B Block action began today in the 26th Best of the Super Juniors tournament, with NJPW running their second consecutive night in Miyagi.
The Sendai Sunplaza Hall hosted a solid night of action. Nothing on night two could touch the Shingo Takagi vs. SHO battle from night one, but the card as a whole delivered more than you likely expected at first glance.
YOH found himself in the main event the night after his tag team partner stole the show. YOH is perhaps better than SHO in the ring, but lacks a certain charisma or intangible that his partner has. That’s a real shame, because he really is something special as a worker.
Here are full results and recaps from Tuesday’s show:
TAKA MICHINOKU, YOSHINOBU KANEMARU & TAICHI DEFEATED JONATHAN GRESHAM, TIGER MASK IV & YOTA TSUJI
Gresham and TAKA started the show with some mat work. The Suzuki-gun squad went to work on Gresham’s left hand. Gresham made his own comeback, hitting Kanemaru with a cutter before tagging in Tiger.
Tiger hit a high cross, but was immediately cut off. He also made his own comeback and hit a Tiger Driver. Tsuji and Taichi tagged in. Tsuji hit a powerslam. He went for a crab, but Taichi fought him off.
Taichi took his pants off, and Tsuji rolled him up for a near fall. Taichi put on a stretch plum, and Tsuji tapped out.
After the bell, Kanemaru ripped off Tiger’s mask, while Taichi and TAKA held Tsuji and Gresham in submission holds. The match never got out of first gear and was not as good as most NJPW openers.
DRAGON LEE & JUICE ROBINSON DEFEATED SHO & SHOTA UMINO
SHO and Lee began, trading holds. SHO had his left shoulder taped up. Umino and Juice tagged in, and Umino aggressively went after Juice. Juice cut him off, then hit a cannonball and a senton.
Juice and Lee isolated Umino in their corner and focused their attack on his left arm. Umino escaped a double ax handle, pushing Lee in the way. He managed to tag SHO, and SHO and Lee traded strikes.
Lee and SHO exchanged big knee strikes. SHO landed on his feet out of a snap German, then hit a lariat. Both made tags. Juice missed a senton on Umino, who followed up with a back elbow. Umino ducked the Left Hand of God and hit a vertical suplex.
Juice hit a flapjack and made a cover, but SHO broke up the pinfall. SHO and Lee fought to the floor. Juice hit a lariat for a near fall, then used a Tenzan-style crab for the submission.
Lee and SHO continued to brawl after the bell, and their fight spilled into the crowd. They were finally pulled apart, with neither gaining a clear advantage. Good intensity between Lee and SHO throughout here, but just an average match.
MARTY SCURLL & BRODY KING DEFEATED TAIJI ISHIMORI & GEDO
Scurll and Ishimori started out with an intricate sequence, while King and Gedo brawled on the outside. Scurll was getting the best of the exchange — until Gedo jumped in to choke him with a towel, cutting him off.
Ishimori and Gedo worked like a totally old school heel tag team here. They used eye rakes, kept Scurll isolated in their corner, cheated behind the ref’s back, all building anticipation for the big tag to King.
King never got a legal tag, but he jumped in and ran wild. He hit a springboard double arm drag and a double senton, allowing Scurll time to recover. Scurll hit Black Plague on Gedo for the pin. A fun little match.
TETSUYA NAITO & SHINGO TAKAGI DEFEATED TITAN & TOA HENARE
Titan hit a springboard arm drag on Shingo, who rolled outside. Shingo grabbed a chair, but didn’t use it. Henare and Naito made tags. Naito and Shingo tried to double up on Henare. Henare got some shine briefly, but was quickly cut off.
Naito and Shingo worked Henare over. Henare blocked a neckbreaker from Naito, and both tagged out. Shingo and Titan went back and forth, then Shingo hit a DVD into a double down.
