ASUKA PROJECT “Pro-Wrestling Festival 2015”
a review by Kevin Wilson

Date: May 5th, 2015
Location: Yokohama Radiant Hall in Kanagawa, Japan
Announced Attendance: Unknown

I got this event because I assumed Kaho Kobayashi had a match on it but she does not. Then I saw that Mitsuo Momota has a match and I got sad. Going into an event already sad is never a good idea, particularly a small indy event that uses mostly marginal talent. This may not go well. Here is the full card:

- Chikara vs. Kenichiro Arai
- Kikutaro and The Winger vs. Mitsuo Momota and Masao Orihara
- Masaya Takahashi vs. Shin Suzuki
- Hiroki Murase vs. Kenta Sugawara
- El Hijo del Pantera vs. Shota Nakagawa
- Hayate, Chon Shiryu, and Hiragi Kurumi vs. Nobutaka Moribe, Tetsuya Nakazato, and Aoi Ishibashi
- Shinose Mitoshichi and Shunma Katsumata vs. Wolf Tomoya and Ayumu Honda


Chikara vs. Kenichiro Arai
Arai works the side headlock to start but Chikara gets him into the corner for a break. Tie-up, Arai gets Chikara in the ropes this time and he chops him in the chest. Arai bails out of the ring when Chikara charges him but returns after a moment, side headlock by Chikara and he tosses Arai to the mat. Chikara goes out after him but Arai gets the better of it, and back in the ring he applies an armbar. Arai knees Chikara in the back and knees him in the arm. Arai keeps working over the arm but Chikara gets away and applies a sleeper. DDT by Chikara and he hits a few chops, Arai goes off the ropes but Chikara chops him again. Vertical suplex by Chikara, Arai rolls out of the ring but Chikara goes out after him. Arai throws Chikara into the ring post before sliding him into the ring, Arai goes up top but Chikara throws him off. Chikara gets on the second turnbuckle and he hits a diving chop to the chest. He goes up top again but this time Arai blocks the chop. Sidewalk slam by Chikara but Arai kicks Chikara low. Arai applies a short armbar and Chikara taps out! I actively don't like Arai and whoever Chikara is he was not going to save this match. A subpar way to begin the event, just dull and pointless.

Kikutaro and The Winger vs. Mitsuo Momota and Masao Orihara
I'll try not to make any snide comments while I review this. Winger and Momota begin things and they do some intro submissions with neither getting the advantage. Winger chops Momota hard while he is again the ropes and then runs away from the old man. He returns after a moment, wristlock by Winger but Momota knocks him away. Kikutaro and Orihara are tagged in and they trade chops and in general goof around, Irish whip by Orihara and Kikutaro tries to shoulderblock him over with no success. Kikutaro kicks Orihara when he pancakes but Orihara gets back up and throws Kikutaro into the corner. Armdrag by Kikutaro but Momota comes in so they can hit a double shoulderblock. Momota stays in and chops Kikutaro, but Winger kicks Momota from the apron. Winger comes in and both pound on Momota. Double Irish whip and Momota gets hit with a double elbow strike. Kikutaro kicks Momota in the leg and he tags in Winger. Winger attacks Momota's leg in the corner and he tags in Kikutaro. Kikutaro goes for a vertical suplex but Momota reverses it into a suplex of his own. Momota tags in Orihara, punches by Orihara and he lariats both Kikutaro and Winger. Orihara lariats Kikutaro in the corner and he hits another one. Orihara puts Kikutaro up top and he hits a spider German suplex. He goes for a moonsault but Kikutaro gets his knees up and tags in Winger. Winger applies La Magistral to Orihara but it gets two. Orihara shakes Winger off but Winger sneaks in schoolboy for two. Low blow by Orihara and he tags in Momota. Momota chops Winger in the corner and he hits a neckbreaker. DDT by Momota, he picks up Winger and he hits a piledriver for a two count. Momota picks up Winger again, this time he hits a backdrop suplex and he gets the three count! Orihara seemed to not know he was in a joke match since he was really trying, but Kikutaro wasn't being funny and Momota is older than dirt so this wasn't good. A couple good moments but not enough to justify an eleven minute match.

