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From The Shelf- NJPW G1 Climax 24 Day Two
Posted by Dylan Diot on 07.23.2014



NJPW G1 Climax 24 Day Two
7-23-14
Aomori, Japan


Katsuyori Shibata and Minoru Suzuki have the day off. On paper this looks like one of the weaker line-ups of the tournament so let’s see how this goes.

Block A- Tomohiro Ishii (0) vs. Satoshi Kojima (2)
Kojima overpowers Ishii to start and they trade forearms. Powerslam by Ishii and Kojima bails. Ishii follows out and he works over Kojima on the floor. Kojima catches Ishii with a chop block on the apron and he hits a DDT onto the apron. Back in, Kojima chops away and goes to the chinlock. Neckbreaker across the knee by Kojima and he throws rapid chops in the corner. Ishii fires away in the corner to come back and Kojima goes right back to the rapid chops!!! Corner forearm by Kojima and he goes up. Flying elbow drop by Kojima gets 2. They trade chops and Kojima pokes the eye to end that. Forearms by Kojima but Ishii comes back with chops. Corner clothesline by Ishii and he puts Kojima on top. Delayed superplex by Ishii gets 2. Kojima escapes a Brainbuster attempt and hits an Ace Crusher. Kojima puts Ishii on top and follows up. Ace Crusher off the top by Kojima gets 2. Release German suplex by Ishii and he hits a powerbomb for 2. Lariat by Ishii and Kojima blocks a second one before hitting another Ace Crusher. Ishii blocks a lariat and he throws forearms. Rolling elbow by Ishii and he throws a forearm to the back of the head of Ishii. They trade forearms again and Ishii throws a head butt. Lariat has no effect and Kojima hits a DDT. Brainbuster by Kojima gets 2!!! Head butt by Ishii and he hits an enzuigiri. Lariat by Ishii gets 2!!! Brainbuster by Ishii gets 3!!!
Winner- Tomohiro Ishii **** (This was an awesome opener and they managed to top their great opener from last year’s tournament. They threw everything they had at each other and just had a great twelve minute fight where Ishii just out hit Kojima and was the better man. So simple and yet so damn great. )

Block A- Bad Luck Fale (2) vs. Shelton X Benjamin w/Taka Michinoku (2)
They trade forearms and Shelton goes to rights that rock Fale. Fale works the midsection of Benjamin in the corner and he rocks Benjamin with hard shots in the corner. Fale steps on Benjamin and he goes for a Samoan Drop but Benjamin escapes. Superkick to the leg by Benjamin and he hits a basement DDT for 2. Ankle Lock by Benjamin and he grabs the Grapevine. Fale grabs the ropes to break. Bejnamin is tossed into the corner by Fale and Fale hits an avalanche in the corner. Samoan drop by Fale and he hits a big splash for 2. Benjamin blocks the Samoan Spike and he hits a Urinage to Fale. They throw lariats at each other and they both rock each other. Fale blocks Pay Dirt and he hits a lariat for 2. Benjamin escapes Bad Luck Fall and he hits a spinning heel kick. Super kick by Benjamin and he hits the Pay Dirt for 3!!!
Winner- Shelton X Benjamin **1/4 ( This was a MUCH better performance from Benjamin, as he showed more fire here and I loved the reaction when he put away the much bigger Fale. I enjoyed the story of Benjamin basically chopping down the big man and was so intense that he caught Fale off guard to pick up a shockingly quick win. )

Block B- Yujiro Takahashi (2) vs. Hirooki Goto (2)
Yujiro bites the hand of Goto and he steps on the head of Goto. Chops by Yujiro and he toys with Goto. Hip toss by Goto and he overpowers Yujiro. Goto stomps away and Yujiro bails before Goto could do anymore damage. Goto follows and he sends Yujiro into the railings. Yujiro drops Goto on the railings and he sends Goto into the railings. Yujiro sends Goto into the post and Goto makes it in before the twenty count. Yujiro stomps away in the corner and he chokes Goto with his boot. Slam by Yujiro and he goes to the chinlock. Basement kick by Yujiro gets 2 and he slaps Goto. Goto fires back with forearms and he hits a lariat. Spinning heel kick in the corner by Goto and he hits a Saito suplex for 2. Yujiro rakes the eyes of Goto and he hits a Yakuza kick into the corner. Big boot by Yujiro and he hits a Fisherman’s Buster for 2. They trade lariats and Goto hits the DVD backbreaker. Yujiro escapes the Brainbuster and he stun guns Goto. Lariat by Yujiro gets 2. Olympic Slam by Yujiro gets 2. Goto blocks a Buckle Bomb attempt and he backdrops Yujiro. They trade forearms and Yujiro hits a German suplex for 2. Goto throws a head butt and he turns Yujiro inside out with a lariat for 2. Shouten Kai gets 3.
Winner- Hirooki Goto *** ( Good match. In terms of being crisp this was one of Yujiro’s best performances but here they kept things basic and Goto withstood Yujiro’s offense and finished him quick since he is just simply better. )

