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Csonka’s NJPW Kizuna Road Review 6.25.19

June 25, 2019 | Posted by Larry Csonka
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Csonka’s NJPW Kizuna Road Review 6.25.19  

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Csonka’s NJPW Kizuna Road 6.25.19

– Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima defeated Yuji Nagata & Yota Tsuji @ 8:45 via submission [**¾]
– LIJ defeated Kota Ibushi, Togi Makabe, Tomoaki Honma, Shota Umino, & Ren Narita @ 11:15 via pin [***½]
Non-Title Match: Juice Robinson & Mikey Nicholls defeated Champions Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa @ 8:30 via pin [**½]
– Bullet Club defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi, Henare, Sho, & Yoh @ 11:10 via pin [***]
– Kazuchika Okada, Big Tom Ishii, Toru Yano, Jushin Thunder Liger, & Tiger Mask IV defeated Suzuki-gun @ 11:55 via pin [***¼]
RevPro British Cruiserweight Title Match: Champion El Phantasmo defeated Ryusuke Taguchi @ 24:10 via pin [**½]
RevPro British Heavyweight Title Match/ZSJ’s G1 Spot on The Line: Champion Zack Sabre Jr. defeated YOSHI-HASHI @ 23:10 via referee stoppage [***½]

– Follow all of my reviews at this link.

– We’re in the Sendai Sunplaza Hall, no English commentary for this show.

Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima vs. Yuji Nagata & Yota Tsuji: Tsuji & Nagata attack to begin, isolating Kojima and working double teams. Kojima cuts off Tsuji with a DDT and another to Nagata. Tenzan tags in and slays the boots to Tsuji, Mongolian chops follow and then double teams on the young lion follows for 2. Tenzan follows with a head butt, and covers for 2. Kojima tags in and follows with elbow strikes. Tsuji fires back, but Kojima cuts him off and knocks Nagata to the floor. He lays in chops on Tsuji, hits the running elbow and the top rope elbow gets 2. Tsuji fights back with a dropkick, tags in Nagata and he follows with kicks. The running boot and XPLODER follows for 2. Kojima fires back, they trade and Kojima hits a rolling elbow, but Nagata takes out the knee. Kojima cuts him off with a cutter tags in Tenzan and he lays in Mongolian chops and follows with a suplex for 2. Nagata pulls the arm bar, Kojima makes the save and Tsuji tags in. They double team Tenzan, slam by Tsuji and the cover gets 2. He locks on the crab, but Tenzan escapes and Tsuji follows with strikes and hits the spear for 2. The dads isolate him, and the TenCozy cutter gets 2 as Nagata make the save. Tenzan then taps him with the anaconda vice. Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima defeated Yuji Nagata & Yota Tsuji @ 8:45 via submission [**¾] This was a pretty good opener with the expected result and Tsuji working hard.

Kota Ibushi, Togi Makabe, Tomoaki Honma, Shota Umino, & Ren Narita vs. Tetsuya Naito, EVIL, SANADA, Shingo, & BUSHI: No LIJ salute from EVIL; Umino and Naito begin. Umino attacks and Naito fires back as they brawl, Naito cuts him off, and hits the hip toss and dropkick; tranquilo. Umino dropkicks him and then spits at him. Naito back in and tags out to BUSHI, Honma tags in and BUSHI attacks with strikes, Honma fires back and hits a shoulder tackle. He follows with strikes and head butts, and the slam connects but then misses the kokeshi. LIJ clears the ring as the brawl to the floor. Naito kicks the shit out of Umino, and back in, Shingo joins in and works over Honma. Honma fires back, but Shingo drops him with a single chop. EVIL tags in and double teams follow. Hw whips Honma to he corner, and Naito hits combination cabrone as EVIL covers for 2. SANADA tags in and lays in uppercuts. Honma fights back and hits a flying kokeshi and tags in Makabe. He runs wild and takes down Shingo with a lariat. Corner mounted strikes follow and the northern lights gets 2 on SANADA. SANADA fires back, Makabe fights off the paradise lock but SANADA hits a dropkick. Ibushi and EVIL tag in and Ibushi hits a flurry of strikes, they work into counters and Ibushi hits the standing shooting star press for 2. EVIL follows with clotheslines, decapitating Ibushi. Shingo in and Ibushi scores with the double PELE and tags in Narita. Shingo cuts him off but Narita hits a suplex as it breaks down. The faces run wild on Shingo, and Narita hits a suplex and covers for 2. Naito makes the save, BUSHI joins in for double teams and Umino takes him out. Narita backslides Shingo for 2. he follows with slaps and strikes, and the sunset flip follows for 2. The lariat follows for 2. Noshigami finishes Narita. LIJ defeated Kota Ibushi, Togi Makabe, Tomoaki Honma, Shota Umino, & Ren Narita @ 11:15 via pin [***½] This was the usual very good LIJ multi-man tag, with Narita showing great babyface fire down the stretch.

