The 28 annual G1 Climax has come to an end and the winner has been declared after a classic match between two of New Japans best workers. The tournament came down to Hiroshi Tanahashi & Kota Isbushi with Kenny Omega and Shibata in each challengers respective corners. These two men tore the house down and really showed just how important this tournament is to every person who competes in it; because the winner earns an opportunity to challenge for the IWGP World Title in the main event of Wrestle Kingdom. One last thing if you have not seen this match I suggest putting aside some time and giving it a watch as I highly recommend it.
Now that the stage is set we can declare the winner of this years tournament is Hiroshi Tanahashi. This is interestingly enough one of the only things that Tanahashi had yet to do in his legendary career and now it is official that for likely the first time Tanahashi will enter Wrestle Kingdom's main event as challenger. Not to discount Ibushi who put in an amazing performance, but it will be interesting to see the former "Ace" in a different role on January 4 next years.
Some other interesting notes from the G1 finals event is that Kenny's first challenger for the IWGP World has been announced as Tomohiro Ishii declared his intentions after a six man tag. This is one of the many benefits of the tournament, because it can set up feuds or matches after it is over as Ishii notched a victory against Kenny during the tournament to earn the opportunity. Also following a tag match another champion found his next contender with Cody making his interest clear in challenging Juice Robinson for the IWGP United States Championship. The announcement of these upcoming matches along with new 6 man tag champions should help in continuing the seemingly always high momentum that New Japan prides themselves with carrying. Overall G1 Climax 28 showed exactly why this tournament is far none the most prestigious event of it's kind in wrestling history.
Kenny Omega Controversial First Loss, Toru Yano Tied Up, Boma Ye Leads to Victory: G1 Climax Night 14 Results
Block B was up on Night 14 the standings going into the show was IWGP Heavyweight Champion “Mr. Terminator” Kenny Omega in the lead with 12 Points and a six win and no losses record, but also is dealing with a foot injury, “Los Ingobernable” Tetsuya Naito in second with 10 points and a five win and one loss record, In third is “Golden Star” Kota Ibushi with 8 Points and a four win and two loss record. The rest of the standings are below
4. Zack Sabre Jr 3-3 6 Points
-. SANADA 3-3 6 Points
6. Hirooki Goto 2-4 4 Points
-. Juice Robinson 2-4 4 Points
-. Tama Tonga 2-4 4 Points
-. Tomohiro Ishii 2-4 4 Points
10. Toru Yano 1-5 2 Points
SANADA def. Toru Yano, the typical Toru Yano comedy match saw a bit involvement from Rocky Romero to help his Chaos teammate Yano out of a Paradise Lock. SANADA wasn’t having it though and after a Yano Shrug from Romero he put the “Roppongi Leader” in a Paradise Lock as well. Then the man whose hair never moves tied Yano to the guardrail then tied the guard rail to the ring post which got SANADA the count out victory moving his score to 8 points and a 4-3 record.
Hirooki Goto def. Tama Tonga, this match was what you can expect out of the OG Bullet Club/Firing Squad. Constant interference and referee bumps, it’s obvious the Firing Squad doesn’t care about the tournament and just love the hate and boos from the crowd. This match ended via DQ after Bad Luck Fale hit a Grenade on Goto. The Never Openweight Champion Goto has 6 Points with a 3-4 Record.
Sidenote: Hirooki Goto is competing in his 11th Consecutive G1 Climax which is second only to Toru Yano who is competing in his 12th Consecutive and Hiroshi Tanahashi who is competing is his 17th Consecutive G1 which is the record.
Zack Sabre Jr. def. Juice Robinson, the Harry Potter of wrestling was gunning for a United States Title Match as told to us by his manager TAKA Michinoku before the match. Sabre repeatedly twisted and bent Juice and was vile going for the injured hand of the “Fruit”. The ending to this match saw a wicked painful submission move pulled out by the “Wizard” where he sat on Juice’s shoulders tying his legs up in them then began to pretzel up the loveable Robinson’s arms until the referee called for the bell. Sabre now has 8 points and a 4-3 record and is at the head of the line for a United States Title shot.
Sidenote: Does anyone think if you have a country specific title then the title should only be defended against wrestlers from that country?
Tomohiro Ishii def. Kenny Omega, IWGP Heavyweight Champion “Best Bout Machine” Kenny Omega and “Brick Wall” Tomohiro Ishii had a trilogy in 2017 with Ishii winning their first contest in the New Japan Cup and Omega picking up the win in the next two in the finals of the United States Title Tournament and Wrestling Dontaku. This match had much more at stake though with Kenny coming in with an undefeated record in the G1 this year and Ishii possibly earning an IWGP Heavyweight Title matches. Like always Omega was the “Knee Machine” relying his V-Trigger a lot in this match which could contribute to his loss with a unwillingness to change up his move cycle. But you can’t sell the “Stone Pitbull” short as he kicked Omega’s butt in this. At one point Kenny’s mouth and lip were busted open it was so brutal to look at. Ishii took advantage of the damaged and injured Omega hitting the Brainbuster to get the pinfall. The Controversy is in the pinfall though as before Red Shoes counted three Ishii pulled so hard on Kenny’s leg that the Champion’s shoulder came off the mat but Ishii was in Red Shoes view so he could not see the shoulder come off the mat. It looks like the decision will stand though giving Omega his first loss. Tomohiro Ishii now has 6 Points and a 3-4 record and is most likely gonna get a title shot after the G1.
Kota Ibushi def. Tetusya Naito, this match you could argue had the most importance as it now changes the outlook of the B Block. Naito is still behind Omega on the board and now with an Ibushi win can really be the beginning of his downfall in the 2018 G1 as he now needs to win his next match to even have a narrow shot a victory. The “Los Ingobernable” Naito went a bit heel again “Golden Star” attacking the knee and then neck of Ibushi setting up for a Destino. The Destino connects but like many other opponents Ibushi kicked out at two. Naito really needs to be looking for a new finishing move; the Destino is becoming the Stardust Press which was his old finisher before being influence by La Sombra (aka Andrade Cien Almas) in Mexico a few years ago. To end the match Ibushi hit a Boma Ye Knee (a Tribute to Shinsuke Nakamura) after that Kota hit the Kamigoye for the pinfall win.