Other PPVs RADICAN'S NJPW "Best of the Super Juniors: Final" iPPV report 6/8 - Bullet Club in big tag action, Ricochet-KUSHIDA MOTYC
Jun 14, 2014 - 9:30:36 PM
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By Sean Radican, Torch columnist
RADICAN’S NJPW iPPV REPORT
“BEST OF THE SUPER JUNIORS XXI: FINAL”
JUNE 8, 2014
This show was held in a larger building than the previous “Best of the Super Juniors XXI” show I watched on iPPV on Ustream and it reportedly drew around 3,000 fans, but did not sell out.
They had a cool setup for the show with posters of all four semi-final competitors in the BOSJ on each side of the NJPW curtain.
(1) Hiroshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima & BUSHI & Kenny Omega vs. Mascara Dorada & Jushin Liger & Tiger Mask IV & Mascara Don. Dorado and Omega closed the match out with some fun exchanges. Omega was going to catch Dorado going for a springboard and turn it into Croyt's wrath, but he dropped him. Omega then followed up with Croyt's wrath for the win.
Winners: Kenny Omega & Hiroshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima &BUSHI.
Star rating: (**) - This was a short, but fun opening match.
(2) Kota Ibushi & El Desperado vs. Rocky Romero & Gedo. Another short match with Romero and Gedo using heel tactics to get the upper hand. Ibushi is an amazing high-flyer and he hit some incredible stuff during this match. Romero got the win after hitting a tombstone variation on Desperado.
Winners: Rocky Romero &Gedo
Star rating: (**1/2)
(3) Katsuyori Shibata & Hirooki Goto vs. Captain New Japan & Yuji Nagata. Shibata hit an insanely stiff looking kick to Captain's chest and he rolled the floor as the announcers went bananas on commentary. Goto tagged in and began working over Captain's leg. Captain tried to fire back on Shibata, but a short right sent him down to the mat. That was funny. Captain fired back on Shibata with a shoulder tackle and tagged in Nagata, who went traded forearms in the corner with Shibata. Nagata caught Shibata with a running kick in the corner that was good for a 2 count. Captain thrilled the crowd by breaking up a three way submission by hitting a German on Shibata. Captain hit a diving headbutt on Goto, but Shibata saved the pin. He got rid of Shibata and hit the Rock bottom on Goto for a near fall.
The crowd was into Captain, but Goto finally cut him off with a back breaker or a 3 count. Captain got the upper hand in Goto, but Goto obliterated him with a clothesline and finished him off with the hellavator.
Shibata and Nagata continued to trade blows on the outside before being separated.
Winners: Katsuyori Shibata & Hirooki Goto
Star rating: (**3/4) - good hard-hitting action in this one. The crowd was way into Captain New Japan nearly getting the win several times.
(5) Taichi vs. KUSHIDA in a Best of the Super Juniors XX1 Semi-final match. Taichi attacked KUSHIDA with a chair as he made his entrance. Taichi ended up breaking a chair over KUSHIDA's back. He then wet to the floor after Alex Shelley and attacked him with Taka Michinoku. The match officially started and Taichi covered KUSHIDA for a near fall. Michinoku distracted the ref as Taichi wore out KUSHIDA with the bell hammer on the outside.
KUSHIDA mounted a comeback, but Taka tripped him from the outside. Shelley ran in to help and KUSHIDA wiped out everyone with a big dive to the floor. Taichi mounted a comeback and hit a roundhouse kick to the head and a sit out powerbomb for a 2 count. KUSHIDA went for a moonsault a short time later, but Taichi got his knees up. Taichi tossed his mic stand to KUSHIDA and acted like he had hit him. He then rolled up KUSHIDA during the confusion for a near fall. Taichi ducked a kick and shoved KUSHIDA into the ref. Shelley broke up a double team attempt on KUSHIDA. KUSHIDA then tapped out Taichi with a kimura.
Winner: KUSHIDA to advance to the finals of the BOSJ XXI
Star rating: (**) - this wasn't much of a match with all of the smoke and mirrors, but it was fine for what it was.
