SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
RADICAN’S G1 CLIMAX 27: NIGHT 4 REPORT
JULY 22, 2017
AIRED LIVE ON NJPWWORLD.COM
Announcers: Don Callis and Kevin Kelly
I will not be reviewing any of the non-tournament matches this year, but I will provide the daily results. If any undercard match turns out to be extremely noteworthy, I will make an exception in certain cases.
(1) Togi Makabe & Kota Ibushi & David Finlay beat CHAOS (Hirooki Goto & Tomohiro Ishii & Gedo).
(2) Suzuki Gun (Zack Sabre Jr. & El Desperado) beat CHAOS (YOSHI-HASHI & Jado)
(3) Yuji Nagata & Tomoyuki Oka beat Hiroshi Tanahashi & Katsuya Kitamura.
(4) L.I.J. (Tetsuya Naito & BUSHI & Hiromu Takahashi beat Bullet Club (Bad Luck Face, Yujiro Takahashi & Chase Owens). During the match, Fale destroyed Takahashi’s stuffed cat, Daryl.
B BLOCK RESULTS & ANALYSIS
(5) Yuji Nagata (0) vs. Satoshi Kojima (w/Hiroyoshi Tenzan) (0) In a G1 Climax 27 B Block match. Yano squirted Kojima right off the bat with his water bottle. Kojima charged at him multiple times and nearly got rolled up twice. Yano ran to the floor, but Tenzan got in his way. Kojima then went on the attack. Kojima got the water bottle and squirted water in Yano’s face to return the favor. Later in the match, Kojima hit Tenzan’s Mongolian chops. He then whipped Yano into the exposed turnbuckles. Kojima went up top for his signature elbow, but Yano rolled to the opposite corner. Kojima eventually connected with an elbow drop later in the match for a 2 count. Yano used the ref distraction trick to hit two low blows and he rolled up Kojima for the win. This was fine.
Winner: Toru Yano (2 pts.)
Star rating: (**)
(6) EVIL (0) vs. Juice Robinson (2) in a G1 Climax 27 B Block match. The announcers talked about a comedown factor for Robinson after facing Kojima. They also mentioned that Juice had a sore neck dating back to the G1 Special in U.S. after Sabre Jr. worked it over in a match. Robinson charged at EVIL and hit a big dropkick and then a cannonball in the corner. EVIL spilled to the floor and Robinson nailed him with a slingshot splash. Callis said on commentary that he didn’t think EVIL could be beaten in under 5 minutes. EVIL fired back and sent Robinson’s injured neck into the guardrail. Kelly mentioned that EVIL had caught Robinson in the banshee muzzle last night as well during their encounter on the undercard. EVIL sent Robinson into the crowd and he struggled to get back to the ring, but made it in at 18. Robinson finally managed to cut EVIL off with a kick to the head as he came off the ropes. Robinson went up top and hit a kokeshi tribute to Honma on EVIL for a near fall much to the delight of the crowd! WOW! EVIL countered Robinson a short time later and hit a fisherman buster and Robinson came up selling his neck. EVIL hit darkness falls, but Robinson popped up and nailed him with a huge lariat as he came off the ropes a short time later. Robinson then hit a big folding powerbomb on EVIL. He then made the cover, but EVIL kicked out at the last second! Great near fall there. Juice went for pulp friction, but EVIL countered it and eventually hit a German. Robinson staggered up to his feet. They went back and forth. Robinson and EVIL both went back and forth countering pulp friction until EVIL finally hit a tiger suplex! Holy s—t! He then obliterated Robinson with a huge lariat for a near fall! WOW! EVIL hit everything is EVIL a short time later and it was good for the win. WHAT A MATCH!
Winner: EVIL (2 pts.)
Star rating: (****) – These two are stepping up huge for NJPW in this tournament. Robinson was great selling his neck here. They had some tremendous counter exchanges built around near falls late in the match. Robinson no-selling the big German from EVIL late in the match and staggering to his feet was one heck of a moment.
