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Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 9:17 am
by Tigerkinney
Frank Olson wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 1:50 am
Today's show mostly felt like a house show stop to me. The matches weren't bad or anything, but it didn't feel like anyone except for the guys in the main event were really putting in full effort. This is perhaps understandable since the wrestlers are in the early middle of a grueling tour and performing in a small building, but this is the first show of the tournament that I would say is basically completely skippable for anyone who's just trying to skip to the highlights.
Have to disagree with you there this time around, thought this was a solid show and an easy watch, even though they were performing in a smaller, ugly (Lanza rightfully buries the Big Wing behind the Paywall) building.

SHO vs TAKA was a good opener, I like how TAKA used his veteran knowledge to counter SHO's power based offence and how it forced SHO to adapt and not rely on brute strength to put TAKA away. Can't disagree with you on the next two matches, Ishimori seem's off his game and it may well be because he's legitimately hurt. On the other hand I liked Gresham vs Dragon Lee a lot more than you, I felt the styles clash actually worked on this occasion and was into the story of Dragon Lee being out-wrestled by Gresham but ultimately being too strong and too determined for the smaller man to put away.

Main event was excellent, it wasn't your typical high work rate main event match and we kind of had the same sort of shenanigans filled, story driven match on the previous show between Taguchi and DOUKI. The difference between this and that match (even though I didn't hate the Taguchi vs DOUKI match either) is that you had two performers delivering at a major league level and not just one. Kanemaru's heel control segment here was so much better than DOUKI's and I'm far from Kanemaru's biggest fan. Everything throughout this match was on point, where as in comparison Taguchi vs DOUKI only got better once Taguchi mounted his comeback.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 1:24 pm
by Frank Olson
Rocky vs. Narita and Bandido vs. Douki were both solid but unspectacular. I can't say that I remember many details from either match even though I just watched them, although I was entertained enough by them while I was watching them.

Phantasmo vs. Eagles was okay, but it's a little awkward to see Phantasmo being pushed as the star when Eagles is clearly the superior wrestler. Phantasmo's tournament so far reminds me a bit of Jay White's 2018 G1, in that it seems that they are trying to establish him as an asshole heel rather than trying to show off his in-ring skills, but White's character work is on a different stratosphere than Phantasmo's. It feels like Phantasmo is a guy playing a pro wrestling heel while White is a pro wrestling heel, if that makes sense.

Ospreay vs. YOH was the best match of the night, with a well-told story of YOH working over Ospreay's knee. YOH's calf crusher looks good and he should keep using that. I like that he is using an AJ Styles move like that and also the Tanahashi fake Dragon Suplex into a German suplex, because it makes it feel like he's really internalized a lot of the tactics of the main eventers from the era when he was a Young Lion. My only complaint is that I think it's kind of a bad look for this match to have been shorter and less spectacular than the Ospreay/Rocky match from a few days ago, since Rocky's role in the company at this point is essentially to be YOH (and SHO's) manager. As fantastic as that Ospreay/Rocky match was it really made the storytelling a little murky.

Taguchi vs. BUSHI was good, and pretty much what you'd expect a match from those two to be. I do find it a little weird that Taguchi has main evented all of the B Block shows so far, especially since Ospreay's semi-mains on those same shows have consistently been the longer and more spectacular matches, but I guess this is a way of reestablishing Taguchi as a threat after he had a losing record last year. It's also weird that BUSHI has a tradition of starting out 0-3 in Best of the Super Juniors, although at least this year he lost to the three top guys in his Block.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Mon May 20, 2019 8:14 am
by rollup
ELP hasn't showed his hand yet and his antics with crowd can really rub the fans (especially online ) the wrong way. At the moment i would say Eagles is miles ahead of him

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Tue May 21, 2019 2:57 am
by thecubsfan
thecubsfan wrote:
Thu May 02, 2019 7:22 pm


It probably doesn't help the perception of the tag teams that they're treated like midcard (or worse) singles performers in the G1 every year. Doesn't really help Tama to go 3-6 at this point.
Hi.



Tonga being in Defy on July 26-27th means you can indeed cross him off the 2019 G1 list. Which he surely knew when he put out that tweet.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Tue May 21, 2019 6:48 am
by Joe Lanza
Master class "getting out in front of a story" by Tama here for sure.

"Oh yeah! Well I never wanted to be your friend anyway!"

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Tue May 21, 2019 2:38 pm
by yaritaihoudai
So Tama's out, and so are Kenny, Hangman, and Elgin from last year's field. That means four spots are available. Who do you think will fill them?

