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[2000-12-14-DDT-Never Mind] Sanshiro Takagi vs Poison Sawada JULIE vs Super Uchu Power vs Tomohiko Hashimoto

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Some quick background on the parties involved:

  • Sanshiro Takagi is the original ace and founder of DDT. He's a huge fan of WWE and of "Stone Cold" Steve Austin and thus his "Stone Cold" Sanshiro Takagi character with the matching black boots and black trunks, plus the shattering glass and Stone Cold like vest.
  • Poison Sawada JULIE is a former New Japan and Malenko dojo trainee and he is also the founder of Union Pro-Wrestling. Before DDT he was mostly an indy guy who fought Mummies in various smaller organizations. He is the founder of one of DDT's biggest historical factions, Jakai Tensho. His character revolves around him getting bitten by a snake and have supernatural snake powers to control opponents. This maybe where the Osirian Portal from CHIKARA got a lot of inspiration for their character from.
  • Super Uchu Power is Koichiro Kimura is another guy who's been around forever and has a background in some martial arts and he even fought Rickson Gracie at Vale Tudo Japan 1995 and he also got a chance to compete in RINGS and in various Japanese indy organizations such as W*ING, FMW, etc.
  • Tomohiko Hashimoto is judoka who was trained by Kimura (Super Uchu Power) and was another pro-wrestler who also ventured into MMA. Hashimoto spent many years working Japanese indies and was highly influenced by Big Van Vader. He was even a member of Team Vader in Japan.

If you're a fan of the Japanese indies, than you'll get a kick out of this as its fun in its setting and context, but far from being an all-time classic or anything. Hashimoto and Uchu are two of the more underrated Japanese indy guys, however Hashimoto was still somewhat green here. Uchu was great before he got eliminated as he was destroying everything and everyone in sight. Unfortunately, Uchu went out second, but in its storyline context, it made sense as the feud was between Takagi who was the babyface ace of the promotion and Sawada who was the top heel. The second half of the match featuring mostly Takagi and Sawada I thought was nothing special. Takagi having to bust all of his top notch offense to dispatch Sawada can be seen as overkill, but it made sense as it was the end of an ongoing rivalry at their biggest show.

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Becoming a bigger fan of DDT, I enjoy seeing the origins and this was their biggest match of the year and a rare Korakuen show for them at the time. The KO-D title has become one of the top 5-6 belts in Japan and this is neat to watch it play out as well. I was unaware of anyone besides Takagi and loved Poison’s look. This was a really fun indie style match to watch. It was more like three separate segments than one cohesive match but that helped play up the characters like Hashimoto and Super Uchu in my mind. Hashimoto in particular looked like someone I would like to seek out more stuff of. Takagi is left with Poison for the finale and it is the story of good vs bad. Takagi runs through the whole arsenal and wins the KO-D title. This felt fitting for DDT’s biggest show of the year. ***1/2 (7.1)

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