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411's NJPW The New Beginning in Hiroshima Review 2.9.14
Posted by TJ Hawke on 02.09.2014



February 9, 2014
Hiroshima, Japan



El Desperado & Jushin Thunder Liger vs. BUSHI & Kota Ibushi
This match sounds like fun. Desperado is getting a shot at Ibushi's belt in two days.

After a few minutes, BUSHI hit Liger with a tope suicida. Liger almost got counted out after that. Neither team could get an advantage for a bit. They just kept going back and forth. Desperado gave BUSHI a fairly safe-looking vertabreaker, and Ibushi had to make the save. Liger took out Ibushi with a rolling senton off the apron. Desperado finished BUSHI with Guitarra de Angel: 123

Unfortunately, this was a pretty flat opener that did not make me interested in watching Desperado challenge Ibushi for the belt. This match was not meant to impress anyone.
Match Rating: *1/2



Minoru Suzuki vs. Tama Tonga
Kaze Ni Nare!

The match quickly turned into a brawl on the floor. They got back into the ring. The crowd was not really into this at all. Suzuki hit a bunch of slaps. Tonga avoided the sleeper and hit a flapjack. Tonga hit a diving crossbody for a nearfall. Taichi hit Tonga with a chair, and Suzuki then hit the Gotch Piledriver: 12.3

This show is flatter than the Earth. Hashtag jokes from thousands of years ago.
Match Rating: ¾*



CHAOS (Takashi Iizuka & Toru Yano) vs. Kazushi Sakuraba & Yuji Nagata
I really am not interested in this match, but it will at least be better than the Gracies match in a couple of days.

CHAOS attacked their opponents before the bell to get the advantage. It did not last for long however. Nagata is the GHC Heavyweight Champion now, by the way. Sakuraba nearly killed himself on a slingshot plancha. They started brawling in the crowd. Iizuka choked Sakuraba with some rope as they got back to the ring. They got the heat on Sakuraba. Punched both of them in the face; Nagata then made a hot tag. The teams went back and forth but with tomfoolery. Sakuraba avoided the Iron Finger and got a sleeper. Nagata choked Yano with a rope. Sakuraba put on the Iron Finger and hit Iizuka with it! Sakuraba and Nagata got disqualified for all of this. They did not seem too bothered by that. They have bigger fish to fry on the next New Beginning show.

Sadly, this was the best match of the show so far. It was not bad, but it was not good either.
Match Rating: **



Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Michael Tarver
This is Earth. This is the most excited I have ever been for a match. If anything about this match is not bad, I will be severely disappointed.

It sucked early on. When they went to the floor, Tenzan got busted open somehow. Tarver then got the heat in the ring. It was all awful. Tenzan came back and got the Anaconda Vice. Tarver hit a rolling elbow, but Tenzan came back with a Samoan Drop. Tarver avoided the diving headbutt and hit an exploder. Tarver caught him with a punch to the face: 123

This match sucked. When you think of all of the great North American independent wrestlers out there, remember that NJPW partnered with the NWA and brought over Michael Tarver, Big Daddy YUM YUM, Jax Dane, and Rob Conway. Maybe they're just trying to make Harry Smith, Lance Hoyt, Shelton Benjamin, and Luke Gallows look like better talent acquisitions.
Match Rating: DUD



Satoshi Kojima (c) vs. Big Daddy Yum Yum [NWA World Heavyweight Title]
Bruce Tharpe is the only thing about this NWA invasion that is worth keeping. The rest can all go to AJPW. #BDYY is the former Byron Wilcott of FCW.

I will not even bother to try to describe Big Daddy Yum Yum's outfit. That can only cheapen the experience of seeing it for yourself. They ended up on the floor. Tharpe helped #BDYY get the advantage. There will not be a better moment this year than hearing Tharpe scream, "Stay on him YUM YUM!" #BDYY worked Kojima over in the ring. Kojima avoided a Stinger Splash and delivered the Kobashi Chops. #BDYY sold them like he was drowning. I cannot do any justice for how #BDYY sold these chops. It's another thing you have to see for yourself. #BDYY came back with a pumphandle gutbuster. Kojima blocked a lariat, but #BDYY hit another gutbuster. #BDYY nearly killed Kojima and himself on a failed moonsault. Kojima came back and hit two lariats: 123

Michael Tarver attacked Kojima from behind. Hiroyoshi Tenzan made the save. Where's Teddy Long?

If Tarver and Tenzan sucked because of how boring it was, this match was hilarious because of how awful Big Daddy Yum Yum is at every aspect of professional wrestling. Watch this match for sure.
Match Rating: DUD



CHAOS (Tomohiro Ishii & Yujiro Takahashi) vs. Tetsuya Naito & Tomoaki Honma
Ishii will be challenging Naito for the NEVER Championship in two days.

CHAOS isolated Honma and worked him over for a bit. Honma eventually escaped and tagged out to Naito. Naito made a comeback. The teams went back and forth. Ishii gave Honma a superplex for a nearfall. Naito saved Honma from something else by hitting Ishii with a springboard dropkick. The teams went back and forth some more. Ishii hit Honma with a folding powerbomb for a nearfall and then an Ishii Driver: 123!

This match was perfectly acceptable, but this show needs a lot more than that to be salvaged.
Match Rating: **1/2



BULLET CLUB (King Fale, Matt Jackson, Nick Jackson & Prince Devitt) vs. Time Splitters (Alex Shelley & KUSHIDA), Ryusuke Taguchi & Togi Makabe
Taguchi's new mustache makes him look like the president of pedophile island.

