There’s even more gold on the line than before!
NJPW finishes Burning Spirit with THREE red hot championship showdowns! Will the Rebel, David Finlay, dethrone the United Empire’s Commonwealth Kingpin, Will Ospreay?
- Six Man Tag: Los Ingobernables de Japon VS Bullet Club; LIJ wins.
- Toru Yano VS Doc Gallows; Double Count-Out.
- Great-O-Khan & Jeff Cobb VS Chase Owens & Bad Luck Fale; Khan & Cobb win.
- SANADA & Tetsuya Naito VS Dangerous Tekkers; Tekkers win.
- Six Man Tag: Kazuchika Okada, Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma VS TMDK; TMDK wins.
- Tama Tonga & Jado VS Jay White & Taiji Ishimori; White & Ishimori win.
- IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions: TJP & Francesco Akira VS Ryusuke Taguchi & Master Wato; TJP & Akira win and retain the titles.
- NEVER Openweight Championship: Karl Anderson VS Hiroshi Tanahashi; Anderson wins and retains the title.
- IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship: Will Ospreay VS David Finlay; Ospreay wins and retains the title.
PLAY BY PLAY
IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions: TJP & Francesco Akira VS Ryusuke Taguchi & Master Wato!
The United Empire took these titles away from Team Six or Nine on the New Japan Road, but Taguchi & Wato have found their road back! Will the Funky Weapon & Way of the Grandmaster be able to return the favor? Or will they fall to the Public Enemy & Nova Fireball?
The introductions are made, the belts are raised, and the rebellion begins!
Teams sort out and Taguchi starts against Akira. They circle and fans rally up. Akira talks some trash on Taguchi but Taguchi tells him to shut up and tag TJP. Akira is upset but he obliges, and TJP steps in. But then Taguchi backs down to tag Wato. Why start this off then? TJP rushes in and runs Wato over! Things speed up and TJP handsprings over Wato to then sidestep and hurdle. Wato leaps over, arm-drags TJP around but TJP headscissors. Wato kips free but TJP gets him for the twisting headscisosrs! Wato headscissors back and holds on tight. TJP headstands and fans applaud as he holds it. TJP then powers free and pats Wato on the knee.
TJP Penalty Kicks but Wato ducks under to roll TJP up. TWO, Wato sweeps the legs to cover, ONE! TJP goes for the sweep but Wato jumps over it, and then Wato pats TJP on the shoulders. Fans applaud and TJP is annoyed. TJP and Wato circle, but then Akira attacks from behind! TJP knocks Taguchi down, the Empire double whip Wato, TJP SOBATS, Akira front KICKS, TJP low KICKS, and Akira SHOTGUNS Wato down! Fans fire up for that speedy combo, and they clap, “A! KI-RA!” “T! J P!” “EM-PIRE!” The Empire double whip, double kick, but Wato ducks they double bulldog to DOUBLE DROPKICK them back!
Taguchi returns, he goes after Akira and Wato hits TJP. They go corner to corner to back elbow TJP and Akira, and then Taguchi sets up for WATO IN MOTION! Taguchi eggs Akira on and Akira rushes in, only for Taguchi to send that dropkick into TJP! Taguchi & Wato double whip Akira, double drop toehold and then double basement dropkick! Fans fire up and Wato stomps TJP down. Wato brings TJP up to scoop and SLAM, then he tags Taguchi. Taguchi gives a point-blank hip! And then another! TJP ends up in a corner and Taguchi gives him a STINK FACE! Taguchi lets off as the ref counts, but he gives more point-blank hips!
Fans rally, Taguchi runs side to side, but TJP gets up and helps Akira RAILGUN DROPKICK Taguchi down! Taguchi flops out of the ring and fans rally up with the Empire. They both run corner to corner to crisscross, TJP WRECKS Taguchi with a dropkick while Akira goes up for a MOONSAULT! Direct hit and Six or Nine are both down! Fans fire up with Akira & TJP and they high-five. The Empire drags Taguchi up, puts him in the ring, and TJP scrapes his sole off Taguchi’s face! The ref reprimands but TJP drags Taguchi up to EuroUpper. Tag to Akira, the Empire double whip Taguchi for a double atomic drop! Cover, TWO!
Akira talks trash on Taguchi and stomps him. Fans rally, Taguchi sits up and CHOPS! And CHOPS! And CHOPS! Akira DECKS Taguchi! Akira bumps Taguchi off buckles, TJP tags in and TJP puts Taguchi up top. TJP drags Taguchi into a Tree of Woe while Akira DECKS Wato. TJP gives Akira a boost up to the top and helps him walk the tightrope for a HALF COAST2COAST! TJP drags Taguchi out of the Tree and to the cover, TWO! Fans rally as Taguchi survives, but TJP puts him in a corner to dig his boot in. TJP fires up the fans as he scrapes Taguchi’s face again and again. TJP runs, but Wato’s back! TJP flips Wato off, but turns around into a HIP ATTACK!
Fans fire up and Taguchi tags in Wato! Wato rallies on TJP, dropkicks Akira down, then KICKS TJP in the chest! And again, and again! TJP ends up in a corner, Wato whips him corner to corner but TJP reverse. Wato comes back to dropkick the legs out! Wato hurries to the corner, and he springboards for a FLYING UPPERCUT! Cover, TWO! TJP survives but Wato fires up! Wato drags TJP into the waistlock, but TJP fights the lift. TJP throws back elbows, runs, Akira tags in. TJP avoids the boot and waistlocks, but Wato moves and Akira’s SUPERKICK hits TJP! Wato then ZIGZAGS Akira down! Cover, TWO!
Fans rally up and Wato calls Taguchi in. They wheelbarrow Akira, but TJP SUPERKICKS Taguchi! Wato gets around but this time TJP ducks and Akira SUPERKICKS Wato! Akira runs, TJP wheelbarrows him, but Wato uses that to hit the COMPLETE SHOT! TJP freaks out and hurries to get Wato up. TJP whips, Wato RANAS him out! Fans fire up with Wato and he drags Akira up. HIGH ANGLE GERMAN SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!! Akira survives but Wato fires up. Fans rally with him and Wato bumps Akira off buckles. Wato hoists Akira up top, CLUBS him, then climbs up after him. Wato hooks Akira up but Akira fights!
Fans rally, TJP CLUBS Wato and moves Akira aside. TJP climbs and lifts Wato in the Electric Chair! Akira springboards up, SUPER DUPER FRANKENSTEINER!! Cover, but Taguchi breaks it in time! Fans fire up and TJP throws Taguchi out. Fans rally, the Empire drags Wato up and resets. Another Electric Chair, Akira goes up top, but Wato fights free! Wato DROPKICKS Akira down! Everyone is down but Taguchi, and Taguchi returns to his corner! Wato crawls over, hot tag to Taguchi! Taguchi hurries to get Akira, but TJP CLUBS Taguchi! TJP climbs up, but Taguchi shoves him down! But Akira shoves Taguchi!
Wato returns, springs up, and he SUPERPLEXES Akira! BUM-A-YE!! Cover, TWO!!! OH MY GAH ANKLE!! Wato TORNILLOS onto TJP! Akira endures the ankle lock, Taguchi really leans on that leg, and fans are thunderous! Akira crawls, reaches, but Taguchi reels him into chicken wings! DODON TO THE THRONE!! Cover, TJP breaks it up!! Fans rally, Taguchi drags TJP up and tosses him out. Wato returns and Six or Nine coordinate. They wheelbarrow Akira, but TJP returns to COMPLETE SHOT Wato first!! And then fireman’s carry on Taguchi! Taguchi slips off, dragon sleepers, but Akira helps TJP up and over!
Akira goes up, DOUBLE STOMP ELBOW DROP DDT!! Cover, TWO!?!? Taguchi survives and the Empire can’t believe it! But they set Taguchi up in the Electric Chair, LEANING TOWER!! Cover, the Empire wins!
Winners: TJP & Francesco Akira, by pinfall (still IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions)
Six or Nine are 0-2 against TJP & Akira! Will Taguchi & Wato have to make the long trek back to the top? Who will the Empire look to conquer next?
NEVER Openweight Championship: Karl Anderson w/ Doc Gallows VS Hiroshi Tanahashi!
The Machinegun shot down the Good Bad Guy to take this title, but he’s been busy in Impact. Now he’s back to defend this title against the Ace of the Universe! Will Anderson take down another target? Or will the Once in a Century Talent make quite the impact himself?
