All matches are from the Aichi Congress Center Event Hall, Nagoya, Japan, taped on 01/12/2018
Drone beat Disturbio
(6:49, Drone headscissors submission, ok)
Okumura & Puma beat Fuego & Star Jr.
(9:44, Puma casita Star Jr., good)
Cuatrero, Rocky Romero, SHO, YOH beat Ángel de Oro, Jushin Liger, Ryusuke Taguchi, Tiger Mask
(9:40, Cuatrero spinning crufix powerbomb, ok)
Niebla Roja, Soberano Jr., Volador Jr. beat Bárbaro Cavernario, Gran Guerrero, Sansón
(9:23, Soberano tornillo Sansón, good)
Bushi, Hiromu Takahashi, Rush, Tetsuya Naito beat Dragón Lee, Hirai Kawato, Kushida, Satoshi Kojima
(12:47, BUSHI boston crab Kawato, good)
Atlantis, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Mistico beat Gedo, Kazuchika Okada, Último Guerrero
(10:57, Mistica on Ultimo Guerrero, good)
This was the tour opening show, and people are working about the level of a tour opening show.
Niebla Roja is now wearing a Chippendale style bow tie. Rocky Romero decides to wrestle in the Black Tiger mask for about 10 seconds into his match.
Sofia Alonso is sitting directly in the center of the picture for the whole show.
This was a fine enough show, but – like most years – just for people who have to see anything. The 2nd and 4th matches were the best two on the show and the two to watch if you’re going to watch any of this. (It’s on the RealHero drive if you’re looking for it.)
Main event was well worked if not extraordinary. Mistico and Último Guerrero had a great night working with each other, with Mistico’s tricky stuff connecting well and UG coming off super strong on the front superplex. It’s probably just a quirk of the schedule, but it’s weird to see Mistico be presented as the star of the show at the end when he’s not booked that way. Tanahashi & Okada didn’t totally mail it in. Atlantis looked slow and a little bit heavy. I was scared when he was going to dive. It was a relief he didn’t.
The semimain was pretty long, with face in peril sections for both Kushida & Kojima. That meant plenty of Rush but really a lot of Dragon Lee. He and Takahashi did give the crowd their usually really strong exchange early on, but not much more. The crowd really wanted Kawato escape the crab at the end but it wasn’t happening. Match told that story well, and Los Ingobernables were as popular as anyone on the show. I could’ve used a little better comeback, but the match still had it’s moments.
The fourth match was the best of the night. Soberano was popular from the moment he appeared and won the crowd even more over during the match. Sansón and Cuatrero lose something not being together. There’s still good, but there’s a stronger confidence together. The finish played into the upcoming title match, but they actually seemed to go cross rivalry for most of the match and did it pretty well. Gran Guerrero worked well Volador and seemed to have the best night of the rudos.
This is three parts goofy comedy match and one part the CMLL guys. Angel de Oro & Cuatrero pick up the speed of the match dramatically when they get it, and seem lost at all the various Romero & Taguchi based shenanigans. The CMLL guys felt like they were barely in, just really an exchange in the middle, and the finish. The rest was fine for a touring show but nothing must see.
The second tag match had good pace and sharp looking moves. Fuego is over in Mexico, but he’s really over in Japan and that got the crowd into the match from the start. Puma did well, though Star may have a difference of opinion about his catch on the tornillo. He probably could’ve gotten the pin on the super powerbomb, that looked more brutal than intended. (Sofia seemed very concerned.) Star looked sharp in his performance. Okumura isn’t anything great, but he knows all the parts and where to be at the right time. This was usual FantasticaMania match fun.
The show little bit of a dry opener. Both Drone and Disturbio used their bigger moves, but there wasn’t a great flow to the match and neither man was had experience working with this crowd. Disturbio didn’t really do a lot more than he’d at home. Drone didn’t stick out.