Welcome back to B Block as we are just about down the wire here with one more show left on B Block after this one.
This one looks to be pretty intense, because it could decide the outcome of who moves on depending on which ones win or lose. As we saw on the last show, we’re down to three people winning the whole thing and all of their matches are important here since again, it could very well shift into someone’s hand if certain ones win or lose.
Can the top three stay on top or is one of them gonna get knocked down? Let’s not waste any time and…dive right in.
G1 Climax 2018 Block B Match
Tomohiro Ishii vs. Juice Robinson
Review: At the last show, Ishii defeated the undefeated Kenny Omega to knock him down a peg so he could give Naito and Ibushi the opening they need to advance. A little fun fact that Ishii has defeated both champions so far in this tournament since he has wins over both Goto and Omega, and he’s now fighting another champion, the IWGP United States Champion, Juice Robinson. It could be another belt Ishii could challenge for if he does somehow win since he won’t challenge Goto due to them being in the same unit and he could also challenge Omega. Nothing wrong with a backup in case he does fail to beat Kenny. Can Ishii defeat another champion or will Juice actually stop the Stone Pitbull?
This match went much better than I expected it to be since you got Ishii who has been on a roll in this G1 whether he wins or loses these matches and you got Juice who is the likable underdog and can give us entertaining matches in the process here. Loved the little mocking Ishii did to Juice when he was attempting to do his punches and you see Juice getting a bit mad about it as he would try to do his Headbutts as a counteract but that, of course, didn’t turn out so well nice try. Both of them played well to their strengths and gave us another solid bout to add in the G1 books. Juice would keep attempting the Pulp Friction on Ishii only for him to keep rolling out of it and hits him with a Headbutt to knock him down a bit and Juice would hit him with a vicious punch to get him down. Juice counters a Vertical Drop Brainbuster but Ishii hits a headbutt only for Juice hits a headbutt and then Ishii hits an Enzuigiri which gives Ishii time to hit the Vertical Drop Brainbuster for the pinfall victory and Ishii has defeated all of the champions in B Block!
Recommended: Solid match, worth watching.
G1 Climax 2018 Block B Match
Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Hirooki Goto
Review: Our NEVER Openweight Champion, while having great matches, really hasn’t been stocking up any big wins here in this tournament, but he could, however, try to get a win here against the Technical Wizard, Zack Sabre Jr. Both of these men are no strangers to each other and have fought before for the Openweight Championship where Goto would win the match as well as meeting at last year’s G1 Climax and Goto would get the win over him again. Can Goto do it a third time or will Zack pull off another surprise win with another crazy submission?
Goto started off strong with this one by getting Zack to the outside and would start throwing him around the guardrails to do some damage to him, but Zack would eventually find an opening and a body part for him to work on throughout the match as he caught Goto to get his arms to do some damage on them and once Zack finds a body part, he’s gonna manipulate it until you tap out. That is exactly what Zack did since he would work on his arms all throughout the match to weaken his arsenal since he does rely on them for his GTR and other various moves, so Zack’s not an idiot for picking those as his target since he has lost to him twice and doesn’t wanna make any mistakes in this one. Goto went to the top rope to do a Diving Elbow drop and Zack catches him into the Orienteering With Napalm Death and yes that is the name he has for it, but Goto would get to the ropes in time before he could tap. Zack would try to do another submission hold and it doesn’t work this time since Goto would deliver a Headbutt to knock him down and would hit him with an Inverted GTR and he would pick him up to attempt the GTR but Zack would roll him up for the European Clutch and he gets the victory over Goto! After the match, Zack would grab Goto’s belt and have it around his shoulder to toy with him to let him know he wants it.
Another win for Zack in the books and despite having ten points, he lost to Omega and Ibushi meaning he wouldn’t be able to advance if he were to somehow tie and beat Naito on the final day, but he could at least ruin Naito’s chances of winning in the process. Now that Zack has defeated Goto, I think we could see another NEVER Openweight Championship match between the two here soon, but where?
Recommended: Another solid match, worth a view.
