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Found 6 results

  1. For some reason I am not surprised the pimped (well, at least nerd-wrestling twitter-pimped, which is still a niche, but it's something at least) american indy claiming to preserve the grappling style does a pretty questionable (read: shit) job of actually doing so while a japanese indy no one talks about seems to be doing just that. This was really good. Sato is way better at working U-STYLE than he is at randomly grabbing chinlocks and headlocks. I like the guy but you can't hide he barely gives a shis sometimes. This played to his strengths and Honda put on a great performance as well-you wan't a guy named Honda to wrestle like Tamon Honda AND HE DOES!!! His offence was "limited" to shooty takedowns and submissions and he did a great job of selling the threat and impact of Sato's kicks and holds. Everything here was a struggle, with plenty of fighting for both takedowns and positioning on the ground and the competitors showed off their skill (which frankly matters a lot when doing something like this) nicely. The finish was brilliant-unexpected, completely caught me off guard but in a good way. ***1/4
  2. This one was a little different, as Honda worked more like a Minoru Tanaka here which.....I'd rather he worked like he did in the previous two matches of his I've seen but what can you do. He made for a good Minoru Tanaka. The opening wasn't much-they did the same chain wrestling sequences you've seen a million times but did do a few interesting things during it-like Yoshida using a one armed headlock while Honda held him in a hammerlock and doing the WOS foot-wristlock counter. Honda did a bunch of dropkicks, an armdrag and even a 619. Also a hammerlock backstabber which may sound like "bad indy move 101" but actually looked really cool. His holds looked great again but his stomps were extremely weak. Yoshida looked like a pretty average professional wrestler. **1/2
  3. This was a much different match than any of the Honda matches I've seen so far. It was a lot to take in. At it's core it's a face vs heel match-but there's just so much going on it's much more than that. Sato put on a really good heel performance, and Honda excelled in this role as well. In the first minute Sato managed to throw Honda outside, pull his hair and drop him suspiciously low on a reverse atomic drop. From then on all hell brooke loose-as Sato had wrestlefriends and even a fan help him beat Honda up. I love the way he viciously threw him onto chairs and then proceeded to throw more chairs at him. But what's really great about this is that these two understood their roles and how to efficiently play them-Honda was believable when fighitng back, didn't do any weird pauses when striking Sato from below, he would either sell or continue striking him, and Sato would respond by registering the pain of the strikes and avoiding them and firing back at the right time. They'd tease you with a comeback several times in a single sequence only to continue the control segment and it made the comebacks that much more special. Sato's Catapult on the top rope was some next level stuff and both guys bumped great. ***1/4
  4. I've always held TAKA Michinoku in high regard and him cultivating such a badass house style in his own promotion is only going to help his 2026 GWE looks for me. This match. My god. What can I even say to do it justice. I'm astonished how simple doing pro wrestling right can be sometimes. This match consisted of nothing more than these two grappling. And it became something special. Not because they used big symbols, but because they used normal, usual, mundane symbols and turned them into something huge by mixing them up with a bunch of cool, beautiful looking matwork. When you know how to sell you can turn Headscissors and Armbars into viable nearfalls too. I loved how TAKA used Headlocks and Sleepers to set up his Crossface variations-maybe connecting smaller symbols with bigger symbols and thus increasing their importance is something that should be discussed more. Ayumu Honda is still the best and this ruled. ***1/4
  5. The Hikaru Sato match was good. So good. Too good to be true. As I searched for more Ayumu Honda I prepared myself for disappointment. I imagined him throwing weak forearms and slapping his thigh. This is the reality of japanese wrestling in 2016. Nice things are in the minority. This wrestler couldn't possibly exist in present time. Right? Right?................... But he does. It turns out Ayumu Honda really is that damn good. I don't remember the last time I was so excited about discovering a worker. It's not that he works shoot style-it's simply the best easily made comparison out there to make people understand what they're getting into with him. It's not that he's consciously flashy like a Volk Han-he just does so much cool shit you've never seen before. In that sense he reminds me of Otsuka. Saying he does extremely high level grappling feels like understating it an a sign of my ability to properly articulare why his work is so special. This is my first time seeing Kazuhiro Tamura, and, well, he looked very good too I guess. ***