After some solid undercard action from the NJPW roster, it’s time to get into the main events of the show. We have a preview of tomorrow’s main event, Guerillas of Destiny defending the IWGP Tag Team Championships against Dangerous Tekkers, and finally SHO looking to take the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship from Hiromu Takahashi. Let’s waste no time, and get right into these matches!
Tag Team Match: SANADA & Tetsuya Naito vs. Kota Ibushi & Tomoaki Honma
Tomorrow, we will see Kota Ibushi defend the IWGP Double Gold against SANADA, in a rematch from the 2020 G1 Climax finals, but tonight, they meet in tag team action. While they’re certain to give their all in this match, Naito is tagging along with SANADA for a chance to further beat down and embarrass Tomoaki Honma.
SANADA & Ibushi got started, previewing tomorrow’s clash. Ibushi took the arm to start the chain wrestling, SANADA countering before being taken to the mat where he again countered and got a hammerlock. SANADA was put into a headlock, he broke free, and they gave each other space before starting again. Ibushi bounced up after being dropped with a shoulder tackle, nailed a dropkick and tagged Honma in.
SANADA was able to take advantage of Honma, before going after Ibushi on the outside. This left Honma to Naito, who just stomped him down into the mat and hit neckbreakers, before the tough as nails veteran hit a DDT/Neckbreaker combo on both opponents before tagging Ibushi in. Ibushi dove in with a dropkick to SANADA, before hitting a body press over the top rope onto his next challenger.
Back in the ring, SANADA was able to work Ibushi into the Paradise Lock, before kicking him free. Ibushi failed to connect with the head kick, dodged the German Suplex before taking the rope assisted Magic Killer. Back to Naito & Honma, Naito applied a submission to attack the previously injured neck, but Honma got the ropes. Honma dropped Naito with a lariat on the apron, before taking him in for a double kokeshi with Ibushi. SANADA & Naito isolated Honma, Naito nailed Destino, and got the win.
Tomorrow’s main event should be excellent, but the bits with Naito & Honma really slowed this one down. Still a solid tag team match, but a weak spot on this card for sure. Match Rating: 2.75/5 (** ¾)
IWGP Tag Team Championship Match: Guerillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa) vs. Dangerous Tekkers (Zack Sabre Jr. & Taichi)
In a rematch from Wrestle Kingdom, Dangerous Tekkers want to do two things. They want to regain their IWGP Tag Team Championships, and finally beat G.O.D in tag team action, having an 0-4 record against the now seven time champions. G.O.D are on an absolute roll after finally winning the World Tag League and becoming record setting champions, but Tekkers can end any hot streak at a moment’s notice. Tama Tonga also stole Taichi’s iron fingers, and has been teasing him all tour about this.
This one started with a brawl on the outside, Tekkers sick of G.O.D and ready to kick their asses. DOUKI took Jado away, as Loa attacked Taichi from behind, who was opening bags of trash thrown at him by Tama, who claimed one contained the iron fingers. Taichi launched a hard kick, dug through more bags, as Tama laughed on the mat. Tama attacked from behind before Taichi got to the last bag, which was taken outside of the ring. ZSJ got involved, but the focus remained on that last bag.
We almost saw a double count out, and Kanemaru opened the last bag on commentary to find a bra. In the ring, Taichi was dropped with a high angle back suplex, and maybe this match could actually get started. Loa choked ZSJ, before G.O.D went to work on Taichi in the ring, who had been completely isolated from the start. ZSJ tried to make the save, but was thrown aside by Loa. 10 minutes have passed, and very little of note has happened in the ring during this Tag Team Championship match.
Taichi finally was able to dodge a charge from Loa, and got a big head kick. ZSJ could finally get the tag, and was hitting anyone that moved with hard strikes, before being shoved away by Loa. He got right back up, took the strikes before picking the arms of Loa away like only he can. Loa would have had his arm broken, but Tama broke the submission up before being picked apart in seconds.
Back to the arm of Loa, the elbow was stomped into the mat. The wrist was bent, head was kicked, but Loa cut ZSJ down with a big spear, putting G.O.D back in control. G.O.D tried for Magic Killer, ZSJ slipped out before being crushed in the corner. ZSJ came back with a choke on Tama, while Taichi applied the stretch plum on Loa, but Tama got the ropes.
Loa would fight off a choke into a jackhammer, before Taichi came in and wanted to get revenge. He’d nail the Axe Bomber and Kawada Kicks on Tama, but be hit with the Tongan Twist. Taichi blocked two attempts at the Gun Stun, and nailed a big backdrop. G.O.D nailed a big neckbreaker, and wanted the Super Powerbomb, but Taichi got the suplex. ZSJ helped cut Loa down, and Tekkers went to work on Tama. Zack Mephisto was nailed, and Loa pulled the referee out before the three count.
