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Thread: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by MC 16 View Post
    Naito's title run being cut short doesn't really bother me. It doesn't hurt Naito and potentially opens up a change in characters since the feud is clearly gonna bring out tons of aggression and bitterness from both sides. .
    Well it'll bring it out of Hiromu, but Naito didn't show any aggression or bitterness today and he was the one turned on!

    I'm starting to wonder which main event act has been more badly handled in the last 5 years, Naito or Roman Reigns. I know Gedo has his loyal supporters, but EVIL being the one to end the Naito reign after only 1 successful title reign can't be supported by 'yeah but COVID put them in a bad position'. If Jay White was due to win the Cup and win the title again, then that's still a bad idea. More BC nonsense and main events littered with interference is a bad idea. EVIL as a main eventer when nothing about the last year has warranted that in either his effort and performances or his reaction from the crowd, is a bad idea. It's not Jinder Mahal levels of bad, but it's Jinder Mahal vibes because they're pushing someone way above his station and you know from the get go it cannot result in a good match, it definitely lowers the ceiling on what to expect for that title now.

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    Hiromu was by far. BY FAR the best performer in the main event. All of it.

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    I do feel for New Japan because I can see that they've been hit by the panademic quite badly and I can imagine it's affected their booking a lot. Same time these shows did leave a lot to be desired. I mean the Master Wato gimmick at this stage to me seems like a fail. If it turns out to be a success I'll be happy to eat some crow. As for EVIL, this certainly has been a surprising development for him. I didn't expect him of all people to get the rocket strapped to his back. While I do think he is talented, he has just never screamed main event talent to me like dare I say Sanada or Shingo have in the group. Honestly it might be too soon, but I think I'd have honestly preferred if Shingo turned on LIJ as opposed to Evil. I also feel like Evil is more suited to Suzuki-Gun as opposed to the Bullet Club but I get that they want the BC to remain their top heel faction. Willing to give this a shot though as long as they keep on pushing Hiromu, he's killed it with his performances! Plus it's nice to see Dick Togo, wouldn't mind seeing him step in the ring at some point in new japan.

    Also in closing just have to say.. I'm pumped for Despy and Shingo. That'll be fun.





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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    I watched the Shingo match and thought it was fine but even at only 10 minutes didn't hold my interest that long. Really weird to hear fans clap but not cheer. I feel bad for people who want to subject themselves to a 40 minute EVIL match.

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    So Evil is a BC member now intresting


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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by Ed View Post
    Well it'll bring it out of Hiromu, but Naito didn't show any aggression or bitterness today and he was the one turned on!

    I'm starting to wonder which main event act has been more badly handled in the last 5 years, Naito or Roman Reigns. I know Gedo has his loyal supporters, but EVIL being the one to end the Naito reign after only 1 successful title reign can't be supported by 'yeah but COVID put them in a bad position'. If Jay White was due to win the Cup and win the title again, then that's still a bad idea. More BC nonsense and main events littered with interference is a bad idea. EVIL as a main eventer when nothing about the last year has warranted that in either his effort and performances or his reaction from the crowd, is a bad idea. It's not Jinder Mahal levels of bad, but it's Jinder Mahal vibes because they're pushing someone way above his station and you know from the get go it cannot result in a good match, it definitely lowers the ceiling on what to expect for that title now.
    I don't mind it not being there now. But I would like some progression further down the line. I can buy Naito not being phased during the match but losing the title and seeing EVIL and BC beat all his mates should bring out that. "Should" doesn't mean it will though, so we'll see.

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by Ed View Post
    Well it'll bring it out of Hiromu, but Naito didn't show any aggression or bitterness today and he was the one turned on!

