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(NOAH) NOAH NEWSLETTER VOL.195 ~ 22ND MARCH 2023

New champions, All Japan interactions, new debuts and Joshi in NOAH! NOAH is heating up in 2023!

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NEWS

YO-HEY & Tadasuke join GLG

During Kongoh vs The NOAH Junior Regulars at Great Voyage in Yokohama 2023 on the 19th March, Tadasuke inadvertently knocked down Shuji Kondo, which allowed Atsushi Kotoge to get the win over him (Tadasuke). The NOAH Juniors left the ring, which left Kondo and the others, Hajime Ohara and Hi69 advancing menacingly on Tadasuke. Kondo it is well known does not like him, Hi69 has a simmering jealousy, and Ohara will do whatever Kondo does. YO-HEY ran in to save Tadasuke, and just when it looked as if Tadasuke would be welcomed by the NOAH Junior Regulars, YO-HEY was seen whispering something to him, and the two took out Kotoge, Seiki Yoshioka and Alejandro. Backstage, while Kotoge et al wondered what had happened, YO-HEY said “No Comment”. Fans were hopeful of a RATELS reunion (Daisuke Harada had been signing autographs), but YO-HEY and Tadasuke came out in the main event as members of GLG (Jake Lee’s “Good Looking Guys” unit).

Saxon Huxley debuts in NOAH

The 203cm Saxon Huxley (which makes him taller than even Jake Lee at 192cm), made his NOAH debut at “Great Voyage in Yokohama”. Very reminiscent of Bruiser Brody, his first match was fittingly a match teaming with Hideki Suzuki and against Yoshiki Inamura and Mohammed Yone. Huxley won the match and backstage said that he didn’t come to Japan to look at the Cherry blossoms, he came here to fight!

The problem with Shuhei Taniguchi, Takashi Sugiura takes a hand

Shuhei Taniguchi emerged from his slumber and the monster reawakened against Takashi Sugiura in a match in Yokohama (“Great Voyage”) where Taniguchi had one of the best matches of his in a long time. He won via repeated soccer ball kicks to the head, which made a nasty thudding sound. Backstage, Takashi Sugiura urged him to seize this chance, Taniguchi asked him for another match, but Sugi told him he had to seize the opportunity by himself. Later (and with Sugiura looking on, hands behind his back and standing in the background in teacher mode), Taniguchi challenged Daiki Inaba and Masa Kitamiya for the GHC Heavyweight Tag titles they had just retained against Kongoh. Masa Kitamiya grimly told Taniguchi that he would accept their challenge, but he would “teach him” when to “leave NOAH forever” and that there was no future for him. Title match will take place on April 16th in Sendai.

Jack Morris challenges for the GHC National

The Yokohama Budokan has always been good to Jack Morris, he made his NOAH debut there (which he won) and on the 19th, he defeated El Hijo Del Dr Wagner Jnr and therefore won the opportunity to challenge for the GHC National. Morris picked up the belt and silently held it over El Hijo Del Dr Wagner Jnr, who was lying spread out on the mat. Title match has been set for April 16th in Sendai.

SUWAMA, Kenoh, Soya & All Japan

Following Kenoh’s labelling All Japan as a “pigsty” (I am trying to imagine how that would have gone down in the Baba era) and walking out of the press conference saying that the whole venue chosen for it was like an old fashioned mayoral meeting in Tokyo with the close press of bodies, Kenoh and Manabu Soya succeeded in winning the All Japan World Heavyweight titles on the 21st March. I have never seen Kenoh so happy on winning a title, the GHC has history, but not as long a history as All Japan, the promotion it flowed from and I think despite his disparaging, Kenoh was overcome to be holding the belts that the legends of All Japan once did. Suwama got in the ring after their victory to challenge for the titles on behalf of Voodoo Murders, Kenoh basically told him to beat it. He wanted nothing to do with him, he was insulted by his not turning up to Great Voyage in Yokohama, where Kenoh had prepared a special seat for him at ringside, and their next challenge (and probably any subsequent challenges) would take place in NOAH as he told everyone pointedly in the ring and then backstage, along with more jumping and cheering with Soya. No challengers have come forward yet, but Kenoh looks to be adding to his collection of belts as on the 1st April when he and Shuji Kondo will challenge DragonGate’s Natural Vibez (Big Boss Shimizu and Kzy) for the Open the Twin Gate Championship. Media outlets are wondering whether Kenoh will once again attempt to unify the GHC and All Japan belts.

Related articles

Kenoh “All Japan, Aoyago disappointing”. Aoyagi demands a double title match and orders Kongoh to win the GHC, World Tag Press Conference

Seriously? Managing Director Kohei Suwama sends a thank you letter to Kenoh, “If it’s full, I’ll give you a monetary reward”

Kenoh & Soya win the World Tag, notice of defense in NOAH, re-notification of “break” to Suwama

Kenoh’s “pigsty” ruthlessly inflames Suwama, lambasts Triple Crown Champion Yuji Nagata!

