NJPW switches back to World Tag League!
NJPW gives the hot tag to World Tag League! Will the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Champions, the Dangerous Tekkers, move to a spotless 3-0?
NOTE: NJPW no longer wants to feed AXS TV now that it is with Anthem and Impact Wrestling. But never fear, I will cover NJPW in the spirit of AXS in providing the most important matches of the show.
- World Tag League 2020: The Empire VS Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens; The Empire wins.
- World Tag League 2020: HenarACE VS FinJuice; FinJuice wins.
- World Tag League 2020: Guerrillas of Destiny VS EVIL & Yujiro Takahashi; Guerrilas of Destiny win.
- World Tag League 2020: YOSHI-HASHI & Hirooki Goto VS Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii; Yano & Ishii win.
- World Tag League 2020: SANADA & Shingo Takagi VS Dangerous Tekkers; LIJ wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Here are the current World Tag League standings!
The Dangerous Tekkers: 2-0
EVIL & Yujiro Takahashi: 2-0
SANADA & Shingo Takagi: 1-1
Guerrillas of Destiny: 1-1
Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii: 1-1
The Empire: 1-1
Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens: 0-2
YOSHI-HASHI & Hirooki Goto: 0-2
The Empire VS Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens!
The Dominator and the Hawaiian Hulk were shocked to lose so soon, but the World Tag League isn’t through yet! Will Great-O-Khan and Jeff Cobb rebound off the Rogue General and Crown Jewel?
But before The Empire gets in the ring, the Bullet Club strikes as Chase Owens WRECKS Great-O-Khan with the dropkick! Fale brawls with Cobb, Owens helps him out and the bell rings to get this on record. Owens and Fale mug Cobb, Owens adds a headlock punch, and Fale chokes Khan! The ref tries to get this back in the ring but Cobb elbows Owens away. Fale throws Khan down but stomps him while Cobb chokes Owens on railing. Khan knees Fale low and then knees him again. Khan uses an arm triangle to squeeze the air out of Fale! Owens shoves the ref away so he can keep on Cobb, but Cobb CHOPS him back! Cobb throws a haymaker and Cobb staggers away. Fale bumps Khan off the apron, then uses a camera cable to choke him!
Cobb throws more haymakers on Owens and Fale lets go of Khan eventually. Owens staggers around and the ref tries to restore order but no one is listening. Fale clubs Khan down, Khan hits back with body shots, and a ring count finally starts. The count passes 5 of 20, then reaches 10 of 20 before Fale puts Khan in. Fans cheer as this is finally in the ring! Fale stalks Khan, stomps him and then stands on him with a salute. Fans cheer for that but Khan is getting mad. Fale drags Khan up and tells off the POS. Khan Mongolian CHOPS back! And then again! Fale hits low to stop the third, then he throws more body shots! The ref reprimands the closed fist, but Khan throws forearms. Fale throws more body shots and forearms of his own, then has Khan in a corner for clubbing forearms over and over!
Khan stays up but Fale whips him corner to corner. Fale runs in, but Khan dodges and Fale only gets buckles! Fale runs but into a BOOT! Khan aims and Mongolian CHOPS Fale down! Fans rally up while Khan catches his breath. Tags to Cobb and Owens, and Owens fires off! Cobb ROCKS Owens back, whips him corner to corner, but Owens goes up and around, ducks and calf kicks! Cobb wobbles and Owens gets a headlock to punch again. Owens runs in at the corner but Cobb dodges. Cobb runs in, blocks the boot and uses that to reel Owens in for ATHLETIC PLEX! Fans cheer and rally as The Empire double whip Owens corner to corner. Cobb whips Khan in for a clothesline! Khan gut wrench suplexes Owens, then Cobb gut wrenches Owens the other way! Cover, Fale breaks it!
Khan clubs Fale, throws knees, and regroups with Cobb. The Empire double whip but Fale blocks it! Fale double whips The Empire, but the Empire comes back to double shoulder Fale down! Fale flops out of the ring and The Empire focuses on Owens. Fans rally as Owens throws forearms on them both! And a back elbow! Owens catches Khan’s clothesline and spins him to a neckbreaker! Cobb waistlocks but Owens elbows Cobb away. Owens deflects Cobb’s punch, fires off a strike fest but Cobb reels him back in! Owens breaks free and PELES! Cobb wobbles and fans fire up as Owens runs to JEWEL TRIGGER! Then he hits another JEWEL TRIGGER!
Owens tucks Cobb in but Khan gets him with the claw! He throws Owens into Fale, then throws him over with a hip toss! Khan clamps the claw onto Owens again, and feeds him to Cobb, TOUR OF THE ISLANDS! The Empire wins!
