Hirooki Goto and Hiroyoshi Tenzan both had to forfeit the rest of their G1 Climax matches because of injuries. That does not break my heart.
CHAOS (Takashi Iizuka & YOSHI-HASHI) vs. Captain New Japan & Tomoaki Honma
This match started as a brawl on the floor. Eventually, the good Captain got worked over in the ring. Honma tagged in and made a big comeback. The teams started to go back and forth. YOSHI-HASHI distracted the ref so Iizuka could hit the good Captain with the Iron Finger. YOSHI-HASHI hit a remarkably average senton: 1…2…3
This was a PPV dark match level match from NJPW. They worked hard I guess for the most part. It was not interesting at all. Match Rating: *
Block B Yujiro Takahashi [6 Points] vs. Kota Ibushi [6 Points]
The result of this match will either make me really sad or full of relief.
Yujiro eventually cut him off after catching him with a snap powerslam. Yujiro got the heat after that. Ibushi came back with his moonsault to the floor. Yujiro hit a big lariat. This match is not interesting. Kota hit a bridging German for a nearfall. Yujiro hit a high angle bridging German of his own: 1…2…NO! Yujiro then hit the Dominator: 1…2…3. I am really sad.
This was an uninspired match where the inferior wrestler went over. THUMBS DOWN! Yujiro now has eight points. Match Rating: **
Block B Yuji Nagata [6 Points] vs. Karl Anderson [6 Points]
This is a very nifty matchup. Anderson cut him off surely enough and worked him over. Nagata is still a very strong worker at his age. How old is he? HOLY SHIT! He’s 45.That is super old to be a very competent full-time wrestler. He probably could be pushed even more. I want him vs. Okada real bad. Nagata started to come back, but Anderson bit his face and hit a neckbreaker for a nearfall. Nagata came back with a super exploder for a nearfall. Anderson came back with a spinebuster for a nearfall. Nagata hit a German for a nearfall and then went for a Rock Bottom, but Anderson reversed it into a Gun Stun: 1…2…3!
This was a very solid undercard match. Nagata and Anderson both work a fan-friendly style and pace. I wouldn’t mind seeing another match between the two on PPV one day. Anderson now has eight points. Match Rating: **3/4
Block A Prince Devitt [8 Points] vs. Katsuyori Shibata [6 Points]
Devitt put on BOXING GLOVES. Wrestler of the Year. The referee tried to take away the gloves. Devitt ended up just throwing one of them at Shibata. Shibata booted him in the face. Devitt quickly used a chair against Shibata as much as possible. He tried to win by countout, but it did not work. Shibata came back and hit his corner dropkick of death. They went back and forth. Shibata got the sleeper, but Fale saved him. Devitt hit the reverse Bloody Sunday for a nearfall. Shibata avoided the double stomp and got the sleeper again. Fale saved Devitt from the Penalty Kick. Shibata wiped Fale out with a pescado. Shibata then hit Devitt with a Kitchen Sink, a Penalty Kick, and the Go-2-Sleep: 1…2…3!
It’s a shame that some of these first-time-ever Shibata matchups are abbreviated matches buried in the deep G1, but it’s nevertheless fun to experience them. It’s also nice to see Shibata work matches that are not like his matches with Goto. I like the Goto matches, but variety is the spice of life. Shibata now has eight points. Match Rating: ***
Block A Kazuchika Okada [6 Points] vs. Tomohiro Ishii [4 Points]
They kept going back and forth. I’m curious if I leave this match interested in watching these two have a title match in 2014. Okada started going after the neck. Ishii came back with a superplex. Okada hit his spike DDT and then the Air Raid Crash on the thigh. Okada hit the Heavy Rain, but Ishii then came back with a lariat. Okada hit his dropkick and went for the Rainmaker, but Ishii actually hit a lariat of his own! Another lariat from Ishii: 1…2…NO! I thought that may have been it. Ishii avoided another Rainmaker and hit a headbutt. Okada then caught him with the tombstone/Rainmaker combo: 1…2…3!
