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Found 62 results

  1. Pretty by the numbers japanese big match but not bad. Sasaki gets the advantage using his power early on, finisher on the floor, some limbwork ensues, lots of stiff shots etc. It's a formula that works and these two are good at it. Sasaki is pretty fly here hitting a big plancha to the floor and really walloping Kawada with potatoes. There is some neck work which ends up not being of much importance but leads to some fun moments. Sasaki cosplays 90s Kobashi by chopping Kawada in the neck and hitting flimsy bulldogs, it also leads to a pretty sick piledriver. Kawada was halfway into lazy mode as he had some nice transitions such as kicking Sasaki in the face when he tried his silly facebuster or slipping underneath for the cheap powerbomb, but he would also just go back on offense at other times. Kind of dumb finishing stretch, but not offensively dumb.
  2. I'd consider this an overlooked gem especially for 2005 Noah. So much hard chopping machismo fighting spirit stuff came from 2005 Mr. Kobashi that you wouldn't think he was capable of anything else. ...and you wouldn't be totally wrong but! his mini feud with Tenryu in 05-06 showed us that Chopbashi was capable of garnering different emotions from fans/viewers other than, "Chop him dammit! Chop him Kobashi!!" and "Oh he's dead..." I tagged WAR to this topic because you got Tenryu, Koshinaka, and Jun Izumida (not sure if he was in W-A-R but, he's built for it) and this was wrestled in this style. So, no head drops, apron moves, moves at all per say...this is all punches, chops (come on its Tenryu-Kobashi) and laid out so well that's it probably the most fun yet serious Noah match Kobashi had outside of his defense vs Ogawa in '03. Ass chops, Tenryu throwing shit, Izumida eating potatoes like its Thanksgiving, Koshinaka still ruling in '05, brawling after the bell...and Kobashi chopping people dead. Great match
  3. KENTA attacking Suzuki before the bell here was very well done, he just dashed at him and booted him in the head, and Suzuki's towel blocking his vision made for a great detail. KENTA brought great fire and his offence was as crisp as I remembered it to be. I loved the transitions Suzuki would use-the Front Necklock/Guillotine where he left KENTA hanging in particular was a fascinating visual, and he was at home when it was time to stretch KENTA, but I wasn't in love with the portions in the match where in the middle where he was outstriking KENTA. Due to their difference in stature KENTA had to sell really big for Suzuki and he did, but Suzuki isn't big enough and didn't hit hard enough that it'd make those long moments of selling after every strike fitting. The match went into another gear when they moved onto the finishing stretch and started working more evenly, Suzuki's Leglock counters were awesome as was him busting out a Giant Swing out of Half Crab and they smoothly worked them into the match since KENTA has enough kicking offence he doesn't have to to pointless rope running of doom with no moves being attempted in them, and the final slap battle was perfectly done with Suzuki evading KENTA's strikes and gaining a bigger and bigger advantage until finally just nuking him and putting him away. ***1/4
  4. This was a blast, Goto really took it to Fujita, busting out a bunch of nasty Backdrops together with Lariats and other offence you'd expect from a lumpy old guy who worked WAR. The match was essentially a three minute long finishing stretch, Fujita played FIP for most of the match and couldn't go all out with the violence because of who his opponent (the clubbing blows to the back and stomps don't really suit him) was but he still managed to throw a brutal counter forearm and a Frankensteiner of all things. ***
  5. Kanemoto is such a great prick invader, it's a joy to watch. He completely overwhelms Sasaki in what is a near squash match just blasting him with slaps, kicks and knees. Sasaki does a pretty great job of someone defiant yet outmatched, like when he reaches for *anything* while he's stuck inbetween the ropes and in his childish facial expressions. Kanemoto is just above everyone here, and doesn't really care about the ref or any of Sasaki's pals that consistently yell at him ringside. My favourite moment may have been when Sasaki hit his first hope spot, started celebrating and Kanemoto quickly and swiftly took him down and trapped him in an Ankle Lock. Kanemoto's (running) knee cut offs ruled and the match had a brutal finish of Kanemoto just face punching Sasaki's lights out in a full mount. ****
