review by Kevin Wilson
The Dates: November 5th and 12th, 2004
Location: Tokyo, Japan
In order to have a wide variety of reviews, I figured I might as well review a recent Big Japan event. Big Japan lost a lot of fans during the CZW debacle (long story that isn't related), but with a few bright stars they are still able to maintain a fanbase and stay afloat. For now. This card is a virtual who's who of real hardcore wrestlers around the world today. Kintaro Kanemura and Shadow WX already are legends, Necro Butcher and Mad Man Pondo have a lot of fans in the States, and Ryuji Ito is a newer hardcore wrestler that is universally considered one of the best young hardcore wrestlers today as he is able to incorporate real wrestling moves while still having fun with light bulbs and what not. In other words, if this event isn't good, then I will be disappointed. Here is the complete card:
Daikokubo Benkei and Katsumasa Inoue vs. MIYAWAKI and Junji Tanaka
Kintaro Kanemura vs. Necro Butcher
MASADA and Mike Samples vs. Shadow WX and Men's Teioh
BADBOY Hido and 2 Tuff Tony vs. Ryuji Ito and GOSAKU
Junji Tanaka vs. ?
Katsumasa Inoue vs. Takashi Sasaki
Necro Butcher vs. Yuichi Taniguchi
Abdullah Kobayashi and Naoki Numazawa vs. Mad Man Pondo and 2 Tuff Tony
BADBOY Hido and Kintaro Kanemura vs. Ryuji Ito and Daisuke Sekimoto
First of all, I tend to grade hardcore matches at a maximum of an 8 score, since I personally don't feel that hardcore matches should be graded on the same scale as I would a technical match. There are exceptions, of course. If a match uses enough wrestling moves to keep things interesting, if the crowd is really into it, or if it is a really special match that has a lot of meaning in the big picture, then that could boost the match score. Cactus/Funk, Toyoda/Kudo, and Onita/Hayabusa are all examples of hardcore matches that I would have no trouble scoring over an 8. So just keep that in mind as you are reading my match thoughts. Not all of these are hardcore matches of course, but most of them are.
Also, I don't know who Tanaka wrestles. I looked everywhere, but never found the results. So if you know who he wrestled, please zip me a line so that I can go back and add his name in.
Daikokubo Benkei and Katsumasa Inoue vs. MIYAWAKI and Junji Tanaka
The match is JIP, as Benkei and Inoue are kicking down MIYAWAKI in the corner. Double Irish whip by Benkei and Inoue, and they hit a double shoulderblock. Inoue stays in, and MIYAWAKI snapmares him to the mat. MIYAWAKI tags in Tanaka and he hits a variety of chops and kicks. Inoue finally manages to duck a kick and applies a waistlock, but Tanaka elbows out of it. Tanaka goes for a kick, Inoue grabs his leg, but Tanaka hits a enzigieri. Cover by Tanaka, but it only gets a two. Samoan drop by Tanaka, another cover, but Benkei breaks it up. MIYAWAKI is tagged back in, and he beats on Inoue in the corner. Irish whip by MIYAWAKI and he elbows Inoue in the gut. MIYAWAKI puts Inoue up on his shoulders and then tosses him down in front of him, sending Inoue crashing into the mat. Cover, but Inoue kicks out. After running over and hitting Benkei, MIYAWAKI nails a variation of the Final Cut, cover, but Benkei breaks it up again. Tanaka runs over and nails Benkei, double Irish whip from the corner, but Inoue avoids the charge by MIYAWAKI and then dropkicks Tanaka. Release German suplex by Inoue on MIYAWAKI which he follows up with a headbutt to the gut. He tags in Benkei, who shoulderblocks MIYAWAKI down. Tanaka gets a shoulderblock as well, and Benkei scoop slams MIYAWAKI. Elbow drop, cover, bit it only gets a two count. Irish whip by Benkei, MIYAWAKI ducks the clothesline, and both men collide in the middle with neither man budging. MIYAWAKI hits a quick low blow and goes for a suplex, he can't get him up, so he calls in Tanaka and together they manage a vertical suplex on Benkei. MIYAWAKI tags in Tanaka, Tanaka goes up top and hits a flying headbutt. Cover, but Benkei kicks out at two. Irish whip by Tanaka to the corner, reversed, but Tanaka gets his foot up when Benkei charges and then hits a diving clothesline from the second rope. Cover by Tanaka, but it only gets two. Tanaka goes for a Samoan drop, but he can't get Benkei up, so he hits a fireman's carry instead. Cross armbreaker is applied by Tanaka, but Inoue gets in the ring and breaks it up. Tanaka bounces off the ropes, but Benkei catches him and gives him a spinebuster. Benkei tags in Inoue, and Inoue hits a missile dropkick from the top turnbuckle. MIYAWAKI comes running in, but he gets clotheslined down for his trouble. Back to Tanaka, Inoue hits a vertical suplex hold, but it only gets two. Inoue then nails a release fisherman's suplex, cover, but MIYAWAKI breaks it up. Benkei tosses MIYAWAKI from the ring and takes over as the legal man. Back suplex by Benkei on Tanaka, cover, bit it only gets a two count. Benkei gives Tanaka a scoop slam and hits a big splash. Cover, but MIYAWAKI breaks it up. Benkei hits a ramming headbutt on MIYAWAKI, chokeslams Tanaka, cover, but it gets two. Inoue now hits a back suplex on Tanaka, goes up top, and he hits a diving headbutt. Benkei then follows up with a big splash, cover, and he gets the three count. Your winners: Daikokubo Benkei and Katsumasa Inoue
