AXS TV continues the coverage of NJPW G1 Climax 28 with a rematch from G1 Climax 27! Will Kenny Omega get back at Testuya Naito for his previous loss?
Gifs can be found on http://frentique.tumblr.com/
- Kota Ibushi VS Zack Sabre Jr.; Ibushi wins.
- Kenny Omega VS Tetsuya Naito; Omega wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
NJPW and AXS TV set the scene again!
Every Summer, 20 of the best wrestlers in the world compete in the most prestigious tournament. The winner becomes a part of history while earning a shot at the IWGP Heavyweight Championship!
Now we go to Block B’s beginnings, and with a bang! The current IWGP Heavyweight Champion, Kenny Omega, has a rematch with the Uncontrollable Charisma, Tetsuya Naito, in a rematch from last year’s finals! Naito won the trophy but it’s Omega who wears the belt. Will history repeat itself with Naito winning a crucial lead in the round robin? Or will the Best Bout Machine show how much he’s grown in the last 12 months?
Plus, there’s another rematch from both last year’s G1 as well as the New Japan Cup quarterfinals as the Golden Star, Kota Ibushi, again faces the Submission Master, Zack Sabre Jr. Can Omega’s best friend and tag partner keep ZSJ from gaining points in the opening round? Or will he #JustTapOut all over again?
AXS TV quickly recaps other matches from Block B.
Fellow Chaos members, Toru Yano and Tomohiro Ishii, battled, and the comedy king fared a lot better than expected. However, Ishii would pull a play out of Yano’s book and get the win. Newly minted IWGP United States Heavyweight Champion, Juice Robinson, would go against Firing Squad leader, Tama Tonga, but naturally Tama Loa would get involved. There would be no disqualifications for the Bullet Club splinter cell this time, as Tama Tonga would Gun Stun and win. The perennial NEVER Openweight Champion, Hirooki Goto, took on the Cold Skull of Los Ingobernables de Japon, Sanada. Sanada put all he could into the match, but Goto would conquer again with a GTR. Who will join the winners at two points? Who will join the losers at zero?
Kota Ibushi VS Zack Sabre Jr!
The Golden Star won points off the Submission Master in the early rounds of the 27th G1 Climax, but would fall to the limitless submission arsenal in the New Japan Cup months later. This is a tiebreaker that means more than just a single win. Who will score the first points in B Block?
NJPW on AXS jumps ahead in coverage to ZSJ waiting inside the ring while Ibushi drags himself up. Ibushi returns but ZSJ is right on him with a heel hook. ZSJ stands on Ibushi’s head as he bends that foot and leg all around. ZSJ stomps the leg, then kicks the knee. He toyingly kicks Ibushi in the chest, which only angers Ibushi with each hit. Ibushi hits back with a body shot, and ZSJ falls down. Red Shoes reprimands Ibushi for using a closed fist, but ZSJ makes Ibushi pay with a serious kick. Ibushi rolls back out, but ZSJ catches his breath in the ring. Another 20 count begins but Ibushi is in at 7. ZSJ is on him with a European Uppercut, then a pie-face. Ibushi forearms back, so ZSJ kicks and kicks.
ZSJ swings a roundhouse but gets the leg sweep. He hooks Ibushi’s leg while twisting the other, and he creates a modifed deathlock, into a bridging one. ZSJ digs his elbow and knuckles into Ibushi’s spine before pulling him back into a Bow & Arrow with chinbar! Ibushi endures the bend, so ZSJ shifts to a half headscissors. ZSJ sits on Ibushi as he maintains both the deathlock and the headscissors. He even takes the time to flex. ZSJ releases Ibushi’s head long enough to shift into an STF! Ibushi uses that opening to get a ropebreak. ZSJ lets go, and fans rally for Ibushi. Ibushi slowly stands, and fires off forearms. ZSJ kicks the leg again, but Ibushi avoids the sweep this time to give ZSJ the roundhouse. Ibushi rests his legs while ZSJ crawls around.
They both slowly stand, and Ibushi runs into a back elbow. ZSJ runs at Ibushi but gets double stomps instead! Fans rally up again as Ibushi fires himself up. He hobbles over to ZSJ for a waistlock, but ZSJ pries his way out to then Pele the arm! ZSJ runs but into a dropkick! ZSJ rolls out and Ibushi fires up. Ibushi slingshots and planchas onto ZSJ! Ibushi’s sore legs slow him down but he isn’t done yet. He drags ZSJ up and into the ring. Ibushi takes aim from the apron, springboards but ZSJ gets under. ZSJ grabs a leg and brings Ibushi down into a Half Crab! Ibushi resists but gets his other leg and even an arm trapped. ZSJ goes for a heel hook, but Ibushi gets a ropebreak. ZSJ lets Ibushi go, and Taka Michinoku coaches ZSJ up.
Red Shoes checks on Ibushi, but ZSJ is on him again. ZSJ goes for a full nelson but Ibushi breaks free, only to run into a boot. Ibushi runs into more boots, but then ducks to PELE, but into an Ankle Lock! He rolls to throw ZSJ, but ZSJ comes back with a EuroUpper! Ibushi comes back with a clobbering clothesline! Both men are down but the fans are still fired up. They rally for Ibushi while Taka coaches ZSJ. Ibushi sits up first, but ZSJ follows. Ibushi brings ZSJ up, but ZSJ counters by grabbing and arm and becoming deadweight. He brings Ibushi to the mat and traps that arm to then go after the legs again! ZSJ jams the knee into the mat over and over, then pulls back for an Achilles lock. He uses his legs to nelson Ibushi’s arms, leaving Ibushi nowhere to go.