No love lost, Masa Kitamiya & Kento Miyahara

Furious that Masa Kitamiya was ignoring his demands for a three man tag in All Japan and irritated even more over Kitamiya’s not greeting him as his senior, Kento Miyahara appeared in NOAH to confront his unrepentant junior following Kitamiya & Inaba’s successful tag defense against Kongoh. Miyahara, who danced his way to the ring, told an unimpressed “Mitsuhiro Kitamiya” that he was getting way ahead of himself (he said it was by one hundred years) calling himself “Masa” and that he had come to finally get an answer out of him about the match. Kitamiya told him that there was no benefit, but since Miyahara had come all the way down here just to shame his junior for not responding, then fine, he would fight him. There was no love lost in Ota Ward, at least not on Masa Kitamiya’s part, and while Miyahara might have had a change of heart after the match, Kitamiya didn’t. The match itself was won by Yoshiki Inamura (against whom Ryo Inoue in particular has sworn revenge and says he will win the All Japan tag league to do it) and was followed by Miyahara speaking on the microphone to Kitamiya. He told him that with the “Masa” name Kitamiya had no choice but to go to the top of NOAH and having seen for himself how he was now, he was no longer “Mitsuhiro Kitamiya”, which was hard for him to say, and he could stop worrying about him. Kitamiya (who hates both of his older brothers/sibling students) told him that he wanted nothing more to do with him, he hated him then and he hated him now. Miyahara, however, seemed to think that they would meet in the ring again although Kitamiya made it very clear that it was unlikely.

Related articles

Kitamiya gets irritated with “Irresponsible comments”, “Not thinking about unnecessary things”. Kenoh once again declares “GHC World Tag Team”. GHC tag signing ceremony.

“Pathetic”, Miyahara asks Kitamiya to quickly determine the three wrestlers who will be on the NOAH side

NOAH’s Kitamiya wins the match, an announcement of “Never getting involved”, Miyahara cheers “Get to the top!”

STINGER war, outcast Eita

To the surprise of no one, Yoshinari Ogawa (and Eita) did not attend the match signing. Chris Ridgeway and HAYATA did, and while Ridgeway did most of the talking, HAYATA was vocal enough to state that losing the pre matches could be an Ogawa trick. He also likened him to an “Amanojaku” (天邪鬼, lit “Heavenly evil spirit”) which is a demon in Japanese folklore, which urges people to wicked deeds by preying on their darkest desires. HAYATA’S description is apt, because the demon is tricky and never does what anyone expects as their nature is contrary. There was no way to try and outmaneuver such a demon with tricks, so HAYATA said there was no strategy other than to destroy him. In the title match, Ogawa stole the win and then appealed for peace between himself, HAYATA and Ridgeway. HAYATA shook hands, Ridgeway was a little apprehensive and when it came time to leave the ring, hung back without shaking hands, despite the fact that both Ogawa and HAYATA where urging him to come walk with them.

What about Eita?

Eita and Ogawa got into a shoving match when Ogawa shook hands with HAYATA, which ended with Ogawa slapping Eita, who thought that like his squabbles with NOSAWA, it would blow over in a matter of seconds. What he forgets is that Ogawa forgives when he wants.

It was hard not to feel sorry for Eita as he did look so alone when he left the ring, gathering up his belt sadly and slinking backstage with hunched shoulders and holding the side of his face. Like Eita said, STINGER are a notoriously silent group, two don’t have social media, the third doesn’t use his much, and it is only Eita who talks online. Eita’s last post was sad, he said he still believed in Ogawa…after all, they were the GHC Junior tag champions. So far, no one has come to challenge for the belts.

Related articles

Yoshinari Ogawa declares dissolution of STINGER!? (Interview, Part 2)

“Stop waking up Ogawa”, HAYATA declares a parting? GHC Junior tag signing ceremony

Lanzelot challenges AMAKUSA

Lanzelot challenged AMAKUSA for the GHC Junior title following his (Lanzelot’s) win over him at the Yokohama Budokan. Title match will take place in Aomori on March 26th. This will be broadcast at a later date.

Joshi matches announced on a NOAH show

NOAH continue to test the water in putting on Joshi matches, this time outside of a special show (i.e. Great Muta and Keiji Mutoh’s retirement) by putting on a women’s match for the first time ever on an official NOAH show. Nothing as of yet has been announced regarding a women’s division or a GHC Women’s Championship, but it would not surprise me if an announcement was made on the 16th April following Maya Yukihi vs Sumire Natsu.

 Jake Lee wins the GHC Heavyweight title

Jake Lee defeated Kaito Kiyomiya following a brutal match where Kiyomiya was worn down but did not have the energy to keep wearing down Jake, which he almost succeeded in doing, at Great Voyage in Yokohama and became the 42nd GHC Heavyweight Champion. He was immediately challenged by Katsuhiko Nakajima, who told him that he would show him what the real NOAH is, and he used the phrase “I’m NOAH”, which made fans wonder if there was a double meaning here as Nakajima started using this in response to Go Shiozaki’s, “I am NOAH”. Jake Lee, after looking stunned, commented that Nakajima was one of the wrestlers he had always wanted to fight. Title match has been set for the 16th April in Sendai.

Related articles

GHC Champion Kaito Kiyomiya dismisses the recommendation to retire, and will “turn everything upside down” in the match against Jake

“I think I will dominate” Jake Lee reveals his ambition in his first GHC challenge to Kaito Kiyomiya in an exclusive interview

Jake “Get the symbol of freedom”, Kiyomiya smiles and says, “Spring in full bloom”. GHC Heavyweight signing ceremony.

“Kiyomiya, take a rest!” The strongest black ship appears in the new era of NOAH! Getting to the bottom of Jake Lee’s heart.