Match Thoughts: Actually, for the opening match of a independent Japanese promotion, it wasn't a bad opener. Not to say it was good, but they were fundamentally sound and didn't mess anything up. While they weren't particularly exciting by any stretch of the imagination, they wrestled a style typical in Japan of opening match. Nothing flashy, nothing stunning, just solid wrestling. Course, since the match was cut at the beginning, that might have helped the match some by making it shorter. Not a good match per se, but not offensive. Score: 5.5
Kintaro Kanemura vs. Necro Butcher
The two begin with dueling chairs, which Kanemura wins and he hits Butcher in the stomach with the end of the chair. Side headlock applied by Kanemura, Butcher Irish whips out of it, and the two collide with no one moving. Again they collide with neither budging, but the third time Butcher gets his boot up and catches Kanemura right in the face. Kanemura hits a quick low blow to regain the advantage and tosses Butcher to the mat. Kanemura goes up top, but Butcher is up and tosses Kanemura from the top turnbuckle to the apron outside the ring. Butcher joins him on the apron, but Kanemura hip tosses him from the apron to the floor. After making a special pile of chairs just for Butcher, Kanemura goes to suplex Butcher into them, but Butcher reverses it and it is Kanemura that hits the steel. Butcher hits Kanemura with a chair in the back and then rams his head into another. After biting Kanemura in the head, the now bleeding Kanemura fights back and cracks Butcher in the head with a chair. Kanemura throws another chair at Butcher and then throws a table at him. Walking with the table, Kanemura walks up above the crowd into the stands, setting it up in the aisle. He then goes back to get Butcher, and they wonder back to the table. Kanemura then picks Butcher up and tosses him down on the chairs in the row in front of where they were standing. After raking his face, Kanemura puts Butcher on the table, climbs up to the ledge above them, and splashes down on Butcher. I miss trash wrestling. Butcher seems to have secured him a table leg (needless to say, he is bleeding by now not only from his face, but his back as well) and he chases after Kanemura, who has returned to the ring. Finally Butcher makes it back, and Kanemura kicks him as Butcher is chucking a chair at him. Butcher then gives Kanemura a headbutt and tosses him out of the ring. Outside the ring, they climb up on a little stage where another table is set. From the bleachers above the stage, Butcher tries to suplex Kanemura back onto the table, but Kanemura blocks it and powerbombs Butcher from the bleachers onto a pile of chairs that was also on the stage. Kanemura tosses a bunch of the chairs in the ring as Butcher slowly gets to his feet. After piling 10 chairs or so in the ring, Kanemura gets tired of waiting for Butcher and decides to go back and get him. After hitting him in the head with a chair, Kanemura drags Butcher back towards the ring and tosses him in. Scoop slam by Kanemura into the pile of chairs, Kanemura goes up top, but Butcher gets up in time and tosses him from the top turnbuckle into the pile. Cover, but it only gets two. Back up, Butcher hits a swinging neckbreaker into the chairs, but again he only gets two. Butcher goes up top, but Kanemura hits him in the head with a chair and suplexes him into the steel chair pile. Kanemura calls for the powerbomb, but Butcher back bodydrops out of it (hitting, of course, the chairs). Both men slowly struggle to their feet, Butcher is up first and tries to hit Kanemura with a chair, but Kanemura blocks it and gets a roll-up for two. Irish whip by Kanemura to the corner, reversed, but Kanemura moves when Butcher charges and Butcher goes head-first into the steel chair set up in the corner. Kanemura quickly rolls Butcher up, and he gets the three count pinfall. Your winner: Kintaro Kanemura
