wrestling / TV Reports

Pantoja’s STARDOM Golden Week Fight Tour Review

May 10, 2024 | Posted by Kevin Pantoja
STARDOM Golden Week Fight Tour 4-30-24 Image Credit: STARDOM
The 411 Rating
Community Grade
Your Grade
Pantoja’s STARDOM Golden Week Fight Tour Review  

STARDOM Golden Week Fight Tour

Ahead of covering the May 5th PPV, I’m going to take a look at some of the most notable matches from the STARDOM tour leading up to that show. Looking at the cards, I’m thinking one from 4/30, two from 5/3, and three from 5/4.

April 30th, 2024 | Chres Gymnasium in Kochi, Japan

Crazy Star and Saori Anou vs. FWC and Mayu Iwatani

It’s the main event and it’s a preview of the Goddesses of Stardom Title match on 5/5 between Crazy Star and FWC. This match meant that we got to relive Mei vs. Hazuki, which was spectacular earlier in the year. That said, every exchange throughout this match was at least pretty good, with the combinations delivering from bell to bell. Like, it made me want Mayu vs. Mei or Hazuki vs. Suzu at some point this year. Structure-wise, it was your typical multi-woman tag as everyone got some shine and then down the stretch, things picked up in terms of close calls and bigger moves. The action was consistently entertaining though. I loved seeing Mayu and Hazuki do stereo tope suicidas. They’re not the team set to challenge Crazy Star but they’re so good together. In the end, Mei used a pinning combination to beat Hazuki in 14:12. Of course that was a very good match, just look at who was involved. [***¾]

May 3rd, 2024 | KDDI Ishin Hall in Yamaguchi, Japan

#1 Contender’s Match: Ami Sourei vs. Natsupoi

The winner gets a shot at Saori Anou and the Wonder of Stardom Title. The size difference played a big part right from the beginning. Ami even toyed with Natsupoi and asked for a test of strength with her hand outstretched high in the air. Poi stomped on her foot and they were off to the races. They kept things up at a more intense style than you’d expect considering this isn’t some kind of grudge match. Ami kept bullying Poi and the fight even spilled outside for a while with teases of a German suplex out there. Natsupoi did what she could to ground Ami and disrupt her size advantage, while Ami did things like a Torture Rack that really put her on her heels. I will give Ami points on that hold because it looks pretty good when she does it. We got some close calls on both sides late until Ami won with Like a Thunderbolt at the 18:55 mark. I still don’t get the Ami Sourei push. She has yet to stand out which is needed on a roster with this much talent. She’s finding her niche as a powerhouse but there’s still work to be done. Natsupoi was the star here with her ragdoll bumping and I’m hoping they’re just holding off on her vs. Saori. [***¼]

HANAKO, Maika and Mina Shirakawa vs. Mayu Iwatani, Starlight Kid and Tam Nakano

This is a homecoming for Mayu Iwatani ahead of the biopic being released about her. She got the streamer treatment during introductions, which I always love seeing. Also, her trio is one that I am excited about. As a match, this was quintessential STARDOM. Great wrestlers, fast moving action, a hot crowd, and a few bits of comedy thrown in there for good measure. HANAKO was obviously the least experienced in the ring but she did well enough, utilizing her size and working some tandem offense with her stablemates. As expected, things picked up late and I was intrigued some choices. For example, Starlight Kid more than held her own against Maika despite the latter being the top champion. I’ve appreciated this renewed SLK push in 2024, especially now that she’s done with Oedo Tai. The closing stretch was fantastic and filled with energy, including HANAKO standing up to Mayu in an impressive showing. I popped for SLK leaping off of Mayu’s shoulders from Bret’s Rope, which Mayu followed with a moonsault, beating HANAKO in 18:56. A hell of a main event that likely doesn’t mean much in the long run but was a blast and honored Mayu’s greatness well. [****]

May 4th, 2024 | Kumamoto-Jo Hall in Kumamoto, Japan

meltear and Starlight Kid vs. Momo Watanabe, Natsuko Tora and Thekla

I couldn’t check out bits of these shows and skip a meltear/SLK pairing. AND SHE DID THE ENTRANCE DANCE WITH THEM! MY HEART! There was a lot of fun to be had here. Right from the start, the lack of commentators meant I could clearly hear Thekla talking trash in English, dissing SLK for dancing with meltear. Then there was SLK getting some revenge on Oedo Tai with her offense and working some surprise tandem offense with Natsupoi. That’s a team that is apparently happening at least for a short while and I love it. As usual, Oedo Tai played the bullies and that worked especially well here because meltear bump their asses off and are sympathetic, while SLK fit into that role with them nicely. SLK fought valiantly against her old teammates, even trying the Stretch Muffler on the larger Natsuko Tora. Alas, she found herself in major trouble late, taking a tandem superkick from Thekla and Momo before falling to a Tora Swanton Bomb in 13:48. Like I said, just a really fun multi-woman tag that gave me a trio I enjoyed and furthered some storylines. [***½]

Saori Anou vs. Yuna Mizumori

In the grand scheme of things, this match doesn’t really mean anything but it’s the main event on this show and I have time so I might as well cover it. Saori’s Wonder of Stardom Title is obviously not on the line. I’ll keep the review relatively short though. This was two stablemates having a pretty solid yet unspectacular match. Yuna is a lower card girl who always brings energy, which she did here. She seemed to relish her shot at a singles main event and brought it here, hitting some running spots outside and a splash off the top that stood out. She never really threatened though and Saori got going late, hitting a vicious missile dropkick to the back of the head and capping off a rally with Tantandol to win at the 14:01 mark. A good, solid match. [***¼]


The final score: review Good
The 411
Obviously, with me handpicking matches, I ended up enjoying this. Every match was good, a few were pretty great and this was just a really fun way to catch up on stuff ahead of the next big show.

article topics :

STARDOM, Kevin Pantoja