– Post match, Ibushi & Naito go face to face. No LIJ pose for EVIL post match.

Non-Title Match: Champions Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa vs. Juice Robinson & Mikey Nicholls: Jado is at ringside. The champions attack and we’re underway as they brawl to the floor. The challengers quickly fight back and try to even things up. Juice drags Loa back to the ringside area, slams him off the barricade but Tonga is working over Nicholls. Loa fires back on Juice, but Nicholls posts Tonga. They beat the count back in and keep brawling. The challengers take control, hitting corner clotheslines and a cannonball. Nicholls hits the big ending and double teams follow. Juice follows with a plancha, but Tonga hits a Tongan twist on Nicholls. The champions isolate Juice, and Loa covers for 2. Tonga tags in and the slingshot elbow connects as Loa hits a senton atomico for 2. Loa lays in strikes, and then grounds the action. Juice fires up, looking for a tag and rolls and gets it. Nicholls runs wild, hits the spinebuster, and sliding lariat. Jado kendo shots him, and Loa hits the jackhammer for 2. Tonga dumps Juice, and La hits the top rope head butt and Tonga follows with a top rope splash for 2. The champions argue with the ref, Juice cuts off Jado and lays in jabs to all. Left hand of God to all until Tonga hits the gun stun. Nicholls then backslides him for the win. Juice Robinson & Mikey Nicholls defeated Champions Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa @ 8:30 via pin [**½] This was a solid match that likely makes Saturday’s rematch in Australia a tag title match, so that works.

Hiroshi Tanahashi, Henare, Sho, & Yoh vs. Jay White, Yujiro Takahashi, Chase Owens & Taiji Ishimori: Gedo & Pieter are at ringside. Ishimori & Yoh begin. Ishimori attacks with kicks, picks up the pace and Yoh follow wit ha running forearm. Owens in and 3K follow with double teams. The faces clear the ring and miss a quad dropkick, allowing Bullet Club to take control. We get floor brawling as Ishimori works over Sho in the ring. White beats down Tanahashi on the floor, as Owens tags in and maintains control over Sho. He grounds the action, laying in strikes and starts slapping Sho around. Sho fires back, rocking Owens but Owens attacks the knee and tags in White. White knocks Tanahashi to the floor and continues to work the knee of Sho. The half crab follows, but Sho makes the ropes. Yujiro tags in and continues to ground Sho. The running boot connects, but Sho fights back and hits a spear. White & Tanahashi tag in and Tanahashi hits sling blade. Yoh joins in and dragon screws follow. Tanahashi hits the senton, covering for 2. White fires back, hits running uppercuts, strikes, and the twister suplex. Tanahashi counters blade runner into twist and shout, and tags in Henare. He runs wild, superkicks Yujiro and hits the stalling suplex on White for 2. It breaks down, Yoh dumps Owens and Ishimori is back in and eats double knees. 3K follow with planchas as Henare hits rampage on White for 2. White counters the uranage, but Henare hits lariat for 2. Sleeper suplex by White, and blade runner finishes Henare. Bullet Club defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi, Henare, Sho, & Yoh @ 11:10 via pin [***] Overall a good match with a really fun closing stretch, but Tanahashi looked rough again.

– Post match, White mocks Goto for failing in their last match, claming he couldn’t go home to his family and ran to a fellow failure in Shibata. White tells Goto to retire, just like Shibata, and will make him famous in the G1. White says he shouldn’t even be in the G1 as he’s the best and #1 contender. Goto arrives and attacks, hits ushigoroshi on Gedo and White bails. I don’t speak Japanese but Goto presumably then told him to fuck right off.

