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[2019-07-06-NJPW-G1 Climax 29: Night One] Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Kazuchika Okada

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This is what the Okada-Tanahashi formula looks like boiled down to its essentials. Lots of slick counters, a big bump to the outside, and a fun sense of history and rivalry that adds a little gravitas to the whole thing. This is their touring match, their comfort zone, and it's pretty damn good. Nice to see Okada finally get the G1 win over Tanahashi. I can definitely gripe that their progression in matches felt a little odd but if you consider that Okada's on an upward trajectory since the start of 2019 and Tanahashi has decidedly been on a downward one, then it fits well enough. Loved the continued trend of Tanahashi having none of Okada's Rainmaker pose and the wrist control segment was a nice little callback to their last Dome match. Again, they played the hits, but the hits are so damn good.

****

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Agreed that this was definitely a greatest hits version of their match formula, but it worked really well in this type of setting. It also played to the story of how their last three G1 matches went the full 30 minutes so both guys worked with a bit more urgency to try and secure a victory on the first night. If you like the Okada-Tana matches but hate their usual padding, you will love this.

****1/2

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Like the rest of the show, this was very much a greatest hits match. Of course, the greatest hits are fucking great. Although I did love the added addition of the dragon screw battle, which sort of reminded me of Tanahashi vs Mutoh's Dome match. The selling was inconsistent as fuck though, but that comes with the territory with Tana and Okada matches. Only gripe that I had with the match. Great main event to end the show and with the crowd going nuts for it, it was well deserved too. ****

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Aye, they pretty much played the hits here, and it resulted in their best G1 meeting probably since the original one from 2013. Very nice urgency right from the start, and it never really lets up. Some VERY brief legwork by Tana, which doesn't get sold, but I can forgive that since Tana wasn't very focused on the attack, thankfully. Very good bombfest fun. With it being in the US, it had a nice different vibe to it too. ***1/2

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Hiroshi Tanahashi and Kazuchika Okada know their formula and they do it with great effect. This was a brilliant condensed fast paced version of their past battles taking you on an experience only these two can. There was no wasted time with both trying to secure the victory, building on their piror G1 draws that gave this match more urgency to it. Perfect way to end the first night of G1 and add another one to the book of greatest wrestling rivalry in the modern era.

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