Winners: The Empire, by pinfall; now 2-1, Fale & Owens are now 0-3
The Empire strikes back and wins! Cobb and Khan are back on top, but will they be the top team in the league?
HenarACE VS FinJuice!
Hiroshi Tanahashi and Toa Henare have yet to get on the board, while the 2019 WTL winners are batting 500 after two great matches. Will The Ace and the Hammerhead be able to get a huge win off the Flamboyant friends?
HenarACE show off the muscles, but then so does FinJuice. Fans rally already as the teams sort out, and it is Tanahashi and Finlay that start. The claps are “Let’s Go, Ace!” as Tanahashi and Finlay circle. They feel out the grapple, but Tanahashi avoids being cornered by FinJuice. Tanahashi and Finlay feel out the grapple but Tanahashi gets away again before Finlay can tag Juice. Fans rally again as Finlay and Tanahashi circle. They tie up, Tanahashi headlocks and hits the takeover, but Finlay headscissors back. Tanahashi pops out, roles reverse as Finlay headlocks to the takeover and Tanahashi headscissors. Finlay pops out, but fans cheer as Tanahashi strums the air guitar!
Tanahashi “tosses the guitar” to Henare, who puts it down carefully. Fans rally as Finlay and Tanahashi tie up again, and Finlay manages to power Tanahashi to a corner. The ref calls for a break, but Tanahashi ducks Finlay’s punch! Finlay dodges Tanahashi’s punch, knees low and whips him corner to corner. Finlay runs in but Tanahashi elbows back! Tanahashi jumps up and crossbodies! Juice runs in but Tanahashi hip tosses him! Finlay gets up and Tanahashi hip tosses him, too! Tanahashi strums another air guitar then tags in Henare. HenarACE double whip Finlay and double elbow him down. Tomahawk elbow drop combo! And then more flexing! Fans cheer for the moves and the muscles while Henare stomps Finlay.
Finlay knees back, tags Juice in but Henare CHOPS Juice! And again! And then CHOPS him off his feet! Fans fire up, Henare drags Juice up, but Juice fights off the fireman’s carry. Juice shoves Henare and BOOTS him! Henare stays up, Juice tags Finlay but Henare reverses the whip. Juice kicks the back drop away and Henare staggers into Finlay’s back suplex! Juice follows up with a back senton! Finlay intercepts Tanahashi, FinJuice run to DOUBLE BULLDOG! Fans fire up while Tanahashi bails out and Finlay goes back to stomp Henare. Finlay drags Henare up, wrenches the arm, and tags Juice in. Juice goes up and hollers before he drops ax handles on the arm. Fans cheer and Juice grins as he brings Henare up. Juice wrenches the arm, tags Finlay, and Finlay goes up to drop ax handles!
Finlay brings Henare back up, wrenches the arm again, and Juice tags in to go up and drop another ax handle! The fans cheer while Juice is wary of Tanahashi. Juice drags Henare up, tags Finlay, then scoop slams Henare, to scoop slam Finlay on top of him! Cover, TWO! FinJuice keeps cool and fans rally up as Finlay brings Henare into a chinlock. Fans rally as Henare endures and fights his way up. Finlay throws a European Uppercut to put Henare in the corner! Tag to Juice, Juice whips Finlay in but Henare dodges! Henare elbows Finlay, then drop toeholds Juice into Finlay’s grapes! Henare hurries and Tanahashi reaches as far as he can, to get the hot tag!
The Ace rallies on FinJuice, blocks a kick to a DRAGON SCREW, then blocks another to another DRAGON SCREW! FinJuice stumbles about but Tanahashi fires up. Tanahashi scoop slams Juice in a drop zone then goes up to the second rope. Fans cheer for the SOMERSAULT SENTON! Cover, TWO! Juice is still in this but fans rally up! Juice has a bloody nose but gets up, and counters Sling Blade to a full nelson! Tanahashi elbows out, but runs into Juice’s SPINE BUSTER! Juice checks his nose and it’s pretty bad. Juice tags out to Finlay and Finlay DECKS Henare! FinJuice brings Tanahashi up, but Henare disrupts the Hart Attack! Tanahashi gets Juice for TWIST ‘N’ SHOUT!
Fans rally as Tanahashi crawls, hot tag to Henare! Henare rallies now with big shoulders! Juice staggers to a corner but Henare runs to clothesline Finlay! Then he gives one to Juice! Henare fireman’s carries and swings Juice into Finlay, then hits a SAMOAN DROP on Juice! Henare drags Finlay, Finlay does his best to resist the suplex, but he can’t get free before the SLAM! Cover, TWO! Henare grows annoyed but fans rally up. Henare aims at Finlay from a corner, runs in, but Finlay fights the tackle off. Finlay swings but into a cording hold! Henare elbows away on Finlay, then HEEL KICKS him down! Cover, TWO!! Finlay survives but fans fire up as Henare aims from the corner again.
