NJPW G1 Climax 27 Night 1-4 Round Up
Where we're up to with G1 Climax so far.
New Japan’s G1 Climax is one of the most unique and grueling tournaments in all of professional wrestling. 20 wrestlers are split into two blocks of 10 and compete in a round robin tournament with the the two block winners competing in the final. This all takes place over 19 shows in 28 days.
With the first four nights of the G1 Climax in the can, it is time to take stock of what we have learned now that every competitor has wrestled their first two matches.
Nagata Could Go (Almost) Winless
Much like Jushin Liger in this year’s Best of the Super Juniors tournament, Yuji Nagata has announced that this will be his final G1 appearance. As he has started the tournament 0-2 he could also have a tournament that mirrors that of Liger, with him putting over younger talents before finally picking up his first win on the last day of Block A competition. This would give the 49 year old the perfect G1 sendoff.
Yano Continues To Be Yano
Throughout his years in the G1, Toru Yano’s matches have been short affairs that consisted of him using underhanded tactics to try to pick up the victory. This year is much the same but the matches are now lasting twice as long. This isn’t a good change as having to watch Yano’s antics for twice as long doesn’t make for a pleasurable viewing experience.
Great Matches Can Come From Anywhere
With a tournament as stacked as this there is the potential for greatness in almost every match, Yano’s matches are the exception, and that has been proven so far. Matches that look good on paper, such as Kota Ibushi vs Tetsuya Naito and Kazuchika Okada vs Michael Elgin, have lived up to expectations and matches that didn’t have much hype, such as Yuji Nagata vs YOSHI-HASHI and Satoshi Kojima vs Juice Robinson, have exceeded expectations. The sheer amount of great matches that will come out of this tournament is mind blowing.
Block A Is Wide Open
This was always somewhat likely in a Block that contains Naito, Tanahashi, Ibushi, Ishii, Goto and Sabre Jr and it’s clear that heading into the last night of Block A competition that there will be 3 or 4 wrestlers still in contention for the top spot. If you look at the standings you might think that both Blocks seem as close as each other but there are some wrestlers that have no chance of winning Block B. The only wrestler that has no chance of making a run at Block A is Yuji Nagata.
Omega & Okada Are Heading For A Pivotal Showdown
Both Kenny Omega and Kazuchika Okada have started the tournament 2-0 and at this early stage they are clearly the two favourites for Block B. It just so happens that these two will meet on the final night of the round robin stage, where the winner of their match will probably be heading to the final. It’s a good way to get Omega a win over Okada without the title being on the line and level up the series.
Standings After Night 4
There are still many, many days of the G1 Climax left and we will check back in at a later date to reassess where we stand.