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Top 5 Matches: Week Ending 11/4/2018

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Well let’s speak honestly here. We had a few big shows this weekend and neither of them were overly spectacular. Crown Jewel was what we expected, more spectacle than quality, but there were still some fun/good moments sprinkled in. Power Struggle on the other hand I think fell flat because nothing was extremely exciting. Both events set up what they had to, for the respective company, but neither really added clever wrinkles to ignite the imagination. So regardless of how you feel about Crown Jewel or WWE, New Japan isn’t perfect, so failing to realize both events were fairly mediocre by company standards, is just bias.

So with that, this is one of those two vote weeks. October is done, and I’ll set out the October pool to reveal what match won last week.

October Pool:

  • Super Show-Down Cruiserweight Championship: Buddy Murphy vs Cedric Alexander (c)
  • NJPW King of Pro Wrestling Triple Threat: Kenny Omega (c) vs Cody vs Kota Ibushi
  • AJPW Raising an Army Triple Crown Championship Match: Zeus (c) vs Kento Miyahara
  • Evolution SmackDown Women’s Title Last Woman Standing Match: Becky Lynch (c) vs Charlotte

So my vote will go to the Triple Crown Championship, since that is a gem of a match that most people will be unaware of because All Japan doesn’t have the visibility it used to. This is a fairly loaded pool, so I don’t think there’s a lot of arguing regardless of which match wins. But ya, I’m voting for the plucky underdog.

Now on to this week!

 

5. NJPW Power Struggle IWGP Intercontinental Championship Match: Chris Jericho (c) vs EVIL

Chris Jericho, the wrestler that never forgets. Took him 5 months to finish his initial interaction with Naito at Dominion, and now after EVIL stepped up, another 5 months and a wild Chris Jericho appears! Even though EVIL has had some high profile matches against Kenny Omega, Tetsuya Naito and Kazuchika Okada…this is easily his biggest match. Can EVIL overcome Jericho, or will we get the forseen outcome of Jericho retaining?

Turnabout is fair play, so before Jericho can get his masks off, EVIL quickly goes after him. The match spills outside and EVIL starts throwing him around the barricades and into the ring post. After a Snap Suplex, EVIL sets up a table but takes too long. So when he tries to Powerbomb Jericho through the table, a Back Body Drop gives Jericho a reprise.

Jericho takes the camera as is his thing in Japan this year, then starts choking EVIL with his shirt. Gets on one of the tables set up for ringside, screams “Everything is Jericho”, and DDT’s EVIL down into the table. Putting EVIL back into the ring, Jericho hits a Lionsault, but EVIL continues to show life. One more stint outside gives EVIL the opportunity to do his Homerun Swing with the chairs and take some control.

Managing to take some control back, they move to the side of the ring with the table and Jericho catches EVIL with the Triangle Dropkick, but holds on and doesn’t fly through the table. After some fighting on the apron, EVIL drives Jericho through the table with an STO. Following up with a Senton from the top rope, for a near fall. EVIL goes for Darkness Falls, but Jericho slips down and turns it into a Walls of Jericho, but EVIL gets the ropes.

EVIL manages to land a Darkness Falls and Everything is EVIL, but Jericho continues to kick out. As the match winds down Jericho lands a Codebreaker, but EVIL kicks out. As a callback to how Jericho won the belt from Naito, he shoves EVIL into the ref and goes for a low blow, but EVIL stops it. Jericho pulls off a Frakensteiner, but EVIL rolls through and Jericho rolls with that, locking in the Walls of Jericho again. After a struggle and even a small transition to the Liontamer, EVIL taps out.

Before Jericho can really do anything heelish to EVIL, Naito comes out quickly for the save. Most likely pointing towards the Intercontinental Championship rematch at Wrestle Kingdom.

Winner: Jericho via Walls of Jericho

Rating: **** 1/4

 

4. NJPW Power Struggle RPW British Heavyweight Championship Match: Minoru Suzuki vs Tomohiro Ishii (c)

These two have had a long standing feud from before the Rev Pro belt was involved. Two of the tougher, old school “Strong Style” wrestlers, these two always beat the hell out of one another. Suzuki did manage to take the title once, but Ishii won it back, so now we’re looking at one more for good measure. This match will be stiff, so let’s just get to it.

