This is my full review of New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestle Kingdom 14, Night 2 event. This show was live from the Tokyo Dome, in Tokyo, Japan. You can watch it on njpwworld or Fite TV.
Our commentary team for this show is Kevin Kelly, Gino Gambino & Chris Charlton. Rocky is announced to be with us later.
The show start with an announcement to the crowd in Japanese about the preshow event.
Six-Man Tag Championship Gauntlet Match – Yujiro Takahashi, Chase Owens & Bad Luck Fale vs Tomohiro Ishii, Robbie Eagles & YOSHI-HASHI vs Taichi, Yoshinobu Kanemaru & El Desperado vs EVIL, BUSHI & Shingo Takagi vs Togi Makabe, Toru Yano & Ryusuke Taguchi(c)
- This match is a gauntlet match, which means the loser will be eliminated and the winner stays on. This starts with Fale and Eagles, Fale hits a Granade with thirty seconds for a nearfall. Ishii pins Chase with a brainbuster in 3:40. Then the next team’s music plays. Suzuki-gun run in and attack the CHAOS team in the ring. Ishii fights them off briefly but then is hit with an Axe Bomber from Taichi for a nearfall about thirty seconds in. Robbie Eagles rolls up Kanemaru and pins him in 3:53. EVIL’s music plays. LIJ slide in the ring and all six guys meet in the middle. These short matches are so quick they just run through spot as quickly as possible, with barely enough time for a pin attempt. EVIL hits Darkness Falls on Ishii but Ishii kicks out at three and the new referee calls it a three count at 5:53. I dont think he should have done that. Ishii kept fighting with EVIL but EVIL quickly put him down with Everything Is EVIL at the next team’s music plays, or an altered version of it due to copyright. BUSHI blinds Taguchi with the black mist then Shingo hits Pumping Bomber and a Made In Japan to pin Taguchi and win the titles. Will Los Ingobernables De Japon all leave with championships at the end of this show? Winners: Los Ingobernables De Japon in 6:09.
As LIJ was leaving the commentary team were talking and the last thing o heard from Kevin Kelly was “OK, so let’s stick around and…” then he and the picture was gone and I was left waiting for the main show to start.
The main show opened with a video package of New Japan in the Tokyo Dome, leading to the two day event in 2020 on January 4th & 5th. They then run down the matches, starting with Liger’s final match. After this very good video package, Kevin Kelly welcomes us as Ryu Lee enters. Ryu Lee used to be known as Dragon Lee until recently.
Ryu Lee & Hiromu Takahashi vs Naoki Sano & Jyushin Thunder Liger w/Yoshiaki Fujiwara
- Jyushin Thunder Liger’s final match starts with a hard lock up with Hiromu Takahashi. Liger starts strong as he wraps up Takahashi in multiple classic Liger holds. As Takahashi turns to tag out, Liger also turns. Takahashi tags Ryu Lee and they both run across the ring, Takahashi knocking Sano off the apron and Ryu kicking Liger. They double team Liger for a moment then use quick tags. Liger makes a comeback against both Ryu and Hiromu then tags Sano. Sano climbs the ropes and hits a double dropkick on both Ryu and Hiromu. Lee and Sano fight to a double down and both tag out. Liger and Hiromu meet in the middle of the ring and trade shots, Hiromu knocking Liger down and violently forcing Liger into the corner. Hiromu shoves away the referee and strikes Liger hard. Liger powerbombs Hiromu but Ryu and Hiromu take over again. This had some great back and forth in the final minutes but unfortunately, just after twelve minutes, Hiromu Takahashi hits Time Bomb on Jyushin Liger and gets the pinfall victory over Liger for the final time. The Dome goes silent for a minute. Winners: Hiromu Takahashi and Ryu Lee in 12:18.
Ryu Lee helps Liger up, gives him a mask and bows to the legend. Liger and Lee hug the ln Lee leaves as Jyushin Liger gets the microphone. Liger said:
“In the first year of Heisei in 1989 Jyushin Thunder Liger Professional wrestler was born. And today in the Tokyo Dome Jyushin Thunder Liger the professional wrestler is no more. For 31 years for your support, thank you dearly.”
