Slightly new format, same great NOAH content from the Emerald Princess herself, Hisame!
As it has been a long week in NOAH, I have decided to not include the “News” section of this weeks newsletter, as the news it all tied up with what has happened on the five days of tour.
CURRENT TOUR RECAP
The first night of Global Junior Tag League 2019 was held on a Tuesday night at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo. NOAH did not manage to sell out the event, but I think they were expecting it as it was weeknight. The second night of the tour 30th May, took place in Hiroshima.
Hiroshima is a place of memories for NOAH due to both the time of year, and what happened in the city in 2009 when Misawa died. It was hard on all of them, especially Go Shiozaki, Akitoshi Saito and referee Shu Nishanaga. When NOAH left the venue that evening, Nishinaga put his hands together in prayer. NOAH have only once returned to Hiroshima to hold a memorial event for Misawa at the arena where he died and on the day itself. It was so painful for them that they have not done it again, and do not intend to do so to mark the ten years of his passing.
As per tradition, the participating teams of Global Junior Tag League 2019 came to the ring for the annual celebration (Tadasuke managed to stand in the wrong place, with Daisuke Harada accidentally treading on Senior Referee Shu Nishinaga as he went to get in the ring, as he was trying to get Tadasuke to move).
All the teams came out (plus the debuting Chris Ridgeway, who was teaming with Hitoshi Kumano), except for the GHC Junior Heavyweight tag team champions, Stinger (Kotaro Suzuki and Yoshinari Ogawa) who refused.
There were many cheers for the returning YO-HEY.
Kotaro Suzuki (who Yoshinari Ogawa says “speaks for us”), says that they want to win Global Junior Tag League as they don’t want to have a title match or defend the belts, such is their contempt for the other juniors.
Chris Ridgeway won his debut match at Korakuen Hall. The crowd were a little unsure of him at first, but soon warmed up when they saw he could both torture Ohara as well as Ohara could, and kick hard too.
The team of himself and Kumano have been doing very well for what is known as an “unknown” team. Ridgeway said that he wanted a rematch against Harada, and that he would bring the IPW Junior Heavyweight back to England.
The big news of the night at Korakuen was Junta Miyawaki getting his first win, with people getting on their feet to applaud him. During the match, Morohashi pretty much let Miyawaki do it by himself, and the tension was notched up by several near falls and kick outs. After his win (via a jack-knife pin), Miyawaki went insane, throwing himself around the ring, rolling on the floor with Morohashi and asking the referee if he really did get the three count. Being a big fan of The Clash, Tokyo Sports reported that he screamed that he wanted to tell Joe Strummer in heaven about it.
Miyawaki, however, has not managed to get another win yet.
YO-HEY & HAYATA started Global Tag League 2019, facing YO-HEY’S former friends in Stinger. Stinger, enraged by YO-HEY’S betrayal, kept him isolated from HAYATA in the beginning stages of the match, attacking his lung. However, neither team prevailed as it ultimately went to a count out, although YO-HEY managed to scramble in the ring just after the count had ended. The match itself was insane, with YO-HEY putting any doubts to rest that he wasn’t ready to return by his somersault off the top turnbuckle, outside the ring, onto Kotaro Suzuki who was standing behind the crowd rail.
YO-HEY seems to be getting on okay, although HAYATA is being protective over him, especially after the match with The Sugiura Army (Hajime Ohara who yelled “lung” when he attacked him) in Hiroshima, when he was seen holding his hand over YO-HEY’S lung at the end of the match, and then getting up to push NOSAWA away when he went to drive his foot in.
Hajime Ohara says that he wants further revenge on HAYATA & YO-HEY for beating himself and Hitoshi Kumano last year in the Global Junior Tag League finals. He doesn’t want revenge on them as a team, he wants revenge on them individually.
YO-HEY & HAYATA sadly have not been as dominant as they had hoped to be towards getting their third win in a row for the league, and throughout the tour only managed to get the win over Junta Miyawaki & Seiya Morohashi (having been counted out against Stinger, beaten by Nosawa & Ohara, and beaten by Daisuke Harada & Tadasuke. The only other win they got was not in Global Junior Tag League.)
Jinsei Shinzaki made his NOAH debut on the 28th May, teaming with Naomichi Marufuji (who had returned from injury) and Daisuke Harada.
Shinzaki quickly found himself the most adult person in the match as Harada and Marufuji acted like children, with Harada refusing to move from where Marufuji wanted to get in the ring at, and then Kenoh squaring up to Marufuji the moment he got in the ring, and Marufuji pointing at Kenoh, hiding behind Shinzaki (who just stood there), and each of them practically chasing each other round him. Despite the difficulties between himself and Harada, they worked together to get the victory. They seemed to have patched up their differences a bit, but are still capable of being immature with Harada saying that he is still Marufuji’s enemy, and that he doesn’t like him, and Marufuji pixellating his picture out of himself, Harada and Shinzaki.