(6) Ricochet vs. Ryusuke Taguchi in a Best of the Super Juniors XX1 Semi-final match. The crowd was into Ricochet during the early going. Taguchi sent him out of the ring and hit a huge flip dive and the fans went nuts. Ricochet fired back and hit a springboard clothesline. Both men went back and forth trading running drop kicks in the corner. Taguchi eventually hit a sit out powerbomb for a 2 count. Taguchi followed up with a snow plow variation for another 2 count. They went back and forth before Ricochet hit a superman punch and the benadriller for the win.
Winner: Ricochet to advance to the BOSJ XXI finals
Star rating (*3/4) - not much to this one as they traded moves most of the match until Ricochet won the short contest.
Taguchi was helped to the back after the match.
(7) Minoru Suzuki & Takashi Iizuka vs. Toru Yano & Jado. Iizuka and Susuki jumped their opponents at the bell. The action then spilled to the outside and Iizuka nailed Yano with a chair while Susuki held him. Iizuka got a rope and hung Yano over the top rope. Well there's something you'll never see in WWE. The ref finally saved Yano. Yano took a sustained beating. The ref began to count out Yano, but Susuki tossed him back into the ring.
Yano finally mounted a comeback and tagged in Jado, who ran wild and wiped out Taka on the apron. Jado got cut off and ate a combination of moves from Susuki and Iizuka for a 2 count. The action broke broke down and Iizuka nailed Jado with a foreign object. Iizuka then finished off Jado with a piledriver.
Winners: Minoru Suzuki & Takashi Iizuka - this was not good.
Sakuraba ran down to make the Dave after the match and nearly got an arm submission on Susuki, but he managed to escape.
(8) Bullet Club (Tama Tonga & Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows) vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi & Tomoaki Honma & Tetsuya Naito. Anderson booted Tanahashi while Gallows and Tonga held him in the corner. He followed up with a big powerbomb onto the apron on Tanahashi a short time alter after Bullet Club cleared the apron. Tanahashi barely beat the 20 count. Tonga tagged in and circled Tanahashi before nailing him with a big splash. Tanahashi ducked a running senton from Anderson and tagged in Naito, who ran wild on Bullet Club. The fans chafed his name as he exchanged blows with Anderson. Anderson eventually cut him off with a spine buster and tagged in Gallows. Gallows eventually ate a flying forearm from Naito, who tagged in Honma.
Honma had the upper hand, but Gallows quickly cut him off with the baldo bomb. Anderson and Gallows hit the tandem neck breaker on Honma, but he kicked out. They went for it again, but Naito broke it up. They went to a big exchange between Honma and Gallows that ended with both men down after a leaping clothesline from Honma. The action broke down Honma isolated Tonga in the ring.
He nailed him with a diving headbutt and Tanahashi finished him with the high fly flow for the win.
Bullet Club jumped Tanahashi after the match. Togi Makabe ran down and made the save. He got on the mic and said, "F--- Bullet Club" and flipped the double bird. It looks like we have ourselves a tag match at the next PPV.
Star rating: (***1/2) - this was a really good six man that had the crowd into the match. The exchanges nicely built to an exciting finish.
(9) Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI & Kazuchika Okada & Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Bad Luck Fale & Yujiro Takahashi & The Young Bucks. The Chaos-Bullet Club feud continues here. Fale and Nakamura went face to face before all 8 men began brawling in the ring. Neither team could get a sustained advantage during the early going. The Young Bucks cut off Okada and nailed him with a combination of m odd for a 2 count. The action broke down and Okada wiped out Matt with a kick before tagging in Ishii. Matt managed to avoid a triple Kick and Takahashi wiped out the Young Bucks and Ishii. The action broke down and everyone ended up brawling on the floor. The Bullet Club got the upper hand and Takahashi eventually tossed Ishii back into the ring to work him over. Both teams continued to brawl on the outside with the Bullet Club continued to control the action. Fale ended up nailing Nakumura’s shoulder with a chair shot. Ishii took a beating from the Bullet Club for a long period of time. The Young Bucks eventually hit a double superkick on Ishii followed by a perfectplex from Takahashi, but the pin got broken up. Ishii and Takahashi went back and forth until Takahashi hit a Saito suplex for a near fall. The fans fired up. Ishii eventually mounted a comeback and wiped out Takahashi with a big clothesline that left both men down. Okada got the hot tag and ran wild.