ZSJ shifts to a deep Half Crab, but this brings Ibushi to ropes for a break by default. He lets Ibushi go, and Ibushi gets to a corner. ZSJ runs in and hits a EuroUpper, then runs corner to corner. Ibushi goes up and over to powerslam ZSJ, then moonsault! ZSJ avoids that, to Penalty Kick! Cover, ONE, so ZSJ gives another PK! Cover, TWO! Fans fire up all over again while both men are down, catching their breath. ZSJ stands up, then kicks Ibushi’s leg. He kicks it again as Ibushi hobbles. He dares Ibushi to kick his leg, so Ibushi does. ZSJ staggers now, but still dares Ibushi to give him more. Ibushi does, and almost makes ZSJ fall. Ibushi kicks again and again and again, but ZSJ eggs him on. ZSJ blocks the next kick to an Ankle Lock, and German Suplex!
But Ibushi lands on his feet! Ibushi blocks ZSJ’s kick to then chop him down! Both men are on the mat while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns, and fans rally as Ibushi and ZSJ stir. Ibushi is up first but ZSJ follows. They head for each other and Ibushi throws a forearm. ZSJ slaps Ibushi, but Ibushi’s glare dares him to do more. ZSJ slaps him more, but it doesn’t back Ibushi down. They stand up, and ZSJ slaps and chops Ibushi, but Ibushi rocks him with one slap. They slap and chop each other to a corner, but ZSJ gives many EuroUppers. Ibushi counters one and goes for a backslide. ZSJ saves himself, but gets a roundhouse to the back! Ibushi drags ZSJ out for a German Suplex with a bridge! TWO, but Ibushi still has more. Ibushi drags ZSJ up with wristlocks, but ZSJ blocks the Kamigoye by going knee to knee. ZSJ blocks it again, then drags Ibushi into a cover, TWO!
Ibushi goes for a high stack but ZSJ blocks with a headscissor. Ibushi turns that into a deadlift, and sit-out powerbomb! Cover, TWO!! Ibushi is shocked by how close that was. Fans are thunderous as Ibushi gets his leg working. Ibushi kicks but misses, ZSJ scrambles on to an octopus hold! ZSJ shifts to put his full weight on Ibushi as he completes The Inexorable March of Progress. Ibushi pries his way out, and tilt-o-whirl, but the momentum ends up toppling them both over to the ropes. ZSJ drags Ibushi into a dragon sleeper, but the ropebreak means he has to let go. ZSJ stalks Ibushi, drags him up, and goes to a standing abdominal stretch. Ibushi reaches, but ZSJ shifts to a scoop, Ibushi slips out, GERMAN SUPLEX! No bridge this time, but Ibushi keeps on ZSJ with a buzzsaw kick!
Ibushi moves his knee pad down, and calls for the knee. He sits ZSJ up, misses, ZSJ gets him into the European Clutch! TWO, and Ibushi has a waistlock. ZSJ rolls to a kneebar, Ibushi powers out to waistlock, but ZSJ fights back. Ibushi grabs the wrists but ZSJ slips down and under to then throw Ibushi over. Ibushi turns control back to his, Straitjacket Suplex! Bridging pin, TWO, KAMIGOYE!! Cover, Ibushi wins!!
Winner: Kota Ibushi, by pinfall; Ibushi earns 2 points, ZSJ earns 0
The Golden Star gets the win, breaks the tie and earns the points! Will his fellow Golden Lover join him in the win-column? Will ZSJ snap back in the next round to get on the board?
Kenny Omega VS Tetsuya Naito!
The 28th G1 Climax opens its B Block round robin with the 27th’s final showdown! Omega has the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, and should he win the entire thing, he chooses who earns the Wrestle Kingdom main event contract. However, history shows that the reigning champion rarely ever wins, let alone makes it to the finals. Is this rematch therefore also a preview of the far future?
Naito takes off his elaborate and fancy ring gear, but Omega gets impatient. The change is complete, the bell rings, and we begin!
Fans are already thunderous as they duel between two big name favorites. Omega seems to mock Tranquilo with those deep breaths. He and Naito slowly circle the ring, then approach. They tie up and fight for position. Omega gets a headlock, but Naito powers out. Omega runs Naito over, then runs again. He walks on Naito’s back, and mocks the LIJ fist. Naito ignores it, but Omega offers a handshake. Naito takes it, and Omega applauds, only to SPIT on Naito! That does it! Naito fires off furious haymakers and stomps! He whips but Omega reverses. Now Naito walks on Omega, to mock the finger gun! Omega runs but is thrown outside. Naito builds speed, to Tranquilo fake, to fake out again. He spits back at Omega! Then Naito goes Tranquilo!
Omega rushes in but gets clubbing forearms for it. Naito rakes Omega’s eyes, then whips. Omega reverses, and gives Naito a kitchen sink knee. He brings Naito up, big back suplex! Cover, TWO! Fans rally and duel while Omega mocks the Naito eye. Omega drags Naito up to kick him in the back. Omega toys with Naito before giving another kick. He drags Naito up and to a corner for a buckle bump. Omega grinds his boot into Naito’s chin, but stops at 4. He whips Naito corner to corner and hard. Naito hits the mat, but rolls away. Omega stomps away, then brings Naito up for a running backbreaker! Cover, TWO, but Omega keeps on Naito with a chinlock clutch. He pulls back on Naito, then gets a half camel clutch with that one arm trapped.
Omega grinds and thrashes Naito, but Naito drags himself backwards. Naito reaches for ropes but Omega gives an eye rake. Naito gets the ropebreak, so Omega lets him go. Omega brings Naito back up to throw him at the ropes. He forearms Naito on the rebound. Omega drags Naito up for another shove, then another forearm to the back. He adds an elbow to Naito’s head, then covers, ONE. Fans applaud Naito’s toughness, but Omega grows annoyed. Omega clubs away, then chops Naito on the chest. Naito staggers about, Omega pushes him towards ropes again, but Naito comes back with a forearm of his own! Naito throws more but Omega kicks low. Omega wants a bomb but Naito resists. Omega palm strikes and drags Naito up but Naito chops !