Henare fires himself up, wants Finlay to stand, and then runs in to RAMPAGE SPEAR! Cover, but Juice breaks it! Tanahashi throws Juice back out and then regroups with Henare. Finlay throws forearms on HenarACE, but Tanahashi SHOTEIS and Henare SUPERKICKS! Tanahashi runs, SLING BLADE AND SWEEP! Fans fire up with Henare as he drags Finlay back up. Henare has the arm but Finlay slips out of the urenage to a waistlock. Henare standing switches, but Juice tags in as Finlay bucks the O’Conner roll away. Finlay turns into Henare’s elbow, but Henare runs into Juice’s lift! UPPERCUT HART ATTACK! Jackknife cover, TWO!!
Tanahashi was a split second behind that but Finlay brings him up. Tanahashi DECKS Finlay but Juice gets him for a DRAGON SCREW! Juice fires up, bloody nose and all, to bring the straps down! Juice drags Henare up, Henare breaks free to wind up, but the headbutt is intercepted with a forearm! Juice tags Finlay, Finlay goes up, Juice Electric Chairs Henare. DOOMSDAY DEVICE!! Cover, FinJuice wins!
Winners: FinJuice, by pinfall; now 2-1, HenarACE is now 0-3
The 2019 WTL winners are back on the upside! But that means Henare and Tanahashi haven’t scored yet! Will HenarACE avoid a dreaded 0-4 start?
Guerrillas of Destiny w/ Jado VS EVIL & Yujiro Takahashi w/ Dick Togo!
Wait, didn’t we just have Bullet Club VS Bullet Club? Tama Tonga and Tonga Loa didn’t treat Fale and Owens very nicely, but will they have more respect for the King of Darkness and Tokyo Pimp?
Being that it’s all Bullet Club, GOD wants a group Low Sweet. Evil, Yujiro and Dick oblige, but then Evil’s team try to sucker punch- er, kick GOD! Only Jado didn’t see it coming, and Dick clubs him down. Tama and Loa hit Evil and Yujiro back, then they throw them out. Tama starts with Yujiro but Evil rakes Loa’s eyes! Tama headbutts Yujiro down and rakes his back! Someone is sent into railings but Tama chokes Yujiro on ropes while apologizing. The ref counts, Tama lets off and Loa goes back to the corner. Tama scoops, slams and covers, TWO! Fans cheer as Tama tags Loa. GOD double whip Yujiro then throw hands and a leaping neckbreaker! Cover, TWO!
Fans cheer as Yujiro hangs in there but Loa drags Yujiro back up. Loa headbutts and Yujiro flounders to ropes. Loa brings Yujiro up and suplexes, uno amigo! Then he wrenches through to make the second amigo a BLUE THUNDER BOMB! Cover, TWO! Loa keeps his cool and looms over Yujiro. Loa asks Yujiro if he wants more, and pretends Yujiro said yes. Tag to Tama and Tama slingshot sentons! Loa slingshot sentons, too, and fans fire up. Tama smiles and thanks the fans for clapping before he brings Yujiro up. Yujiro CHOPS and forearms back! Tama kicks low, but swings into Yujiro’s dragon sleeper! Tama slips out to suplex Yujiro high and hard!
Yujiro gets to ropes, Tama runs over but Yujiro boots him back! Tama super forearms back, but Yujiro flapjack hotshots him out of the ring! Tama hits the floor hard, Evil tags in and heads right over! Evil whips Tama into railing! Evil whips Loa over into Tama! Evil whips Tama but Tama reverses, only for Evil to reverse back! Tama hits railing and tumbles up and over! Evil keeps the ref from seeing Dick stomp Tama! Dick gets away before Jado comes over, Evil’s team isn’t used to having someone in the opposing corner like that. Yujiro is untying the blue buckle pad! Evil puts Tama in, kicks him around, then stands on him for a cocky cover. ONE, but Evil argues the count.
Tama hits back with body shots but Evil rakes eyes! The ref reprimands, Evil drags Tama up and whips him to the corner. Yujiro moves the pad and Tama hits bare buckles! The ref reprimands but the damage is done. Yujiro tags in, he and Evil say Jado is up to something, but they whip Tama corne rto corner. Yujiro BOOTS, Evil clotheslines, and then FISHERMAN BUSTER! Yujiro basement boots, covers, but Loa breaks it! Evil throws Loa out and fans rally up. Yujiro drags Tama up, Tama shoves him but Yujiro blocks the kick to trip Tama up! Yujiro runs and adds the basement boot! Yujiro drags Tama up, brings him around and fireman’s carries, but Tama fights out and shoves Yujiro away. Tama dodges Yujiro to hot tag Loa!
