NJPW Wrestling Dontaku Results
May 4, 2019
Welcome to live coverage of the second and final night of NJPW Wrestling Dontaku! To watch the show subscribe to NJPW World where the event is being broadcast live with English commentary!
(1) SHOTA UMINO & REN NARITA def. YOTA TSUJI & YUYA EUMURA
From what I saw this was a hard-hitting opening match between the four best Young Lions in the promotion right now. Tsuji stomped down Eumura after the match. I’m going to go back and update this later. I was a bit distracted by the Portland/Denver game going into QUADRUPLE OVERTIME. Sorry…
(2) TAICHI, MINORU SUZUKI, DESPERADO, YOSHINOBU KANEMARU & TAKA MICHINOKU def. JEFF COBB, TIGER MASK, HENARE, YOSHI-HASHI & RYUSUKE TAGUCHI
Some comedy early on with Coach Taguchi running a train on Taka, and forcing Yoshi-Hashi to wear his rugby helmet, completely against his protests. Things slowed down with Suzuki-Gun working over Yoshi-Hashi with quick alternating tags for several minutes. The whole match built up to Jeff Cobb getting the hot tag and running wild on all of Suzuuki-Gun, clearing the apron, suplexing Desperado and Kanemaru at the same time, before getting his revenge on Taichi after losing the title to him last night. All ten guys brawled and Cobb hit Tour of the Islands on Taka, but Taichi took him out from behind, then destroyed Henare with a superkick to score the win. The reign of terror continues.
(3) TORU YANO, JUSHIN THUNDER LIGER & TOGI MAKABE def. TAMA TONGA, TANGA LOA & JADO
(4) JUICE ROBINSON, TOMOAKI HONMA, MIKEY NICHOLLS & HIROOKI GOTO def. JAY WHITE, CHASE OWENS, BAD LUCK FALE & HIKULEO
This was fairly procedural for the first half with Honma getting the early advantage, missing Kokeshi, and being worked over by all of Bullet Club for several minutes. There were a few threads including Juice and Nicholls working really well together, and Hikuleo got a ton of time to show off. He’s really improved. He actually single-handedly took out the whole opposing team and it took Goto trying to take his head off with a nasty lariat to finally take him down. The dude is HUGE. He even got some good shots in on the champ, before Juice finally put him away with the Right Hand of God, and Pulp Friction.
(5) EL PHANTASMO & TAIJI ISHIMORI def. WILL OSPREAY & DRAGON LEE
It’s official, mystery wrestler “X” and the new member of Bullet Club is indeed El Phantasmo! I didn’t even try to do live coverage as it was basically ten minutes of non-stop tornado tag action with ridiculous moves that I couldn’t keep up with if I tried. This was a showcase for Phantasmo’s debut to get everyone familiar with how incredible he is, and he absolutely tore the house down. When you’re the stand-out in a match with Ospreay and Dragon Lee, you’ve done something very, very right. Just go watch this match — it’s pure adrenalin. Phantasmo actually pinned Ospreay with an arm-trap facebuster.
(6) TETSUYA NAITO, SHINGO TAKAGI & BUSHI def. KOTA IBUSHI & ROPPONGI 3K
It was clear the focus here was on Ibushi and Naito who got a ton of time to work with one another, but the others had a job to sell the Super Juniors and definitely delivered. Everyone got time and looked incredible. This made me really want to see Ibushi and Shingo Takagi have a singles match. Naito seemed to have the champion’s number getting the better of all their exchanges, including a few incredibly close nearfalls including an absolutely sick Gloria that dropped him on his neck. In the end Naito pinned Sho with the Destino for the win.
After the match Naito got on the mic and said the crowd wanted to see an IWGP Intercontinental Championship match here tonight, but that didn’t happen. He demanded an answer from Ibushi, as well as a time and a place. Ibushi returned to the ring and said the challenge has been accepted! The match is on, June 9th at Dominion!