This was another really enjoyable match. I do not know what’s coming in the second half, but NJPW could have one of the more fun G1 2013 shows on their hands here if this keeps up. Also, I did in fact want to see a title match between these two in 2014 after this match. Okada now has eight points. Match Rating: ***1/4
Block A Lance Archer [4 Points] vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi [6 Points]
Tanahashi is so on point right now that I’m not upset about having to watch a Lance Hoyt match. You can take a man out of the Lance Hoyt, but you cannot take the Lance Hoyt out of the man.
Archer’s size and power was too much for Tana for a while. He was just running through Tana. He had a couple of hope spots, but Tana could just not get anything going until Archer missed a frog splash. Tana made a comeback after that. They botched a dragon screw. It looked like a swinging KneeDT! (Credit to JP Nichols for describing it perfectly.) Archer got a nearfall with a release powerbomb. Tana came back with the Sling Blade. Archer hit a Bubba Bomb for a weak nearfall. Tana reversed a Blackout into a Sling Blade. He then hit two High Fly Flows: 1…2…3
This was DUD levels of boring. Hiroshi Tanahashi is one of the best wrestlers in the world, but he could not get an enjoyable match out of Archer. This may surprise you, but a match that was 95% composed of Lance Hoyt beating up Hiroshi Tanahashi got over like a wet fart in NJPW. This was a failure. Tanahashi now has eight points. Match Rating: ½*
Block B Tetsuya Naito [6 Points] vs. Toru Yano [4 Points]
I sense a boring match is coming. After going into the crowd, Yano got the advantage. Yano worked Naito over in the ring after that. He locked in a single leg crab. Naito eventually made a comeback. I know this recap sucks, but this is so goshdarn boring. They went back and forth. They botched a spot. Yano hit a wacky powerbomb for a nearfall. Naito hit a super ‘rana, a missile dropkick, and a bridging German for another nearfall. Yano avoided the Stardust Press. I thought (was hoping) that would be the finish. Naito got a couple of pinning combinations for nearfalls. Yano caught him with the low blow/cradle combo: 1…2…3! Wut.
This was another super boring match. This show has fallen off a cliff. I’m in a mood and have zero patience for boring wrestling. Yano now has six points for some ungawdly reason. Match Rating: ½*
Block B Minoru Suzuki [6 Points] vs. Shelton Benjamin [6 Points]
I feel like my patience is about to be tested. At least I get to hear Suzuki’s theme. Hopefully, I will get to hear it twice.
Not much of note happened early on. After going to the floor, Shelton got the advantage. He got the heat after that. They traded ankle locks. Shelton hit a superkick. This second half is death by boring. Shelton hit a diving blockbuster for a weak nearfall that no one cared about. Suzuki came back with a sleeper and then the Gotch Piledriver: 1…2…3
I’m losing my mind at how bad this show has become. No one can convince me it’s good. Suzuki now has eight points. Match Rating: DUD
Block A Satoshi Kojima [6 Points] vs. Togi Makabe [6 Points]
I’m just praying that this main event is saved by the crowd being irrationally happy all of a sudden.
The crowd was slightly more lively at the start of this than they had been for this half of the show. Kojima has taped up ribs. Kojima has a taped up shoulder still. Kojima got control early on. He hit a DDT on the apron and diving falling elbow drop. Makabe came back with a German for a nearfall. Both guys look really hobbled. Kojima avoided a diving knee drop. Makabe hit a bridging Dragon suplex for a nearfall. Kojima roared back with a lariat. Makabe hit a powerbomb, but Kojima kicked out at one. Makabe then hit the spider German and a diving knee drop: 1…2…3
This was a solid match, but it came across like a Wrestle Kingdom main event compared to the rest of the second half of this show. I’m not sure why Makabe won. Kojima seemed to be building some momentum for an eventual title shot. Makabe now has six points. Match Rating: **1/2
After seven days of competition, here are the tournament standings:
The 411: This show completely died in the second half, and it was not exactly a great show to begin with. This actually may have been one of the worst shows from 2013. Sure, WWE and TNA have worse booking, but the amount of boring in this match seems impossible to top at the moment.