DDT “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2016 ~MOST HOT SUMMER IN THE WORLD~” Preview

ddt-ryogoku2016

DDT “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2016 ~MOST HOT SUMMER IN THE WORLD~”, 28/08/2016
Tokyo Ryogoku Kokugikan

0. King Of Dark Title – 6:30 Man Is Now A 1:30 Family: Chikara (c), Mitsuo Momota & Nobuhiro Shimatani Vs Tomomitsu Matsunaga, Hoshitango & Rekka
0. Tokyo Joshi Pro Offer Match: Miyu Yamashita, Yuka Sakazaki & Akane Miura Vs Syoko Nakajima, Hyper Misao & Yuu
1. DNA FIGHTS ~BATTLE OF LAST SUMMER~: Kazusada Higuchi & Daiki Shimomura Vs Kouki Iwasaki & Mizuki Watase
2. Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title – Battle Royal: Joey Ryan (c) Vs Reika Saiki Vs Toru Owashi Vs Keisuke Ishii Vs Saki Akai Vs Kazuki Hirata Vs Cherry Vs Guanchulo Vs Mad Paulie Vs KENSO Vs Gota Ihashi Vs Jun Kasai Vs Yoshihiko
3. KUDO Comeback ~YELLOW DRAGON COME BACK!!~: KUDO & Masahiro Takanashi Vs Akito & Yasu Urano
4. NωA Road To DDT Fes 2016 ~ Sasadango Teaches The Way To Survive Showbiz: Makoto Oishi, Shunma Katsumata, MAO & Super Sasadango Machine Vs Antonio Honda, Trans-Am ★ Hiroshi, Lady Beard & Gorgeous Matsuno
5. AJPW World Jr. Heavyweight Title: Hikaru Sato (c) Vs Soma Takao
6. DDT Extreme Title – Watase Contra Watase: LiLiCo (c) Vs Danshoku Dino
7. Special 6-Man Tag Team Match: Sanshiro Takagi, Shiro Koshinaka & NOSAWA Rongai Vs Great Kabuki, Yukio Sakaguchi & Kota Umeda
8. Special Tag Match: Daisuke Sasaki & Tetsuya Endo Vs Dick Togo & Mike Bailey
9. KO-D Tag Team Titles – Uchikomi! Presents: Ken Ohka & KAI (c) Vs HARASHIMA & Yuko Miyamoto
10. KO-D Openweight Title – Good Com Asset Presents: Konosuke Takeshita (c) Vs Shuji Ishikawa

Bloody right it’s been a hot summer. DDT is back in Sumo Hall for the ninth time in the the company’s existence. It is also the eighth “PETER PAN” show and the seventh “PETER PAN” held in this building. Throughout 2016 DDT was focused on the rivalry between Happy Motels and DAMNATION. The main event and the road leading to it reflects this as the youngest ever KO-D Openweight Champion takes on The Big Dawg~! of DAMNATION. The KO-D Tag Team Titles are on the line in a match where Bad Communication is fatal. The Wrestling Master teams up with a Speedball to fight a charismatic protege and a young man who feels robbed of his future. A samurai steps in when a planned foreign exchange with Funk University was cancelled. Title matches, idols, injury comebacks and plenty more are also planned for DDT’s biggest show of the summer.

0. King Of Dark Title – 6:30 Man Is Now A 1:30 Family: Chikara (c), Mitsuo Momota & Nobuhiro Shimatani Vs Tomomitsu Matsunaga, Hoshitango & Rekka

The day starts off with the King Of Dark Championship, DDT’s “Misfortune Title” that punishes the champion by forcing them to only wrestle in dark matches until they win. The title currently belongs to Chikara. No, not that one. I mean the grandson of Rikidozan and the person who finds more joy out of Chopping people than anyone else in the world. It’s all he’s good at and that’s me being veeeerrrrrrrrrry generous. Sadly for Chikara his first match in Sumo Hall involves defending this championship at 1:30pm. An upside to this is his father Mitsuo Momota wants to help him out. The three times Momota has wrestled in the building for All Japan have all been in the opening match so it’s fitting he gets to do it again this time with his son.

