Nagoya is the last show for the foreseeable future that Noah can have fans attending due to the worsening Coronavirus situation in the Tokyo Metropolitan areas, and as a result there was a long queue for the merchandise, not least because the Showa era style posters and t-shirts for Takashi Sugiura vs Kazuyuki Fujita were on sale.
Noah streamed the event live over three channels, ABEMA, WrestleUniverse and FITE. ABEMA you can watch free and from anywhere in the world for three days after the broadcast, WrestleUniverse (as long as you are a subscriber), you can watch whenever you want, and FITE have the show available for $19.99, although I cannot say how long it will be there for. Stuart Fulton and Mark Pickering provided English commentary for FITE, which was also broadcast on WrestleUniverse. The ABEMA crew providing the Japanese commentary were at ringside, with the flamboyant Kuniko Yamada dressed in pink to support Atsushi Kotoge.
MOMO NO SEISHUN (Atsushi Kotoge & Daisuke Harada) & Yasutaka Yano vs FULL THROTTLE (Hajime Ohara, Seiki Yoshioka & YO-HEY)
YO-HEY came out to the match looking somewhat focused for his usual exuberant self. There was somehow an element of seriousness to him today. Fans were expecting him to challenge for the GHC Junior Heavyweight as he had been indicating that he would, but in the event he didn't. He had another challenge in mind later, which we will see, although during the match he did indicate that he was still after Kotoge.
FULL THROTTLE'S opponents consisted of the young Yasutaka Yano (who has taken a bit of teasing about his hair, which Takashi Sugiura likened to the guards outside of Buckingham Palace), who teamed with Daisuke Harada and Atsushi Kotoge, who has a speckled chest thanks to being chopped a few days ago. Yano decided (as ever) that he was going to start, and knowing its better not to argue with a Noah Born as soon as he has made up his mind, Daisuke Harada looked around, saw it was Hajime Ohara and gave him the start. Yano put on a show worthy of an experienced wrestler against his seniors, kicking out of Hajime Ohara's pin repeatedly, standing up to Seiki Yoshioka, and using dropkicks on YO-HEY (who soon gave him a demonstration of how it was done) although at times he did need to take direction from Harada.
Fans found that as much as they loved Daisuke Harada vs Hajime Ohara, they want to see more of Daisuke Harada vs Seiki Yoshioka in the future, and today teased that.
WINNER: YO-HEY with the Face G on Yasutaka Yano (11 minutes, 54 seconds)
Kongoh (Katsuhiko Nakajima & Nioh) vs Akitoshi Saito & Junta Miyawaki
Akitoshi Saito flew solo today, and was trying to rouse himself to be "Funky". It looked awkward, he didn't look happy, and if anything he looked as if someone had a gun to head. Katsuhiko Nakajima observed all of this, and was not impressed by Saito, his "funkiness" or what he has become and during the match he was merciless with him. Despite this, Nakajima cannot stay away from the cameras, and couldn't resist posing for them. Junta Miyawaki was treated like an afterthought, or not even a thought, although he did come close to pinning to Nakajima and probably would have done if it wasn't for Haoh breaking the pin.
WINNER: Katsuhiko Nakajima with the Vertical Spike on Junta Miyawaki (11 minutes, 49 seconds)
"Here today too, you Akitoshi Saito. Funky? Noah is crumbling because of dumb-ass guys like you. You should give it up, I will force you into giving it up. I'm looking forward to it."
And with a laugh he threw down the microphone and walked off. Saito looked for a moment like he was thinking about it, before coming to his senses and walking backstage.
Kotaro Suzuki vs Susumu
Very technical grudge match, and mercifully free of NOSAWA'S presence, or vengeful STINGER coming to fight their enemies. Suzuki and Susumu have their own grudge, which has been stemming from Kotaro's misguided befriending of Susumu as Sarubahe de Oriente, who turned out to be HAYATA'S old friend when he was unmasked. Certainly, had Noah (and the world) had not been suffering a pandemic, this match would have gone on longer, and sadly due to time limits it came to a draw.
WINNER: Neither, time out draw (11 minutes, 2 seconds)
Both Susumu and Kotaro couldn't believe it, and complained to the ref. Had Kotaro pinned Susumu a few seconds earlier, then Kotaro would have probably gotten the win and therefore nothing was resolved.
