Kevin’s NJPW Road To The New Beginning 2.3.21 Review

NJPW Road to the New Beginning

February 3rd, 2021 | Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan

Yesterday’s show was solid so I’m giving this another shot.

Gabriel Kidd and Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Yota Tsuji and Yuya Uemura

I like Taguchi being the New Japan Dad who takes his kids to work. He teamed with one yesterday and now has another at his side. However, he wasn’t really the focus here. Instead, that honor went to Kidd and Tsuji, who picked up where they left off with some aggressive strikes and intense battles. Interestingly though, it was Uemura who felt like he was the closest to picking up a win. He nearly stole this against Taguchi a few times before ultimately falling to Dodon in 8:28. A fine way to start the show and give the Young Lions some shine. [**¾]

EVIL, Jay White and Yujiro Takahashi vs. Kazuchika Okada, Tomohiro Ishii and Toru Yano

These five-match cards mean that relatively notable matches go on early like this one. After Jay White’s challenge yesterday, it was confirmed that he and Haku’s kids will challenge Ishii, Goto, and HASHI for the NEVER Titles on 2/11. Once again, Ishii charged White at the bell to continue their feud. I’m assuming they have their singles match at whatever major show comes after The New Beginningtour. That was the main focus here, along with EVIL and Okada continuing their beef. That feels much less interesting than White/Ishii, which is probably the hottest thing in NJPW right now. Yano and Yujiro were again the setup for the finish as Yano dusted him off with a low blow and roll up in 11:07. Another good match boosted by White/Ishii. That is going to be so good when it happens, especially considering how great their G1 meeting was. [***]

The Dangerous Tekkers, DOUKI, El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru vs. El Phantasmo, The Guerrillas of Destiny, Jado & Taiji Ishimori

It’s amazing how much better Suzuki-Gun is than Bullet Club. I don’t mind ELP and Ishimori rules but that’s out it. Desperado, Taichi, and Sabre Jr. rule on the other end. This is running back the match from Monday but without the elimination stipulation. That meant it got less time, clocking in at 12:18 but that kind of worked for it. That allowed things to move along nicely without giving me too much of G.O.D. or Jado. The idea was, as most of these tags are, to build to something down the line. This one focused on the two tag title programs, with DOUKI and dooky Jado added in. DOUKI ate the pin when hit with Sudden Death in what was a good but not great match. [***]

Hiromu Takahashi and Tetsuya Naito vs. SHO and Tomoaki Honma

SHO vs. Hiromu feels like it has MOTY potential. Their exchanges in these tags are usually the highlight. SHO is just so sneaky powerful and Hiromu’s speed combined with his absurd recklessness feels like a recipe for something special. Naito hasn’t really put in much of an effort over the past few weeks but I totally get it. He’s chilling until something big comes up down the line. He and Honma had some decent back and forth but again, this worked because of SHO/Hiromu. Naito pinned Honma following Destino at the 12:45 mark. Nothing special here. [***]

BUSHI and SANADA vs. Kota Ibushi and Master Wato

I’m still not sold on the idea of SANADA/Ibushi as the first major title defense for Ibushi. SANADA feels like the new Hirooki Goto in that he’s a big loser in important matches. Anyway, he can still have some quality exchanges with the likes of Ibushi because he can be so smooth in the ring. Meanwhile, BUSHI and Wato have been quietly having some of the better back and forth battles on these shows. It feels like the kind of thing that might steal the show soon. Wato is down to use his speed while BUSHI, even though LIJ are faces, can still resort to underhanded tactics. I wish SANADA would display a bit more power. I know it’s not his game but him tossing Wato around a bit or hitting him hard would make him feel like he’s a better match for Ibushi. Alas, he did get to swing him around in Skull End to win after 18:47. Like the rest of this show, it was good. [***¼]

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The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

The final score: review
Torture

The 411

It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.

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The 411: It’s hard to really go any higher with a show like this. Everything was between **¾ and ***¼, which is consistent but nothing special. It continued build but other than Ishii/White, things feel like they’ve been building too long already.
Final Score:
[ Torture ]
legend

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Legend ratings

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  • 0 – 0.9

    Torture

  • 1 – 1.9

    Extremely Horrendous

  • 2 – 2.9

    Very Bad

  • 3 – 3.9

    Bad

  • 4 – 4.9

    Poor

  • 5 – 5.9

    Not So Good

  • 6 – 6.9

    Average

  • 7 – 7.9

    Good

  • 8 – 8.9

    Very Good

  • 9 – 9.9

    Amazing

  • 10

    Virtually Perfect

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