New Japan Pro Wrestling New Years Dash w/Heather
It’s 7:30 AM for me and this long awesome weekend of New Japan Wrestling is over. If you haven’t watched the shows this weekend do yourself a favor and check them out! For now, here’s a quick recap of the important goings on stage New Years Dash.
1. Jushin Thunder Liger! After kind of passing the torch to Hiromu Takahashi on night 2 of Wrestlekingdom, tonight was the retirement ceremony for Jushin Thunder Liger. It was really lovely to see the roster (save Bullet Club and LIJ) show their respect for the departing superstar. Despite knowing it was happening it was pretty emotional and seeing Tanahashi cry on the outside was a touching moment. Leave it to Okada to lighten the mood as he of course had to take a selfie in the midst of it all.
Dude is a goof, man.
2. Minoru Suzuki and Jon Moxley has an awesome confrontation on night 2 of WK that obviously meant we would be seeing a future match between these two. It was further written in the stars tonight when Moxley attacked Suzuki after SuzukiGuns match with CHAOS and left the murder dad lying in the ring after a death rider with, of course, a smile on his face. These two facing each other will definitely not be the prettiest match, but there’s something to be said about wondering which will murder the other first. I’m curious if the rumors of Suzuki leaving that we’re going around late last year are true, though a coming title match may prove them wrong. Let’s hope!
3. After the no good son of a bitch Kenta ruined Naito Two Belts celebration last night, it wasn’t surprising to see them facing each other down in a tag match tonight that also featured Jay White and Sanada. It ended up being Jay White that took the loss from Sanada but it was bullet club who again stood tall at the end of the match, again depriving us of the roll call I need following Hiromu’s return. It seemed pretty obvious Kenta would be Naito’s first opponent after his ruining of his championship celebration, and I actually do think despite him losing to Goto at WK that this is a good first match for Naito to have as double champ. He deserves to be destroyed by Naito.
Jay also called out Sanada for a match, and I still think this year is going to lead to an eventual Naito/Sanada showdown and possible Sanada departure from LIJ. While I don’t want it, Sanada has been poised to be a breakout star for awhile and if he isn’t already it is coming.
4. Title challengers! Roppongi 3K lost the four way tag tonight to Desperado and Kanemaru (thanks to some Bushi most) which means Despy and Nobu are still pretty much one of two tag teams that will be dueling for the Jr belt incoming. I like them, but new blood would have been nice and unexpected.
After Shingo pinned Goto in his tag match with Evil vs Goto and Ishii, Shingo made a challenge for the Never title. Shingo killed it all year last year and it makes sense he’ll get singles opportunities this year. I would not be surprised to see him take Goto out.
Juice Robinson, David Finlay, Tanahashi and Ibushi took out Bullet Club tonight (GOD, Bad Luck Fale and Chase Owens) and it was Tana and Ibushi who set a challenge for the IWGP tag titles after. I’d be surprised to see them take the belts, but I suppose they do need somewhere to go from here and it’s a fun combination.
It looks like Okada’s first opponent following his title loss will be the ever challenging but never winning Taichi who got himself and his team disqualified today by attacking Okada with Iizuka’s iron claw. I’m as shocked as all of you Taichi wasn’t Naito’s first challenger but here we are.
There was no big shock this year as there have been in year’s past but still a part of a great wrestling weekend. The results are as follows.
LA Dojo Boys Karl Fredericks, Alex Coughlin and Clark Connors beat Young Lions Yota Tsuji, Yuyu Uemura and former? YL Toa Henare with Fredericks over Uemura.
Desperado and Kanemaru defeated RP3K, Hiromu Takahashi & Bushi and Ishimori & El Phantasmo when Despy pinned Sho post Bushi most.
Juice, Finlay, Ibushi and Tana beat Guerrillas of Destiny and Chase Owens and Fale with Ibushi over Bullet Club’s professional pin eater Chase Owens
Shingo & Evil Beat Goto & Ishii with Shingo over Goto
Okada, Will Ospreay, YoshiHashi, & Robbie Eagles beat Taichi, Suzuki, Lance Archer & Zack Sabre Jr by DQ following Taichi’s iron claw attack.
Naito & Sanada beat that son of a bitch Kenta and other son of a bitch Jay White with Sanada over Jay.
What a wonderful weekend of wrestling despite the many streaming issues I had haha. I really encourage everyone to watch NJPW and these shows. They are awesome. Now, to sleep! Happy wrestling!