(7) SANADA (w/El Desperado) (2) vs. NEVER Openweight Champion Minoru Suzuki (0) in a G1 Climax 27 B Block match. Suzuki slapped SANADA across the face and that fired him up big time. SANADA ran wild on Suzuki and nailed him with some huge forearms in the corner. Suzuki yelled at SANADA, who continued to lay into him with rapid-fire forearms in the corner. Suzuki fired back and got an arm bar around the ropes. SANADA went to the floor and Suzuki slickly rolled to the apron and hit a PK from the apron to the floor. Suzuki dragged SANADA into the crowd. Kelly finally explained that would probably have to pull a knife on someone to get a DQ, as Desperado worked over Suzuki with a chair while Suzuki ran interference. Suzuki sent SANADA back to the floor and hit some light slaps on him and then some short rights to the chin. Suzuki smiled as he worked over SANADA outside the ring. SANADA tried to fire back, but Suzuki simply absorbed them and sent SANADA to the floor with a big forearm. Suzuki laughed at the crowd as they chanted for SANADA. SANADA fired back and hit a kick to Suzuki’s leg. He hit another kick to Suzuki’s leg. Desperado ran into the ring, but the ref was distracted. SANADA sent him packing with a big dropkick. He then caught Suzuki with a missile dropkick. SANADA went for a paradise lock, but Suzuki locked him up in a cross-arm breaker. Suzuki went for a PK inside the ring, but SANADA caught it and hit a dragon screw. He then went for the paradise lock again. Suzuki almost got the cross-arm breaker, but SANADA escaped and locked in the paradise lock. The fans popped big for that. SANADA then nailed Suzuki with a huge running dropkick. SANADA got a running start on the floor and hit a drive by variation. Suzuki escaped the skull end and got a choke.
SANADA began to fade and Suzuki let go and went for the Gotch piledriver. Callis said Suzuki shoulder just leave the sleeper on. SANADA nearly got hit with the Gotch, but he blocked it and hit a backdrop. Suzuki nearly got the choke again, but SANADA shook him off and hit a backdrop driver. He hit a TKO a short time later for a near fall. Suzuki went for the choke. They exchanged counters and SANADA had the skull end, but Suzuki slipped out as they went down and hit the Gotch piledriver for the win. WOW!
Suzuki kicked at SANADA after the match. He also sent several young boys running for their lives before eventually leaving the ring.
Winner: Minoru Suzuki (2 pts.)
Star rating: (***3/4) – This was fantastic with Suzuki being a jerk and Desperado interfering. SANADA looked fantastic mounting comebacks and fending off the outside interference much to the delight of the fans. They had a great exchange of counters down the stretch leading into the finish.
(8) Tama Tonga (w/Chase Owens & Bad Luck Fale) (2) vs. IWGP U.S. Champion Kenny Omega (w/Yujiro Takahashi (2) in a G1 Climax B Block match. Tonga has been in Bullet Club since the beginning. Kelly said Tonga was questioning Omega’s leadership. It’s Bullet Club vs. Bullet Club in this encounter. Tonga ambushed Omega during the ring introductions. The announcers mentioned Tonga isn’t a fan of The Elite. He took Omega’s shirt and tossed it to the mat. Omega then took Tonga’s shirt off and nailed him with a big chop. Omega was also wearing Elite tights as well. Omega got sent to the floor and the fans applauded. Tonga hit a flap jack on Omega onto the apron. Tonga got on the mic and asked Omega if he wants to be the leader of BC. He said Omega has to represent BC and not The Elite. He told Omega to be one of them if he wants to be in BC. Tonga went right back on the attack and hit a flurry of moves capped by a belly to back suplex. Tonga said f— the G1 and all he cares about is BC. He pointed at Omega and said, “This is not a leader.” Tonga went after Omega’s leg when they exchanged blows. He ducked a punch from Omega and hit a neck breaker. He turned to the camera and asked, “Are you with us? Bullet Club?” Tonga went after Omega’s injured leg and hit a knee-DT. Kelly mentioned Tonga had gone after his knee last night in their tag match when Omega thought the match was just going to be a fun and games exhibition. Callis said he didn’t care for Tonga’s tactics. Omega fired back and hit a clothesline. Omega went on the attack and hit a rocker dropper variation for a 2 count. Tonga went for a gun stun suddenly, but Omega fought it off.