G1 Climax 2018 Block B Match
Tama Tonga vs. Kota Ibushi
Review: It’s time to reignite the Bullet Club Civil war with Golden Elite’s, Kota Ibushi taking on Firing Squad’s, Tama Tonga and the last time we have a Civil War match on this block was when Kenny Omega and Tama Tonga fought in the ring and that resulted in Kenny getting the victory but it was a disqualification meaning he didn’t get the clean win over him and it opened the door to an actual match down the road, but it could also play out depending the outcome of this match. This is one that Ibushi needs to win to strengthen his chances of winning the block but if he does somehow lose, his chances are gonna be really slim depending on how the last two matches play out.
I love Tonga’s new shirt and I am very tempted to buy it. Before Ibushi could even get to the ring, Tonga would start to attack him on the entrance ramp and would continue the assault on Ibushi and would get him back in the ring to attack him some more. The two would start going back into it until Ibushi would appear to have gotten the advantage and attempts a Triangle Moonsault only for Tonga to slide into the ring quick enough to push him off and they would keep fighting outside and it looked like they were all the way in the back to the point where they would disappear, but Ibushi would eventually be seen from the balcony while Tonga was still on the ground level as Ibushi would high five a fan and do a Balcony Moonsault onto Tonga, just don’t do it Saturday so you don’t get banned again. Ibushi would get Tonga back into the ring and it looks like he had him until Loa would run in to prevent Ibushi from doing more as Tonga used this distraction to hit a reverse Gun Stun and a DDT for only a two count. The referee would get knocked out and Fale came into the ring until Kenny Omega ran out to even the odds as all the outside interference is out for Ibushi to attempt the Kamigoye but Tonga slides out of it to hit a Pop-up Gun Stun and he pinned Ibushi for the victory. They’re not done yet as Loa would hit the Tongan Bomb on Kenny just before his match coming up next.
While not a great wrestling match, the story behind it was excellent and added much-needed depth to the rivalry and this is where the interference should’ve happened mostly with the G1 almost over and the fact that Golden Elite is on the top spot that they would wanna make sure it would be ruined for them and it makes sense here. Now that Ibushi got pinned, is he eliminated? Right now the answer is no unless Kenny does somehow beat Toru, otherwise, he would be out since he still only has one loss.
Recommended: Very enjoyable with a great story attached to it, watch it if you’re invested in this feud.
G1 Climax 2018 Block B Match
Toru Yano vs. Kenny Omega
Review: Kenny only has one loss in his name thanks to Ishii, but if he does somehow win his next match then he is pretty much a lock to go onto the final due to Ibushi losing to Tonga not too long ago, but Kenny would have to win against his opponent, Toru Yano. Last time they fought…I thought the match was okay and I didn’t mind the comedy, but I felt like it should’ve been saved for something outside of the G1 Climax but not much you can do about it. Can Kenny get an easy victory or is Toru gonna ruin it for someone else?
Kenny took a beating just at the previous match thanks to Firing Squad and this could very well play into Toru’s factor if he is somehow smart enough to take advantage of it, especially when Toru just goes into the ring right away while Omega was down from that Powerbomb as he used this time to untie the turnbuckle posts until Kenny woke up and started the attack only to be thrown into the exposed turnbuckles. Again, I’m not a big fan of comedy matches being used in these types of tournaments, but it works out here much better in this one than their previous encounter last year and had others involved like Adam Page, Chase Owens, and even had Young Lion, Ren Narita involved when him and Omega’s arms are tied together to attempt a countout victory, but Kenny would get back in the ring in time for him and Ren to hit a Double Clothesline before they untied each other. Also, Toru’s Dragon Screw with the turnbuckle post was hilarious and amazing. Kenny would hit the V-Trigger and would attempt to hit the One-Winged Angel but Toru grabbed the referee to hold on tight and reversed it to hit a low blow onto both of them but that gave an opening for Tonga to run in and hit the Gun Stun on both Toru and Kenny, but he’s not done yet as he grabbed Toru to have him on top of Kenny to get the victory and Kenny suffers his second loss in a row.
This ending is what made the match make more sense along with the story of it since he did, in fact, ruin both Ibushi and Kenny in the same night by making them both lose. Now that Kenny has suffered a second loss, it means Ibushi is still in the race to have a chance to win and I will get to how at the bottom of the standings later on. Does this mean Toru will get a shot at the IWGP Heavyweight Championship? It could happen, but I think it’ll go to Tonga since they didn’t have a clean ending and the fact he screwed him over on this one that he might get it at a future date.
Recommended: The match was entertaining and comical, worth viewing.
