Jump to content
Pro Wrestling Only
Sign in to follow this  
Charles (Loss)

[2003-12-26-ZERO-ONE] Tatsuhito Takaiwa & Naohiro Hoshikawa vs Dick Togo & Ikuto Hidaka

Recommended Posts

Takaiwa & Hoshikawa vs Togo & Hidaka, Zero-One December 26th 2003

 

Background: Zero-One's top juniors (Takaiwa/Hoshikawa) face off against long-time stablemates Togo and Hidaka in a match to determine the promotion's first junior tag champions.

 

Why I think it's underrated: I saw no discussion of this match whatsoever prior to watching it last year. It's easy to miss; the card is instantly forgettable overall. That's unfortunate, because these four go the extra mile to deliver something special. They build off elements established in a series of Hoshikawa vs Hidaka matches in years past, as kick-based Hoshikawa has to survive the anti-leg offense of Hidaka. Good tag structure in the body of the match followed by a big-time finish, including a semi-accidental bump you'll never forget.

 

What it deserves: Top 50 consideration. If they had a hotter crowd and went about 5 minutes shorter it would probably be a MOTYC. As it stands this is a hidden gem.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This was much better than the NOAH junior tags of the same time period but still wasn't without flaws. Mainly Takaiwa doing his usual Takaiwa bullshit (too many powerbombs, going back on offense too easily). That said, Dick Togo getting busted open gave him a lot more to focus on than he would usually have. He was pretty great punching and clawing at the open wound. I enjoyed the Hidaka vs Hoshikawa matches that came before this, even if they aren't anything incredible. They get a lot more mileage than you'd expect out of leg work in a juniors match and Hoshikawa is surprisingly consistent when it comes to selling it though this being a tag match may have made that easier as well. The combination of Hoshikawa's leg injury and Togo bleeding should have made this more dramatic but the crowd was pretty dead for the first 2/3's of this. A hotter crowd or a different comeback for Takaiwa after being hit with the senton could have elevated this to greatness but as it is it's merely good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can live with Takaiwa being Takaiwa in tag matches. It's when he's in longer singles matches that it gets bad. Here he is mostly okay, with just a little bit of the invincible lariat and powerbomb machine version showing up. Togo is great. Hidaka is great. The thing I loved about this match was Hoshikawa's performance. He never stopped selling the leg, just tapered it back as the leg work got farther behind him and sold in between kicks and by climbing to the top a little slower. Another aspect I liked was the Takaiwa/Hoshikawa tenson and how it may have cost them the match by giving Togo and Hidaka the early opening to take apart Hoshikawa's leg. If Hoshikawa isn't isolated like that early, he's more effective late and that could have swung things the other way. Takaiwa working over Togo's cut was all kidns of fun, as is most Takaiwa dickishness. And Takaiwa really screws up the bump on the second rope pedigree. It almost looks like a tigerdriver 91 , just brutal. One f those mistakes that actually helps the match.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tatsuhito Takaiwa & Naohiro Hoshikawa vs Dick Togo & Ikuto Hidaka - Z-1 12/26/03 NWA Lightweight Tag Team Champions


Am I the only one who is immediately annoyed by a wrestler wearing capris? It just screams I am a bland spot monkey. Based on this one match, Hidaka was just the typical 00s wrestler adding spins & flips to moves that just do not need spins & flips and overwrought finish sequences. Overall, he was not a critical wrestler in the match. In fact, I thought the match lived and died on the shoulders or in this case the knee of Hoshikawa. I had never heard of Hoshikawa, but he gave one helluva selling performance. His offense left a whole lot to be desired especially his weak jumping kicks. Takaiwa had some good spots, but I thought he took away from the flow of the match. Rather than coming in as the heavy hitter saving Hoshikawa, he was more interested in trading spots with his opponents.


Within the first minute, Hoshikawa injured his knee on a dive to the outside. Togo and Hidaka went to town on the knee and started off looking like one of the best Junior matches of the decade. I liked Hoshikawa rallying near the opponent corner only to have Togo sweep the leg from outside. He wraps it around the post and the a chair around it. Hidaka applies a figure-four and Togo comes in & jams a chair into his knee. Takaiwa saves and CREAMS Togo busting him open with the chair that comes flying out and almost hits Hoshikawa. Takaiwa works the cut well, but eventuall Takaiwa and Togo trade teases of finishers before Takaiwa hits a powerbomb only for Togo to hit a top rope Pedigree and then a Pedigree and a pretty, pretty Senton Bomb. Takaiwa now big chops and a Top Rope Death Valley Driver. It has really devolved into spot-trading at this point. Takaiwa sets Togo up for some sort of Doomsday Device, but Hoshikawa whiffs on kick and Togo ranas out. Takaiwa finally wrangles Hidaka and powerbombs to tag out to Hoshikawa.


Hoshikawa is not very good at offense, but the most interesting facet of the match is his knee. Hidaka and Hoshikawa work a really good sequence around his knee with Hidaka targetting it and Hoshikawa not being able to hold him on a first bridging German and on the scond bridged on one leg. Same Doomsday Device set up this time we see it leads to a Takaiwa double powerbomb into a Death Valley Driver. Now that was a wicked spot! I like that as a finish and the only reason not to use that as a finish would be if they were not winning. Of course, they follow it up with weakest, lamest jumping kick by Hoshikawa and Togo saves. Togo detains Hoshikawa and Hidaka gets powerbomb and Togo hits a beautiful Senton. Hoshikawa and Hidaka go back and forth, before Hidaka grabs a heel hook. Senton flying in by Togo. Togo dives onto Takaiwa on the floor and Hoshikawa taps out. Togo and Hidaka are the inaugral NWA Lightweight Tag Team Champions.


When Hoshikawa was in the ring, it was an interesting match with Hoshikawa trying to overcome the early injury and Togo/Hidaka targetting it. Takaiwa would come in and just hit MOVEZ~! Yes, his double powerbomb/DVD was impressive, but would like to see more transition work. Togo has a really great Senton, but still not an outstanding performance. It is a good, heated junior tag, but a little uneven. ***1/2

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  

×