Naito chops and chops, then clubs Omega. He whips, but Omega kicks him back. Omega prepares the bomb, but Naito resists again. Omega clubs Naito more, then lifts, but Naito slips out. Naito’s kick is blocked and Omega chops him. Omega runs, but into a hip toss! Naito dropkicks Omega in the back of the head! They’re both down while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns as Naito sits up. Fans continue to duel as Naito stands and Omega follows. Omega swings but Naito dodges to spit! Omega rakes Naito’s eyes, then grinds him into ropes. Red Shoes counts and Omega lets up, to fireman’s carry. “You Can’t Escape!” But Naito does, and shoves Omega to a corner. He deflects the boots to hit a draping neckbreaker to standing neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Naito stands again, and elbows Omega’s neck. He whips Omega corne to corner, jump kicks and sweeps a leg, but Omega catches him to “You Can’t Escape!” Rolling senton to moonsault! Cover, TWO! Naito rolls out but Omega fires up. Omega pursues and back suplexes Naito on the apron! Naito writhes while Omega clears space.
Omega pulls up the floor pads to expose the floor. But Naito attacks, dropkicking through the pad to hit Omega! Naito drags Omega up and in, then whips him corner to corner. He jump kicks, sweeps the legs, and swings in for the dropkick! He even takes time to pose. Omega gets up but Naito is on him. Naito hammerlocks and half nelsons, but Omega fights out with elbows. Naito clubs him in the back, then runs, but into the huricanrana! He ends up outside again, and here come the Terminator drums. Omega builds speed, but Naito intercepts. Naiot uses ropes for the tornado DDT! Cover, TWO! Fans duel again while Omega flounders. Naito stands to mean-mug the Omega fans. Omega yanks Naito out and dropkicks him into the crowd!
Young Lions clear the area while Omega takes aim. Omega springboards for a HUGE crossbody! He wipes Naito out but pays for it a bit himself. Red Shoes checks on them both, but they’re somehow okay to continue. Omega stands and fans rally up as he drags a limp Naito up and over the railing. Omega slumps over the railing himself as the 20 count begins. He puts Naito in at 10, then fires the fans up. Omega climbs up top as Naito stands. Naito trips Omega up! Naito grins as he positions Omega, then climbs up to join him. Omega counters with snake eyes! Naito is dazed but somehow holding onto the rope. Omega comes back with the full nelson, Snap Dragon Suplex! Then a gutwrench into the Dr. Wily sit-out powerbomb! TWO!
Fans are thunderous as they duel again, but Omega has one more idea. He loads up, BANG, and runs. Naito dodges to German Suplex, but Omega lands on his feet. Omega’s knee is blocked but he ducks the enziguri to V-Trigger Naito in the back of the head! But Omega isn’t done there, as he drags Naito up again. He hoists Naito up on his shoulders, but Naito Reverse-Ranas! Both men are down and the fans are at a fever pitch. Naito sits up first, followed by Omega. They go to a corner, and Naito puts Omega on the top rope. He climbs up to throw hands, then SUPER STEINERS! Omega sits up, so Naito pumphandles into GLORIA! Cover, TWO!!
Naito knows he’s close, so he vows to finish it. Omega slaps the cobwebs out of his head but Naito is on him. Naito wrenches the arm, but Omega elbows away. Enziguri! Naito whips but Omega reverses, then dodges. Naito dodges, V-TRIGGER! Omega grabs Naito, cross-fisherman, but Naito slips out to a DDT! Then, wrench and DEST– No, Omega makes it an electric chair. Omega pops Naito up, Naito tries to victory roll, but Omega blocks that into a sitting driver! Cover, TWO!! Fans are thunderous while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns again as Red Shoes checks on both men. They’re somehow okay to continue, and the fans haven’t stopped chanting. Omega drags Naito up in full nelson position. Naito resists, pries his way out and fights back with elbows. Omega wheel kicks Naito in the neck! Naito’s in a corner, and Omega takes aim from across the way. Omega runs in, V-TRIGGER! Omega grits his teeth as he drags Naito up to the top rope. He climbs up there to join Naito, pulls Naito into the full nelson again, but Naito holds on for dear life. Naito fights out again, and Omega staggers down. Omega jumps up to chop Naito’s back, then hoists Naito for an Electric Chair! Naito turns around, SUPER SUNSET POWERBOMB! Omega flounders while Naito takes aim. Fans are fired up as Naito runs in, tilt-o-whirl, DESTINO! Cover, TWO!?
Naito is shocked, but he just keeps going. He drags Omega up, wrenches, and tilt-o-whirls, but Omega tosses him off. Omega turns around, into Naito’s uranage slam! Naito drags Omega back up, wrenches, tilt-o-whirl, but Omega pops him off again. Omega thrusts, but Naito blocks and SLAPS Omega in return! Rolling kick! Then, DESTIN– TOMBSTONE! Omega flounders to a cover, but it’s barely one, TWO! Omega springs on Naito with a double underhook, JAY DRILLER! High stack cover, TWO!! This is looking a lot like their G1 Climax finals match last year. Omega drags Naito up again while fans duel. BANG, and V-Trigger! Omega’s not done, Electric Chair, to One Winged Angel! Cover, Omega wins!!
Winner: Kenny Omega, by pinfall; Omega earns 2 points, Naito earns 0
The Cleaner gets back at Naito for last year’s defeat in the finals! Both Golden Lovers are in the B Block win-column while Naito joins Sanada in the loss-column. Will Omega be the fifth IWGP Heavyweight Champion to make it to the finals? Will he be the third champion to win it all? Or will Naito rebound and make his way to the finals for the second year in a row?
Kenny Omega speaks.
In Japanese, he credits Naito for “an incredible match”, and says he’ll be sure to close out in just Japanese. He apologizes to Naito that he didn’t say this in person last year, but congratulations on winning the G1 Climax 27. Too bad he didn’t get the belt. Or that he hasn’t changed since then. But there’s always next year. In fact, Naito might be able to become “number three in the company.” He says third because Omega and “Ibu-tan” will be first and second. Omega admits he’s still not the best in Japanese, but he likes talking like this. He’d like to do it again. So to conclude, and in English, “Good bye, MWAH, and Good Night, BANG!” Omega boldly bashes Naito verbally, but will he be feeling so bold after the round robin completes?