The teams went back and forth for a bit. KUSHIDA was eventually cut off and then worked over. KUSHIDA eventually hit Slick Nick with a satellite DDT, and he then tagged out to Makabe. The teams started going back and forth. The Splitters hit stereo planchas on the Bucks. Taguchi and Devitt squared off. Devitt eventually hit him with Bloody Sunday: 123!

Hey, we finally have a fun professional wrestling match on this PPV put on the best wrestling company in the world! This match featured a ton of good talent, and they worked a smart match. The rudos did not even really cheat to win!
Match Rating: ***1/4



CHAOS (Kazuchika Okada & YOSHI-HASHI) vs. Hirooki Goto & Katsuyori Shibata
I feel like Okada and Goto already have a name, but cagematch.de did not list one. Goto is getting a shot at Okada in two days. Even without that, this is a very nifty matchup.

CHAOS isolated Goto for a bit and worked him over. Goto caught YOSHI-HASHI with a lariat and then tagged out to Shibata. Shibata delivered some big strikes to Okada. Shibata and Goto ran through Okada for a bit, and YOSHI-HASHI had to make the save. Okada came back and called for the Rainmaker, but Goto hit the lariat. YOSHI-HASHI finally did something useful. Goto/Shibata dropped Okada on their knees, head first. YOSHI-HASHI then ate a DVD on the thigh, the Penalty Kick, and then the Shouten Kai: 123!

I enjoyed this match quite a bit. While the match was designed to set up Goto for his title match in two days, it mostly just made me excited for more tag matches from the Goto/Shibata team. That has a lot of promise.
Match Rating: ***1/2



BULLET CLUB (Doc Gallows & Karl Anderson) (c) vs. Killer Elite Squad (Davey Boy Smith Jr. & Lance Archer) [IWGP Tag Team Titles]
I did not enjoy the first match these two had together. After a boring few minutes, the Bullet Club isolated and worked over Archer. He tagged out to Smith. The crowd went mild. The teams went back and forth. I think accidentally clicked the slow motion button. Archer got a nearfall on Gallows with a chokeslam. This match is so fucking lifeless. KES had Anderson pinned with a double powerbomb, but Gallows made the save. Gallows then ate the double powerbomb. Tama Tonga distracted everyone. He ate the double powerbomb for his troubles. The Bullet Club came back though. Smith ate the Tornado-plex: 123

I would genuinely be interested in someone explaining to me why they enjoyed this match. I do not care if they did, but I would be absolutely fascinated to hear the explanation. Karl Anderson can be a bona fide singles main eventer, but he is absolutely being wasted right now by NJPW.
Match Rating: *



Hiroshi Tanahashi (c) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura [IWGP Intercontinental Title]
These two would have to have one of the best matches ever for this show to be considered a thumbs up. Tanahashi took the belt from Nakamura in the main event of Wrestle Kingdom. NJPW is taking a page from WWE's book by booking a rematch on the next big PPV.

Not much of note happened early on. Nakamura was going after Tanahashi's right arm a lot, which got him control of the match. Tana came back with a dragon screw. Nakamura came right back and took Tana down. Nakamura delivered some knee strikes. Tana came back and went after the knee. He hit a dragon screw on the floor. Tana then hit a High Fly Flow to the floor. Tana hit the Florida Key in the ring for a nearfall. Nakamura avoided a High Fly Flow then hit a Boma Ye to the back of the head. Nakamura then got a nearfall with a backstabber. Nakamura hit the Funplex, but Tana avoided the Boma Ye. Nakamura got a cross armbreaker, but he had it locked in on the wrong arm. He was working over the other arm earlier. Tana survived that, but Nakamura hit Boma Ye: 12匩O!!! Nakamura hit a diving Boma Ye and the called for a regular one. Tana avoided it and hit the Sling Blade. He hit a second Sling Blade and then a High Fly Flow to a standing Nakamura. Another High Fly Flow: 12匩O!!! WOW! Great nearfall. I definitely thought it was over. Sure, it's a little WWE main eventy, but it worked here. They sort of botched a wacky cross armbreaker spot, but Tana then immediately hit a bridging dragon suplex: 123

As great as that last High Fly Flow nearfall was, the moments after it pretty much erased what was gained by it. That nitpick aside, this was a very satisfying main event. For whatever reason, these two are just not bringing out the very best in each other despite being two of the promotion's biggest three stars.
Match Rating: ***3/4


Overall Thoughts: This was a legitimately bad show from the best wrestling company in the world. They have been on a cold streak since King of Pro Wrestling, but this was of lower quality than I could have possibly expected. Obviously, NJPW deciding to split up New Beginning into two shows had a very negative affect on the artistic quality. I suspect that part two of New Beginning will be better, but we can only hope that NJPW recognizes how bad this show was and then decides to not split up all PPVs going forward. The quickest way for NJPW to lose me as a fan that watches a lot of their shows would be to continue this PPV plan. I genuinely hate it. I suppose it's possible that they could do the split PPV plan and still be great, but if this show was any indication, there is a lot to be worried about.

In the post-show press conference, Tanahashi mentioned something about a brand extension. It would not be a Smackdown/Raw situation, but it sounds like each major PPV going forward will be split in two with Tanahashi and Okada main eventing either show. I'm in panic mode. I should probably give NJPW time to make it work, but I'm not optimistic about it at all.


Thanks everybody for reading! You can send feedback to my Twitter or to my email address: Shabang728@gmail.com. Also, feel free to check out my own wrestling website, FreeProWrestling.com. Also, check out my Best of Chikara blog and an archive of all my 411 video reviews.





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