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Fighting Spirit Unleashed (2019)[2] was an professional wrestling tour promoted by New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW). The tour's three events took place on September 27 at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium, September 28 at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City and September 29 at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[1] These were the second to fourth shows under the Fighting Spirit Unleashed name. The event was also notable for being the beginning of the retirement of NJPW referee Tiger Hattori.[1]

ProductionEdit

BackgroundEdit

On July 6, 2019, NJPW announced a second under the Fighting Spirit Unleashed name with three nights being held in Massachusetts at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium in Lowell, New York City at the Hammerstein Ballroom and the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[1][3][4][5] It was also announced that the event would be the beginning of the retirement of NJPW's referee Tiger Hattori.[1][3]

NJPW also previously partnered with Jersey All Pro Wrestling (JAPW) for the NJPW Invasion Tour 2011 and since 2014 they have been partnered with Ring of Honor (ROH), co-producing shows annually in North America.[6][7] The show marked the fourth time NJPW presented shows in the United States independently, as opposed to partnering up with an American promotion.[8]

Fsu

The official logo of the event

Tickets for the show went on sale July 26, with New York show costing from $20 to $150, Philadelphia costing from $30 to $150 and Philadelphia costing from $30 to $150 and with Lowell show costing from $20 to $150 with both New York and Philadelphia immediately selling out.[1][9] It was also announced that Hiroshi Tanahashi, Kazuchika Okada, Kota Ibushi and Tetsuya Naito were also advertised for the event.[9] NJPW had previously promoted a event named Fighting Spirit Unleashed on September 30, 2018 at The Walter Pyramid in Long Beach, California, with the event being broadcasted on AXS TV.[10] On August 26, NJPW announced several other wrestlers for the event including Bullet Club members (Jay White, KENTA, Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa), CHAOS members (Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii and Yoshi-Hashi) and all rest of the members of Los Ingobernables de Japón (BUSHI, EVIL, SANADA and Shingo Takagi).[11] On September 9, it was announced that the legendary tag team Rock ‘n’ Roll Express (Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson), Lance Archer and Roppongi 3K (YohSho and Rocky Romero) would be part of the tour.[12][13] On September 12, NJPW announced the meet-and-greets for event, costing from $25 to $50.[14] On September 24, NJPW announced the full cards for the tour including three championship matches.[15][16]

StorylinesEdit

Fighting Spirit Unleashed (2019) featured professional wrestling matches that involved different wrestlers from pre-existing scripted feuds and storylines. Wrestlers portray villains, heroes, or less distinguishable characters in the scripted events that build tension and culminate in a wrestling match or series of matches.[17]

KENTANEVER2

KENTA, who defended the NEVER Openweight Championship at the tour

In the NEVER Openweight Championship match, KENTA made his first title defense against Yoshi-Hashi.[16] On August 12, 2019, KENTA and Yoshi-Hashi teamed with Tomohiro Ishii in a match against Bullet Club (Bad Luck Fale, Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa).[18][19] During the match, KENTA turned on his partners and joined the Bullet Club.[19][18] Meanwhile, KENTA would win the NEVER Openweight Championship with the help form his Bullet Club stablemates.[16] On September 15 at Destruction in Beppu, KENTA would cost Yoshi-Hashi and Tomohiro Ishii's match against his Bullet Club stablemates Guerrillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa) for the IWGP Tag Team Championship.[16] KENTA would continue feuding with Yoshi-Hashi, which lead to a brawl on September 22 at Destruction in Kobe.[16] Afterwards, in a interview, Yoshi-Hashi to a match for the NEVER Openweight Championship.[16] The title match was announced on September 24.[16][15]

G.O.D4

Guerrillas of Destiny (Tanga Loa and Tama Tonga), who defended the IWGP Tag Team Championship in the tour