“There are still some diamonds in the rough that I am curious about”, the new GHC champion Jake Lee expresses his beliefs to increase his power

EVENT RECAPS & POST MATCH INTERVIEWS

Post match interviews

Sunny Voyage 2023 (Tuesday March 14th)

Great Voyage in Yokohama 2023 (Sunday March 19th)

Event recaps

Great Voyage in Yokohama 2023 (Sunday, March 19th)

ELSEWHERE IN NOAH

– Naomichi Marufuji picked a few hairs off of Anthony Green’s chest before chopping him

– Very sadly with the defection of YO-HEY and the retirement of Daisuke Harada, the NOAH Junior Space recorded its last session this past week.

– Naomichi Marufuji posted two short InstaLive videos of himself and a drunk Tadasuke. Who had a white towel over his head for some reason in the first, and then had the grin and the eyes half closed and half open in the second.

– A sports news outlet based in Nigeria, reported that Chris Ridgeway had passed away on March 30th 2021! I mean STINGER might be reclusive, and one fan drawn cartoon depicted HAYATA living inside of Yoshiki Inamura’s tires as it was a dark place to hide, but come on! I doubt the 1,308 fans at the Yokohama Budokan were all having a mass hallucination.

– Eita has now become a freelancer. DragonGate said that with his activities in NOAH and Eita also wanting to expand, that this was the best and easiest option all round.

– Manabu Soya announced himself as the mystery wrestler who would enter Champions Carnival Block B

– Kenta Kobashi will be running Fortune Dream (8) again at Korakuen Hall on the 14th June.

– The Great Muta will be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, alongside Keiji Mutoh. Akitoshi Saito wondered whether Muta had a passport.

CURRENT CHAMPIONS

  • GHC Heavyweight Champion: Jake Lee
    Challenger: Katsuhiko Nakajima, ABEMA presents GREEN JOURNEY 2023 in SENDAI (Xebio Arena Sendai, Sunday April 16th)
  • GHC Junior Champion: AMAKUSA
    Challenger: Lanzelot, SUNNY VOYAGE 2023 (Aomori Mutsu Maeda Arena, Sunday March 26th)
  • GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: Masa Kitamiya and Daiki Inaba
    Challengers: Shuhei Taniguchi & Takashi Sugiura, ABEMA presents GREEN JOURNEY 2023 in SENDAI (Xebio Arena Sendai, Sunday April 16th)
  • GHC Junior Tag Champions: Yoshinari Ogawa & Eita
    Challengers: None at the time of writing
  • GHC National Champion: El Hijo Del Dr Wagner Jnr
    Challenger: Jack Morris, ABEMA presents GREEN JOURNEY 2023 in SENDAI (Xebio Arena Sendai, Sunday April 16th)

THIS WEEK IN NOAH

– Friday March 24th

SUNNY VOYAGE 2023

Akita Selion Plaza

Starts: 18:30 JST

Broadcast: TBA

– Saturday March 25th

SUNNY VOYAGE 2023

Iwate Morioka Gymnasium

Starts: 17:00

Broadcast: TBA

– Sunday March 26th

SUNNY VOYAGE 2023

Aomori Mutsu Maeda Arena

Starts: 15:00

Broadcast: TBA

– Monday March 27th

SUNNY VOYAGE 2023

Aomori Hachinohe Yutori 1st floor multi-purpose large hall

Starts: 18:30 JST

Broadcast: TBA

Birthdays

  • March 27th: Kenta Kobashi (56)
  • March 29th: Kai Fujimura (28)

NOAH FROM THE VAULT

“Donmai, Donmai” – Mitsuharu Misawa’s diary

With thanks to: Flame286 & Metal NOAH

Picture credits: Weekly Pro (Kitamiya & Miyahara)


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More From Japan

(NOAH) NOAH NEWSLETTER VOL.200 ~ 7TH MAY 2023

New alliances, MMA challengers and the return of a beloved tag team!

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NEWS

AXIZ reunite

Go Shiozaki lost in his return match at MAJESTIC (4th May at Ryogoku Kokugikan) to Katsuhiko Nakajima’s Vertical Spike. While he was lying on the mat, with a worried Kaito Kiyomiya and Yoshiki Inamura looking on, Katsuhiko Nakajima got on the mic and said, “What is this, Go Shiozaki? This awkward state? Is this “I AM NOAH?” Where did that strong Go Shiozaki go? Shall we do it again? Stand up!”, Everyone, including Shiozaki, thought that Nakajima wanted to fight him again and so Shiozaki used Nakajima to pull himself up. Nakajima had his usual devilish smile on, and grabbed Shiozaki by the hair as if he was going to strike him.

What he actually did was offer him his hand, which Shiozaki took, and to the wild screaming of the crowd, AXIZ reformed and the two would not let go of each other.

Kenoh was outraged and demanded to know what was going on. Manabu Soya later left the ring shaking his head. Backstage, Nakajima confirmed that yes, AXIZ were back and the reason why he had left was because (and this sounds familiar) Kenoh didn’t need him, Kongoh didn’t need him, and he didn’t need them. Kenoh growled that he would destroy anyone who got in his way and that included All Japan, All Japan’s Suwama, Dragon Gate (probably the whole roster) and Katsuhiko Nakajima. Kenoh remarked that usually Kongoh didn’t punish people who left (he probably doesn’t mean the chaotic juniors), but it seems that he himself will have another singles match with Nakajima on the 31st May at Shinjuku FACE. Kenoh has also branded AXIZ as a “thief and traitor duo” and has warned elderly AXIZ fans not to make any bank transfers. He has also claimed that while he was injured, Go Shiozaki is a “salary thief” for doing nothing for NOAH during that time, and not even updating his Twitter.