Masaya Takahashi vs. Shin Suzuki
They trade wristlocks to start, headlock by Suzuki and he goes for a shoulderblock, but it doesn't work. Suzuki eventually is able to shoulderblock Takahashi, Takahashi leaves the ring but Suzuki goes out after him. Takahashi throws Suzuki into the ring post and scoop slam him onto the floor. Takahashi wraps up Suzuki with a chair before returning to the ring, but he makes it back on his own power. Irish whip by Takahashi but Suzuki hits an elbow smash, he applies a headlock but Takahashi gets to the ropes. Stomps by Suzuki, he goes for a slam but Takahashi blocks it. Scoop slam by Takahashi, Suzuki elbows him but Takahashi returns fire. Takahashi goes for a suplex but Suzuki lands on his feet and hits a dropkick. Irish whip by Suzuki but Takahashi kicks him back. Jumping kick by Suzuki and he hits a sunset flip for two. Schoolboy by Suzuki but he gets another two count. Elbows by Suzuki but Takahashi catches him with an elbow. Backdrop suplex by Takahashi but it gets a two count. Takahashi applies a reverse chinlock but Suzuki makes it to the ropes. Takahashi elbows Suzuki, Suzuki charges Takahashi in the corner but Takahashi moves, Takahashi rolls up Suzuki with a schoolboy and he gets the three count! This one started pretty good but then it dragged and turning into nothing. Takahashi had some fire when it started, I am not sure where it went as the match continued. A bit disappointing after a promising start.

Hiroki Murase vs. Kenta Sugawara
They look nearly identical from the hard cam but I think I know which is which. They trade wristlocks to start and then trade headlocks, but neither gets the advantage. Side headlock by Sugawara but he can't shoulderblock Murase off his feet. He finally does so, scoop slam by Sugawara and he hits another one. Another scoop slam by Sugawara but Murase kicks him back and barely hits a swandive missile dropkick. Snapmare by Murase and he elbows Sugawara repeatedly in the head before applying a chinlock. Sugawara gets to the ropes, scoop slam by Murase and he hits an elbow drop. Irish whip by Murase but Sugawara hits a shoulderblock. Sugawara hits a body avalanche in the corner followed by a second one and a Samoan Drop for a two count. Murase elbows Sugawara and they trade shots back and forth, Sugawara goes off the ropes but Murase hits a lariat. Cover, and he gets the three count. This was basically structured like a young lion match. Pretty basic and the ending was really sudden. Murase has shown potential in the past but he didn't get much of a chance to show it in this match. Just average all the way around.

El Hijo del Pantera vs. Shota Nakagawa
Pantera takes Nakagawa down to the mat to start the match but Nakagawa gets back up and gets in the dominate position. They take turns on top until Pantera backs away to give a clean re-start. Irish whip by Nakagawa but Pantera hits a shoulderblock. Hurricanrana by Nakagawa, and Pantera rolls out of the ring. He gets on the apron but Nakagawa dropkicks him back to the floor and hits a tope con hilo. Our first highspot of the event, yay! Nakagawa returns to the ring with Pantera slowly following, kick by Nakagawa and he covers Pantera for two. Nakagawa goes out to the apron and he hits a missile dropkick for another two count. Nakagawa goes off the ropes but Pantera catches him with a Gory Special. Pantera ties up Nakagawa's legs and punches Nakagawa before rolling him to the mat in a unique submission hold. Pantera picks up Nakagawa and punches him, Pantera puts Nakagawa in the tree of woe and he delivers a sliding dropkick. Cover, but Nakagawa gets a hand on the ropes. Pantera chops Nakagawa in the corner but Pantera avoids his charge and kicks Nakagawa in the head. Tornado DDT by Nakagawa, cover, but it gets a two count. Punches by Nakagawa and he goes off the ropes, but Pantera kicks him. Superkick by Nakagawa, he goes up top and he hits a missile dropkick for a two count. Nakagawa goes up top but Pantera headscissors him back to the mat. Spinning backbreaker by Pantera, he waits for Nakagawa to get up but Nakagawa hits a schoolboy for two. Another quick cover by Nakagawa with the same result, Pantera picks him up and hits some front slam move I've never seen before. Nakagawa barely gets a shoulder up on the pin attempt, Pantera drags him back up and he nails the Nobori Special II for the three count! Maybe it seemed better after the last four matches but I thought this one was quite fun. They both brought their working boots and Pantera was hitting moves I've never seen before which always makes a match more exciting. Nothing earth shattering but a solid match. Mildly Recommended

