Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/06/09/njpw-dominion-2018-report-kazuchika-okada-vs-kenny-omega-tetsuya-naito-vs-chris-jericho/
Welcome to POST Wrestling’s coverage of New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Dominion event from Osaka-jo Hall.
WH Park and I will be reviewing the entire show later today for members of the POST Wrestling Café.
EL DESPERADO & YOSHINOBU KANEMARU VS ROPPONGI 3K FOR THE IWGP JUNIOR HEAVYWEIGHT TAG TITLES
3K landed simultaneous tope con giros to the champions on the floor before the bell rang.
Kevin Kelly stated that Dragon Lee has challenged El Desperado to a Mask vs. Mask match following their Best of the Super Juniors match last weekend.
Kanemaru missed and sprayed the whiskey into Desperado’s eyes. Sho hit a powerbomb onto the double knees and Desperado kicked out.
Sho followed with the Shock Arrow but it was countered, he ran Sho into the referee and Kanemaru hit Sho with the bottle of whiskey and was cradled by Desperado to win the match and retain the titles.
WINNERS: EL DESPERADO (pinned Sho) & YOSHINOBU KANEMARU AT 9:29 TO RETAIN THE IWGP JUNIOR HEAVYWEIGHT TAG TITLES
This was nothing approaching the level that Desperado, Sho, and Yoh set during the Best of the Super Juniors tournament. It was a short opening match with a heel finish. Rocky Romero called the champions, “punk ass bitches” after the match.
JAY WHITE & YOSHI-HASHI VS JUICE ROBINSON & DAVID FINLAY
Kelly noted that there is a lot of talk that Yoshi-Hashi “could be on the bubble” when it comes to this year’s G1 roster.
White and Yoshi-Hashi worked over Finlay’s neck after a Saito suplex from White.
Robinson received the tag and hit a cannonball to White seated in the corner while Yoshi-Hashi was in the tree of woe.
Finlay returned and hit a stunner to Yoshi-Hashi and was immediately caught with a Blade Runner. Robinson grabbed White and hit the Pulp Friction and pinned the U.S. champion.
WINNERS: JUICE ROBINSON (pinned Jay White) & DAVID FINLAY AT 7:27
This would theoretically set up Robinson challenging Jay White for the U.S. title, which would make sense for the Cow Palace card next month.
Robinson grabbed the U.S. title after the match and posed to the crowd with it.
MINORU SUZUKI & ZACK SABRE JR. VS TOMOHIRO ISHII & TORU YANO
The double-team submission offense from Suzuki-gun featured Suzuki applying a rear-naked choke to Ishii and handing him off to Sabre for a heel hook. Ishii broke free and nailed Suzuki off the apron.
Suzuki and Ishii were tagged in together, they trade forearms, Suzuki quickly went for the Gotch piledriver and Ishii stopped it with a back body-drop.
Suzuki blasted him with a forearm and Ishii was shaking. They continued to trade and Ishii sold as though he lost his equilibrium.
Yano was in with Sabre, he attempted a low blow behind the referee’s back and the arm was caught by Sabre’s thighs and torqued. Sabre submitted Yano while Suzuki placed Ishii in a submission at the same time.
WINNERS: ZACK SABRE JR. (submitted Toru Yano) & MINORU SUZUKI AT 8:44
Ishii attacked Suzuki on the ramp after the match and brought him back ringside. They each grabbed chairs and went at it inside the ring, Suzuki won the chair battle and hit Ishii on the back and they brawled to the floor. They had a big exchange of slaps and ended with Suzuki chasing after Ishii to the back.
HIROOKI GOTO VS TAICHI VS MICHAEL ELGIN FOR THE NEVER OPENWEIGHT TITLE
Elgin has lost a lot of weight and looks to be in tremendous condition. He has also switched from his usual singlet to standard trunks. Don Callis explained the color scheme was inspired by Doug Furnas and Phil LaFon.
Taichi placed Miho Abe onto the apron to distract Goto and Elgin, instead, they just started wrestling each other and ignored her.
The first major spot of the match saw Elgin with a tope con giro to both on the floor.
There was a Tower of Doom spot with Elgin going underneath Goto and powerbombing him while Taichi took the superplex portion.
Elgin hit an Ocean Cyclone Suplex and Goto kicked out. It looked so good that it should have been saved for a finish.
Goto landed a headbutt, Ushigoroshi and reverse GTR for a two-count.
Taichi used Abe to distract the referee and attacked both with the microphone stand. He superkicked Goto for a believable near fall. He used the Gedo clutch, but was lifted by Elgin and hit a buckle bomb and then hit the second one into Goto in the corner before pinning him to win the title.
WINNER: MICHAEL ELGIN AT 13:45 TO WIN THE NEVER OPENWEIGHT TITLE
Elgin really stood out from the three in the match and if you eliminated Taichi it would have been a stronger match. The tease after the match was that Elgin and Goto will have a match for the title since Elgin did not pin the champion to win it.
EVIL & SANADA VS THE YOUNG BUCKS FOR THE IWGP TAG TITLES
Matt starts selling his lower back early in the match.
