[Please note: this is the final for the A Block side of the bracket, with full spoilers for the entire rest of the tournament to this point.]
It is time for the finals of the A Block in New Japan Pro Wrestling’s (NJPW) annual tournament, the G1 Climax 30. Only four men can currently win the block, each relying on various outcomes:
- Jay White – only has to win his match, and he will win overall
- Kota Ibushi – must defeat Taichi, and Jay White must lose or tie with Tomohiro Ishii
- Kazuchika Okada – must defeat Will Ospreay, and both Jay White and Kota Ibushi must each draw or lose
- Will Ospreay – must defeat Kazuchika Okada, and both Jay White and Kota Ibushi must lose their matches, forcing a three way tie where each man’s record against Taichi will be the deciding factor, giving Ospreay the overall win
In the main event, Jay White will look for that win against Tomohiro Ishii (eliminated, sadly), whilst Kota Ibushi will face Taichi (already eliminated) in a must win match as well, and Will Ospreay will face the man he has never defeated, Kauchika Okada, in a match both men must win if they are to advance. Both pride and a potential championship match are on the line as Shingo Takagi (eliminated) faces Minoru Suzuki (eliminated) in a rematch from the incredible Jingu Stadium show a few months ago, wile Yujiro Takahashi (eliminated) seeks his first and only tournament win against the impressive Jeff Cobb (eliminated) in the opening contest.
+ Tomohiro Ishii vs Jay White (G1 Climax 30 A Block Match): damn this was a good match. No funny business, no gimmicks, and a must win affair for Jay White against the toughest man in NJPW made for a phenomenal main event. Even the crowd was making noise, despite it being against the rules, which means you know this was an incredibly exciting match
+ Kota Ibushi vs Taichi (G1 Climax 30 A Block Match): god damn, I loved this. Following whatever the heck Ospreay/Okada was meant to be, these two knew they had to do something different and they absolutely did do something different. I won’t spoil the gimmick, but rest assured it will go exactly as you think it will, and you’ll love it all
+ Shingo Takagi vs Minoru Suzuki (G1 Climax 30 A Block Match): this was not as good as their Jingu stadium match, but it was still pretty good. I hope Suzuki didn’t get a small stinger towards the end, as the final few moments looked a little bit rushed, but the forearms, lariats and kicks made this well worth watching
– Will Ospreay vs Kazuchika Okada (G1 Climax 30 A Block Match): what in the fuck was this garbage. The first part of this was good, almost even really good, but to say that this was the absolute dirt worst moment of the tournament would be a blight on the good name of dirt
– Yujiro Takahashi vs Jeff Cobb (G1 Climax 30 A Block Match): strong pass on this one, thanks. I had hope that Cobb would just murder Yujiro but as soon as it became clear it was going to be a back and forth affair, I lost all interest
– Yota Tsuji vs Gabriel Kidd: the unofficial C Block was on the line, where if Tsuji won he would be crowned the winner, while Gabriel Kidd looked to continue his streak of having banger matches. This was a standard prelim match, frankly, and I did expect a bit more for the final meeting between these two
> this was the first show with live English commentary, and gosh darn, the quality of that audio was garbage, especially from Chris Charlton who was the only person actually in the building live. I hope these issues are fixed for tomorrow
Should you watch this event: The final two matches are fantastic and you may get some joy out of Ospreay/Okada, but that is going to strongly vary per person. A lot of stories were continued, concluded or begun on this show, for better or for worse, but at least we know who has won the A Block.