Because December is the month when Takashi Sugiura celebrates twenty years in wrestling (his anniversary was on the 23rd), the lobby was full of flowers, backstage Go Shiozaki (as Chairman of the Noah Wrestlers Association), presented Sugi with a caricature of himself with his two dogs. In the ring, as there was no Yoshinari Ogawa today and therefore no classes, so Kazuyuki Fujita and Hideki Suzuki took the opportunity to do some sparring together.
The event was broadcast on ABEMA, however, it is not available to view now. At the time of broadcast unless you bought the PPV (which is summarized below), you could only view the first hour. However, thanks to fans at the venue (mentioned below), Noah and Noah fans clipping moments and uploading them, you did get the feeling that you were watching live. Hopefully it should be on WRESTLEUNIVERSE in the New Year.
Yasutaka Yano vs Kai Fujimura
Very much a young boy match, which isn't surprising as Yano only debuted in October, with Fujimura a year and five months ago.
WINNER: Kai Fujimura with The Boston Crab (6 minutes, 18 seconds)
Mohammed Yone & Shuhei Taniguchi vs The Anti Wrestlers Alliance (Akitoshi Saito & Masao Inoue)
Masao Inoue came limping to the ring with a blackened chest, thanks to the "Christmas Present" from Naomichi Marufuji and Go Shiozaki. Mohammed Yone and Shuhei Taniguchi were waiting to give him their New Years gift, which was again full of chops and going to stop Masao Inoue from being able to take a bath. Yone was a little kinder though, stroking Inoue's chest before chopping him.
WINNER: Mohammed Yone with the Kinniku Meat Buster on Masao Inoue (13 minutes)
Momo No Seishun (Daisuke Harada, Atsushi Kotoge & Junta Miyawaki) vs FULL THROTTLE (Hajime Ohara, Seiki Yoshioka & YO-HEY)
"The old and new leader showdown"
If there is one thing that Noah fans love, then its the rare occasions that we get to see Hajime Ohara vs Daisuke Harada, and we are about to get much more of that. The matches between them are always brilliant and highly anticipated, and they were about to give us the best New Year's gift, ever. Elsewhere in this match, it was said that although he lost, this was a real breakout for Junta Miyawaki who broke out of his shell in a big way.
WINNER: Hajime Ohara with the Tres Fleur on Junta Miyawaki (15 minutes, 31 seconds)
Harada said that he had been waiting for Ohara to put his name forward, and that he wanted him to show him his strength, not the strength of his support. Accepting his challenge, Harada warned that he would defeat him and defend the title.
This much anticipated title match between two wrestlers that Noah only ever bring out very rarely, will take place on the 10th January at Korakuen Hall.
Naomichi Marufuji & Kinya Okada vs Kaito Kiyomiya & Daiki Inaba
The big story of this match was the budding rivalry between Naomichi Marufuji and Daiki Inaba, which came full bloom today. Elsewhere, Kaito Kiyomiya started wrestling what one fan called, "Misawa Style".
WINNER: Kaito Kiyomiya with the Stretch Plum Facelock on Kinya Okada (17 minutes, 42 seconds)
The Sugiura Army (Kazuyuki Fujita & Hideki Suzuki) vs Go Shiozaki & Yoshiki Inamura
Ten months after their epic thirty minute title match stare down, Go Shiozaki and Kazuyuki Fujita met in the ring again. They parodied that moment by staring at each other again, only to have it broken up by Hideki Suzuki after about three minutes. The rivalry between them went on throughout the match, and there was a square up afterwards indicating that they are going to clash again at some point. Fans want to see them have a singles match with an audience this time, this seems likely given Fujita's comments that the last time, he was the loser.
While Shiozaki and Fujita faced off, Yoshiki Inamura (looking now much younger than he did when he had his mohawk and red costume), fought Hideki Suzuki and they had some stiff exchanges, not least the excruciating submission of Suzuki's that looked like it was going to tear Inamura's face in half.
