It’s one of my favorite times of the year as New Japan Pro Wrestling will kick off the Best of the Super Juniors 24 (BOSJ) on May 17th at Korakuen Hall. This tournament will span two weeks, which culminates on June 3rd at Yoyogi National Gymnasium.
The winners of Block A and Block B will face off to decide who will get a shot at the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Title on June 11th at Dominion. That is of course, if the current champ, Hiromu Takahashi should win the tournament.
The brackets are very interesting. Block A is so stacked that I almost want to skip the Block B matches…Almost.
- Jushin Thunder Liger
- Will Ospreay
- Taka Michinoku
- Hiromu Takahashi
- Dragon Lee
- Marty Scurll
- Tiger Mask IV
- Ryusuke Taguchi
- Yoshinobu Kanemaru
- El Desperado
- Volador Jr.
Dave Meltzer recently stated on his radio show that this could be Jushin Liger’s last BOSJ. That could mean Liger might receive a push in the tournament or even win it. Liger squares off with Taka Michinoku on opening night.
Speaking of opening night, Dragon Lee vs. Hiromu Takahashi will be the main event. Everyone has raved about the slew of great matches they’ve had with each other. I got up close and personal with one of their matches at the ROH PPV back in September. I wasn’t impressed. It was a rushed spot fest with good action but no semblance of a story to support it.
In a long-awaited rematch, Will Ospreay vs. Ricochet will be the main event on night two. Their match in last year’s tournament was the talk of professional wrestling. Many loved the aerial spectacle the two men put on while others felt it was a gymnastics demonstration that hardly resembled a real fight.
For the most part, I enjoyed the match. There were a few of moves that made it very difficult to suspend reality and they were calling out spots so loudly that it took me out of the match at times. At other times, my jaw hit the floor in sheer astonishment. Hopefully, they learn from their mistakes and improve upon what could be a classic match.
The first two shows of the tournament, May 22, May 29th and the finals on June 3rd will air live on New Japan World. The rest of the shows will be released on demand the following day.
-Wednesday, May 17th (Korakuen Hall, live on New Japan World) A & B Block Matches
Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Taka Michinoku
Tiger Mask vs. Volador Jr.
Ricochet vs. Taichi
ACH vs. BUSHI
KUSHIDA vs. El Desperado
Will Ospreay vs. Marty Scurll
Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
Hiromu Takahashi vs. Dragon Lee
– Thursday, May 18th (Korakuen Hall, live on New Japan World) A Block
Taichi vs. Taka Michinoku
Dragon Lee vs. Marty Scurll
Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Hiromu Takahashi
Ricochet vs. Will Ospreay
– Saturday, May 20th (Mie, On Demand) B Block
ACH vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
Tiger Mask vs. KUSHIDA
El Desperado vs. BUSHI
Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Volador Jr.
– Sunday, May 21st (Shizuoka, On Demand) A Block
Will Ospreay vs. Taka Michinoku
Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Marty Scurll
Dragon Lee vs. Taichi
Ricochet vs. Hiromu Takahashi
– Monday, May 22nd (Korakuen Hall, live on New Japan World) B Block
Volador Jr. vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
Tiger Mask vs. ACH
Ryusuke Taguchi vs. El Desperado
KUSHIDA vs. BUSHI
-Tuesday, May 23rd (Tochigi, On Demand) A Block
Taka Michinoku vs. Marty Scurll
Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Will Ospreay
Taichi vs. Hiromu Takahashi
Ricochet vs. Dragon Lee
– Thursday, May 25th (Ishikawa, On Demand) B Block
Tiger Mask vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
Volador Jr. vs. El Desperado
Ryusuke Taguchi vs. BUSHI
KUSHIDA vs. ACH
– Friday, May 26th (Nagano, On Demand) A Block
Taichi vs. Marty Scurll
Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Ricochet
Taka Michinoku vs. Hiromu Takahashi
Dragon Lee vs. Will Ospreay
– Saturday, May 27th (Ibaraki, On Demand) B Block
ACH vs. El Desperado
Volador Jr. vs. BUSHI
Tiger Mask vs. Ryusuke Taguchi
KUSHIDA vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
– Sunday, May 28th (Gunma, On Demand) A Block
Ricochet vs. Taka Michinoku
Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Dragon Lee
Will Ospreay vs. Taichi
Marty Scurll vs. Hiromu Takahashi
– Monday, May 29th (Korakuen Hall, live on New Japan World) B Block
Tiger Mask vs. El Desperado
BUSHI vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
Volador Jr. vs. ACH
Ryusuke Taguchi vs. KUSHIDA
– Wednesday. May 31st (Osaka, On Demand) A Block
Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Taichi
Ricochet vs. Marty Scurll
Dragon Lee vs. Taka Michinoku
Will Ospreay vs. Hiromu Takahashi
– Thursday, June 1st (Aichi, To Be Announced) B Block
Tiger Mask vs. BUSHI
Ryusuke Taguchi vs. ACH
KUSHIDA vs. Volador Jr.
Yoshinobu Kanemaru vs. El Desperado
– Saturday, June 3rd (Yoyogi 2nd Gymnasium, live on New Japan World)
Tournament Finals: Block A winner vs. Block B winner