Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ 2018

April 27, 2018

This year’s Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ returns under a different format. Instead of a round robin tournament it is now a single elimination playoff featuring 16 wrestlers, most of who have competed in the previous years. The prize for the winner is 500,000 yen and every match has no time limit.

The notable name absent from the field is last year’s winner Trans-Am ★ Ryuichi. So far no reason has been given for why he isn’t there. The first timers are Fuminori Abe, Akiyori Takizawa, Manabu Hara, Minoru Fujita and Yasu Urano. Most of the rest have been in the previous two tournaments except for Takato Nakano, who was only in last year’s. This is the competition that made Trans-Am ★ Hiroshi and normally he would be a favourite to go far but his new peaceful lifestyle along with a lack of recent ring time has me questioning if he can live up to his previous runs.

BASARA “VAJRA 69 ~FEAST~”, 23/05/2018
Shin-Kiba 1st RING

1. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 1A: FUMA Vs Daichi Kazato
2. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 1B: Yusuke Kubo Vs Takumi Tsukamoto
3. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 1C: Manabu Hara Vs Takato Nakano
4. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 1D: Trans-Am ★ Hiroshi Vs Akiyori Takizawa
5. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 1E: Isami Kodaka Vs Ryuichi Sekine
6. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 1F: Ryota Nakatsu Vs Minoru Fujita
7. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 1G: Gouma Ryu Vs Fuminori Abe
8. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 1H: Yasu Urano Vs SAGAT

BASARA “VAJRA 70 ~NAGASONE KOTETSU~”, 10/06/2018
Tokyo Itabashi Green Hall

1. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 2A: Winner Of Match 1C Vs Winner Of Match 1D
2. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 2B: Winner Of Match 1E Vs Winner Of Match 1F

BASARA “VAJRA 71 ~SENDAI SHISHIN~”, 17/06/2018
Miyagi Ward Cultural Center

1. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 2C: Winner Of Match 1A Vs Winner Of Match 1B
2. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Round 2D: Winner Of Match 1G Vs Winner Of Match 1H

BASARA “VAJRA 73 ~FEAST~”, 28/06/2018
Shin-Kiba 1st RING

1. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Semi-Final: Winner Of Match 2C Vs Winner Of Match 2A
2. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Semi-Final: Winner Of Match 2B Vs Winner Of Match 2D

BASARA “VAJRA 74 ~REIGN SUPREME~”, 12/07/2018
Shinjuku FACE

1. Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ – Final: X Vs X

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DDT “JUDGEMENT 2018 ~DDT 21ST ANNIVERSARY~” Preview

March 24, 2018

DDT “JUDGEMENT 2018 ~DDT 21ST ANNIVERSARY~”, 25/03/2018
Tokyo Ryogoku Kokugikan

0. Under Match: Mizuki Watase, Rekka, Daiki Shimomura, Nobuhiro Shimatani & Takato Nakano Vs Mad Paulie, Hoshitango, Tomomitsu Matsunaga, Gota Ihashi & Cherry
0. Under Match: Kouki Iwasaki & Shinichiro Tominaga Vs Kenshin Chikano & Akira Jo
0. Under Match – Tokyo Joshi Pro Offer Match: Yuka Sakazaki & Syoko Nakajima Va Rika Tatsumi & Maho Kurone
1. Gauntlet Tag Match: LiLiCo & Makoto Oishi Vs Reika Saiki & Lady Beard Vs Akito & Shunma Katsumata Vs Toru Owashi & Kazuki Hirata Vs Antonio Honda & Ethan Page Vs Naomi Yoshimura & Keisuke Okuda
2. World Crazy Wrestler No. 1 Decision Battle In DDT: Joey Ryan Vs Colt Cabana
3. Tokyo Joshi Pro Offer Match – Special 6-Woman Tag Match: Miyu Yamashita, Maki Ito & Mizuki Vs Saki-sama, Yoshiko-sama & Azusa Christie
4. Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title: Super Sasadango Machine (c) Vs Jiro Kuroshio
5. KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles: KUDO, Yukio Sakaguchi & Masahiro Takanashi (c) Vs Kota Umeda, Yuki Ueno & Koji Takeda
6. Weapon Rumble 5 Way Tag Loser Gets Anal Blast Match: Sanshiro Takagi & Ippanjin Munenori Sawa Vs Mike Bailey & MAO Vs Yuko Miyamoto & Soma Takao Vs Isami Kodaka & Fuminori Abe Vs Michael Nakazawa & Chinsuke Nakamura
7. Dramatic Dream Match: Danshoku Dino, Keisuke Ishii & Ken Ohka Vs Great Muta, Daisuke Sasaki & Tetsuya Endo
8. KO-D Tag Team Titles – Uchikomi! Presents: HARASHIMA & Naomichi Marufuji (c) Vs Daisuke Sekimoto & Kazusada Higuchi
9. KO-D Openweight Title: Konosuke Takeshita (c) Vs Shuji Ishikawa

For an audio preview I appeared on an episode of the Wrestling Omakase podcast to talk about the show. We also review the “SAKI AKAI PRODUCE ~ DDT COLLECTION” show on the same episode. You can listen to it here.

The DDT UNIVERSE live broadcast begins on 1:30pm JST with the first pre-show match beginning at 2:00pm JST and the main show beginning at 3:00pm JST. So for other time zones the main show begins at 7:00am GMT (remember the clocks will have gone forward one hour in this time zone), 2:00am ET and (Saturday) 11:00pm PT. For those with access to AbemaTV the event will also air live for free on the DDT channel (VPN needed for those outside Japan). There will be either muted audio or replacement music for the entrances and video packages because of this.

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DDT is back in Sumo Hall once again for its biggest event of the year. “JUDGEMENT 2018” is being held to mark DDT’s 21st anniversary and is providing a stacked card to celebrate. The headline match is a rematch of a 2016 Sumo Hall main event but there is plenty to talk about from top to bottom. We have grudge matches, we have generational battles, we have wrestling demons, we have anal explosions, we have title matches, we have joshi, we have crazy foreign wrestlers and we have the other sub-brands jumping in to get involved. The only way this show gets any more insane is if DDT goes the Pop Team Epic route and holds an identical 5 hour show immediately after this 5 hour show ends but with different a commentary team.

0. Under Match: Mizuki Watase, Rekka, Daiki Shimomura, Nobuhiro Shimatani & Takato Nakano Vs Mad Paulie, Hoshitango, Tomomitsu Matsunaga, Gota Ihashi & Cherry

The first match of the day is between rookies and veterans. The rookie team consists of DNA and BASARA wrestlers. Mizuki Watase’s big matches in DNA for the last few months have been against wrestlers like Koji Kanemoto & Minoru Tanaka. Taiwanese wrestler Rekka recently formed a short lived team with Chinese wrestler Choun-Shiryu that fell apart over their national differences. Daiki Shimomura has been bottom of the pile and taking loss after loss on most shows. His Gran MilliMeters partner Nobuhiro Shimatani has been the same except he has spent his time trying to win over DAMNATION so he can join their group. BASARA’s Takato Nakano is approaching the first anniversary of his debut match in April.

On the veteran team Mad Paulie has become a little bit calmer ever since he discovered dancing. He loves to dance along to Shuji Ishikawa’s karaoke. Because of this he acts a little bit nicer to his opponents but he is still dangerous to wrestle. Gota Ihashi embarrassed himself on the big stage when he got to team with Kota Ibushi and Riki Choshu on a show produced by Choshu. They won their match but Choshu ripped apart Ihashi with criticism during a post show interview. Ever since then Ihashi has been trying to regain his confidence and even wants to discover if the power of Choshu is inside of him. It isn’t. The real power is the friends you make along the way and Choshu has been friends with Ibushi for years so the entire journey is a waste of time in the first place. Hoshitango, Tomomitsu Matsunaga & Cherry have been filling up the DDT pre-show matches throughout the year.

0. Under Match: Kouki Iwasaki & Shinichiro Tominaga Vs Kenshin Chikano & Akira Jo

The focus of this match is between Kouki Iwasaki and Akira Jo. The two are feuding against each other in DNA where the homegrown wrestlers are defending themselves against the Naomi Kingdom, which Jo is a part of. Shinichiro Tominaga comes over from Ganbare☆Wrestling as a proud “amateur” pro wrestling card carrier. Kenshin Chikano has a DDT appearance here and there. He had a little more of a presence in BASARA last year when BASARA had a summer long rivalry with Dove Pro Wrestling.