Block B- Lance Archer w/Taka Michinoku (0) vs. Tetsuya Naito (0)
Knee to the gut by Archer and Naito catches him with a dropkick. He goes for a crossbody but gets caught and Archer tosses him into the corner. Naito goes up but Archer pulls him ONTO the turnbuckle!!! Short arm clothesline by Archer gets 2 and he presses Naito into a powerslam for 2. Arm bar by Archer and he clubs the chest of Naito. Slam by Archer and he chokes Naito with his boot. Archer sends Naito hard into the corner and he throws some forearms. Avalanche by Archer gets 2 and
he rakes the face of Naito. Suplex by Archer and he goes for a big splash but misses. Naito fights back and hits a back elbow to Archer. Basement dropkick by Naito and he snap mares him into a summersault senton. Slingshot basement dropkick by Naito and he goes up. Missile dropkick by Naito gets 2 and Archer goes for the Chokeslam but Naito blocks. Capo kick by Naito and he hits a flying forearm. Archer sweeps the leg of Naito and Naito counters a powerslam into a reverse DDT. Stardust Press misses and Archer goes for Blackout. Naito escapes and hits an enzuigiri. Archer blocks the flying forearm and goes for the Chokeslam but Naito blocks. Release German suplex by Archer and he hits the Chokeslam for 2. Naito counters a Full Nelson Slam into a small package for 3!!!
Winner- Tetsuya Naito **1/2 (Decent match with Archer tossing Naito around until Naito made his comeback and caught Archer off guard for the win. It wasn’t anything special and they were a tad sloppy at points as well, so nothing to write home about. )

Block A- Tomoki Honma (0) vs. Yuji Nagata (0)
They battle for control and Nagata throws forearms in the corner. Honma throws a slap in return and he hits some forearms in the corner. Back elbow by Honma and he slams Nagata. Dropping head butt misses and he throws some boots at Honma. Nagata works the left shoulder of Honma and Honma goes to the ropes to stop Nagata’s assault. Chops by Honma but Nagata hits a knee to the midsection of Honma. Nagata covers for 2 as Honma gets his leg on the ropes. Shots to the midsection by Nagata and Honma fights back with chops. Knee to the gut by Nagata gets 2. Kicks to the chest by Nagata and he hits a big boot but this fires Honma up!!! Honma blocks a suplex attempt and reverses into one of his own. Chops in the corner by Honma and he hits a corner forearm. Bulldog by Honma and he hits a dropping head butt. Half crab by Honma but Nagata makes the ropes to break. Big boot by Nagata but Honma comes back with a lariat. Nagata counters the Brainbuster into the Fujiwara arm bar. Honma gets his foot on the ropes to break. Honma blocks a Saito suplex and Nagata hits a big boot. Honma counters a orner knee strike into a Liger Bomb. Brainbuster by Honma gets 2!!! Honma goes up and he misses the diving head butt. Nagata slips up attempting to run the ropes and Honma hits some forearms. Big boot by Nagata and they exchange forearms. Slap by Nagata and he throws some jabs at Honma. Cradle by Honma gets 2!!! Release German suplex by Nagata and he hits a big boot. Brainbuster by Nagata gets 2!!! Backdrop Hold by Nagata gets 3.
Winner- Yuji Nagata ***1/2 ( This was a very good match. Honma is continuing to thrive in his role of plucky underdog. His nearfalls are believable and he knows the right moments when to get that near fall for the crowd to pop huge. )

