RADICAN’S 8/1 G1 Climax 27: Night 11 report – Makabe-Sabre, Goto-Naito, Ibushi-Tanahashi

By Sean Radican, PWTorch Columnist


Zack Sabre, Jr. (art credit Matt Charlton & Sam Gardiner)

RADICAN’S G1 CLIMAX 27: NIGHT 11 REPORT
AUG. 1, 2017
KAGOSHIMA, JAPAN
AIRED LIVE ON NJPWWORLD.COM

This show had a multi-camera shoot and Japanese commentary.

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.

UNDERCARD RESULTS

(1) Michael Elgin & Jushin Thunder Liger beat Katsuya Kitamura & Shota Umino

(2) Suzuki Gun (Minoru Suzuki & Taichi & El Desperado) beat Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Hirai Kawato. After the match, Kojima and Suzuki went at it.

(3) L.I.J. (SANADA & BUSHI) beat Juice Robinson & David Finlay.

(4) L.I.J. (EVIL & Hiromu Takahashi) beat Bullet Club (Kenny Omega & Chase Owens). After the match, Omega wiped out EVIL and Takahashi.

(5) CHAOS (Kazuchika Okada & Toru Yano) beat Bullet Club (Tama Tonga & Yujiro Takahashi).

A BLOCK RESULTS & ANALYSIS

(6) Bad Luck Fale (6) vs. YOSHI-HASHI (4) in a G1 Climax 27 A Block match. Fale went after the ring announcer, but he got out of the way and went to the floor. The announcer then gleefully announced Fale behind a Young Lion. HASHI went right after Fale and got a rollup for a 2 count. He no-sold a shoulder tackle from Fale and went back on the attack. Fale finally wiped him out with another shoulder tackle. Fale went attack on the outside and sent HASHI into the NJPW Universe. Fale whipped HASHI through several rows of chairs. HASHI struggled, but managed to get back into the ring when the ref got to 18. HASHI mounted a comeback and went on the attack. HASHI hit a blockbuster off the top a short time later, but Fale kicked out at 2. HASHI applied the butterfly lock, but Fale fought out of it. He then wiped out HASHI with a huge clothesline a short time later. HASHI avoided the grenade and hit a leaping lariat off the ropes for a 2 count. He applied the butterfly lock once again. Fale got him up on his shoulders and tossed him into the corner. Fale hit a big splash off the ropes for a 2 count. The fans fired up behind HASHI. He went for the bad luck fall, but HASHI countered it into a sleeper. Fale faded and collapsed to the mat. HASHI let go of the choke and hit a kick to his back and a running double knee strike for a 2 count. HASHI applied the butterfly lock for a third time. Fale got to his feet and HASHI countered it into a guillotine. HASHI then rolled up Fale for the win! WOW!

Winner: YOSHI-HASHI

Star rating: (***1/2) – This was a good match. HASHI just kept plugging away and trying to find a way to put Fale away and he simply could not do it. Finally, he managed to roll him up in a small package to get the win.

(7) Zack Sabre Jr. (w/El Desperado) (6) vs. Togi Makabe (6) in a G1 Climax 27 A Block match. Sabre jawed at Makabe and shoved him. He told Makabe to bring it and they began exchanging in the middle of the ring. This is what lead to Sabre’s downfall against Goto. Desperado shoved the ref from behind and went after Makabe on the floor. He went for an Irish whip, but Makabe reversed it and sent him flying into the barricade. Sabre fired back on the outside and went after Makabe’s leg. They ended up back inside the ring and Sabre continued to work over Makabe’s leg on the mat. Sabre went after Makabe with some unique leg submissions on the mat, as he worked on his knee and ankle with a combination submission. Makabe struggled, but managed to eventually get to the ropes. Makabe fired back with some strikes. Sabre shook them off and told Makabe to bring it. He went after Makabe’s leg to slow him down, but Makabe hit a clothesline out of the corner a short time later and the fans fired up. Sabre ducked a lariat, but Makabe caught him with a western lariat a short time later. Sabre went for a flying guillotine and Makabe managed to eventually drive him into the corner. He hit a northern lights suplex on Sabre, but only got a 2 count. Sabre fired right back and got the octopus submission. Sabre went after Makabe’s arm, but Makabe managed to fall forward sending them both into the ropes.

