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NJPW Dontaku tour 2019

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For such a wanker, gotta say, that is a really sick jacket. I'm envious haha

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Okada in a big dumb brawl with King Diamond will be different, and fun. Like SANADA’s new look! (What a transition.) It reminded me of when Takeshi Rikio got a fancy new robe before beating Kobashi—but of course no one thought SANADA was winning here. And he didn’t. 0-6 against Okada all-time now, but this, I think, still managed to be a good and useful showing for him. And the fans treat him like a big deal even if his record doesn’t quite suggest they should.

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Okada put Sanada over in his postmatch speech by calling him his rival and saying that their story is just beginning which makes sense as they are both 31 years old.

When I saw Sanada all cleaned up I had a slight hope he would pull it off (and corresponding regret that I decided not to go).

I'm glad that NJPW is still trying to have stuff happen during Dontaku to make it more notable. It still lags behind the other big shows but it always has a surprise or two.

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Jericho?  Ugh.

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Kenny is definitely headlining one of the nights of WK.

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Even last year, Kenny was hoping to do Omega-v-Ibushi at the Dome in 2020.

 

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Posted (edited)

I really enjoyed this tour even though my boy didn't win the strap. 😐

The various CHAOS (plus Ibushi and minus poor YOSHI-HASHI who got relegated to teaming with guys who aren't CHAOS) vs. LIJ tags were great. The most underrated part of all them was YOH forgetting his promo after tagging with Okada vs. BUSHI & SANADA and having to redo it 3 or 4 times until he got it right. You've never seen someone that giddy to finally have some mic time. EVIL vs. Ishii was great. The Jr. Tag title match was pretty good.

Dragon Lee vs. Ishimori was fucking insane.

Miho Abe's post match celebration makes any Taichi title win fun. The belt weighs more than she does. I don't think Cobb got buried at all as much as the NEVER Openweight singles title gets passed around like an escort during NBA All-Star weekend now. Moreover, Cobb just start doing more shows with New Japan. There is plenty of time to give him a real push.

Now Goto...he got buried. I enjoyed the Switchblade match but he is now the rehab opponent for everyone who loses a major title program.

If New Japan had better tag teams, EVIL and SANADA could actually do something great together. I think Gedo realized that they deserved more than wrestling the same two tag teams (one that doesn't even tour full time with New Japan) even if it meant pulling the trigger on giving one of a main event rub a little earlier than expected. With that said, I am that much more interested in seeing what direction they go in for G1.

 

Edited by Elsalvajeloco

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I'm really starting to hate Sanada's "I have this complex sequence that can easily get countered into tombstone so I'm going to do it, a lot" approach. Lets not even talk about him always releasing sleeper before 3 count so that he can do a moonsault into Okada's knees. I understand that Okada was winning this and I understand the idea of rival who is almost there, but never actually manages to win, but... their matches start to feel a bit like Sanada is doing stupid shit on purpose so that Okada would beat him.

You know, if Sanada suddenly said fuck it, I'm not releasing people from sleeper then he'd probably be two times champ by now. That being said I loved his new look. And he got another big main event on his belt now so its all good. But if this is supposed to be a long term rivalry then I really hope that they'll heavily alter their match layout in the future.

So I guess White/Tanahashi at Dominion as well? And Taichi/Ishii? No problems with that, Ishii defeated Taichi in NJ Cup so it is about time that Taichi got his revenge.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Archibald said:

I'm really starting to hate Sanada's "I have this complex sequence that can easily get countered into tombstone so I'm going to do it, a lot" approach. Lets not even talk about him always releasing sleeper before 3 count so that he can do a moonsault into Okada's knees. I understand that Okada was winning this and I understand the idea of rival who is almost there, but never actually manages to win, but... their matches start to feel a bit like Sanada is doing stupid shit on purpose so that Okada would beat him.

