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matt925

NJPW G1 Special in San Francisco

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I didn’t find the first half of the card lazy at all, but I do wonder if, at a certain point, New Japan’s straight top-down construction might limit ticket sales in the US. We’re used to at least the pretense that every match matters, maybe a few could “steal the show”, etc. Much less just getting stars on the card to make an appearance in tights. 

Still no word that I can find on Hiromu other than Dave’s initial report, which could be good or bad, but we won’t know until we know.

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I was making dinner during the Young Bucks match, I didn’t pay much attention to it. And from the sound of it I didn’t miss much. The Young Bucks are weird they can put on show stealing performances. The Wrestle Kingdom match against Sho abs Yo was bonkers good and I have yet to see  it but I heard them and The Briscoes tore the house down. On the other hand they also are quick to rely on just doing superkick spotfest if the audience allows then to. I have yet to see the Dominion match against Evil and Sanada so I can’t comment on that but maybe they have done all they can do in New Japan. At best I hope their Heavy Weight Tag Run ends up like Snoop Doggs No Limit run where it was awkward at first but once they get more assimilated although never a complete fit there’s flashes of brilliance sprinkled in enough that it’s not a utter disaster.

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If an IWGP title match is going to be a death match they should announce it ahead of time. Or have some fluorescent lights. Or have it on an island.😀

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Worst IWGP title match in at least two years.

Ross and Barnett should be fired.

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So I apparently I had no idea I've had AXS for who knows how long now and actually can watch NJPW. Anything aside from the last three title matches I should check out from this? The only NJPW matches I've watched n the last few years have been 2-3 KUSHIDA Jr. Title matches (vs. BUSHI & Hiromu). Do I need to have seen the previous Cody/Kenny match to enjoy this one?

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Hiromu/Dragon Lee was good until the injury, and Jay White/Juice is a top-10 MOTY candidate and Jay's breakout match.

The Cody/Kenny match is terrible and can be ignored.

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Latest Hiromu update is that he can sit and talk with conciousness, but no statement as to the extent of the injury. 

Keeping my fingers crossed for the guy though. 

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I think the straight hate for the main event might be a little much. It was Cody. What did you expect? This match was about the story, not match quality. Did people folks really get their expectations that high for a Cody match? For me, the pay off was the transition from the reunification of the BC and defection of King Haku and his boys. Perfectly acceptable wrestling on top of an ok card.

 

 

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With the caveat that I mostly liked the match, because I find their mutual ~acting~ melodrama really compelling, I think the problem was more an uncharacteristically off Omega performance, rather than Cody being Cody. (Although, Cody's "doing everything slower makes you more of a heel" Randy Orton thing is... not great.) He just seemed tired (almost like he promoted/headlined his own show, shot commercials, and has been flying around doing a hundred interviews), weirdly struggled to jump high enough on like half his v-triggers (granted, getting kneed in the sternum would still hurt), and went to the "we're so fatigued we have to hold one another up, but I'm clearly calling spots" well twice. I found the basic narrative frame interesting enough--Kenny is too consumed by his passions and is thus too risky; Cody takes advantage until he turns away from cheating at the last moment, choosing to lose right rather than win wrong--but I needed more intensity to sell that. Instead, it was a bit aimless between big bumps. But that's also my own bias against this sort of match. Even the most heralded, like the Gargano/Ciampa duology, fall a bit short of MOTYC for me.

I think @Michael Sweetser's point is also part of this: Okada set the standard for match quality really, really high. (Though I'd still ballpark this with Okada's Cody, Fale, EVIL, and SANADA defenses.)

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That is a great take on the match and the only thing I disagree with is the nitpickiest bit in that I thought the V Triggers looked fine, good even. As a massive Omega mark, I do wish he'd rein in the histrionics just a smidgeon from an 11 to a 10. At least he's not doing it every match and saves it for the big occasions when the narrative justifies the emotions. I thought the structure was a bit janky and the story built too much around big dangerous spots to be a truly great match but I do understand they did that to highlight the differences between the two of them. I agree that that this would be near the bottom of Okada's defences in terms of match quality (how dare you put the SANADA match in that category though!).