They went to a big exchange in the middle of the ring. Sabre went after Makabe’s leg at first, but then he began trading forearms. They then began trading forearms and went back and forth until Makabe hit a big lariat. Makabe went for the King Kong knee drop, but Sabre managed to get out of the way. Sabre immediately went for the octopus submission. He then quickly transitioned to a modified trailer hitch on the mat and Makabe tapped out!

Winner: Zack Sabre Jr. (8 pts.)

Star rating: (***1/2) – This was a strong showing for Sabre. He was more ground oriented against Makabe and for the most part he forced Makabe to fight his type of match and it paid off with a leg submission victory in the end.

(8) Tomohiro Ishii (6) vs. Yuji Nagata (0) in a G1 Climax A Block match. They had a back and forth exchange and came to a stalemate to kick things off. Yuji nailed Ishii with a big kick to the chest. He fired back with a big chop. They continued to exchange like this back and forth. Nagata grabbed Ishii and hit several knees to the head. He then dropped him with a pair of big kick to the chest. Nagata hit a big kick to Ishii’s back. He took exception and popped up and raked Nagata’s eyes. Nagata then rolled to the floor while Ishii yelled at him. Ishii hit a series of strikes. Nagata seemed to shake them off. Ishii hit some light slaps to Nagata’s head. Nagata fired up, but Ishii sent him back down with some big chops and a headbutt. Ishii yelled at Nagata, who continued to glare at him. Nagata tagged Ishii with a big forearm and then another. They began trading and Ishii quickly sent Nagata down with a big forearm. He hit some light kicks to Nagata’s head. Nagata fired back and caught him with a knee to the mid-section. Nagata went on the attack and hit an exploder for a 2 count and the fans fired up. Ishii fired back and surprised Nagata with brainbuster. Ishii hit several kicks to Nagata’s chest and back. Nagata just glared at him and got up, but Ishii caught him with a powerslam off the ropes a short time later.

Ishii hit his delayed signature superplex, but Nagata managed to kick out at 2. Nagata countered Ishii a short time later and got the white eyes arm bar and the fans lost their minds! WOW! Nagata screamed when Ishii tried to get to the ropes and reapplied the hold in the middle of the ring. Ishii struggled to the ropes once again and managed to get there to break the hold. Ishii fired back with a headbutt. He nailed Nagata with several strikes, but Nagata dropped him with a huge forearm. He wound up and nailed Ishii with a huge kick to the chest for a near fall. He set up for a super exploder and connected! HOLY S—T. HE made the cover, but Ishii kicked out! WOW! Nagata set up for another big kick, but Ishii ducked it and hit a German. Nagata got right up and hit another exploder. Ishii then got up and hit a lariat. Nagata then got right up and hit a spinning kick and both men were down. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Ishii fired back and hit a powerbomb out of the corner and folded over on top of Nagata for a 2 count. Ishii hit a headbutt and a lariat, but Nagata wouldn’t go down. He hit another running lariat, but Nagata kicked out! Nagata countered Ishii and hit a brainbuster for a near fall. WOW! Ishii countered the backdrop driver. They went back and forth and Ishii hit a sliding lariat for a near fall. He then lifted up Nagata and hit the brainbuster for the win. What a war!

Winner: Tomohiro Ishii (8 pts)

Star rating; (****1/2) – Nagata was on the very top of his game for this match. They went to war and had one hell of a back and forth hard-hitting affair with some absolutely crazy exchanged. Nagata remains without a win in the tournament and the crowd really got in to this match down the stretch as he got several near falls on Ishii.

