Csonka’s NJPW on AXS TV Review 4.07.17
Csonka’s NJPW on AXS TV Review 4.07.17
– BUSHI is the guest for interviews this week.
IWGP NEVER Openweight Championship Match: Champion Katsuyori Shibata defeated Bobby Fish @ 16:48 via pin [****¼]: Shibata was nursing a back injury and there was some speculation he may need time off. These two had a match that aired on ROH TV this week, and it was solid but a bit disappointing; thankfully they did way better here. Fish has new snazzy non-reDRagon tights here. Slow beginning, with both guys looking to throw strikes, but Shibata took Fish down and grapplefucked him a bit before Fish could make the ropes. In shades of their ROH match, Shibata then worked the figure four early. Fish escaped and they worked the double knee bar spot, exactly like their ROH match. Fish attacked the knee of Shibata, slamming it off of the apron several times, hopefully he sells it better than n their ROH match. They went to the floor, where Fish worked the neck and shoulder of Shibata in the barricade. Fish continued the attack on the floor now targeting the neck of Shibata. Back in, Fish hit the slingshot senton onto the shoulder for a near fall. Fish worked nee strikes and a backdrop suplex, and again got a near fall. it’s all Fish as he works a guillotine and then elbows to the neck, showing great focus and aggression. Fish was demanding that the ref stop the match, and then went back to laying in the kicks as Shibata finger waved him off and demanded he keep kicking him. They traded corner kicks and knees, and then Shibata worked forearms and then the corner dropkick. Shibata worked an abdominal stretch, and then kicks. He got the hanging guillotine, which should be broken easier because of the work on the shoulder, but Fish powered into a spinebuster and then the heel hook. Shibata made the ropes, ran into a suplex and Shibata popped up and planted Fish with the German and the PK, but he dropped to the mat and couldn’t cover. Fish again scored with he heel hook, great fight spot from Shibata, but Fish pulled him back center. Shibata with another great fight and finally got the ropes. XPLODER by Fish into the backdrop suplex, but Shibata was not done and kicked out again. Shibata countered the suplex and head butted the fuck out of Fish and busted himself open, locked in the sleeper and then destroyed Fish with the PK for the win. That was an excellent match, using what worked with the ROH match and adding in the aggression and sense of urgency that the ROH match severely lacked. This was a tremendous co-main event, and would have been right at home as the main event.
– BUSHI as happy that the juniors got to main event over the NEVER title. He was determined to beat KUSHIDA, and the venue was basically in his hometown.
IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship Match: BUSHI defeated Champion KUSHIDA @ 22:57 via pin to become the NEW Champion [***½]: The mysterious Los Ingobernables member is back. BUSHI is in his pimp as fuck all white gear. We got a nice, fast paced, back and forth here with BUSHI doing his sliding pose to frustrate the champion. They worked to the floor, with BUSHI sending KUSHIDA to the barricade. He then used a chair to keep the advantage. Back in the ring, BUHSI kept the heat, grounding KUSHIDA. BUSHI worked the figure four head scissors and skull fucker until KUSHIDA got the ropes. BUSHI kept control with an STF, while also trying to rip off KUSHIDA’s nose. The dropkick followed and then BUSHI choked out KUSHIDA with his shirt, but KUSHIDA hit a backdrop suplex to break that. The mystery man tripped up KUSHIDA, allowing BUSHI to set him on the ropes but KUSHIDA fired back and hit a hit a lariat. KUSHIDA sent BUSHI to the floor, but the mystery man again got involved and held KUSHIDA, but BUSHI ran into him and KUSHIDA hit a dive onto both. Back in the ring they went back and forth, with KUSHIDA getting a slick arm bar, only for BUSHI to make the ropes. KUSHIDA then started to attack the arm, and then we got a ref bump when BUSHI pulled the ref into a missile dropkick. MIST by BUSHI and KUSHIDA rolls to the floor. Naito is out now and holds KUSHIDA for a suicide dive from BUSHI. Naito and BUSHI work over KUSHIDA, but Elgin makes the save or his little buddy. Elgin hits the combo sack of shit/Samoan drop on then and beats Naito to the back. He lions hold back the mystery man as Elgin limps after Naito. Back in the ring, KUSHIDA mounts a comeback and hits a pretty moonsault for a near fall. BUSHI uses the ref for a distraction and scores with a backslide for 2. KUSHIDA counters the MX into a code breaker of his own, and we get a double down spot. They trade strikes from their knees, fight to their feet and KUSHIDA has had enough of this shit and punches BUSHI in the mouth but BUSHI keeps firing but KUSHIDA attacks the arm again. KUSHIDA then applies the hover board lock, BUSHI fights and crawls, but then BUSHI gets a roll up for 2. KUSHIDA jacks the jaw of BUSHI, scores with a PK to the arm, they do a sloppy counter spot and BUSH hits the Canadian destroyer for a great near fall. Both guys are spent here, BUSHI lands a kick and a standing MX. To the ropes and scores with the MX proper and KUSHIDA survives! BUSHI up top now, flies in and hits the MX off the top and finally puts KUSHIDA away. The match was strong, very good even, but disappointed in the main event. The run in came too early I felt, and took some steam away from the match. It added to the Naito vs. Elgin feud, which is fine and didn’t directly impact the finish. Also, they did not reveal the mysterious Los Ingobernables member, who felt like more of a distraction than anything else. The home stretch was really strong, but with a lackluster beginning and the interference taking away, it felt flat in the main event spot. BUSHI was the second tier LIJ junior even before Takahashi arrived, he’s good but lacks the flare and that next level Takahashi kicks it into.
– In the final interview, BUSHI said he wore white because it was a special match. He gets compared to KUSHIDA a lot, they are contemporaries, but he feels he’s every bit as good as KUSHIDA, if not better.
– End scene.
– Thanks for reading.