Nick got the big hot tag and executed a tremendous sequence on the champions. He went for a kick from the apron, missed EVIL and kicked the ring post with his right foot, which they attacked. Nick stopped a Magic Killer attempt with a head scissors inside the ring.
Matt was tagged in, he stopped the Skull End and set up Sanada for a tombstone, but EVIL pulled Nick off the apron to the floor. Sanada went for the Skull End onto Matt but was stopped by a missile dropkick from Nick that further injured his foot.
Matt got EVIL up for the tombstone, Nick went for the Meltzer Driver and lost his balance on the springboard attempt.
Nick made the save after LIJ hit the Magic Killer to Matt. EVIL was left in the ring with Matt, who countered the STO with a backslide for a two-count. Sanada dropkicked Nick’s bad leg and sent him off the apron to the floor.
Nick returned and helped Matt with a double superkick to EVIL and catching Sanada with one coming off the top. EVIL was sent to the floor and the Bucks hit More Bang for Your Buck and pinned Sanada.
WINNERS: THE YOUNG BUCKS AT 15:04 TO WIN THE IWGP TAG TITLES
This was such a great match. Instead of Matt’s selling throughout, it was Nick selling the foot with so much of his offense built around it. This opens a lot of possibilities and sets up a battle of tag champions with The Briscoe Brothers at Best in the World on June 29th.
The Bucks invited Don Callis to call ‘All In’ on September 1st.
REY MYSTERIO, HIROSHI TANAHASHI & JUSHIN THUNDER LIGER VS CODY, MARTY SCURLL & HANGMAN PAGE
Page wanted to start the match with Tanahashi.
The Bullet Club got the advantage on Liger after Scurll stomped the knees from the surf board setup.
Mysterio was tagged in with Scurll, he set up for the 619 but Page tagged Scurll and went for the slingshot clothesline and was caught.
Mysterio set up Scurll and Page on the middle rope to deliver a double 619.
Liger hit a top rope ‘rana to Cody, Cody recovered and hit the Cross Rhodes to pin Liger.
WINNERS: CODY (pinned Jushin Thunder Liger), MARTY SCURLL & HANGMAN PAGE AT 11:34
Mysterio landed a seated senton onto Cody and they cleared the ring to tend to Liger.
The match was cool to see the pairing of the babyfaces, it was more of a tease for future singles matches. The interaction between Mysterio and Scurll was very good.
WILL OSPREAY VS HIROMU TAKAHASHI FOR THE IWGP JUNIOR HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE
They went to the ramp immediately, Ospreay sprinted down and hit a somersault off the ramp and landed on his feet after hitting Takahashi.
Takahashi took over in the ring, he landed a missile dropkick off the apron to the floor. The tape on Ospreay’s neck had already come off.
Takahashi was knocked off the apron and Ospreay hit the Space Flying Tiger Drop. Ospreay attempted the OsCutter and was caught in mid-air with a German suplex.
There was an incredible sequence with Ospreay being German suplexed and fully rotated, Ospreay came back with a pair of reverse ‘ranas, went for the Storm Breaker and Takahashi countered with a Code Red, this was tremendous.
Ospreay hit the Burning Star (a shooting star press to Takahashi, who was draped on the top) and followed with a corkscrew shooting star from the top and got a two-count.
Takahashi leaped off the turnbuckle and landed another Code Red and applied “The D” (his triangle submission). Ospreay lifted him and dumped Takahashi right onto his head to break free.
Ospreay went for another OsCutter and was shoved to the floor, Takahashi hit a sunset bomb and followed with the Dynamite Plunger for a two-count. Takahashi countered the Storm Breaker with The D, he was lifted up and hit the butterfly piledriver onto Ospreay and ran him into the turnbuckle off his shoulders. He followed with the Time Bomb and pinned Ospreay.
WINNER: HIROMU TAKAHASHI AT 20:19 TO WIN THE IWGP JUNIOR HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE
There was a lot of scary stuff, but it was also a tremendous match.
TETSUYA NAITO VS CHRIS JERICHO FOR THE INTERCONTINENTAL TITLE
Jericho came out with a lot of makeup on.
Jericho jumped Naito as he was making his entrance and suplexed Naito on the concrete floor. He set up a wooden table against the barricade and powerbombed Naito through it.
Jericho pulled him on top of a table and hit a DDT and the table failed to break. Jericho was in his element establishing chaos from the second he attacked Naito. They finally entered the ring and the match officially began. Naito is cut around his right eye.
Jericho is destroying Naito and constantly getting into the face of Red Shoes and yelling at him. It wasn’t until five minutes after the bell rang that Naito fought back. Naito choked him with his pants and used the broken pieces of the table as weapons.
Naito took him back to the table and hit a piledriver to Jericho on it. The audience is chanting for Naito and the loudest they have been for any of the matches so far.
Jericho blocks a top rope ‘rana and jumps down, nearly spiking Naito’s head as he applies the Walls of Jericho. Naito got out of the hold and hit a huracanrana and tornado DDT attacking the neck of Jericho.
