On Monday September 16, Destruction arrived in Kota Ibushi’s home town of Kagoshima, with the G1 winner aiming to retain his IWGP Tokyo Dome Right to Challenge contract in the main event.
9th Match: Kota Ibushi defeated KENTA via pinfall to retain his IWGP Tokyo Dome Right to Challenge Contract.
KENTA rocked Ibushi before the bell with an ugly boot to the G1 winner’s skull. He followed by striking Ibushi with his contract briefcase, and removing the contract inside before breaking the case with his boot. KENTA grabbed the microphone and promised he’d replace the case design with a BULLET CLUB case while trainers checked Ibushi for any signs of head trauma.
As Ibushi gave his consent for the match to start, the bell finally rang, only for KENTA to strike with a Busaiku Knee. The new BULLET CLUB member continued to push the advantage as he sent Ibushi into guardrails, booted him into the crowd, and landed a DDT on the floor.
Ibushi finally made his way to the ring at the referee’s count of 17, only to take a Green Killer to an already damaged head and neck. Ibushi would fire up in the face of boots in the corner, but KENTA would quickly retaliate with his own brutal kicks. More boots finally knocked some sense into Ibushi, who rallied with strikes, a moonsault, and then a plancha that hit flush unlike in Dallas when KENTA blasted him out of the air and injured Ibushi’s ankle.
The two were mirror images at the ten minute mark, as they both hit rolling sole butts, open hand strikes and then high kicks that knocked both to the mat. When both found their feet, Ibushi took KENTA out of the ring with a Frankensteiner, but thought he had enough of an advantage to land a Golden Triangle before his home crowd fans. KENTA evaded and then went quickly and firmly after the only just recovered ankle, and then the left knee of the Golden Star.
KENTA not only effectively dominated on the mat with a knee bar, but was winning the mental game, almost goading Ibushi when he found a break to go for KENTA’s own corner dropkick so he could evade and continue the punishment, eventually landing his own, and then a double stomp for a near fall.
Ibushi finally found space with a lariat and a thunderous sit out powerbomb for two. When Ibushi looked for a Boma Ye however, the Guerrillas of Destiny would come to ringside; Ibushi hit the move, but the referee would be pulled out by Tonga, who then hit the ring with his brother to land a Magic Killer. GoD looked to follow with a Super Powerbomb on Ibushi, only for Ishii and YOSHI-HASHI to even the sides, and bring the match back to a one on one affair.
The damage looked to be done for Ibushi though, as KENTA scored a very near two count with a PK, and then his version of the Kamigoye for an even nearer count. Ibushi caught KENTA’s knee on a G2S attempt to hit the original Kamigoye; KENTA kicked out, but not from a second as Ibushi retained his briefcase.
8th Match: BULLET CLUB (El Phantasmo & Taiji Ishimori) defeated Birds of Prey (Robbie Eagles & Will Ospreay) when Phantasmo pinned Eagles to retain the IWGP Juniro Heavyweight Tag Team Championships.
Will Ospreay started the match and demanded that El Phantasmo come in with him from the champions’ side. This he did, but only when combining to attack the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion. The advantage was not to last however, as the Birds of Prey turned the offense around and landed a pair of planchas to the floor.
BoP pushed the advantage against Ishimori, but his smooth rope work threw former partner Eagles off his game for long enough to allow the champions to take control. Eagles would feel the pressure for close to five minutes before a low lariat brought Ospreay back into the match.
The Aerial Assassin would bring his high speed offense straight to Ishimori and ELP, but Phantasmo proved every bit Ospreay’s match. The two traded high speed and high impact counters before ELP was able to land his rope walk hurricanrana and shift the momentum back to the champions’ corner. Eagles would prevent Ishimori and ELP from taking control for long, and a scintillating run of double team offense would get the upper hand back to Ospreay, but Ishimori would rock the Junior Heavyweight Champion with a massive lariat.
