With Strong Style Evolved in the can (check out our match recommendations right here if you missed them) and less than a week to go until Sakura Genesis, New Japan Pro Wrestling have made haste in getting the full card for the next show out for us, so let’s take a look, shall we?
NJPW Sakura Genesis 2018 (April 1, 3AM Eastern, 12AM Pacific)
- Bullet Club (Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi) vs. Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson)
- Chaos (Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano) vs. Suzuki-gun (Taichi & Takashi Iizuka)
- Bullet Club (Bad Luck Fale, Tama Tonga, & Tanga Loa) (c) vs. Taguchi Japan (Michael Elgin, Ryusuke Taguchi, & Togi Makabe) (NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship)
- Chaos (Hirooki Goto, “Switchblade” Jay White, & YOSHI-HASHI) vs. David Finlay, Hiroshi Tanahashi, & Juice Robinson
- Los Ingobernables de Japon (EVIL, SANADA, & Tetsuya Naito) vs. Suzuki-gun (Davey Boy Smith, Jr., Lance Archer, & Minoru Suzuki)
- Los Ingobernables de Japon (BUSHI & Hiromu Takahashi) vs. Roppongi 3K (SHO & YOH) vs. Suzuki-gun (El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru) (c) (IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship)
- Marty Scurll vs. Will Ospreay (c) (IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship)
- Bullet Club (Cody Rhodes & Hangman Page) vs. Golden Lovers (Kenny Omega & Kota Ibushi)
- Kazuchika Okada (c) vs. Zack Sabre, Jr. (IWGP Heavyweight Championship)
So what have we got here?
The first thing that leaps out at me is that EVIL is, at last, back from the broken orbital bone he suffered during New Japan’s tour of Australia last month, so that’s great to see, even if I’m not necessarily the most stoked that that match seems to be in service of setting up a tag title defense for LIJ against Killer Elite Squad.
Of course, with Rey Mysterio, Jr. still out with his bicep injury, the challenges made on Sunday will have to wait, so running Scurll/Ospreay in the meantime is logical, and I was surprised by how much I was into their match at Power Struggle last year, so I’m quite open to another round of that.
But most interesting and exciting here is the next step taken on the Golden Lovers vs. Bullet Club story. Golden Lovers getting another match against a Bullet Club team is no shock, and the composition of that team being Cody and Hangman Page makes perfect sense, but Young Bucks vs. Owens and Takahashi is super interesting.
Not just because it reinforces the idea that despite Cody’s apology, the Young Bucks find themselves on the outside looking in, but because Chase Owens has stood by Kenny and Kota this entire time, teaming with Ibushi on many of the New Japan Cup shows. Can he and Yujiro hold it together against the Bucks or will his sympathy for the Golden Lovers lead to another exit from Bullet Club?
There you have it, folks
Excited to be up at butt o’clock for this one, Cagesiders?