Kazuchika Okada, Big Tom Ishii, Toru Yano, Jushin Thunder Liger, & Tiger Mask IV vs. Minoru Suzuki, Lance Archer, Taichi, Yoshinobu Kanemaru, & DOUKI: Liger and DOUKI begin, no sneak attack by Suzuki-gun. They trade shoulder tackles, and Liger hits the back breaker and follows with the Romero special until Kanemaru makes the save. Tiger tags in and lays in kicks on DOUKI, but Suzuki tags in and cuts him off with strikes and then beats down Yano. Yano removes the buckle pad, but Suzuki-gun maintains control and takes the fight to the floor. Suzuki lays in chair shots on Tiger, and back in, hits the running boot and PK for 2. Archer tags in and continues to beat down Tiger, Tiger tries to fire back but gets cut off as Taichi tags in and tries to remove his mask. Kanemaru tags in and hits a reverse DDT for 2. He misses a moonsault and Tiger hits the tiger driver and both men are down. Okada and Archer tag in and Okada picks up the pace, takes out DOUKI, and DDTs Archer for 1. Archer misses a charge, slam by Okada and he heads up top and ha to leap over Archer, but Archer cuts him off and take shim back up top. Okada counters blackout, and connects with a dropkick. Tags to Big Tom and Taichi. They brawl right away, trading strikes and kicks, until Ishii hits a shoulder tackle. Taichi cuts him off with an enziguri, it breaks down and the pants are off. Taichi lays in a flurry of kicks, the stretch plum follows, Suzuki-gun plays defense but Liger & Tiger make the save. Yano joins in and Taichi cuts him off, axe bomber by Taichi on Ishii and that gets 2. Ishii counters the superkick and follows with a German. DOUKI tags in, lays in kicks on Ishii, and Suzuki-gun runs wild on Ishii. DOUKI hits the slingshot DDT but Okada makes the save. Dropkicks from Okada, lariat on DOUKI by Ishii and the brainbuster finishes it. Kazuchika Okada, Big Tom Ishii, Toru Yano, Jushin Thunder Liger, & Tiger Mask IV defeated Suzuki-gun @ 11:55 via pin [***¼] This was a good and fun tag, continuing established issues and providing teased for upcoming G1 matches.

RevPro British Cruiserweight Champion El Phantasmo vs. Ryusuke Taguchi: They play to the crowd to begin. The crowd loves Taguchi and Red Shoes, but not Phantasmo. They lock up and Phantasmo grounds things and celebrates. They work into standing switches, but Taguchi grounds Phantasmo and frustrates him. Phantasmo complains to the ref and they stall again as Taguchi plays to the crowd. They lock up and Taguchi starts going for pins until Phantasmo backs away. Taguchi grounds the action, but Phantasmo works a head scissors and stops Taguchi from escaping. Taguchi finally counters out, but Phantasmo makes the ropes. Phantasmo now offers a handshake, and of course attacks. Taguchi then fights back, they make each other run and Taguchi avoids the dropkick. He follows with kicks, and then teases the ropewalk but Phantasmo crotches him. Phantasmo now attacks the arm and does the ropewalk, adding in kicks, and follows with a RANA for 2. Phantasmo chokes out Taguchi, but Taguchi cradles him for 2. Phantasmo cuts him off and sunset flips Taguchi for 2. Taguchi follows with an ass attack, but Phantasmo cuts off the second and hangs him in the ropes, pants him and steps on his ass. The cover gets 2. Phantasmo grounds the action, lays in strikes, and then hits the lionsault for 2. Phantasmo stomps on his face, and then follows with a chinlock. Taguchi bites his hand, but Phantasmo cuts off the ass attacks, but Taguchi hits an enziguri. B triggers follow, and then the springboard misses, but Taguchi hits a head scissors and dumps Phantasmo. The springboard ass attack to the floor then connects. Back in and Taguchi heads up top and hits bombs away for 2. Phantasmo counters bum a ye into a cradle for 2 and they then work into a double down. Back to their feet and they trade strikes, Taguchi fires up and Phantasmo gets the double titty twister. He follows with kicks, but Taguchi hits a lariat. Phantasmo fights off dodon, and cradles Taguchi for 2. The Argentine cutter is countered, but Phantasmo hits a superkick and then hits the cutter for 2. CR2 is countered, and Taguchi follows with strikes, and the three amigos. The DDT follows, and Taguchi looks for bum a ye and hits it for 2. Taguchi heads up top and Phantasmo crotches him. Phantasmo follows him up and hits the RANA and follows with the big splash but eats knees, Dodon by Taguchi connects and that gets 2. The ankle lock follows, Phantasmo fights, and makes the ropes. The ankle lock is applied again, but Taguchi counters the roll and maintains control, dropping down. Phantasmo uses the ref to escape, and sorta hits a destroyer off the ropes for 2. CR2 is countered, kicks by Phantasmo and CR2 finally finishes it. Champion El Phantasmo defeated Ryusuke Taguchi @ 24:10 via pin [**½] This was solid stuff overall, but way too much bullshit and lack of urgency for as long as it went (which was way too long). The closing stretch was good, I want more from my title matches; no big match Guch here tonight, and Phantasmo felt lacking as the champion.

