The 33rd edition of New Japan’s legendary G1 Climax tournament kicked off over the weekend in Hokkaido. You can find our primer on the event and the results from July 15’s night one here.
With Sun., July 16’s action in the books, all 32 men in this year’s field have now wrestled once. Night two saw three former NJPW Heavyweight/World champs lose to gaijin opponents, but first we got a look at HENARE (fka Aaron Henare)’s new Māori facial tattoo...
It didn’t help him win, but it’s a badass look for the indigenous New Zealander.
The other losses mentioned above included Jeff Cobb overpowering Tetsuya Naito en route to a Tour of the Islands-induced pinfall in the main event, Zack Sabre, Jr. countering an armbar into a roll-up victory over Hiroshi Tanahashi, and AEW’s Eddie Kingston winning a slobberknocker with Shingo Takagi when he got three off a Northern Lights Suplex.
Highlights from ’G1 CLIMAX 33 Day2’ (July 16th)— njpwworld (@njpwworld) July 16, 2023
Watch Now: https://t.co/FMcgC2wxXZ
5th match: 【G1 CLIMAX 33 C BLOCK TOURNAMENT】@Takagi__Shingo #EddieKingston#G1CLIMAX33 #NJPW #noah_ghc #njpwworld pic.twitter.com/ACD8LuECui
Eddie isn’t done with Shingo. But before we get to that, here are Sunday’s full results from Hokkaido Prefectural Sports Center.
• David Finlay def. Tomohiro Ishii
• Mikey Nicholls def. Aaron Henare
• Eddie Kingston def. Shingo Takagi
• EVIL def. Tama Tonga
• Hirooki Goto def. Toru Yano
• Shane Haste def. Alex Coughlin
• Zack Sabre Jr. def. Hiroshi Tanahashi
• Jeff Cobb def. Tetsuya Naito
Which gives us the following way too early look at the standings:
Chase Owens (1-0-0): 2
SANADA (1-0-0): 2
Kaito Kiyomiya (1-0-0): 2
Ren Narita (0-0-1): 1
Shota Umino (0-0-1): 1
Gabe Kidd (0-0-0): 0
Hikuleo (0-0-0): 0
Yota Tsuji (0-0-0): 0
Kazuchika Okada (1-0-0): 2
Taichi (1-0-0): 2
Tama Loa (1-0-0): 2
YOSHI-HASHI (1-0-0): 2
El Phantasmo (0-1-0): 0
Great-O-Khan (0-1-0): 0
KENTA (0-1-0): 0
Will Ospreay (0-1-0): 0
David Finlay (1-0-0): 2
Tomohiro Ishii (0-1-0): 0
EVIL (1-0-0): 2
Eddie Kingston (1-0-0): 2
Tama Tonga (0-1-0): 0
Shingo Takagi (0-1-0): 0
Aaron Henare (0-1-0): 0
Mikey Nicholls (1-0-0): 2
Hirooki Goto (1-0-0): 2
Zack Sabre Jr. (1-0-0): 2
Jeff Cobb (1-0-0): 2
Shane Haste (1-0-0): 2
Hiroshi Tanahashi (0-1-0): 0
Tetsuya Naito (0-1-0): 0
Toru Yano (0-1-0): 0
Alex Coughlin (0-0-0): 0
Back to the NJPW Strong Openweight champ, at the post-match presser he thanked Takagi for the fight — and challenged AEW’s Tony Khan to book a rematch for one of the two big PPV events the company has coming up in late August & early September...
“Shingo, I’m not going to talk a lot of trash, or try to sell tickets. This is a sport, so I’m going to treat it like a sport. Thank you for the fight and I hope we do it again. I’m praying, Tony Khan I put you on the spot, me and Shingo for All In or All Out,
“Give us time. Me and Shingo will show the world, Strong Style, King’s Road combined. Thank you, Shingo.”
The G1 wraps up on Aug. 12 (and if Eddie & Shingo don’t make the quarterfinals, their last matches will happen Aug. 8), so that would give them time to rest up before a possible round two in Wembley Stadium or the United Center.
For now, they’ll get ready for their next matches on Wednesday (July 19). The G1 resumes tomorrow with more A & B Block action. You can find the card of tournament matches for those shows and the full G1 match schedule here. All shows stream on the NJPWWorld subscription service.