The show went up on RPW On Demand this morning, so let's crack into it and go through it together, shall we?
Jushin Liger vs. Marty Scurll
Scurll taunting early, trying to get in Liger's head, but Liger can play just as well. Grappling from there, with the New Japan veteran having the advantage, tying the Villain up in knots and cannily blocking submission attempts on his own person. Scurll ends up outside, eating the nearly 52-year-old Liger's trademark cannonball off the apron, but back in the ring Scurll puts some offense together, wringing Liger to the mat alongside his arm and landing the apron superkick.
The punishment continues, Marty smashing Liger's face into the apron, chopping him hard, and taking him back inside for more arm violence, stomping away on the elbow and wrist. Liger mounts a comeback with boots in the corner into a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, then the Shotei in the corner, climbing up top... AVALANCHE FRANKENSTEINER! SCURLL KICKS OUT!
The Villain cuts him off with an uppercut and ends up with an inverted Olympic slam and a high knee for a nearfall. Liger blocks a chickenwing attempt into a victory roll, tries to follow with a brainbuster but Scurll reverses to a straight suplex. Back to the top, Liger with a superplex, leaving both men struggling. Slugging it out on their knees slap-for-slap, Marty pops up for a superkick and does the fakeout to the knee when Liger gets up.
Rolling Koppo Kick connects but the Villain pokes Liger's eyes when he goes to follow up. Scurll off the ropes and Liger steals his fakeout superkick and strings it into a Liger Bomb! Not enough! Winding up the big Shotei but Scurll catches his hand and wishbones his fingers. He taunts Liger and gets rolled up but is able to pop out of it...
Marty Scurll wins by submission with the crossface chickenwing.
Good opener, went a bit bigger than I expected and I'm certainly not complaining. One of the better Marty Scurll matches I've seen recently, being totally honest. Liger got that old man magic.
Sha Samuels vs. Tomoaki Honma
Testing their strength early on, pushing each other around in a lockup and going for the bull moose shoulder blocks. Honma misses a Kokeshi and Samuels takes him outside to introduce him to the guardrails and the ringpost. Back in the ring they slug it out, chop-for-forearm, Honma knocking Sha to the mat and trying another Kokeshi, but he rolls out the way.
Honma gets the deadlift suplex and follows with a charging forearm into a bulldog and connects with Kokeshi! A missile dropkick earns a nearfall, he goes right for the Fire Thunder but Samuels slips out and shoves him into referee Chris Roberts. Honma gets a visual pin off a brainbuster but Roberts isn't there to count. Samuels nails him with a low blow as he's checking on Roberts and then James Castle runs down and hits a Busaiku Knee on Honma!
Samuels makes the cover as Roberts wakes up... HONMA KICKS OUT! Castle winds up a second knee but Honma slips away and he nails Sha with it! Castle with a headbutt to Honma, Honma drops him with one of his own! Missile Kokeshi, Honma climbs up top...
Tomoaki Honma wins by pinfall with the diving Kokeshi.
On the slight side and, not being a regular viewer of RevPro, the interference means essentially nothing to me, but a reasonably good match all the same.
Pete Dunne vs. Yuji Nagata
Grappling early, Nagata practically wrestling literal circles around Dunne. Pete manages to ground Nagata with some wrist control but Blue Justice takes him around into a northern lights suplex and a side headlock. The Bruiserweight with a Jim Breaks armbar and he goes to work on Nagata's fingers but the bigger man forces his way out.
Nagata against the ropes and a shoving match breaks out when Dunne breaks, until Yuji shifts to kicks. Pete bites the fingers and Nagata writhes in pain on the mat! Dunne traps him up in the apron and throws a series of forearms before fishhooking his nose back in the ring and going to work on the arm again. Nagata steels himself and they go forearm-for-forearm on their feet but Dunne gets a double palm thrust and a boot for two before going to the Romero Special. He can't get all of it so he just stomps Nagata's knees and goes back to the nose.
More forearms and Nagata absolutely bowls Pete over with a knee strike! Chest kicks send Dunne into the corner, looking for the exploder but the Bruiserweight thumbs his eye to block it. Off the ropes, Nagata fakes a low dropkick and connects with the exploder. Not enough! Big corner enzuigiri from Dunne into a Go 2 Sleep but it doesn't quite connect. Double stomp off the top gets a nearfall, but when he looks to follow with Drop Dead Nagata fires a knee to the face and locks Shirome on! Dunne has a foot on the ropes!
Dunne blocks a shoulder armbreaker and throws more forearms but Nagata lands a stiff roundhouse to the arm. Blue Justice looking for that back suplex, Dunne out with a rake of the eyes and biting the fingers! Enzuigiri, corner knee...
Yuji Nagata wins by pinfall with a pinning back suplex.
Very good match. I've become a fan of Pete's looking over some of his back catalog since I bought RPW On Demand to be able to watch these, and it's great to see Nagata get a berth on one of these interpromotional shows, even under the circumstances of Michael Elgin being hurt.