The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and we see who NEVER gives up!
Fans rally, “Let’s Go, Ace!” for Tanahashi as he circles with Anderson. Anderson calls Gallows over to talk things out and even hug. Anderson and Tanahashi circle and the fans rally again. They tie up, are in a deadlock, but Tanahashi pushes Anderson to ropes. Anderson turns things around but then Tanahashi turns it back. Anderson puts Tanahashi in the corner and Red Shoes calls for the break. Anderson lets off clean and fans applaud. Tanahashi and Anderson circle again, tie up, and Tanahashi waistlocks. Anderson headlocks, Tanahashi slips out the back to get the headlock, but Anderson throws body shots.
Anderson hammerlocks Tanahashi’s arm and then wrenches it to a wristlock. Tanahashi endures, drops to get a leg and he drags Anderson down. Tanahashi floats to a headlock, Anderson slips out to headlock back, but then Tanahashi returns the favor. Anderson slips out again, but then so does Tanahashi. They end up outside the ring and fans applaud as they stare down. They put up their dukes, each daring the other to get in the ring. The ring count starts, Anderson and Tanahashi keep telling the other, “You go!” Anderson suggests they go at the same time, and so they do, at 13 of 20! Fans applaud as the two stand off in the ring now.
Anderson and Tanahashi pace as fans rally up. Anderson kicks but Tanahashi blocks! Tanahashi CLUBS the leg and Anderson goes to a corner. Tanahashi throws body shots. Tanahashi whips but Anderson reverses then runs in, only for Tanahashi to elbow him away. Tanahashi goes up to CROSSBODY! Direct hit and fans fire up for the air guitar. Gallows protests but Tanahashi ignores him to bring Anderson up. Tanahashi throws body shots, whips Anderson to ropes but Anderson reverses, only for Tanahashi to use that to WRECK Gallows with a dropkick! Tanahashi ROCKS Anderson, BOOTS Gallows, but Anderson GUN STUN HOTSHOTS Tanahashi down!
Red Shoes starts a ring count, fans rally up, “Let’s Go, Ace!” and Tanahashi is still down at 10 of 20. Anderson wants to go out but Red Shoes keeps him back. This is all to distract Red Shoes as Gallows APRON CHOKE SLAMS Tanahashi! Tanahashi flops back down to the floor and Gallows acts innocent. Red Shoes can’t call what he didn’t see but he warns Gallows to stay back. Tanahashi stirs as fans rally up, and the ring count restarts. Tanahashi drags himself up at 7 and in at 8, but Anderson is on him! Anderson scoop SLAMS Tanahashi then soaks up the cheers. Anderson runs to SENTON! Cover, TWO!
Fans rally but Anderson is annoyed. Anderson stands on Tanahashi’s face, then lets off to drag Tanahashi into a chinlock. Fans rally, Tanahashi endures, and Anderson grinds the hold. Tanahashi fights up, throws body shots, but Anderson pulls hair! Tanahashi ROCKS Anderson, but Anderson ROCKS Tanahashi. Tanahashi ROCKS Anderson again but Anderson ROCKS Tanahashi again! Fans rally up as the forearms pick up speed! Anderson gets the edge but Tanahashi gives strikes back. Anderson UPPERCUTS Tanahashi, but Tanahashi blocks the kick! DRAGON SCREW! Anderson clutches his knee and fans fire up.
Gallows coaches Anderson up but fans rally for Tanahashi. Tanahashi throws forearms on Anderson, whips him to ropes, but Anderson reverses. Tanahashi hits FLYING FOREARMS! Fans fire up, Tanahashi storms up on Anderson and he throws body shots. Tanahashi scoops and SLAMS Anderson, then goes to the corner. Tanahashi hops up for a SUNSET SENTON! Direct hit and a cover, TWO! Fans rally but Gallows gets on the apron. Tanahashi grabs Gallows’ leg and hits a DRAPING DRAGON SCREW! Gallows shouts in pain as he flops down. Tanahashi runs but into a SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO!
Anderson hurries to fireman’s carry Tanahashi! T K O!! Cover, TWO!! Fans fire up as Tanahashi survives! Anderson shouts at Gallows to get up but fans are rallying for Tanahashi. Anderson walks around, he pounds the mat and fans clap along. Tanahashi stirs, Anderson takes aim, GUN- NO, Tanahashi trips Anderson and gets a leg, GROUND DRAGON SCREW! And then an INVERTED GROUND DRAGON SCREW!! Anderson clutches his leg, but Tanahashi gets both legs for the TEXAS CLOVERLEAF!! Anderson endures, Gallows pushes the rope closer, but Red Shoes kicks at Gallows! Anderson crawls forward and reaches out, but Tanahashi drags him away!
Anderson endures as Tanahashi sits deep, but Gallows gets on the apron to distract Red Shoes! Red Shoes misses the tap out!! Toru Yano runs in from Japanese commentary! He trips Gallows and they brawl! Nothing was settled earlier tonight, but Gallows DECKS Yano! Tanahashi lets Anderson go, the Texas Cloverleaf meaning nothing now. GUN- NO! Tanahashi denies Anderson again! Tanahashi then dodges the lariat to run and SLINGBLADE! Cover, TWO! Tanahashi fires up, goes to the corner and climbs up, and Anderson stands. HIGH FLY ATTACK! Tanahashi fires up more and returns to the top rope!
Gallows distracts again but Yano trips him up again! Tanahashi aims and leaps, HIGH FLY FLOW onto knees!! Cover, TWO!?!? Tanahashi survives the turn around and Anderson clutches his knees. Gallows RAMS Yano into railing! Fans are thunderous for “LET’S GO, ACE!” as Anderson gets to a corner. Tanahashi stands, runs at Anderson but misses! Anderson JUMP KICKS, but his legs are hurting him! Anderson waits on Tanahashi, but still no Gun Stun! Tanahashi tries to steal but Anderson pushes him away! Gallows trips Tanahashi up but Tanahashi kicks him away. GUN- NO!! Tanahashi blocks again, but Anderson slips out of Twist ‘n’ Shout! GUN STUN!!! Cover, Anderson wins!!
Winner: Karl Anderson, by pinfall (still NEVER Openweight Champion)
The Machinegun had Big LG helping him out, and Gallows beats up on Yano for good measure! But wait, here come Jay White & Gedo! The IWGP World Heavyweight Champion and his Blacksmith are here to celebrate with the Good Brothers. White tells the Young Lions to get out of the ring so it can be Bullet Club standing over Tanahashi & Yano. Bullet Club Too Sweets, then they stomp away on The Ace & Producer! Young Lions try to stop this but they get beat up for it. Wait! Here comes TAMA TONGA! The Good Bad Guy CLOBBERS White! And Anderson! And SUPER FOREARMS Gallows! Fans fire up with Tama!
Tama sees White all alone now, and he said he’s told White already. Tama’s gonna kick White’s ass! But White is begging for mercy. Just look! It’s HIKULEO! Tama’s younger brother is storming into the ring! Tama and Hiku stare down, and White grins as he stands with the towering Tongan. “I’M his family now! It’s all about this! Bullet Club is his family!” NOT! Hiku choke grips White! And feeds him to a GUN STUN!!! Bullet Club isn’t family! Family is family! Tama and Hiku hug and the fans love it! The Guerrillas of Destiny have grown stronger now, and Tama has the belt! Tama gets the NEVER Openweight belt, too, and he holds it out to Hiku!
Fans fire up as Hiku holds up Anderson’s belt, and Tama holds up White’s belt! Will we see GoD dethrone the Bullet Club as they make their Declaration of Power?
IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship: Will Ospreay w/ The United Empire VS David Finlay!
The Commonwealth Kingpin was among many of the shocking upset wins The Rebel pulled off in this year’s G1 Climax. They’ve gone back and forth, in the ring and on the mic, and now they’ll finally settle this! Will the United Empire sweep the night to still reign supreme? Or can the rebellion still come away with a victory?
The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and after a long, hard road, we see who burns brightest in this Burning Spirit finale!
The two rush each other at the bell and the forearms fly fast and furious! Fans fire up, Finlay gets the edge, then he whips. Ospreay reverses, Finlay ducks the boot but things speed up. Finlay hurdles, hurdles and DROPKICKS! Finlay clotheslines Ospreay out of the ring, then he PLANCHAS! Direct hit and down goes Ospreay! Finlay says it was “that easy,” and then he whips Ospreay into railing! Ospreay bounces off the steel and Finlay fishhooks his face! Finlay dares Ospreay to talk trash now, then CLUBS him down. Red Shoes reprimands and Finlay apologizes, only to whip Ospreay hard into more railing!
