EVIL Reigns In Osaka, New Champions Crowned At NJPW Dominion

When Tetsuya Naito won both IWGP Heavyweight Title belts in January, it felt like a vindication for underdogs everywhere. Interrupted by a pandemic, his reign as the 70th IWGP Heavyweight Champion, as well as the 24th IWGP Intercontinental Heavyweight Champion, was seen as a years-long payoff to the trials and tribulations that the LIJ had suffered since his last run on top in 2016. The flame of Tetsuya Naito being the franchise face of NJPW was the light at the end of the tunnel for many fans, trapped in their homes during these uncertain times. That flame was snuffed on Sunday when EVIL won both belts in less-than-pristine fashion.

With the help of returning veteran Dick Togo, EVIL won a nearly-40 minute war against Naito, resorting to everything from crotch stomping, to chair shots, to a full-on Mafia-style garroting from Togo, to win the belts. The first member to join Los Ingobernables de Japon, the first member to leave Los Ingobernables de Japon, and now the first member of Bullet Club to hold both IWGP Heavyweight Titles at the same time- a feat that neither Jay White nor KENTA could accomplish back in January & February- EVIL has made his mark on NJPW and left a trail of snuffed hopes and broken hearts in his wake.

Elsewhere on the Dominion card, Zack Sabre Jr. & Taichi defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi & Kota Ibushi to become the 87th IWGP Tag Team Champions. Sabre & Taichi decimated The Ace & The Golden Star, eventually reducing Tanahashi’s knees to dust, and beating Ibushi to a pulp. The Suzuki-gun duo left the two stars in a heap in the center of the canvas, as they smugly celebrated with their new titles.

The only champion to successfully defend their championship was Shingo Takagi. The NEVER Openweight Champ bested SHO to not only retain his belt, but avenge his first round loss in this year’s New Japan Cup tournament. His celebration was short-lived, as El Desperado leveled Takagi after the match and laid down a challenge for the belt.

Here are the full results from NJPW Dominion. The show is available on NJPWWorld.com.