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Makai Club #1

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    Makai #6

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  1. Cien Caras is the hot rudo but he got out-rudo’d by the Infernales. Tirantes was constantly being manipulated by Satanico and then distracted by Mascara Ano 2k, which allowed for MS-1 and Satanico to cheat and double team on Caras. Eventually Ano 2k loses his shit and attacks Satanico, getting the DQ for his brother and giving the fall to MS-1. MS-1 continues working the arm, as he did during the first fall and Satanico kept on pushing his luck. But with no Mascara Anos 2K to distract the ref, Tirantes caught Satanico and awarded the fall to Cien Caras via DQ, making it 1-1. And the final fall is finally mano v mano and it delivers on that with solid action built around struggle and drama. The pop when Cien Caras gets the pin and gives MS-1 his comeuppance was awesome. As was Touch and Go (The entrance music of Cien Caras) getting played while MS-1 is getting his hair shaved. ****
  2. This was an excellent Akiyama performance topped off by him getting the result. He and Misawa worked well a team initially but then once HDA were in control, he had some good success in countering both Taue and Kawada’s offence for a short bit. And then Akiyama was the one who regained the advantage and put the finishing touches on Kawada, who was really good in his own right. He was very petty and measured with his offence, opting to play with Akiyama and Misawa rather than actually destroy them like he'd do normally. It was a character driven performance and he was excellent at it. Taue and Misawa were strong in their roles, teasing some of what's to come while keeping the match narrative in focus. Great tag team match. ****
  3. Makai Club #1

    [1984-06-16-WWF-MSG, NY] Greg Valentine vs Tito Santana

    This got incredible heat. And the action lived upto that as well. Valentine is an outright bully in this with his violent assaults on the arm and the body. Tito’s selling was amazing and put Valentine's offence over as very dangerous. The count out victory was only a good outcome for Tito Santana in theory but he was hurting badly. ****1/4
  4. Makai Club #1

