Ishimori tossed him outside. Goto got whipped into an exposed turnbuckle.
Goto hit a misdirection lariat to Yujiro and managed a tag to Ishii. Ishii blocked an Ishimori dropkick and hit a lariat. Ishii dispatched an interfering KENTA after a series of misdirection spots. Yujiro hit an inverted DDT. Ishii blocked a lariat. They traded strikes. Yujiro hit a lariat and fisherman buster for a two count.
Ishii came back with a German on Yujiro. KENTA and YH got tags. Goto and Ishimori jumped in. Ishii entered. Ishimori and Yujiro hit a neckbreaker to YH. KENTA followed with a top rope double stomp for a near fall.
YH escaped a Go 2 Sleep. KENTA escaped a Goto ushgoroshi. YH hit a thrust kick into a Goto ushigorsoshi into an Ishii sliding lariat for a near fall. YH hit a lariat on KENTA for two. KENTA blocked Kharma and hit a DDT.
Ishimori hit a Bloody Cross on YH, but missed a 450. YH hit a lariat. Goto tagged in for a wheel kick and a bulldog on Ishimori for a near fall. Ishimori blocked an ushigoroshi and hit a handspring kick. Bullet Club triple-teamed Goto. YH and Ishii saved.
Yujiro took the referee. KENTA jumped in with YH's bo staff. KENTA hit Ishii and Goto with the bo. Ishimori covered, but YH broke up the pin. KENTA bumped the referee. YH and Yujiro dueled with their bo and cane. KENTA and YH fought over the bo. YH hit KENTA with the bo.
Ishimori hit a drop toehold into the exposed buckle on Goto. Ishimori got two quick near falls on pinning combinations. Ishimori took a flip bump off an Ishii lariat. Ishimori hit a knee strike to Goto.
Goto blocked a La Mistica and hit a headbutt. Goto hit a GTW and a GTR for the pin.
YH got his bo back and the good guys retained.
Here is the lineup for Monday's show:
NJPW Road to Wrestling Dontaku night 12, Monday, April 26, 5:30 a.m. Eastern time on NJPW World --
- Tetsuya Naito vs. Great-O-Khan
- SANADA vs. Aaron Henare
- Will Ospreay & Jeff Cobb vs. Shingo Takagi & BUSHI
- Hiroshi Tanahashi, Toru Yano, Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Ryusuke Taguchi & Master Wato vs. EVIL, Yujiro Takahashi, Taiji Ishimori, Gedo & Dick Togo
- Taichi, Zack Sabre Jr. & DOUKI vs. Tama Tonga, Tanga Loa & Jado
- Minoru Suzuki, El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru vs. SHO, YOH & Tiger Mask