Finlay has his shillelagh as he stalks Ospreay around the way. Red Shoes reprimands and tells Finlay to put the shillelagh down. Ospreay mule kicks Finlay first! Ospreay CLUBS Finlay, puts the shillelagh aside and ROCKS Finlay in the mouth! Ospreay whips, Finlay reverses but Ospreay leaps the railing! Finlay runs in, Ospreay ROCKS him then clears off the timekeeper’s table. To pick it up and CHUCK it at Finlay! Finlay and the table go down in a heap and fans fire up for that innovative savagery. Ospreay storms over to Finlay, Abe-san at least gets the mic, bell and hammer, and Ospreay stands the table up.
Ospreay drags Finlay but Finlay has hold of another table. Ospreay whips Finlay into railing now, and he sets up the other table Finlay brought. The tables are put side by side, but Finlay throws body shots! Ospreay ROCKS Finlay, and then reels him in! Ospreay aims for the tables but Finlay fights free! Finlay RAMS Ospreay so hard into the railing, Finlay tumbles into No Man’s Land. Finlay puts Ospreay in the ring, fans rally up, but Ospreay FLAPJACK HOTSHOTS! And BOOTS Finlay down! Fans fire up while Ospreay clutches his back. Ospreay drags Finlay up, CLUBS him on the back, and has him in a corner for hard body shots!
Finlay sputters but Ospreay brings Finlay up for another hard shot! Ospreay stands on Finlay at the ropes, stomps him, but Red Shoes counts. Ospreay springboards for a knee drop! Cover, ONE! Finlay shows heart and fans cheer but Ospreay is annoyed. Ospreay bumps Finlay off buckles, stands Finlay up, and CHOPS him! Finlay staggers then drops to his knees while fans applaud the echo on that one. Ospreay stands Finlay up but Finlay throws CHOPS back! Ospreay CHOPS Finlay off his feet, covers, TWO! Ospreay drags Finlay around to omoplata the arm, and he throws elbows into the sides. Ospreay hooks Finlay’s arm for a RECLINER! It’s a cover, ONE!!
Finlay clutches his arm but Ospreay snarls as he stalks Finlay to ropes. Finlay throws body shots but Ospreay DECKS him with a right. Ospreay reels Finlay in for a cobra twist! Finlay endures but Ospreay throws in elbows. Ospreay puts more pressure on the hold but Finlay endures as fans rally. Finlay powers up to hip toss free! Finlay fires forearms on Ospreay but Ospreay SOBATS. Ospreay reels Finlay in but Finlay back drops him away! Fans fire up and Finlay goes to a corner. Finlay runs in and CLOBBERS Ospreay with forearm after forearm! Finlay whips, Ospreay reverses but Finlay CLOBBERS Ospreay again!
Ospreay goes to a corner, Finlay runs in and UPPERCUTS! Finlay shoves Ospreay out and goes up to FLYING UPPERCUT! Cover, TWO! Finlay is annoyed but he pushes Ospreay around. Fans rally, Finlay reels Ospreay in and snap suplexes! Cover, TWO! Finlay facelocks to grind Ospreay down but Ospreay fights up. Finlay clinches, Ospreay throws elbows but Finlay still lifts! Ospreay stops that with a facelock and they end up on the ropes. Red Shoes counts the break, Finlay KNEES Ospreay low again and again! Red Shoes reprimands, Finlay whips but Ospreay handsprings to NEURALIZER! Fans fire up while both men are down!
Fans rally as Ospreay sits up. Finlay crawls to a corner and staggers up. Ospreay SOBATS and Finlay drops to a knee. Ospreay whips Finlay to the corner hard and then RAMS Finlay in the other corner! Finlay falls down but Ospreay drags Finlay up. Ospreay scoops for a RUNNING BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Fans rally as Finlay hangs tough. Ospreay paces around, drags Finlay up again and reels him in. Finlay fights the lift, Ospreay CLUBS him then gives him Kowata Kicks! But Finlay still fights the lift! Finlay back drops, Ospreay sunset flips but Finlay rolls through to BASEMENT EUROUPPER! Fans rally as Ospreay goes to a corner.
Finlay runs in but Ospreay BOOTS him away! Ospreay runs, into a BLUE THUNDER BOMB from Finlay! Cover, TWO! Finlay grits his teeth and fans rally up again. Finlay drags Ospreay up, fires off forearms, and Ospreay wobbles around. Finlay puts Ospreay up top, climbs up and throws headbutts. Finlay then brings Ospreay up, but Ospreay throws body shots! Ospreay HEADBUTTS Finlay down and fans rally up again. Ospreay stands but Finlay trips him up! Finlay climbs up after Ospreay but from the outside! Finlay clinches and aims at the tables! Ospreay fights back and now he aims for the tables!
Red Shoes tells them not to but the two brawl up top. They both hop down, Finlay ROCKS Ospreay, then ROCKS him again. Ospreay ROCKS Finlay, Finlay hits back, and fans rally as the forearms fly again. Ospreay gets the edge, and he HOTSHOTS Finlay off the crossbar! Ospreay leaps to sunset flip right over Finlay! Ospreay brings Finlay around for an APRON POWERBOMB! Ospreay then sets up on the other corner, for a SKY TWISTER!! Direct hit and down goes Finlay! Fans fire up while both men are down! Red Shoes checks on them and they’re both okay to continue. Ospreay gets up and brings Finlay around the way.
Ospreay smacks Finlay off the table, and again. Finlay grabs his shillelagh! Finlay blocks the table bump this time, to SMACK Ospreay’s fingers!! Ospreay scrambles away and Finlay kisses the shillelagh for helping out. Finlay then pursues Ospreay, keeps him from returning to the ring, and he wrenches the bad arm to SLAM the hand on the railing! And on the apron! Ospreay clutches his fingers but Finlay grabs the arm to put it through railing! Finlay BENDS the fingers against the railing! Red Shoes counts, Finlay lets off at 4, and Ospreay is clutching his hand in pain. Finlay just STOMPS the hand!
Red Shoes reprimands but Finlay puts Ospreay in the ring. Finlay stomps Ospreay’s bad hand again! And again! Ospreay shouts in pain but Finlay brings him up. Ospreay throws body shots but swings into a takedown! Finlay throws knee after knee into Ospreay’s side, then he gets the bad arm for a FUJIWARA ARMBAR! Finlay bends the fingers as part of it! Ospreay endures and the Empire coaches him up but Finlay pushes way back on the hold! Ospreay moves around, and gets a ROPEBREAK with a foot! Finlay lets off and Ospreay goes to the apron. Finlay stands on Ospreay’s head but lets off to bring Ospreay up.
Finlay bends the fingers on the bad hand! Ospreay throws forearms but Finlay just BITES the bad fingers! And SNAPS them! Finlay runs, into a Tiger Wall Kick and ENZIGURI! The legs still work! Finlay staggers back to a corner and Ospreay clutches his tortured hand again. Ospreay signals to the Empire to get something. Gideon Grey finds spare tape and Cobb POPS Ospreay’s fingers in place! Gideon and Cobb wrap up the bad fingers while Ospreay bites his other hand to endure the pain. Gideon finishes wrapping the fingers, but Finlay puts Ospreay on the apron! Ospreay ROCKS Finlay, springboards, but into the IRISH CURSE BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO!
Ospreay survives and he’s again holding his bad hand. Fans fire up with Finlay as he cravats. But no Acid Drop, Ospreay puts Finlay on the apron to GAMANGIRI! Fans rally as Ospreay goes out to join Finlay. Ospreay brings Finlay up but he can’t lift Finlay because of the bad hand. Ospreay fires off Kowata Kicks again, calls his shot, but even clapping his hands hurts like hell! Finlay reels Ospreay in for an APRON HALF ‘N’ HALF! Fans fire up as Finlay sees the tables nearby. Finlay brings Ospreay up to line up a shot. Finlay goes up the corner, ACID DROP onto the tables!! But the tables don’t break and both men just bounce off!!
