SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
NEW JAPAN CUP REPORT
MARCH 18, 2021
AIRED LIVE ON NJPWWORLD.COM
(1) YUYA UEMURA vs. GABRIEL KIDD
Yuya Uemura and Gabriel Kidd traded standard wrestling moves, with a focus on wrist control by both men to get an early advantage, in which Uemura won. Gabriel was able to get to his feet and the two then battled in and out of head locks. Eventually, both got frustrated and traded chops in the ring, sending Kidd to the mat. Uemura contorted for several minutes until Kidd made a comeback. After Kidd’s assault both men traded forearms. Eventual Kidd hit a suplex and got the pinfall.
WINNER: Gabriel Kidd in 8:00
(2) YOTA TSUJI & YUJI NAGATA vs. GREAT-O-KHAN & JEFF COBB
Yuji Nagata and Great-O-Khan started, with Kahn getting Nagata toward his corner and Cobb grabbed ahold, whole Khan pummeled. Nagata got a come back and tagged in Tsuji, both then teamed up on O-Khan. After a few moments O-Khan fought back and got Tsuji in the corner and tagged in Cobb, who continued the fight. Cobb and Khan tagged in and out until Tsuji was bale to get the hot tag to Nagata. He was able to knock o-Khan off the apron and then he battled with Cobb, who won the exchange and tagged in O-Khan. Magnolia Chops were used by Khan, Nagata tagged in Tsuji who battled with O-Khan. Cobb and O-Khan teamed up and got a near fall on Tsuji, Khan then got the pinfall win over Tsuji.
WINNER: Great-O-Khan & Jeff Cobb in 12:00
(3) TOA HENARE & JUICE ROBINSON vs. BAD LUCK FALE & KENTA
Juice Robinson and Bad Luck Fale started, Toa Henare entered shortly after the start and the two hit a move on Fale. Once Toa was alone Fale threw him into the Bullet Club corner and Kenta was tagged in. Kenta and Fale worked over Toa in their corner, until Henare was able to counter and get the tag to Juice. Kenta and Juice battled, and both men made tags. Fale and Toa then battled until all four men were in the ring. Fale hit an elbow drop on Toa for a near fall, he then hit a choke slam for the pinfall.
WINNER: Bad Luck Fale & Kenta in 9:00
(4) BUSHI & TETSUYA NAITO & SHINGO TAKAGI vs. TAIJI ISHIMORI & CHASE OWENS & EVIL
Evil and Shingo Takagi started, but Evil tagged in Taiji Ishimori before any contact was made. Shingo then took out both Ishimori and Chade Owens, then tagged in Naito. Naito continued working on Ishimori and then tagged in Bushi, who continued the work. On the outside, Evil and Shingo fought with Evil winning the engagement. Owens was tagged in and he battled with Bushi, he and the rest of his team worked over Bushi until he made the tag into Shingo. Takagi fought off Evil and Ishimori in the ring. Shingo got a near fall on Evil. Owens was tagged in and he got a two count on Shingo. Naito was then tagged in and he worked over Chase Owens, Evil evened the odds, but then Naito, Bushi, and Shingo worked together for a near fall that was broken up by Ishimori. Naito then hit his finish on Owens.
Winner: Bushi & Tetsuya Naito & Shingo Takagi in 10:00
(5) DAVID FINDLAY vs. JAY WHITE – QUARTER-FINAL MATCH
White leaned out on the ropes to start the match, then a test of strength was had, White then counseled with Gedo outside the ring. Findlay and White then battled, Findlay took the match to the outside and he got in the face of Gedo. White took advantage and tossed Findlay in the barrier at ringside, and then into the ring apron, then back to the barrier.
David Findlay was able to beat the 20 count, but White continued the beatdown once he got back into the ring. Eventually Findlay evened the odds and as able to knock White out of the ring with uppercuts, he then jumped over the top rope onto White, and threw him back into the ring. Findlay then continued his offense, until Gedo involved himself. After a few moments of battle, Juice Robinson carried Gedo out of the arena and it was now just Jay White and David Findlay.
White got a quick two count and took command of the match once more. After a while Findlay and White were both laying after an exchange, Findlay got up but White him a German Suplex to ground his opponent once more. In this time, White got Findlay out of the ring and hit a slam leading to another near fall. Then he hit a Kiwi Crusher, for another near fall.
Findlay hit a blue thunder bomb to give him some space, White answered back by throwing Findlay into the corner. Both men were visible beaten at this point. On their knees, both men struck each other with forearms, eventually getting to their feet. Findlay hit a back breaker for a two count, then a neck breaker for a near fall. White then hit a DDT and set up the Blade Runner, but Findlay hit his cutter and got the pinfall over White.
WINNER: David Findlay in 20:00 (***)
(Sage’s Analysis: A very surprising ending. It looked like this was going to be a very formulaic ending and I was swerved. The New Japan cup being used to build guys up like Shingo and Findlay is a good use, in my opinion. David Findlay has grown a lot in the last year and I am interested to see his semi-final match.)
(6) SANADA vs. WILL OSPREAY – QUARTER-FINAL MATCH
The match started fast and furious with drop kicks and acrobatics in the ring ropes by Sanada. Ospreay was on the outside of the ring and asked that Sanada not hit his face. Sanada then hit the face of Ospreay, Sanada was then perched on the top rope and kicked down onto the floor. Ospreay then slammed Sanada into the barrier, and dropped him on his back on the same barrier.
Sanada was able to beat the count, but Ospreay continued the assault once he reentered the ring. Ospreay worked a back breaker and an abdominal stretch in this time. He then placed Sanada on the apron and hit a knee drop on his back, sending him to the floor. Another 20 count started at this time, with Sanada entering in at the count of 17. The men then traded forearms, with Ospreay hitting a springboard forearm.
Sanada was able to take out the leg of Ospreay, he was able to use this delay to get some of his offense in. Ospreay sold that his nose was broken, as both men played in the ring after an exchange. Ospreay worked stiff and methodical shots for a while, Sanada then grabbed the nose of Ospreay and tied him up with his face in the turn buckle pad. Here he drop kicked Ospreay’s face into the pad.
Sanada then threw Ospreay out of the ring, and back in, getting a two count once back in. The two men then went back and forth for a while trading suplexes, top roped moves, counters, and near falls. Ospreay hit an elbow off the tope rope, and then a power bomb to slow down Sanada. After a moment, Sanada hit a German suplex, he then went to the top rope and Ospreay kicked him and slammed down Sanada from a fireman’s carry position.
The men then countered DDT attempts, Ospreay tried an Oscutter but Sanada was able to avoid it and swing Ospreay and then get him in a head submission. Ospreay sold that he was near passed out and sprung to live for a second, Sanada let go and tried his top rope moonsault, but Ospreay got his knee’s up. Sanada got a near fall on a roll up, Ospreay followed that up with a hurricanrana and an Oscutter for a near fall.
Ospreay then forearmed the back of Sanada’s head, he then hit the Storm Breaker for the pin.
WINNER: Will Ospreay in 19:00 (****)
(Sage’s Analysis: A really fun act from start to finish. If these two were given 30-40 minutes they could easily have a match of the year level type of match, the likes of Ibushi and Jay White. The match itself was logical and made Sanada look like he was overmatched at times, but Ospreay has really been on a tear and I think Sanada’s day will come. I for one am holding my stock in Sanada for years to come.)