Marufuji continued winding up people, particularly Kenoh, Go Shiozaki and Maybach Taniguchi. Kenoh because Kenoh is filled with obsessive hatred for him, Shiozaki because they are having a singles match at the Misawa memorial night at Korakuen Hall (Shiozaki has also never beaten him in a singles match), and Taniguchi as they will face off at the other night in Osaka, and caused a brawl in Hiroshima outside the ring between the three of them after he shoved Taniguchi.
Naturally, NOAH’s resident bumbling old vet, Masao Inoue (who was already being harassed by Sugiura during the tour), came in for his share of teasing too – especially after their singles match in Osaka, when Marufuji went to hold the ropes open for him and then kicked him. Despite his teasing of Inoue, Marufuji later said that ever since he was a trainee in the All Japan dojo, he had always had a liking for Inoue. Inoue was also menaced by AXIZ in Hamamatsu on the 2nd June, especially by Katsuhiko Nakajima, who looked as if he was going to hunt him down.
Daisuke Harada and Tadasuke have vowed to end HAYATA & YO-HEY’S dream of three consecutive wins, with Tadasuke becoming manic after victories, and at one point singing a theme from a Pokemon trainers game (and probably one which RATELS have played many times over together) as he walked off. Daisuke Harada warned that “Crazy Tadasuke” would come out more than ever, but “Crazy Tadasuke” proved a little too much for him at one point, and he left leaving Tadasuke to warble on.
Their team has been doing better than their teammates in RATELS, who have not been doing well so far.
Despite the rivalries that Global Junior Tag League (always) causes between them, the four of them were on form in their traditional home of Osaka, in what fans called “RATELS day” where YO-HEY & HAYATA signed autographs, and Daisuke Harada & Tadasuke did the NOAH’s Ark fan club photo session. However, in the match, Tadasuke and Harada were pulled off the turnbuckles during their entry by HAYATA & YO-HEY, and like last year in GJTL, Harada and Tadasuke, were victorious.
Takashi Sugiura has two pre-matches (without KAZMA SAKAMOTO most of the time as he is a freelancer and not on this tour much), against both AXIZ and Kaito Kiyomiya.
Katsuhiko Nakajima was his usual smirking self, ducking Sugiura’s punches, that was until Sugiura battered him with elbows. Kiyomiya, however, was as respectful as usual, and his only act of contrition was to get in the ring and hold the belt up to Sugiura. He was, however, a little more disrespectful with Kenoh and was held back by Taniguchi in Hiroshima.
Sugiura was not intimidated by either of them.
Kaito Kiyomiya spent the tour alternating between matches with Kenoh (Kiyomiya held the belt up to him, but had little to say in the post match promos, except about defending the belt) and Takashi Sugiura.
Kenoh’s main focus was his hatred of LIDET, Naomichi Marufuji and Kaito Kiyomiya. Marufuji called Kongoh “Kenoh and his three dogs” and on the way home from the final night of tour, said that they were “the bearded dog, the dog with the cloak and the one with no eyebrows”.
Hideki Suzuki finally got his wish to appear in NOAH again and with The Sugiura Army (28th May, Korakuen Hall). His original target had been Kaito Kiyomiya, but after facing off against Go Shiozaki, he realized that he had another opponent – and one of a similar size and body, and one who could chop. Suzuki was able to stand up to Shiozaki’s lariat, and manhandle him,
Suzuki told Shiozaki that he was “NOAH’s strength”, a comment that did not go down well with Naomichi Marufuji.
Yoshiki Inamura debuted a new red ring costume (with “Kongoh”) written on the back, a Sugiura style haircut and most bizarrely, shaved eyebrows – of which no one knows anything about, and he has never said anything about as to why they are shaved. Inamura had two singles matches against Takashi Sugiura, which Sugiura won (naturally), but he wouldn’t give up.
The kick he received to the head caused some concern, especially as the card in Hamamatsu was changed at the last moment, but he turned up in the main event teaming with Kongoh against Stinger, Quiet Storm & Naomichi Marufuji. Fans are wondering why this change occurred, but it may well be related to the kick to the head with medical opinion having it that he could cope with a tag as he would have a chance to rest, but not a fully blown singles.
By the end of a grueling five days, (four events in a row and long bus journeys in between), everyone got back on the bus and seemingly fell asleep. Fans had mentioned that they all looked tired by Hamamatsu.
That is except Naomichi Marufuji, who was awake, bored, and tweeting to wind people up.
When the bus returned to Tokyo, Kaito Kiyomiya posted at 2.45am that he and Chris Ridgeway were training in the dojo. Mohammed Yone (like Daisuke Harada) went home to take a long hot bath, Yone said he was looking forward to seeing his bunny, Mimi.
