Genba Hirayanagi VS KAGETORA
Clipped down quite a bit and we see the continued heel growth of Genba, matching up against the more experienced KAGETORA. Genba tries to steal the win, but the Shoryu-Genba and a straight up low blow both fail to get the job done. Genba has also added a nice version of a T-bone suplex to his arsenal. KAGETORA back with a big brainbuster followed by the John Woo and his Ikkitousen (fireman’s carry into an Emerald Frosion) finisher for the win.Match Rating: *Kikutaro & Akira Taue VS Namazu Man & Kuishinbo Kamen
A great injustice was done to this match since they clipped it down a lot! The first meeting of Kikutaro and Kuishinbo since their Osaka Pro days together, and the two clowns haven’t missed a step of their chemistry together! Didn’t get to see much of the newly beefed up Catfish Man, but Taue was fun and adapted to well to the comedy spots. Taue chokeslams his own partner and Catfish man pins him for the win.
Really would have preferred if they didn’t cut out so much.Match Rating: *
Naomichi Marufuji, Taiji Ishimori & Ippei Ota VS Ultimo Dragon, Amigo Suzuki & Takeshi Minaminao
Part of the hype of this match was Marufuji and Ultimo having similar finishers, the Shiranui and the Asai DDT respectively, and the two had some good exchanges in there together which they could build for a future singles encounter between the two. The other story of the match was Taiji Ishimori going up against his mentor and he some solid exchanges with Minaminao as well before putting away Amigo with the Superstar Elbow. A match like this should lead to something down the line for the participants involved, but as per NOAH's booking style, NOTHING came of it.Match Rating: *1/24 X 4 Survival Tag: Kenta Kobashi, KENTA, Akihiko Ito & Atsushi Aoki VS Kensuke Sasaki, Katsuhiko Nakajima, Takashi Okita & Kento Miyahara
Match #1: Takashi Okita & Kento Miyahara VS KENTA & Atsushi Aoki
- A hot start to the series with the NOAH team using some rather heelish tactics on the KO rookies. Okita has potential to be a good powerhouse grappler like Sugiura, but he'll be stuck in the junior heavyweight division since he lacks height! KENTA was taller than him! Miyahara had his arm brutalized by Aoki throughout the match, and that lead to him finally being eliminated by a keylock cross-armbreaker by the future NOAH Jr. star.Match #2: Takashi Okita & Kensuke Sasaki VS KENTA & Atsushi Aoki
- Match two and KO send in it's biggest gun in Kensuke! KENTA gets right in his face and is actually able to stand toe-to-toe with the former IWGP/Triple Crown champion! Aoki even seems to get in some good shots on the big man, including hitting his Assault Point finisher for a near fall before Kensuke regains control slamming down with a powerbomb to counter an armbreaker, and making the rookie submit to the Boston Crab!Match #3: Takashi Okita & Kensuke Sasaki VS KENTA & Akihiko Ito
- Ito got in a good amount of offense on Sasaki, including hitting a big Death Valley Driver and a frog splash for a near fall, but then Sasaki took his head off with a big lariat and pinned him!Match #4: Takashi Okita & Kensuke Sasaki VS KENTA & Kenta Kobashi
- Okita now gets a chance to shine against a veteran as he takes it to Kobashi and even manages to hit a big Jackhammer for a 1 count! Kobashi quickly battles back with a superplex and a barrage of chops before putting Okita's lights out with a sleeper-hold! Very convincing sell of the sleeper by Okita!Match #5: Kensuke Sasaki & Katsuhiko Nakajima VS KENTA & Kenta Kobashi
- This is where the awesomeness of the match goes into serious overdrive! All four men put in one heck of an effort to pull out one Hell of a back and forth battle where you know the first team to give in inch to the other could lose it all! This confrontation was also leagues better than the tag match at the Budokan that ended in a draw, and the shocking ending of Nakajima scoring the win over KENTA adds fuel to the fire of what would be one of the best feuds of the year!
- Nominated by many as a Match of the Year contender, I would whole-heartedly agree, and the final round could easily have been a MOTY in itself!Match Rating: ****1/2
Labels: El Dorado, Kensuke Office, NOAH, SEM