Naito and Henare tagged back in, and Shingo jumped in for an assist. Naito hit some trademark spots, including the combinacion de cabron and a one-legged dropkick. Shingo and Titan brawled on the outside, while Naito hit a flying forearm and a Destino on Henare to win the match. This was quick.
B BLOCK MATCH: DOUKI DEFEATED REN NARITA
Narita showed off some impressive amateur moves, out-wrestling Douki early on. Douki low-bridged Narita to the floor, then used a chair shot to take control of the match.
Douki hit a double stomp and methodically worked over Narita. Narita went for a double underhook belly-to-belly, but Douki blocked it and applied a modified triangle choke. Narita reached the bottom rope with his feet, forcing a break.
Narita hit a perfect dropkick. He followed with a pair of shoulder tackles and hit a vertical suplex for a two count. Narita used a modified Scorpion Deathlock, but Douki reached the ropes. Narita hit a big belly-to-belly, but could not bridge out of it. He covered, but Douki kicked out at two.
Douki hit a lariat. Narita used a roll-up and an inside cradle for two near falls. Douki hit a sloppy springboard DDT, then used his Suplex de La Luna for the pin.
After the match, Douki attacked Narita with a pipe. Narita was impressive in defeat. We obviously have a very small sample size, but Douki has not been impressive so far.
B BLOCK MATCH: ROBBIE EAGLES DEFEATED ROCKY ROMERO
They came out firing strikes. Rocky hit a headscissors, and Eagles rolled outside. Rocky teased a dive, but slid out to the floor while Eagles jumped back in. Eagles went for a suicide dive, but Rocky hit him with a dropkick.
Back in the ring, Rocky used an octopus hold, then hit a dropkick. Eagles went after Rocky’s left leg. He went for a figure four, but Rocky kicked him off. Eagles hit a chop block, then a lariat to the back of the head for a two count.
Eagles continued to target the left leg with kicks. He hit a bridging fall-away slam for a two count. Eagles hit double knees in the corner, a 619 to the legs, then again hit double knees in the corner for a near fall.
Rocky caught a kick and hit a slap to the face. He followed with a tornado DDT. Rocky hit a series of chops, then used a flying bodyscissors to transition to an armbar. Eagles reached the ropes, forcing a break.
They exchanged kicks. Rocky hit his forever clotheslines, but his knee gave out, allowing Eagles to hit a springboard dropkick to the leg. Eagles used a Ron Miller Special submission, but Rocky made it to the ropes.
Eagles hit an enzuigiri, then used a Pulse Drop for a near fall. Rocky flipped out of a backpack stunner, and used a magistral cradle for a two count. Eagles bridged out of another cover. Rocky hit a standing Sliced Bread for a near fall.
Rocky hit a rewind kick. Eagles caught another kick, and he used a backpack stunner for a two count. Eagles hit a 450 to Rocky’s leg, then used the Ron Miller for the submission. Good match.
B BLOCK MATCH: EL PHANTASMO DEFEATED BANDIDO
They used a really nice opening sequence, ending with both kipping up out of handstands. They used a series of monkey flips and bridges to transition in and out of covers. Bandido got sent outside, and Phantasmo hit a suicide dive, landing in the front row.
Back in the ring, Bandido avoided a charge in the corner. He went for a gorilla press slam, but Phantasmo escaped. Bandido hit a flying headscissors, sending Phantasmo to the floor. Bandido hit a big tope con hilo, then sent Phantasmo back inside.
Bandido went for a springboard crossbody, but Phantasmo hit a dropkick. Phantasmo used an airplane spin neckbreaker out of a torture rack position. They traded Canadian Destroyers, then both collapsed. Phantasmo ended up bleeding from the mouth.
They traded chops, then exchanged strikes. Bandido hit a pop-up cutter for a two count. He used an inverted suplex, then a running knee strike, earning a near fall. Bandido went up top, but Phantasmo cut him off with an enzuigiri. Phantasmo hit a top rope rana, then used a frog splash for a near fall.
