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Boss Rock

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  1. This was very good and sort of the hard-hitting encounter you would expect, but it never quite hit that next level for me. Which is a shame, as Goto is know for overachieving at the Dome. The first 10 minutes or so felt like the typical "this is fine but nothing special" Goto match but to their credit, they definitely ramped things up in the last five minutes or so. KENTA does a great job embracing the heel role and Goto pulled the fire out down the stretch. Very good but I wish they had done a little more in the first two-thirds. ****
  2. This is one of the few matches that actually got better each time I watched it. It's still a bit too slow in the beginning but I like that there's still clear escalation in building to each big spot. I also wasn't quite as high on Okada my first viewing, but on repeats I really think Okada was terrific in his selling and making Kenny seem like a major threat when he was still barely a year into his heavyweight push. It's also a "best in the world"-level performance from Kenny in terms of offense. It's been over a year since I last watched this but I went ***** on it. Still not the best match of 2017, but it's damn great.
  3. I was expecting this match to either be really good or be a slow, boring trudge. Thankfully it was the former. It's truly a testament to both guys that they knew how to work around their physical limitations and yet still deliver a really entertaining match. It's also a case study in physical charisma and knowing how to make your offense, flashy or not, count. ****1/4
  4. These two could have just settled for the high-octane spotfest we all expected, and while we more or less got that, it was the storytelling that took everything to the next level. Hiromu is the returning hero who is still struggling to adjust after such a long layoff due to injury. Meanwhile, Ospreay is the confident hotshot who's ruled the roost in Hiromu's absence. Ospreay seemed one step ahead almost the entire time and yet Hiromu just would not be denied. He held on just long enough each time to find an opening and he made the most of each one. Simple yet effective storytelling. And oh yeah, the spots were insane. ****3/4
  5. I would agree with anyone who says Naito should have won at WK 12. That being said, probably the biggest reason this match was so tremendous was how it built off Naito's past disappointments and his loss two years prior. These two have struggled with chemistry before but here they complimented each other perfectly. Naito pushed the pace whereas most Okada matches start off much slower, while Okada has the stamina and athleticism to make any finishing stretch captivating. But as I mentioned before, this match truly succeeded because of the story it told in Naito overcoming every failure he's endured. Okada attacking the knee was a great wrinkle to the match which saw him fully embrace the heel role and while at first it was used for a count-out tease, him repeatedly slamming the knee near the end really drove the whole thing home as Naito the conquering hero and Okada the cocky yet desperate heel. The callbacks to WK 12 were tremendous as well, first with Naito surviving the spinning tombstone/Rainmaker combo which put him away before and then not only attempting Stardust Press, but FINALLY hitting it. One of the greatest title matches of the 21st century. Bravo. *****
  6. Sorta feel like it had the same padding issues as a lot of other Okada matches, but overall they did a great job building to the second half of the match and escalating everything. Ibushi snapping was of course the highlight but the last five minutes or so were terrific. Love Okada making the Michinoku Tombstone a part of his arsenal. Their G1 match was better as it was more compact but this was absolutely a worthy sequel. ****1/2
  7. Boss Rock

    Wrestle Kingdom 14

    Terrific weekend of wrestling overall. Sort of devastated Ibushi lost two nights in a row and while I'm sure he'll get his moment down the line, Jay beating him in the end after the year he's had was a drag. Mixed feelings about the ending angle but Naito winning was the most important thing. Everything else ranged from solid to fantastic. Okada-Naito in particular was booked to perfection. So many great callbacks to the WK 12 match and they really knew how to milk the drama. Going to be a tough MOTYC to top.
  8. Arguably the greatest in-ring rivalry of the 2010's and maybe the most important. While Okada is probably more responsible for NJPW's return to prominence, it was his feud with Tanahashi that was essential to his ascent. A lot of newer fans (myself included) can probably point to this feud as their introduction to the promotion. While you could argue they've had too many matches over the past 7 years and that Okada's coronation should have happened at WK 9 instead of WK 10, the storytelling and booking was for the most part perfect and made for one of the greatest passing of the torches in recent memory. In terms of how I would rank them as wrestlers, I would put Tanahashi ahead as he has more volume but that's really a credit to his longevity in the business. With Okada, it feels like he's only just entered his prime so it's a bit tough to compare. While I would put his peaks ahead of Tanahashi's, he could be inconsisent until around 2017 or so when he had a pretty solid claim to best in the world. Here's my ranking of their matches: 1. King of Pro Wrestling 2013 ***** 2. Invasion Attack 2013 ****3/4 3. Wrestle Kingdom 10 ****3/4 4. Destruction in Kobe 2018 ****3/4 5. Wrestling Dontaku 2018 ****3/4 6. G1 Climax 2016 ****1/2 7. G1 Climax 2018 ****1/2 8. G1 Climax 2019 ****1/4 9. G1 Climax 2013 ****1/4 10. New Beginning 2012 ****1/4 11. Dominion 2012 ****1/4 12. Wrestle Kingdom 9 ****1/4 13. Wrestle Kingdom 7 ****
  9. Boss Rock

    The Cancellation of Jim Cornette

    I honestly don't think any of them looked much better than Janela when it comes to physique. And I don't really think he comes off as a jobber either. He's fine in that midcard position to lose to Mox and Omega but go over someone like Spears.
  10. Boss Rock

    The Cancellation of Jim Cornette

    I think my biggest issue with Cornette (obviously apart from his offensive comments) is the hypocrisy when it comes to folks he doesn't like. I get not liking folks like Janela for what they bring to the table as a wrestler (I have no strong opinions on Janela either way, he's had matches I've liked and matches I don't like) but to criticize folks for not working out or looking out of shape when the guy managed Eaton, Condrey, and Del Ray is just silly.
  11. Boss Rock

    Wrestle Kingdom 14

    Makes sense as Tana can't lose at the Dome to a heel gaijin and Jericho would need to get his win back at some point.
  12. Boss Rock

    Wrestle Kingdom 14

    I was never a fan of the "pinfall followed by a 10 count" thing. And as much as I love Cactus-Vader, the break period made even less sense.
  13. Boss Rock

    Wrestle Kingdom 14

    1,159 people are talking about this Supposedly won't be on the broadcast but still pretty cool and was actually surprised they didn't announce it sooner.
  14. Boss Rock

    Current New Japan

    I think Mutoh is too.