Archive for Shinjiro Otani

NJPW Super J Cup 1994

Posted in NJPW with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2010 by Grappleholic

The show starts with comments from some of the participating wrestlers.  I don’t speak Japanese, but I’m sure it’s something along the lines of “I will win!”  Then we get a cool opening video package.

The new Japan ring announcer whose name I forget (H-something Tanaka, maybe?) welcomes us to the show (LIVE from the Sumo Hall in Tokyo) and all the participants come out:

Masayoshi Motegi (SPWF)
Hayabusa (FMW)
Ricky Fuji (FMW)
Gedo (WAR)
Super Delfin (Michinoku Pro)
TAKA Michinoku (Michinoku Pro)
Great Sasuke (Michinoku Pro)
Negro Casas (New Japan)
Dean Malenko (New Japan)
Black Tiger II (New Japan)
Wild Pegasus (New Japan)
Shinjiro Otani (New Japan)
El Samurai (New Japan)
Jushin Thunder Liger (New Japan)

So everybody is in the ring, then I think Tatsumi Fujinami comes out to show off his shiny WWF Junior Heavyweight Championship belt from the early 80s… or something.

Round 1: Gedo vs. Dean Malenko.  Gedo was chunky and had hair at this point.  They shake hands, then go at it fast and furious.  They slow it down and do that elborate arm counter sequence the Japanese fans always like.  They do another awesome little wrestling sequence stemming from a cross armbreaker attempt by Gedo.  Malenko locks in a cross armbreaker of his own.  Gedo turns it into a cradle, but Malenko puts him back down.  Gedo gets out of that particular hold, but Malenko stays on his arm.  Fuck Malenko is great.  Malenko goes for a chickenwing facelock but Gedo fights it, so Malenko just puts him in a Dragon sleeper.  Gedo gets out of that one too.  Malenko hits a brainbuster for a near fall.  Then I got a phone call and couldn’t type for a few minutes.  Gedo catches Malenko coming off the ropes with a powerslam for the pin at 8:04.  Really good match.  Malenko being eliminated in the first round sucks, though.

Round 1, Non-Title: UWF Super Welterweight Champion Super Delfin vs. Shinjiro Otani.  Otani jumps Delfin before the bell and goes after his leg.  He stays on the leg, punishing it in various ways.  Delfin gets rope breaks to escape the holds and finally makes a comeback, leapfrogging Otani, then dropkicking him, and doing a backbreaker.  All of these moves require use of the legs.  Delfin shows no ill effects from Otani’s earlier leg work.  Otani responds by punishing Delfin’s legs some more.  Delfin stomps Otani with his apparently uninjured leg, then hits a backdrop and a stalling brainbuster.  Otani kicks out of a very near fall.  Otani blocks another brainbuster attempt, then throws Delfin out of the ring and hits a springboard dive.  Otani hits a missle dropkick for a near fall, then goes after Delfin’s leg again.  Delfin gets a rope break.  Otani pulls him to the middle of the ring and puts him back in the leg hold.  Delfin hits a tornado DDT and gets the pin with what I assume is the Delfin Clutch at about 8:07.  Good match, despite the fact that 90% of Otani’s offense was targeting Delfin’s legs and Delfin didn’t sell his legs at all.  They shake hands after the match.

Super Delfin comments on something.

Round 1:
TAKA Michinoku vs. Black Tiger II.  For the benefit of those ignorant of puroresu, Black Tiger is Eddie Guerrero.  Tiger hits that somersault he always did and then powerbombs young TAKA.  He continues to punish TAKA in various ways and even puts him in what appears to be a Sharpshooter.  TAKA starts making a comeback and Tiger bails.  Once TAKA’s momentum evaporates, Tiger comes back in to beat him some more.  He is surprised to learn that TAKA still has some steam.  TAKA hits a springboard dive to the outside, then gets near falls with a German suplex and a Frankensteiner.  Tiger blocks another Frankensteiner attempt and powerbombs TAKA for a two count.  Tiger hits a frog splash for a near fall.  TAKA gets more near falls from a powerbomb and a moonsault.  He goes for another moonsault, but Tiger gets his knees up and and hits a brainbuster for a near fall.  Tiger wins with a tornado DDT at 6:47.  Okay match.  Ring boy Tatsuhito Takaiwa helps TAKA to the back.

Round 1, Non-Title: WWC Junior Heavyweight Champion Masayoshi Motegi vs. El Samurai.  Motegi dropkicks Samurai, then the bell rings.  Another dropkick sends Samurai out of the ring, and Motegi dives through the ropes onto him.  Motegi goes to the top rope, but slips and falls off.  Goof.  Samurai makes a comeback and gets a near fall off a piledriver, then another one off something else.  Samurai goes for a crab hold and they do a couple of cradle reversals.  Samurai gets a near fall off of a Tombstone Piledriver, then another off a neat reverse brainbuster.  Samurai misses a dropkick when Motegi hangs onto the ropes.  Motegi dropkicks Samurai and runs at him, but gets backdropped out of the ring.  Samurai hits his own dive to the outside.  Samurai hits a missile dropkick back in the ring for a two count.  Samurai goes for a Frankensteiner, but Motegi powerbombs him, then does a surfboard hold.  Motegi hits some rolling Germans, but Samurai reverses one into a front cradle for another close one.  German suplex gets a near fall for Samurai, then the Samurai Bomb gets the victory at 7:09.  Worst match so far, but still not bad.

Motegi comments.

Round 1: Ricky Fuji vs. Negro Casas.  Casas throws a dropkick, then they do some stuff on the mat.  They stay on the mat for a few minutes, then Casas sends Fuji to the outside and dives out onto him.  Has there been a dive in every match so far?  I think so.  Back in the ring, Fuji hits a diving double axe handle for a two count.  Casas gets a one count with a la magistral, then a two count off of a diving senton.  He tries the senton again, but Fuji moves.  Fuji hits a Tiger Driver for the win at 5:53.  The match was so-so.