0. Under Match – Tokyo Joshi Pro Offer Match: Yuka Sakazaki & Syoko Nakajima Va Rika Tatsumi & Maho Kurone

Tokyo Joshi Pro gets fully represented with two matches this time around. The pre-show match is between two of their long standing tag teams the Miraclians and the Dragon Bombers. The Apricots have been teaming together for as long as Yuka Sakazaki & Syoko Nakajima have been around. They have a few achievements between them but the one they share together is becoming the first ever TOKYO Princess Tag Team Champions. On the surface the Dragon Bombers look like an odd pairing but Rika Tatsumi and Maho Kurone have won over fans with their personalities. Kurone’s entire zombie character is immediately eye catching and her behaviour at shows is often fun to follow. Tatsumi got some media attention when she admitted to fancying another Tokyo Joshi wrestler Mizuki and openly questioned the No Relationships rule used by the promotion because it only refers to having boyfriends and not girlfriends. She is currently preparing for the biggest match of her life in May when she main events Korakuen Hall. She recently pinned Nakajima to build up her momentum. Either repeating it or pinning Sakazaki would only increase it further.

1. Gauntlet Tag Match: LiLiCo & Makoto Oishi Vs Reika Saiki & Lady Beard Vs Akito & Shunma Katsumata Vs Toru Owashi & Kazuki Hirata Vs Antonio Honda & Ethan Page Vs Naomi Yoshimura & Keisuke Okuda

The show kicks off proper with a wacky Gauntlet Match for Tag Teams. When LiLiCo was last in DDT she was defending the now forgotten KO-D 10-Man Tag Team Titles with Makoto Oishi and three others. That was in November. Now she’s back in training with Oishi to enter the gauntlet. Oishi has planning his next steps ever since NωA split up. He demanded to join T2Hide so he could take over the group and even won the right to be a member. But he instead turned it down so he could go do literally anything else. Reika Saiki & Lady Beard are connected together outside of wrestling as the idol duo DEADLIFT LOLITA. This is their first time teaming together for a wrestling match. Shunma Katsumata became the breakout wrestler from NωA when he joined ALL OUT and went through a crazy Hardcore Match where he used thumbtacks. Akito has been by Katsumata’s side during this encouraging him to come out of his shell. Toru Owashi & Kazuki Hirata are still the same except for the times when Hirata gets deported and replaced by a suspiciously similar looking foreign substitute. They might still be feeling burned by Oishi rejecting them. Ethan Page has been loving his stay in Japan which probably explains why he acts different here compared to how he normally elsewhere. DDT brought him in with big hopes that he will be their next big Canadian star. Antonio Honda is with him to make sure that happens. Finally, Naomi Yoshimura & Keisuke Okuda have been terrorising DNA with their Naomi Kingdom unit. Their troublemaking is now spreading to DDT and they are very interested to be in the same ring as LiLiCo and Saiki.

2. World Crazy Wrestler No. 1 Decision Battle In DDT: Joey Ryan Vs Colt Cabana

Everything about this match is a little funny. Two of America’s most known and successful comedy wrestlers will face off one on one inside one of Japan’s most prestigious wrestling arenas… and there’s been zero build up for it. That’s not to say either of them have done nothing in DDT at all. In January Joey Ryan competed at the D-Oh Grand Prix. He seemed to be more concerned about convincing the audience to throw paper tape at him for his entrances than he was with winning matches. Colt “Boom Boom” Cabana challenged for the KO-D Openweight Title on Christmas Day but failed to win it. He then spent New Year’s Eve pretending to be Abdullah The Butcher. Both are fighting for the right to be called the DDT’s craziest gaijin wrestler.

3. Tokyo Joshi Pro Offer Match – Special 6-Woman Tag Match: Miyu Yamashita, Maki Ito & Mizuki Vs Saki-sama, Yoshiko-sama & Azusa Christie

For the first time Tokyo Joshi gets a main card spot on a Sumo Hall show. Miyu Yamashita has regained her position as the ace of the promotion when she won back the TOKYO Princess Of Princess Title on 4th January. Since then she has been fighting off challengers like Veda Scott, Yuna Manase and Maho Kurone. Teaming with her is one of the scariest egos ever to grace a DDT ring. Pop idol turned pro wrestler Maki Ito often becomes intense when she wrestles. Her petite figure doesn’t stop her from throwing headbutts and giving her opponents the middle finger. She also formed her own team/fan club called the Ito Respect Army and brought in Mizuki as Member #001. Mizuki doesn’t mind and is happy to make a friend. They even recorded a music video together. It’s just that this friend can act like a psychopath when she doesn’t get her way.

Their opponents are NEO Biishiki-gun, the snooty aristocratic unit led by the snootier and even more aristocratic Saki-sama. Her biggest move over the last year was abducting one of the weakest wrestlers in Tokyo Joshi, Azusa Takigawa and brainwashing her into becoming Azusa Christie. Azusa is now a devoted nun who worships Saki-sama as if she was God. This change has seen her gain more success than she ever had previously and she along with Saki now holds the TOKYO Princess Tag Team Championships. Ever since her inclusion, NEO Biishiki-gun have been the dominant force in Tokyo Joshi and now they have a new girl joining them for this show. In February Saki-sama brought out a shy woman who was hiding her face behind a teddy bear and introduced her as an old friend from her childhood. Maki Ito confronted this girl and threatened her until the bear was lowered and the face was revealed. The girl is Yoshiko-sama and she isn’t afraid to fight back! Her teddy bear is named Charlotte by the way.

4. Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title: Super Sasadango Machine (c) Vs Jiro Kuroshio

I’ve had trouble trying to keep up with the Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title this year. Super Sasadango Machine won it the first week of January and asked to defend the belt against Jiro Kuroshio at Sumo Hall. His wish was granted but on one condition. Sasadango would need to defend the title at least twice a week every week up until the show takes place. Sasadango quickly found a solution to this problem. He set up an office in Nagoya and invited celebrities, spokesmen and other various business people to try and win the belt from him. In return they would get to promote their projects on DDT’s social media. It worked for the most part but there were some title changes I missed from people I don’t know and from there I lost track. As of writing I think he is still the champion and his title match with Kuroshio is all set.

But things are never just normal with this championship. There are always people hunting after the belt and I’ll be shocked if this match just stays between Sasadango and Kuroshio. Heck I’ll be shocked if a title change does not happen right before the match takes place! Also I don’t think Kuroshio would be just satisfied with doing just this match. Remember, he has a pinfall victory over Konosuke Takeshita from the D-Oh Grand Prix. There has to be some sort of follow up to that.

5. KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles: KUDO, Yukio Sakaguchi & Masahiro Takanashi (c) Vs Kota Umeda, Yuki Ueno & Koji Takeda

On the one hand Shuten-dōji finds themselves in the familiar position of the KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles match on DDT’s big supercard. On the other hand their opponents this time includes what used to be one of their own! Kota Umeda returned from a long injury absence last November and is making up for lost time in both DDT and DNA. He built up a quick but intense rivalry with another rookie Yuki Ueno. He also joined the rest of DNA in their feud with the Naomi Kingdom. It was during this time that Umeda started to figure something out. As the fourth member of Shuten-dōji he was often left out of their 6-Man Tag Title matches. The only times he got to step in was to cover for one of the other wrestlers if they were hurt. This had to change.

Shuten-dōji reached the point where they were disappointed by their current position. They wanted to face the best trios DDT could throw at them but in the end it is they who are the best trio. That was when Umeda stepped up to them. He wanted to challenge his brothers for the titles and to do so he is teaming with his rival Ueno as well as another rookie Koji Takeda. The response from Shuten-dōji was mixed. Masahiro Takanashi found it funny. He thought Umeda’s new unit looks so bad that they should be called Pigging 2018 after the consistently worst unit to compete in the DDT General Elections year after year. But KUDO & Yukio Sakaguchi took this seriously. They would allow Umeda to challenge them but he would no longer be a part of Shuten-dōji if he does so. Umeda was willing to pay that price. Now Umeda is leading his generation team against his former family and in the process became a fierce enemy to Sakaguchi in particular. It might get worse when the title match takes place.

6. Weapon Rumble 5 Way Tag Loser Gets Anal Blast Match: Sanshiro Takagi & Ippanjin Munenori Sawa Vs Mike Bailey & MAO Vs Yuko Miyamoto & Soma Takao Vs Isami Kodaka & Fuminori Abe Vs Michael Nakazawa & Chinsuke Nakamura

Well this has been crazy. Originally DDT was going to hold its Falls Count Anywhere specialty match but Sumo Hall management and the Japan Sumo Association finally put their foot down and told them no. The potential risk of audience injuries and building damage is too high for them to accept. Unfortunately for them they weren’t prepared for DDT’s Plan B. Sure DDT will keep it in the ring but now there are explosives involved. At least it’s still safer than Sami Callihan playing with a pinata.

