D-King Grand Prix 2019 Schedule… In 2018

November 13, 2018

The D-Ou Grand Prix is back for a second go around. The first tournament held in January earlier this year was a successful concept for DDT. Even though the upcoming edition is labelled as the 2019 tournament, the first show will take place on 30th November and the rest takes place during December 2018. The reason for this is the winner of the D-Ou GP will get a KO-D Openweight Title shot at “JUDGEMENT 2019” on 17th February. If the tournament was to be held in January like the first one then there wouldn’t be much time left to set up and promote the Sumo Hall show coming out of it. The same format of two groups containing seven wrestlers each is being kept. Each block match has a 30 minute time limit, winners get 2 points and draws of any kind are worth 1 point. The final between the two block winners will have no time limit. In the case of a tie for 1st place in one of the blocks then the direct confrontation rule will be used. The results of the group match(es) between the tied wrestlers determines who advances to the final. If that also ends in a tie then a tiebreaker match will be held on the 30th December show before the final takes place.

A Block

Daisuke Sasaki
HARASHIMA
Kazusada Higuchi
Akito
MAO
Puma King
Go Shiozaki

B Block

Konosuke Takeshita
Tetsuya Endo
Soma Takao
Masahiro Takanashi
Mike Bailey
Sammy Guevara
Shinya Aoki

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 IN SHINJUKU”, 30/11/2018
Shinjuku FACE

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Puma King
2. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs MAO
3. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Kazusada Higuchi Vs Go Shiozaki
4. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Mike Bailey
5. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Masahiro Takanashi
6. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Shinya Aoki Vs Sammy Guevara

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 IN NANTO”, 01/12/2018
Toyama Nanto City Fukuno B & G Ocean Center

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: MAO Vs Puma King
2. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Akito Vs Go Shiozaki
3. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Masahiro Takanashi
4. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Sammy Guevara

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 IN FUJI”, 02/12/2018
Shizuoka Fuji-san Messe

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs MAO
2. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Kazusada Higuchi Vs Akito
3. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Go Shiozaki Vs Puma King
4. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Mike Bailey
5. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Masahiro Takanashi Vs Sammy Guevara

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 IN SHINKIBA”, 07/12/2018
Shin-Kiba 1st RING

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Akito
2. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Kazusada Higuchi
3. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Masahiro Takanashi
4. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Soma Takao
5. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Shinya Aoki Vs Mike Bailey

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 IN OSAKA”, 08/12/2018
Osaka World Pavilion

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Go Shiozaki
2. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Akito
3. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Kazusada Higuchi Vs Puma King
4. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Tetsuya Endo
5. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Shinya Aoki
6. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Masahiro Takanashi Vs Mike Bailey

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 IN HAKATA”, 09/12/2018
Hakata Star Lane

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs HARASHIMA
2. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Kazusada Higuchi Vs MAO
3. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Akito Vs Puma King
4. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Shinya Aoki
5. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Sammy Guevara

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 IN YOKOHAMA”, 14/12/2018
Yokohama Radiant Hall

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Puma King
2. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: MAO Vs Go Shiozaki
3. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Soma Takao
4. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Masahiro Takanashi Vs Shinya Aoki
5. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Mike Bailey Vs Sammy Guevara

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 IN NAGOYA”, 15/12/2018
Nagoya City Mid-Sports Center

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Daisuke Sasaki Vs Kazusada Higuchi
2. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: HARASHIMA Vs Go Shiozaki
3. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – A Block: Akito Vs MAO
4. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Konosuke Takeshita Vs Sammy Guevara
5. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Tetsuya Endo Vs Shinya Aoki
6. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – B Block: Soma Takao Vs Sammy Guevara

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DDT “D-OU GRAND PRIX 2019 THE FINAL!!”, 30/12/2018
Tokyo Korakuen Hall

1. D-Ou Grand Prix 2019 – Final: Winner Of A Block Vs Winner Of B Block


DDT “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2018 ~FALL WRESTLING CULTURE FESTIVAL~” Preview

October 19, 2018

DDT “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2018 ~FALL WRESTLING CULTURE FESTIVAL~”, 21/10/2018
Tokyo Ryogoku Kokugikan

0. Time Difference Battle Royal: Gorgeous Matsuno Vs Hoshitango Vs Gota Ihashi Vs Nobuhiro Shimatani Vs Yumehito Imanari Vs Shota Vs Michael Wolf Vs Tiger Mask V (Self-Proclaimed) Vs Monster Halloween Vs Gundan Hitori
0. Mina Shirakawa DDT First Participation War! Tokyo Joshi Pro 6-Woman Tag Match: Miyu Yamashita, Yuki Kamifuku & Mina Shirakawa Vs Yuka Sakazaki, Mizuki & Shoko Nakajima
1. KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles: Soma Takao, Tetsuya Endo & Mad Paulie (c) Vs Toru Owashi, Kazuki Hirata & Yuki Ueno
2. Gauntlet Tag Match: Mike Bailey & Antonio Honda Vs Mizuki Watase & Jason Kincaid Vs Kazusada Higuchi & Kota Umeda Vs KUDO & Masahiro Takanashi Vs Tanomusaku Toba & Keisuke Okuda Vs Tomomitsu Matsunaga & Michael Nakazawa
3. Super Joshi Pro Wars 2018: Saki Akai & Maki Ito Vs Meiko Satomura & Cassandra Miyagi
4. ALL OUT Vs STRONG HEARTS! Special 6-Man Tag Match: Akito, Shunma Katsumata & Yuki Iino Vs T-Hawk, El Lindaman & Duan Yingnan
5. The World’s Crazy Couple Battle: Makoto Oishi & Misaki Ohata Vs Joey Ryan & Laura James
6. Soken Holdings Present – Will You Eat Or Be Eaten!? Giant Special Single Match: Super Sasadango Machine Vs Andreza Giant Panda
7. The Difference In 27 Years Of Age! Representative Director And President (48 Years Old) And Belonging Wrestler (21 Years Old) Waste Blood Washing Conflict Play – Final Settlement Weapon Rumble!: Sanshiro Takagi Vs MAO
8. Shigehiro Irie’s Grand Fight: Shigehiro Irie & Keisuke Ishii Vs HARASHIMA & Yukio Sakaguchi
9. Dramatic Dream Match: Konosuke Takeshita Vs CIMA
10. KO-D Openweight Title: Danshoku Dieno (c) Vs Daisuke Sasaki