Hayate, Chon Shiryu, and Hiragi Kurumi vs. Nobutaka Moribe, Tetsuya Nakazato, and Aoi Ishibashi
mmm and crew attack before the match starts and the action spills out of the ring. Moribe rolls Kurumi into the ring and headbutts her but Kurumi fights back. Kurumi goes for shoulderblocks with no success, but Kurumi delivers a dropkick. Ishibashi comes in to take his place as Shiryu runs in, Irish whip by Ishibashi but Shiryu hits a shoulderblock. Armdrag by Shiryu but Ishibashi delivers a dropkick. Shiryu sweeps Ishibashi's feet out when she goes out to the apron and Shiryu dropkicks Ishibashi out of the ring. Nakazato and Hayate get in the ring, and Hayate hits a headscissors. Armdrag by Hayate and he hits a multiple rotation headscissors. Hayate and company fake a dive before rolling back into the ring. Kurumi and Nakazato get into the ring, Kurumi asks for a handshake but Kurumi armdrags Nakazato. They do the Michinoku Hop before Kurumi keeps armdragging everyone, including the referee and her own teammates. Everyone gets mad and threatens to walk out while Kurumi pleads in the ring for them to come back Her teammates eventually come back as did the other team, Moribe hits a backbreaker on Kurumi before hitting a senton atomico for two. Moribe tags in Nakazato, Nakazato punches Kurumi in the throat before tagging in Ishibashi. Ishibashi chokes Kurumi in the corner, snapmare by Ishibashi and she kicks Kurumi in the back. Cover, but it gets two. Ishibashi applies a bodyscissors but Shiryu breaks it up. Moribe and Ishibashi chop Shiryu, then Moribe drops Ishibashi onto him for a two count cover. Moribe tags in Nakazato and Nakazato headbutts Shiryu. Moribe dropkicks Shiryu from the floor, Nakazato covers him but it gets two. Nakazato tags in Ishibashi, stomps by Ishibashi to Shiryu and she applies a neck crank. Shiryu gets to the ropes and Ishibashi tags in Nakazato and Shiryu is double teamed in the corner. Reverse splash by Nakazato but it gets a two count.

Nakazato avoids Shiryu's dropkick attempt but Shiryu hits a springboard kick off the ropes and tags in Kurumi. Kurumi shoulderblocks everyone and she tags in Hayate, Moribe gets Hayate on his back but Hayate hits a Misteriorana. Front roll into a back kick by Hayate, but the cover gets two. Ishibashi comes in and she armdrags Hayate, Irish whip by Ishibashi but Hayate avoids the dropkick and kicks Ishibashi in the ribs. Schoolboy by Ishibashi but it only gets two, Hayate goes off the ropes but Ishibashi kicks him for a two. Moribe throws Kurumi into the corner but Kurumi hits a shoulderblock. Body press by Kurumi to Moribe but it gets a two count. Irish whip by Kurumi but Moribe applies a stretch hold. Front slam by Moribe and he hits a somersault senton. Rolling vertical suplexes by Moribe but Kurumi hits a vertical suplex of her own. Kurumi goes up top and she hits a diving body press for a two count when Nakazato breaks it up. Shiryu comes in, kick by Shiryu to Nakazato and he kicks Nakazato in the corner. Shiryu goes up top and he hits a jumping kick for two. Shiryu goes up top but Nakazato catches him when he jumps off. Jumping shoulderblock by Nakazato and he hits a Jackhammer on Shiryu, but the cover is broken up. Shiryu is triple teamed in the corner, chokeslam by Nakazato and Moribe hits the diving body press, but Kurumi breaks up the cover. Kurumi lariats both Moribe and Nakazato, Shiryu catapults off Nakazato's back and dives out onto Moribe. In the ring, Kurumi drop toeholds Nakazato and Hayate puts him in La Magistral while Kurumi jackknifes Nakazato for the three count! This was another fun match, it had a lot of elements that I enjoy. Hayate is super smooth and a pleasure to watch, and Ishibashi is my favorite Joshi wrestler that I never get to see. The middle dragged a bit, it could have been shortened, but it had more good parts than bad. Mildly Recommended