(9) Tetsuya Naito (6) vs. Hirooki Goto (6) in a G1 Climax 27 A Block match. Goto hit some kicks in the corner and Naito spit at him. Goto then hit a series of kicks. Naito fired back a short time later and clotheslined Goto over the top turnbuckle to the floor. Naito began working over Goto’s head/neck area. He hit a neck breaker and made a lax cover for a 2 count. Goto fired back and hit a leg lariat in the corner. The fans seemed mixed in their support, but the Naito chants were louder. Naito fired back and hit his signature dropkick sequence off the ropes. Goto blocked a swinging DDT and eventually caught Naito with a clothesline off the ropes and both men were down. Goto no-sold an enzuguri after they exchanged blows. He then wiped out Naito with a clothesline. He went for a neck breaker over his knee, but Naito countered it into a DDT and both men were down once again. Naito got up and eventually went for Destino, but Goto countered it into a neck breaker over his knee! Goto grabbed a sleeper and Naito began to fade. He fought out of it, but Goto nailed him with a headbutt to the chest. He then hit a modified final cut. Goto went for the GTR, but Naito blocked it. Goto stomped him down to the ground and set up for this signature kick. Naito blocked it and hit a German. Goto no-sold it and Naito hit a rolling kick. He then caught Goto with a flying forearm. Goto blocked another destino attempt and hit his signature neck breaker over his knee. The fans fired up and Goto set up for the GTR, but Naito countered it into a neck breaker over his knee. Naito then ran at him and hit destino for a near fall! Naito lifted Goto up and went for another Destino and connected with it for the win.

Winner: Tetsuya Naito (8 pts)

Star rating: (***1/2) – This was a good match. It felt like something was missing to take it to the next level. If Ibushi beats Tanahashi in the main event, Goto is still in decent shape in terms of staying in contention to make the finals.

(10) IWGP IC Champion Hiroshi Tanahashi (8) vs. Kota Ibushi (4) in a G1 Climax A Block match. Tanahashi tried to get the fans behind him, but the Ibushi chants were louder. The Tanahashi chants picked up and the crowd seemed to be evenly split behind each wrestler. Tanahashi chopped Ibushi against the ropes instead of offering a clean break multiple times. He took Tanahashi down and turned his back to him to play some air guitar. Ibushi popped up behind him and wiped him out with a huge kick as he came off the ropes. Tanahashi blocked a kick and hit a chop block. The crowd was mostly behind Ibushi and offered some light boos as Tanahashi went after his leg. Ibushi mounted a comeback and hit a combination of strikes before wiping out Tanahashi with a big kick to the chest. He then hit a standing moonsault for a 2 count. The fans fired up with Ibushi in control. He sent Tanahashi to the floor with a big hurricanrana and the fans applauded. He set up for the golden triangle and connected! They battled near the apron. Tanahashi eventually hit a dragon screw on Ibushi’s leg around the ropes and he collapsed to the floor. Tanahashi went up top and hit a high fly flow to the floor on a standing Ibushi! Ibushi managed to pull himself back into the ring at 19. Tanahashi hit two more dragon screws around the middle rope and Ibushi collapsed back into the ring. He then got the Texas cloverleaf. Ibushi struggled, but managed to get to the ropes and the fans applauded.

Ibushi hit a snap German a short time later, but Tanahashi fired back with one of his own. Tanahashi went for a basement dropkick, but Ibushi jumped over him and caught him with a double stomp to the gut in mid-air and both men were down. WOW! Both men got up and exchanged forearms. The fans fired up as the pace of the exchange picked up. They continued to go at it and Ibushi went for a lawn dart, but Tanahashi turned it into a sling blade. He went up top, but Ibushi cut him off! They battled up top. Tanahashi punched him down to the mat, but Ibushi hit a moonsault kick. He then hit a big lawn dart, but it didn’t appear that Tanahashi connected with the turnbuckle padding. Ibushi set up for the outside in German off the ropes and connected! He ran over to make the cover, but Tanahashi kicked out at the last second! Tanahashi fired back a short time later and hit a swinging neck breaker and both men were down. They went back and forth and Tanahashi hit a straightjacket German for a near fall. He hit the sling blade, but Ibushi kicked out at 2. WOW! Tanahashi went up top and hit a standing high fly flow! He went up top again for the traditional high fly flow, but Ibushi got his knees up! Ibushi grabbed Tanahashi’s arm and went for a big knee, but Tanahashi caught it. They went back and forth and Ibushi hit a KO kick! Holy s—t! Ibushi then connected with the last ride powerbomb for a near fall. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! Tanahashi grabbed Tanahashi’s arms and hit a huge knee to Tanahashi’s head for the win. WOW! That was unreal.