The Silver Back rallies and then blocks a kick, “Not today!” Kick, knee and enziguri! Yujiro wobbles into a GERMAN SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO! Fans rally up and Loa drags Yujiro up. GOD coordinate, TONGAN TWIST! Cover, Evil breaks it! Tama kicks at Evil, but Evil blocks it, hands it to the ref and then mule kicks Tama down! Loa runs at Evil, Evil rakes Loa’s eyes! THe ref reprimands, Evil stops but he holds the ref. Dick uses the SPOILER CHOKER on Loa! Jado SMACKS Dick with the kendo stick! Tama is distracting the ref now as Jado aims at Evil! Evil blocks the stick strike, but Tama clubs Evil! Evil denies Gun Stun but Tama denies the low blow!
Loa CLUBS Evil, and they give Evil MAGIC KILLER!! Evil used to use that move with Sanada! GOD has Yujiro now, but Yujiro fights out of Magic Killer to then FISHERMAN BUSTER Tama! Yujiro fires up and builds speed to DIVE into Tama! Tama hits railing and fans fire up for Yujiro! Yujiro baits Loa in and dumps him out! Yujiro builds speed, Jado SMACKS him with the stick! Loa LARIATS! Cover, TWO!! Yujiro survives but Loa puts him in a CROSSFACE! Yujiro taps, GOD wins!!
Winner: Guerrillas of Destiny, by submission; now 2-1, Evil & Takahashi now 2-1
Tama and Loa are the strongest part of Bullet Club in this tournament! They beat Owens and Fale, and they just beat the Darkness Pimps! Will they keep winning to once again be the top team in NJPW? And how does club leader, Jay White, feel about all of this?
YOSHI-HASHI & Hirooki Goto VS Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii!
Now it’s Chaos VS Chaos!? The Head Hunter and Fierce Warrior are NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Championship with the Stone Pitbull, but will they and the Producer still be on friendly terms after this?
Yano helps Red Shoes disinfect his hands after the check. Yano then gets impatient, and he starts against Goto. Fans clap and Yano circles with Goto. They tie up, Goto powers Yano back but Yano puts Goto on the ropes. Red Shoes calls for a break, Yano lets off clean and fans cheer. Goto and Yano circle again, tie up, and Goto headlocks. Yano endures as Goto grinds, and he throws body shots as he powers out. Goto rams Yano but Yano stays up! Yano rakes eyes then runs, but Goto runs him over! Goto drags Yano back up, but Yano rakes his eyes again! And then he goes to a corner! Hashi tells Yano to leave the buckle pad there, Yano tells him to shut up, but Hashi somehow convinces him to drop the pad. Yano then turns around and Goto kicks Yano low!
Goto bumps Yano off the red buckles, then tags in Hashi. Goto Hashi run Yano over with shoulders, then coordinate for the hip toss senton! Goto drags Yano back up, and they fire off hammering hands. Ishii runs in and Goto Hashi double hip toss to double kick! Then they hammer away on Ishii! But Yano returns with the buckle pad! He SMACKS Hashi, SMACKS Goto, then SMACKS Hashi again! Red Shoes takes the pad from him and Yano apologizes. Yano brings Hashi up, and whips him into the bare buckles! Hashi doubles over but Yano brings him around to whip him back in! Hashi falls over and Yano stomps him down! Tag to Ishii and Ishii stomps Hashi down. Ishii stands on Hashi’s head and eggs him on with kicks and slaps.
Hashi gets up and fires a forearm, but Ishii doesn’t flinch. Hashi fires off more but Ishii CHOPS Hashi back! Fans cheer as Hashi stays up, and Ishii CHOPS him again! Hashi CHOPS, Ishii grits his teeth and CHOPS again! Hashi CHOPS, Ishii CHOPS, repeat! They CHOP back and forth, fans rally up as they keep going, and Ishii CHOPS Hashi off his feet! Ishii talks some smack to Hashi and even to Goto. Ishii brings Hashi up to headbutt him down! Ishii dares Hashi to #GetBackUp! Hashi does and Ishii CHOPS him! Hashi CHOPS and CHOPS and CHOPS! Ishii stays up to CHOP Hashi back down again! Fans cheer and Ishii drags Hashi back up. Ishii bumps Hashi off the buckles and tags in Yano.
Yano stomps away on Hashi then digs his boot in. Goto gets in but Red Shoes keeps him back. Yano drags Hashi up, and apologizes as he whips Hashi into the bare buckles! Yano stomps Hashi, fans rally up, but Yano whips him to ropes. Hashi dodges and hits the BLOCKBUSTER! Fans rally up again as Yano and Hashi crawl. Hot tag to Goto! Goto rallies on Yano, DECKS Ishii, then runs at Yano. Yano slips around and SLAPS Goto on the back! Yano runs, but Goto follows and LARIATS! Fans rally and Goto drags Yano up to throw forearms. Goto whips corner to corner then hits MURAMASA! And a BULLDOG! Cover, TWO!
