G1 Climax 2015 Day 15 (A. J. Styles, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Tetsuya Naito, Bad Luck Fale)

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Eight day of competition for A Block and two more wrestlers lost their chances of winning this tournament:

Doc Gallows defeated Tetsuya Naito in 8:22 via pinfall. Well that was surprising. It also effectively ends Naito’s chances of winning this year’s G1. While Gallows win might seem to come out of nowhere, it does reveal NJPW’s hand for the final day of this tournament (more on that in the analysis section). On top of that Gallows ruining Naito’s chance gives the later an excuse to go after the Bullet Club members tag team titles. Earlier this year Naito associated himself with CMLL’s Los Ingobernables stable while he was in Mexico. This was the actual base for his heel turn. Knowing that a return of La Sombra to NJPW and a re-formation of the La Sombra/ Naito team becomes very likely. Not a bad match.

Hiroyoshi Tenzan defeated Katsuyori Shibata in 9:49 via submission. Fun match with lots of back and forth action. In the end, Tenzan locked the Anaconda vice on Shibata, who passed out, forcing the referee to call the match.

Toru Yano defeated Kota Ibushi in 0:50 via pinfall. Yes, you read it right. Ibushi wanted to go for the early win, but that’s Yano’s thing so low blow and roll-up for the win. Seems a bit surprising as I don’t think a Yano/Ibushi feud would make much sense. Ibushi is under contract until October 3, so maybe that has something to do with the way he was booked during this tournament. Another possibility is that this was NJPW’s way of giving Ibushi the night off after his awkward landing on his neck a couple of days ago. Whatever the reason, big upset.

A. J. Styles defeated Bad Luck Fale in 9:53 via pinfall. Match started with Fale pretending to lie down for the leader of Bullet Club, only to kick out at 2. Major tension between the BC members, with styles getting in Fale’s face, and Fale refusing to just give up his chances of winning the tournament. Other members got involved and Tama Tonga prevented Fale from using a chair. Styles won  by using the ropes. Everybody seemed to calm down after the match but something is definitely brewing inside Bullet Club. Not a great match action wise, but very good story.

Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Togi Makabe in 16:15 via pinfall. Very good, competitive match-up between those two. With the crowd siding with Makabe, Tanahashi subtly played heel, as he likes to do when the occasion warrants. Makabe came close on a couple of occasion but this was Tanahashi’s to win. High Fly Flow to win. Good stuff.

Standings:

A. J. Styles – 12
Hiroshi Tanahashi – 12
Tetsuya Naito – 10
Bad Luck Fale – 10
Katsuyori Shibata – 8
Togi Makabe – 8
Kota Ibushi – 6
Toru Yano – 6
Doc Gallows – 4
Hiroyoshi Tenzan – 4

Analysis: Well, that simplifies things. With Naito and Fale out of the running it now is clearly between Styles and Tanahashi. Their match o the last day of competition for A Block (on Friday) will determine who goes trough to the final. Not the best day wrestling wise, but, this time, it was all about setting things up for things to come.

In other results:

Yujiro Takahashi and Cody Hall defeated Mascara Dorada and Jay White. (Takahashi pinned White)

Karl Anderson and Tama Tonga defeated KUSHIDA and Captain New Japan. (Anderson pinned Captain New Japan)

Michael Elgin and David Finlay Jr. defeated Hirooki Goto and Yohei Komatsu. (Elgin pinned Komatsu)

Shinsuke Nakamura, Kazuchika Okada, Tomohiro Ishii and YOSHI-HASHI defeated Satoshi Kojima, Yuji Nagata, Tomoaki Honma & Ryusuke Taguchi. (Nakamura pinned Taguchi) Excellent tag match here, perhaps one of the best of the whole tournament. Ishii and Honma had a big brawl afterwards.

 

Tomorrow (08/12) is the eight day of competition in B Block, with the following matches:

Karl Anderson vs. Yujiro Takahashi
Hirooki Goto vs. Michael Elgin
Satoshi Kojima vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
Kazuchika Okada vs. Yuji Nagata
Tomoaki Honma vs. Tomohiro Ishii

Anderson vs Takahashi is interesting if only to see if the tension between BC members continues. Goto vs Elgin should be very good, if Elgin wins expect him to stay in Japan for some time (which may happen anyways, but a win against the IC champ would be big for Elgin). Nakamura should put Kojima away, while Okada should defeat Nagata, but that means they’ll have a tie on the last day (if Nakamura defeats Okada, as expected. Will be interesting to see how they handle things. Finally Ishii vs Honma will be tons of fun. The two already had a five star match this year, can they repeat that feat? I’m rooting for Honma here because I wanna see the crowd’s reaction when he wins.

See you all tomorrow for more G1!

 

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