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Csonka’s NJPW New Beginning in Sendai Review

February 14, 2015 | Posted by Larry Csonka
8
The 411 Rating
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Csonka’s NJPW New Beginning in Sendai Review  

Introduction
As a reminder, this will not be another traditional recap, but instead it will be a mash up of the Rs, Instant Analysis and my usual Twitter ramblings I would do during the shows; completely uncensored and as the ideas flow unfiltered to the old keyboard. Remember, this is a review; and I am here to review the show. As always, I encourage discussion and even disagreement, just do so in a respectful manner. I will be doing the review for Raw and most PPVs and iPPVs going forward.

 photo New Beginning in Sendai_zpsmlzrkec4.jpg

NJPW New Beginning in Sendai 2.14.15

OFFICIAL RESULTS
~ Captain New Japan and Manabu Nakanishi defeated Satoshi Kojima and Yohei Komatsu @ 6:19 []
~ reDRagon (Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly) defeated Jay White and Tiger Mask @ 10:31 [***]
~ Alex Shelley, Kushida and Máscara Dorada defeated Bullet Club (Kenny Omega, Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson) @ 11:11 [***]
~ NWA World Junior Heavyweight Title Match – Jushin Thunder Liger (c) (with Tiger Mask) defeated Chase Owens (with Bruce Tharpe) @ 7:49 [**½]
~ NWA World Title Match – Hiroyoshi Tenzan (with Satoshi Kojima) defeated Rob Conway (c) (with Bruce Tharpe) @ 11:50 [***¾]
~ Kota Ibushi and Tetsuya Naito defeated Kazushi Sakuraba and Toru Yano @ 12:51 [**¾]
~ Chaos (Kazuchika Okada and Yoshi-Hashi) (with Gedo) defeated Bullet Club (Bad Luck Fale and Yujiro Takahashi) @ 9:55 [**¾]
~ Hirooki Goto, Hiroshi Tanahashi and Katsuyori Shibata defeated Bullet Club (Doc Gallows, Karl Anderson and Tama Tonga) @ 12:07 [***]
~ For The Vacant NEVER Openweight Championship – Tomohiro Ishii defeated Tomoaki Honma @ 24:46 [*****]
~ IWGP IC Title Match – Shinsuke Nakamura (c) defeated Yuji Nagata @ 17:55 [***¾]


Captain New Japan and Manabu Nakanishi defeated Satoshi Kojima and Yohei Komatsu: The crowd seemed to like the match due to the guys hitting their trademark stuff, but this was not a good opener. Usually they throw this on a little so that it gets forgotten about, but this was the wrong match to open with.

reDRagon (Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly) defeated Jay White and Tiger Mask: reDRagon lost their tag titles on the previous show, so this was a recovery match for them. I really would have opened the show with this, they worked a good pace, the crowd was into it and it was just fun. reDRagon gets their rebound victory, as they should, and Jay White again impressed. He’s having strong performances and while I am not sure what his future holds, the fact that he is standing out to me is a positive. Now can we work on getting some other junior tag teams involved please?

Alex Shelley, Kushida and Máscara Dorada defeated Bullet Club: This was fallout from the Osaka show, where Dorada and Shelley made the save for Taguchi after his loss to Omega. Dorada then challenged Omega for a title match. Speaking of those two men, they got to work a good bit in this match and it looked promising. Hopefully they can get some magic back around the Jr HW Title. Anyway a fun six-man tag overall, with Bullet Club taking the first loss on the night as payback for the Osaka show where they ran wild.

NWA World Junior Heavyweight Title Match – Jushin Thunder Liger (c) defeated Chase Owens : This was a perfectly fine, but unspectacular match. Owens is working hard, and for his age Liger does well but the large majority of his singles matches come across as just fine. Liger wins clean and then offers Tiger Mask a title shot. He accepted, I’m not all that excited about the upcoming match, but the crowd seemed to like the angle.

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Bruce FUCKING Tharpe!

NWA World Title Match – Hiroyoshi Tenzan (with Satoshi Kojima) defeated Rob Conway (c) : We continued with the NWA Title action as Rob Conway defended his NWA Title against Hiroyoshi Tenzan. Conway had an appendectomy one month ago and is back to action. Between that fact and my general dislike for Conway and Tenzan matches lately I did not have high hopes for this. Well they proved me wrong, now this wasn’t a match of the year or anything, but it was really fun and enjoyable. They simply worked a smart match, it had a smooth layout and they didn’t go too heavy on the Tharpe theatrics (the best one was the distraction when Conway tapped for the phantom finish). The crowd wanted that referee to see that because they hate Tharpe and anyone associated with him, but especially wanted old man Tenzan to win. They traded ego trips down the stretch for near falls, the crowd got really hot and Tenzan scored the win and the title following the moonsault. This was so much better than I thought, and great work by Conway, Tenzan and Tharpe as a package here.

