Best of the Super Juniors Report: Dragon Lee vs. SHO

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The third night of the Best of the Super Juniors tournament took place Wednesday from Aomori with tournament matches from the A Block.

The first A Block match featured Jonathan Gresham defeating Taka Michinoku in 9:28 to earn his first two points. Michinoku constantly broke the rules and poked Gresham in the eyes. Gresham applied a variety of submissions through his control of the wrist, ending with the Octopus to submit him.

Tiger Mask defeated Yoshinobu Kanemaru in 11:14 to increase his total to four points. Kanemaru worked on Tiger Mask’s knee by wrapping it around the post in the beginning. Tiger Mask hit a tombstone and Tiger Driver for a two-count. Later, he kicked out of Deep Impact as Kanemaru went back to the knee. After missing a top rope moonsault, Kanemaru was hit with a flying knee and then had his figure four countered by an inside cradle and Tiger Mask won. Tiger Mask has had two good matches in the tournament, so far. They aren’t show-stealers but above what I’ve anticipated.

In the next match, Shingo Takagi defeated Titan in 10:26. This was the best match on the show so far with Takagi winning with a Pumping Bomber followed by the Last of the Dragon. Titan looked excellent in this match and Takagi is one of the major standouts in the tournament after three days. Takagi rolled out of Titanics and hit the Noshigami. Titan also hit a dive that sent them into the crowd. This was a strong match.

After defeating Dragon Lee in his first match of the tournament, Taiji Ishimori defeated Marty Scurll in 22:21 to gain another two points. The match was long, and you felt the length in the middle. There was a scary spot where Ishimori reversed a tombstone and nearly lost control of Scurll, as they crashed into the ropes and Scurll fell out of his control. Scurll had the chicken wing applied twice near the end, Ishimori was out and finished Scurll with the Bloody Cross. It was a good match but had its issues as well and could have been tightened up timing wise.

In the main event, Dragon Lee defeated SHO in 27:10 to earn his first two points. This was an excellent match, offset by a subdued crowd that didn’t react close to the first night of the A Block where SHO felt like a superstar to the audience. SHO came in with his left shoulder taped and both worked on the other’s arm. With both clutching their arms and trading strikes on the floor, they were nearly counted as Kevin Kelly and Caprice Coleman screamed for them to “get in the ring” and they made it. Lee hit an insane tope suicida to the floor and they went several rows into the crowd after Lee launched himself out of the ring. Lee kicked out of everything SHO had including a Shock Arrow, a Last Ride onto the knees, and a back suplex onto the knees. Lee hit two shining wizards and following multiple attempts, hit the Desnucadora to win the match. Solid main event.

Here are the B Block matches for Thursday’s card in Aomori:
*Ren Narita vs. Robbie Eagles
*Bandido vs. YOH
*El Phantasmo vs. Bushi
*Will Ospreay vs. Rocky Romero
*Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Douki