Jump to content
Pro Wrestling Only
Sign in to follow this  
Loss

[1993-05-03-NJPW-Fukuoka Dome] Hulk Hogan vs Great Muta

Recommended Posts

I always enjoy seeing Hogan in Japan, because he pulls out the same mat wrestling he knows every single time. That said, I don't care to ever watch this match again, but I'm glad I saw it once. Hogan wins with the Axe Bomber.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Hulkster does an effort at some technique as he's working in Japan baby~. The fans seemed to want him to pose instead. Muta was being a bit of a tosser but not as bad as sometimes under the paint. It was reasonable enough fare.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Totally felt like Muta was dogging it here until he got to do his stupid running the whole way down the ramp move. Hogan was trying to get something out of this match but Muta just didn't seem to care. Probably the worst Hogan match in Japan on yearbook and not really his fault.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, this was the "WWF title is like a Honda, the IWGP title is a Rolls-Royce" match. Somehow the historical significance of this was completely lost on me until now, and I feel like it deserves more attention. This is the WWF Champion working a show involving WCW's top babyface--that was an absolutely unthinkable occurrence until Hulk and Sting were booked and actually appeared. To say nothing of '90s Hogan and Fujiwara sharing a bill.

 

Hogan's delivered more inspired Japan performances, and this is pretty much a shit show from Muta. He shows no real interest in selling anything and takes up too much time doing stupid crap like laying on the ramp and crawling under the ring for no real reason. He only shows a bit of fire when he's on offense. Hogan did come to work, but Muta's back on my shitlist after his great '91. This was an inexcusable performance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pretty crazy to have Sting & Hogan on the same show here. Not that it would've changed things from New Japan's perspective, but do we know where Hogan's head was at regarding his future in WWF at this point? There were noticeably a few WCW references in the commentary.

 

Hogan with a takeover into cross armbar is more of a hold than I've ever seen from him. Gaijin Hogan is definitely fun to watch. Muta seemed determined to bring this down as he bails outside and goes under the ring for what feels like an eternity. The crowd also seems pretty indifferent to him and was hotter for Fujiwara/Hase. Hogan hits a nice backdrop suplex on the floor and takes a vertical suplex on the ramp before the windsprint lariat. We should've banned Hogan from the US for a year like Japan did Doc if it would mean performances like this. It gets a bit much when Muta resorts to a bunch of hokey gimmicks that Hogan nonetheless bumps for. Hogan Axe Bomber but Muta mists him before another Axe Bomber finishes it. Love the Buddha statue Hogan receives afterwards.

 

I may be giving it too much credit for sheer shock at seeing Hogan try this hard, but I dug it.

 

***

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Between this and the Providence house show match, this was the first disc of the year that drug for me in spots. I thought Muto was dreadful here and a complete piece of shit. Even Hogan didn't seem too interested compared to the 91 stuff vs. Tenryu. Overall this felt overly long and was a chore to get through for me. This was overall a weird show in retrospect with Sting and Hogan on the same bill. **.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For what has to be one of the last, if not ​the last, Hogan title defenses to make tape in the original Hulkamania era, this underwhelmed me.

 

The first few minutes were all right, and it's always nice to know that Hogan can wrestle a little on the mat when he chooses to. But Muta didn't do a thing for me here. It's almost like someone told him to wrestle like he was a stateside Hogan challenger working for Vince, and if that's what happened, they should have imported a WWF challenger who fit the style better, because Muta stank at it. Granted, he wasn't in there against a five-star athlete, but he's looked a ton better than this even when he's a brawling nutcase. The only Muta-like move we saw was the moonsault, which he used too early in the formula. It should have been closer to the Hulkup, which we didn't see as such, come to think of it.

 

I would have loved to see more of the spot where Muta apparently used a piece of scaffolding as a vine to swing down and attack Hogan on the floor. Unfortunately, the crowd got in the way and made it impossible to see much of anything at all.

 

The Colonel really didn't serve a purpose; he didn't even have his megaphone to yell into, unless I missed it. He also made a bit of a fashion error by wearing a Megamaniacs jacket, unless of course Beefcake somehow made this card. I know he wore Hulkamania jackets at some point or other; if he had them by now, why not wear one of them instead?

