NJPW: G1 Climax 30 Night One
September 19th, 2020
1) Yota Tsujji vs. Yuya Uemura - Young Lions Match
First time seeing both these guys and they do an awesome job putting on a compact sub 10 minute opener. Uemura taps out Tsuji with a deeeeep lion tamer for the win just over 6 minutes in.
Match rating - **1/2
2) Will Ospreay vs. Yujiro Takahashi - Block A Match
Easy first match in the tourney for Ospreay. This is these two's first meeting and they mesh super well with Takahashi being a very solid base for Ospreay to get his shit in. Takahashi got a little bit in, but this more of a prolonged squash despite being a little competitive at times. A very fun one, though. Ospreay had some cool counters and the finish was sick. 2 points for the Aerial Assasin.
Match rating - **3/4
3) Jeff Cobb vs. Taichi - Block A Match
DAMN this popped off. I have been a "fuck Taichi" kinda guy, but the fact remains he pulls out some little bangers every now and again and this is one of them. Taichi took Cobb to the floor and worked over Cobb's leg on the railing. He continues this in the ring, but can't keep Cobb down and they go into a pretty back & forth exchange that had me on the edge of my seat a couple times during the near falls. Taichi picks up the shocking (at least to me) victory as he evades the Tour of Islands a couple times and hits Black Memphisto for the victory.
Match rating - ***1/4
4) Minoru Suzuki vs. Tomohiro Ishii - Block A Match
This was never not going to deliver. They start off throwing elbows and things gradually get more stiff & intense. This was everything you would expect and want from these two and it built up so well into such a heated battle between two insane motherfuckers. Suzuki nails Ishii with a gotch style piledriver for the win after a badass slugfest. Match of the night.
Match rating - ****1/4
5) Shingo Takagi vs. Jay White - Block A Match
LIJ vs Bullet Club wages on here. Apparently these two faced off once before, but I'm pretty sure I haven't seen it so this is a first time match for me and I honestly was pretty stoked on it. Jay pleays weasel heel from the jump by sliding out of the ring at the bell. Once he gets in and gets going, he fires at Shingo hard with a lot of deep suplexes/head drop spots. I'd say this match was as good as I expected but there was lots of low blow and ref bump type shit down the stretch, plus Gedo got involved a couple times. All of these things brought it down a good bit for me, but the work itself was strong. I feel like both of these guys are in a similar spot in the company at the moment and in their runs in New Japan so that added to this also. Jay White wins after a low blow and a blade runner.
Match rating - ***1/4
6) Kazuchika Okada vs. Kota Ibushi - Block A Match
This is probably the weakest match these two have had together, but it's Okada and Ibushi so it's still very good. The finishing run with Okada going for the kamigoye and Ibushi catching him with a sitout powerbomb instead was NUTS and set up for the perfect finish with Ibushi going apeshit on Okada with two back to back kamigoye's to take the pin and get a HUGE win to start the G1. Ibushi beat Okada in last year's G1, then lost to him at Wrestle Kingdom, and now finds redemption in the G1 yet again. Awesome stuff. Good match to close out the night.
Match rating - ***1/2