  6. Gordeau is a martial arts guy most famous for jobbing to Maeda in a pretty big match. That was in, like , 1988. This match is just the best, a whirlwind of random yet awesome stuff. Basically half of the match are nearfalls (which is actually really awesome and only possible because of how short the match is) and it has the classic 80s screwy "keep my heat" finish you'd expect out of an old carny. Gordeau resorts to biting to survive, which the announcer claim was some kind of callback spot to his Vale Tudo days (wikipedia says this is indeed true). Also there's a spot where Inoue goes to catch his breath after a rope break and Gordeau goes after him and slaps him on the back of the head which, much like this match general, ended up being both hilarious and awesome. ***
  7. Just a teaser of what these two can do but what an awesome teaser it was. Usuda has some of the prettiest kicks in all of wrestling and of course Ikeda won't shy away from taking them. My favourite moments here were Ikeda desperately kicking his way out of a leglock and dramatically punching Usuda out. I don't know how much you enjoy violence for its own sake but I love it, and these two are strong enough sellers to not ruin the match with machismo bullshit. There was a great moment where Usuda leaned on the ropes and Ikeda just Lariated him with full force and instead of backflipping outside of the ring Usuda kinda just weirdly bounced off and it looked a lot more realistic and brutal than the spot usually does when it's sold conventionally. ***1/4
  8. I really enjoyed the opening portion with them battling for positions and Barnett attempting a few cool leglocks but the match just went into another dimension once Tamura hit Barnett with a big counter knee. Barnett just unloads on Tamura here, hitting some of the most beautiful suplexes I have ever seen that combined a perfect combination of power and technique. The matwork is exactly what you'd want out of a big Tamura match, there isn't anything I find as beautiful in pro wrestling as Tamura's lightning quick seguences on the mat. Tamura's kicks provided a great means of feeding for Barnett's throws, and even something as nonsensical as them saying to hell with it and starting to kick away at each other with guards down managed to fit in, as just seconds later Barnett attempted a high kick which pointed to high fatal playing around in dick measuring contests could be. Finish was about as perfect as it could've been, as Tamura finally managed to counter Barnett's throws and lock in one final Jujigatame to seal the deal. ****1/2
  9. I'm not entirely sure why I'm continuing to watch Jeff Hardy's TNA matches. I've already reached a conclusion on how he was as a worker at the time and it's probably not going to change. Maybe I should stop. This was fine. Jeff Hardy was my favourite wrestler when I was 12 and Raven was in that spot when I was 13. MVP was before any of them and inbetween were The Rock and Jericho. Then I discovered puro through my new favourite KENTA and eventually I stopped having a favourite wrestler. As far as this match goes. Some good, some bad. I liked Raven avoiding Hardy's chairshots but literally the next spot had him stand there while Jeff set up his chair jumping. Then Raven avoided Hardy's chair jump spot which I liked but-urgh-why not just avoid it on the first try. You don't have to get all your shit in. This had enough violence in it to keep me interested throughout the whole thing but also some eye-rolling stuff like them doing a top rope-nothing (trust me it looks like exactly it sounds), the ref helping Raven set up tables, a blade job that went on forever etc. I liked the dramatic shots of the women in the crowd turning away, now that I think about it they could've been plants but I don't think TNA would be capable of using plants in such an efficent manner, more likely they had them chant for Kevin Nash or whomever old they signed at the time. **1/2
  10. This ruled! The four way setting fits this type of match much better as you can have wrestlers continue to fight while others set up spots. Sabu's presence helped this a lot, he was the best worker in here, here was a spot where Jeff used him to jump onto Abyss and then offered Sabu to use him to jump onto Abyss as well and Sabu just stomped him and it was the best, the amount of disgusting bumps and insane dives delivered as you'd expect but I also liked how they used weapons to transition and as cut-offs. Jeff Hardy continues to jump off high things and it gets REALLY preposterous here. Finish ruled as well, Rhino hits a Piledriver off the top rope and gets the win but Sabu throws himself at him to break it up only to do so a split second too late. ***1/2
