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G1 Climax 27 Day 18 Results & Review: Okada vs. Omega III

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Many thanks once again to Robert McCauley for the following report on the G1 Climax 27 B Block Final show:

Going into the last day of the B block for the G1 Climax 27 everything was laid out. If Kenny Omega beat Kazuchika Okada, he would win the block. If Okada beat or tied Omega, he would win the block. There were nine matches before we could get to the block conclusion so we’ll start there.

Suzuki-Gun (El Desperado, Taichi, TAKA Michinoku & Yoshinobu Kanemaru) def. Jushin Thunder Liger, KUSHIDA, Tiger Mask & Hirai Kawato @ 7:04
KUSHIDA made his return to New Japan after a month of touring the US and UK, defending the ROH TV Championship. The faces go their big spots in before Kawato was tagged in and after a hope spot, fell victim to El Desperado. It seems likely with how strong Desperado has looked on his tour that he will be KUSHIDA’s next challenge for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship.

Chaos (Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI) def. Bullet Club (Chase Owens, Tanga Loa & Yujiro Takahashi) @ 7:20
The Chaos team who had all been in this year’s G1 took on the Bullet Club members who had not been in G1 so you knew how this one was going. After a brutal match with Sabre the night before, Ishii still went out there and gave fans their money’s worth. Chase Owens got the big hope spot in this one against Goto, which surprised the crowd, but of course the Chaos team picked up the win with Goto pinning Owens via the GTR.

Suzuki-Gun (Takashi Iizuka & Zack Sabre Jr.) def. Togi Makabe & Yuji Nagata @ 6:16
Iizuka makes his return from a broken leg which has kept him sidelined the last several months. This was a chaotic as you’d expect from an Iizuka match, brawling everywhere, pulling out the Iron Claw, performing all his hits. Makabe and Nagata remind us of how dangerous the madman is as they take the fall.

Bullet Club (Bad Luck Fale, Cody, Hangman Page, Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson) def. War Machine (Hanson & Raymond Rowe), Ricochet, Ryusuke Taguchi & Katsuya Kitamura) @ 8:14
Almost identical pairings from the night before, the only changes were Kitamura for Elgin and Fale for Owens and this proved to be the difference maker as the teams traded falls. Three minutes shorter and not nearly as fun as the previous night’s match, it was still fun seeing the big men (War Machine & Kitamura) throw around the Bucks and you gotta love Ricochet anytime you see him. Ultimately the Bullet Club team picks up the win, looking strong for their championship matches tomorrow.

Hiroshi Tanahashi, Kota Ibushi & David Finlay def. Los Ingobernables de Japon (Tetsuya Naito, BUSHI & Hiromu Takahashi) @ 6:57
Even after the hellacious match just 23 hours earlier, Naito was taking the craziest bumps from Finlay here, who was really trying to get all his stuff in. I find it to be a treat seeing Hiromu in the same ring, on opposite sides of Tanahashi and Ibushi. Those are two singles matches I’d love to see if ever possible because of weight divisions in New Japan. Not much to this one other than Naito’s crazy bumps. Ibushi picked up the win over BUSHI in relatively short fashion.

G1 Climax Tournament Match
Juice Robinson def. Michael Elgin @ 11:49
Coming off his recent surprise victory over Omega, Juice was on a roll here, out to prove a point against Elgin. They worked a good power/counter match here with Elgin looking to control Juice with his strength while Juice countered the big man’s moves with smarts. Different from the surprise roll up he got on Omega, Juice was able to hit the Pulp Friction on Elgin here to get the win. This win puts Juice ahead of Elgin in the final official B block rankings. Both these men had a very good tournament, Elgin proving how fantastic he truly is and Juice turning heads with solid performances night in and night out.

