New Japan Pro Wrestling
G1 CLIMAX 29
Day 7 – Block A
Korakuen Hall, Tokyo
Kevin Kelly and Rocky Romero with Chris Charlton on commentary which is PERFECTION.
BAD LUCK FALE (2) w/ Jado & Chase Owens
ZACK SABRE, JR. (0)
ZSJ goes right at Fale and hooks in a guillotine at the bell, looking to choke the big man out early. Fale uses his power to hoist ZSJ who transitions into a rear choke but Fale throws him off. ZSJ now tries to get a kneebar but Fale stays standing, ZSJ stretches the knee anyway and Fale gets the ropes to break. The arm of Fale now targeted but ZSJ gets crushed in the corner by Fale who looks for an elbow drop, but ZSJ catches it into an armbar. Fale powers ZSJ up and then runs through him with a lariat. Bad Luck Fall is countered into a Flying Octopus hold with wrist manipulation. Fale backs up to the ropes and Jado gets a kendo stick shot in, Fale distracts the ref and Chase Owens boots ZSJ at ringside. ZSJ is whipped to the barricade by Fale, who fights ZSJ into the crowd. They climb deep up the steps into the crowd and Fale looks for a Bad Luck Fall down the stairs, ZSJ escapes, Chase holds ZSJ but ZSJ reverses and Fale takes down Chase. Fale looks for Grenade but ZSJ counters into a flying armbar as the ref starts to count. Fale goes down as ZSJ transitions to a triangle, ZSJ releases at 13 and runs down back to the ring, Fale is stuck deep in the audience! Fale races down as fast as he can but cant make it in time and gets Counter Out! HUGE pop for that finish!
Zack Sabre Jr (2) defeats Bad Luck Fale (2) by Count-Out
JAY’S RATING: 2.25 out of 5
This was an ok match that got elevated by that finish and crowd reaction. ZSJ is finally on the board which is good, and I hope he can continue a bit more momentum this G1. Fale brought little to nothing to this until the end, where they all made great use of a countout finish (it has to be used right, and this is a great example).
LANCE ARCHER (4)
HIROSHI TANAHASHI (2)
Tana fires shots to the knee before the bell, catching Archer off guard! Archer bails and Tana gets a pescado to wipe him out, and then sends him into the railing, but Archer comes back with a chokeslam on the apron. Tana stops Archer from getting back in the ring, so Archer kicks him away and then wipes him out with a cannonball off the apron. Chants for Archer. What a G1 for this dude. The ref begins to count and Archer slams Tana’s back into the rail and the apron, then sends him back inside. Archer grounds Tana and keeps things slowed down. SPLIT CROWD for Tana and Archer as Archer chops Tana down. WHAT A CROWD RESPONSE FOR ARCHER. Tana fires back with shots, Archer puts him down. Tana keeps coming but Archer catches him in a Black Hole Slam, cover but only 2 and Archer chases the ref out of the ring saying it was 3. Split chants again as Archer drops Tana with a short arm lariat. Cocky cover but only 2 for Archer who grounds Tana again, and the crowd chants are split and LOUD again. Archer talks shit and says this isnt his house anymore and that he’s the new ace. He then says “I’m from Texas” and tries to lock in a Texas Cloverleaf, Tana fights out of it and looks for a German, Archer fights out and gets running elbows in the corner before Tana counters with a Sling Blade and both are down.
The crowd is behind both of these guys. Inverted grounded dragon screw by Tana leads to a Cloverleaf, but Archer’s legs are huge and long, and Archer resists strongly so Tana gets another grounded dragon screw. Big chants for both again. Sling Blade is caught but the chokeslam is cut off, Tana hits the ropes but Archer runs through him with the Derailer. Blackout is countered as Tana teases a rope walk but Archer throws Tana off. Archer now decides to show how its done, and yells at the audience to shut up as Archer walks the ropes with ease. Tana catches the shot off the ropes into Twist and Shout and hits Sling Blade! Cover, but only 2. Standing High Fly Flow is caught and countered into a chokeslam, cover by Archer but only 2! Interesting twisting splash out of the corner, cover but still only 2. Chants for both grow loud again! Archer calls for the EBD Claw, Tana blocks the hand, the go back and forth but Archer is able to close the gap and lock it in as Tana gets in the ropes for the break. Tana collapses, the crowd is on fire, Archer looks for Blackout but Tana gets a headscissors to counter and rolls that forward into a victory roll and gets the flash 3 count and the WIN!