Block A- Davey Boy Smith Jr. w/Taka Michinoku (0) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (0)
Feeling out process to start and Smith Jr. stings Nakamura with a kick to the shoulder. Smith Jr. begins to work that arm but Nakamura snap mares him into a knee drop. Knees to the midsection by Nakamura and Smith Jr. catches Nakamura with a clothesline. He knocks Nakamura off the apron and he sends Nakamura into the railings. Back in, Smith Jr. covers for 2 and he grabs a double nerve hold. Smith Jr. stomps the midsection of Nakamura and he hits a belly to belly suplex for 2. Chinlock by Smith Jr. and Nakamura comes back with a knee to the midsection. Spinning heel kick by Nakamura and Smith Jr. throws some forearms. More knees to the midsection by Nakamura and he hits an enzuigiri. Nakamura puts Smith Jr. on top and hits the corner knee lift for 2. Powerslam by Smith Jr. and both men are down. They trade forearms and Smith Jr. ends that with a knee to the midsection. Butterfly suplex by Smith Jr. gets 2. Suplex by Smith Jr. and he rolls through for the delayed suplex. Nakamura escapes and hits a flying knee strike. Release back suplex by Nakamura and he goes for Boom Ye! but misses. Lariat by Smith Jr. gets 2. Saito suplex by Smith Jr. gets 2. Nakamura blocks a Tiger suplex attempt and hits a Lungblower. Cross arm breaker by Nakamura and he tries to turn it into a Triangle Choke but Smith Jr. breaks with a powerbomb. Tiger suplex by Smith Jr. gets 2. Nakamura escapes a powerbomb attempt and hits the second rope knee strike. Boom Ye! by Nakamura gets 2!!! Standing Boom Ye! by Nakamura gets 3!!!
Winner- Shinsuke Nakamura ***1/2 ( Very good match. Nakamura sold the wear and tear his body took in the Shibata match and Smith Jr. was methodical in his approach to working over Nakamura, choosing to slow the pace of the match and add more impact to his maneuvers. )

Block B- AJ Styles (0) vs. Toru Yano (2)
Styles’ pants are black tonight if any of the commenters are wondering. Styles attacks to start and he stomps away on Yano. Forearms by Styles but Yano takes him down by the hair. Styles throws strikes and hits a discus clothesline. Yano rakes the eyes and Styles catches him with a dropkick, forcing Yano to bail. Baseball slide by Styles and back in, he hits a slingshot back senton for 2. Muta Lock by Styles and he rakes the eyes, forcing a break. Styles goes to a rear Muta Lock but Yano goes into the ropes to break. Styles slams Yano’s head off the turnbuckle multiple times and Yano exposes the corner. Styles charges but misses and hits the exposed corner. Yano grabs a chair and he swings but Styles moves. He drop toe holds Yano onto the chair and charges but Yano drop toe holds him into the exposed corner for 2. Styles suplexes Yano into the exposed corner and Yano bails to the floor. Yano nails Styles with a chair and he goes to suplex Styles back in but he snaps Yano’s neck off the ropes to come back. Springboard forearm by Styles gets 2. Northern lights suplex by Styles gets 2. Styles goes for the Styles Clash but Yano blocks so Styles hammers the back. Inverted atomic drop by Yano and he catapults Styles into the exposed corner. Powerbomb by Yano gets 2!!! Yano puts Styles on top and he follows up but Styles stops him. Yano goes low and cradles Styles for 2!!! Styles rolls through a powerbomb attempt and he hits the Styles Clash for 3.
Winner- AJ Styles ***1/4 ( In terms of actual wrestling, this is one of the better Yano efforts I have seen. He took it to the champ and almost caught him multiple times for a potential second surprise win. Styles is bringing it to the G1, playing an awesome heel and showing aggression. )

Block B- Kazuchika Okada (2) w/Gedo vs. Hiroyoshi Tenzan (2)
Tenzan overpowers Okada and mocks him to start. Shoulder chops by Tenzan and Okada bails. Tenzan throws chops on the floor and Okada sends him into the railings to come back. DDT on the floor by Okada and back in, Okada slams Tenzan. Hilo by Okada gets 1. Neckbreaker by Okada gets 1. Chinlock by Okada but Tenzan fights out so Okada snap mares him into a basement dropkick for 2. Snap mare and Okada grabs a neck crank. Tenzan fights out and hits a spinning heel kick to come back. Shoulder chops by Tenzan and he throws some head butts. Corner clothesline by Tenzan and he goes up. Standing knee drop off the top by Tenzan gets 2. Head butt by Tenzan and he suplexes Okada for 2. They trade forearms and Tenzan hits a Samoan Drop. Okada hits an Air Raid backbreaker on Tenzan and he slams Tenzan. Okada goes up and hits a flying elbow drop. Tenzan blocks the Rainmaker with some head butts and he hit a TTD for 2!!! Anaconda Vice by Tenzan but Okada fights out so Tenzan hits the Anaconda Buster for 2. Tenzan goes up and hits a diving head butt for 2. Slam by Tenzan and he goes up. Moonsault misses and Okada hits a big boot. Tenzan blocks the Tombstone and Okada catches him with a dropkick. Tenzan blocks the Rainmaker again and hits a lariat. Okada blocks the Anaconda Buster and Tenzan hits some shoulder chops. Back elbow by Okada and he dropkicks Tenzan in the back. Tombstone by Okada and he hits the Rainmaker for 3!!!
Winner- Kazuchika Okada ***1/2 ( This was the best Tenzan single match in a long time. He busted out a majority of his move set and this is the first match in a long time where he didn’t look old or slowed down. Just shows just how good Okada is when he can get this kind of performance out of Tenzan. )