Takashi Sugiura, however, returned home, did his laundry and one of his dogs became entranced with the smell of his pants…
Global Junior Tag League (28th May) Post match promos
Global Junior Tag League (30th May) Post match promos
Global Junior Tag League (31st May) Post match promos
Global Junior Tag League (1st June) Post match promos
Global Junior Tag League (2nd June)
- GHC Heavyweight Champion: Kaito Kiyomiya
- GHC Junior Champion: Minoru Tanaka
- GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: AXIZ (Go Shiozaki and Katsuhiko Nakajima)
- GHC Junior Tag Champions: Stinger (Kotaro Suzuki & Yoshinari Ogawa)
~ Fans were determined to give YO-HEY his welcome back streamers, and turned out to determinedly do this in Hamamatsu (as one fan put it, “we will fulfill the mission this time”)
~ Fans are now calling the team of Hi69 & Minoru Tanaka, “Ultra Soul” (after the entrance music used)
~ Noah has a referee from America on the Global Junior Tag League tour with them, and who is also training with them. He is called Ben.
~ Maybach Taniguchi posted a picture of himself jogging, which Takashi Sugiura immediately seized upon and zoomed in on the picture of his face. He later asked why Taniguchi was wearing a hat during treatment, Taniguchi said it was to keep his hair out of the way…but Taniguchi does not have long hair.
~ Kongoh are now all wearing red. Masa Kitamiya has based his on Masa Saito’s red attire (however, he sometimes wore black during the consecutive dates). It has been said that is nice to see a unit with a color in NOAH.
~ Naomichi Marufuji still looking for a new partner, even going to far as to post a picture of his car and saying that was his partner.
~ Maybach Taniguchi has debuted a new move (a camel clutch variation), he says he does not have a name for it yet though.
~ Takashi Sugiura turned 49 on May 31st, he says he will live for NOAH. Fans bought special streamers to the show for him. He also celebrated by photographing Masao Inoue at the urinal.
The 9th June show (the Misawa Memorial from Korakuen Hall, Tokyo and the second to last night of Global Junior Tag League) will be broadcast by G+ on Thursday 13th at 8pm JST.
Global Junior Tag League Mini Interview: Tadasuke & Daisuke Harada
Junta Miywaki rejoices in first point
Kiyomiya’s presence in the pre-match fights
Naomichi Marufuji returns from lumbar disc herniation, 18th August declares victory in new opening league
PICTURE CREDITS: Noah GHC, Puroresu Weekly.
Newsletter written by Hisame
Mitchell’s ROH Results & Report! (7/13/19)
The Kingdom, Jay Lethal and The Bouncers in a big Six Man main event!
ROH Wrestling Television, Episode 408
Manhattan Mayhem is on the horizon, and so is a major ROH World Championship match! But before Matt Taven and Jay Lethal face off 1v1, they bring allies to the ring for a truly massive Six Man Tag match!
- Proving Ground: Rhett Titus VS Shane Taylor; Taylor wins.
- WOH World Championship #1 Contender’s Four Corner Survival: Stella Grey VS Jenny Rose VS Angelina Love VS Tasha Steelz; Steelz wins and will challenge Kelly Klein for the title at Summer Supercard.
- Six Man Tag: The Kingdom VS Jay Lethal & The Bouncers; Lethal & The Bouncers win.
PLAY BY PLAY
ROH looks back to Best in the World.
The Peacock faced Rush’s brother, Dragon Lee, and beat him using Rush’s moves! The Best of 3 Series’ third match saw the K I N G topple the Franchise Player! And the Villain Enterprises expanded to include an army! A FLIP Army! The Allure used every trick up their sleeves to beat the Pretty Badass and American Joshi, but were confronted by Maria Manic! Manic didn’t get her hands on Mandy Leon or the Beautiful People, so she ran roughshod over security! And most shocking of all, Matt Taven didn’t need to resort to anything underhanded to down the Hawaiian Juggernaut!! How can anyone hope to stop Taven’s #PurpleReign now?
Kenny King joins ROH commentary for this opening contest.
Coming off a big victory over THE Jay Lethal, the K I N G wants to see what his old friends are up to.
Proving Ground: Rhett Titus VS Shane Taylor!
The Fittest returns to in-ring action to show that Strong Beach physique. But will physique be enough to survive the Notorious Hitman and ROH World Television Champion?
Rhett wants to shake hands with his former Rebellion brother, but Taylor SPITS on the Code of Honor! Rhett just uses it as body oil. The bell rings and the 10 minute time limit starts counting down. All Rhett has to do is survive the 10 minutes, and he gets a future shot at the title!
Fans rally as the two circle. Taylor shoves Rhett down and taunts him as he stands up. Rhett comes back to waistlock, but Taylor standing switches. Rhett powers his way out, but gets caught in a full nelson! Taylor grins but Rhett powers out of the nelson! Taylor headlocks but Rhett powers out to headlock back. Rhett grinds but Taylor powers out and runs Rhett over! Taylor wants Rhett to stop playing, and scoops him up. Rhett slips out and dropkicks Taylor back! Rhett grins and flexes, but then he tries to fireman’s carry, and Taylor is too much. Taylor spins Rhett, misses one way but hits the clothesline on the other! ROH goes to break as Taylor dares Rhett to get up.
