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Shinya Hashimoto


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Hashimoto is one of the most underrated wrestlers who ever lived.

Since when ? The day I stumbled onto puroresu I heard about Hash as being a great fucking wrestler. Even when the New Japan heavies weren't pimped at all, Hash was the exception to the rule because he was working a stiffer, harder style akin to the AJ guys which were the references back then. I love Hash, he's been a favourite of mine for ever, but it's the first time I've heard of him being "underrated". But hey, if people have forgotten how great he was these days, he should be put back into the mix yesterday indeed.

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Let me start by saying that I really like Hashimoto and really want to see his whole career arc play out. That being said, I don't think I am quite as high on him as most everyone else because I still see him as a step down a lot of times from the All Japan heavyweights. I do think Hashimoto is the type of wrestler I resonate with him the more I watch because while his execution at times was iffy, the emotional aspect of his matches usually delivered in spades.

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I have watched a ton of his matches over the last couple of weeks and I'm still not sick of him. That is really, really rare as watching guys in isolation is usually something I can only do with my absolute tip top favorites. As far as I'm concerned Hash is an absolute upper tier wrestler. Not sure where I would have him on a depth chart, but I really don't think any of the AJPW guys from his era are clearly better. He has the emotional resonance of Kobashi without the tendency for silliness or goofiness, the adaptability and big shot impact of Kawada and the ace like feel of Misawa.

 

I mentioned this in the thread on Bret, but to me Hash is a guy who has an innate quality that very few wrestlers in history have. Call it the "It Factor" or whatever the hell you want to, but he is a guy who can get over more with little body language cues or mannerisms than most anyone I've ever seen. In some respects he's like a better working Choshu (and I like Choshu more than most) in that he can signal escalations in a match in ways that are not overt enough to feel forced, but obvious enough where the crowd will respond and it automatically makes the match feel like the biggest thing happening on earth right that second.

 

I know Hash has plenty of long matches and the AJPW guys have plenty of shorter ones, but I also think he was able to hit highs in shorter, quicker matches than any of the AJPW guys. That might be selection bias as I haven't watched much 90's AJPW in years and have little desire to do so at this point. But stuff like Hash v. Zangiev or even some of the shorter Hash v. Tenryu matches are outstanding bouts, that I would put on the level of the best All Japan matches not just despite the fact that they don't have as much in them but because they don't have as much stuff in them.

 

I'll keep watching more of his stuff when I'm done catching up on some of the 2012 matches I'm behind on.

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Hashimoto is one of the most underrated wrestlers who ever lived.

Since when ? The day I stumbled onto puroresu I heard about Hash as being a great fucking wrestler. Even when the New Japan heavies weren't pimped at all, Hash was the exception to the rule because he was working a stiffer, harder style akin to the AJ guys which were the references back then. I love Hash, he's been a favourite of mine for ever, but it's the first time I've heard of him being "underrated". But hey, if people have forgotten how great he was these days, he should be put back into the mix yesterday indeed.

 

 

If people are going to work the gimmick where they pretend Hash was ever hyped on the level of the AJPW boys or even Liger they are going to have to try it on someone who hasn't been around reading these boards/newsletters for almost 20 years.

 

To be fair it is true that Hash was always touted as the best of the NJPW guys, but outside of your more insulated and puro heavy pimping circles I don't recall him ever getting play as a "holy shit this guy is other worldly worker" the way Jumbo, Misawa, Kawada, Kobashi, Liger or even Hokuto and Toyota did, and even there I don't remember him really cropping up as a "head of the class" guy. You could maybe toss him in the same category as Tenryu and Fujinami as a guy who was clearly highly appreciated and thought of as a great worker within the circle of fans who are really interested in all puro, but outside of Phil, Dean and a few others I don't remember him ever being touted as on the level of the aforementioned people even though I think he definitely was.

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Hash was *always* a step above all NJ heavies for me. He always did a terrific job carrying less talented and charismatic stars to some of the best matches of their careers. I haven't looked into the details yet but you can probably point to nearly a couple dozen stars who had their best match with him in either singles or tags.

 

He's the one guy you can point to when asking "what if" about having the opportunity to work in All Japan during the era and comfortably say he'd likely fit right in. Some may say that's giving him too much credit. I do not.

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Hashimoto is one of the most underrated wrestlers who ever lived.

Since when ? The day I stumbled onto puroresu I heard about Hash as being a great fucking wrestler. Even when the New Japan heavies weren't pimped at all, Hash was the exception to the rule because he was working a stiffer, harder style akin to the AJ guys which were the references back then. I love Hash, he's been a favourite of mine for ever, but it's the first time I've heard of him being "underrated". But hey, if people have forgotten how great he was these days, he should be put back into the mix yesterday indeed.

 

 

If people are going to work the gimmick where they pretend Hash was ever hyped on the level of the AJPW boys or even Liger they are going to have to try it on someone who hasn't been around reading these boards/newsletters for almost 20 years.

