NJPW Dontaku 2018 Reviews

Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/05/04/njpw-dontaku-2018-reviews/

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John Pollock & Wai Ting are back to review both Dontaku events that New Japan Pro Wrestling presented from Fukuoka.

The first features Kenny Omega taking on Hangman Page, and a rematch between Cody and Kota Ibushi from Wrestle Kingdom.

The second night is built around Kazuchika Okada’s attempt to break the all-time IWGP title defense record as he meets Hiroshi Tanahashi to break the record they share.

Plus, a tremendous IWGP junior heavyweight title bout between Will Ospreay and KUSHIDA, a big angle shot with the return of Chris Jericho, the identity of Bone Soldier, and the announcement of the main event for June’s Dominion card at Osaka-jo Hall.

Plus, your Café feedback from the POST Wrestling Forum.

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I have been trying to watch night two of Wrestling Dontaku, it doesn’t seem to be up and available on NJPW World. I see a few matches but not all of them.

What a shame, I hope they are up soon.

The Jericho/Naito angle shows how impactful blood can still be in wrestling when done right. That attack means so much more because Naito left a bloody mess.

I agree, blood can be impactful if done right. I for one didn’t need to see it - the ambush-style run in by Jericho was just great. Putting him in the crowd and having him savagely hit Naito like that felt very old school and something I haven’t seen executed properly in a long while.

If felt different than his program with Kenny Omega, still fresh. I felt like his own “LIJericho” shirt was classic heel, thumbing his nose at the entire group.

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I watched these live. Has the problem been resolved?

The shows are up in their entirety now, both in Japanese & English.


I interpreted the mask as a troll job of Bushi and the eye liner a troll job of Evil

What would a run of Jericho facing all members of LIJ on the road to Dominion do for those guys? What is cool about a guy like Jericho is I can see him having strong matches with any type of guy. That said, it’ll be him and Naito and that the shirt is a List reference is beyond incredible. This guy is a master.

Re: Kenny and Cody - I’ve learned that subtleties usually pay off in the works of Being The Elite. I am surprised to hear it’s not translated to Japanese. Do you think they would be even bigger there if the show was more commonly seen by that audience, or would the audience reject the notion of dramedy story telling which is very much an American method

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What are we setting the over/under on length of Okada-Omega IV? At least an hour and i’m thinking they could go for close to 90 minutes.

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Good catch, I didn’t notice that. I would be OK with Jericho doing a program where he battles his way through LIJ to get to Naito but I can’t see it happening.

I never believed they needed more than 60 min for anything after II and the matchup in the G1 told the story of urgency really well. But now, a year later, with the stip. it would be really weird to not go longer than 60 it would seem. I can see them using 59 minutes before pin 1. And then the remaining pins or finish soon after. Somewhere between 75-90 minutes. This would be a heck of a prop bet in Vegas.

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