Fans are thunderous as Red Shoes checks both men. Somehow, Ospreay and Finlay are okay to continue. Finlay rises first and he staggers around. Finlay shakes out his head, he resets the tables and he drags Ospreay up. POWERBOMB through the tables!! Finlay gets in the ring to leave Ospreay in the wreckage. Finlay wants the count out and Red Shoes starts the ring count. Gideon checks on Ospreay, coaches him up, but we’re at 10 of 20. And then 15! Ospreay grits his teeth and growls as he crawls, but we’re at 18! Ospreay springs in at 19, into a SPEAR!! Finlay hurries to ACID DROP!! Cover, TWO!??!
Ospreay survives and Finlay is furious! But the fans are thunderous as this one continues! Finlay slashes his throat and drags Ospreay up. Finlay tries to suplex but Ospreay’s dead weight. Finlay gives him those Kowata Kicks in return! Finlay taunts Ospreay and fans rally up. Finlay drags Ospreay up but Ospreay feebly forearms him. Finlay DECKS Ospreay, and Ospreay mumbles and groans as he sits back up. Ospreay throws another weak forearm, but Finlay UPPERCUTS him. Ospreay grits his teeth and fires up to ROCK Finlay! Finlay EuroUppers over and over and over! And then he CLOBBERS Ospreay!
Ospreay sits up in a daze but Finlay suplexes! But Osprey cradles, TWO!! Finlay swings, into a backslide! TWO, and Finlay jumps, but no Prima Nocta! Ospreay spins Finlay around to GHOST PIN! TWO!! Finlay gets up, but Ospreay ROUNDHOUSES him! Ospreay springboards, but Finlay catches the cutter to an inverted suplex! OSAKA STREET CUTTER!! Finlay fires up, runs, but into a STANDING SPANISH FLY!! Cover, TWO!! Finlay survives but Ospreay prepares the arm! HIDDEN- NO! BACKSLIDE! Ospreay rolls through but Finlay suplexes, TRASH PANDA!!! Cover, ROPEBREAK!!! Red Shoes apologizes for not seeing it in time but that was a legit ropebreak!
Finlay is beside himself but the fans are thunderous! Finlay drags Ospreay back up, suplexes, but Ospreay slips out! HIDDEN BLADE!!! But both men are down as we pass 25 minutes! Fans are thunderous again as Ospreay crawls his way back over to Finlay. A standing count begins but both men are down at 5! They get forehead to forehead and give junkyard dog headbutts. They go back and forth like that, and even at the same time! Finlay throws a forearm, Ospreay gives it back and fans fire up! Ospreay and Finlay stand, and now it’s fast and furious haymakers! Ospreay ROCKS Finlay, DOUBLE LARIATS hit, Ospreay swats another to HOOK KICK!
Finlay wobbles, Ospreay runs in, but Finlay ducks the Hidden Blade! Ospreay comes back, he slips through Finlay’s clothesline to lift and- RANA from Finlay!! Cover, TWO!!! Ospreay escapes and fans are electric! Ospreay dodges Finlay, springboards, but into a PRIMA NOCTA!! Cover, TWO!?!? Ospreay survives but Finlay just roars! Fans rally with Finlay and he drags Ospreay up. ACID- NO, Ospreay throws him away, goes up and up, SUPER OSCUTTER!!! But Ospreay holds on and says he’s not done! Underhooks and- NO, Finlay fights it, so Ospreay PEDIGREES! AND POINT BLANK HIDDEN BLADES!!! Cover, TWO!??!?! WHAT??!!
Ospreay is furious! He underhooks again, lifts and STORMBREAKER!!! Cover, Ospreay wins!!!
Winner: Will Ospreay, by pinfall (still IWGP United States Heavyweight Champion)
That was a 28 minute, 22 second WAR, but the Commonwealth Kingpin managed to conquer The Rebel! Finlay came so close to taking this title, but he’s still not quite there yet. Will Finlay be able to fight his way back up and try again before the year is out?
As for Ospreay, the Empire sets up in the ring to celebrate with their leader. Ospreay has the belt around his waist as Great-O-Khan waves the Empire’s banner behind him. But wait! Tetsuya Naito makes his way out! Fans applaud and Ospreay has the rest of the Empire stand down. Naito assures them he’s not here to fight, and they let him into the ring. Ospreay even allows Naito to have the mic first. Khan holds the mic out but just drops it at Naito’s feet. Naito picks it up to tell Ospreay, in English, “Congratulations~!” Then in Japanese, Naito says, “You know why I’m out here.” And back in English, “One more time. Naito VS Ospreay.” What’s “Mr. Ospreay” say? Is it yes or no?
Naito then hands the mic to Ospreay, but then “OI OI OI OI!” Zack Sabre Jr. makes his way out! Naito is surprised, the fans are excited, but Ospreay & The Empire are pissed! ZSJ keeps shouting, “OI!” as he goes down the ramp and into the ring. ZSJ snatches the mic from Ospreay to say “OI OI OI OI!” some more. In Japanese, “Choto matte <Wait a moment.>” ZSJ addresses Naito first. “Does this head work?” Naito’s going to challenge Ospreay for the IWGP US Heavyweight Championship? “Naze? <Why?>” Naito didn’t win today! And he didn’t win against Ospreay in the G1! Ospreay agrees but he doesn’t like ZSJ defending him. He grabs for the mic but ZSJ stops him.
ZSJ admits, Naito beat him in the G1 Climax, but then “this dickhead” beat Naito. But then ZSJ beat “this dickhead” in the New Japan Cup. That means ZSJ should be the next challenger! Naito says no, Ospreay again wants the mic, but ZSJ says “OI OI OI OI.” ZSJ says he has an idea. NJPW will be in England next week for Royal Quest II! So it should be ZSJ VS Naito 1v1, to name the #1 contender to the US Championship! “Dou desu ka? <How about that?>” Naito considers it but then Ospreay grabs the mic! Only for Naito to snatch it away! Ospreay’s so mad while Naito stares ZSJ down. But then Naito turns to Ospreay with a smile. “Amigo… Hasta luego. <Friend… See you later.>”
Naito drops the mic and leaves, but he didn’t really answer anything! ZSJ pursues Naito to ask him about the challenge for Royal Quest! Ospreay then picks the mic up to ask WTF was that! Both Naito and ZSJ are challenging for Ospreay’s title? Khan says that seems to be the case. Ospreay looks to the crowd and shrugs as if to ask them now. “Hey, whichever one it is. If it’s Naito, or if it’s Zack Sabre Jr, it doesn’t matter. Ospreay is best champion.” Fans applaud that. Ospreay then puts on the United Empire merch shirt, and they all stand together again.
Khan gets the mic to say, “Do those fools think they can ruin our moment? They’ll do anything to bore the lot of you. We won’t stand for it. Those scumbags crawled all the way out here, to beg and grovel for a chance at Ospreay’s belt. Don’t get it twisted: It’s Ospreay, the champion, who has the right to pick a challenger! It’s us, the United Empire, who call the shots around here! And now, hail us, loyal subjects!” Fans applaud, and Khan says they have conquered Kobe. “Therefore, show us your allegiance! Show your imperial pride! CROWNS UP!” The Empire throws up their hand sign, but Khan demands more fans do the same!
More fans do as they’re told, and that’s satisfactory for Khan. Have they also done their duty and bought an Empire shirt? If not, it’s probably because they’re sold out. Just get your acts together. The Empire has the IWGP Junior Heavyweight and US Heavyweight titles, so the world title is inevitable! They’ll go to the homeland of Gideon Grey & Will Ospreay, where Aussie Open will “execute” FTR and take the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championships! “Attention! We are Gideon Grey, Great-O-Khan, Jeff Cobb, Francesco Akira, TJP, and Will Ospreay! This is the power of the UNITED EMPIRE!” There’s so much gold in their treasury, will the United Empire soon conquer ALL of NJPW?
A great event to close out Burning Spirit, even with titles maintaining a status quo. Great Junior Heavyweight Tag title match, but I had a feeling on Friday that that match was going to go the Empire’s way. TJP & Akira are now open to taking on any number of Face teams, especially with Super Junior Tag League joining World Tag League for the Winter. Anderson VS Tanahashi was great stuff, even with Gallows getting involved. Tanahashi losing was a bit of a surprise, but the bigger surprise was Hikuleo leaving Bullet Club to side with his brothers in GoD. Hikuleo can definitely challenge for the NEVER Openweight title but I’m not sure his chances of winning. White VS Tama will also be awesome but I can’t be sure if Tama wins, knowing that Okada is challenging at WrestleKingdom.