Match Thoughts: Of all the Japanese hardcore wrestlers of the 90s, Kanemura was always one of my favorites. He connects well with the crowd, and he has some actual wrestling ability that he flashes whenever it is appropriate to make a match better. Necro Butcher is, well, Necro Butcher. Love him or hate him, he doesn't mind taking the bumps to make a match memorable. The powerbomb onto the chairs from the bleachers was just sick. The only real complaint I would have is that the chairs seemed over-used, with a pile of chairs used as a weapon half a dozen times in the match. But overall it was a fun little brawl, nice to see Kanemura still alive and kicking. Score: 6.5
Shadow WX and Men's Teioh vs. MASADA and Mike Samples
MASADA and Samples jump Shadow WX and Men's Teioh to start the match, with Men's Teioh and Samples staying in the ring as the legal men. Hiptoss by Men's Teioh and he gives Samples a back bodydrop. Another hiptoss sends Samples from the ring, and Men's Teioh chases after him, sending him head first into a row of chairs. Meanwhile, Shadow WX and MASADA have gotten in the ring as they exchange chops. Shadow WX gains the advantage with a low blow, side headlock is applied, MASADA Irish whips out of it, and both men collide in the middle with neither budging. Shadow WX goes off again with no effect, but the third time he knocks MASADA down. MASADA tries for a clothesline, but Shadow WX ducks it and slaps on the Crippler Crossface. Samples runs in to break it up, but Men's Teioh catches him and puts him in an abdominal stretch. Both men break their holds, while Men's Teioh takes over wrestling MASADA and tosses him from the ring. Men's Teioh follows him out, but MASADA gains the advantage. Meanwhile, Samples has taken over his battle with Shadow WX, and he sits Shadow WX down in a chair at ringside. Samples then climbs back in the ring and goes for a somersault tope suicida, but Shadow WX moves in time so Samples goes right into the chair. MASADA comes over to help, and he throws Shadow WX into the back wall. Men's Teioh then comes over to Samples and applies the Teioh Lock while still on the outside. MASADA rams Shadow WX into the ring post, and Samples joins him in double teaming Shadow WX outside the ring. Finally, Shadow WX is thrown back in the ring and MASADA joins him. Punch to the face by MASADA and he tags in Samples. Kick by Samples, and he rakes on Shadow WX's eyes. Samples tags MASADA back in and he kicks on Shadow WX while he is still down. Shadow WX fights back to his feet, but MASADA punches him back down and rakes his eyes. Kneedrop by MASADA and he tags in Samples. Samples and Shadow WX trade punches, Samples gets the better of it though, Irish whip by Samples, but Shadow WX clotheslines him down. Shadow WX tags in Men's Teioh, who works over Samples in the corner. MASADA comes in to help, Irish whip by MASADA to the opposite cover, but Men's Teioh reverses it and hits a clothesline on both of them. Men's Teioh gets MASADA out of the ring, goes for a suplex on Samples, it is reversed, Men's Teioh lands on his feet, but Samples clotheslines him down. Cover, but Men's Teioh kicks out. Men's Teioh sneaks in a roll-up for two, then Samples gets a roll-up for two. Punches by Men's Teioh, and he clotheslines Samples down. Shadow WX is tagged in and they hit a double shoulderblock. Stunner by Shadow WX, and he clotheslines Samples towards his corner, allowing Samples to tag in MASADA. Both men hit clotheslines, but MASADA gets the better of it and he chokeslams Shadow WX. MASADA picks up Shadow WX and hits a stiff lariat, cover, but Men's Teioh runs in to break it up. MASADA tags in Samples, Irish whip, and Samples dropkicks him down. Another Irish whip, and after two kicks to the head Samples hits a modified uranage. Cover, but Shadow WX kicks out. Waistlock by Samples, reversed, and Men's Teioh runs in to hit a German suplex on Samples. Shadow WX clotheslines the crap out of Samples and then tags Men's Teioh into the match. Irish whip by Men's Teioh, reversed, and they go into a pinning sequence with neither man getting the three count. Forearm shot by Men's Teioh, cover, but MASADA breaks it up. Samples holds Men's Teioh for MASADA, but MASADA hits Samples on accident. Shadow WX comes in and hits a delayed brainbuster on Samples, Men's Teioh quickly applies the Teioh Lock, and Samples submits! Your winners: Shadow WX and Men's Teioh
Match Thoughts: An odd assortment of wrestlers to say the least. While I like Shadow WX and Men's Teioh, Samples and MASADA don't do much for me. The match started slow with the meaningless brawling around the ring, but it slowly developed into a watchable match. It probably would have been smarter to have Men's Teioh wrestle more in the match though, for he is obviously the most skilled wrestler of the four when it comes to in-ring abilities. Overall nothing horrendous, but not particularly good either. Score: 4.5
BADBOY Hido and 2 Tuff Tony vs. Ryuji Ito and GOSAKU
