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NJPW ‘Super Jr. Tag League 2018’ (10.26.18) Results & Review

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The seventh night of the 2018 Super Jr. Tag League returns to Korakuen Hall with full camera and commentary treatment. All teams have a match as the tournament is beginning to heat up with many on the verge of elimination. Let’s get started!

Henare, Umino & Tsuji def. Yoshida, Narita & Uemura @ 7:39 via Umino Boston Crab on Uemura – **1/2
Tsuji’s power is too much for Narita so he sweeps the leg and keeps him grounded. He tags in Uemura to help him overpwer Tsuji. When they bring in Yoshida, he attacks Umino on the apron with a couple of boots before setting his targets on Tsuji, who is able to use the distraction to his favor by landing a dropkick and tagging out to Henare. Coming in hot with should tackles and lariats, Henare manages to drop Yoshida with a vertical suplex, resulting in Yoshida digging deep with a desperation dropkick and causing them to both tag out. Umino and Uemura trade forearms, Uemura puts him down with a dropkick and his team runs train on Umino in the corner before Narita grounds him with a belly-to-belly suplex. Tsuji breaks up Uemura’s Boston Crab, Henare hits a headbutt into a Samoan Drop which gives Umino time to climb to the top with a dropkick, stacks Uemura in a pin and when he kicks out, turns it into a Boston Crab for the win. Umino and Yoshida stare daggers into each other and have to be pulled apart.

Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano def. Minoru Suzuki & TAKA Michinoku @ 7:26 via Yano Schoolboy on TAKA – **1/2
Ishii and Suzuki are trading forearms before the sound of the bell. Suzuki boots Ishii in the face, Ishii yells at him to bring it and shoulders Suzuki to the mat. He takes Suzuki to the corner where they trade more forearms until a boot takes Ishii down and Suzuki spits on him before tagging to TAKA. Unfortunately, TAKA’s strength doesn’t match Suzuki’s so he’s left with Ishii glaring at him intensely and turns his focus back to Suzuki. The two continue their brawl on the outside where Suzuki chokes Ishii out with a chair and throws him back in for TAKA to pick apart. Suzuki tags back in and Ishii grits his teeth as he continues to take punishment until finally catching Suzuki in a powerslam and tagging out to Yano. Immediately sprinting for and removing the turnbuckle pads, Yano and TAKA trade attempts at bouncing the other off the exposed buckle. Yano wins at his game and rolls TAKA up for the win. Ishii and Suzuki aren’t done, despite the bell. They trade shots, throw young lions out of their way and brawl to the back.

Tanahashi, Makabe & Honma def. Ibushi, Yujiro & Owens @ 10:30 via Tanahashi High Fly Flow on Owens – **1/2
Ibushi baks Tanahashi in the ropes where Yujiro grabs hold and Owens rushes in for the double team, bumping Ibushi away in the process. After a look of disgust, Ibushi high fives the too sweet and all semms to have been forgiven. Tanahashi overcomes the double team, kicks Ibushi on the knee and tags Honma who unsuccessfully attempts the Kokeshi, allowing Bullet Club to grind him down. Honma catches Ibushi’s kick, delivers a slap but Ibushi’s slap in response crumples Honma and they continue the beatdown. Honma finally manages to turn Yujiro into a vertical suplex, gets the tag to Makabe who cleans house and both teams tag in Ibushi and Tanahashi once more. Standing moonsault from Ibushi, Twist & Shout from Tanahashi, they trade kicks for slaps, standing hurricarana from Ibushi and a tag to Owens. Backsliding and hitting a superkick on Tanahashi, Owens sets up for the package piledriver but Honma cuts it off, Ibushi comes in with a springboard dropkick and Makabe a double lariat. Tanahashi recovers to hit a slingblade, Honma a Kokeshi and Owens is finished with a High Fly Flow. Tanahashi runs circles around Ibushi while holding the Wrestle Kingdom briefcase.

