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[2000-05-14-ECW-Hardcore Heaven] Yoshihiro Tajri vs Steve Corino

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This was a classic blood bath as Tajiri finally fights back against Corino and just destroys him. Tajiri is a sadistic monster wiping Corino's blood on his chest and killing him with kicks and putting him through tables.

 

Corino (the heel) makes a few valiant comeback attempts, but he can't match Tajiri. I LOVE this match and have it at about ****1/4.

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Watched this the other day, still holds up. Corino and Taijiri do this really weird reverse David v Goliath thing that I can't really liken to any other match I've seen. Corino's comebacks were all well done. Taijiri when he does the buzzsaw combo to Cornio while he's laying on the table is one of the better go home sequences I've seen. It was OVER after that. Bright spot of ECW's dying days

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Tajiri vs Steve Corino - ECW Hardcore Heaven 2000

 

Cyrus may be the worst character ever. So friggin annoying.

 

Apparently, I saved the best for last. This friggin' ruled. Corino, Victory & Cyrus turned on Tajiri. Big mistake. Corino goes a racist tirade and Tajiri kicks his fucking head off. The kicks and chops were awesome. Great intensity from Tajiri. Corino is such a great cowardly heel. Great set up for Tarantula. Victory well-used to give Corino a heel hope spot. BRAINBUSTER ON THE RAMP! Corino does a five alarm blade job. Bleach hair soaked in blood. Corino has some dark, gross blood. Tajiri dropkicks a table into Corino's face. Tajiri is awesome! Corino backdrops Tajiri into a table. OH MY GOD! A GREAT TRANSITION! Corino is awesome at this old school gimmick with all the suplex variations that never get done in ECW. Hell he busted out a powerslam. I am trying to think if I have ever even seen a powerslam in ECW. Corino gets all caught up with the table. Should have stuck to the old school Finish sequence is awesome. Tajiri gets the Octopus here comes Jack Victory. GREEN MIST~! Tajiri unloads on Corino. I mean just rapid fire kicks and punches. He never lets up and the crowd just builds to a huge pop. Tajiri final kick to the face is just brutal. DOUBLE STOMP THROUGH THE TABLE!!!! Awesome match and a feel good ending! Got to be a top 5 ECW match of all time! ****1/4

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One of the best matches in ECW history. May 2000 has been the month of blood but Corino eclipses them all with a sickening blade job here and some of the darkest blood I have ever seen. His hair is completely red. Tajiri was just amazing attacking him and being insanely violent. The set up for the Tarantula felt natural as did the transition to Tajiri being back body dropped into the table. All of the offense was effective and brutal. The finish was really clever with the timing done really well from the mist to the double stomp through the table. A great, great match. ****1/4

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I've mostly been skipping the ECW PPV stuff because 2000 is pretty dire, but I've really been enjoying reliving Corino's rise up the ranks, and this was a big part of it.

 

Love the way Corino's promo sets up Tapir's anger and thus the violence level. Then Corino takes an absolute beating... the tree of woe kick where his blood is pooling beneath him is absolutely sick (and iconic). The dropkick of the table spot as well is also eye popping. That Corino keeps going is amazing and really puts him in a different light than he'd been seen before - ye I also love the way he sells the weakness that comes from the blood loss. Killer finish, too.

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This was a pretty good match but too one-sided to be a classic of any sort. Tajiri kicked Corino's ass so bad that Styles began to portray Corino in a sympathetic light but I guess they were trying to put over how gutsy Corino was. Tajiri wasn't in any jeopardy, which is a squash in my books even if it was a violent and bloody one.

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This told a great story of Tajiri getting revenge on the bully Corino in a role reversal that we don't often see with the face getting in a large bit of the offensive while the heel fights from the bottom for the most of it. Even though he takes a beating, they do a great job of making Corino effective here as he keeps fighting through the brutal beatdown. Much like most of 2000, Tajiri is the MVP here and looks like someone that they should build around.

 

This is a highlight in ECW's dying days as two of their best talents at this point put on a very good match.