Related articles

Kongoh’s leader, Kenoh, denounces Go Shiozaki and Katsuhiko Nakajima’s AXIZ reunion as a “thief and traitor duo”

NOAH promise more women’s matches

Following the four woman tag at MAJESTIC, Ryo Mizunami hinted afterwards that NOAH will be holding more and she (and others) want to be a part of this. Nothing more has been said about the possibility of a women’s GHC Championship though.

N-1 VICTORY 2023 Announced

NOAH have announced that the N-1 VICTORY 2023 will make a return in August 2023, and as is tradition, will have the final night held in Osaka in early September. No names have been announced as of yet, but the league will head up for a couple of dates in Sapporo, Hokkaido (NOAH have not been to Hokkaido since before the pandemic when they would traditionally share a ring with Big Japan and then get drunk together over a lost weekend). No names have been announced as of yet.

Masakatsu Funaki challenges Josh Barnett 

Following his victory over Shinya Aoki at MAJESTIC, Masakatsu Funaki challenged Josh Barnett, who was sitting at ringside to a match. Barnett accepted, but NOAH are yet to state the date when the match will take place. Funaki also seems to be hinting that his career is now winding down, and he wants to tie up any loose ends; such as the Aoki match and the challenge to Barnett, who he has never faced before, but seems to have always wanted to. Mutoh told Funaki to keep going until he is sixty, but Funaki, who makes no pretense about the fact that he is approaching his mid fifties, seems to think that this is unlikely.

Eita alone, Daga joins “the new STINGER”. HAYATA not welcome either. 

During the STINGER vs I guess the last of Perros Del Mal De Japon, Eita and Daga, Eita caught Daga with the Imperial Uno, which meant that Yoshinari Ogawa could capitalize, and he went to pin Eita. However, Ogawa broke the pin and got to his feet slowly, dragging Eita up by his hair. He looked across the ring to Daga, and Daga turned on Eita. Eita, now utterly alone, was beaten up after the match, and no one at all came out to help him as there is now no one left. Backstage, Eita on all fours, said that from now on he would be trusting no one and didn’t believe in friends (NOSAWA posted “…..” to this) and demanded a singles match with both Ogawa and Daga. As for STINGER, Chris Ridgeway said that from now on he, Daga and Ogawa were the new STINGER. Daga gave no reason for his turning on his old friend, STINGER rarely give reasons anyway, and Ogawa said that HAYATA and Eita were no longer considered “friends”. Eita will get his singles matches on the 14th May at Korakuen Hall, and with Daga on the 21st in Kobe. Fans are wondering if Eita and HAYATA will team up, but HAYATA seems to be more preoccupied with the GHC Junior at the moment.

Ring intruder at Korakuen Hall

At NOAH’s Korakuen Hall event on the 29th April, a young woman intruded into the ring at the start of Kaito Kiyomiya, Sean Legacy & AMAKUSA vs Kongoh, and started imploring Kiyomiya to “show us a stronger NOAH” because he was “the savior of NOAH”. She was gently expelled from the ring by Referee Nishinaga, Kiyomiya and the young rookie, Taishi Ozawa. No further information has come from NOAH or any news outlets as to who this young woman was or what the consequence of her intrusion was, and it is rare in Japanese wrestling that a fan should intrude into the ring, but NOAH took the precaution to check bags at their fan event and MAJESTIC, and extra wrestlers were seen at ringside, which fans said felt like security. The very real threat was that she could have had a knife. New Japan’s Toru Yano has also spoken out about fan behavior. He didn’t mention fan invasion specifically, but more wrestlers being harassed by fans when at baggage claim at airports, at convenience stores etc. Kenoh kind of saved the situation by telling Kiyomiya that if he was stronger, then strange people wouldn’t do things like this!

Shinjiro Otani

At an event held on the 6th May to help with his hospital bills, Shinjiro Otani made an appearance. Takashi Sugiura bought him some flowers and Otani thanked him for not giving up wrestling due to the injury that Otani sustained during the title match. He also warned Sugiura, that he would see him in the ring again. Sugiura said he was waiting for that day.

Voodoo Murders vs Kongoh

SUWAMA broke into NOAH’s event at Korakuen Hall on the 29th April and gave Kenoh, a massive Last Ride powerbomb. Shrieking that he was going to take the All Japan World Heavyweight Tag back to where it belonged, i.e. All Japan, he was prepared to come and have a match in NOAH (with Kono his partner) to retrieve them. There then followed a comical scene involving the infamous lifts, where a quaking old man appeared and was told by Suwama to hold the doors. The match has been set for NOAH’s Kobe event on the 21st May. The event will not be broadcast live, but I would imagine this match will be through NOAH’s official Instagram. Suwama got further revenge on Kenoh at All Japan’s show on the 7th when Kongoh and Voodoo Murders had a pre match. Kenoh was given another powerbomb, shoved into a body bag and Voodoo Murders posed with their boots on him, before carrying him backstage on their shoulders. Half in and half out of the bag and dumped on the floor, Suwama told him that now he was in hell, those titles were theirs.

