A newb-friendly guide to some of the biggest stories in New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW) for the week of March 13, 2013 through March 19, 2013.
New Japan Cup iPPV results
The finals of the New Japan Cup were broadcast live on iPPV this past Saturday morning (Mar. 23) and are still available to view on NJPW's official Ustream as a video-on-demand (VOD) until April 1st.
On top of being a solid show, the results have laid the groundwork for what looks to be NJPW's most stacked card since WrestleKingdom, when Invasion Attack takes place Apr. 7 over WrestleMania weekend.
The results from the Cup itself:
Hirooki Goto defeated Davey Boy Smith Jr. via pinfall with his Goto Shiki (cross-legged cradle)
Kazuchika Okada defeated Toru Yano via submission with his Red Ink (kneeling cross-legged STF)
Kazuchika Okada defeated Hirooki Goto via pinfall with his Rainmaker (wrist-lock transitioned into lariat)
With his New Japan Cup win, Okada has become the number one contender for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, and will face off against champion Hiroshi Tanahashi at Invasion Attack in a rematch of their WrestleKingdom match from January. His Cup win also means Okada has captured three of NJPW's most prestigious accomplishments since his return to the company--the New Japan Cup tournament, the G1 Climax tournament, and the IWGP Heavyweight Championship.
It appears that Okada's new submission finisher Red Ink will supplement his Rainmaker instead of entirely replacing it, meaning that Okada can finish his big matches either on his feet or on the ground.
All the non-Cup matches from the event were multi-man tag matches:
Manabu Nakanishi, Jushin Thunder Liger & Tiger Mask IV defeated Yuji Nagata, Super Strong Machine & BUSHI
Togi Makabe, Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima defeated Takashi Iizuka, Yujiro Takahashi & YOSHI-HASHI
Shinsuke Nakamura, Tomohiro Ishii & Jado defeated Minoru Suzuki, Lance Archer & TAKA Michinoku
Karl Anderson, Tama Tonga, Prince Devitt & Ryusuke Taguchi defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi, Captain New Japan, KUSHIDA & Alex Shelley
Prince Devitt's been pretty vocal expressing his hatred of Captain New Japan and Hiroshi Tanahashi (and most everyone else in NJPW right now), so his win by way of pinning Captain New Japan in his multi-man tag match must have brought a quantum of solace, but Devitt is still looking to avenge his loss to Tanahashi at Anniversary Show.
A flurry of callings-out took place during the show to set up Invasion Attack.
NWA president Bruce Tharpe sent over a video to NJPW which aired during the show. He announced that new NWA World Heavyweight Champion Rob Conway will be the "representative" to come to NJPW and prove NWA's superiority. Tharpe has done well as the evil gaijin in his videos, and Conway is probably one of the best choices as far as sending over an established singles wrestler with NWA ties. Conway is most widely known for his run in WWE between 2000 and 2007, where he was a part of La Resistance from 2003 to 2005.
After teasing it, Shinsuke Nakamura challenged Davey Boy Smith Jr. and Lance Archer to an IWGP Tag Team Championship match, where Nakamura will partner with Tomohiro Ishii. Smith Jr. accepted, but also challenged Nakamura for his IWGP Intercontinental Championship. The tag team match will take place during the show leading up to Invasion Attack, whereas the Intercontinental match will take place on Invasion Attack.
Tomoaki Honma made a surprise run-in to save Togi Makabe from a CHAOS beat down.
Alex Shelley challenged Prince Devitt to an IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship match. The trash talk on Twitter has already begun:
@fakekinkade if i were you id be more worried about getting your head kicked in by the REEEEEAL Prince Devitt. Video game NERD
— Prince Devitt (@fergaldevitt) March 25, 2013
Invasion Attack card
NJPW announced the card for its Invasion Attack iPPV taking place Apr. 7. Bob Sapp and Akebono make their return to NJPW after a... match at WrestleKingdom. These are spectacle guys and they are what they are. Personally, I enjoy seeing them both on the undercard.
Aside from NJPW's IWGP title defenses, titles from CMLL and the NWA will be defended. A total of five championship matches in all:
IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship
Time Splitters (C) (KUSHIDA & Alex Shelly) vs. Apollo55 (Prince Devitt & Ryusuke Taguchi)
Eight-man Tag Team Match
Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Manabu Nakanishi, Super Strong Machine, & Akebono vs. Takashi Iizuka, Tomohiro Ishii, YOSHI-HASHI, & Bob Sapp
CMLL World Tag Team Championship
El Terrible & Tama Tonga (C) vs. La Mascara & Valiente
Tag team match
Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma vs. Masato Tanaka & Yujiro Takahashi
Toru Yano vs. Minoru Suzuki
Tag team match
Yuji Nagata & Hirooki Goto vs. Kazushi Sakuraba & Katsuyori Shibata
NWA World Heavyweight Championship
Rob Conway (C) vs. Satoshi Kojima
IWGP Intercontinental Championship
Shinsuke Nakamura (C) vs. Davey Boy Smith Jr.
IWGP Heavyweight Championship
Hiroshi Tanahashi (C) vs. Kazuchika Okada
Fan-subbed videos of puro
Videos can be found at Rain Maker's YouTube channel.
That's it for this week. If you feel we missed a story let us know in the comments section. In the mean time, check out Rain Maker's YouTube channel!