Mascara Dorada & Jay White vs. Yujiro Takahashi & Cody Hall

The bulk of the match saw White and Hall exchanging back and forths. I feel like we say it all the time but White and Hall are both showing tremendous potential. Hall is especially showing potential as he’s improving rapidly. When you look at the progress of Sho Tanaka, Yohei Komatsu, David Finlay along with White and Hall, you see why veterans in the business are sending their kids here to take the next step in their training.

Anyway, the finish saw Yujiro one-on-one with Jay White, Yujiro was the aggressor but White had a hope spot here and there. It was short lived however as Takahashi (now sporting compression tape on his shoulder) hit the Miami Shine to pick up the win. **½

KUSHIDA & Captain New Japan vs. Karl Anderson & Tama Tonga

Rough night for the Captain as he was the target of the two Bullet Club members throughout. The early portions of the match saw Anderson try to unmask him. KUSHIDA got the hot tag midway through the match but quickly tagged out to let Cap get at them. It didn’t work well, Tonga took KUSHIDA to the outside and distracted Captain New Japan allowing Anderson to get into position for the Stun Gun and the victory. **

Hirooki Goto & Yohei Komatsu vs. Michael Elgin & David Finlay

#BigMike was #Big throughout this entire match, he’s really harnessed that part of his wrestling style while in Japan and it’s for the better. One cool spot saw #BigMike lifting Komatsu up for a delayed vertical suplex, Goto ran in a few times to break it up and eventually #BigMike said fuck it and lifted both guys on his shoulders for a double fallaway slam. #BIGMIKE, BABY!

Poor Komatsu was absolutely destroyed in the closing stretch of this match taking a belly-to-back to the corner, followed by a rolling senton from #BigMike. Komatsu tried like hell to come back but his attempted hurricanrana was sniffed out by Elgin who turned it into a buckle bomb and mercifully ended Komatsu’s night with an Elgin Bomb for the win. This was a lot of fun if you enjoy a big beefy gaijin destroying a New Japan young boy and seriously, why wouldn’t you? #BigMike for Life, never leave! ***

Satoshi Kojima & Yuji Nagata & Tomoaki Honma & Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Shinsuke Nakamura & Kazuchika Okada & Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI

The best way to describe this 8-man is fun. From beginning to the end, everyone delivered and all seemed to be having the time of their life. The beginning of the match featured a huge tease of a major Nagata/Okada confrontation but Nagata tagged in Taguchi and proceeded to join him in his weird little pose. Hey I won’t be mean to Taguchi today, he was a lot of fun in this match and was a focal point through most of it, teaming with Honma for a double Kokeshi. Nakamura eventually finished Taguchi off with a Boma Ye.

This was a really fun match and perhaps the best G1 multi-man tag yet, don’t skip this. ***3/4

G1 Climax 25

Tetsuya Naito vs. Doc Gallows

This was what it was, Naito played his character well but the crowd was more interested in booing Gallows so Naito was the pseudo-babyface here and it hurt some of the dynamic. The best part of the match came before the bell as Naito was slowly taking off his suit. Gallows yelled such things as “Take that shit off!” “TAKE OFF YOUR PANTS” and my personal favorite, “HE LOOKS LIKE A DICK!” You may have won me over, Doc. You may have finally done it.

Oh then the match started and I quickly lost any and all respect I had for Doc. Short-lived, I know. Gallows was slow, methodical and boring throughout. Naito did a few of his trademark LOS INGOBERNABLES dickhead heel spots but the crowd cheered them. There weren’t many other highlights to speak of. In a mild upset, Gallows pinned Naito with a top-rope Gallows Pole. **1/2

Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Katsuyori Shibata

Many Western fans, especially those relatively new to New Japan Pro Wrestling may not understand but Tenzan is a big deal. He was one of the pillars of the company during their darkest times and he’s emerged as a New Japan legend. So when he gets a win like he did here against Shibata, it’s a big deal to the fans in the arena and in Japan. We (Western fans) may look at it and wonder what the hell they are doing feeding someone with so much potential in Shibata to an old fart like Tenzan but it’s simply not that. Think of this win as a lifetime achievement award.

