Japanese Wrestling

NJPW – King of Pro Wrestling 2019 – Full Results and Review

New Japan Pro Wrestling return to Tokyo, just days after a huge typhoon deviated Japan, for King of Pro Wrestling 2019. The top two matches on this show are Kota Ibushi defending his right to challenge for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship in the Tokyo Dome against EVIL, and Kazuchika Okada defending the IWGP Heavyweight Championship against SANADA.

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Our commentary team for this show is Kevin Kelly, Gino Gambino and Chris Charlton on translation.

The show opens with an announcement to which Chris Charlton provides translation. Due to Typhoon Hagibis both Zack Sabre Jr and John Moxley are unable to get to Japan. As a result, John Moxley has been stripped of the US Heavyweight title and the title is now vacant. The ring announcer then goes over the new card. Lance Archer will now face Juice Robinson for the vacant US Championship.

El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru vs SHO & YOH

  • This is El Desperado’s return match after breaking his face in a hardcore/death match before the Super Jrs tournament. Desperado and Kanemaru get the jump start. SHO and YOH fight back early but only get a few minutes to shine, then Desperado sells his jaw, and Suzuki-gun attacks SHO and YOH. Desperado and Kanemaru take it to ringside then work over SHO with quick tags. YOH gets the tag about seven minutes in. Roppongi 3K goes for the 3K but YOH is pulled out of the ring by Kanemaru. The ref takes a bump and Kanemaru sprays SHO with the whiskey in the face. Kanemaru holds YOH while Desperado hits the Pinche Loco on SHO to win. Good match. Winners: El Desperado and Yoshinobu Kanemaru in 10:44.

Toru Yano & Togi Makabe vs Tomoaki Honma & Hiroshi Tanahashi

  • This is the twentieth anniversary of Hiroshi Tanahashi. Tanahashi and Makabe start the match. They wrestle, leading into some tackle, which Makabe wins. Makabe backs Tana up and tags Toru Yano. Tana tags Honma. Yano and Makabe take charge when they go to ringside. Yano and Makabe get heat on Honma. Honma finally tags Tanahashi. Yano gets a good nearfall on the Ace but Tanahashi pulls out the win with a High Fly Flow. Winners: Hiroshi Tanahashi and Tomoaki Honma in 9:44.

Taichi & DOUKI vs Shingo Takagi & Tetsuya Naito

  • Naito and Taichi officially kick the match off but Taichi tags DOUKI straight away. About a minute in, Naito tags Shingo. DOUKI takes Shingo to ringside as Taichi pulls Naito off the apron. Back in the ring DOUKI and Tauchi work over Shingo. Eventually Shingo tags Naito as Taichi tags in too. Naito and Taichi go at it for just a few minutes until they both tag out. Shingo gets the best of DOUKI until Taichi comes in the ring with his microphone stand for a disqualification. Taichi lays out both Naito and Shingo, powerbombs Naito and pins him while DOUKI counts to three. Taichi calls Naito weak on the mic after and saying Naito couldn’t get it done. It feels like Naito loses all his big matches and gets beaten up a lot. I hope to see something good come Naito’s way soon. Winners: Tetsuya Naito and Shingo Takagi in 9:01.

Minoru Suzuki vs Jyushin Thunder Liger

  • Liger comes comes to the ring as ‘Battle Liger’, a Liger with no top and short ears and parts on his mask with less of his face covered. He looks great. They test things out slow with wrist locks and knuckle holds. Liget lays down and invites Suzuki to wrestle. Suzuki seems to get the upper hand until Liger takes the fight to ringside. Liger tries to use a chair and the ref stops it and gets knocked down. Suzuki then uses the chair to beat up Liger. They brawl around ringside as Suzuki pulls at Liger’s mask, telling Liger to take it off. They get in the ring and Suzuki takes pleasure in knocking Liger down and waiting for him to get up so he can do it again. Liger knocks Suzuki down with a hard shotai to the face. Liger bates Suzuki and gets a rings of Saturn like hold, wrenching Suzuki’s arms back. Liger begins to work over Suzuki’s arm. Suzuki fights back with a sleeper and attempts a GSP but Liger backdrops out of it. Liger hits a brainbuster but Suzuki kicks out at two. They trade shots and Suzuki no-sells it all. Liger fires up but cannot hurt Suzuki so Suzuki starts laying in the forearms. Suzuki wins with a delayed Gotch-Style piledriver. Suzuki gets a chair, lays out Young Lions, raises the chair above his head and throws it away. Minoru Suzuki kneels down and bows to the downed Liger. After Suzuki leaves, Liger gets the mic and says thank you to Suzuki. Great match. Winner: Minoru Suzuki in 17:38.