Then Liger’s music played one last time as fans clapped and Jyushin Liger left the ring and ringside area. Liger slapped hands with fans and hugged some on his way out. Thank you Jyushin Thunder Liger for all of your hard work.
IWGP Jr Heavyweight Tag Championship Match – Roppongi 3K vs Taiji Ishimori & El Phantasmo(c)
- Roppongi 3K start fast with dropkicks to ELP and Ishimori, sending them to ringside. R3K both dive on their opponents. One minute in ELP and Ishimori escape to ringside to get a breather. The champions single out SHO and use quick tags after knocking YOH down. They beat up SHO for a while but when YOH finally gets a tag he runs wild on both ELP and Ishimori. SHO tags back in and gives ELP two German suplexs but when he goes for a third, ELP grabs Ishimori to stop it but SHO suplexs both of them. ELP hits a Styles Clash on SHO and gets a long two count. The referee is distracted and ELP grabs the belt for a weapon but Rocky Romero takes it away. ELP goes for the dick punch but SHO is wearing a metal cup. SHO and YOH hit their finishers, followed by a double stomp assisted Shock Arrow piledriver to pin ELP. R3K win the belts here in a good, exciting match. Winners: SHO and YOH, Roppongi 3K in 14:09.
British Heavyweight Championship Match – Zack Sabre Jr(c) vs SANADA
- This starts very fast but even as they roll around exchanging holds, reversals and pins attempts without even a one count. Zack is kicked to ringside, dodges a dive and SANADA flips back in. ZSJ kicks the barrier in frustration. Back in the ring SANADA works over the leg of Zack with leg whips. Zack is send outside again and SANADA hits a planché over the top rope. They trade pin attempts in the ring and as they get closer to a three count the fans sound very engaged. Zack gets SANADA in an Octopus hold one more time but SANADA reverses into a Skull End. ZSJ reverses again and pins SANADA with a European clutch pin. Winner: Zack Sabre Jr in 12:32.
IWGP US Heavyweight Championship Match – Jon Moxley(c) vs Juice Robinson
- Jon Moxley makes his way to the ring through the crowd and when he gets there, Juice Robinson dives over the ropes and onto Mox. They fight with chairs at ringside then Moxley takes Juice in the ring. Juice fights back after Moxley bites his eye. Moxley has worked over the lower back of Juice early on and when Juice tries to powerbomb Moxley, Juice struggles to lift him, and does. Moxley moves to targeting the legs of Juice and applies a figure four on the ring post. Juice punches a chair into the face of Moxley. Juice hits a jackhammer for. a two count. Juice sells his back and goes for Pulp Friction but is reversed into a German suplex. They trade big clotheslines for a double down. They get up and trade big shots as Juice sends Moxley down with a left hand. Juice picks up Moxley for a Pulp Friction but is reversed and Jon Moxley hits Deathrider for the win. Jon Moxley retains his US Championship in New Japan. Winner: Jon Moxley in 12:49.
Jon Moxley stands in the ring and Minoru Suzuki’s music, Kaze Ni Nare, plays. On his way to the ring, Suzuki takes his tracksuit off and gets ready to fight. Suzuki gets in the ring, they trade strikes, then Suzuki gets a sleeper on Jon then hits the Gotch Style Piledriver and calls for a Championship match. Suzuki claims to be the king of professional wrestling and I agree.
Never Openweight Championship Match – KENTA(c) vs Hirooki Goto
- Goto started strong as he is very angry at the traitor KENTA and twice within the first minute KENTA rolled out but was followed and immediately sent back in the ring. Apparently KENTA went back to Japan because he was sick of working for an audience of one in the United States, who could he be talking about? KENTA keeps sending Goto to ringside and getting the ref to count as fans boo. Finally back in the ring KENTA delivers a very loud kick to the spine of Goto. This is a very hard hitting match and as they trade multiple forearms in the corner, Goto hits KENTA and KENTA crumbles, fans love that. This gets better as the time goes on and they hit harder and harder. KENTA goes for a GTS but Goto headbutts out of it. They then trade headbutts and lariats. Goto wins that exchange and almost decapitated KENTA. They trade hard slaps. Goto hits GTW and then GTR for a three count and to win the Never belt. Very good, hard hitting match. I enjoyed very much. Winner: Hirooki Goto in 16:12.
