New Japan on AXS TV Episode 7
February 27, 2015
Commentators: Mauro Ranallo, Josh Barnett
Recap by: Jason Namako of Wrestleview.com
Tetsuya Naito welcomes us to the show.
Naito: “This is Tetsuya Naito of New Japan Pro Wrestling. Today, you will watch the G-1 Climax Championship, held at Ryogoku Kokugikan on August 11, 2013. You’re watching World Pro Wrestling returns.”
We go to comments from Naito in the TV studios about the build to his 2013 G-1 Climax Finals match with Hiroshi Tanahashi.
Naito: “It was physically really tough. I was hurt all over. When I heard that I was going into the finals, I was relived and I wanted to get some rest before the finals. (We see video of Naito defeating Karl Anderson in the B Block Decision Match to advance to the Finals.) I felt like taking my costume off and relaxing in a bath before the main event, the championship finals. When I heard that I was matched up with Tanahashi……personally, Tanahashi is a very special wrestler to me because I was a fan of him. I actually transferred to Heavyweight because I wanted to follow Tanahashi’s footsteps. I never say this to his face, but he is the wrestler I admire most. (We see video of Tanahashi defeating Katsuyori Shibata in the A Block Decision Match to advance to the Finals.) Now that I’m becoming busy with the promotion and all and now I know that you have to train properly even when you’re busy. Tanahashi cares about his diet and he takes care of his condition, it makes me realize how professional he is. Because I’ve admired him for a long time, I’ve always said that it is my duty to bring him down. He’d be my most favorable opponent to win the championship. I knew that I’d be facing a tough opponent because its the finals. I know that he’s tough, its evident from the status. But again, I was super excited when I got in the ring with him.”
Main Event in the Finals of the 2013 G-1 Climax: “The Stardust Genius” Tetsuya Naito vs. “The Ace of the Universe” Hiroshi Tanahashi
Dueling chants for both men as the bell sounds. Chain wrestling early, stalemate. Tanahashi with a series of gut shots. Naito with an armdrag, followed by a dropkick. Chinlock applied, then switched into a headscissors. Naito turns to his belly to put more torque hold. Tanahashi flips himself, then does a handstand to try & get out, but Naito gets him back in the headscissors. Naito gets 2. Naito with elbows to the back of Tanahashi’s head, followed by a right hand. Naito runs into a back elbow, 2nd Rope Crossbody by Tanahashi. Series of uppercuts by Tanahashi, then puts on the brakes when Naito tries to go up & over, followed by a chop block to Naito’s previously injured leg. Tanahashi stomps away at the leg, then drives the knee into the mat. Tanahashi with kicks to the knee, then tries to Irish whip Naito, but Naito doubles down, his leg buckling. Tanahashi takes Naito down and hits a series of knees to the back of the injured leg. Figure Four variation applied, Naito gets to the ropes as we go to commercial.
Back from commercial as Tanahashi with more stomps to Naito’s injured leg. Crowd boos at the actions of Tanahashi. Naito sent off the turnbuckles, Tanahashi pulls at the injured leg in the ropes. Naito fights back with slaps, but Tanahashi responds with a series of slaps, knocking Naito down with a big one. Naito avoids a corner charge, walks up the ropes and hits Tanahashi with a Tornado DDT, both men down. Naito tries to get feeling back in his injured leg. Swinging Neckbreaker, hiptoss, running basement dropkick, snapmare, running senton by Naito. Running dropkick in the corner by Naito, then goes to the apron, sweeps out Tanahashi’s legs and hits a slingshot dropkick. Reverse DDT Neckbreaker, followed by a running basement dropkick to the back of Tanahashi’s head. Lotus Lock applied, Tanahashi gets to the ropes. Clubs to the back of the head, but Tanahashi goes back to the leg. Naito goes for an enziguri, but Tanahashi with a dropkick to the injured leg that sends Naito to the outside. Tanahashi heads up top, HIGH FLY FLOW CROSSBODY WIPES OUT NAITO!!
Back from commercial as Tanahashi breaks the ref’s count and brings Naito back in. Tanahashi remains on the apron, grabs the injured leg and hits a Dragon Screw to it while the leg was wrapped up in the ropes. Tanahashi goes for the Cloverleaf, but Naito quickly gets to the ropes. Tanahashi with more kicks to the leg, then goes again for the Cloverleaf, but Naito counters with an inside cradle for 2. Roll-up by Naito for 2, then hits a sliding enziguri. Strike exchange, then they slug it out until Tanahashi with a big uppercut, but Naito comes back with a flying forearm. Tanahashi goes back to the leg, but Naito fights back. Naito then with a series of slaps that rock Tanahashi, but then Tanahashi comes back with the Straitjacket German for a close 2. Tanahashi off the ropes, hits the Slingblade. Tanahashi heads up top for the High Fly Flow, but Naito moves out of the way! Naito then with a springboard dropkick to the back of Tanahashi’s head. German by Naito for a close 2. Naito holds onto Tanahashi, Tanahashi blocks a Dragon and backs Naito into the corner. Naito with an enziguri, followed by another flying forearm. Naito hits Gloria (Hammerlock Side Slam), then heads up top for the Stardust Press, but now its Tanahashi who moves out of the way and Naito lands hard on his injured knee as we go to commercial.