    I'm starting to wonder which main event act has been more badly handled in the last 5 years, Naito or Roman Reigns. I know Gedo has his loyal supporters, but EVIL being the one to end the Naito reign after only 1 successful title reign can't be supported by 'yeah but COVID put them in a bad position'. If Jay White was due to win the Cup and win the title again, then that's still a bad idea. More BC nonsense and main events littered with interference is a bad idea. EVIL as a main eventer when nothing about the last year has warranted that in either his effort and performances or his reaction from the crowd, is a bad idea. It's not Jinder Mahal levels of bad, but it's Jinder Mahal vibes because they're pushing someone way above his station and you know from the get go it cannot result in a good match, it definitely lowers the ceiling on what to expect for that title now.
    Didn't you know that Naito is TRANQUILO!? I do think Naito struggles to portray certain emotions. It's weird given his character.


    I am in no way a fan of EVIL being champion nor am I into the story being told here at all. It's not my dig.

    As for using COVID as a booking excuse - well the fact Naito only got 1 title defense is almost certainly a result of COVID. The tournament's booking was likely capsized by COVID too and I don't believe that, for example, Hiromu's NJ Cup run and sudden focus in this story is something that was planned pre-COVID. Whether EVIL was planned to win or not, I don't know - I don't think it was but can't be sure. I think the story of LIJ's inner turmoil is good to turn to in this instance. Jay White winning the cup and belt being a bad idea is obviously based on opinion and hard to argue. I don't think Jay was winning the cup either but I do think EVIL's turn may have been planned like this to cover for his absence. EVIL's turn obviously needed something big to make it memorable hence cup win. And I guess if they were going to all in on reheating him then he had to beat Naito to look strong.

    BC nonsense and interferences etc being a bad idea is opinion as well.

    EVIL being a main eventer/champ out of nowhere does suck ass and I'm not entirely on board with him having a title reign either. I do recognise that they obviously wanted to tell a story with LIJ having issues and they were never going to choose SANADA or Shingo to be the ones to break away and get the push over EVIL. I can't really be annoyed at that because expecting anything other than that, from a NJPW booking perspective, is silly. Certainly not into LIJ as much as others though and I couldn't care less for the internal strife and all that stuff so I, personally, could do without this being the big main event storyline NJPW has going on right now. It's meh. Not really sure I agree Naito being badly handled all that much tbh. I think he's super unlucky to have his reign get smashed by COVID and ultimately be quite forgettable. Other than that, he's pretty much been solidified as the 1B of this era of NJPW through his booking and development.

    Agreed that the ceiling is lowered and that I'm not really hyped for an EVIL title reign as a result. Will be great when someone beats him though and I don't think it'll be too long.


    Oh and yeah if they go typical 30+ mins with EVIL main events all the time, I won't be watching those


    edit: forgot but are people legit criticising the draw for these shows or what? Coronavirus is still a thing and the Japanese are being hyper vigilant with regards to it. People were told not to attend if they had symptoms within 14 days of the show. Very easily could have people not going for these reasons and it's pretty crappy criticism to use against any promotion at this point in time.
    Last edited by RainShaker; 07-13-2020 at 02:17 PM.


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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by RainShaker View Post
    Didn't you know that Naito is TRANQUILO!? I do think Naito struggles to portray certain emotions. It's weird given his character.


    I am in no way a fan of EVIL being champion nor am I into the story being told here at all. It's not my dig.

    As for using COVID as a booking excuse - well the fact Naito only got 1 title defense is almost certainly a result of COVID. The tournament's booking was likely capsized by COVID too and I don't believe that, for example, Hiromu's NJ Cup run and sudden focus in this story is something that was planned pre-COVID. Whether EVIL was planned to win or not, I don't know - I don't think it was but can't be sure. I think the story of LIJ's inner turmoil is good to turn to in this instance. Jay White winning the cup and belt being a bad idea is obviously based on opinion and hard to argue. I don't think Jay was winning the cup either but I do think EVIL's turn may have been planned like this to cover for his absence. EVIL's turn obviously needed something big to make it memorable hence cup win. And I guess if they were going to all in on reheating him then he had to beat Naito to look strong.