Chris Hero vs. Tomohiro Ishii
Hero clobbers Ishii to the mat with an elbow right off! The Stone Pitbull gets right in his face and they go bull moose a while. Ishii looking for a suplex, Hero blocks and throws a scoop slam into the senton, then chops in the corner, but Ishii reverses, throwing chop and forearm combinations. Hero tosses Ishii outside and rocks his head with another straight elbow and a big boot, chucking him up the entry ramp.
Chop for chop they go, Hero throws a bicycle kick to end the exchange early, leaving Ishii motionless on the ramp as he does kip-ups in the ring. Ishii crawls back in and eats another senton but has the fight in him to throw defiant headbutts to Hero's midsection. Clubbing blows rain down and the Stone Pitbull fires up! Right hands to the head just wear Hero's hand out before Ishii fires chops back. Looking for the suplex again, Hero blocks it, Ishii connects with a lariat and suplexes Chris Hero up and over!
Following with a back suplex, Hero tries to fight out with elbows but Ishii stays in and lands it to put the self-proclaimed Greatest of All Time on the back foot for the first time in the match. Hero bowls Ishii over with Mafia kicks for a nearfall, then the short piledriver. ISHII POPS RIGHT BACK UP! Catches a boot and levels Hero with a headbutt! Ishii throwing running lariats, Hero remains standing and flips him off after the fourth, elbowing the lariat arm on the fifth!
Elbow for elbow, Ishii connects with the lariat, taking Hero to the mat! Sliding lariat gets a nearfall but Hero blocks the brainbuster with a knee. Ishii hitting the combo forearms but Hero has another boot for him. Ishii ducks an elbow and grabs a waistlock, looking for the German suplex, Hero blocks it for a while but Ishii connects and he pops right back up.
Hero swats the enzuigiri away and connects with a straight elbow. Ishii slips away from Death Blow and throws a huge right before connecting with a chop into the enzuigiri. Hero with a rolling elbow for a nearfall! Spike piledriver and Ishii's right back up again only to fall to an elbow...
Chris Hero wins by pinfall with the Gotch piledriver.
Every bit as awesome as you hoped it would be when you saw those two names across from each other, folks.
Hero gets on the mic after to put Ishii over, saying he's got a reputation as one of the baddest strong style wrestlers on the planet, but he wants everybody to go check out Ishii's work as a young boy in Michinoku Pro alongside Gedo, Minoru Tanaka, and Dick Togo. He says Ishii started at the very bottom and worked his way to the top, and he asks the crowd to give the man the ovation he deserves. Naturally, they oblige.
BUSHI vs. Will Ospreay
A bit of feeling out and right into it when BUSHI sprawls on the mat like a lovesick teenager-- Will flips him off and they proceed to get flippy. BUSHI catches Ospreay in the ropes with a front facelock, dropping him to the apron with a DDT! BUSHI punishes young Will more in the ring, eventually locking the STF on with his forearm practically jammed in Ospreay's mouth.
The choke with the t-shirt now but Will escapes and lands the handspring gamengiri. Ospreay hits a huge springboard forearm and follows it with the Sasuke Special! BUSHI blocks an OsCutter and hits Black Magic only to get caught for Cheeky Nando's and a nearfall. 450 comes up empty and BUSHI fires off a slingshot kick and a missile dropkick, followup with the corner knees into a nearfall of his own.
BUSHI calling for MX but Ospreay dodges and connects with a knockout roundhouse kick. The Aerial Assassin fired up, going for the OsCutter again but BUSHI counters with a lungblower! Throwing forearms, BUSHI short circuits with a kick and into a Codebreaker but Ospreay blocks, lifting him into a fireman's carry and knocking referee Chris Roberts out accidentally. BUSHI with the mist and an overrotated backslide... not enough!
Canadian Destroyer! WILL OSPREAY LIVES! BUSHI to the second rope but he jumps right into a gamengiri. Forearm for forearm into slap for slap, Ospreay levels BUSHI with a huge one. Rainham Maker connects and BUSHI kicks out! Corkscrew falling roundhouse...
Will Ospreay wins by pinfall with the OsCutter.
Good match. Bit of a tough row to hoe following Hero/Ishii but they managed, and honestly had a better match here than I reckon they would in New Japan, where Ospreay has felt weirdly off since Best of the Super Juniors and BUSHI has a tendency to fall a bit flat.
David Starr & Moustache Mountain (Trent Seven & Tyler Bate) vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (EVIL, SANADA, & Tetsuya Naito)
Lot of stalling early, but eventually Starr and SANADA get at it. Starr goes for a bunch of quick pin attempts before smashing SANADA to the mat with a precision pelvic thrust. The Cold Skull goes to town on the Product but Starr pops off a slam and a tag, bringing Seven and EVIL against each other. Trent goes to twirl his mustache and EVIL cuts him off, wrenching his whiskers!