Hiroshi Tanahashi (4) defeats Lance Archer (4) by pinfall via victory roll
JAY’S RATING: 3.75 out of 5
This was a highly entertaining match, with Tana bringing his aggressive game to go toe to toe with Archer and the resulting chemistry worked quite well! Archer continues to win over the crowd with outstanding, focused, explosive performances such as this one. Fale needs to step aside and let Archer take the NJPW big-man reins.
EVIL with a headlock to start, grinding KENTA down then running through him with a tackle. KENTA fires back with boots but EVIL pops right up and they go head to head, with the ropes getting a tense break as KENTA wipes EVIL’s makeup off from under his eyes. EVIL comes in but KENTA catches him with a snapmare and kick to the back, and gets the mocking back kick. Chest kicks by KENTA, but EVIL catches one and gets the ref-assisted gut-kick, then dumps KENTA and sends him into the railing. EVIL uses a chair on KENTA, wrapping one around the neck of KENTA and using a second one to baseball bat the one around the neck. The action now spills into the halls backstage as cameras follow, the come out the other side back into the arena but EVIL now brings KENTA up the stairs into the crowd. The audience is cleared and EVIL clears chairs away to expose the floor and piles the chairs up, EVIL looks for a suplex on the chairs, KENTA blocks and tries his own which EVIL blocks, another reversal, and another and KENTA finally gets EVIL over onto the chairs with the suplex. KENTA stands tall but gets mostly boos from the crowd, who stil have not accepted KENTA into NJPW. Back inside and KENTA drops EVIL with a flying clothesline, cover but only 2. Mid-kicks by KENTA in the corner drop EVIL and KENTA gets face washes, EVIL follows with a corner clothesline, KENTA replies with a corner boot, another corner clothesline by EVIL and he fakes out KENTA into running into a hard lariat. Fisherman suplex by EVIL, cover but only 2.
KENTA looks for a shot, EVIL blocks and lands a strike to KENTA but runs into a powerslam, and KENTA follows with a spring dropkick. Corner flying boot from KENTA connects followed by the hesistation dropkick, KENTA climbs and lands the double stomp and covers but only gets 2. GTS is countered by EVIL who looks for Everything is Evil, KENTA escapes and looks for GTS again but EVIL reverses and hits a release German suplex. They go head to head and trade shots, nice trade sequences as EVIL lands a headbutt to drop KENTA. Chants for EVIL who hits Darkness Falls, cover but only 2. Everything is Evil is countered into a backslide for 2, small package by KENTA gets another 2 and EVIL lands a lariat and covers but only gets 2. EVIL unwraps the arm and lines up a lariat, KENTA ducks and hits a GREAT busaiku knee and covers but only gets 2! Chants for EVIL. Another busaiku knee lands hard, cover but still only 2. A couple chants for KENTA but they get shouted down. PK by KENTA is blocked, EVIL looks for a headbutt but KENTA meets him with a knee and hits the PK. Go To Sleep follows, cover and thats 3!
KENTA (8) defeats EVIL (4) by pinfall via Go To Sleep
JAY’S RATING: 3.75 out of 5
This was a very good outing between two dudes with styles that meshed well. KENTA continues to shake off WWE and find his own voice again, with the main struggle now being winning over the crowd that is making him work for it. But performances like this help, EVIL was a great foil for him, and his going undefeated in 4 matches is a great foundation for his return. Very good work all around.
KOTA IBUSHI (2)
The winner of this match will say a lot as the G1 moves forward, given each standing at 1-2. They take it to the mat and wrestle to begin. Cravate by Ibushi, nice flip out escape by SANADA, they run the ropes and looks for quick falls getting not even 1 counts, they evade each other’s kick attempts and stand off as the crowd pops. NICE sequence. Chants for both. SANADA compares chants, and they both head to different corners to try to fire up and guage the crowd response. Fun. Referee Red Shoes tells them to lock up and they do. Ibushi looks for a Paradise Lock early, SANADA escapes and dumps Ibushi, teases a dive with style just to show he can but Ibushi takes him down with a spring dropkick back in the ring. Chants for Ibushi. Ibushi’s ankle is a little shakey so he grounds SANADA who gets the ropes to break. Boot by Ibushi who starts yelling at SANADA who fires off shots, Ibushi asks for more and then drops SANADA with a mid-kick. SANADA gets the knees up to block the standing moonsault, Ibushi back up, they run the ropes and SANADA gets the dropkick, Ibushi bails but SANADA hits the pescado. SANADA works the crowd and gets cheers. Back inside and SANADA looks for a backdrop, Ibushi blocks and evades a SANADA spring, landing a powerslam and middle rope spring moonsault. Cover by Ibushi but only 2. Flurry by Ibushi, SANADA tries a counter and they trade rollups for 2. Dropkick to the knee by SANADA but Ibushi counters the next attempt with a double stomp to the chest. Nice spot.
