New Japan held their latest press conference today, this one featuring the contract signing for the upcoming Hiroshi Tanahahsi-Shinsuke Nakamura IWGP Heavyweight Title match. It was streamed live earlier on YouTube so it hasn’t really been edited much if any and only low-quality video is available right now. The video is below, it runs about 20 minutes but skip to about 4:15 for the actual start of the presser.
New Japan announced some updates for the September events today:
Jushin Liger will work all events through 9/11, including ALL TOGETHER, before leaving for his next CMLL excursion. He will miss all post-9/11 September events and it is not known when he will return to Japan.
As expected, Shinsuke Nakamura will get his IWGP Heavyweight Title shot at Hiroshi Tanahashi in the next chapter of “The Rivalry” on 9/19 at Kobe World Hall. Also confirmed for the event is IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion Kota Ibushi vs. KUSHIDA for the title. 4 singles matches are also confirmed for the event: Makabe vs. Lance Archer, Wataru Inoue vs. Minoru Suzuki, Tetsuya Naito vs. Yujiro Takahashi and Yuji Nagata vs. Hideo Saito.
The full card for NEVER 7 on 9/21 was announced today as well, unlike past NEVER events this one will only feature New Japan talent. The full card:
Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Takaaki Watanabe
Yujiro Takahashi vs. Kyosuke Mikami
Hideo Saito vs. King Fale
Toru Yano vs. Hiromu Takahashi
Hirooki Goto vs. Tama Tonga
Tetsuya Naito vs. KUSHIDA
The event will be at Osaka World Hall.
New Japan returned to Tsubame today for an event that was originally planned for earlier this year but had to be postponed due to the 3/11 earthquake & tsunami, the original makeup date was next Monday but it was then moved up to today. Results from Tsubame Citizen Gym:
They claimed 1400 paid (a Full House).
Hiromu Takahashi & Tiger Mask 4 beat Takaaki Watanabe & Jushin Liger in 12 minutes. Takahashi pinned Watanabe.
Wataru Inoue beat King Fale in 7:07.
Yuji Nagata & Hiroyoshi Tenzan beat Hideo Saito & Takashi Iizuka in 12:46 by DQ (Saito DQ’d).
Tomohiro Ishii & Yujiro Takahashi beat Tomoaki Honma & Tetsuya Naito in 13:22. Takahashi pinned Honma.
Ryusuke Taguchi & Makabe beat Taichi & TAKA Michinoku in 10:35. Makabe pinned Taichi after a King Kong kneedrop.
KUSHIDA, Hirooki Goto & Hiroshi Tanahashi beat Gedo, Toru Yano & Shinsuke Nakamura in 17:58. KUSHIDA pinned Gedo after Midnight Express.
Next tour begins on 9/3, next up is ALL TOGETHER this Saturday then the Yuji Nagata Produced event on 8/30.
Although I already posted a day’s worth of videos earlier, here’s a bonus that just showed up in my YT subscriptions list-the latest installment of the NEW JAPAN GREATEST MOMENTS series. This match is from September 17, 2002 and offers a preview of sorts of the main event of ALL TOGETHER as the combatants here will face off on opposite sides again-this is Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. KENSO, who of course back then competed as his real name, Kenzo Suzuki. The full match is below, it goes about 17 minutes:
A couple of changes to the ALL TOGETHER card were announced today:
Injury Report: The previously hinted at Satoshi Kojima injury suffered during the New Japan event this past Sunday has been confirmed. Right eye orbital bottom bone fracture. Out indefinitely and unfortunately he will miss the event. New Japan star Wataru Inoue will take his place in the 7th match, an 8-man tag match. New Japan announced he is also off the Yuji Nagata Produced event on 8/30. It’s not known exactly how long he’ll be out.
Kentaro Shiga (Independent/Freelancer) and BLACK BUSHI have been added to the special Destroyer Cup Battle Royal, which will feature The Destroyer as a special observer.
