AJPW Champion Carnival Day 4 on April 20, 2017
Watch: The RealHero Archive
Dream Messe Miyagi West Bridge Hall – Sendai, Miyagi, Japan
Evolution (Atsushi Aoki & Hikaru Sato) vs. Yuma Aoyagi & Yusuke Okada**3/4
Cool opening match. Sato picks up the win when he submits Okada with a Boston crab after a nice sequence with a PK for a near fall, followed up by a transition into a cross arm breaker transitioned into an ankle lock, and then a high kick for another near fall. Very nice! Obviously stiff work by Sato and Aoki who never pass up a chance to work over the young boys. Wait, that sounded wrong. Also should be noted that Sato will be challenging Keisuke Ishii for the Jr. title on April 28.
Ultimo Dragon, Koji Iwamoto, Yohei Nakajima vs Jun Akiyama, Tsuyoshi Kikuchi & Aisawa NO. 1*3/4
I lost interest in this match fairly quickly. It was basic comedy, fluff, undercard filler. Best part was Akiyama forcing Nakajima to switch teams with him forcing him to tag with Kikuchi, who Akiyama wanted nothing to do with. It was funny how forceful Akiyama was in pushing Nakajima to the other team and how badly he did not want to go. They went about 9 minutes which was too long and Ultimo Dragon scored the pin with the La magistral cradle on Kikuchi, I believe.
B Block: Daichi Hashimoto vs. Takao Omori**3/4
This was a decent match. Nice finish. I was hoping Daichi would get the win here and go to 3-1, but that was not to be and after day 4. Hashimoto is .500 with a 2-2 record. Omori is 1-1- 1. Daichi ran wild on Omori (no pun intended), hitting him with the shining wizard to the back of the head and the DDT for a near fall. He managed to kick out of the Omori driver which had me thinking maybe this was his night, but Omori came right back with the axe bomber for the victory.
A Block: Daisuke Sekimoto vs. Jake Lee**3/4
I was really expecting much more from this match. It’s obvious after watching night 1. and seeing the difference in the matches from Korakuen and the matches from night 2,3, and 4, that the boys really had their working shoes on there and in these smaller venues are really taking it easy and saving themselves from injury and fatigue a little bit. Nonetheless. this was a fine match as you would expect the lads worked very stiff and snug, and as is the theme in these tournaments, the match was short. I was surprised that Sekimoto won here with the scorpion leg lock which was a nice change of pace. It’s unfortunate that he lost his grip on the hold and had to re-apply it. and in doing so had a very tenuous hold on it at best when Lee tapped, so it looked not that believable. I can’t remember if Lee had his leg worked over in any of his previous matches before this to maybe lead to a storyline reason why Sekimoto would win with the scorpion or not. Oh well, decent match nonetheless. Lee falls to 0-3 while Sekimoto improves to 2-1.
B Block: Suwama vs. Naoya Nomura**1/2
This was a basic Suwama match, slow, methodical, perhaps some would say plodding. It went 10 minutes and Suwama picked up the win with a vicious last ride powerbomb. I was, again, disappointed, as I have seen these two gentlemen have been singles matches with each other than this. Suwama 2-0, Nomura 0-2.
B Block: Shuji Ishikawa vs. The Bodyguard**1/2
Another letdown. Sheesh, Bodyguards high kick looks so horrible it barely grazes his opponents and they always drop like they got hit by a ton of bricks. This went about 8 minutes. Ishikawa hit the fire thunder for a near fall, which I thought for sure was the finish, and then a few seconds later hit the giant knee to score the pinfall and even up his record at 1-1 while the Bodyguard went to 2-2.
Kento Miyahara, Zeus & Ryouji Sai vs. Joe Doering, Kengo Mashimo & KAI***
Easily the best match of the night. Great work between Zeus and Mashimo as always. I would love to see a feud between these two men. Maybe when Zeus wins the triple crown Mashimo can get a shot at him. I remember a great 6 man tag from last year where they were tag partners, yet every chance they got, they were fighting with each other and slapping each other really hard when they would tag in and out, that was so awesome. Sai and KAI look great with each other here too. Nice tope suicida by KAI which leads to some serious crowd brawling. Back inside the ring and Zeus starts working over KAI. Miyahara and KAI = great chemistry, Mashimo and Miyahara also = great chemistry. Just as things are really heating up, Doering hits the revolution bomb on Zeus and picks up the win for his team in about 10 minutes.
AJPW CHAMPION CARNIVAL DAY 4 ON APRIL 20, 2017
Average - 5.5/10
I expected more; it was a little disappointing. I expected more from Sekimoto vs Lee and SUWAMA vs Nomura. The 6 man was good, but way too short, especially after the mediocrity that preceded it. I was expecting them to go 20 plus to save the show, but they did not.