    Pet Peeves in Wrestling

    I've noticed recently that everyone tends the take bumps in the middle of the ring rather than the sides, unless it leads to a foot on the ropes or an apron spot. It can be awkward at times, especially when setting up top rope moves.
  5. Open The Dream Gate Title #1 Contendership Match: Milano Collection AT vs. Ryo Saito This looks like this is a good place to pick a start to Ryo Saito’s accession to the Dream Gate Title which will culminate next year. Despite being against Milano, who is on his way out (although perhaps that isn't known in real time), he has the crowd in the palm of his hand and is able to get the win and a title shot against Masaaki Mochizuki soon after. The match has a lot of history behind it. Dragon Gate airs their 2001 acclaimed match in T2P during the intermission. So there is a lot of tension in the air besides just the title match. Milano controls the majority of the match in the way you'd expect. Tons of tricky, lucha libre inspired holds with a little flair. Perfect style for Milano who is an eccentric character. Ryo Saito’s selling was really solid, helping make Milano a credible winner and gaining crowd heat for himself. The match’s bread and butter was creating some terrific, nail-biting nearfalls for a prolonged time period. Great stuff. ****
  6. Open The Dream Gate Title Match: Masaaki Mochizuki vs CIMA (c) Great match with an incredible ending with a hot crowd that went nuts for the result. Unlike the Susumu title defence, the grappling was much better this time around with Mochizuki staying focused on the chest, also using it for kick practice as the match progressed. This was a respect filled match as neither tried to cheat in the match. This was a straight match with them telegraphing what each other was going to do, like CIMA stopping the Sankakugeri by Mochi very quickly and Mochi blocking the Schwein from CIMA before lighting CIMA up with the flurry of kicks for the finish. The match was full of net counters like that and it added to the story greatly. This was a truly fantastic match with great wrestling and drama. ****1/2
  7. Open The Triangle Gate Title Match: Italian Connection (Anthony W. Mori, Milano Collection AT & YOSSINO) (c) vs. Aagan Iisou (Shuji Kondo, Takuya Sugawara & YASSHI) While this isn't Aagan Iisou’s final match in the company, it's the last one that was on TV, as they'd be fired on New Year's Eve for behavioural problems. It must have been something big as all five members were sacked. What a rowdy bunch of lads. They were the same in their wrestling as well. In Dragon Gate, there is a big distinction between heels and faces, similar to Lucha Libre in the way I mean, and they were real heels. Kondo has all the advantages in the world with his size and yet he insists on choking Mori with a shirt. That's the type of people they are. The tag team wrestling was spectacular at times. High speed pacing. Great sense of urgency and rush to end the match before someone interferes. Good triple and double team moves. The whole works. Yoshino and Kondo were excellent when paired up, being ultra lightning speed v raw, explosive power, as were Mori and Sugawara. Everyone had their role though and contributed to the match. Including President Takashi Okumura, who sorted YASSHI out. ***3/4
  8. Hair Vs. Mask Eight Man Tag Team Match: Do FIXER (Dragon Kid, Genki Horiguchi, Magnum TOKYO & Ryo Saito) vs. Florida Express (Daniel Mishima, Johnson Florida, Kensuke Sasaki & Michael Iwasa) I can't believe it. Kensuke Sasaki got pinned! That was unexpected. Obviously it was through Do FIXER antics (freedom salt) but but did the job. The match was hilarious like most Florida Express matches. Do FIXER desperately tried to budge Sasaki to no avail so they attempted to quit the match, which was pretty funny. There was an amusing all inclusive suplex spot, including Hokuto with the punch line being only Sasaki and Hokuto do a moonsault while the rest of the group gets suplexed. This had some rather good serious wrestling as well in short spurts - Dragon Kid and Sasaki could have a real good match in them if it was made. Genki Horiguchi hit some sick dropkicks as well. Fun match. And fair play to Kensuke Sasaki for shaving off his own hair for this comedy gimmick. Respect! ***1/2
  9. Do FIXER (Dragon Kid, Genki Horiguchi & Magnum TOKYO) vs. Florida Express (Daniel Mishima, Kensuke Sasaki & Michael Iwasa) Such a fabulous set of entrances. Do FIXER enters in the Do FIXER way while Kensuke Sasaki has the time of his life goofing around, coming out to Living in America with the Florida Bros in American get up. Much to the embarrassment of Akira-Chan, as he calls her. Then out comes Stalker Ichikawa. Who challenges Akira Hokuto to a match! And that goes as well as you'd might expect. Stalker lasted longer with Yoshiaki Fujiwara than he did with Akira Hokuto. The match was masterful comedy. It had the usual Florida Brother spots but with Kensuke Sasaki playing along, and sometimes not, that was increased tenfold. There were many times where I bellowed out with laughter, but one time in particular was the arm wringer spot where Dragon Kid was too weak to twist Sasaki’s arm so he had to ask Sasaki to play along, which he did. There were plenty of similar spots that were so funny. This was just as funny outside of the spots involving Sasaki. The best thing about Dragon Gate is everyone is trained in the same system so their traits are in-line with each other, and that includes comedy, so Magnum Tokyo begging was just as funny as the ref doing arm drags to everyone. The finish was cute as well - Magnum Tokyo attempts a Pumphandle but his arm gets trapped by Sasaki’s massive thighs and the ref thinks it's a low blow attempt and calls it. Wow. This is why I rate comedy matches. Amazing experience. ****1/4
  10. Hair Vs. Hair Tag Team Match: Anthony W. Mori & Ryo Saito vs. Aagan Iisou (Shuji Kondo & Takuya Sugawara) Takuya Sugawara shone greatly in this match. He came across as a vile, prick of a man with his facial expressions, dismissive aura and his general look. What he lacked for stand out offence, he made up for in everything else. He and Mori had some really good exchanges with Sugawara bullying the skinny Italian (heh) and feeding for Mori’s hope spots. The spot where he brought in the scissors and stabbed Saito like he was Abdullah The Butcher was awesome as well. He and Saito had some solid double team work as did Mori and Saito who aren't even in the same unit. As for why they are teaming together, I don't know but they worked off each other well in their roles. Kondo was in the match at least but he was great any time he was in. Great power spots, a good game changer for when Sugawara needed help and vital for giving his team the win. Ultimately the match ends with Mori and Sugawara, as they were the main story of the match. Mori got pinned by the Shiisanpuuta, so he has to shave his head. Ryo Saito stops him and offers his own hair. Sugawara attempted to shave Mori’s hair after the fact but Saito stopped him. Strong match with shockingly incredible drama. ****
  11. Makai Club #1