Hido and Tony charge Ito and GOSAKU to start, and the match is under way. Hido chops on Ito, and the two exchange blows. Ito hits Hido with a series of kicks to the chest, but Hido shoulderblocks him down. Irish whip by Hido, but he misses two clotheslines and Ito dropkicks him to the ring. Major clip here, as suddenly it is a bloody GOSAKU and Hido fighting in the ring. Hido stomps on GOSAKU in the corner. Tony comes in to help, and both men choke GOSAKU. GOSAKU is tossed out of the ring by Hido and Tony, and his legs hit a stack of chairs that had been set up at some point. Ito suddenly appears, and Hido tosses him into a row of chairs. Tony sets a chair up on Ito's neck and then drives it down into him with a chair shot. Tony rakes his bat of nails against Ito's head before Hido brings Ito back to the ring. Tony rakes Ito with the nail bat again, Irish whip, and he hits Ito in the head with it. Cover, but Ito kicks out. Choke by Tony and he tags in Hido. Hido hits Ito twice with a chair, picks him up, Irish whip, and he nails another chair shot. Cover, but it gets two. Tony sets the chair up in the ring and brainbusters Ito into it. Cover, but again it gets two. Tony goes and gets a barbed wire bat, and with Hido's help he powerbombs Ito onto it. Cover, but GOSAKU breaks it up. Irish whip by Tony from the corner, but Ito gives Hido a boot and then clotheslines Tony. Spinning leg kick by Ito on Hido, and he manages to tag in GOSAKU. GOSAKU rams Tony and Hido together, Irish whip on Tony, and he hits a gawd awful Rock Bottom. Irish whip by GOSAKU to the corner and he hits a running clothesline. GOSAKU then puts Tony up on the top turnbuckle and tosses him back off. Cover, but it gets two. GOSAKU tags Ito back in, and he hits two kicks on Tony and a leg drop. Northern Lights suplex by Ito, he goes for a piledriver, Tony goes to back bodydrop out of it, but Ito reverses that into a sunset flip for two. After a pinning sequence, Tony blocks a shining wizard and then hits one of his own (the knee variety). Cover by Tony, but Ito kicks out. Hido is tagged in, Irish whip, and he hits Ito in the chest with a barbed wire bat. Cover, but it only gets a two count. Hido picks Ito up and hits a landing piledriver onto the barbed wire bat, clotheslines Ito, cover, but again it gets two. Hido tags in Tony, Tony delivers a sit down inverted piledriver, cover, but it gets a two count. Tony then hits the double stomp/senton combo, and Ito rolls out of the ring. On the apron, Tony tries to hit the Tony Driver (according to the announcers), but Ito reverses it and powerbombs him onto a few chairs set up at ringside. Ito then comes sailing back in the ring with a springboard dropkick on Hido and then he kicks the barbed wire bat into him. Shining wizard by Ito, cover, but it gets two. Ito scoop slams Hido, puts a chair on his chest, and hits a frog splash from the top. Cover, but Tony pulls the referee out of the ring. GOSAKU runs over to attack him, but Tony suplexes him from the apron to the floor. Meanwhile, back in the ring Ito hits a German suplex, but Hido kicks out. Hido then hits a release German suplex, but Ito hits a savate kick to the head when he charges towards him. Scoop slam by Ito, he goes up top again, but Hido is up and clotheslines Ito as he jumps off. Cover, but Ito kicks out. Hido clotheslines Ito twice, Ito won't budge, but the third one knocks him out. Cover, and Hido gets the three count. Your winners: BADBOY Hido and 2 Tuff Tony
Match Thoughts: Ordinarily I would complain about the clipping of the match, but since it seems it clipped GOSAKU wrestling, then as DDP would say.... it's not a bad thing. It's a good thing. Pretty much everything GOSAKU did here looked rough, so the less he was in the better. I can understand the praise for Ito, the man obviously has some real wrestling ability (beyond brawling, which some hardcore wrestlers do very well). When you see matches like these you don't expect to see Northern Lights suplexes, springboard dropkicks, and frog splashes with such high elevation. So while Ito did elevate the match, he alone couldn't make up for the other wrestlers, and there really weren't any "creative" hardcore spots in this match to make it special or memorable. I imagine if GOSAKU had landed in the middle of the chair pyramid that it would have been a great visual, but with only his legs hitting the chairs it somewhat hurt the spot. While I have seen far worse hardcore matches, I have also seen far better and I look forward to seeing Ito a little later on the DVD in a truly crazy hardcore match with my man Kanemura. Score: 5.5
On to 11/12/04. I am going to skip the match with the wrestler whose name is a mystery. It seemed to only be a five minute draw anyway, and was obviously intended to be a exhibition of sorts. I will assume no one will care.
