NEW JAPAN CUP NIGHT 10 3/14/2021


Minoru Suzuki, El Desperado, & DOUKI defeated KENTA, Taiji Ishimori, & Jado (8:02)

**3/4

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Desperado pinned Jado with Numero Dos.


Will Ospreay, Jeff Cobb, & Great-O-Khan defeated Taichi, Zack Sabre Jr., & Yoshinobu Kanemaru (7:10)

**

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Cobb pinned Kanemaru with the Tour of the Islands.


SANADA, Shingo Takagi, & BUSHI defeated Hirooki Goto, Yuji Nagata, & Ryusuke Taguchi (6:26)

**1/4

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SANADA pinned Taguchi with the Japanese Clutch.


New Japan Cup second round: David Finlay defeated YOSHI-HASHI (16:12)

***

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This was an eminently solid match that bordered on being very good. The only thing holding it back was that neither man is very high up on the NJPW totem pole.

They performed chain wrestling at the start. Finlay hit a simple vertical suplex for a quick two. They took the fight to the apron, where YOSHI-HASHI brought Finlay to the floor the hard way by taking out his legs on a baseball slide. Back in the ring, they exchanged strikes, but YOSHI-HASHI's chops were too powerful.

YOSHI-HASHI targeted Finlay's back until Finlay escaped out of a suplex attempt and hit a backbreaker. Finlay followed it up with a plancha out to the floor. In the ring, Finlay landed a diving uppercut for two. He got more near falls with a cradle and another backbreaker. YOSHI-HASHI avoided a corner attack and took out Finlay's legs again, sending him crashing to the mat.

They traded forearms in the center of the ring. YOSHI-HASHI countered one into a backslide and a thrust kick and followed it up with a falling powerbomb for two. He immediately followed it up by applying the Butterfly Lock. After a long fight, YOSHI-HASHI transitioned into a simple sleeper, where Finlay powered out with a Blue Thunder bomb.


Finlay went for a stunner, but YOSHI-HASHI countered it into a backstabber before hitting running double knees for two. YOSHI-HASHI went for Karma, but Finlay turned it around and hit the stunner for two before following it it up with a ushigoroshi for another near fall. YOSHI-HASHI fought out of Sliced Bread and downed Finlay with a lariat.

YOSHI-HASHI went for Karma, but Finlay fought out of it once again. YOSHI-HASHI laid in headbutts and hit a dragon suplex and a lariat for another two. Finlay countered Karma into another stunner and hit an Acid Drop to pick up the win.


New Japan Cup second round: Jay White defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi (20:01)

***1/4

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The storytelling here was very interesting, as this was about as clean a win as Jay White's ever had in NJPW. The match was very good but without any Gedo interference, the finish was completely unexpected.

Both men tried to play mind games with the other. Tanahashi laid down as if to let White pin him, but rolled White up for a close two. White beat Tanahashi down in the corner, but Tanahashi hit his corner crossbody before scaring White out of the ring with his physique. Out on the floor, White attacked the Young Lions at ringside and sent Tanahashi hard into the barricade.

Back in the ring, White targeted Tanahashi's neck and back, hitting a backbreaker for two. He beat down Tanahashi for a long time, taunting him in an abdominal stretch before Tanahashi eventually hip tossed his way out of it. Tanahashi went for his flipping senton, but White rolled out of the way, so Tanahashi hit a dragon screw and landed the senton for two.

They had a sequence of about 20 standing switches before White spiked Tanahashi with a DDT. The Bladebuster followed for two. They traded forearms in the ring before White downed Tanahashi with a flatliner and a deadlift German. White tried to dump Tanahashi to the floor, but the Ace skinned the cat back into the ring and walked right into a uranage for two.

Tanahashi fought out of a fireman's carry and hit Twist and Shout. White rolled to the apron, allowing him to hit Tanahashi with a dragon screw, but upon re-entry, Tanahashi caught him with a dragon screw of his own. White tried to forearm his way out of another dragon screw, so Tanahashi just dropkicked White's other leg before hitting the dragon screw. Tanahashi then locked on the Texas Cloverleaf. White eventually reached the ropes for a break.


White tried to counter his way out of the Slingblade, but Tanahashi was able to hit it and send Gedo packing with a dragon screw. A second Slingblade got two. Tanahashi went to the top rope, but White popped up and sent him crashing to the mat. Tanahashi countered the Blade Runner into an arm-trap German. He tried to follow it up with a dragon suplex, but White fought out and cradled Tanahashi for two.

Tanahashi returned the favor with another cradle for a near fall before starching White with his open-hand slap. He then countered the Blade Runner into yet another dragon screw, but White countered the follow-up into the Blade Runner out of nowhere for the win.

White will face David Finlay in the next round. In a post-match promo, White addressed Finlay as a "new Impact tag team champion" and essentially said that Finlay has no chance to beat him. He also set the seeds for a NEVER Openweight Title challenge against Tanahashi.


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