Back from commercial as Tanahashi with Grounded Dragon Screws to both of Naito’s legs, then finally locks him in the Cloverleaf. Naito crawls to the ropes, but Tanahashi sits down on the hold, putting on more pressure. Naito then is somehow able to reach the ropes to force a break. Another Dragon Screw by Tanahashi, then he goes for another Slingblade, but Naito takes him down and locks in Pluma Blanca (Triangle Choke variation). Tanahashi begins fading and the referee checks his arm three times, but Tanahashi shows signs of life on the third and final attempt and gets his foot on the ropes to force a break. Naito heads up top with Tanahashi and hits a Super Rana, but Tanahashi rolls through and pins Naito with a Sunset Flip for 2. Tanahashi holds on, gets to his feet and hits Naito with a Styles Clash! Tanahashi heads up top, HIGH FLY FLOW TO NAITO’s BACK!!! Tanahashi heads back up top for another High Fly Flow, but NAITO GETS HIS KNEES UP, BOTH MEN DOWN!!!
Back from commercial as both men get to their feet, charge at one another, but Tanahashi strikes first with a dropkick to the injured knee of Naito. Tanahashi goes for another Slingblade, but Naito catches him with TANAHASHI’s OWN SLINGBLADE!! Naito this time hits the Dragon, but Tanahashi kicks out! Naito hits another Gloria, then heads up top.
STARDUST PRESS!!! 1-2-3!!! WOW!!
Winner of the 2013 G-1 Climax: “The Stardust Genius” Tetsuya Naito by pinfall (Stardust Press)
Both men are still down afterwards, full of exhaustion, then Naito finally is able to get to his feet and celebrates his win. Tanahashi collapses at ringside and is helped to the back as we then go to post-match press conference comments from him.
Tanahashi: “I was close, I was so close. It was a great stage and a great honor, but its all right, i’m not tired at all.
Back to the ring as Naito is presented the G-1 Climax trophy and flag, taking photos in the ring with both. Announcer Shinpei Nogami is in the ring with Naito for an interview.
Nogami: “This is your first G-1 victory. Congratulations, Tetsuya Naito!”
Naito: “Thank you. When I took time off the ring, I thought that everyone would forget about me. I knew nobody would talk about me and you’d all watch New Japan Pro Wrestling as usual. I didn’t trust my fans enough. Even after coming back, I was still shaky, went through many injuries and showed my fans disappointing matches. But even so, I received lots of support each and every match. Seriously, thank you.”
Naito is in tears as the crowd chants for him.
Nogami: “Fans are welcoming him back as they call out his name.”
Naito: “My worries of these last few months are completely gone, this has been a great moment.”
Nogami: “Now you’ll be looked up to as the G-1 Champion, what are your plans?”
Naito: “I might be a G-1 Champion, but I have a lot of paying back to do. IWGP, Okada, no before that…..before anyone, Tanaka. I want to start off by facing Tanaka.”
Nogami: “So your goal is beyond getting the NEVER belt?”
Naito: “I’m not satisfied just yet, I want to properly beat Tanaka, then I’ll go for the IWGP belt.”
Nogami: “There is a big round of applause, I’d like to hand this mic over to you.”
Naito: “No matter what your dream is, if you don’t give up, there is a chance. As long as you don’t give up, the road will shape itself. My dream is to become the face of New Japan Pro Wrestling. Its a tough road to take, you may think its impossible, but that’s what makes me want to challenge, that’s why I’ll keep chasing my dream. I don’t care what anybody says, my dream will not change. The face of New Japan Pro Wrestling is me.”
Confetti falls from the ceiling as Naito continues to celebrate his win.
We go to post-match press conference comments from Naito, who celebrates his win with Yuji Nagata, Tomokai Honma and Mascara Dorada with beers.
Naito: “I don’t know what to say, it was tough. I couldn’t wrestle in my way, so it was painful. This may sound cliche, I think my fans supported me greatly. I want to thank all the fans here and the rest of them who gave me power. There’s one more thing. Tanahashi, no, Mr. Tanahashi, I’m glad I was able to wrestle you in the finals. I’m proud to have won the championship, defeating you. I’d like to face you on a bigger stage the next time and I will win. Mr. Tanahashi, thank you.”
We go back to the TV Studios as Naito looks back on the match with Tanahashi.
Naito: “I was relived when the G-1 Climax 23 ended. I gave my all these last 11 days. I was worried about my knee throughout the G-1. I’m glad I fought until the end, I was relived more than anything. The support from the fans really helped me. My right knee was in pain as he kept attacking me, I felt crushed. I was supported by the fans’ voices which made me fight until the end, it felt really good. I wanted to stand there forever, I wanted to wrestle forever and ever. After seeing that view, I wanted to see it again and even a greater view. I’ll never forget about that view I saw. Being able to wrestle in a fully packed stadium and win, I was able to learn a lot from that. It was a really tough match and a tough series, but winning the championship elevated my rank as a wrestler. From that, I’m now able to see a whole different view, as well as new obstacles I must overcome. I joined New Japan Pro Wrestling to rise to the very top, I overcame the injury on my right knee so I could be the star of this league. I think this was an unforgettable summer for me, Tetsuya Naito.”