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[2016-04-10-BJW] Shuji Ishikawa vs Hideyoshi Kamitani

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This could've been an amazing match but it being modern puro this is about as good as you're going to get. I liked the beginning with Kamitani getting some shine before Ishikawa took over. Then Kamitani makes his comeback and they, uhm, do stuff for a couple of minutes before transitioning into the finishing stretch. It seems fine. My biggest problem with the match was how they connected the dots. You have Ishikawa ragdolling Kamitani on the outside, throwing him into the chairs, dumping him with a brutal Bodyslam, yet he's kind of limping for no reason, not really acting like you'd want a monster in control to. You don't really actively think of how stuff like how a wrestler walks affect the match quality but even that plays a part. I think they could've milked control segments and the comeback better and that the match definitely could've used more struggle and purpose in the middle. The finishing stretch is really great, as every move gains more purpose, every transition and nearfall holds more weigth, everything is more significant, they build to stuff better and the action improves. ***3/4

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Re-watched this last night and it's definitely lost some of its luster. it had a brutally great finish, with Ishikawa laying into Kamitani with everything he has and Kamitani still not dying. That running knee after the dragon suplex looked killer! And I loved Kamitani’s desperation in the end with those final slaps before he eats Ishikawa’s Rainmaker-style headbutt. But Ishikawa didn’t feel like a big enough danger. He’s at his best when he’s bullying around the younger guys but he was working from underneath for a good chunk of the match, and Kamitani isn’t really opposing enough on offense to carry the match. He’s so much more interesting working as the baby-faced underdog who sells his beating with tears in his eyes. Ishikawa manhandling him on the outside was fun but the back work was wasted and the build to the finish was too flip-floppy. Solid finish but everything else was kind of forgettable.

 

 

 

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I rewatched this too a few days ago as I saw it ranked in the ****1/2 range for some. It is a fun, bulky match but more in the Ishii vs. Shibata style for me where I needed more context and overall progression to help out the insanely stiff shots. ***3/4

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Really liked the match mostly. Ishikawa had some awesome work on the back such as his mean slams and elbows to the spine. Kamitani is a bit bland but he really came off as a fiery up face in the finishing stretch. Him fighting out of the prison lock looked great. I'm a sucker for those spots. However it begs the question why that was even there when the match was previously focused on the back. The finish rocked. Iffy middle though. ***3/4

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