The finals are coming up fast and the action is only getting more intense. Tonight’s A-Block series comes to us from Fukuoka and it is surely set to clear up that finals picture. With only a few matches left, who will stake their claim as the winner of the A-Block?
Michael Elgin vs. Bad Luck Fale:
Elgin is coming off of an absolutely insane match with Okada that is easily my A-Block match of the tournament, and, well, Fale is Fale. Per the rest of the tourney, Fale is out here with Tanga Loa, let the countdown to shenanigans begin. I’d be lying if I said I was looking forward to this match.
Fale is going right to the heavily taped and severely injured bicep of Elgin. And just like that, Loa interjects himself, but Big Mike eliminates the Tongan for now. Fale could be such a badass big man but all the BS he and G.O.D. are up to is just killing his potential. Like I said in my Night 11 review, if the story was going somewhere, I wouldn’t be as disappointed but it’s not.
Fale is targeting his entire offense on the right arm of Elgin. If Big Mike truly is injured then he has some serious trust in Fale to not mess his shit up worse. Elgin is a one-armed man at this point as he can barely move the injured right arm. Elgin is the only positive in this match, his heart with the injury has the crowd 100% behind him.
From the opening bell, this match has solely been “when are the Tongans going to interfere.” It just puts this damper on the match and kills the interest I have in watching. And just like that, the ref is down and here comes Tanga Loa. The crowd is booing furiously and rightfully so, they’re just as annoyed.
Elgin gets a massive bodyslam onto Fale and goes to the top. As he climbs Tama Tonga runs down and smashes him with a chair. Multiple chair shots to the downed Elgin and the ref is ringing the bell. Another match involving the BC OG’s and another shit finish. I’m over it, no real story is being told. If they’re just going to interfere, get it over with and save us the time.
Winner: Michael Elgin
Togi Makabe vs. Hangman Page:
Hangman gives everything he an in the open to try and move Makabe but to no avail. Makabe answers back with a massive shoulder block that sends Page to the floor. Page gets back into the ring and then flies to the outside to hit Makabe with a Suicide Dive. Page follows that up by sending Togi chest first into the barricade.
Page has no shot at winning the tournament and he is fighting with anger and just trying to make some waves and play spoiler. Makabe isn’t laying down for Hangman though and he is fighting strong. Don’t forget, Makabe is a former G1 winner back in 2009, he’s no slouch.
Page hits a gorgeous Rolling Elbow into a Bridging German Suplex combo for two. These guys are laying it in stiff and everytime Page hits Makabe, Makabe just hits him back harder. Can we take a second to talk about Makabe’s nickname? He’s the Unchained Gorilla, that’s badass!!
Makabe gets an opening and tries for the King Kong Knee Drop but Page rolls to safety. Massive test of strength as both men are trying to lariat the others head off. Makabe unleashes a pair of lariats that sends Page to the apron, Makabe runs to the ropes and his met with the Buckshot Lariat!
Page quickly follows with a Rite of Passage and gets another two points! Even though he has been eliminated, Page is not slowing down and he wants to finish the best he can.
Winner: Hangman Page
Switchblade Jay White vs. Yoshi-Hashi:
This is a battle between CHAOS stablemates. White wanted Yoshi-Hashi to lay down and give him a pass and Yoshi-Hashi wasn’t having that at all. The way White has been treating his stablemates here is absolutely 0 chance they do him any favors.
Yoshi is off to a quick start and is doing his best to make Switchblade pay for his sins against CHAOS. And just like that Jay White finds himself in control after a nasty Saito Suplex to Yoshi over the top rope. White is repeatedly smashing Yoshi-Hashi into the barricade in ring apron and it pummeling him into the announce desk.
It is awesome having Rocky Romero on commentary as he gives the insight into how the rest of CHAOS feels toward White. White is just punishing Yoshi-Hashi and is now going to get a chair for further damage. Red Shoes intervenes and this gives Yoshi-Hashi the opening to fight back. Yoshi-Hshi is building some steam and caps it off with a Blockbuster for a two count.
You can hear the pain in Rocky’s voice anytime he has to say anything complimentary of Jay White. Yoshi-Hashi with a POwerbomb into a bridge for two. As he’s done throughout the tournament, White uses the ref as a distraction to crotch Yoshi on the top.
White goes for the Bladerunner, Yoshi counters with a Karma attempt but to no avail. Switchblade pushes Yoshi into Red Shoes and then hits the low blow as he’s done time and time again. The crowd is unanimously behind Yoshi-Hashi as they want him to put away White. Yoshi goes for the finish but his Karma attempt is reversed into the Blade Runner for the three.