The pre-show matches will begin at 2:00pm JST and the main show begins at 3:00pm JST. That’s 6:00am/7:00am for GMT, 1:00am/2:00am for EST and 10:00pm/11:00pm the night before for PST.

For the first time DDT will be streaming parts of the show live on their Youtube channel. The two pre-show matches and the first three matches of the main card will be aired. The link to the Youtube page is here (https://bit.ly/2q1KIOK).

The entire show will aire live on DDT Universe. Here is the link (https://bit.ly/2yxkxnV).

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The seven months since DDT’s last appearance in Sumo Hall has been a lot to take in. Sometimes hectic, sometimes confusing and for me sometimes exhausting. The number of events grew thanks to the launch of a brand new weekly show called “DDT LIVE! MAJI MANJI” airing live on AbemaTV. The other brands also increased their schedules with more shows in more locations. DDT’s rookie brand DNA was put to bed when the roster was considered too advanced to be a developmental. The lack of rookies ready to debut was also a reason to end the concept for now. Then there was the chaos in the main event scene. DDT’s longest and most dominant title reign ended when the company’s estranged son returned to defeat their golden boy. The new rebellious champion went on to make some unwise decisions leading to a rash of unexpected title changes, some beyond the control of those in charge of DDT and some coming directly from the people with power. With injuries putting some of DDT’s best and brightest on the shelf it was a time for new blood to step up. One in particular took things too far towards his boss. Or maybe he took it far enough and needs to go further? New invaders entered the company. One group wants to prove they are the better than DDT’s best while another gigantic figure arrived looking to kick ass and chew bamboo, and it’s all out of bamboo. There is plenty to talk about so let’s get started.

0. Time Difference Battle Royal: Gorgeous Matsuno Vs Hoshitango Vs Gota Ihashi Vs Nobuhiro Shimatani Vs Yumehito Imanari Vs Shota Vs Michael Wolf Vs Tiger Mask V (Self-Self-Proclaimed) Vs Monster Halloween Vs Gundan Hitori

Normally the Battle Royal on this kind of show will be for a big prize, like the Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title. Not this time. The championship found its way into the pop idol group SKE48 back in July and has been passed around between some of the girls ever since. The current champion Yuki Arai promised to show up with the title at Korakuen Hall a week after this show so nobody is anticipating any shenanigans here. Instead the appeal is going to be from the “ALL DOIN” wrestlers. The self-proclaimed Tiger Mask V, the W*ING gimmick that came 25 years too late Monster Halloween and masked man in a fancy shirt Gundan Hitori are all representing the “ALL DOIN” super indy show that is scheduled for November. Most of the DDT regulars have developed a little since “JUDGEMENT 2018” back in March. Gorgeous Matsuno became the self-appointed gatekeeper of DDT against gigantic animals. That didn’t end well for him. Gota Ihashi has been getting into shape with the ultimate goal of earning Riki Choshu’s respect. He’s making enough progress that Choshu’s eternal rival Tatsumi Fujinami has offered to help out. Nobuhiro Shimatani finally achieved his dream of joining DAMNATION. “Nobu” has been full of confidence ever since even if it hasn’t translated into results. Yumehito Imanari has probably advanced the most out of anyone. He launched the Imanari Revolution in Ganbare☆Wrestling to push himself into Ganpro’s main event scene and he hasn’t looked back. The other Ganpro rep is Shota who joined the brand full time in May. Michael Wolf recently entered DDT all the way from Oklahoma’s Compound Pro Wrestling. The only person here who is the same as always is Hoshitango.

0. Mina Shirakawa DDT First Participation War! Tokyo Joshi Pro 6-Woman Tag Match: Miyu Yamashita, Yuki Kamifuku & Mina Shirakawa Vs Yuka Sakazaki, Mizuki & Shoko Nakajima

The spot dedicated entirely to Tokyo Joshi Pro is focusing on their newest signing. Mina Shirakawa is a gravure idol who is a massive pro wrestling fan, so much so that she began training to wrestle in April as part of a collaborated project between DDT and Best Body Japan. She had her debut match in August teaming with one of her opponents here Shoko Nakajima. In September, Shirakawa jumped at the chance to visit Mexico so she could participate in a lucha libre expo. The first thing she did when she arrived was travel to the ZEUS GYM in Naucalpan to train! So far Shirakawa has only wrestled three matches in her career, twice for Big Body Japan and once in Mexico. She has committed herself to Tokyo Joshi full time beginning this November. She has performed at a Tokyo Joshi show before though. Four years ago she was in a Brazilian themed idol duo called Oh P Samba that performed a song and dance at a Tokyo Joshi show. For now this will be her introduction to everyone in DDT.