Now Suzuki is well known to use heel tactics and chairs, but this was a more traditional match. Both men stood in the ring and just beat each other to a pulp. It could be argued that this didn’t add a layer to their feud, but the fact Suzuki kept it in the ring proves how important this was. Suzuki got an early advantage with stiff Forearm strikes and kicks, but Ishii countered with Forearms of his own and Headbutts.

The story came down to Suzuki kept going for the Sleeper into the Gotch Piledriver, but early on it was hard to apply since Ishii is known to not have much of a neck. The match shifted when Suzuki went for the Gotch, but Ishii countered it into a Rite of Passage style reverse Piledriver. Ishii followed that up with a few Sliding Lariats, and Suzuki was fighting from the back foot the rest of the match.

One more Gotch counter shows Ishii clipping Suzuki with a Enzuigiri, a few more strikes and then Vertical Drop Brainbuster, to retain his British Heavyweight title. Given that Suzuki has not been able to get any momentum this year, we could see a shift in Suzuki-Gun. Bullet Club has changed, CHAOS has changed, maybe it’s time to break up another long standing stable.

Should be interesting to see what happens with Suzuki come Wrestle Kingdom.

Winner: Ishii via Vertical Drop Brainbuster

Rating: **** 1/4

 

3. Pro Wrestling NOAH Global Tag League Day 1 GHC Jr Heavyweight Championship Match: Daisuke Harada (c) vs Kotaro Suzuki

Making his return to NOAH since the Burning departure in 2013, Kotaro Suzuki has a purpose. He claimed that the current crop of Juniors were a joke and he would win the Global Jr League, which he did to get this title shot. Harada took exception to this obviously, but couldn’t stop him in the Junior tournament. So now this is Harada’s last chance to prove himself to the returning veteran.

This match started off fairly docile until Kotaro hits a Tombstone on the apron. This set up for a nice moment of arrogance as he showed no desire to win in the middle of the ring and was okay if Harada got counted out. Harada slides in at 17, Kotaro throws him back out and waits in the corner for Harada to return. It took a little bit for Harada to regain his bearings, but when he did, the pace quickened.

We saw both men crisscrossing and bouncing off the ropes trying to keep the other off balance before Harada lays out Kotaro and tries to keep the faster pace. Kotaro gets some space and goes to the top rope for something. Harada meets him and goes for a Superplex but Kotaro shifts mid air and turns it into something I’m calling the “Holy Shit Driver”. Was it the cleanest looking? No. But by god was it a moment that made me actually jump out of my chair.

Harada rolls to the outside, Kotaro meets him with a Diving Elbow. Rolls him back in, goes for a Powerbomb, Harada block, Kotaro attempts a sunset flip, Harada blocks and attempts a Double Stomp but Kotaro evades. Harada bounces off the ropes and Kotaro catches him and lands Excalibur for 2. Follows up with Blue Destiny, but Harada kicks out again.

Kotaro goes for a Tiger Driver, but Harada block and just drops Kotaro on his face. Both men are down, and when they get up we get an unique variation of a strike fest. These two are so evenly matched, Kotaro goes for an Elbow high, but Harada hits him with an Elbow in the gut. We see dueling Forearm shivers, Discus Elbows, and then Harada finally gets the best of the exchange. Manages to pull off his Henkei Knee Upper but Kotaro kicks out.

Harada throws a strike, Kotaro catches it, tries Tiger Driver again, but as Harada is countering, he goes for a Crucifix pin. As soon as Harada gets out of it, Kotaro applies the La Magistral cradle, and we see the rolling locomotion style. About 4 or 5 rolls, before finally he wears down Harada long enough to keep his shoulders down for 3.

Interesting ending that still has both men look fantastic, but Kotaro proved the new crop of NOAH Juniors are still below him.

Winner: Suzuki via Locomotion La Magistrals

Rating: **** 1/2

 

Honorable Mentions:

 