0. Tokyo Joshi Pro Offer Match: Miyu Yamashita, Yuka Sakazaki & Akane Miura Vs Syoko Nakajima, Hyper Misao & Yuu

Tokyo Joshi Pro is still going along four years into its existence. This year they introduced their first championship, the TOKYO Princess Of Princess Title. The first and only champion is Miyu Yamashita who won the belt when the promotion held its first Korakuen Hall show in January. She hasn’t been impossible to defeat but her wins come when they count. Her big challenge coming up is Yuu. This woman debuted at the Korakuan show and has been undefeated ever since. Her experience level in Judo helped her progress quicker than most if not all of the other girls who have wrestled for the promotion since its inception. This match here will give a little preview of their title match in September. Also keep an eye on Hyper Misao. She’s a super hero but this year has resorted to cheating and fighting dirty to win her matches.

1. DNA FIGHTS ~BATTLE OF LAST SUMMER~: Kazusada Higuchi & Daiki Shimomura Vs Kouki Iwasaki & Mizuki Watase

DDT’s development brand opens up the show proper. The match sees a step down for Kazusada Higuchi. He won the Right To Challenge Battle Royal in March but lost his the KO-D Title match a month later. Since then he’s been up and down the card teaming with other wrestlers who have similar sumo backgrounds. In DNA he is still unbeatable and is the early favourite for the DNA Grand Prix scheduled for October. Daiki Shimomura had a bad debut in March, getting injured and missing three months of ring time. He has some catching up to do but we at least found out during Beer Garden week that he can do a Shinsuke Nakamura impression. Maybe that can rub off on him. Kouki Iwasaki found some success in the DNA team that won the KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles and he’s developing into a competent wrestler. Meanwhile Mizuki Watase found love and the dangers that comes with it. But that’s another story for another part of this preview.

2. Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title – Battle Royal: Joey Ryan (c) Vs Reika Saiki Vs Toru Owashi Vs Keisuke Ishii Vs Saki Akai Vs Kazuki Hirata Vs Cherry Vs Guanchulo Vs Mad Paulie Vs KENSO Vs Gota Ihashi Vs Jun Kasai Vs Yoshihiko

If you notice the Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title now has a tan that’s because it spent the summer travelling across the United States, mainly California. Joey Ryan left Japan as the champion back in June and since then the belt has had quite an adventure, capturing a lot of attention along the way. Let’s look at what the list of champions during this period: a WWE Hall Of Famer, half of the Lucha Underground roster, Spider-Man, the Beyond Wrestling fanbase, Joey Ryan’s fiance, their pet cat, Vince McMahon’s star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame, three entrants from this year’s WWE Cruiserweight Classic, a man with a box of cereal for a head and comedian Ron Funches. And this does not include all of the wrestlers who have previously held championships in WWE, TNA, ROH, ECW, EVOLVE, SHIMMER, PWG, CZW, PROGRESS and God knows where else. Sadly it’s time for the belt to come home to Japan where Joey Ryan is expected to defend it in the usual Battle Royal. It’s fitting for this championship that I treat its return to Japan as a chance to calm the gimmick down.

Anyway the usual cast of misfits fill up the match. KENSO who exists to annoy me has spent all summer fighting Sanshiro Takagi for a spot on this show, Mad Paulie is one of DAMNATION’s “pets”, the “Muscle Idol” Reika Saiki is this year’s eye candy and Jun Kasai is back after causing havoc at DDT’s last visit to Sumo Hall.

3. KUDO Comeback ~YELLOW DRAGON COME BACK!!~: KUDO & Masahiro Takanashi Vs Akito & Yasu Urano

KUDO finally makes his return after a bad injury to his right ACL discovered in September 2015 put him out of action. While he was gone Shuten-dōji added Kota Umeda to take his place. Masa Takanashi also changed his ring name to Masahiro Takanashi because he felt it was time to start a new chapter of his career. KUDO’s first match back is against familiar opponents. Smile Squash and Shuten-dōji wrestle against each other often so he should feel at home here.