It all begun when Sanshiro Takagi was reunited with an old friend. In a moment that they absolutely swear was not like anything else that happened that same week involving former DDT talent, Munenori Sawa returned to DDT to save Takagi from a beatdown. They embraced, tears were shed and one of DDT’s wackiest tag teams from the last decade were back in business. Although Sawa had retired from pro wrestling to become a salaryman, he would still show up near a wrestling ring every now and then. Takagi threw out a challenge. He and Sawa would face anyone in a Falls Count Anywhere Match at Sumo Hall. They attracted a lot of offers. Yuko Miyamoto wanted to get involved and as the current DDT Extreme Champion he surely qualifies. Soma Takao joins Miyamoto as part of Smile Squash. The call was also answered by Isami Kodaka & Fuminori Abe from BASARA. Kodaka is a hardcore wrestler and Abe is pretty much Munenori Sawa Jr. so the stipulation suits them fine.

The challenge led to an old enemy of Takagi’s resurfacing. Michael Nakazawa sent a video saying he would enter with a friend from “New York”. That friend is Chinsuke Nakamura! The Pauper Of Strong Style made his presence felt when he threw Takagi over the top rope and out of the ring. He celebrated this accomplishment by pointing to the RyogokuMania sign held above Korakuen Hall. The loudest response of all was from MAO fresh off of his split from NωA. MAO thinks now is the time DDT gets a new face for Street Wrestling and it should be him. He’s bringing Speedball Mike Bailey back to team with him. However MAO may be too crazy judging by that time he ran over Takagi with a van to win a Falls Count Anywhere match. He then threatened to blow up Shin-Kiba 1st RING with fireworks.

So the match was set and tensions grew to a dangerous level between Takagi and MAO. Takagi’s response to getting hit by a vehicle was to start shoving fireworks into other wrestlers’ butts to give them an Anal Explosion. MAO responded in kind until it was the major focus by everyone involved in the upcoming match. That was when the ban came and the match had to be cancelled. During that announcement all of the teams came together and threw together a replacement match. The BASARA team wanted to use weapons. MAO demanded that someone should get an Anal Blast. Everyone agreed to a Weapons Rumble match. As the match progresses, new weapons would be brought out Royal Rumble style. Plus whoever loses the match must subject themselves to an Anal Explosion! This means everybody is happy except for the Japan Sumo Association. Serves them right.

7. Dramatic Dream Match: Danshoku Dino, Keisuke Ishii & Ken Ohka Vs Great Muta, Daisuke Sasaki & Tetsuya Endo

One of the first announcements for this show made back in January was the involvement of The Great Muta. DDT eventually announced that he would be teaming with DAMNATION to take on Danshoku Dino and his friends. Daisuke Sasaki would use the news to announce that he is in charge and Muta would be fighting under his leadership. There was no response from Muta about this. Sasaki then started taunting Dino by spitting cola and coffee at him Poison Mist style. Again there was no response from Muta. But Sasaki’s actions did bring Dino to his breaking point. The attacks made Dino transform into The Great Homo! Under his own Muta-style personality, Dino would constantly attack Sasaki and Tetsuya Endo. Endo moreso than Sasaki. He would spit Poison Milk Mist at them and attack their backsides with a spike. The only way he could be stopped was when Sasaki transformed into Nerima Sting to combat him. This finally made Muta stir. The demon was not pleased by this nonsense especially from Dino.

A threatening message was sent to DDT HQ. Dino has been given the Poison Curse! No matter where Dino goes, Muta would possess everyone around him and make them spit the Poison Mist in Dino’s face. Nowhere was Dino safe. Employees, trainees, referees, wrestlers, fans, models, TV hosts. All of them spat the Mist at Dino under Muta’s power. Dino would get attacked again and again and again and again and again! Has Muta’s plan brought Dino back to the brink enough to summon The Great Homo? Keisuke Ishii and Ken Ohka are there to help Dino but the three of them are clearly outmatched. The only thing they don’t have to worry about is Muta doing a Moonsault but that’s what Endo is there for.

8. KO-D Tag Team Titles – Uchikomi! Presents: HARASHIMA & Naomichi Marufuji (c) Vs Daisuke Sekimoto & Kazusada Higuchi

For many in DDT there is one task that seems impossible and that is beating HARASHIMA. The backbone of DDT is often the biggest mountain to climb and some wrestlers have become obsessed with doing it. The latest wrestler in this position is Kazusada Higuchi. HARASHIMA has been a thorn in his side ever since Higuchi’s first year in DDT. HARASHIMA gave Higuchi his first loss, beat him twice in KO-D Title matches and also won the KO-D Tag Team Titles from him with Naomichi Marufuji. The team known as HarashiMarufuji have held the titles ever since. They even survived a title defence held inside a factory! If they were ever to be beaten, Higuchi would have to find somebody really strong to team with him.

Oh crap. Daisuke Sekimoto wants to get involved.

Sekimoto & Higuchi joined forces for the annual New Year’s Eve cross promotion Tag Team Tournament and made it all the way to the final. They made such a good impression together that they are reuniting to go after HARASHIMA & Marufuji. Sekimoto and HARASHIMA have a history together but there is respect between them. HARASHIMA and Higuchi however do not like each other ever since HARASHIMA knocked out Higuchi during a singles match earlier this month. When Higuchi came to he went on a rampage chasing after HARASHIMA. A defeat to Marufuji too in the run-up to this match hasn’t helped. Higuchi will have to keep his emotions in check against these two.

9. KO-D Openweight Title: Konosuke Takeshita (c) Vs Shuji Ishikawa

This is the rematch 19 months in the making. Konosuke Takeshita and Shuji Ishikawa main evented “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2016” with the KO-D Openweight Title on the line. Ishikawa came out on top that night and held onto the belt for almost the rest of 2016. HARASHIMA won the title from him in December that year but the championship made its way back to Takeshita at “JUDGEMENT 2017” just over one year ago. Since then Takeshita has firmly kept the belt in his grasp and fought all-comers, breaking the DDT record for most title defences in a single reign with 10 successful defences at this time. Freshly graduated from college, Takeshita has been having a great year as the champion. It’s getting tough though. A lower back injury has plagued Takeshita throughout February and gave him a big target that can be exploited. So it’s been a tough year but a great year none the less.

However you can argue Shuji Ishikawa’s last 12 months have been just as good if not better. He goes on a tear in All Japan and wins the Champion Carnival, then the Triple Crown, then the Real World Tag League with Suwama and then AJPW World Tag Team Titles also with Suwama. When he refocused his efforts in DDT at the beginning of 2018, Ishikawa ends up winning the first ever D-Oh Grand Prix tournament almost unbeaten. His only loss in the competition was against his DAMNATION leader Daisuke Sasaki. The goal of the Grand Prix was to establish DDT’s leading star for the rest of the year and Ishikawa proved there is no one more deserving of it than him.

Ishikawa has gone out to prove he has a range of other talents too. Ever since he won the Grand Prix, Ishikawa has performed karaoke in the ring to celebrate his big victories in DDT. Mad Paulie has joined in the fun by dancing along to his songs. Sasaki & Endo aren’t as eager to join in so they just grin and bare it while he sings. With the big title match on the horizon, Sasaki gave Ishikawa a serious order. Ishikawa cannot sing karaoke and Paulie cannot dance again until Ishikawa beats Takeshita at Sumo Hall to become the KO-D Champion. This gave Ishikawa an idea. Takeshita is injured. If he gets so injured that he cannot defend the title at Sumo Hall then Ishikawa will become the champion by default. Then for the main event Ishikawa can sing karaoke inside the ring all night long! So for the last month Ishikawa has intentionally tried to injure Takeshita in their preview matches. It briefly worked when Takeshita had to miss a show to recover but he came back and in their most recent match together pinned Ishikawa.

So there you have it. The strongest champion in DDT’s history is hurt but still capable of beating whatever is being thrown at him. DDT’s strongest challenger is almost unstoppable and is powered by the desire to show off his vocal talents. Their 2016 match is well worth the watch in preparation for this.


D-King Grand Prix 2018 Preview

December 27, 2017

More details have emerged for the D-King Grand Prix tournament taking place in January. At the end of “NEVER MIND 2017” on Christmas Eve, Konosuke Takeshita asked what would be the big prize for him because he is already the KO-D Openweight Champion and will most likely be the defending champion in the main event of “JUDGEMENT 2018” next March. The original announcement of the tournament was that the winner will get a main event KO-D Title shot on that show. DDT Producer Danshoku Dino revealed his intentions behind setting up the D-King GP. The winner will be “cast in the leading role” for DDT in 2018 so whoever wins the GP will become a major focal point of the company over the next 12 months. If that isn’t enough, a few days later the Assistant Producer Hisaya Imabayashi revealed that the winner will also receive 2,000,000 yen in prize money!