But that’s enough about the new girl. Can’t let her overshadow the others this easily. Miyu Yamashita is currently on the most successful TOKYO Princess Title run in the championship’s history, winning the belt on 4th January and defending the title a record six times. She, Yuka Sakazaki and Shoko Nakajima also made their American debut competing in the Chikara King Of Trios tournament, making it all the way to the semi finals. Sakazaki has been most successful in tag team action, forming the Magical Sugar Rabbits with Mizuki and winning the TOKYO Tag Team Titles together. Yuki Kamifuku recently won a match for the first ever time after 14 months of wrestling. Everything will be going up from there for her.

1. KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles: Soma Takao, Tetsuya Endo & Mad Paulie (c) Vs Toru Owashi, Kazuki Hirata & Yuki Ueno

DAMNATION’s numbers increased back in May when Soma Takao betrayed what was left of Smile Squash to join the heel unit. Since then Takao has been low blowing his way to victory while saying little in between the matches. He is still quietly undefeated at “PETER PAN” with a 9-0 record. Can he make it 10 for 10 and go a full decade of (not so much) destruction? Tetsuya Endo & Mad Paulie have spent the last half year teaming together, briefly holding the KO-D Tag Team Titles. Not much has changed other than that period when Endo wanted to talk about his pet beetle. He is still a top notch wrestler when he wants to be. That was proven when he made it to the King Of DDT final again.

The team challenging for the KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Titles are the newly relaunched DISASTER BOX. The original unit was formed by Toru Owashi as a heel unit way back in 2006. The unit played a major part in establishing HARASHIMA after he dropped the HERO! gimmick. The unit had another run in 2008 but went away at the start of this decade, with the exception of a one show reunion with original member Shogo “Jet” Takagi in 2017. HARASHIMA and Owashi decided to reform DISASTER BOX this year during the DNA draft and allowed the promising youngster Yuki Ueno to join them. Nobody else. Anyone who said otherwise was ignored. Well, at least until he couldn’t be ignored anymore.

Kazuki Hirata wanted to join in so he could continue teaming with Owashi. He was declined but a miracle run in the King Of DDT tournament convinced HARASHIMA to bring Hirata into the group. To prove he is good enough, Hirata has sometimes tried to wrestle without the aid of his musical Hirata GO! glasses. He has since gone back on that plan now he is an accepted member. When Takao, Endo & Paulie won the vacant titles, they tried to nominate the rest of their unit as the challengers. DISASTER BOX instead got the nod and the two sides have been duking it out for months, waiting for this day to come.

2. Gauntlet Tag Match: Mike Bailey & Antonio Honda Vs Mizuki Watase & Jason Kincaid Vs Kazusada Higuchi & Kota Umeda Vs KUDO & Masahiro Takanashi Vs Tanomusaku Toba & Keisuke Okuda Vs Tomomitsu Matsunaga & Michael Nakazawa

One half of the KO-D Tag Champions is already occupied on the card so Mike Bailey has to get mixed up in the Gauntlet Tag Match. Antonio Honda is by his side as they face a mixture of DDT talent. Mizuki Watase & Jason Kincaid have formed a well run team during their time in the RENEGADES unit. Kincaid was brought into DDT in mere weeks after “JUDGEMENT 2018” as RENEGADES’s gift to the company. Watase has wrestled in a snazzy suit and never really explained why. The Maji Manji show has been mostly built around Kazusada Higuchi & Kota Umeda. Higuchi made it his goal to put somebody through a table on every episode while Umeda became “Mr. Maji Manji” when he won a tournament early in the show to earn a big push by the company. Unfortunately knee injuries have constantly paused his momentum. KUDO & Masahiro Takanashi have been doing their usual thing in Shuten-dōji. Their usual thing is drinking. Tanomusaku Toba returned to DDT first take part in a few Street Wrestling matches. He then appeared on Maji Manji, wrestling to impress his step-son who refuses to call him Dad. That didn’t end up being his proudest moment but he’s gotten more DDT appearances since then, usually whenever they wanted a strike heavy match-up. Keisuke Okuda became DDT’s newest signing in September. Until then he was causing terror in DNA as part of the Naomi Kingdom. So far his biggest move was picking a fight with HARASHIMA. Tomomitsu Matsunaga & Michael Nakazawa reformed Booing 2018 for the Dramatic General Election but kicked out their longtime ally Gota Ihashi. Normally I’d say the winners of this match will go after the KO-D Tag Titles but that didn’t happen the last time.

3. Super Joshi Pro Wars 2018: Saki Akai & Maki Ito Vs Meiko Satomura & Cassandra Miyagi

What a year it’s been for Meiko Satomura. The Sendai Girls leader has had accomplished years before but 2018 has been an international breakthrough for her. From Fight Club: PRO in England to the WWE Mae Young Classic in America to wXw in Germany, Satomura has been making waves in Europe and America this year. Back in Japan she made her mark in DDT by becoming the first ever woman to win the KO-D Openweight Title! While her reign was short it was the highlight of a turbulent time in the championship’s history. Cassandra Miyagi made two DDT appearances during this time. One as part of an adventure through a secret martial arts factory (it’s a long story) and the other challenging for the KO-D 6-Man Tag Titles. The two Sendai Girls return to DDT to face without a doubt the two most popular women in the DDT family.

Saki Akai has been motivated by Satomura’s success to become more than just the token woman on the DDT roster. This year Akai became the first woman to enter the King Of DDT tournament. Sadly she didn’t make it past the 1st Round. She also got into a situation where she was stalked by the monsters of the UWA Corps. She also returned to Tokyo Joshi for a few matches after so many fans pointed out that she looks identical to the Sakisama. Speaking of Sakisama, the aristocrat returned home to Paris in August after her personal nun became too rebellious (it’s another long story).