The Young Bucks tried to cut Okada off, but he took them down with a double flapjack. Okada avoided a double team attempt from the Young Bucks and wiped out Nick with white noise. He then hit a big elbow off the top and signaled for the rain maker, but Nick ducked and Matt nailed him with a big superkick. The Young Bucks hit a big combination of moves on Okada and Fale hit a big splash, but Okada kicked out at the last second. Okada countered Fale and nailed him with a dropkick before tagging in Nakamura. Nakamura went to town on Fale with several knees to the gut in the corner. He then propped him up over the top turnbuckle, but Fale avoided a running knee attempt. Nakamura blocked a suplex attempt on the apron and hit a DDT through the ropes and the fans fired up. Nakamura set up for a big kick on Fale, but ended up eating a clothesline. They went back and forth until Nakamura hit a back stabbed and tagged in HASHI. HASHI and Okada took turns working over Fale until HASHI hit a neck breaker off the top, but the pin got broken up. The action broke down and HASHI tried to finish off Fale, but Takahashi cut him off up top. Fale hit a Samoan drop on HASHI, but he kicked out. HASHI countered a choke slam into a punch and hit a big clothesline off the ropes for a near fall on Fale. HASHI went up top and hit a swanton on Fale, but Takahashi broke up the pin.
The action broke down and Nakamura wiped out the Young Bucks only to be attacked by Fale. They did another near fall spot on Fale and the fans fired up. HASHI got a cross-arm breaker on Fale, but Fale rolled on top of HASHI and nailed him with a choke slam into a punch. Nakamura broke up the pin, but Fale tossed him to the floor and Fale hit HASHI with a razor’s edge for the win.
Fale and Nakamura went face-to-face after the match. Fale hit Nakamura with a headbutt. Fale then held the IC title over Nakamura. Ishii tried to get in the ring, but the Bullet Club wiped him out. The Young Bucks threw some crotch chops as Takahashi stood over Ishii.
Winners: Bad Luck Fale & The Young Bucks & Yujiro Takahashi
Star rating: (***3/4) – This was a really good match that put more heat on Bullet Club. The match looked to set up Nakamura vs. Fale at the next PPV as well as a future angle between Takahashi and Ishii. HASHI got some really good nearfalls down the stretch and the action was tremendous late in the match.
(9) Ricochet vs. KUSHIDA in the Best of the Super Juniors XXI Finals. They went to a couple of stalemates early. Ricochet and KUSHIDA then engaged in a breath taking exchange off the ropes that ended with KUSHIDA back dropping Ricochet over the top and he hit his head on the apron before crashing to the floor. KUSHIDA targeted Ricochet’s arm for several minutes, but Ricochet fired back and hit an incredible handspring dive over the top to the floor to gain the advantage. The fans fired up with Ricochet in control. Ricochet worked over KUSHIDA for a long period of time. He began taunting him with some slaps and KUSHIDA ended up nailing him with a dropkick when he went for a handspring off the ropes. KUSHIDA followed up with a huge swanton off the top over the ringpost to the floor and the fans went nuts. KUSHIDA went back into the ring and collapsed to the mat. KUSHIDA nailed Ricochet with a dropkick as he got back into the ring and flew to the top rope quickly and connected with a moonsault for a nearfall.
