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Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:43 am
by Frank Olson
Holy shit, what an incredible tournament final! I can't say offhand whether I'd rank it above last year's Hiromu vs. Ishimori final, but I'd say that they are both in the upper echelon of matches that I've ever seen. Damn near every spot was incredible, but they all felt like they were important to the match and not just there for the sake of being cool spots. Absolutely incredible performances by both Ospreay and Shingo. I know that Ospreay rubs some people the wrong way for various reasons, but this match really showed how over he is with the Japanese crowd while also suggesting that he could be an even bigger star down the line. At this point I'd expect him to semi-main one of the two Tokyo Dome shows at minimum, and possibly even hold the IWGP Heavyweight Title at some point in the next few years. And I hope that he and Shingo face off for that title at some point on a major show.

I really loved the US Title match. I haven't been a regular WWE viewer in over 10 years, so I hadn't seen much of Moxley/Ambrose prior to this, but I thought he came off incredibly well here. He had the aura of a psychopath who wrestles in an underground fight club. In a way he is doing the same sort of thing that Jericho has been doing in his post-WWE run, but Moxley comes off more authentic and less campy. Juice was phenomenal in the match as well, and took some really insane bumps. I hope that his back isn't too messed up after he overshot that dive from the rafters. My only complaint about the match is that I wish it had been a No DQ match, since it's pretty ridiculous that Red Shoes didn't disqualify either man with all of the blatant chair and table shots, but I guess that's more of an overall New Japan issue than it is a problem with this match in particular.

Though it's doomed to be overshadowed by the main and semi-main events, Tanahashi vs. White was excellent as well. I haven't been a huge fan of any of their prior matches together, as I don't think that they have much chemistry as opponents, but Tanahashi's injury gave them an easy natural story to work with that allowed both men to do what they do best. I can't think of many wrestlers today who work to their character better than these two do.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:07 am
by yaritaihoudai
Dominion card is up. It's a mix of good and bad.

+ Ospreay vs. Lee. No surprise here. After his BOSJ, I'm not going to doubt Ospreay delivering any time soon.

+ Shingo vs. Kojima. This is going to be awesome. Battle of the lariats.

+ Moxley vs. Umino. Weird opener, but hey, I guess Moxley is already in Japan so why not. Can't imagine how this is going to look, but that makes it good in my book.

- Bummed that they're not doing Liger/Suzuki yet. Are they going to drag it out to Wrestle Kingdom? Seems too long, but on the other hand, if they do it before, is there another opponent that will feel as big for the actual retirement match? I know a lot of time in Japan for retirements they do inconsequential 6-man tags, but I feel like Liger deserves something bigger.

- No Jr. tag title match. We get a six man with Tanahashi/Taguchi/Juice vs. White/Chase/Ishimori. I guess El Phantasmo is booked in RevPro, so shouldn't have got my hopes up. I saw someone mention there's a Kizuna Road event in Sendai where Yoh and Ishimori are from, so they'll probably do it there.

-G.O.D. vs. Evil/Sanada. Probably won't be a terrible match, but it's just a match. People are complaining that it's been done to death. I don't really feel that way. Yeah, they wrestled twice in the tag league last year, but that was six months ago. I can watch it again. My complaint is the piss-poor build, just L.I.J. winning with the Magic Killer in an eight man tag is enough to propel them to number one contendership. Whatever.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:28 am
by BoxingRobes
I loved the BOSJ Final.

Undercard was rock solid before the big singles matches.

