NJPW Best of Super Juniors 29: Night 1 Results (5/15)

Best of Super Juniors is back where it belongs; in the springtime of the year. The opening night of the 29th Best of Super Juniors tournament saw a number of tournament debuts, with debutantes and returning competitors alike looking to make a big statement to kick off the tournament.

Block action started off with three debuts getting important wins on their road to establishing themselves amongst the locker room. IMPACT X Division Champion Ace Austin used his wiles to get the win over LA Dojo graduate Clark Connors. It wasn’t just cunning strategy and his signature FOLD finisher that got Austin the win, he also sliced the webbing of Connor’s fingers with a laminated playing card. The X Division champion is going to be a difficult obstacle for the A Block competitors.

Indie darling and former-WWE Superstar Alex Zayne got a big win over Yoshinobu Kanemaru. Zayne used his speed advantage and fast food flavored offense to pick up two points over the Junior Heavyweight legend.

The final debut of the night was a confusing one. The villainous United Empire debuted their latest Jr. Heavyweight Francesco Akira. Despite being a member of the bully faction, as well as aligning with the universally-despised TJP, it was an odd sight to see Francesco Akira (and TJP) play plucky underdog against House of Torture’s SHO. SHO’s devious tactics were thwarted by TJP, giving Akira the chance to hit him with Fireball and pick up two points. Francesco Akira, the same nice young man that he was in AJPW, seems an odd fit in United Empire, but time will tell.

In the semi-main event Ryusuke Taguchi broke a promise to himself, and to the fans. The IWGP Jr. Tag Team Champion promised “no butt stuff” at the pre-tournament press conference, and within seconds of the bell ringing in his first match, Taguchi was flying ass-first at Hiromu Takahashi. A broken promise or a careful misdirection, either way it was all for naught. Hiromu was able to trap Taguchi in the Nameless Hiromu Roll to earn two points.

In the main event, Taiji Ishimori tapped out the soft-spoken, comfy-dressed YOH. For lack of a better term, YOH is entering this tournament a hollow shell of himself. Whatever is going on with the young superstar, it is holding him back. He barely spoke at the pre-tournament, and the man barely lasted 15 minutes against the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion. While it is still early, YOH will need to pick up the pace if he hopes to make the finals like he did last year.

Here are the full results:


NJPW Best of Super Juniors 29: Night 1

Available on NJPWWorld.com

  • Non-Tournament Match: Robbie Eagles, Master Wato, Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Tiger Mask def. Wheeler Yuta, Yuto Nakashima, Ryohei Oiwa & Kosei Fujita by pinfall. (10:16)

    Master Wato pinned Kosei Fujita via Recientemente.
  • Non-Tournament Match: Los Ingobernables de Japon (BUSHI & Shingo Takagi) def. Bullet Club (Dick Togo & El Phantasmo) by pinfall. (9:15)

    Shingo Takagi pinned Dick Togo via Pumping Bomber.
  • Non-Tournament Match: Titán, EL LINDAMAN & Jado def. Suzuki-gun (TAKA Michinoku, DOUKI & El Desperado) by pinfall. (9:13)

    Titán pinned TAKA Michinoku via Double Stomp.
  • A Block: Ace Austin (2) def. Clark Connors (0) by pinfall via THE FOLD. (9:51)
  • A Block: Alex Zayne (2) def. Yoshinobu Kanemaru (0) by pinfall via Cinnamon Twist. (11:31)
  • A Block: Francesco Akira (2) def. SHO (0) by pinfall via Fireball. (11:49)
  • A Block: Hiromu Takahashi (2) def. Ryusuke Taguchi (0) by pinfall via Nameless Hiromu Roll. (10:32)
  • A Block: Taiji Ishimori (2) def. YOH (0) by submission via Bone Lock. (16:15)

READ MORE: Best of Super Juniors Schedule

NJPW Best of Super Juniors continues on May 17th at 5:30am ET on NJPWWorld.com