New Japan Pro Wrestling
Best of the Super Juniors XXII – Finals
June 7, 2015
Tokyo, Japan – Yoyogi National Stadium Gymnasium #2

Jushin Thunder Liger and Sho Tanaka vs. Yohei Komatsu and Ryusuke Taguchi

Just where Taguchi belongs, in the opener. Er, um, sorry! Where did that come from? Anyway, the bulk of this match was Taguchi on offense. It boiled down to him and Sho Tanaka. Tanaka made a brief, fiery comeback but Taguchi cut him off and hit the dodon for the pinfall. It was a match. **½

Tiger Mask vs. Chase Owens

Owens, the savior of this tournament (for eliminating Taguchi on the second to the last night) and the NWA, jumped Tiger Mask before the bell even rang and started on the mask ripping. They proceeded to have a solid match. Owens teased the package piledriver but Tiger Mask comes back with the tiger driver and and armbar, which he eventually transitions into a modified chickenwing for the submission. **½

Owens laid out Tiger Mask after the mask, but he quickly got back up to his feet and Owens bailed.

Barbaro Cavernario vs. Mascara Dorada

Cavernario gave the club to the ref and he proceeded to sell the weight of said club. That was awesome. They started off hot with some great lucha offense. Dorada went to the apron but Cavernario grabbed his leg and fell face first onto the apron.

He followed that up with his big dive to the floor that got the crowd going. Dorada followed this with a huge hurricanra that took Cavernario off the apron and to the floor. Amazing spot. He followed that up with a huge tope con hilo. Cavernario grabbed him in a waistlock sleeper then followed with a suplex for a near fall.

The finish was a mess, sadly. Cavernario got caught on the ropes and Dorada went for his finish, but slipped on the ropes. Dorada had to instead armdrag him to the floor then awkwardly follow that up with Dorada screwdriver finish for the win. The finish was a flat one, but otherwise this was an excellent display of moves and athleticism. ***½

Bobby Fish vs. Beretta

Back and forth action to start. Fish took him through the ropes and DDT’d him on the way down on the apron. That’s a new one! Fish went to do something off the top rope but Beretta caught him. Fish slid under, however, and dropped him down to the tree of woe position, then when he got up suplexed him onto the ring post, hurting his leg. Fish locks in the leglock but Beretta gets to the ropes. The legwork and selling here is great. Beretta gingerly made his way to the top rope but Fish grabbed him with a falcon arrow off the top rope then locked in the armbar. Amazingly, Beretta transitioned that to a bridge position for a nearfall. Fish locked in the leglock once again and that caused Beretta to tap. Great match with fantastic selling by Beretta. Both guys were awesome on this tour. ***¾

Rocky Romero vs. Nick Jackson

These two had a pretty fun back and forth match. One thing I noticed is that for once, someone actually managed to dropkick Romero to the floor when he clutched the top and middle rope for once. The fun spots started when Nick hit the senton on the back of a crouched Romero. Jackson teased a tombstone on the floor but Romero escape. Nick flew off the rope but Romero dodged, grabbed him and hit the sliced bread #2. Romero catches him with a rollup out of nowhere for the pinfall. This was a pretty fun match. Nick might have had some stinging words about my star ratings but both he and Romero had a great tour. ***½

G1 Climax Announcements

Yes, they’re in fact happening right now. I wasn’t expecting this until next month honestly, but here we go: Kazuchika Okada, AJ Styles, Hirooki Goto, Togi Makabe, Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Yuji Nagata, Satoshi Kojima, Tetsuya Naito, Katsuyori Shibata, Shinsuke Nakamura, Toru Yano, Tomohiro Ishii, Yujiro Takahashi, Karl Anderson, Doc Gallows, Bad Luck Fale, Michael Elgin, Kota Ibushi and Tomoaki Honma are all in.

I won’t lie, I wasn’t blown away by this list. I saw all of these guys last year have tremendous matches. Maybe once we get blocks settled this’ll be more interesting, but I’m tepid about this year’s entries. Elgin being in is a good choice though, so good for him. I just keep thinking Dave Meltzer’s theory about New Japan becoming stale is starting to become true. Even a NOAH or CMLL guy would have been a nice touch here, but what can you do. Regardless, the potential matchups will probably be great.