Yano survives and fans rally up. Goto drags Yano up, but Yano blocks the fireman’s carry and throws elbows. Goto forearms back but Yano forearms, too! They brawl back and forth, Goto gets the edge and whips, but Yano reverses to pull hair! Red Shoes reprimands, Yano whips but Goto reverses to send Yano into the bare buckles! Goto kicks and runs but Yano throws Goto down by his hair! Fans cheer as both men are down again. Yano tags Ishii and Ishii kicks at Goto. Ishii stomps Goto and Goto gets mad. Goto forearms but Ishii eggs him on. Now these two throw forearms back and forth, faster and faster, and fans rally up! Ishii and Goto keep going, Goto ROCKS Ishii and adds on!
Goto runs but Ishii swats the forearm to give a forearm! Goto blocks the kick to ELBOW Ishii down! Fans rally up as both men are down! Goto crawls and tags in Hashi! Hashi runs at Ishii in the corner and CHOPS! Ishii CHOPS back! Now Hashi and Ishii trade forearms back and forth! Hashi throws body shots and CHOPS and Ishii staggers! Hashi runs to CHOP, whip and CHOP, mule kick and neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Fans rally and Hashi drags Ishii up. Hashi fisherman suplexes but Ishii fights! Hashi resists Ishii’s suplex and CHOPS again! And again! Ishii fires forearms from all sides! Ishii gets about 10 but Hashi CHOPS again! Ishii DECKS Hashi then DECKS Goto!
Yano drags Hashi up and whips him to the bare corner! Yano whips Ishii in but Hashi dodges! Ishii hits bare buckles, Hashi LARIATS Yano down then comes back to mule kick Ishii! Goto returns to fireman’s carry, USHIGOROSHI and DOUBLE KNEES! Cover, TWO!! Ishii survives but fans rally up. Goto drags Ishii back up, dragon sleeper and Hashi grabs legs. Yano grabs Hashi but Goto kicks Yano, they give Yano the GOTO BUSTER! Goto Hashi focuses on Ishii now, dragon sleeper and lift, but Ishii fights free! Hashi kicks low, he and Goto whip Ishii, but Ishii DOUBLE LARIATS! They stay up to double KICK back! They get Ishii up, G Y R!! Cover, Yano breaks it!
Goto throws Yano out and brings Ishii up. Fans fire up as they get Ishii back up but Ishii kicks free! Yano trips Hashi, Ishii feeds Goto to Yano’s forearm! Yano whips, Goto reverses but Yano avoids buckles! Yano sends Goto into buckles and uses a fireman’s carry takedown to throw him out! Hashi kicks Yano, clubs him on the back then runs, but into an atomic drop! Yano trips Hashi to catapult him at the buckles, but Hashi stops himself! Hashi mocks Yano’s catchphrase then clubs Yano! Hashi throws forearms, whips Yano, but Yano grabs ropes. Hashi runs in, misses and Ishii lariats! Yano hits the BELLY2BELLY! SLIDING LARIAT from Ishii! Cover, but Goto breaks it!
Yano throws Goto out and hurries out after him. Ishii aims as Hashi sits up. Ishii runs, Hashi blocks and CHOPS! Ishii headbutts, Hashi SUPERKICKS! Hashi swings, into a spin and Ishii suplexes, but Hashi blocks! Hashi fishermans to KUMAGOROSHI! Cover, TWO!! Ishii survives the Bear Cutter but Hashi has the fans rallying up! Hashi drags Ishii up, reels him in, but Ishii fights out of the pump handle. Hashi gets around, shoves Ishii to Goto’s forearm, but Yano trips Goto! Ishii shoves Hashi into Yano’s shoulder and hotshot! Hashi ducks the lariat, shoves Ishii into Yano and rolls Ishii up! TWO!! Hashi runs and LARIATS Ishii down!
Hashi drags Ishii back up, pump handle, but no Karma as Ishii DRAGON SUPLEXES! Hashi gets up?! Hashi LARIATS but Ishii stays up! Hashi headbutts, Ishii enziguris! Ishii and Hashi run at each other, Ishii LARIATS! Yano keeps Goto out as Ishii covers, TWO!! Hashi is still in this but Ishii suplexes to the BRAIN BUSTER! Cover, Ishii and Yano win!
Winners: Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano, by pinfall; now 2-1, Goto & Hashi are now 0-3
The Pitbull and Producer are climbing back up, but Hashi and Goto are falling further down! Is there still time for the Head Hunter and Fierce Warrior to #GetBackUp?
