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[1977-12-01-NJPW] Antonio Inoki vs Pat Patterson

paul sosnowski

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Pat Patterson comes out to the ring in a fabulous glittery red white and blue striped jacket. This is a one-fall match for Inoki's NWF Heavyweight Title, which he has held since 6/26/75. Before the bell, Patterson starts yelling at Inoki, "I'm gonna break your leg tonight, you understand that? And I'm gonna get your belt, Boy, and take it back to stateside". Then he yells at the crowd "Aww, shaddup!!" Pat Patterson is 36 years old, Inoki is 34


Holy shit, this starts fast!!! They crisscross each other to the ropes, Patterson knees Inoki in the gut, Inoki misses a dropkick and Patterson hooks on the figure four leglock 20 seconds into the match. Not kidding! Inoki tries to get to the ropes, but both men roll out to the floor with the leglock still applied. Patterson gets back in the ring, yelling "Come on, Boy", as Inoki tries to walk it off on the outside. Inoki comes in and fires an MMA style kick to Patterson's left leg. Patterson comically tries to kick him back. Inoki takes Patterson down with a go-behind, into a stepover toehold. He spins down to the mat and turns it into a standing indian deathlock, dropping down to the mat twice,as Patterson screams in pain. Patterson finally gets to the ropes for a break, Inoki goes outside now, Patterson kicks and misses from the apron. They lockup in the ring, Patterson immediately hits an over the knee backbreaker. He scissors Inoki's head and holds him there with a figure four on the mat and yells "Cmon you Japanese Jerk, give up, haha. Give up, Champion, look at him now...hahaha". Patterson drapes Inoki's head on the ropes and jumps on his back, then scoops him up for a bodyslam, then he figure fours Inoki's head again on the mat, the verbal taunts continue. Patterson drops two knees and a big elbow on Inoki's chest, headscissors again...


Two more big elbows from Patterson on Inoki's chest, another headscissors..then Patterson gets Inoki in the corner and drops two knees on his face, another knee to the chest, and back to the headscissors...this is getting to be a bit much. Inoki escapes, Patterson grabs a side headlock and takes him down, into a chinlock (that's a BIG chin..lol). Inoki gets to the ropes, Patterson drops two knees to his neck and back, then bodyslams him again. Right into another headscissors...Inoki escapes and applies the standing deathlock and drops back three times with it now. He reaches back and grabs the chin, Inoki starts blatantly choking him. Patterson bails to the outside, screaming and lashing out at the ringside fans. Patterson lures Inoki into the corner, nails him with a big kick to the abdomen, Inoki swats at his head and messes up Pat's perfect hair. Patterson moves the turnbuckle out of the way and rams Inoki's head twice into the metal. Inoki reverses and rams Patterson into it at full speed and knocks him down. They start swinging at each other, Patterson takes Inoki's leg and bashes it three times into the post on the outside. Patterson starts working the leg and won't break cleanly, the referee grabs his hair, and Pat yells at him, "You sonofabitch". Patterson hoists Inoki up and slams his knee into his own. Down on the mat, Inoki wraps up Patterson's leg and grabs an armbar. Inoki whips Patterson into the corner, Pat comes and him with a big knee, but misses and winds upside down tied up in the ropes. Inoki stomps on Pat's right leg and wraps it around the post to return the favor. Patterson walks it off as the referee counts up to 13. Inoki MMA kicks the leg, Patterson does a go-behind, but Inoki scissors Patterson's back...as they are joined in a very strange position. Patterson rolls him up and drops two hammer elbows on him, before hammerlocking the left arm. Inoki rolls him up for a one count, Patterson holds on and laughs at him again. Inoki picks Patterson up with one arm into the Gotch/Backlund lift, both men tumble over the top rope. Patterson gets in the ring first, meets Inoki with a knee and scoops him into a fireman's carry for an airplane spin, now they both tumble over the opposite rope. Patterson grabs a standing headlock, Inoki reverses and rams Pat's head into the post. No blood.

Inoki brings him back in, hits two big dropkicks, backdrop, a bodyslam, Inoki goes to the top rope and hits a big kneedrop, then locks on the OCTOPUS Submission for the win at 24:01


There was some good stuff in this match, but the neverending headscissors kind of killed it for me. 3 and 1/4 ***





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