The Lion’s Gate project continues as they put on their third show tonight, taking place at Shinjuku Face in Tokyo.
Quiet Storm vs. Henare
Henare is making his in-ring debut here as a young lion after being a ringside attendant for the last month. He’s from New Zealand and already has the size to be a heavyweight. Henare looked good on offense and on selling for the most part. We had a solid back and forth ending with a Quiet Storm lariat to complete a solid match.
Hajime Ohara def. Hirai Kawato
Typical young lion match where Kawato sold a ton, made a brief comeback that looked fine, and was submitted by Ohara’s armbar/half crab submission. Didn’t look bad but nothing worth noting.
Kenoh def. Teruaki Kanemitsu
This was a good, competitive match. Kenoh stands out as a great worker and had a fun match with Kanemitsu, who didn’t look bad and got some offense, including a boston crab. Kenoh swept him and hit a double foot stomp. When that didn’t work, he hit the penalty kick and got the win.
Tomoaki Honma def. Shiro Tomoyose
Tomoyose is a NOAH rookie who has been out for a while with an injury. He’s stocky, but pretty short. Pretty quick match with Honma getting the win with the kokeshi. Honma wanted to shake hands after the match, but Tomoyose slapped him and left.
David Finlay def. Go Asakawa
Finlay has ditched the young lion gear and is wearing a new ring outfit, which begs the question if he’s graduated beyond that status. Solid, short back and forth match. They traded forearms for a bit before Finlay laid him out with a uranage then pinned Asakawa with a stunner, so that might be your answer.
Juice Robinson def. Ayato Yoshida
Pretty solid match as Yoshida (rookie from Kaientai Dojo) stood out to me more than others on this card. He looked pretty good already, showing some intensity and ring familiarity. Robinson pinned him with the unprettier.
Ryusuke Taguchi def. Hitoshi Kumano
Another perfectly fine match, but nothing special. Kumano taunted Taguchi early by slapping his butt and using hip attacks of his own. Kumano took a lot of the offense, but Taguchi came back and hit the dodon for the win.
Katsyuori Shibata, Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Satoshi Kojima, Yuji Nagata and Manabu Nakanishi def. Go Shiozaki, Maybach Taniguchi, Katsuhiko Nakajima, Masa Kitamiya and Kaito Kiyomiya
Nothing revolutionary, but a solid match where everyone worked well with one another. Shibata’s shoulder is still all taped up. Kiyomiya, another rookie, was worked on early before NOAH guys managed to get a hot tag. Shiozaki tagged in, and he and Shibata went at it immediately.This turned into your usual ten man tag you’d see on any “Road To” show. It boiled down to Kiyomiya holding his own against Nagata until being caught by an overhead belly to belly suplex, a knee to the corner and a huge backdrop suplex for the win.
Nakajima jumped Shibata after the match as everyone went wild on one another. Shibata then caught Shiozaki in a sleeper and held it for a long time, ignoring anyone who tried to stop him. NJPW guys got the better of it and posed with Yuji Nagata closing the show with a promo.