NJPW Power Struggle Super Jr Tag League Finals 3 Way Match: Roppongi 3k vs Yoshinobu Kanemaru & El Desperado vs Shingo Takagi & BUSHI
Winner: RPG 3k via Shock Arrow
Rating: **** 1/4
WWE Crown Jewel WWE Championship Match: Samoa Joe vs AJ Styles (c)
Winner: Styles via Phenomenal Forearm
Rating: *** 3/4
NJPW Power Struggle: Zack Sabre Jr vs Tetsuya Naito
Winner: Naito via Destino
Rating: *** 3/4
Lucha Underground Mask vs Mask: Son of Havoc vs Killshot
Winner: Son of Havoc
Rating: *** 1/2
WWE Crown Jewel: Degeneration X vs Brothers of Destruction
Winner: DX via Sweet Chin Music/Pedigree combo
Rating: *** 1/4
Progress Chapter 77 Pumpkin Spice Progress: Tim Thatcher vs William Eaver
Winner: Thatcher via Fujiwara Armbar
Rating: *** 1/4
NJPW Power Struggle: Hiroshi Tanahashi & David Finlay vs Kenny Omega & Kota Ibushi
Winner: Golden Lovers via Golden Trigger
Rating: *** 1/4
Progress Ch. 77 Pumpkin Spice Progress: Isla Dawn vs Millie McKenzie
Winner: No Contest (Interference)
Rating: ***
NJPW Power Struggle: Kazuchika Okada & Trent Beretta vs Bad Luck Fale & Jay White
Winner: Trent via Victory Roll
Rating: ***

 

2. WWE SmackDown WWE Championship Match: Daniel Bryan vs AJ Styles (c)

From Mitchell’s Coverage:

Why wait three more days? We’re getting The Phenomenal VS The Goat tonight! Who wins to then have another match at Crown Jewel?

SmackDown returns as introductions are made and the belt is raised! The bell rings and we begin! Bryan and Styles circle and tie up. They fight for control as they grind shoulders into each other. Bryan brings Styles in, gets the wristlock, then brings him down. Bryan hammerlocks and stomps the arm! He backs off as Styles gets up, showing a semblance of respect. Styles and Bryan circle again, but Styles gets a waistlock slam! Bryan gets up and goes after the wrist again. He wrenches the arm around, but Styles scoops and throws Bryan over the top rope. Bryan stays on the apron, and Styles backs off to show his semblance of respect.

Bryan returns, and the two circle again. They tie up and Styles has Bryan in a corner. Bryan turns it around as fans start dueling. Bryan backs off at 3, then gives a shove. Styles shoves Bryan so Bryan shoves back. Styles shoves again, so Bryan goes after the arm. Bryan gives a shoulder breaker, then a hammerlock. He puts Styles into a corner shoulder first, then kicks away from both sides. He goes left and right, then grabs the arm for another shoulder breaker. Styles throws a forearm, then forearms and chops in a corner. He chops Bryan then whips him corner to corner. Bryan goes up and over, then runs, but Styles keeps pace. Styles dropkicks Bryan down! Bryan bails out as fans fire up. Styles aims, slingshot but misses! Bryan builds speed to DIVE! Direct hit but just a little double edged as Bryan holds his leg.

We go picture in picture while both men are down. The referee checks on them, and they’re okay to continue. Styles heads for the ring first while Bryan gets his leg moving. A ring count begins, but Bryan puts Styles in at 6. He stalks Stylse to ropes, then wrenches the arm for another shoulder breaker. He keeps going and has Styles in a hammerlock on the mat. Bryan sits on the hold to add leverage as he pulls back. Styles endures but Bryan flips him over for a cover, TWO! Styles gets to ropes, but Bryan is after him. He hits Bryan and put shim in a corner, but Bryan hits him back for buckle bumps. Bryan whips corner to corner hard, then says “YES!” before running in. Styles boots Bryan away, then leaps up, moonsault DDT! But the bad arm keeps Styles from making a cover.

Styles gets to ropes while Bryan stirs. Styles goes to Bryan in a corner, brings him up, and rams in his shoulder. He chops Bryan, but keeps with him in the other corner. Styles chops and chops, but Bryan turns things around to chop Styles! And kick him! Bryan reels Styles out for an arm wringer! He twists Styles’ arm, but then backs off. Fans duel between “YES!” and “NO!” as Bryan stalks Styles. Bryan drags Styles up and gives him a rocking European Uppercut. We return to single picture as Bryan unleashes Yes Kicks! Styles takes the kicks, but blocks the buzzsaw into a dragon screw! Bryan clutches that bad leg, but Styles is right on it. Styles DDT’s the leg into the mat and Bryan crawls away in pain. Styles kicks Bryan while he’s down, showing little mercy as he tweaks it between his own legs.

