My views on Pro Wrestling from the East and West

Monday, February 16, 2004

Tenzan wins IWGP Tourney!

Hiroyoshi Tenzan overcame all odds yesterday as he went through 3 men in one night to become the 35th IWGP World Heavyweight Champion. Everyone (myself included) was sure Tenzan would not even make it to the semis, but New Japan did their fans a great service by finally giving the title to the most deserving man on the roster.

The tournament started with Yuji Nagata notching another win against Tadao Yasuda. Despite cheating tactics by the Makai Club and injuring his knee, Nagata came back and tapped out Yasuda with the Nagata Lock III.
Next up was Tenzan's hard fought bloody battle with Kensuke Sasaki, but thanks to a little distraction from Shinya Makabe, Tenzan manage to hit the TTD for the win.
After alot of whinning, Tanahashi proved his worth in the tournament when he scored a big win over Yoshihiro Takayama with a victory roll. Takayama praised Tanahashi for the win, but all Tanahashi had to say was " It was a historic win!"
The last quaterfinal of the night ended in bizarre fashion as Tenryu KO'd Chono suddenly with a soccer kick to the face about six minutes into the match. Chono had to be stretchered out. I've seen Tenryu bust Omori's nose with a similar kick in World Japan so I can guess what it looked like.

The first semi final was another bloody battle for Tenzan as he overcame Nagata, scoring the win with the moonsault press. But in the process he injured Nagata as his leg landed on Nagata's face and KO'd him, also needing to be stretchered out after with a possible concusion.
Then came the battle of young vs old as Tanahashi looked to prove himself by furthering up the ladder, but had his dream cut short as he fell to Tenryu's 53Yrs Old brainbuster.

Prior to the finals, the GHC Jr Heavyweight title was contested as Mitsuo Momota, the first member of Japanese legend Rikidozan's family step foot into a New Japan ring, tried to bring the gold home to NOAH. Momota's attempts fell short as he lost to a ground-cobra twist hold by defending champion Jushin Thunder Liger.

Than came the much anticipated finals. Tenzan Vs Tenryu! This was said to be fast paced despite the fatigue from earlier matches. Tenzan again bleeding profusely, but managed to come back and score the TTD followed by the top rope diving headbutt to become the 35th IWGP Champion. The celebration was almost cut short by a blindside attack by a bitter Kensuke Sasaki! But after Sasaki got removed Tenzan still managed to pull himself together and give his congratutory speech.

Congratulations to Tenzan and may his reign be longer than the last with many successfull defenses!

No WWE No Way Out Report?
I was busy today and missed the live airing of the show. But I will be catching the replay later tonight and will put up a report tomorrow, so check back then.



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