Round 1: Hayabusa vs. Jushin Thunder Liger.  This should rock.  I think I’ve seen it before, but it’s been forever.  Masato Tanaka is one of the FMW guys out to second Hayabusa.  Hayabusa attacks Liger before the bell, then does the obligatory suicide dive.  Hayabusa puts him back in the ring and dropkicks him.  Hayabusa keeps up the attack until Liger manages to get the upper hand and lock in a figure-four leglock.  Hayabusa gets a rope break, then Liger nails him with a flurry of shoteis and hits a powerbomb for a near fall.  Liger goes back to the legs with a Prison lock.  Hayabusa tries to punch his way out, but Liger puts more pressure on.  Liger lets him go to beat on him some more, then goes back to working the leg.  Hayabusa gets a headlock on Liger, who backdrops him to escape.  Liger hits the koppou kick in the corner, followed by his avalanche-style brainbuster.  That normally means death, but Hayabusa manages to get a shoulder up.  Hayabusa fights back and goes up top to hit a spinning kick for a two count.  Hayabusa hits a moonsault for a near fall.  He comes off the top rope again and botches a headscissors.  Hayabusa overshoots on a Shooting Star press and lands on his face.  Liger hits the Liger Bomb for a near fall.  Liger sets up for his avalanche brainbuster again, but Hayabusa pushes him away.  He dives, but Liger catches him with a powerbomb.  Liger hits a Fisherman buster for the win at 10:18.  Liger was great, but Hayabusa botched a bunch of shit.  They shake hands after the match.

Haybusa comments.

We get a recap of Round 1.

Round 2: Gedo vs. Super Delfin.  Gedo beat Dean Malenko in the first round, while Delfin beat Shinjiro Otani.  Delfin goes after Gedo’s arm, but Gedo kicks him away.  Delfin locks in a half crab while grinding his boot in Gedo’s ear.  Ouch.  Gedo tries the same crab hold, but Delfin hits an enzuigiri.  Delfin throws some strikes that don’t affect Gedo, then nails him the balls and takes control.  Delfin hits a nice spinning headscissors, then they trade dropkicks.  Gedo gets back on track and goes on the offensive with repeated kicks to Delfin’s spine, then puts him a backbreaker-type hold.  Delfin manages to send Gedo face-first into the turnbuckle and hits a brainbuster for a two count.  Neckbreaker gets another two count.  Gedo gets sent to the outside, then Delfin jumps to the top rope and dives outside onto him.  I wonder if every match in this round will have dives out of the ring too.  Gedo fights back, but Delfin gets a near fall with a victory roll.  Gedo hits his powerslam that put away Malenko in round 1, but Delfin kicks out.  Gedo gets a near fall with a moonsault, then Delfin gets another one of his own with a crucifix hold.  Delfin hits a backdrop hold, which Gedo also manages to kick out of.  Delfin hits a diving elbow drop for a two count.  Delfin hits a tornado DDT and goes for the Delfin Clutch, but Gedo surprises him with an inside cradle for the win at 8:21.

Round 2: Black Tiger II vs. Wild Pegasus.  Eddie Guerrero vs. Chris Benoit, so you know this has to be good.  Tiger beat TAKA Michinoku in the first round, while Pegasus had a bye. They start out with some fine old fashioned wrestling.  Tiger breaks from that and hits that hilo he always liked to do.  Tiger punishes Pegasus in various ways until Pegasus counters a brainbuster attempt and hits a reverse brainbuster of his own.  Pegasus goes on the offensive.  He gets his first near fall off of a German suplex hold, then another off of a powerbomb.  Tiger comes back in a big way when he hits a nice Frankensteiner and gets a near fall off of his own German.  Tiger hits a fall away slam, but then misses a missile dropkick.  Tiger does an awesome sequence where he almost slips on the top rope, but keeps his balance and hits a swank Frankensteiner for a near fall.  He follows that with a top rope Frankensteiner, but Pegasus manages to kick out of that too.  Tiger hits a brainbuster and goes for the tornado DDT, but Pegasus blocks it.  Pegasus goes for some avalanche move, but Tiger pushes him away and dives.  Pegasus catches him with an armdrag and covers for the win at 10:23.  Not their best match, but still a very good give and take match.

Round 2: Great Sasuke vs. El Samurai.  Sasuke had a bye in the first round, while Samurai had to go through Masayoshi Motegi.  They lock up and Sasuke goes a little leg work.  They break and lock up again, but Samurai struggles to get Sasuke up for a back suplex.  Sasuke maintains the advantage.  Samurai fights back and goes to work on Sasuke’s leg.  Samurai hits that backdrop suplex he was looking for earlier, then stretches Sasuke with a nasty hold.  Sasuke fights back and sends Samurai out of the ring, then hits a wacky dive to the outside.  Back in the ring, they go at it fast and furious, then Samurai hits his own suicide dive.  Samurai hits a nice German for a near fall in the ring, then follows with his diving headbutt for another near fall.  Samurai goes for a powerbomb,  but Sasuke counters into a Frankensteiner for a near fall.  Sasuke gets another near fall with a sunset flip off the turnbuckle.  Samurai nails his powerbomb,  but Sasuke kicks out again.  Sasuke counters something from Samurai into a sunset flip for the win at 11:41.  Really really good match here, best of the show so far.  They shake hands after the match.

Round 2: Ricky Fuji vs. Jushin Thunder Liger.  Fuji beat Negro Casas to get here.  Liger beat Hayabusa.  Neat hammerlock/flip exchange to start, then a test of strength.  Fuji hits the obligatory suicide dive, then powerbombs Liger on the floor.  They do more stuff, then Liger hits a nasty ghetto stomp off the ring apron.  Soon after, Liger goes for his avalanche-style brainbuster, but Fuji turns around on him and lands on top for a near fall.  Fuji sends Liger out and hits a baseball slide dropkick.  Fuji sets up Liger on the top rope, but Liger nails him with a shotei and hits a diving Frankensteiner for the win at 7:50.  Cool finish.  I’ve forgotten that Liger used to be a really good flier before his brain surgery and various injuries piling up.  Liger’s still great anyway though.

