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NJPW ‘Best of the Super Juniors 25’ 5.31.18 Results & Review



The A block is coming down to the nitty-gritty on its sixth night of tournament action in the ‘Best of the Super Juniors’. Half of the block faces the possibility of elimination in front of 1,426 at the Hachinohe City East Gymnasium.

Best of the Super Juniors Tournament Match
BUSHI def. Flip Gordon @ 11:59 via MX – **1/2

BUSHI was in a must-win scenerio in order to remain alive in the tournament. If you’ve seen every BUSHI match of the tour, close your eyes and picture this match. That’s exactly how it went. Perfectly fine but unspectacular. They start with pose off and Flip hits a 619 around the ring post. Then BUSHI decides that’s enough excitement and chokes Flip out with chairs along with his shirt. Flip comes back with a springboard drop kick, topé con hilo, lands on his feet when BUSHI moves on the Four Flippy, hits a springboard spear, a standing Shooting Star and lands a Moonsault from the top rope. BUSHI cuts him off with a DDT and top rope dropkick before they begin trading forearms. They head to the top where Flip grounds BUSHI with a superkick but BUSHI gets his knees up on the 450 attempt and rolls Flip up for a two count. After a strike exchange, BUSHI connects with a codebreaker and follows with an MX for the win. This was perfectly fine but not anything major.

Best of the Super Juniors Tournament Match
Taiji Ishimori def. ACH @ 11:57 via Bloody Cross – ***

ACH was faced with a make or break match against his former tag team partner, Ishimori. Really fast-paced action from the start. Ishimori went after the shoulder with a death grip and hit his draping second rope German suplex but was caught on a dive. ACH attempted to hit Ishimori with a German of his own, Ishimori flipped out and landed a handspring kick. They trade strikes and ACH sweeps the leg, stomps Ishimori to the mat, throws him to the corner and hits him with double running knees. He follows with a double knee gutbuster and goes up top for a 450 and misses. Ishimori lands a nasty John Woo dropkick, double knees into the corner and finishes with Bloody Cross. Really physical match. Although he’s a heel, Ishimori still delivers exciting offense which is something I’d like to see from BUSHI. This eliminates ACH from the tournament. He asks for more after the match but Ishimori brushes him off.

Best of the Super Juniors Tournament Match
Will Ospreay def. Tiger Mask @ 12:05 via Storm Breaker – ***

Ospreay bowed to Tiger before the bell and the two shook hands. Tiger came out swinging early but Ospreay avoided his kicks and grounded the veteran with uppercuts and stomps to the neck. Ospreay was caught running in and dropped with a Tombstone. He rolled out of the ring screaming and stayed out until the count of nineteen. Tiger stomped the neck and applied a chinlock but Ospreay powered out. He went to hit the ropes but collapsed due to the whiplash to his neck. Tiger continued his attack on the neck until Ospreay nailed a handspring kick, enziguri and top rope 619 combination. They battle out of their finishers and trade forearms until Ospreay attempts an Oscutter but was caught in an armbar. Tiger hoists him up and hits a Tiger Driver for two, followed by a top rope Butterfly suplex for another two count. He positions Ospreay for a Tombstone but Ospreay reverses the positions and lifts Tiger into Storm Breaker position and drives Tiger down for the three. Fun back and forth match and one of Tiger’s standout performances. He ices Ospreay’s neck for him and they shake hands before heading to the back.

Best of the Super Juniors Tournament Match
YOH def. Yoshinobu Kanemaru @ 16:37 via Five Star Clutch – ***

YOH has been battling Kanemaru for months in tag team matches. Kanemaru and Desperado have been cheating in order to beat YOH and SHO and take away their junior tag belts. Needless to say, YOH really wanted this win. He’s jumped before the bell, thrown into the crowd and choked with chairs. Things didn’t start off on the right foot. Kanemaru brought him up to the apron for a hanging DDT to the floor and delivered three consecutive DDTs back inside the ring. He begins laying the boots to YOH but is caught into a Dragon Screw legwhip. YOH hits a flurry of offense, an enziguri, double stomp and his backbreaker + neckbreaker combination. He rushes towards Kanemaru but gets dumped to the outside. Kanemaru throws him towards the post but YOH evades and lands a dropkick to the floor and follows with a topé con hilo. YOH doesn’t allow Kanemaru time to regroup, instead throwing him back in the ring and lands some forearms in the corner before dropping him off the top with a suplex. Kanemaru rolled out of the way of a Swanton Bomb and drops YOH off the top with another DDT. He goats YOH in for a dropkick and catches him with a neckbreaker. Kanemaru grabs the whiskey, sprays it in YOH’s face and hits a low before Deep Impact but YOH kicks out. Kanemaru hits a brainbuster. Kick out. YOH superkicks his way out of a second Deep Impact and rolls Kanemaru up for two. He goes for another superkick but Kanemaru grabs the referee to block the attack. He charges at YOH, who counters his momentum into a Five Star Clutch for the win. Really fun conclusion to the show. Both SHO and YOH have defeated Desperado and Kanemaru in the tournament, likely setting up a match at Dominion. Kanemaru has been eliminated from the tournament and attacks YOH in frustration after the match, before being pulled away. YOH gets back up and celebrates his win with the crowd.

The strongest A block show since the opening night. There were a lot of meaningful matches that lead to eliminations and a main event which likely will be leading to a title match at Dominion. Nothing out of context was a blow away match but knowing the ramifications made each match fun to watch. If you’ve been following the tournament closely you’ll enjoy everything going on throughout the show.

The next A block show is going to feature the block finals. Here are the matches and the possible outcomes:

Taiji Ishimori (4-2) vs YOH (3-3)
– If Ishimori wins, he’s won the block.
– If YOH wins, he ties Ishimori and would need Ospreay to lose to force a tie between him, Ishimori, Flip and Ospreay.

Will Ospreay (4-2) vs Flip Gordon (3-3)
– If Ospreay wins, he needs Ishimori to lose.
– If Flip wins, he ties Ospreay and would needs Ishimori to lose to force a tie between him, Ishimori, Ospreay and YOH.

BUSHI (3-3) vs Yoshinobu Kanemaru (2-4)
– If BUSHI wins he needs YOH and Flip to win to force a five way tie between him, Ospreay, Ishimori, YOH and Flip.
– Kanemaru is eliminated

Tiger Mask IV (3-3) vs ACH (2-4)
– If Tiger wins he needs YOH and Flip to win to force a five way tie between him, Ospreay, Ishimori, YOH and Flip
– ACH is eliminated

Taiji Ishimori (4-2)
Will Ospreay (4-2)
YOH (3-3)
Flip Gordon (3-3)
BUSHI (3-3)
Tiger Mask IV (3-3)
Yoshinobu Kanemaru (2-4) ELIMINATED

Robert McCauley hasn't missed an NJPW show since the launch of NJPW World. Always be on the look out for his reviews where he shares results and gives his honest opinions on the goings-on of New Japan Pro-Wrestling.