  11. Here we go again! I actually liked the opening quite a bit, them brawling outside the arena was surprisingly fun, probably because I'd much rather watch them slam each other onto walls than exchange weak punches. Jeff Hardy most certainly jumped of a high place. Match seemed to flow really well until the dreaded obvious setting up of spots began. Lots of things I disliked there: Hardy going for a Twist Of Fate with a different arm to set up a counter, Abyss running the ropes one more time so he could be in position for Hardy to kick him in the balls (I did like that as a counter even if they did give it away), pretty much any time Hardy sets up a chair when he could do the same move he does without jumping on it and it would look better and be more efficient. Aaaaaaaaand doing the Twist Of Fate stunner-style when you're trying to smash someone's face into a ladder is also stupid. I always disliked the "stunner onto a object" spots actually. Looked like it hurt Austin's ass more than the other guy. I did enjoy watching these two take stupid bumps and Hardy's Diving Legdrop in particular looked super nasty. **1/4
  12. Look-I'm giving Jeff Hardy's first TNA run a shot. I like trainwrecks. "Full Metal Mayhem" screams "we wanted to do a TLC match but WWE copyrighted that". This is a garbage match in TNA, is there an unnecessary additional stipulation that accomplishes nothing? You bet there is! I didn't expect this to make sense and it met my expectations, it had the obvious setting up of spots I feared and Hardy even won a ladder-assisted test of strength against Abyss. Lots of walking around that doesn't look like fighting or them fighting while wasted. I'm sure Jeff Hardy vs. Jerry Estrada would've been a classic though. The Twist Of Fate on the floor was embarrassingly looking bad and I'm sure I could pick this apart if I cared enough to do that. Hardy is a maniac that will take insane bumps which prevented this from totally sucking. **
  13. Awesome match and one of the best sub-5 minutes matches I've seen. The grappling at the beginning is insanely amazing and the rest of the bout is great too. *** 3/4
  14. A highly praised match, that I don't think I have ever seen. However, after the last great AJ match (vs Joe) that I watched I need more 2005 AJ in my life. This match starts off hot with AJ diving out of the cage onto Abyss during his entrance. They then brawl through out the arena. Strange choice for a cage match, however it is the main event of a show where every match is in a cage, so they probably needed to change things up. Finally it looks like AJ is going to get into the ring and he gets the cage door slammed into his back and then viciously into his face. Way more vicious than I have ever seen. It might had been the great bump AJ took, but it looked brutal. AJ is busted open and then Abyss goes to work on the cut. This match feels more like a grudge match than any match the WWE has had in years. I miss this TNA. Before they lock themselves in the cage Abyss brings a chair, chain and a bag of thumbtacks. Abyss' destruction segment is fun with AJ being rammed into the turnbuckle which has the chain on it and just being tossed into the cage like a sack of potatoes. AJ's comeback starts by countering a gorilla press into a DDT, which looked great. His comeback is destroyed after a minute or so with an INSANE Black Hole Slam! That gets two and now the thumb tacks are brought out by Abyss. He goes for another Black Hole Slam, but AJ counters. He tries to power bomb him into the tacks, but ti's countered into a Styles Clash right onto the tacks. Surprisingly that is not the finish. AJ goes to the top of the cage, but Abyss chucks the referee into the cage knocking AJ down to hang outside. Abyss goes to the top with the chain and hangs AJ. He chokes him, but AJ counters and sunset flip power bombs Abyss into the tacks for three. This was really good, but not on the level of Joe-AJ. It felt like it went a few minutes too long at the end and the crowd brawling at the beginning could had been short. None the less, great stuff. ****1/2
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