Match Ratings, Podcast Notes For NJPW New Year Dash 2019 From Sean Ross Sapp Of

Six Man Tag
Roppongi 3K defeated Killer Elite Squad and Takashi Iizuka

  • KES hilariously attack Lions on their way out. Iizuka for some reason is in the crowd. I thought I was done with him.
  • Romero gets stopped in his tracks trying to attack Davey and Hoyt. Hoyt removes Iizuka's surgical mask and he does this thing. 
  • This match, while not amazing by any means, is a nice indication of why I think the tag team scenes should be combined. However, with two nights of Wrestle Kingdom next year, I'm fully expecting it to expand as opposed to combining.
  • DBS hits a great second rope powerslam on Yoh, but Sho breaks up the pin. Yoh also gets out of a Killer Bomb and R3K take over.
  • DBS does an awesome double Northern Lights suplex to tag out.
  • Iizuka gets rolled up and pinned, R3K take a literal New Year Dash out of the ring. KES beat up Lions some more.
  • This was a smart booking decision. Helps R3K, and I don't think it hurts KES. Iizuka is Iizuka and...yeah
Wrestling Television Viewership Numbers: WWE Raw, SmackDown, NXT, AEW, IMPACT

Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi (w/ Pieter) defeated Toa Henare & Tomoaki Honma

  • Takahashi and Chase wearing Bullet Club gear throughout everything. 
  • Some really basic work in this one, controlled by Owens and Takahashi. Pieter gets a slap in at some point.
  • I like the story of Henare just taking any kind of match he can in an effort to prove himself. 
  • Honma misses a headbutt and gets Fisherman Suplexed by Takahashi.
  • Henare is in and helicopters (not that way, sicko) Owens into Takahashi. Owens has a nice roll into the ankle lock though.
  • Package piledriver from Owens gets the win.
  • This match had no real flow to it, no real heat. The story in the ring seemed to conflict with the one being told on commentary. 


Juice Robinson & David Finlay defeated Best Friends via DQ

  • Beretta challenged Juice after his title win. 
  • Finlay's affiliation with Juice is making him a little more colorful, which he kind of needed. 
  • Rocky Romero is great on commentary -- he's joined. 
  • Finlay is on fire, and Chuckie takes a hike to toss out hugs. Finlay and Juice mock them by hugging, but Finlay rejects a kiss.
  • Best Friends don't take kindly and throw them into the guard rail.
  • Some back and forth leads to Beretta and Juice squaring off and Beretta getting a really nice half and half suplex, but can't get the Dudebuster.
  • Juice gets the Shotgun knee on Juice and tags to Finlay, who comes in with an Irish Curse backbreaker.
  • Chuckie goes off and hits Finlay with a chair. That's a wrap.
  • Chuckie throws a chair into Juice's face and Beretta isn't happy. Chuckie goes back in and snap piledrives Finlay on a chair. 

Will Ospreay, Tomohiro Ishii, HIrooki Goto defeated Kushida, Jeff Cobb & Yuji Nagata

  • Ospreay and Kushida go at it, and I've loved Ospreay's explanation of changing his style to extend his career and shorten everyone else's.
  • Goto, Ishii and Ospreay target Kushida, and Ospreay finishes it off with a standing star press.
  • Kushida gets right in Ishii's face. it doesn't work great for him because he'd put in a Boston Crab.
  • Nagata breaks up the submission, and Ishii goes after him and headbutts him off the apron. 
  • Kushida is still getting his ass kicked, several minutes in with no one to tag. That changes when Nagata comes in and gives Ishii a receipt for the headbutt in the form of kicks.
  • It might shock you to learn that Ishii got pissed off and mean mugged, then Nagata and Ishii got in each other's faces and traded forearms. Nagata gets the better of it. 
  • Nagata grounds Ishii and pounds him out. I dunno why he's not pinning here, but hey, whatever. Instead he waits for Ishii to punch him and applies an armbar. 
  • Ospreay breaks up the armbar, but gets a Nagata Exploder suplex for his trouble. 
  • Goto and Cobb are in but only serve to take each other out. Ospreay takes over and is ready to hit an Oscutter on Kushida, but Cobb saves his partner and catches Ospreay with an AthleticPlex.
  • Kushida eats a stunner from Ospreay and an assisted corkscrew (off of Ishii's back), but gets pinned with a StormBreaker. This was fun.
  • Ishii and Nagata go at it
  • All the stiff work in the world doesn't make up for seeing the same spot over and over and no sense at the points of the match. That being said, it still overcame and was a blast. Nagata was the star of this match early on, but not pinning when he had a guy practically knocked out took away quite a bit for me.

NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Team Championships
Bullet Club (c) (Guerrillas of Destiny & Taiji Ishimori w/ Jado) defeated Togi Makabe, Ryusuke Taguchi & Toru Yano

  • Yano gets his ass kicked pretty thoroughly and trolled by Bullet Club. Tama Tonga refuses to send Yano into the exposed buckle, instead sending him into the protected one.
  • The crowd loves this as Rocky Romero suggests that this is a ploy to sell Bullet Club Block Party tickets. Yano isn't as kind as Tama and sends him into the steel.
  • Taguchi comes in and it's ass to faces all day. Jado cracks Taguchi with a kendo stick, but Taguchi still has Ishimori in an ankle lock.
  • I'm not sure why Ishimori would hand spring into a kick while following Taguchi, but it works.
  • Makabe has really slowed down of late, and he battles with Loa. Yano jabs Loa with a chair, but Ishimori pulls the ref out before a pin.
  • Jado gets taken out by Yano, and Makabe double clotheslines G.O.D.
  • Yujiro Takahashi and Chase Owens make the save, with Owens getting a package piledriver on Makabe, and Loa following up with Apeshit for the win.
  • This wasn't a great match, but it accomplished getting Owens and Takahasi back in BC. A perhaps below average match, but the storyline progression pushed it up a little bit.

SuzukiGun (w/ Taka Michinoku) defeated LIJ

  • Taichi immediately crashes a chair into Naito's head. I can't pretend I'm going to care about Taichi in a program with Naito.
  • This is not a match, this is a big brawl, and SuzukiGun are beating ass. There's a count for some reason. How can this match even exist? 
  • Well, it does. Suzuki and Sabre go banana split on Bushi. The ref is trying to maintain control, but I think the heat here would have been better with a quick win right there.
  • Bushi fights back and there is a match. He and Sanada are the only two good to go.
  • Sanada applied a Paradise Lock to Desperado, but Suzuki baits him into an armbar.
  • ZSJ applies a nice standing guard double wristlock on Evil, but gets suplexed out of it. 
  • Naito is back and along with LIJ, puts the pain on Taichi. 
  • Taichi comes back with an Axe Bomber on Naito that doesn't get the pin. Taichi takes forever with the IC title like he's going to hit Naito. The ref is distracted for a solid 30 seconds, and Taichi spends literally over 20 measuring Naito. This felt like forever. 
  • Black Mephisto gets the pin. This went way longer than it should for what happened. Another Suzukigun beatdown after the match.

Bullet Club (Jay White, Gedo, Bad Luck Fale) defeated YOSHI-HASHI, Hiroshi Tanahashi & Kazuchika Okada

  • Pairing the returning Yoshi Hashi with Tanahashi and Okada is a fun call. Glad to see Fale on this after he wasn't on Wrestle Kingdom.
  • It's still so surreal to see Okada and Tanahashi on the same side of the ring.
  • Hashi gets his ass whipped for a while until Okada tags in and takes out Gedo to a great reaction.
  • Okada takes a page out of Tanahashi's book with a dragon screw leg whip that Tanahashi approves of. 
  • Hashi gets worked over more until White uses the Freak Accident, which is called a uranage and a Saito Suplex. It is neither. 
  • Hashi does a release Fisherman's Suplex and everyone bought it as a finish, but White kicks out. 
  • White gets a Cobra Clutch suplex and a Blade Runner for the win. The big Jay White push continues.
  • White challenges Tanahashi, and then Bullet Club beats down Tanahashi and Okada.

Rating guide

10- Perfect, 9- MOTY Territory, 8- Excellent, 7- Great, 6- Good, 5- Average to above average, 4- Slightly below average, 3 or below: Poor

Each match starts at a 5 and slides up and down based on entertainment, execution, time, environment, reaction and stakes. The ratings are in no way an indication of a "star rating," which is a completely different system. A standard, non-offensive "TV match" lands at a 5.The gap between 5.75-6 is generally the largest, with anything reaching 6 being recommended viewing.

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