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Found 13 results

  1. Hardcore Tag Team Match: Ryuji Ito & Shuji Ishikawa vs. HARASHIMA & Togi Makabe Holy shit. HARASHIMA blonde. I don’t like it. He looks like a scummy dude from Freedoms. I guess that makes sense in the match though. The match is a pretty action packed brawl. They waste no time using the chairs and assorted weapons around the ring. HARASHIMA gets bloody fast and the deathmatch duo takes advantage - I know I said I don’t like the hair but a bloody face plus the hair is always a great look. Ito smashing a chair into the forehead was a total dick move, and he doesn’t redeem himself with those chair shots to the back either. Makabe puts in a shift as well. He is known for not always being up to his best but he knows he is in Budokan and he wrestles like it. He lays in the forearms when against Ishikawa, who replies with headbutts. HARASHIMA was a superb underdog, taking the brunt of the offence then working for the comeback. His selling of the weapon shots was great. He levels Ito and Ishikawa with weapon shots of his own. His offence was full of aggression and poise. Damn, he was good in this match. This was such a good match. ***3/4
  2. Kings Road/WWE main event parody match better than a lot of serious attempts at such things. Neat opening exchange, and you realize these guys are good at filling time and getting their match over, Dino actually is better at things like working a sleeper hold or emoting during a strike exchange than most wrestlers, even aside from all the effective butt comedy. HARASHIMA really laces him up with kicks in a way not many comedy workers would be content taking them, and there is really amusing "distraction" spot that works better than most outside distraction spots because it's self aware. Funny to think that this main event drew more people to Korakuen Hall than NOAH does these days and was probably better than any NOAH main event in like half a dozen years too.
  3. HARASHIMA defends the KO-D Openweight Title Another MOTYC from DDT Sweet Dreams 2014. This is just slightly lesser than their Peter Pan match because the match has a more forgettable start but I think the finishing stretch is in some ways superior. HARASHIMA being busted open by an Irie headbutt then Irie pounding the daylights out of HARASHIMA before HARASHIMA found an escape by kicking Irie in the face was a great end to the match. The first few minutes are unmemorable but the rest of the match is more than adequate. ****1/4
  4. KO-D Openweight Title Match: Shigehiro Irie (c) vs. HARASHIMA - DDT Ryogoku Peter Pan 2013 18/08/2013 I can’t help but love Irie’s entrance. Him crying just at the moment makes you automatically on his side. He was fantastic during the match as well as was HARASHIMA. I loved how everything built throughout with there being tons of great escalation in offence both guys. Really loved the early sections of the match. HARASHIMA trying to beatdown Irie with his strikes only for Irie to lay into him with a lariat or squish with his body by sitting down on HARASHIMA’s chest. There was a great sense of struggle in the match where momentum constantly shifted back and forth. Irie adopted some tremendous counter wrestling to match HARASHIMA’s direct assaults. Irie hit a sick powerbomb off the top rope followed by an over the shoulder driver. His elbows looked raw as hell, too. HARASHIMA was out right ruthless in the final stretch, hitting strike after strike before hitting a springboard elbow/type finish for the win. A great climax to a great match. ****1/2
  5. Neat match that was really made by the surprisingly good selling. Irie has some good power spots, and him punching through HARASHIMA's guard and annihilating him with THE POUNCE sounds great in a vacuum but the way HARASHIMA just throws himself with crazy bumps really adds to them. They do some crowd brawling early on but they throw good strikes and it is more them slamming each other into the barricade and the apron then one wrestler "dragging" the other halfway across the arena to get him back into the ring which looks more like they're holding hands than actual dragging. HARASHIMA responds to Irie's power offence wih vicious knee strikes and stomps. Finishing stretch is a little too nearfall heavy but it was very exciting and fun. HARASHIMA slipping through Irie's attempted Fire Thunder Driver was an amazing spot and they executed "will he or will he not fall down" selling about as good as they could've.
  6. Interesting story behind this match. As of a few hours before, this was supposed to be Sakaguchi vs Kota Ibushi for the KO-D Openweight Title but Ibushi was out with High Fever so HARASHIMA took his place instead due to his high ranking in the DDT Election that year (3rd place). Yukio Sakaguchi, who is the son of former NJPW President Seiji Sakaguchi, is the defending champion of the KO-D Openweight Title and has already beaten KUDO (Peter Pan) and Daisuke Sasaki (DDT Who’s Gonna Top). Sakaguchi was rather new to wrestling at the time, well compared to HARASHIMA anyway, with him being three years into his career in wrestling and was 42 years old at the time so there was a lot against him but he took to wrestling like a glove and was on a high and he wasn’t ready to let that slip. This was an excellent match considering they weren’t opponents only a few hours before. A match built around grappling and stiff striking which meant Sakaguchi’s MMA career came into play here. Sakaguchi controlled the majority of the match but HARASHIMA put up a fight hitting some nasty kicks. One thing HARASHIMA brought into play here was his excellent facial expressions. They were on point and add a tone to the match. A highly unique match, especially in DDT and a great one at that. ****1/2
  7. Never been a big KUDO fan. He doesn’t have the charisma of HARASHIMA but I do think that he is still a good wrestler because of his intensity and good offence, and he very much delivered here. Some of his comebacks were extremely well timed and thus allowed all the babyface heat he gained in the match to shine through most effectively. The fire he showed in his offence was so awesome. HARASHIMA was fantastic in this. And whilst KUDO did great fighting from beneath, HARASHIMA stood out with his outstanding heel work. Closed fists for some of the strike exchanges, smiling in such a dickish manner whilst brutalising KUDO’s ribs, being an absolute bully. The peaked at the absolute right time with no over dramatic near falls, keeping it to a minimum. There was tons of struggle in the match, allowing the tension of a switches of momentum to happen. The crowd bought into what the story was telling. Great match held up by two fantastic performances. ****1/2
  8. More of an angle than a match, Sasaki cashes in DDT's version of the MITB contract. The two minutes are pretty much just finisher attempts, and the highlight of it is HARASHIMA's selling of passing out at the end. Exciting for what it was.
  9. Another neat HARASHIMA title match. I really like the way he uses matwork to establish the pace of his matches and the matwork itself is always interesting, I can't really think of a proper comparison for it. He demolishes Higuchi's leg here, kicking away at it and twisting it in all sorts of ways. Higuchi looked good as well, he did a solid job of selling the damage and had some great power spots which was enough for HARASHIMA to get them to a very strong match. HARASHIMA is probably the best ace in Japan right now. ***1/2
  10. Very good match that would've been great if Kodaka wasn't such a clown. His ringpost figure 4 botch was embarrassing and any time he was going after HARASHIMA's leg he had no idea what kid of hold he wanted to use, to the point HARASHIMA had to cover for him and counter it because it was so bad. Still HARASHIMA is a total badass, he rocks Isami with deadly kicks, knees, double stomps etc. and is the only ace in contemporary puro that knows to properly carry himself as such. I love his Suimengiri and he always does a great job of organically teasing, building to and using his bigger moves without making the set up obvious. It can be quite hard to nail the selling required here when you have the guy use the moves that include attacking with his injured limb but HARASHIMA is a capable wrestler and made it work. ***1/2
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