Also announced will be a minute of silence 10 minutes before the event’s scheduled start time-3:50 PM JST-which I believe is roughly the time the massive earthquake hit on 3/11. This was announced by the promotions in this joint statement:
August 27th (the Saturday) it is done, ‘the ALL TOGETHER’ Japanese martial arts mansion conference (start 16 of the tournament o’clock) is, but you died day 15:50, at inside the Japanese martial arts mansion place of the meeting place, with east Japanese large earthquake disaster you prayed the happiness in the other world of many everyone, you became the carrying which the silent 祷 1 minutes is lowered.
The day, everyone of the fan which is crossing over in the meeting place extent of participation, no soldier/finishing asks to the silent 祷 may.
New Japanese professional wrestling corporation
All the Japanese professional wrestling corporations
Corporation [puroresuringu] Noah
As is usually the case after a major event or tournament, New Japan President Naoki Sugabayashi held a presser today at the New Japan offices, some items of note coming out of it:
G1 CLIMAX Champion Shinsuke Nakamura also was in attendance for the traditional post-tournament/title match champion’s interview.
The next major event, which will be the next tour’s final event, will be a Kantaro Hoshino Mourning event. Sugabayashi announced the 2 hinted-at-yesterday matches for the event: IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion Kota Ibushi vs. KUSHIDA for the title and the next chapter in The Rivalry-once again it’s IWGP Heavyweight Champion Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Shinsuke Nakamura for the title. The event will be on 9/19 at Kobe World Hall.
Injury Report: Satoshi Kojima was hospialized following yesterday’s loss to Hiroyoshi Tenzan. Possible right eye injury, maybe an orbital bottom bone fracture. Scheduled for further examination today, so hopefully more details are forthcoming soon.
Jushin Liger is once again headed to Mexico for another CMLL excursion. He will leave after the 9/11 Korakuen event, length of excursion is undecided. They “apologize to everyone of the fan which has been enjoyed the tournament of the liger player deeply.”
Also confirmed was Koji Kanemoto participation in the upcoming All-Japan Jr. Heavyweight League. As a result, Kanemoto will miss all of the next New Japan tour with the exception of 9/19.
New Japan has now posted video of the Nakamura interview (it streamed live earlier) to it’s YT channel, the video is below (it runs about 14 minutes):
New Japn wrapped up this year’s G1 CLIMAX tournament today, results from Ryogoku:
They claimed 11,500 paid (a Full House).
Hideo Saito beat Yuji Nagata in 4:29.
Giant Bernard beat Toru Yano in 7:29.
Lance Archer beat Yoshihiro Takayama in 7:19.
Yujiro Takahashi beat Makabe in 8:37.
Tetsuya Naito beat Makabe in 5:11. As a result, Naito wins Block A and advances to the finals.
Strong Man beat Hirooki Goto in 7:27.
Karl Anderson beat MVP in 8:30.
Hiroyoshi Tenzan beat Saotshi Kojima in 14:10.
Shinsuke Nakamura beat Minoru Suzuki in 12:13. As a result, Nakamura wins Block B and advances to the finals.
IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Champions Prince Devitt & Ryusuke Taguchi beat Kota Ibushi & Kenny Omega (DDT) in 15:01 to retain the titles. Devitt pinned Omega after Bloody Sunday V2. V6 for the champs.
G1 CLIMAX Finals: Shinsuke Nakamura beat Tetsuya Naito in 20:19 to win the tournament. Believe it or not, this is the first time Nakamura has won the tournament-it was perhaps the only major singles accomplishment missing in his career to date. If tradition holds true, this means at some point soon we should get another epic chapter in “The Rivalry”. But that probably is at least 2 months away due to Tanahashi’s upcoming CMLL excursion. I would tentatively circle 10/10 as a possible title match date (DESTRUCTION ’11). And give Naito some due credit, he made quite the comeback to get all the way to the finals.
Next event is a standalone “New Japan Live” event on 8/22 in Tsubame, followed by ALL TOGETHER on 8/27 and the Yuji Nagata Produced event on 8/30. Next tour is G1 CLIMAX SPECIAL 2011 starting on 9/3.
UPDATE: After the Jr. Tag Title match, Taichi made a challenge to the titles. KUSHIDA also appeared to make a challenge for the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Title held by Ibushi. More on both as it becomes available.