A press conference was held with all of the Japanese entrants making an appearance to comment on their chances in the tournament. Takeshita said he’s been satisfied by defending the KO-D Title in Korakuen Hall but there are many regions in Japan where the title has never been defended in. Some of those areas are on the tour schedule and while he is not defending the title in the tournament, he wants to wrestle in those towns as if the title is on the line every show. He thinks the strongest wrestler should win the Grand Prix and it doesn’t make sense if the champion is not the strongest.

The rest of Block A gave their opinions. For HARASHIMA it has been years since he last competed in a Round Robin tournament. He knows how much risk there is in suffering an injury because there have been times when he got hurt early in tournaments and could not complete his remaining matches. Keisuke Ishii sees the Grand Prix as an opportunity to end his current depressing run. He is confident he will win because his total singles record against his Block A opponents are 9 wins, 7 losses and 5 draws. Tetsuya Endo claims that he is only interested in fighting Jiro Kuroshio, nobody else. Masahiro Takanashi had spent his recent time wondering why he was put in the tournament because he is more of a 6-Man Tag Team specialist. He found out it was because KUDO is not in good enough condition to compete in a league format and Takanashi was nominated in his place. Now he realises he is the second most experienced wrestler in the tournament after HARASHIMA. When he looked at the poster for “JUDGEMENT 2018” that was when he found his answer. He believes he will face Kazusada Higuchi in the final. Jiro Kuroshio is happy for the opportunity and is excited for his matches. He wants to win the Grand Prix for himself rather than for WRESTLE-1.

Over in Block B the atmosphere is a bit different. Daisuke Sasaki has become depressed after losing the Independent World Jr. Heavyweight Title to Ken Ohka then failing to win the KO-D Tag Team Titles with Endo. He doesn’t think he will win the tournament. He feels so low that he thinks he will only win one match. He said this while looking at Shuji Ishikawa. Yukio Sakaguchi is delighted to take part because he gets to prove he is the clearly the strongest in DDT. Soma Takao is entering his first league competition and is counting on the experience he learned wrestling in All Japan to bring out his full potential. Akito already has his battle plans in place to beat all but one person in his block. The one man he can’t figure out is Ishikawa. If he can beat him then as far as he is concerned, winning the tournament is guaranteed. He desires to face his friend Takeshita on DDT’s biggest stage. Kazusada Higuchi is keeping it simple and will focus on one match at a time. He’ll defeat whoever steps in front of him then the main event spot in Sumo Hall will come naturally to him. Shuji Ishikawa thinks he had a good 2017 and wants to continue that momentum going into 2018.

Some questions were asked to the wrestlers by the wrestling press. Takeshita was asked which wrestler he is most looking forward to fighting. He said Kuroshio because it is a new generation DDT Vs WRESTLE-1 match. Kuroshio said he has a plan to beat Takeshita but he’s keeping it secret. Ishikawa was asked about having to fight his friend Sasaki. Ishikawa said it was a conspiracy by DDT to put them together in the same block. But he will fight Sasaki if he has to. Sasaki joked that Ishikawa only has three seconds to beat him. HARASHIMA was asked about Takeshita throwing around the words “New Generation” in his earlier comments. HARASHIMA has no thoughts in particular about it and he is only focusing on winning his matches. Endo was asked about being separated from DAMNATION and being alone in his block. Endo promised to give the prize money to Sasaki when he wins it.

Ishii was asked to provide more data about his singles record against the rest of Block A. He said he has 6 wins & 1 loss against Endo, 3 wins & 0 losses against Takanashi, 0 wins & 5 losses plus 1 draw against HARASHIMA, 1 loss & 1 draw against Takeshita. He has never wrestled singles matches against Kuroshio and Joey Ryan. Sakaguchi & Takanashi were asked about wrestling in KUDO’s place. Sakaguchi described the tournament as being different from King Of DDT which KUDO usually participates in. They are sorry that KUDO is unable to compete in the GP but he will be there to celebrate with them when they win.

Akito was asked about what Ishikawa’s potential strategy will be against him. Akito repeated that he cannot figure Ishikawa out. He has time to come up with something but right now he can’t see anything at all when he looks at him. Endo was asked about getting to fight Takeshita one on one again for the first time since “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2017”. He refused to give an answer. He doesn’t want to think about it until it happens. Finally, Ishikawa was asked if he has a blueprint in place for 2018. He said he has no such thing. He just does his best and the fans appreciate it. He doesn’t know if he will win the tournament but he will make the effort.

Neither of the two foreign entrants were in attendance so there are no comments available for Joey Ryan and Mike Bailey.

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2018 IN SHINJUKU”, 05/01/2018
Shinjuku FACE

1. 4 Way Tag Match: Joey Ryan & Veda Scott Vs Antonio Honda & Soma Takao Vs KUDO & Toru Owashi Vs Makoto Oishi & Shunma Katsumata
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Jiro Kuroshio
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Keisuke Ishii
4. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Masahiro Takanashi
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Akito
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Kazusada Higuchi
7. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Mike Bailey Vs Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2018 IN OSAKA 2 DAYS”, 07/01/2018
Osaka Hirano Community Hall

1. Danshoku Dino, Kazuki Hirata & Yuki Ueno Vs Shunma Katsumata, MAO & Veda Scott
2. 4 Way Match: Keisuke Ishii Vs Toru Owashi Vs Kouki Iwasaki Vs Naomi Yoshimura
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Tetsuya Endo
4. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Joey Ryan
5. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Masahiro Takanashi Vs Jiro Kuroshio
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Yukio Sakaguchi
7. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Kazusada Higuchi
8. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Akito Vs Mike Bailey

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2018 IN OSAKA 2 DAYS”, 08/01/2018
Osaka Hirano Community Hall

1. Danshoku Dino Sometimes Throws Away The Heavy Responsibilities Of A Producer To Hit The Desire Of Man New Year’s Special Battle Royal: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Tetsuya Endo Vs Toru Owashi Vs Toru Owashi Vs Kazuki Hirata Vs Naomi Yoshimura Vs Mizuki Watase Vs Yuki Ueno Vs Veda Scott (Special Referee: Danshoku Dino)
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Joey Ryan
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Jiro Kuroshio
4. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Keisuke Ishii Vs Masahiro Takanashi
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Kazusada Higuchi
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Mike Bailey
7. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Akito Vs Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2018 IN NERIMA”, 10/01/2018
Tokyo Nerima Coconeri Hall

0. Under Match: KUDO, Masahiro Takanashi, Kouki Iwasaki & Nobuhiro Shimatani Vs Mike Bailey, Makoto Oishi, Shunma Katsumata & MAO
1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs HARASHIMA
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Keisuke Ishii Vs Joey Ryan
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Jiro Kuroshio
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Soma Takao
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Shuji Ishikawa
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Akito Vs Kazusada Higuchi

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2018 IN YOKOHAMA”, 11/01/2018
Yokohama Radiant Hall

0. Under Match: HARASHIMA, Antonio Honda, Mizuki Watase & Rekka Vs Kazusada Higuchi, MAO, Daiki Shimomura & Nobuhiro Shimatani
1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Masahiro Takanashi
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Keisuke Ishii Vs Jiro Kuroshio
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Joey Ryan
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Shuji Ishikawa
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Mike Bailey
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Akito

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2018 IN SHIMIZU”, 13/01/2018
Shizuoka Shimizu Marine Bill

1. 3 Way 6-Man Tag Match: Konosuke Takeshita, Antonio Honda & Kouki Iwasaki Vs Daisuke Sasaki, Mad Paulie & Nobuhiro Shimatani Vs Makoto Oishi, Shunma Katsumata & MAO
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Masahiro Takanashi
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Keisuke Ishii Vs Tetsuya Endo
4. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Joey Ryan Vs Jiro Kuroshio
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Akito
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Kazusada Higuchi Vs Mike Bailey
7. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2018 IN SHINKIBA”, 14/01/2018
Shin-Kiba 1st RING

0. Under Match: Makoto Oishi, Shunma Katsumata & MAO Vs Kouki Iwasaki, Mizuki Watase & Yuki Ueno
1. 7 Way Match: Danshoku Dino Vs KUDO Vs Akito Vs Mad Paulie Vs Toru Owashi Vs Kazuki Hirata Vs Antonio Honda
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Keisuke Ishii
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Tetsuya Endo
4. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Masahiro Takanashi Vs Joey Ryan
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Mike Bailey
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Soma Takao
7. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Kazusada Higuchi Vs Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2018 THE FINAL!!”, 28/01/2018
Tokyo Korakuen Hall

1. D-King Grand Prix – Final: Winner Of A Block Vs Winner Of B Block


D-King Grand Prix 2018 Schedule

December 4, 2017

DDT is trying out a round robin tournament to set up the main event of their next Sumo Hall show in March. The D-King Grand Prix will have two blocks both consisting of seven wrestlers. The winners of each block face each other in the final and the tournament champion gets added to the main event of “JUDGEMENT 2018 ~DDT 21ST ANNIVERSARY~”. This is the first round robin DDT has done since the 2010 Young Drama Cup and I think the first on DDT’s main shows since the 2005 KO-D Tag League. Every block match has a 30 minute time limit, I assume the final will have no time limit. Every show during the group stage will have one or two non-tournament matches as well.