Fuji comments.

Semifinal: Gedo vs. Wild Pegasus.  Usual pretty stuff to start, then Benoit slaps Gedo.  Gedo slaps him back, and it’s ON!  They go at it, then Goed locks on a painful looking arm submission that looks like it’d be hell on your shoulders.  He gets a rope break and soon after they chop the shit out of each other for a bit.  Benoit gets sent outside and Gedo hits a moonsault from the turnbuckle onto him.  They get back in the ring and Gedo misses a diving headbutt.  Benoit hits a powerbomb for a near fall, then slams Gedo and hits his own diving heatbutt for the win at 6:18.  Good match for the time they were given.

Gedo comments.

Semifinal: Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Great Sasuke.  They start with the classic “do some technical stuff and flips to pop the crowd” thing.  They do some more stuff, but I was momentarily destracted.  A common problem for me.  Liger lands his koppou kick and Sasuke is out of it for a minute.  Liger hits a Tombstone Piledriver and locks Sasuke in a chickenwing facelock.  Liger punishes Sasuke’s arm.  Liger comes off the top rope and they dropkick each other at the same time.  Liger goes outside and Sasuke hits a gorgeous Asai moonsault.  Sasuke hits another insane dive off the top rope out of the ring.  They finally make it back in the ring and Sasuke goes to town on Liger.  Sasuke hits a Tombstone of his own and follows with a Swanton bomb (dunno what he calls it), but Liger moves out of the way.  Liger hits the Liger bomb for a two count.  Liger hits an avalanche-style Frankensteiner for two, then Sasuke counters his cover for two of his own.  Liger hits something (brainbuster?) for a near fall.  Liger hits a Fisherman buster, but Sasauke manages to kick out.  Liger suplexes Sasuke out of the ring and dives off the turnbuckle onto him.  Sasuke tries to springboard back into the ring, but messes up and lands on his head.  OUCH.  He recovers and hits a Frankensteiner for the win at 18:09.  Awesome match.  They hug afterwards.

Liger comments.

Final:
Great Sasuke vs. Wild Pegasus.  They go at it, and it’s good stuff.  All the other participants in the tournament are at ringside watching the final match.  5 minutes in, Benoit hits a German suplex for a near fall.  Sasuke slams Benoit and hits a leg drop, then works on his arm.  Benoit goes for a powerbomb, but Sasuke counters with an arm drag.  Benoit gets a near fall with a Dragon suplex hold.  Benoit follows with the diving headbutt for a two count.  Benoit locks in the Sharpshooter, then hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for a two count.  Benoit whips Sasuke into the ropes again and throws a dropkick, but Sasuke holds on so it’ misses.  German suplex gets another two count.  At 13 minutes, Sasuke finally hits the obligatory suicide dive.  Sasuke hits his own German for a near fall, then gets another with a Fisherman suplex.  Sasuke misses a diving dropkick.  Sasuke suplexes Benoit out of the ring.  More stuff, then Sasaki hits a strange moonsault for a near fall.  Benoit hits a gutwrench suplex off the top rope for the win at 18:46.  Good match.

Now for the celebration.  Tatsumi Fujinami gives Benoit his old WWF Junior Heavyweight title belt and a gold jacket with “WINNER” on the back.  Of course, he also gets some big trophies too.  Sasuke, Tiger, Gedo, and Liger get trophies for various awards too.

I finally get to hear someone in English, as Benoit comments.  So does Sasuke, but he doesn’t speak English.  Then we get a nice closing video package.

All in all a really good show, but I wouldn’t call it the best show ever as some people have.

Starrcade: The Essential Collection Disc 2 (Repost)

Posted in WCW with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2010 by Grappleholic

Originally posted on my old blog on 2/1/09.

Tully Blanchard introduces #19 on the countdown.

#19
Starrcade, 11/26/87
NWA World Tag Team Championship Match: Arn Anderson & Tully Blanchard (w/ JJ Dillon) (c) vs. The Road Warriors (w/ Paul Ellering).  Jim Ross and Tony Schiavone are on commentary.  The Road Warriors are challenging for the gold in their hometown.  Hawk dominates Anderson to start.  Tully comes in and quickly tries to bail, but Animal press slams him back into the ring.  He tries to bail again, but Hawk chases him down and throws him back in.  The Horsemen double team Hawk briefly, but Hawk nails a double clothesline to keep the momentum on the Road Warriors’ side.  Hawk press slams Blanchard, but Anderson clips his knee, finally giving the Horsemen a chance.  Blanchard hits Hawk’s injured knee with a chair.  Anderson hits a DDT on Hawk and covers, but Hawk kicks out at one.  Blachard tries to put Hawk in the figure-four, but Hawk counters and keeps fighting.  Anderson and Blanchard take turns beating on Hawk.  Blanchard finally goes lock in the figure-four.  Hawk finally makes the hot tag.  Animal cleans house.  Blanchard knocks referee Tommy Young out of the ring.  Animal backdrops Anderson over the top rope.  Warriors hit the Doomsday Device on Anderson.  A young Earl Hebner (w/ full head of hair!) comes in and makes the three count for Animal gets the pin at 13:24.  New Champions!  But wait!  Tommy Young comes back in.  He saw Animal throw Anderson over the top rope and reverses the decision!  Horsemen win by DQ!  I really liked the match.  It seemed custom made for the Road Warrior sto win the titles in their hometown, and I don’t understand why they didn’t.

Tully introduces the next match as well.