I think Taichi is a lock for one. As for the other three, best case I think would be Ospreay, Shingo, and either Henare or Chase Owens. Worst case would be Mikey Nichols, Honma, and Yujiro. Who else is there? Finlay maybe, or whoever is coming after Juice, I guess.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Tue May 21, 2019 3:37 pm
by ThommyGunn
Taichi, Ospreay, Nicholls, Finlay. No way they pull the trigger on Shingo who will probably be coming right off a win in BOSJ.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Tue May 21, 2019 6:30 pm
by Tigerkinney
Some other possibilities:

Jeff Cobb- Recent NEVER Openweight Champion

Colt Cabana- Worked the New Japan Cup

Lance Archer- Worked the New Japan Cup

Davey Boy Smith Jr.- Worked the New Japan Cup

Of the two KES workers, I think Archer has a better shot of making his way back into the G-1, he had a well received match with Will Ospreay, where as DBS Jr probably hasn't endeared himself to management by whingeing about being misused (whilst he might have a point, publicy airing your grievances is never the wisest of moves).

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 1:43 am
by Frank Olson
Don't forget about the mystery man who is targeting Juice Robinson. I assume that whoever that winds up being will be guaranteed to be in the G1.

My guesses for the vacant spots would be that mystery biker guy, Ospreay, Taichi, and Cobb. I'd really like to see Henare in the G1, but it seems like they just don't see him at that level, at least yet.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 10:33 am
by Danwaka
Tigerkinney wrote:
Tue May 21, 2019 6:30 pm
Of the two KES workers, I think Archer has a better shot of making his way back into the G-1, he had a well received match with Will Ospreay, where as DBS Jr probably hasn't endeared himself to management by whingeing about being misused (whilst he might have a point, publicy airing your grievances is never the wisest of moves).
Archer's back injury could make doing a G1 run pretty hard, though. He was out for a while with it.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 4:19 pm
by thecubsfan
In my head, the storyline here is Lance Archer gets a G1 spot if and only if he sells a certain amount of G1 Dallas tickets in time.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu May 23, 2019 12:06 am
by Frank Olson
Holy shit, what a great show today! That has to be the second best New Japan show so far this year, only behind Wrestle Kingdom.

Ishimori vs. TAKA was a fun little opener. The short timeframe helped give TAKA's work an urgency that it's been missing so far this tournament. I don't always like it when one person dominates a match and then the other competitor suddenly wins with one big move at the end, but I thought that structure actually worked considering these two guys' respective places in the New Japan junior hierarchy.

Bandido vs. Narita was my favorite match of the night, and one of my favorites of the tournament so far. It probably only went about 5 minutes, but it was balls to the wall the whole time. Narita's suplex on the apron was incredible. I hadn't been too impressed with Bandido up to this point in the tournament, but he really delivered here. I'd like to see more of these super quick all-killer no-filler matches in this tournament.

Gresham vs. Titan didn't sound particularly appealing on paper, especially given Titan's tournament output so far, but it wound up being another really cool match. They were doing a lot of wacky innovative stuff that I haven't seen before.

I was expecting Rocky vs. YOH to be a lot more comedic (and really I was expecting Rocky to lean on comedy a lot more in this tournament in general) but the competitive match they had here made sense given both men's stories in the tournament. I'm glad that YOH is continuing to use the calf cutter, which looks great.

I loved Tiger Mask vs. Dragon Lee. That might have been my favorite Tiger Mask IV performance I've ever seen. I loved watching him shut down so much of Dragon Lee's fancy offense with basic common sense counters (like just powerbombing Lee when he tried to give him a hurricanrana). It was such a good Tiger Mask performance that I even briefly suspended my disbelief and thought he might score the upset, even though I knew that logically that would not have made much sense.

BUSHI vs. DOUKI was another enjoyable match. I'm really surprised by the quality of BUSHI's tournament so far this year since he seemed to really be phoning it in last year.

SHO vs. Kanemaru was kind of awesome in its own little way. I'm surprised that SHO is only 1-3 at this point, but it's fitting that the “Heel Master” would win with a hilariously sleazy count out.

Taguchi vs. Eagles was yet another really good match on this show. Eagles is just so incredibly smooth with everything that he does. It was a cool surprise that he was the first one to give Taguchi a loss. It shows that Eagles is more than just the jobber of the Bullet Club juniors, which I appreciate since he's been one of my favorites in the tournament so far.

Shingo vs. Scurll was Scurll's second focused and well-structured match in a row (that disastrous match with Ishimori must have set him straight) and Shingo looked like an enormous superstar as always. Even the interference spots with Brody King worked. Scurll did take the bump off of one of Shingo's finishers a little awkwardly, but other than that this was a really good match.

