It’s Omori and Akiyama’s 25 anniversary show and there are some big matches at hand, with Doering/Suwama in the main event for the Triple Crown Title!
Match 1 – Koji Iwamoto & Yusuke Okada vs. Kotaro Suzuki & Yohei Nakajima
Fun little opener to kick things off, they kept the action flowing and it was solid. Okada continues to progress well in his first year, showing great determination but of course he still takes the fall here with Nakajima taking him out.
Winners: Suzuki/Nakajima (via jumping spinkick) **3/4
Match 2 – Atsushi Maruyama & Masashi Takeda vs. Masanobu Fuchi & Osamu Nishimura
Decent match, they obviously keep things simple with some hold based wrestling and Fuchi doing his usual stuff, which works perfectly fine. At the end Fuchi tries for a small package on Maruyama but Takeda rolls them both, reversing the pressure so that Maruyama has Fuchi down for the pin instead.
Winners: Maruyama/Takeda (via small package) **3/4
-After the match Maruyama challenges Nishimura to the BANG! TV Title.
Match 3 – Haruka Kato & SAKI vs. Natsumi Maki & Saori Anou
This was a fun little showcase for some Joshi talent. They provided some good action that they kept pretty constant. Not familiar with SAKI and Kato but I’ve seen Anou and Maki a couple of times now and they all did well, certainly all onboard with Anou and Maki using BABYMETAL – Megitsune as their theme.
Winners: Maki/Anou (via stodgy bridging backslide) ***
Match 4 – Ishikiri, Rikiya Fudo & Ryouji Sai vs. Danny Jones, Fuminori Abe & Yutaka Yoshie
Another fun little multi-man match. this was Danny Jones last match for All Japan before flying back over here. It’s been great seeing him integrate so well over there and I’m sure he’ll be back again some point in the future. Not much else to add really just a fine match really.
Winners: Jones/Abe/Yoshie (via big splash) **3/4
-Akiyama and Omori come out and are commemorated with flowers from their peers which includes Kobashi & Kawada (who now looks like an executive for a company).
Match 5 – KAI, Kento Miyahara & Yoshitatsu vs. Shuji Ishikawa, The Bodyguard & Zeus
Last of the undercard tag matches and it’s another decent one. It’s odd seeing Yoshitatsu suddenly mixing with All Japan’s current big players, even odder is him making Zeus tap-out here and then later on is announced as the next No.1 contender. It’s certainly baffling how they are utilising Tatsu (along with some of AJPW’s other recent booking) but I do like him, despite his recent New Japan run being pretty dire and hope he does well with the opportunity he is given, though I know a Zeus push is what’s desired by most currently. Anyway perfectly fine match-up to give these guys something to do.
Winners: KAI/Kento/Tatsu (via Koji Clutch) **3/4
Match 6 – All Asia Tag Team Title Match: NEXTREAM (Naoya Nomura & Yuma Aoyagi) (c) vs. Atsushi Aoki & Hikaru Sato
This was pretty solid. First 10 minutes felt run-of-the-mill with Aoki and Sato getting some control, then things pick up a little afterwards but it never gets real good and just stays quite average really, with NEXTREAM managing to retain the belts. Nothing special but still very decent.
Winners: NEXTREAM (via inside leg hook brainbuster) ***
Match 7 – AJPW Jr Title Match: Ultimo Dragon (c) vs. Tajiri
a re-match from the big Sumo Hall show and I’d say this was just as solid as that one, again they kept things quite simple with a good load of mat wrestling and it was enjoyable. In the end Dragon hits the Asai DDT but the ref had been knocked previously so he was unable to make the count, this allowed Tajiri to spit Green Mist in Dragon’s face and hit a buzzsaw kick which lets him win the belt back off of Dragon.
Winner: Tajiri (via Buzzsaw Kick) ***
-After the match Yohei Nakajima attacks Tajiri and challenges him for the belt.
Match 8 – AJPW World Tag Team Title Match: Burning Wild (Jun Akiyama & Takao Omori) vs. Daisuke Sekimoto & Ryuji Ito
This originally was meant to be Sekimoto/Okbayashi in the match as the champs, but unfortunately Yuji is out with an injury, sothey had to vacate the belts. He’s been replaced by Ryuji Ito, which is a bit of a contrast really, but they manage to make it work a deliver a really solid tag titlematch. Sekimoto/Ito get some control early but once that’s out the way it becomes very back and forth with Sekimoto doing most of the work for his team since ya’know there’s not much for Ito to do without his light tubes though He still hits a nice moonsault. In the end Burning Wild win the belts which is a nice little way to celebrate their 25th anniversary. Good stuff overall.
Winners: Burning Wild (Wrist-clutch Exploder) ***1/2
Main Event – Triple Crown Title Match: Joe Doering vs. Suwama (c)
So Suwama serves as a transitional champ losing to Doering in his first defence. it’s a very good main event though, nothing outstanding but they worked it well. Suwama in the early goings tries to focus on Doering’s leg, but once that’s tossed out the window it becomes much more back and forth and gets quite physical. It’s a little sluggish at times and there’s a bit of dead air but it’s overall still very enjoyable.
I think the biggest thing here though was Joe winning the title. Whilst the booking towards it has been a little shaky and questionable, Doering recovering from his tumour and getting back on top of All Japan is a great little feel-good story and I’m more than happy for him.
Winner: Doering (via Revolution Bomb) ***1/2
-After the match Tatsu comes out to challenge Doering, which I know has upset a lot of people but I’m more intrigued if anything to see how they go about it.
This was a pretty solid show overall but I wouldn’t say that any match was outstanding or must-see. I think the main draws here are Doering winning the belt and it being Akiyama/Omori’s 25th anniversary, other than that I wouldn’t say you’re missing much by skipping this show. But it’s still enjoyable through and I’d still recommend the main event at least.
Link to show on Realhero Archive: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B5rK95X3mRiiZEVhVVV0Vl93WFE
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