Following up on two great US shows this year, followed by an amazing G1 Climax tournament and some standout bouts on the Destruction Tour, Fighting Spirit Unleashed promises to keep up this high standard of quality New Japan action on the road to King of Pro Wrestling. As the third US show of the year, Fighting Spirit Unleashed is a sign of New Japan’s successful global expansion. If you signed up recently for the G1 or to watch All In, this is a good first US show to experience.
Why You Should Watch It
- In my opinion, when it comes to in-ring action, no promotion in the world can rival New Japan Pro Wrestling right now.
- NJPW has some of the best wrestlers in the world signed to its roster, and with fewer restrictions and more time for matches and builds than WWE, the quality of their matches is the best in the world. If you love professional wrestling, you owe it to yourself to at least attempt to watch this promotion once or twice.
- If you signed up to NJPW World to watch the G1 Climax or All In, this will be a good first sampler of what a New Japan show outside of its base country is like.
- It’s interesting to see an American audience react to a New Japan show, as apposed to a Japanese audience.
- Will Ospreay and Marty Scurll will probably try to destroy each other.
- It will be the first time Jim Ross and Kevin Kelly have commentated alongside each other in over 19 years. The last time was an episode of Monday Night Raw which was broadcast on July 19th 1999.
- September 30th – 1am (October 1st, UK), 5pm (Pacific), 8pm (Eastern)
How to Watch
- The only way to watch Fighting Spirit Unleashed is through the company’s streaming service – NJPW World. – CLICK HERE FOR MY GUIDE ON USING AND GETTING THE MOST OUT OF NJPW WORLD
- The show will be broadcast on AXS TV five days later for anybody that has AXS but hasn’t seen enough New Japan yet to sign up to NJPW World.
- NJPW World can be accessed through an official app on Amazon Fire Sticks, as well as through on laptops, phones and tablets with Chromecast support.
- Not only does it work out at slightly cheaper than WWE Network every month, it offers regular live shows, as well as access to previous events from decades past, matches from select indie promotions such as Ring of Honor and RevPro, the full ALL IN show, and exclusive documentaries that follow the lives of both their Japanese and English speaking roster members.
- Please note that there is no free trial period available, so you will need to purchase the service in order to watch.
- Regardless of when you sign up, the billing date for NJPW World is the first day of every month for every user (so you could be charged 2 days in a row if you signed up on the last day of a month) – IF YOU ARE PLANNING ON SIGNING UP, DO IT AS CLOSE TO THE BEGINNING OF THE MONTH AS POSSIBLE.
- Once you cancel your subscription, you immediately cannot use your account, even if you have weeks left until your next billing date – IF YOU ARE PLANNING ON CANCELLING, DO IT AS CLOSE TO THE END OF THE MONTH AS POSSIBLE.
- Live shows are available to watch in full usually within thirty minutes after they’ve been broadcast.
How to Avoid Streaming Issues
- Although not many users experience these anymore, NJPW World has been known in the past for having some streaming issues
- Streaming issues are very uncommon these days
- BEST WAY TO AVOID ISSUES: NJPW World has two different servers for streaming – one for Fire TV and browsers, and one for mobile and tablet devices. The Fire TV and browser stream is the one that’s known to experience issues, so if you are having troubles, I would recommend switching to watching on a mobile or tablet device
ACH, Rysuke Taguchi and Jushin Thunder Liger vs. SHO, YOH and Rocky Romero – A simple six-man tag to open the show. Expect a big reaction for Liger, lots of exciting flippy stuff from ACH, a load of butt action from Taguchi, and plenty of shenanigans from Romero. Should be a lot of fun.
Frankie Kazarian and Christopher Daniels vs. Hangman Page and Chase Owens
Kazarian and Daniels are not regular members of the NJPW roster, which is what makes this match so interesting. Perform well here, and they may just land themselves some more opportunities, but unfortunately for them, they are going up against one of the most up-and-coming teams in New Japan, the Good Old Virginia Boys, full of momentum after a consistent performance teaming together throughout the G1. Expect a big audience reaction for both of these teams.
Flip Gordon, Chris Sabin and Jeff Cobb vs. Chuckie T, Beretta and Hirooki Goto
If you have never seen Jeff Cobb wrestle before, you’re in for a treat. Watching him throw grown men around like they’re children in ever more creative ways is fantastic, and if recent rumours are to be believed, we will be seeing him a lot more in NJPW. Throw in the excitement of Flip Gordon, the veteran Chris Sabin, the wonderful antics of the Best Friends, and the physicality of Goto, and we should be in for a great match.