But all of the attention goes to Maki Ito. All of the attention must go to Ito! She’s been finding ways to constantly stay in the sights of the Tokyo Joshi fanbase and it’s been paying off big for her. After a big match against Riho in May, Ito considered splitting up the Ito Respect Army after her alliance with Mizuki hit a rough patch. Their relationship got even rockier when they ended up in opposite sides of a TOKYO Princess Tag Titles match. Ito took the loss in both that and a singles match with Mizuki afterwards but in those matches she was able to show her growth as a wrestler. While she hasn’t been able to win big in the ring, outside it Ito’s getting more and more popular. The big evidence for this is her current lead in the Dramatic General Election. Early on in the competition Ito moved miles past the rest of the field. Others have since gained ground but a strong performance at Sumo Hall might be what she needs to seal the deal.

Except that won’t be enough to satisfy Ito. In a reverse of last year’s match between Satomura and Miyu Yamashita, Ito has no respect for Satomura. Not after Satomura lost the KO-D Title after Ito promised to win the Election and challenge her for the belt. This attitude is causing Akai to distrust Ito. She really shouldn’t be underestimating Satomura. The rift got even worse when Akai & Ito got into a little scuffle at the press conference for this show. If they can’t get along, they’re screwed. If they can get along… they’re still screwed.

4. ALL OUT Vs STRONG HEARTS! Special 6-Man Tag Match: Akito, Shunma Katsumata & Yuki Iino Vs T-Hawk, El Lindaman & Duan Yingnan

ALL OUT has gone through a bumpy road since “JUDGEMENT 2018”. Things went went south after April when Konosuke Takeshita lost the KO-D Title and Akito briefly went down with an injury. Shunma Katsumata was then called out for his poor performances and had to go in search of himself to improve. Part of it involved signing up to a Gold’s Gym membership. His efforts rewarded ALL OUT with a KO-D 6-Man Tag Title reign that was sadly cut short when Takeshita suffered an injury. With Takeshita out of action it was up to Akito & Katsumata to continue on without him. Katsumata in particular decided go down the road of hardcore wrestling a little more often. He already had a taste of hardcore back in February when he fought Yuko Miyamoto but since then he had matches with table spots against Kazusada Higuchi and went one on one with Violento Jack in a Fans Bring The Weapons Death Match. Things seemed to be looking up when Takeshita returned and the powerful rugby rookie Yuki Iino joined the unit. That’s when a new conflict emerged to challenge them.

One of the big wrestling stories of the year coming out of Japan is the STRONG HEARTS exodus from Dragon Gate. During the springtime, CIMA spent time away from the company teaching pro wrestling in China for a promotion called Oriental Wrestling Entertainment. In May, CIMA along with some of his Japanese proteges more or less left Dragon Gate. Now, the public reason for this was so this group of wrestlers could focus exclusively on OWE in Shanghai. Obviously, everyone was surprised when instead the newly named STRONG HEARTS showed up in Wrestle-1 looking to cause some trouble. When that conflict ended over the summer, STRONG HEARTS found their next target, ALL OUT and DDT. When Takeshita was shared his disappointment with ALL OUT having no plans for “RYOGOKU PETER PAN” this year, STRONG HEARTS immediately sent them the challenge.

Two matches between the two sides will happen at Sumo Hall. First up is the 6-Man Tag. Akito, Katsumata & Iino are there for ALL OUT. STRONG HEARTS will be represented by T-Hawk, El Lindaman and Chinese newcomer Duan Yingnan. They want to show ALL OUT what real fire and fever in the ring is like!

5. The World’s Crazy Couple Battle: Makoto Oishi & Misaki Ohata Vs Joey Ryan & Laura James

The battle of the married couples! Makoto Oishi surprised everyone during a street wrestling event in May when he suddenly proposed to Misaki Ohata during their match. It was a heartwarming story in the middle of a wacky situation. Honestly, who could get upset by that?

Oh, huh… Alright then.

There isn’t much in wrestling that annoys Joey Ryan. Usually it’s him doing the annoying stuff. But somebody doing a marriage proposal during a wrestling match when he and Laura James already did it? Copycats! Ryan & James have challenged Oishi & Ohata to a match to see which marriage deserves to be called crazier. Oishi & Ohata say that their proposal was original and to be fair it is very different to what Ryan & James did. For one thing it involved Yukio Sakaguchi trying to run Ohata over with a truck and Oishi jumped in front of it to save her. How romantic.

 

6. Soken Holdings Present – Will You Eat Or Be Eaten!? Giant Special Single Match: Super Sasadango Machine Vs Andreza Giant Panda

Behold! The greatest discovery in Japanese wrestling over the last two years isn’t one of the New Japan young lions, nor is it a company ace like Kento Miyahara or Shotaro Ashino. Sure, Masashi Takeda is rad and Hana Kimura has star power written all over her. But nobody has captured attention the same way Andreza Giant Panda has. The “Big Beast Of The North” burst onto the scene from Hokkaido’s New Nemuro Pro Wrestling (N2W) in 2017, a promotion that they themselves admit is filled with out of shape, middle-aged amateur wrestlers with no fighting experience or any physical strengths. But how did Andreza get here? Originally named Shin Shin, he was born in China with a gigantism disease on 1st January 2016. The amount of growth a normal panda goes through in one year, Andreza went through in one month. As a cub he had the appetite of three pandas. Tragically he was abandoned by his parents and was bullied by the other pandas in China. He was found by a Chinese king and was sent to live in his fishing processing company in Nemuro city under the care of New Nemuro’s president Samson Miyamoto. Due to his massive size of 300cm in height and 500kg in weight, Miyamoto knew that this panda was made for pro wrestling. Now renamed Andreza Giant Panda, the animal dominated New Nemuro and quickly became the promotion’s top star. Andreza won the Best Newcomer award in the 2017 Samurai! TV Japan Indie Grand Prize. He also found a mate and became a father. Andreza’s ultimate goal is to appear in WWE after becoming famous. For the moment, a match for DDT in Sumo Hall will be his highest profile wrestling appearance yet. The fate of nature may very well be at stake!