ROH returns and Rhett wrecks Taylor with a dropkick. Rhett shows off his core strength with leg raises, but Taylor pulls him down to ROCK him with that One Hitter Quitter! Taylor drags Rhett up and into the ring to put him on the apron. Taylor climbs up, to drop the leg! He laughs and taunts Rhett as he CHOPS the chest! Rhett gasps for air while he crawls to a corner. Taylor climbs in and throws another big right! Rhett forearms Taylor back! Rhett backs Taylor down but Taylor blocks and reverses the whip to rock him again! Taylor yanks Rhett up but Rhett lands on his feet! Rhett rocks Taylor back with a JAB!
Rhett is in the corner again, and dodges Taylor as he runs in, to give him back a splash! And a BOOT! Then side to side for another! Rhett keeps moving to boot again! Fans fire up with The Fittest as he fireman’s carries Taylor again! For a Samoan Drop! Cover, TWO! Rhett keeps his cool as Taylor goes to a corner. Rhett runs corner to corner but his boot is blocked! Taylor shoves Rhett back to KNEE him in the face! Cover, TWO!! Rhett survives and now Taylor is frustrated. Taylor toys with Rhett but Rhett SLAPS him back! Taylor pie faces but Rhett CHOPS and forearms away! Rhett fires off forearm after forearm but Taylor bobs ‘n’ weaves to HEADBUTT! Cover, Taylor wins!
Winner: Shane Taylor, by pinfall
Rhett fell short of proving himself worthy, and the ROH World TV Champion continues rolling on. Kenny gives Taylor his due props, but goes to check on Rhett in the ring.
“I’m searching for the words, man, to describe what I just saw out of you right now.” The word is, “disgusting.” King is disgusted by Rhett. What happened to him? ROH stuck them together and they fought, they scratched and they clawed and became one of the best teams ever, the All Night Express. They beat The Briscoes, the Young Bucks, Roderick Strong, Tyler Black, you name them. “What the hell happened to you?!” Rhett fails a Proving Ground match because he only proved that while he has the body of a god, he has the “heart of a b*tch.” There’s no fight left in Rhett! If Kenny was Joe Koff, he’d rip up Rhett’s contract on the spot!
Rhett’s family and pregnant wife are here, yet he embarrasses them!? Does Rhett think it’s okay that the reason his son won’t look him in the eyes is because daddy’s a coward?! Rhett gets mad, and that’s what Kenny wants to see! Show him something! But when Rhett doesn’t, Kenny is the one who gets mad. Is the Titus family really proud of that?! Because the Rhett Kenny King knew was a man, not this “punk ass b*tch.” Will these fighting words light a fire in the Fittest? Or does the K I N G have a point?
ROH hears from Kelly Klein.
“Women of Honor has some of the best women wrestling has to offer right now, and I love it.” That means the Gatekeeper will defend her title against some of the best women around. Maria Manic has Kelly’s attention, and Kelly is ready for that match. Kelly’s even excited to fight Tasha Steelz, the Allure, Stella Grey or Jenny Rose as she defends her world title. Who makes it out of the contender’s match first in line for a fight with the Pretty Badass?
ROH looks back to June 29th.
Jay Lethal vowed to work twice as hard as before, “whip the crap out of Matt Taven,” and become a THREE-TIME ROH World Champion! But Taven told him that in New York City, July 20th, we will all finally see that we are living in “The Time of Matt Taven.” Taven is the King of ROH, because heee’s Matt Taven, and he was #BorntoRule! But then, Alex Shelley returned!
Shelley was careful not to say he retired from ROH. Let’s pretend he has a card in his hand that is known as the “veteran’s card.” And let’s say there’s a hole punched for every year he’s contributed to the industry. That’s 17 holes. Shelley’s fingerprints are all over the world of wrestling, so now he plays his card. Shelley expects to be respected! And it won’t matter who walks out of Manhattan, Shelley just wants his shot to prove to them, him, and the world that he still has #TalentonLoanfromGod! Who will the returning revolutionary meet after mayhem goes down in Manhattan?
WOH World Championship #1 Contender’s Four Corner Survival: Stella Grey VS Jenny Rose VS Angelina Love w/ The Allure VS Tasha Steelz!
While only one of the Beautiful People is in this match, it is no surprise that she still has her friends by her side. Angelina Love leads the way as Velvet Sky helps Mandy Leon and their fluffy mascot, Foxxy, into the ring. But the spotlight quickly moves to the Garden State Goddess, little gritty Grey, and the American Joshi. With Kelly Klein watching on commentary, who grabs a huge victory and earns a Summer Supercard showdown?