The match itself wasn’t anything special, there was some back and forth throughout but Tenzan was clearly the featured guy here and he won in somewhat easy fashion with the Anaconda Vise in the middle of the ring. This is the 2nd straight upset as 77% of our G1 Climax pick’em participants thought Shibata would come away with the win (Naito was an 80% favorite in the match prior). **¾

Post-match, Tenzan took a bow and though the sound was muted, you could tell the crowd was going nuts. These last few nights have looked and felt like a G1 sendoff for Tenzan. We’ll find out next year about his participation but I’d guess we’ve seen his last G1 Climax tournament (he currently holds the record for most appearances with an astounding 19).

Kota Ibushi vs. Toru Yano

When Yano entered the ring he noticed Puroresu legend Kenta Kobashi at the commentary table. Naturally, Yano acted like a dickhead to him which resulted in a death stare from the 48-year-old. I’d pay to watch Kobashi chop the shit out of Yano for 15 minutes.

Now onto the match… this was a weird one. Yano immediately tried to tackle the corner pad off but Ibushi sniffed it out and hit Yano with a dropkick to the back. Then Ibushi, ever the babyface, decided to try and take the pad off himself. Hmm. He ran Yano into the pad rolled him up in a schoolboy and got a nearfall.

Not a fan of people trying to out-Yano him, Yano snapped into action with a series of ref distractions and low-blows. Finally, Yano got a solid nut shot in, rolled Ibushi up and upset Ibushi. Wow. I’m not going to rate this one as little to nothing happened but wow. NR

I know some people are going to be really upset as this is Kota Ibushi losing in pretty terrible fashion but you have to remember this is Yano. Sometimes Yano picks up ridiculous wins in ridiculous fashion. I don’t think Kota Ibushi is any worse off for it. The one issue I will take, however, is that this loss didn’t mean anything in the grand scheme of things. Kota Ibushi was eliminated from G1 Finals contention the day prior so this was pretty meaningless. I would’ve preferred this loss be the one that knocks Ibushi out of contention. That could then set up a brief feud between the two (that’s funny, a brief feud with Yano…I crack myself up) or even a one-off match down the road. You can still do that but it has far less impact, there’s not much to fight for in this scenario but pride. Oh well.

A.J. Styles vs. Bad Luck Fale

This was a fascinating match and different from anything else we’ve seen this G1 Climax season. Styles and Fale met in the middle of the ring to start, exchanging pleasantries then Fale laid down to give AJ Styles the easy win and an easier path to the G1 Climax Finals.

The crowd booed like crazy as Styles went for the pinfall… ah no so fast… Fale kicked out at two. This surprised all of the Bullet Club included Styles who said “What are you doing? We talked about this!” Cooler heads prevailed as Styles and Fale hugged… no so fast again as Fale tossed Styles to the outside. Now it was on. The two brawled throughout the audience. It wasn’t a very good match from that standpoint but the crowd was going nuts throughout. Once they finally got back into the ring, Fale looked to be in control (no, seriously) hitting the Grenade and teasing a Bad Luck Fall. Styles attempted to reverse the Bad Luck Fall into a hurricanrana but Fale held on and teased a Styles Clash to a massive ovation. Fale got back on track, attempting another Bad Luck Fall but Styles rolled out, brought Fale to the mat and pinned him with his legs on the ropes.

This wasn’t your traditional G1 Climax match in any sense but it was important and certainly interesting. The crowd was way into it the whole way through and it told a great story. I’m having a tough time rating it as so much of the match was on the outside but I enjoyed it nonetheless. **¾

Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Togi Makabe

There’s nothing I love more in New Japan than heel Tanahashi. We got it this main event and it was, as always, really great.