    Carl Greco vs. Kazuchika Okada

    It's an interesting comparison, I'll say that. Both have their strong points. I'm not sure I'll vote for Greco but just comparing him to Okada highlights his strengths. He's an animal when it comes to strikes and submission wrestling. If I'm watching Battlarts, he's more than likely to be in that match. And compared to Okada, offensively, he he way more convincing. Okada has iffy offence when he comes to strikes and submissions. Okada has a more predictable style, thanks to the New Japan in-house style. So if you like not knowing when the match will end, Greco is the better guy to go with. But despite all of the that, Okada is the better of the two for me. For someone like myself who can be rather cynical when it come to certain wrestling tropes like kick outs, Okada is some one who can have me living and dying off the drama of his matches despite their similarities to many other matches of his. I've already mentioned his strikes as as a negative but that can be turned into a positive if you look at how he uses them. In matches against people like Katsuyori Shibata and Minoru Suzuki, that comes out tenfold despite the obvious gap in stiffness. Okada uses it as a way for his opponents to get the clear advantage while he stubbornly tries to prove his toughness. It's a compelling mini story that Okada has pretty much perfected (Both on TV and in a live crowd setting). I compare it to Suzuki vs Nagata, for example, doing the same elbow exchanges and almost always killing my interest despite their strikes being superior to Okada's. I don't think many people in this thread would agree with that though, as it's more of a personal feeling. At the end of the day, Okada through his wrestling makes me and plenty of people care about the match result. And you can maybe pick his matches apart, saying there can be a lot of dead spots, and you'll be right, but it doesn't bother me a whole lot ultimately. Each person has their own criteria.
  12. Makai Club #1

    Barry Windham vs Chris Jericho

    Jericho is an odd cookie. He could go out and have the MOTN (He and Christian was my MOTN on a WM full of highly acclaimed matches) and had many different periods in his career where he was a highlight of the show, having many good feuds against Shawn Michaels, Rey Mysterio, Christian, etc. But there are quite a few clunkers in there. I really dislike the series with Punk whether it be the WM, Extreme Rules or Payback '13 matches. In fact most of what he did after the Jerishow run is on my "do not watch" list. The New Japan run was a step up with a shockingly great match against Omega, a solid match with EVIL, who isn't exactly a top wrestler, and a fun match against Tanahashi. Same with AEW. Some good, but more bad sprinkled in, like the Orange Cassidy Mimosa match. With Barry Windham, I've only seen good things. Although that is due to selective picking as I don't see the point of actively watching bad wrestling on purpose but I do acknowledge that Windham had his low points. Right now, I'm going for Windham but both will be in the low half of my 100.
  13. Makai Club #1

    Dramatic Dream Team (And Friends)

    I've watched very little of pre-2009 DDT. But I have see the Aloha World Order. Antonio Honda was doing a Ricky Steamboat impression which was hilarious. I will check out what you mentioned. Some are on their service, some isn't so I'll have to rely on my skills at finding matches and links.
  14. Makai Club #1

    [1986-03-20-AJW] Dump Matsumoto vs. Yukari Omori

    I’m at a loss for words at this match. Its entire presentation from the entrances and beyond is just phenomenal. To simply put it, it’s an absolute classic in every sense of the word. The brawling is OUT OF CONTROL in ways that wrestlers such as Stan Hansen was never really able to capture himself. It was uncontainable between not only Dump and Yukari but all the seconds on the outside, too, including Gokuaku Domei, Devil Masami and Chigusa Nagayo. First of all, Dump's entrance was amazing. I adored her Samurai costume as it makes her look like a total monstrous villain. Her eyes among the blackish face mask, especially, gave me that feeling. Yukari Omori came out with shoulder pads that reminded me of Norman Smiley but it worked and it definitely helped give the match an intense aura without them even touching. And when they did, the match broke down immediately into the Dump Masamoto show. Teenager girls crying, wild brawling, scissor stabbings. Wrestling. *****
  15. I don't believe I've ever seen, or heard of, a 30 minute draw in RINGS. It was an ambitious effort, and a spectacular one at that. Thanks to the style of RINGS, the slower moments on the ground were just as compelling as the balls-out closing stretch where they are cutting each other up. The grappling truly was excellent. It was methodically paced so they could take their time on the struggle aspects of applying and defending the holds. There was a lot of emphasis on movement and swarming around trying to get a better position for an opening before both get more desperate and start throwing more and more meaningful strikes. There were stoppages for the blood but that only added to the intensity just knowing that both are hurting and that led to a more all or nothing approach. Both resorted to throwing the hardest kicks to the body that they could throw but nothing could finish the match other than the time limit bell. ****1/2