I think the obvious story is Okada doesn't take risks he doesn't have to (hence, why he can constantly edge out Sanada) while Sanada is still trying to force openings to beat the guy with a huge advantage in big match and pressure situation experience. It's like Leon Spinks (Sanada) in the rematch with Ali (Okada) when Ali regained the heavyweight title. They've done a tremendous job putting layers on this story so if and when Sanada finally does topple him for the strap, it's going to blow the lid off the joint. They're putting on ridiculously awesome matches, and the story makes incredible sense. The only thing they have alter is Sanada showing he has done his due diligence and figured out all the mistakes he has made in the previous six efforts to put himself on the level of Okada.

Edited by Elsalvajeloco
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I understand your point and I agree that when/if he wins building will explode and I'll likely flip the table from excitement, but it is all a bit too much for me. I get and like how Naito was lost in the moment and went for Stardust press couple of times and eventually lost the match. But with Sanada there are multiple points of failure that I feel should be adjusted somehow. But they won't, that one time Okada simply won't be able to raise his knees.

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Posted (edited)
13 hours ago, Archibald said:

I'm really starting to hate Sanada's "I have this complex sequence that can easily get countered into tombstone so I'm going to do it, a lot" approach. Lets not even talk about him always releasing sleeper before 3 count so that he can do a moonsault into Okada's knees. I understand that Okada was winning this and I understand the idea of rival who is almost there, but never actually manages to win, but... their matches start to feel a bit like Sanada is doing stupid shit on purpose so that Okada would beat him.

You know, if Sanada suddenly said fuck it, I'm not releasing people from sleeper then he'd probably be two times champ by now. That being said I loved his new look. And he got another big main event on his belt now so its all good. But if this is supposed to be a long term rivalry then I really hope that they'll heavily alter their match layout in the future.

So I guess White/Tanahashi at Dominion as well? And Taichi/Ishii? No problems with that, Ishii defeated Taichi in NJ Cup so it is about time that Taichi got his revenge.


Taichi's promo lines , at least the subbed ones, are so good.  Taichi came off as so tsundere for Ishii and it was hilarious.

 

I enjoyed EVIL/Ishii and Ishimori/Lee  more than I enjoyed Okada/Sanada (that was good too, but not as good).   Juice/Fale was very good as well.

 

Edited by alstein

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I'm not sure if there is any thread for Dean stuff so I'm posting this here:

He might be wrong. Or he might be right and this is all just a random coincidence. But weird coincidence nonetheless. Two videos of similar style being shot for two different people at around the same time in same area feels a bit odd. But hey, crazier things have happened.

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Admittingly, I was sort of confused when they played that video and then El Phantasmo debut in the next match. 

Unless the Union Jack patch is a red herring, it's going to be someone from the UK.

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Interesting, but I’m not sure there’s anything to it. Two things being shot two miles apart in Los Angeles is just life in Los Angeles. Even putting aside the Union Jack, the synthwave aesthetic doesn’t fit Moxley at all; and I don’t think New Japan would slot him in at the US title level anyway.

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Feel strongly that Chris Brookes will show up this year, not sure if it is him though. 

Only seen Dragon Lee v Ishimori. The overhype I read ahead of it set too high a bar for me, though it was obviously good work. Dragon is underrated in terms of being a strongboy. Flying should be a last resort, hurl the fucks around if ya can. 

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Okada vs Sanada was ridiculously high level but I'm also dying for a 15 minute main event sprint these days. Okada has set the standard for these epics but I'm ready for just a bit of left-field match layout. At least the Jericho match will probably be a brawl. 

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3 hours ago, Hagan said:

Okada vs Sanada was ridiculously high level but I'm also dying for a 15 minute main event sprint these days. Okada has set the standard for these epics but I'm ready for just a bit of left-field match layout. At least the Jericho match will probably be a brawl. 

I think you can safely remove probably. The problem is getting that sumbitch under 25 minutes. If Ibushi/Naito goes at 20 (at the G1 Supercard, they went 20:53), then I doubt it's shorter than that.

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Elsalvajeloco said:

I think you can safely remove probably. The problem is getting that sumbitch under 25 minutes. If Ibushi/Naito goes at 20 (at the G1 Supercard, they went 20:53), then I doubt it's shorter than that.