Jay White v. Hiroshi Tanahashi was a nice redemption from their WK match.
Juice Robinson v. Jon Moxley was so good. I was at ****1/2 on it. I like everything about this Jon Moxley. He's going to be the biggest star in American wrestling at this point.
Will Ospraey v. SHINGO - Thirty Seven Stars. It was fucking incredible.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:49 pm
by ThommyGunn
After seeing these gaijins get these weird tangentially similar pervert gimmicks; Jay White SWITCHBLADE Knife Pervert, Chris Jericho PAINMAKER Cenobite Pervert, Jon Moxley DEATHRIDER Biker Bar Pervert, I think I'm starting to understand how all the Japanese fans felt any time they would see a wrestler head west and become a master of karate and come out to traditional music and a kimono.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:27 pm
by mlev76
Late to the party here and still need to watch the BOSJ final night, but very much enjoyed the tournament this year. My favorite part has been, by far, Rocky Romero. We're going on almost a decade and a half where he's been a super underrated great wrestler. His match with ELP is in my current top ten for the year and I may, for sentimental reasons, keep it there even if matches are technically better. Just a great match on all fronts.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:35 pm
by thecubsfan
FWIW, Lance Archer says he's back for the Kizuna Road tour on the Cabana podcast today and Cabana is definitely not in the G1 (which he jokes is because he's already doing his yearly comedy thing but doesn't actually believe he would've been part of it otherwise.)

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:50 pm
by mlev76
thecubsfan wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:35 pm
FWIW, Lance Archer says he's back for the Kizuna Road tour on the Cabana podcast today and Cabana is definitely not in the G1 (which he jokes is because he's already doing his yearly comedy thing but doesn't actually believe he would've been part of it otherwise.)
Did anyone actually think Cabana would have been in the G1?

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Fri Jun 07, 2019 1:22 am
by Frank Olson
The Dominion card is...interesting. The top 3 matches should all deliver, with Okada/Jericho being an intriguing-sounding styles clash. Despite being a big Okada fan I have to admit I've been a little bored with his match formula lately (particularly the SANADA matches, but also to an extent the Jay White match at MSG) but that is not at all the style that Jericho has been wrestling over the past year or so, so it will be really interesting to see how they match up. Obviously we know what we are getting with Naito/Ibushi and Ospreay/Dragon Lee should be great as long as Dragon Lee doesn't insist on doing a bunch of forearm exchanges at random points throughout the match.

The best-looking things on the undercard are the first two matches. I'm looking forward to watching Moxley murder Umino. I really hope that goes less than 10 minutes, that Umino doesn't get more than a brief hope spot, and that Moxley does that crazy release suplex thing that he did to Juice yesterday. Shingo vs. Kojima is a match that I never realized I really wanted to see until it was announced. You have to think that they wouldn't have Shingo lose to Kojima, so I wonder if this is building to Shingo being in the G1 after all.

NEVER Title match should be good at minimum, and maybe great if Taichi doesn't overdo the shenanigans or spend the first 10 minutes of the match doing nothing.

I do not care at all about the Tag Title match. G.O.D. are the most stale act in the company right now. I like EVIL and SANADA as a team but I have no interest in watching them wrestle G.O.D. yet again, especially in a match that has had literally no build.

ZSJ/Suzuki vs. YOSHI-HASHI/Liger is presumably building up to two Kizuna Road matches. I could imagine one of those shows being main evented by Liger vs. Suzuki, with a British Heavyweight Title defense against YOSHI-HASHI as the semi-main (or vice versa I guess, although I think it would be a mistake to go the other way around).

The match I'm really perplexed by is Tanahashi/Juice/Taguchi vs. White/Ishimori/Owens. Obviously Tanahashi and White just had their singles match, so it makes sense that they are paired up, but otherwise it seems like just a random collection of guys. I think it would have been better to have Tanahashi and Juice sit out Dominion to sell the beatings they took at the BOSJ finals. I like all six wrestlers but it's unclear to me what this match would be building to.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Sat Jun 08, 2019 1:53 pm
by Frank Olson
My ranking of Best of the Super Juniors competitors, from my least to most favorite…

20) TAKA Michinoku
TAKA’s tournament was more incomplete than bad per se, but he wasn’t exactly lighting the world on fire with his performances before he got injured. He did give a strong fiery performance against Shingo (in a fun sprint that was basically an extended hope spot for the ZSJ hypeman) but otherwise put in competent but perfunctory efforts.
Best Match: Shingo Takagi
Worst Match: Titan

