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Charles (Loss)

[1990-05-28-NJPW] Riki Choshu vs Shinya Hashimoto

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Not as good as the Muto match, surprisingly enough. These two usually have really good chemistry, and this is a good match, but I like their later matches much better. Hashimoto scores a win which I'm guessing was an upset.

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Hash beat Choshu at the Dome the year before. That was the pattern of their matches in 1989-91: Hash would take the first one each year, then Riki would beat him later in the year.

 

John

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I agree with Loss' praise for Choshu-Muto but did not see this as an inferior match. Where the Muto match was about power vs. mobility, this was more a straight-up heavyweight slugfest, which suited me fine. I particularly liked their nasty exchange of headbutts. The flash ending was well-executed, with Hash selling that he was pretty fucked up and trying a last, desperate counter before Choshu could hit another lariat. It wasn't their best match, but this is a pairing I can happily watch over and over.

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Not knowing about the '89 Dome show result (or this one for that matter) I definitely got into the story of Hash smacking Choshu in the mouth figuratively as well as literally. Choshu takes over with his usual stuff but it all looks good and he throws in a top-rope kneedrop that comes off as a desperation move. Hash is out on his feet with lariats when he busts out a spinning heel kick to get the big upset victory.

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Good heavyweight battle style match that seemed to be building to a bigger feud and did feel like a real nice win for Hash. Despite all my problems with the flaws in Muto/Choshu I had these two New Japan matches about on the same level.

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Choshu lays in some kicks of his own. Hash with kicks and Choshu counters with some headbutts. Chops from Hash. Counter forearm smash from Choshu. Two DDT’s from Hash. He actually hits a second rope elbow drop which I think is a first from the 90 yearbook. Choshu starts busting out the lariats. One of them was up side the head of Hash. Finish was unexpected. Hash counters a lariat with a powerslam and finishes Choshu off with a leg lariat. Nice little match. I liked the pace.

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Another Muskateer test for the legend. An intense battle with some hard hits. Both were going at it full steam ahead. This time Hash was the one surviving punishment before quickly coming back for the upset win. They could've done the finish better and it wasn't conclusive, but breakthrough results like this were establishing Shinya as a main event star. I thought it shaded the Mutoh match from earlier in the week.

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Nice match, but it felt like it was missing something. Maybe on this day and this environment it was exactly what they needed to do, but watching this in a vacuum, it didn't feel complete to me. Good stuff though, I've always liked Hashimoto in the limited stuff of his that I have seen.

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Almost shoot-style with the kicks early on, this became a nice little straight-ahead brawl later. Three DDTs seem a bit much from Hash, but I'm still used to Jake using it as a killer finisher. I thought the powerslam was the finish, but it's the leg lariat that puts Choshu away as the fans go wild. This one definitely did what it was designed to do, as the fans went wild for Shinya's victory.

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Really liked the finish. I was a little disappointed by the match but I'm not sure why. It was fast paced and hard hitting, evenly matched, so I don't know, it worked for the kind of match it was, I was just expecting more. Maybe my fault more than theirs.

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I'll always enjoy watching these two tear into eachother. Hashimoto is always such a beastly lumbering giant, landing huge swinging chops and kicks into Choshu. Choshu punches him in the face to comeback and keeps using his head as a punching ball. Both guys have a devastating move they can always land, the DDT and the lariat, so that was a cool dynamic. Hash blitzes Choshu and keeps softening him up with fat elbow drops, but Choshu drops him out of nowhere. Choshu then puts a massive beating on Hash, landing several lariats and a big suplex on the floor. Choshu is really throwing the kitchen sink and Hash seems done until he catches the surprise powerslam and huge spin kick for the last ditch win. Epic moment and borderline great match.


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Everything great about Hash v Choshu. Not quite as epic as 1996, not the same story of pride as 1991, not the struggle of 1997, but at its core it's Hash v Choshu and everything that entails. They really thump each other silly and there are few more consistently awesome slugfests in wrestling history. Choshu was landing absolute jaw-jacker elbows including a knockout blow as Hash charged him in the corner, Hash was kicking him absurdly hard in the midsection, they were trading nasty headbutts, it had all the staples. I just love the struggle you get with all of their matches. Overall this was worked pretty even and generally I like it when someone at least sustains momentum for a stretch, but not one transition felt lazy or like someone decided it was their turn to go back on offence again. If Hash cut off Choshu he did it with something that'd believably halt your momentum. If Choshu cut off Hash he made damn sure you were buying it. They milked the big moments, they hit with purpose, they didn't need to do a whole lot, and they had everyone on strings. Finish might've come off a little sudden, but I like it as a surprise KO with Hash spotting his chance and going all in before Choshu can recover. This match-up never fails. 

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