When Super Sasadango Machine was chosen to be Andreza’s opponent he quickly established his motivation for the match. Andreza eats 40kg of bamboo on a daily basis and that is enough to make him a danger to the environment. The problem is Andreza is nigh on unbeatable. Sasadango thought he discovered a weakness. Andreza is supposedly helpless without his master Miyamoto. Sasadango kidnapped Miyamoto and thought it would give him the advantage on Andreza. That was proven wrong when Andreza somehow figured out how to travel from Nemuro to Sapporo by himself to rescue his master. Sasadango has since experienced how powerful Andreza’s Lightspeed Headbutt is and nobody has kicked out of the Andreza Press. A simulated fight with Sanshiro Takagi dressed as a panda gave Sasadango some valuable information. Also DDT is certain this match won’t get them sued for animal mistreatment so Sasadango has the all clear to do whatever he wants to take the air out of the Giant Panda!

7. The Difference In 27 Years Of Age! Representative Director And President (48 Years Old) And Belonging Wrestler (21 Years Old) Waste Blood Washing Conflict Play – Final Settlement Weapon Rumble!: Sanshiro Takagi Vs MAO

Enthusiasm is a characteristic that is usually appreciated but some people tend to take things too far. This year MAO reached that point. When DDT returned to focusing to its Falls Count Anywhere matches, MAO felt now was his time to step up and take the mantle of Street Wrestling king. The days of Sanshiro Takagi doing the crazy stuff is over. MAO wants to replace it with fucked up wrestling for a fucked up world! The over-enthusiasm came when MAO drove a van into Takagi during a match then threatened to blow up Shin-Kiba 1st RING with bottle rockets. MAO’s conflict with Takagi continued after “JUDGEMENT 2018” when the two were paired together in the King Of DDT 1st Round. Their match went crazy with bicycle crashes and the destruction of plastic boxes. They took it even further at Campsite Pro Wrestling when MAO and Takagi chased each other around in cars! The situation has gotten so out of control that both men agreed to have the ultimate DDT match to settle their score… The Weapon Rumble! New weapons will be added to the match Royal Rumble style and they can be anything. Weapons, humiliating mind games, wrestler cameos, family members. Anything is fair game. The two cannot be kept apart now. Even at the press conference they fought each other in a 3 minute wrestling match that ended in a time limit draw. At this point it will take divine intervention for a winner to be determined…

Thank God pro wrestling is so convenient.

Just days before the show, MAO went training in the Arakawa river bed with his Moonlight Express partner Mike Bailey. The training was focused on improving MAO’s accuracy with a pico pico hammer. Things turned south when MAO swung so hard that he lost grip of the hammer and threw it far away. When MAO went searching through the grass, he unexpectedly found the God Of Arakawa. Maybe he took the form of Jason Kincaid wearing a Casper jumper so he wouldn’t scare MAO away. Or maybe that’s just a coincidence and the God always looks like that. Anyway, the God Of Arakawa spoke to MAO and held two hammers, one gold, one silver. He asked if either of them belonged to MAO. MAO said neither were his. The God appreciated MAO’s honesty and awarded him a bag of 100 empty cans as a gift. The God then got mixed up and also gave him the Legendary Pico Pico Hammer. Then he gave him the gold and silver hammers anyway because at this point why not? So now MAO has the power of a God by his side!

8. Shigehiro Irie’s Grand Fight: Shigehiro Irie & Keisuke Ishii Vs HARASHIMA & Yukio Sakaguchi

What in the hell happened these last seven months? What in the hell happened this last year? Shigehiro Irie has been the key figure of confusion throughout DDT from March to October. After spending the early part of the year quiet and entirely absent from the company, he made a surprise return at the end of the previous Sumo Hall show as a different person. Gone was the happy go lucky Irie, in his place was a bitter man watching DDT change into something he no longer loved. His solution was to become KO-D Champion again so he could tear down DDT and rebuild it in his image. A month later he defeated Takeshita to win the title. Slowly but surely he found allies for his cause. Mizuki Watase was the only member of the main roster to join him. The rest of Irie’s followers consisted of wrestlers from overseas like Jason Kincaid, Facade, Sammy Guevara, Baliyan Akki and Ryan Davidson. The group was named RENEGADES because Irie wanted to do things his way rather than management’s.

The sticking point for Irie was DDT’s failure to deliver their promises. Irie loves going on his excursions to America wrestling new people and making new friends. DDT’s ideas to do more international work was never followed up on. It reached the point where Irie wanted to defend the KO-D Title in America and he was going to do it whether DDT allowed it or not. The Director of DDT at the time was Danshoku Dieno and he reluctantly gave Irie permission to go ahead. However he warned Irie not to act reckless and lose the championship. It was Irie’s responsibility alone to be the defending champion overseas.