19) Titan
I’m not a lucha expert by any means, but I’ve generally been really impressed with what I’ve seen from Titan. So I was really disappointed by his efforts on this tour, where he rarely seemed on the same page as his competitors (or the referees, who on more than one occasion were still counting his pinfalls long after Titan was already celebrating his victory). I think Titan was miscast in the more technical A Block (though he did have a fun styles clash with Jonathan Gresham), but really he felt like just a guy on this tour.
Best Match: Jonathan Gresham
Worst Match: TAKA Michinoku

BUSHI is sort of the junior equivalent of YOSHI-HASHI in that he’s a perfectly solid wrestler and a fine guy to have on the roster but he doesn’t always seem motivated and he rarely rises above a certain level. (He does feel like more of a star than YOSHI-HASHI does, but that’s mostly due to his impressive mask collection). Almost all of his matches on this tour were in the “gentleman’s three” range and very few of them were truly memorable (my pick for his “worst” match is somewhat arbitrary, as he had several other matches that I found equally forgettable). That said, he was never less than solid in this year’s tournament, which was refreshing after his poor performance last year.
Best Match: Will Ospreay
Worst Match: El Phantasmo

The most controversial and least polished performer in the tournament couldn’t compare to the man he was a last-minute replacement for (El Desperado), but he got a pretty impressive amount of heel heat considering how few New Japan fans must have been familiar with him. DOUKI sometimes came off as sloppy to the point of being uncoordinated, but his sleazy indie presence added a fun bit of randomness to the tournament. The narrative about him coming to New Japan to punish the roster’s many “hipster luchadores” was fun and helped him stand out from the pack. I don’t really care if I never see DOUKI again, but I also wouldn’t mind if he showed up from time to time as a pin eater in Suzukigun 8-man tags.
Best Match: Robbie Eagles
Worst Match: YOH

16) Taiji Ishimori
Going into this tour Ishimori was my New Japan MVP of the year, coming off of a strong if brief run with the Junior Title and a spectacular Dontaku match against Dragon Lee. Unfortunately he seems to have gotten legitimately injured very early on in this tournament, and he was noticeably slower and less willing to take crazy bumps than he normally would be. It’s a testament to Ishimori’s abilities that he still managed to have a number of solid matches throughout the tournament even in this somewhat hobbled state, and the level of his push ensured that he still felt like an important part of the tour. But the fact that he wasn’t one of the standout performers has to be considered a disappointment, even if it really isn’t his fault.
Best Match: Dragon Lee
Worst Match: Marty Scurll

15) Marty Scurll
I’ve grown pretty tired of Marty Scurll’s act and am really ready for him to just end whatever his contractual obligations are to Ring of Honor and/or New Japan and just move on to his natural home in AEW. He had a rough start to this tournament that was highlighted by the tour’s worst match, against Ishimori. However as the tour progressed his matches improved dramatically, and overall he seemed a lot more focused and hard-working than he has in recent years. The matches against Kanemaru, Shingo and SHO were the best non-Ospreay matches I’ve seen from Scurll in recent memory. I also liked the touch of Scurll being accompanied by his Villain Enterprises stablemate Brody King. While I have no particular connection to that faction I do think it’s cool that New Japan incorporates continuity from other promotions, and allowing Marty to be the leader of his own little faction improved his presentation compared to his previous Super Junior runs.
Best Match: Yoshinobu Kanemaru
Worst Match: Taiji Ishimori

14) Yoshinobu Kanemaru
Kanemaru has really come a long way since two years ago when I thought he was by far the most boring person on the New Japan roster. He seems a lot more engaged than he used to and while he isn’t the flashiest wrestler around he can easily go toe-to-toe with anyone he steps in the ring with. He’s also really got his slimy Heel Master character down. His countout victory over SHO (throwing Tsuji in the Roppongi 3K member’s face) was one of the most memorable moments of the tour, and the numerous callbacks to that in later matches were consistently funny. Kanemaru didn’t have any truly great matches (his main event against Shingo came the closest) but he remained a solid and entertaining hand throughout the tournament.
Best Match: Shingo Takagi
Worst Match: Titan