But before the bell rings, Velvet grabs a mic to tell Jenny she doesn’t belong here, that Stella doesn’t belong here, and Tasha- She doesn’t even know who Tasha is, actually, but she doesn’t belong here, either. The only woman in the ring that matters is the Allure’s Bada$$, Angelina Love, the TRUE #1 Contender! Angelina proved herself already when she pinned Kelly at Best in the World. Win-loss records leave out a lot, and Kelly knows Angelina didn’t need to cheat that night to win. But talking aside, the other three competitors uphold the Code of Honor, but don’t even worry about Angelina. The bell finally rings, and Jenny goes right at her!
Stella and Tasha fight while Jenny rains down rights on Angelina! Angelina and Jenny roll out of the ring and Angelina kicks back. Jenny forearms but Angelina kicks again. Stella whips Tasha but Tasha runs Stella over. Tasha brushes herself off and runs, but Stella keeps up. Tasha and Stella trade hip toss blocks while Angelina and Jenny trade apron bumps. Stella rolls Tasha but Tasha arm-drags back. Stella arm-drags Tasha now, but Angelina kicks Jenny away. Angelina is on Stella with a sleeper, but Stella kicks Tasha away. Angelina throws Stella down by her hair, and The Allure cheers her on as she whips Stella into a corner. Stella runs into Tasha, then Angelina dropkicks them into each other. Angelina throws Stella out and runs, but into Jenny’s SPEAR! Cover, TWO!
Tasha throws Jenny out fast and stares down with Angelina. Tasha flexes but it doesn’t impress Angelina. Angelina ties up with Tasha to a headlock. Tasha powers out but Angelina runs her over. Things speed up and Tasha shows agility to hip toss Angelina down! Fans fire up as Tasha whips. Angelina reverses and scoops to a spinning sidewalk slam! Cover, TWO! Tasha fires forearms back and whips, but Angelina reverses. Tasha goes up and over and rolls, to drop toehold Angelina down. Angelina gets clear of the basement dropkick but Tasha gets clear of the elbow drop. The two stare down as fans cheer.
Tasha eggs Angelina on, and the two start trading forearms. Tasha gets an edge and fires off! She runs but Mandy trips her up! A Fatal 4 Way means no disqualifications, but the referee tells the Allure they’re EJECTED! Mandy is upset and Velvet just shrugs it off as they take Foxxy with them. Angelina is a bit more concerned now that she’s all alone as ROH goes to break.
ROH returns and Tasha waistlocks Angelina. They roll to a cover, TWO! Stella throws Tasha out to roll Angelina, but Jenny breaks it. Jenny kicks Stella out to then La Magistrol Angelina, TWO! Jenny stays on Angelina in a corner for a back elbow and whip. Angelina reverses but Jenny dodges to send Angelina into the post! Jenny dropkicks Stella back out and goes out to join her. They start trading hands, but Tasha slingshots out to take them both down! Fans fire up but now Angelina climbs up top. Angelina LEAPS to crossbody them all down! This is the top tier talent Kelly has wanted to see. But speaking of, Angelina dares Kelly to come closer. Kelly heads closer to the ring, and stares Angelina down the whole way. But this keeps Angelina seeing Jenny, Stella and Tasha all get back in the ring.
Jenny clubs Angelina, and has help from Stella! They DOUBLE POWERBOMB Angelina down! But then Tasha double clotheslines Jenny and Stella down! Fans fire up behind the Boricua Badass as she fireman’s carries Stella. Stella fights out and drags Tasha into a sleeper hold clutch! Angelina kicks Jenny then hits a complete shot, to the Koji Klutch! Side-by-side submissions, but which one puts their victim out first!? Jenny and Tasha endures, and Jenny reaches for a ropebreak! The ref counts and Angelina lets her go. Meanwhile, Tasha sits up, and Angelina kicks Stella off her! Jenny kicks Angelina down, then goes to Tasha for a German Suplex! Jenny kicks Stella for a snap suplex! She runs at Angelina but gets the Botox Injection! Angelina covers, but Stella breaks it!
Stella scoops but Angelina slips out and shoves, Botox Injection for Stella! Tasha throws Angelina out to get Stella with a CUTTER! Cover, Tasha wins!!
Winner: Tasha Steelz, by pinfall; NEW #1 Contender to the WOH World Championship
Angelina ain’t happy about it, but the Boricua Badass got the better of her fair and square, okurrr? Can Tasha make it a one and done when it comes to title matches? Or will Kelly still be the champion when she leaves Toronto?
But wait, the lights drop down. And a rather creepy little video plays. Dolls sit in a line, but a hand reaches out to take the man. To chew him up and spit him out! Because the MANEATER is here! And Maria Manic has appeared behind Tasha and Angelina! Angelina saw this once before, she gets away again. But Tasha shows no fear! Security hurries to keep this fight from happening, but Maria just manhandles them like she did at Best in the World! She takes one and tosses him from the ring, then clotheslines another! But she slaps the third around to then put him in the torture rack! And then she dumps him out onto the other two! The fourth man gets the double hand choke slam! Maria Manic made mince meat of five grown men, but is she going to devour the entire WOH Division?
ROH hears from Rush.
