Thursday, December 26, 2019
Select Match Reviews: NJPW Road to Tokyo Dome Roundup
Matches from 12/19:
1.Kota, Tanahashi vs Naito, SHINGO ***1/2
2.Ospreay, Eagles vs Hiromu, BUSHI ***3/4
Matches from 12/20:
3.Naito, EVIL, Hiromu, BUSHI vs Okada, Ospreay, Eagles, YOSHI-HASHI ***1/2
Matches from 12/21:
4.Ospreay, Ishii vs Hiromu, EVIL ****
5.Liger, Tanahashi, Kota vs Okada, Romero, YOSHI-HASHI ***1/4
The first match on the list had a good energy and was borderline great. The amount of tape on Naito's legs worries me a bit but he seems more than ready to go in a couple of weeks. The flashpin finish was a nice touch, too.
The second was one of my favorite moments of the year as it was the in-ring return of Hiromu. To make things even better, this also rocked! The Birds of Prey being planted into signs on opposite sides of the building at the same time was one of those weird things I tend to love, too. Big moment, great match. The finish was a legit surprise too, even if it was slightly diminished due to it being a tad rough. The post-match added a lot, too!
On the 20th gig, we have LIJ and CHAOS continuing their ongoing battle in a very good atomicos match. The Naito/Okada and Ospreay/Hiromu angles in particular got heavy focus and the action remained consistent throughout.
To close out the year on New Japan, we have two pulls of relevance. First though, the rumors continue to fly in regards to SANADA's health and having Sabre fall to the LIJ junior earlier on this show seems like a potential setup for a change if needed. Food for thought.
Now, of the pulls, up first we have the best match of the tour. The dynamic on display alone made it interesting, as did the fantastic content on display here. Ishii and EVIL worked their always fun style as the juniors flew everywhere. I loved this.
The last pull was Liger's final match in Korakuen. Good match, emotional moment that also built Kota/Okada. Liger is one of the best ever and should always be remembered as such and this should be watched for those reasons alone.
The point of these shows is to give a last minute tease and make everyone look good, even in defeat. They did that while giving some surprises along the way. They truly are the kings and we are their servants!