The SmarK Rant for NJPW Dominion – 06.09.19
Well, at least a couple of matches from it.
Shota Umino v. Jon Moxley
Might as well continue with the saga of DEATH RIDER because it’s short anyway. Umino goes for it with a flip dive before Mox even makes it in the ring, and back in with a missile dropkick. And then he walks into a lariat and Moxley destroys him with elbows. Backdrop suplex gets two. Elbowdrop gets two. Moxley with an STF and he cranks on Umino, but the kid makes the ropes. Moxley gives him some free shots, but Umino comes back with a dropkick and german suplex for two. He tries a fisherman’s suplex, but Mox reverses out and hits him with the drop suplex for two. Dirty Deeds finishes at 3:49. The poor young lion is dead and Moxley announces his candidacy for the G1 Tournament, and then collects his new plaything and carries him to the back, which of course sets up this brilliance:
Now sitting at almost 3.5 million views on YouTube, by the way. Anyway, match was just an energetic squash to get Moxley over further as a maniac. And it worked. **1/2
Moving on to something COMPLETELY different…
IWGP Junior Heavyweight title: Dragon Lee v. Will Ospreay
So having won the title at the MSG show, Dragon now defends against Ospreay, who is fresh off winning the BOSJ tournament. They trade takedown attempts with each guy flipping out of it, and then they trade ranas and do the stalemate sequence…with Lee suddenly hitting Ospreay with a running knee during the “We both pose dramatically” wrap-up! Noice. Ospreay comes back with a 619 and follows with a dive to the floor, and back in for two. Back elbow gets two and Will wraps him up with a wacky submission hold and rolls him over for two. They slug it out and Ospreay goes up for the Pip Pip Cheerio, but lands on an STO from Lee. Ospreay misses a corner dropkick and Lee hits his own while yelling Shibata’s name, followed by a suplex for two. Ospreay comes back with a gravity-defying handspring kick and the flying forearm for two, and Lee bails to escape. Ospreay tries to follow with the SPACE FLYING TIGER DROP, but that misses and Lee puts the stunned Ospreay on the railing. And then he follows with a dive that puts Ospreay ass over teakettle into the the announce tables, wiping out poor Milano Collection AT, and both guys are dead in the crowd. Incredible.
Back in, Dragon with a german suplex for two and he hangs Ospreay in the Tree of Woe, but Will powers up with scary core strength and they slug it out up there. Ospreay kicks him to the floor and follows with an amazing corkscrew moonsault. Back in, Bloody Sunday gets two. Lee blocks the Stormbreaker and they do an amazing series of reversals into a Dragon Lee DDT, but then he holds on and tries another one and Ospreay reverses that into his stunner and both guys are down. They slug it out with forearms from their knees and Ospreay cuts him off with a hooking kick, but Lee counters his flips with a reverse rana…only to have Ospreay hit him with a Spanish Fly for two. They head to the apron and Lee snaps off a rana there…only for Ospreay to land on his feet! “That’s not allowed!” notes the announcers. Ospreay gives him an apron powerbomb and back in for the shooting star press, and that gets two. Robinson Special sets up the OzCutter, but Lee hits him with a knee strike in mid-air. They slug it out on the apron again and Ospreay tries to go up, but Lee kicks him into the Tree of Woe and then double-stomps him all the way down to the floor. And of course we get the 19 ¾ countout tease. Back in, Ospreay comes back with a high kick, but tries a powerbomb and Lee manages to reverse into a Canadian Destroyer and running knee for two. Another knee is caught, but he hits a second attempt and Ospreay is OUT. Lee goes for the finish, but Ospreay flips out and comes back with the back elbow and a top rope OzCutter, then hangs on into the StormBreaker and wins the IWGP Jr. title at 20:08. I mean, I GUESS you could say it wasn’t as good as the Takagi match, but honestly that just makes me want to go back and rate the BOSJ final even higher. ***** Just incredible high-level flying here and I’m excited to see Ospreay hang with the big boys in the G1 now.
OK, now for the one all the kids are talking about…
IWGP Intercontinental title: Kota Ibushi v. Tetsuya Naito
Ibushi won the IC title from Naito in a pretty boss match on the MSG show and he’s RIPPED here. Kenny Omega is probably composing poems for him as we speak. They do some reversals to start and Ibushi puts him down with a high kick, but Naito hiptosses him into a low dropkick and stops to troll the crowd a bit. He wraps Ibushi up with a neck hold on the mat, but Kota makes the ropes and Naito claims that he can’t release the hold and makes Red Shoes help him out of it. Ha! Naito stomps Ibushi down in the corner, right on his beautiful, beautiful face, and then slingshots in with a dropkick as well. That gets an arrogant two as Naito is clearly enjoying the heel role again. Naito continues kicking him in the moneymaker and then rakes the eyes dramatically in another great spot, but Ibushi manages a double stomp to block a sliding punch attempt. Naito misses a blind charge and Ibushi puts him on the floor with a rana and follows with a corkscrew dive. Back in, that gets two. Back in, Ibushi with a german suplex, but Naito hits him with a springboard DDT and both guys are out. Naito with a Yes Knee for two and he pounds away in the corner, but Ibushi puts him on the apron with a backflip kick and tries a deadlift german into the ring. Naito blocks that and teases a tombstone from the apron, but Ibushi escapes and they slug it out, leading to a sneering Naito hitting a german suplex from the apron to the floor, slamming Ibushi’s head into the side of the ring on the way down. HOLY FUCKING FUCKBALLS. Please tell that wasn’t a planned spot because I nearly screamed in terror when I saw this…
Ibushi somehow beats the count and Naito puts him on the top rope and brings him down with a reverse rana, but that only gets two. Destino is blocked by Ibushi, who drops Naito on his head with the package piledriver, and both guys are out. They slug it out from their knees and trade forearms, and then Naito headbutts him right in his beautiful face , so Ibushi gives him a stiff palm strike and puts him down with a lariat in response. Ibushi tries a Bom a Ye but hits the corner, and Naito gives him a suplex into the Destino…for two. Another try is blocked by Ibushi, who turns into a GTS and follows with the Last Ride for two. Naito counters the kamagoye with a sick DDT right on the top of Ibushi’s head. Naito with a swinging inverted DDT out of the corner for two, but Ibushi won’t stay down, so Naito tries another Destino and Ibushi blocks it again, but Naito turns it into a reverse rana this time and hits him with a brainbuster for two. One more Destino hits this time and finishes at 22:08 to regain the title. Kind of surprised because the match seemed to be building towards Ibushi getting the comeback win, but how do you come back from having your head slammed into the side of the ring? I don’t want to encourage this kind of madness, but holy shit this was a great match regardless. *****
I might go back and review some more from this show later, but those are the ones I wanted to get done and I can already safely call this is a big thumbs up show no matter what the quality of the other ones are!