Both men exchanged counters and Ricochet hit a GTS variation with a kick to KUSHIDA’s knee for a good near fall. The fans fired up as both men regrouped on opposite sides of the ring. Ricochet hit an incredible running dropkick on KUSHIDA against the turnbuckles. He went for a springboard SSP, but KUSHIDA rolled out of the way and got a pinning combination for a near fall and the fans went nuts. They went to a great exchange off the ropes where KUSHIDA floated over Ricochet and eventually got a kimura and the fans fired up. Ricochet struggled, but managed to get the ropes. KUSHIDA waited for Ricochet to get up and he nailed him with a kick to the arm and then a kick to the head. KUSHIDA followed up with a dragon suplex with a bridge for another good near fall and the fans went nuts. Holy crap! KUSHIDA went up top for a twisting splash, but Ricochet managed to get out of the way. The fans fired up as Ricochet tried to punch some feeling into his arm. Both men began exchanging strikes form their knees before getting to their feet. Ricochet ended up firing back and hitting a superman punch. He followed up with a suplex and held on for another suplex for a good near fall and the fans went bananas. This is amazing!
Ricochet dragged KUSHIDA into position while holding his arm. He went up top, but KUSHIDA popped up and cut him off. Ricochet managed to shove KUSHIDA away, but he got up and nailed him with a running flip kick. KUSHIDA mounted Ricochet up top. Ricochet got him up on his shoulders and hit a top rope benadriller, but KUSHIDA kicked out. Good lord! Ricochet went up top and hit a 630, but KUSHIDA kicked out again and the fans went insane. OH MY GOD! Both men were slow to recover and Ricochet went for the benadriller again, but KUSHIDA ducked and nailed him with a kick to the head. KUSHIDA countered another benadriller attempt a short time later and locked in a kimura. The fans went nuts, but Ricochet managed to roll over. He ended up getting KUSHIDA up for the benadriller, but KUSHIDA fought out of it. Ricochet nailed KUSHIDA with a big kick to the head and then connected with the benadriller for the win. Wow…just wow. That was insane.
Winner: Ricochet to win the Best of the Super Juniors XXI Tournament and a shot at the IWGP Jr. Hvt. Title against Kota Ibushi.
Both men shook hands after the match and Ricochet signaled for the fans to applaud KUSHIDA. KUSHIDA eventually rolled out of the ring and was helped to the back by Liger.
Star rating: (****3/4) – This was an amazing match that went a little over 23 minutes. They told a fantastic story with KUSHIDA working over Ricochet’s arm throughout the match to set up his kimura finisher. The near falls in this match were tremendous as Ricochet could not put KUSHIDA away. This is certainly a historical win for Ricochet, who becomes the first American to win the BOSJ tournament in 18 years.
After the match, Ricochet was presented with a trophy and a check for winning the tournament. Ricochet cut a promo talking about how only three other foreigners had won the tournament and he said now you could add his name to the list. The fans chanted for Ricochet. Ricochet said he would beat Kota Ibushi to become the new IWGP Jr. Hvt. Champion. Ibushi got into the ring and grabbed the mic from Ricochet. He cut a promo in Japanese. Ricochet held up his trophy and pointed at Ibushi’s title. Ibushi left and Ricochet thanked the fans to close the show.
Overall thoughts: (7.5) – The show started out slowly. I couldn’t get into many of the matches on the undercard, but the show closed out with three really strong matches featuring the Bullet Club in six and eight man tag matches and the Ricochet-KUSHIDA BOSJ Finals.
I really enjoyed the Bullet Club tag matches. The second match in particular was very good and set up Fale-Nakamura for the IC Title. NJPW continues to pour heat on the Bullet Club and I’m looking forward to seeing the reaction of the fans when the heels are finally conquered.
The main event between Ricochet and KUSHIDA was incredible. They had a nearly perfect match that started out slowly and then went to hyper speed. They told a really good story with KUSHIDA working over Ricochet’s arm to set up his kimura submission. KUSHIDA nearly had Ricochet finished off several times, but couldn’t get the job done. He showed incredible heart down the stretch, as Ricochet just could not put him away. The near falls Ricochet got on KUSHIDA down the stretch were incredible and you’re going to want to go out of your way to see this match.
You can purchase this show at Ustream.tv/njpw to view until 11:59 EST on June 15.
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