TITLE NEWS

GHC Heavyweight

In a match that saw Naomichi Marufuji pull out old moves (Shiranui and Shiranui Pole Shift, plus a rope bounce that he hasn’t used for a while) and moves that he has worked on, Jake Lee retained the GHC Heavyweight at MAJESTIC. However, no challenger came forward, and fans were expecting to see Go Shiozaki come out. Jake thanked Marufuji and ran down what he had felt in his past title defenses; Kiyomiya was the future, Nakajima the strength and Marufuji the history. Jake wondered what was next and predicted that on the 14th May at Korakuen Hall, things would start to happen. Jake’s match then is himself teaming with Good Looking Guys (including YO-HEY and Tadasuke) against two NOAH Juniors (Seiki Yoshioka and Atsushi Kotoge) against Kaito Kiyomiya and Takashi Sugiura. Fans think that it will be Sugiura who challenges.

Related articles

“Half the guys don’t think about it”, the real intention of outside invader Jake Lee’s cut down of the Ark warriors

“I can’t win in a direct match anymore”…Naomichi Marufuji aims to surpass his teacher, Mitsuharu Misawa, in recapturing the GHC

“It’s like a dream” – Jake, “Full speed for the first time in a while”, Marufuji

“Naomichi Marufuji must do his best here and now”, Mutoh speaks! 4th May Ryogoku Kokugikan, the direction of Jake vs Marufuji

GHC Junior Heavyweight

HAYATA was forced into doing some light comedy, when at the title match signing/press conference, Ninja Mack told him that he didn’t want him to be injured in their title match, and handed him a gift of bandages and athletic tape. HAYATA tried to keep a straight face. However, Ninja Mack found nothing to laugh about when HAYATA beat him and went to hand him his presents back. Apparently, HAYATA kept the bandages, as he only tried to give back the athletic tape. Ninja Mack knocked them to the floor and walked off. The GHC Junior Heavyweight is the only one with a challenger out of all the championships at the time of writing, as HAYATA has nominated Dante Leon as opponent. Dante Leon took the belt from Ninja Mack, but HAYATA feels he has to defeat everyone who held it while he was injured. Dante says he is coming back to take his belt back. Pre matches will take place, with the title match on the 17th June in Nagoya.

Related articles

GHC Junior signing ceremony: Ninja provokes the champion with first aid supplies, HAYATA “excellent”

GHC National

El Hijo Del Dr Wagner Jnr continues to cement himself as one of the greatest GHC National Champions, by defeating Hideki Suzuki at MAJESTIC to retain in an epic match. Suzuki was even booed as he knocked Wagner Jnr down with a punch early on after Wagner Jnr had yelled “Arriba Mexico!”. Suzuki didn’t look as if he was too bothered, and fought most of the match with a cool hard expression. El Hijo Del Dr Wagner Jnr isn’t on any cards for the rest of May 2023, so it looks as if the title will probably be challenged for some time in June.

Related articles

“Real” Suzuki emphasizes “Real Deal” to take over the GHC National, match signing ceremony

GHC Heavyweight Tag

Monster Taniguchi, which his seniors try so hard to awaken, sat dormant at the match signing as Saxon Huxley overturned the table, (which Takashi Sugiura, no stranger to trashing tables during press conferences, helped put back), but then turned his own over with a roar and made off with the tag belts. Sugi very politely helped the staff put the tables back. The team of Sugiura and Taniguchi gave very close to retaining, but they lost the belts when Saxon Huxley pinned Taniguchi with the Hanging Neck Bombs. The new champions celebrated by yelling loudly into the camera, and Huxley repeatedly head-butting his belt. Two new tags arose that night at MAJESTIC; AXIZ, and a new team of Masato Tanaka and Kazuyuki Fujita.

Related articles

Huxley and Taniguchi go berserk overturning tables, Sugiura apologizes

GHC Junior Tag

YO-HEY and Tadasuke (Good Looking Guys Unit) defended the GHC Junior Tag against Alpha Wolf and DragonBane at Korakuen Hall on the 29th April. The lucha brothers came very close to taking the titles, but YO-HEY saved the team by pinning DragonBane. No challengers have come forward, but it does seem likely that they will be challenged by the people that YO-HEY dumped to join GLG; Atsushi Kotoge and Seiki Yoshioka at Korakuen Hall on the 14th May, which is NOAH’s next event. However, Kotoge and Yoshioka may not be the most stable team, as Yoshioka did catch him with a kick accidentally.

EVENT RECAPS & POST MATCH PROMOS

  • STAR NAVIGATION 2023 

(Saturday April 29th, Korakuen Hall, Tokyo) 

Event recap

Post match interviews

  • ABEMA PRESENTS MAJESTIC 2023

(Thursday 4th May, Ryogoku Kokugikan)

Event recap

Post match interviews

NOAH Fan Event Recap

ELSEWHERE IN NOAH

– Atsushi Kotoge posted a picture of himself when he came to NOAH eleven years ago. He says he is “slightly embarrassed” about seeing himself back then.

– Mohammed Yone and Super Crazy almost left via the wrong gate at MAJESTIC. The trainee standing there tried to tell them, but they seemed insistent, eventually he had to almost stand in their way before they realized.

