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Found 44 results

  1. Interpromotional matches in Japanese pro-wrestling are the best. This part of the New Japan vs. UWF feud and Takada is here to kick butt and to me he is clearly the star of this match. He puts an absolute beating on Yamada just blasting him with slaps, kicks and hitting him with one of the nastiest tombstone piledrivers I’ve ever seen in my life. Takada is not afraid of throwing hands with Inoki either, however the main focus of this is the Yamada beatdown. Kido is perfectly fine in his invading role as well, but he more so just along for the ride.
  2. I believe this was the second show of UWF 2nd stage and so they did this match as a bit of strong style in it's stiffest format. For example, they picked one another up, there was a snap mare and a large number of rope breaks instead of escapes. So with that said, it's totally understandable that they opted to do this. They had to ease people back into the U-style and not discredit everything they did in '86, '87, and the first half of '88. That's wild when you think about it. There was a three year gap and three years in wrestling is a long time...basically a seachange from 1985 to 1988. Ok so we take this more as a NJPW match. If that's the case then this is awesome! The submissions aren't as believable until later but the kicks are vicious. Even the submissions were very dramatic because you never knew the one Takada was going going to tap to & Maeda was eating kicks. Really cool brutal stuff. The stiffness didn't take this over to the level of violence that was shown in 7/24/89 & that was beautifully teased in the Yamazaki/Fujiwara match. Not quite the same type of match though so it's hard to reconcile where this fits in the shoot-style paradigm. A classic for a strong style match but not up to credibility standards for UWF or shoot style...got to rate it more as straight pro-wrestling.
  3. This is the infamous match where Choshu gets shoot kicked in the face. Aside from questionable morals, it‘s a really hot match with the crowd being absolutely white hot for all the Choshu/Maeda exchanges. Maeda kicking the hell out of Choshu is fun, but Maeda outgrappling Choshu may be even funner. I wonder if that is what caused Maeda to snap because Choshu seemed not ready for Maeda to actually wrestle him and just wanted to do his usual spiel. The initial moments after the kick are some of the most intense you‘ll ever see in a wrestling ring, with Maeda egging Choshu on further and Masa Saito tackling the big guy. Really a thrill to check out, pity the kick was real because this would‘ve set up an amazing singles match.
  4. This was quite the clash of the titans style match. Picture it like the scene in a western where a big gunfight breaks out and lots of stuff breaks and lots of people get shot. Takada is kind of a slug, but Maeda carries him fine on the mat, and both guys go into standing exchanges as if ready to die. Not the most pure or artful fight, but brutal and dramatic to the max.
  5. One of my favourite matches of the style. The grappling in this match was amazing. Everything looked tight and out right gnarly at times. One thing I loved in this match was everything lead into each other. For example, Maeda's suplexes almost always lead to a submission attempt on the arm. But the focus of the match was Maeda constantly going for the legs. As great as Maeda was, Takada was the star with his all time great underdog performance. His selling of the leg was fantastic and his defence of the grappling from Maeda was great. He got in some great strikes to gain the advantage in parts of the match. Great battle, filled with struggle and top notch grappling. ****3/4
  6. The perseverance of Nakano is also a part of the ~shoot style storytelling~. A big win on the last show earns him a match against Takada. Pretty standard match for these two, so quite good but not quite what it could've been had they went all out. Love them fighting for positioning on the ground and the fighting spirit spot was really interesting and in character for Nakano-they do a "is that kick all you've got?", it gets a big pop and they move on. Because it makes for a far better match than exchanging low kicks for five minutes in the centre of the ring, and one where you can suspend your disbelief much more easily. I was impressed by how synchronized they were on knockdown spots, convincingly following through when you you're going down adds a lot to the viewing experience. Awesome finish here as they tie a callback to Nakano's big win from the last show into a sequence where Takada counters Nakano and Nakano dramatically kicks away before being forced to tap. ***1/4
  7. I don't remember hearing of JT Southern before, he looked pretty clueless here, as even as he got almost nothing in it felt like got a little too much in. I enjoyed Takada working his superiority, there was a spot where he almost turned a Kneebar into a modified Boston Crab that looked neat that I don't remember seeing before and the finishing Armbar looked very cool. **3/4
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