 

****

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Hey look, it's another Tajiri match from 2000 that kicks a whole lot of ass. Corino, for any faults that can be pointed out in him, can take a classic ass whipping and bleed buckets while doing so and that's exactly what he does here. Tajiri is fantastic as the ass kicker who's fed up with the way he's treated by The Network. I think this match went a long way in bridging the gap from Corino being a chickenshit comedy guy to being a guy who could realistically headline the company. I've always loved the manjigatame -> mist spot and Victory sold it great. The dropkick to the table was nasty, Tajiri's brainbuster on the ramp was nasty and the flurry he lands on Corino before the finish has been burned into my brain forever. Not quite a MOTYC, just below it, but one of the very best matches in ECW history and another highlight on what was a fantastic show. ****1/2

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In 2000 I was convinced Tajiri was the best wrestler in the world, and matches like this were the reason. He's a monster ass kicker and Corino absolutely holds up his end. **** 1/2.

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Steve Corino tells Tajiri that the two of them go way back and these morons here in Milwaukee and the millions watching on PPV don’t deserve to see them fight each other.  He says that he’s a forgiving man and is giving “the little slant eyed bastard” (who on earth approved that line???)  one last chance to come back to him, if doesn’t, he’s going to kick his ass!  Well that clearly didn’t go as planned, Tajiri’s responding by taking his head off with a kick.  Corino counters the huracanrana with a powerbomb for a two.  Tajiri is backed up against the ropes, Corino catches a kick, but Tajiri then transitions to the ‘Tarantula’.  He follows Corino out onto the ramp way where he gives him this nasty looking brainbuster.  The camera lingers for a little too long on the fallen Corino as you clearly see him gig himself on the floor.  Tajiri hangs Corino in the ‘tree of woe’ before dropkicking him in the face.  Fuck, blood splatters directly onto the camera lens after that.  This is some blade job as Corino’s hair has already turned dark red while there is a puddle of blood on the mat from where he was hung upside down.  Tajiri places a chair in front of Corino’s face, but Jack Victory grabs his ankle to prevent the baseball slide.  Corino frees himself and levels Tajiri with a superkick.  He picks up that chair and charges, but Tajiri kicks it into his own head.  Tajiri lays Corino over the edge of a table and then dropkicks that into him as Corino is again out on the runway.  Victory is around to check on his man when Tajiri takes out both with a springboard double clothesline.  Corino backdrops a charging Tajiri back into the ring and through that table he’d just set up before getting a near fall after a fisherman’s suplex.  Victory passes Corino a second table which he positions next to the turnbuckles in the corner.  He takes too long on that table though, allowing Tajiri the chance to recover and lock on the Octopus hold.  That brings in Victory but it was almost as if Tajiri was expecting him, blowing the green mist into his face.  Tajiri then throws dozens of unanswered, super-fast, rapid fire kicks and punches that gets a standing ovation from the crowd.  Double foot stomp through the table and Tajiri gets the win.  Kintaro Kanemura jumps Tajiri after the match which in turn brings out Dusty Rhodes, Rhino and finally the Sandman.  The usual five minute long Sandman entrance, so no idea if he was meant to make the save and the wrestlers just got bored of waiting or what, either way they all make their way out of there leaving just Rhino alone.

It’s funny that OJ should use the term squash, because that’s what I felt about this on first viewing.  Tajiri laying a brutal and nasty beating on Corino who has the occasional comeback but goes back to being destroyed by Corino.  A proper sick blade job, Corino’s hair a dark shade of red by the time this is over and loved that closing stretch from the Octopus hold on.

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Oh, man. What a match. Tajiri’s sadism knows no bounds and he mercilessly punishes Corino here -- who has one of the nuttier bladejobs of 2000 as his beach-blonde hair turns strawberry red from the blood that gushes out of his head. He’s on wobbly legs from the blood loss, and his selling makes this match just as much as Tajiri’s malice does. One of the best ECW matches ever, for sure. 

Stray Observations:

  • Tajiri hits Corino with a Brainbuster on the ramp, my God. He’s dead! 
  • Honestly, so many great spots in this one. Tajiri dropkicking the table into Corino’s face; double-stomping him through the table in the finish; misting Jack Victory while twisting Corino in the manjigatame; his flurry of strike combinations that destroys Corino and had the crowd popping out of their seats; the spots just flow fluidly and logically one after another without ever feeling forced. 
  • Corino spouts racist bullshit in the pre-match, and I’m glad Tajiri beats his dumb ass. 
  • I love these inverted David vs. Goliath matches where the face is Goliath and the heel is David. 

Rating: ****½

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