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23.4.17 0710
The W - Pro Wrestling - Wrestle Kingdom 11 Results
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SKLOKAZOID
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Since: 20.3.02
From: California

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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.70
Anyone catch this? I set my alarm for 3AM (Pacific) just in time for Tanahashi/Naito and swore I was going to pass back out, but both main events were so good I had trouble falling asleep.

- Michael Elgin won the New Japan Rumble
- Tiger Mask W defeated Tiger the Dark
- Roppongi Vice defeated The Young Bucks for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship
- Gauntlet Match for NEVER Six-Man Tag Team Championship: EVIL, BUSHI and SANADA defeated Ricochet/Satoshi Kojima, David Finlay and Bad Luck Fale/Yujiro Takahashi/Hangman Page
- Cody defeated Juice Robinson
- Adam Cole defeated Kyle O’Reilly to win the Ring of Honor World Championship
- Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii defeated Guerillas of Destiny and Great Bash Heel to win the IWGP Tag Team Championship
- Hiromu Takahashi defeated KUSHIDA to win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship
- Hirooki Goto defeated Katsuyori Shibata to win the NEVER Openweight Championship
- Tetsuya Naito defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi to retain the IWGP Intercontinental Championship
- Kazuchika Okada defeated Kenny Omega to retain the IWGP Heavyweight Championship
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CRZ
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Since: 9.12.01
From: ミネアポリス

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.19
I heard something about Meltzer losing his mind and, in turn, all of Wrestling Twitter losing their mind.

I think I don't miss being a part of that game.



Mr Shh
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Since: 9.1.02
From: Monmouth County, NJ

Since last post: 31 days
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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.10
The lighting structure at the top of the entrance ramp was NAITO'S EYE, and I didn't even realize it until Naito came out.

I turned my phone off at 8:30AM Eastern and watched all 5+ hours.

So cool that wrestlers got to bring all of their non-IWGP belts with them, even if they are from NJPW-partner promotions.

Worst match was Cody/Juice, which isn't to say it was bad at all. WrestleMania ended up being Cody' best flagship 2016-17 supercard match.

Not even a token Ricochet/Ospreay spot is shitty, but the Gauntlet match was lots of fun.

Tag title three-way was too chaotic. Any idea if legal men were involved in the finish?

Last four matches were just amazing, each better than the previous (in my humble opinion).

The heat for Tanahashi-Naito was off the charts. That whole deal was incredible.

I lost my breath by the end of Okada/Omega. Of course Cloud was going to slay Safer Sephiroth. Omega was at 11 the whole time. Don't know how he did it. And I don't know how Okada's neck isn't broken. Thought we were getting a 30 minute match, but after 10 minutes, I realized that this was going a lot longer. Wasn't the greatest match I ever saw, but it's not far off. As soon as it was over, I jokingly said to myself "Ha, six stars."

Ha, six stars.

(edited by Mr Shh on 5.1.17 1421)


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used2bcool
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Since: 5.11.08
From: Framingham, MA

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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.13
I watched the main event (it's on Youtube). I'm not familiar with Kenny Omega's work all that much, so this was quite an eye opener. I think I preferred the AJ/Nakamura from last year, though. This one started out much slower and took a while to catch fire, but once it did it was something else.

I need to watch this with Japanese commentary. The English commentators were actively insipid.



In a coat of gold or a coat of red, a lion still has claws


And mine are long and sharp, my lord, as long and sharp as yours!
dMp
Knackwurst








Since: 4.1.02
From: The Hague, Netherlands (Europe)

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#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.75
I've watching NJPW on occassion over the past 2 years, trying to catch the big shows and I've become a huge fan of Naito. The guy is just special.
That match with Tanahashi was great. Going back & forth with knee kicks. Just awesome.

What's probably best about these shows is that it's freaking long but it's all wrestling. No fluff just fights.
That does make it harder to sit through but if you know it becomes easier to pace your excitement a bit.

Takahashi-Kushida was great too. I think I am now a LIJ fanboy.
KJames199
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Since: 10.12.01
From: #yqr

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#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.69
Omega/Okada is on AXS this Friday with Jim Ross and Josh Barnett announcing. The rest of the show will be shown in one-hour increments on the coming weeks.



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Dr Unlikely
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Since: 2.1.02

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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.61
    Originally posted by KJames199
    Omega/Okada is on AXS this Friday with Jim Ross and Josh Barnett announcing. The rest of the show will be shown in one-hour increments on the coming weeks.

Wow, so are they just skipping over the rest of 2016? I've been following along via AXS, and where the show currently was (I think about May?), Okada just lost the IWGP Heavyweight Title to/is feuding with Naito, while Omega has just finished feuding with/beating Tanahashi for the Intercontinental. Which has made the mental jump of Omega and Naito essentially switching places/belts/feuds in all the Wrestle Kingdom 11 hype kind of a whiplash.
KJames199
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Since: 10.12.01
From: #yqr

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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.69
    Originally posted by Dr Unlikely
    Wow, so are they just skipping over the rest of 2016?
I think they're rushing WK11 to TV and then will go back to their previous place in the order, but I could be wrong.