The crowd rooted for Makabe from the outset and this was a big mistake as Tanahashi took it to Makabe in the early portion. Tanahashi focused his punishment on Makabe’s legs, cutting him down, stomping on the knee and just being a general dick. I always wonder if Tanahashi anticipates the crowd reaction ahead of time and plans to work heel or if he does it on the fly. Either way, it’s impressive how well he can flip between the two.

The bulk of the match saw the two work some back and forth highlighted by Tanahashi continuing to work Makabe’s knee. The closing stretch began when Tanahashi missed a High Fly Flow, Makabe seized the opportunity and hit a powerbomb following by an attempted King Kong Knee Drop. Tanahashi wisely grabbed the injured leg of Makabe, hit him with a massive Dragon Screw and a Slingblade. Tanahashi went to the top setting up a High Fly Flow but Makabe stood up and like King Kong pounded his chest and screamed at Tanahashi. Tanahashi went with the plan and hit a High Fly Flow grounding Makabe, he then sprung into action jumping to the top and hitting another High Fly Flow for the win.

The beginning and end were fantastic while everything else in-between was just okay. I enjoyed the story told throughout as well as the limb work from heel-ish Tanahashi but there’s been much better main events throughout the tournament. ***¾

With this win, Styles and Tanahashi are tied with 12 points, solely atop the A Block leaderboards, setting up a massive main event for the 8/17 show. The winner will move onto the G1 Climax Finals. This isn’t a total shock as the early booking of the shows indicated they were probably going this way. Also our G1 Climax Pick’Em participants sniffed it out with 227 of our 372 participants selecting either Styles or Tanahashi to win the A Block.

Final Thoughts: An uneven but entertaining show. The pre-G1 Climax tags were a lot of fun including what may have been the best multi-man tag this G1 season. The G1 matches themselves were a mixed bag as there weren’t great matches per se, but important and entertaining nonetheless.

G1 Climax 25 Official Standings

Block ABlock B
AJ Styles12Kazuchika Okada12
Hiroshi Tanahashi12Shinsuke Nakamura10
Tetsuya Naito10Karl Anderson10
Bad Luck Fale10Hirooki Goto10
Katsuyori Shibata8Tomohiro Ishii8
Togi Makabe8Michael Elgin8
Kota Ibushi6Yujiro Takahashi4
Toru Yano6Satoshi Kojima4
Doc Gallows4Yuji Nagata4
Hiroyoshi Tenzan4Tomoaki Honma0

Voices of Wrestling G1 Climax Pick’Em Standings

(Remember to support our sponsor and use our exclusive coupon code VOICE)

