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NJPW Strong results: Ospreay & TJP vs. Narita & Connors

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Saturday's show kicked off the NJPW Showdown series that was filmed in Philadelphia at the 2300 Arena.

Team Filthy (West Coast Wrecking Crew & JR Kratos) defeated David Finlay, Alex Coughlin & Yuya Uemura

Team Filthy’s Danny Limelight did color commentary for this match. Coughlin and Kratos had a great exchange with a bodyslam during the match even getting a great reaction. Finlay did a dive to the floor midway through, but Kratos later planted him with a Sky High. The finish saw the Wrecking Crew put Uemura away after Royce Isaacs used a deadlift half-and-half-to-German suplex followed by a Jorel Nelson springboard back elbow with Isaacs pinning Uemura. Afterward, Kratos and Coughlin got into it.

Juice Robinson defeated El Phantasmo

Phantasmo poked Robinson in the eye. Robinson responded later with a pescado, landing on Phantasmo on the floor. Robinson later offered him a free shot to the face, but Phantasmo kicked him in the gut instead followed by back rakes.

Robinson came back later, sticking Phantasmo with a full nelson slam followed by a standing senton. He scored a two count after landing a fireman’s carry gutbuster. Phantasmo landed a big splash just before the ten minute mark. Phantasmo teased a One-Winged Angel, but Robinson escaped and shoved Robinson into the ref. He then gave Robinson a low blow and went for the pin, but the ref was still out. Robinson used Pulp Friction, but the ref was still down. He finally pinned Phantasmo after a sit-out fisherman’s buster.

After the match, Robinson called out Impact Wrestling's Moose who he will wrestle at NJPW’s Battle in the Valley in San Jose this Saturday.

-- A quick vignette for Buddy Matthews (fka Buddy Murphy in WWE) aired and it was announced Saturday that he is wrestling Kazuchika Okada this Saturday in San Jose.

Ren Narita and Clark Connors defeated United Empire (Will Ospreay & TJP)

Narita, who is really beginning to resemble his trainer Katsuyori Shibata, had the crowd chanting for him as soon as he stepped foot in the ring. TJP locked his head in a ankle scissors early, taunting the crowd as he squeezed. Connors was in next and chopped up his previous mentor and tag partner, TJP.

Ospreay broke up the babyface momentum when he stepped into the ring without tagging. He tried putting the boots to Narita and Connors, but they stopped him with a double back body drop.

United Empire gained another advantage when they laid Narita out and left him on the floor. They worked Connors over until he blasted Ospreay with a pounce off the ropes. He tagged out to Narita, who had recovered, and he began suplexing Ospreay all over the ring. Ospreay cut his offense short after connecting with a handspring somersault heel kick.

Ospreay went for the Stormbreaker on Narita, but Narita slipped out of it and locked on a sleeper. Connors then locked TJP in the Nirvana Strangle (the submission finisher for FMW's Mr. Gannosuke) which is a full nelson camel clutch. Neither of the United Empire team submitted and both were forced to break the hold.

After a couple of very close near falls, Narita scored the pin after putting TJP down with a bridging front suplex. He will face Ospreay this Saturday in San Jose.

Afterward, Ospreay attacked and attempted putting Narita’s lights out with the Hidden Blade back elbow to the head. However, Narita ducked and threw a big boot that missed as Ospreay slipped away to the floor. Narita then took the mic, and in Japanese, he told Ospreay that he wasn’t interested in his fake IWGP World Heavyweight title belt. He said that all he wanted was a win and not to underestimate the LA Dojo. He sat cross-legged in the middle of the ring, offering Ospreay a free shot as Ospreay and TJP exited to the back.

Final Thoughts:

Tonight’s Strong was good but didn't feel as big time as the past few. Maybe it’s just that we’re getting used to this current lineup that has been used this fall. The lighting and overall setup looked much better on this episode, especially when compared with the recent Autumn Attack run.

The main event was very good as well as Coughlin and Kratos’ exchanges during the opener.