Jado came back with the Iron Fingers, Tama was given them and DOUKI made the save before being dropped. Taichi blocked the strike, ZSJ isolated Tama, and Taichi didn’t get revenge before the referee was back. The referee dropped, Loa next, then Jado, but Taichi threw the win away by hitting Tama in front of the referee.
While I’d love to ignore the opening minutes, they really pull down the quality of this match. In the end, the action was great, as these two teams have great chemistry, and it was shown here in the end. Could have been their best match yet, but there was too much nonsense in this one, though it was super fun. Match Rating: 3/5 (***)
IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship Match: Hiromu Takahahi vs. SHO
Since winning the 2020 Best of The Super Juniors tournament, Hiromu Takahashi has been on the top of his game. He beat the Super J-Cup winner El Phantasmo on Night One of Wrestle Kingdom, then won the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship back on Night Two. However, tonight he gets another major test in SHO, a man who he’s tied against in singles matches at 1-1, and who wants to claim his first singles championship. SHO beat him in Best of The Super Juniors, and is the one doubt Takahashi has that he’s unstoppable.
As soon as the bell rang, they both rushed in for some forearm shots in the middle of the ring. They’d eventually slow down and put more power behind their shots, Takahashi finally getting SHO in the corner before being shoved off. They’d get right back to their forearm shots, neither man wanting to be the first to fall in this match, but SHO was forced to take a knee. He’d get right back up, and continue to show his toughness with Takahashi.
Finally, Takahashi threw SHO outside the ring and into the barricade, before meeting the steel himself. Now they were trading blows outside the ring, right in front of Jushin Liger on Japanese commentary. They’d get back in the ring at nineteen to break the count, before getting back into a brawl. SHO was down and Takahashi stuck to forearms, beating him into the mat.
SHO got back up, thrown into the corner, took a lariat before trying to get the spear, only to be countered. A second attempt after some misdirection took Takahashi down, hitting a mid-kick for a near fall. A deadlift German Suplex was countered by Takahashi, who hit the wheelbarrow flatliner, before hitting the overhead belly to belly into the corner.
SHO was sent to the apron for the sunset bomb, countered and went for a suplex down to the floor. Takahashi countered out and got the powerbomb to the floor, SHO crashed hard on his neck. Once he got back up, he wasted little time hitting the apron powerbomb on Takahashi.
Takahashi barely answered the 20 count to get back in the ring, only to take a deadlift German Suplex. SHO hung on nailed another then went for the cross armbreaker, Takahashi quickly getting his foot on the ropes. Another German Suplex, and SHO was ready to end this one, before taking a suplex from Takahashi, but he rolled back up to his feet.
SHO went for the cross arm piledriver, but Takahashi managed to counter out. They’d throw some more forearms as we passed the 20 minute mark, jumping into the blows but neither man stayed down for more than a one count before collapsing. One big move can end this one, and Takahashi applied the Triangle Choke in the middle of the ring. SHO broke free, blocked a Time Bomb attempt into Double Wrist Lock, and would be isolated in the middle of the ring.
Takahashi would refuse to tap, and got his foot on the bottom rope just in time. A powerbreaker from SHO got a two count, but he couldn’t get Shock Arrow. A headbutt from Takahashi followed by a superkick set up another Time Bomb attempt, but SHO got a jumping knee. The cross arm piledriver spiked Takahashi, who still kicked out. It was time for Shock Arrow, but Takahashi countered into a DDT.
Three superkicks but SHO kept standing, and he went for the triangle choke once again, only to be driven into the corner with the Death Valley Driver. Time Bomb was hit, but SHO kicked out at two. This became the longest Junior Heavyweight Title match ever, before Takahashi hit a lariat and Time Bomb II to get the win.
From the moment go, these two went to war and never let up. It was an epic match for sure, and one of the best matches we’ve ever seen over this title. Shingo vs. Tanahashi was a hard act to follow in the main event slot on this tour. SHO will get his time eventually, but right now, Hiromu Takahashi is the ace of his division. Match Rating: 4.75/5 (**** ¾)
After the match, Takahashi would be attacked by El Phantasmo & Taiji Ishimori, but BUSHI made a save. Phantasmo says he refuses to leave Japan without winning that championship. Can he beat Hiromu Takahashi for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship? Let us know what you think in the comment section down below.
SUBSCRIBE NOW: Get TheOvertimer’s Hottest Stories, Breaking News and Special Features in your email, CLICK HERE!