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Phil Schneider

[1985-01-16-UWF] Yoshiaki Fujiwara vs Super Tiger

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This is a previously unavailable HH I picked up from Max Lanicault and it is another classic from this series. I think these two work so well together because of what they do different. Fujiwara is going to take you down and rip at your extremities, Sayama is going to throw fast nasty kicks and punches and knock you silly. Both guys can hang in the others world, Fujiwara throws some very cool punch combos in the corner, Sayama counters some on the mat, still they want to get the match where they need it to be. Sayama tries to punish Fujiwara when he gets it to the ground by slipping out and landing huge jumping knees on his prone body, Fujiwara gets some very nasty throws when he can get inside of Sayama's kicks including a cool shoot piledriver. More then almost any other great wrestling matchup, this is a battle of gameplans. This version has Fujiwara coming out ahead. Sayama comes very close to snoozing him out, but finally Fujiwara is able to grab hold. The finishing submission is awesome, we get to see Fujiwara work through every step of the hold, before finally snapping the elbow which causes Tiger to very quickly tap, the submission was a great combo of fast and slow, much like the whole match.

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Fujiwara is constantly aware of his positioning in the ring and Tiger's proximity to the ropes, scooting back when he’s got him in a leglock to prevent the break. When Tiger’s on the offensive, Fujiwara retreats to the corner in defense, cognizant of his weakness to Tiger’s strikes. Tiger nearly overwhelms him again with strikes until Fujiwara starts lobbing punches of his own and shoot piledrives him to red light Sayama’s drive. There’s effective simplicity in Fujiwara’s execution of the final submission -- the way he maneuvers himself around Tiger’s body with the arm in tow, patient yet methodical as he seeks out an opening and quickly cranks on the elbow to tap Tiger.

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