A Block

Konosuke Takeshita
HARASHIMA
Keisuke Ishii
Tetsuya Endo
Masahiro Takanashi
Joey Ryan
Jiro Kuroshio

B Block

Daisuke Sasaki
Yukio Sakaguchi
Soma Takao
Akito
Kazusada Higuchi
Mike Bailey
Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2017 IN SHINJUKU”, 05/01/2018
Shinjuku FACE

1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Jiro Kuroshio
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Keisuke Ishii
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Masahiro Takanashi
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Akito
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Kazusada Higuchi
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Mike Bailey Vs Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2017 IN OSAKA 2 DAYS”, 07/01/2018
Osaka Hirano Community Hall

1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Tetsuya Endo
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Joey Ryan
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Masahiro Takanashi Vs Jiro Kuroshio
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Yukio Sakaguchi
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Kazusada Higuchi
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Akito Vs Mike Bailey

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2017 IN OSAKA 2 DAYS”, 08/01/2018
Osaka Hirano Community Hall

1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Joey Ryan
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Jiro Kuroshio
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Keisuke Ishii Vs Masahiro Takanashi
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Kazusada Higuchi
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Mike Bailey
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Akito Vs Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2017 IN NERIMA”, 10/01/2018
Tokyo Nerima Coconeri Hall

1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs HARASHIMA
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Keisuke Ishii Vs Joey Ryan
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Jiro Kuroshio
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Soma Takao
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Shuji Ishikawa
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Akito Vs Kazusada Higuchi

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2017 IN YOKOHAMA”, 11/01/2018
Yokohama Radiant Hall

1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Masahiro Takanashi
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Keisuke Ishii Vs Jiro Kuroshio
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Joey Ryan
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Shuji Ishikawa
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Mike Bailey
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Akito

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2017 IN SHIMIZU”, 13/01/2018
Shizuoka Shimizu Marine Bill

1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Masahiro Takanashi
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Keisuke Ishii Vs Tetsuya Endo
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Joey Ryan Vs Jiro Kuroshio
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Akito
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Kazusada Higuchi Vs Mike Bailey
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2017 IN SHINKIBA”, 14/01/2018
Shin-Kiba 1st RING

1. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Keisuke Ishii
2. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Tetsuya Endo
3. D-King Grand Prix – A Block: Masahiro Takanashi Vs Joey Ryan
4. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Mike Bailey
5. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Soma Takao
6. D-King Grand Prix – B Block: Kazusada Higuchi Vs Shuji Ishikawa

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DDT “D-KING GRAND PRIX 2017 THE FINAL!!”, 28/01/2018
Tokyo Korakuen Hall

1. D-King Grand Prix – Final: Winner Of A Block Vs Winner Of B Block


TOKYO Princess Tag Title Tournament

August 30, 2017

The brand new TOKYO Tag Team Championships are up for grabs in a 7 team tournament taking place over the next two months. A lottery was held to determine the first round matches as well as which team would get a bye into the semi-final. The competing teams are:

Muscle Strikers: Reika Saiki & Miyu Yamashita
Miraclians: Yuka Sakazaki & Syoko Nakajima
BRAVE☆MATES: Yuu & Nodoka-oneesan
Dragon Bombers: Rika Tatsumi & Maho Kurone
Ito Respect Army: Maki Ito & Mizuki
Konkatsu-gun: Azusa Takigawa & Nonoko
trick student: Yuna Manase & Marika Kobashi

TOKYO JOSHI PRO “SHINKIBA DE BAKOON!”, 09/09/2017
Shin-Kiba 1st RING

1. TOKYO Princess Tag Team Titles Tournament – Round 1A: Maki Ito & Mizuki Vs Reika Saiki & Miyu Yamashita
2. TOKYO Princess Tag Team Titles Tournament – Round 1B: Yuka Sakazaki & Syoko Nakajima Vs Azusa Takigawa & Nonoko
3. TOKYO Princess Tag Team Titles Tournament – Round 1C: Yuu & Nodoka-oneesan Vs Rika Tatsumi & Maho Kurone

Mizuki says she usually feels anxious when she wrestles on her own. But she’s never scared when she’s with Maki Ito. Ito is so brave that she originally wanted to fight on her own against three opponents! Reika Saiki recently won the TOKYO Princess Of Princess Title and wants the Tag Title belt to throw over her other shoulder. Miyu Yamashita just doesn’t want to lose to two girls with weird ribbons in their hair.

The Miraclians are the longest serving tag team in Tokyo Joshi Pro. They were originally called the Fighting Comedians but both Yuka Sakazaki & Syoko Nakajima feel that they have matured a lot since then so they are now the Miracle Comedians, or Miraclians for short. Together they can achieve miracles and can conquer the world! Azusa Takigawa thinks Konkatsu-gun are in luck because the title belts are colored pink and silver, the colours of love. Nonoko thinks the belts were literally made for her & Takigawa.

Nodoka-oneesan says it takes just as much courage to fight with your friends by your side than it is to fight on your own. So that’s why her team with Yuu is called BRAVE☆MATES. The Dragon Bombers would prefer the belts to be blood red so Maho Kurone could eat them. Rika Tatsumi hopes to win the title with Kurone so they can edit Kurone’s Wikipedia page to say she won this and also the Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title. If only Tatsumi could figure out how to edit Wikipedia pages first…

TOKYO JOSHI PRO “YOKOHAMA DE BAKOON!”, 16/09/2017
Yokohama Radiant Hall

1. TOKYO Princess Tag Team Titles Tournament – Semi Final: Winners Of Match 1A Vs Winners Of Match 1B
2. TOKYO Princess Tag Team Titles Tournament – Semi Final: Yuna Manase & Marika Kobashi Vs Winners Of Match 1C

trick student is the sole team that are already in the semi final. Marika Kobashi thinks she is the cutest in Tokyo Joshi and deserves the cutest championship so she will fight hard to win this title with Yuna Manase. Their team name comes from their costume colours, Kobashi’s orange and Manase’s purple, being suitable for Hallowe’en. They are also both students in different schools (Kobashi in high school and Manase in vocational school). Thus they are two students who wants to play tricks.

TOKYO JOSHI PRO “SMILE YES YOKOHAMA”, 14/10/2017
Yokohama Radiant Hall

1. TOKYO Princess Tag Team Titles Tournament – Final: X & X Vs X & X


DDT “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2017 ~PETER PAN EVEN IF YOU BECOME 20 YEARS OLD PETER PAN~” Preview

August 17, 2017

DDT “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2017 ~PETER PAN EVEN IF YOU BECOME 20 YEARS OLD PETER PAN~”, 20/08/2017
Tokyo Ryogoku Kokugikan

0. King Of Dark Title – Street Pro Wrestling Extra Edition! Gota Ihashi Ryogoku 5 Game Series: Gota Ihashi (c) Vs Mad Paulie, Gorgeous Matsuno, Dai Suzuki, X & X
0. Dark Match: Tomomitsu Matsunaga, Hoshitango, Nobuhiro Shimatani & Masato Kamino Vs Mizuki Watase, Rekka, Diego & Daiki Shimomura
0. Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title – Tokyo Joshi Pro Offer Battle Royal: Tetsuya Koda (c) Vs Miyu Yamashita Vs Syoko Nakajima Vs Yuka Sakazaki Vs Nonoko Vs Rika Tatsumi Vs Azusa Takigawa Vs Yuu Vs Nodoka-oneesan Vs Maho Kurone Vs Marika Kobashi Vs Yuna Manase Vs Mizuki Vs Cherry
1. Yuki Ino Debut Match: Kouki Iwasaki & Yuki Ino Vs Naomi Yoshimura & Yuki Ueno
2. KO-D 10-Man Tag Team Titles: Toru Owashi, Kazuki Hirata, Joey Ryan, Saki Akai & Yoshihiko Vs Makoto Oishi, LiLiCo, Lady Beard, Super Sasadango Machine & Ken Ohka
3. Ikemen Vs Idol! Handsome Humanity Battle: Jiro Kuroshio Vs Shunma Katsumata
4. Special 4 Way Tag Match: Kaz Hayashi & Keisuke Ishii Vs Isami Kodaka & Yuko Miyamoto Vs Mike Bailey & MAO Vs Kotaro Suzuki & Soma Takao
5. KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles: KUDO, Yukio Sakaguchi & Masahiro Takanashi (c) Vs Dick Togo, Yasu Urano & Antonio Honda
6. DDT 20th Anniversary Weapons Rumble – All Rights Contra Marriage: Sanshiro Takagi Vs Danshoku Dino
7. DDT Extreme Title – Cabellera Contra Cabellera: Daisuke Sasaki (c) Vs Akito
8. KO-D Tag Team Titles – Uchikomi! Presents: Shigehiro Irie & Kazusada Higuchi (c) Vs HARASHIMA & Naomichi Marufuji
9. KO-D Openweight Title – Good Com Asset Presents: Konosuke Takeshita (c) Vs Tetsuya Endo

The main show airs live on DDT UNIVERSE on Sunday 20th August at 3:00pm JST, 7:00am GMT, 2:00am ET and Saturday 11:00pm PT.

