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[1986-09-23-NJPW] Yoshiaki Fujiwara vs Keiichi Yamada


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This was previously available as near unwatchable post stamp size handheld from a japanese site, however, due to recent flood in new japanese handheld footage we get a proper quality version where you see all the details of the grappling.

 

Damn what an intense contest. Almost all on the mat, and Yamada looks really impressive. It's crazy that he was only in his 3rd year as a pro wrestler, but Fujiwara puts him over really strongly. Yamada was a stud and going at Fujiwara like a relentless amateur wrestler. No surfboards or anything from him here, instead he was rocking banana splits and flying legbars, even busting out a credible shootstyle Figure 4. He could've easily gone on and become a high end shootstylist - well, if he wasn't too small maybe. Fujiwara is awesome as you expect from a grappling master, doing lots of cool shit such as using his head to dig into Yamada's elbow joint or reversing the figure 4 into a toe hold. Early on Fujiwara seems to be disrespecting Yamada and mocking his submission attempts, bitchslapping him in the corner, but Yamada keeps pushing him, fighting back with huge slaps and a dropkick that almost kicked Fujiwara's head into th 3rd row. Fujiwara refuses to uses the ropes, but eventually is forced to resort to them. There are like half a dozen great armbar counters from Fujiwara in this match proving why he is the master of the move, several times he seems to be luring Yamada into a trap in order to snap him, but Yamada immediately curls into a pyramid in order to defend against the submission. My favourite moment my have been Fujiwara getting the armbar and flatting Yamada in order to prevent his defense and using his leg to apply the pressure, never seen him do that anywhere else. Yamada keeps pushing and escaping though and going after Fujiwara like a terrier until he goes for one shot too many. Great match.

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  • 4 months later...

Watching Liger as a young lion grap it up with one of the best in Fujiwara was just as satisfying as one might expect. For not having a ton of experience, Yamada looks pretty good in there with the reverse armbar maestro Fujiwara. I mean, whenever he has an opening, Fujiwara is quick to take him down with the armbar. When Yamada finally gets him in a leglock, Fujiwara mocks him, pointing at the leg like "are you kidding me with this shit?" before promptly exerting control. I really like Yamada's little slaps to the face when he's got Fujiwara on the ropes and then he climbs on with a great octopus hold. But Fujiwara peels him off, flings him down, and hits a side suplex. Yamada's able to grab a kneebar to take him to the ropes, and when he's on his feet, he's lunging at Fujiwara with slaps. At one point, he's able to get Fujiwara in a neat figure-four but that's the last straw as Fujiwara contiously takes him down with Fujiwara armbar counters, eventually submitting him for the win. Very cool match.

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  • GSR changed the title to [1986-09-23-NJPW] Yoshiaki Fujiwara vs Keiichi Yamada

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