Well now, top matches are gonna be looking interesting. With some of the North American shows running clip shows, or reruns of matches…or full PPVs; at least we’ve got Japan to look towards.
I do find it amusing that so far this month, some of the lesser companies have gotten more voting love. Surprisingly, Zero1 19th Anniversary: Dangan Yankies (Masato Tanaka & Takashi Sugiura) vs Strong BJ (Yuji Okabayashi & Daisuke Sekimoto), won the vote for last week.
So with ROH winning the first week, and now Zero1; this is shaping up to be an interesting month for MOTY.
On to this week!
Quick Top 5:
- DDT Judgement: KO-D Openweight Title: Masato Tanaka (c) vs Konosuke Takeshita
Rating: **** 1/4
- IMPACT!: World Tag Team Championship: TJP & Fallah Bahh vs The North (c)
Rating: *** 3/4
- Dragon Gate Glorious Gate: Ben-K & Keisuke Okuda vs Strong Machine J
Rating: *** 3/4
- AEW Dynamite: The Lucha Bros vs Best Friends
Rating: *** 3/4
- ROH TV Ep. 444: Alex Shelley vs Rey Horus
Rating: *** 3/4
- Dragon Gate Glorious Gate: Dragon Kid & Ultimo Dragon vs HYO & Diamante
Rating: *** 1/2
- ROH TV Ep. 444: The Briscoes vs Dan Maff & Jeff Cobb Rating: *** 1/2
- IMPACT!: Jake Crist vs Daga
Rating: *** 1/4
- Dragon Gate Glorious Gate: Naruki Doi & Masato Yoshino vs BxB Hulk & Masato Yoshida
Rating: *** 1/4
- 205 Live: Oney Lorcan vs Isaiah Scott
- MLW Fusion: Zenshi vs El Lindaman
- NXT UK: Joseph Conners vs Ridge Holland
- AEW Dynamite: Blood & Guts Advantage Match: Inner Circle vs The Elite
- WWE SmackDown: Cesaro & Shinsuke Nakamura vs Drew Gulak & Daniel Bryan
5. ROH TV Ep. 444: Alex Shelley vs Rey Horus
Now, given that I follow ROH about as closely as a nearsighted truck driver; I’m not overly sure if this was on Bound for Honor or just filmed for TV during the show. Either way, it was shown on the most recent episode; so I’m rollin with it like Limp Bizkit.
There were many references towards the Pure tournament that’s coming up; so Shelley took a more grounded wrestling focused approach. Great early chain wrestling from Shelley left Horus looking very far out of his depth. Horus was able to get a little space and comeback a bit on the outside. Shelley was over confident, going as far to announce moves; like the Superfly Splash from the corner, so Horus managed to turn it around.
Once Shelley started to get his hubris in check, we saw a nice bit of back and forth. Shelley countered Horus by hitting Sliced Bread; but Horus kicked out. Horus had one last pinfall attempt before Shelley caught him in the Border City Stretch and the luchador was forced to tap.
Winner: Shelley via Border City Stretch
4. AEW Dynamite: The Lucha Bros vs Best Friends
Both men crawl as the other wrestlers rally up. Hot tags to Chuckie and Fenix! The Kentucky Gentleman rallies with lariats, then catches Fenix’s leap into a BACKBREAKER! Pentagon gets in and KICKS Chuck’s leg. Pentagon whips but Chuckie comes back with a KNEE! Chuckie scoops Fenix for the LONG DART CUTTER! Best Friends go corner to corner and want to hug, but given current circumstances, keep it to elbow bumps. Pentagon and Fenix DOUBLE SUPERKICK the Best Friends! Pentagon goes out to fetch Chuckie and brings him to the concrete! But Cassidy gets off commentary to “hurry” over! Fenix and Pentagon see him coming, and dare him to do something. Chuckie shoves them both off the stage!
Trent brings Fenix and Pentagon up and lines them up, for Cassidy’s NO HANDS SENTON! Trent puts Pentagon back in and Chuckie gives him AWFUL WAFFLE!! Cover, TWO!! Pentagon still lives but Chuckie tags in Trent. Best Friends bring Pentagon up and around, but Fenix SUPERKICKS Trent into a DESTROYER! Fenix keeps Chuck stuck up top while Pentagon has the cover, TWO!! Trent survives so Fenix head sup top to club Chuckie. Chuckie clubs back and the ref is busy with them, so Pentagon LOW BLOWS Trent! Pentagon enziguris Chuckie then sets Trent up! DOUBLE STOMP PACKAGE DRIVER! Cover, Lucha Brothers win!
Winner: Lucha Bros via Spiked Fear Factor
3. Dragon Gate Glorious Gate: Ben-K & Keisuke Okuda vs Strong Machine J
Dragon Gate suspended activities from 3/1 up until 3/22. So this was their first show in about 3 weeks; and they took the AEW approach. The three main factions were seated around the non-entrance sides of the ring, and it was effectively empty arena. This was streamed for free on their YouTube, and yes, it has English commentary.
Now generally speaking this was a smaller show in regard to story impact, but this match had a lot of layers. A match between four members of the Dragon Gate generation (Dragon Gate was born from Ultimo Dragon’s old Toryumon promotion which ran from 1999-2004, but counts in the history of Dragon Gate). Strong Machine J are on the less experienced side of things, and Ben-K just lost the main championship in December. Ben-K and Okuda are close friends, with Okuda applying more of an MMA. He reminds me a bit of Nobuhiko Takada, and that’s not a bad thing.
Either way, the match was a great show of four younger peers trying to prove themselves to the hierarchy of Dragon Gate. Ben-K was definitely the most elite in the match and made to look to be on a different level; but Strong Machine J put together a few pinfall attempts that could’ve caught even the former champion. Ben-K and Okuda had a few nice tandem attacks where Okuda would strike and Ben-K would hit a suplex or powerbomb.
The match ends with Ben-K having to use his main finish, so that helps Strong Machine J look competent. In a show that was littered with R.E.D. interference in a few of the matches, this was the cleanest and also wrestled well.
Winner: Ben-K via Ben-K Bomb
2. IMPACT!: World Tag Team Championship: TJP & Fallah Bahh vs The North (c)
Fallah gets the hot tag and starts to help the challengers equal things out. A few big spots, a great Pop-up Powerbomb gives the Filipino team the first glimpse of a chance. After the commercial break, The North have the advantage again; but things are much more competitive. A few big trading spots leave all four men down on the mat, and then we start trading finish attempts. The North gets Fallah up for the Tandem Inverted Mat Slam; but Fallah kicks out. They go for a Tandem Crucifix Bomb, but a Double Clothesline gives Fallah the chance to tag in TJP.