Tuesday, November 24, 2015

NJPW kicks off the World Tag League with some amazing new teams

I provided in depth coverage of the G1 Climax tournament over the summer, and though I was disappointed Hiroshi Tanahashi won the tournament and the Wrestle Kingdom X title shot over Shinsuke Nakamura, all the amazing wrestling action was well worth it. Michael Elgin especially won over Japanese fans in ways he hasn't been allowed to do in Ring of Honor.

As November turns to December, it becomes time for the tag team version of the tournament. Even more American talent found their way into the World Tag League tournament than the G1. Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian make their debut as a team in NJPW while regulars The Kingdom and the Bullet Club unit of Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson (also the tag champions) are also involved. Bullet Club's leader AJ Styles is also in action, teaming with Yujiro Takahashi. The aforementioned Michael Elgin also returns to New Japan to join the tournament teaming with G1 winner Tahahashi in an epic unit.

Tanahashi and Elgin make an amazing team.
All images credit NJPW.
Perhaps the most interesting unit is the Los Ingobernables team of Tetsuya Naito and his new partner EVIL. Formerly a well known talent in America for the last few years on excursion, Takaaki Watanabe, took the EVIL identity upon his return to his home country. Clad in a purple robe and carrying a scythe, he certainly maes an imposing figure as the slightly insane unit cheats their way to victory.

Tetsuya Naito and EVIL with new Ingobernable recruit BUSHI.
Night one actually opened with one of the biggest matches of the tournament as Tanahashi and Elgin met Tanahashi's Wrestle Kingdom X opponent Kazuchika Okada and his partner Yoshi-Hashi. The two teams put on an epic 18 minutes which ultimately served to showcase how entertaining a team Elgin and Tanahashi make.

The other live episode this weekend wasn't populated by too many exciting tag tournament matches, but it was main evented by a highly entertaining "Special Fun Match". Elgin and Tanahashi teamed with the former CJ Parker, now using his old ring name of Juice Robinson, They battled the CHAOS unit of Toru Yano, Shinsuke Nakamura and Tomohiro Ishii in a battle built around great fun.

Ultimately, the World Tag League doesn't quite have the notoriety of the G1, but it still brings some great wrestling action available on demand worldwide on NJPW World. Check it out if you're so inclined.

No comments:

Post a Comment