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[2011-11-06-DDT] Koji Kanemoto & Minoru Tanaka vs Kenny Omega & HARASHIMA


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Uploaded to Universe last week. This match is weird, everything involving Kanemoto vs. HARASHIMA is great and absolutely everything else sucks. I've seen both Omega and Tanaka in matches I like but they're just really boring here. And since it's a tag match building up to an Omega All Japan junior defense against Tanaka, the body of the match is focused on them. Really brings down Kanemoto and HARASHIMA's performances, which is mostly what I wanted to write about here.

They have great chemistry with each other, and you can tell even from the handshakes. Koji ignores Omega, and then goes to shake HARASHIMA's hand but Hara snubs him! Thought that was great. When they're in the ring against each other for the most part they're just punching each other, HARASHIMA just wildly throwing wide hooks like a hurt boxer. 

Referee Matsui has to break up HARASHIMA and Kanemoto after Kanemoto storms in to save Minoru, and they spend a while jawing at each other. This match also has the thing where the DDT crowd all ges behind HARASHIMA when he's up against someone from a big promotion, like in the tag match against Tanahashi and Komatsu.

Around 15 minutes in, they get to do a few of their signature spots to each other. Kanemoto's strikes are wonderful as always. He takes Hara's legdrop to the outside with a really nasty bump. In return, he does the corner kicks, which look great. Then, they high kick each other at the same time and Tanaka and Omega tag in to do their finishing run. It's alright but this is Omega during the time when he did the most shtick, so your mileage may vary.

Of course, HARASHIMA and Kanemoto never faced each other again after this match. Like tears in rain, am I right?

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  • GSR changed the title to [2011-11-06-DDT] Koji Kanemoto & Minoru Tanaka vs Kenny Omega & HARASHIMA
  • 10 months later...

This is a dream match in the making honestly. You have Kanemoto still able to go on a really high level. Tanaka who ages likes fine wine. Kenny Omega who is coming into his own as a wrestler and HARASHIMA. Now, the match doesn’t really blow me away in a way that I liked. There are lulls in the match where they seem just to be going through endless cycles of HARA/Kanemoto and Tanaka/Omega which makes sense given the booking will lead to an Omega vs Tanaka match for the All Japan Junior Heavyweight title. The HARASHIMA vs Kanemoto exchanges are gold though. Awfully stiff strike exchanges, great home promotion hero vs invader stuff. ***1/2

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