Katsumasa Inoue vs. Takashi Sasaki
Tie-up to start, side headlock by Inoue, Sasaki Irish whips out of it, and both collide in the middle of the ring with little effect. Inoue goes off the ropes again, still no one gives, but the third time he knocks Sasaki down with a shoulderblock. Kicks by Inoue, and as Sasaki gets to his feet the two exchange blows. Sasaki gets the better of the dual as he elbows Inoue to the mat. Inoue is up quickly though and he headbutts Sasaki down. Back up again, they exchange chops, and Sasaki knocks down Inoue with a spinning kick. Snapmare by Sasaki and he kicks Inoue in the back. Sasaki picks up Inoue, scoop slam, and a quick leg drop. Cover, but it only gets a two count. Sasaki continues kicking on Inoue, but Inoue struggles to his feet and begins trading blows back. He finds little success however, and Sasaki kicks him back down again. Cover, but again it gets two. Sasaki tries to continue his kick barrage, but Inoue finally manages to catch one and he pushes Sasaki to the mat. Dropkick by Inoue and he clotheslines Sasaki. Tombstone piledriver by Inoue, cover, but Sasaki kicks out. Modified Northern Lights suplex by Inoue, but again it gets two. Inoue goes for a suplex, reversed by Sasaki, Sasaki applies a waistlock, Inoue elbows out of it, but Sasaki nails a dropkick to the head while Inoue is crouched over. Irish whip by Sasaki and he hits a side leg kick. Cover, but it gets a two count. Irish whip again by Sasaki, this time from the corner, but Inoue moves out of the way when Sasaki charges and hits a jumping headbutt. Fisherman's brainbuster by Inoue, cover, but Sasaki kicks out. Inoue goes up top, but Sasaki moves out of the way when he jumps off. Savate kick by Sasaki, Irish whip from the corner, and he nails a running side leg kick. Sit-down powerbomb by Sasaki, cover, but Inoue barely kicks out. Back up, Inoue sneaks in a punch and whips off a Tiger Suplex, but it only gets two. Inoue goes for a Fisherman's brainbuster, but Sasaki reverses it into a regular brainbuster. Cover, but it gets two. Sasaki charges Inoue, but Inoue gets a quick backslide for two. More kicks by Sasaki follow, he hits a lariat, cover, and he gets the three count. Your winner: Takashi Sasaki
Match Thoughts: Fundamentally sound, if nothing else. I come into these matches (opening matches in gyms for hardcore promotions) with such low expectations that when they are decent, it surprises the hell out of me. Besides a somewhat dead crowd and the large amount of kicks by Sasaki, there was generally nothing wrong with this match. Many opening Japanese matches rely on mat work, but this one didn't have any at all, making it a little different then New Japan or All Japan. Inoue had some impressive moves, including the Fisherman's brainbuster and Tiger Suplex. Seems off that these two moves (Liger and Tiger Mask's finishing moves, respectively) can't get the win, but an average-looking clothesline does. So other then a few relatively minor complaints, it was a decent match by two obviously young talented wrestlers. Score: 6.0
Necro Butcher vs. Yuichi Taniguchi
Irish whip by Butcher to start the match quickly and he boots Taniguchi down. Taniguchi rolls out of the ring and hides, so that Butcher can't find him. Someone tells Butcher that Taniguchi is under the ring, but by now Taniguchi has re-emerged on the other side and tosses Butcher into the ring post. Taniguchi then slams Butcher into a table and then into the ring post again. Headbutt by Taniguchi, and he clubs Butcher in the back. Butcher finally fights back and slams Taniguchi into the apron. After throwing Taniguchi into the chairs at ringside once, he tries it again, but the second time it is reversed by Taniguchi and Butcher goes sailing into the chairs. Taniguchi takes Butcher to the back and rams him into a truck. Taniguchi then takes him over to the concession stand, slamming him into the table. Back to another section, Taniguchi tosses Butcher into a table again. Slap to the chest by Butcher, he tries to Irish whip Taniguchi into some chairs, but again it is reversed and Butcher goes flying into them. Uppercut by Taniguchi, but Butcher hits him back and removes a mat at ringside. Butcher tries to piledriver Taniguchi onto the exposed floor, but it is reversed and he gets back bodydropped onto the concrete instead. Back in the ring, Taniguchi misses a charge on Butcher and Butcher chokes him with a belt. Elbows by Taniguchi