Omega shares a secret with the NJPW fans: “Every match today in the B Block was exciting.” Every match was great, because NJPW has such variety. Omega doesn’t care if your favorite match was someone else’s, everyone’s doing a great job. But he knows most everyone thinks he’s the Best Bout Machine, that he’s the reason fans stick around until the end, because they want to see Omega lift both the IWGP Heavyweight Championship belt, and “that ugly-ass trophy” to be a two-time gaijin G1 champion and personally choose his opponent. Everyone already knows who that’ll be, but until then, Good-bye & Good Night, Ba-ba-bang!
A great selection for the opening B Block action. It’s a shame we didn’t get all of Ibushi VS ZSJ, but the latter portion was more than enough to show how great both men are. I like that Ibushi won this time, but the round robin format works out that ZSJ could end ahead of Ibushi. Omega VS Naito was on par with their finals match in last year’s G1 and that’s a good thing. Omega wins and he has a great veiled-insult promo on Naito. Again, champions don’t usually make it to the finals, but if anyone can, it’ll be Omega. Just about any choice in Block A is a great match-up to Omega to make for a great finals for this year. Also, while he was vague about it, I’m pretty sure Omega’s choice for Wrestle Kingdom will be either Ibushi or Okada.
My Score: 8.5/10
Andrew’s Impact Wrestling Uncaged Ratings & Review
With the tag titles changing hands last week, do we see more changes with Impact Wrestling Uncaged?
With the tag titles changing hands last week, do we see more changes with Impact Wrestling Uncaged?
The pseudo-PPV atmosphere is sure to bring in more consistent viewership, but they’re in an interesting spot. Taya and Tessa are really the only two credible Knockouts unless Gail comes out of retirement (since Rosemary, Su and Jordynne are in the same storyline), so we’ll probably see this get extended somehow. As for the other title match, The Machine has a lot of support and wrestling fans all know the money is in the chase. So I could see Cage getting “screwed” again, but I’d much rather see Cage with the title.
So let’s get hype for the show with a video package of the returning Reno Scum!
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) February 16, 2019
- Knockout’s Championship Street Fight: Tessa Blanchard vs Taya Valkyrie (c) – Taya retains via Double Footstomp through Table – *** 3/4
- ‘All Ego’ Ethan Page vs Willie Mack: Mack wins via Stunner – ** 1/2
- Elimination 4v4: Team Impact (Fallah Bahh, Sami Callihan, Eli Drake & Eddie Edwards) vs Team AAA (Puma King, Psycho Clown, Hijo del Vikingo & Aerostar): Team AAA 4-3 – *** 3/4
- Fatal 4 Way Impact World Championship: Killer Kross vs Moose vs Johnny Impact (c) vs Brian Cage: Johnny retains via Starship Pain on Moose – *** 1/4
Both women come out with throwback shirts. Tessa comes out with the old school Four Horsemen shirt and Taya comes out in her Perros de Mal shirt (old Triple A stable she was in with Perro Aguayo Jr). This match was a little awkward at times, and the first table they had ” La Wera Loca vs Diamond” painted on, didn’t break after two spear attempts. Really good hardcore style action, with chairs, insults, ring posts and another table. Definitely more of a brawl than wrestling, but after the table didn’t break the subsequent spots seemed to be a little off. Still a solid match, entertaining to watch, good way to start off the Uncaged show. Dios perdona, los perros no.
After a quick promo with Team Impact, Scarlett joins Melissa during the commercial break moment and she’s barely dressed and her and Melissa start doing squats. I mean they’re doubling down on sex sells, and I’m not even mad.
Mack and Page was a solid match. Good brawling, Willie’s agility outlasted Page’s strikes. One would assume the winner should be closer to an X Division title shot at least. So it should be interesting where this leads.
Killer Kross follows that with his typical chilling, slightly unhinged promo, and damn it was well done.
The interesting thing about the commercial break stuff tonight is Melissa doing live interviews with different people. It’s kinda neat, like extra content.
Team Triple A has a clap back promo after the commercial, which says the Cup is staying in Mexico. If memory serves, Team Triple A beat Team TNA in the first World X Cup, so I’m curious if they’ll pull from that for a storyline.
Sami Callihan calls out Swann one more time, Swann throws the shirt at Callihan, so a fight ensues. Swann gets the best of things momentarily, but an eye gauge allows Sami the opening to toss Rich around a little, Piledriver him on the stage and then Powerbomb him off the stage through a table. So I guess Sami will get the X Divison shot, but might have to go through Willie Mack first in the following weeks before Rebellion.
A lot of fun fast paced action, good dives, good strikes, nice story telling and only one slip so far from Aerostar. Eli Drake is the first one eliminated by Puma King because he tries to tell Eddie to not use the kendo stick, but tries to use it himself, Eddie catches him and takes his stick back, then pushing Eli. So one Gedo Clutch later, Eli is eliminated by pinfall. Fallah Bah eliminates Vikingo after a Twisted Running Powerslam. Aerostar eliminates Bahh after a Crucifix Pin when Bahh misses the Banzai Drop. Boston Knee Party from Eddie eliminates Aerostar. Piledriver from Sami eliminates Puma King. Two on one advantage with Sami and Eddie against Psycho Clown. Eddie hits a Boston Knee Party lays out Psycho Clown, but Sami pushes Eddie off and tries to steal the spotlight, only a two count, Psycho Rolls Up Sami for the pinfall elimination. Eddie has Psycho on the ropes, but Eli returns, takes Kenny the Kendo Stick and distracts Eddie. Then he hits Eddie to give Psycho a shot to hit a Backstabber, followed up the La Magistral for the victory. So Impact kinda played themselves, but it was a damn good match with a lot to unpack.