1st August, 2018. The date will live on as the starting point for the most chaotic period in the history of the KO-D Title. Irie gets pinned by Sami Callihan at a Rockstar Pro show in Ohio, losing the championship in his first defence outside of Japan. When news made its way back to DDT, everybody scrambled to save face. The wrestlers were in shock and blamed Irie for damaging DDT’s reputation abroad. Takagi and Dieno went to work trying to figure out how to get the title back on a DDT wrestler. Irie saved face by winning the championship back a week later and he was able to return to Japan with the belt. Crisis averted but Irie’s pride was scarred. Not so much by the title loss but by Dieno being proven right. Irie grew to resent Dieno even more, blaming him for everything he finds wrong with DDT. The feud led to more chaos in the title scene when Dieno used a Right To Challenge Anytime, Anywhere Gauntlet to win the KO-D Title from Irie on an episode of Maji Manji. Another Gauntlet was used two weeks later by Meiko Satomura that led to her winning the title. Irie had one chance left to win back the belt in a 3 Way Elimination Match but Dieno surprised him with the Gaydo Clutch and Irie became the first person eliminated from the match. Beaten and outsmarted, Irie accepted defeat and admitted it was time to move on. He shook Dieno by the left hand because the left hand is closer to your heart.

When the dust was settled, Irie had a new direction and it is one that relies less on DDT. Late in September Irie announced he will not renew his contract and will become a freelancer in October. He will still be accepting bookings with DDT but his priority will be going abroad with dates already confirmed for America and Germany. His last match before he heads away is here in Sumo Hall with his favourite partner and opponents. HARASHIMA, the man Irie could not beat until this past July. Yukio Sakaguchi, the man who he had violent clashes with in the past. Keisuke Ishii, the man he grew up with in wrestling and shared plenty of time with as part of Team Dream Futures. Already gone from his contract, Irie has shown signs of his old self recently. The big goofy smile is returning. Maybe he will show it to everyone in DDT one more time at Sumo Hall.

I swear if Irie shows up at New Japan in a few months time calling himself “Dramatic” there is going to be Hell to pay.

9. Dramatic Dream Match: Konosuke Takeshita Vs CIMA

The other ALL OUT Vs STRONG HEARTS match is focused on the two big names of the groups. Takeshita Vs CIMA! Sumo Hall has been home to some of Takeshita’s biggest matches in his career. Kenny Omega, Katsuhiko Nakajima, Hiroshi Tanahashi and his battles with both Tetsuya Endo and Shuji Ishikawa all took place in the building for DDT’s biggest events in recent years. CIMA on the other hand? The 2000 Super J Cup and two Dragon Gate shows from almost a decade ago were the only Sumo Hall appearances I can find for him. If home field advantages and venue familiarity count in this situation, Takeshita has it by the bucket load.

Of course the worst thing someone can do in this match is underestimate CIMA. This dude has been wrestling almost as long as Takeshita has been alive. Takeshita wasn’t even three years old when CIMA made his WCW debut. CIMA can be very sly in the ring when he wants to be. Any chance Takeshita has of making this a spot heavy blow for blow banger can be stopped in its tracks when CIMA decides to twist his body a dozen different painful ways instead. The result of this paints an interesting future for DDT’s immediate future. The STRONG HEARTS are already confirmed to appear on the next Korakuen Hall show a week after this show. If CIMA beats Takeshita, what next will be on his mind for DDT? I mean obviously we know what he’ll want. The Iron Man Title of course! STRONG HEARTS Vs SKE48 will be the next big invasion feud, mark my words!!!

10. KO-D Openweight Title: Danshoku Dieno (c) Vs Daisuke Sasaki

And so we finally make it to the finale. Two major figures in DDT that plotted and scrapped their way into the Sumo Hall main event. This is the first “PETER PAN” main event appearance for both Danshoku Dieno and Daisuke Sasaki. Dieno has main evented Sumo Hall for DDT once before back in 2013 but that was the first half of a weekend double header in the building and the lesser of the two shows. This year is what counts for Dieno and he did everything he could do to make it here.

Dieno was the DDT Director for most of the year. When it came to the KO-D Title, he publicly showed no desire for it and was the neutral party when deciding challengers and title defences. He avoided any tournaments or matches to determine the No. 1 contenders and played no part in the annual scramble for the Right To Challenge Gauntlets. But in the background, Dieno had a goal he needed to accomplish. The one thing that’s alluded him in his long DDT career is the main event match at “PETER PAN”. The best way to do that is be the champion and the title holder Shigehiro Irie just happened to be a thorn in his side during this period. Calling in a favour from Super Sasadango Machine, Dieno was gifted a Right To Challenge Gauntlet and he cashed it in on an exhausted Irie, easily beating him to become the new champion. He then immediately quit as the Director so he wouldn’t have to grant Irie a rematch. The one grave mistake he made was forgetting that there was one more Gauntlet in play and it was being held by a disgruntled Meiko Satomura. Dieno loses the title to Satomura in his first defence and his dreams start falling apart. The only saving grace was hearing that Irie wanted revenge. Dieno was able to wiggle his way into a 3 Way Elimination Match for the title and he ended up pinning both opponents to become champion once again. In the end, everything worked out perfectly for Dieno. His dream is finally coming true!

Daisuke Sasaki lived the dream once. He found something too good to be true. He found love. Big Love. A fling with “Japan’s First Genderless Wrestler” Asuka over the summer turned into something more, at least in Sasaki’s mind. They teamed together on Maji Manji shows until they were booked into a singles match against each other at July’s Korakuen show. Sasaki didn’t worry about it until Asuka broke the news to him in the ring. She was never really interested in him. He’s too old for her and also wasn’t her type. This was the point where Sasaki’s 2018 changed. Gone was Big Love and in its place was a hatred for everything. Sasaki defeated Asuka then went on to win the King Of DDT in August. With a broken heart and no desire to fix it, Sasaki’s focus was now on becoming the KO-D Champion at Sumo Hall. Also the 2,000,000 yen cash prize from the main event sponsor.