White, Fale, Tama, Tanga & Gedo def. Okada, Goto, Beretta, Chuckie T. & Romero @ 16:36 via White Blade Runner on Romero – ***1/4
Bullet Club come out to White’s theme today. Okada wants to start off with White but isn’t given the satisfaction so Goto and Tama kick it off instead. Tanga comes in to help his brother but Goto takes care of both with lariats and a spin kick in the corner before tagging out to Chuck. Tama comes in this time to help his brother but Chuck still manages to hit a hurricanrana, Chaos clears the Bullet Club apron and Chuck lands a tope con hilo to the floor. A tense moment between Beretta and Rocky emerges when Beretta cuts off his Forever clotheslines with a slap. Rocky looks hurt but they hug it out and all seems forgiven. Jado cuts Beretta off with the Singapore cane to the back and Bullet Club take Chaos to the floor. White slams Umino on Okada and back in the ring, they grind on Beretta. The crowd rallies behind Beretta, he makes the tag to Okada ad White is quick to drop him with a Saito suplex. They trade forearms, White attempts Blade Runner, transitioned into a Rainmaker, White chops his way out and takes a Flapjack instead. Rocky gets the tag, ranas White, Tanga and Tama, Beretta comes in and they hit double knees on White, Goto lariats Fale over the top, Best Friends land a placha apiece and Okada a dropkick on White. Rocky looks to finish White off with the Sliced Bread #2 but White transitions it into the Blade Runner and wins the match for Bullet Club.

KUSHIDA & Chris Sabin def. Jushin ‘Thunder’ Liger & Tiger Mask IV @ 10:20 via Outatime on Liger – ***
Liger and KUSHIDA start off by trading holds and find themselves evenly match so they tag out. Sabin and Tiger trade takeovers but Sabin is able to capitalize on his speed, lands a PK and takes Tiger to the corner where he tags KUSHIDA back in. Tiger is able to kick his way out of KUSHIDA’s control, tag in Liger who tees off with a slidings dropkick to the floor, followed by an apron senton to the floor and sends KUSHIDA ack in where he locks in the Romero Special. The legends grind KUSHIDA down with more holds until he fires back with a hiptoss + cartwheel dropkick and makes the tag to Sabin. Dropkick from the top to Liger and an apron PK to Tiger, Liger manages to fight out of Sabin’s Fisherman’s Buster and hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. KUSHIDA looks for the handspring elbow but Tiger catches him and Liger connects with a shotei. Tiger takes KUSHIDA to the top but Sabin cuts it off yet Liger is still able to capitalize with a frankensteiner off the second. A successful Tiger Driver and tombstone piledriver but Sabin cuts off the Tiger suplex, hit the chinlock dropkick and finish Liger with Outatime. They all shake hands after the match.

Yoshinobu Kanemaru & El Desperado def. Volador Jr. & Soberano Jr. @ 12:32 via Desperado El Es Culero on Soberano – ***1/4
Suzuki-Gun attack before the bell and take the match to the outside. They look to throw Soberano into the stage buthe leaps up and moonsaults to his feet back on the floor. Suzuki-Gun take them up the stairs to the second level and attempt to throw team CMLL into each other from one side to the other. The plan backfires as both are dropped with backbreakers and crossbodys from the overhead entrance of the second level. Team CMLL take Kanemaru back to the ring where they hit a springboard splash nd enziguri but Desperado makes his way back to the floor and sweeps Soberano off the apron. After throwing him into rhe crowd, Desperado takes Soberano to the top with unmasking the luchador in mind. Soberano hits a desperation dropkick, tags Volador who comes in with a rana, superkick and lungblower flurry before Desperado rips at his eyes. Soberano evens the score with a dropkick off the second and Volador takes to the top for a moonsault but Desperado gets his boots up. With a dropkick from the top onto both members of SZKG this time, SZKG bail to the outside and are met with a pair of topes and a tornillo. Soberano rolls up Desperado, Kanemaru breaks it up, sprays the mist and Desperado rolls Soberano up for the win.