In the IWGP Tag Team Championship match, Guerrillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa) made their seventh title defense against Roppongi 3K (Sho and Yoh).[15] On September 16 at Destruction in Kagoshima, Sho and Yoh teamed with their CHAOS stablemates Tomohiro Ishii and Yoshi-Hashi in a winning effort against Bullet Club (Bad Luck Fale, Chase Owens, Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa), after Yoh picked up the surprise win by pinning Tonga.[20] Afterwards, Bullet Club attacked Yoh.[20] On September 22 at Destruction in Kobe, during a eight-man tag team match, Yoh picked up another surprising win over the other half of the IWGP Tag Team Champions Tanga Loa.[21][15] After the match, the Guerrillas of Destiny attacked Sho and Yoh.[21] Despite being a junior heavyweight tag team, Sho and Yoh asked for a title match for the IWGP Tag Team Championship.[15] If the Guerrillas of Destiny they will equal the reign of Cho-Ten (Masahiro Chono and Masahiro Chono) with most succesfull title defenses at seven.[15] The title match was announced on September 24.[15]

ResultsEdit

Night 1Edit

# Matches Stipulations Times
1 Karl Fredericks defeated Alex Coughlin Singles match 8:47
2 Lance Archer defeated Ren Narita Tag Team match 7:23
3 Juice Robinson and Mikey Nicholls defeated TJP and Clark Connors Tag Team match 8:04
4 Tomohiro Ishii and Amazing Red defeated Los Ingobernables de Japón (Shingo Takagi and BUSHI) Tag Team match 8:48
5 CHAOS (Hirooki Goto, Yoshi-Hashi and Rocky Romero) defeated Bullet Club (Jay White, KENTA and Gedo) Six-man Tag Team match 12:28
6 Guerrillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa) (with Jado) (c) defeated Roppongi 3K (Sho and Yoh) (with Rocky Romero) Tag Team match for the IWGP Tag Team Championship 16:43
7 Kazuchika Okada, Hiroshi Tanahashi and Kota Ibushi defeated Los Ingobernables de Japón (Tetsuya Naito, EVIL and SANADA) Six-man Tag Team match 20:26
  • (c) – refers to the champion(s) heading into the match
  • Videoicon – refers to the video of that match

Night 2Edit

# Results Stipulations Times
1 TJP defeated Ren Narita by submission Singles match 8:48
2 Lance Archer defeated Karl Fredericks Tag Team match 7:37
3 Juice Robinson and Mikey Nicholls defeated Clark Connors and Alex Coughlin Tag Team match 8:29
4 Bullet Club (Tama Tonga, Tanga Loa and Jado defeated Roppongi 3K (Sho, Yoh and Rocky Romero) Six-man Tag Team match 10:46
5 Hiroshi Tanahashi, Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson defeated Los Ingobernables de Japón (Tetsuya Naito, Shingo Takagi and BUSHI) Six-man Tag Team match 10:19
6 Amazing Red, Hirooki Goto and Tomohiro Ishii defeated Bullet Club (Jay White, Chase Owens and Jado) Six-man Tag Team match 12:02
7 KENTA (c) defeated Yoshi-Hashi Singles match for the NEVER Openweight Championship 25:04
8 Los Ingobernables de Japón (EVIL and SANADA) defeated Kazuchika Okada and Kota Ibushi Tag Team match 18:46
  • (c) – refers to the champion(s) heading into the match
  • Videoicon – refers to the video of that match

Night 3Edit

# Results Stipulations Times
1 Rocky Romero defeated Clark Connors Singles match 9:03
2 Mikey Nicholls defeated Karl Fredericks Singles match 10:00
3 Lance Archer defeated Alex Coughlin Singles match 8:25
4 Amazing Red defeated Ren Narita Singles match 8:57
5 Los Ingobernables de Japón (Tetsuya Naito, SANADA and Shingo Takagi) defeated Juice Robinson, Sho and Yoh Six-man Tag Team match 11:45
6 Los Ingobernables de Japón (EVIL and BUSHI) defeated Kota Ibushi and TJP Tag Team match 11:23
7 Hiroshi Tanahashi, Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii, Yoshi-Hashi, Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson defeated Bullet Club (Jay White, KENTA, Tama Tonga, Tanga Loa, Chase Owens and Gedo) (with Jado) Twelve-man Elimination Tag Team match 22:20
  • (c) – refers to the champion(s) heading into the match
  • Videoicon – refers to the video of that match

