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GALLOWS & ANDERSON DEPART NJPW, TITLE CHANGES AND MORE: NJPW NEW BEGINNING IN NIIGATA REPORT

By Matthew Macklin on 2016-02-14 12:07:00

The New Beginning in Niigata, February 14th:

The Young Bucks & Cody Hall defeated Captain New Japan, Jushin Thunder Liger & Tiger Mask IV

This was a good opener. The Bucks & Hall make for a great team, with Hall being the muscle behind the arrogant Bucks.  There was lots of good back and forth between The Bucks, Tiger & Liger.  Hall looked really polished when he was in with Captain.  He hit a really good looking discus lariat. The Bucks & Hall won after a triple team Indytaker.  Hall tombstoned Captain as the Bucks came off the top rope. Bullet Club needed that win.

Bobby Fish & Kyle O'Reilly defeated Gedo & Kazushi Sakuraba

This was great and something really different.  O'Reilly & Sakuraba put on a clinic in mat wrestling.  O'Reilly was able to hang with Sakuraba move for move as they took to the ground and the crowd showed huge appreciation for it.  There was also some comedy involving Gedo, a quadruple sleeper hold and lots of slick ReDRagon double team.  Fish pinned Gedo after ReDRagon hit Chasing The Dragon.

Ricochet, Matt Sydal, Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan defeated David Finlay, Manabu Nakanishi, Yuji Nagata & Ryusuke Taguchi

This was an entertaining tag.  The veterans picked up where they left off in Osaka.  Kojima & Nagata had a really great exchange.  Taguchi blocked a Kojima lariat with his ass, which was pretty funny.  Finlay & Ricochet worked well together.  Finlay turned him inside out with a huge uppercut.  Ricochet & Sydal floored Finlay with a double kick and Ricochet finished him off with a shooting star press.

EVIL & Tetsuya Naito defeated Jay White & Michael Elgin

Before the match Naito made commentator, Milano Collection AT open the ropes for him.  This was a good tag match. Elgin launched White over the top with a crossbody.  Elgin & Naito had some good back and forth with Elgin hitting all his power moves on both Naito & EVIL.  White was really explosive when he came in off a tag to face EVIL. Elgin was taken out with a double team and that left EVIL to pin White with an STO.  After the match Los Ingobernables attacked a young boy and the referee.

NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Team Champions: Toru Yano, Jay & Mark Briscoe defeated Yujiro Takahashi, Bad Luck Fale & Tama Tonga

This was scheduled to be a non-title match and I didn't realise it had been changed to a title match until Yano & The Briscoes were handed the titles after the match.  Jay Briscoe was in rare form here. He started this with an insane suicide dive on Yujiro.  Yano & Tonga had an incredible sequence with Yano running scared, then Yano trying to outsmart Tonga, only for Tonga of outdo him and hit a dropkick.  This was a far better match than the one they had in Osaka. They played off the finish of the last match with the referee this time intercepting the Yujiro low blow.  Yano was then able to use a ref distraction to hit a low blow and roll up Yujiro.  I'm not sure what the point of putting the titles on Bullet Club was, only to switch them right back again.

Kazuchika Okada, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI defeated Juice Robinson, Hirooki Goto & Katsuyori Shibata

The story here is that Hirooki Goto is a broken man.  He refused a hand shake from Okada before the match.  He was worked over by CHAOS and couldn't make the tag.  Ishii wore him down and taunted him.  At one point Shibata came in and kicked Goto in an effort to fire him up.  Shibata then made a blind tag, which Goto wasn't happy about. Shibata spent the next few minutes beating the hell out of everyone on his own including picking up where he left off with Ishii as they brutalised each other.  Robinson ended up in the ring with Okada.  Robinson was all fired up and had some language that wasn't PG.  Goto tried to get involved, but he failed, eating a dropkick from Okada.  Okada finished Robinson with a Rainmaker.  After the match Goto again refused a handshake from Okada. Okada then said to Goto "you don't seem your usual self, why not join us?" Referring to CHAOS.  It looks like that's where this is heading and it would be the best thing for Goto. This was all really well done. Goto told a fantastic story with his expressions throughout the match.

