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[1983-04-03-NJPW] Tatsumi Fujinami vs Riki Choshu


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  • 1 year later...

Energetically, Choshu is at his peak in the series, knowing full well if he wants to beat Fujinami, he has to keep a little fire burning through the match. He explodes at the sound of the bell and collides with Fujinami on a lariat attempt. The two take a bit to gather themselves but even after that initial contact, Fujinami is still working with that champion’s air, goading Riki on with slaps as if discrediting him as a threat, a mistake that comes back to haunt him. Choshu has some good takedowns early on as he tries to keep Fujinami under control, working to set up the sasori-gatame. Fujinami plays defense to avoid the hold but once Riki hits the backdrop suplex, he’s got the champion in a tough spot, pulling him back to the middle of the ring after a rope break and re-applying the deathlock hold. Choshu’s aggravation is obvious here over Fujinami refusing to submit and the action becomes a little more desperate, the crowd fully invested at this point. Riki’s able to hit the lariat on the outside but Fujinami delivers the German suplex hold back in the ring for a nearfall. They seem to have each other scouted heading toward the finish but Choshu nails Fujinami with another lariat out of nowhere to score the victory and the title! Fujinami’s in disbelief at the result and having underestimated Choshu.

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  • GSR changed the title to [1983-04-03-NJPW] Tatsumi Fujinami vs Riki Choshu
  • 5 months later...

Another hot start to this rivalry. Starts of similar to their May 82 match. Intense grappling and both guys struggling for the advantage. After such a hot start, the match becomes blurry and by blurry I mean I don’t know what happened because it’s very forgettable. However Riki Choshu locks on the Sasori-Gatame and the match starts getting some energy to it. Then they bring out the big bombs and have a pretty intense finish. Disappointing overall and a huge step down from my previous ****1/2 rating but alas, it happens. **3/4

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  • 4 months later...

Choshu comes in with a lot of intensity and with a specific gameplan, but Fujinami grinds him down and outclasses him in the mat. The way Choshu acts when pinning Fujinami on the ropes is a helpful signifier for where he's at in the match. Early on, he grapevines the leg, works a front headlock and tries to sneak strikes in before the referee breaks them up. After Fujinami has put him through hell on the mat, he just waits there for the referee. Choshu goads Fujinami into a sasori-gatame in a wonderful way, he threatens a toe hold from x-guard (or whatever the catch term for those things is). Fujinami kicks at him, which means Choshu now has both his legs and can try to get his hold. But he doesn't, he ends up falling on his ass and Fujinami gets a rope break. it's not really any of Choshu's tricks that get him the win but just heart and ~fighting spirit~. He turns the tide when Fujinami has him in big trouble following a dropkick and a suplex, by just dropping Fujinami with a backdrop suplex. The home stretch is dope. Choshu tries to submit Fujinami finally applying the sasori-gatame twice, but Fujinami manages to crawl to the ropes both times. Choshu's lariat on the outside is nasty as hell, as well as the one that ends the match but he still struggles to keep Fujinami pinned on the last one! Choshu and Masa Saito's reaction right after the match ends is so good. Outstanding story and world class grappling. Great match.

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  • 4 years later...

This one is stiff, I love this match, the only problem I have with it is the video quality but everything else is awesome, Choshu used his force to limit Fujinami’s technical ability, he gave him no chance at all. Choshu was relentless from start to finish and he was able to keep up hold to hold with his opponent when he had to, the pioneer of the sharpshooter looked like one of the best wrestlers in the world in part thanks to Tatsumi Fujinami’s sublime selling. The match basically is Riki Choshu tries to kill Tatsumi Fujinami in nineteen minutes, Riki Choshu’s energy combined with his opponent’s selling made for a great match, the crowd loves Fujinami and absolutely despised Choshu, when Tatsumi tried to make a comeback the people in the stands started to cheer almost instantly but I felt like Choshu I always had complete control over the situation and he was able to ground Fujinami pretty effectively throughout the entirety of this match. It looked like the first match of the Tatsumi Fujinami vs Ryuma Go trilogy but this time the roles were reversed, Fujinami’s versatility is at full display, in the that trilogy, he was that unbeatable ace figure without any notable weakness in his game while in this one he is the babyface that has no shot at beating the up and coming heel and he is outstanding in both situations, Choshu’s brutal offense also helped, he tried his best to chop Fujinami’s head off with lariats that make Stan Hansen look like Chris Jericho in comparison, add to that his sick backdrop suplex and you have a certified banger and that’s the best way to describe it, Choshu got the three count after hitting Fujinami with a brutal lariat, his opponent couldn’t kickout in time.

If you don’t mind the video quality watch this, it’s absolutely worth a watch, I personally recommend it to everyone who liked the Kengo Kimura match I reviewed yesterday.

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