Tonga fired back with a hurricanrana takedown, but Omega fired back and hit one of his own. Omega set up for rise of The Terminator and hit it after Owens and Takahashi tried to wave him off. Omega went up top and hit a missile dropkick to Tonga’s back. Omega said “Oh yeah!” before hitting a huge Dr. Bomb for a 2 count. Omega set up for a V Trigger, but Tonga surprised him with a big spear! Omega went for a dragon suplex, but Tonga slipped out and hit a Pele kick. Omega fired right back with a V Trigger knee and then a neck breaker over his knee. Omega hit a huge V Trigger against the ropes. He set up for the one-winged angel, but Tonga reversed it and hit a reverse Tonga twist. Tonga went for the gun stun, but Omega hit a snap dragon after blocking it. Omega hit a V Trigger knee, but Tonga kicked out at 1. He hit another V Trigger and then the one-winged angel for the win. WOW!
After the match, Omega hit several boots to Tonga’s back. The other members of BC tried to separate them. The other members of BC hit the too sweet. Tonga teased walking away, but then joined in and hugged Omega. The announcers said they had buried the hatchet.
Winner: Kenny Omega (4 pts)
Star rating: (***1/2) – This was a very good match. Tonga is growing as a performer and it was tremendous to hear him question Omega’s leadership on the mic. Tonga dominated a lot of the action, but in the end Omega was just too much for him.
(9) IWGP Hvt. Champion Kazuchika Okada (w/Gedo) (2) vs. Michael Elgin (0) in a G1 Climax 27 B Block match. Okada went for a rainmaker early, but Elgin blocked it. Okada got the upper hand on the floor a short time later and went for his signature splash over the barricade, but Elgin caught him and tossed him back over the barricade to ringside! Elgin hit a belly to back on the apron and immediately rolled Okada into the ring and made the cover for 2 count. Okada ducked a slingshot splash and went on the attack. Elgin caught Okada going for a splash in the corner and hit a deadlift German! Both men were down after Elgin finally managed to cut of Okada’s momentum. Elgin hit two Germans and held on. Okada went to the ropes and Elgin tried to hold on and transition to a dragon. He then got a straightjacket suplex and the fans fired up! WOW!. That was an impressive show of power. Okada cut off Elgin a short time later with a flap jack as he came off the ropes. Okada hit a big flurry of offense and kipped up. The fans started an Okada chant as he went on the attack. They went back and forth until Elgin finally caught Okada with a powerslam and both men were down. They got up and Okada went for a big boot, but Elgin hit the home run swing forearm. Okada caught Elgin in the corner and hit his signature neck breaker over his knee. A big Okada chant began and he went up top and connected with the big elbow. Okada signaled for the rainmaker, but Elgin backed him into the corner. Okada caught him and hit the corner dropkick a short time later causing Elgin to spill to the floor.
Elgin got back into the ring and Okada scaled the turnbuckles behind him. Okada jumped off the top, but Elgin turned it into a sit-out powerbomb for a near fall! They went back and forth. Elgin ducked a rainmaker and hit an enzuguri. Okada fired back with a German and hung on to Elgin. Elgin tried to fight out, but Okada hit a dropkick to the back of his head. Okada caught Elgin with the too awesome dropkick a short time later. He went for the rainmaker once again, but Elgin caught him with one of his own! Elgin hit a huge running clothesline off the ropes. Elgin hit a razor’s edge sit-out powerbomb, but Okada kicked out at the very last second! WOW! The fans chanted for Elgin, who set up for a buckle bomb. Okada fought out of it and Elgin dropped him with a discus forearm. Elgin set up for the deadlift superplex. Okada managed to slide around Elgin when he got him up in the air. Elgin fought him off and came off the top, but Okada nailed him in mid-air with a dropkick. Elgin blocked another tombstone attempt. They ended up going at it near the apron. They began trading forearms. Elgin set up for another deadlift suplex off the apron. Okada blocked it and nailed him with a kick. Elgin fell down to the mat. Elgin got up and hit an enzuguri. Elgin then connected with a superplex, but Okada kicked out at the last second again! Elgin hit a buckle bomb and went for the Elgin bomb. Okada slid out of it and went for the rainmaker, but Elgin popped him up into a sit-out powerbomb for a near fall. Holy s—t! WOW! The fans fired up once again. Elgin placed Okada on the top turnbuckle. He set up for the burning hammer, but Okada slipped out and hit the rainmaker! Okada was down, but he held onto Elgin’s wrist. Okada hit another rainmaker and Elgin tried to roll over. The announcers said there were five minutes left. Okada went for a rainmaker, but Elgin countered it. They went back and forth and Okada hit a tombstone. He then hit a rainmaker and it was good for the win. That was AMAZING!
