AJPW Raising An Army – October 15
Watch: The RealHero Archive
Sanjo Sakae Gymnasium – Niigata, Japan
Big THE Ryokan & SUSHI vs. Koji Iwamoto & Ultimo Dragon**
This was joined in progress so we got to see the last 9 minutes of a 12 minute match. This was perfectly fine, nothing special. The best name in wrestling? It’s a tie between Big the Ryokan and Walking the Mummy. Big seemed a little off working with Ultimo Dragon in this match. Anyways like I said perfectly acceptable opening tag match. Two star worthy.
Koji Iwamoto & Ultimo Dragon def. Big THE Ryokan & SUSHI
Ryouji Sai vs. Yohei Nakajima**1/2
This was okay but I was hoping for more. The two fought outside for a bit. Both guys utilized lots of kicks. I like Nakajima when he is working this style more so than when he is doing cruiserweight style matches and I love when Sai is stiff as hell, I just felt like these guys held back a little in this match. Another prelim “alright” match.
Ryouji Sai def. Yohei Nakajima
Jun Akiyama & Masanobu Fuchi vs. Masao Inoue & Takao Omori**1/4
Way too much Fuchi in this match for me. Pace was so slow and the guys had to wait forever for him to get up. It just looked awkward to me. Omori must have just returned from Miami Beach, because he was so tanned. No fishnets though which was disappointing. This was once again okay but I felt like it could have been better if less of the focus was on Masa. I guess they want to build him up a little before the tag title match on 11/27. Nothing really stood out to me in this match other than I felt like Masanobu Fuchi looked too old to be wrestling in a serious match.
Jun Akiyama & Masanobu Fuchi def. Masao Inoue & Takao Omori
Mitsuya Nagai, Takeshi Minamino & Tatsuhito Takaiwa vs. NEXTREAM (Jake Lee, Naoya Nomura & Yuma Aoyagi)**3/4
Best match so far, lots of heat, all kinds of brawling, guys getting thrown into chairs, pure heel cheating by Nagai and company who seem to be some sort of faction against the All Japan boys. The match was pretty fun overall as I could almost give it 3 stars but I’m going to stay on the conservative side here. I don’t think there is anything on this show that is worthwhile seeking out to watch including this. The only thing I will say is that Nagai has this sick looking brainbuster that he used for the finish that looks so nasty. I will go back to watch that again!
Mitsuya Nagai, Takeshi Minamino & Tatsuhito Takaiwa def. NEXTREAM
All Asia Tag Team Championship: Atsushi Aoki & Hikaru Sato (c) vs. Atsushi Maruyama & Masashi Takeda**3/4
A bit disappointed by this one, may go back and rewatch it. See, the thing is, that Aoki, Sato, and Makeda are all favorites of mine. It may be that the match was too subtle for me and that I was not picking up on some of the storytelling or the nuances of the action. They went almost 16 minutes here and the match to me was building but never got to that next level that would put it in 3 star range. Still not a bad match at all. There was nice mat work and MMA style striking, I just was hoping for more. As you can see, that’s a theme of this show.
Atsushi Aoki & Hikaru Sato def. Atsushi Maruyama & Masashi Takeda to retain the All Asia Tag Championship
Big Guns (The Bodyguard & Zeus) & Kento Miyahara vs. Strong BJ (Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi) & Suwama***
Good match, they went 22 minutes here, each guy squared off against an opposite from the other team for the most part. Okabayashi and Sekimoto against Bodyguard and Zeus respectively and Suwama against Miyahara. Good performance from Sekimoto and Okabayashi though not as good as their performance the night before against SMOP. Zeus was fine and Bodyguard was better in a 6 man setting where he didn’t have to do too much. The finishing stretch was good between Miyahara and Suwama. Based on the finishing sequence I think Miyahara may get a good match out of Suwama who seems to be struggling with his cardio since returning to action after a long layoff. Suwama pinned Kento so hopefully that means Kento goes over when he puts the title on the line against Suwama on November 27.
Strong BJ & Suwama def. Big Guns & Kento Miyahara
AJPW RAISING AN ARMY - OCTOBER 15, 2016
Average - 5/10
I give this show a thumbs in the middle, very reminiscent of a New Japan house show, the main event was good especially if you’re a fan of the guys involved. It would be worthwhile to seek out. Other than that not much else is worth going out of your way to see. One thing I will say is that the show looks great in HD courtesy of the RealHero Drive, and the arena they wrestled in looks really cool, so for me that made it really fun to watch.