Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/06/05/the-winner-of-the-best-of-the-super-juniors-tournament/
The 26th Best of the Super Juniors tournament concluded Wednesday at Sumo Hall with blocks winners Shingo Takagi and Will Ospreay meeting in the final.
The two had a phenomenal match that went over 33 minutes, ending with Ospreay executing a top rope OsCutter and match-ending Storm Breaker to hand Takagi his first loss in the promotion.
It was highlighted by each kicking out of the other’s big moves with Ospreay kicking out of the Last of the Dragon and Takagi from an OsCutter. The drama was accelerated due to the audience’s excitement throughout the final.
Ospreay was the star of the tournament and must be the majority’s choice for Wrestler of the Year five months into the year.
Afterward, Ospreay announced he is moving to Japan and will compete against both heavyweights and junior heavyweights while also wishing Hiromu Takahashi a full recovery so they can face off again.
Ospreay will challenge IWGP junior heavyweight champion Dragon Lee this Sunday at Dominion in Osaka following second BOSJ tournament victory.
Earlier in the night, Jon Moxley made his New Japan debut and pinned Juice Robinson to win the IWGP United States title after a hard-hitting match that was unique in that environment. They went over 24 minutes with Moxley hitting the double arm DDT (formerly the Dirty Deeds) and Robinson kicked out. He went for it again but altered the move into an Impaler DDT and pinned Robinson.
We will have a complete review of the show on The Double Shot tonight for POST Wrestling Café members.
I haven’t seen the Moxley match and can’t find much about it online other than that he won the US title.
How was it? Did he show a different wrestling style? Did he keep any of his “signature” WWE moves like the “Lunatic Lariat” elbow off the ropes?
A fantastic top of the card. Much like DoN, this show benefited from just how different each of the big matches were. Shingo bookends the tourney with the two best matches of it, but Ospreay has to be the performer of the tourney and as John says, of the year thus far. He got a good match out of Douki, and all of his other matches were great to near-perfect. His story and performance in the tournament very much dovetailed with him talking about moving to Japan and wanting to put the company on his back. His defeat of Shingo initially surprised me, but if he’s making a full-time commitment to NJPW a la Ibushi, then giving him such a prestige victory makes sense.
@RedRaider07 Apart from the double underhook DDT, it was a very new Moxley, or at least a remixed version of his pre-WWE work. Close strikes/forearms, lots of antagonism of refs/young lions. Seemed to almost deflate or horrify the portion of the crowd that was behind Juice (who was also uncharacteristically bitter after), but got a good chunk of them behind him. Even his entrance, chaotically going through the crowd (but not Izuka like) felt different from either his WWE persona or traditional NJPW presentations of new wrestlers.
Great recap @Contrasoma
It was very different to Jericho’s presence as well. No gimmick outfit or persona. He wore “Rousey” type trunks/shorts and came through the crowd. Juice seemed to be a good foil as the clear difference in presentation for two Gajin / Americans was easy to pick up on for those not knowing Moxley. One endears himself to the fans while the other is a straight forward no frills brawler.
I was a little disappointed to not have a challenger named for Doniniom as I imagine he’s staying in Japan thru the weekend now that he won the title.
Guys I’d love to see him work with:
Naito - for the Tranquilo taunts to rile him up
Suzuki - for the violence of it all
Ishii - for the way he can take shots and make Moxely feel like a striker
I think Juice should plan out his somersaults more accordingly. That one off the top of the tunnel, where he overshot the scrum of wrestlers, looked painful. And then he almost overshot the table, leaning against the guardrail, and smashed Moxley in the head.
An overall excellent night of wrestling. I did not appreciate the comedy match - thought it was a waste of Phantasmo, but the rest of the card really delivered.
On that night, Ospreay was the best wrestler in the world. He was on point and as sharp has he’s been.
I also really liked the Tanahashi-White match. This time White felt like he belonged there.
Only caught the last two matches, but they both delivered. Main event may be my MOTY so far. Moxley and Juice was fantastic too. Excited for Dominion.