Kota Ibushi and Tetsuya Naito defeated Kazushi Sakuraba and Toru Yano: This was another solid tag match, mostly focusing on Naito vs. Yano and Ibushi vs. Sakuraba as far as the work goes. Yano tried to be a dick and win with his low blow spot, but Naito blocked the cradle and scored the win. There was nothing wrong here, just a good mid-card match.

Chaos (Kazuchika Okada and Yoshi-Hashi) (with Gedo) defeated Bullet Club: This is another match in the never ending series of tag team matches set to hype the Fale vs. Okada single match that I am not eve sure anyone will care about by the time we get there. Team Okada wins, but he doesn’t pin Fale. Much like the last match, there was nothing wrong here, just a good mid-card match.

Hirooki Goto, Hiroshi Tanahashi and Katsuyori Shibata defeated Bullet Club: Hirooki Goto, Hiroshi Tanahashi and Katsuyori Shibata all lost their titles in Osaka, so this was the rehab match to get them all back on the winning track, to get a little revenge Bullet Club and to make sure everyone knows that Goto and Shibata will still be going after the tag team titles. With there being no AJ Styles on the show, and Tama Tonga being Tama Tonga, everyone knew the finish was Tama Tonga eating the loss. Overall I liked this a bit more than the previous two matches, just better chemistry and flow. Goto and Shibata stared down with Anderson and Gallows, because this feud must continue.

For the Vacant NEVER Title – Tomohiro Ishii defeated Tomoaki Honma: Togi Makabe had been out with the bird flu or something, so since he couldn’t make this title defense, they vacated the title and made Ishii vs. Honma. I love Honma to death, but I have no idea how you can give the guy a title shot when he never wins. Oh wait, I see what I did there. But seriously, this booking is something I am not a fan of anywhere. Now that I said that, holy shit this was amazing. Yeah I know, you bitched about the booking and are now going to praise the match. Yes, yes I am. Yes, not a fan of booking the match due to Honma never winning, but as far as a wrestling match goes this was simply amazing. Once it was over I had to go back and watch it again just to verify what I watched and how great it was. The crowd was unreal for this match, as I have discussed before they LOVE Honma no matter what and simply want him to win because he’s their guy. They engaged in a brutal affair, with all of the stiff chops, lariats and head butts you can stomach and maybe a few more than that. It’s not a style that everyone loves, but the layout was excellent and the work from both was amazing. The near falls were so good because the crowd was biting on everything, and Honma hitting the Kokeshi on the floor was insane. I was simply locked into this match, I was biting on all of the near falls and this was beautiful display of violence. Easily one of the top matches of the year so far, and should be when the year ends as well. This match gets the highest recommendation to seek out at all costs and to watch right now now, go ahead, I’ll wait.

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IWGP IC Title Match – Shinsuke Nakamura (c) defeated Yuji Nagata: Seriously, did you go back and watch that last match yet? DO IT NOW. They had booked to this match well during the “Road to” events, and followed that up with a great pre-match video package. It was all the feels as Nagata discussed contemplating retiring after WK 9, they then showed his family at ringside and this was set up beautifully. Could the veteran grab gold one more time, or would Nakamura be too much for him? They told the simple story to play into that, Nagata was the wise veteran and was able to use his experience, but Nakamura was too fast. I really liked the match and where it was going, and then it ended with the boma ye. It had the feeling that it was going longer, and that Nagata was about to kick out, but he didn’t. The crowd also didn’t really react to it like it was the finish either because the finish came a bit out of nowhere, but I also liked that we didn’t have to see Nakamura use 12 boma ye’s to score a win. Okada and Tanahashi’s finishes are greatly protected, and Nakamura’s should be better protected as well. Much like Osaka, it lacked in terms of what NJPW usually brings to a major show main event, but they did well considering what they had to follow.

* End scene.

* Thanks for reading.

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“Byyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyye Felicia!”

8
The final score: review Very Good
The 411
Overall I felt that this was a stronger show than Osaka, and on a personal level I enjoyed it more. Tomohiro Ishii defeated Tomoaki Honma is worth your 999 YEN alone, and weak opener aside, I felt that the overall match quality was better. The guys that needed to win here did, Bullet Club took loses in payback for running wild in Osaka and the NWA Title match delivered way more than I could have hoped for. The show gets a definite thumbs up, and if you only have time for one of the New Beginning shows, go with Sendai over Osaka.
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