And we got an awesome main event with the US Championship. Ospreay and Finlay stepped it up from their G1 Climax match, and that stuff with the tables was rough. I did like that they took finger snapping to another level and had Ospreay have to pop his fingers back into place and wrap them up. Ospreay winning was a small surprise as I thought this was going to be Finlay’s moment. But we do get a big story going into Royal Quest and Declaration of Power. Ospreay may not want it but I bet we will get Naito VS ZSJ at Royal Quest, the winner challenging Ospreay down the line. And whether it’s Naito or ZSJ, the winner will give Ospreay an awesome title match.
My Score: 8.8/10
Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Results & Report! (12/1/23)
SmackDown hears voices!
The Viper is here for The Bloodline!
He returned at WarGames, he returned to Monday Night Raw, and now, The Apex Predator, Randy Orton, returns to Friday Night SmackDown! Will he be able to strike at The Bloodline tonight?
- Kevin Owens VS Grayson Waller; wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
[Due to the scheduling choices of KFOX14 (El Paso & Las Cruces), coverage of SmackDown will not begin until 9PM Eastern]
Mitchell’s NJPW World Tag League Results & Report! (12/1/23)
A Block, round 5!
Will it be Chaos for the Reiwa Musketeers?
Shota Umino & Ren Narita are just outside the top spot in A Block, can they take over and truly lead NJPW’s future in World Tag League?
- Six Man Tag: El Phantasmo, Hikuleo & Jado VS Bullet Club; Bullet Club wins.
- Six Man Tag: Just5Guys VS Tiger Mask, Atlantis Jr. & Soberano Jr; Just5Guys win.
- Six Man Tag: Master Wato, Yuji Nagata & Minoru Suzuki VS Ryusuke Taguchi, Lance Archer & Alex Zayne; Wato, Nagata & Suzuki win.
- 8 Man Tag: Yoh, Bishamon & Boltin Oleg VS Los Ingobernables de Japon; Yoh, Bishamon & Oleg win.
- 2023 World Tag League, Block A: The Gates of Agony VS EVIL & Yujiro Takahashi; Evil & Yujiro win.
- 2023 World Tag League, Block A: TMDK VS Kaito Kiyomiya & Ryohei Oiwa; TMDK wins.
- 2023 World Tag League, Block A: Great-O-Khan & Henare VS Gabe Kidd & Alex Coughlin; Kidd & Coughlin win.
- 2023 World Tag League, Block A: Shota Umino & Ren Narita VS Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii; Yano & Ishii win.
PLAY BY PLAY
Here are the current A Block standings.
TMDK: 3-1, 6 points
Shota Umino & Ren Narita: 3-1, 6 points
Kaito Kiyomiya & Ryohei Oiwa: 2-2, 4 points
War Dogs: 2-2, 4 points
The United Empire: 2-2, 4 points
Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii: 2-2, 4 points
The House of Torture: 1-3, 2 points
The Gates of Agony: 1-3, 2 points
2023 World Tag League, Block A: The Gates of Agony VS EVIL & Yujiro Takahashi w/ The House of Torture!
Bishop Kaun & Toa Liona finally got on the board, beating the War Dogs. Meanwhile, the House of Torture is falling apart as they just keep losing! Will the Gates slam shut on them, too? Or will the King of Darkness & Tokyo Pimp find a way to lie, cheat and steal a win once again?
Wait, the Gates are coming out wearing House of Torture shirts? And then they wait for the House to make their entrance? Is this a sign that they’ve become allies? Dick Togo, Sho, Yoshinobu Kanemaru, and of course Evil & Yujiro all come out together and they seem pretty chummy with the Gates. All seven go to the ring now, and this is a rather interesting development. Did Prince Nana approve this deal? Everyone shakes hands and “put one out” so clearly there’s something to this. They even pose for photos! But then Kaun & Liona quickly and quietly TOSS Sho & Kanemaru, then they TOSS Dick! Yujiro & Evil don’t understand!
Kaun & Liona throw forearms, the bell rings and the Gates whip Evil & Yujiro. Yujiro & Evil hold ropes to then BOOT in return! But they run into double scoop SLAMS! The Gates tear off the House of Torture shirts, and Liona even wipes his butt with it! Evil & Yujiro are in opposite corners, Kaun runs in to ELBOW Yujiro and Liona SPLASHES Evil! Then the Gates trade, ELBOW for Evil and SPLASH for Yujiro! And back the other way! Fans fire up as the Gates tricked the tricksters! They fire each other up, and Kaun sends Liona into SPLASH Evil! The fans rally up, the Gates run in to SPLASH SANDWICH Evil!
Liona stands Evil back up, he and Kaun OPEN- NO, Yujiro saves Evil and they bail out. The House falls back, daring the Gates to come out after them. The Gates storm out after them, but going all the way to the entrance is suspicious. Sho & Kanemaru attack from behind with chairs! Fans boo as Dick distracts the ref so that the House can mug the Gates! Sho CHOKES Liona with his chair, but Liona bench presses it away! Yujiro helps Sho while Evil drags Kaun around, to RAM into the timekeeper’s area! Poor Abe-san! The fans boo but Evil gets on the mic to basically say this is what they get for messing with the House!
Yujiro SMACKS Liona off the timekeeper’s table, but Liona roars! So Yujiro POSTS Liona to knock him down! Evil drags Kaun up, puts him in the ring, and fans rally up. Evil CLUBS Kaun, CLUBS him again, and calls to the ref. Marty Asami returns and Evil stomps Kaun. Evil drags Kaun up, wrenches the arm and tags in Yujiro. Yujiro CLUBS Kaun’s arm, then reels him in to snapmare and ROCK with a haymaker. Yujiro looms over Kaun to rain down more fists but the ref reprimands. No closed fists! So Yujiro fishhooks Kaun’s nose! Yujiro sits Kaun up to run and basement BOOT! Cover, ONE!!
Yujiro is annoyed but he drags Kaun back up. Yujiro wrenches, wristlocks, and he CLUBS the arm. And stomps it! Kaun clutches the arm, it is taped up from that fight with the War Dogs. Yujiro wraps the arm around ropes! The ref counts, Yujiro lets off at 4 but the House all complains. Tag to Evil and he throws his shirt at Liona. Now the ref has to keep Liona out, and Evil throws Kaun out for the boys to stomp away on! Fans boo these vultures, but then Sho puts Kaun back in for Evil. Cover, TWO! Evil argues with the ref but the fans rally up. Evil tags Yujiro then runs to BLAST Liona! Liona stays up and roars, so Evil pokes him in the eyes!
Evil and Yujiro drag Kaun up, whip him to a corner, and Yujiro runs in but into Kaun’s BOOT! Kaun catches Evil for an URENAGE! Then Kaun uses Evil as a step to SHOTGUN Yujiro! Fans fire up while they’re all done, and Kaun crawls over. Hot tag to Liona! Liona rallies on Yujiro, BOOTS him, then catches Evil for a spin and LARIAT! Fans fire up more and Liona has targets in opposite corners. Liona roars, then SPLASHES Evil! SPLASH for Yujiro! SPLASH for Evil! SPLASH for Yujiro! Liona just keeps going, then he whips Evil into Yujiro! Fans fire up with Liona, and he runs back in, but both Yujiro and Evil dodge!
Yujiro & Evil kick low, double whip to ropes, but Liona breaks the line to DOUBLE SHOULDER TACKLE! Fans fire up again and Liona roars for Kaun! Kaun rises and tags in, and the Gates get Yujiro up! But Yujiro moves, the double lariats collide! Kaun hurries to grab a leg but Yujiro BOOTS Kaun into Liona! Evil tags in and he storms up to CLUB Kaun! Evil stomps Kaun, Yujiro joins in, and the ref reprimands. Yujiro drags Kaun to a corner, he and Evil double whip Kaun corner to corner. Yujiro runs in to BOOT! Evil runs in to clothesline! Snapmare and then they set Kaun up while Sho distracts! Dick hops up, DICK CHOP!!
Fans boo as Evil covers, TWO!! Kaun survives and the fans fire up again! Evil slashes his throat, drags Kaun up, and spins him around, but Liona is back! HELL STAB! Then a HEADBUTT for Yujiro! Liona & Kaun BLAST Dick & Sho off the apron! The fans fire up as now Evil is alone! Kaun & Liona high five and LARIAT SANDWICH! They roar again and they get Evil up. HEAVEN’S GATES!! Cover, but Dick YANKS the ref out!! Fans boo, but Yujiro slips back in to CLUB the Gates! Kaun ROCKS Yujiro in return! Kaun & Liona set Evil & Yujiro up, but they block double low blows! Kanemaru and Sho get in, they DOUBLE LOW BLOW!!