WINNER: Hideki Suzuki with the Double Arm Suplex on Yoshiki Inamura (18 minutes, 11 seconds)
"SHOWDOWN" ~ Takashi Sugiura 20th anniversary match: The Sugiura Army vs Kongoh (7 vs 7 elimination match)
The Sugiura Army (Takashi Sugiura, Kazushi Sakuraba, Kendo Kashin, NOSAWA Rongai, Kaz Hayashi, Daisuke Nakamura* & Kazunari Murakami) vs Kongoh (Kenoh, Katsuhiko Nakajima, Masa Kitamiya, Manabu Soya, Tadasuke, Haoh and Nioh)
Notes on the elimination match
~ ALL of The Sugiura Army helped hold the ropes open for Takashi Sugiura
~ Daisuke Nakamura was introduced to both Noah and The Sugiura Army. He is an MMA fighter. Tadasuke said that although he himself has no background in MMA and therefore their styles are different, he would like a singles match with him.
~ Match started with something akin to the Noah Juniors, with a mass brawl, which gave the main event a feeling of chaos. Kenoh making a beeline for Takashi Sugiura. When order was restored, The Sugiura Army threw Kendo Kashin in. Kashin didn't appreciate this, and left soon after he was eliminated. He would show up, however, for the Sugiura Army aftershow party.
~ Katsuhiko Nakajima really stuck it to Kazunari Murakami, biggest grin ever on his face as he did the "Shutter Chance".
~ Kenoh eliminated Murakami in typically violent fashion following a fight on the ring apron.
~ Masa Kitamiya was bust open by a Takashi Sugiura headbutt
Kazushi Sakuraba eliminated Haoh (Powerplant, 10 minutes 58 seconds)
Daisuke Nakamura eliminated Tadasuke (Arm Cross, 12 minutes 6 seconds)
Manabu Soya eliminated Daisuke Nakamura (Boston Crab into pin, 13 minutes 10 seconds)
Katsuhiko Nakajima eliminated Kazunari Murakami (Over the top rope, 16 minutes 22 seconds)
Kenoh eliminated Kendo Kashin (Over the top rope, 19 minutes 5 seconds)
Nioh eliminated Kaz Hayashi (Over the top rope, 21 minutes 30 seconds)
Kazushi Sakuraba eliminated Nioh (Full Nelson Hold, 22 minutes 57 seconds)
Kazushi Sakuraba eliminated Kenoh (Over the top rope, 26 minutes 1 second)
Masa Kitamiya eliminated Kazushi Sakuraba (Senton, 30 minutes 40 seconds)
Katsuhiko Nakajima and NOSAWA Rongai eliminated each other (Over the top rope, 34 minutes 50 seconds)
Takashi Sugiura eliminated Manabu Soya (Frankensteiner, 36 minutes, 31 seconds)
WINNER: Takashi Sugiura with the Olympic Slam on Masa Kitamiya (45 minutes, 10 seconds)
After the match, Takashi Sugiura led the crowd in applauding the fight that Masa Kitamiya had put up. He then got on the microphone, and told all The Sugiura Army to gather round. However, Kendo Kashin wasn't there. I am unsure of what he said, but presumably he thanked everyone for coming, spoke about Noah in 2021 and addressed The Sugiura Army.
After being presented with flowers backstage, and speaking to the press, it was time for The Sugiura Army PPV. Kuniko Yamada presided over the party, in which everyone ate food, drunk alcohol (Sakuraba apparently turned up with Tequila, or else he was looking for it), and due to COVID, sat divided by plastic screens. Although he is no longer a member of The Sugiura Army, Kinya Okada was invited (and he tore into a hunk of meat). Hajime Ohara was not invited. I get the feeling he probably would not have approved of drinking.
Sugi was presented with various gifts; NOSAWA presented him with two big bags of Royal Canin dog food, which was bought with the proceeds of the PPV, and from himself he gave gift certificates. Kazuyuki Fujita gave Sugiura a New Japan "Team Japan" jersey.
Kendo Kashin slunk back in, perhaps he had been to a local store because he had bought beer with him. He failed to enter into the party spirit, and remained somewhat a grouch in the corner. This didn't get any better when putting on their big bowties (of Mohammed Yone proportions), Takashi Sugiura and Kazushi Sakuraba, got up to do their comedy skit which took place in the style of two old entertainers with an old fashioned microphone in the middle of them. Now, I don't know if Kashin was the subject of it, or else he was mentioned in it, but he apparently didn't find it funny. I can imagine that Kenoh was highly unamused by the this entire thing too.
Noah will be back in 2021 on Monday, January 4th with "NEW SUNRISE 2021"
With thanks to: Metal Noah, Naoki_Slam, Gong EX, Oshima-san, Kei
Image credits: PKDX
GIF'S taken from Noah GHC