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[1996-04-29-NJPW-Battle Formation] Genichiro Tenryu vs Tatsumi Fujinami


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  • 3 weeks later...

Pretty compelling match. Fujinami is a bloody mess, to a point where this match is hard to watch at times. Still, Tenryu's shots looked great, and his casual facial expressions, not at all phased by the incredible amount of blood loss, are great. Tenryu makes fairly easy work of him. Not competitive enough to be a truly great match, but worth seeing.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I thought Fujinami got in plenty of stuff given the context of his shattered nose. I loved him calling back to his cruiswerweight days with the early topes and throwing desperate potato shots once Tenryu had him in trouble. Tenryu is probably the all-time-great dick. Can't beat his contemptuous little facials as he booted Fujinami in his busted nose. I liked the fact that he kept looking at the ref to stop it, because it made Fujinami's last rally all the more dramatic. Fujinami gushing blood on Tenryu's chest as he held him in the dragon sleeper was another tremendous visual. This, Muta-Shinzaki and Hash-Takada made for a perfect run of dome-show matches.

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This came in 3rd in my 'best Japanese matches under 10 minutes' tournament last spring, and did best for everything after 1990. The first time I watched it, way way back in my early puro watching days, I couldn't fully appreciate Tenryu's attitude and stuff like the little face punts. I just thought it was a squash that took too long to end. Now, it comes across as something really memorable. Was there any Tenryu/Fujinami interaction in '96 after this?

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  • 1 month later...
  • 3 months later...
Guest Ventura

This was awesome. After the broken nose there was a feel in the air that something was wrong, which made it very real in my eyes. Watching a calm Tenryu slowly destroying the bloody mess of Fujinami was just sick.

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  • 3 years later...

No fancy-ass shit here (except those two topes). Fujinami starts off hot, goes for the tope one too many times, gets his nose busted, and then this is just a flat-out war. This isn't as good as it would have been around 1988 but it's a hell of a match for two guys on the downside (even though Tenryu is timeless, both from a conditioning and a style standpoint).

 

Edit: Oh God--Tenryu's "hey, you gotta little somethin' on your nose" to Fujinami after the match is one of the greatest moments of the year.

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  • 1 month later...

This was great. Tenryu was a complete dick and Fujinami dipped into the fountain of youth and may have turned in his best performance of the 1990's. Short match but really great why it lasted and full of fight. A vicious spectacle that adds to both GOAT cases. ****1/4

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  • 10 months later...

I had heard Tenryu broke Fujinami's nose in this match but after watching this, it actually looked like he smashed his fucking face in with Fujinami pouring blood everywhere. Tenryu was just the biggest prick here by ruthlessly targeting the nose and doing it so casually. Tremendous heel performance and Fujinami gave great fiery underdog performance.

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  • 1 year later...

Genichiro Tenryu vs Tatsumi Fujinami - NJPW 4/29/96

 

Fujinami's face looks like a murder scene about 3 minutes into this. Tenyru caved his face in when Fujinami was going for a suicide dive and blood was pouring like a faucet from his face. Damn sure made this match compelling as hell and pretty uncomfortable to watch. Fujinami was on a roll with dragon screw leg whip and two BADASS suicide dives that make all the modern WWE guys look like nancy boys. Then Tenryu crushed his nose and it all changed. Fujinami did get a figure-4, but then basically passed out in his own figure-4 from blood loss. tenryu was the ultimate dick looking to the crowd like why is this guy being such a chump and just waiting to chop the hell out of him. It is classic Tenryu the big punches to the side of the head of the injured Fujinami drawing boos. The powerbomb, lariats and reverse elbow. Fujinami gets a Dragon Sleeper as a hope spot before Tenryu puts him with a Mack Truck Lariat! Post-match, Tenryu is like you got something on your face and Fujinami slaps the shit out of him. Way better than I expected. Thought it be two legends doing a greatest hits package instead it was a bloody, heated affair. ****

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  • 2 months later...

I liked this a lot but not as much as others. Fujinami's topes at the beginning were awesome. Fujinami bleeds a bunch and some of his brief comeback teases are great, especially one where he's firing back with punches. But overall, I feel like this was largely just an exceptionally good competitive squash.

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  • GSR changed the title to [1996-04-29-NJPW-Battle Formation] Genichiro Tenryu vs Tatsumi Fujinami
  • 1 year later...

Incredible.  This starts off super hot with the dives and then the violence creates the drama that leads to the great mannerisms and expressions from Tenryu.  Fujinami, as noted, gives a great underdog fiery performance as it goes on.  The slap at the end is pretty classic.  Great match.

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