to get out of it, and he back suplexes Butcher to the mat. Now Taniguchi grabs the belt and he whips Butcher in the back with it. Taniguchi takes off Butcher's shirt and whips him in the back some more. Taniguchi then chokes Butcher with the belt, but Butcher rakes his eyes to get him to stop. Butcher is tossed into the turnbuckle, Taniguchi charges from the opposite side and hits a double chop to the chest. Irish whip by Taniguchi, and again he hits Butcher in the chest. Choke by Taniguchi in the corner, Irish whip, and he hits a Northern Lights suplex for two. Off the ropes, Taniguchi goes for a body splash, but Butcher moves out of the way. Swinging neckbreaker by Butcher, cover, but Taniguchi kicks out. Butcher grabs Taniguchi, hits a running Ace Crusher, cover, but again Taniguchi kicks out at two. Butcher goes under the ring and grabs a few chairs, sliding them into the ring. Butcher uses one chair to scoop slam Taniguchi, cover, but it only gets two. After setting up the two chairs facing the corner, Butcher sits Taniguchi down into one of them, goes up top, but Taniguchi moves out of the way of the senton and Butcher goes into both the chairs. Taniguchi throws a chair at Butcher, cover, but it gets two. Taniguchi goes for another Northern Lights suplex, but Butcher reverses it into a swinging neckbreaker for two. Back up, clothesline by Butcher, cover, and he gets the three count. Your winner: Necro Butcher
Match Thoughts: Certainly not as good as the Necro Butcher match we saw earlier and hardly entertaining at all. I would have to assume after watching this that Taniguchi is just dead weight, for I know that Necro Butcher can put on very entertaining brawls when he is in the position to do so. The early part of the match was repetitive and un-creative, and when they got back in the ring things never really picked up. At least bump Necro Butcher around a little bit, toss him from the top turnbuckle to the floor or something. Pretty uninspired brawling and quite disappointing overall. Score: 3.0
Abdullah Kobayashi and Naoki Numazawa vs. Mad Man Pondo and 2 Tuff Tony
Match is JIP, as Numazawa is already bleeding and dragging Tony around ringside with a cart. Numazawa sets a chair up on the cart and sits Tony in it, while Kobayashi puts Pondo in a chair on a cart as well. They then ram the two into each other, with Tony ending up landing on Pondo. After getting them off the cart, Kobayashi chases Pondo to the back into a bowling area (?), but Pondo grabs a bowling ball and hits Kobayashi in the back with it. Back in the arena area now, Pondo hits Kobayashi with the bowling ball again and throws him back into the ring. Pondo sits Kobayashi up in the corner, and then rolls the bowling ball into his lower midsection. Tony then gets in the ring, grabs the bowling bowl, and chucks it at Kobayashi's face. Again he throws the bowling ball at Kobayashi, as Numazawa gets in the ring. Scoop slam by Tony on Numazawa, double stomp/senton combination by Tony, cover, but it only gets a two count. Tony hits Numazawa in the stomach with a chair, sets it up, and suplexes Numazawa into it. Cover by Tony, but again it gets two. Tony tags in Pondo, who immediately sets to make a pile of chairs in the middle of the ring. Scoop slam by Pondo on Numazawa into the pile, he goes up top, but he misses the twisting splash. Kobayashi comes in and puts Pondo up top, but Tony comes over and pulls Kobayashi off. Meanwhile, Numazawa has climbed up with Pondo, and Kobayashi throws a chair at Pondo as he is about to grab Numazawa. Numazawa takes way too long in doing his move though, so Pondo elbows him and sets up Numazawa for a superplex. Tony then comes up and powerbombs Pondo, which sends Numazawa with more force into the pile of chairs. Cover, but Kobayashi breaks it up. Tony and Pondo put Kobayashi onto the top rope, Pondo puts a chair on Kobayashi's back, and Tony comes off the side ropes with a somersault leg drop onto the chair. Back to Numazawa, they hit a double delayed suplex into the chair pile, cover, but it only gets two. Double Irish whip, Tony and Pondo go for a double suplex, but it is reversed into a double DDT. Numazawa tags in Kobayashi, Irish whip on Pondo, and he hits a running splash in the corner. Kobayashi scoop slams Tony, hits a splash off the second rope on Tony, then a big elbow from the top, cover, but Pondo breaks it up. Numazawa comes back in, Irish whip on Tony, and he hits a facebuster