#18
Starrcade, 12/29/96
Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Jushin Thunder Liger.  Big commentary table needed for this crew: Schiavone, Tenay, Dusty, and Heenan.  I love when WWE puts Liger matches on DVD.  Liger controls the match early on.  Rey hits a Frankensteiner and starts his comeback.  A headscissors sends Liger out of the ring, then Rey does the precursor to the 619, which is the same motion, but with no opponent to hit.  It’s just a fake out.  Liger suplex Mysterio out of the ring.  Rey comes back in but misses a dropkick.  Liger puts Rey in a surfboard hold.  Mysterio hits a standing moonsault for a near fall, then DDTs Liger right on his horns.  Rey tries to springboard onto Liger, but Liger catches him with a dropkick.  Liger hits a release German suplex for a two count.  Liger hits a koppou kick in the corner.  Rey respons with a monkey flip out of the opposite corner.  Rey hits a cool headscissors and an Asai moonsault.  Back in the ring, Rey hits a move and covers, but Liger gets a foot on the ropes.  Rey goes for the springboard leg drop, but misses.  Liger hits a diving headbutt for a two count.  Rey goes for a top rope Frankensteiner, but Liger holds on and Rey falls.  Liger hits a koppou kick and the Liger bomb for the win at 14:17.  Good match, but I expected a match between these two to be a lot better.  It’s definitely not a waste of time by any means, though.

Tully again, introducing the next match.

#17
Starrcade, 11/26/87
Scaffold Match: The Rock & Roll Express vs. The Midnight Express (w/ Jim Cornette & Big Bubba Rogers).  Rogers jumps Morton before he can climb the scaffold.  When Morton recovers, he climbs up with Cornette’s tennis racket in hand.  This sucks.  Who invented this retarded match?  Rock & Roll Express wins in about 10 minutes.  Cornette sends Big Bubba up the scaffold.  Morton gives him a low blow and climbs down to safety.  This was shit and a complete waste of time.

Ric Flair introduces the next match, because he’s in it!

#16
Starrcade, 12/26/88
NWA World Heavyweight Championship Match: Ric Flair (c) (w/ JJ Dillon) vs. Lex Luger.  Jim Ross and Bob Caudle are announcing.  In ring intros, courtesy of legendary ring announcer Gary Michael Capetta.  Tommy Young is the referee.  The stipulation here is if Flair gets DQ’d, Luger wins the title.  Luger clotheslines Flair out of the ring early.  They show Lou Thesz in the crowd.  Luger overpowers Flair early on.  Flair chops Luger, who doesn’t sell it, so Flair bails and begs off.  Luger works Flair’s arm.  Luger doesn’t sell Flair’s chops again.  Luger beats up Flair some more.  Flair shoves the referee, who warns him.  Flair must have forgotten that he can lose the title on a DQ.  Flair finally gets the advantage.  Luger locks on a sleeper hold, but Flair escapes.  Flair goes for the figure-four, but Luger counters with an inside cradle for a near fall.  Luger hits a superplex for a near fall, then puts Flair in the figure-four.  Flair doesn’t give up, though, so the match continues.  Luger accidentally nails the ref, then Flair throws Luger over the top rope.  Ross says it should have been a DQ.  Why wasn’t Luger DQ’d in the first few minutes when he clotheslined Flair over the top rope?  Anyway, more neat stuff happens while I was typing.  Flair attacks Luger’s leg with a chair while the referee isn’t paying attention.  Flair works Luger’s leg over.  Flair locks in the figure-four.  Luger manages to turn it over.  Flair goes up top, but of course Luger throws him off.  Luger gets a sunset flip for a near fall.  Luger puts Flair in the Torture Rack, but his leg gives out and Flair gets the pin with his feet on the ropes at 31:02.

Jim Ross introduces the next match.

#15
Starrcade, 12/27/95
Eddie Guerrero vs. Shinjiro Otani (w/ Sonny Onoo).  I’ve seen this a few times before, most recently on the Eddie Guerrero DVD set that came out a few months ago.  Schiavone, Rhodes, and Heenan are commentary.  This match is part of the WCW vs. New Japan World Cup.  They’re tied at 2 points each at this point.  Anyway, they wrestle, and it’s very good.  The first few minutes mostly mat-based.  Otani hits a neat monkey flip.  Eddie hits a move and sends Otani to the outside.  Back in the ring, Eddie puts Otani in a crab hold.  Eddie hits a brainbuster and covers, but Otani gets his foot on the ropes.  Otani sends Eddie to the outside and hits a springboard suicide dive.  Otani gets him back in the ring and works him over.  Otani locks in a sleeper hold, but Eddie hits a backdrop suplex to escape it.  Cover gets two.  Otani hits a German suplex for a near fall.  Eddie hits a nice avalanche-style Frankensteiner for a near fall.  Eddie hits a sit-out Razor’s Edge (they’re probably a better name for it I can’t think of).  Otani manages to get Eddie in an ankle hold.  Eddie gets a rope break.  Eddie hits his own dive to the outside.  Otani suplexes Eddie back into the ring and hits a springboard dropkick.  Otani does the throat slash gesture about 5 times and goes for the Dragon suplex.  Eddie counters and they do a pinfall reversal sequence, during which Otani gets the pin at 13:44.

Road Warrior Animal introduces the next match.

#14
Starrcade, 12/26/88
NWA World Tag Team Championship Match: The Road Warriors (c) (w/ Paul Ellering) vs. Dusty Rhodes & Sting.  Ring intros from Capetta.  Tommy Young is the referee.  Ross and Caudle are announcers.  Sting and Animal lock up.  Sting sends Animal out, then works his arm when he comes back in.  Tag to Dusty.  Dusty hits the elbow on Animal, who tags out to Hawk.  They brawl a bit, then Sting comes back in and brawls with Hawk too.  Animal comes back in and press slams Sting.  Dusty tags in and works over Animal’s leg, wrapping it around the post.  Hawk tags in and wants a test of strength with Dusty.  Dusty nails him and goes for the figure-four, but Animal stops him.  Hawk and Dusty end up outside the ring, where Hawk beats up Dusty.  Back in the ring, the Warriors make the exchange and Animal takes a turn wearing down Dusty.  Warriors continue getting heat on Dusty.  Dusty manages to tag Sting, who comes in against Animal.  Sting hits the Stinger Splash and locks in the Scorpion Death Lock, but Hawk breaks it and sends Sting to the outside.  Warriors beat on Dusty.  Sting comes in and hits a cross body on Animal.  Ellering stops the referee from making the count to cause the DQ at 11:18.  Dusty and Sting celebrate afterwards, even though they didn’t win the belts.