G1 Climax Tournament Match
Tama Tonga def. SANADA @ 12:01
This was a complete goofball match. Tama Tonga is one of the great entertainers in all of wrestling. His charisma sets him apart from most in the New Japan roster. He’s able to make a complete goof of himself while also seeming credible when he turns it up. As far as I’m concerned, this was the best Tama has looked all tournament long and also being a great performance from SANADA. These two are super athletic and able to make so many high-flying moves look effortless. Their transitions in and out of each other’s finishers in the closing stretch were great and in the end Tama hit the Gun-Stun for the win and position himself over SANADA in the rankings. Both men had good tournaments and this match was a great way for them both to close off their runs. Definitely Tama’s best outing and one of SANADA’s as well.

G1 Climax Tournament Match
Toru Yano def. Minoru Suzuki @ 6:56
Yano has been a thorn in Suzuki’s side for years. He always manages to find a way to beat the grumpy old man. It’s a really fun dynamic these two have with Suzuki being forever grumpy and Yano blissfully unaware of how much of an annoyance he is to everyone. This was one of Yano’s best outings this year. He pulls out all his usual tricks but Suzuki isn’t falling for them and instead tries to beat him at his own game. This angers Yano’s Chaos team-mate, Rocky Romero, who comes out and assists Yano with yet another win over Suzuki. Most of the time when Toru Yano enters in the ring you can be sure the match won’t be anything to write about but his chemistry with Suzuki is always fun because they’re polar opposites. Suzuki had a couple of truly great matches this tournament, especially the draw with Okada. Yano had a really fun goofball match with Omega earlier in the tournament. For their own unique standards, I’d say both had a successful tournament.

G1 Climax Tournament Match
EVIL def. Satoshi Kojima @ 14:21
One of the biggest standouts of the tournament this year has been EVIL. He’s really turned the corner to becoming a great performer, especially in the latter half of the tournament here. Kojima has had some spirited battles this last month and this one was one of his most intense. Both these guys are big and thick, relying on stiff power moves. A hoss fight, if you will. This was loads of fun, watching the two beat each other up with incredibly solid lariats. Tenzan was urging his best friend, Kojima, on but in the end EVIL prevails and ends up with one of the best records of the tournament at 6-3. Kojima falls to a sad 1-8, tied for the worst record of G1 with Nagata. Both men have had a really good tournament, especially for Kojima’s age, but EVIL had a blow away second half that moves him into the conversation of G1 MVP.

G1 Climax Tournament Match
Kenny Omega def. Kazuchika Okada @ 24:40
The writing was on the wall for ‘The Rainmaker’ after being defeated by EVIL and then going thirty minutes with Suzuki, he was sufficiently beaten down enough for Omega to pick at his bones and take the B block. That’s exactly what he did. Okada came out with his neck taped, making a clear target for Omega who found various ways to drop the ace on top of his head and neck. This year these two have officially put International wrestling on the map. Their match in January turned many heads, then their sixty minute draw in June turned even more. Both these matches went over thirty minutes though and the G1 limit is only thirty.

Luckily for Omega, he drew Okada’s name last, after he had to wrestle eight other singles matches. Okada’s body has been broken down severely over the last month and all Omega had to do was put forth a focused attack onto the neck. This was a disgusting dissection Omega performed on Okada here. The Rainmaker gave his all but it was very clear from the jump that he wouldn’t have the gas and Omega hits the One-Winged Angel at just under twenty-five minutes to score not only two points, not only win the B block but also to finally beat Okada one-on-one. This win guarantees him that even if he doesn’t beat Naito tomorrow in the finals, he still gets a match for Okada’s title somewhere down the line. This was beautiful storytelling done in all the right ways and is exactly why people praise the booking of New Japan.

Overall this was an excellent night of wrestling from New Japan. Each tournament match saw the performers give great efforts in providing memorable matches. Stars like EVIL and Juice Robinson were made in this year’s tournament and beautiful storytelling was done by those in the main event. When wrestling is done right it’s one of the most beautiful works of art.

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