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thecubsfan
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Since: 10.12.01
From: Aurora, IL

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#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.43
They want to jump on the buzz of this show, but they're planning to air 4 Wrestle Kingdom shows and then go back to the old order. The long term plan is to reduce the delay.



thecubsfan.com - luchablog
Tenken347
Knackwurst








Since: 27.2.03
From: Parts Unknown

Since last post: 3 days
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#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.36
    Originally posted by thecubsfan
    They want to jump on the buzz of this show, but they're planning to air 4 Wrestle Kingdom shows and then go back to the old order. The long term plan is to reduce the delay.


Neat. Although I hope nothing spoils how the story with Shibata and Yuji Nagata goes.
texasranger9
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Since: 9.1.11

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#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.57
Just saw the 6* match. Did they cut some of it? I didn't see it live and it didn't feel as long as they said it went. That was the longest match in the Tokyo Dome of all time? I thought Japan had longer matches. Is that AJPW or NOAH?
Tenken347
Knackwurst








Since: 27.2.03
From: Parts Unknown

Since last post: 3 days
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#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.36
    Originally posted by texasranger9
    That was the longest match in the Tokyo Dome of all time?


Based on what I saw last night, that can't possibly be true (although I heard Ross say it, too). It was pretty close to a full hour, though. I liked it alright, but probably way less than a lot of people, though. For a certain kind of spot-intensive match, it was very good, and exactly the sort of thing I would have been way into when I was younger, and I thought that Okada did a much better job of selling the intensity of his feud with Omega than I usually think he does. Omega's a guy that's really hit or miss with me, but I liked him here. He's fast for his size, and the triple jump moonsault to the outside was probably the highlight for me.
thecubsfan
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Since: 10.12.01
From: Aurora, IL

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#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.43
I haven't seen the AXS version myself, but people who've seen both say it's the complete version.

    Originally posted by texasranger9
    I thought Japan had longer matches. Is that AJPW or NOAH?


There's been long matches, especially one hour draws, but just not in the Tokyo Dome. The Dome shows are hoping to draw casual fans, and the draws tend to be in (relatively) smaller places like Sumo Hall where it's going to mostly diehard fans who have more of patience for that sort of length.



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KJames199
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Since: 10.12.01
From: #yqr

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#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.69
I watched the AXS version last night. Really enjoyed it though the six-star hype set expectations sky-high, which never helps. My wife (who hates wrestling) actually got into it and said it was much better than anything she's seen from WWE.

Meltzer said that nothing was cut out despite the ad breaks, and it looked like the match picked up after ads right from where it left off. If anything was cut out, I couldn't tell.



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StaggerLee
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Since: 3.10.02
From: Right side of the tracks

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#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.63
I still have no idea who either of the guys in th3 main 3vent are, but that's a match that could close most Wrestlemania cards and fans would not complain.

Great match. Lots of psychology. Lots of "Holy Shit!" Spots.
Th3 3nding was a little bi5 of a letdown, but maybe in Japan a clothesline is a legit finisher move.
Quezzy
Knackwurst








Since: 6.1.02
From: Pittsburgh, PA

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#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.93
    Originally posted by StaggerLee
    I still have no idea who either of the guys in th3 main 3vent are, but that's a match that could close most Wrestlemania cards and fans would not complain.

    Great match. Lots of psychology. Lots of "Holy Shit!" Spots.
    Th3 3nding was a little bi5 of a letdown, but maybe in Japan a clothesline is a legit finisher move.


I've seen this complaint a lot, that a closthesline was a lame way to finish such a great match. But Okada is the champion and has been beating people with that move for years. Without that context it doesn't seem as special as it is if you've been watching him for years. If somebody saw The Rock wrestle for the first time they wouldn't think his finisher is great either, but fans who have seen it beat people for years recognize it as a big move.



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THAT IS AWESOME!
Dr Unlikely
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Since: 2.1.02

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#17 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.61
    Originally posted by KJames199
    I watched the AXS version last night. Really enjoyed it though the six-star hype set expectations sky-high, which never helps. My wife (who hates wrestling) actually got into it and said it was much better than anything she's seen from WWE.

    Meltzer said that nothing was cut out despite the ad breaks, and it looked like the match picked up after ads right from where it left off. If anything was cut out, I couldn't tell.


Yeah, watched it via the AXS presentation and the only place where I thought their might have been any editing was in the transition between their entrances and getting in the ring, and even then, it may have just been a weird camera cut.

I'm on board with calling this a great match, and while I don't have the depth of '90s NJPW/All Japan knowledge for true context, I'd be fine with dropping five stars on it. The six star thing creates an impossible expectation, naturally, but having that in my head didn't make me think less of the match. I'd still say there are a few New Japan matches in the 3-4 year time period that I've been following that I thought were better, and comparably, I could name some US matches from the WrestleMania era to now that I thought were better, but this is on par with those.

