There is, seemingly, no rest for the wicked and just 24 hours after the final bell had rung on the superb Wrestle Kingdom 14, them good folks over at New Japan Pro Wrestling were back with NJPW New Year Dash.
It’s insane to think that less than a day before most of the competitors involved here were putting their bodies through hell just for our entertainment and you’d think that that amount of punishment would mean that New Year Dash would suffer, but that’s the beauty of this format.
By focusing on team-ups it allows all of your favorite NJPW stars to show up, do a few bits, and let other wrestlers carry the majority of the workload. It keeps the crowd happy, stops their big hitters from risking serious injury, and means that they can put on another in a series of stellar shows.
You can probably guess when I’m going with this review so if you don’t want to hear another Indy Guy rave on about the virtues of NJPW, then thanks for coming and I’ll see you Saturday for the SmackDown review.
For those of you that have chosen to stay, it’s time to lace up our boots and head to the ring.
6 Man Tag-Team Match: Toa Henare, Yota Tsuji, & Yuya Uemura vs. Karl Fredericks, Clark Connors, & Alex Coughlin
Right off the bat, New Year Dash opened up with the perfect example of how to build a show.
This was a clinic in technical wrestling and hard-hitting blows and had zero flippy sh*t in sight for the likes of Jim Cornette and his idiot drones to lose their sh*t over. In fact, there was a distinct lack of flippy shit through-out the entire event which may have had something to do with the previous night’s excursions, which would make a lot of sense.
You push something too hard it will break eventually.
The trick that NJPW does better than nearly every other company is to let the matches and the show grow naturally, proving that you don’t always need to throw out a barnstormer for the curtain jerker to get people invested in what’s going on.
Hands were thrown, back’s were dropped, suplexes were verticalled, and it all ended after Fredericks tapped Uemura out with a submission.
Winners: Karl Fredericks, Clark Connors, & Alex Coughlin