G1 Climax 29 Block A: Zack Sabre Jr. vs Sanada

I try not to miss a Zack Sabre Jr. match. The guy is incredible and has such fantastic physical heel charisma. He’s like Bryan Danielson at his worst (best) and I love it.

I’m looking forward to seeing Sanada in this singles matchup.

The crowd is doing the Seven Nation Army chant to “Zack Sabre Jr” but like every crowd that does the chant, they can’t get the timing right and they rush back into the next round like it’s in 7/4 time or something. Just stop.

Dang, there’s an absolutely fantastic sequence of holds, submission attempts and reversals early in the match.

Absolutely beautiful subtle heel move as Sanada’s wristband comes off and Sabre just kicks it out of the ring, sending Sanada out to regroup and reassemble. These guys are such pros.

Sabre is so fluid — it’s amazing to watch him flow through a match from hold to hold. And Sanada is right there with him with the holds and reversals.

Interesting how New Japan World blurs out middle fingers but leaves the f—s and sh—s. I guess fingers are the universal language.

Sabre is SO GOOD at his physical heeling, and so dangerous at turning his goading into successful baiting into a submission.

I’m so conditioned by WWE booking all their faces to be idiots that whenever I see a face gloating over a successful move, I’m legitimately surprised when a heel doesn’t use that wasted time to regain the advantage.

I haven’t written much the past five minutes because it’s been so good, so fluid and so balanced. The crowd is really waking up and Sanada has turned a marky ZSJ crowd into solidly pro-Sanada.

Winner: Sanada bridging Sabre into a roll-up reversal. +2 pts. Sabre takes out his frustrations on various officials and other staff around the ring.