Jay White goes over to Rocky after the match and apologizes but explains it has to happen this way. He tells Rocky that things have to be done the hard way sometimes and his way gets results.
Winner: Switchblade Jay White
Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. EVIL:
The Ace and The King of Darkness are set to face off with Tanahashi at the top of the table and EVIL still in the hunt. This is an incredibly important match as an EVIL win gets him in the conversation and a Tana win will further cement him at the top. This is Tanahashi’s 17th G1 and he doesn’t show a single sign of slowing down.
The two start the match battling or position via some chain wrestling. EVIL ducks a strike from Tana and drapes his injured arm over the top rope. EVIl is slowing the match down to his pace and is working the arm mercilessly.
Rocky is going in depth about Tanahashi’s academic prowess. Just really breaking down the fact that Tana is super smart. Tana is finally able to break EVIL’s grasp with a Kangaroo Kick and then he goes to the usual sequence of Forearm Smash and Senton. EVIL knocks Tana off the top rope and The Ace goes crashing to the floor.
A really fun spot where Red Shoes had Tana’s leg and Tana had EVIL’s leg, after a brief Mexican Standoff, everyone agrees to set the legs down. EVIL is in firm control and is working over Tana in every aspect. Tanahashi counters an Everything is Evil into a Twist and Shout to give himself some breathing room. A quick Slingblade from Tanahashi to get a two count.
Tanahashi connects with a standing High Fly Flow but fails on the follow-up attempt. EVIL plants Tana with Darkness Falls but Tana is able to get the shoulder up at 2 3/4! Tanahashi counters an Everything is Evil attempt into one of his own and he quickly scales the ropes to put away EVIL with a High Fly Flow. Tana now sits firmly with 12 pints and it’s his block to lose!
Winner: Hiroshi Tanahashi
Minoru Suzuki vs. Kazuchika Okada:
The King and The Rainmaker will duel to see who moves up the ladder to join Tanahashi near the top of the table. Suzuki has absolutely zero time for Okada’s antics and attacks him right off the bat. Suzuki gets Okada into the crowd and he’s punishing him with chairs and barricades.
Red Shoes has a death wish as he interferes with Suzuki murdering people in the crowd. Okada tries to fight back but Minoru quickly gets the upper hand. This is his world and Okada needs to try and get back to the ring. Minoru makes his way back to ringside while Okada is still struggling in the crowd. Suzuki is just waiting with a chair for Okada to make his way back.
Somehow Okada makes his way back into the ring at the count of 19 and Suzuki is incredibly annoyed by this. Suzuki is just toying with Okada, he kicks him off the apron into the barricade at ringside. Okada once again by some miracle breaks the count at 19.
Suzuki is showing his veteran wherewithal and blocking the ref’s vision while he chokes Okada with his shirt. Okada is trying to fight back with some forearms and kicks. Suzuki gets back in control and he’s now torturing Okada with a barrage of Armbar variations.
Okada is able to connect with a Shotgun Dropkick and now he’s taunting Suzuki, Okada wants to die. The two engage in a striking battle which both seem more than happy to oblige. They are just laying in the strikes and beating the hell out of each other! The emotion in this match is so heavy, each man giving everything in the tank, the sweat flying with each connected palm strike, magic.
Okada slips out of the Rear Naked Choke and goes for a Rainmaker just to get clocked in the face. Okada hits the Tombstone and then collapses to the ground! Kazu goes for his own Gotch Piledriver which leads to Suzuki countering into a Tombstone attempt of his own. Okada finally hits Suzuki with a Gotch Style Tombstone. Okada is finally able to put away Suzuki with the Rolling Rainmaker into the Traditional Rainmaker combo. This was a hell of a war!
Okada now joins Switchblade at 10 points and Suzuki is officially eliminated. Luckily no Young Lions were killed during this match.
Winner: Kazuchika Okada
|Jay White||10||Kota Ibushi||8|
|Minoru Suzuki||8||Zack Sabre Jr||6|
|Bad Luck Fale||6||Tomohiro Ishii||4|
|Michael Elgin||6||Hirooki Goto||4|
|Togi Makabe||4||Tama Tonga||4|
|Hangman Page||4||Juice Robinson||4|
The A-Block is coming to a hell of a finish and it is a three horse race. With Tanahashi not slowing down a bit, both Okada and Switchblade can’t afford any slip-ups. Thanks for reading our coverage of the G1 and stay tuned as the final inches closer!