    BC nonsense and interferences etc being a bad idea is opinion as well.

    EVIL being a main eventer/champ out of nowhere does suck ass and I'm not entirely on board with him having a title reign either. I do recognise that they obviously wanted to tell a story with LIJ having issues and they were never going to choose SANADA or Shingo to be the ones to break away and get the push over EVIL. I can't really be annoyed at that because expecting anything other than that, from a NJPW booking perspective, is silly. Certainly not into LIJ as much as others though and I couldn't care less for the internal strife and all that stuff so I, personally, could do without this being the big main event storyline NJPW has going on right now. It's meh. Not really sure I agree Naito being badly handled all that much tbh. I think he's super unlucky to have his reign get smashed by COVID and ultimately be quite forgettable. Other than that, he's pretty much been solidified as the 1B of this era of NJPW through his booking and development.

    Agreed that the ceiling is lowered and that I'm not really hyped for an EVIL title reign as a result. Will be great when someone beats him though and I don't think it'll be too long.


    Oh and yeah if they go typical 30+ mins with EVIL main events all the time, I won't be watching those


    edit: forgot but are people legit criticising the draw for these shows or what? Coronavirus is still a thing and the Japanese are being hyper vigilant with regards to it. People were told not to attend if they had symptoms within 14 days of the show. Very easily could have people not going for these reasons and it's pretty crappy criticism to use against any promotion at this point in time.
    People have criticised the crowd size? I'm sure the crowd is actually as full as you can be under the limited capacity conditions. They were only allowed around 3-4 thousand, weren't they?

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    With the first show back with fans, it should have been a sellout at 30% capacity. I have been told ticket prices were quite high for this and that may have had an effect and I can buy that, but even then that's no excuse for the company. Especially for a tournament final. That speaks very poorly on both Okada and EVIL. As for all these excuses, there were 500 more fans to the show and a virtual sellout The next day. That had nothing to do with it. One day isn't gonna make that difference, it should have been a layup and they underachieved because Okada isn't at that level of popularity Naito is and nobody cares EVIL on his own outside of the context of a mega LIJ story.

    Also Jay didn't draw well on top or get over with Japanese fans despite his large push. That's not an opinion, there's enough evidence to show they aren't into this style. EVIL being champion I'm not sure anyone is a fan of. It just wasn't well done but I do agree this isn't a longterm deal. No fucking way EVIL goes to the Dome as champion in my book. And at least it's something different. Between this and a mind numbing Okada title win that he wrestles shitty in as well in a different way I would much prefer them going completely off the wall like this as the company was quite stale and it at least feels like there's a real shakeup for the first time in forever.

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    Yes, I am sure that it reflects extremely badly on EVIL and Okada that they didn't sell out their NJ Cup final with a bigger show happening the next day that involved a guaranteed title match with Tetsuya Naito. In a country that is already very socially germophobic pre-pandemic and is experiencing a second wave during a pandemic. Gedo, Harold and BUSHIROAD must be beyond pissed at this clear sign of failure.

    If you ask me - I think it's pretty great that amount of people went at all given the circumstances. It's all too easy to turn around and blame EVIL and Okada ignoring a shitton of other factors. The cup itself wasn't very exciting, a lot of the big players were absent and the second 'hook' match was the debut of master fucking wato The show did well enough given all of this and the pandemic. It's completely vapid that the take is Okada and EVIL are to blame for this and that NJPW have totally bungled it.

    I don't see how anyone other than people who are anti-Okada are even considering this a legit criticism at all. They didn't sell out Dominion either - where are the criticisms regarding that? You're implying that both shows were guaranteed sell outs. Neither happened. So am I allowed to say that Naito isn't as popular as you think he is and this all reflects poorly on him? My maths might be off but 3900 isn't 30 percent of 16k either. Of course, I'm probably overestimating the capacity of the hall. So I'm going to ask why it wasn't an actual sell out for Naito vs EVIL and why we aren't criticising Naito for that either? Why are we having to define it as a 'virtual' sellout?

