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superkix

[2018-06-20-BJW] Hideki Suzuki vs Takuya Nomura

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An easy MOTYC. Here's my review from SUPERDUPERPLEX.

Quote

This is wrestling. This is what makes for a compelling story, full of heart and fire -- not fluff and glitter. The classic tale of the student trying to best the teacher. If you go back and watch the matches between Hideki Suzuki and Takuya Nomura, you begin to see the flowering of Nomura as a wrestler. In each match, Nomura learns something new and applies it to the next, and with each new match, Hideki dominates him less and less. Nomura knows Suzuki better than almost anyone in Big Japan. He knows if you try to tangle with him early on over a lock up, you're toast. So he keeps his distance, peppering the leg with kicks and then when he finds an opportunity, he goes for it. In this case, he's able to escape the front facelock with a go behind into the rear waistlock but when he tries to go for the arm, Hideki is quick to take over and exert his dominance. Nomura smartly pops him in the ribs with a punch to escape a headlock and fights for a leglock, and you see the pain in Hideki's face when Takuya cinches in, forcing the champ to grab the rope. Selling. Hideki again re-asserts himself on the ground, squeezing Nomura in a scarf hold for a rope break. Then Nomura starts with the kicks, targeting the arm. He goes for an armbar and digs his fucking thumb into Hideki's eye in order to break his resistance and get a reverse armbar. Awesome. You can see the inexperience but at the same time, the fighting spirit, as Nomura's trying grab the arm and hold on in some kind of submission.

When Hideki is back on his feet, he's at his most vulnerable. Nomura backs him into a corner with strikes, taking him down with palm thrusts and kicking him when he's down. Of course, that only pisses off Hideki, who mounts him and lands a few palms of his own as Nomura tries to defend himself. Then, when he sees an opening, he punches Nomura in the side of head. Again, Nomura finds an opportunity with an exposed arm and tries for a double wristlock but he can't hold on and goes back to what worked before: the strikes. He lays into Hideki with some kicks, some knees, throws him with a German suplex and then lets loose on Hideki against the ropes with slaps. This is when the champ realizes if he's going to keep his belt, he needs to shut this down quick. He shoves Nomura back, laying into him with a rare (low) high kick and punts him in the face. Suzuki, lip busted, waits and then knocks him out with another punt kick. And just like that, Nomura's shot is over...but, if anything, Nomura was one of the few to find a chink in Suzuki's armor and in the next time they face each other, Suzuki is going to have to fight even harder to remain the master.

 

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One of the most unique matches I've seen this year. Really reminded me a lot of an MMA fight, more specifically Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen. You see the underdog exerting his will and even putting the super dominant champion in real trouble, only for the champ to pull out something crazy and get the win. And at less than eleven minutes long, that's not something you see in a whole lot of championship matches. But I'm glad I saw it. ****

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This was a good match. The student/teacher relationship worked here, and, finally, someone was able to crack Suzuzi a bit and make him reel. Nomura looked really fantastic here and looked very believable even though he's a lot smaller. His strikes looked brutal, I think he really walloped Suzuki once or twice. The finish really worked for me, too, with Suzuki getting the advantage with a brutal kick, realizing that was his way of finishing the match, and laying in two more. Very good stuff.

 

****

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I also must say that considering this was the first Hideki match I saw since the snore-inducing rematch with Daichi, it was nice to see the guy I was blown away by last year.

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I knew superkix would love it as much as I did.

 

Nomura is TWENTY FUCKING FOUR YEARS OLD, and he sold out Korakuen Hall in his first title challenge. This is another "Bati Bati meets Strong BJ" type match the young kid has had this year - the other one being the MOTYC against Abe, who is at ring side supporting the prodigy - and what's most impressive is that, in a promotion that has deathmatch wrestling as (at the very least) half of it's main attraction, the crowd KNOWS what match they are gonna get. Every hold might be the finish, and every strike counts. Takuya had a sold out Korakuen going crazy as he, the 22 year old punk, made Hideki Suzuki, the most dominant wrestler the promotion has had in the last two years, look beatable. The ending might be a little underwhelming but I thought it was fucking genius, not gonna spoil it though.

Nomura's 2018 is fucking insane, this match doesn't have the work or intensity as the Abe one, but it has the stakes, the story and fucking Korakuen.

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12 hours ago, Jmare007 said:

Nomura's 2018 is fucking insane, this match doesn't have the work or intensity as the Abe one, but it has the stakes, the story and fucking Korakuen.

Between this, the Abe match, the Togo match, and his performance in the Strong Climb, Nomura is easily one of the best wrestlers in Japan right now. He gets it. 

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8 hours ago, superkix said:

Between this, the Abe match, the Togo match, and his performance in the Strong Climb, Nomura is easily one of the best wrestlers in Japan right now. He gets it. 

