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[1990-09-01-AJW] Aja Kong vs Bull Nakano (Cage)

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- (Cage Match - Special Ref Bulldog KT) Aja Kong vs Bull Nakano

The version I have is from the original TV broadcast not the AJW Classics episode that came out earlier this year. Sadly for some reason this is the only match from that tv ep that exist today and whatever earlier stuff that aired on the same episode got cut off/no one taped/isn't in circulation. They do air a highlight package at the end of the show showing briefe clips of what else took place on this show and among other things this card also had a lost Kyoko vs Toyota singles match, ending with Toyota going over with the rolling cradle in 18+ so f u to whoever forgot to set their VCR to record the rest of this show 20 years ago. I think Aja agrees as she infact has "Fuck U" shaved into the side of her head...yup.

Much like the Madusa match a couple months ago, they have Aja & her opponent do a face to face pre match promo and shockingly, it again breaks down into a crazy brawl backstage. Madusa actually seconds Aja here so I guess the post match hug during their street fight is what formed their alliance. Would have been interesting to see whear her as a member of Jungle Jack had played out long term had she not bounced in 91 to go to WCW.

Match itself is worked a little diffrently then your usual AJW cage match and thinking about it, as far as I can tell this may infact be the 1st cage match AJW ever did. To start with, this one has a ref and not just any ref no, Bulldog Fucking KT who would be better known today as Gedo who'd been in wrestling like 1 year at this point. Why in the blue ass hell he of all people is the ref for this match I have no clue. He ends up playing a big part in the match though. He won't let either wrestler use weapons which is obviously weird since it's a freakin cage match and so he's always taking them from them and getting in their face for it. Last man standing rules are also in effect so you can win via some other means then escape which doesn't even play a factor until the end. Intense hatred rite straight off the bat as they get to beatin the crap out of each other. Bull gets the early advantage but it doesn't last long and they go back and forth for a while. They alternate between brawling and trying to wear each other down with holds and power stuff and I thought they pulled off the mix well. Things get interesting when Aja decides to go after Bulls leg and goes nuts attacking it with a trash can. She opens up a pretty fair sized gash on Bulls leg and once Aja smells blood she goes to work on that for a while and while Bull tries to fight back but never fully regains control. Along the way I should mention that Gedo bets whacked a few times by both for his troubles of trying to enforce rules in this cage match and he ends up a bloody mess as well. For the finish he also ends up playing a big part as after Aja nails Bull a few more times in the leg she goes to escape and though Bull manages to get back to her feet, Gedo is standing near the ropes fully in the way preventing Bull from getting thear in time and allowing Aja to get the win.

Bull cries foul post match leading to screaming & yelling and all hell breaking loose post match with them brawling some more and having to be sperated. For what this was designed to do I thought this did a perfect job. No whear close to their more famous cage match a few months later but it was great as a set up for the re-match and just as a stand alone still really damn good.

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There was a lot of excitement, but this was probably my least favorite match between the two. Why oh why did they adopt WWF escape rules? Using the garbage can and crowdhug brawling are my two least favorite things about Aja Kong. The absence of the latter was made up for with a healthy amount of the former.

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Why oh why did they adopt WWF escape rules?

Storyline reason is because of the screwy ending in this match with the ref. Except for the 11/91 tag, every AJW cage match after this is then fought under, over the top only escape rules with no ref.

 

Always thought it made for great matches. Except for War Games, AJW style is my favorite type of cage match ever.

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Underwhelming. I'm not sure what the story with the ref was supposed to be about (oh, it's Gedo--that explains...absolutely nothing) and it was pretty dippy that the trashcan was even in the cage to begin with. Nakano, who has basically been sold as being invincible for this yearbook, starts despairing and crying like 8 minutes in because her guillotine legdrop doesn't render Kong comatose. Eventually Kong, like Sir Robin, bravely runs away to victory. That wasn't the WM3-esque payoff to Bull as Unstoppable Monster Heel that I was hoping for. Afterward both ladies talk trash on the mic and appear to either be ready to start fighting again or start making out. Turns out to be the former.