13) El Phantasmo
Gedo’s strong booking probably ultimately had more to do with Phantasmo’s success on this tour than his own performances did. A lot of his heel mannerisms came off as very try-hard and he just isn’t a very good actor, even by pro wrestling standards. He was booked to perfection though as the main heel of the B Block, and there’s no denying that he got some incredible crowd heat, leading to the tournament’s emotional peak (his surprise loss to crowd favorite Rocky Romero). Phantasmo’s actual wrestling wasn’t always terribly exciting, especially when he was in control (as he was for most of the boring main event he had late in the tournament against Taguchi), but he did manage to rise to the occasion in his wild Korakuen Hall spotfest with Will Ospreay.
Best Match: Will Ospreay
Worst Match: Ryusuke Taguchi

12) Bandido
Bandido has a lot of the flaws that you would expect from a young highspot wrestler (occasional sloppiness, a high volume of spots that look cool but don’t make much sense, etc.), but he is impressively athletic and was a welcome new addition to this tournament. He got off to a slow start but really found his footing with the amazing 5-minute Korakuen Hall sprint against Ren Narita, which felt like the platonic ideal of his style, and most of his matches from that point forward were really fun.
Best Match: Ren Narita
Worst Match: El Phantasmo

11) YOH
The most interesting thing about YOH in this tournament was that he seemed to be presenting himself as an amalgam of the people who were main eventers during his Young Lion days. He took the Calf Crusher from AJ Styles and the blocked German into successful Dragon Suplex from Tanahashi, and his singles match gear seems to be a tribute to Stardust Genius-era Naito. It still feels like he’s missing some element that he needs to come fully into his own though, and this tournament did nothing to erase the perception that he’s the Marty Jannetty of his team. YOH had a lot of good matches but nothing completely must-see, and in some ways was even outshined by his team’s manager.
Best Match: Will Ospreay
Worst Match: DOUKI

10) Ryusuke Taguchi
Taguchi was mostly in big match rather than comedy form throughout this tournament, but still seemed a little unconvincing as a main event presence compared to block-mate Will Ospreay. He had consistently good matches throughout most of the tournament (and I don’t think it was his fault that the Phantasmo match was so boring, since his opponent was in control for 90% of it) but nothing I would say was great.
Best Match: Will Ospreay
Worst Match: El Phantasmo

9) Tiger Mask
At the outset of this tour I was a little worried about this veteran’s ability to physically make it through the tournament, as his leg injury really seemed to affect the quality of his opening night match with TAKA. But he was ultimately able to perform at his grumpy best throughout much of the tournament, and was in a block with competitors who best compliment his gritty style. His match against Dragon Lee, where he was just shutting down all of the champion’s fancy offense with simple, blunt counter-wrestilng, is probably my favorite Tiger Mask IV performance I’ve ever seen. He also had an excellent technical wrestling showcase against Jonathan Gresham. He did have a few matches that were merely solid (including the tournament’s least memorable Shingo match), but overall he did very good work as the A Block’s veteran jobber.
Best Match: Dragon Lee
Worst Match: TAKA Michinoku

8) Rocky Romero
Given Rocky’s current position in the hierarchy of the New Japan roster, where he usually functions these days as a manager and a commentator, I expected him to primarily be a comedy jobber in this tournament. So I was pretty surprised by Rocky’s tournament narrative, which found him trying to prove himself as a still-vital wrestler even if he typically came up short against his younger, faster opponents. It was a story that worked out really well, climaxing with the great moment where he got the upset win over super-heel El Phantasmo with the full support of Korakuen Hall behind him.
Best Match: El Phantasmo
Worst Match: Ryusuke Taguchi