– Xtreme Tiger returned to the NOAH ring following his concussion

– Most people down the old man VIPER tonic, Masato Tanaka opened it, poured it down his throat and chugged it.

– Keiji Mutoh told Kazushi Sakuraba that he should fight a bear on PPV. Sakuraba said no, he would be killed, and suggested that Mutoh do it. Mutoh said he was an old man who was enjoying retirement by sitting at home and watching historical dramas on NHK.

– Ray Escorpion made his NOAH debut, which involved heel tactics and stalking Dralistico.

– Jake Lee regretted his choice of costume, i.e. his gloves and cape, at the NOAH Fan Event. He said he felt like he needed an icepack under his armpits.

– Eita hid under the ring to jump Yoshinari Ogawa at Korakuen Hall on April 29th. When he crawled out he stretched and yawned, meaning that he fell asleep under there!

– Alejandro was sitting at the commentary table when it got trashed by the Luchadores at MAJESTIC.

CURRENT CHAMPIONS

  • GHC Heavyweight Champion: Jake Lee
    Challenger: TBA
  • GHC Junior Champion: HAYATA
    Challenger: Dante Leon, GREEN JOURNEY 2023 in NAGOYA (Nagoya International Conference Center Event Hall – Saturday, June 17th)
  • GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: REAL (Saxon Huxley & Timothy Thatcher)
    Challengers: TBA
  • GHC Junior Tag Champions: Good Looking Guys (YO-HEY & Tadasuke)
    Challengers: TBA
  • GHC National Champion: El Hijo Del Dr Wagner Jnr
    Challenger: TBA

THIS WEEK IN NOAH

(May 2023 schedule)

– STAR NAVIGATION 2023

Date: Sunday May 14th

Venue: Korakuen Hall, Tokyo

Start times: Doors 17:30 JST, Bell 18:30 JST

Broadcast: ABEMA

Birthdays & anniversaries

May 8th 1961: Akira Taue birthday (62)

May 13th 2000: Jumbo Tsuruta memorial (23)

*NOTE ABOUT ABEMA BROADCASTS

For the overseas fan a subscription to WrestleUniverse is recommended instead of a subscription to ABEMA. You can only watch ABEMA shows live (you cannot watch replays should you miss the show), but these always get uploaded to WrestleUniverse a few minutes after the broadcast finishes. I do not recommend that overseas fans subscribe to ABEMA due to the time consuming and expensive issues around finding a VPN that is compatible with their firewall, and ABEMA do not broadcast any other NOAH shows aside from the live broadcasts, they do not show much exclusive content and they do not show vintage or older events.

LINKS

“No matter how many times you fall down, you get back up, that’s pro wrestling” – Kaito Kiyomiya vs Reiwa’s “Pu-Girl”

“I want to fight” Aoki’s first NOAH participation, Funaki “challenge”. Press conference for the first showdown in six years

“Isn’t that a stupid question?” Shiozaki, returning for the first time in eight months, emphasizes “perfection” like AMAKUSA

26 year old wrestler Kaito Kiyomiya talks about the importance of the dojo and generational view

NOAH FROM THE VAULT

Donmai, Donmai” – Mitsuharu Misawa’s diary….he’s being obscene!

With thanks to: Metal NOAH

Picture credits: NOAH.co.jp


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(NOAH) NOAH NEWSLETTER VOL.199 ~ 25TH APRIL 2023

Lots of Championship news! Does Jake Lee have what it takes to captain the ark?

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NEWS

“I made you all wait”, Go Shiozaki announces his return

Go Shiozaki made a surprise appearance at NOAH’s Sendai event on the 16th April, and announced that he would return to the ring at “MAJESTIC” at Ryogoku Kokugikan on Thursday May 4th. In an interview done soon afterwards, Shiozaki said that of course his goal was to “get my belt back as soon as possible” and naturally, his target is the current champion, Jake Lee. He is very excited about NOAH now with the influx of foreign wrestlers, and of course, Jake Lee whom he knew from being in All Japan. Shiozaki’s return match will be against Kongoh’s Kenoh, Katsuhiko Nakajima and Manabu Soya. Shiozaki says he will not only be fighting against his opponents, but also the younger generation of NOAH, who he says are “a threat”. NOAH’s generational wheel continues turning.

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The theme of return is “New Go Shiozaki”, “Fight with five people”, thrilled by the new NOAH scenery

“I have to get my belt back”, Go Shiozaki vows to return early to the title front

Junta Miyawaki returns from Mexico

Junta Miyawaki announced (bilingually as he also announced this in Mexican), that he would be returning from Ultimo Dragon’s training camp, and would make his first match back at Korakuen Hall at STAR NAVIGATION on the 29th April. His opponent will be HI69, who has been on a roll recently. Before he left, Junta Miyawaki said that he would “sip muddy water”, (which basically means to hit rock bottom and crawl you way back up), before he returned to NOAH. HI69 was unimpressed with this statement, saying that Junta had no idea what he was talking about, but he would soon make him realize it.

Women’s matches

NOAH continue to book women’s matches on their bigger shows. Sendai saw Maya Yukihi and Sumire Natsu fight in a singles match, and afterwards mention was made (even fleetingly) of a woman’s GHC championship. The next women’s match will be a four way at “MAJESTIC” on the 4th May between

Maya Yukihisa & SAKI vs Sumire Natsu & Ryo Mizunami.

