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[2001-04-14-AJPW] Taiyo Kea & Johnny Smith vs Genichiro Tenryu & Kim Duk

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I liked this match. It didn't pretend to be anything different than what it was. You had Kim Duk, who was older than dirt and had stolen Rambo's gimmick from IWRG, and a perpetually grumpy Tenryu vs. two midcard guys who are suddenly more important to the company than before because of the departures. I haven't enjoyed too many things about Japanese wrestling in 2001 but I am enjoying Taiyo Kea's sudden rise. it's fun watching Smith get a bigger role too. Both guys were up for the challenge and good enough workers to make it work. If you like Tenryu, he was in vintage form here. He spent most of the bout being snarly and throwing punch combos. 

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OJ and myself have certainly been if different opinions on puro in 01 so far. I don’t think it has been any grand year but I’ve certainly been higher on most of the matches so far. This is the opposite of that. They certainly didn’t over reach but Duk was slow as molasses here and took70% of the match. Kea vs Tenryu continues to be a mice feud but as a semi main in Buddokan, this was a poor match. **1/2 

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