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Found 11 results

  1. This was pretty much a shootstyle brawl with plenty of bitchslaps and stomps. So, exactly what it should be. Man, did Funaki just treat everyone like garbage then? It brings out Anjoh's inner dickhead tough to even things up. The grappling was fine enough and they kept things going for the entire 20+ minutes which ain't easy, but the highlight was clearly them kicking the crap out of eachother. Funaki's time in europe had clearly rubbed off on him as he went for stuff like mid section headbutts or cravate holds which he executes like a WoS wrestler. He sure loved his spin kicks, but the thing I most dug were his short low kicks. Really entertaining match.
  2. Man, I fucking loved this. I wouldn't really think of shoot style as being the environment most conducive to big spectacles, but UWFi always did things a little differently and this had just the right amount of pro style to make it a heck of a fun spectacle. This is one of the better Albright performances I've seen. He came across as a total monster, just destroying guys with suplexes and clubbing them about the head. Whenever Yamazaki or Anjoh landed a strike of any sort it felt like an accomplishment because Gary was able to either block or catch most of them. Even something like a Yamazaki high kick that would go over Gary's head had people stirring, just because the shot actually got close. The first exchange with Anjoh was awesome because Anjoh is so totally out of his depth with the size difference and he knows it. Albright just walked through Anjoh's kicks, grabbed hold of him and tossed him. There was one bit later where Albright got in close and Anjoh had to resort to dropping to his knees to avoid being suplexed, but Albright just grabbed him anyway and Anjoh had this amazing "oh I am fucked" expression as he got launched with a deadlift German. The Albright/Yamazaki exchanges were great as well; maybe even better than Albright/Anjoh. Yamazaki has a longer reach on his kicks and the first one that truly landed got a huge pop, then later when Yamazaki manages to suplex him the crowd responds with a big Yamazaki chant. Boss isn't great, but all he has to do as Albright's partner is not lose. His kicks were super light and he never had much to offer on the ground, but he was vocal with his selling and took a Yamazaki roundhouse kick square in the face. So fair play to him, I guess. Last stretch had some nice drama with Albright chucking Anjoh around, and there were a couple women in the crowd who looked terrified for him. Anjoh straight dives at Albright and catches him with a knee and the two women start to believe, but then Gary clubs him and grabs him around the waist and the women literally cover their eyes because they know what's coming. Anjoh makes it up to his feet after the first German (which was fucking disgusting) and sort of staggers towards his corner. He doesn't really know where he is, but he's close enough where he could probably tag out. Albright realises and charges him again, going in for the kill, and this time Anjoh doesn't get back up.
  3. Way too fun. This was about the best match you can possibly get out of two dudes as limited as Abby & Benkei. First Anjo and Tiger take turns laying into pudgy old sumowrestler Benkei before Abby comes in for the old stab & chop. Anjo ends up bloodied and playing a really good Ricky Morton for such a natural dipshit heel before coming back by beating the shit out of Abby and bloodying him in return. Undeterred by the potential Hep infection Tiger Mask comes in and beats the shit out of a bloody Abby aswell. Tiger can't really do highspots against these fat dudes so he just throws a bunch of kicks to the face and kneedrops and it's awesome. Abby trapping Anjo with his blob physique was a great spot too. Tiger Mask & Anjo looked super here and Abby selling and coming back with a last ditch throat chop was genuinely exciting stuff.
  4. This was a fun match with everyone dishing out stiff shots and Anjoh making jokes. Takayama was wearing biker gloves for some reason, but other than that his exchanges with Anjoh and Tiger Mask were the highlight of the match. Tiger Mask works best against heavyweights because it adds some restraint to his work and Takayama forces him out of his usual spiel by not going along and making him actually hit the mat and work exchanges instead of just hitting his spots.