 

Not that this means much, but Hogan looks awful with heavy dark eyebrows. It's hard to explain, but if they were meant to make him look younger they did the opposite. No one looks worse than someone who tries to hide their age and fails.

 

I didn't like Hogan shoving the referee down twice with no repercussions. He looked like a real bully, and the ref looked weak and ineffectual for letting him get away with it, especially the second time.

 

The scene with Hogan and the Buddha trophy provided some unintentional (I think) comedy when it looked for a second like Hogan was praying to it for more hair. Sorry, pal, but you only have yourself and your needles to blame for that unfortunate predicament.

 

The fans didn't like Hogan's posedown too much; the more he tried to get them to cheer, the more they seemed to boo, and it visibly upset him. He finally got his desired reaction just before he left.

 

Which title or titles were actually on the line here? I operated under the assumption that Hogan was defending the WWF title, which was the only title at stake. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

 

I wouldn't worry too much about Hogan saying that he valued the IWGP belt more than the WWF title in a Japanese press conference as he apparently did. What did you expect him to do, say that the IWGP title meant nothing just hours after he fought the guy who held it? This is one time that Hogan's political skills really served him well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Colonel really didn't serve a purpose; he didn't even have his megaphone to yell into, unless I missed it. He also made a bit of a fashion error by wearing a Megamaniacs jacket, unless of course Beefcake somehow made this card.

Beefcake was on the card. He wrestled Masa Saito.

 

Muta has had a hard time here, and fair enough, he was not at his best. In his defence though, I believe he was working with a really quite serious knee injury at this time. As I understand it, he and Power Warrior botched up a slam off the top rope move, Muta fell to the outside and really wrenched his already delicate knee. This was in March, and Muta did not wrestle between that and the Hogan match. According to the Observer, he only made the match because of the importance of the card in the brand new dome. He didn't wrestle again until he returned full time about a month later either.

 

As far as the match goes, it was kind of weird. Both Hogan and Muta flipped back and forth between being all out face and total heel at various poonts in the match. Hogan was clearly putting in a lot of effort but skinny 93 Hogan just didn't have the aura that he used to and Muta did quite a lot considering the pain he was likely in.

 

It's a shame, because I think a Massive Hogan vs Healthy Muta in about 1991 might have actually been very good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Useful information.

 

WWF World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan vs IWGP Heavyweight Champion The Great Muta - NJPW 5/3/93

 

Non-tile. Still pretty impressive that Muta wrestled both the NWA World Champion & WWF World Champion in the same calendar year. Also impressive he wrestled Sting & Hulk Hogan within a six month window. I was pretty amped for this when Muta flipped off the crowd and misted. It seemed like he was going to go back to his violent, maniacal tendencies. I thought this was pretty entertaining. But it felt rushed and all over the place. I liked Hogan wrestling early with the juji-gatame. Muta is more about the heel chicanery eyerakes and rolling under the ring. There is a good fire fight on the outside with some strong chops through back and forth. Hogan is the one that sends Muta into the crowd. I liked Muta having the timekeeper's hammer. It was stuff like the running lariat only to have Hogan go on top with some nasty eyerakes and punches. He even gets booed. Tries to save face by yelling "Ichiban!". Then Muta is back on top with the backbreaker and Moonsault. I was really hoping for a Hulk-Up. Instead a rope swing comes into play. Then Axe Bomber. Then there is Mist that hits the chest. Legdrop for two. Axebomer wins. It is a weird match. I mean it is Hulk Hogan vs The Great Muta, it is a match you would never expect to happen. It is not bad. It just feels really thrown together. ***

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I subbed to NJPW World and finally caught this.

I remember the magazines making a big time about how much "better" Hogan was in Japan, but I sure didn't see it here. I think you're all being too easy on Hogan (not that Muta was any great shakes in this match either).

The spot at the end where Muta grabbed the netting to glide onto Hogan was pretty cool though.

This felt like a heel vs. heel match, and not in a good way.

A disappointing match, especially considering the classics both were capable of at the time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×