NJPW Road To Destruction 2019
September 6, 2019
Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
12th Young Lions Cup League Match
Alex Coughlin vs. Michael Richards - 6/10
Coughlin lit up Richards' chest with ONE SINGLE CHOP. Coughlin has that golden palm that guys like Eddie Edwards, Roddy, or WALTER have made them stand out from the rest. Coughlin's performance was great, but Richards still feels like a normal indie guy, like a really solid indie guy. Coughlin won with a bridged Scorpion Deathlock, which looked unique and impressive for a guy that doesn't even have a profile in Cagematch yet. With this win, Coughlin has taken the lead of the block as the only man with 4 points.
12th Young Lions Cup League Match
Clark Connors vs. Karl Fredericks - 6.5/10
This was good, but just slightly behind each man's match against their Japanese rivals. Connors worked over Frederick's taped up shoulder for the heat until Fredericks made a comeback, hit a spinebuster, and submit Connors with a Single Leg Crab.
Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Shota Umino & Yuya Uemura vs. Ren Narita, Satoshi Kojima & Yota Tsuji - 6.5/10
The stuff between Yuya and Tsuji goes months back, so they just kinda did their thing, but Narita vs Shota was awesome. Shota was a total asshole, obviously taking notes from Moxley matches. Old timers did their thing, they're pretending to have some friendly rivalry heat. Finish, surprisingly, saw Narita get the win over Uemura after the Belly-to-belly Bridge.
BULLET CLUB (Tama Tonga, Tanga Loa & Yujiro Takahashi) (w/Jado) vs. CHAOS (Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI) & Tomoaki Honma - 5/10
This was kinda weak, Ishii lit up the match for a bit, but nothing special. It started with a brawl that looked fun, but once back in the ring, BC worked over YOSHI, Ishii got the hot tag, but then Honma came in to just lose. Roa got the pin after Apeshit and an assist by Jado's kendo stick.
Birds Of Prey (Robbie Eagles & Will Ospreay) & Toa Henare vs. BULLET CLUB (Bad Luck Fale, El Phantasmo & Taiji Ishimori) - 7/10
Good overall match, BoP vs ELP/Taiji was the same stuff we've been seeing, but I really liked the tandem offense of Ospreay and Eagles against Fale. Henare was there for the babyface in peril run and to take the pin by the hands of Fale and his Grenade.
CHAOS (Hirooki Goto, Kazuchika Okada & Rocky Romero) vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (BUSHI, SANADA & Shingo Takagi) - 7.5/10
Excellent match, but nothing new, and I'm sure i'll be writing that again for the next show too. Romero and Shingo went at it last with Shingo hitting a Pumping Bomber and Made in Japan for the win.
BULLET CLUB (Chase Owens & Jay White) w/Gedo vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (EVIL & Tetsuya Naito) - 8/10
This match started with the greatest thing ever. Naito and EVIL are doing the LIJ fistbump when Chase attacks EVIL from behind, leaving Naito hanging there. White approaches and tries to fist bump him, which Naito kinda went for, but then just attacked White. This is something that I've noticed from these builds up matches, these two have an amazing and beautiful chemistry, it's like they're buddies who hate each other, but still sit together to watch the world (in this case Chase and EVIL) burn.
The match itself was good, nothing new really, but just overall good wrestling and Chase was a far better complement for White in order to balance out EVIL. I'm really enjoying EVIL and Naito as a tag team, like I don't expect them to ever chase the titles, but I enjoy this a lot. Finish saw EVIL win with another Scorpion Deathlock, non-bridged and thus less impressive.
Post-match - White attacked Naito and took off with his title.
Hiroshi Tanahashi & Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Suzuki-gun (Minoru Suzuki & Zack Sabre Jr.) - 8.5/10
Before the match, Suzuki attacked Liger, who was on commentary, brought him to the ring and hit the GSP, laying him out. Tanahashi and Taguchi ran for the save and started the match with a brawl. Taguchi for the first time in a while looked serious, even if he was still wearing his helmet.
Taguchi was actually my favorite in this match. Surely he did a lot of his butt offense, but he was doing it in a more serious manner. His final sequence against Sabre where they countered submissions was really good. And while this is a Road To show, Tanahashi put on his working shoes, he was going after Sabre's legs, hitting High Fly Flows and all. Suzuki and Sabre were their usual awesome tag team. Sabre looked really strong at the end, taking out Tanahashi with the Zack Driver, and another on Taguchi for the pin.
I'm not gonna lie, there's something special about Sabre working over Taguchi's butt with European Uppercuts.
Post-match - Sabre attacked Taguchi and Tanahashi again, Suzuki killed Young Lions. Sabre cut a promo on Boris Johnson saying that once he wins the RevPro title back, he'll go and take his job. I wonder if "Prime Minister' will stick as Sabre's new nickname.
The shows have started getting repetitive, but they're still solid shows, and the Young Lion's Cup keeps me interested.
NJPW, PROGRESS, RevPro, CMLL, etc
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