New Japan Pro Wrestling
G1 Climax 29 – Night 17
Nippon Budokan
Tokyo, Japan

Watch: NJPW World

Non-G1 Results

  • Jon Moxley & Shota Umino defeat Juice Robinson & Ren Narita
  • Jeff Cobb & Toa Henare defeat Tomoaki Honma & Toru Yano
  • Suzuki-gun (Minoru Suzuki, Taichi & Yoshinobu Kanemaru) defeat CHAOS (Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI)
  • Los Ingobernables de Japon (BUSHI, Shingo Takagi & Tetsuya Naito) defeat BULLET CLUB (Chase Owens, Jay White & Yujiro Takahashi)

G1 Climax 29 A Block
Lance Archer (6) def. EVIL (8)

Archer is dominating the match early. Turnbuckle pads get taken off and Yano isn’t even in the match. There is a brief EVIL comeback before Archer just flattens him. Archers Derailer always looks awesome. Archer going for a cover quickly after a chokeslam is a nice call back to his match with ZSJ. I’m still not sure how I feel about the EBD claw but they are putting it over huge as he gets the win over EVIL and then destroys some young lions with it.

There is an awesome shot of Archer on the turnbuckle after the match where he looks gigantic.

Both men had great tournaments. Archer might be in for a title shot at some point this year and he would make a great addition to the NEVER division..Looks like Evil will have to wait for his big push a bit longer. But it will come of that I’m certain. A really fun match and a good way to kick off G1 action.

G1 Climax 29 A Block
Bad Luck Fale (8) def. SANADA (8)

Yet another bad Fale match. SANADA just getting dominated by Fales boring offense. You have to SANADA credit though for having developed a strong crowd connection as he managed to get them invested in this match. 

The finish is bad and these Fale roll-ups suck. I’m not sure where this is supposed to go as he’s been getting most of his wins with roll-ups like that. I guess the story is that he isn’t good enough to beat anyone with his finisher anymore?

What’s the point in Fale beating SANADA though? Both men were already out anyway so you could have just given SANADA another win. It’s not like Fale is getting a push coming out of this tournament. He really should just focus on his training school.

SANDA had an okay tournament but I don’t think he was one of the standouts of the tournament. Fale is dogshit and nothing else matters. Skip this match.

G1 Climax 29 A Block
Zack Sabre Jr. (8) def. KENTA (8)

The match is solid but a bit unspectacular at the start. It picks up significantly when ZSJ starts working over KENTAs arm. Afterwards, the match is getting really fiery and we get some nice strike exchanges between the two. All the while KENTA is just using his left arm as Zack Sabre just keeps on dismantling his right arm. The finish is an absolutely beautiful reversal of the GTS into the submission for the tap out victory.

KENTA has been a controversial figure in this tournament but I believe that he has accommodated himself quite nicely and he has established himself as yet another top guy in the promotion. While he obviously isn’t the same wrestler he used to be he has found a style that works for him. He brings a different level of physicality to his matches that we haven’t seen in New Japan since Shibata retired. A very good match and a fitting way for both men to go out.

G1 Climax 29 A Block
Will Ospreay (8) def. Hiroshi Tanahashi (8)

Will Ospreay is crazy over in Japan now. He always was a favorite of the Japanese crowds but he has elevated himself to another level in this tournament. Here he gets dueling chants with Hiroshi Fucking Tanahashi of all people and they last throughout the entire match.

Ospreay is taking Tanahashi to the brink. And beyond as Ospreay manages to put away the 1 in 100 Ace of the Universe. I literally jumped up from my seat when he hit the Stormbreaker. The finishing sequence with Ospreay hitting the hook kick as Tanashi was ready to go for the sling blade was a thing of beauty. This is a huge win for Ospreay and is arguably more important than his BoSJ win earlier this year. Ospreay is a star and future IWGP Heavyweight champion. This is the match of the night and one of the best matches of the entire tournament.

G1 Climax 29 A Block
Kota Ibushi (14) def. Kazuchika Okada (14)

An absolutely amazing match. I came into this one with sky-high expectations and I was not disappointed. The tension in the air was palpable right from the start. They are keeping things equal throughout the match. Okada is the ace of the promotion and he carries himself as such in all of his matches now. He feels like a proper end boss that you have to overcome to achieve your goal. Ibushi meanwhile felt up to the challenge at every point and refused to back down. These men will face each other again for the IWGP Heavyweight belt at some point down the road. 

They timed their spots in this match perfectly with Okada hitting a rainmaker out of desperation while Ibushi was on offense and then the beautiful sequence where Okada hits the dropkick from just off-screen after Ibushi does the Nakamura pose. 

The Kamigoye is a great finisher as it always feels decisive when he hits it after staring down his opponent beforehand. They know what’s coming but they are powerless to stop him from knocking them out. Both men had tremendous G1s and Ibushi now gets the chance to add this resume when he faces off against Tetsuya Naito, for the fourth time this year, in the final of the tournament.

Final Thoughts

Tremendous effort from New Japan on this show. A proper final for the A Block with four great matches. The only match not worth watching is Bad Luck Fale vs SANADA. The top two matches are two of the best matches of the entire tournament. Go out of your way to watch this show.