If they're smart they'd keep it short.   Every now and then you do need a short title match just to show you can have a short title match.  It's either that or have some crazy levels of shenanigans, and Jericho has no logical friends in NJPW outside of Gedo and Jado , and Bullet Club makes zero sense for Jericho because of Jay White.

Edited by alstein

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9 hours ago, alstein said:

If they're smart they'd keep it short.   Every now and then you do need a short title match just to show you can have a short title match.  It's either that or have some crazy levels of shenanigans, and Jericho has no logical friends in NJPW outside of Gedo and Jado , and Bullet Club makes zero sense for Jericho because of Jay White.

What's ironic is yesterday after watching the Dark Side of the Ring ep,  I was relistening to the Talk is Jericho episode where he had Meltzer on for the 30th anniversary of Bruiser's Brody death. With Jericho saying he fashions himself as New Japan's Bruiser Brody for this current era (and I don't think it's changed in the interim w/ the AEW-NJ rift), there is going to be at least 10 minutes of shit outside the ring. It may come at the beginning or somewhere in the middle. Taking that into consideration, they're probably going to wrestle for at least 15 inside the ring. It being the main event of Dominion? It's no chance it goes short unless Jericho is hurting bad. Even then, they'll just do more smoke and mirrors. If they ever do a short IWGP title match like KUSHIDA/Hiromu, it's going to happen on some random tour and not one of the biggest shows of the year.

Plus, I don't get the purpose of just having a short title match at this point just to have one. There are a bunch of champions in boxing and MMA who always go to decision (whether it's 25 in MMA or 36 minutes in boxing). In wrestling, you get to have a finish inside an allotted timeframe of 60 minutes. If Okada (or White or Tanahashi or Omega before him) were going Broadway every time in a title match, then of course it would be too much. If the matches stunk, then it would be different as well. As is, if Okada wants to keep having amazing matches with guys who can work, I don't see any reason to stop him. Even if he defended it against a Fale, I still see it going over 15.

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While I'd love to get some shorter title matches at the same time I think the idea is that these are top guys and top guys aren't winning against each other in quick fashion. If title match went 15 minutes then it would kinda imply that challenger wasn't on that level.

Speaking about the outside the ring stuff, I think last year Jericho/Naito had like 5 minutes brawl outside the ring before the bell was rang.

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28 minutes ago, Archibald said:

While I'd love to get some shorter title matches at the same time I think the idea is that these are top guys and top guys aren't winning against each other in quick fashion. If title match went 15 minutes then it would kinda imply that challenger wasn't on that level.

Speaking about the outside the ring stuff, I think last year Jericho/Naito had like 5 minutes brawl outside the ring before the bell was rang.

Moreover, if there is any place to have two top guys have a match shorter than usual, it would be in G1. If guys are having these wars every other night, it would make sense for either an upset or at least one main event to go 13-15 minutes. It would serve two purposes: first to put over someone really strong who needs it and two, to give someone a break from a long match who really needs it.

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Omega's win over Okada in the G1 was basically a perfect example of how you pull of selling cumulative fatigue/damage against a dangerous opponent, while still delivering a main event the in-house crowd won't feel cheated by.

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6 hours ago, Archibald said:

While I'd love to get some shorter title matches at the same time I think the idea is that these are top guys and top guys aren't winning against each other in quick fashion. If title match went 15 minutes then it would kinda imply that challenger wasn't on that level.

 Speaking about the outside the ring stuff, I think last year Jericho/Naito had like 5 minutes brawl outside the ring before the bell was rang.

And while not completely the same, Akiyama never recovered from losing to Ogawa in that fashion. I know he didn't enjoy being champion, or so the story goes and it fit both Akiyama as an unfocused ace as well as Ogawa's sneaky prick style, but it killed Akiyama's credibility long-term and he never recovered. It also didn't really elevate Ogawa either. Just like with the G1, establishing early finishes, countouts and the like are great if done correctly but it's pretty tough to find situations where it fits.

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So what's Sanada's new look? Did he finally shave that awful Amish beard thing?

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28 minutes ago, Curt McGirt said:

So what's Sanada's new look? Did he finally shave that awful Amish beard thing?

 

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