SANADA & Shingo Takagi VS Dangerous Tekkers!
The Cold Skull and Dragon broke even against Yano and Ishii but the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Champions are so far undefeated! Zack Sabre Jr. and Taichi vowed that they would be both tag division and tag league champions to close the year, but will LIJ save us from that horrible end to 2020?
Taichi finishes “singing” and the Tekkers jump LIJ! ZSJ is after Sanada and Taichi jams Takagi with his mic stand! Takagi gets out and ZSJ stays in with Sanada. ZSJ finally throws his jacket away and drags Sanada up to a headlock. Sanada throws body shots, powers out and elbows ZSJ down! ZSJ avoids the standing moonsault but not the dropkick! Sanada drags ZSJ up, brings him over and tags Takagi. Takagi clobbers Taichi and Sanada clubs ZSJ. LIJ double whip ZSJ and Takagi knees ZSJ down for Sanada’s basement dropkick! Takagi drops a knee, covers, ONE! Fans rally for “L I J!” and Takagi drags ZSJ around for a chinbar. ZSJ endures, but Takagi bell claps him down! Takagi drags ZSJ around, tags Sanada in and LIJ splits the wish bone!
Sanada drags ZSJ back up, wrenches and whips, but ZSJ catches Sanada for a cobra twist! Sanada powers out, hip tosses ZSJ down but ZSJ snapmares. Sanada handsprings through, dumps ZSJ out, but Taichi stops Sanada from taking flight! ZSJ trips Takagi up, Taichi throws Sanada out, and the Tekkers stomp LIJ. Taichi whips Sanada to railing! And chokes him with the camera cable! Red Shoes reprimands, Taichi holds on with one hand that he hides. Red Shoes knows the trick so Taichi lets Sanada go. Taichi cravats Sanada and chokes him into the railing! Red Shoes reprimands and counts and Taichi lets up.
Taichi puts Sanada in, ZSJ stands on Sanada’s head at the ropes and digs his heels in. Taichi adds on but Red Shoes counts. The Tekkers put their hands up but that’s not the problem! Red Shoes counts again, the Tekkers again put their hands up. Red Shoes means it this time and the Tekkers let off. ZSJ tags Taichi and they’re back to standing on Sanada again. Red Shoes reprimands, Taichi sits Sanada up and disguises a choke as a shoulder claw! Taichi chokes Sanada blatantly on ropes but Takagi storms over on the apron. Taichi lets off Sanada but fans rally up. Taichi drags Sanada up, chokes him again, and puts him in the corner! ZSJ adds his boot, Red Shoes reprimands, and the Tekkers let off.
ZSJ tags in, Taichi talks smack to Takagi, and ZSJ shoves Takagi down! The Tekkers go back to Sanada, ZSJ drags Sanada up to cravat and grind him to the mat. Sanada gets his feet on the ropes, Taichi tries to kick them off, Red Shoes has his hands full trying to get the Tekkers to play fair. ZSJ tags Taichi in and Taichi chokes Sanada! Red Shoes reprimands and knows this isn’t a cover. Taichi lets off, but chokes Sanada again! Red Shoes counts but Taichi lets off, to choke Sanada even harder! Fans rally up and Taichi mocks their claps. Taichi kicks Sanada around, pushes him, but Sanada CHOPS back! And again! And again! Taichi chokes Sanada to an open corner!
ZSJ DECKS Takagi and Taichi whips Sanada corner to corner. Sanada reverses but Taichi dodges to GAMANGIRI! Taichi pushes Sanada down, covers, TWO! Fans cheer but Taichi is annoyed. Fans rally for “L I J!” but Taichi just watches Sanada stand. Taichi powers up but the buzzsaw is blocked! Taichi rakes eyes! But Taichi runs into a basement dropkick! Fans rally up, Sanada and Taichi crawl, hot tags to ZSJ and Takagi! ZSJ boots and EuroUppers, but Takagi ROCKS him! ZSJ comes back, narrowly avoids Noshigami but Takagi whips him to a corner. Takagi blocks the boot, stomps a mudhole into ZSJ, but Taichi goes after Takagi.
Taichi whips Takagi, Takagi reverses and corner clotheslines! Takagi clotheslines ZSJ, runs Taichi over, but ZSJ comes back with a guillotine! Takagi powers out to a suplex! Fans rally up and Takagi powers up. Takagi runs, ZSJ catches the bomber but Takagi powers up! ZSJ resists the lift, throws Takagi down, then STOMPS the arm! And then he traps the arm to CRANK it! Fans rally up, ZSJ aims and BOOTS the leg! ZSJ kicks and kicks and kicks the arm! ZSJ runs, Takagi elbows and JABS, but then he fakes ZSJ out to DDT! Fans fire up as Takagi sits ZSJ up, but ZSJ catches the sliding lariat into an armlock! ZSJ also has the eadscissors but Takagi powers up. ZSJ shifts to a triangle hold, squeezes tight, but Takagi powers up more! Takagi dead lifts and fireman’s carries, DEATH VALLEY!