Fans boo as the House stomps away on the Gates! Yujiro has his cane, Dick has the Spoiler Choker. Liona shoves Sho aside but gets the CANE SHOT! Dick CHOKES Kaun, Kanemaru gives him WHISKEY MIST! And then Sho CLOBBERS Kaun with his wrench! Dick gets the ref back in as Evil hits EVERYTHING IS EVIL on Kaun!! Cover, The House wins!
Winners: Evil & Yujiro Takahashi, by pinfall (gain 2 points; The Gates of Agony earn 0)
Kaun & Liona lured the House in, but one good trick wasn’t enough to beat the numbers game. The House even mugs the Young Lions trying to help The Gates! Will this be the beginning of the most unwanted comeback in World Tag League history?
2023 World Tag League, Block A: TMDK w/ Kosei Fujita VS Kaito Kiyomiya & Ryohei Oiwa!
The Mighty Don’t Kneel, but Shane Haste & Mikey Nicholls did fall for the trickery of Toru Yano. Will TMDK be able to rebound and stay at the top of the block? Or will the Green Supernova and his protege still #CreateTheFuture?
The teams sort out and Mad Mikey starts against Oiwa. They tie up, fans rally up, and Oiwa pushes Mikey back, only for Mikey to put him on ropes. Mikey lets off but shoves Oiwa. Oiwa shoves back! They go forehead to forehead, then forearm for forearm! Mikey claws eyes, headlocks, and brings Oiwa over. Shane tags in, Oiwa gets away, and then Oiwa arm-drags Mikey! Shane runs in, but into an arm-drag! Oiwa wrenches and whips Shane to ropes, Kaito joins in so they can DOUBLE ARM-DRAG! And then DOUBLE DROPKICK! The fans fire and Oiwa has Shane in a corner. Shane throws a chop, but Oiwa stomps and ROCKS Shane in return.
Oiwa drags Shane up to wrench and wristlock, then he scoops to POWERSLAM! Oiwa runs, but Shane gets up to DROPKICK back! Shane puts Oiwa on ropes, stomps away, and then BLASTS Kaito! Mikey smothers Oiwa on the apron, lets off before he gets caught, and then Shane slides to SHOVE Oiwa to the floor! The ref has to keep Kaito back, so that lets Mikey stomp Oiwa. Mikey puts Oiwa in, Shane covers, TWO! Shane drags Oiwa up, brings him around and bumps him off buckles. Tag to Mikey and he CHOPS! Fans rally, Mikey eggs Oiwa on then CHOPS him again! Mikey ROCKS Oiwa, Oiwa ROCKS Mikey!
Oiwa fires off on Mikey but Mikey ROCKS him right back! And CHOPS him right down! Cover, TWO! Fans rally but Mikey sits Oiwa up and runs. Oiwa avoids the sliding lariat! Mikey hobbles up, throws a forearm but Oiwa throws back a flurry! Mikey fires a flurry of his own! Mikey runs, into an UPPERCUT! Oiwa runs and ROLLING ELBOWS Mikey down! Fans fire up as both men crawl, hot tag to Kaito! Kaito rallies on TMDK, whips Mikey and DROPKICKS him down! Shane kicks and runs, into a DROPKICK! Fans fire up again and Kaito whips corner to corner. Mikey reverses but Kaito comes back to NECKBREAKER DROP! Cover, TWO!
Fans rally up again as Kaito drags Mikey up and reels him in. Mikey fights the suplex, but Kaito fires forearms! Kaito reels Mikey in but Mikey suplexes! Kaito slips free, ducks Mikey’s elbow, but Mikey DDTS! Fans fire up while both men are down, Mikey crawls to hot tag Shane! Shane UPPERCUTS again and again on Kaito, whips him to a corner then BLASTS Oiwa before he UPPERCUTS Kaito! Shane keeps moving, CANNONBALL! Fans fire up with Hysterical Haste and he drags Kaito up, FALCON ARROW! Cover, TWO! Kaito survives and fans rally up. Shane calls his shot and he drags Kaito back up to reel him in.
Shane underhooks the arms, lifts, but Kaito fights free to chicken wing! Shane fights that to ROCK Kaito! Shane eggs Kaito on then UPPERCUTS him! Kaito comes back to UPPERCUT Shane! Shane UPPERCUTS Kaito! Kaito grits his teeth and shakes his head. Kaito UPPERCUTS, Shane UPPERCUTS, repeat! Fans rally, Shane gets the edge with UPPERCUT after UPPERCUT, but Kaito rebounds to RUNNING UPPERCUT! Both men are down again, and the fans fire up! Shane crawls to an open corner, Kaito crawls to hot tag Oiwa! Oiwa runs in to forearm smash, then he whips Shane corner to corner. Oiwa runs in to DROPKICK!
Fans rally up again as Oiwa clamps on a gut wrench, for a GUT WRENCH SUPLEX! Oiwa drags Shane up again, GUT WRENCH SUPLEX! Oiwa isn’t done, he drags Shane up for a GUT WRENCH BRIDGE! Cover, TWO! Oiwa BLASTS Mikey and Kaito slides in. They double whip Shane, then Kaito sends Oiwa in to ELBOW! Kaito runs in to forearm! Feed to the SPIN POWERSLAM! Cover, Mikey breaks it! Kaito TOSSES Mikey and Oiwa fires up! Oiwa drags Shane up in a waistlock but Mikey makes the save! Mikey CHOPS and Shane LARIATS! They coordinate, fireman’s carry, HIGHWAY TO HELL! Cover, Kaito breaks it!
The fans fire up again but Mikey tosses Kaito out. Shane kicks Oiwa around, eggs him on, but Oiwa sits up. Kaito gives more kicks, and a boot! Shane aims from a corner, runs in, but Oiwa dodges the Shane-ing Wizard to single leg, ANACONDA SUPLEX! Shane staggers back up, Oiwa gets around to GERMAN SUPLEX! Bridging cover, but Mikey sweeps Oiwa’s legs! Mikey whips, Oiwa reverses and DROPKICKS! Oiwa calls to Kaito and he returns. They get Shane up and fans fire up with them. Oiwa Electric Chair Lifts while Kaito climbs. But Shane victory rolls under the crossbody! TWO!! Mikey catches Kaito for a MIKEY BOMB!
Oiwa fires off on Mikey and DOUBLE CHOPS! But Shane SUPERKICKS! Mikey scoops, TANK BUSTER!! Cover, TMDK wins!!
Winner: TMDK, by pinfall (gains 2 points; Kaito & Oiwa earn 0)
A powerful battle from both teams, but only one team was mighty! Will Shane & Mikey still be the A Block finalists
2023 World Tag League, Block A: Great-O-Khan & Henare w/ Callum Newman VS Gabe Kidd & Alex Coughlin!
The Dominator & Face of Fury are holding on at 2-2, but so are #WarReady and the Dreadnought! Will the United Empire conquer these War Dogs and stay strong? Or will Kidd & Coughlin win won for the Rebel?
But of course the War Dogs attack at the ramp! But the Empire is ready, and Khan JAMS Kidd with his banner’s staff! Henare fires hands on Coughlin, HEADBUTTS him, and Khan CHOKES Kidd with the staff! Khan throws Kidd down, Henare CLUBS away on Coughlin, and the Empire gets the Dogs set up for Callum! Callum FLIES! Direct hit and he even lands on his feet! Fans fire up with the Empire and they throw the crowns up. Khan CLUBS Kidd, Henare LASHES Coughlin with his vest, and then Khan whips Kidd hard into railing! Red Shoes says fine then, and the bell rings to get this on record.
Fans cheer while Henare puts Coughlin in and throws forearms. Henare runs to then run Coughlin over! Fans cheer more, and Henare aims. Henare KICKS Coughlin in the back! And KICKS him again! Henare snapmares Coughlin to KICK him again! Then he SENTONS onto knees! Coughlin deadlifts and GERMAN SUPLEXES! Coughlin stomps Henare while Kidd whips Khan hard into railing, sending him up and out! Kidd then drags Khan to the back area of the stands, and whips him all the way into a wall! Coughlin digs his boots into Henare in a corner, then his knee. Red Shoes reprimands and Coughlin lets off.