IWGP Jr Heavyweight Championship: KUSHIDA defeated BUSHI

This was awesome and so well booked. If you expected a clean wrestling match, you'd be disappointed, but this told and incredible story and made KUSHIDA look like he could fight through anything.  The ref got knocked down after a distraction from EVIL & Naito, which led to BUSHI hitting KUSHIDA with green mist and a crazy suicide dive. This blinded KUSHIDA and he was forced to hit a straight right punch and out of desperation he went after the mask of BUSHI.  The match turned into a fight. The referee again was distracted, so BUSHI this time hit KUSHIDA with black mist, and a back slide for a near fall that everyone bought.  BUSHI then hit the diving Codebreaker and at that point I was sure that they had done it again  and ruined another KUSHIDA title reign.  But no, KUSHIDA spectacularly kicked out.  KUSHIDA them turned it around with a Codebreaker of his own and targeted the arm.  EVIL and Naito tried to get involved again, but Taguchi & Jay White held them back, allowing KUSHIDA to make BUSHI submit to the Hoverboard Lock.  This was outstanding.

IWGP Tag Team Championship: Tomoaki Honma & Togi Makabe defeated Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows

The outcome of this was never in question, but this was a really great match, with Honma playing the underdog role like only he can.  Anderson & Gallows came to the ring with Tama Tonga & Bad Luck Fale, which was fitting as Fale & Tonga as Bullet Club originals.  This started with Gallows & Anderson attacking Honma in the aisle and working his arm over.  He eventually made the tag to Makabe, who brawled with Anderson & Gallows.  Honma ended up back in and took a lot of punishment from BC, refusing to die.  He was hit with double team and a big powerbomb from Gallows.  Honma & Anderson had a great exchange of reversals until Honma hit a Kokeshi on Anderson.  Makabe got in the ring and slapped Honma to wake him up.  They then hit the Doomsday Kokeshi on Anderson followed by a King Kong Kneedrop and Kokeshi with Honma pinning Anderson.

After the match Tama Tonga took the mic and said that he and a new Bullet Club member challenge for the tag titles.  The new member wasn't named.  Makabe accepted the challenge.  That explains why Bullet Club lost the six man tag title so soon.  Tama Tonga might be in line for a much bigger push.  After the show Tonga said the new BC member is someone not currently in NJPW.

Gallows, Anderson, Fale & Tonga then shared a moment in the ring, too sweeting each other before Gallows & Anderson bowed before the crowd as they depart New Japan Pro Wrestling.

IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Kenny Omega defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi

This was an incredibly dramatic, spectacle.  Kenny Omega is the new IWGP Intercontinental champion and it was what should have happened.  Omega told Cody Hall & Yujiro Takahashi to leave ringside and leave him alone.  Omega suplexed Tanahashi into the crowd and worked over the injured shoulder of Tanahashi.  Tanahashi did his best to target the knee of Omega, which Omega sold incredibly for the remainder of the match. It forced Omega to do a one legged moonsault.  He went for a powerbomb, but collapsed because of the knee.  Tanahashi hit a High Fly Flow to the floor and went after the knee again, eventually locking in the Texas Cloverleaf.  The Young Bucks then appeared from under the ring, superkicked Tanahashi and hit the Indytaker.  Omega then hit Tanahashi with Styles Clash for an incredible near fall.  Michael Elgin appeared and took care of The Bucks, carrying both of them at once to the back.  Omega hit a reverse rana and went for the One Winged Angel, which Tanahashi countered into a reverse rana of his own, which was awesome.  They traded near falls.  Tanahashi hit a High Fly Flow cross body, and missed a High Fly Flow.  This allowed Omega to hit a series of Boma Ye like knee strikes and the One Winged Angel to win the match.  After the match Omega decided to sing and he swept the streamers out of the ring with his broom, while still selling his knee like he had been shot in the kneecap.  Omega is a superstar. This was incredible.  Go out of your way to see it.  In the space of one month Kenny Omega has become a legit main event player in NJPW.  They will be just fine with all the departures.

This was an awesome show.  The three title matches are all worth watching, especially the Jr title match and the main event.  Both New Beginning shows are available on NJPWWorld.com now.

I can be found on Twitter @MatthewMacklin and RunningEnzuigiri.com (@TweetEnzuigiri)

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