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NJPW ‘Super Jr. Tag League 2019’ (10.17.19) Results & Review

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The second of back-to-back nights at Korakuen Hall to kick off the 2019 Super Junior Tag League. The main event sees a battle between CHAOS as both teams are looking to get on the board after dropping their opening night match. Let’s get started!

Rocky Romero & Ryusuke Taguchi (2-0) def. Tiger Mask IV & Yuya Uemura (0-2) @ 12:32 via Taguchi Dodon on Uemura – **1/4
The match starts promising with some grappling between Romero and Uemura but everything falls apart once their partners get the tag. Tiger gets in on the comedy and I lose all interest in the match. Romero stops Taguchi from tapping by placing his boot between Taguchi’s hand and the mat because Taguchi only has one hand and can’t verbally submit. Uemura has a strong finishing stretch with counter roll ups before eating the pin. Comedy wrestling has no place in a tournament format.

Volador Jr. & Titán (2-0) def. TJP & Clark Connors (0-2) @ 12:24 via Titán Springboard Double Stomp on Connors – **1/4
Another match to showcase Titán’s abilities. Volador did a little bit more than yesterday by hitting a dive in the finishing stretch. Connors received very little time in the match compared to how much Uemura got yesterday. TJP took most of the beating by did manage to flash by transitioning a hold into a Scorpion Death Lock + Gory Special combination. Titán is an exciting wrestler but he was the only one putting any substantial effort into the match.

El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru (2-0) def. El Phantasmo & Taiji Ishimori (1-1) @ 15:36 via Desperado Pinche Loco on Ishimori – *1/2
The first five minutes consisted entirely of back rakes, eye gouges and rope-walking. After that, five minutes of stomps low in the tree of woe and outside brawling. Never fear, Desperado gets his revenge by dropping a knee low on Ishimori before everybody receives a shot low followed by belt shots and whiskey. Korakuen put their best foot forward but this was largely a chore. The best spot was an unintentional lionsault over the jaw of Desperado by ELP.

Roppongi 3K (1-1) def. Birds of Prey (0-2) @ 21:15 via YOH Five Star Clutch on Eagles – **3/4
Ospreay needs to start vetting up on guys lower on the rung than him. Neither SHO nor YOH are established enough to be putting Ospreay to task. There was a spot where Ospreay was delivering a series of up-kicks, SHO powers up and the two make dumb ‘hopefully this makes a GIF’ faces at each other before SHO lariats Ospreay inside out. Ospreay shouldn’t be taking spots like that from SHO. I understand he wants to give SHO shine but just last night we saw SHO get dorked on by SZKG. If Desperado can make SHO look bad, Ospreay *in cannon* should have no problem. The continuity isn’t there and looks bad in context.

On the other hand, Eagles and YOH rule together. You can see both on a similar level in terms of the booking so them going back and forth didn’t look out of place. Their finishing sequence is the highlight of the tournament so far, the problem being you have to sit through eighteen minutes before you see it. I’ll give this match the nod as the tournament’s best but in no way is it something to seek out. They went too long and Ospreay was too giving for a guy who pinned Tanahashi.

When you see the empty seats in Korakuen Hall it doesn’t take too long to understand why when watching this show. It’s not bad but there’s very little to sink your teeth into. You have a comedy tag team, an unmotivated Volador Jr., guys back raking each other for five minutes and the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion not fulfilling his role as the established veteran. Nothing is cohesive because everything in this tournament is inconsequential to the big picture.

Standings
El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru (2-0)
Rocky Romero & Ryusuke Taguchi (2-0)
Volador Jr. & Titán (2-0)
Roppongi 3K (1-1)
El Phantasmo & Taiji Ishimori (1-1)
Birds of Prey (0-2)
Tiger Mask IV & Yuya Uemura (0-2)
TJP & Clark Connors (0-2)

Along with providing show reviews from across Japan, Robert McCauley is also an editor for FightboothPW.

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