NameTotalBonusNight 1Night 2Night 3Night 4Night 5Night 6Night 7Night 8Night 9Night 10Night 11Night 12Night 13Night 14Night 15Night 16Night 17Night 18
August Baker7712454454242522444442
Dylan Waco7715435243244444532522
Josh Walther7715335533343424452324
Allen Vick Jr7615444404344514441443
Bastian Sauer7615544433224534442431
Bonski McBonski765435333435555553424
Rob Rodriguez7615434522443535340235
David Dunn7515334432435424323443
Graeme Touchdown7510444442244444353424
Joshua Robinson7515243354344534311542
Ed Burns7413334343145525542431
Alex K.7310444523334435432424
Dan Atwood7310454444144434532512
Ewen MacDonald7313345223324444351524
Siva Punisamy7313344444324444342322
Aaron Bentley7215443323223433442335
Ben Pitchford7210534334134534442433
Chris Maffei725434352344535452434
J. Michael7215334412135455232334
Jake Barry7215344322244425432414
James Starkey7210245443234445432432
Kenny Ortiz726544354234534444422
Marcus Origer7210235441243524445424
Matt Audet7210445434335422443422
Matt Love725434353354543443334
Morten Hansen7213343324234253434433
Skylar Hinnant7211443334253544342431
Barry Meijer7115544441134514432412
Evan Speciner7110444524145333442414
Len Liu7115324233253435424322
Matt Wheal7113345433134534432322
Oliver Court7110543243342434443333
Olivier Tremblay7115345433214422353431
Scott Barker7115533343124434432422
Adam Watkinson7013443333244534133422
Cameron Krusemark708443432244544343414
Capu Random7010334323234534344244
Christopher Duarte708335242343544143444
Doug Nunnally708444432325544433422
Kevin George705544442444444252405
Paco Silva Martínez705445554434424232433
Rob Reid705353433354535451423
Robert Palmer7010445423224544253322
Seth Chodosh7010434523132444454431
Taylor Mitchell706434432244534552424
Alejandro Giménez Gómez695345344243444433424
Andrew Chupurdy6910445432224534433313
Bryn Edwards Gunn6913533322343445332421
D Chong6910434332134433542434
Jody Plante6913235312124545433513
John Carroll6910343443422524352414
Mark Shaw695534443325433443433
Matt Trebby695454344244434342424
Paul Volsch698353334322524543244
Richard Jaeger697445353214445242424
Rob McCarron6910543312235544351432
Samuel DiMascio697425524344333442514
Santiago Tomasi6910544523133333442433
Tony Albicocco698544434223544351422
Brian Jackson686344344244344341353
Chad Campbell688433343143545442323
Chris Smith687245252324544333433
Goncalo Monteiro6810143412344545432333
James Baldwin685344424423454442532
John Mulligan688455334244444141332
Joseph Remy685445334334434243433
Keenan Carnegie6810524524414124343523
Mario Morrison688545442234525331332
Nnaemeka Odunze687345353244535322323
Paul Leazar6810444522254335332421
Rich Kraetsch6810433432334424342424
Robert Dougherty688435133334335343433
Ryan Smith685234543235554342423
Ryan Wilson6813134434323354223324
Sean Sedor6810334424224445243323
Tomek Cherek6810434433124424442532
Alexander Panos675444423244435342415
Benson Sam673245542343444443414
Brady Livingston675544343334534242333
Chris Bacon676333344353425432424
Jake Daniel675445353334515452312
Joe Gagne675435314344343443424
Kelly Harrass677344432245534352412
Michael Quealy678544443134534432321
Mike Spears678444333134434432523
Ru Gunn675444424134535352414
TJ Hawke6710545523533213222442
Tye Liddell675533433333534342425
Wyatt Eddy675445424444533332422
Ajay Sameer668534322134534432532
Aled M665443432324435442334
Andy Clark668343432134534541540
Azri Firman665324254243535354223
Brandon Howard6610443423234534431313
Brian Ubben665544453144544313412
Daniel Mason665434453215354333243
Dave Taylor665345323144535154423
Dylan Harris668445222343544331423
Ed Mills6610343332244433423432
Edgar Morales665144343344544433431
G Brett Williams663435443155534432431
Gregory Davis668455233234453232233
Heather Christianson665443343245434432423
Izzac Mackenroth667444333234324244325
Jason Bullock665444353224445252431
