Wrestling Review: NJPW G1 Climax 27 (Day 7) (2017)

And on the seventh day, New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) continued the G1 Climax 27, with a huge main event of Hiroshi Tanahashi versus Hirooki Goto. Four more A Block matches were on the show, as Yuji Nagata looks to get his first win of the tournament against the leader of Los Ingobernables de Japon, Tetsuya Naito, and Kota Ibushi goes up against the Unchained Gorilla, Togi Makabe. Zack Sabre Jr. has the unenviable task of facing an angry Bad Luck Fale, and two more big boys slug it out for tournament points as Tomohiro Ishii does battle with YOSHI-HASHI. As always, tag team matches featuring participants in upcoming tournament matches round out the card.

+ Yuji Nagata vs Tetsuya Naito (G1 Climax 27 A Block Match): the crowd was very quiet for the first half of this match, but I absolutely loved it. The interactions between the older Nagata and the somewhat arrogant Naito were great to watch, and the inevitable kicks, chops and a brutal slap duel sent the crowd and me into a frenzy. This was great, and easily the match of the night
+ Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Hirooki Goto (G1 Climax 27 A Block Match): GOto will always be my boy, but I can admit he was definitely the underdog in this match, and I think the crowd knew it. Tanahashi will always have fans, of course, but the crowd was hot for Goto’s offense. Both guys were at their best here, and it made for a really good back and forth match, even though it only went ~15 minutes
+ YOSHI-HASHI vs Tomohiro Ishii (G1 Climax 27 A Block Match): there was a viscous chop battle right near the beginning here, that was making me wince in my chair. I don’t know if it was just my video, but the crowd seemed really quiet throughout this match, which I think did lessen it’s effect on me, but I still liked this match. I don’t think I’ll ever not like an Ishii match, and YOSHI-HASHI has had a pretty good run this tournament
+ Suzuki-gun (Minoru Suzuki & Taichi) vs Los Ingobernables de Japon (EVIL & Hiromu Takahashi): this was a fun match, for the standard Suzuki-gun interference stuff, with a fun little twist. Suzuki/EVIL is going to be another interesting match. Suzuki may be the most ‘wildcard’ guy in this whole tournament

BUSHI is starting to look a lot like Griffith, from Berserk, and I don’t know if that bodes well for the rest of Los Ingobernables de Japon.

– Togi Makabe vs Kota Ibushi (G1 Climax 27 A Block Match): something about this match fell flat for me. Ibushi went for his (admittedly fantastic) dropkick several times, and none of them felt convincing and Makabe hit a chasing lariat in the corner several times, with the same flat feeling. These two felt like they were going through the motions more than anything
– Zack Sabre Jr. vs Bad Luck Fale (G1 Climax 27 A Block Match): I’ll admit, I was hoping Fale would squash Sabre in under five minutes, but this was not the case. This dragged on for far too long, as Sabre’s offense looked like nothing more than a nuisance to Fale, when surely Fale could have just laid on top of Sabre for the pinfall win. Wasted opportunity, to be honest
– Tencozy (Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima) vs CHAOS (Gedo & Kazuchika Okada):another very short, nothing special tag match. This was meant to build hype for Okada/Kojima, but it didin’t do it for me. Maybe I am getting sick of these tag matches
– Taguchi Japan (Michael Elgin & Ryusuke Taguchi) vs Bullet Club (Chase Owens & Kenny Omega): Big Mike is a big boy, but he looks like a cuddly baby sometimes. There was a fair bot of Taguchi-comedy, which simply didn’t have the same effect on me as the Yano/Omega match did. And dammit, I just don’t care about Chase Owens
– Taguchi Japan (David Finlay & Juice Robinson) vs Bullet Club (Tama Tonga & Yujiro Takahashi): this was a very forgettable match. They did not build any hype for Juice/Tama, and no-one looked overly impressive
– CHAOS (Jado & Toru Yano) vs Los Ingobernables de Japon (BUSHI & SANADA): god damn it, BUSHI

> I thoroughly enjoyed Tama Tonga and Juice Robinson’s tribute to Tomoaki Honma, who was in attendance and on commentary for the show

Should you watch this event: With three of the five G1 matches delivering, this was a better than average show, though admittedly the undercard felt a bit lacking. The CHAOS/LIJ tag team was worst for one huge reason, but Tanahashi and both my boys Goto and Ishii had great tournament matches.


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