I was a guest on the Burning Spirits podcast this week to preview the show. The episode can be heard here.

Now that the 20 year celebrations are mostly done with it’s time to return to Neverland for DDT “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2017”! A lot has happened since Saitama Super Arena. DDT went viral for their portrayal of Donald Trump (even getting featured on @midnight), for having a Battle Royal on a moving train and for booking the Tokyo Dome for an Empty Arena Match. We’ve had the new generation establishing themselves in the main event and even got one to reveal his entire tragic life story because he believed it was all the champion’s fault.

So what’s in store for Sumo Hall this time? The show is headlined by the definitive rivalry of modern DDT, the previous ace teams with the ace of NOAH for tag team glory, hair will be chopped off, the company is put on the line against a wrestler’s romantic life (or lack thereof), two handsome men face off, multiple championships are on the line including a brand new 10-Man Tag Team Title, a new strong lad debuts and there will be some free for all brawls spread around the building.

?. Maybe A Dark Match: Kendo Kashin Vs Mitsuo Momota or Chikara

We’re going to start off with something weird that has been developing over the last week but has been simmering in the background for months. Kendo Kashin is an ideas guy and he never lets something like common sense or reality limit his plans. For his appearances in DNA and Ganbare☆Wrestling during the year, Kashin often threw out challenges for a 5 Vs 5 Elimination match to be held on this event’s pre-show with Kashin’s team representing IGF NEW. Nobody took the challenges seriously. Then this past week at the Ganbare☆Climax, Kashin got into confrontations with Mitsuo Momota. The tension between them raised so high that Kashin is now claiming he got permission from DDT to fight Momota inside Sumo Hall on the morning of “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2017”, at 6:30am to be precise. DDT denies this and also revealed that they do not get access to the building until 7:00am. But DDT is interested in doing some sort of dark match featuring Kashin and Momota. They are, as of this writing, negotiating with both wrestlers to organise a match to take place outside the venue at 6:30am. Momota thinks it is a difficult task for him to commit to but his son Chikara has offered to take his spot. Kashin has also demanded Bomber Saito to be the referee. Momota is against that idea because he knows Kashin and Saito went to the same high school together so there is no guarantee Saito will be neutral. If this match goes ahead does this mean the bout will be a Dawn Match instead of a Dark Match?

0. King Of Dark Title – Street Pro Wrestling Extra Edition! Gota Ihashi Ryogoku 5 Game Series: Gota Ihashi Vs Mad Paulie, Gorgeous Matsuno, Dai Suzuki, X & X

Whenever DDT runs in Sumo Hall they can’t help but take the action out of the ring and even out of the building. Gota Ihashi is still cursed to fight for DDT only on the pre-shows because of his status as the King Of Dark Champion. At least DDT is giving him a bunch of opportunities to get rid of it. The rules for his upcoming challenge have not been explained yet but it looks to be a 5 match Gauntlet series, all of them being Falls Count Anywhwere. Mad Paulie, Gorgeous Matsuno and Dai Suzuki are the only opponents revealed so far but the remaining two entries have been kept secret. I have predictions for who they will be. Maybe one of them can be Jun Kasai because he has a habit of showing up for these kind of matches whenever DDT produces them, either as a participant or by getting in the way while working another job. And what if the other was Kota Ibushi? The DDT Falls Count Anywhere matches are right up his alley. Also Ibushi’s first wrestling match after the G1 Climax being a Falls Count Anywhere dark match for DDT in Sumo Hall is the most Kota Ibushi decision he could ever make. I mean yeah, the drama surrounding his relationship with Kenny Omega is captivating and all but you know his desire to Moonsault off of the Ryogoku balcony again is too strong to resist.

Now watch me be wrong and the two mystery wrestlers turn out to be Kendo Kashin and Mitsuo Momota making another appearance.

0. Dark Match: Tomomitsu Matsunaga, Hoshitango, Nobuhiro Shimatani & Masato Kamino Vs Mizuki Watase, Rekka, Diego & Daiki Shimomura

Not much to go on for this mixture of veteran lowcard and DNA wrestlers. Masato Kamino is the freshest face in the match after only debuting on 5th August. He’s trying to grab attention immediately by wearing a lavish entrance jacket that is allegedly worth 100,000 yen. Tomomitsu Matsunaga reclaimed his Sumo King throne during Beer Garden week. Nobuhiro Shimatani has been the butt of many jokes throughout the year. It remains to be seen if this is just rookie hazing or if this will be his role in DDT from now on. Hoshitango has had a quiet year, sticking to appearances for the more significant shows on the calendar. On the other side Mizuki Watase, Rekka, Diego & Daiki Shimomura have all been hard at work in building up DNA. Diego has the highest profile of all four by being a part of the ALL OUT stable. Watase has shown that when you remove him from last year’s romantic soap opera he has solidly improved in the ring. Rekka sadly missed an opportunity to grab the spotlight when his DDT show in Taiwan had to be cancelled. Shimomura has been able to climb a small step above his generational counterpart Shimatani.

0. Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title – Tokyo Joshi Pro Offer Battle Royal: Tetsuya Koda (c) Vs Miyu Yamashita Vs Syoko Nakajima Vs Yuka Sakazaki Vs Nonoko Vs Rika Tatsumi Vs Azusa Takigawa Vs Yuu Vs Nodoka-oneesan Vs Maho Kurone Vs Marika Kobashi Vs Yuna Manase Vs Mizuki Vs Cherry

The Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title found its way to Tokyo Joshi Pro when the zombie girl Maho Kurone ended Joey Ryan’s international title reigns. Since then the belt did its thing and made its way through the roster until Cherry surprisingly got involved and won the title. Until now Cherry has had little to nothing to do with Tokyo Joshi, at least publicly as far as I know. But her determination to be the Iron Man Champion led her to show up and win the belt. So when it looked like Cherry would be the defending champion going into this Battle Royal she lost the belt to the brand’s general manager Tetsuya Koda at a fan club event. Koda claims that he wanted to guarantee the title would be staying in Tokyo Joshi and he would have passed the belt over to one of the girls. However he thinks all of them are equally cute so he couldn’t decide who deserves it most. His solution is to keep the belt for himself! It later turns out that Koda is going to a handshaking event starring singer Maria Makino later this month and he wants to impress her with a nice, shiny championship belt wrapped around him. Unfortunately for Koda, him being the champion means that he now qualifies as an active wrestler and he must enter the Battle Royal to defend the title! Further more, the joshi are pissed that he looked past all of them for a hopeless attempt at impressing some singer.

1. Yuki Ino Debut Match: Kouki Iwasaki & Yuki Ino Vs Naomi Yoshimura & Yuki Ueno

Yuki Ino is the latest in the growing line of DDT rookies to debut on the big stage. The 22 year old university rugby player had several opportunities from other sports on offer but he chose instead to go with pro wrestling. He is pretty strong with reports that he can bench press 205kg, dead lift 300kg and leg press 560kg. He bragged about smashing past the opposition on the rugby pitch and he will do the same in the ring. The kind of attitude might not mesh with another big ego standing on the other side, like say Naomi Yoshimura. The young brute is throwing bodies aside so he can claim to be the new ace of DNA. Now that somebody else of his size has entered the fray things will get interesting indeed.