7) Dragon Lee
The IWGP Junior Champion’s athletic ability and willingness to risk his long-term health are second to none, but I sometimes question his grasp of storytelling and psychology. Too often he resorts to random strike exchanges in the middle of his matches (and fairly tepid ones at that) and he sometimes does things that just don’t fit his babyface character (as when he tried to take a cheap countout victory at one point in his match with Ishimori). Stilll, when he’s focused Dragon Lee can be one of the most exciting wrestlers in the world. His match with Shingo was an incredible main event sprint.
Best Match: Shingo Takagi
Worst Match: Jonathan Gresham

6) SHO
Roppongi 3K’s better half had another strong tournament, though he peaked early with his excellent singles match against Shingo and strong-if-overlong Dragon Lee main event, and then later felt a little lost in the shuffle after being mathematically eliminated a lot earlier than I expected. Still, I can’t fault his performances, which were consistently good. It was a struggle to come up with his “worst” match.
Best Match: Shingo Takagi
Worst Match: TAKA Michinoku

5) Jonathan Gresham
Gresham’s elaborate grappling really stood out in this tournament, as did his intricate match-to-match selling of finger and rib injuries. I doubt that I’ll ever find the free time for it, but it would be fun to go back and just marathon his nine matches and watch his particular story unfold. He never really got to show off what he could do in a longer match (the terrific Shingo match came the closest) but he worked very well within the short match format he was usually allotted. The Tiger Mask match had one of the best and most creative flash pins that I’ve ever seen.
Best Match: Tiger Mask
Worst Match: Marty Scurll

4) Ren Narita
The Young Lion may have been a last-minute replacement, but he added a really fun element to the B Block that wouldn’t have been there if Flip Gordon had filed his paperwork on time. Despite his relative lack of experience Narita often came off as the more polished performer in his matches, and he delivered every time he got in the ring. He had terrific matches against Ospreay, Eagles, and Bandido in particular. My only disappointment is that we never got to see Narita’s amazing suplex finisher (the only reason I have the BUSHI match listed as his “worst” match of the tournament is that I thought that would have been an ideal spot for Narita to get a flash pin with that maneuver).
Best Match: Bandido
Worst Match: BUSHI

3) Robbie Eagles
Going into the tournament I was afraid that Eagles would merely be the third wheel of the Bullet Club juniors and a guy who would have good matches but would not matter in the booking, but thankfully New Japan seem to be positioning him as a future babyface at odds with his stablemates’ cheating ways. He’s an incredibly smooth wrestler, especially considering the complexity of some of his offense and the pace of his matches, and he didn’t have a match on this tour where he didn’t deliver.
Best Match: Will Ospreay
Worst Match: El Phantasmo

2) Will Ospreay
From an ongoing narrative perspective it didn’t make a ton of sense that Ospreay was able to put established heavyweights like Bad Luck Fale and Lance Archer away definitively earlier in the year but was having back and forth epics with the likes of DOUKI and BUSHI in this tournament. It shouldn’t take him longer to beat manager/commentator Rocky Romero here than it did to beat Kota Ibushi at the Tokyo Dome. That said, Ospreay is among the most consistently hard working wrestlers on the roster, and I admire his efforts to always put on the most spectacular match of the night, even when the situation doesn’t seem to call for it. He really got the best out of everyone he got in the ring with, and by the time he was delivering his tournament victory speech he came across as one of the biggest stars in wrestling.
Best Match: Shingo Takagi
Worst Match: DOUKI

1) Shingo Takagi
While Will Ospreay might have had more consistently remarkable matches throughout the entire tournament, Shingo certainly peaked higher more often. The matches against Titan and Tiger Mask were forgettable (though not bad), but the SHO and Dragon Lee matches were Match of the Year contenders. Shingo’s undefeated streak was totally convincing, as he played his bully role perfectly. This made it all the more remarkable when the finals match against Ospreay showed some chinks in the LIJ member’s armor, and that long-term storytelling helped make that an all-time great match.
Best Match: Will Ospreay
Worst Match: Tiger Mask