onto the steel chair. Clothesline by Numazawa, cover, but Tony kicks out. Numazawa hits a Northern Lights suplex, cover, but again it gets two. Irish whip by Numazawa, reversed, and Tony hits a swinging Rock Bottom. Tony Driver by Tony, but Kobayashi breaks up the fall. Pondo tosses Kobayashi from the ring and sets up a contraption with Numazawa lying between two chairs with a stop sign on his chest and another chair bridging the two chairs together. Pondo then goes up top and hits a twisting splash through the chair onto Numazawa, cover, but Kobayashi pushes Tony into Pondo to break up the fall. Tony goes for another Tony Driver on Numazawa, it is reversed, we get a pinning sequence, but neither wrestler can get the three count. Tony does manage to get Numazawa back up on his shoulders however, Tony Driver on the stop sign, and he gets the three count. Your winners: Mad Man Pondo and 2 Tuff Tony
Match Thoughts: Still not great, but better then the last match. Since two of the four men were already bleeding when the match started, I wonder how much of the match we missed. A few of the spots were innovative (such as the carts and somersault leg drop), but many of the others are either over-done or took too long to set up. I guess "pile of chairs" is the new craze, for it was used a lot in the Butcher/Kanemura match and again here quite a bit as well. The match wasn't really bad, but between the cut beginning and the slow parts it wasn't particularly good either. Score: 5.0
BADBOY Hido and Kintaro Kanemura vs. Ryuji Ito and Daisuke Sekimoto
This is a light tube death match, with light tubes taped to the ropes on two sides. Since two different things will probably be going on at different times during this match, I will probably just pick the more important/main pairing when that happens for the play by play. The two teams brawl to start, as in the ring Kanemura gives Sekimoto a belly to belly suplex. Kanemura goes off the ropes, but Sekimoto catches him with a scoop slam and clotheslines him over the top rope. Outside, Kanemura slams Sekimoto into the apron as Hido and Ito get back into the ring. Irish whip by Hido, and Ito goes into two of the light tubes before Hido clotheslines him down. Irish whip again by Hido, but he misses the clothesline and Ito dropkicks him to the outside. Ito comes flying out of the ring with a springboard attack, but Hido hits him in the chest with a light tube as he falls. Hido kicks Sekimoto in the chest, but Sekimoto gains the advantage and slams him into a table. Meanwhile, Kanemura hits Ito with a light tube and carries him to the back staging area. Hido and Sekimoto continue to pound on each other at ringside, while Kanemura takes Ito up to the staging area and then unceremoniously throws him off through a table. Kanemura intelligently walks down instead of jumping off himself, as at ringside Hido hits Sekimoto with a light tube. Hido slams Sekimoto into the ring post as Kanemura joins them, setting up a table at ringside. Hido puts Sekimoto on the table, but Sekimoto recovers as Kanemura is on the top turnbuckle. Sekimoto jumps up on the apron and tosses Kanemura off the top turnbuckle back inside the ring. Hido is back though, and knocks Sekimoto off the apron into the ring. Wielding chairs, Kanemura and Hido simultaneously hit Sekimoto in the chest/back and then Kanemura cracks him over the head with the chair. Hido then hits him with a chair, double Irish whip, and Sekimoto goes into the light tubes. Kanemura takes two light tubes off and cracks Ito in the head with them as he approaches the ring. In the ring, Irish whip by Hido, and Sekimoto goes into the light tubes again. Outside the ring, Kanemura tosses Ito into a row of chairs and applies a reverse chinlock. Meanwhile, in the ring Hido has found a barbed wire bat and rakes it again Sekimoto's face. Hido then hits Sekimoto in the chest, as Kanemura props two light tubes against Sekimoto's chest so that Hido can break them with the bat. Sekimoto begins to fight back, but is quickly knocked back down. Kanemura sets a chair up in the corner and pulls Ito into the ring, pushing him into a few light tubes. Kanemura sets a pile of light tubes up in the corner resting on the chair, he tries to Irish whip Sekimoto into them, Sekimoto reverses it, but Kanemura slams on the breaks before he reaches the light tubes. His quick thinking didn't save him though, as Sekimoto spears him into the light tubes anyway.