RevPro British Heavyweight Champion Zack Sabre Jr. vs. YOSHI-HASHI: Still no Taka with Sabre. This is for Sabre’s title and G1 spot. Sabre grounds things right away, but HASHI gets back to his feet. Sabre starts working the arm, grounding HASHI. He transitions to a choke, but HASHI makes the ropes. Sabre follows with uppercuts, and then escapes a butterfly lock attempt. Sabre locks on a cravat, HASHI escapes and follows with back elbows and a slam. He follows with clubbing strikes, chops and Sabre is down. Sabre pulls a knee bar and locks him up in the ropes. To the floor and Sabre punishes the leg in the barricade, and follows with kicks. Back in and Sabre continues to work the knee, laying in kicks, and then tying up HASHI with an Indian deadlock variation. He transitions to a crab, bending HASHI in half until he makes the ropes. Sabre follows with kicks, slaps, but HASHI fires back with chops until Sabre takes out his knee. Sabre continues to control, kicking HASHI in the head and then the knee. HASHI fires back and hits a suplex. HASHI now lays in strikes and chops, and the running blockbuster connects. More chops follow, and then the draping dropkick follows. HASHI now hits a neck breaker, and heads up top. The swanton follows, but Sabre gets an arm bar until HASHI makes the ropes. Sabre follows with kicks, HASHI fires up and hits a spin kick but Sabre locks on the triangle and drags HASHI to the mat. HASHI tries to power up and does, hitting a powerbomb. HASHI up top and gets crotched, and Sabre follows him up and they battle for position. HASHI knocks him off and hits the blockbuster for 2. The butterfly lock follows, but Sabre counters into a cobra twist. HASHI then counters out and gets one of his own. He then transitions into a shoulder breaker and the butterfly lock follows. Sabre fights but HASHI pulls him back center ring. Sabre then escapes to the ropes. Sabre connects with the PELE to the arm, HASHI hits a running meteora but Sabre counters and rolls into an STF. He transitions to an arm lock, tying up HASHI, and back to he STF and transitions to a Muta lock variation until HASHI makes the ropes. HASHI counters the Zack driver into a back stabber and the running meteora gets 2. They work into counters, PK by Sabre and follows with another. Sabre lays the boots to him but HASHI fires back with chops. Sabre cuts him off by stomping on the arm and shoulder, slaps him around but HASHI counters into a cradle for 2. The lariat follows, and then a rolling elbow. The fisherman’s buster then connects for 2. Karma is countered and Sabre locks on a choke, transitions to orienting with napalm death and the refs stops it. Champion Zack Sabre Jr. defeated YOSHI-HASHI @ 23:10 via referee stoppage [***½] I love Sabre’s style but many times it depends on having a babyface the fans believe in fighting through his offense and rallying behind them, and HASHI wasn’t that guy. The work was really good and the match very good overall, but just never sniffed being great.

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The 411 on Wrestling Podcast returns to the 411 Podcasting Network for episode 30. On the show, the good brother, Jeremy Lambert, joins 411’s Larry Csonka; the guys will review the WWE Stomping Grounds 2019 PPV, and then preview the ROH Best in the World PPV and AEW Fyter Fest events. The show is approximately 86-minutes long.

* Intro
* WWE Stomping Grounds 2019 Review: 2:20
* ROH Best in the World Preview: 34:50
* AEW Fyter Fest Preview: 52:30

You can subscribe and listen to the 411 on Wrestling Podcast via the above player on Transistor, or on the following platforms:

* iTunes
* Spotify
* Stitcher
* Google Play

The final score: review Good
The 411
Today’s NJPW Kizuna Road event was an overall good show that could have been much better had the final two matches really delivered, but was an overall easy watch with some build to future matches and largely good wrestling.