IWGP Jr Heavyweight Championship Match – Will Ospreay(c) vs El Phantasmo

  • Will Ospreay’s music is now playing on njpwworld, that must mean the issues with the record label have been resolved, thankfully. ELP sends Ishimori to the back and Ospreay sends Eagles back too. They wrestle back and forth, flipping around the ring. ELP calls for a test of strength. They roll and flip while in a test of strength. ELP keeps trying to shake the hand of Ospreay so Ospreay slaps ELP hard. ELP rakes the eyes of Will, showng his true colours. Ospreay takes it to ringside with a space flying tiger drop. Ospreay throws ELP at Gino Gambino on commentary. They brawl throughout the arena and end up on a balcony with steps down each side. Ospreay is knocked off and lands below, as Ospreay gets up, ELP flys off and lands on Ospreay in a huge spot. Back in the ring the match is very back and forth with extremely high athletic moves. They move to the apron as they hammer each other. Ospreay escapes and jumps off the barrier to hit a cutter on ELP off the apron to the floor. ELP climbs back in and is hit with a coast-to-coast dropkick then a shooting star and a Oscutter but Ishimori pulls the ref out. Robbie Eagles comes down and takes out Ishimori then they fight to the back. ELP punches Ospreay in the balls and hits him with the belt. Phantasmo pulls the ref back in and hits a shooting star press but Ospreay kicks out. ELP hits a Styles Clash but Ospreay kicks out. ELP trys a One Winged Angel but Ospreay rolls out. Ospreay and ELP stand on the top rope, ELP goes for a rana but Ospreay turns it into a powerbomb. Ospreay hits Hidden Blade to the face of El Phantasmo and a Stormbreaker for the win. Great match, I loved this. Winner: Will Ospreay in 27:59.

Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI vs “Switchblade” Jay White, Yujiro Takahashi & KENTA

  • This starts a bit slow but three minutes in all six start to fight at ringside as Bullet Club beats down their opponents. Bullet Club get heat on YOSHI-HASHI. KENTA teases Ishii which builds until YOSHI-HASHI can tag Ishii. KENTA and Ishii hit each other hard. This spills to ringside as everyone brawls. Goto and Jay White tag in and White gets the upper hand but Goto continues to fight. Goto pins Takahashi with a GTR. Good match but the Jr Heavyweight match should have been after this. Winners: Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii and YOSHI-HASHI in 12:28.

At this point Kevin Kelly announces that the next match is the match between Kota Ibushi and EVIL but Chris Charlton jumps in and says the next match is the IWGP US Heavyweight Championship match. Good save Chris. Rocky joins commentary for this match.

IWGP US Heavyweight Championship Match – Lance Archer vs Juice Robinson

  • Before the match Lance Archer gets the microphone and says he wants a no DQ match, Juice accepts. This goes to ringside early as Juice gets a chair. Juice uses a chair for a while but Archer fights back and chokeslammed Juice through a table over the barrier hard. Archer takes all corner pads off the ring and sets stuff up in each corner, a chair in two and a table in the other two. Archer is thrown through two chairs and is bleeding from the nose, Juice also sells his hand like a finger is dislocated. Juice hits a superplex but Archer powers out of the pin. Juice hits the Juice punches and a cannonball, driving Archer through a table. Moments later Archer pounced Juice through the last table. They both go under the ring at opposite corners and throw loads of chairs in the ring. Juice goes for Pulp Friction on a stack of chairs but Archer hits a full Nelson bomb. Archer hits Blackout on a stack of chairs but Juice kicks out. Archer locks in the EBD Claw and pins Juice. Archer continues to beat up Juice and David Finlay makes his return to save Juice. Winner: Lance Archer in 14:59.