Ric Flair and David Crockett introduce the next match.

#13
Starrcade, 12/28/92
King of Cable Tournament – Final: Sting vs. Vader (w/ Harley Race).  Jim Ross and Jesse Ventura are on commentary.  They lock up.  Sting throws some punches Vader doesn’t sell.  Vader slams Sting.  Sting runs into Vader, which is the equivalent of running into a brick wall.  Vader press slams in and drops him on the ropes.  Sting finally drops Vader with a rolling kick.  Sting hits a release German on Vader and keeps his momentum going by clotheslining Vader over the top rope.  Sting dives over the top rope onto Vader and Race.  Back in the ring, Vader hammers Sting with punches.  Vader misses a splash in the corner and Sting takes him over with an arm drag.  Vader kicks Sting in the face, but Sting comes back with a DDT and a superplex!  Sting locks Vader in the Scorpion Death Lock!  Vader gets out and they head outside.  Sting goes for a Stinger Splash, but Vader moves and Sting hits the guardrail.  Vader goes on the offensive back in the ring.  Vader hits a backdrop and a big splash for a two count.  Sting gets a near fall with a backslide.  Sting goes for a sunset flip.  Vader tries to sit on him, but Sting moves.  Vader hammers Sting with more punches.  Vader sets up Sting on the top rope, but Sting punches him, causing him to fall.  Sting doesn’t have any energy left to hit a move, though.  Vader makes it up and wallops Sting some more.  Sting makes a comeback and hits a diving splash for a two count.  Race distracts Sting allowing Vader to nail him and take over again.  Vader hits a chokeslam and a second rope splash.  Vader goes up top again, but Sting slams him and gets the pin at about 17 1/2 minutes.  Awesome match.

Flair and Crockett introduce the next match.

#12
Starrcade, 11/24/83
NWA World Tag Team Championship Match: The Brisco Brothers (c) vs. Ricky Steamboat & Jay Youngblood.  Gordon Solie and Bob Caudle are on commentary.  For the second match in a row, the video starts after the opening bell, so I can’t get a match time.  Jack and Steamboat start.  Angelo Mosca is the special referee.  Briscos make a few quick tags.  From a distance, I can’t tell the difference between Steamboat and Youngblood.  I guess I’ll have to watch the hair, as Youngblood has a mullet.  Steamboat and Youngblood make quick tags and work over Jerry.  Jack tags in and goes at it with Steamboat.  Jack (I think) hits a double-underhook suplex (pronounced “suplay” by Solie) and does a neat waistlock into a pinning predicament for a near fall.  Jerry uses a keylock on Steamboat, but Steamboat powers out.  Youngblood tags in and goes at it with Jack.  Jerry comes back in and gets a near fall with a ground Cobra Twist.  Jerry doesn’t like the count and shoves Mosca, who shoves him back, allowing the challengers to get the advantage.  Steamboat drops Youngblood onto Jerry for the pin at about 12 minutes.  The Briscos are poor spots about losing and attack Mosca, Steamboat, and Youngblood after the match.  Jack puts Steamboat in the figure-four and Jerry goes up for a splash onto Steamboat, but Mosca catches him.  Steamboat and Youngblood fight them off.

Flair and Crockett again, introducing #11.

#11
Starrcade, 11/28/85
NWA World Heavyweight Championship Match: Ric Flair (c) vs. Dusty Rhodes.  Yay, we finally get a bell!  Tommy Young is the referee.  Schiavone and Caudle are on commentary.  They lock up, then Dusty clubbers Flair.  Flair bails and takes a moment to compose himself before coming back in.  Flair leapfrogs Dusty, but takes a Bionic Elbow to the head.  Flair takes another breather.  Back inside, Dusty works Flair’s arm over.  Flair gets out of it and fires away with chops.  Flair kicks Dusty’s leg and apparently hurts it, because Dusty howls in pain and bails.  Ah, it’s the same leg that the Horsemen broke months earlier.  Dusty mans up and comes back the apron, where he nails Flair with some more elbows.  Dusty works on Flair’s leg.  Flair tries to suplex Dusty, but can’t get him up.  Dusty reverses it and suplexes Flair, then goes back to the leg.  Flair manages to get Dusty in a sleeper hold, but Dusty escapes and sends Flair face first into the turnbuckle.  Dusty wraps Flair’s leg around the post.  Flair goes up top and gets thrown off for the 5 billionth time.  Dusty goes for the figure-four, but Flair pushes him away.  Flair fires a chop and goes for the figure-four, but Dusty pushes him away.  Flair tries again with the same result.  The fight some more.  Dusty gets thrown over the top rope while the referee isn’t looking, but makes it back in and hits a diving cross body for a near fall.  They fight some more, then Flair punishes Dusty’s leg some more.  Flair locks in the figure-four and tortures Dusty, but eventually releases the hold.  Dusty hits some elbows for a near fall.  There’s a ref bump.  Dusty puts Flair in the figure-four.  Arn and Ole Anderson run in and attack Dusty.  A second referee comes in and makes a two count for Flair.  Dusty gets an inside cradle and pins Flair at 22:07.  The babyfaces come down and celebrate with Dusty.  Dusty’s title win here was, appropriately, a Dusty finish, as the decision was reversed a few days later.

Dusty Rhodes introduces #10.

#10
Starrcade, 12/28/97
WCW World Cruiserweight Championship Match: Eddie Guerrero (c) vs. Dean Malenko.  Schiavone, Rhodes, and Tenay are the announcers.  Charles Robinson is the referee.  Eddie is a brilliant asshole heel, and Malenko is the babyface who wants to kick his ass.  Eddie and Malenko are great, of course.  Malenko hits an Alabama Slam and a jackknife hold for a near fall, then a powerslam.  They trade shots, then Eddie rakes Malenko’s eyes, then snapmares him and rubs a boot into his face.  More stuff happens.  Eddie goes for a tornado DDT but gets tossed away.  Malenko hits a move for a near fall.  Sorry, I’m a little sleepy and having trouble keeping up with the match.  Eddie works on Malenko’s leg.  Malenko hits a sort of German suplex for a near fall.  Eddie tries a move, but Malenko spins him around into a backbreaker.  Eddie tries a top rope Frankensteiner and Malenko tries to counter it.  They both end up falling.  Malenko hits a powerbomb and goes for the Texas Cloverleaf, but doesn’t get it.  Eddie hits a missile dropkick and the frog splash for the win at 14:57.

