It’s been a couple of days since the last major set of New Japan Pro Wrestling shows (for match recommendations for Wrestling Dontaku, check here) and you know what that means— announcement time! We’ve got confirmed matches for Dominion 6.9 and the Best of the Super Jr. Finals, as well as block assignments for the tournament, so let’s list ‘em out and break ‘em down, starting with the matches.
Best of the Super Jr. 26 Finals (June 5, 5:30AM Eastern / 2:30AM Pacific)
- Block A Winner vs. Block B Winner (Best of the Super Jr. 26 Tournament Finals)
- Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. “Switchblade” Jay White
Dominion 6.9 in Osaka-jo Hall (June 9, 3AM Eastern / 12AM Pacific)
- Taichi (c) vs. Tomohiro Ishii (NEVER Openweight Championship)
- Kota Ibushi (c) vs. Tetsuya Naito (IWGP Intercontinental Championship)
- Chris Jericho vs. Kazuchika Okada (c) (IWGP Heavyweight Championship)
Okay, so nothing new or surprising here, really! This is all stuff that was set up on the two nights of Wrestling Dontaku but that being said, it’s a pretty exciting set of matches.
The 1/100 Ace returns against the Switchblade in a match that could have very real IWGP Heavyweight Championship implications for the fall and also rounds out the Best of the Super Jr. 26 Finals, a show that often lacks a compelling reason to tune in above and beyond the actual tournament finals.
As far as Dominion 6.9 goes, well, nobody expected black lipstick grandpa Chris Jericho to show back up, let alone challenge Kazuchika Okada for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, but I’m here for it. Chris has successfully reinvented himself as a grumpy dad brawler in New Japan and given the match Okada got out of the grumpiest dad brawler of them all, Genichiro Tenryu, when the old man was 65, broken down, and retiring, I’m confident this is gonna be good.
Plus Naito tries to reclaim a belt he never wanted but now covets as part of his strategy to become a double champ from Ibushi in a match that should easily tear the house down, and Taichi faces the Stone Pitbull in his first defense of the NEVER, surely a tough test if there ever was one.
- Dragon Lee
- Jonathan Gresham
- Marty Scurll
- Shingo Takagi
- Taiji Ishimori
- TAKA Michinoku
- Tiger Mask IV
- Yoshinobu Kanemaru
- El Desperado
- El Phantasmo
- Flip Gordon
- Robbie Eagles
- Rocky Romero
- Ryusuke Taguchi
- Will Ospreay
Well, those two blocks are mighty evenly matched!
I’d give A the slight nod just because having Lee, Ishimori, Gresham, AND Shingo all in the same block is a recipe for excellence, plus my personal pick for a sleeper match of the tournament is Gresham vs. Tiger Mask, because Tiger Dad always brings it in BOSJ and Gresh is low-key one of the best wrestlers in the world today.
But with B block full of vets like Romero and Taguchi, plus stalwart Ospreay and newcomers Bandido and Phantasmo, well, I don’t think there are likely to be too many duds in this year’s tournament, folks.
And, not strictly relevant to the tournament, but Brody King will be wrestling on this tour!
There you have it, folks
Now that BOSJ blocks are settled, what matches are you looking forward to most, Cagesiders?