Jeff Tillery665435543234425542204
Martijn Winkel6610344323115443244333
Matt Kennedy665445314434334443323
Matt Rolder665443333334335343424
Niall Hallinan667442443225444144323
Paul Cooke665445333324544341423
Sean Flynn667244423333542451442
Sean N663445354133433553422
Antonio Garza657443433143435433313
Benjamin Good6510344113254444332422
Brian Brennan6510543222234424142434
Chris Burnett655444443134233423534
Christopher Griger658434243124324532434
Darren Lyne657545434124434322413
Dominick Gonzalez655544323234535323522
Erin Hotovy655434432324423432544
Filip Pejic655443332344533443305
Frederick Cholowski655544432243534352502
Jake Glowacki655534542125344332325
Jeremy Sexton657344424044434342423
Joe Estrada6510342432144534432412
Kevin Hare655343433234544443502
Lucas McFadden658455223523443233322
MacLean Craig657245333334524333413
Mitch Cowan658544423144434322413
Monty Rimorin655344334345313242444
Riley Hansen655535352233434432522
scott glover6510544453134335232112
Sean Spencer655444324145525351512
Travis McNeill655443413244344352424
Adam Joyce645345433234435332422
Brandon Gordon645335311234554343343
David Mora645434333234444433422
Dee H645153234344444332424
dillon burgess647433333134535432413
Eddy Collazo6410333314225244143424
Greg P645444342244434241523
Jason Lee6413335323233432443031
Kevin Lyon645344332424544452402
Luuk van Egeraat645344354324453214521
Mark Edward Dowling645324343414234443524
Martin Foster647143543343423442332
Michael Zavala646443312423545343323
Michelle Burkey6415333424114422322225
Parker Holland645344433034335544403
Robert Pannell645244343334534442421
Sherman Lee645233423243435433344
Tanner Teat645444333234333333434
Victor Zoest645444332234534442224
Warren Taylor648533432125524243422
Alessandro Tucci635544433224443350323
Andrew Carpenter6310441422242444342412
Andrew Perkins636244332242533332444
Ayaash M637445242233533232522
Ben Gordon635243433245524443411
Bill Knust633434433333434443422
Darren Lynch638342424334324231353
David Penton635433233425543441323
Ferdinand Meyer635534154224434252233
Gabriel Perez637345433424534321411
Guilherme Jaeger635444323422234442425
James Hagan635234233243434344334
Jamie Mohan635343343314333442533
Jeff Chase635434234244435432322
João Vitor Silveira Passos633444444333333441513
lawrence obrien633042442255435445322
Lou Pickney635344323234433453512
Mark Aasal635343332133355343343
Mark Berlowitz635434543135233442413
Matt Brown635444333233535422413
Matt McEwen635444532233534431413
Matthew Bray633343334344525432314
Phil Williams633433432254434423442
Samuel Cooke637343343344424222522
William Housell Jr.637334442253434241341
William Young635344524245424232323
Zach Smith633544344134344244214
Aaron Lomas6211432313243435342311
Benoit Brunette623544442423343332225
Brady Vincent623234443324534534402
Chris Adams625254224344523333422
Dave Christian625544532334442241412
David Neild623334343244534242522
Edward Miguez625334432144535322423
Garrett Kidney628433233253324332432
Hugh Little625244433324434342413
Jacob K Randlett623235423243534452314
Jamie ODoherty623535543234424053412
Jason Woito625444444342422341314
Jesse Carey625444442342234442412
Jordan Greenhalgh625444342234534342312
Kevin Gombau625444342234534342312
Kevin S627444323034434533321
Lee Thomas625334434243432343242
Mark Smith625433542233424442413
Michael Levy625325544223324242343
Peter Weinstein625433432335424442412
Rob Barry627435453123323242423
Ryan Tulleth625345443134334233332
Thomas Green625243233254424352432
Andrew Bates615444332423435232323
Andy Doran615235512234444442412
Antonio Edwards613343333134544232524
Charles Humphreys615244333224544232423
Evan Grady-Troia613544323135534352312
joe mills613543432135534433213
Lucas Zamarín615353333223535242224
manny kang615234443244525223313
Mary Robinson615224452224345233522
Matthew Nielson610533444334435442411