Xtreme Tiger concussed & Luchadore’s trash the commentary table

Very sadly Xtreme Tiger sustained (probably) a concussion during the match in Sendai and was stretchered from the ring. Fortunately, he could still move as he was seen to be sitting up and sliding himself on to the stretcher. The remaining Luchadores (Doralistico, Dragon Bane, Alpha Wolf, Alejandro & Lanzelot) decided to continue the match, and as they are NOAH Juniors, didn’t bother to tell the ref. They just carried on and during this, Dragon Bane trashed the commentary table by moonsaulting through it. Then everyone else joined in, fighting in the wreckage. Akitoshi Saito (who had been sitting at the table) was seen looking on blankly. Later he made the comment that the table was not made of a material that was meant to be broken.

Yasutaka Yano and Kinya Okada taken off the Sendai card at the last moment

Yasutaka Yano and Kinya Okada were announced to have been taken off the Sendai card at the last moment, meaning that Anthony Green and Akitoshi Saito (who wrestled by taking his shirt off and in his normal clothes) had to fill in for them. NOAH have not announced the issue (illness, injury, etc) but fans think that they may have gone to Mexico for training, albeit why this should be so sudden is a mystery.

Title news 

GHC Heavyweight

Jake Lee retains, Naomichi Marufuji challenges

Jake Lee retained the GHC Heavyweight against Katsuhiko Nakajima, and was challenged that same night by Naomichi Marufuji. The nautical references continued, as Marufuji said that Jake’s steering was making him “seasick” and used a term that he says he came up with before he made his challenge, by saying that “Even if it is rotten, it is Marufuji” (the full saying is “Even if it is rotten, it is still a sea bream”, which basically is like saying “white cat, black cat, as long as it catches mice, then it is a good cat” i.e. quality is quality). Title match has been made for “MAJESTIC” on the 4th May.

The two pre matches have taken place at shows not broadcasted live, Hamamatsu (which was put on WrestleUniverse on the 25th April) and Kyoto KBS Hall (which will be streamed on WrestleUniverse on the 26th April from 18:00 JST). Neither the champion or the challenger scored the direct win over the other, but Jake was seen to hold the belt over Naomichi Marufuji as he, Jake, stood on the turnbuckle and held it even higher.

Related articles

The new champion gives NOAH a warning! Is it okay to stay as NOAH = Marufuji?

“After all, I’m the man who’s been with NOAH for a long time” – Naomichi Marufuji, on the 25th anniversary of his debut who named himself as the one to overthrow Jake, talks about his thoughts!

GHC Heavyweight Tag

Masa Kitamiya and Daiki Inaba lost the GHC Heavyweight Tag Championship to Takashi Sugiura and Shuhei Taniguchi in Sendai. Shuhei Taniguchi, much to his seniors delight, got the win but there was no chance to celebrate for very long as a new fearsome tag team, who were part of a new unit (and therefore a new power in the heavyweights) appeared on the scene to challenge. Hideki Suzuki announced that himself, Timothy Thatcher and Saxon Huxley, were breaking away from The Sugiura Army, which he said was “over” (fans have long felt that the unit simply fizzled out) and the three of them were breaking away on their own.

Suzuki challenged for the GHC Heavyweight Tag belts on behalf of his partners, whom both came across as having chemistry akin to an old school American tag team (Saxon I know is from England, but you know the vibe I am talking about). Backstage, Hideki Suzuki said their new unit was called “Real”. In their first pre match in Hamamatsu, Suzuki refused to shake hands with Takashi Sugiura and Sugiura was defeated by Saxon Huxley. The next night in Kyoto, Sugiura defeated Huxley, which was Huxley’s first NOAH loss, with the Olympic Slam and labelled himself as “Beastmaster”. There was also some slight friction appearing between Takashi Sugiura and Shuhei Taniguchi, as Taniguchi did the same “I heard you lost today?” kind of comment back to Sugiura, and once again refused to shake hands with him when Sugiura offered and just walked off when Sugi asked, “Did you win?”.

GHC National

In an epic match, El Hijo Del Dr Wagner Jnr defended the GHC National against Jack Morris, and the two of them shook hands afterwards and patched up their friendship. Backstage, Hideki Suzuki appeared in the comments booth when Wagner Jnr was in it, clapping sarcastically and saying that he was coming for his belt. Suzuki also made a very poetic comment about the challenge.

“Because Wagner Jnr is the sun of Mexico, I will take him deep into the ocean. We will sink together, and only I will rise”

Their two pre matches so far have been inconclusive as they head towards the title match at “MAJESTIC” on the 4th May at Ryogoku Kokugikan.

GHC Junior

AMAKUSA did not do well in the pre matches against HAYATA, and HAYATA ran him into the ground in the title match in Sendai, winning in thirteen minutes and four seconds. In order to forestall anyone who thought they were going to challenge, he was picking up where he left off, and his next challenger would be Ninja Mack. Ninja Mack had challenged HAYATA in late 2022 for the belt, but he had won it when HAYATA was injured, and the belt was awarded to him. To HAYATA, he needed to defeat Ninja Mack first before dealing with anyone else. The two pre matches have not gone well for HAYATA, although Ninja Mack hasn’t got the win over him directly, he has still gotten the win for his team at one point, even if one of the matches was won by someone else, which for him counts as a victory over HAYATA.