A little bull moose action and SANADA and Naito run in and eat body slams on top of the King of Darkness before Bate and Starr join the body slam party a bit more willingly. The trio call for one more and turn to referee Chris Roberts to the delight of the crowd. Fortunately for him, LIJ wake up and go on the offensive, delivering simultaneous slams to the mustachioed ones. EVIL lifts Seven to his feet by his whiskers and yanks down on them before tagging to Naito.
The IWGP Intercontinental Champion presses the attack, clubbing Trent and continuing to work the beard and mustache. Quick tags as LIJ take Seven to the proverbial woodshed until SANADA heads to the turnbuckles, whereupon Trent yanks him by the leg right into a lariat. Tag made to Bate, he clears house, diving corkscrew uppercut on SANDA, looking for a German suplex but gets a dropkick into a kip-up, and then finally the deadlift German suplex for a nearfall!
Slugging it out now, until Tyler catches an uppercut into a backslide for two. He runs into a TKO and the active men turn over again to Starr and EVIL. More slugging, David throwing a wild series of straight forearms but eventually caught into a side slam. They try to double team the Product but he's a step ahead and manages to take them out but EVIL cuts him off before a dive.
Double mustache yank begets a double headbutt, Moustache Mountain follow it with a pop-up uppercut into a spinning backfist and tandem dives! Starr with a brainbuster over the knee... NOT ENOUGH! Everything breaks down a bit, LIJ running roughshod and leaving David Starr vulnerable for a freight train of strikes...
Los Ingobernables de Japon win by pinfall with EVIL from EVIL on David Starr.
Really good trios match. Moustache Mountain & Starr make for a really fun trio, and Los Ingobernables love wrenching a man's whiskers.
Katsuyori Shibata vs. Zack Sabre, Jr. (c) (RPW British Heavyweight Championship)
Grappling and jockeying for position early, Shibata largely staying on Sabre's back. Take two goes much the same as the first, with Shibata grabbing a sleeper momentarily. Right back at him on the break this time, Shibata grabbing a side headlock, Sabre shoots him off to the ropes and almost eats a Penalty Kick for his trouble. Sabre trying for the feet but Shibata manages to get away.
Back at it, ZSJ gets the arms this time, wrenching a surfboard in but Shibata flips out into an abdominal stretch attempt that Zack reverses. Sabre with a hip toss into the armbar but Shibata won't let him lock it in. Shibata with a knucklelock, elevating him and taking him down, wrenching and stomping the arm before transitioning to a short armscissors.
Zack escapes, Shibata goes right back at it but the technical wizard reverses and Pele kicks Shibata's taped-up arm. Seated armbar into a stepover twist, laying kicks in before an arm wringer takedown and a stomp to the elbow send Shibata to the outside, trying to shake some life back into his arm. He rolls back in and ZSJ steps on his head and grabs a wristlock, folding his arm to the mat and stomping on the shoulder that I'll remind you has a legitimate torn rotator cuff. Shibata is a madman.
Sabre flips into a triangle and rolls Shibata over into the Ode to Jim Breaks with a foot to back of his head but Shibata makes the ropes. Half nelson suplex blocked, Sabre with an uppercut and a boot before tearing the rest of the tape off Shibata's shoulder. He sits right back up after a disdainful kick but Zack just fires another one. More boots and Shibata just gets fired up, dropping Sabre with a single right hand and whipping him across for a Yakuza kick!
A second and a flurry of uppercuts follows, then the hesitation dropkick. Half-halch suplex into a pin but Sabre kicks right out so Shibata shifts back to the abdominal stretch. Sabre blocking and to the ropes, he gets dropped by a back suplex but pops right back up and throws one of his own. Kicks exchanged, laying both men out, and they crawl to their knees, exchanging forearms and then, on their feet, uppercuts, but Shibata wins the exchange with chest kicks that level Sabre.
Off the ropes for a boot, Zack Sabre, Jr. fills with determination and determines to trade boots with the man they call the Wrestler. Sabre picks a leg into a pin but Shibata kicks out into a sleeper! Zack pops right out into another pin and throws a roundhouse. A suplex follows, Penalty Kick... NOT ENOUGH! Sabre throwing chest kicks of his own, Shibata demands more and catches him with a huge slap when he comes off the ropes.
Back to the sleeper, Sabre nearly makes the ropes so Shibata chucks him with the sleeper suplex! Sleeper hold locked in, Sabre fades, Shibata sets him down on the mat...
Katsuyori Shibata wins by pinfall with a Penalty Kick, becoming the NEW RPW British Heavyweight Champion.
Awesome match. I think I might have liked their first one a bit more, the fighting spirit stuff at the end of this one crossed my personal line by a hair, but it's still a really good time.
Post-match, Chris Hero comes out to blow a kiss to the man he’ll face on Night 2, Katsuyori Shibata.
I mean, these shows are kind of worth it on some level even if they turn out disappointing, but this one absolutely wasn't. Hero/Ishii was my clear match of the night, but Scurll/Liger, Dunne/Nagata, and Shibata/Sabre are all varying degrees of very good to great. Check it out on RPW On Demand, folks, it's worth the time.