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ROH/NJPW ‘G1 Supercard’ Preview & Predictions



Ring of Honor and New Japan Pro-Wrestling join forces to showcase their collective brand of wrestling in front of a sold out crowd at Madison Square Garden. With twelve matches and ten titles on the line, G1 Supercard aims to be one of the most talked about wrestling events of all time. Let’s take a look at everything that’s set to take place.

Kagetsu, Jenny Rose & Hazuki vs Hana Kimura, Stella Grey & Sumie Sakai
This is the show’s dark match that only fans live in attendance will be able to watch. These six are a mix between members of both Stardom and ROH. Kagetsu is the current World of Stardom Champion and Hazuki is the High Speed Champion. The two will be teaming with ROH’s Jenny Rose as the trio goes up against Sumie Sakai who holds the distinction of being the inaugural Women of Honor World Champion along with Stardom’s rising star, Hana Kimura, and Stella Grey. My knowledge on these six is extremely limited and since I won’t be there live, doesn’t look to grow. Kagetsu’s team has the belts so I give them the edge.
Prediction: Kagetsu, Jenny Rose & Hazuki

Honor Rumble
On the preshow we’ll see the faces who couldn’t make the main card inside the Honor Rumble. Several names have already announced but the majority of the entrants will be surprises. The named participants are: Brian Milonas, Cheeseburger, Jushin ‘Thunder’ Liger, Kenny King, PJ Black and The Beer City Bruiser. Impossible to tell who will win without knowing all of the participants but I’ll take my shot.
Prediction: YOSHI-HASHI

NEVER Openweight Championship vs ROH World Television Championship
Will Ospreay (c) vs Jeff Cobb (c)

The first of two winner takes all title versus title matches. Ospreay broke wrestling Twitter when he seemingly defied the laws of physics by hoisting Cobb over his shoulder for the Storm Breaker during the Honor Rising tour. This act propelled Ospreay on his way to becoming the giant killer. The winner will take both titles and would likely have to do tours for both promotions. We’ve recently seen Cobb do tours in NJPW but Ospreay is no stranger to ROH and is even a former TV Champion. The match is a complete toss up, you can make a strong case for either guy. I don’t follow ROH close but NJPW have been building Ospreay up strong so I’ll take him to walk out as double champion.
Prediction: Will Ospreay

Dalton Castle vs Rush
This is another case of me being unfamiliar with the feud because I don’t follow ROH. Rush is one of the company’s newest signings and has a reputation of not agreeing to take many losses. Castle is a former ROH Champion but has been hindered by some injuries. Rush is your new guy, he’s a big name, give him the win.
Prediction: Rush

ROH Women of Honor Championship
Mayu Iwatani (c) vs Kelly Klein

The third match in their series, Kelly Klein looks to regain her title from Mayu Iwatani. Klein lost the title to Iwatani back in February and failed to reclaim the title in March. Since becoming champion, Iwatani has defended the title in Stardom as a way to help raise its prestige. I can see Klein finally getting over the hump and get her win over Iwatani.
Prediction: Kelly Klein

New York Street Fight
Bully Ray vs Juice Robinson

When Bully Ray’s opponents was listed as a surprise, many fans were eagerly anticipating one of two option: Minoru Suzuki or Tomohiro Ishii. Instead, we got Juice Robinson. Many believe this could be a swerve and Suzuki has helped fan that flame on Twitter by having a war of words with Bully. Whoever winds up coming out as his opponent, it’ll be a nice moment to watch Bully get destroyed.
Prediction: Not Bully Ray

IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship
Taiji Ishimori (c) vs Dragon Lee vs Bandido

Many fans, myself included, have this match circled as the one with the best chance to steal the show. Three of the most exciting wrestlers on planet meeting in a big time title match. The three-way stipulation only ensures that we’re going to see these three set an insane pace that very few are capable of replicating. The man with the least amount of wrestling experience is the only man to have set foot in the ring with both of his opponents. Bandido met Ishimori in a singles match last year in PWG and had two tags against Lee in Lucha Libre Boom. This is the first time Ishimori and Lee have squared off in any fashion and if that doesn’t excite you, I don’t know what to tell you. Both men are set for next month’s Best of the Super Juniors and a strong showing from Bandido will all but lock him in with them. I don’t see Ishimori losing the title and Bandido will probably take the pin, but this is an awesome match to look at on paper.
Prediction: Taiji Ishimori

IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championship & ROH Tag Team Championship
Guerillas of Destiny (c) vs Brody King & PCO (c) vs The Briscoes vs EVIL & SANADA

A four team, winner takes all tag team match. Like the other title versus title match, whoever wins will likely have to tour with both promotions while they’re champions. Since I have Ospreay winning the ROH TV title for the NJPW side, I’m going to pick an ROH team to win the NJPW titles to split the series. The Briscoes are a known and respected commodity in NJPW but ROH are looking to rebrand and getting to showcase their newest signings to the NJPW audience may be able to generate Japanese interest in the product.
Prediction: Brody King & PCO

RevPro Undisputed British Heavyweight Championship
Zack Sabre Jr. (c) vs Hiroshi Tanahashi

The RevPro title has become synonymous with Zack Sabre Jr. and that makes complete sense as the figurehead of the revival of the British wrestling scene. He’s been one of the most popular wrestlers in the world ever since leaving Pro Wrestling NOAH in 2015 and has won titles everywhere he’s gone. The record between him and Tanahashi is split at two wins a piece, Tanahashi having won both their sole title match and most recent match. Tanahashi holding the RevPro title would be something completely different and you can argue that if he’s out of the running for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, why not have a reign with this one? It’s bizarre to even think about Tanahashi losing a singles match at the biggest U.S. show in the company’s history. The man who put New Japan on his back and brought it to where it is today. All that and I just don’t see this one in the cards for Tanahashi. This is the title Sabre has built and he should walk out still champion.
Prediction: Zack Sabre Jr.

IWGP Intercontinental Championship
Tetsuya Naito (c) vs Kota Ibushi

At one point there was real tension between these two. Naito expressed real frustration when fans welcomed Ibushi back with open arms after he left in 2015. As someone who had to fight for the fans approval, them giving it away so easily to Ibushi must have hurt. The three singles matches we’ve gotten since then have been certified classics. These two beat each other up in ways that amaze fans who don’t think the two will ever be able to wrestle again. Yet here we are. This is the first time these two have wrestled for a championship and if you don’t think they’re going all out, you don’t know Ibushi and Naito. Ibushi has won their last two matches so this one weighs heavy on the side of Naito. There are those who believe Naito is in line to win this year’s G1 Climax and are using that as a reason for Ibushi to take the title from him here. The tournament is still months away. I say hold off on the change and let Naito have this moment over Ibushi.
Prediction: Tetsuya Naito

Ladder Match for the ROH World Championship
Jay Lethal (c) vs Marty Scurll vs Matt Taven

The rivalry between Lethal and Taven is one of the longest lasting in ROH history. Their feud goes back to 2013 with the TV title and now in 2019 they’re second from the top at MSG. With the rumors of Marty Scurll on the way out, why give him this moment? When is the next time ROH will be able to run a show this size? This is the perfect opportunity to give Taven the big win. ROH know he isn’t going anywhere so they’ll be able to build off the moment and use this as a landmark in their history.
Prediction: Matt Taven

IWGP Heavyweight Championship
Jay White (c) vs Kazuchika Okada

Very few can claim a 2-0 record over Kazuchika Okada. Very few can claim beating Hiroshi Tanahashi for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. Only two can claim to have main evented New Japan’s first show at MSG. Jay White can check all three boxes. His rise to the top since returning from excursion has been incredible. While he’s been on the way up, Okada has been treading water since losing the title last summer. Okada used the New Japan Cup to prove that he’s still the best Chaos has to offer but it’s never looked more bleak. The story of both men over the last year has been the best thing New Japan has done. Jay White mirrors the arrogant Okada of the past. Everything has come full circle. Now is the time for Okada to take the throne back as a changed man. A better man.
Prediction: Kazuchika Okada

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