Winner Challenges for IWGP Heavyweight Championship at Tokyo Dome – Kota Ibushi vs EVIL

  • EVIL shows his strength early with a continuous side headlock but Kota uses his speed to take advantage. This is very back and forth with Kota using his kicks and EVIL using power moves to wear down Ibushi. This very hard hitting as EVIL goes for a bronco buster but Kota leaps up and lands a double stomp on EVIL. Kota looks for a stalling German suplex off the ropes but EVIL drops Ibushi on his throat across the ropes. EVIL wraps a chair round the neck of Kota and hits it off with another. Superplex to Ibushi back in the ring and Kota kicks out at two. At the fifteen minute call Ibushi misses a dropkick. Ibushi puts EVIL on the top rope and looks for a piledriver but EVIL stops it. Kota hits a great top rope rana for a two. Ibushi hits the package tombstone that he calls the bastard driver but can’t cover. Ibushi hits the last ride powerbomb but only gets a two. EVIL hits a huge clothesline and gets a really good nearfall. Ibushi reverses Everything is EVIL then they suplex each other on the back of their heads. In a great sequence they reverse each other’s finishers and Kota hits Kamigoye but EVIL kicks out. Kota hits another Kamigoye and wins. That was great. Winner: Kota Ibushi in 23:56.

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IWGP Heavyweight Championship Match – Kazuchika Okada(c) vs SANADA

  • Before the bell Okada and SANADA stand in their ring jackets looking at the crowd as they chant Okada and SANADA at the same time. The bell rings and Okada goes for a shotgun dropkick but SANADA moves, they have a good first minute of quick action and dodging then they slow down. Going into this match Okada has beaten SANADA six times, while SANADA has only defeated Okada once. SANADA takes Okada to ringside and drops Okada across the barrier. Back in the ring SANADA keeps Okada down with a rear chinlock. Back to their feet Okada fights back with a flying European uppercut. Back at ringside Okada throws SANADA over the barrier and hits a flying crossbody to whip out SANADA on the chairs. Okada stop the referee’s count to let SANADA back in the ring. SANADA sends Okada rolling to ringside and SANADA hits a crossbody over the ropes. In the ring SANADA gets Okada in the Paradise lock. Okada hits two dropkicks to take over then Okada hits a perfect missile dropkick. Okada delivers a huge elbow drop. Okada looks for a tombstone but SANADA reverses it into one of his own. SANADA sinches in Skull End but Okada keeps fighting. SANADA holds the Skull End for a long time while Okada keeps fighting out. Okada hits a short-arm rainmaker from nowhere for a two. They kneel down and forearm each other over and over. As they get up they continue top forearm each other. They move to uppercuts as the continue to beat on each other. SANADA gets the Skull End on Okada again. SANADA hits a Muta moonsault to Okada’s back then goes for another but Okada gets the knees up. Okada reverses Skull End into a deep driver, then hits Rainmaker to win. Okada wins this lengthy championship defence to retain his IWGP Heavyweight Championship. Very good match. Okada gives SANADA a thumbs up while SANADA crys. Okada and SANADA shake hands. SANADA walks off crying, just like Okada did years previous against longtime rival, Hiroshi Tanahashi. Winner: Kazuchika Okada in 36:21

After the match Okada and Kota Ibushi have a face-to-face as the main event of January 4th is set. Kazuchika Okada vs Kota Ibushi.

Support altprowrestling

altprowrestling has been in commission since May of 2018 and continues to grow. By donating just £1 you are aiding the progression of this site, future upgrades and updates, and for that, I am eternally grateful.

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