Top 10 Matches
1) Will Ospreay vs. Shingo Takagi
2) Shingo Takagi vs. SHO
3) Shingo Takagi vs. Dragon Lee
4) Robbie Eagles vs. Will Ospreay
5) Bandido vs. Ren Narita
6) Dragon Lee vs. Tiger Mask
7) Jonathan Gresham vs. Tiger Mask
8) El Phantasmo vs. Will Ospreay
9) Shingo Takagi vs. Jonathan Gresham
10) Robbie Eagles vs. Ren Narita

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Sun Jun 09, 2019 8:59 pm
by Joe Lanza
Dominion will go down as a legendary show, for a variety of reasons

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Sun Jun 09, 2019 9:28 pm
by Frank Olson
Dominion was a bit of a mixed bag for me, although I ultimately liked more than I disliked.

Moxley vs. Umino wasn't quite as violent as I was expecting, but it did its job of establishing Moxley as an antihero rather than an outright heel. His announcement that he wants to enter the G1 got the show off to a hot start.

I really liked Shingo vs. Kojima. The lariat battle that they had, where Kojima no-sold the Pumping Bomber, was one of the better spots of that type that I've seen in a while. They did a good job of telling the story that Shingo couldn't bully around this tough guy heavyweight the way that he did with the juniors in BOSJ, while still showing that he's a smart enough wrestler to adapt to his circumstances and still pick up the win. I wasn't expecting Shingo in the G1 til 2020, but it's very exciting that he'll be in it this year.

YOSHI-HASHI/Liger vs. ZSJ/Suzuki was a solid little undercard match. I really like the dynamic between Suzuki and ZSJ and I wish that New Japan would use them as a team more regularly. I hope that they actually do the Liger vs. Suzuki match sooner rather than later. I know some people want them to wait til the Tokyo Dome, but it already feels to me like the feud has lost some steam since the Dontaku tour.

The Tanahashi & Friends vs. Bullet Club 6-man was nothing special. I still think it would have been preferable to have Tanahashi and Juice sit this show out to sell their beatings from the BOSJ Finals, although of course it became clear later in the night why Tanahashi was around. He didn't look too great in this match though, and whatever he was going for with that finish just did not work.

The NEVER Title match didn't do much for me. It seemed like the idea they were trying to get across is that Taichi is tough but not tough enough to cleanly beat Ishii, but it feels like they've already told some variation of that story with Taichi 100 different times since he's become a heavyweight. They need to figure out whether they actually want to push him or not. Also it's kind of annoying that they seemed to be taking the NEVER Title in a fresh new direction at the beginning of the year with Ospreay's run, but now they are just back to the status quo of it being the “tough guys doing forearm exchanges” belt. I love Ishii, but I think it would have been better to keep the belt on Taichi, if only to give the title a little bit of consistency again.

The Tag Title match was a slog as expected. I like G.O.D.'s theme song, but once they hit the ring they are the most boring pushed act in the company.

The show picked up again with the announcement of KENTA in the G1. The full roster lineup for that tournament is going to be really interesting.

Ospreay vs. Dragon Lee was really wild. That tope that Dragon Lee did while Ospreay was on the announce table was one of the craziest spots of its type that I've seen, and I could say the same for that moment when Dragon Lee did his jumping foot stomp to Ospreay to the outside of the ring. I have the impression that Ospreay is not going to be in the G1 and is instead going to focus on being the ace of the junior division, which is a little weird considering how he was booked earlier in the year.

Naito vs. Ibushi was bonkers and definitely my favorite match on the show. That apron suplex spot was downright disturbing, and whether it came off as intended or not it was probably the most memorable moment on the card. Interesting that Naito won the IC Title back here. I had assumed that one Tokyo Dome main event would be Okada vs. Naito and the other would be Ibushi headlining against either Tanahashi or Omega, but this opens up a lot of other different possibilities.

