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  1. Chop battles have been done a thousand times, but the formula can't get old if you have the right guys doing it. A bomb fest of a match is what this should've been, and thankfully it was. Nothing to look deep into here, just two buff badasses kicking each other's asses, ****1/2.
  2. What you see is what you get with New Japan, and this match was no exception. It had the 30 minute trope of course, but thankfully it didn't drag like it usually does. That was probably because there wasn't any pointless grappling or holds as this was all action. I could've done without Zack wasting his Zack Driver, but it's a minor gripe with an otherwise perfectly satisfying match, ****1/2.
  3. This is the best WrestleMania match in like years. This was a brilliant back and forth with Bryan intricately countering Kofi at every turn which made for some great hot comebacks from Kofi. I'm glad this ended up also being the MOTN, ****1/2.
  4. For better and for worse I thought this was just as good as their Judgement match. It wasn't as long, so it didn't drag as much in the first half of the match, and the atmosphere, while smaller, felt much more intimate. Hard hitting with both guys pulling out great performances to top off a very enjoyable first American DDT show. The stuff that came after the match was satisfying as well, ****1/2.
  5. Excellent match for Black and Ricochet to leave off on. I liked War Raiders trying to keep up in athleticism which made for some great spots. Went a bit overkill by the end, but thankfully the match didn't go too long, ****1/2.
  6. Riddle's best performance in NXT so far. I liked his dominance over Dream because it made sense. Even though Hogan can get fucked, I liked Dream's hulk up a lot which made for a great comeback. In a way this became a car crash with both guys just pulling out several different moves from other notable wrestlers around the world and Riddle just killing Dream with his bombs. It gave Dream another great performance, so I can't complain, ****1/4.
  7. They kind of tried too hard to make this an "epic", but it was still quite the brutal war between the two. WALTER beat down Dunne with his massive chops and offence, and Dunne came back with his own signature strikes. Their wXw match was a better performance, but this felt like a great fight. Should've been a little bit shorter though, ****1/2.
  8. I'm probably in the minority who thought the first two falls were pretty good as they came at a crisp pace. Then it got excessive, just like most Gargano matches nowadays. Superkick after superkick, head drop after head drop, thigh slap after thigh slap. Look I'll forgive the moves fest because at least it didn't have any of Gargano's lame high school theater melodrama, but it still became redundant after a while. Like just call this dude Johnny Cena for how many fucking times he kicked out of several match ending moves. I won't argue too much about the narrative because I think it can be justified, but reminder that excess does not equal MOTYC, especially when there wasn't much of a story in the match to begin with, ****1/2.
  9. Fuck me for not thinking Josh Barnett of all people would have one of the best matches of the weekend. Suzuki was on a higher level here than he usually is, and yeah his performance met that incredible expectation, but Barnett stole the show in my opinion. His selling and urgency to not get captured in a submission was great, and his big bombs had awesome impact behind it. Definitely did not need to go into overtime if they were just going to go to another draw, but still a great main event to a great show, ****1/2.
  10. Fantastic match of course because it was what you would expect from these two mad men. Tons of athleticism, spots, and intensity to make it feel big. It was obvious Bandido wasn't winning here, but Ospreay still gave him a lot of offense while still giving an incredible performance too. One of the best matches of the weekend, ****1/2.
  11. You can keep your Devlin vs WALTER, THIS is the European match of the year for me, AND one of the best matches I have seen all year. I can't praise Ospreay enough in how ridiculously talented he is, so all the props to him for giving such an awesome performance for the still relatively small Triple W. A-Kid too is just an out of this world talent that you will be hearing a lot in the future as a major star somewhere in the world. His performance in this match was just as incredible as everything he did had meaning behind it. Whether it was getting beaten down and selling like death or countering Ospreay's athleticism with his own unique athleticism, he was a hometown boy on a mission to prove once again he could hang with world class talent. Not to mention the Triple W crowd is up there with the likes of PWG fandom in elevating a match's atmosphere. It's hard to mix athleticism with a compelling story and great character work, but both guys managed to do it for a perfect match, *****.
  12. The obvious chemistry between two world class wrestlers should obviously lead to classic after classic, but I feel like the matches between these guys shows too much chemistry in a weird way. It's a weird complaint I have about the Okada vs Naito matches in that these guys work so well together that it sometimes feels like I'm less watching an "epic" match and more so two guys trying to tell me "this is what an epic match looks like". Strange complaint I know, but everything still works out in the end for an exciting and compelling match which I will always accept no matter how it's done, ****1/2.
  13. Mutoh student vs Mutoh student. A different paced match compared to the previous hard hitting match, and I would say just as good. This was more about getting SANADA over as the hometown boy, which led Tana to work in rare "heel-ish" fashion. Both of these guys have had some pretty great matches before together, and this didn't feel any different. Lots of chemistry in the sequences and storytelling, and I love the finish with Tana going for the move that won him his previous match but being countered into the Skull End for SANADA's win. I hope they finally pull the trigger on SANADA, well at least I can dream, ****1/2.
  14. An incredible finale to what is probably the best Cup ever? Not only that, but I think this was SANADA's best singles performance I've ever seen. There was a reason why he was treated as potential "Ace" material back in the day, and his face performance here showed that. Of course he was the hometown boy, but he definitely earned that crowd support by not backing down from Okada. Besides the generic match formula with nothing happening in the first third of the match, this told a wonderful story of SANADA taking Okada to the limit and once again getting close to taking that win. New Japan is Okada's world in the end, so there was no one else who could've been in the MSG main event, ****3/4.
  15. nivvad

    [2019-03-16-OTT-Scrappermania 5] WALTER vs Jordan Devlin

    Like their first match, this didn't feel like a MOTYC to me, but still a really great match. This was NXT "sports entertainment" style storytelling with a complete over-dramatic emphasis on Devlin "knocking out" WALTER which was baffling to me to think that's even close to realistic. Fortunately, the actual structure of the match was well laid out as Devlin didn't give WALTER an inch to dominate him. Excellent payoff to a storyline that I thought still had more time to tell, ****1/2.