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Jetlag

[1998-05-05-ARSION-ARS Tournament] Rie Tamada vs Candy Okutsu

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This starts out great with Candy recklessly flying right into a Tamada dropkick. Then a weird thing happens when Okutsu tries a japanese leg roll pin and seems to dislocate Tamada's shoulder and she has to take a break. If that was intentional I'll have to give them points for creativity because I've never seen a simple rollup used in such a way. Tamada comes back and they take it to the mat and Okutsu is immediately going after her shoulder and Tamada fights back by going for the leg and this match is getting really really good now. They move back to standing and really smash into eachother, Tamada has a really great elbow smash and an awesome roaring elbow where she spins around really fast while keeping her elbow perfectly straight like a spinning top, while Candy just smashes her in the face with that forearm. Then Tamada starts busting out these missile dropkicks where she hits Candy right in the face. I guess it gets pretty joshi, where they forget the legwork and throw out a ton of moves, but it's hard to hate it when they do all these super neat standing exchanges, like Candy blocking a Dragon Suplex and eating an axe kick to the back of the head for it etc. I think joshi standing exchanges can be underrated and this was a good example of match with great ones. Match also ended just right. Another really good bout.

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This was a wee bit sloppy in points, a wee bit no-selly here and there, but the good stuff more than made up for that and by the end I thought it was fairly rockin'. The way they introduced the Tamada shoulder injury was certainly inventive and it worked pretty well for a minute there, leading to some neat dueling limbwork. It starts getting really good when they basically drop that limbwork, which maybe sounds ass backwards, but they drop it in favour of thumping each other in the face really hard so how loudly can we complain? Tamada was throwing absolute forearm cannons and then missile dropkicked Candy dead in the face a couple times for good measure. Last couple minutes feel appropriately frantic as well, with one of the best flash finishes like that I've seen in ages. Really fun match. 

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