Melissa finally returns after a few commercial breaks off, with Sami Callihan and David Crist. This was ridiculous but great. Just erratic idiocy, they steal Melissa’s sandals at some point, David sings “Hey there Samuel” and Sami does a pitch like a dating service while Melissa is getting her sandals. So dumb, but great.
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) February 16, 2019
Small promotional video package for Reno Scum. Returning to Impact for the first time since the first wave of GFW “invasion” (nearly 2 years).
A quick little moment with Dark Allie, Su Yung and Rosemary, followed by a commercial with Melissa and KM & Fallah Bahh. Very funny, Melissa plays off the wrestlers well. She needs to stick around since she’s got a nice personality and seems to work well with most of the guys.
Scarlett with a weird video package, her in a bed, a little moan and showing cleavage is her formula. So if it ain’t broke, I’m not gonna fix it, shut up, stop judging me!
LAX joins Melissa before the main event and the Latina comes out in her. She’s more animated that usual, very fun and entertaining. She even busts their chops a little, but they take it in stride and seem to enjoy each other’s company.
Since the match starts with only about 12 minutes before time limit the match wasn’t going to be a technical masterpiece, but for what it was it was fun. It was more of a brawl, since there were 3 bigger guys. Kross had a bunch of moments looking like a beat, Cage looked like a million bucks hitting the Drill Claw on both Moose and Kross. But Johnny pulled the opportunistic thing, and while Kross and Cage were tied up, Johnny pulls Moose to the corner, barely hits Starship Pain and sneaks in a pinfall before Cage finishes the Drill Claw + pin on Kross. So Johnny retains while looking like a punk, and the crowd wanted nothing to do with him. Terminator claps most of the match.
.@MrGMSI_BCage had the World Championship right within his fingertips once again…
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) February 16, 2019
Overall Score: 7.5/10
Solid solid show from start to finish. Tessa and Taya got things kicked off well, Melissa doing backstage interviews as the Twitch commercial break stuff was great. World Cup match was fun and set up a few storylines for the Impact stars while Team Triple A got the home field advantage win. Main event was a little disappointing to be honest. Johnny has worn out his fan support both in Mexico and on Twitch chat. Granted yes, I’m hopeful this is building towards a big blow off at Rebellion, maybe with Cage going over and Austin Aries returning, but I guess we’ll have to see.
Also from the main event, we see some cracks in the Moose and Kross alliance, so that could definitely be an interesting match in the near future.
So yeah, we have a lot to chew on moving into TV tapings for the shows leading up to Rebellion, but from a completely playlist mentality view point, Cage got screwed. Brian Cage better be getting this damn title soon, or I want him to put Don Callis through the announce table.
Now the weekly Twitch viewers portion:
- Week 1: High – 10,350 / Low – 8,500
- Week 2: High – 8,000 / Low – 6,500
- Week 3: High – 8,500 / Low – 7,900
- Week 4: High – 7,100 / Low – 5,300
- Week 5: High – 7,450 / Low – 5,650
- Uncaged: High – 9,000/ Low – 8,000
Well it looks like people just need a reason to tune in. Not only was this week mostly main event talent, but since the event had was named, I feel like people just expected better quality. So still no record breaking high, but solid numbers throughout the entire show.
Mitchell’s NJPW AXS TV Results: New Beginning in Sapporo Part 2!
Who leaves Sapporo with the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team titles?
NJPW continues in Sapporo with two HUGE tag team matches! The Rainmaker and The Ace look for further revenge while EVIL & SANADA defend their tag titles!
This coverage of New Beginning in Sapporo will be as aired by AXS TV.
Gifs can be found courtesy of http://frentique.tumblr.com/
- IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championships: EVIL & SANADA VS Zack Sabre Jr. & Minoru Suzuki; EVIL & SANADA win and retain the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championships.
- Kazuchika Okada & Hiroshi Tanahashi VS Jay White & Bad Luck Fale; White & Fale win.
PLAY BY PLAY
NJPW and AXS set the scene!
The Ace is once again IWGP Heavyweight Championship after dethroning The Best Bout Machine at Wrestle Kingdom 13! But the record-setting 8-time champion has a very determined challenger in The Switchblade. Jay White has Gedo and the Bullet Club by his side, and now has his title match in Osaka! But before then, Hiroshi Tanahashi will look to slow White down with the help of his old rival, Kazuchika Okada! Will this amazing tag team be able to defeat White and Bad Luck Fale? Or will it only be a sampling of the Cutthroat Era’s coming?
And before that, Los Ingobernables de Japon’s Heavyweight Tag Team Champions broke even with their challengers in singles competition. Now it is time to face off for the titles! Can the two-time Tag League and Two Time Tag Champions be able to overcome the Undisputed British Tag Team Champions? Or will Suzuki-Gun have two tag titles around their waists? That match is now!
IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championships: EVIL & SANADA VS Zack Sabre Jr. & Minoru Suzuki!
Why wait for bells when you just wanna fight? Suzuki and ZSJ go right at Evil & Sanada as they enter the ring! ZSJ stomps Evil while Suzuki mugs Sanada on the outside. Red Shoes holds the belts, but Suzuki gets one to choke Sanada with it. Suzuki whips Sanada but Sanada reverses to send Suzuki into railing! Evil and ZSJ end up the leg men and brawl while the introductions are made. Evil whips ZSJ and goes to hip toss, but ZSJ counters to an abdominal stretch. ZSJ denies a counter but Evil still hip tosses out! Tag to Sanada, and LIJ go after ZSJ together. Double whips, clothesline, back senton! Cover, TWO! ZSJ rolls away but Sanada stalks him to a corner. Cold Skull whips ZSJ corner to corner but ZSj goes up and over. He fakes Sanada and rolls him up, TWO!