G1 Climax 2018 Block B Match
SANADA vs. Tetsuya Naito
Review: It’s time for our main event as we have Los Ingorbernables de Japon fighting each other here with Tetsuya Naito taking on SANADA and I do believe this is the first time that these two are fighting each other as well. Two years ago, Naito fought EVIL in the G1 where Naito won and last year we had EVIL taking on SANDA where SANADA came out on top for that one, so I’m kinda seeing a pattern here with two LIJ members being on the same block to fight each other somehow. For this one, however, SANADA teased Naito by thinking there was tension in the group and wouldn’t do the fist bump with him after matches to try and throw Naito off and would keep it that way until they fight each other like they are right now. This one is crucial for Naito since if he does lose here, then he will be eliminated from the tournament and hard to do it when you’re so close and already suffered your second defeat to Kota Ibushi. Which one of them is gonna come out on top?
You can hear the crowd being so torn between these two since they’re loved by the fans and you can even see that in their matches. Naito went for the fist bump with SANADA and once he went to do it back, Naito used this to kick him in the midsection and throw him out the ring to try and do his Tranquilo thing, but SANADA grabbed his foot to drag him to the outside and would taunt him with a little bit of ‘Tranquilo’ of his own. This match is more of these two guys know each other so well despite not having a one on one match together and they know how to counter each other from certain moves, but the real outcome depends on who can hit their moves quick enough before they could reverse it. Most of the reversals came from the Destino and the Skull End due to it being their bigger moves in their arsenal and would always fight out of it or reverse it into a move of their own. SANADA would catch Naito before he could hit the Destino and attempted a TKO only for Naito to reverse it back into the Destino for a two count and once he tries to go for another one, SANADA would hit a Destino on Naito and kicks out of it! SANADA didn’t waste any time here as he applied the Skull End to knock him down and misses the Moonsault off the top rope. SANADA went to try to apply the Skull End once more but Naito tries to reverse it only for SANADA to reverse it into the European Clutch and Naito kicks out at 2.99! Naito would throw SANADA into the turnbuckle and that looked nasty and hits a German Suplex for a two count and SANADA and Naito would go back and forth with the Skull End until Naito was able to catch him with the Destino for the win and he’s still alive in the race!
After the match, the two of them would fist bump and the other members of the group, EVIL and BUSHI would come out to the ring to join them as they have Hiromu Takahashi’s jacket out with him as all four of them celebrate in the ring and say they hope Hiromu comes back soon. This is why they’re my favorite faction in wrestling right now, they treat each other like an actual unit and a family and even when they fight each other in the G1 or whatever, they just wanna prove that they’re the best. Even after the match, none of them are angry and instead of just having tension in the unit it just strengthens their bond together to bring them closer and that’s amazing since you rarely see that here. Naito is still in the race and LIJ is still growing strong and can only go up from here.
Recommended: Really good match and nice story, definitely worth watching.
Overall: If we’re gonna go by just the in-ring quality of the matches, I’m gonna have to say that this was the weakest out of the bunch but the stories between Naito/SANADA and Bullet Club are what made their matches better and it felt like something that you would see on A Block where that one is more story driven than wrestling driven. Still, a solid night and we still got our top three finalists for the last show.
Favorite Match: SANADA vs. Tetsuya Naito
Least Favorite Match: Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Hirooki Goto (If I had to pick one.)
B Block Standings:
Kenny Omega 6-2 (12 Points)
Tetsuya Naito: 6-2 (12 Points)
Kota Ibushi: 5-3 (10 Points)
Zack Sabre Jr: 5-3 (10 Points) – Eliminated
SANADA: 4-4 (8 Points) – Eliminated
Tomohiro Ishii: 4-4 (8 Points) – Eliminated
Hirooki Goto: 3-5 (6 Points) – Eliminated
Tama Tonga: 3-5 (6 Points) – Eliminated
Juice Robinson: 2-6 (4 Points) – Eliminated
Toru Yano: 2-6 (4 Points) – Eliminated
Now that all three of these men are still at the top of the block, it’s time to see what they need to do to win now:
Kenny Omega: Kenny needs to defeat Ibushi
Tetsuya Naito: Naito needs to defeat Zack Sabre Jr. and Kota Ibushi would have to defeat or tieKenny Omega
Kota Ibushi: Kota would have to defeat Kenny Omega and Tetsuya Naito would have to lose against Zack Sabre Jr.