Bryan is still down, so Styles keeps going after the leg. Styles drops an elbow into a toehold. Bryan works to go after Styles’ face, but Styles fights him off. Bryan gets the fish hook and reels Styles in for an armbar! Styles works against it, and has Bryan turned over, for a knee smash! And then he sweeps the leg! He keeps kicking Bryan while he’s down, but the referee has him back off. Styles comes back for a BIG shinbreaker! He keeps kicking, but then Bryan hits back! Styles kicks the leg again, then gives Bryan a shinbreaker on a buckle! Bryan is down, clutching the leg, but Styles still keeps on him. Styles drops another elbow, but Bryan uses his good leg to kick Styles in the back. Bryan gets free, and gives Styles another EuroUpper.

Bryan runs in at the corner but into a back elbow. Styles hops up, moonsault but no DDT as Bryan gets a cravat! Bryan drives in knees, then throws Styles down! Both men are down but now Bryan is firing up. He gives more Yes Kicks! The buzzsaw hits! Bryan takes aim from a corner, but runs into a dropkick! Both men are down again, but Styles heads for an apron. He prepares himself, springboards, but Bryan trips him up! Styles is stuck up top, so Bryan turns him around. Bryan climbs up to join Styles, for a SUPER Back Suplex! That Styles turned enough on! The crossbody brings both men down, Bryan gasping while clutching his neck! We go to break while the referee checks on him.

SmackDown returns and Styles throws forearms. Bryan drags Styles into the Yes Lock!! Styles is so close to the ropes, he just reaches out, Ropebreak! But the damage was done as Bryan backs off. Bryan waits for Styles, then brings him in for a suplex. Styles resists, and suplexes Bryan out!! That bad leg is hurting again from the landing! Styles drags Bryan up, shinbreaker on the desk! Styles whips but Bryan reverses, Styles goes into steel steps! Bryan puts Styles in, then joins him. Bryan fires himself up, bad leg and all. He aims at Styles, runs in corner to corner, for a big dropkick! Bryan runs again, for another dropkick! He hoists Styles up top, then climbs up to join him. Super Steiner BLOCKED! Styles Brings Bryan back up, but Bryan gets that Super Steiner! Both men are down again, but stirring.

Styles gets up, and throws a clothesline in the corner. He runs in but is put on the apron. He shoulders in but Bryan kicks him! Bryan wraps the bad arm on the ropes, but backs off at 4. Bryan YES Kicks Styles between the ropes! But Styles catches one, dragon screw in the ropes! Bryan is down while Styles gets back on the apron. Styles aims, springboards, but flies into a double underhook suplex! Into armbar! Bryan pulls back, Styles flails and fans duel. Bryan shifts to a YES LOCK! Styles endures as Bryan pulls back. Styles gets up, makes it a cover, ONE! Bryan holds Styles with headscissors, and now it’s more a triangle. Fans duel as Styles holds on. Styles gets up, deadlifts Bryan, STYLES CLASH!! To CALF CRUSHER!! Bryan reaches, flails, but taps!! Styles wins!!

Winner: Styles via Calf Crusher

Rating: **** 1/2

 

1. Progress Chapter 77 Pumpkin Spice Progress World Championship Match: WALTER (c) vs Zack Sabre Jr

So I don’t follow Progress heavily, but this match seems to have had something brewing for a while. WALTER is one of the biggest and most well known names in the European wrestling scene, and we all known Sabre is a technical wizard. So Sabre gets another shot to prove himself against the Ring General from Austria. Who will survive?

The early game of cat and mouse was fantastic. Sabre was trying to pick his spots, allowing to give WALTER a couple openings, just to try and grab his arm or pick an ankle. Sabre’s Bicycle Kick to the arms really helped to play into his strategy.

As Sabre softened the arms, he went for numerous variations of stretches and Armbars. WALTER managed things early just by purely over powering Zack. Sabre got too cheeky at one point when he bridged out of a pin attempt and held it to talk shit. So WALTER decided to just stomp the hell out of Sabre.

WALTER tried to keep things grounded and go hold for hold with Sabre which wasn’t really a smart move. WALTER has an impressive Sleeper Hold and STF variation, but Sabre knows how to get out of more holds than most people can name. So what kept Sabre in this match was picking his spots and trying to wear down limbs, old school wrestling style.

This was a masterfully wrestled match and I can’t do it justice with the transitions and technical holds, but I will say regardless of a huge discrepancy in size, Sabre was very believably in this match until the waning moments. A highlight moment was when both men would hit each other and hold on while yelling at the other to accept and dish out more punishment. Sabre also had a Shawn Michaels moment of defiance when he flips off WALTER when all hope is nearly lost.