Winner: Kota Ibushi (6 pts)

Star rating: (****1/2) – This was great. The fans favored Ibushi and Tanahashi went slight heel at the beginning and most of the fans got behind it. Tanahashi went after Ibushi’s legs, but just couldn’t make a lot of traction with the leg work. He appeared on the verge of winning with a high fly flow late in the match, but Ibushi got his knees up. Ibushi hit the last ride powerbomb for a near fall and then finished off Tanahashi with a sick knee to the head for the win. This took a little while to get going at first, but it was incredible during the second half. Ibushi stays in contention with the win, as some will hold out hope for the dream finals of Ibushi vs. Omega. Tanahashi remains tied for first despite losing.

After the match, the fans chanted for Ibushi. He cut a promo must to the delight of the fans, who were behind him most of the match.

Overall thoughts: There were two great matches on the card and everything else was good. Sabre is now tied for first place after beating Makabe. He has had a great run through the tournament so far. The big matches you want to see are Nagata-Ishii and Ibushi-Tanahashi, which were both incredible.

Nagata hasn’t picked up a win yet in the tournament, but he gave Ishii all he could handle. He even hit Ishii’s own finish on him, but he couldn’t put him away and ended up falling short in the end. This was one hell of a war that is worth going out of your way to see. Nagata is going out in grand fashion in terms of in-ring performance in his final G1.

The main event between Ibushi and Tanahashi was incredible. Tanahashi didn’t have to worry about his arm in his last match and he got on a roll against Ibushi in this match, as Ibushi chose to go with power moves, striking, and high-flying to wear him down. This was one hell of a back and forth match with some great near falls down the stretch. Tanahashi kicking out of the last ride powerbomb was incredible before Ibushi put him away with a sick double wrist clutch knee strike to the chin.

After 11 nights, Ibushi remains in contention with 6 points. The top of the A block is crowed with Tanahashi, Naito, Sabre, and Ishii all at 8 points. Makabe, Fale, Goto, and Ibushi are all right behind them with 6. The tournament continues to spoil wrestling fans with great matches that have a big fight feel. You don’t want to miss Nagata vs. Ishii and Tanahashi vs. Ibushi. It will be interesting to see if Ibushi gets a shot at the IC Championship in the fall after this win. Of course, the Omgea-Ibushi dream match final is still on the table as well. This tournament has shattered my expectations in terms of storytelling and in-ring action.

STANDINGS AFTER NIGHT 11

A BLOCK

Hiroshi Tanahashi (4-2, 8 pts)
Tetsuya Naito (4-2, 8 pts)
Zack Sabre Jr. (4-2, 8 pts)
Tomohiro Ishii (4-2, 8 pts)
Togi Makabe (3-3, 6 pts)
Bad Luck Fale (3-3, 6 pts)
Hirooki Goto (3-3, 6 pts)
Kota Ibushi (3-3, 6 pts)
YOSHI-HASHI (2-4, 4 pts)
Yuji Nagata (0-6, 0 pts)

B BLOCK

Kazuchika Okada (5-0, 10 pts)
Kenny Omega (4-1, 8 pts)
EVIL (4-1, 8 pts)
SANADA (3-2, 6 pts)
Minoru Suzuki (3-2, 6 pts)
Michael Elgin (2-3, 4 pts)
Tama Tonga (2-3, 4 pts)
Juice Robinson (1-4, 2 pts)
Toru Yano (1-4, 2 pts)
Satoshi Kojima (0-5, 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 11

(8) Tomohiro Ishii vs. Yuji Nagata (****1/2)

(10) IWGP IC Champion Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Kota Ibushi (****1/2)

ATTENTION: Read Radican’s G1 Climax 27: Night 1o report by clicking HERE

Contact Sean at pwtorchsean@gmail.com. Follow Sean on twitter at twitter.com/sr_torch. Follow and like Radican’s Wrestling Community Facebook.com at Facebook.com/seanradicanrwc

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