They then announce the Big Show Schedule for 2020. There is notable no big shows announced for outside of Japan.
New Japan Big Shows 2020:
- The New Beginning – Feb 1, 2
- The New Beginning – Feb 9
- March 3
- New Japan Cup – March 20 & 21
- Sakura Genesis – March 31
- April 29
- Wrestling Dontaku – May 3 & 4
- Best of the Super Jr. 27 – June 6
- Dominion – June 14
- G1 Climax 30 – October 16, 17 & 18
Chris Charlton says “and if your think that’s the end of it, there’s lots more coming.”
Special Singles Match – “Switchblade” Jay White vs Kota Ibushi
- Jay tries his usual tactic of rolling out but gets caught getting back in. Jay fights off Ibushi and knocks him off the ropes and crashing into the barrier at ringside. As Ibushi landed he kept his arms down and just smashed into the metal railing. Jay throws Ibushi around at ringside. Jay holds Ibushi in a sleeper and shouts “your people don’t care about you anymore.” Ibuhsi fires up, hits a rana and dives over the ropes onto Jay White. Getting back in the ring and Ibushi hits a missile dropkick. Ibushi lands a spinning powerslam and moonsaults on the face of Switchblade. Kota hits half of a Bastard driver as Jay struggled and Ibushi couldn’t hook the second leg. Ibushi’s chest is red from the fall onto the barrier earlier. Switchblade hammers on Kota which just brings out Kota’s evil side. Kickboxing, hard hitting, super tough Kota Ibushi kills Jay for a few minutes until Jay has to use the referee to take as and control of this match. Jay hits a Kiwi Crusher but Ibushi has a tough head and kicks out. Jay hits the snap Saito suplex on Kota’s head then hoists him to the top rope. Ibushi begins to reverse Jay’s attempt at a superplex but Gedo climbs up to distract. On the ropes Ibushi goes for a springboard rana but Jay blocks and Kota lands on his stomach on the ropes. Jay slams Kota off the ropes in an awkward position hard. Kota fires up with a V-Trigger and a high angle German suplex. Kota goes for Kamigoye but Jay pulls him into the referee who bumps out of the ring. Gedo gets in the ring with a chair and hits Kota. Kota turns and no sells. Gedo tries to kick Kota but Kota just looks at him and punches him out of the ring. Kota hits an incredibly hard knee then a last ride powerbomb but the referee is still out at ringside. Kota collects the referee and fans clap. Jay lays down so Kota can’t hit the Kamigoye so Ibushi picks him up, kicks him hard and hits an brutal Kamigoye but at two, the referee is pulled out. Gedo uses a knuckle duster(brass knuckles) on Kota and Jay hits a straight jacket bloody Sunday. Jay nearly stumbled hitting Bladerunner but straightened up and hit it. Jay White pins Kota Ibushi. Very sad for Ibushi fans seeing him lose two in a row in the biggest stage in New Japan. Winner: Jay White in 24:57.