I'm interested to see where Kenny goes from here. Does he continue to do WWE style main events from 2000? Or does he actually pay more than lip service to his own admission that Okada is the best wrestler and try to adapt to the more traditional IWGP style? Something in between would be probably the most realistic option and what I'd like to see. 

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Apparently JR is in the ER and suffered a broken rib thanks to what happened Saturday

 

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A couple other notes, regarding that: JR tweeted that both White and Juice "did the right thing" after the show, are good kids, and they shouldn't be held responsible; he also said Barnett isn't going to be in any trouble for his improvisation. 

One other thing, regarding Cody/Omega: I wonder if they went out there, thinking they might have just seen Hiromu's last match. Juice and White presumably were making their entrances before he collapsed backstage, but surely Cody and Kenny were aware.

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21 minutes ago, Beech27 said:

One other thing, regarding Cody/Omega: I wonder if they went out there, thinking they might have just seen Hiromu's last match. Juice and White presumably were making their entrances before he collapsed backstage, but surely Cody and Kenny were aware.

Yeah. I could see that completely throwing them off. That said, the Juice/Switchblade match was really good.

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31 minutes ago, Beech27 said:

A couple other notes, regarding that: JR tweeted that both White and Juice "did the right thing" after the show, are good kids, and they shouldn't be held responsible; he also said Barnett isn't going to be in any trouble for his improvisation. 

 

If JR's account is correct, Barnett should be fired and smacked by NJPW for jumping the rail.  Frankly, AXS should be thinking of moving  on from JR and Barnett anyway, as their commentary all night crossed into unprofessional.  You can't have the live voices of your American Network presence constantly shitting on the product all night.

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Why doesn't AXS use Callis and Kelly?

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Callis and Kelly are NJ employees but are for NJ World.  AXS has the exclusive rights for the live broadcasts, and use Barnett and JR, so they're stuck.  Barnett and JR don't work for NJPW, they work for AXS.  NJ is using all AXS equipment for production and not their own in-house guys.  

 

Which means I should amend, and say that NJPW should push AXS to part ways with Barnett and JR, as the commentary even before the incident was unprofessional, and Barnett pretty much buried the company at the end of the show.

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22 hours ago, EVA said:

Another amazing Juice promo.

Juice justifying the roll up is the best thing lol. God, he has grown on me so much.

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Ross knew so little about the product that he'd just end up talking about The Rock for most of the night instead and it bugged the shit out of me.  "You know who's a big star?  This guy who has nothing to do with this fucking company.  What's this little guy's name again?  This is a title match."


If you took a drink every time he mentioned The Rock you'd still be in a coma today

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I do not for one second believe that this JR/Barnett/Jay White thing is legit. The idea that Barnett would be so incensed that JR got his chair tipped over that he'd storm the ring in the middle of the show is a pretty big stretch.

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Tipped over with enough force that he broke a rib.

 

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Barnett is supposededly extremely protective of JR, so it's not outside the realm he would've felt froggy if he felt someone took a shot at his little buddy.  The only thing that has me thinking work is possible is that AXS pimped it on their Twitter, which would be dumb, especially if NJPW got pissy about someone jumping the rail.  

 

My biggest problem with it being a work is there's no real endgame I can see from it.

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I've been waiting for the set up for a Josh Barnett NJPW match for months now. He's never been shy about referencing his pro-wrestling experience and loves Japan. I never once thought this was anything more than a way to get him into an NJPW ring and eventually on AXS tv.

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That's what I thought of, but Jay White?  Who does that match help?

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Methinks it's the same logic as Jericho. A name (Barnett in UFC/Jericho in WWE) to get American eyes on the product. White could eat a loss in a special appearance and get back on top by beating a name (one of the big three/four) the next tour.

I may also be wrong....but I posted this instead of recording a commercial for a shitty client so life is still quite good.

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"This isn't Kenny Omega talking, this is Tyson Smith!"

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