EVIL, Tetsuya Naito and SANADA vs. Davey Boy Smith Jr., Lance Archer and Zack Sabre Jr.
In their final G1 Climax 2018 bout, ZSJ defeated Naito in a fantastic match, and prevented him from reaching the finals in the process. Ever since, there’s been bad blood brewing between the two. Throw in Zack’s recent comments towards EVIL and his hatred of Halloween, and this should be a heated brawl between LIJ and Suzuki-Gun.
KUSHIDA and Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Jay White and Gedo
On September 23rd, Gedo aligned himself with Jay White and destroyed Chaos from the inside, attacking Hiroshi Tanahashi in the process. As the only man to defeat Tanahashi during the G1, White feels as though he is entitled to an opportunity for The Ace’s contract for an IWGP Heavyweight Championship match at Wrestle Kingdom. Not only will this match set up a future brawl between these two, it will also be the first time we see Gedo and White team up since forming their alliance, making this is a fascinating encounter.
Juice Robinson vs. Cody – IWGP US Championship Match
IWGP US Champion vs. NWA Worlds Heavyweight Champion – that alone is absolutely fascinating.
Coming off of a disappointing win-loss record from this year’s G1, Juice does certainly owe quite a few people a shot at his big stars and stripes belt, but the first to get an opportunity post-G1 is The American Nightmare, Cody. With this being Juice’s first title defence of the belt since winning it in July, it’s only appropriate that the bout takes place on US soil.
But he’s got a difficult task ahead of him. Coming off a historic victory at All In, Cody is shrouded in white-hot momentum. He’s already holding ten pounds of gold – does he have room for more? Will he bring the gold he currently holds with him? Will Juice coat Cody’s hair that signature Ric Flair mix of bleach blonde and blood red? I can’t wait to find out.
The Young Bucks vs. G.O.D – IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championship Match
The last NJPW show in the United States, G1 Special in San Francisco, is memorable for ending with The Firing Squad breaking away from the rest of Bullet Club, and laying out their former teammates in dominating fashion. It’s only appropriate then that the first major tag team encounter between Bullet Club and Firing Squad will take place in the same country this whole war started.
With tensions so high, expect this to be physical, brutal, and overflowing with curse words. Hopefully this match will go the limit without any of Firing Squad’s signature shenanigans so we can fully experience how good both The Young Bucks and G.O.D are as teams.
Will Ospreay vs. Marty Scurll – IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship Tournament Semi-Finals
Ospreay vs. Scurll – it’s a rivalry that has spanned across promotions, and made its way into New Japan. These two have already produced one five-star match against each other this year, where Ospreay near enough killed himself in order to finally beat The Villain, so expect a hard-hitting, fantastic brawl between these two that may just steal the show.
Kenny Omega and Kota Ibushi vs. Tomohiro Ishii and Kazuchika Okada
Here is your main-event – the first time Omega and Okada will ever wrestle on American soil. These two have had four of the greatest matches of all time together, including their epic at Dominion this year, and now they will be on opposite sides of the ring against each other in LA. Not only that, Okada just happens to be teaming with Ishii, arguably one of Omega’s greatest ever opponents, second only to The Rainmaker.
Coming off two brutal wars, one in the G1 and one during the Destruction tour, Ishii and Omega have proven they have levels of chemistry with each other that cannot be taught or fabricated. On top of all of that, Kota Ibushi, one of the best pro wrestlers in the world, will also be in there, who has had fantastic encounters with both Ishii and Okada.
If this match lives up to even half of its potential, it will still be absolutely fantastic.
Recommended Matches with Links and English Commentary
- Kenny Omega vs. Kazuchika Okada – Dominion 2018
- Juice Robinson vs. Jay White – G1 Special in San Francisco
- Kota Ibushi vs. Tomohiro Ishii – G1 Climax 2018
- Cody vs. Nick Aldis – All In
- Juice Robinson vs. Kenny Omega – Destruction in Kobe 2017
- Tomohiro Ishii vs. Kenny Omega – G1 Climax 2018
- Cody vs. Kenny Omega – G1 Special in San Francisco
- Will Ospreay vs. Marty Scurll – Sakura Genesis 2018
- Kazuchika Okada vs. Zack Sabre Jr. – Strong Style Evolved UK
- Minoru Suzuki vs. Tomohiro Ishii – Strong Style Evolved UK
- G.O.D vs. Cody and Marty Scurll – Strong Style Evolved
- The Golden Lovers vs. The Young Bucks – Strong Style Evolved
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