Fans rally up, Takagi tags Sanada! Sanada takes his time bringing ZSJ up to throw forearms. Sanada whips, ZSJ reverses and avoids the dropkick, but Sanada blocks the Penalty Kick to DRAGON SCREW! ZSJ gets away but Sanada DECK Taichi first! Fans rally as Sanada aims at ZSJ, to PLANCHA! Direct hit and down goes ZSJ! Sanada encourages fans to get louder and they do. Sanada is satisfied with the volume and he puts ZSJ in. ZSJ reaches but Sanada covers, TWO! Sanada keeps his cool and brings ZSJ around. Sanada fireman’s, ZSJ slips out to wristlock, then PELE the arm! ZSJ runs in at the corner but Sanada elbows! Sanada QUEBRADA, but ZSJ gets under!
ZSJ tries to bait Sanada in but Sanada trips ZSJ up! Sanada gets the legs but ZSJ resists Paradise to drag Sanada into a cradle, ONE! Sanada has the prawn hold, ONE! ZSJ with the sunset, ONE! Sanada prawn, TWO!! Sanada headlocks to a takeover but ZSJ headscissors out and CRANKS! ZSJ crawls to his corner and tags in Taichi! Taichi drags Sanada up but Sanada breaks free. Taichi CHOKES Sanada again! Red Shoes counts, Taichi lets go and Sanada dropkicks Taichi down! Sanada tags Takagi and Takagi goes after Taichi. LIJ double whips, Sanada runs in to elbow and Takagi adds a clothesline! BOOT, LARIAT, ROLLING ELBOW! NOSHIGAMI CUTTER! Cover, ZSJ breaks it! Sanada knees low, throws ZSJ out and fans fire up with Takagi! “OI! OI! OI!”
Takagi wants Taichi to stand, and then Takagi runs, but Taichi dodges Pumping Bomber to get Seiteijyujiryou! A mouthful for a modified dragon sleeper! But Sanada grabs Taichi for a dragon sleeper of his own! ZSJ gets Sanada with a normal sleeper, but Sanada slips around to dragon sleeper! Takagi catches Taichi for a regular sleeper, the Tekkers endure double dragon sleepers! Skull End and… Dragon Skull? Fans rally up as LIJ squeezes tight! Taichi powers out by choking Takagi! ZSJ slips out, Seiteijyujiryou and Iron Octopus! ZSJ cranks Sanada, Taichi grinds Takagi down, but LIJ refuses to give in! Fans rally up as Takagi reaches for ropes. Taichi cranks harder, but Takagi still gets the ropebreak! Fans cheer as the Tekkers let LIJ go.
Fans rally up again and Taichi drags Takagi up. Taichi reels Takagi in, but Takagi resists the lift! Taichi gives Takagi Kowata Kicks then reels him in, but still Takagi resists the lift! Takagi powers Taichi up and over with a back drop! Fans rally as Takagi runs in but Taichi dodges. ZSJ hits a EuroUpper, Taichi Alabama lifts, but Sanada gets in to save Takagi! Sanada backslides ZSJ, ZSJ slips off but into a MAGIC SCREW! DANGEROUS SAIDO for Sanada!! Taichi kicks Takagi but Takagi clotheslines and SNAP GERMANS back! Taichi fires up to GAMANGIRI! All four men are down and the fans fire up! ZSJ and Sanada get out, Taichi and Takagi slowly stir. Takagi is in one corner, Taichi is in the other. Takagi talks some smack as he gets up but Taichi returns it. They run at each other, DOUBLE LARIATS!
Both men stay up, so they DOUBLE LARIAT again! Taichi fires up but Takagi swats his arm away! A bit double-edged, but Takagi runs, only for Taichi to dodge! AX BOMBER! Fans fire up as both men are down again. Taichi gets up and mocks the “OI! OI! OI!” Fans still clap along, and off come the pants! Takagi AX BOMBERS Taichi! And then TAICHI RYU GEDO CLUTCH! TWO!! Takagi couldn’t steal the win with Taichi’s moves, but fans fire up all the same! Takagi fires himself up and watches Taichi rise. Takagi runs, but Taichi boots! And ROUNDHOUSES! Taichi tries to steal Takagi’s move with the pump handle and torture rack, but Takagi slips off to Alabama lift!?
