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NJPW ‘Best of the Super Juniors 25’ 6.2.18 Results & Review

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The B block’s sixth night of tournament action and the final hard camera produced show before the two night conclusion at Korakuen Hall for this year’s ‘Best of the Super Juniors’. This show took place in Gunma in front of 1,515 at the New Sunpia Takasaki with facing elimination. Let’s see how many survived!

Best of the Super Juniors Tournament Match
Chris Sabin def. El Desperado @ 12:14 via Cradle Shock **3/4

This was a make or break match at the start of the night that resulted in being meaningless by night’s end. Desperado hid behind the entrance and attacked Sabin from behind. He threw Sabin into a sea of chairs and continued beating him down in the crowd. The attacks continued in the ring but Sabin countered a brainbuster into a cradle and took him to the top for a suplex. He lands a springboard DDT, plancha and a running kick from the apron before sending Desperado into the chairs. Sabin then sets Desperado on a chair and sentons off the apron onto him and carries him body to the top rope for a Hurricanrana and a top rope dropkick to the back of the head. Desperate, Desperado swings a chair but it’s superkicked into his face and is dropped with Cradle Shock. The loss eliminated Desperado but the main event wound up eliminating Sabin as well. Good outing by both guys.

Best of the Super Juniors Tournament Match
Marty Scurll def. Ryusuke Taguchi @ 15:42 via Small Package – **3/4

At the time, Taguchi needed the match in order to stay alive but ultimately it turns out it wouldn’t have mattered. He gets under Scurll’s skin early on by mocking his taunts. Scurll eats several hip attacks and takes his anger out on a Taguchi fan by stealing their glasses. Taguchi tries the Just Kidding superkick but Marty grabs his hand and snaps the fingers. Scurll goes from the umbrella but Taguchi rips it from his hands and hands the umbrella to the referee. He blocks a low blow attack from Scurll but pretends he was hit anyway and the referee threatens to disqualify Scurll, who pushes the ref but is pushes back into a cradle. Scurll blocks a Dodon by pushing Taguchi into the ref and while Taguchi checks on the ref, Scurll unlaces his boot. Taguchi comes back in and tries applying the ankle lock but Scurll rolls through and pins Taguchi in a small package. Goofy underhanded tactics. Light and fun, as you’d expect in a match between the two.

Best of the Super Juniors Tournament Match
Hiromu Takahashi def. SHO @ 16:20 via D – ***1/2

This was a win that SHO desperately needed if he hoped to win the tournament. They started off pedal to the metal and didn’t let up. As soon as the bell rang, they charged full steam with lariats and forearms. SHO successfully shoulder tackled Hiromu to the mat but he bounced back up and they continued trading forearms until Hiromu ran at SHO, looking for a Hurricanrana. His attempt was blocked and they began trading dropkicks. When that got old, they went to trading powerbombs and then to German suplexes. SHO countered a Time Bomb into a cross armbreaker and blocked another Hurricanrana with three consecutive powerbombs, the third on top of his knees. Knowing that SHO has the rana countered, Hiromu tries one more time and picks the leg, transitioning SHO into a triangle choke and despite his best efforts, SHO was forced to tap. One of the best matches of the tournament. SHO has really been the breakout star this year and Hiromu continues on his run of great matches.

Best of the Super Juniors Tournament Match
KUSHIDA def. Dragon Lee @ 18:18 via Back to the Future – ***

Since the final day of block action features KUSHIDA going against Hiromu, Lee needed this win in order to still have a chance of winning the block. The two weren’t on the same page with the handshake and their confusion bled over to the match. There were several miscommunications leading to a good but underwhelming main event. Neither were able to gain any sort of edge until Lee landed a tope con hilo. Then he began raining down forearms in the corner and that lead to an exchange of forearms. KUSHIDA kicks Lee out of the ring with a handspring kick and climbs to the top, hitting a senton to the floor. Lee uses his knees to block a moonsault and has a flurry of offense starting with a German suplex, into an armbar, a sleeper and a double armbar which forces KUSHIDA to use his mouth in order to force the ropebreak. Lee looks to finish the match with a Desnucadora but KUSHIDA counters into a DDT and follows with Back to the Future but Lee floats into a pin of his own. KUSHIDA kicks out, eats knee and poison rana but manages to hook Lee into another Back to the Future and walk out with the win. They show respect and KUSHIDA celebrates with the crowd. This was a good match but the missteps along the way broke up the flow which was unfortunate and underwhelming in its conclusion.

As should be expected at this point, Hiromu had another great match. Like I’ve seen saying all tournament, every match was good but if you’re cherry-picking then there is only one match that stands above the others. Completionists have likely enjoyed everything but if you’re making those tough decisions, Hiromu and SHO had the best match of the night. SHO is the tournament’s breakout star, continuing to step up and put on great performances with the top wrestlers in the division. Unlike the A block, pretty much everyone was eliminated on their sixth night so let’s break down the next night’s matches and see what everyone needs.

Hiromu Takahashi vs KUSHIDA
– If Hiromu wins, he wins the tournament
– If KUSHIDA wins, he wins the tournament

Marty Scurll vs SHO
– If Marty wins, he needs Hiromu/KUSHIDA to go to a draw to win the tournament
– SHO is eliminated

El Desperado vs Dragon Lee
– Desperado is eliminated
– Dragon Lee is eliminated

Ryusuke Taguchi vs Chris Sabin
– Taguchi is eliminated
– Sabin is eliminated

Standings
Hiromu Takahashi (4-2)
KUSHIDA (4-2)
Marty Scurll (4-2)
Dragon Lee (3-3) ELIMINATED
Chris Sabin (3-3) ELIMINATED
SHO (2-4) ELIMINATED
El Desperado (2-4) ELIMINATED
Ryusuke Taguchi (2-4) ELIMINATED

Recommended Match
Hiromu vs SHO

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.

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