WALTER counters out of a last ditch Triangle Choke and ends the match with the Fire Thunder Driver. Damn impressive match.

Winner: WALTER via Fire Thunder Driver

Rating: ***** 1/4

 

Thoughts:

Well I guess I’ll just stick with dark horses in this article. WALTER vs Zack Sabre Jr ranks highly in my personal Match of the Year list, so there’s no way I’m not giving it the credit it deserves. Beautifully wrestled old school, Billy Robinson approved, style of wrestling. Yes it’s swimming up stream with names like Styles, Bryan and Jericho in this Top 5, but it was even better than anticipated.

Until next week, do that thing we always say and, Always Use Your Head.


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Andrew’s G1 Climax 29 Ratings & Analysis: Night 4 B Block

Second night for the B Block! Jay White and Tetsuya Naito need to get on the scoreboard. Did it happen?

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Second night for the B Block! Jay White and Tetsuya Naito need to get on the scoreboard. Did it happen?

Sapporo is a fun city for the main event, with a lot of general history.

Will Ospreay having a neck injury means he’s not working the undercard tonight.

Those are probably the two points that matter the most. So I guess let’s get to the show!

Ratings:

  • Jyushin Thunder Liger & Kota Ibushi vs Yota Tsuji & Shota Umino: Ibushi wins via Half Boston Crab @8:20 – **
  • Toa Henare, Ren Narita & Tomoaki Honma vs EVIL, BUSHI & SANADA: BUSHI wins via MX @7:20 – ** 1/2
  • Minoru Suzuki, Yoshinobu Kanemaru, Zack Sabre Jr & Lance Archer vs KENTA, Clark Connors, Karl Fredricks & Hiroshi Tanahashi: Kanemaru wins via Deep Impact @11:30 – ***
  • Chase Owens & Bad Luck Fale vs Kazuchika Okada & YOSHI-HASHI: Okada wins via Rainmaker @8:45 – ** 1/4
  • Block B: Shingo Takagi vs Toru Yano: Shingo wins via Pumping Bomber @6:15 – ** 3/4
  • Block B: Juice Robinson vs Hirooki Goto: Juice wins via Pulp Friction @12:20 – *** 1/2
  • Block B: Jon Moxley vs Jeff Cobb: Moxley wins via Draping Deathrider @8:55 – *** 1/4
  • Block B: Tomohiro Ishii vs Jay White: Ishii wins via Vertical Drop Brainbuster @19:15 – **** 1/2
  • Block B: Taichi vs Tetsuya Naito: Taichi wins via Last Ride @21:00 – *** 3/4

 

Analysis:

Liger and Ibushi take on Young Lions because Will Ospreay is nursing an injury. So this was unexpected, but who’s gonna argue with some Liger? Bare bones basic Young Lion match, but Liger and Ibushi kept the interest high.

EVIL and SANADA are facing one another on Thursday, but they were on the same team tonight. Part of this story was BUSHI remaining to look strong since the end of the BOSJ, while EVIL and SANADA had the tension building up. Instead of the LIJ fist bump after the win, EVIL tries to cheap shot SANADA, SANADA counters and then they have a stand off.

This Suzuki-Gun match was beautiful. It was just a gang fight, with each member of Suzuki-Gun taking someone off and Lance Archer even joined commentary at some point. House show quality match was a good way to describe this, but it was still fun and got across the point for future matches and just great character work.

It might be a little mean to say, but YOSHI-HASHI is in this match, so who cares? Chase Owens does prove why he’s the glue that holds Bullet Club together. He’s a great tag team player and this year he’s looked a lot better than he has in the past. So we’ve got an alright match, Okada wasn’t gonna eat a pin, but I guess they wanted to protect YOSHI a little, so Chase ate the Rainmaker.

Shingo proved he watched the Naito match by trying to get Yano to take off his shirt. Anyone who saw Shingo in Dragon Gate knows he’s got some comedy chops being a former…wait…the current, Open the Owarai Gate champion (Owarai means comedy). Shirt, wrist tape and turnbuckle shenanigans ensue, but the right person won. Shingo gets on the board and doesn’t suffer the shame of getting bamboozled.

This tends to be an issue with Goto and Juice a lot of the time. By this, I mean boredom. Goto and Juice have bumped heads a few times and they both try very hard, but they aren’t exciting together. Juice being a quirky but not overly animated just means you get a snarky line and one move that may be entertaining (usually Left Hand of God) and then the action stalls. So both did good work, it was a tough match, but it wasn’t really anything crazy. Solid enough match though.