El Toro Blanco is “sick and tired” of Dalton Castle. Rush whooped The Peacock in 15 seconds. But if Castle wants to mess with his familia, well perro, the bull is going to end him for good! Rush didn’t come to ROH to play, he came to become the best! “Nothing happens unless I say so.” When and where will this grudge match happen? Mass Hyteria on July 21st! A wild weekend is coming for ROH, who survives the mayhem and hysteria on the way to the Summer Supercard?
Six Man Tag: The Kingdom VS Jay Lethal & The Bouncers!
Matt Taven vows to prove he’s the king, while TK O’Ryan and Vinnie Marseglia vow to show who are the real elite tag team wrestlers in ROH. But they’ll have to prove it with actions, not words, as they take on their rivals all at once! Will the Franchise Player gain major momentum towards Manhattan when he sides with former foes in Brian Milonas & The Beer City Bruiser?
But given the apparent collusion involving Kenny King and timekeeper Amy Rose, Jay Lethal asks that she take her leave. Amy obliges, not wanting to be a source of controversy for this main event. The Kingdom then make their entrance, and ROH takes another break.
ROH returns and Lethal starts against the Horror King. The bell rings and they tie up right away! Vinnie powers Lethal to a corner but the ref backs him off. Vinnie throws a forearm but Lethal gives it back and we have a brawl! Lethal starts backing Vinnie down but Vinnie knees low and puts Lethal in a corner. Vinnie chops but Lethal CHOPS right back. They trade more CHOPS, and Vinnie wants Lethal to give him more. Lethal CHOPS Vinnie like he wants, but Vinnie just trash talks and knees low. Vinnie runs but misses in the corner, Lethal hip tosses and cartwheels to dropkick! Vinnie hurries to the Kingdom’s corner and tags to TK. Brian “Brawler” Milonas tags in and ties up with the Sassy Wild Horse.
Milonas shoves TK all the way back to his corner! TK runs back out but skids to a stop as Milonas towers over him. TK says he wants Lethal? Milonas gives TK what he wants, but he does tag Lethal a bit hard. Lethal shakes it off and ties up with TK. TK headlocks but Lethal powers out, only for TK to run him over. TK runs and runs Lethal over again, but things speed up. Lethal hurdles but his hip toss is blocked to TK’s own hip toss. Lethal boots TK back but runs into an elbow. TK runs but into that hip toss and cartwheel dropkick! Lethal has gotten two Kingdom members with that, and then tags in Bruiser. Taven tags in and Bruiser dares him to bring the fight. Taven has Bruiser calm down, and fans chant “Melvin! Melvin!” But again, The Kingdom wants Lethal.
Taven wants Lethal and even offers a free shot. Bruiser says Taven’s too scared to fight a real man. Taven just wants Lethal, and again gives a free shot. Lethal tags in but he sees the sucker punch coming. The two fire off haymakers and CHOPS on each other! Lethal whips but Taven reverses, but Lethal gets under TK at the ropes. Vinnie rushes at Lethal on the outside but Lethal dodges to CHOP! TK jumps but Lethal punches him out of the air, only for Taven to wreck Lethal with a dropkick! Taven drags Lethal up and throws him into railing, then The Kingdom attacks like piranha! The Bouncers protest but The Kingdom put Lethal in. Taven stomps and chokes Lethal to then tag in Vinnie. The Kingdom mugs Lethal with stomps then Vinnie rains rights down. Fans duel as ROH goes to one more break.
ROH returns once again, and The Kingdom continues to mug Lethal. Taven stomps Lethal down then drags him up to put in the Kingdom’s corner. Taven CHOPS Lethal then tags in Vinnie. Vinnie tags in TK, and the two whip Lethal. Lethal reverses to whip Vinnie, but TK waistlocks him. Lethal boots Vinnie then slips out of TK’s suplex. He ducks them both to tag in Bruiser! Bruiser rallies with the power of “BEER! BEER!” He punches Taven, uppercuts Vinnie, and uppercuts TK! Bruiser brings TK in for the sidewinder DDT! Cover but Vinnie breaks it! Vinnie fish hooks Bruiser but Bruiser bites the fingers. Oh but wait, Bruiser can’t bite, “I ain’t got no teef!” Bruiser brings TK up but TK CHOPS! TK kicks low and DDT’s Bruiser! But Milonas tags in to rally on The Kingdom! He even back drops Taven!
Milonas falls back to senton on Taven! Vinnie runs but gets flattened with a crossbody! Cover, but Taven breaks it! Taven fires off strikes on Milonas, but Milonas powers Taven to a fireman’s carry. TK leaps but into Milonas’ arms! Milonas gives them a Fall Away Samoan Drop combo! Fans fire up with the Mastodon, but also for Lethal as he DIVES onto Vinnie! Lethal gets back in to DIVE onto TK! And of course, he runs and DIVES onto Taven! The trifecta has been completed! Vinnie runs in to fight with the Bouncers, and whips Bruiser, but Bruiser reverses. TK tags in before Vinnie gets fed to the Scrapbuster! TK climbs and leaps, but into Bruiser’s arms. Milonas sandwiches TK with Bruiser, and it even sends Bruiser stumbling. But Bruiser comes back while Milonas climbs, and it’s the Last Call leg drop! Cover, The Bouncers and Lethal win!