Winner: Kazuchika Okada
Star rating: (****1/2) – This was an epic match with Elgin showing he’s going to be a force in this tournament. He took Okada to the limit and then some. Elgin countered the rainmaker several times and got a bunch of near falls, but he just couldn’t hit the Elgin bomb. Okada finally got on track very late after hitting a rainmaker out of the burning hammer position and then another a short time later. Elgin managed to counter a rainmaker attempt, but Okada ultimately put him away with a third rainmaker. This was a really good long-form match that went over 26 minutes.
Okada said some words after the match and Gedo finished things off for him. Kevin Kelly said he and Don Callis would not be back until the final three nights of the tournament.
Overall thoughts: This was another really good night of G1 action. Kelly and Callis shined on commentary and they really have grown into a fantastic unit. EVIL and Juice Robinson heated things up with a great match after Yano won in the opener. Both guys continue to grow as performers and they lit up the place with a tremendous match.
It feels like everyone it stepping up that needed to in this block so far. SANADA was fantastic against Suzuki in a hard-hitting encounter. Tonga is a brand new wrestler. He was disappointing, but he and Omega told a great little story involving some in-fighting in Bullet Club. Tonga had Omega on the ropes, but ultimately fell short.
What more can be said about the main even than it was a great match? Elgin and Okada tore it up. It wasn’t great right off the bat, but they built the match at a great pace and Elgin kept having an answer for Okada each time he went for the rainmaker. Elgin showed his power well in this match and got several good near falls on Okada that set the crowd on fire. It seemed like they favored Okada first, but Elgin won them over with his effort. NJPW has something great in Elgin and hopefully he gets utilized well throughout this tournament and beyond.
If you’re stuck for time EVIL vs. Robinson and Elgin-Okada are musts, but if you have a little extra time Suzuki-SANADA is well-worth checking out as well. I will miss the English commentary until the last few nights of the tournament, but I’m looking forward to going back to Japanese commentary.
STANDINGS AFTER NIGHT 4
Hirooki Goto (2-0, 4 pts)
Tetsuya Naito (2-0, 4 pts)
YOSHI-HASHI (1-1, 2 pts)
Bad Luck Fale (1-1, 2 pts)
Zack Sabre Jr. (1-1, 2 pts)
Hiroshi Tanahashi (1-1,2 pts)
Kota Ibushi (1-1, 2 pts)
Tomohiro Ishii (1-1, 2 pts)
Yuji Nagata (0-2, 0 pts)
Togi Makabe (0-2, 0 pts)
Kenny Omega (2-0, 4 pts)
Kazuchika Okada (2-0, 4 pts)
Toru Yano (1-1, 2 pts)
EVIL (1-1, 2 pts)
Minoru Suzuki (1-1, 2 pts)
Juice Robinson (1-1, 2 pts)
Tama Tonga (1-1, 2 pts)
SANADA (1-1, 2 pts)
Satoshi Kojima (0-2, 0 pts)
Michael Elgin (0-2, 0 pts)
I will provide a list of matches ranked at **** or higher for people just looking to watch the best matches from the tournament. This guide is also handy for those of you that are short on time and looking to sample the best of each night of G1 Climax 27.
Match recommendations for G1 Climax 27: Night 4
(6) EVIL vs. Juice Robinson (****)
(9) IWGP Hvt. Champion Kazuchika Okada vs. Michael Elgin (****1/2)
ATTENTION: Read Radican’s G1 Climax 27: Night 3 report HERE
Contact Sean at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Sean on twitter at twitter.com/sr_torch. Follow and like Radican’s Wrestling Community Facebook.com at Facebook.com/seanradicanrwc