The Sugiura Army (Kazushi Sakuraba, Kazunari Murakami & Kendo Kashin) vs Funky Express (Mohammed Yone, Shuhei Taniguchi & Masao Inoue)
Melee fight broke out almost immediately with fights going on outside all four corners of the ring, Kendo Kashin threw a steel barrier at Masao Inoue, who retaliated in kind. Inoue was not taking any rubbish anymore from anyone this evening. It was time to take a stand! Kashin ran off, knowing he was evidently dealing with a wild man. Kazushi Sakuraba later found the same, leading Kashin to complain to the ref about Inoue. Then Inoue got cocky, emboldened by his own success against Sakuraba, he broke the pin. Sakuraba reversed it into a headlock, and this started a chain reaction of everyone doing on each other. Inoue was not put out by this, and used the eye rakes on The Sugiura Army, that was until everyone ganged up on him.
Kazunari Murakami (who Takashi Sugiura says looks like a gangsters sub-boss), is no lover of Disco. Yone used the defiantly proud "Disco Fever" pose at him, and was dealt with quickly. By a huge slap.
At the end of the match, Sakuraba comically started looking like Takashi Sugiura does whenever he has to deal with Inoue, and put him in a submission while fights went on around the ring, even going backstage.
WINNER: Kazushi Sakuraba with the Sharpshooter on Kazushi Sakuraba (10 minutes, 48 seconds)
Kendo Kashin has a habit of latching on to people, for some unfathomable reason he thinks that he and Kenoh are friends (even going as far as to call him "Daisuke", which is real name), and so today he thought that Funky Express, who had just lost the match, might want to Disco pose with The Sugiura Army. They didn't, even though Kashin begged. They remained unmoved, and Kashin and Sakuraba got Murakami to do it.
Then the heavyweights did something very rare, they started fighting backstage, as Kendo Kashin burst in on Funky Express and attacked them. Kashin is a junior, he has experience of this, the others didn't quite know what to do and Masao Inoue looked as if he was laughing. Kashin left pointing his fingers and yelling.
GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Championship Match
*Match of The Year*
STINGER (Yoshinari Ogawa & HAYATA) vs Ikuto Hidaka & NOSAWA Rongai
The match was volatile from the moment STINGER entered the ring, and it erupted in the way most if not all junior matches do when you have more than two men in one place, in a mass brawl.
NOSAWA thankfully did not try and end this in just a few seconds with sneak attacks and quick pins, but he no doubt wished it could have been over that quickly as STINGER were both out for revenge, and to protect their titles. NOSAWA tried begging Ogawa for mercy, but that did no good. If NOSAWA was going to attack STINGER'S knees, they were going to attack his arm. They did this by keeping him away from his partner, and utilizing flash tags. HAYATA smiling watching Ogawa rip NOSAWA'S arm from its socket.
NOSAWA can be as devious as Ogawa, but he's not as clever in it, he found this out when none of the standard tricks worked and Ogawa carried himself with an air of, "What? You expect me to fall for that?" Despite this, NOSAWA did manage to pull off a few of the usual tricks, HAYATA'S knee was targeted, and a crisis situation arose whereby he almost quit (Ogawa saved him), and NOSAWA resorted to a low blow on Ogawa, which HAYATA broke the pin on. And then because everything was going so well, NOSAWA started wasting time showboating, which allowed Ogawa to get the pin.
WINNER: Yoshinari Ogawa with the reversal of the La Mahistral (18 minutes, 36 seconds)
Then something that many fans had been hoping for happened.
This is bad news for Ogawa, YO-HEY is back on the scene, and he is the one person who has some influence over HAYATA, which is why Ogawa has wanted to keep them apart. It's also bad because both YO-HEY and Yoshioka know HAYATA very well, and indeed, have known him for far longer than Ogawa has. There is also Susumu to add to this, who also knows them well. So for Ogawa, this title challenge is an extreme threat to not just losing the titles, but to losing everybody, as YO-HEY is capable of taking far more than just a belt.
The M's alliance (Naomichi Marufuji, Masaaki Mochizuki & Masato Tanaka) vs Kaito Kiyomiya, Yoshiki Inamura & Kinya Okada
Naomichi Marufuji tried to shake hands with Kaito Kiyomiya at the start of the match. Kiyomiya ignored him, and was almost chased around the ring. In the end Kiyomiya gave him his own way. He knows it's easier that way.