 

All snark aside I didn't *hate* this--they did work hard and there was some attempt at trashcan-centered psychology. Taking out the monster's leg/knee is a pretty sound strategy and the blood on the leg adds to the effect. Still, I know where I'd rather be given a choice of wrestling cards in Japan to attend on this night.

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That wasn't the WM3-esque payoff to Bull as Unstoppable Monster Heel that I was hoping for.

Heh, all i'll say is i'm just amused that you wanted/exspected the pay off after only watching 2 previous Bull matches on the set and this being maybe 2 months into the Bull/Aja feud which lasted a good 2 & 1/2 years roughly.

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Didn't need a payoff, though one could easily inquire as to why we needed a cage otherwise. If Bull had won outright I'd be perfectly fine with that. I'm just not a fan of Bull's "first" loss (that we see) coming in rather screwy fashion, with the purposely shitty officiating and cage escape. God help me for making this comparison but it's not unlike Ryback's first loss coming as a result of a cheap referee double-cross/fast-count.

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I agree with Pete. I know this angle essentially gets driven out to Dream Rush but from what we saw on 8/19 this was a significant step back for me. If I saw this as a stand alone, I would be annoyed and Gedo Kiniski and still would have thought the match had flaws. With what we have seen so far, not a whole lot of this makes sense from the cage, Bull getting beaten, to the garbage can spots. Ajas win feels so anticlimactic and that is unfortunate. I loved Aja's elimination in the 8/24/94 match because that felt like a defining moment of a big dog going down. This felt like Gedo screwing Bull. Joshi in 1990 is kind of depressing me after the promising start.

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Aja gets busted open early. Bull uses Aja’s metal basket weapon which was sitting inside cage. Referee takes it away. Probably should have done that before match started. Bull nails the referee on purpose and he was like that’s cool and goes back to refereeing the match. Aja hits him too in the head with a weapon. Rough gig. And now he’s completely busted open. Felt goofy with the ref involvement. This didn’t settle anything.

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Joshi in 1990 is kind of depressing me after the promising start.

It's by far the worst year of the 90's for available footage and memorable matches. If you took the 20 years from 1983-2002 I'd say 1990 is the weakest year. It was a year of rebuilding AJW which they did an amazing job of, and things start getting good next year.

 

This cage match was clipped a fair bit and disrupting the flow didn't help. Wild and chaotic fighting. It was very messy, but entertaining in it's unpredictability. Plenty of weapon usage as Aja kept hitting Bull's theigh with a severed trash can. And a heavily involved Gedo as ref. All over the shop but it did a good job of furthering the feud.

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Good to know Zenjo. Joshi is back in my good graces after November, but I was just coming off the high of 1994 which really made me a bigger fan of Joshi than at any point before.

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I don't know what disgusted me more: Bull getting screwed by an incompetent referee, or the fact that Aja spends half the bout beating the hell out of Bull's leg with a trashcan, only for Bull to be moving around as well as she ever has like nothing happened. Yes, there was a gash on her leg, but it didn't appear to bother her one bit.

 

I also noticed that the ref got beaten up with no consequences whatsoever. If the guy isn't going to enforce the rules, what the hell's he doing in the cage to begin with? The fact that he was beaten up by two ladies, albeit the two toughest ladies in the promotion, isn't going to help his career any. No wonder AJW went to escape-only rules for its cage matches. (Personally, I think that's the way all cage matches should be. Cage matches are one of the few things where the WWF had it right and the Southern promotions had it wrong. If two people hate each other enough to fight in a cage, I want to see who's tougher and can take more of a beating, not who the better wrestler is.)

 

I'm with Soup; after the athleticism and skill shown in the first few joshi bouts, things have taken a significant downturn with the introduction of Aja and Bull. Hopefully, business picks up again in the near future.

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I didn't know there were escape rules until the finish. I thought Aja Kong was climbing up to pull a Jimmy Snuka and then she just won. Very anti-climatic. I didn't care too much for the match overall, but I did like Bull's leg being worked on by cutting it with the box thing. I don't think I've ever seen that before.

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