Ospreay vs. Phantasmo was a strong main event and the kind of match that Phantasmo really needed to have after a lackluster start to his tournament. I'm not normally a huge fan of crowd brawling, but theirs felt legitimately wild and out of control. Ospreay violently launching that chair into Phantasmo after throwing him into the chairs really set the tone for the match and it never really let up from there.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu May 23, 2019 2:47 pm
by Ckkj14
Bandido v Ospreay and Shingo v Dragon Lee were both incredible

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Fri May 24, 2019 4:21 am
by Frank Olson
Phantasmo vs. Narita was another good showing for the Young Lion, who has consistently looked like one of the most polished performers in the tournament despite having the least experience.

Titan vs. TAKA was just okay. That ending with Titan releasing the pin but the ref counting it anyway was really awkward.

Eagles vs. BUSHI was a fun little sprint, though it lacked any truly memorable moments.

Gresham vs. Tiger Mask was a cool match. Gresham is doing a lot of really innovative stuff in this tournament, and the way that he was selling getting the wind knocked out of him was really interesting. The way that he caught Tiger Mask at the end was maybe the best-looking flash pin I've ever seen.

YOH vs. DOUKI was not good. I've mostly enjoyed DOUKI up to this point in the tournament, but he was really sloppy here (tripping after his double foot stomp, messing up the springboard DDT again). He seemed uncoordinated and not up to New Japan standards.

SHO vs. Scurll was a solid match that the hot crowd elevated to near-greatness. The way that SHO transitioned into that first Shock Arrow (that Scurll surprisingly kicked out of) was amazing.

Taguchi vs. Romero didn't do much for me. The stuff with the basketball at the beginning was kind of funny, and the flurry of rollups at the end was well done, but the meat of the match was fairly unremarkable.

Kanemaru vs. Ishimori was a really good sprint. I loved the spot where Kanemaru tried to sneak another countout victory by sliding a chair that Ishimori jumped over.

Ospreay vs. Bandido had a surprisingly slow first few minutes (relative to what you would expect from these two) but once it got going it was a really wild spotfest. That springboard shooting star press from Bandido was insane. It was a little distracting to see Ospreay loudly calling out spots at several points, but otherwise his work was superb as usual. He is the clear star of the B Block.

Shingo vs. Dragon Lee was an awesome main event and definitely one of the best matches of the tour to this point. Shingo is so great at being a wall for his opponents, but he can also match everyone's speed, which just makes him more intimidating. Dragon Lee's big tope spot was absolutely insane. I really hope we are getting this match again at Dominion.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Sat May 25, 2019 3:55 am
by Frank Olson
SHO vs. Tiger Mask was a nice brisk opener. Tiger Mask's last few matches have all played heavily on the grimy technical wrestling that he's so good at, and that plays to SHO's strengths as well.

Ospreay vs. Narita was a really impressive showing between the two best performers in the B Block. The overhead belly to belly on the outside was amazing, as was the moment when Narita smoothly countered an Oscutter attempt with a suplex.

Scurll vs. Kanemaru was a fun gimmicky match between two noted cheaters. The spots involving the whiskey and the umbrella were genuinely funny.

DOUKI rebounded after a terrible performance yesterday and actually looked pretty smooth today, although his opponent Eagles was the standout in their match. The accidental blood definitely added to the match. I felt while watching this that Eagles really has a lot more upside as a babyface, and I hope he gets to play that role in New Japan down the road.

TAKA had his best performance of the tournament so far against Shingo. I was never truly convinced that TAKA would win, but Korakuen was the right place to do a match that was basically an extended hope spot and the enthusiastic crowd helped make this a lot of fun.

I was enjoying Bandido vs. Taguchi well enough until Bandido messed up his goofy finisher. A pretty good but not great match.

Ishimori vs. Gresham was good though I came away feeling that these two have a better match in them. Nothing really wrong with the match, but it never quite hit the level that I thought it could.

YOH vs. BUSHI was solid, although it didn't do anything to change the perception that these two are by far the least exciting half of the ongoing RPG 3K vs. LIJ feud.

Dragon Lee vs. Titan had some impressive individual moments but I really wish that Dragon Lee would stop doing the forearm exchange spots. His strikes aren't convincing and he tends to insert those spots at totally random points in his matches. Still a reasonably fun match, but not nearly as exciting as I was hoping for.

I've found some of Phantasmo's heel work in this tournament a little cringey, but it was clear from the reactions he was getting today that his push is working. I felt that the actual wrestling that he and Rocky did was good but unspectacular, but the crowd being so invested in Rocky putting this asshole in his place really elevated the match and made it feel worthy of the main event spot. It was the right time and place for this match.