NJPW World Tag League 2015 Day 6, AJ Styles Pulled From Show Due To Injury

The biggest story coming from Japan this week-end has been AJ Styles forced to forfeit his match against Gotot and Shibata due to a lingering back injury. Styles (who is 38) had already been forced to calm down a bit in recent months for the same reasons. There is no word yet on if Styles will be able to compete during the rest of the tournament, but, if I was Styles (or NJPW) I would take no risks here. Indeed Styles has two very big matches in the coming weeks, starting with main eventing the December 18th ROH Final Battle PPV against Jay Lethal and ending with co-main eventing Wrestle Kingdom 10 against Nakamura. And since Styles already had his match against Nakamura and Ishii during this tournament, and was therefore able to further build-up his match against Nakamura, there is nothing really important left for him to do during this tag league. If necessary, he can always make an appearance during the December 9th final, but he should use the remaining time to rest up a bit so he can be fit for bigger and better things.

In results from the two other tournament matches scheduled for Day 6:

A Block: Togi Makabe and Tomoaki Honma defeated Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian in 10:05 via pinfall:

While The Addiction have been playing faces a couple of tomes, depending on whom they were facing, here, against the super-over Honma, they were were playing those dastardly heel characters they are so good at. And it worked like a charm. Daniels and Kazarian used every dirty tactic in the book against Honma and were so effective at it that when Honma finally made the hot tag to Makabe (after a desperation Kokeshi), the crowd erupted. Makabe cleaned house, they did the incredibly fun Doomsday Kokeshi spot again and Kazarian fell to the King Kong Knee Drop. It seems NJPW swerved us a bit with Honma’s and Makabe’s tournament debut (2 matches, two defeats) because now they are on fire.

B Block: Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows defeated Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima in 10:51 via pinfall:

Most interesting parts of this match were the interactions between Kojima and Anderson, with Kojima proving once again he can still go and Anderson making many wonder why he isn’t pushed as a singles wrestler more often. This was a solid match, a bit under the excitement level of the previous one but still entertaining to watch. The tag team Champions have been booked in an interesting manner this year, as it they really have to fight for their place in the final (usually the Champions win (almost all their matches and lose the final to set up the WK  Tag Team Title Match) which is certainly refreshing. Let’s hope Gedo continues with such booking, it will make NJPW’s Tag Team Division that much more interesting.

B Block: Hirooki Goto and Katsuyori Shibata defeated AJ Styles and Yujiro Takahashi via forfeit

 

Standings (number of matches/points):

A Block

Hiroshi Tanahashi and Michael Elgin (3-4)
Kazuchika Okada and Yoshi-Hashi (4-4)
Togi Makabe and Tomoaki Honma (4-4)
Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian (4-4)
Kazushi Sakuraba and Toru Yano (1-2)
Yuji Nagata and Manabu Nakanishi (2-2)
Tama Tonga and Bad Luck Fale (2-0)

B Block

Tetsuya Naito and Evil (3-6)
Hirooki Goto and Katsuyori Shibata 3-6)
Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson (4-4)
Satoshi Kojima and Hiroyoshi Tenzan (3-2)
A.J. Styles and Yujiro Takahashi (3-2)
Shinsuke Nakamura and Tomohiro Ishii (2-0)
Michael Bennett and Matt Taven (2-0)

 

Tournament matches scheduled for day 7:

A Block: Togi Makabe and Tomoki Honma vs Bad Luck Fale and Tama Tonga

A Block: Hiroshi Tanahashi and Michael Elgin vs Yuji Nagata and Manabu Nakanishi

B Block: Shinsuke Nakamura and Tomohiro Ishii vs Michael Bennett and Matt Taven

 

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