Winners: Jay Lethal & The Bouncers, Brian Milonas pinning
The winner of Guerrillas of Destiny VS The Briscoes in the ROH World Tag Team Championship match at Manhattan Mayhem better watch out, because some big competition is meeting them at Mass Hysteria. Who will The Bouncers get to toast with on the 21st?
But wait, Taven doesn’t let Lethal go, and gives him CLIMAX to the floor!! The Bouncers hurry to Lethal’s side as The Kingdom retreats. Taven raises the title, but will he still be holding onto the gold after Manhattan Mayhem?
A pretty good go-home with major developments for a busy weekend coming up for ROH. Not only is Manhattan Mayhem on Saturday, July 20th, but now there’s another event on July 21st with this “Mass Hysteria” in Lowell, Massachusetts. Of course, this is all on top of ROH TV finally referencing Best in the World, but the usual mess was mostly ironed out. Rush has a solid promo, and his grudge match with Castle will surely be longer and better than the shocking 15 second squash at G1 Supercard. What’s odd is that while Kenny King beat Lethal at BitW in their Best of 3, he’s doing a story with Rhett Titus next? Lethal’s using his contractual rematch, sure, but is this story with Rhett going to delay Kenny’s shot at Taven more? Is Rhett going to turn so that we more or less get an All Night Express reunion? It is both intriguing yet confusing as to what is going on here.
The Women’s Fatal 4 was a great match, and what a great surprise to see the younger Tasha Steelz getting this chance. I thought it was going to be Angelina Love, but at the same time, even Angelina Love seems like an odd choice from out of The Allure. But I suppose with now women’s tag titles in ROH (yet?) all three could try going after Kelly in turn. And then we got to see Maria Manic at the same time tonight, that was a great way to debut! The Maneater will surely be a contender, and a monster for the Allure to worry about while they’re each taking turns against Kelly Klein. Kelly’s promo is obviously to put the company over, but for just the WOH Division in a vacuum, it is definitely heating up now with an addition like Manic.
And to end the show, we get a really good Six Man Tag, and obviously the goal for The Kingdom was to do as much as they could to Lethal so it’ll be easier for Taven in Manhattan. I am still disappointed the timing kept Jeff Cobb from becoming ROH’s top guy, but I again reference that the G1 Climax and Cobb going back and forth just wouldn’t be good for him or ROH. Lethal might as well dethrone Taven, joining Adam Cole as the only other three-time champ. Then we could get Lethal VS King 4 within a span of a few months, and maybe that story (which has an interesting twist with how it involves timekeeper Amy Rose) is what gives King his first world title reign, and makes him an ROH Triple Crown winner. Then we can circle back to King VS K I N G, Grand Slam Taven VS Triple Crown Kenny for the One True King of Honor!
My Score: 8.2/10
Andrew’s G1 Climax 29 Ratings & Analysis: Night 5 A Block
KENTA, Lance Archer and Kazuchika Okada are setting the early A Block pace! Something’s gotta give. Who comes out undefeated?
KENTA, Lance Archer and Kazuchika Okada are setting the early A Block pace! Something’s gotta give. Who comes out undefeated?
Shmoxley in the opening tag team match means we should start off fun. Tanahashi and Sabre are in the battle of, well, someone needs to get at least a point out of that.
Then we’ve got Ospreay and Ibushi who are banged up but most likely still going to be psychopaths in the ring. Let’s get ready for the carnage, I mean, no…I meant carnage.
- Shota Umino & Jon Moxley vs Tomohiro Ishii & Yuya Uemura: Shooter wins via Fisherman Suplex Hold @5:45 – ***
- Hirooki Goto, Jeff Cobb & YOSHI-HASHI vs Toa Henare, Yota Tsuji & Juice Robinson: YOSHI wins via Butterfly Lock @9:30 – ** 1/4
- Tomoaki Honma, Ren Narita & Toru Yano vs Jay White, Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi: Owens wins via Package Piledriver @8:50 – ** 1/2
- BUSHI, Tetsuya Naito & Shingo Takagi vs Taichi, Minoru Suzuki & Yoshinobu Kanemaru: Suzuki wins via Gotch Style Piledriver @8:35 – ** 1/2
- A Block: KENTA vs Lance Archer: Kenta wins via Game Over @12:00 – ***
- A Block: SANADA vs EVIL: EVIL wins via Everything is Evil @18:10 – **** 1/4
- A Block: Bad Luck Fale vs Kazuchika Okada: Okada wins via Double Legged Cradle @10:15 – ** 1/2
- A Block: Zack Sabre Jr vs Hiroshi Tanahashi: Tanahashi wins via Triangle Counter Pin @13:55 – *** 3/4
- A Block: Kota Ibushi vs Will Ospreay: Ibushi wins via Kamigoye Knee @27:15 – **** 3/4
Moxley and Ishii start off trying to kill one another. This is a great opener and the respective Young Lions have to pull their veteran off as to not incur a disqualification. The Young Lions then take the bulk of the match and Shota has definitely picked up a few mannerisms from Moxley that we slowly see him unlocking. This may be our evolution of Shooter, but for an opening match this was very fun and the fact Moxley and Ishii just want to fight added for a neat dynamic.