Sanada knees and whips ZSJ but ZSJ denies the dropkick. ZSJ misses the Peantly Kick, and Sanada trips him up! Sanada gets ZSJ in the Paradise Lock, but ZSJ slips out and toys with him. ZSJ kicks Sanada, but Sanada knees back. Sanada whips but ZSJ reverses. Suzuki gets a cheap shot and gets Sanada in a hanging armbar! ZSJ hits Evil just because. Suzuki lets Sanada go then goes after Evil. ZSJ keeps on Sanada and Suzuki mugs Evil. Suzuki brings Evil out to the crowd to bowl him through chairs. Suzuki laughs as he rams Evil with the railing. Then he throws chairs onto Evil! ZSJ twists Sanada around for a modified Octopus, then he hammerlock stomps an arm! Suzuki searches under the ring while ZSJ gives Sanada a shoulder breaker. Suzuki has a folding chair to jab Evil in the head!
The ring count passes 17, but Sanada manage to make it in at 19.5! ZSJ is on Sanada with an arm bar, to hammerlock, then digs his elbows into Sanada’s spine. ZSJ pulls back on Sanada’s free arm from wrist to elbow for another hammerlock. He makes it a buttefly of sorts, then a cover, TWO! ZSJ drags Sanada over and tags in Suzuki. Suzuki takes Sanada and wrenches, but then ZSJ wrenches, and they keep passing Sanada for wrenches. ZSJ boots the arm and then Suzuki boots the arm. Sanada clutches that tortured arm but Suzuki goes after it more against the ropes. REd Shoes counts but Suzuki lets go at 4. Suzuki toys with Sanada now, but Sanada hits back. Suzuki just laughs again and throws forearms back. They go back and forth, but Suzuki hits hard. The champs are in trouble while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns while Suzuki taunts Sanada. Sanada does sit up but Suzuki’s right on him with fast forearms. Suzuki kicks but Sanada dragon screws, only for Suzuki to counter into an armbar! ZSJ hits Evil to keep him away, but Sanada resists the arm. Suzuki gets the arms apart and has Sanada at full extension! Sanada flails while ZSJ keeps Evil down with his own armlock! Suzuki pulls as hard as he can, but Sanada gets a ropebreak with his feet. Suzuki holds on to slam the arm on the mat. Tag to ZSJ and he hands the wrench off to ZSJ. ZSJ hammerlocks and tweaks Sanada’s arm. ZSJ sits down on the arm to practically triangle it! Suzuki keeps Evil at bay with an armbar on the ropes! ZSJ shifts his weight into a modified Labell meets Rings of Saturn!
Suzuki tortures Evil on the apron but Red Shoes can’t do anything about that while he watches ZSJ and Sanada. Sanada shifts again and gets another ropebreak via feet. Suzuki keeps on Evil with body shots while ZSJ lets Sanada go. ZSJ dares Sanada to stand, and then rock shim with a European Uppercut. Sanada returns the EuroUpper, but his arms are hurting. ZSj shoulder breakers, then catches the leap frog for a flapjack! Penalty kick is CAUGHT! Dragon Screw! Suzuki runs in and gets a dragon screw, too! Fans rally for LIJ as Evil tags in! The King of Darkness rallies on ZSJ! He scoop slams ZSJ hard, then rocks him with forearms. Evil whips but ZSJ reverses, only for Evil to run him over!
Fans rally as Evil drags ZSJ up. ZSJ kicks but Evil blocks it to elbow the knee. ZSJ grabs the arm but Evil counters to a shoulder breaker! Evil blocks another kick, Fisherman Buster! Cover, TWO! Evil keeps his cool as fans fire up again. He drags ZSJ up again and turns him, but ZSJ turns and suplexes Evil! Then the neck twist! Both men are down from exhaustion, but they still come back for more. ZSJ wants revenge for Sapporo Part 1 as he throws EuroUppers. Things speed up and each man dodges the other, but then ZSJ runs into Evil’s lariat! Evil drags ZSJ up, fireman’s carry, but ZSj reverses to a Pele! ZSJ kicks then sweeps the legs! Both men are down again but Suzuki returns. Suzuki tags in and goes right at Evil with forearms.
Suzuki whips Evil corner to corner and boots him. He snapmares and Penalty Kicks! Cover, TWO! Evil barely escapes, but Suzuki toys with him now. Suzuki throws haymakers, then boots, but Evil hands it off to Red Shoes! Evil SUPERKICKS Suzuki down! Tag to Sanada! Sanada whips but Suzuki reverses. Sanada tumbles, springboards, but into Suzuki’s sleeper! ZSJ hits Evil again, and then helps Suzuki corner to corner train on Sanada! Snapmare, DOBULE Peanlty Kicks! Cover, TWO!! Sanada survives that string of attacks, but Suzuki stomps him down. We can hear someone throw the other into railing while Suzuki hammers away on Sanada in the corner. Red Shoes backs Suzuki off, but Suzuki runs back in. Sanada dodges, and Evil returns for a corner clothesline! He feeds Suzuki to Sanada’s back suplex!
Evil hits ZSJ and now LIJ has Suzuki isolated! They call for the finish and fans are thunderous! Evil lifts Suzuki, but ZSJ stops Magic Killer. Suzuki rolls Sanada into an Ankle Lock! ZSJ has Evil in the Octopus! Suzuki shifts to a kneebar! Sanada endures teh grapevine’d move, and Suzuki even grabs an arm! Sanada grabs Red Shoes to keep himself from tapping! ZSJ has shifted Evil into a grounded twist! Neither LIJ can get free as Suzuki shifts the position of his kneebar! Sanada endures, as does Evil. Fans cheer LIJ on, but Suzuki just twists the ankle harder! Sanada uses one last gas to get the ropebreak! Suzuki lets Sanada go, to come back for a sleeper. And then ZSJ Penalty Kicks! Suzuki also Penalty Kicks! Cover, but Evil breaks it in time!