2. KO-D 10-Man Tag Team Titles: Toru Owashi, Kazuki Hirata, Joey Ryan, Saki Akai & Yoshihiko Vs Makoto Oishi, LiLiCo, Lady Beard, Super Sasadango Machine & Ken Ohka

I have one word for this: Overkill. You noticed how many wrestling promotions have established 6-Man Tag Team Titles recently? New Japan, DDT, Big Japan, Ring of Honor and Lucha Underground have all established such championships in the last couple of years. Dragon Gate has always had them so they can get away with it. Then the zombie corpse of FMW decided to come up with an 8-Man Tag Team Championship last year that has since vanished because, well, what do you expect from Atsushi Onita (Not a singles match that’s for sure)? Well, DDT decided to up the ante once more and create the KO-D 10-Man Tag Team Titles! This probably came about after watching too much Super Sentai because the title belts follow a similar colour scheme. Red, blue, yellow, green and pink belts are on the line for the winners. And what a line-up of insanity DDT has decided to bring in for the two teams!

Toru Owashi is the captain of the side featuring Kazuki Hirata, Joey Ryan, Saki Akai & Yoshihiko. Hirata has spent the year in muted limbo because his entrance song could not be used on DDT UNIVERSE. He was also deported from Japan and replaced by his Italian cousin Hirata Collection A.T. The cousin’s entrance song was also muted so he was no improvement. When Hirata returned he was told to record his own version of “TOKYO GO!”. Lo and behold he pulled it off! Joey Ryan is coming off of a heated feud with Daisuke Sasaki over pictures of his wife Laura James. Saki Akai’s been making allies with foreigners, learning English to team with them and serving beer inside an empty Tokyo Dome. She also has the right to be DDT general manager for a day. Yoshihiko has just been laying around doing its own thing.

The other team is being led by Makoto Oishi and mostly have a flair for live performances. LiLiCo returns to DDT after her romantic life within the company last year went haywire. Lady Beard hasn’t wrestled in DDT much this year but is always ready to sing his heart out. Super Sasadango Machine will undoubtedly have a PowerPoint presentation ready. Ken Ohka is coming in fresh off of winning the Ganbare☆Climax in his home promotion Ganbare☆Wrestling. There are so many questions to ask. Who will win? Will either team get along? Does Ken Ohka still have his “FUCK” hat? Can the belts combine to form a Megazord? Will this championship have a longer shelf life than the WWE UK Title? Who knows?

3. Ikemen Vs Idol! Handsome Humanity Battle: Jiro Kuroshio Vs Shunma Katsumata

We have two charmers here. The kind of people who light up any room they enter. Even though Shunma Katsumata got his start in DDT he first trained to wrestle in the dojo ran by the SMASH promotion. He never got to debut for them and he left before the company fell apart. Juro Kuroshio was also in that dojo and he did get his debut match. From their the two youngsters split apart. Kuroshio stayed with SMASH as it transformed into Wrestling New Classic, then when that went bust he jumped to WRESTLE-1 and became the lovable Ikemen he is today. Katsumata went to DDT where he was among the first generation of DNA wrestlers for the brand’s launch. He then became a pop idol as part of NωA. Now fate has brought them back together in a battle of handsome men. Kuroshio’s jacket Vs Katsumata’s singing. It’s possible Kuroshio’s entrance could last longer than the match. He likes to milk the chants by running through the audience and Sumo Hall is a big building.

4. Special 4 Way Tag Match: Kaz Hayashi & Keisuke Ishii Vs Isami Kodaka & Yuko Miyamoto Vs Mike Bailey & MAO Vs Kotaro Suzuki & Soma Takao

Four teams are thrown together, maybe we’ll get some No. 1 Contenders out of it. Keisuke Ishii removed a ghost from his past by going back to the All Japan Dojo he left many years ago to train with Kaz Hayashi. He was taught how to properly use Hayashi’s finisher the Final Cut but he has yet to use it in DDT. Isami Kodaka has been busy running Pro Wrestling BASARA but he is stopping by with his usual Yankii Ni Cho Kenji partner Yuko Miyamoto. Miyamoto is here as part of Smile Squash for the upcoming Dramatic General Election so he’ll be looking for fan votes. Mike Bailey became cocky when he won a Right To Challenge Contract but has been a bit aimless when his cash in left him empty handed. He teamed with MAO once in July and are teaming again here. Kotaro Suzuki & Soma Takao seems to be a random pairing. Takao is still undefeated at “PETER PAN” with an 8-0 record. But given the number of teams in this match it is the biggest threat yet to his streak. Like I said earlier, I expect the winners will be chasing after a tag team championship afterwards.

5. KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles: KUDO, Yukio Sakaguchi & Masahiro Takanashi (c) Vs Dick Togo, Yasu Urano & Antonio Honda

Maybe I shouldn’t have trashed the idea of trios championships earlier. Then I look at the title history and see that Shuten-dōji became 6 time champions in the space of 3 years. If it wasn’t for the Iron Man Title, this right here would be the hot potato of DDT. Still, a championship is worth fighting for (King Of Dark excluded) and the challenging team are no slouches. Dick Togo is back for a special appearance with two of his guys. Yasu Urano is no longer affiliated with DDT but still shows up for shows like these. Antonio Honda is here to talk about Gon, The Little Fox. What is Gon’s story anyway? Maybe I can fill out the rest of this preview with the tale and hope that nobody would notice.



You know what, I just looked it up and it’s best that I don’t tell it. Poor Gon, he only wanted to help…

6. DDT 20th Anniversary Weapons Rumble – All Rights Contra Marriage: Sanshiro Takagi Vs Danshoku Dino

Something drastic needed to be done for this special celebration of DDT’s 20 years of existence. Two of DDT’s most important figures will clash and the stakes are as high as they could be for both of them. Sanshiro Takagi has done it all. He created DDT and over two decades built it up to where they now run buildings the size of Sumo Hall on an annual basis. He even got to headline the Tokyo Dome this year… in an empty arena match. Anyway despite his hard work paying off, somebody out there thinks a better job can be done. Danshoku Dino believes Takagi has taken DDT as far as he can and it’s time for a new leader to take over. Dino should be that leader. So his stipulation is simple. If Dino beats Takagi, Dino takes over DDT! In order for this to go ahead, Takagi had to think of something for Dino to do if he lost. Inspiration struck when Takagi had a private conversation with Dino’s mother. Dino turned 40 years old this year he is still single. His mother is worried that he will live the rest of his life alone because there are not that many gay wrestlers available for him to date. A lightbulb went off inside Takagi’s head and he promised to help her. If Takagi beats Dino then Dino must go and get married!

So those are the stakes. One man’s wrestling empire against another man’s bachelorhood. Such an important match needs important rules so DDT is bringing back the Weapon Rumble. Takagi is a veteran of the match facing The Great Sasuke in 2009, Minoru Suzuki in 2012 and Michael Nakazawa in 2014. Every few minutes a weapon is introduced to the match. What it is could be anything. Bicycles, a castle of chairs, boiling hot stew, giant mechanical fists and most importantly of all, famous wrestlers from outside of DDT could appear. Expect a couple of unpredictable cameos in this match.

DDT are already coming up with ideas if Dino loses and has to get married. Top of the pile is “Danshoku Terrace House”, a reality show where Dino is forced to live in a house with a bunch of other people from all around the world until he picks a partner. Another idea is “Danshoku Bachelor” where 25 men and women compete for Dino’s affections. Both DDT UNIVERSE and Samurai TV! are interested in getting the rights to the show.

7. DDT Extreme Title – Cabellera Contra Cabellera: Daisuke Sasaki (c) Vs Akito

Somebody’s going to get a haircut. Daisuke Sasaki has been a scrappy DDT Extreme Champion ever since he won it from Jun Kasai inside Saitama Super Arena. He fought Dick Togo to a 30 minute draw in an Ultimate Submission Match, beat Antonio Honda in a No DQ Match and had two defences against Joey Ryan, one being a Last Man Standing draw and the second being a Ladder Match which Sasaki won. His record as champion hasn’t been 100% but he’ll admit when he’s beaten. Akito has beaten him plenty this year including a singles win during the King Of DDT. Everytime Sasaki lost to Akito he would hand over the DDT Extreme Title to him and walk out of the ring. Akito would be happy to accept the championship if it was an authorised title transfer but a ring attendant would always take the belt away and give it back to Sasaki. It led to a brief period where Akito couldn’t figure out how the concept of championships in wrestling worked.

When the time came for Sasaki to nominate his challenger at Sumo Hall, his usual request for Candice LeRae was declined. Again. Akito came out to challenge him. Sasaki would accept but only if it was Cabellera Contra Cabellera. Hair Vs Hair! Akito agreed because he is willing to sacrifice anything to become a champion again. Sasaki is fine with that. He claims he doesn’t care about his own hair so he’s willing to risk it too. It led to a weird situation during last week’s press conference where both Sasaki and Akito tried to cut off their own hair to prove how much or little it meant to them. Amon Tsurumi had to stop both of them from ruining the stipulation.