4. NωA Road To DDT Fes 2016 ~ Sasadango Teaches The Way To Survive Showbiz: Makoto Oishi, Shunma Katsumata, MAO & Super Sasadango Machine Vs Antonio Honda, Trans-Am ★ Hiroshi, Lady Beard & Gorgeous Matsuno

DDT is working with a music festival in November and to capitalise on the event they created New Wrestling Aidoru (Idol) or NωA for short. Makoto Oishi, Shunma Katsumata and MAO were selected for the wrestling idol group and quickly recorded their first record “Never Give Up☆I LOVE YOU”. Their goal is to be good enough for a spot on the music festival but the only way they will qualify is if they get over 50,000 followers on Twitter. They thought things were going well when they forced Dick Togo to join NωA but it only took a few hours for him to graduate from the group. Some good news happened though. Masked wrestler, marketing genius and PowerPoint extraordinaire Super Sasadango Machine offered to be their manager. His latest idea is to pit NωA against another team of wrestling idols and singers. Antonio Honda and Trans-Am ★ Hiroshi were both members of a band called DPG (Dramatic Perfect Group), pro wrestling is just a side project for Lady Beard outside of his music career and Gorgeous Matsuno is an old crooner. Expect musical numbers.

5. AJPW World Jr. Heavyweight Title: Hikaru Sato (c) Vs Soma Takao

When Team Dream Futures decided to split up in May all three members went their separate ways. Two of them have struggled and since gone to do very different things. Shigehiro Irie is currently on an excursion in America to develop as both a wrestler and a grown up. Keisuke Ishii formed Fantastic Memories with Danshoku Dino hoping to recapture their success back when they were part of Belt Hunter X Hunter. The one who avoided the post-Drift slump is Soma Takao. He has beaten both of his former teammates in singles matches and has an impressive win-loss record throughout DDT. With this success came an opportunity to get what he wants most: the AJPW World Jr. Heavyweight Title. The challenge was sent to All Japan and it was accepted. After all, the champion has some history with the challenger.

Hikaru Sato has done well for himself since leaving DDT in 2014. A short stay in Union Pro saw him dominate as a big fish in a small pond. Then he went on to All Japan where he is a regular contender in the Jr. Heavyweight division. He won the Jr. Title in June and is going into Sumo Hall for his second defence but there is more to this than just a title match. In February 2011 Takao beat Sato in a No DQ Hair Vs Hair Match and shaved him bald in the middle of the ring. Soma thinks history gives him the edge over Sato. The champion is happy to wrestle at Sumo Hall for DDT again. He has fond memories of the first “PETER PAN” from 2009. Even though he wrestled in the dark match, Sato remembers being excited because everyone worked so hard to put the show together. He is reminded of that everytime he wrestles in Sumo Hall.

One last thing. Soma Takao is 7-0 at “PETER PAN” shows. Slowly but surely this is approaching an Undertaker at WrestleMania level of winning streak.

6. DDT Extreme Title – Watase Contra Watase: LiLiCo (c) Vs Danshoku Dino

Love’s precious, isn’t it? Who would have guessed when LiLiCo found a few DNA wrestlers to be her bodyguard earlier this year she would hit it off with one of them. Mizuki Watase and LiLiCo fell in love and became an item. They sought inspiration from Titanic to help LiLiCo win the DDT Extreme Title and since then the power of their love has kept the title in their possession. But now comes a man who is a big threat to LiLiCo. Not just for her championship but for her boyfriend too! Danshoku Dino is the No. 1 Contender and he thinks Watase is only in a relationship with LiLiCo to hide the fact that he’s gay. To prove it the match will be Watase Contra Watase, the winner gets Watase, the loser can never touch him again! If that’s not enough Watase is freely allowed to get involved in the match. So he can prove his love with LiLiCo is real by helping her win… Or he can prove Dino is right by helping him win? Is Dino’s claims about Watase true? Is Watase’s romance with LiLiCo nothing more than a sham? Is this a better love story than the Overwatch shipping of Pharah and Mercy I found on NeoGAF? We’ll soon find out.