The champions went high risk with an attempt at a unique double team, but Eagles flew in with a hurricanrana to counter, and the two Birds of Prey would cross paths with stereo tope con giros. Spectacular offense would follow from both sides, as Phantasmo tried to powerbomb both his challengers, who landed on their feet and followed with I95 to Ishimori for a near fall.
Eagles would lock in the Ron Miller Special to Ishimori in the middle, and Ospreay would assist with a springboard 450 as Ishimori neared the ropes. Phantasmo gutted out a flying Cobra Twist to slam Ospreay onto his partner and break the hold in superhuman fashion as the match continued.
Eagles would tee off on ELP, who responded by putting Eagles on the mat, and then flying out to Ospreay with a quebrada to the floor. That gave Eagles the time to recover however, with a Pulse Drop securing a two count, and a 450 delivered to the knee. When Eagles went for the Ron Miller again, though, he was kicked off into a belt shot from Ishimori. A Bloody Cross and CR2 would follow for Eagles, who was pinned, allowing the champions to retain.
7th Match: Los Ingobernables De Japon (Tetsuya Naito & EVIL) defeated BULLET CLUB (Jay White & Yujiro Takahashi) when EVIL pinned Takahashi.
Naito made the BULLET CLUB pair wait, standing on ceremony before White and Yujiro lost their cool and attacked. Naito quickly seized the advantage however, with a pair of deep armdrags letting White know who has been on control for the vast majority of the tour.
Gedo would get involved however, pulling at Naito’s leg from the floor and allowing White to turn the tide of the match as he brawled with Naito deep into the crowd. Naito would have to rush to avoid a countout loss, and he dashed right into White and Takahashi’s waiting, and punishing, arms.
A tijeras and neckbreaker finally created an opening for Naito to tag in EVIL, who powered through Yujiro, Jay, and an intervening Gedo. White was able to land a mighty DDT all by himself however, bringing in Yujiro, and the two took effective control of EVIL at the ten minute mark. Takahashi scored a very close nearfall with the Miami Shine, but Naito broke up a Pimp Juice attempt.
The match broke down with Naito and EVIL connecting a series of blows to Yujiro, and then an emphatic EVIL secured the three count.
Post match, a frustrated White would charge at EVIL, but Naito would come to his pareja’s aid. White would go prone to avoid Destino, and then landed a brutal low blow to the Intercontinental Champion.
6th Match: CHAOS (Kazuchika Okada, Hirooki Goto & Rocky Romero) defeated Los Ingobernables De Japon (Shingo Takagi, SANADA & BUSHI) when Okada pinned BUSHI.
Just like in Beppu, Takagi and Goto charged at one another at the opening bell before Goto took control, and he and Romero combined to land a double shoulder tackle. SANADA would stop Mr. Azucar getting too comfortable however, and put Romero in the Paradise Lock; Takagi meanwhile was more interested in targeting Goto on the apron than Romero in the ring.
Romero would use a rewind kick to bring Okada into the action, and the IWGP Champion was only too eager to get after SANADA. Okada would almost land a Rainmaker to Cold Skull, but a snapping side suplex proved an effective counter.
As the match broke down, Takagi would grab Romero for his own version of the Reverse GTR; this incensed Goto, who charged in with an almighty lariat. BUSHI was left with Okada in the end however, and an elbow drop was followed by a Rainmaker for the victory.
5th Match: Jyushin Thunder Liger, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma defeated Suzuki-Gun (Minoru Suzuki, Zack Sabre Junior, Yoshinobu Kanemaru and DOUKI) when Suzuki was disqualified.
Suzuki once again brawled with Liger at ringside, while Honma landed a Kokeshi to Kanemaru inside the ring. ZSJ and Tanahashi would tag in, leading to an exchange of Cobra Twists, but Suzuki was around to presevent the match from being too sportmanlike. He would charge in, and the ring emptied with Suzuki again targeting Liger on the floor.
Suzuki-Gun took control on Tanahashi back inside, but Liger would break things up. Casting rules aside, Suzuki and Liger continued to brawl with no care for who was legal in the match.