Special Singles Match – Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Chris Jericho
- Tanahashi has a new, altered version of his previous music and Chris Jericho’s music has been altered due to music rights, even though it’s Chris Jericho’s band Fozzy. Jericho wears the AEW World Championship to the ring and even holds it up and shows the crowd which gets a reaction. They feel each other out for a few minutes, trading similar moves or reversals. Tanahashi opens things up with a mule kick sending Jericho to the corner. Jericho sends Tanaka to ringside with a dropkick off the second rope. At ringside jericho slams Tanahashi’s head in a gate and DDTs Tana on the English commentary table, telling Gino to “shut your mouth” when Gino pleaded with Chris to stop. Back in the ring Tanahashi fires up but Jericho hits a backbraker to stop him. Jericho plays air guitar on the top rope then goes for a splash but Tanahashi moves. Jericho pulls Red Shoes in the way of Tanahashi as he goes for a splash in the corner. Then we get commentary back. Jericho beats Tanahashi with a weight belt but then Tanahashi low blows Jericho to even the odds. Sunset flip on Jericho by Tanahashi and Red Shoes comes round to count. Tanahashi shoves Jericho to ringside and climbs the ropes. Tanahashi hits a High Fly Flow on Jericho at ringside from the top and Jericho gets in at eighteen. Two Dragon screws as Jericho climbs back in then more to follow as Tanahashi works over the knee. Tanahashi goes for a High Fly Flow but Jericho gets the knees up. Jericho hits lionsault and applies a lion tamer. Tana goes for a High Fly Flow on a standing Jericho but Jericho blocks it with a code breaker. Tanahashi dodges the elbow from Jericho and hits a code breaker of his own. Tanahashi blocks a lion tamer and hits a Twist and shout. Tanahashi hits a Slingblade. Tanahashi hits the High Fly Flow but Jericho rolls through and ends up in a high angle lion tamer. Jericho steps over the head with the lion tamer and Tanahashi submits. Chris Jericho breaks his losing streak as he taps out The Ace. Winner: Chris Jericho in 22:26.
We see a video package about how this match will crown the very first double champion in New Japan Pro Wrestling. Kazuchika Okada holds and defends the IWGP Heavyweight Championship while Tetsuya Naito holds and defends the IWGP Intercontinental Championship. The winner will leave with both belts.
Double Championship Match – Kazuchika Okada(c) vs Tetsuya Naito(c)
- Naito is wearing all white to the ring, with a large white, fluffy Los Ingobernables De Japon coat. Very nice. As the bell rings the fans explode in cheers and chants. It gets very loud. They finally lock up at two and a half minutes in. Okada controls the match with a slow pace for a few minutes but Naito punches back. Naito pulls Okada out of the ring for a neckbreaker from the apron to the floor. Naito works over the neck of Okada for about five minutes. Okada goes for a Rainmaker much earlier than normal and is reversed. Naito hits a top rope rana at the fifteen minute point. Naito gloates and that give Okada time to hit a running dropkick for a double down. They get up and Naito fights off Okada in the corner. Naito climbs the ropes and Okada dropkicks him out of the ring. Okada slams Naito knee first on a table at ringside at after much struggle, Naito gets back in the ring at nineteen. Naito fights back and hits a satellite DDT on Oakda. Naito hits a reverse rana from the top rope and Okada bounced off his head. Okada dropkicks Naito out of the air and Naito pops up and hits Destino for the best nearfall ever. They trade secondary finishers, then big strikes, then Okada hits a Rainmaker for another great nearfall. Naito spits in the face of Okada then Okada goes straight back to the knee of Naito. The fans boo Okada for slamming Naito’s knee on the mat over and over. Okada teases the fans. Okada picks up Naito by holding the wrist and keeps clotheslining Naito. Okada goes for a Rainmaker but Naito turns it into a Destino. Naito hits a Stardust Press and covers Okada but he kicks out. Naito picks up Okada and drops him down vertically on his head, Naito then picks up Okada and hits one final Destino to retain his Intercontinental championship and win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. Tetsuya Naito is the first ever double champion, holding the IWGP Intercontinental and IWGP Heavyweight Championships. That was an amazing match with mind blowing spots and moments. I feel like I need a rest just sitting here and watching it. Incredible. Winner: Tetsuya Naito in 35:38.
Okada is carried out as Naito calls for the microphone. Naito says to Okada that winning in the main event feels pretty good. Maybe one more time in the future? Okada raises his fist to Naito as he leaves. They then present the belts to Tetsuya Naito. Naito lays both belts down, kneel at them and poses with his fist in the air. Naito gets the microphone again. He starts with “Buenas Noches Tokyo Dome.” Naito says he will never forget this weekend and with these two belts he will take a step into the future. In the middle of Naito shouting his catchphrase “Los Ingobernables De Japon” he gets attacked by KENTA who gives the new double champ a GTS and leaves Naito laying. KENTA sits on the chest of Naito while holding the belts then KENTA leaves when BUSHI enters the ringside area. KENTA leaves, relishing in the boos, while BUSHI helps Naito on the long walk out of the arena.