7. Special 6-Man Tag Team Match: Sanshiro Takagi, Shiro Koshinaka & NOSAWA Rongai Vs Great Kabuki, Yukio Sakaguchi & Kota Umeda

Well this match fell apart. It was all supposed to be about Terry Funk. Unfortunately a hernia prevented ol’ Funker from travelling to Japan and he had to cancel his appearance. Shiro Koshinaka is bring brought in on short notice to be his replacement. Koshinaka has history in DDT by being a former KO-D Tag Team Champion with Danshoku Dino under the team name Butt Samurai. Koshinaka gets to be in the ring again with his old Heisei Ishingun stablemate The Great Kabuki. He says he is also looking forward to wrestling Yukio Sakaguchi for the first time.

8. Special Tag Match: Daisuke Sasaki & Tetsuya Endo Vs Dick Togo & Mike Bailey

There is one man I can point to as the centrepiece of DDT’s storylines this year and that man is Daisuke Sasaki. He played a role in many of the main event angles that have gone on and developed into a dangerous competitor in the process. And to think it all began with a crush. 2016 began with Sasaki all alone. The Golden☆Storm Riders had to break up when Kota Ibushi quit DDT and Suguru Miyatake blew out his shoulder. It was around this time that Candice LeRae had her first tour with DDT and Sasaki was instantly smitten with her. Like a lovesick puppy Sasaki proposed to her several times, mostly to be his tag team partner but it eventually became an offer of marriage. LeRae’s rejection left him feeling devastated but the real shock came when news of LeRae’s engagement to Johnny Gargano reached Japan. This is where you can pinpoint Sasaki’s tragic origin story if he was a supervillain. Sasaki snapped and went into a jealous rage, constantly demanding to fight Gargano at DDT shows even though Gargano was never going to get booked. He also wanted tag team title shots despite having no tag partner. Eventually Sasaki solved his problems by getting a pet dog and it is a very big dog. When “Adrian” was introduced it turned out to be Shuji Ishikawa in a giant mascot dog outfit. While the imagery of a big dog beating up wrestlers is funny (and it was) the new team were no joke and they quickly became tag team champions. Sasaki grew a mean streak and got his hands on a Right To Challenge Anytime Anywhere Contract. He used it to win the KO-D Title from HARASHIMA in April and became king of the DDT world until Konosuke Takeshita knocked him off his perch. Sasaki got a small measure of revenge though when he convinced Takeshita’s best friend to switch sides.

Tetsuya Endo saw himself as the bridesmaid of Happy Motels. This time last year he returned from an injury to face his best friend and tag team partner Takeshita at Sumo Hall. Endo lost that match but no matter, most wrestlers lose their first bout back from injury. He and his buddy soon became the KO-D Tag Team Champions and everything was great until Sasaki & Ishikawa came along. Sasaki made Takeshita pass out to the Cross Facelock at the 19th Anniversary Show but no matter, they were caught unprepared and they could get their rematch a month later. Sasaki made Takeshita pass out again in the but no matter, now Endo can chase after Sasaki’s KO-D Title. Takeshita gets the title shot first and goes on to finally beat Sasaki, becoming the youngest KO-D Champion ever. No matter, Endo got a Right To Challenge Contract around the same time. He cashes in for a fair and square title match against his best friend to prove who is truly better. Takeshita won. That’s when Endo cracks and has enough of being in his friend’s shadow. Seeing an opportunity, Sasaki crashes Takeshita’s post-match victory speech and offers Endo to join his new unit DAMNATION. Endo shocked everyone when he pushed his best friend aside and accepted the DAMNATION T-shirt! Since then Endo has found new success by embracing his dark side. Can there be anybody out there to stop DAMNATION? How about somebody from Sasaki’s past?

