Honestly, one of the best ways to catch up with WTL is not to watch the matches but burn through the backstage promo playlists on the English youtube channel. I've gotten so much out of those things, but none of it includes getting my enthusiasm killed by middle-of-the-road tags. (If you have time, interest and energy to watch the matches, by all means, do it, cool. I'm watching very selectively and watching the promos more carefully.)
- I think Sami Callihan can cut effective promos and is by no means bad, but watch through his promos with Juice, and you see how they're worlds apart. Sami seems to be trying always to do something off-beat and "interesting", maybe a bit goofy or unpredictable, because that can be the hook for a lot of promos in the West. Juice cuts a very by-the-book promo, like the NJPW babyfaces typically do, but it just works, every time. He does bring his own personality into it, but it's serious, it's determined, it's about what just happened and what is going to happen next. His promos have no 'hook', no 'gimmick' but they just work. Simple, effective.
- Tanahashi is in such an odd place because he's cutting promos on a guy who isn't there, but he still does good. He's also mentioned Ibushi in his promos, saying their story is not over yet. It's ...interesting.
- Naito throwing shade on WTL, calling it the worst ever makes me laugh. EVIL took offence to it, and Hiromu is excited by the small tiff within their faction. (Every Hiromu promo so far has been incredible.)
- Okada is coming off like a jerk, which is pretty much perfect. He always brings up "being in a hurry" (because 'asennayo' means 'don't be in a hurry'). Naito has been pretty damn great in countering him, though. The new submission Okada used? Naito's reply, "Isn't it the challenger who usually brings in new moves to defeat the champion?". He also said Okada debuting a new submission gives him time to figure out ways to counter it. I'm hyped for this main event.
- Best Friends have had the perfect balance of being themselves and comedic but not too comedic to not be credible.
- The next time somebody asks you why NJPW has so many tag matches, just show them the Tenzan promo where he praises young guys for fighting hard and says, with a smile, that he didn't himself even break a sweat.