TenKoji and Tomoaki Honma vs. Yuji Nagata, Manabu Nakanishi and David Finlay

The usual six man tag you’d expect in New Japan. Nagata and Kojima went at it at one point and turned out to be awesome. Finlay came in and got some shine but Kojima laid him out with a diamond cutter. Honma came in and worked on him, but soon that turned into TenKoji giving everyone a 3D. Finlay went to finish Honma, but he came back with a torpedo kokeshi then the top rope kokeshi for the win. Pretty good little match, about what you’d expect from usual New Japan multi man matches. ***

Cody Hall and Yujiro Takahashi vs. Kazuchika Okada and Gedo

Yujiro came out with a lovely lady wearing next to nothing, so you KNOW the camera men were all over this young lady like nobody’s business. Not Maria levels of perverseness, but enough to get the job done. Liger, who was doing commentary, of course was beside himself. Despite this match sounding bad on paper, it was fine and kept short. Lots of back and forth action. Okada nailed Hall with a dropkick, elbow, and finished him off with the rainmaker for the win. **½

New Japan Ten Man Tag I’ve Seen a Million Bajillion Times
Shinsuke Nakamura, Tomohiro Ishii, Toru Yano, YOSHI-HASHI & Kazushi Sakuraba vs. Captain New Japan, Hirooki Goto, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Katsuyori Shibata & Togi Makabe 

Unlike the Korakuen hall show from Friday, they removed Honma and added in Captain New Japan. Boy that feels like a breath of fresh air! I’ll type in my summary before they even do anything: everyone’s rival paired off with one another, there was a spot where everyone brawled on the outside with some barricade spots, then Captain New Japan got pinned after a fun back and forth flurry with someone. Sure enough, it went down EXACTLY like that, with CNJ getting the boma ye from Nakamura and being pinned by Ishii after a brainbuster flipping off Makabe as he gets the pin. Fun match, but it’s been done. Move on. Let’s all just move on. ***

Best of the Super Junior Finals
Kushida vs. Kyle O’Reilly

Kushida got a cool Back to the Future like video with him driving a Delorean and going, well, back to the future like in the movie. Lots of mat wrestling early. O’Reilly worked him down with hit flurry then worked on his arm. O’Reilly had him in a waistlock sleeper but Kushida transitioned to the hoverboard lock, only for O’Reilly to grab the ropes quickly. Kushida went for something on the top rope but O’Reilly slammed down on the arm from the top rope, landing hard on the uninjured arm and tried for a submission but Kushida escaped. O’Reilly goes to the outside and Kushida follows with a huge senton dive off the top rope to the floor. Kushida went for a moonsault but O’Reilly grabbed him and sunk in an armbar but Kushida put his feet under the ropes. That was a GREAT spot. O’Reilly crotches Kushida and hits a giant back suplex from the top rope for a nearfall. Kushida fired back with a flurry of punches but O’Reilly drops him with a Regal plex for another nearfall. O’Reilly hits the brainbuster then armbar but Kushida grabbed the ropes. This is such a great match.

O’Reilly went for his waistlock sleeper on the apron but Kushida reversed it into a suplex. After a huge back and forth punching match Kushida laid out O’Reilly with a Sliced Bread #2 and a sky twister press for a nearfall, then locks in the hoverboard lock one more time. O’Reilly fights it off, but Kushida rolls back to the center and eventually had to tap out.

Just an amazing match you have to go out of your way to see. I wish the crowd were more awake in spots but otherwise…I mean, damn. They went all out, and you can’t do much better than that. ****¾

Kushida gets his trophy, his giant check of five million yen, then cuts a promo. He’ll be facing Kenny Omega at Dominion for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship. We get the big streamer celebration and all as the show ends.

Final Thoughts: A pretty good card highlighted by a fantastic main event. The addition of reDragon, as it shows here tonight, is one of the best additions to the junior heavyweight roster in some time. If there’s anything you need to go watch today, it has to be the main event. Just phenomenal.