Suzuki-Gun drags LIJ up but LIJ fights back! Suzuki wants his piledriver, and ZSJ wants his, but Evil and Sanada deny those, for Darkness Falls and TKO in stereo! LIJ fires up as they go after Suzuki again. MAGIC KILLER!! Cover, but ZSJ breaks it just in time! Sanada grabs Suzuki and Evil gets ZSJ. Skull End, but ZSJ counters the STO! Evil counters back, EVERYTHING IS EVIL!! And then for Suzuki, True Skull End, but Suzuki slips through! Sleeper, Gotch hold, but Evil saves Sanada! Everything is countered, but the Sleeper is escaped. MAGIC KILLER AGAIN!! Sanada climbs while Evil takes ZSJ out, Moonsault! Cover, LIJ wins!
Winners: Los Ingobernables de Japon, Sanada pinning; still IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Champions
The King of Darkness and Cold Skull are still golden! Suzuki-Gun’s quest to have two different companies’ tag titles has not worked out, it’ll be back to the drawing board for them. However, will Evil & Sanada now have a claim to the British Heavyweight Tag Team Championships?
Kazuchika Okada & Hiroshi Tanahashi VS Jay White & Bad Luck Fale!
The Rainmaker and The Ace have fought hard over the IWGP Heavyweight Championship and the claim to being the best one ever, but now they are united in making sure the Switchblade does NOT become champion! Will this all-star alliance succeed against the new Bullet Club leader and his Underboss underling?
White refuses to let this dream team have their photo op. He insists he is the historic wrestler everyone should take pictures of, not the old generation. Tanahashi and Okada bite their tongues and bide their time, they’ll get at White after the break.
NJPW on AXS returns and White starts against Tanahashi. Fans are strongly behind The Ace but White just chuckles. They circle and Gedo can be heard shouting “You’re stupid!” at commentary. White lunges but Tanahashi stays away. They tie up and go around, and Tanahashi manages to power White to a corner. White turns it around, but backs off, only to get the leg! White grins as he shows how easy he could’ve gone after the bad leg. He backs off but tries a sucker punch! Tanahashi dodges and headlocks, and he grinds White down. White gets up but can’t power out of Tanahashi’s grip. Tanahashi grinds White down again but White fights out with body shots. White powers out this time, but Tanahashi fakes him out to get him back in the headlock!
Tanahashi grinds White on the mat but White powers back up. White again can’t power out so he pulls hair! Tanahashi pulls White’s hair in return! Tanahashi throws body shots then whips, but White reverses. White runs into an elbow, Tanahashi springboard crossbodies! Tanahashi air guitars and tosses it out. He brings White over and tags Okada. Okada and Tanahashi whip White and double elbow him down. Okada back sentons, then Tanahashi somersault sentons. The dream team shake hands and drop double elbows! Fans are loving this already! Okada drags White up and fans are thunderous for him. He snapmares White and then hits a running basement dropkick! Okada drags White up but White powers him to the corner. Tag to Fale, but Okada gets away.
Okada and Fale circle and tie up. Fale shoves Okada but Okada’s right back with hammering hands! Okada whips but Fale reverses and whips Okada hard into buckles! Fale looms over Okada then stomps him down. Fale drags Okada up and talks trash, so Okada hits back. Okada runs and handsprings over the back drop! He wants a sleeper and hops on as a backpack. Fale endures then drops back! Okada lets Fale go, and White attacks Tanahashi! White goes after Tanahashi on the outside and throws him into barriers! Okada bails out but Fale gives chase. Fale throws Okada into barriers, too! White chokes Tanahashi with camera cables! White says he IS the next champion! Fans boo while Fale takes a towel and chokes Okada with it. It was an Okada Dollar towel, too!
White keeps on Tanahashi in the front row with Euro Uppers. White takes apart barriers to throw the railings onto Tanahashi. He buries Tanahashi while the ring count climbs. Then White scoops slams a Young Lion onto Tanahashi! Fale chokes Okada on the ropes in the ring. Red Shoes backs Fale off, but he comes back to drag Okada up and dump him out. White goes right at Okada by ramming him into the apron and then the railing! And then the apron again, and then the railing! White rams Okada into the apron once more, then throws forearms. Red Shoes finally spots this and reprimands White. White plays innocent as he puts Okada back in the ring. Fale tags White in, and White soaks up the heat.
White runs corner to corner for a huge Euro Upper, and then suplexes Okada into the buckles! Cover, TWO!! Somehow Okada escapes! White takes his frustrations out on Tanahashi, then returns to Okada. White grinds his forearm into Okada’s face, then puts on a Half Crab. Fans rally up for Okada and Okada crawls for ropes. White pulls harder but Tanahashi comes it go after White. Fale throws Tanahashi out, and then tags back in. Fale goes after Okada’s leg with stomps. Okada hits back and clubs Fale. Okada hops on for a guillotine, but Fale simply puts Okada in the Bullet Club corner. Fale stomps a mudhole into Okada then tags White. White drags Okada up for a CHOP! White follows Okada to the open corner, then tells Tanahashi this CHOP is for him.
Fans continue to rally as White snapmares Okada into a chinlock. Okada feeds off the energy and fights out with body shots. Okada runs but into White’s back elbow! Cover, TWO! White keeps on Okada with another chinlock. Okada endures while Tanahashi and the fans rally up again. Okada gets up and fights back again, but White clubs him down. White puts Okada in a corner and whips corner to corner, but Okada reverses. Okada runs into White’s boot. White runs but into a flapjack! Both men are down but stirring while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns once more, and Okada crawls for his corner. Hot tag to Tanahashi! White stands and The Ace fires off forearms on him! Tanahashi whips but White reverses, only for Tanahashi to forearm him down! Tanahashi dropkicks Fale then goes after White again. He scoop slams White into a drop zone, then hops up. Second rope somersault senton hits! Cover, TWO! Tanahashi keeps his cool while fans rally up again. Tanahashi waits for White to stand then runs, but he runs into a CHOP! But he keeps going, only to run into another CHOP! Tanahashi still shakes it off, but runs into a waistlock. He elbows out but White chop blocks the bad leg! White catches his breath as he looms over Tanahashi.