Dieno talking about his dreams only pisses Sasaki off even more. Sasaki called Dieno the symbol of DDT and a relic of the past. Mind games developed in the last couple of weeks as Sasaki tried to withstand Dieno’s lewd moveset. He now believes he is invincible against Dieno’s erotic wrestling style. Dieno warns that he will go beyond Sasaki’s imagination to win and if that means pulling out the ultimate versions of his signature moves, so be it. This Sunday, the symbol of DDT will be decided!


Tokyo Princess Cup 1st Round

May 28, 2018

TOKYO JOSHI PRO “THE 5TH TOKYO PRINCESS CUP”, 03/06/2018
Shinjuku Village Studio C 106

1. Marika Kobashi, Yuka Sakazaki & Raku Vs Mizuki, Maho Kurone & Hinano
2. Azusa Christie Vs Yuki Kamifuku
3. 3 Way Match: Shoko Nakajima Vs Rika Tatsumi Vs Yuki Aino
4. Tokyo Princess Cup – Take A Chance: Miu Vs Hikari
5. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1A: Reika Saiki Vs Yuu
6. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1B: Hyper Misao Vs Saki-sama
7. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1C: Miyu Yamashita Vs Maki Ito
8. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1D: Nodoka-oneesan Vs Yuna Manase

Reika Saiki wants to experience deja vu and repeat last year’s road to success. She won the previous Tokyo Princess Cup and became the TOKYO Princess Champion quickly afterwards. If she repeats this then she can regain the title from Miyu Yamashita. She sees her opening round match against Yuu as a Muscle Showdown. Yuu thinks the distance between her and the title is growing. She wants to show her strength against Saiki.

After last year’s performance, Hyper Misao thinks she is a stronger wrestler when put in a tournament setting. She hopes the “Goddess of Summer” will be smiling on her again this year. Saki-sama loves tournaments. In fact she hosts plenty of private tournaments in her manor for her own entertainment. But she never took part in one herself so this is the perfect opportunity to try it out against the common people. She is also interested in the Take A Chance qualifier match because she may find a beautiful flower bud that hasn’t found its colour yet.

Yamashita and Maki Ito argued over the Princess Title. Ito thinks she is stronger but Yamashita being the champion proves her wrong. Ito isn’t looking ahead at the rest of the bracket. Her only goal right now is to beat Yamashita in the 1st Round and claim the belt for herself! Doesn’t matter if the match is non-title.

Nodoka-oneesan and Yuna Manase is a more peaceful pairing. Nodoka has been doing her gymnastics to prepare for the tournament. Manase as the eighth entrant thinks she has the lucky number because 8 is the shape of her chest when she lies down.

The Take A Chance qualifier is between two of the Up Up Girls. Either Miu or Hikari will advance to the tournament proper. Miu thinks she has the power and stamina to defeat her teammate. Hikari wants Miu to know she is tougher than everyone thinks. Hikari wants to make the most of this opportunity so she can wrestle as many of her seniors as possible. Both of them also realise a Tag Title shot is in their future if either of them beats Marika Kobashi in Round 1.

TOKYO JOSHI PRO “THE 5TH TOKYO PRINCESS CUP”, 09/06/2018
Shin-Kiba 1st RING

1. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1E: Azusa Christie Vs Rika Tatsumi
2. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1F: Shoko Nakajima Vs Maho Kurone
3. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1G: Yuka Sakazaki Vs Mizuki
4. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1H: Marika Kobashi Vs Miu or Hikari

Azusa Christie is entering the tournament so she can stay close to Saki-sama. She thinks Rika Tatsumi’s nickname is “White Kokeshi”. Tatsumi is aware of how successful Christie has been ever since she was turned into a brainwashed nun. But Tatsumi has grown stronger too and she doesn’t need to cling onto somebody else to find success.

Shoko Nakajima has felt a little aimless ever since she lost the TOKYO Princess Tag Team Titles. When she watched Yamashita and Tatsumi fight for the TOKYO Princess Title earlier this month it shook her emotions. She was on the verge of tears until she told herself “I want to be the best.” Maho Kurone has suddenly begun to act more friendly towards others. She became interested in championships because her friend Tatsumi wanted to be a champion. Kurone does not like to eat anything that is not her friend.

Mizuki thinks Yuka Sakazaki is too noisy but she still has fun wrestling her. The real problem is Mizuki has never beaten Sakazaki. She may need to destroy her voice to beat her.

Marika Kobashi’s 1st Round opponent is against one of the Up Up Girls. Whoever it is, Kobashi is looking forward to fighting them. She has two years more experience than them so she is confident of advancing to Round 2.

TOKYO JOSHI PRO “THE 5TH TOKYO PRINCESS CUP”, 17/06/2018
Tokyo Narimasu Act Hall

1. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 2: Winner Of Match 1A Vs Winner Of Match 1B
2. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 2: Winner Of Match 1C Vs Winner Of Match 1D
3. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 2: Winner Of Match 1E Vs Winner Of Match 1F
4. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 2: Winner Of Match 1G Vs Winner Of Match 1H

The bracket is set in place up until the semi finals.

