NJPW G1 CLIMAX 33 – NIGHT 15 RESULTS (8/8): Radican’s results & analysis of Henare vs. Tonga, Kingston vs. Finlay, Takagi vs. Evil

By Sean Radican, PWTorch Columnist (Twitter: @SR_Torch)


AUG. 8, 2023

Announcers: Kevin Kelly and Chris Charlton


O-Khan pinned Oiwa with the eliminator. He stared Kiyomiya right in the face after the fall had been counted.

WINNERS: Jeff Cobb & The Great-O-Khan in 9:00.


Coughlin attacked Toru Yano as he made his entrance. Honma  got jumped as well. The fans booed Coughlin and Kidd. Coughlin tied Yano to the barricade at ringside with tape. Yano eventually freed himself. Kidd shoved the ref down and then hit Honma with a foreign object to get the pin.

WINNERS: Alex Coughlin & Gabe Kidd in 8:30.


Narita and Umino had a good hard-hitting exchange early. Narita ended up tapping out Jado with the Cobra Twist for the submission win.

WINNERS: Narita & Desperado & Suzuki via submission at 6:45.

(4) TMDK (Zack Sabre Jr. & Shane Haste & Kosei Fujita) vs. HIROOKI GOTO & OSKAR LEUBE & YOH

Good action here. Haste caught Leube with a big clothesline for a nearfall. He then hit The Last Ride for the win.

WINNERS: TMDK in 10:00.

Yoh and Fujita got into it after the match and Goto ran over like an upset parent and grabbed Fujita and tossed him into the ringpost. Sabre then got into it with Goto.


Tsuji hit a falcon arrow on Makabe late for a nearfall. He then hit a big spear for the win.

WINNERS: Bushi & Tsuji & Naito in 11:00

After the match, Naito kept the Cloverleaf hold on Tanahashi past the bell in a preview of their block D match tomorrow.

(6) TOMOHIRO ISHII (2) vs. MIKEY NICHOLLS (4) – C Block match

Nicholls won a strike exchange and took over on the floor during the early going. Ishii mounted a comeback and hit several strikes in the corner. The ref tried to intervene and Ishii shoved him away. Nicholls won another hard hitting exchange in the ring and hit a DDT for a nearfall. Nicholls hit a stalling vertical suplex for a two count a short time later. They battled up top and Nicholls hit a superplex on Ishii.

Nicholls hit a DDT and Ishii got right up only for Nicholls to put him right back down. Nicholls hit a sliding lariat for a nearfall. The crowd tried to rally behind Ishii. He eventually ducked a clothesline and hit a German suplex and both men were down. Both men got up and began trading clotheslines that they no sold. Ishii missed a sliding clothesline. Nicholls caught Ishii with a kick to the head and a short time later Ishii returned the favor and both men were down.

Ishii finally hit a sliding lariat for a two count. Nicholls countered the VDBB and hit a Master Blaster and a moonsault for a near fall. Ishii hit a headbutt and a clothesline. He staggered, but grabbed Nicholls and hit the VDBB for the win.

WINNER: Tomorhiro Ishii (4 pts) in 13:15. (***3/4)

(Radican’s Analysis: Another day another really good to great Ishii G1 match. It probably won’t be long before Ishii is done with doing the G1. He doesn’t have the greatest won-loss record, but in terms of performance consistency he’s one of the most reliable men to put on an awesome match in the tournament.)

Kelly mentioned that Ishii had passed the one hour mark in terms of total match time in G1 matches during his career. What a crazy stat.)

(7) HENARE (4) vs. TAMA TONGA (7) – C Block match

Charlton mentioned that Henare only had 4 points, but he had beaten Shingo Takagi and Tomohiro Ishii to cemented himself an invite back to G1 next year.

Tonga needs a win and Evil to win later to stay alive for a shot at the final eight. Tonga hit a backdrop early and tore off his shirt. Henare fired back and exposed the top turnbuckle. He wedged Tonga between the ropes and nailed him with a running charge. Henare was in control, but Tonga caught him with a dropkick off the ropes and both men were down. Tonga didn’t want to climb the corner with the exposed turnbuckle, so he went to the other side of the ring. When he went up top, Henare nailed him with a knee that sent him to the floor.

Henare went on the attack and hit a rugby kick for a two count. Tonga charged at Henare but ate a blue thunder bomb for a near fall. Tonga mounted a comeback and hit a Tonga Twist. He decided to climb up to the top where the padding was exposed this time and he connected with Supreme Flow for a two count. Henare caught Tonga coming off the ropes with a pop up Samoan Drop. Henare hit a big knee to Tonga’s head. He set up for Ultima, but Tonga fought it off. Henare got Ultima a short time later.

Tonga eventually hit a Gun Stun out of nowhere after escaping, but he could not make the cover and both men were down. Tonga eventually rolled over to make the cover, but only got a two count. He went for three Gun Stuns, but Henare blocked each attempt. Henare hit Rampage, but Tonga blocked Streets of Rage. Tonga hit a Superman punch and a Jay-driller.

WINNER: Tama Tonga (9 pts) in 14:30. (***3/4)

(Radican’s Analysis: Tonga stays alive with the win for the final eight. This was a really good match. Henare has looked more and more comfortable going to a hard-hitting style with his new look. He might have finally found his character in NJPW with this latest overhaul.)

(8) EDDIE KINGSTON (8) vs. DAVID FINLAY (w/Gedo) (8) – C Block match 

Eddie needs a win and he’s in. A draw also gets Kingston in with an Evil loss. Kingston took control on the outside during the early fling and tossed Finlay into the barricade several times. Finlay fired back and not a snap suplex on the floor. He ended up shoving Kingston into the ringpost a short time later. Finlay and Kingston went back and forth with Finlay going for Into Oblivion. Kingston blocked it and hit a backfield and then a Northern Ligjhts suplex, but Finlay got his foot on the bottom rope.