Kidd and Khan keep brawling in the back as Coughlin CHOPS Henare! Coughlin whips Henare corner to corner then clotheslines! Coughlin then scoops Henare, and hits a FALL AWAY SLAM! Henare tumbles and writhes while fans applaud the show of strength. Coughlin covers, TWO! Tag to Kidd, and the War Dogs get Henare up. Coughlin holds the arms back so Kidd can CHOP Henare! And CHOP again! Kidd then stands on Henare’s head but Red Shoes reprimands. Kidd steps off to storm around. Kidd mockingly asks where Will Ospreay went. Kidd says he’s beating up Ospreay’s boys like they’re his b*tches!
Kidd DECKS Henare, then digs his knee in again. Tag to Coughlin, he drags Henare up, and says “Knock knock” as he taps Henare on the head. Henare snarls but Coughlin SLAPS him down! Coughlin says Henare’s supposed to respond, “Who’s there.” Coughlin kneels on Henare but Khan knocks him over! The War Dogs mug Khan, Kidd drags him out of the ring, then whips him hard into railing! Kidd even DECKS Callum for the hell of it! Fans boo but Kidd says he’s a madman! Coughlin stomps Henare, drags him up, and RAMS him into the corner. Tag to Kidd and Kidd RAMS into Henare. Kidd then snapmares Henare to drop an elbow! Cover, TWO!
Khan runs back in but Kidd DECKS him! Kidd drags Khan up to throw him out, and Coughlin hauls him up to whip hard into more railing! Kidd storms around, kicks Henare, but Henare grits his teeth. Kidd eggs Henare on, kicks again, but Henare blocks! Henare steps over to WHEEL KICK! Both men are down and fans fire up! Henare crawls, Khan drags himself up! But Coughlin runs in to BLAST Khan off the apron! Coughlin then goes out to stomp on Khan, and Kidd CLUBS Henare. Coughlin sends Khan into railing again! Kidd drags Henare up, ROCKS him, then bumps him off buckles. But Henare just growls!
Kidd bumps Henare off more buckles, but Henare just headbutts the buckles! Kidd eggs Henare on, CHOPS him, then whips him. But Henare reverses to SAMOAN DROP! Fans fire up as Henare crawls for his corner. Hot tag- NO, Coughlin YANKS Khan down! Red Shoes reprimands, Coughlin whips, but Khan reverses to send him into railing! And then Khan BOOTS Coughlin down! The fans fire up, hot tag to Khan! Khan runs Kidd over, whips him to a corner and clotheslines! Then torture rack and swing, NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Kidd is still in this but the fans rally behind Khan. Khan sits Kidd up, into the IRON CLAW SLEEPER!
Kidd BITES the fingers! And SNAPS them! Kidd runs, rebounds, but Khan gets under! Henare runs in, ASSISTED SITOUT POWERBOMB!! Cover, TWO!! Kidd survives but Henare and Khan coordinate. Shoutout to Aussie Open, RUNNING KICK SANDWICH! Scoop, HEEL KICK T T D!! Cover, Coughlin breaks it! Coughlin and Henare trade big forearms! Fans fire up as they go back and forth! Coughlin gets the edge, but Henare BODY BLOWS! And ULTIMA- NO, Coughlin fights the full nelson! So Henare shoves him to a corner for a SHINING WIZARD! Then snapmare and RUGBY KICK! And then the Monster Rage boils over!
Henare drags Kidd up, fireman’s carries, and Khan runs. But Kidd slips free to shove Henare into Khan! Kidd BITES Henare, TOSSES him out, talks trash, but turns around into the HELL STAB! IRON CLAW, but Kidd grabs at Red Shoes! RIGHT HAND!! Kidd and Khan fall over after that closed fist shot! Fans rally up as hard as they can but Kidd snarls as he drags Khan up. Kidd runs, springboards, OSCUTTER?!? Kidd sends a message to Ospreay, and Coughlin is back in! Gut wrench, Coughlin goes up, HIJACK TOMBSTONE!! Cover, War Dogs win!!
Winners: Gabe Kidd & Alex Coughlin, by pinfall (gain 2 points; Khan & Henare earn 0)
That madman tells Ospreay that he’s dead when they finally face off 1v1! December 16th is still two weeks away, is Kidd going to overlook the rest of the WTL all because he wants after the Kingpin?
2023 World Tag League, Block A: Shota Umino & Ren Narita VS Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii!
The Reiwa Musketeers are coming off a big main event win last round, and are near the top of the block! But the Clown Prince & Stone Pitbull just took down the top of the block last round against TMDK! Will Yano & Ishii pull off another shocker to get to the front of the line? Or will the Roughneck & Son of Strong Style make it through the Chaos?
The teams sort out and Ishii starts against Narita. The fans rally, the two tie up, and they’re in a deadlock. Every step Narita pushes Ishii back, Ishii pushes Narita back. Ishii uses his stockier frame to keep pushing Narita, and they end up on ropes. Red Shoes calls the break, Ishii lets off, but Narita intercepts the forearm with a forearm! Narita fires off more shots, but Ishii eggs him on! Ishii and Narita trade forearms back and forth, fans fire up as they pick up speed! Narita ROCKS Ishii, runs, but Ishii avoids the boot. Narita avoids the lariat to BOOT Ishii down after all! Fans fire up and Narita stomps Ishii. Narita then stands Ishii up to bump off buckles.
But then Ishii hits Shota! Shota hits back, Ishii fights both Musketeers at once! That doesn’t go well and they mug him 2v1. Tag to Shota and he digs his boots in while Narita BLASTS Yano! Red Shoes counts, Shota & Narita double whip Ishii to ropes, then DOUBLE ELBOW! SENTON! SOMERSAULT SENTON! Then they shake hands to DOUBLE ELBOW DROP! Cover, TWO! Shota kicks Ishii around, eggs him on, but Ishii stands. The two stare down, and Shota throws a forearm. Ishii eggs Shota on now, so Shota throws more forearms. Ishii leans into the shots and backs Shota down like that! Shota keeps throwing shots, but Ishii DECKS him!
Fans fire up and Ishii rains down more shots on Shota! Red Shoes counts, Ishii lets off, and then Ishii eggs Narita on. Red Shoes keeps Narita back and Yano tags in. Yano fires up, and he unties a buckle pad! Then he throws it to Shota and tattles on him to Red Shoes! Shota gives the buckle pad over, and Yano SLAPS Shota in the head! Fans cheer but Shota scowls. Yano claws the eyes! Yano runs, Shota ELBOWS him then runs to basement dropkick! Tag to Narita, and Narita whips Yano to ropes, for a NECKBREAKER DROP! Cover, TWO! Yano is still in this and fans rally up. Narita brings Yano up but Yano pulls hair!
Narita kicks and whips but Yano reverses to throw Narita down by his hair! Yano drags Narita up and whips him into the bare buckles! Narita writhes, Yano BLASTS Shota, and Ishii rushes over to go after him! Yano throws Narita out and then goes out after him. Yano whips Narita hard into railing! Ishii whips Shota hard into railing, too! Yano drags Narita back up, puts him in the ring, and he stomps Narita around. Yano drags Narita up, tells haters to shut up, then tags in Ishii. Ishii CHOPS Narita, stalks him, and CHOPS him against the ropes! Ishii eggs Narita on and CHOPS him again. Ishii continues to egg Narita on, so Narita throws a forearm!
Ishii slaps Narita around, Narita throws more shots, but Ishii CHOPS him back down! Fans applaud, and Ishii taunts Shota. Shota coaches Narita but Ishii gives Narita toying kicks. Ishii HEADBUTTS Narita, CHOPS him, then CHOPS and CHOPS again! Narita roars but Ishii CHOPS him back down! Ishii whips Narita corner to corner, runs in, but into a BOOT! Narita runs up, Ishii ROCKS him! Ishii swings, but into a HALF HATCH! Both men are down and the fans fire up! Hot tag to Shota! Shota fires off on Ishii, whips him to ropes, but Ishii reverses. Shota CLOBBERS Ishii, then BLASTS Yano! Fans fire up behind Shota and he sends Ishii to a corner.