And I also respect what I think Meltzer is getting at in dropping six stars on it, that this match represents a moment in the best possible light of New Japan dropping the mic at WWE and daring them to pick it up by sending out their New Top Guy vs. the most talented non-Japanese worker available and saying "not only can we put on a killer match, we can also book to it and promote it correctly." This was their SHOW ME WHAT YOU GOT moment and in that sense, it delivered.

(Comparatively, I think, mechanically, Bret vs. Austin I is the "better" match, but Bret/Austin II at WrestleMania 13 is the big one, since it encompasses the first match and set the table for the new boom period. So, if you asked me to rate them, I'd go five stars or whatever Top Of The Heap rating you wanted to use, but I also understand feeling the need to denote, for historical purposes, that Austin passing out in a pool of blood and Bret turning with him is the big, real deal, nothing will ever be the same moment.)

So, for the match itself...I've been following since not long after Okada returned, and thus I fully buy The Rainmaker as a killer finisher, though I absolutely see how, to someone coming from a different perspective, a Tombstone/Jumping Spinning Death Penalty Tombstone as a set-up to the Rainmaker feels odd. I thought the match was great, and to hear the crowd react to it like they did absolutely made it feel like it worked "in the room" too. The spot where Omega went through the table verged just a little into "too dangerous" for me (because of how the table was constructed). Omega's twisting moonsault out of the corner was unbelievably smooth and jaw-dropping. Okada's dropkick remains the single most technically beautiful thing in all of wrestling, and Omega answering with one of his own towards the end was great. I liked the One Winged Angle being set-up as the Move That Will End This Match if Omega hits it, and then not firing that shot yet, since you didn't need it and Omega wasn't winning (basically, you can book the rematch on "Omega needed to do just one thing, and if and when he does it, he will win" and STILL have Okada kick out if Omega is leaving).

I guess if I thought it was missing anything, it would be just a little touch of showmanship at the end. This will sound strange, but it needed just a tiny bit of Rock/Hogan to sell the final flurry. I bought that Okada dropkicking Omega off the turnbuckle to the outside essentially reset the match (filling Omega's damage bar, as it were), but, to put it in New Japan terms, I wanted that FIGHTING SPIRT moment, the hulk-up Hogan did at WM18 where you get that sense that the both men have shot through all limitations and are now working on a new level for them. It could have been Omega (and I'm sure Omega has a Hulk Up in him) and still losing, since Hogan lost after his "final" Hulk Up. It could have been Okada (they hit the Rainmaker Camera move earlier), but one of them just needed to do that little flourish right at the buzzer to get this to All Time Greatest for me.

It's a nitpick, though. I really like Omega, but have some difficulty knowing how to take him because - at least as I see it - he's been playing really broad as a character to cross the language barrier (he's been acting for the stage, not for TV, as it were), but after the Terminator entrance, I really did find him fully believable as a World Champion in this match. And Okada just cemented that there's no real weakness to anything he does and deserves his spot as the guy who takes on the world for them.
StaggerLee
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Since: 3.10.02
From: Right side of the tracks

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#18 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.63
    Originally posted by Quezzy
      Originally posted by StaggerLee
      I still have no idea who either of the guys in th3 main 3vent are, but that's a match that could close most Wrestlemania cards and fans would not complain.

      Great match. Lots of psychology. Lots of "Holy Shit!" Spots.
      Th3 3nding was a little bi5 of a letdown, but maybe in Japan a clothesline is a legit finisher move.


    I've seen this complaint a lot, that a closthesline was a lame way to finish such a great match. But Okada is the champion and has been beating people with that move for years. Without that context it doesn't seem as special as it is if you've been watching him for years. If somebody saw The Rock wrestle for the first time they wouldn't think his finisher is great either, but fans who have seen it beat people for years recognize it as a big move.


Well I got that with the way JR was selling it. I've just never been that big on a clothesline as a finisher. But that's my only, admittedly small, complaint about this match.

(edited by StaggerLee on 18.1.17 0037)
SKLOKAZOID
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Since: 20.3.02
From: California

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#19 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.70
Some clotheslines, like San Hansen's lariat, are treated as really devastating in Japanese kayfabe.

Of course, then there's also really legitimately devastating moves like Kenny Omega's One Winged Angel or the Tiger Driver '91 that look like they would mess someone up.

But, hey, how people react to finishers is entirely subjective. I know it took me years to adjust to Shawn Michaels' superkick as a devastating finisher. I don't think I truly bought it until late '96.
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As horrible as the match was, Booker and Stevie deserve medals for doing anything in front of this crowd. I'm willing to bet around 40% of the people in that crowd have been to a cross burning at some time in their lives. 40% might be low.
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