They were going back and forth looking for an advantage in position when Finlay suddenly hit Into Oblivion, but he couldn’t make the cover and both men were down on the mat. Both men got to their knees and began trading blows. They traded headbutts and got to feet and began trading strikes. Finlay blocked a series of spinning backfists and connected with soem big discus forearms. Finlay connected with a spear for a nearfall. He then hit Into Oblivion for the win.

WINNER: David Finlay in 16:30. (****)

(Radican’s Analysis: This was a really good back and forth encounter as both men were battling to stay alive with a win. Finlay ended up getting the win here, as the match came down to a series of counters late. It would be nice to get a Kingston Strong Openweight Championship defense in the near figure against Finlay.)

Finlay is the first man to advance out of the C block with the win. Finlay promised to beat Ospreay in their round of 8 matchup on his way to the back.

(9) SHINGO TAKAGI (7) vs. EVIL (w/Dick Togo) (8) – C Block match

There will be a bonus play in main event if Takagi wins with Takagi facing Tama Tonga to make the playoffs. If Evil wins, he’s in. There’s also numerous other crazy scenarios that could take place to advance either man that Charlton ran down on commentary very quickly.

Evil attacked Shingo and choked him with a towel when he got into the ring before the bell rang. He dropped the towel and the ref called for the bell. Evil made a quick cover, but Takagi kicked out at two. The announcers mentioned the next round would have no time limit. A potential playoff match between Shingo and Tonga would also have no limit.

Shingo got on a roll, but Togo distracted him. Evil tried to throw Takagi into the ring announcer several times. He succeeded on the third try. Evil got on the mic and taunted Shingo. He then tried to shave Takagi’s head. Evil has promised to shave his head if he doesn’t advance. Evil tossed Takagi to the floor and Togo worked him over. The ref kept looking where Evil wanted him to when Togo rolled Takagi back into the ring and Evil made the cover. That was funny.

Takagi fended off all sorts of interference, but it took three tries for him to hit Made in Japan for a near fall. Takagi hit Last of the Dragon, but the ref got pulled. Togo made the count and Takahashi rang the bell. Takagi was upset to say the least. Togo choked Takagi out. Tsuji and Bushi ran down to help, but they got cut off. El

The ref was still down as Takagi took an absolute beating from House of Torture. Evil made the cover, but Hiromu Takahashi ran down and pulled the ref. Tsuji hit a big moonsault to the floor to wipe out House of Torture and the fans went crazy. Takagi shoved the ref and hit a low blow. He hit Everything is Evil for the win. Wow.

Winner: Evil (10 pts) at 17:45. (**1/4) *Evil advance to playoff round

(Radican’s Analysis: This was a down ending to the last night of C Block action. This was every Evil match we’ve seen and with NJPW trying to push forward a new crop of wrestlers to bring us out of the malaise of the pandemic era booming, Evil is a terrible reminder of how bad things were at times for NJPW.

Takagi winning and going to a playoff match against Tonga after beating the odds would have been the feel good moment of the tournament, but instead Evil went over here and he’s through to the playoff. Gross.)

After the match, Evil said he was going to shave Takagi’s head, but LIU made the save. LIJ left and Evil told him he’d shave him bald anytime.

Many fans left for the exit, but those that stayed applauded Takagi as he left with some help from his stablemates. Evil called himself Mr. G1. He told Sanada to learn his place.

Overall thoughts: (5.0) – The undercard was enjoyable enough, but the main event left such a bad taste in my mouth that it nearly ruined any enjoyment I had watching the rest of the card.

This tournament has been rough to get through. The format with four blocks of 8 wrestlers is brutal. There’s just no reason to run such a lengthy tournament with so many people in it.

There have been a lot of really good matches, but nothing truly great to point people towards in terms of showing them a high-end MOTYC nor has there been an exciting angle or storyline to mention to people that ask what will hook them in if they invest their time watching this tournament.

I suggest watching all of the block matches on this show prior to the main event. For the first time in the tournament, I was really interested because of the potential tie-breaker situation where if Shingo won, he would have an impromptu playoff match against Tama Tonga to determine the last slot in the playoffs.

I haven’t found myself hooked by many of the stories in the tournament, but I was all in on seeing this tie breaker match. I thought NJPW had done a good job of scaling back on their relentless push of Evil and House of Torture, which was one of the big reasons people began to check out of NJPW a couple of years ago. NJPW had slowly been earning back the trust of fans by getting back to what they do best and that’s putting on great wrestling matches with great stories and great wrestlers.

Takagi has been an afterthought in NJPW for the most part since dropping the IWGP World Hvt. Championship a couple of years ago. It would have been a really fun story to at least see him go to a tie break match against Tonga. NJPW shoved Evil down our throats in the past, but lately he’s been utilized on the undercard. To see his schtick with all of the interference and ridiculous ref distractions in the main event of a block night where he wins the match is a near unforgivable booking offense from NJPW.

Contact Sean at pwtorchsean@gmail.com. Follow him on X @SR_Torch

CATCH UP ON THE PREVIOUS REPORT: NJPW G1 CLIMAX 33 – NIGHT 13 RESULTS (8/5): Kuester’s results & analysis of Sanada vs. Owens, Narita vs. Kiyomiya, Tsuji vs. Kidd


OR CHECK OUT PROWRESTLING.NET’S REPORT FOR ANOTHER VIEWPOINT: NJPW “G1 Climax 33 Night 15” results (8/8): Vetter’s review of Shingo Takagi vs. Evil, Eddie Kingston vs. David Finlay, Tama Tonga vs. Henare, Tomohiro Ishii vs. Mikey Nicholls

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