Monday, August 17, 2015

Top Five 8/10/15-8/16/15

1) Hiroshi Tanahashi: Honestly, there really couldn't be another choice. I didn't want Hiroshi Tanahashi to win the G1 Climax, but that's exactly what happened and his final two performances may have been his best. With the A Block on the line, he faced AJ Styles and they went on to have a very good match. I don't think it was a match of the year candidate like a lot of people did, but still great stuff. The next night, he got the pin in a really fun ten men tag team match while the B Block was decided. Then, in the finals of the G1, he took on Shinsuke Nakamura. These two went for over thirty minutes in a legit MOTY candidate. Both guys put on one hell of a performance and Tanahashi got the victory. We are now set for the Okada/Tanahashi rematch at the Tokyo Dome early next year. I wanted Nakamura to win, but Tanahashi killed it here.

2) Shinsuke Nakamura:  Obviously, had Shinsuke Nakamura won the G1, he would have topped the list. Instead, he has to settle for second but he still had a very impressive week. I'll start by going with his least impressive performance, which came in a win against Satoshi Kojima on the 12th. Then, he faced Kazuchika Okada on the last night before the finals. With Okada having 14 points and Nakamura having 12, he needed the win to win the block and he did. They had a great match (top 10 in the year for me) and Nakamura was able to make the IWGP Champion submit. Despite winning his block, Nakamura didn't have the best G1 and that may have had something to do with his injured elbow. That looked like a thing of the past in his last two matches, both of which were excellent.

3) reDRagon:  For a while now, I've considered reDRagon the best tag team in the world. On the G1 Climax Finals show, they defeated the most overrated team in pro wrestling (at least in my eyes), the Young Bucks to win back the IWGP Jr. Tag Team Titles. I couldn't have been happier to see this considering how good Bobby Fish and Kyle O'Reilly are. I honestly get the sense they'll be doing more singles stuff soon in ROH, so it'll be nice to see them work as a team in NJPW for a bit longer. Hopefully, it's a good reign since these titles seem to change hands so often.

              4) Bayley: For the second straight week, Bayley makes the list by stealing the show on an episode of NXT. She is the only person to make my list and not do something in NJPW. Her match against Becky Lynch not only closed out NXT, but was possibly the best WWE match of the week. Similar to her bout against Charlotte last week, it was a very good back and forth contest won by Bayley. So not only has she recently become the second woman to pin Charlotte, but she has now beaten Becky as well, who is on the main roster. This made her the number one contender for the NXT Women's Title, which she'll most likely win at TakeOver: Brooklyn. It should be a special moment in front of the largest crowd in NXT history.

5) KUSHIDA: It was tough to pick a final person this week. There was Tomoaki Honma, who finally got his first G1 win. There was Michael Elgin, who put on a great match against another possible candidate, Tomohiro Ishii. Instead, I went with KUSHIDA. I've been a fan of the guy for a while and this isn't his first appearance on the list this year. First, he and Ricochet stole the show in a very fun ten man tag the night before the G1 Finals. Then, on the night of the finals, KUSHIDA successfully defended his IWPG Jr. Heavyweight Title against Ricochet in a good match. Hopefully he holds the belt until Wrestle Kingdom 10 and I get KUSHIDA vs. Alex Shelley. I can dream can't I?

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