NJPW presented its Power Struggle event on Saturday from the Edion Arena in Osaka and featured multiple title changes in the promotion’s first major event since the G1 Climax.
In a rematch from the G1, KENTA challenged Hiroshi Tanahashi for the IWGP United States Championship and avenged his loss from one month ago. The match was highlighted by a spectacular High Fly Flow by Tanahashi to the floor and through a table with KENTA on top of it. Tanahashi attempted to thwart the weapons and tactics introduced by the challenger. The closing sequence saw Tanahashi counter the Go to Sleep with a sling blade, as he went for a follow-up, it was countered with Tanahashi sent into the exposed buckle and hit with the Go to Sleep as KENTA became the new champion.
Tanahashi’s short reign comes to an end after less than two months since defeating Lance Archer to win the belt in Los Angeles at ‘Resurgence’.
The next challenger is poised to be Chase Owens, who defeated Tanahashi during the G1, and stepped aside to allow Bullet Club teammate KENTA to have the first shot at the championship.
El Desperado became IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion for the second time after submitting Robbie Eagles and ending his 3+ month run as champion.
They had an excellent match built around each targeting the knee of their opponent.
There was a tremendous sequence of cradles, counters, and near-falls with Eagles taking risks with the injured knee that blew up his face. Eagles attempted a 450 from the top to the injured knee of Desperado, however, the challenger got both knees up, and thus, there was damage to both men from the attempt.
Desperado secured Numero Dos while locking onto the wrists of Eagles for a variation of the stretch muffler style submission and forced Eagles to submit.
The title change comes one week before the start of the annual Best of the Super Juniors tournament.
The third title change on the show saw EVIL, SHO & Yujiro end the 15-month reign of Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI as NEVER Six-Man Champions.
The House of Torture trio became the latest set of champions after EVIL pinned YOSHI-HASHI after hitting Everything is EVIL.
Here are the full results from the show:
*IWGP World Heavyweight Championship: Shingo Takagi (champion) over Zack Sabre Jr.
*Tokyo Dome #1 Contendership Shot: Kazuchika Okada (holder) over Tama Tonga
*IWGP U.S. Championship: KENTA over Hiroshi Tanahashi (champion)
*IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship: El Desperado over Robbie Eagles (champion)
*KOPW 2021 – Amateur Wrestling Match: Toru Yano (holder) over The Great O-Khan
*NEVER Openweight Six-Man Tag Championship: EVIL, SHO & Yujiro over Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI (champions)
*SANADA, Hiromu Takahashi & BUSHI over Yuji Nagata, Ryusuke Taguchi & Master Wato
*Tanga Loa, Gedo & Jado over Togi Makabe, Tomoaki Honma & Tiger Mask
*Yoshinobu Kanemaru & DOUKI over Ryohei Oiwa & Kosei Fujita