Taichi fights off Dragon Mephisto to then LAST RIDE!! High stack, but Sanada breaks it! ZSJ drags Sanada up to throw him out! ZSJ aims at Takagi and PENALTY KICKS! TAICHI GEDO CLUTCH! TWO!?! Takagi narrowly escapes and the fans are fired up again! The Tekkers coordinate, Taichi slashes his throat and says this is over! Alabama lift, but Sanada drags ZSJ out! ZSJ fights Sanada off but runs into Takagi’s elbow and JAB! ZSJ EuroUppers back, Taichi BOOTS, ZSJ guillotines! TENSHO- NO! SKULL END for Taichi! Takagi endures the arm Pele to PUMPING BOMBER! SKULL SWING for Taichi! And feed to fireman’s carry, LAST OF THE DRAGON! Cover, LIJ wins!!
Winners: Sanada & Shingo Takagi, by pinfall; now 2-1, Dangerous Tekkers now 2-1
They’ve pinned the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Champions! That’s almost as good as winning the league! Will Cold Skull and the Dragon have a title match waiting for them regardless now? Takagi takes a look at those tag titles and motions to Sanada that these could be theirs. Takagi and ZSJ talk trash while ZSJ fetches the belts for him and Taichi. ZSJ says he’ll even take the NEVER Openweight Championship from the “Last of the F***ing D*ckheads!” The Tekkers leave, surely to work on how they can prevent from losing again, and fans clap “L I J!” as Takagi takes the mic.
“Osu! Now we’re 2-1! And it looks like we just beat the tag champions! Oi, oi, oi, I think we can do this, Sanada!” Sanada’s won WTL twice in a row, and had three finals in a row! So if they don’t win this, Takagi will take the blame. Takagi promises to do all he can. “Don’t doubt me! I’ll put my mind to it!” Takagi knows it’s no secret the two of them are totally different, “but our tag work exists between the calm and the fury.” Don’t look away for even a second! That’s all Takagi has to say, though he knows he can say a lot. Takagi knows the fans want to hear from Sanada, so don’t get going just yet. Sanada hasn’t talked at all this tour!
Fans clap, “SA-NA-DA!” and Takagi encourages them to get louder. The fans do get louder, so Sanada concedes and takes the mic. “I’ll say this loud and clear. Of all the tag partners I’ve had, I like TKG right here the best.” Sanada gives Takagi a new nickname! And with that, “See you next time!” Will the next time Korakuen sees Sanada be when he and Takagi have the World Tag League trophies, the tag titles, or both?
Here are the current World Tag League standings!
SANADA & Shingo Takagi: 2-1
Guerrillas of Destiny: 2-1
Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii: 2-1
The Empire: 2-1
The Dangerous Tekkers: 2-1
EVIL & Yujiro Takahashi: 2-1
Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens: 0-3
YOSHI-HASHI & Hirooki Goto: 0-3
What a great third round for WTL and day four for the entire event. To think there’d be so many teams at 2-1, and for a team with Tanahashi on it would be 0-3! Bullet Club VS Bullet Club in WTL part 2 was a really good match, and could definitely be a sign that GOD will be Team White against Team Evil in a new Bullet Club Civil War. GOD got the win to stay strong, and so that there wouldn’t be an undefeated duo left in Bullet Club. How Evil and Yujiro treat Fale and Owens could also be telling, as GOD weren’t very nice to them either. Fale and Owens might side with Evil and Yujiro in the end just on that.
Chaos VS Chaos was very good, and I’m a bit surprised that Goto is on a 0-3 team while Yano is on a 2-1 team. But in the end, the four of them all have something already to defend, so what either team does in the tournament is probably moot. HenarACE had a good match with FinJuice but it works for the previous WTL winners to get back up, as that is history at stake there. The WTL has had back-to-back winners back-to-back between Makabe and Honma in ’15 and ’16, then Evil and Sanada in ’17 and ’18. FinJuice doing it ’19 and ’20 would make for a rather historic three-peat of back-to-back winners.
And the main event was of course match of the night, as NJPW schedules it that way. LIJ getting a win over the champions is a parallel in all the tournaments so far. Sanada did it to Naito, Hiromu did it to Ishimori in the BOSJ, and now Sanada and Takagi have done it to the Tekkers. Suzuki-Gun may be trying to gather up all the gold, but I feel like LIJ is right on their heels with that. Naito as Double Champion, Takagi as at least NEVER Openweight, Hiromu could get the Junior Heavyweight title back, and now Sanada and Takagi could get the Heavyweight Tag titles. Even if LIJ doesn’t win WTL, they’ve punched their ticket, and there could be a LOT of double duty going around for champions at WrestleKingdom 15’s two day extravaganza, which would be a great way to commemorate having endured 2020 being so awful.
My Score: 9.1/10