White scoops Tanahshi but Tanahashi fights out. Tanahashi waistlocks but WHite standing switches to a saido suplex! Both men are down but White tags out to Fale. Fale corners Tanahashi and throws big body shots. Then he throws bit clubbing forearms! He taunts the fans and they boo back as he drags Tanahashi up. Fale whips corner to corner then runs in, but misses! Tanahashi waistlocks, but Fale’s too big for a German Suplex! Fale fights out of the waistlock, then suplexes Tanahashi. Okada saves Tanahashi, and then they double suplex Fale together! Fans rally up again and Tanahashi crawls, but he dropkicks White first! Hot tag to Okada!
The Rainmaker forearms and whips Fale, but Fale reverses. Okada hits Fale then hits the DDT! Okada kips up and fans fire up again! He drags Fale up and manages a scoop slam! Okada winces just a moment before climbing up top. Fale gets under and Okada rolls through. Okada runs back but into a Samoan Drop! Fale hits a big splash! Cover, TWO!! Okada survives but White goes after Tanahashi! White puts Tanahashi into railing while fans cheer Okada on. Fale aims, grabs Okada, but the Grenade is denied with a dropkick! Okada wants to lift Fale!? Fale reverses but Okada slips out. Okada runs but gets run over! Both men are down but Tanahashi returns to the corner. Hot tags to Tanahashi and White!
The Ace and Switchblade each dodge each other. White trash talks Tanahashi but the brawl is on! Tanahashi hits, then White hits, repeat. They build up speed back and forth, then White throws several. Tanahashi gives them all back, but White kicks out the bad leg. White whips but Tanahashi reverses. Tanahashi dodges and slingblades White down! Cover, TWO!! Okada hits Fale then tells Tanahashi to finish this. Tanahashi gets the Cloverleaf but White rakes the eyes! White kicks Tanahashi away while Fale puts Okada into barriers. Tanahashi dragon screws White! Fale runs in but Tanahashi blocks, hands off to Okada and Okada dragon screws! Tanahashi returns to White, running, but Gedo swipes him! White gets Tanahashi with a Complete Shot to German Suplex! Bridging cover, TWO!!
Fans are thunderous again as White slashes the throat. He drags Tanahashi up into position, and Fale chases Okada. Okada saves Tanahashi then has to fight off Fale. Fale rebounds, Tanahashi slingblades him down! White rocks Tanahashi, but Okada dropkicks him down! The dream team have each other’s backs! And they both power up to combine forces! Gut wrench to TOMBSTONE! Hand off, to STYLES CLASH! Tanahashi rolls White, for Okada’s elbow! Fans are at a fever pitch, but Gedo distracts Tanahashi. Fale attacks Tanahashi and dumps him off the top rope! Red Shoes reprimands Gedo but it’s too late. Okada leaps but into the Grenade! Fale corner splashes Tanahashi, and gives him a Grenade! Fale crushes Tanahashi with his boot while White crawls over. White has Fale stand down so he can finish Tanahashi.
White drags Tananashi up, fireman’s carry, Death Valley Driver! Cover, TWO!? Tanahashi survives but White isn’t done. He slashes the throat, drags Tanahashi, but ends up in Twist ‘n’ Shout! Fale whips Tanahashi but Tanahashi reverses to another Twist ‘n’ Shout! Red Shoes keeps Gedo out of the ring, but White gets a chair in the distraction! White swings but misses, Tanahashi slingblades White down! Tanahashi sees Fale coming, and manages a German Suplex! Gedo is in, but his brass knuckles miss to get a slap! White SMACKS Tanahashi from behind! Fans boo as White gets away with it. Dragon screw to the mat! And another! And then an inverted Figure Four! Okada wants to get in but Fale drags him back out. Tanahashi endures while Okada fights Fale off. So Gedo drags Okada out! Fale SPLASHES Okada! Fale lifts Okada, Bad Luck Fall!
Tanahashi still endures as White wrenches and pulls as hard as he can on the hold! Fale keeps his eyes on Okada while Tanahashi reaches and flails. Tanahashi taps, White and Fale win!!
Winners: Jay White & Bad Luck Fale, White by submission
The unthinkable has happened! The Switchblade has made the IWGP Heavyweight Champion tap out! Is the Cutthroat Era inevitable?
White picks up the belt and the mic to address Sapporo. White looks down at Tanahashi and says, “I told you that I would beat you and take this belt from you.” People think it’ll be a shock when White wins, but it will not be! White’s already beaten Tanahashi and everyone NJPW has to offer. And he made Tanahashi submit! Gedo rubs it in, but can The Ace pull off a miracle in Osaka?
White says “You can give it multiple names.” Call it Tanahashi is White’s “b*tch”, you can call it TGU: Tanahashi Gave Up. No, TTO: Tanahashi Tapped Out. That’s what the inverted figure four will be! Put it everywhere! #TTO!
Tanahashi responds by saying he used his knee as bait. White took that bait, but he wasn’t as big of a fish as Tanahashi expected. Is The Ace putting on a brave face? Or are he and his reign in more trouble than he knows?
A really great hour for NJPW, especially with big tag team matches. Evil & Sanada VS Suzuki & ZSJ was great because they knew how to play up all the story from the many, many matches all four men have had in the past. I honestly was surprised Suzuki-Gun lost, I thought they were going to end up double champions. But LIJ has been red hot, hence why they are all champions at this point, so it makes sense to keep that hot streak going. LIJ probably won’t lose those tag titles for a long time from what I can tell. No other heavyweight tag team looks strong enough right now.
Then in the special tag match for the main event, the dream team of Okada and Tanahashi had some really good chemistry with each other, and there was plenty of story to fuel this match, too. I’m a bit surprised White won, but NJPW doesn’t really use the kind of math a company like WWE would. WWE’s math would put it that White winning now means he won’t win the title in their New Beginning Osaka match, but NJPW isn’t so back and forth like that. White’s on his own hot streak, and literally has Gedo by his side, so Osaka might be the night we all Breath with the Switchblade.
My Score: 8.5/10