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 NJPW storms the US east coast this September for Fighting Spirit Unleashed! (in English). New Japan Pro-Wrestling (2019-07-06). Retrieved on 2019-07-06.
  2. Rose, Bryan 2018-07-06. NJPW RETURNING TO LONG BEACH THIS FALL WITH FIGHTING SPIRIT UNLEASHED . Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved on 2018-07-06.
  3. 3.0 3.1 NJPW Announces East Coast Fighting Spirit Unleashed Events (in English). Pro Wrestling Sheet (2019-07-06). Retrieved on 2019-07-06.
  4. NJPW coming to East Coast for Fighting Spirit Unleashed tour (in English). Wrestling Observer Newsletter (2019-07-06). Retrieved on 2019-07-06.
  5. NJPW coming to East Coast for Fighting Spirit Unleashed tour (in English). Wrestling Observer Newsletter (2019-07-06). Retrieved on 2019-07-06.
  6. Meltzer, Dave 2010-10-03. New Japan Pro Wrestling comes to the U.S. . Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Archived from the original on 2010-10-06. Retrieved on 2017-06-27.
  7. Meltzer, Dave 2017-01-15. ROH announces War of the Worlds tour dates with NJPW . Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved on 2017-06-27.
  8. Johnson, Mike 2017-01-04. New Japan to debut in United States this July . Pro Wrestling Insider. Retrieved on 2017-05-13.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Daily Update: NJPW Fighting Spirit Unleashed, UFC 240, Maria Kanellis (in English). Wrestling Observer Newsletter (2019-07-26). Retrieved on 2019-07-26.
  10. en: OMEGA AND OKADA SQUARE OFF FOR THE FIRST TIME IN THE STATES, NEW IWGP TAG, UNITED STATES CHAMPIONS CROWNED: COMPLETE NEW JAPAN FIGHTING SPIRIT UNLEASHED RESULTS FROM LONG BEACH, CA (in English). Pro Wrestling Insider (2018-10-01). Retrieved on 2018-10-01.
  11. Rose, Bryan 2017-08-26. NJPW announces talent for Fighting Spirit Unleashed tour . Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved on 2017-08-26.
  12. Rock ‘n’ Roll Express Added to NJPW Fighting Spirit Unleashed tour (in English). Wrestling Observer Newsletter (2019-09-09). Retrieved on 2019-09-11.
  13. RPG3K, Archer and the R’n’R Express Join Fighting Spirit Unleashed! (in English). New Japan Pro-Wrestling (2019-09-10). Retrieved on 2019-09-11.
  14. Meet and Greets confirmed for Fighting Spirit Unleashed! (in English). New Japan Pro-Wrestling (2019-09-12). Retrieved on 2019-09-12.
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 15.4 15.5 15.6 Championship match set for Lowell at Fighting Spirit Unleashed! (in English). New Japan Pro-Wrestling (2019-09-24). Retrieved on 2019-09-24.
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 16.4 16.5 16.6 NEVER Championship at stake in NY on huge Fighting Spirit Unleashed Card! (in English). New Japan Pro-Wrestling (2019-09-24). Retrieved on 2019-09-24.
  17. Grabianowski, Ed. How Pro Wrestling Works . HowStuffWorks, Inc.. Discovery Communications. Archived from the original on 2013-11-18. Retrieved on 2017-06-12.
  18. 18.0 18.1 NJPW G1 Climax 29 finals live results: Kota Ibushi vs. Jay White (in English). 'Wrestling Observer Newsletter'. Retrieved on 2019-08-12.
  19. 19.0 19.1 KENTA is in BULLET CLUB, and SHIBATA is FURIOUS! (G1 Climax 29) on YouTube
  20. 20.0 20.1 Ethan, Renner 2019-09-16. NJPW Destruction in Kagoshima live results: Ibushi vs. KENTA . Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved on 2019-09-16.
  21. 21.0 21.1 Ethan, Renner 2019-09-22. NJPW Destruction in Kobe live results: Tetsuya Naito vs. Jay White . Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved on 2019-09-22.
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