The Bullet Club return to New Japan Strong as they team up with Team Filthy against a quartet headlined with Hikuleo and Tama Tonga.

Quick Results
Kenny King pinned Gregory Sharpe in 9:43 (**¾)
Christopher Daniels pinned The DKC in 9:15 (**¾)
Tama Tonga, Hikuleo, David Finlay & Alan Angels pinned Jorel Nelson, Jay White, Royce Isaacs & El Phantasmo in 13:20 (***¼)

Yup, we’re back at the Vermont Hollywood in Los Angeles… Ian Riccaboni and Alex Koslov are on the headsets and yes, we’ve an interrupting promo from Christopher Daniels. He doesn’t care if anyone’s upset about how he’s upset the LA Dojo as he’s all about showing people up…

Gregory Sharpe vs. Kenny King
King debuted with a win four weeks ago, while Sharpe’s become a bit of a regular down the card as of late. You could say he’s on a bit of a streak…

Commentary makes a point of reminding us that King eliminated Jushin Thunder Liger and Great Muta in the Honor Rumble at MSG way back when, as we open with Sharpe grabbing a hammerlock, which King escaped as he came back in with an armdrag and an armbar. Sharpe gets free and hits armbars of his own, only to get thrown onto the apron… he shrugged it off and came back in with a crossbody off the top for a two-count, before a second trip up top ended with King dropkicking the ropes to knock Sharpe off balance. A neat snap suplex allowed King to roll over into some ground and pound as he kept the upper hand, following up with a take on an Arabian clutch on the mat. That’s followed up with a camel clutch and some fish-hooking, but Sharpe fought free and knocked King into the corner with some forearms.

Sharpe’s misdirection kick off the ropes had King down ahead of a German suplex for a near-fall. A Dragon suplex from King switches things around, as a spinebuster planted Sharpe for another near-fall… King tries for a Royal Flush, but Sharpe escaped, then caught King up top for a superplex. King blocks it though, only for Sharpe to land it at the second try as a low dropkick nearly led to the upset. Pushing on, Sharpe goes for a crossbody, but King rolls through and switched it up into the Royal Flush for the win. I liked the finish, but this felt like a dry match – as aside from the debut vignette, the Strong crowds haven’t been given anything to sink their teeth into with King. **¾

The DKC vs. Christopher Daniels
Daniels’ run against the LA Dojo crew continues… with him slapping DKC in the head after rolling him to the mat early on.

After putting the referee between himself and DKC, Daniels followed up with an armdrag as he began to target the left arm of DKC. Mounting a comeback, DKC snapmare’d and kicked Daniels into the corner, before a tijeras took Daniels down. A handful of hair helped Daniels cut off the DKC, as did a wicked clothesline, before DKC was bounced into the corner by the veteran. DKC’s dumped with a neckbreaker for a two-count as a chinlock keeps things going low and slow… before an attempted dropkick from DKC got nothing but air. Daniels chucks DKC to the outside to slow things down even further. A running forearm knocks DKC back to the floor… but DKC mounts a comeback with a running cannonball back in the ring.

The DK-Fire chops keep Daniels down, as did a flying kick, before a cradle nearly put Daniels away. More chops from the DKC lead to a superkick for another two-count, before his charges into the corner led to Daniels lifting up and crotching DKC on the top rope. From there, a uranage drops DKC before the BME connected for the win. Decent, but this LA crowd just doesn’t want to boo Daniels… **¾

Post-match, Daniels escorted the ref outside before he cheapshot DKC with a piledriver… which earned the Fallen Angel chants of “one more time,” and some charitable boos too.

Bullet Club (El Phantasmo & Jay White) & West Coast Wrecking Crew (Jorel Nelson & Royce Isaacs) vs. Hikuleo, Tama Tonga, Alan Angels & David Finlay
Bobby Fish was out with the West Coast Wrecking Crew, as we’ve got several threads ongoing here – including the long-standing rivalry between White and Finlay.

After a bunch of too-sweets and middle fingers, we got going with Tama Tonga and Jay White, reprising their G1 Climax and Declaration of Power rivalry… except we didn’t as White instantly tagged out to El Phantasmo. Finlay tagged in too, as the LA crowd cheered for ELP… even as they found their feet, with Finlay scoring a dropkick for an early two-count. Alan Angels is in as ELP’s pinged around the opposite corner… but ELP goes to the eyes to get free, only to eat a Slingblade Bulldog from the former Dark Order man. Mounted punches in the corner wore down ELP, but the Bullet Club took over after Jorel Nelson kicked Angels in the ropes. We’ve a pump kick from ELP as he and White double-team Angels in the corner… which set the tone for a while as the Filthy Bullets group isolated the former 5 for a spell.

Angels bounces off of Isaacs’ knee for a backbreaker as White returned and measured up Angels for a chop. ELP’s back to piss around en route to a back rake, ahead of the UFO… but Angels escaped and countered with a standing Shiranui instead. Hikuleo makes the hot tag in as he cleared house with bodyslams, before he chopped ELP into the corner. Phantasmo escaped a running boot as Jay White capitalises on a downed Hikuleo with chops of his own. A dropkick to the knee keeps Hikuleo grounded, but he’s able to rise up with a chop from his knees before tagging in Tama Tonga… who lands a dropkick and took things outside, where he threw White into the side of the ring. Back inside, a wild clothesline dumps White, as did a snap powerslam, before Tama called for a Gun Stun.

White pushes free and countered back with a DDT, as tags then brought in Nelson and Isaacs… whose attempted double-team on Tama backfired at first. Isaacs’ overhead belly-to-belly drops Tama as a Parade of Moves began in earnest, until Bobby Fish tripped up Finlay in the ropes to stop his momentum. Hikuleo’s in to chase White away, then chokeslam ELP into oblivion… an attempted double chokeslam to Isaacs and Nelson is stopped, but Tama’s still legal as he dumped White with a Tongan Twist. The WCWC continue to double-team Tama for a spell, leading to the Dominator/neckbreaker combo for a near-fall. Angels is in to try a ‘rana on Nelson, but he’s caught and passed off into an Isaacs German suplex as Tama remained legal… and avoided a similar fate as he crashed into Isaacs with a Gun Stun. Nelson tries to cut off Tama, but eats a Gun Stun of his own for the win to bring the main event to a close. ***¼

Next week: Bateman vs. Jakob Austin Young, Bad Dude Tito vs. KENTA and the Motor City Machine Guns defend the NJPW Strong Openweight tag titles against Barrett Brown & Misterioso.

The show that needs a shot in the arm continues to need a shot in the arm, both in terms of the product and the crowds. As ever, the in-ring on Strong is solid, but presenting this Japanese-style product to the States just isn’t working, particularly as “main roster” New Japan feels cold.