TOKYO JOSHI PRO “THE 5TH TOKYO PRINCESS CUP FINAL FIGHT”, 08/07/2018
Tokyo Ryogoku KFC Hall

1. Tokyo Princess Cup – Semi Final: X Vs X
2. Tokyo Princess Cup – Semi Final: X Vs X
3. Tokyo Princess Cup – Final: X Vs X


King Of DDT 2018 – Fucking Hell It’s A Big One

May 22, 2018

Tournaments! Tournaments everywhere! BASARA is doing the Heaven Summit ~Itadaki~ in May. Tokyo Joshi Pro is doing a the Tokyo Princess Cup in June. Ganbare☆Wrestling is doing the Ganbare☆Climax in August. And of course DDT is bringing back the King Of DDT for its largest turnout ever. The 2018 edition of the annual playoff will contain 32 different wrestlers all fighting for a big prize. The winner will receive 1,000,000 yen plus the main event KO-D Openweight Title shot at “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2018” on 21st October. This is going to be where DDT sets up their second half of 2018 so there will be a lot to keep an eye out for when the entry list and possibly the bracket is revealed.

If you look below you will see that your eyes are not messing with you. The entire 1st Round of 16 matches will take place in one day during Beer Garden Week. The plan is to air the entire show live on AbemaTV. Since beer drinking is one of the big selling points of attending the show they better be well stocked for this one.

DDT “FIGHTING BEER GARDEN 2018 ~ KING OF DDT 2018 1ST ROUND”, 31/07/2018
Shinjuku FACE

1. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
2. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
3. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
4. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
5. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
6. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
7. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
8. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
9. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
10. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
11. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
12. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
13. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
14. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
15. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X
16. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 1: X Vs X

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DDT “FIGHTING BEER GARDEN 2018 ~ KING OF DDT 2018 2ND ROUND”, 04/08/2018
Shinjuku FACE

1. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 2: X Vs X
2. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 2: X Vs X
3. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 2: X Vs X
4. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 2: X Vs X
5. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 2: X Vs X
6. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 2: X Vs X
7. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 2: X Vs X
8. King Of DDT 2018 – Round 2: X Vs X

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DDT “KING OF DDT 2018 3RD ROUND”, 25/08/2018
Tokyo Korakuen Hall

1. King Of DDT 2018 – Quarter Final: X Vs X
2. King Of DDT 2018 – Quarter Final: X Vs X
3. King Of DDT 2018 – Quarter Final: X Vs X
4. King Of DDT 2018 – Quarter Final: X Vs X

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DDT “BLACK OUT PRESENTS KING OF DDT 2018 FINAL ROUND”, 26/08/2018
Tokyo Korakuen Hall

1. King Of DDT 2018 – Semi Final: X Vs X
2. King Of DDT 2018 – Semi Final: X Vs X
3. King Of DDT 2018 – Final: X Vs X


The 5th Tokyo Princess Cup

May 22, 2018

The 5th annual Tokyo Princess Cup is the biggest one yet with 16 girls competing. The tournament will be held over the course of four shows with the first round split evenly between two shows in one week. There will be a bracket set in place for everything up until the semi-finals. The first round matches will be determined by lottery soon. The semi-final matches will be determined by another lottery on the day of the finals. The complete line up is as follows:

Miyu Yamashita (5th Consecutive Appearance)
Shoko Nakajima (5th Consecutive Appearance, 2nd Winner)
Yuka Sakazaki (5th Consecutive Appearance)
Rika Tatsumi (3rd Consecutive Appearance)
Hyper Misao (2nd Appearance In 3 Years)
Yuu (3rd Consecutive Appearance, 3rd Winner)
Nodoka-oneesan (3rd Consecutive Appearance)
Marika Kobashi (2nd Appearance In 2 Years)
Maho Kurone (2nd Consecutive Appearance)
Reika Saiki (2nd Consecutive Appearance, 4th Winner)
Yuna Manase (2nd Consecutive Appearance)
Maki Ito (2nd Consecutive Appearance)
Mizuki (2nd Consecutive Appearance)
Saki-sama (1st Appearance)
Azusa Christie (1st Appearance, Kind Of)
Take A Chance Spot – Either Miu or Hikari (1st Appearance For Either)

The field was whittled down to 17 when Tokyo Joshi Pro eliminated girls who have not won any matches yet (Yuki Kamifuku, Yuki Aino, Raku and Hinano). The final spot is nicknamed “Take A Chance” and will be determined by a match between the two Up Up Girls who have won matches: Miu and Hikari. It is essentially a qualifying match for the final spot.

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TOKYO JOSHI PRO “THE 5TH TOKYO PRINCESS CUP”, 03/06/2018
Shinjuku Village Studio C 106

1. Tokyo Princess Cup – Take A Chance: Miu Vs Hikari
2. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1: X Vs X
3. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1: X Vs X
4. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1: X Vs X
5. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1: X Vs X

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TOKYO JOSHI PRO “THE 5TH TOKYO PRINCESS CUP”, 09/06/2018
Shin-Kiba 1st RING

1. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1: X Vs X
2. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1: X Vs X
3. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1: X Vs X
4. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 1: X Vs Miu or Hikari

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TOKYO JOSHI PRO “THE 5TH TOKYO PRINCESS CUP”, 17/06/2018
Tokyo Narimasu Act Hall

1. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 2: X Vs X
2. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 2: X Vs X
3. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 2: X Vs X
4. Tokyo Princess Cup – Round 2: X Vs X

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TOKYO JOSHI PRO “THE 5TH TOKYO PRINCESS CUP FINAL FIGHT”, 08/07/2018
Tokyo Ryogoku KFC Hall

1. Tokyo Princess Cup – Semi Final: X Vs X
2. Tokyo Princess Cup – Semi Final: X Vs X
3. Tokyo Princess Cup – Final: X Vs X


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


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.