Block B- Karl Anderson (0) vs. Togi Makabe (0)
Rights by Anderson and he throws an uppercut. Anderson grabs the hair to maintain hold of the headlock and Anderson throws a punch at the jaw of Makabe!!! Makabe dumps Anderson to the floor and follows out to send Anderson into the railings. Anderson returns the favor and he chokes Makabe against the railings. Back in, Anderson chokes Makabe with his boot and he throws another shot to the jaw of Makabe. Anderson hammers Makabe on the mat and he throws some uppercuts at Makabe. Chinlock by Anderson but Makabe fights out and no sells chops from Anderson. Shot to the jaw by Anderson and Makabe comes back with a lariat. Corner lariats by Makabe and he hits some punches in the corner. Northern lights suplex by Makabe gets 2. Clothesline by Makabe gets 2. Spinebuster by Anderson gets 2. Makabe blocks a TKO and Anderson hits a bicycle kick in the corner. TKO by Anderson gets 2. Gun Stun is blocked and Makabe hits a lariat. Powerbomb by Makabe gets 2. Makabe goes up and Anderson catches him with a sick kick. Anderson follows up and hits a super TKO for 2!!! Corner Northern lariat by Makabe and he puts Anderson on top. He follows up and slams Anderson’s face off the ring post. Hanging German suplex by Makabe and he hits the King Kong Knee Drop for 3.
Winner- Togi Makabe **3/4 ( I love that Makabe’s injured jaw is going to play into his G1 matches. They are going to add great story elements into each contest. This match was solid but didn’t get much time to develop into anything noteworthy. )

Block A- Doc Gallows (0) vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi (2)
Gallows pulls the hair of Tanahashi to start but Tanahashi catches him in a side headlock. Gallows pulls the hair again to break. Gallows charges in the corner but misses and Tanahashi goes for a crossbody but Gallows catches him and hits a fall-a-way slam. They go to the floor and Gallows sends Tanahashi into the railings. Big boot by Gallows knocks Tanahashi into the front row. Gallows nails Tanahashi in the back with a chair and he chokes Tanahashi with the chair. Gallows chokes Tanahashi with his boot and Tanahashi pulls Gallows off the apron in an attempt at a count-out but Gallows makes it back in!!! Gallows puts Tanahashi in the tree of woe and he connects with a dropkick. Gallows throws some elbows at the chest of Tanahashi and he hits some elbow drops for 2. Chinlock by Gallows but Tanahashi fights out. They trade shots to the midsection and Gallows sends Tanahashi hard into the corner. Gallows goes up for the Vader Bomb but eats knees. Flying forearm by Tanahashi and he dropkicks the leg of Gallows. Flying forearm again by Tanahashi and Gallows comes back with the Gallows Pole. Backbreaker by Gallows gets 2. Bicycle Kick by Anderson and he hits a high kick for 2. Tanahashi blocks the Gallows Pole and Gallows attempts to dump him but Tanahashi skins the cat. Slingblade by Tanahashi doesn’t even get 0. Gallows blocks the Dragon suplex and Tanahashi hits another Slingblade. Tanahashi goes up and hits High Fly Flow to the back of Gallows. He goes up and hits another High Fly Flow for 3.
Winner- Hiroshi Tanahashi *** ( This is like an old school WWF house show main event where the top guy faces a big ugly heel and picks up a solid win. It makes for a good match and a good go home moment for the live crowd but for me personally, G1 main events need to have a bit more pomp and circumstance. )

Block A: Benjamin (4), Tanahashi (4),Shibata (2), Fale (2), Ishii (2), Kojima (2), Nagata (2), Nakamura (2), Smith Jr. (0), Gallows(0), Honma (0)
Block B: Okada (4), Goto (4), Styles (2), Takahashi (2), Tenzan (2), Yano (2), Makabe (2), Naito (2), Archer (0), Suzuki (0), Anderson (0)



The 411: Clearly not as good as the awesome opening night show, but it surpassed all of the "B" shows from last years tournament. The opening match was awesome and you got shockingly great performances from guys like Benjamin, Yano, and Tenzan. I didn't see a lack of effort from anyone and while some matches were clearly better than others, this was a very good show and makes the G1 two for two on exciting events. This is a surprise hit and I'm very happy that this card exceeded my expectations.
 
Final Score:  7.0   [ Good ]  legend





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