Will Ospreay vs. Kenny Omega set for NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 17

What started as a Twitter feud has now found its way to the Tokyo Dome on January 4th.

Kenny Omega returns to NJPW for the first time in four years to challenge Will Ospreay for the IGWP United States Championship.

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Wrestle Kingdom 13 Results & Thoughts

-Wrestle Kingdom 13 Results – 1/4/19 – Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan

PRE-SHOW: Most Violent Players (Togi Makabe & Toru Yano) & Ryusuke Taguchi won a gauntlet match to become #1 contenders to the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship.

-Will Ospreay pinned Kota Ibushi by pinfall with Storm Breaker to win the NEVER Openweight Championship. Ibushi was taken out on a stretcher out after the match. I’m not sure if this was a work or a shoot.

-Los Ingobernables de Japon (BUSHI & Shingo Takagi) defeated Roppongi 3K (SHO & YOH) and Suzuki-gun (El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru) to win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship when Takagi hit SHO with Last of the Dragon.

-Zack Sabre, Jr. submitted Tomohiro Ishii to become the new RPW British Heavyweight Champion.

-Los Ingobernables de Japon (EVIL & SANADA) defeated Guerrillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa) and The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson) to win the IWGP Tag Team Championship when SANADA hit Matt Jackson with a moonsault for the pin.

-Juice Robinson pinned Cody w/ Brandi Rhodes after hitting two Pulp Frictions to win his second IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship.

-Taiji Ishimori beat KUSHIDA with Bloody Cross to become the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion.

-“Switchblade” Jay White w/ Gedo pinned Kazuchika Okada after coming back from a spinning Rain Maker and delivered a Blade Runner

-Tetsuya Naito defeated Chris Jericho in a No Disqualification Match to win the IWGP Intercontinental Championship

-Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Kenny Omega with High Fly Flow to win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship for a record eighth time.

Jay White

-Thoughts:

Wrestle Kingdom delivered on all fronts and capped off by a main event for the ages. Every match told a different story that was intriguing and didn’t involve wrestlers peeing their pants of being thrown in a commode.

Sabre, Jr. vs. Ishii was the submission master trying to ground the heavy-handed striker while Ibushi vs. Ospreay saw two all-around specialists trying to out-athlete each other. The tag team title matches of both divisions exhibited all-out action, and Juice Robinson got a much-needed win over Cody after losing a lot of the steam he gained last summer.

Jay White beating Okada clean in the middle of the ring was shocking and the way it came about was brilliant. Okada not only put on his best performance since Dominion in June, but he returned as the RAINMAKER. Tights instead of pants, extravagant robes instead of a t-shirt and his trademark blonde hair instead of red.

Usually, when a wrestler returns to form, they never lose their first match back. Okada was super over in the Tokyo Dome, and he lost as clean as a sheet. “Switchblade” failed to have that star-making match last year against Tanahashi. However, he more than held up his end this year.

Jay White has arrived!

Tetsuya Naito and Chris Jericho’s No Disqualification Match was a fun brawl that highlighted how multi-talented these two wrestlers are.

Kenny Omega and Hiroshi Tanahashi exuded the sheer will to win more than any match I’ve seen in the last ten years. Skill, pedigree, and conflicting ideologies created a story that was unique on its own merits, yet so familiar.

Tanahashi is a modern traditionalist while Omega spearheads the new wave of vastly athletic wrestling that is sweeping the industry. Both styles were on display in the Tokyo Dome by two master class professional wrestlers. Forty minutes of…Bottom line, there is no amount of me telling you how excellent this match was that will prepare you for how awesome this match is.

-What’s Next?

Wrestle Kingdom 13 was not only a great show but a highly newsworthy one as well. Not only did every single title in the promotion change hands, but all of the wrestlers who are rumored to be leaving New Japan lost.

Cody, Brandi Rhodes, Hangman Page, and The Young Bucks have officially signed with All Elite Wrestling.

KUSHIDA is rumored to be WWE bound.

Kota Ibushi’s future destination is a mystery.

Chris Jericho’s next stop is unknown but faintly rumored to be going with All Elite Wrestling

Kenny Omega…ANYTHING can happen with him at this point.

 

New Japan Pro Wrestling will be just fine no matter who stays or who leaves. They drastically hit the reset button, made a new star and are well on their way to making more.

New Japan Announces Wrestle Kingdom 11 Card

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New Japan Pro Wrestling announced the complete line-up and match order for Wrestle Kingdom 11 at a press conference on Monday. For the uninitiated, the Tokyo Dome show is New Japan’s equivalent to WrestleMania and has been traditionally held every year on January 4.

New Japan RumbleTo be honest, I usually skip this match. It’s a Royal Rumble style match without any real stakes. It’s simply a vehicle to provide some warm up entertainment before the real show begins.

Tiger Mask W vs. Tiger the DarkThis match is a promotional tool for the Tiger Mask anime show that airs on TV-Asahi. I don’t know if Koto Ibushi will be W this time around but that mask looks to be difficult to work in.

IWGP Jr. Tag Team Championship: The Young Bucks (c) vs. Roppongi ViceThank goodness it’s not a Fatal Four Way this time around. A straight up tag match should give all four wrestlers more time to shine, which hopefully make the match mean more instead of the usual eight-person spot fest. 
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NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 8 Review

njpwwrestlingkingdom8

Any wrestling fan worth his salt knows what January 4th represents. It is the biggest day of the year for Japanese pro wrestling as New Japan Pro Wrestling puts on their annual Wrestle Kingdom event otherwise known as the Tokyo Dome show. The perspective magnitude of this event is equal to WrestleMania and boasts an impressive resume of spectacle and sport.

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