Phantasmo used a rope walk, halfway around the ring. Bandido hit a moonsault press for a two count. Phantasmo pulled the referee in Bandido’s way, then hit a thumb to the eye. He then used a modified facebuster to pick up the pin. A good match with some cool moves, but not a blow-away outing.
B BLOCK MATCH: WILL OSPREAY DEFEATED BUSHI
A hot opening sequence ended with BUSHI hitting a flying headscissors over the top to the floor. He continued his attack on Ospreay’s neck with a chair shot. Back inside, BUSHI hit some chops, then used a neckbreaker.
Ospreay came back with a series of chops. BUSHI grounded Ospreay with an STF, and Ospreay forced a break. Ospreay removed BUSHI’s shirt and hit some chops. BUSHI used the shirt to choke Ospreay, but Ospreay responded with a handspring kick.
Ospreay hit a 619, then a dropkick in the corner. Ospreay hit Pip Pip Cheerio, but BUSHI kicked out at two. BUSHI hit a missile dropkick. After a nice series of teases and counters, BUSHI finally hit a swinging neckbreaker.
Ospreay hit a step-up enzuigiri. They traded strikes. Ospreay hit a sit-out powerbomb for a two count. BUSHI avoided an OsCutter, and hit a codebreaker for a near fall. BUSHI went to the second rope for an MX, but Ospreay cut him off.
Ospreay flipped out of a top rope rana, landing on his feet. He followed with a standing Spanish Fly for a two count. Ospreay went for a Storm Breaker, but BUSHI flipped to the apron. BUSHI hit a draping DDT, dropping Ospreay on the apron. They teased a countout, but Ospreay made it back inside at 19.
BUSHI hit a backstabber for a near fall. He went for an MX, but Ospreay caught him with a dropkick. Ospreay hit a Robinson Special, then an inverted Bloody Sunday DDT. He went for an OsCutter, but BUSHI blocked it. Ospreay dodged BUSHI’s black mist, then hit the Hidden Blade. Ospreay then hit a Storm Breaker for the pin. Again, a very good match, but not a great one.
B BLOCK MATCH: RYUSUKE TAGUCHI DEFEATED YOH
They did a nice series of dropdown spots, ending with Taguchi avoiding a low dropkick. Taguchi hit a hip attack. YOH blocked a second with an atomic drop. Taguchi rolled to the ropes, then crotched himself on the bottom rope.
YOH used the Paradise Lock, then broke it with a dropkick. Taguchi rolled to the floor, and YOH hit a rolling senton off the apron. Back inside, YOH used an elbow drop, a knee drop, and a double stomp for three quick near falls.
YOH hit a dragon screw, then continued to attack Taguchi’s legs, as the pace slowed. Taguchi hit a springboard hip attack, rolled through a sunset flip, and hit a springboard plancha. Taguchi hit a hip attack off the apron, sending YOH into the front row.
Back inside, Taguchi went for his rolling suplexes. YOH blocked the third, and he used an inside cradle for a two count. YOH hit a neckbreaker, then a flying forearm. YOH fought for a dragon suplex, but had to settle for a gutwrench German for a near fall.
YOH went for a superplex. Taguchi fought him off, then hit a second rope hip attack. Taguchi went for a Bomaye, but YOH rolled through into a half crab. That was awesome. YOH again focused on attacking the legs, using a figure four. Taguchi reversed the hold, then reached the ropes.
They traded cradles for near falls. Taguchi went for Dodon, but YOH rolled through. Taguchi got two quick near falls. Taguchi hit an enzuigiri, then YOH hit a thrust kick into a double down. They got back to their feet, and exchanged strikes.
YOH ate a hip attack. He attempted to full himself up by the bottom rope but Taguchi caught him coming in. Taguchi used an ankle lock to set up a Tiger Suplex for a near fall. YOH went for an enzuigiri, but Taguchi caught him. Taguchi hit Dodon for a near fall. Taguchi then hit a modified Dodon for the pin.