Shinose Mitoshichi and Shunma Katsumata vs. Wolf Tomoya and Ayumu Honda
Katsumata and Honda start off, they tussle for position, shoulderblock by Honda but Katsumata hits a dropkick. Tomoya and Mitoshichi are tagged in and they trade shoulderblock attempts. Dropkick by Tomoya but Mitoshichi drives him back and tags in Katsumata. Katsumata stomps down Tomoya in the corner and stands on his shoulders, Katsumata picks up Tomoya but Tomoya kicks him and hits a scoop slam. Tomoya throws Katsumata into the corner and he tags in Honda. Honda clubs on Katsumata but Katsumata elbows him back. Enzigieri by Katsumata and he tags in Mitoshichi. Shoulderblock by Mitoshichi but Honda dropkicks him in the knee. Honda goes for a submission but Mitoshichi gets into the ropes, dropkick to the back by Honda and he tags in Tomoya. Scoop slam by Tomoya and he hits an elbow drop to Mitoshichi for two. Snapmare by Tomoya and he applies a sleeper into a camel clutch, but Katsumata breaks it up. Tomoya tags in Honda, Honda throws Mitoshichi into the corner and hits a series of elbows. Dropkick by Honda and he stomps on Mitoshichi in the corner. Honda and Tomoya trade shots, Irish whip by Honda and he hits an armdrag. Cross armbreaker by Honda, then Tomoya comes in and applies one to the other arm. The referee gets Tomoya off and Mitoshichi gets into the ropes. Honda elbows Mitoshichi in the arm but Mitoshichi hits a heel kick. Mitoshichi tags in Katsumata and Katsumata kicks everyone. Flip kick by Katsumata in the corner followed by an enzigieri, he gives a scoop slam followed by a moonsault for a two count. Honda kicks Katsumata but Katsumata drops him with a dropkick.

Katsumata goes to the apron but Honda avoids the dive and dropkicks Katsumata in the back. Honda tags in Tomoya, Irish whip by Tomoya and he elbows Katsumata in the corner. Another elbow by Tomoya and he hits a Northern Lights Suplex for two. Tomoya picks up Katsumata and he hits a double arm suplex, he goes up top but Katsumata avoids the dive. Mitoshichi comes in and hits a neckbreaker on Tomoya, giving Katsumata time to tag him in. Mitoshichi picks up Tomoya and he hits a side Russian leg sweep. Kicks by Tomoya and he hits a snap backdrop suplex. He hits a second one before hitting a backdrop suplex hold for two. Tomoya charges Mitoshichi but Mitoshichi pulls the rope down, and Tomoya tumbles out of the ring. Pescado by Mitoshichi, Honda comes in the ring and he hits a tornillo plancha onto Mitoshichi. Katsumata gets in the ring, he springboards up to the top turnbuckle and dives out on Honda and Tomoya with a plancha suicida. Mitoshichi and Tomoya return to the ring and Mitoshichi hits a vertical suplex. Jumping lariat by Mitoshichi, and he covers Tomoya for two when Honda breaks it up. Tomoya kicks Mitoshichi, but Katsumata kicks Tomoya and hits a Tiger Feint Kick. Katsumata goes up top and goes for a 450 Splash, but Tomoya moves out of the way. Spinning Samoan Drop by Katsumata, Mitoshichi picks up Tomoya and he counters Tomoya when he goes off the ropes with an Emerald Frosion for the three count! This was far from perfect as there were some hiccups and miscommunications, but it was fun. Katsumata has gotten really good at what he does, he is a great underdog face type with some flashy moves. Mitoshichi and Tomoya are both average at best, but the other two dragged them up to a decent match. It wasn't overly exciting when Mitoshichi and Tomoya were dominating the action but there was still enough here that you likely won't regret watching it. Mildly Recommended

Final Thoughts:

This event started out really rough but the last three matches all had some redeemable qualities. The main issue here is that the wrestlers as a group weren't very good. Even with the good matches, there were a couple average wrestlers that dragged it down. I wish I could put all the good wrestlers in one match as that would have produced something worth watching, but unfortunately I didn't book the show. There were some parts here and there worth seeing but as an overall event there is no way I can recommend it.

Grade: D 

Back to Indy Reviews

event reviewed on 5/11/15