Moxley focused on Cobb’s left shoulder, so the story was to take out Cobb’s power and try to figure out how to end the match. We saw another solid match, and Moxley gets across more of his character. He does borderline heel tactics and then apologizes to the referee. So this brawling, unstable babyface is an old school gimmick in Japan, but not often seen in New Japan. It’s nice to watch, and Moxley taking advantage of Cobb’s positioning to hit the Draping Dirty Deathriding Paradigm DDT.

Jay White starts off against two of the heavier hitters from Chaos, his former stable. After taking Goto lightly, Ishii comes into this match after a big win over Jeff Cobb. White came into the match less relaxed, but still playing up his smarmy character. Ishii laid into Jay the whole match, where Jay tried to outsmart the Stone Pitbull, but Jay isn’t as clever as he thinks he is. A great match with well placed false finishes and a lot of tension. Fantastic back and forth, plus Ishii picking up the win is something special.

There were so many story threads going on here. Sapporo is the place of their Intercontinental Championship match earlier in the year where Taichi had Takashi Iizuka interfere. Iizuka left the Iron Fingers for Taichi, but he hasn’t used them in the 6 months he’s had them. This was a great struggle of wrestlers who were once rivals, but Naito has since eclipsed Taichi. Hell, Taichi even hit a Ganso Bomb, shades of his mentor Toshiaki Kawada. References, call backs and a solid match from a story telling perspective.  Work rate might not have been fantastic, but that’s the beauty of professional wrestling being more than the moves in the ring. Plus part of the fun of Taichi matches is watch Miho Abe react, since she’s such a lovely devoted valet.

Overall Score: 6.75/10

A lot of this show was driven by the stories and the historical threads between participants, opposed to the in-ring action. I appreciate the mixture of angles that New Japan shows attack with. Many newer fans just know NJPW for great hard hitting work rate, but the beauty of puroresu in general is how deep the stories go.

Sometimes the wrestlers reference things from their mentors/trainers, sometimes it’s just a story line from the isolationist politics that each puro company has dabbled with or sometimes it goes all the way back to when someone was a Young Boy in a dojo. The layers are there for those who wish to know, so part of the fun in nights like this, are what personally floats your boat.

The show was the weakest so far, but there were plenty of satisfying moments outside of ring work.

B Block Standings:

  • Tomohiro Ishii – 2-0 (4 Points)
  • Jon Moxley – 2-0 (4 Points)
  • Juice Robinson – 2-0 (4 Points)
  • Toru Yano – 1-1 (2 Points)
  • Hirooki Goto – 1-1 (2 Points)
  • Shingo Takagi – 1-1 (2 Points)
  • Taichi – 1-1 (2 Points)
  • Jay White – 0-2 (0 Points)
  • Jeff Cobb – 0-2 (0 Points)
  • Tetsuya Naito – 0-2 (0 Points)


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Andrew’s Top 5 Matches: Week Ending 7/14/2019

HOLY WRESTLING WEEKEND BATMAN! With everything that went on, what did I see and what made the Top 5?

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HOLY WRESTLING WEEKEND BATMAN! With everything that went on, what did I see and what made the Top 5?

Well let’s not mess around too much since we’ve got a lot to break down. Our June match of the month was a two horse race, but one did end up winning without any controversy.

Updated Match of the Year Pool:

  • January – NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 13 IWGP Heavyweight Championship: Kenny Omega (c) vs Hiroshi Tanahashi
  • February – NXT Halftime Heat: Ricochet, Aleister Black & Velveteen Dream vs Adam Cole, Johnny Gargano & Tommaso Ciampa
  • March – Stardom: Wonder of Stardom Title Match: Jungle Kyona vs Momo Watanabe (c)
  • April – WrestleMania 35: WWE Championship: Kofi Kingston vs Daniel Bryan (c)
  • May – AEW Double or Nothing: Cody Rhodes vs Dustin Rhodes
  • June – NJPW BOSJ 26 Finals Day: BOSJ 26 Finals: Shingo Takagi vs Will Ospreay

So there we go. The BOSJ Finals that blew away many that saw it, still resonated well with voters. So we have our first iteration of the same company getting a second match, but still none of the wrestlers yet.

Now what won last week, as the first match of July? Impact Wrestling Slammiversary: Impact World Championship: Brian Cage (c) vs Michael Elgin, took the first match slot of July.

