Veterans and NJPW icons Yugi Nagata and Minoru Suzuki have done it all at 52 years-old. There is still a lot of fight though in the two warhorses as they proved on the third night of Summer Struggle.
In the main event, Nagata and Suzuki were locked in a battle of attrition which tested the limits of both men as they endured the extreme pain and punishment that they inflicted on one another.
Yuji Nagata and Minoru Suzuki start the match by just smashing each other with forearms before kicking at each other. An arm bar by Nagata has Suzuki on his hands and knees on the mat. Suzuki expertly rolls to the ropes and maneuvers Nagata into a leg lock through the ropes.
Nagata whips Suzuki into the steel barricade kicking him in the face. Suzuki catches that leg wrapping it in the barricade. Suzuki is about to hit the leg with a steel chair but Red Shoes stops him. Suzuki uses the barricade to cripple Nagata’s ankle as best he can. They brawl on the floor until Suzuki kicks Nagata’s ankle which brings Blue Justice down. Suzuki uses the barricade on the ankle again.
It takes Nagata until a count of 17 to get back into the ring. Suzuki uses the ring ropes on the knee and ankle now. Nagata blocks a Suzuki kick and begins damaging his leg in kind. Both men start throwing harsh forearms. Suzuki, the maniac, just laughs and asks for more as the clobbering goes on for almost four minutes when finally both men drop to their knees at the same time. The crowd cheers. Suzuki and Nagata start trading head butts almost knocking each other out.
The forearm war rages on for another minute. Nagata launches Suzuki across the ring with an exploder suplex. A kick to the stomach doubles Suzuki over. He coughs and chokes, rolling around on the mat as Red Shoes seems concerned. Nagata stands Suzuki up. Another knee to the gut has Suzuki gasping for air.
The pair just demolish each other with palm strikes to the face. Nagata falters but won’t fall. A forearm finally drops him to the canvass. Suzuki gives him the Gotch Piledriver for the win. Nagata is assisted out of the ring by Young Lions. Suzuki chuckles at him over the house microphone saying none of Nagata’s blows hurt him in the least. Suzuki stated he knows what will be next for him in NJPW but didn’t reveal what that might be.
Struggle Night Three Results
Gabriel Kidd, Yota Tsuji, Ryusuke Taguchi and Satsohi Kojima versus Chaos (Yoshi-Hashi, Toru Yano, Tomohiro Ishii and Hirooki Goto)
Kidd calls out Ishii before the match. Ishii obliges. Kidd trades blows and shoulder tackles with Ishii and won’t back down. A shoulder block puts Kidd down but he gets right back up. Kidd fights off both Goto and Ishii before tagging in Taguchi. Great performance by Kidd. Yoshi is a victim of Kojima’s machine gun chops. Yoshi kicks out of Kojima’s flying elbow smash. Tsuji is pinned by Yano. Yano pushes him into the official, punches him in the “lower abdomen” and rolls him up for the 1-2-3.
Winners: Chaos (Yoshi-Hashi, Toru Yano, Tomohiro Ishii and Hirooki Goto)
Tomoaki Honma and Togi Makabe versus Los Ingobernables de Japón (Sanada, Shingo Takagi)
Makabe and Shingo, the two bulls, start things off engaging in a shoulder tackle showcase. That ends in a tie. Shingo gives Honma a headlock around the steel post. Ouch. Honma DDTs both Sanada and Takagi. He hits his Kokeshi on Sanada. Honma misses one from the top rope though. Sanada makes Honma submit to Skull End.
Winners: Los Ingobernables de Japón (Sanada, Shingo Takagi)
Yuya Uemura, Master Wato, Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Kota Ibushi and Hiroshi Tanahashi versus Suzuki-gun (Douki, Yoshinobu Kanemaru, El Desperado, Zack Sabre Jr. and Taichi)
Taichi attacks Tanahashi with his microphone and Douki batters Tenzan with his staff and the official still calls for the bell to start the match. Strange that. Douki chokes out Tenzan. Tenzan makes a comeback taking out all of Suzuki-gun with his Mongolian chops. Desperado pins Uemura with Pinche Loco. Taichi and Sabre Jr. taunt Ibushi with the IWGP Tag Team Championships.
Winners: Suzuki-gun (Douki, Yoshinobu Kanemaru, El Desperado, Zack Sabre Jr. and Taichi)
Chaos (Sho and Kazuchika Okada) versus Bullet Club (Gedo and Yujiro Takahashi)
Okada ends Bullet Club’s sneaky double-teaming sending Gedo out of the ring. On the floor, Gedo hits Sho in the head with the ring bell hammer. Yujiro throws Sho into the exposed turnbuckle a couple of times. Yano stole the turnbuckle pad in the opening bout so Chaos hurt Chaos. Jado appears with his kendo stick. Gedo is about to punch Sho in the head with brass knuckles. Yano comes from out of nowhere punching Gedo in the “lower abdomen”. Sho takes out Jado and hits the backcracker on Gedo. Sho makes Gedo submit to a cross armbreaker.
Winners: Chaos (Sho and Kazuchika Okada)
Los Ingobernables de Japón (Bushi, Tetsuya Naito) versus Bullet Club (Taiji Ishimori and Evil)
Dick ‘The Spoiler’ Togo is outside the ring for Bullet Club. Ishimori gives Bullet Club the edge by attacking Naito from behind. Naito fires back by ramming Evil into ringside barrier after ringside barrier. Naito runs Togo off. Togo trips up Bushi. As the official is distracted he puts the boots to Bushi on the floor. Later on, Togo yanks Naito out of the ring. Evil clocks Bushi with a Darkness Lariat and makes him submit with the Scorpion Deathlock. Evil stares down Naito from the ring. Naito climbs up on the apron. He grabs Evil by the hair. Togo pulls Naito down onto the floor throwing him into a ringside barrier. Evil claps and smiles.
Winners: Bullet Club (Taiji Ishimori and Evil)
Minoru Suzuki versus Yugi Nagata
Winner: Minoru Suzuki
Summer Struggle Night Three
Although there were no major surprises night three of the tour was a first-rate event capped off by one of the best and most brutal matches of 2020.