Jericho re-applied the Walls of Jericho, Naito fought to the bottom rope for the break. Naito went for the Destino and they had a hiccup in the execution and just worked around it.
Naito hit a Destino but Jericho was at the rope to break the count. Naito is also cut on the cheek.
Naito attempted a flying forearm off the ropes and was caught with a code breaker.
Naito attempted the Destino, it was stopped as Jericho moved Red Shoes, hit a low blow and the code breaker and pinned Naito.
WINNER: CHRIS JERICHO AT 17:17 TO WIN THE INTERCONTINENTAL TITLE
Jericho attacked Naito with the title after the match. He then removed his belt and started whipping Naito until EVIL ran down and fought Jericho off.
This was so different from everything else on the show and was a big grudge style fight. Jericho was tremendous, and Naito rallied the audience for his comebacks after being beaten to death at the start. This was the perfect match to put in between the junior heavyweight title match and the main event.
KAZUCHIKA OKADA VS KENNY OMEGA IN A 2/3 FALLS, NO TIME LIMIT MATCH FOR THE IWGP HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE
There was an incredible video beforehand with Omega meeting with Kota Ibushi and asking him “Are you ready?” and “What did it cost?” with the video explaining Omega lost The Bullet Club in this quest for the title. This was a tremendous scene setter.
Kota Ibushi is in Omega’s corner.
Okada attempted a Rainmaker five minutes into the match, Omega blocked and went for the One-Winged Angel and then tumbled over the top to the floor.
Okada ran and dived over the barricade right into a V-Trigger that looked nuts. Back inside the ring, Omega targeted the back of Okada. Omega connected with a springboard crossbody over the barricade to the floor.
Okada blocked a reverse ‘ran and followed with a piledriver on the edge of the apron and then dropkicked Omega off the apron and he crashed into the barricade. Okada was toying with him, called for the Rainmaker and as the camera zoomed out, Omega sent him to the floor and hit the Terminator dive as he sells his ribs from the barricade spot.
Omega hit Croyt’s Wrath for a near fall on Okada.
Omega ducked a Rainmaker and hit a V-Trigger for another near fall.
Okada hit a piledriver, Omega ducked the Rainmaker and went for a roll up, but Okada hooked the legs and pinned him at 28:47.
They received a two-minute rest period before the second fall began.
Omega leaped onto the guardrail and was shoved into another guardrail and landed with his injured ribs.
Omega set up a table on top of Okada on the floor and connected with a double foot stomp from the apron. Okada yelled out in agony from the stomp.
Omega hit the cross-legged fisherman buster off the top turnbuckle. Omega was selling his ribs significantly.
Omega attempted to suplex Okada off the apron through a table on the floor, he then lifted Okada onto his shoulders, Okada popped off and ended with Omega landing a reverse ‘rana on the floor.
In the ring, Okada countered the One-Winged Angel and hit a tombstone, Omega ducked the Rainmaker and hit the spinning uranage.
Omega landed a big dropkick, a V-Trigger and then Okada hooked the legs just like the first fall, but this time Omega kicked out. Omega hit a butterfly piledriver for a big near fall.
Omega hit the One-Winged Angel at 19:20 of the second fall to even the match at 1-1.
The third fall begins, and Omega immediately goes for the One-Winged Angel, it’s countered, and Okada lands the Rainmaker.
Omega connected with a Styles Clash and Okada kicked out.
After a series of reversals, Omega hit a package tombstone for a two-count. Ibushi checked on Omega to make sure he was okay.
Omega climbed to the top and missed the Phoenix splash. Omega blocks the tombstone and hits another V-Trigger. He hit two more and the third was blocked. Okada hit a dropkick and hit the Rainmaker but didn’t have enough power to drop Omega, Okada collapsed from delivering the Rainmaker.
They are attempting to strike and neither have much remaining.
Okada hits a Rainmaker and holds onto Omega’s wrist, lifts Omega and hits another one as Omega’s eyes roll back. Okada goes for one more, Omega ducks and hits a German suplex.
Omega hit a reverse ‘rana and uses Red Shoes to pull himself up, he runs the ropes and is hit with an Okada dropkick.
Omega catches him and hits the One-Winged Angel out of nowhere countering the Rainmaker, Okada is dazed against the rope and Omega cannot go for the cover.
Omega hits another V-Trigger and one final One-Winged Angel and pins Okada at 16:55.
WINNER: KENNY OMEGA AT 65:02 TO WIN THE IWGP HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE
One of the greatest title matches you will ever see and for historical significance, it’s up there as this ends one of the greatest title runs ever.
The Young Bucks came down and hugged Omega. Okada was helped to the back.
Kenny Omega addressed the audience, he spoke in Japanese, his goal was to become IWGP champion. He stated that he saw the future of pro wrestling during this match.
He said that the Bucks, Ibushi and he can do anything and bids them adieu.
After Omega wraps his speech, Cody comes out but then turns around on the ramp and walks to the back.