Since we had so many shows this weekend, there was a draw, so we’ve got 6 matches this week in the interest of fairness.

 

5t. NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: SANADA vs Will Ospreay

From My Analysis:
Well now, this went back and forth quite a bit. SANADA proved his athleticism, Ospreay proved that he can hang with heavyweights and it was close the whole time. The only really awful spot was Ospreay slipping out of the Paradise Lock. There’s a gimmick there, and we don’t need the allure of it to be cheapened for a dumb flip spot. Aside from that worthless moment, the match was really wrestled well and SANADA had a few attempts at victory. SANADA’s constant desire to use the Moonsault still proves to be his downfall. He really needs a new move.

Winner: Ospreay via Stormbreaker

Rating: ****

 

5t. AEW Fight for the Fallen: The Brotherhood (Cody & Dustin Rhodes) vs The Young Bucks

Snippet from Mitchell’s Coverage:
The Bucks have Dustin alone and they know it. Fans rally up behind Dustin as he throws hands on both Bucks! He gives jab after jab, and pumps it up like daddy did! Dirty birds for Matt, bionic backhands for Nick! But then a SUPERKICK in return! Shining Wizard to Macho Elbow! Cover, TWO!! Fans duel again as Matt grits his teeth. Matt runs at Dustin in the corner but gets a kick. Dustin hops on for a DESTROYER! Cover, TWO!! Fans rally and Dustin still feels it. Dustin tags Cody in and he sends Nick’s kick into Matt. Then Cody SUPERKICKS Nick, grabs Matt, but Nick SUPERKICKS Cody back! The Bucks think, and as Cody stands again, they give him DOUBLE SUPERKICKS to the back! Cover, but Dustin breaks it!

The Rhodes regroup, as do the Bucks. Fans hope they “Fight Forever!” as the Rhodes both stand together. The Bucks rush them, to steal the uppercuts! But then they get SUPERKICKS from the Rhodes! To give them back! Stolen Cross Rhodes! Cover, TWO!! Cody survives his own move, but the Bucks are not done. Nick FLIES onto Dustin, then coordinates with Matt. Matt gut wrenches, Nick springboards, MELTZER DRIVER! Cover, the Young Bucks win!

Winner: Bucks via Meltzer Driver

Rating: ****

 

4. NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Block B: Tomohiro Ishii vs Jeff Cobb

From My Analysis:
HOSS FIGHT! Big boys do big boy things and it was great. Chop exchanges, suplexes and both men putting the other through hell. Each favored their backs at different points, which made sense with all the punishment and suplexes both we dolling out. This definitely felt like it could go either way and that’s always a great vibe. Cobb never hit Tour of the Islands, so it was well protected.

Winner: Ishii via Vertical Spike Brainbuster

Rating: ****

 

3. WWE Extreme Rules: United States Championship: AJ Styles vs Ricochet (c)

Snippet From Mitchell’s Coverage:

Styles goes to suplex but Ricochet counters with a swinging neckbreaker! But Styles still lifts Ricochet for a brain buster! Cover, TWO!! Both men are down again but fans know “This is Awesome!” Styles slowly gets up and drags Ricochet over to a corner. Styles hauls Ricochet up top but Ricochet fights back. They brawl and Styles rocks Ricochet. Styles climbs up to join Ricochet but Ricochet fights back again. Ricochet slaps Styles off the top and adjusts position. But Styles is right back up, only to get a hotshot from Ricochet! Ricochet climbs back up, springboard shooting star! Cover, but Styles has a foot under the rope! Anderson points it out and the count is off!

Ricochet can’t believe how close he was, but he vows to wrap it up. He drags Styles to a drop zone, climbs up top, but Anderson runs over. Ricochet leaps over him and BOOTS Anderson down! But this distraction allows Gallows to trip Ricochet! Ricochet is stuck on the corner and Styles takes advantage, with an IMPLODING STYLES CLASH! Cover, Styles wins!