Juice and Cobb are both respectful Gaijin faces, so not a lot of heat for this match. Plus YOSHI-HASHI was in it, so I could’ve downed a few Valium and been more invested in staring at a wall. Pork Chop Sandwiches later, and YOSHI-HASHI wins with that awful Butterfly Lock. Great…I can now taste colors.
So Yano wanted to get him a piece of the Jay White on the down turn, but Jay tried to still play the calculating heel. Honma put in a bit of decent work but Narita was obviously the one sent out to eat the pin. Narita held his own against Yujiro and Chase, but Chase eventually stopped playing with his feud and hit the Package Piledriver to tie things up in a nice little bow.
Shingo took a hell of a beating in this match. Kanemaru played random interference and Taichi took Shingo to the woodshed. Naito also continued his distaste of Taichi and Suzuki while being a little protective of Shingo at points. Now being the unabashed fanboy of Shingo, yet also a subscriber to Holy Emperor weekly, I’m very torn about this whole thing. The match played up the G1 tensions and the LIJ vs Suzuki-Gun tensions very well, but my heart knows not which to root for.
Lance is a good foot taller than KENTA and that was the story of the first 75% of this match. Lance was shrugging off the strikes of our returning striker. KENTA was getting effectively crushed, until Lance pushed the anime comeback button and said “You’re fucking Hideo! That’s who you are! HIDEO!” – which prompted the anime comeback in KENTA. KENTA managed to even lift Lance for a few things, but relied heavily on the dropkicks and strikes. He couldn’t quite pull off the Go 2 Sleep, so he went to his Crossface submission, Game Over. And boy howdy, it was game over! (I will see myself out after that)
EVIL and SANADA have this brotherly rivalry in LIJ. Being former 2 time IWGP Heavyweight Tag Champions, familiarity is obvious. SANADA starts off the match quickly and this is definitely a match of quick bursts when the one gets an advantage. I guess they are transitioning SANADA away from the Paradise Lock since this is the second match where he had it mostly on, but “something happened” and the opponent gets out of the move. We get a bunch of great back and forth, but something that continues to plague SANADA is his limited moveset when it gets down to crunch time. EVIL pulled out a plethora of tricks, including using the referee as an anchor for the Magic Killer. Whereas, SANADA sticks to Dragon Sleeper variants, into Skull End attempt or a Moonsault. With how over SANADA is, I really expect him to start getting more crunch time maneuvers. EVIL wins and quickly wants to bury the hatchet by extending the LIJ fist bump. SANADA bumps fists, and all is fine in our ungovernable world.
Fale tends to have Okada’s number in tournaments, and he starts off by attacking him in the back and dragging him out. So we get a typical Bullet Club brawl with heel tactics and ref bumps, but Okada perseveres. Okada is able to lift Fale a few times, but can’t hit the Rainmaker, and wins via the wrestling move he tends to fall back on, the Double Legged Cradle.
Well both Tanahashi and Sabre come into this match 0-2, so there’s a level of desperation that both bring to the table. Sabre wrestled circles around Tanahashi, and Tanahashi just tried to keep up for most of the match. After countering the High Fly Flow, Sabre locks in a Triangle Arm Bar, but Tanahashi floats over for the bridging pin counter. The Ace finally has 2 points!
There have been well known injuries for both of these men, and they played into the story of the match well. Focusing on each other’s injuries, calling back to their Wrestle Kingdom match and just a generally high energy and high impact match. Watching this match, you have to assume one of them will die with their style, but it is damn entertaining. Everyone expected this to be a great match and it delivered.
Overall Score: 8/10
Well we had a lot of good storylines and matches that mostly paid off. Lance Archer has been doing great work, Fale and Okada was at least somewhat entertaining and the cripple fight in the main event was fantastic. The inner faction turmoil was now squashed, so we can have a nice tournament while The Ace gets a few points over the petulant British child.
So great show, great entertainment, and generally a good time. I can only hope the B Block carries equal weight.
Block A Standings:
- Kazuchika Okada: 3-0 (6 Points)
- KENTA: 3-0 (6 Points)
- Lance Archer: 2-1 (4 Points)
- EVIL: 2-1 (4 Points)
- SANADA: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Hiroshi Tanahashi: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Will Ospreay: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Bad Luck Fale: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Kota Ibushi: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Zack Sabre Jr: 0-3 (0 Points)