Mike Fuller613334422134333453533
Phil OConnor616233423443433433331
Sean Garmer615344322134444433413
Thomas Jayroe615435422143224424433
Alfred Arriola605545333343423332212
Brian Stafford605234432234243441415
Bryan Rose605334443232434433222
Chris Boothroyd607244322122434442415
Christian Renoe6010423223234434322421
Collin Miller603434332344534352311
David Woodley603245333234425442322
Derek Drago605434433223244422432
Francis Lane605342432334444432303
Jason Ryan603444324233424342423
Jesse B603344333254434332313
Joel Zewski607443322135434422412
Jonathan Parsons605332422334434432432
Jordan Benterman605224424134434253413
Keith Campbell605443232234434234413
Keith Harris605245322234435340333
Kenneth Butler603244423244523442422
Kevin Held605445422234424231432
Matthew Brown605243323134434443224
Michael McDonald605233342224332552424
Mike Bate605433323333445232422
Rodrigo Garcia605233532324334252423
The Mosayat605444323234433332413
Will True605544432124435252221
Abrasive Obelisk593435423044423341424
Alan Counihan593433343125344253313
Brandon Simms593534232423434434411
Dan Mullooly595544412123424353403
Dan Tiller597254142251522233324
Darrell Chess595434434213234242423
Drew Wardlaw595343413224334333522
Kelly Corcoran593244344334434332402
Kent Sinkler595445413444312243132
Markus Herter595354442333414232232
Martin Bentley593434432134424332433
Rancho King592335422244435243412
Richard Benson597535441223421232432
Rogers Hudson595243323124533442414
Tenese Sarwieh595444442222325432412
Tim Evans590444333234434441441
Travis Kriens595443312234534441412
Aaron Richards585242443333543152122
Angela Stephens585445432233434232401
Brendan Creecy585434232234444322403
Brennan Bajdek585334322324424342422
cal hodges587233323213435241433
Chris Steffensen585334323234435332402
Joseph Roche580444413342433253432
Karl Grant585334422224434352402
Neil McNerlan585244434143423323421
Peter Gardner580534342434323242433
Alexander Kaiser575235413134345332312
Dakota Schmidt573435513243334331223
Danny Kuchler573345442134434321313
David Neil Rapp575134422024433443423
Jon Burr575441304224522352333
Joseph Atwood575444331334242441411
Alex Giardini565345303123444223512
Andrew Moll567234332223524231512
Andrew Rich563133524124525342412
Bill Thompson563244543222313332424
Brian Sanders565344324222523333420
George T565234414204453342312
Greg Johnson563444112445433333122
Jack Beckmann565433453023324242313
Jake Polustine563324123234434333423
Jamie Sessions560544342214332352423
Jeremy Weimer565544424122444123302
Julian Perez565243323132335352421
Michael A. DeSota565533332135413152313
Mitch Parcells560343352243445332411
Mitch Thomas568434322134322333312
The Jonathon Hunt Experience560335222334434252441
Ben Crooty555433313224215432413
Johnny Marlow550423424224412345225
mark pierson II555422302234433432324
Mike A. Roonie555243233124232522523
Richard Fann555445402123443232124
Sarah kenneally553332432234233234423
Sebastian Zamf555245314224441332321
Stefan Kuschnig555334314233134341224
T.C. Carroll550443443233234352411
Aidan Daly543445443223233332220
John Boyle543343233204332252532
Matt Pecolatto545434321304333331522
Peter Richards543334343033444430321
Allan Blackstock533242423224432342214
Jared Welch532244444123414432221
Lucha Max533344423024343132413
Tim Kelly530334413124525332422
Tommy Livingstone533043423134434233412
Wayne Maw535342424032233342241
Alex Silva520433222243235442520
Case Lowe523433221223533253501
Christian Laputka520434424221434333321
George Andrew525334322131433522213
Niel Jacoby524244343103434132322
Jack Smith510345344114325132411
Kuba Fineczko515235432113234233302
Andrew J. DeYoe502133525125223412331
No One Nation504234441124222113523
Trent Williams505243502014333441321
Adrian Gaskin493343322124433331113
David R. Curington490334322133324252313
Kristin Barry462323321043422333141
Kyle Henke445422321214241022232