One of the biggest strengths of TNA is their willingness to work with the wrestling-hungry crowds in Japan, and on Friday, July 4, the biggest stars of Impact Wrestling will join forces with Wrestle-1 for Global Impact Japan 2014.
In one of the most unique shows wrestling fans will witness all year, the top stars from TNA, including Austin Aries, Samoa Joe and Bobby Roode, traveled to Japan to square off against some of the best performers in the Land of the Rising Sun.
Here is all the vital viewing information every Impact Wrestling fan needs to enjoy this One Night Only event.
Where: Ryogoku Kokugikan, Tokyo, Japan
When: Friday, July 4 at 8 p.m. ET (pre-taped)
Watch: Pay-per-view (local service providers)
|2014 TNA Global IMPACT Japan Match Card|
|Magnus (c) vs. Kai||TNA World Heavyweight Championship||Magnus|
|The Wolves (Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards) (c) vs. Team 246 (Kaz Hayashi and Shuji Kondo) vs. The BroMans (Jessie Godderz and Robbie E)||TNA World Tag Team Championships||The BroMans|
|Austin Aries (c) vs. Sanada||X Division Championship||Sanada|
|Abyss vs. Yoshihiro Takayama||N/A||Takayama|
|Junior Stars (Koji Kanemoto and Minoru Tanaka) vs. Bad Influence (Christopher Daniels and Kazarian)||N/A||Bad Influence|
|Gail Kim vs. Madison Rayne||N/A||Kim|
|Bobby Roode vs. Masakatsu Funaki||N/A||Roode|
|Keiji Mutoh, Rob Terry and Taiyo Kea vs. Masayuki Kono, Rene Dupree and Samoa Joe||N/A||Mutoh, Terry and Kea|
Match of the Night: Bobby Roode vs. Masakatsu Funaki
The top matches on the card for the TNA/Wrestle-1 show were spoiled weeks after this event was filmed. TNA's American flagship program, Impact Wrestling, had to discuss the results due to the major title changes overseas.
Most fans remember who won each of the three title bouts, but there were several battles not talked about that stole the show in Japan.
No match garnered more attention than the epic battle between Bobby Roode and Masakatsu Funaki.
Roode is one of the biggest stars in TNA history and one of the best in-ring technicians around today. While he doesn’t have the high-flying skills that others possess, he has a ring presence matched by few others and a natural charisma.
There have been ups and downs with Impact Wrestling over the years, but the one constant has been Roode’s power in the ring and on the mic. With the ability to tell a convincing story in the ring, the match against a Japanese star like Funaki should be an instant classic.
Many wrestling fans will remember Funaki as the All Japan Triple Crown Heavyweight champion, but he was also part of a decorated tag team with Keiji Mutoh (The Great Muta) and now one of the key pieces in Wrestle-1.
Funaki is also a MMA legend and legitimately one of the toughest men in the wrestling industry. As a co-creator and two-time King of Pancrase, he defeated top names in the industry like Ken Shamrock and Frank Shamrock, and was also involved in a legendary fight against Rickson Gracie.
The mixture of elite MMA ability and a long wrestling career—he started with New Japan Pro Wrestling in 1985—makes Funaki one of the biggest stars in Japanese sports and an ideal challenger for Roode.
With both men possessing elite skills, how each wrestler reacts to the other’s moves will make this an interesting spectacle. If Roode and Funaki develop instant chemistry, this will be the best match of the night.
Predicted Winner: Bobby Roode
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