New Japan Pro-Wrestling - King of Pro-Wrestling 2013 (10/14/13) - IWGP Intercontinental Title - Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Naomichi Marufuji: ****1/4
This is another match from New Japan's English Commentary Show on AXS TV, this time featuring an IWGP Intercontinental Title Match. It's a very interesting match as it's NJPW vs. NOAH, as Naomichi Marufuji (who many ROH fans will remember) challenges Shinsuke Nakamura. This was a great match, as you would expect. Both guys are just so good, and they seemed to mesh really well together. Lots of really good action throughout this match. In the end, Nakamura would score the victory, retaining his IWGP Intercontinental Title. I really enjoyed this match.
Afterwords, Suzuki-gun came out while Nakamura was celebrating. Minoru Suzuki challenged Nakamura to an IWGP Intercontinental Title Match the following month, where he would have to join Suzuki-gun if he lost the title to Suzuki. Nakamura accepted (and I'm sure you all know how that match went, in terms of the result).
Smash Wrestling - Danger Zone (2/23/14) - Ladder Match - Alex Vega vs. Brent Banks: ***1/2
Here we have another match where the winner advances to the tournament for the Smash Wrestling Title. This time, it's a Ladder Match between two former partner, now heated rivals. I thought this was a very interesting Ladder Match. It was relatively tame by Ladder Match standards, and part of this had to do with how the match played out, as Brent Banks refused to use the Ladder as a weapon at points (I guess he didn't want to give the crowd the satisfaction). The action in here was still good, and there were a few cool spots, but I was definitely expecting more from this match. Towards the end of the match. Brent Banks ask Jimmy Korderas (the referee, who also has had issues with Banks in the past, including wresting a match against Banks) to hold the ladder so he could climb it and grab the contract. He shoves down Korderas after he refuses. Korderas responds by knocking Banks off the ladder! This allows Alex Vega to hit an elbow drop off a ladder, and then climbs the ladder to secure the contract, and his spot in the Smash Wrestling Title Tournament.
AIW - WrestleRager: Night 3 (9/7/14) - AIW Intense Division Title - Fatal Four-Way - Davey Vega vs. Johnny Gargano vs. Tyson Dux vs. Pete Dunne: ***1/2
This is Davey Vega's 3rd title defense of the weekend, and it was also the biggest challenge, as he faced off with three tough opponents in Johnny Gargano, Tyson Dux, & Pete Dunne. This was a pretty short match for a Fatal Four-Way, but it was definitely filled with tons of action. There was a lot of really cool stuff in this match, including a fair amount of multi-man spots. Everyone got a chance to shine in this one, but in the end, Davey Vega was able to outlast the competition, and got the win to retain his AIW Intense Division Title.
Lucha Underground - Season 1, Episode 3: Crossing The Border (11/12/14) - Triple Threat Match - Fenix vs. Pentagon Jr. vs. Drago: ****
So the setup for this match was that Konnan had met with Dario Cueto in the latter's office, and complained about the lack of actual luchadors on Lucha Underground up to that point (which was a legitimate complaint about the first two episodes at the time). Dario Cueto, being the great man that he is, remedied this problem by putting three luchadores (all of them from AAA) in a Triple Threat Match. At the time that this show aired, I had no idea who these three guys were, but boy did they leave a lasting impression. This was a crazy match! These luchadores went all out to prove themselves in this new promotion, and it resulted in a really fun & enjoyable. We saw everything you could possibly imagine, including Fenix diving off the top of Dario Cueto's office onto both Drago & Pentagon Jr.!!! Through all the carnage, Fenix would eventually pick up the victory. A super fun match for sure!
WWE NXT (3/25/15) - NXT Title - Kevin Owens vs. Finn Balor: ****
Finn Balor earned this title match by winning a #1 Contender's Tournament, which he won when he defeated Adrian Neville in the Finals at NXT Takeover: Rival. This is a match that I never thought we would see, and it definitely lived up to expectations. It was great! While the beginning parts of the match were a little slow, things picked up as the match progressed. There was a lot of great action throughout this match from both guys. There was also a good amount of storytelling, as Owens went after Balor's leg throughout the match, and that eventually led to Balor's downfall, as he was unable to capitalize after hitting his Double Stomp from the top rope. This led to Owens taking advantage of situation, as he gets the win and retains his NXT Title. Once again, a really great match between these two.
That's all for this set of random match reviews. Be sure to check out all of my other reviews on my blog!