Shota runs in to UPPERCUT, then FISHERMAN SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO! Shota keeps going, and he turns Ishii over into an STF! Yano stomps Shota, so Shota kicks Yano and tosses him out. Shota goes back to Ishii, stands him up, and clinches. Ishii fights the lift with elbows! Shota ROCKS Ishii, gives him taunting kicks, but Ishii ROCKS Shota back! Shota and Ishii stare down, and Shota fires off forearm after forearm! Shota has Ishii in the corner for more shots! Red Shoes reprimands but Ishii roars and turns things around to CHOP and ROCK Shota on repeat! The fans rally up as Shota sits down, only for Ishii to stand him back up for more!
Ishii CHOPS and ROCKS Shota into sitting down again, and the fans fire up! Ishii eggs Shota on, kicks him around, slaps him even, and Shota scowls. Shota storms up on Ishii, Ishii throws a forearm. Shota eggs Ishii on, and leans into the shots a la Ishii. Shota then ROCKS Ishii and he staggers away! Ishii comes back, Shota clinches but Ishii slips around. Shota elbows Ishii, whips, but Ishii reverses to SAIDO! Fans fire up while both men are down! Shota and Ishii crawl, hot tag to Yano! Yano fires up and whips Shota, but Shota reverses. Yano avoids the bare buckles, to then bait Shota into them! Roll up, TWO!
Yano runs, but Shota DROPKICKS him down! Fans fire up again, and Shota crawls to hot tag Narita! Narita runs up on Yano, BACK ELBOW! Then HALF HATCH BRIDGE! Cover, TWO! Yano escapes, but Narita BLASTS Ishii to cut off the tag. Narita clinches but Yano fights the lift! So Narita trips Yano, and rolls him, CROSS ANKLE CLOVERLEAF! Yano endures, the fans rally up, but Narita drags Yano from ropes! Yano keeps fighting around, he reaches out, ROPEBREAK! Narita lets off in frustration but the fans rally up again. Narita stands Yano up, reels him in, COBRA TWIST! But Yano powers free with a hip toss!
Narita runs in but Yano trips him! CATAPULT into the bare buckles!! Ishii clotheslines Narita, too! Then he BLASTS Shota! Yano fires up and he hauls Narita up. ONI- NO, Narita fights free! Narita gets around, SLEEPER! Yano is fading fast, but Narita goes to the COBRA TWIST now! Yano endures, fans rally up, and Yano fights his way around. Shota keeps Ishii out, and Narita brings Yano away with the SLEEPER! Then back to COBRA TWIST! Yano is turning red like his favorite chair! But Ishii sends Shota into railing, to then TACKLE Narita! Fans fire up while Narita tosses Ishii back out. Narita roars and goes back for Yano.
Narita drags Yano up but Yano fights the suplex. Narita knees low, runs, but Yano avoids the boot to clinch and BELLY2BELLY! Fans fire up while both men are down! Yano and Narita crawl, hot tag to Ishii, and he BLASTS Shota! Ishii drags Narita up, throws him into Shota, then runs, but Narita BOOTS! GERMAN SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!! Ishii escapes and the fans fire up again. Narita crawls, hot tag to Shota! Shota aims at Ishii, BANG and V-TRIGGER! Shota then slingshots to APRON DDT Ishii!! Fans are thunderous and Shota stands tall as Ishii flops over. Red Shoes checks but Ishii is somehow still in this.
Shota drags Ishii up as the ring count begins. Shota puts Ishii in, climbs up a corner, and he MISSILE DROPKICKS Ishii down! Then Shota resets, to slingshot CUTTER! Cover, TWO!! Ishii survives and the fans fire up again! Shota drags Ishii up, dragon sleepers, but Ishii fights free. Ishii runs, into a snap cradle, that then shifts into a BONE LOCK!! Ishii endures the over-the-shoulder crossface, but Narita keeps Yano out! Shota pulls on the hold, but Ishii still fights around! Ishii reaches out, but Shota pulls back more! Ishii flails and kicks around, to have the ROPEBREAK! Shota lets go and the fans fire up again.
Narita slides in, he and Shota coordinate. Shota wrenches Ishii, dragon sleepers, and then gets Ishii up. Narita runs, BOOT into SAVING GRACE! Cover, TWO!! Ishii survives and the fans are thunderous again! The Musketeers stay focused, though, and they haul Ishii up. They double whip him to a corner, Shota runs in to ELBOW! Narita runs in to JUMP KICK! Feed to Shota’s forearm! Narita’s BOOT! Shota’s ROLLING ELBOW! Another BOOT! And then the lift, for the HART ATTACK! Cover, YANO BREAKS IT! Fans fire up but Narita fires off on Yano! Yano gets around, fireman’s carry takeover! Yano kicks and whips Shota, but Shota reverses!
But Yano denies the tornado DDT! Yano atomic drops Shota, then pops him up. Shota fights the Onigoroshi, underhooks Yano, but Yano RAMS Shota into bare buckles! Ishii reels Shota in, hoists him up, POWERBOMB! High stack, TWO!! Shota survives and the fans fire up again! Ishii roars, the fans duel, and Shota flounders up. Ishii runs, Shota BOOTS him, blocks the lariat, and ENZIGURIS! Narita is back to WHEEL KICK! Narita hurries to get Ishii up and NORTHERN LIGHTS! Then a clinch, but Ishii HEADBUTTS free! Narita ENZIGURIS, Shota full nelsons! Narita runs, but Ishii gets free, the BOOT hits Shota!
Ishii shoves Shota into Narita, Yano drags Narita out! LARIAT!! Cover, TWO!?! Shota survives and fans are thunderous again! Ishii grits his teeth and he stands back up. Ishii roars and looks to finish this off. We’re at 20 minutes, Ishii suplexes, but Shota slips free! HALF ‘N’ HALF! But Ishii gets right up to CLOBBER Shota! But Shota’s right up to SHOTGUN Ishii! Ishii’s back, but Shota pop-up KNEES, and LARIATS! Fans fire up again and Shota drags Ishii up. HALF ‘N’ HALF BRIDGE! Cover, TWO!! The fans are thunderous and Shota just fires up again! Shota aims from a corner, vowing to end it here!
Ishii slowly rises, Shota runs in, BLAZE BLADE!! But Shota isn’t done! Underhooks and- NO, Ishii wrenches out to PELE!! Both men are down and the fans are electric! Ishii goes to the corner while the fans duel, and he SLIDING LARIATS!! Cover, NARITA BREAKS IT! Yano runs in to toss Narita out! Ishii roars and he drags Shota back up. Ishii suplexes, but Shota fights free! Shota wrenches, ROCKS and ROLLING- NO, Ishii ROCKS Shota! But Shota catches Ishii, only for Ishii to wrench out! Shota POP-UP UPPERCUTS! And then V- NO, Ishii blocks to HEADBUTT! And then Ishii spins Shota to a BRAINBUSTER!!! Cover, CHAOS WINS!
Winners: Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii, by pinfall (gain 2 points; Shota & Narita earn 0)
There weren’t any tricks needed here, Ishii & Yano beat the Musketeers straight up! Is it still too soon for Shota & Narita to say the Paradigm Shift is coming?
And because it’s Ishii who won this, he’s a true strong silent type, so he and Yano just get outta here! No closing address tonight, but will actions speak louder than words for the Stone Pitbull in this tournament’s second half?
Here are the NEW A Block standings!
TMDK: 4-1, 8 points
Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii: 3-2, 6 points
Shota Umino & Ren Narita: 3-2, 6 points
War Dogs: 3-2, 6 points
Kaito Kiyomiya & Ryohei Oiwa: 2-3, 4 points
The United Empire: 2-3, 4 points
The House of Torture: 2-3, 4 points
The Gates of Agony: 1-4, 2 points
Another great round for World Tag League and this block, with some rather shocking moves. I really thought The Gates were going to get going after their win last round, but I guess the House of Torture couldn’t just drop off that badly so they had to win this here. And as we saw in that main event, Yano & Ishii are making a go of it in this block. They beat Shota & Narita, who are certainly still frontrunners, but that was great stuff to make a point that Shota & Narita aren’t ready to beat the real “old guard” they’re talking about replacing here. War Dogs beating the Empire seems fine, they’re mostly just keeping pace so they could cost somebody later.
And great match from TMDK VS the Noah duo, and a great win for TMDK to again be the clear first place team. 4-1 at the halfway point, this block is on Shane & Mikey to win or lose, and as I’ve been saying, TMDK as both a group and as just these two, the OG members, have been solid a long time. It’d be great if they got to the tournament finals here, maybe even get that title shot at WrestleKingdom.
My Score: 8.9/10
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