  5. Lots of goodness here. Match started of pretty slow but I find it muche easier to concentrate when wrestlers are fighting for position, gauging the distance for striking and generally acting like they are actually fighting than when they just grab a hadlock for five minutes. Early highlight was Nakano busting out a shoot DDt, but things got out of control once Miyato broke Nakano's nose with palm strikes, then the transitioned to a cool subplot of Anjoh and Nakano hitting each other with illegal elbows and they finished the match off with Anjoh and Yamazaki blasting each other and Yamazaki's awesome selling of peril where he gradually acted weaker and weaker before going down. ***1/4-***1/2
  6. Before the match Anjoh signals he doesn't want any elbows in this match, doing a callback to their tag from May and thus cueing the famed ~shoot style storytelling~. And so they fight, and Anjoh starts punching Nakano in the body and Nakano loses his temper and starts foreaming/elbowing Anjoh, somewhere in there he gets his nose broken and this turns into an even bigger shootfight with both athletes sneaking in punches during their striking flurries and an awesome flash finish. Sometimes the most shocking thing to do is to actually end the match instead of doing an escape/counter/kick-out when you're most expecting it. ***1/2
  7. One of the lesser known Tamura classics. Maybe his best pre-RINGS match. Amazing matwork, amazing crowd. **** 1/2
  8. It's sleazy IWA japan brawling vs. sleazy UWFi shootstyle. Anjoh is thrilled to wrestle a guy this grotesque and goes nuts with the Looney Toons spots! Watch as Anjoh points to his head to signify his cleverness then falling on his ass the next second, getting MMA mount position only to play belly drums on Goto, STALLING~, etc. However there are also some slick takedowns and submissions in this match, and given that it's Anjoh and Goto, lots of nasty violence and uncooperativness. Goto actually isn't afraid to go on the mat and give out stiff lariats and punches, and Anjoh was right there kicking him in the jaw a bunch. Eventually Anjoh lands a series of stiff knees and elbows, bloodying Goto, who promptly goes nuts bloodying Anjoh with punches and a fork in return. Crowd boos the hell out of the DQ finish, I guess because they enjoyed watching these two murder eachother so much. Post match a bloody Anjoh tries to drag a police officer into this, as if to question why the police always sit there watching when a heel is doing something seriously wicked.
  9. Anjoh cuts an amazing promo before this starts. I don't even know what he's saying but he's wearing a dress shirt and beige chinos and you can tell he's being a condescending prick to the ugly homeless WAR guys, making these "I'm soooo scared" gestures while Takayama laughs at his little buddy's mean jokes. I'm not sure it's particularly smart business practice for a shoot style fed to have this on the same card as Tamura/Sakuraba. Like, this is not shoot style at all. At times it even felt a bit like a wink wink nudge nudge comedy match. But I'll be fucked if I didn't enjoy lots of it. Anjoh and Tak started out sort of dismissive, poking fun at the tubby WAR dudes and Gedo's ring gear. Fuyuki wants a Greco-Roman knuckle lock so Tak holds his hand way up and Fuyuki can't reach it. Anjoh is one of my favourite shoot style guys but he's such an awesome smug little carny that he makes this kind of match his home as well. He and Takayama were like a pair of all-star high school receivers welcoming a ragtag secondary that could barely run the length of themselves. So the secondary started being dirty fucks and kneeing the all-stars in the balls. I love how vocal Fuyuki is in the ring. He does this shrieking thing as he goes to hit someone and it makes him sound like a wildman. Anjoh mocks him for it so Fuyuki hits him with a fire extinguisher and we get a heat segment on Anjoh who blades and everything. Fuyuki punches him in the cut and team WAR work full on heel. At one point Fuyuki brings in a pair of Y-fronts or something and puts them on Anjoh's head, and Anjoh wrestles the rest of the match with these blood-soaked Y-fronts on his head. It was...strange. As was the finish. I have no clue what that was about at all. This was basically a WAR match that happened to be taking place in UWFi. There was nothing UWFi about it other than the initials on Anjoh's singlet.
  10. The second match from UWFII's first show Starting Over is as intruiguing, ambitious and entertaining as you'd hope for. The structure of the match is simple-it starts out with them simply gauging the distance with leg kicks and some simple takedowns and mat exchanges and the match gradually heats up. The way the holds are used here is hard to compare to anything else-like a weird combo of U-style and classic NWA style. Essentially, there are plenty of submission attempts where the submission isn't fully locked in, and the true pay-off is more in the transition which comes after the hold than the hold itself. They managed to convincingly display their character gradually getting frustrated and going from cheapshots to just plain brawling. Anjoh pinballed as much as he possibly could've in this setting, the novelty of the style resulted in some interesting moments like Anjoh going for a Jacknife Pin, shooting Nakano into the ropes and Nakano going for a Dragon Suplex as well as going for a pin straight off a German. The match also had a well executed shoulder injury angle, which was sold fittingly (Anjoh targeted it with his kicks and strikes and went for submission on Nakano's bad arm, Nakano sold it initially and after the match but didn't weep and go overboard). Really, had they found conclusions other than rope breaks a few more times when there was a locked in submission this would've easily been a great match. ***3/4
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