Shots traded, Ibushi gets rocked but lands a thudding mid-kick, Euro by SANADA, another kick, another Euro, they keep trading thudding blows and Ibushi finally takes down SANADA with the short lariat. Sitout powerbomb by Ibushi gets 2, and Ibushi looks for Kamigoye. SANADA blocks, Ibushi fights for position but SANADA rolls through with the wrists and lines Ibushi up and hits his own KAMIGOYE! Cover but only 2. The moonsault misses from SANADA and Ibushi follows by running through SANADA with BOMA YEEEEEE, and both are down! Chants for both. SANADA blocks the Lawn Dart and looks for Skull End, Ibushi reverses into his own and tries to drop down but SANADA counters and looks for a Lawn Dart, Ibushi reverses and hits his own Lawn Dart and both are down again. Dragon suplex by Ibushi is blocked and SANADA lands on his feet out of a German, pele by Ibushi, spinning back kick by SANADA who looks for Skull End, spinning Ibushi around and dropping. Ibushi rolls out of it and looks for Kamigoye, SANADA looks for Skull End again but eats a head kick from Ibushi and collapses. Ibushi channels Nakamura and hits BOMA YEEEEEEE! Cover but only 2! The knee is fully uncovered, Kamigoye connects and Ibushi covers and gets the 3!
Kota Ibushi (4) defeats SANADA (2) by pinfall via Kamigoye
JAY’S RATING: 3.8 out of 5
That was a really good match especially considering Ibushi’s ankle injury, aided by a fully invested crowd that was deeply split between both of these future company-faces. Kevin Kelly talks about how this wont be the last time we see these 2 in a big money match here, and I couldnt agree more. This is the immediate future right here. And given each of their journeys, I think the right man won as Ibushi is just a touch more ready for the nod, and demonstrated it here again by keeping the action riveting given a huge necessitated change in style. Really well done.
WILL OSPREAY (2)
KAZUCHIKA OKADA (6)
Will is 0-3 against Okada in past encounters, but has always held his own impressively. This is their first outing since Will has begun transitioning to heavyweight competition. We get the bell, and the crowd goes loud for Will! Interesting… they wrestle to the mat to begin, nice counter work, they feel each other out and stand off. Loud chants for Will again. Great double wrist roll through counter by Okada to take control, and he runs through Will with a tackle. Will with a nice monkey flip drops Okada hard who bails and Will does the dive fakeout, chants for Will, then Will holds the ropes for Okada to get back in. Okada slides in and Will is on top of him with strikes, but Okada dropkicks Will off the top and down to the floor. The ref (Red Shoes) begins the count, but Okada stops it and opens the ropes for Will now. Will back in and Okada keeps the pressure on, targeting Will’s neck. Senton atomico by Okada connects and he goes back to the neck. LOUD chops by Will but Okada no-sells them and drops Will with a forearm. Corner elbow and DDT is countered by Will into a suplex. Chants for Will. Strikes by Will who ducks the running elbow, Okada evades the handspring kick, Will ducks a clothesline and hits the kick on the next try. Chants for Will again.
Pip Pip Cheerio drops Okada, cover but only 2. Stormbreaker is blocked by Okada, so Will hits a HUUUUGE chop and Okada just COLLAPSES. More chants for Will. Damn. Top rope 619 is caught and Okada puts Will down with the Air Raid Neckbreaker, and Will sells taped the neck and shoulder. Both are down and Will is getting chants. Okada kips up and John Woo’s Will into the corner, follows with the big elbow drop off the top which means… RAINMAKER POSE! Will escapes the Rainmaker but eats a boot, backflip kick is countered but Will hits a nice head kick and evades the dropkick but the standing shooting star eats Okada knees and Okada takes Will’s HEAD OFF with a dropkick. Tombstone piledriver follows, and Okada calls for Rainmaker again, but Will gets a rollup for 2 and lands the Robinson Special. The crowd is alive. OsCutter is countered by Okada dropkicking Will over the top to the floor. Okada gets Will on the apron and looks to hoist, Will fights out, shots traded, they start firing off and Will drops Okada with a series! Euro by Okada who hoists Will but Will escapes and gets a head kick, climbs but Okada cuts him off. Will escapes and lands a hook kick, then uses the barricade to hit an OsCutter on the floor! MORE chants for Will!