Four years ago Dick Togo called time on his legendary career. After saying his goodbyes in Japan he spent his final 12 months wrestling around South America in countries like Chile and Bolivia. They were his second homes and he wanted to help establish their wrestling scenes. Fast forward to 2016 and Togo is back in Japan with a burning desire to return to the ring. He still has plenty left in him and he wants to fight the new generation of wrestlers that have appeared during his absence. Everybody was happy to have him back. Everybody that is except for Sasaki. Togo’s protege was pissed off that this old man is back on the scene when it should be known to everyone that the student has surpassed his master. A welcoming hug became a low blow. Sasaki made his intentions known, he is better than Togo and will prove it. Endo also thinks that Togo should stay out of DAMNATION’s way. Togo disagrees and wants to put both of these punks back in their place. But he needs help. Togo demanded a tag team match but foolishly did so without having anyone to back him up. Luckily there was a new Canadian sensation brought in to save the day.

“Speedball” Mike Bailey has only been wrestling in Japan for a month but he is quickly winning over fans with his rapid strikes and agility. So we currently have a Canadian wrestler making waves in DDT in short time? Sounds familiar. Sounds doubly familiar actually. Anyway, Bailey was picked as Togo’s partner and he could not be more excited to wrestle with such a legend. While he holds no grudge with DAMNATION you can be sure Sasaki & Endo aren’t going to let him steal their spotlight. Sparks will fly in this one.

9. KO-D Tag Team Titles – Uchikomi! Presents: Ken Ohka & KAI (c) Vs HARASHIMA & Yuko Miyamoto

Mandatory listening for this part of the preview.

I see this as two pairs of brothers from other mothers fighting over the KO-D Tag Team Titles. Ken Ohka had a stressful year over in his home base Ganbare☆Wrestling. He had been betrayed so often that it must felt crushing to him. Thankfully a kindred spirit came along and they caught on like a house on fire. KAI from Wrestle-1 offered to help his problems. They wrestled in identical vests and jeans which in pro wrestling terms is the closest bond two people could ever make. They also like B’z which is another thing a lot of Japanese wrestler seem to bond over. So they named their team Bad Comi after the song “Bad Communication” (Did the song above end? Keep playing it) After their one match together they somehow convinced DDT to give them a title shot. An injury scare put their chances in doubt but they surprised everyone by winning the belts from DAMNATION.

Their challengers are HARASHIMA & Yuko Miyamoto, together known as Smile Yankee. The two originally tagged together for the 2015 New Year’s Eve tournament and they reached the final. A few more appearances in the summer convinced them to team more. Miyamoto even decided to join Smile Squash for the upcoming DDT Dramatic General Election. Much like their opponents, Smile Yankee have a habit of wearing identical gear during their matches. They swap between HARASHIMA’s gear and Miyamoto’s gear. Ohka doesn’t care that Yankee Smile has only ever lost once, Bad Comi are the hottest tag team in the world!

10. KO-D Openweight Title – Good Com Asset Presents: Konosuke Takeshita (c) Vs Shuji Ishikawa

This makes up the other part of the Happy Motels Vs DAMNATION feud. Since his debut at 17 years old, Konosuke Takeshita was first labelled as DDT’s Rookie Supernova and later simply “The Future”. It only took four years for him to reach the top and become the KO-D Openweight Champion, the youngest wrestler to ever do so. Losing over and over to Daisuke Sasaki in the tag team division was a tough hurdle to overcome but in May he finally did it. Since then he defended the belt against a veteran outsider (Yuko Miyamoto), a former KO-D Champion with one last golden opportunity to get the belt (Toru Owashi) and his best friend (Tetsuya Endo). Now he has to fight The Big Dog.

Forget the part about Shuji Ishikawa being Daisuke Sasaki’s “pet”. This is still a big lad and former champion who smashed through the King Of DDT tournament to get this title match. Takeshita does have a 4 minute victory over Ishikawa that happened in May but don’t expect the same thing to happen here. Ishikawa has been wrestling in several different companies this year and has taken Chops, Lariats and German Suplexes from the best of them. He also has previous experience wrestling in the main event of “PETER PAN” when he headlined the 2011 show. Takeshita thinks he can summon the fighting spirit necessary for such a special show. Ishikawa doesn’t care, he’ll just crush that spirit while providing a great match for the crowd. Then when he wins the title he will hug Sasaki in the ring to celebrate.

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