GHC Junior Tag

Fans knew that Yoshinari Ogawa and Eita were going to fall apart. YO-HEY knew this too, but knew enough about his opponents, to be wary. In the end, a misfire by Eita, who caught Ogawa in the face with a kick, letting Tadasuke get the win, made the team implode. Ogawa might have come to the ring ignoring Eita’s very existence, but by the end of the match the two were brawling and the fight went backstage. After kicking Ogawa in the crotch, Eita announced that the only person he trusted was Daga. Daga will return to NOAH at “MAJESTIC”, with the one person who hasn’t turned on Ogawa (although he was wary of his aligning with Eita), Chris Ridgeway, who is returning to NOAH at Korakuen Hall on Saturday 29th April.

The new GHC Junior Champions, Good Looking Guy’s YO-HEY and Tadasuke, were challenged backstage by Dragon Bane and Alpha Wolf, who told them they were going to be taking the belts back to Mexico. The brothers have run riot on the junior tag champions, defeating them in the pre matches, Alpha Wolf in a singles against Tadasuke. Title match will take place this Saturday at Korakuen Hall.

EVENT RECAPS & POST MATCH PROMOS

  • ABEMA presents GREEN JOURNEY 2023 in Sendai (Sunday April 16th)

Event recap

Post match interviews

  • Act City Hamamatsu (Saturday, April 22nd)

Event recap

Post match interviews

  • Kyoto KBS Hall (Sunday, April 23rd)

Event recap

Post match interviews

ELSEWHERE IN NOAH

– Because they were both champions facing their challengers, YO-HEY offered HAYATA a handshake in Kyoto. HAYATA reacted in usual fashion (he refused) but the two were seen to work together…

– Kongoh appeared in a short Kenoh Channel video, where each of them ate one of Shuji Kondo’s financiers and talked about the merch table. Katsuhiko Nakajima very neatly put back a packet of Naomichi Marufuji’s curry, which Kenoh had thrown.

– Although he is no longer appearing in the ring, NOSAWA Rongai was seen watching at the Hamamatsu show. He’s not a member of the audience however, as he seems to be travelling with them – Kenoh said that he was glad Go Shiozaki had returned as he could not “wait to beat the shit” out of him.

– Atsushi Kotoge has revealed his beloved Shiba is called “Chikuwa”. When he left for NOAH’s weekend shows, he told him he was leaving him as watchdog to guard the family.

– Mercedes Monet said she wanted a match with “Marufugi”. “Marufugi” said he wanted one with her too.

– YO-HEY and Yoshiki Inamura will appear on “All-Star Chorus Battle” on May 14th for Fuji TV. The premise of the show is that they will team with five other people, sing the hit songs of the Reiwa era and compete as a chorus for a championship.

– A picture taken by NOAH’s official photographer in Kyoto was captured at precisely the moment that Seiki Yoshioka was diving off the top turnbuckle. The angle of his body made him look as if he was leaping out of the stained glass behind him. Ironically, he seemed to be leaping from the roof of the Ark. Also photographed against The Ark was Yoshiki Inamura, who put a Dove above his head.

CURRENT CHAMPIONS

  • GHC Heavyweight Champion: Jake Lee
    Challenger: Naomichi Marufuji, ABEMA presents MAJESTIC 2023, Ryogoku Kokugikan, Thursday May 4th
  • GHC Junior Champion: HAYATA
    Challenger: Ninja Mack, ABEMA presents MAJESTIC 2023, Ryogoku Kokugikan, Thursday May 4th
  • GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: Takashi Sugiura & Shuhei Taniguchi
    Challengers: REAL (Saxon Huxley & Timothy Thatcher), ABEMA presents MAJESTIC 2023, Ryogoku Kokugikan, Thursday May 4th
  • GHC Junior Tag Champions: Good Looking Guys (YO-HEY & Tadasuke)
    Challengers: Dragon Bane & Alpha Wolf, STAR NAVIGATION 2023, Korakuen Hall, Saturday April 29th
  • GHC National Champion: El Hijo Del Dr Wagner Jnr
    Challenger: Hideki Suzuki, ABEMA presents MAJESTIC 2023, Ryogoku Kokugikan, Thursday May 4th

THIS WEEK IN NOAH

  • STAR NAVIGATION 2023

Date: Saturday April 29th

Venue: Korakuen Hall

Start time: 18:30 JST (doors open 17:30)

Broadcast: ABEMA (Live)

BIRTHDAYS & ANNIVERSARIES 

29th April: Atsushi Kotoge debut anniversary (2005)

29th April: Tadasuke debut anniversary (2007)

*NOTE ABOUT ABEMA BROADCASTS

For the overseas fan a subscription to WrestleUniverse is recommended instead of a subscription to ABEMA. You can only watch ABEMA shows live (you cannot watch replays should you miss the show), but these always get uploaded to WrestleUniverse a few minutes after the broadcast finishes. I do not recommend that overseas fans subscribe to ABEMA due to the time consuming and expensive issues around finding a VPN that is compatible with their firewall, and ABEMA do not broadcast any other NOAH shows aside from the live broadcasts, they do not show much exclusive content and they do not show vintage or older events.

NOAH FROM THE VAULT

“Donmai, Donmai” – Mitsuharu Misawa’s diary

With thanks to: Metal-NOAH

Picture credits: NOAH.co.jpPro Wrestling DX


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