BUSHI & Shingo Takagi def. Taiji Ishimori & Robbie Eagles @ 14:00 via Rebellion on Eagles – ***
Shingo and Ishimori start by trading go-behinds. Ishimori cartwheels into an armdrag but Shingo puts the breaks on and goes for a senton but Ishimori evades and there’s a stalemate. Eagles lands a dropkick and springboard armdrag on BUSHI, ranas Shingo and follows with a tope. Bullet Club grind on BUSHI’s knee but he’s able to comeback with a double rana and tag in Shingo who pops Eagles up for a DVD and a vertical suplex onto Ishimori. Floating through a second suplex, Ishimori pops up onto Shingo’s sholders, rolls him up and applies acrossface, hitting a handspring kick when the crossface is broken up. BUSHI and Eagles are tagged and BUSHI comes in with a dropkick off the top but his swinging neckbreaker is countered into a springboard sliced bread. Ishimori puts both members of LIJ down with a DDT + flatliner combo, lands a placha and Eagles comes off the top with a splash onto BUSHI’s knee. He locks in the Ron Miller Special but Shingo breaks it up with a sliding lariat. Eagles and BUSHI trade forearms that lead to a BUSHI Destroyer and an MX but Ishimori breaks that up. Shingo catches Ishimori on his shoulders when attempting a handspring and throws Ishimori off, then lands the Pumping Bomber. With Ishimori down, they finish Eagles by Shingo holding him up in a facebuster position and BUSHI driving Eagles down with a codebreaker.

ACH & Ryusuke Taguchi def. YOH & SHO @ 18:33 via Taguchi Korakuen Suplex Hold on YOH – ***1/4
ACH and SHO begin with shoulder tackles and chops. They stalemate but SHO refuses the fist bump and they tag out. Taguchi and YOH are very nearly pirouetting their way around the ring and then start running the ropes opposite of one another, unable to make contact. They raise their fists to bump but Taguchi collapses. YOH tries three different pins, Taguchi goats him into another and armdrags YOH, followed by a hip attack. Clearing SHO off the apron, ACH coaches Taguchi into a series of corner lariats and waits for Taguchi to send YOH into his butt in the corner. To ACH’s surprise, instead of meeting his butt head-first, YOH shoves his fingers inside of ACH’s butt and does the same to Taguchi. He tries three more pins on taguchi before tagging in SHO who comes in hot with a sliding dropkick and PK. A desperation hip attack from Taguchi gives him space to tag ACH and they hit both a tope con hilo and suicida on 3K. ACH leg sweep, double stomp, superkick, deadlift German on SHO but misses the splash off the top. 3K hit a flurry of corner attacks but ACH still manages to double rana and get the tag to Taguchi. A flurry of hip attacks, two vertical suplexes and a facebuster, Taguchi fires up with the Nakamura mimic but is rolled up by YOH and eats double knees from 3K. Lungblow + single-leg dropkick but Taguchi turns a 3K to a hip attack. YOH turns the Dodon to the Five Star Clutch but Taguchi rolls that up for his own two count. Super 69 land a facebuster + cutter combo but SHO breaks it up. Taguchi locks Oh My & Grankle, transitioned to another double team facebuster, again broken up by SHO. Taguchi finally scores the win with a bridging half nelson suplex on YOH.

Post-match, Taguchi declares that ACH did 69% of the work and Korakuen did the rest. The two hip attack each other and send the crowd home happy.

This was a very strong show with all four tournament matches being good. It’s nitpicking trying to find the best of the bunch and I’ll sidestep that debate by declaring the Okada/White tag as my favorite. Their story continues to unfold with White now announcing that he has someone inside Chaos working for him. Korakuen was at their loudest during that match and from that match on, everything was a hit. Maybe nothing from the show will be remembered at the end of the year but as a standalone night, this was a lot of fun start to finish.

Recommended Matches
Chaos vs Bullet Club
SZKG vs CMLL
ACH & Taguchi vs YOH & SHO

Standings
BUSHI & Shingo (4-1)
YOH & SHO (3-2)
Kanemaru & Desperado (3-2)
KUSHIDA & Sabin (3-2)
Ishimori & Eagles (2-3)
Liger & Tiger (2-3)
ACH & Taguchi (2-3)
Volador Jr. & Soberano jr. (1-4)

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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