HIROYOSHI TENZAN, JUSHIN "THUNDER" LIGER, & TIGER MASK IV vs. CHAOS (Hirooki Goto, YOSHI-HASHI, & Jado) - 4.75/10
JUICE ROBINSON & DAVID FINLAY JR. vs. BULLET CLUB (Leo Tonga & Bad Luck Fale) - 3.75/10
This constant beating of Leo Tonga feels like a HUGE mistake to me. They're just wasting a resource. He's large enough that the losses will really hurt his aura when they're ready to push him.
ROPPONGI VICE vs. BULLET CLUB (Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi) - 4.5/10
Less than two months after we were told Roppongi Vice was done forever, they have now picked up a win. I've been into this little Trent vs Yujiro angle, but Roppongi Vice getting the win here seems counterproductive on multiple levels. Not only does their win hurt the storyline IMO, but if Rocky Romero is scaling back his in-ring duties, then there is no reason for him not to eat the pin. In fact, Yujiro pinning Rocky would reinforce his claims that a Jr. Heavyweight, which is what he still views Trent as, has not chance against heavyweights like himself.
KOTA IBUSHI, MICHAEL ELGIN, & TOGI MAKABE vs. SUZUKI-GUN (Minoru Suzuki, TAKA Michinoku, & Takashi Iizuka) - 4/10
Suzuki-Gun jumps the bell on their opponents. Then they go to the outside and press weapons into their opponents' bodies and ref doesn't give one sh*t about any of this, not counting them out or DQing them. Then they got into the ring and similar sh*t happened. I don't understand why they insist on Suzuki like he's any old brawler rather than as Minoru freakin' Suzuki, badass MMA guy.
Elgin got to knock the Iron Fingers off of Iizuka's hands, so that's some revenge for him, I guess. Kota pinned Iizuka. Tiger Hattori looked horrifically unprofessional in his t-shirt and track pants.
IWGP JR. HEAVYWEIGHT TAG TEAM TITLE MATCH:
Funky Future (Ryusuke Taguchi & Ricochet)(c) vs. Suzuki-Gun (Yoshinobu Kanemaru & Taichi) - 8/10
Stupid Taguchi Tricks give way to Stupid Taichi Tricks. Can we please get some wrestlers in this division who don't rely on shtick to fill up the first half of their matches? Once the dumb stuff stopped and the heat started this match was really great, and just kept getting better and better. This was one of those matches that makes you remember that when he's not doing stuff with his butt, Ryusuke Taguchi is actually a pretty awesome wrestler.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT - Snore. Rocky Romero came out and said that he is bringing a new team, Roppongi 3K. My guess is that this will The Tempura Boyz/Raijin & Fujin/ Sho Tanaka & Yohei Komatsu finally back from excursion. At least I hope that's who it is. If they waste Will Ospreay by making him be Rocky Romero's new tag team partner, I'd going to be pretty annoyed. Ricochet claimed that Taguchi Japan would hold the belts forever.
IWGP HEAVYWEIGHT TAG TEAM TITLE MATCH:
War Machine(c) vs. The Guerrillas of Destiny vs. K.E.S. - 6.5/10
Another fun three-way from these teams. I've warmed up a bit to the idea of the Guerrillas of Destiny getting in the way of my hoss fight now that I've realized that Lance Archer can chokeslam them.
LOS INGOBERNABLES DE JAPON vs. CHAOS (Kazuchika Okada, Will Ospreay, Toru Yano, Tomohiro Ishii, & Gedo) - 7/10
We go from a quick, exciting sequence between Ospreay and Hiromu to Stupid Yano Tricks; from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows. The action here was very good, but the real point of this match (and the post-match beat-down) was to build up the three match-ups they've been focusing on, which are EVIL vs. Okada, Naito vs. Ishii, and Hiromu vs. Ospreay, and everything they did along those lines was excellent.
IWGP JR. HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH:
KUSHIDA(c) vs. El Desperado (w/TAKA Michinoku) - 7.5/10
A perfect example of why you should just stay in the ring and wrestle. All of the standard pro wrestling holds and dives and so forth were great, but all of the overbooking they did was terrible. Everything from the usual dumb spot where they're on the outside forever without a count and the heel presses a weapon into one of the babyface's limbs while the referee stands there and does nothing, to new "creative" sh*t like El Desperado's whip, to that idiotic spot where El Desperado tried to convince the referee that KUSHIDA had pulled his mask off. What was his plan there, anyway? Do we know if pulling a mask off is even illegal in New Japan? And even if it is, then won't it just result in a DQ and Desperado's title match here on this major show being over? Sure, he'll be entitled to another won because the champion will have been disqualified, but then he'll just back where he was at the beginning of this match.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT - Ospreay and Hiromu both want KUSHIDA's belt.
IWGP INTERCONTINENTAL TITLE MATCH:
Hiroshi Tanahashi(c) vs. Zack Sabre Jr. (w/TAKA Michinoku) - 8.5/10
They had a wonderful, grapplef*cky match with Zack working Tanahashi's injured arm and Tanahashi working over Zack's knee. Then, because we haven't learned anything from the reaction to last weekend's show, Minoru Suzuki interfered. Michael Elgin showed up to make the save and chase Suzuki away. Zack and Tanahashi do some more stuff, exchange more submissions and nearfalls. And then TanahashiWinsLOL. After the match, Tanahashi called out Kota Ibushi, so I guess that's going to be our title match next month. Why does New Japan even bring guys like Zack in if they're not even going to give them a chance to rise to their full potential?
A pretty great show from New Japan, despite the disappointing booking the main event. While it was certainly better than the Fukushima show, some of the issues that caused that show to fail were on display here, with very little indication that the company has any intention of addressing them.