Multiple title changes at New Beginning in Sapporo

Photo Courtesy: NJPW

NJPW crowned several new champions on its first of two New Beginning in Sapporo events this weekend.
Friday’s card saw new roster members Nic Nemeth and Matt Riddle secure titles in the top matches.

Nemeth became the second IWGP Global Heavyweight Champion, defeating David Finlay after selling most of the match and overcoming the attack on his left knee. The closing stretch saw Nemeth mount a comeback with head butts to avoid Into Oblivion and landed a superkick and the Danger Zone (formerly the Zig Zag) to win the championship.

Nemeth addressed the audience and promised to defend the championship against anyone and defend it anywhere and thanked them as the confetti surrounded the former WWE performer.

Matt Riddle defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi to become the NJPW Television Champion in a short match to become the third holder of the championship.

Tanahashi countered the Bro Derek on Riddle’s first attempt but after landing a Final Flash knee strike, the second attempt at the Bro Derek connected, and Riddle won in just under nine minutes.

The third title change featured SHO becoming the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion, beating El Desperado by count-out.

The match included Desperado applying Numero Dos when the lights went out and Yoshinobu Kanemaru appeared and aided his House of Torture teammate. This prompted Ryusuke Taguchi to help Desperado.

It was a match full of interference and lots of weapon strikes including some dangerous chair shots to the head.

Ren Narita appeared and choked out Desperado on the floor, which allowed SHO to roll into the ring and win the title, which can change on a count-out in NJPW.

EVIL retained the NEVER Openweight Championship against Shota Umino, and IWGP Women’s Champion Mayu Iwatani pinned Mina Shirakawa with the Dragon Suplex Hold in the other title matches.

Kazuchika Okada’s penultimate match with the company saw the outgoing star score the pinfall in a multi-man tag. Okada teamed with Tomohiro Ishii, YOSHI-HASHI & YOH to defeat Jeff Cobb, Great O-Khan, Francesco Akira & Callum Newman with Okada pinning Newman after hitting the Rainmaker.

New Beginning in Sapporo continues on Saturday with a show featuring a rematch between Tetsuya Naito and SANADA for the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship, a Hair vs. Hair match between Yota Tsuji and Yuya Uemura, and the final match for Kazuchika Okada in New Japan Pro Wrestling.

*IWGP Global Heavyweight Championship: Nic Nemeth over David Finlay © in 23:07
*NJPW Television Championship: Matt Riddle over Hiroshi Tanahashi © in 8:38
*IWGP NEVER Openweight Championship: EVIL © over Shota Umino in 15:45
*IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship: SHO over El Desperado © via count-out in 16:13
*IWGP Women’s Championship: Mayu Iwatani © over Mina Shirakawa in 12:28
*Tetsuya Naito, Shingo Takagi, Yota Tsuji, Hiromu Takahashi & BUSHI over SANADA, Taichi, Yuya Uemura, DOUKI & Taka Michinoku in 10:07
*Kazuchika Okada, Tomohiro Ishii, YOSHI-HASHI & YOH over Jeff Cobb, Great O-Khan, Francesco Akira & Callum Newman in 10:55
*Ren Narita, Yoshinobu Kanemaru & Yujiro over Togi Makabe, Ryusuke Taguchi & Oleg Boltin in 7:15
*Zack Sabre Jr. over Yuji Nagata in 7:56
*Toru Yano & Tomoya over Tomoaki Honma & Takuma Kato in 7:10

About John Pollock 5564 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.