 

To be fair it is true that Hash was always touted as the best of the NJPW guys, but outside of your more insulated and puro heavy pimping circles I don't recall him ever getting play as a "holy shit this guy is other worldly worker" the way Jumbo, Misawa, Kawada, Kobashi, Liger or even Hokuto and Toyota did, and even there I don't remember him really cropping up as a "head of the class" guy. You could maybe toss him in the same category as Tenryu and Fujinami as a guy who was clearly highly appreciated and thought of as a great worker within the circle of fans who are really interested in all puro, but outside of Phil, Dean and a few others I don't remember him ever being touted as on the level of the aforementioned people even though I think he definitely was.

 

Hash was unquestionably hailed as the ace performer in NJ, but at no point do I recall any direct or indirect assertion that he was on a par with the AJ elites. I'm not sure I'd argue he belongs there, though Dylan's point makes me want to rewatch as I haven't looked at much of his stuff the last few years. But I don't ever recall him being on a level with the four corners.

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Hashimoto is one of the most underrated wrestlers who ever lived.

Since when ? The day I stumbled onto puroresu I heard about Hash as being a great fucking wrestler. Even when the New Japan heavies weren't pimped at all, Hash was the exception to the rule because he was working a stiffer, harder style akin to the AJ guys which were the references back then. I love Hash, he's been a favourite of mine for ever, but it's the first time I've heard of him being "underrated". But hey, if people have forgotten how great he was these days, he should be put back into the mix yesterday indeed.

 

Yeah, I'm with El-P. I've never heard anyone say a cross word about Hash besides being fat. He's always been pimped as one of the greats.

 

I also think shoot style is alot easier to do than just about any style out there.

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If people are going to work the gimmick where they pretend Hash was ever hyped on the level of the AJPW boys or even Liger they are going to have to try it on someone who hasn't been around reading these boards/newsletters for almost 20 years.

Nice one. I've only been around for the last 14 years. Not that's it's glorious or anything. (BTW, when did I say he was pimped at the level of the AJ boys or Liger ? Oh, yeah, I didn't.)

 

Anyway, Hash *only* finished 24 on the Smarkschoice GOAT poll (in 2006). Yeah, one of the most underrated wrestler that ever lived. Feel the sense of hyperbole. :rolleyes:

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If people are going to work the gimmick where they pretend Hash was ever hyped on the level of the AJPW boys or even Liger they are going to have to try it on someone who hasn't been around reading these boards/newsletters for almost 20 years.

Nice one. I've only been around for the last 14 years. Not that's it's glorious or anything. (BTW, when did I say he was pimped at the level of the AJ boys or Liger ? Oh, yeah, I didn't.)

 

Anyway, Hash *only* finished 24 on the Smarkschoice GOAT poll (in 2006). Yeah, one of the most underrated wrestler that ever lived. Feel the sense of hyperbole. :rolleyes:

 

You didn't say it because it's never happened. But it should. Because he's better than all of them sans maybe Kawada

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I'm one of the biggest Victor Zangiev fans out there and that match is fun, but if you think that's better than some of the AJ matches, you need to do some rewatching.

It's not even better than some of the AJPW matches? Jesus Christ I know they are idols we are supposed to worship at the feet of but that's a little much no?

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If people are going to work the gimmick where they pretend Hash was ever hyped on the level of the AJPW boys or even Liger they are going to have to try it on someone who hasn't been around reading these boards/newsletters for almost 20 years.

Nice one. I've only been around for the last 14 years. Not that's it's glorious or anything. (BTW, when did I say he was pimped at the level of the AJ boys or Liger ? Oh, yeah, I didn't.)

 

Anyway, Hash *only* finished 24 on the Smarkschoice GOAT poll (in 2006). Yeah, one of the most underrated wrestler that ever lived. Feel the sense of hyperbole. :rolleyes:

 

You didn't say it because it's never happened. But it should. Because he's better than all of them sans maybe Kawada

 

That's your opinion. And even with that opinion that doesn't make him the most underrated wrestler that ever lived by a long, long, long shot. The guy has been pimped as a great wrestler foverer. (nice no-sell of the GOAT poll result too)

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Thank you for letting me know what an opinion is. Much needed analysis as always from Jerome.

 

The fact that you call him "one of" the best New Japan Heavyweight's ever in this thread is a good place to start actual discussion about Hash rather than running through the same old "I have liked this guy forever" schtick we hear all the time.

 

Who is even comparable to Hash as an NJPW heavy? Mind you you will have to answer with a dreaded opinion, but I'd love to hear it.

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Thank you for letting me know what an opinion is. Much needed analysis as always from Jerome.

Nice side-stepping. Still no reply on your comment being ridiculously hyperbolic ? Yes ? No ? I guess not.