The match itself will have No Disqualifications and can only end by either submission, knockout or TKO. Sasaki has more experience in Hardcore Matches but Akito realises he can now use objects to cause even more limb damage for his submission holds.

8. KO-D Tag Team Titles – Uchikomi! Presents: Shigehiro Irie & Kazusada Higuchi (c) Vs HARASHIMA & Naomichi Marufuji

Shigehiro Irie & Kazusada Higuchi will be the first to tell you they are not pretty boy ikemen wrestlers. They are bastards, guys, lads, YaroZ. The two have found success in the tag division since teaming together to represent the unconventional YaroZ sub-brand. Now as the KO-D Tag Team Champions they are challenged by the most powerful ikemen alliance of all. When Naomichi Marufuji was announced to wrestle on this show back in March I knew that he would be doing something with HARASHIMA. I though it was the perfect fit for him as an opponent. But they thought of a different idea and are instead teaming together. When HARASHIMA lost all of his remaining chances to headline Sumo Hall this year he told the wrestling media it was time for him to do something selfish. In previous years he did what was best for DDT but this year he wanted to do something for himself. Turns out it was to join forces with Marufuji and go after the Tag Titles. Plus there looks to be a business relationship being formed between DDT and NOAH. I mean DDT sent two thirds of NωA over for the NOAH Jr. Tag League. That’s kind of like giving your crush a mixtape.

While Marufuji’s appearance in the match would be interesting on its own, the other factor in the match is the rivalry between Irie and HARASHIMA. Poor Irie no matter how hard he tries just cannot beat HARASHIMA. Time after time, HARASHIMA has come out on top. It’s almost a certainty at this point. In their last meeting in June, HARASHIMA pinned Irie in under 3 minutes and Irie’s only reaction was to storm out straight back to the locker room. That has to be stuck in the back of Irie’s mind. Higuchi’s record against HARASHIMA is only a little better with a pinfall tag team victory earned back in April. History is in the challengers’ favour too. Whenever a high level DDT wrestler teams with a famous outside they usually win the KO-D Tag Team Titles. Examples include Shiro Koshinaka & Danshoku Dino, Daisuke Sekimoto & Masa Takanashi, MIKAMI & Tatsumi Fujinami and Yoshihiro Takayama & Danshoku Dino. The odds are against the champions but they wouldn’t be YaroZ if it were easy.

9. KO-D Openweight Title – Good Com Asset Presents: Konosuke Takeshita (c) Vs Tetsuya Endo

This is going to be the definitive match of DDT’s current era. So much history to delve into here. Former friends, former tag team champions together, both have been built up for the last 3 years to be the next generation of stars to lead DDT into the future. Konosuke Takeshita has been described as a supernova ever since his debut match in 2012. You can hardly dream of a better road to the top. When you get a significant debut match held inside Budokan Hall you know there are high aspirations for your career. From there you get special one on one matches with Tatsumi Fujinami, Kenny Omega, Katsuhiko Nakajima, Kota Ibushi, Hiroshi Tanahashi, HARASHIMA, Isami Kodaka and Shuji Ishikawa all before he reaches 21 years of age. Then when he does turn 21 he wins the KO-D Openweight Title on his birthday. Like I said, it’s a dream come true. But while Takeshita has been positioned front and centre, his friend turned rival Tetsuya Endo took a different direction in his rise up to the main event spot.

While Endo and Takeshita were on a successful tag team run as the New Generation Combination, they fought each other several times with the KO-D Title as the reason. Whether it was a No. 1 Contender’s Match or a Championship Bout itself, the two were put in enough situations to find out who was better. And more often than not, Takeshita would win. As it currently stands Takeshita and Endo have had 9 single matches against each other in DDT. Takeshita won 6 of them (1 match was stopped when Endo dislocated his elbow), Endo won 2 and their last match was a draw. To make it even more frustrating for Endo, he couldn’t win the KO-D Title after two attempts while Takeshita achieved the goal with the same amount of opportunities. Endo ended up looking like the bridesmaid to Takeshita. So in July 2016 when Endo lost to Takeshita again, this time in a KO-D Title match, he was immediately approached by Daisuke Sasaki to join DAMNATION. When tempted with the promise that he would no longer be seen as a second class wrestler next to Takeshita, it didn’t take Endo long to make his decision and he willingly abandoned his friends to go down a darker path. Since then Endo has built on success while discarding his emotions. Although he’s been accused of faking his new nihilistic attitude to look cool, Endo can back up his actions with the success he’s earned since joining DAMNATION. The latest achievement was winning the 2017 King Of DDT tournament which leads us to the climactic main event at Sumo Hall.

So much has developed between Takeshita and Endo during the last year. Back in April we learned that 60 minutes was not enough to determine a winner between the two. Takeshita had been using the Cross Arm German Suplex for his most dramatic victories but he also developed a new Wrist Clutch Fisherman Buster called the Surprise Rose to put away his more recent challengers. If that’s not enough, Takeshita has one other big match move in his arsenal. He recently used the top turnbuckle Brainbustaaaaahhhhh!!!!! in tribute to his first opponent and inspiration El Generico. Endo meanwhile has turned the Shooting Star Press and Spanish Fly into killer moves. Endo won the King Of DDT with the Shooting Star Press. The grounded version of the Spanish Fly is called Tetsuya In The Sky and it has given him some unexpected quick victories. Then there is his top rope version the Tetsuya In The Sky With Diamonds to look out for. Is it now Endo’s time to shine or will Takeshita continue to shape the future of DDT? We won’t have to wait long to find out!


Isaacs English Lesson, Urano’s KO-D Destiny, Sasadango Develops Suzuki Deathblow

May 26, 2017

DDT “AUDIENCE 2017”, 28/05/2017
Tokyo Korakuen Hall

0. Dark Match: Mad Paulie Vs Tomomitsu Matsunaga
1. Saki Akai & Heidi Katrina Vs Antonio Honda & Nobuhiro Shimatani
2. Toru Owashi, Hirata Collection A.T. & Hiranito Collection A.T. Vs KUDO, Yukio Sakaguchi & Masahiro Takanashi
3. Daisuke Sasaki, Shuji Ishikawa & Tetsuya Endo Vs Shigehiro Irie, Kazusada Higuchi & Kouki Iwasaki
4. Smile Squash Vs ALL OUT!: HARASHIMA & Soma Takao Vs Akito & X
5. Super Sasadango Machine Return: Sanshiro Takagi & Super Sasadango Machine Vs Minoru Suzuki & Rocky Kawamura
6. KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles: Makoto Oishi, Shunma Katsumata & MAO (c) Vs Danshoku Dino, Keisuke Ishii & Royce Isaacs
7. KO-D Openweight Title: Konosuke Takeshita (c) Vs Yasu Urano
*Yasu Urano will cash in his Right To Challenge Anytime, Anywhere Contract.

Royce Isaacs offered to teach Saki Akai some English phrases to help her communicate with Heidi Katrina in their upcoming tag match. Shigehiro Irie took up the offer too. As nice of a gesture it was, Isaacs added in some NSFW phrases to the lesson. Enough of it to make me wonder if he just wanted an excuse to brag about his Miracle Ass.

The main event is confirmed to be Yasu Urano cashing in his Right To Challenge Anytime, Anywhere Contract against Konosuke Takeshita for the KO-D Openweight Title. The situation is made even more dramatic because Urano’s contract with DDT will be done at the end of the month and he is moving on to be a freelance wrestler. Urano said it is his destiny to challenge for the title this way. He is not confident that he can beat Takeshita or if their match can reach the high standards of previous KO-D Title bouts but he does think it is the most exciting thing to ever happen to him. In regards to his future relationship with DDT, Urano said his next booking with the company is on 20th August for “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2017”. If he becomes the champion then he might just stay away from DDT until then so he won’t have to worry about any Right To Challenge cash ins. What is also important to realise is Takeshita himself has a Right To Challenge Contract. Losing to Urano will mean Urano gets both the KO-D Title and another RTC contract so there is a lot to keep track of going into this match.

Super Sasadango Machine is ready to complete his impossible comeback to the ring after his health scare last year. He decided to train away from the DDT Dojo because their strict coaches prevented him from rehabilitating the way he wanted to. So he went to the Ibushi Wrestling Institute to train without any restrictions. During this process, Sasadango created a brand new “Deathblow” finisher to combat Minoru Suzuki’s Gotch-Style Piledriver. He promises to outscource the move to Sanshiro Takagi for the Takagi Vs Suzuki No People Street Wrestling Match at the Tokyo Dome next week. Sasadango will pay the Institute 35% of the match earnings if Takagi beats Suzuki. However if Takagi loses then he will pay the Suzuki Pro Wrestling Laboratory the 35% instead.