On the eve of WrestleMania, Ring of Honor and New Japan Pro Wrestling teamed up for G1 Supercard of Honor in front of a sold out Madison Square Garden. Check out the results from the event below.
Jeff Cob def. Will Osprey to win the NEVER Openweight and ROH World TV Championship.
The show kicked off with Jeff Cob and Will Osprey putting their respective titles on the line, in a winner-take all match. This was fantastic from bell-to-bell, and was everything you would expect from a Will Osprey match. Osprey and Cob had a very big man vs little man match and it was amazing. Osprey was incredible in the air as you’d expect from a guy called the Aerial Assassin, and Jeff Cob proved that he is one of the best wrestlers in the world. I am shocked he isn’t in NXT personally. A fantastic opener that got the crowd excited.
Rush def. Dalton Castle.
Well this was odd, both men got in the ring and one of The Boys left one of their fans in the ring, when Dalton was distracted by the Referee cleaning it up Rush attacked him. Rush hit him with basically three shotgun dropkicks into the corner, pinned him and that was it. I was shocked by this and was unsure what they would do with Dalton, then he attacked and it all made sense. I think a heel turn for Castle will do good for him and I am looking forward to see how it’s handled.
Kelly Klein def. Mayu Iwatani to win the Women of Honor Championship.
Moving on from that complete squash match, we moved on to a women’s match for the WOH title. This was a very fun match with a ton of really cool spots especially from Mayu Iwatani. It was a fairly back-and-forth match and both ladies told an intriguing story throughout. At the end though, Klein got her title back and was promptly attacked by Velvet Sky and Angelina Love (The Beautiful People from TNA). Mandy Leon then came to the ring who was on commentary and joined the stable, who revealed themselves to be called Alurre. I am interested by this and was a good story progression after a very fun women’s match, although the crowd did not seem into it, which was disappointing.
Flip Gordon, Juice Robinson, & Mark Haskins def. Bully Ray, Shane Taylor, & Silas Young in a Six-Man NYC Streetfight.
Now this was meant to be a 1-on-1 match between Juice and Bully Ray, but after Juice was shown laid out earlier in the night the match was changed. Flip Gordon first came out in Juice’s spot, but this turned into a six-man tornado tag match. This had a very ECW feel to it and was one of the best “street fight” matches in a long time. All six men got extremely creative with a variety of weapons and it gave a nice change of pace to the show. If you like extreme, no holds barred-type matches, this is the one for you. It was chaotic and just a ton of fun.
Dragon Lee def. Bandadio & Taiji Ishimori to win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship.
This was everything you could expect from a Junior Heavyweight match. This was so much fun from start to finish all three of these guys put their heart out there and I was not bored at any point during this match. It wasn’t even just a “flippy” match either, all three men hit some ridiculous power moves. I feel like the match ended suddenly and I would’ve liked it to have gone a bit longer, but that might just be me being selfish. Another extremely fun match and was one of the most pure fun matches of the entire show, fantastic.
G.O.D def. Villain Enterprises, EVIL and SANADA, & The Briscoes to retain the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Titles
Moving on from that we had a four corners match for the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Titles, and this was a lot of fun from all teams. PCO had a crazy entrance complete with an electric chair which was super goofy but I loved that was used to jump start him and bring him to life. Speaking of PCO at one point the 51 year old man was powerbombed from the ring to the floor with nobody to catch him, and he sat up like the Undertaker.
This was just a fun, chaotic four corners match from all teams involved. Guerrillas of Destiny would eventually pick up the win with a super powerbomb onto Brody King to retain their titles. Very fun match and while it was not match of the night, was still a solid match. The four corners stipulation was used very well to tell a story throughout the match.
Zack Sabre Jr. def. Hiroshi Tanahashi to retain the British Heavyweight Championship.
This was a match of Zack Sabre Jr. doing Zack Sabre Jr. things. There was a lot of submission work and I will never understand how smoothly ZSJ can transition into submissions the way he does. This was the perfect spot for this match because it was a great way for the crowd to take a bit of a breath. It was a fun, short match which just reinforced ZSJ being a technical genius, he is truly amazing. Both men were supremely over here, but I think it was right to have ZSJ retain, because, well he’s British.
Kota Ibushi def. Tetsuya Naito to win the IWGP Intercontinental Championship.
This was potentially the match of the night and I expected no less from these two, this was also the first real New Japan Showcase of the night and they did not let down. When the crowd chants “Holy Sh*t” before the match even begins, you know you’re in for something special. If you did not watch this show, I urge you to seek out this match at the very least, it was flawless from start-to-finish. The match went about 20 minutes and I think they filled out that time perfectly, with Kota Ibushi becoming the new IWGP Intercontinental Champion.
Matt Taven def. Jay Lethal & Marty Scurll to win the ROH World Heavyweight Championship.
Next we had a triple threat ladder match for the Ring of Honor championship. This was a lot of fun and they really used the ladders all throughout the match. Probably the spot of the match was when Jay Lethal did a Macho Man-esque Elbow off the ladder putting Taven through a table. There was one scary part of the match where they had one ladder through the other making an X and they tossed it out of the ring. It clipped a fan, but he was okay.
Other than that, this was a really fun match with a ton of creative ladder spots. A fantastic showcase for ROH. Taven got a lot of heel heat and while I’m not his biggest fan, I am interested to see how he will do as Champion.
Kazuchika Okada def. Jay White to win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship.
Then we had our main event of the evening, The Rainmaker vs The Switchblade for the prestigious IWGP Heavyweight Championship. Switchblade came out in all white, which looked super slick. Okada came out in usual Rainmaker gear. This match was kind of slow but that helped the match, it made it feel like a big deal which is how the IWGP title should feel. The two had a crazy amount of pinfalls, counters, and spots all throughout and told an extremely good story. With Jay White even kicking out of not 1, but 2 Rainmakers. It was not enough however, as Okada hit one more Rainmaker and shockingly, reclaimed his IWGP Heavyweight Championship.
Overall thoughts on the show.
From start to finish this was a fantastic show, every match was it’s own and they were all amazing for their own reasons. Every wrestler put their heart and soul into their performances and I think they all realized the significance of the show with it being in MSG. The production quality was phenomenal from ROH and NJPW, and they did a great job making it feel like a big show. I think match of the night was probably the main event, and Jay White kicking out of two Rainmakers. It made him look strong in defeat.
There were a couple questionable parts of the show, like Dalton Castle getting squashed, but I think there was far more good than bad. The show was like 5 and a half hours long but it honestly did not feel that long. They paced it fantastically and at no point did it feel like a long show. They broke it up very well and gave us enough matches that allowed us to catch our breaths a bit. If you have never seen a ROH or NJPW show, and want to get into it, I highly recommend you check out this show.