Hiroshi Tanahashi made a surprise return for the first time since having elbow surgery following the G1 Supercard. He said that he felt like he was at the lowest of his lows right now, not being able to wrestle, but he was certain he would be back by June 5th for the Best of Super Juniors Finals at Ryugoku, and would work his way back, up and up and up, until he was at the top of New Japan once again.
Jay White and Gedo came to the ring and stopped Tanahashi from leaving. White asked him if he really thought he deserved the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, stating that the line starts behind him. He is the real champion and he is next in line, no matter who wins tonight. Gedo took a cheap shot, and the two beat down the Ace.
(7) TOMOHIRO ISHII def. EVIL
They started with about a hundred back-and-forth forearm strikes that went for so long that the crowd started clapping for each one. They eventually graduated to shoulder tackle attempts, ramming into each other until both guys collapsed. After a quick brawl on the outside the went back to trading, this time with big open-palm chops. EVIL didn’t like getting slapped in the face and had to walk away for a second to maintain control, then basically told Ishii to hit him harder, which the Stone Pitbull did with a hard series of strikes and a thudding suplex, before going to work with short-arm lariats in the corner. EVIL found his second wind and blasted his opponent’s back, stomping away at him over and over again doing some serious damage. The punishment continued on the outside with a Hangman’s DDT off the barricade, then wrapped a chair around Ishii’s throat. The referee tried to get involved but was shoved away, and EVIL took a second chair and swung for the fences, damn near hitting a home run with the Pitbull’s head. He applied a Sharpshooter in the ring, working the back and knee set up earlier, sitting down on the hold as Ishii screamed out in pain, but refused to give up for an eternity. Ishii somehow powered his way out with a big back suplex, taking both guys down for a good beat. After connecting with a huge lariat he applied a Sharpshooter of his own, screaming at each other as they fell into the ropes. EVIL get trying to throw punches but Ishii absorbed each of them before killing him with another lariat; EVIL popped right back up though and dropped him with a back suplex, followed by another lariat for a close nearfall. Both of them absolutely refused to stay down. At one point EVIL kicked out of a lariat at ONE, the two collided in the center of the ring, and they just collapsed. They continued to ram into one another with simultaneous lariats until they could barely stand, at which point they countered each other’s finishers multiple times and traded half-and-half suplexes. Unbelievable. Ishii hit another running lariat that literally turned him upside down, but it wasn’t enough. He hit him with the Brainbuster, and finally got the win in one of the hardest fought matches I have ever witnessed.
(8) KAZUCHIKA OKADA (c) def. SANADA TO RETAIN THE IWGP HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
Sanada’s has shaved the goat beard! This started with a slow exchange, both guys countering move–for-move in a tremendous feeling out process. The challenger even got a smile out of Okada after going several minutes chain grappling with him, reversing everything but the kitchen sink. Things slowed down as Okada slapped on a few holds. Eventually Sanada broke free, trying to weaken his opponent’s knee with Dragon Screws, even managing to trap the champ in the Paradise Lock, before slowing things right back down with his own holds. That was essentially the theme of the match — both guys being perfectly even, Okada unable to gain any longterm advantage, and Sanada having the fight of his life trying to break his 0-5 record against Okada in singles matches. A very slow, but incredibly well-worked match. At the 30-minute mark, they were still trading finisher attempts with Okada unable to hit the Rainmaker or the Tombstone over and over again. At the 35-minute mark Sanada reversed the Tombstone twice more, and hit a Rainmaker of his own for the closest nearfall ever, then tried to put him away with Cold Skull, but Okada rolled through and finally hit the Rainmaker to win in a nearly 39-minute battle of attrition.
Okada cut his show-closing promo saying that he would work hard to make sure everyone around the world loves professional wrestling. He asked who would be his challenger at Dominion for the IWGP title… The lights went out, and some creepy imagery appeared on the screen with a figure in the shows. CHRIS JERICHO appeared in the shadows and introduced himself, laying claim to the title at Dominion. Back in the arena Okada laughed, accepted the challenge, making it official, and celebrated with the fans to end the night.