 

The fact that you call him "one of" the best New Japan Heavyweight's ever in this thread is a good place to start actual discussion about Hash rather than running through the same old "I have liked this guy forever" schtick we hear all the time.

Oh, that's a nice one. Taking about schtick, understand that you can't possibly "discover" every damn great wrestler ever. I get your frustration.

 

Who is even comparable to Hash as an NJPW heavy? Mind you you will have to answer with a dreaded opinion, but I'd love to hear it.

I haven't watched puro in years, and old school NJ in probably a decade. To me Hash was the best New Japan heavyweight ever.

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I'm one of the biggest Victor Zangiev fans out there and that match is fun, but if you think that's better than some of the AJ matches, you need to do some rewatching.

It's not even better than some of the AJPW matches? Jesus Christ I know they are idols we are supposed to worship at the feet of but that's a little much no?

 

It was fun but nothing overtly special. One of the better Zangiev matches.
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Let me start by saying that I really like Hashimoto and really want to see his whole career arc play out. That being said, I don't think I am quite as high on him as most everyone else because I still see him as a step down a lot of times from the All Japan heavyweights. I do think Hashimoto is the type of wrestler I resonate with him the more I watch because while his execution at times was iffy, the emotional aspect of his matches usually delivered in spades.

When I saw people comparing him to the AJPW group I thought it was crazy at first, just comparing the amount of super high end stuff that a Kobashi or Misawa produced as opposed to Hashimoto. But I think a lot of that has to do with the AJPW style being more conducive towards high end matches. I think after looking at the individual performances that Hashimoto absolutely belongs in the discussion with the AJPW crew, even though I'd say he produced many less high-end matches. Hashimoto had some brilliant performances in matches that were not "laid out" to be all-time classics. One example would be the Hashimoto-Yamazaki match from G1 98 in which both guys were absolutely incredible but the match as a whole didn't end up as good as the best Misawa/Kawada/Kobashi stuff. So yea, Hashimoto was pretty damn great, even if he doesn't have the amount of super high-end stuff that the AJPW guys were churning out.

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I don't give a fuck about the alleged hyperbole of my comment. If it makes your ego feel better for me to say he is one of the least talked about great wrestlers ever fine. Or are we going to pretend he's a guy who is talked about on the level of guys like Hansen, Bret, Flair, Funk, your AJPW boys, Liger, et?

 

I don't give a shit about "discovering" anyone. If I was interested solely in "discovering" people I damn sure wouldn't spend my time watching matches held in front of 50 thousand plus people, when there are tons of obscure little Southern indy matches on youtube.

 

Glad we agree Hash isn't "one of" the best NJPW heavies now, which was your glorious attempt to pimp in this thread.

 

Now to a serious question from someone who isn't trying to prove how cool he is.

 

Jerry, I think Fujinami is an interesting one. If you asked me to rate them career v. career I'd probably take Fujinami because I like him a lot as a junior and the fact that he transitioned so well to the heavy ranks is a plus with me. I do not think Fujinami by himself has the same aura as Hash, nor do I think he was the same level of big match worker. I haven't watched a substantial amount of 90's Fujinami in a long time, though what I have watched recently led me to believe that he is better than "pretty good" as I've seen some characterize him as from the period, but nowhere near the level of the top heavies of that period. I think it's telling that an awful lot of Fujinami's best performances as a heavyweight were in tags or other multi-man environments. I don't even mean that as indictment I just think in some ways he is more suited to that environment. Fujinami has some great singles matches to be sure, particularly the Choshu matches, but I don't know if I would buy him as a better singles match wrestler than Hash. I'd have to think on it for a while.

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I'm one of the biggest Victor Zangiev fans out there and that match is fun, but if you think that's better than some of the AJ matches, you need to do some rewatching.

It's not even better than some of the AJPW matches? Jesus Christ I know they are idols we are supposed to worship at the feet of but that's a little much no?

 

It was fun but nothing overtly special. One of the better Zangiev matches.

 

 

I had it top five on the NJPW Set. I don't regret that at all.

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Now to a serious question from someone who isn't trying to prove how cool he is.

Trying to proove how "cool" I am on a pro-wrestling board arguing about a dead japanese pro-wrestler being pimped as a great one years ago. Feel the coolness factor.

 

Seriously, let it rest. I will certainly do so. You made a hyperbolic statement, I just put it in perspective, then you made it personnal taking about "gimmick" and "schtick" and "ego".

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Now to a serious question from someone who isn't trying to prove how cool he is.

Trying to proove how "cool" I am on a pro-wrestling board arguing about a dead japanese pro-wrestler being pimped as a great one years ago. Feel the coolness factor.

 

Seriously, let it rest. I will certainly do so. You made a hyperbolic statement, I just put it in perspective, then you made it personnal taking about "gimmick" and "schtick" and "ego".

 

Let it rest? You were still trolling me for validation. Just fuck off.

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