End of disc 2!

New Japan “Wrestle Kingdom III In Tokyo Dome” 1/4/09 (Repost)

Posted in NJPW with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 29, 2010 by Grappleholic

Originally posted on January 10, 2009.

Jeremy Borash welcomes us to the show, then we get a cool video package of past occurrences on New Japan Tokyo Dome shows.  After that we get a rundown of the card.  This is New Japan’s 20th anniversary of running the Tokyo Dome.  Their first Tokyo Dome show was in April 1989.  Close enough.  It’s show time!

Wrestle Kingdom Grand Opening VIENTO DORADO: Mistico, Ryusuke Taguchi, & Prince Devitt vs. Averno, Jado, & Gedo.  Mistico is a HUGE star in Mexico for CMLL.  I watched a heavily pimped Mistico/Averno match a few years ago, but I just can’t get into Lucha.  Mistico and Averno both wear their respective CMLL titles to the ring: Mistico’s CMLL World Welterweight Title, and Averno’s CMLL World Middleweight Title.  Yes, I had to Wikipedia that to see what belts they were.  I know next to nothing about Lucha.  After a year wearing black trunks, Taguchi is finally wearing his Funky Weapon pants again!  Mistico and Averno start.  They do a sequence, then Mistico dives to the outside onto Averno.  Tags to Taguchi and Jado.  Taguchi sends Jado to the outside and teases a dive, but Jado moves.  Devitt and Gedo come in next.  The heels get the advantage on Devitt.  Devitt hits a gourdbuster on Gedo and tags in Mistico.  Mistico cleans house and hits another suicide dive on Averno.  Jado and Gedo fight Taguchi and Devitt on the outside as Averno and Mistico work the crowd in the ring.  Mistico sends Averno out again and hits an Asai moonsault.  That dude likes his dives, doesn’t he.  Taguchi dives outside onto Gedo, and Devitt does a helluva dive on Jado.  Averno and Mistico go at it again in the ring.  Nifty exchange, I guess.  Mistico utilizes his move, La Mistica, to force Averno to submit at 9:50.  Kind of a strange match.  Mistico’s music is kind of unsettling for some reason.

LEGEND and the Main Event Mafia arrive in a hummer.  Chono and Nash give each other the nWo sign.  That was neat.

Jushin Thunder Liger 20th Anniversary Match: Jushin Thunder Liger & Takuma Sano vs. Wataru Inoue & Koji Kanemoto.  The Liger character debuted at the first New Japan Tokyo Dome show in 1989.  Sano is currently of NOAH, but back in the late 80’s or early 90’s, he had a big rivalry with Liger under the name Naoki Sano.  Inoue and Kanemoto jump Liger and Sano before the opening bell, then double team Liger.  Liger tries to fight back with shoteis, but takes a belly to belly from Kanemoto and the Staggerin’ Blow from Inoue.  When the match gets in order, Liger tags in Sano, who gets worked over and tags back out.  Like he does in every match, Liger makes me think he’s going to do a dive, but it’s just a baseball slide.  Liger powerbombs Inoue, who has gone from being a junior to a small heavyweight.  Tags, then Sano and Kanemoto trade strikes.  Quick tags on both sides in the early part here.  Sano dives outside onto Inoue, leaving Liger and Kanemoto in the ring to be awesome.  Kanemoto traps Liger in his ankle hold, but Sano makes the save.  Kanemoto hits the moonsault on Liger for a near fall.  Sano hits a Northern Lights bomb on Kanemoto and Liger follows with the brainbuster, but Kanemoto kicks out.  Liger unleases his avalanche-style brainbuster on Kanemoto to get the win at 8:48.  Everybody makes friends again after the match.  Ikari No Jushin Liger!  That music OWNS.

Video package hyping the NO LIMIT vs. Motor City Machine Guns match.

IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship Match ~Tread on!!~:
NO LIMIT (Yujiro & Tetsuya Naito) (c) vs. Motor City Machine Guns (Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley).  Borash handles ring intros for the TNA guys.  MCMG dominate until NO LIMIT manages to double team Shelley, but that doesn’t last long.  Sabin dives out onto Naito.  We’ve got to be approaching 10 suicide dives on this show, and it’s only the third match.  The first 7 minutes are all MCMG except for that brief double teaming on Shelley earlier.  Naito finally manages to fight back and tag in Yujiro.  Yujiro beats up Shelley until Shelley manages to get a backslide for a near fall.  Tag on both sides.  NO LIMIT works over Sabin.  Naito gets a German suplex for a 2 count on Sabin.  Shelley comes back in the save Sabin from being double teaming.  Shelley has a busted nose.  Naito goes up for the Stardust press, but Shelley prevents it from happening.  Naito ducks a clothesline from Shelley and Sabin eats it.  Shelley saves Sabin from a pinning predicament.  Naito goes for the Stardust press, but Sabin moves out of the way.  Double superkicks from the MCMG gets a near fall on Naito.  Sabin pins Naito at 13:21 after the Made In Detroit, a double team move which looks remarkably like Jimmy Jacobs and Tyler Black’s double team Contra Code.

Low-Ki/Tiger Mask IV hype video.  Tiger is really hit-or-miss for me, but I dug their match in September when Ki won the belt.  Hopefully this one will be good too.

IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship Match ~Ballistic Interception~: Low-Ki (c) vs. Tiger Mask IV.  ROAR!  GO GO TIGAH!  GO GO TIGAH!  I love Tiger’s music.  Tiger is wearing a white costume here.  Ki blasts Tiger with a kick and hits the Ki Krusher ’99, but Tiger kicks out.  Yes, that was the first sequence of the match.  At least Ki’s going for the win earlier.  Jado and Gedo lost earlier, so I needs to get a win for GBH.  Ki tries to hi the Ki Krusher on the ramp, but Tiger counters and and hits a Tombstone Piledriver!  Ki barely beats the count to get back in the ring.  Back inside, Ki hits a springboard kick for a near fall, followed by a suplex with the same result.  Tiger dives from the top turnbuckle to the outside onto Ki.  That’s four matches in a row with dives to the outside.  Tiger goes on the offensive back in the ring.  Ki does his crazy handspring across the ring and kick thing.  Ki goes for the diving stomp, but Tiger moves.  Tiger tries a double arm superplex, but Ki fights him off and hits the diving stomp for a 2 count.  Ki goes for the Dragon Clutch, but Tiger fights back and hits a kind of sleeper suplex for a near fall.  Tiger suplex hold only gets two.  A modified version with one of Ki’s arms pulled between his legs gets the three count for Tiger at 8:49.  Not as good as their September because they didn’t have as much time and had to get their shit in quick, but still a fun match.  They shake hands after the match.

Fighting Holdings Competition: Giant Bernard, Takashi Iizuka, Tomohiro Ishii, & Karl Anderson of GBH vs. Riki Choshu & Masahiro Chono of LEGEND and Kurt Angle & Kevin Nash of the Main Event Mafia.  The LEGEND/MEM team get individual entrances, because they’re Legends and Main Eventers.  Nash and Bernard go face to face to start.  Bernard gets the better of it and tags in Iizuka.  Iizuka eats Chono’s Sliding Yakuza kick.  GBH uses heel tactics to try to get the advantage.  Choshu stops Ishii, who tags out to Anderson.  Anderson gets his ass kicked by Chono.  Chono tags in Angle to a big pop (by Japanese standards).  Angle owns him, then tags in Choshu.  Bernard tags in and beats up Choshu.  Bernard hits a Vader Bomb for a near fall.  Choshu takes a beating until he fights Anderson off and hits his lariat.  Angle suplexes Ishii and Iizuka, then locks Anderson in the ankle lock at the same time Choshu locks Iizuka in the Scorpion Death Lock and Chono puts Ishii in the STF.  Anderson submits to give LEGEND/MEM the win at 7:09.  Bernard lays out Angle with the Bernard Driver after the match to set up a singles match between them next month.  Match wasn’t anything spectacular, but served its purpose.

Nagata/Tanaka hype package, including highlights of their awesome match from this past October.

ZERO1 World Heavyweight Championship Match ~ Crusade For Justice: Yuji Nagata (c) vs. Masato Tanaka.  Borash does the intros for this too.  That makes no sense.  Anyway, they start back where they left off in October, beating each other up.  Tanaka breaks a flimsy Japanese chair over Nagata’s head.  It’s funny, Japanese chairs are really flimsy, but their tables are tough.  Tanaka has the advantage in the early part of the match.  Nagata finally manages to start fighting back after four minutes.  Tanaka is BUSTED WIDE OPEN!  Nagata hits an Exploder off the top rope.  Tanaka elbows Nagata in the head a bunch.  Nagata hits a rebound suplex.  Nagata is bleeding too.  Tanaka hits the Sliding D, the Diamond Dust, and a lariat for a 2 count.  Tanaka hits a backdrop suplex off the top, but the champion kicks out again.  Nagata kicks out of a second Sliding D, then a third.  Nagata locks in an armbar and snaps into Kiler Nagata mode.  Nagata hits the backdrop suplex, but Tanaka kicks out.  Nagata KICKS TANAKA IN THE HEAD and hits another backdrop.  Backdrop hold gets the win for Nagata at 11:41.  After the match, there is a brief confrontation between Nagata and his former New Japan Dojo classmate and current ZERO1 President, Shinjiro Otani.  I expect that to be Nagata’s next defense.

They show video messages from Dixie Carter and Mick Foley on the big screen.  I think it’s intermission now.  They show replays from the matches that have happened so far.  Finally, we get a hype video for Akiyama/Nakanishi.

NJPW vs. NOAH Battle Tendencies ~the invasion~: Manabu Nakanishi vs. Jun Akiyama.  The first few minutes aren’t really interesting.  At 4 minutes they start chopping and slapping each other.  Akiyama gets in a front headblock, but Nakanishi, being the large, powerful man he is, gets out of it.  They fight some more, then Akiyama hits the Exploder off the top rope.  They clothesline each other, then Nakanishi gets Akiyama in the Argentine Backbreaker (Torture Rack).  Akiyama fights out and transitions it into a DDT.  Akiyama gets a near fall off of a Exploder, then a high knee.  Akiyama gets the win with the wrist-clutch Exploder at 10:27.

IWGP Tag Team Championship – Hardcore Match: Most Violent Players (Togi Makabe & Toru Yano) (c) vs. Team 3D (Brother Ray & Brother Devon).  TenKoji were supposed to be in this match as well, but Tenzan went out the day before the show for emergency eye surgery.  Bubba has a mohawk for some reason.  Yano and Devon start.  Yano backs Devon into a corner and gives a clean break, then rubs Devon’s head.  Devon returns in kind.  Isn’t this match supposed to be… ya know… hardcore?  Nothing interesting happens until Bubba Germans Makabe on his head.  Makabe responds with a lariat.  Bubba hits a superplex on Makabe.  Devon comes off the top with a headbutt for a near fall.  (I didn’t notice at the time, but I saw a gif image showing that Devon missed the headbutt and just bounced into it.  Funny.)  I must have missed the tag while I was typing.  Yano nails Devon with a Singapore cane, then throws it to Makabe, who nails Bubba with it.  Devon takes a spike piledriver at ringside.  Makabe uses a trash can lid.  Devon is bleeding.  Boring match.  Devon takes the heat for a bit, then Bubba tags in and cleans house.  Bubba no sells some trash can shots.  3D hit their reverse 3D on Makabe for a near fall.  Makabe takes the WASSUP headbutt, then Bubba recommends to Devon that he get the table.  However, against Bubba’s recommendation, he is the one that is put through the table.  MVP set up another table, which Makabe gets powerbombed through by Bubba.  Bubba follows with a splash for a two count.  A chain lariat from Makabe accidentally hits Yano.  Devon schoolboys Yano for a two count.  Makabe hits Devon with the chain.  The DVD stops.  I put in disc 2, then Devon sucks another chain lariat and Makabe takes the 3D.  Bubba gets the pin at 15:34.  I hate that it had to have the cut in mid match like that.  I tried to use AVI Splitter and Joiner to fix it, but it didn’t work out.  Bubba says a few words in Japanese after the match.  The last minute or two were okay.  Other than that, the match sucked, like, worse than their match last year.

