Shinsuke Nakamura vs Ryusuke Taguchi
Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Fun little match, lots of antics interspersed with good action. Taguchi looks good early on, getting some cheeky stuff in and looking like he can hang with one of the best guys in the company. Nakamura sells both his disdain for being in a match with this geek and his frustration that this geeks is getting the better of him pretty well. Nakamura gets the advantage, notably hitting a Boma Ye to the neck on the outside, and his quasi-heel work is not bad, something I’d like to see more. The match really slows down for this heel work, which is pretty shitty for a sub-ten minute match, but Nakamura’s shitty talking during it helps. Taguchi’s shine isn’t anything special, and soon thereafter Nakamura plants him with an enzuigiri for a brief double down. Nakamura’s kicks and knees are really stiff throughout this match. Nice spot where Nakamura hits a gourdbuster and looks for a Boma Ye, but Taguchi collapses when he gets up to his feet. Forearms back and forth when he gets up, and when Taguchi goes to rest in the corner, Nakamura goes for Boma Ye to the neck which is reversed into a jumping hip attack, followed by a real nice corner dive. Back inside, Taguchi hits a hip attack off the top for two and then a Boma Ye-style hip attack which Nakamura reverses into an armbar. Taguchi rolls it into an ankle lock and the crowd and myself are thoroughly impressed before Nakamura gets the ropes. Taguchi reverses the Landside into a rollup and hits a hip attack out of it, goes for a second, and is dropped with a Boma Ye. Forearm exchange again, Taguchi goes for a hip attack but it’s reversed into the DND, Nakamura goes for a Boma Ye but hits the corner when Taguchi moves, but is able to hit a flying Boma Ye for two. Hip attack attempt, Nakamura ducks it and hits another Boma Ye for the pin. Fun match, really overachieved despite its flaws, one of the best sub-ten minute matches I’ve seen this year.