NJPW Best of the Super Juniors 2016 Final, Sendai, June 7th:
Jay White defeated David Finlay
These guys were really intense here. This was great. Finlay showed a mean streak and took some shortcuts. Steve Corino did a great job of putting over how the BOSJ has helped Finlay grow and how he showed that he is equal to White. These guys weren’t holding back at all. White won with a quick roll up, which might play into Finlay coming closer to getting a win over White.
Yujiro Takahashi & Chase Owens defeated Captain New Japan & Yoshitatsu
Here we had the greatest faction in the history of pro wrestling, The Bullet Club Hunters. This was what it was. The crowd were into it at least. Yoshi did Triple H’s full hot tag sequence. The crowd were into Captain getting some near falls at the end. Owens got involved with a chair and Yujiro pinned Captain after hitting Miami Shine.
Katsuyori Shibata & Juice Robinson defeated Manabu Nakanishi & Yuji Nagata
This was a really hot match. Nagata & Shibata tore into one another straight away. Robinson & Nakanishi have the most bizarre, but great chemistry. Nakanishi hit a perfect diving cross body. Nagata & Shibata exchanged suplexes and heavy shots. The finish came when Shibata booted Nagata off the apron before he finished Nakanishi off with a PK.
Kyle O’Reilly, Bobby Fish & Hiroyoshi Tenzan defeated Rocky Romero, Beretta & Tomohiro Ishii
This was a great six man tag. Tenzan & Ishii were all fired up when the crowd went crazy for their face off. Tenzan was taking everyone out on his own at one point. There was great action between ReDRagon & RPG Vice. Tenzan was really laying in the shots. Romero & Kyle picked up where they left off last night. Kyle pinned Romero when ReDRagon hit Chasing The Dragon. In a post show interview yesterday. O’Reilly said that he intends to gain weight and become a heavyweight.
Ricochet, Matt Sydal & KUSHIDA defeated Volador, Jushin Thunder Liger & Tiger Mask IV
This was awesome. You couldn’t ask for a more fun junior heavyweight style tag match. Every guy had a chance to shine. There was fast paced action, cool sequences and big dives. Ricochet & Volador did amazing things. KUSHIDA dove over the ring post onto Tiger & Volador at ringside. Liger & Tiger hit big dives off the top to the floor to allow Ricochet to finish Volador with a 630 Splash. This was great. Don’t skip this match.
After the match ReDRagon said they want a Jr tag title shot, because they never lost the titles. RPG Vice then showed up and said they want a shot too because they are entitled to a rematch. A brawl broke out, which ended with Sydal & Ricochet hitting moonsault to the floor. So it looks like we’re back to three way tags for the titles. This match looks to be set for Dominion.
Michael Elgin & Satoshi Kojima defeated Kenny Omega & Bad Luck Fale
This match was crazy. There were ladders, brawling and lots of chicanery. Omega attacked Elgin with a ladder and the broom, which the referee didn’t seem to mind. Kojima came in off a mega hot, hot tag and went crazy with forearms and chops. Elgin suplexed Omega off a ladder. Kojima took out Fale. Elgin then hit a powerbomb onto a ladder and an Elgin Bomb to pin the IWGP IC champion. This was a huge win for Elgin and the crowd erupted with Elgin chants when he won. After the match Omega said he accepted Elgin’s challenge to the ladder match. So that is official for Dominion.
BUSHI, SANADA, EVIL & Tetsuya Naito defeated Gedo, Kazuchika Okada, Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI
Yeah, you guessed it. It was awesome. There was some great build for Dominion here. The crowd was red hot for this. Naito got an incredible pop when he came out through the curtain. Goto caught EVIL with a sick lariat early on. Okada & Naito tore it up together. This was just full throttle all the way through. Naito had his mouth busted at one point. The finish came when SANADA hit a TKO on Gedo, allowing BUSHI to finish him with a diving Codebreaker. After the match the LIJ beatdown continued. Ishii ran in to make the save, but he was misted. The dust settled and we were left with an awesome stare down between Okada & Naito, which alone created amazing buzz for their title match at Dominion. This feud has been superb.
Best of the Super Juniors XXIII Final
Will Ospreay defeated Ryusuke Taguchi
Ospreay did it. He solidified his meteoric rise in NJPW by becoming the youngest ever BOSJ winner at 23, only the fifth gaijin winner and he did it all only two months after his NJPW debut. This match was outstanding and an easy match of the year candidate. Both guys put in amazing performances, and it was Taguchi’s best performance in years. He was superb here. He targeted the leg of Ospreay, which Ospreay sold perfectly, even to the point where he had to do a one legged springboard. There were so many incredible moves here from both guys. Ospreay wowed people with some of his aerial attack. Taguchi showed amazing fire, even when he was using his ass attacks, they meant something. The counter of the match was when Taguchi caught Ospreay mid diving cutter and grabbed an ankle lock. This is a match you need to see. The near falls and false finishes were incredibly well done. Ospreay won when he hit an imploding 450 Splash (which you have to see to believe) and a diving cutter.
After the match Ospreay called KUSHIDA into the ring and said that they will be having a rematch.
Ospreay is a special talent, there’s no denying it. His rise in NJPW is unheard of. Him winning here was the right move. After only two months in the company, coming from being an unknown, he is now a superstar in the company and someone they can build around for years if they want to. Aside from his mind blowing athletic ability, his selling, storytelling and showmanship are absolutely superb for someone of 23 years old. His rise through Rev Pro & Progress in the UK, to PWG & Evolve in America, his amazing displays in OTT and now this have made Ospreay’s past 12 months something truly special.
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