Tanahashi was the legal one, and landed a Dragon Screw to the new British Heavyweight Champion to bring in Makabe. King Kong cleaned house before bringing in Liger to finally get his hands on Suzuki and then DOUKI. As Liger looked to finish DOUKI off, Suzuki would attack and look to remove Liger’s mask, before attacking the Living Legend and the referee with a chair to bring about the DQ.
Post match, Suzuki succeeded in removing Liger’s mask, and posing with it like a trophy while attendants rushed to cover Liger’s face. As Suzuki left, Liger took the microphone and with his closing address to Kagoshima fans as an active wrestler, left them with the promise that he was coming for Suzuki’s head.
4th Match: CHAOS (SHO, YOH, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI) defeated BULLET CLUB (Tama Tonga, Tanga Loa, Bad Luck Fale & Yujiro Takahashi) when YOH pinned Tonga.
Ishii and YOSHI-HASHI attempted to get revenge on BULLET CLUB for their loss early, but were quickly neutralized at the jump by Fale who dumped both to the floor. BULLET CLUB took control on SHO for a period, but after an escape, first Ishii and then YOSHI-HASHI got their hands on GoD.
Fale would agin charge in to take out Beppu’s contenders, leaving YOH to take on Tonga in ring. Against the flow of the match, YOH landed an impressive cradle to pin Tonga in under seven minutes.
Post match, Tonga and Loa attacked YOH with Jado’s kendo stick, and landed a Magic Killer to earn swift revenge.
3rd Match: Manabu Nakanishi, Toa Henare, Alex Coughlin & Karl Fredericks defeated Ryusuke Taguchi, Yuji Nagata, Shota Umino & Yota Tsuji when Henare pinned Tsuji.
A fired up Tsuji charged right at Coughlin with a dropkick to start, and the pair entered a vicious exchange, before Umino and Fredericks tagged in. Two of the three top contenders in the Young Lion Cup were evenly matched, but Fredericks would take control with a spectacular dropkick and high stomp.
Heavy damage would be dealt to Umino by all four of his opponents before Taguchi could tag in, and fire up with a pair of cheeks for all. Nakanishi would be last to face Taguchi’s buns, and the Coach would tag in Nagata to bring about a reunion of the 1995 Young Lion Cup final.
Nagata would land an Exploder Suplex and secure an armbar, but Fredericks would prevent Kagoshima from seeing the white’s of Nagata’s eyes. In the melee, Tsuji would be left in ring with Henare, and showed some amazing fire, but the Maori Warrior would land a Rampage Tackle and then Toa Bottom to earn victory.
Two more matches in the Young Lion Cup started the evening’s action.
2nd Match: Ren Narita (4-1) defeated Michael Richards (1-4) via pinfall.
Narita took control with a heel hook and then headlock early, before showing strength beyond his size disadvantage by rocking Richards with a shoulder tackle. Narita maintained impressive control on the head of Richards until the bigger man suplexed out of the hold.
A corner lariat and vertical suplex would follow for Richards, but the following half Boston crab wasn’t tight enough to prevent a Narita escape. A dropkick would land for Narita, and immediately afterward, the Narita Special #4 would seal the deal.
1st Match: Yuya Uemura (1-4) defeated Clark Connors (3-2) via submission.
Connors found an early advantage on the mat, taking the head of Uemura, and handstanding out of a leg scissors counter. When Uemura attempted his own snug headlock, Connors tried to turn holds to strikes, but Uemura showed his amateur credentials with a high angle waist lock takedown and tight hammerlock, letting Connors know he couldn’t walk to eight points in Kagoshima.
Uemura continued to press the advantage with snug strikes, a bodyslam and a hip toss. Connors would reply with a big dropkick however, and instantly navigated a Boston Crab. Uemura would escape however, and launched a barrage of brutal strikes to Connors, before landing an Overhook Suplex and locking in a Boston Crab of his own for his first two points of the league.