    Okada and EVIL are not the main reasons that the show didn't sell out. NJ Cup final not drawing as well as Dominion because Naito > Okada in popularity is a take I am passing on, my guy. Not going to pin it all on popularity when one show had title matches and the other didn't for starters. But I know your main point is to pretty much act as if Okada's to blame and has never been that popular or good in the first place. As for Naito's popularity, yeah he's insanely popular but he's never going to get that Ace booking - he's 1b and has proven to be a draw as such. He's never going to be booked above this station no matter what. His reign sucked and I think COVID really fucked it and the booking was forced into something to keep NJPW interesting during these times. They pretty much had a ton of their big match draws from WK missing and... with what remained, LIJ had five of those.

    So they've got all the key guys in LIJ still active and a gap in BC needing filled. I guess Gedo decided to have fun with it? I don't know. They're obviously relying deep on this for the time being due to the pandemic limiting the roster. It's not bad booking to cover your bases like this whilst trying to keep the product fresh. It's personal opinion to think it sucks because you think EVIL sucks.

    Anyhow, couldn't you argue that they didn't NEED to draw strong for these shows anyway if they are running reduced capacity? Genuinely baffled at why we'd criticise the drawing aspect when this was essentially a chance of NJPW to get away with running some matches that wouldn't draw too hot under normal circumstance. It's almost certainly why they're telling the story they are in the way that they are. Otherwise, I doubt they'd have gone with EVIL as the winner and the person to beat Naito. Can only imagine the house when Naito gets his title rematch down the line and the story has taken its toll. Better to do this type of reheat reign when you aren't able to draw massive due to crowd limitations.

    As for Jay White, does he have xpac heat with the fans because I think he's over as an outright heel and has done a fantastic job of realigning Bullet Club given how the Elite turned them more into less outright villains and more comedic bad guys. I am surprised to hear that he's not over and people aren't into him given that he's very clearly in the plans to be a big part of NJPW going forward. I don't think he was very over initially but I think people have grown to him. He isn't a mega over superstar but this can be built towards... which I imagine would be the aim. It took Naito like five years to actually get super over despite NJPW trying so I think I am willing to give things a shot with White as he has promising signs and hasn't peaked yet.


    ---

    I totally think NJ Cup and Dominion weren't very great overall but I also acknowledge this isn't a normal time so things are going to be a bit weird from storytelling POV. I guess doing this and having Tana/Ibushi lose the belts was a way to try and hit the ground running and look fresh. We'll see where everything goes with EVIL but I think NJPW has enough goodwill with fans that they'll be patient during this and be willing to see the story through despite the general suckery involving EVIL.


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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    I've never got the claims that Jay White isn't over as a heel currently. He definitely took his time getting to this point but I have zero problems in saying that he's over as a heel right now. Whether it's the crowd booing him on a regular basis regardless of opponent while reacting to his heel shenanigans in the right way or online which is usually Jay White being showered with praise from both sides of the water. I don't see much proof that he's not over. Even numbers wise, the only match that stands out as being lacklustre as a draw was the Goto vs White match at Wrestling Hinokuni. And the match in later in the Osaka was perfectly normally (despite the tour being one of the more weaker draws of the year). And I agree that Jay White played a big part in making Bullet Club feel like a real credible stable again. He embodies Bullet Club with his cheating antics and his attitude.

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    ezgif-2-e3108f514b6f.jpg

    All the wrestlers in the States are having their own version of the New Japan Cup. The stakes aren't as high but it's a much compacted tournament. The first round has already been completed Friday, so they'll do the rest of the rounds next Friday and the one after that too. Karl Fredericks vs KENTA looks like the promising match.

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    Re: NJPW New Japan Cup 2020 & Dominion 2020

    KENTA/Fredricks was good, but KENTA's hair stole the show.

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