Yup, can't wait to see what's in store for him next.

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As is expected if you've ever seen these two interact, Suzuki wrestles from on top here, and looks unstoppable for long stretches, but this really works because he sells the hell out the bursts of offense that Nomura does get, and makes it feel like a real fight in that way. By the second time Nomura gets some big hits in, you might start to thing, shit, maybe he can actually do this? That's pretty quickly dispelled and Suzuki looks strong as hell again by the end, but this is incredibly exciting in bursts.

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I loved this, possibly top five for the year for me. Hideki was a major discovery for me last year, but I've not seen anything of his in 2018 - and it seems that for a lot of people he's been disappointing. This, however, was incredible - a very simple teacher/student set-up with Hideki dominating early, though not really able to pin Nomura down. And then when Nomura does suddenly get a few shots in, it's phenomenal - Hideki seems to almost panic, covering up and hitting the mat trying to avoid the strikes, and there's a real surge of excitement for something so simple and direct, with the sense that we might get a big upset. The ending, which may be offputting for some, I loved - Nomura had his chance, couldn't get it done, and then all it took was one opening for Hideki to put him down - and the fact that the crowd knew this was a possibility was what had them going crazy for each small shift of momentum.

I've seen people saying this was too short, or that it would have been a great match if it were longer. This is probably a discussion for a different time, but I find that notion very weird, and quite telling in terms of the broad model of what a great match is in 2018 - a model that I think needs challenging. To me, this was pretty much perfect as it was - what they did only worked because it was this length, because the finish could come out of nowhere, and because everything counted. Not to say that there's no place for a good epic, just that there's no reason for that to be the standard to which all great wrestling must aspire.

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I loved this match. Easily top five for the year so far. 

One of the criticisms levelled at Suzuki is that he can look lazy which to me is his character. He is incredibly arrogant because he knows he can beat you on the mat. A valid criticism is that he sometimes doesn't give enough to his opponent and instead can make them look inconsequential. His matches against Sekimoto and Okabayashi show him when he wants to work with his opponent because those matches usually play of Suzuki's grappling skills and Sekimoto/Okabayashi pure strength and striking ability. 

His matches against Kamitani and Hashimoto are the other end where instead he makes them look like chumps and undeserving of his time. 

Nomura straddles the fine line between them as befitting his stature. He's a young rookie who is bulking up. He's not as big as Suzuki and he can't out wrestle him (yet) but he has grit and heart. The crowd see this and absolutely adore him for it. They were hugely behind him when Sato was brutalising him and from his adventures you can see his nastiness coming through. 

This match was a perfect length for what they were trying to show. These two had a match during the Kaki wave show last year which was about 8 minutes and was more grappling than striking and this was the logical progression. 

Suzuki couldn't beat him by grappling and making him submit so he resorted to a closed fist strike. And then he resorted to kicking him in the head when Nomura was downed. And when that didn't work he had to desperately do it again to get a KO win. 

Nomura shouldn't beat Suzuki in his first title challenge but they can build from this for the rematch. If BJW book it right, it should be at one of their big events of the year. 

I'm going to watch it again 

 

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Suzuki has been a whole lot of nothing in 2018, so it's mind boggling that a rookie with only a little over 2 years experience was able to give Suzuki his best match all year. Well I shouldn't be that surprised since Nomura is a student of Suzuki, but this was still quite the intense battle. Even with only two years experience, he was still made to look super competitive against Suzuki in a shoot style type of match. A punt to the face is what kept Nomura down, but it's clear that his future is really bright, ****.

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This was the best 'straight' wrestling match I've seen this year. Nomura pairing up with Fuminore Abe and turning on Hideki lead to an incredible tag match to set up this title match and while you can argue Nomura didn't really *deserve* a title shot, Hideki was more than willing to get in the ring with him and beat his ass for what he did at Endless Survivor. Nomura looks way more credible here than you'd probably expect a two year rookie to look in their first title challenge but it's clear that he's still overmatched against Hideki. The match didn't need to go longer, this was the perfect length given Suzuki's position in the company and Nomura's position in his career. The finish ruled and reminds me of the Fujita/Shibata match from 2004 which is one of my all time favorite matches. The crowd boos Hideki and he flips them off, letting them know he doesn't give a shit what they think because he just killed his former young boy. This match is super easy to understand even without the context of Nomura's turn against Hideki or the lead in tag. It's a brief watch, it's got good action, it's violent and the finish rules. You can't really ask for more than that. ****3/4

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I don't watch a lot of Big Japan, but this was good. Liked the way Suzuki pressed his size advantage early, Nomura's intensity as he tried to take control of the match and the dickish finality of Suzuki's last big punt. You get the sense these guys have an even better match in them, but I'm glad we still see glimmers of shootstyle in 2018. 

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