Juice Robinson vs. Jay Lethal
New Japan Pro Wrestling
January 5, 2016
This was a Ring of Honor match held in a New Japan ring. From the structure to the offense to the pacing, it was the exact type of undistinguished match you would expect to see on any random episode of ROH television. That is, with a couple of exceptions.
The first exception is that on the whole, the offense was a tiny bit more interesting and better executed than in a run-of-the-mill Jay Lethal ROH match. Robinson worked in a cool lucha arm drag. Lethal executed his best looking tope in a long while. Although not physically possible, somehow his topes usually look like he is able to slow himself down right before impact. Lethal also usually does the weak “hands in front of face” thing (as opposed to stretching the arms out when understandably not wanting to make headfirst contact) that so many U.S. guys do. This one had significant oomph behind it. Lethal crushed Robinson it.
The second notable difference was that Lethal and Truth Martini’s act drew significantly more heat in Korakuen Hall than it does in the US. Lethal drew more heat for small taunts than he usually does while Martini got a rather massive reaction for his first interference bit. The airplane spin comedy spot was also generally well received. The act drew significantly more heat than Bruce Tharpe and charges generally did during the NWA invasion matches in New Japan, although to be fair, those guys rarely worked Korakuen where it is far easier for a standard heel act to get heat.