Both are down as the ref counts. Will is back in first, Okada gets back in BARELY in time but Will meets him coming in with Coast to Coast! Cover but only 2! Will lines Okada up and hits OsCutter! Cover, but Okada is still able to kick out at 2! Chants for Will because there havent been enough yet. Will looks for the super OsCutter but Okada catches him on the way down into a German suplex and holds on, Will ducks Rainmaker but eats another dropkick! Rainmaker is countered by Will into a standing Spanish Fly, cover but only 2! BEAUTIFUL shooting star press by Will lands fully, cover but STILL only 2! YET MORE chants for Will, who fires up with the crowd and calls for the end. Okada drops out of Stormbreaker and gets Will in tombstone position, Will reverses and hits knees to Okada’s head, then plants Okada with a tombstone! Ripcord hook kick by Will, Stormbreaker is attempted but Okada flips out of it and hits a SHORT ARM LARIAT AND HAS WRIST CONTROL! GREAT spot. Another short lariat connects, Okada is fired up, Rainmaker is countered into a Stormbreaker attempt but Okada drops out of it again and hits a discus lariat, then follows with RAINMAKEEEEEEER! Cover and thats all.
Kazuchika Okada (8) defeats Will Ospreay (2) by pinfall via Rainmaker
JAY’S RATING: 4.5 out of 5
Well shit y’all. That was an absolutely INCREDIBLE outing between these two, surpassing their previous encounters and yet leaving room for more which is insane. These two work off each other SO FUCKING WELL, and this was just a masterclass in being great scene-partners. Will came within a BREATH of beating Okada, but even more notable to me than his stellar performance (which I hoped for/expected) was the crowd reaction. They are ready for Will to notch this win. Which means Will has earned his position with the crowd in that way. And that… that is honestly beautiful. It makes me emotional, as I have watched Will give a TON of himself to New Japan and to see this crowd so READY for him to knock off OKADA is just a testament to his dedication, and a huge fucking compliment (well-deserved at that). Yeah. This is wrestling.
After the match, the crowd cheers for Will as he leaves. Okada takes the mic remarks that they arent even halfway through the G1 yet. As everyone can see, he’s pretty fired up. Next time he’s back in Tokyo, it will be for Budokan. But before we get there, he’s going to get his place in the Finals. He then says lets get fired up for the G1 together, and when we come back for the G1 in Tokyo, he’s gonna MAKE IT RAIN! Good simple closer sending everyone home happy.
A VERY good day of action, with each match crescendoing in quality up through this POWERHOUSE main event between Okada and Ospreay. There’s good stuff throughout and good story developments, with KENTA staying undefeated thus far, ZSJ getting on the board in entertainingly creative fashion, and Ibushi and Tanahashi getting to 4 each. But that main event pushes all the rest aside. This is some must-see wrestling here. Cheers to Okada and Will, and watch out for their next encounter. If New Japan is listening to that crowd, we may see something different on number 5. The standings thus far:
Kazuchika Okada (4-0)
Hiroshi Tanahashi (2-2)
Lance Archer (2-2)
Kota Ibushi (2-2)
Will Ospreay (1-3)
Zack Sabre Jr (1-3)
Bad Luck Fale (1-3)
Jon Moxley (3-0)
Tomohiro Ishii (2-1)
Shingo Takagi (2-1)
Juice Robinson (2-1)
Toru Yano (2-1)
Tetsuya Naito (1-2)
Hirooki Goto (1-2)
Jeff Cobb (1-2)
Jay White (0-3)
- Full Details on New WWE President & CFO Nick Khan’s Contract – Pay, Company Benefits, More
- Sammy Guevara Reportedly Used Wrong Chair on Matt Hardy In AEW Dynamite Spot, Matt Lashes Out on Twitter
- WWE Producer Pat Buck Posts Message for Those Who Don’t Know About His Career
- AEW Star No Longer on Twitter After Criticism from Fans
- The Rock Responds to Daniel Bryan’s Tweet About a Possible Match
- Arn Anderson Says He Knew Horsewomen Would Be Stars, Questions WWE’s “Idiot” Choice To Have Charlotte Lose Her Raw Debut
- Hornswoggle On The Longest He’s Ever Spent Hiding Under A Ring
- XFL Creditors File Motion Objecting to Purchase By The Rock and His Partners
- Chris Jericho Reveals That The Dark Order’s John Silver and Alex Reynolds Have Officially Signed AEW Contracts
- Update On Matt Hardy Getting Busted Open On AEW Dynamite
- Adam Cole Storms Out of Pat McAfee Interview After Incident
- WWE RAW Superstar Ties the Knot This Week
- IMPACT Notes: Update On Aces & Eights, Rumor Killer On Rusev, ECW Legend At Tapings and more
- Jon Moxley Talks WWE Handing Wrestlers Scripted Promos, Calls Vince McMahon A Madman
- Rusev Already Banned from Streaming on Twitch