Previously on NJPW: Matt Taven revealed the ultimate ladder match hack, Enzo and Cass showed up to work, and we felt The Allure of 2008 American women’s wrestling and hairstyles.
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And now, the best and worst of this year’s first Road to Wrestling Dontaku show from April 13, 2019.
Worst: Shots Being Shot
I’ll kick off this article with a Worst section, but it’s going to be a pretty positive one. While the tag matches involving the Bullet Club were the weakest parts of this first Road to Dontaku show, they weren’t that bad. They do contain some odd feud choices, though, most notably the Juice Robinson-Mikey Nicholls-Chase Owens-Bad Luck Fale situation surrounding the United States Championship. Unlike most of the other angles on this tour, I don’t think this does much for almost anyone on paper. It doesn’t redeem itself in the ring on Night 1, but it doesn’t damn itself for the rest of the tour either, I guess.
Robinson wins the eight-man tag (Taguchi, Nicholls, Robinson, and Goto vs. Hikuleo, Owens, Fale, and White) for the good guys with a Pulp Friction to Hikuleo and shows through his promo backstage how this feud could possibly escalate to a fun place. He clarifies that his new rave circus gear is “the costume of a man who is focused, of a man who ain’t messin’ around,” drives home that a key element of this feud will probably be if he can bodyslam Fale (If not, we know he’s physically way weaker than Okada), and does it with that energy that made people fall in love with him.