Winner: Styles via Avalanche Styles Clash

Rating: **** 1/4

 

Honorable Mentions:

NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: KENTA vs Hiroshi Tanahashi
Winner: KENTA via Go 2 Sleep
Rating: *** 3/4
WWE Extreme Rules: SmackDown Tag Team Titles: The New Day vs Heavy Machinery vs Rowan & Daniel Bryan (c)
Winner: New Day via Midnight Hour
Rating: *** 3/4
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Block B: Juice Robinson vs Shingo Takagi
Winner: Juice via Pulp Friction
Rating: *** 3/4
AEW Fight for the Fallen: CIMA vs Kenny Omega
Winner: Omega via One Winged Angel
Rating: *** 3/4
WWE Extreme Rules: Raw Tag Team Titles: The Revival (c) vs The Usos
Winner: Revival via Shatter Machine
Rating: *** 1/2
AEW Fight for the Fallen: SCU vs Lucha Brothers
Winner: Lucha Bros via Spike Fear Factor
Rating: *** 1/2
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: EVIL vs Kota Ibushi
Winner: EVIL via Everything is Evil
Rating: *** 1/2
WWE Extreme Rules: Undertaker & Roman Reigns vs Shane McMahon & Drew McIntyre
Winner: Undertaker via Tombstone
Rating: *** 1/2
WWE Extreme Rules: Intercontinental Championship Match: Shinsuke Nakamura vs Finn Balor:
Winner: Nakamura via Kinshasa
Rating: *** 1/4
WWE Extreme Rules: Aleister Black vs Cesaro
Winner: Black via Black Mass
Rating: *** 1/4
AEW Fight for the Fallen: Jimmy Havoc, Darby Allin & Joey Janela vs MJF, Shawn Spears & Sammy Guevara
Winner: Spears via Death Valley Driver
Rating: *** 1/4
WWE Extreme Rules: WWE Championship: Kofi Kingston (c) vs Samoa Joe
Winner: Kofi via Trouble in Paradise
Rating: *** 1/4
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: Bad Luck Fale vs Lance Archer
Winner: Archer via EBD Claw Hold
Rating: ***
WWE Raw: 2 out of 3 Falls: The Miz & The Usos vs The Revival & Elias
Winner: Miz & Usos 2-1
Rating: ***
AEW Fight for the Fallen: Kip Sabian vs Hangman Page
Winner: Page via Deadeye
Rating: ***
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Block B: Jon Moxley vs Taichi
Winner: Moxley via Deathrider
Rating: ***
IMPACT!: Kiera Hogan vs Jordynne Grace vs Madison Rayne
Winner: Grace via Grace Driver
Rating: ***
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Yoshinobu Kanemaru, Minoru Suzuki & Taichi vs Tetsuya Naito, Shingo Takagi & BUSHI
Winner: Suzuki via Gotch Style Piledriver
Rating: ***
WWE SmackDown: Shinsuke Nakamura vs Finn Balor
Winner: Shinsuke via Kinshasa
Rating: ***
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Minoru Suzuki & Zack Sabre Jr vs Kazuchika Okada & YOSHI-HASHI
Winner: Sabre via Cross Arm Breaker
Rating: ***
WWE Extreme Rules: Extreme Rules Winners Take All Raw Women’s & Universal Championships Match: Becky Lynch (c) & Seth Rollins (c) vs Baron Corbin & Lacey Evans
Winner: Rollins via Stomp
Rating: ***

 

2. NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: Kazuchika Okada vs Zack Sabre Jr

From My Analysis:
Okada has the amazing ability to wrestler his opponent’s style of match. Sabre stretched him and tried to break him, but Okada fended off every attempt. We saw numerous counters, submissions and great wrestling. Okada’s Rolling Rainmaker to set up the traditional Rainmaker is always a fun transition. Awesome match.

Winner: Okada via Rainmaker

Rating: **** 1/4

 

1. NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Block B: Jay White vs Hirooki Goto

From My Analysis:
Jay White hasn’t taken Goto seriously, like the better portion of New Japan fans. White put on some great heel work, from his interactions with Gedo, to being a step ahead with a beaming shit eating grin the whole time. Goto showed the heart and resolve that he used to be well known for. Most people who became fans over the last 4 years or so, know Goto as a good hand but to never accomplish anything really. This could finally be a return to the form he had a while ago when he was considered on equal footing with Nakamura and Tanahashi. Damn great effort from both wrestlers.

Winner: Goto via GTR

Rating: **** 1/4

 

Thoughts:

Well even though I missed the Evolve show because of having plans on Saturday, I think I caught enough of the quality shows. The Rhodes’ story is something I’ve been finding entertaining, but watching Jay White’s character evolve is great too. So my vote will go to Jay White vs Hirooki Goto.

Goto showing a possible resurgence and White continuing to grow are all great things so early in this G1 Climax tournament.


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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