September 27th, 2020
1) Gabriel Kidd vs. Yota Tsuji - Young Lions Match
It really feels like these guys are getting more intense as the tournament goes on. They work on the mat then go into throwing some BOMBS. Kidd puts away Tsuji with the under hook suplex. It looked great once again. Decent little jawn.
Match rating - **1/2
2) Taichi (2-0) (4 pts) vs. Yujiro Takahashi (0-2) (0 pts) - Block A Match
On the most loaded card, we also have possibly the most uninteresting match in the block on paper as the opener. Taichi is on a hot streak with two wins over Cobb and Suzuki whereas Takahashi is still searching for his first tournament victory. Taichi is cocky early and dominates, but Takahashi fires up and fires back and they throw big moves at one another for a minute or two before Taichi picks up the win. Not nearly as painful as expected on paper. Taichi goes 3-0 and Takahashi goes 0-3.
Match rating - **3/4
3) Minoru Suzuki (1-1) (2 pts) vs. Jeff Cobb (1-1) (2 pts) - Block A Match
This was probably one of the more underwhelming matches of the G1 so far. Not that it was bad, but it’s not the dream match you’d expect at all. Suzuki wears down Cobb for 2-3 minutes early then they slug it out for a few minutes and Suzuki pins Cobb with a gotch style piledriver. It’s good for what it is and has a simple story with some decent action, I just had way higher expectations so I guess I let myself down for than anything. None the less, big win for Suzuki after his loss to Taichi.
Match rating - **3/4
4) Kota Ibushi (1-1) (2 pts) vs. Tomohiro Ishii (0-2) (0 points) - Block A Match
Damn these two can do no wrong I stg. Ishii has yet to gain any points and Ibushi is coming off a loss to Jay White. This was your vintage Ibushi/Ishii and it doesn’t top their epics from G1 27 & G1 28, but it’s another awesome edition to their list of matches. Just a banger of a match where they get stiff as fuck and throw each other around with tons of fighting spirit. Ibushi wins with a Kamigoye. Ishii gets knocked loopy and tries to tussle after the bell which just added to how great this was. Not much more can be said, loved it.
Match rating - ****
5) Will Ospreay (2-0) (4 pts) vs. Shingo Takagi (1-1) (2 pts) - Block A Match
So here it is, the big rematch from their classic BOSJ final last year. I went five stars on it and have been hyped about this rematch since it was announced. Ospreay is undefeated in the G1 and Shingo is 1-1. It appears to be a slight Shingo advantage bc we are in Kobe hall - an arena he had many many great matches in with Dragon Gate. But at the same time, Ospreay’s record heading into this is much stronger, not to mention he beat Shingo in a huge match last time in their first meeting. Early, Ospreay shows this confidence and does a good job of a looking like a cocky dick which isn’t hard considering he’s already a dick in real life. They have an insane fast paced exchange early and Shingo shows he isn’t phased by Ospreay. This turns out to be a pretty awesome match that had me reeled in the entire time. It was hard to come close to their BOSJ match though. It just was lacking something in comparison to that. HOWEVER, on its own, it fuckin rules and is my second favorite match of the tournament so far only behind Tana/Naito. Very verg good stuff with a lot of near falls down the stretch and my man SHINGO getting his victory back in his home arena. Hell yes!
Match rating - ****1/4
6) Kazuchika Okada (1-1) (2 pts) vs. Jay White (2-0) (4 pts) - Block A Match
The story behind this is cool and all, but I haven't been the biggest fan of Okada/White matches and this turns out to be no different. Okada's 2020 hasn't been great and this didn't do it many favors. White nails his gimmick and the focus on his heel persona is awesome. However, it was very hard to stay invested in this one for the entire duration. Despite that, it's not TERRIBLE, especially since it barely hit the 20 minute mark and didn't overstay it's welcome. A few good moments and a decent story, just didn't feel like a main event or touch anywhere near Ibushi/Ishii or Shingo/Ospreay. Jay White wins and is 3-0 and leading the A Block.
Match rating - **3/4