Masaaki Mochizuki was sent flying by Yoshiki Inamura, for simply bouncing off of him, and The M's alliance soon realized that the best way to take him down is not by attacking his body, which is rock hard from lifting tires, so they took his knees out. Because of Inamura's training, the attempted GEKITOZ on Tanaka looked like two boulders falling when he put his fists down.
Kinya Okada's big chance came against Naomichi Marufuji when the two fought solo towards the end of the match. Okada might not have come away with a huge win, but Marufuji came up with a new move, which involved giving one of his Tiger Knees to an opponent facing head on, whose ears he grabbed. Marufuji hasn't given it a name though, although he said he was thinking about it.
WINNER: Naomichi Marufuji with the New Tiger King (provisional name according to Noah) (17 minutes, 36 seconds)
GHC National Championship Match
Kazuyuki Fujita vs Takashi Sugiura
"This was a fight between monsters. The hashtag doesn't lie"
As this was a fight between a unit, The Sugiura Army gathered round, Kazushi Sakuraba was put on Kendo Kashin control duty as he was seen to be taking a firm hand with him and leading him away from the action. Given half the chance he would have gotten involved. Katsuhiko Nakajima was on commentary, and sat looking on as Kazuyuki Fujita and Takashi Sugiura had the traditional stare down, which has become standard in Fujita title matches. Sugi said he didn't like it, wasn't going to do it, and attacked after a few seconds with a big boot. The two beasts then proceeded to tear up Nagoya. There was nothing very much technical in this match, just two guys fighting over a belt with slams, elbows, punches, kicks and the occasional suplex and Sugi clinging on to Fujita's ankle to make him submit.
Fujita however made it to the ropes.
When the course of the match turned back to Fujita, Sugiura had a plan, and this worked well. Pretending to be knocked out, he played the part enough for the ref to bend down and check on him. Sugi kept the ref engaged long enough in this for Fujita to become annoyed, and shove the ref aside. Fujita then went for the Soccer Ball kick, and Sugi rolled out of the way and caught him in a slam using his momentum. A vicious elbow war followed, and then a slap war. The match finished with Sugiura punting Fujita's head almost to the roof, and then hitting the Olympic Qualifying Slam.
WINNER: Takashi Sugiura with the Olympic Slam (18 minutes, 8 seconds)
Everyone gathered around Fujita who was lying motionless with his eyes flickering, even his tongue seemed to be lolling out of his mouth. Kashin undid his boots to let circulation flow, and a stretcher was bought out. Once Fujita had been carried out, Sugi was speaking to the crowd, when his first challenger appeared.
Sakuraba challenged for the title, to be told by Sugiura that he could do it on one condition.
He beat him at Rock-Paper-Scissors.
You can tell this is going to get very silly.
GHC Heavyweight Championship Match
Keiji Mutoh vs Masa Kitamiya
The gallery of champions played on the screen as the lights lit up the arena green for the much anticipated main event, as Naomichi Marufuji took his place on commentary. The story of this match, was not of the future like Kaito Kiyomiya's had been, but rather it was one of the past, and the shared memory of Masa Saito. For the match Kitamiya had shed his Kongoh colors of red, and appeared in Saito's black.
Mutoh started by wearing Kitamiya down with mat wrestling. This is his usual way of getting a feel for an opponent; with Go Shiozaki he had worked out that he would best play the feeble old man, with Kaito Kiyomiya, young and full of energy, he would let him wear himself out, but with Kitamiya, so much like Masa Saito, the old ways were called for, and he was going to have to catch him off guard. Later Mutoh praised Kitamiya, and said that he was more than worthy to inherit and be the guardian of the Saito name.
WINNER: Keiji Mutoh with the Shining Wizard (22 minutes, 53 seconds)
As the referee strapped on the belt, Naomichi Marufuji left the commentary area and got in the ring. Mutoh shook hands with the M's alliance, and everyone lined up to celebrate as they did their pose. Then Marufuji went for the microphone, and challenged for the GHC Heavyweight.
Mutoh, the person who had ignored his last two challengers, responded and no hard feelings between them, they made their M sign together. For Marufuji, this is a childhood dream. Title match will take place on the 6th June at the CyberFight Festival at the Saitama Super Arena.
WITH THANKS TO: Abeshin, Naoki Slam, Karin, Kei
GIF CREDIT: WrestleUniverse, Noah GHC
Noah's next event: Saturday 2nd May 2021