Dropkick by Sekimoto on Hido, and Ito hits both Hido and Kanemura with a chair. Kicks by Ito on Hido, scoop slam, he goes up top and hits the 450 splash. Cover, but Kanemura breaks it up. Sekimoto quickly comes over and clotheslines Kanemura. Cover by Sekimoto, but it gets two. Chop by Sekimoto on Kanemura, Ito and Sekimoto get Hido and Kanemura in opposite corners and Irish whip them towards each other, they avoid the collision, but when they swing back around they are met with a DDT and Northern Lights suplex (respectively). Ito's Northern Lights suplex on Hido only gets two though, so Sekimoto grabs him and puts him in the Argentine Backbreaker. Kanemura kicks Sekimoto before Hido can submit, puts another tied together stack of light tubes in the middle of the ring, goes to powerbomb Sekimoto into them, but Ito kicks him in the head before he can do so. Sekimoto puts Kanemura up into the Argentine Backbreaker, Hido manages to hand Kanemura a light tube even though Ito is holding him back, Kanemura hits Sekimoto in the head with the light tube, but Sekimoto is too badass and won't release the hold. Another shot does it though, Kanemura goes off the ropes, but Sekimoto powerslams him into the stack of light tubes. Sit down powerbomb by Sekimoto on Hido, cover, but Hido kicks out. Sekimoto goes outside the ring to find Kanemura, puts him on a table at ringside with a stack of light tubes on his chest, and his partner Ito flies from the top turnbuckle with a splash on Kanemura. Sekimoto gets back in the ring and puts Hido up on his shoulders, and Ito comes off the top with a missile dropkick, sending Hido crashing to the mat. Cover by Sekimoto, but it only gets a two count. Ito grabs a stack of light tubes, Sekimoto puts it on Hido's chest, and Ito goes off the top with a frog splash onto Hido. Cover, but Hido somehow kicks out. Sekimoto goes for a German suplex on Hido, but Kanemura comes back in the ring and hits a German suplex on Sekimoto. Sekimoto takes a page out of Kawada's book though and doesn't sell it, hits Kanemura with a clothesline, goes for a German suplex again, but Hido hits him in the chest with a barbed wire bat. Kanemura gets a stack of light tubes, sets it laying on top the turnbuckle, and tosses Ito into it. Clothesline by Hido on Sekimoto, but Ito breaks it up. Kanemura tosses Ito from the ring and throws him into a row of chairs. In the ring, Hido clotheslines Sekimoto, sets a stack of light tubes in the ring, delivers a landing piledriver into the light tubes, and gets the three count pin. Your winners: BADBOY Hido and Kintaro Kanemura
Match Thoughts: I sure do enjoy "death matches" more when real wrestling moves are inserted in. Since you aren't going to get the FMW-like crowd atmosphere in front of only 100 people, you have to put on a better match to make a strong impression. Hido stuck out here as slightly out of place, since the rest were using moves such as DDTs, suplexes, splashes, etc. and he depended more on weapons and clotheslines to make an impact. As for memorable spots (which I think is important in death matches), the frog splash by Ito to the outside through a table was pretty awesome, and Kanemura calmly dumping Ito off the balcony was fun as well. Even though I don't feel I need to say any more about Ito since I talked about him before, I must say that he is impressive in that he has such an arsenal of wrestling moves that require skill and athleticism (such as the 450 splash) and tends to elevate death matches just by being in them. It wasn't the best death match I have seen, since light tube death matches aren't my personal favorite (give me a circus death match any day of the week and I am happy), but for what it was it was entertaining and overall fun to watch. Score: 7.0
While the event didn't have any "blow away" matches, it did do a good job of showcasing the talent that is currently in Big Japan. Two matches with Kanemura, two with Ito, and two with Necro Butcher almost makes this a smart purchase alone (even though the second Butcher match was very disappointing). The only thing stopping me from giving it my highest recommendation is that it didn't really have a "must see" match, and only had three matches that I think are very good with the rest being average or worse. If you don't like hardcore matches, then obviously I wouldn't recommend it, since the non-hardcore matches are average at best.
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