Voices of Wrestling Best of the Super Juniors Pick’Em Final Standings
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Edgar Morales5872342332334616
Kelly Harrass5862343422434516
Max Bachhuber5853443223434516
Brian Brennan5762332432434516
Darren Lyne5751422433424716
A. S.5652342342434614
Lawson Leong5682423223333516
Paco Silva Martínez5661342422334616
Rob Reid5653333323333814
Christopher Griger5572241232334616
Claudio Escudero5552334233414516
Derek Drago5564323322323616
Francis Lane5552443212334616
Mitch Cowan5562333433423514
Dan Mullooly5472232324233714
Lee West5472434132324514
Alex Giardini5351234224434514
Allen Vick Jr5361144123324616
Gabriel Perez5342333222334616
Jared Welch5352314223334714
Joseph Remy537344333243458
Kenny Ortiz5363332132414516
Kevin Hare5352333421334416
Mark Berlowitz5353333332333316
Michael Zavala5341332423433714
Oliver Court5362233341424514
Sean Sedor5341333333423516
Tommy Livingstone5352333033423616
Andrew Bates5252341233214616
Jody Plante5251343312334416
Matt Trebby5232333423424514
Morten Hansen5252424312324614
Richard St.Hilaire5242433321333516
Theo Wilson5262333222304616
Brady Livingston5152333122323418
Danny Kuchler5152322332313814
Kent Sinkler5150332423324614
Mitch Parcells5143114334232516
Christopher Duarte506324323242478
David Mora5061324322424413
Karl Clancey5062343322324313
Niall H5062332332323414
Rich Kraetsch506133233443468
Anthony Albicocco4950333231134516
Jake Daniel496233343243268
Jake R.496234333232468
Matt Magnum4961232232324514
Matt McEwen4941332323414514
Mike Spears495244333333358
Abrasive Obelisk487134331323468
Adrian Gaskin4852333212133416
Alan Counihan4852314313313514
Andrew Rich4853334303324411
Azri Aqil4861233312124416
Bastian Sauer486234333233448
Ewen MacDonald485334331243368
Jason Sitek4861332322223514
Kyle Conzett4850343332234610
Nick Mogel4862322322323414
Richard Jaeger4842212433333414
Antonio Edwards474233332333378
Gonçalo Monteiro475234243223368
Marcus Origer4742223414232414
Matt Rolder475234332333448
Paul Cooke4753332213223414
Paul Völsch4753332322334410
Adam Gaetan4650322222333514
Case Lowe465133233342458
Dylan Harris466332332332358
Frederick Cholowski466233333321458
joel zewski466133232233468
Brian Kline453134142433278
Bryan Rose455233243413438
Chris Dalgleish455133242331378
Daniel Mackinnon456123323313378
Darrell Chess4531342343333310
Kevin Wilson453224124233478
Miles Messmer4532412323424510
Santiago Tomasi4541333202434511
Brandon Gordon4432233311433610
Greg Johnson446314232143438
Rob McCaron446233242123448
Víctor Pérez4450333123212514
Anthony Perillo436232143222358
Andy Doran424222322243448
Cal Hodges425223333222348
Mike McDonald425323124331348
T.J. Hawke426123233122278
the mosayat4241442431032410
William Young422133332332368
Aidan Daly413134233243148
Edward Mills415233232220458
Filip Pejic415232322332338
John Cunningham414333132214438
KENTA kicks heads415024332241258
Lee Thomas413122422333268
Phil Williams414222222242368
Trent Williams415132333212358
David Naismith405442322232245
Joe Gagne404134322132447
Brendan Creecy395043232301268
dominic sweeney386233231242343
Keith Campbell385123313222248
Alexander Panos3731331421021511
Berry Meijer374023222241258
Caitlin Lipinski376212242130176
Joseph Roche374213243033273
Lawrence OBrien374234122320248
William Housell Jr.374232331402463
Dakota Schmidt365233222431360
David Woodley365322111233148
Garrett Kidney3651223130231310
Alan Maggle353223223222453
Allan Blackstock355232322331450
David Neil Rapp345134323212350
Gabe Throne345223431333230
Amal Ahmadzai335212243313250
Mike Langford306022422230160
Matt Zierer294132133130143
Kyle Blevins273222203041143
Chris Harrington264113201142430
Sean Flynn264012111211228
Robert O.232332132120130