The main event was...not great. This match proved that Jericho really needs the smoke and mirrors of a plunder brawl to deliver these days. This was mostly a regular IWGP Title match, and Jericho came off as being too slow to hang with Okada. I did like the way that the abrupt sitout finish called back to last year's Dominion main event (although I suspect that this was done for political reasons, as AEW probably didn't want one of their No. 1 contenders taking a definitive Rainmaker loss), but the finishing sequence leading up to that looked really clunky. I'm afraid that the Jericho/Tanahashi match that they set up (probably for one of the two Dome shows) is going to be really ugly if they don't give it some sort of No DQ stipulation.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Sun Jun 09, 2019 10:55 pm
by Tigerkinney
Frank Olson wrote:
Sun Jun 09, 2019 9:28 pm
The Tag Title match was a slog as expected. I like G.O.D.'s theme song, but once they hit the ring they are the most boring pushed act in the company.
During commentary on the mediocre tag title match, Kevin Kelly made the point that despite being five time tag champions, G.O.D should get more respect. Well that match showed exactly why they don't get more respect, as save for the odd match or two, there five title matches have been full of dull matches with B.S finishes. They may be five time tag champs but they aren't exactly deserving of that honour. I wouldn't go as far as saying G.O.D are the worst wrestlers in New Japan, but they are for my money, definitely the most overpushed.

I was pretty deflated after that tag title match but my mood picked up after the KENTA reveal and the fact he want's to be in the G-1.

Main event wasn't terrible but it was a disappointment, the Jericho stuff was exciting at first but it's getting to the point of diminishing returns now.

I enjoyed the NEVER title match but can see Frank's point regarding them playing hot potato with that belt. I enjoy Ishii more as a wrestler but I actually wanted Taichi to retain here, as I thought they were going to finally deliver that definitive win for Taichi. Definitive in that he managed to beat someone without having to resort to cheap tactics. It's a story they've slowly been telling with Taichi, in that deep down he knows that the only way he is going to earn respect is by ditching the cowardly heel shortcuts.

I enjoyed Naito vs Ibushi, but even I must admit that bump Ibushi took on the apron made me squirm. As much as I enjoy their matches together, perhaps for their own well being they should give that match up a rest for a while.

Dragon Lee vs Ospreay was match of the night for me. I don't think it topped the BOSJ Finals match between Shingo and Ospreay but they pushed it pretty close, if I was forced to give a star rating, I would go **** 3/4 on this one.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Mon Jun 10, 2019 2:52 am
by mlev76
I had two matches at 4 stars (Ishii/Taichi and Ospreay/Lee) and two at 3 3/4 (Shingo/Kojima and Naito/Ibushi), but what started as a really exciting show with the G1 announcements, the KENTA appearance and some of the matches really was dragged down by my disappointment in the last two matches. The semi main just had too much stupid shit to match their MSG match and I don't know if Ibushi was legit out of his mind, but it seemed to not be up to their standards.

The main event, while not bad, was well below your typical main event standard and Jericho's stuff, which was awesome in the Naito and Omega matches, just didn't click here. I wasn't a fan of the post match stuff either and with the G1 coming up, it seems odd for them to set up a rematch after a loss and when it probably can't happen until the fall.

I think in the aftermath of a superb BOSJ and a great final match, my expectations were certainly high and it didn't live up to them.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Mon Jun 10, 2019 11:12 am
by mlev76
Douki seems to have been signed up as a full time guy. Joe will be very happy.

Aaron Solow, Tony Kozina and Mick Moretti are on the Australian shows.

Re: Strong Style Spirit - New Japan catch all thread

Posted: Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:19 pm
by SuperplexlariatBW
So they may have others from outside CMLL and ROH in the Super J-Cup? Maybe they can debut guys like A-Kid then.