Hype video for the New Japan vs. NOAH tag match.

NJPW vs. NOAH Battle Tendencies ~the encounter~:
Shinsuke Nakamura & Hirooki Goto vs. Mitsuharu Misawa & Takashi Sugiura. Goto and Sugiura start by trading strikes.  Crowd cheers when Nakamura tags in.  They cheer even more when Misawa tags in.  Misawa and Nakamura trade shots as well.  Nakamura takes Misawa’s elbows and uses kicks to knock him down.  Goto comes back in and fires up against Misawa.  Goto gets a two count off a German suplex.  Tempers seem to flare between Goto and Sugiura whenever they interact.  Sugiura is the work horse of the NOAH team, while Misawa, as usual these days, seems like he’s half asleep.  Sugiura gets Nakamura in an ankle lock while Goto and Misawa fight outside.  Sugiura transitions out of the ankle lock into a German, then rols through into a Dragon suplex.  Goto comes in and hits the Shouten on Sugiura.  Misawa hits the Emerald Frosion on Goto.  Nakamura hits the Landslide on Misawa.  All four are down for a moment, then Sugiura and Nakamura go at it again.  They seem to mix well.  Sugiura hits the Olympic Slam on Nakamura for a near fall.  He goes for it again, but Nakamura counters out and they have an awesome counter exchange.  Nakamura locks Sugiura in a nifty cross armbreaker for the win at 15:18.  New Japan wrestlers be strongest!

Hype video for the main event.

IWGP Heavyweight Championship Match: Keiji Muto (c) vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi.  These two have had two singles matches in the past, I think, and both were in All Japan.  Muto pinned Tanahashi in February 2005, then they wrestled to a time limit draw in last year’s Champion Carnival.  Can Tanahashi finally overcome his mentor?  Good old fashioned wrestling to start.  At 6 minutes, Tanahashi hits a Dragon screw leg whip and starts working Muto’s knee.  Muto fights back and does his Shining elbow, then remembers he’s selling the knee.  Tanahashi drives in the reminder with more kicks to the knee.  Muto gives Tanahashi a Dragon screw of his own, then another off the ring apron to the floor!  Then another ON the floor.  Well, I guess it’s effective.  Muto hits a Shining Wizard and sends Tanahashi back-first into the guardrail.  Another Dragon screw from Muto, this one on the guardrail.  Muto goes back to the ring, then Tanahashi hobbles his way back as well.  Muto does yet another Dragon screw.  Tanahashi has to be hurting by now.  Muto Dragon screw #6 is followed by the figure-four leglock.  Tanahashi survives and counters another Dragon screw attempt.  They take turns dropkicking each other’s knees.  Dragon screw #7 from Muto.  #8 preceeds another figure-four leglock.  Tanahashi rolls through it and reaches the ropes.  Tanahashi counters the next Dragon screw attempt and goes for a German, but settles for chop blocking Muto’s knee instead.  Tanahashi hits a rolling senton from the second rope.  Tanahashi hits a flurry of European uppercuts, then Muto reverses an Irish whip and hits a Shining Wizard in the corner.  Muto hits Dragon screw #9 and two Shining Wizards, but Tanahashi counters the third and hits another Dragon screw variation on the ground.  Tanahashi goes for the Texas Cloverleaf, but doesn’t get it, so just drops a bunch of elbows instead.  Tanahashi gets a two count off of the Sling Blade.  I’m glad he doesn’t use that as a finish anymore, it’s so lame.  Trapped German suplex from Tanahashi gets another two count.  He hits the High Fly Flow, but hurts his knee on the landing and can’t cover.  Muto hits the Shining Wizard, Tanahashi hits the Sling Blade, and both men are down.  Tanahashi ducks yet another Shining Wizard attempt and hits yet another Sling Blade.  Tanahashi goes up top, but Muto meets him and hits Dragon screw #10 off the top rope.  Muto hits the Shining Wizard again for the two count.  Muto jumps off the top rope and hurts his knee.  Dragon screw #11 from Muto, followed by figure-four #3.  Tanahashi gets another rope break.  Muto does the Roll of the Dice off the ropes.  Muto looks to go for another Shining Wizard, but Tanahashi surprises him with a Frankensteiner for a two count.  Tanahashi hits the Roll of the Dice off the ropes too.  Tanahashi hits the German suplex, but I think only gets a one count.  Looks like his knee gave out and he couldn’t hold the bridge.  Tanahashi hits the Dragon suplex hold for a two count.  Tanahashi hits another Sling Blade and the High Fly Flow, but goes for a second and misses.  Muto hits the Shining Wizard and goes for the moonsault press, but Tanahashi moves.  Tanahashi hits two High Fly Flows for the win at 30:23.  The match is really great, and my commentary is not meant to criticise.  I just thought it was funny that Muto kept doing Dragon screw leg whips over and over.  It’s still a great match.  There’s just a lot of repetition, but that’s the norm for Japanese main events.  Tanahashi gets the big belt and trophies presenation after the match.  Tanahashi says he wants his first challenger to be his eternal rival, Nakamura.

All in all I’d say it’s a really good show.  It’s easy to watch because most of the matches are short, and I have kind of an attention span problem.  The main event was great, and nothing on the show was glaringly bad except for the 3D/MVP match.  I didn’t like the lucha match, but I won’t call it bad, I just don’t like lucha.