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[1996-08-24-RINGS-Maelstrom] Volk Han vs Tsuyoshi Kohsaka


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  • 1 month later...

The camera work here is spectacular. My thought watching this was that this is a classic, although I'm still not as educated to this style as I'd like to be. This is given more time than most RINGS matches on the set, and there is some really incredible matwork on display. It doesn't feel like an exhibition though, as you get a strong sense of the struggle, and this is the closest thing I've seen to actual momentum shifts in this style. Probably a good first match to watch instead of whatever I watched first.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 3 years later...

Matwork, glorious matwork. Not too much vertical time in this one. Han is so inventive, he seems to come up with new moves nearly every outing. Kohsaka was also an adept technician as they went from hold to counter hold. The fans were believing it could end at any time, which was one of the main plus points of the style. Consistently good quality. It threatened to explode, but didn't. Near the end Han looked done for, yet he pulled one last counter out of the bag to prevail.

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  • 10 months later...

Definitely the best RINGS match to this point, as Loss said it really felt like a competitive match than guys just noodling around on the mat, with both guys having to improvise their way through various submissions. Han pulls a win out of his ass when he looks completely done for, a very well-done finish that also adds to this. I don't know if my anti-shoot bias will ever have me place such a match in my MOTY list but this comes as close as anything since the big Takada matches.

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  • 5 months later...

This was incredible. I don't know if I have seen any better foot and leg work from a shoot style match in history and I thought it was incredibly clever that once I thought Han was done for sure, he had the resourcefulness to lock on that armbar that looked like he was going to break Kohasaka's arm and pick up the victory. Amazing 15 minutes of grappling. ****1/2

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  • 1 year later...

Volk Han vs Tsuyoshi Kohsaka - RINGS 8/24/96

 

So this is RINGS, human pretzel making. A sick part of me wishes Uncle Eric brought in these dudes to WCW so I could hear Tony, Dusty & Bobby call the action. Dusty would say "uncle" and "uncler" so much. Han gets the coolest, most organic figure-4 you will ever see from a standing half guard. Yep, believe the hype brutha, Volk Han is legit. Thought the escapes from Kojsaka on the figure-4 and cross arm breaker were too easy. Then they started using rope breaks which I liked better. Han lets Kohsaka take him down and grabs a double wrist lock. The double wrist lock seems to be the base for everything. In kayfabe, it seems like Han is being presented as the better wrestler. I hate the bundle of legs dueling submission as a spot no matter what. Han drops down with a rear naked choke and Kohsaka comes up with a sick counter of basically an inverted deadlock on the legs. I marked out and Kohsaka has a renewed sense of confidence. That felt like a big moment where the momentum could have shifted to Kohsaka. He grabbed a rolling leg takedown but in the pretzel he created he left his arm exposed and Han grabbed hyperextended it and since Kohsaka was in pretzel of his own creation he had no escape and was forced to tap.

 

Even though I haven't watched much shoot style I gobble it up with a spoon when I do. It was exciting to see my first Volk Han match thought he lived up to the hype. Definitely some mark out moments like the figure-4 and just some of those wrist lock grabs and chains. The counter to the choke by Kohsaka was my favorite spot felt electric and like everything was going to go his way, but then he taps in his own trap! Thought some escapes were little too easy in the beginning and in shoot style I like narratives of contrasting styles didn't feel that here. It was an incredible display of grappling wizardry. ****1/2

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  • 4 months later...

#113 - placetobenation.com/countdown-top-500-matches-of-the-90s-150-101/2/

 

I pretty much share the same thoughts as PeteF3. This was really cool for what it was, but it's not my preferred style of wrestling. I give these guys props for delivering something great within their niche. The finish was really awesome.

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  • 9 months later...

Great RINGS match with some really, really awesome submissions. Volk Han especially brings it -- a traditional arm wrench in a shoot style match! He briefly attempts this one crazy submission where he tries to bull Kohsaka's arm between his legs while holding down his ankles. Wish he got a chance to really lock it in. All the big submission high spots really hit with the crowd and looked great.

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  • GSR changed the title to [1996-08-24-RINGS-Maelstrom] Volk Han vs Tsuyoshi Kohsaka
  • 10 months later...

Yup, this one ruled, right from the opening. TK's initial counter to Han's armwhip takedown was the chef's kiss and then Han is like, okay, let me fuck with the leg now, to which TK works his way into control and we're presented this great sequence of them vying for control. Beautiful counter submission wrestling and if that's your thing, welcome. Han is just so good at adapting to his opponent's movements and escape attempts. He'll snap off an armbar but if there is too much squirming, he'll shift his attention to the leg. Love TK's rolling necklock and there's a great moment where Han tries his "step on the foot" extension leglock but gets caught off guard with a heel hook. They pretzel each other with hold, twisting and twerking limbs to try and gain the advantage. Han dragging TK down with the choke was great but then, of course, TK turns the tables with the leglock and sends Han scrambling for the ropes. Beautiful arm takedown into the hammerlock by Volk and he does such a good job of preventing the escape…although it happens, barely. The end was great - Han with the little cat slaps and again another armlock takedown but when TK counters with the kneecrusher, Han is like "shit, I just need to grab the arm and bend it to win." And he does it. Awesome match.

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