Japanese Pro-Wrestling in 2016, A Year in Review

APRIL 2016

[4/4] Tokyo Gurentai – Masaaki Mochizuki defended the Tokyo World belt against Minoru Tanaka. Hikaru Sato and Ryo Kawamura defeated Kikutaro and “Hollywood” Stalker Ichikawa to become the new Tokyo IC Tag champions.
[4/5] NOAH – Harada and Kotoge defeated Kenoh and Ohara to recapture the IWGP Junior Tag belts.
[4/6] WRESTLE-1 – Yuji Hino and KAZMA SAKAMOTO defended the W-1 Tag belts against Manabu Soya and Jun Kasai. Kotaro Suzuki defended the Cruiser belt against TAJIRI. KAI defeated Masayuki Kono to become the next contender for the W-1 belt.
[4/7] NOAH – Lance Archer and Davey Boy Smith Jr. defended the GHC Tag belts in the USA to claim the most defense record at 8. K.E.S. would go on to make their 9th and 10th defenses of the belt as well throughout the course of the coming week.
[4/9] AJPW – The opening day of the “2016 Champion Carnival” began at the Korakuen Hall. The main event saw Kento Miyahara go to a 30 minute draw against Kengo Mashimo.
[4/10] NJPW – Tetsuya Naito defeated Kazuchika Okada to become the IWGP Heavyweight Champion for the first time in his career. Seiya Sanada, now SANADA, joined Los Ingobernables de Japon. Katsuyori Shibata defended the NEVER Openweight belt against Hiroyoshi Tenzan. Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa captured the IWGP Tag belts. KUSHIDA defended the IWGP Junior belt against Will Ospreay. Tanahashi, Elgin, and the returning Yoshitatsu also captured the NEVER 6 Tag belts.
[4/10] NOAH – A junior challenger decision tournament was held. Which saw Hajime Ohara best Daisuke Harada to become the next rightful challenger against Yoshinobu Kanemaru for the GHC junior belt.
[4/10] BJW – The final match of the “Ikkitosen ~ strong climb” was held in Sapporo. As Shuji Ishikawa defeated Hideyoshi Kamitani to achieve back to back wins of the strong division class league.
[4/11] NOAH – Mitsuhiro Kitamiya announced that he is formally changing his name to Masa Kitamiya. In honor of is idol Masa Saito.
[4/11] BJW – Isami Kodaka and Yuko Miyamoto defended the Asia Tag belts against the team of Atsushi Maruyama and Masashi Takeda in Sapporo.
[4/16] AJPW –  Jun Akiyama and Daisuke Sekimoto competed in their first singles match against one another as the “2016 Champion Carnival” continued.
[4/17] K-DOJO – Tank Nagai defended the CHAMPION STRONGEST-K belt against Hi69 at the main event at Korakuen Hall. Taishi Takizawa and Kotaro Yoshino also captured the STRONGEST-K TAG belts.
[4/20] BJW – Hideyoshi Kamitani was announced to be out due to a right rib fracture. He was pulled from the on-going Champion Carnival of which he was competing in at the time.
[4/20] Oudou – Their first ever show was held at the Korakuen Hall. The main event saw Akebono, Taiyo Kea and Ryota Hama take on Masato Tanaka, Daisuke Sekimoto and Yuji Okabayashi. AAA’s Pentagon Jr. also made his Japan debut as he took on Fenix.
[4/21] NOAH – Held their opening of the “Global Tag League 2016” at the Korakuen Hall. The main event saw Go Shiozaki and Maybach Taniguchi take on Takashi Sugiura and Shelton “X” Benjamin. Minoru Suzuki and Takashi Iizuka also took on Hiroyoshi Tenzan and Satoshi Kojima.
[4/23] NJPW –  Tanahashi, Elgin, and Yoshitatsu defended the NEVER 6 Tag belts against the BULLET CLUB team of Kenny Omega, Bad Luck Fale, and Yujiro Takahashi. SANADA also made his in-ring debut for New Japan.
[4/24] AJPW – Daisuke Sekimoto defeated Zeus to win the “2016 Champion Carnival” at the EDION Arena Osaka, 2nd Stadium.
[4/27] NJPW – Kenny Omega defended the IWGP IC belt against Michael Elgin.
[4/27] FMW – A special FMW Alliance vs. UWF Alliance focused show was held at the Korakuen Hall. The main event saw Atsushi Onita, Raijin Yaguchi, NOSAWA Rongai & Hideki Hosaka take on Masakatsu Funaki, Yoshihiro Takayama, Alexander Otsuka & Takaku Fuke. A special honoring ceremony was held for the late Hayabusa as well.
[4/28] WRESTLE-1 – Yuji Hino & KAZMA SAKAMOTO defended the W-1 Tag belts against the team of Yasufumi Nakanoue & Seiki Yoshioka.
[4/29] BJW – Isami Kodaka & Yuko Miyamoto made their 5th defense of the Asia Tag belts after they took on the team of Daisuke Sekimoto & Great Kojika. This was Kojika’s first challenge for the belts in 35 years. Jun Akiyama also competed in his first ever match in Big Japan, as he teamed with Daichi Hashimoto to take on Yuji Okabayashi & Yoshihisa Uto.
[4/29] WRESTLE-1 – Keiji Mutoh publicly hinted that a special opponent with be coming to WRESTLE-1 to make a challenge for the big Yokohama show on August 11.
[4/30] NOAH – Atsushi Kotoge & Daisuke Harada defended the GHC Tag belts against the team of TAKA Michinoku & El Desperado.
[4/30] Doutonbori – Ra-pid defended the WDW Championship against TORU at the Osaka Sekaikan. HUB and Orochi defended the WDW Tag belts against the BJW team of Kankuro Hoshino and Abdullah Kobayashi.

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About BushidoRX

I have been following Japanese Pro Wrestling for 20 years now and I have also been doing some form of covering it either in news or results for nearly 15 years as well. I got my start in promotions like AJPW, NJPW, FMW and Michinoku Pro. With All Japan being my go to promotion till this very day. Throughout the years I have followed All Japan more closely than any of the others out there, and thus I have taken it upon myself to keep people informed with what is happening all throughout sport in Japan. If it does not appear on the news feed I either do not follow it closely enough to relate the information or it just not my go to promotion in general. Follow Puroresu Spirit, which is my personal site, as I do my best to keep you all informed with what is happening in the land of the rising sun.

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