AUGUST 21, 2020

Watch: New Japan World

The finals of the New Japan Cup USA is here. Three matches are set for this episode of Strong, including the aforementioned tournament final and the Strong debut of Jay White. So without further ado, let’s get into it.

Rocky Romero & Adrian Quest Def. The DKC & Danny Limelight

Limelight and The DKC make their Strong debut after impressing on the Lions Break Collision series. I thought both guys were impressive on Collision in an enhancement role, but wanted to see more out of them. In line with the previous Strong openers, this was really good. Limelight and  The DKC were still essentially enhancement, yet they were able to show more than they previously did. Quest looked the best here, and out of all the new guys brought in for these New Japan of America shows, he looks slated to be one of the harder pushed guys, which is A-OK with me. ***1/2

Brody King & Flip Gordon Def. Jay White & Chase Owens

This was really a nothing match, but the point of it wasn’t necessarily what took place between the bells. The work was competent and Flip looked good; however, the purpose of this match was to get Jay White on the card and for HIKULEO to make his Strong debut to beat up Flip and Brody. Firstly, if I was a betting man I’d say Jay White being on the show is a slick way to either make people think he is or isn’t showing up at the Jingu Stadium show next week. Secondly, I like the idea of HIKULEO being the monster for the U.S. chapter of the Bullet Club. So despite this match being a gentlemen’s three, it achieved what it needed. ***


I have a feeling I’m going to be the low man on this. Now don’t get me wrong, this was good, but I just thought it lacked something. Maybe my expectations were too high, or maybe it’s because I thought the outcome was a foregone conclusion. Three weeks in a row I’ve said that Finlay is having decent matches but below his level. I’ve theorized that it’s the lack of crowd that’s really hurting him and I think I can confirm that’s the issue I’m having with these matches. KENTA wins the trophy and the U.S. Title challenger briefcase. Jeff Cobb comes out mid-victory promo to run KENTA off, essentially making the first challenge for the briefcase. Good but disappointing match. ***1/4


I’m getting a little tired of saying this was an easy hour of wrestling to watch because it always is. This brings the end to the New Japan Cup USA episodes of Strong. Starting next week are the ‘Road to Fighting Spirit Unleashed’ shows. It’ll be interesting to see how these shows will be structured without a tournament to build around. See you next week to find out.