MPro Fighting Tohuku Legend 6th ~ Iwante Vol.
review by Kevin Wilson

Date: March 19th, 2006
Location: Yahaba Townsman Gymnasium
Attendance: 1,060

Just to show that I don't only watch the big promotions, here is a review from a Michinoku Pro show from this year. I like a lot of different promotions, it is just easier to find events and information for the larger ones. Michinoku Pro is the longest running independent promotion in Japan and has created a lot of stars over the years, two of which will be competing on this card: Jinsei Shinzaki and Great Sasuke. Plus my man Yoshitsune is wrestling, so this is bound to be fun. The following matches from the show aired:

- GAINA Return Match: Jinsei Shinzaki and GAINA vs. Kei Sato and Maguro Ooma
- Great Sasuke vs. Shu Sato
- Takeshi Minaminno, Mango Fukuda, and Pineapple Hanai vs. Yoshitsune, Rasse, and Nakajima
- Tohoku Jr. Heavyweight Championship: Kagetora vs. Makoto Oishi

Super Delfin appears before the show and challenges Shinzaki to a match on a later date. Shinzaki did not seem to be against this idea.

Jinsei Shinzaki and GAINA vs. Kei Sato and Maguro Ooma
This is GAINA's return match, which in Japan probably means he is going to lose. Sato and Ooma attack GAINA with a chair as soon as the match starts. Sato kicks GAINA in the head and connects with a series of mounted punches. Cover, but it gets a one count. Sato bites GAINA in the head, but the referee gets him off. Back up, forearm by GAINA but Sato returns with one of his own. The two trade shots, high kick by Sato and he hands him to Ooma. Ooma takes a giant board and drives it into GAINA's head from the corner, and then Sato hits GAINA in the back with it. Sato dropkicks Shinzaki off the apron while Ooma takes the stake and drives it into GAINA while Sato hits GAINA with a chair. Welcome back, GAINA! Cover by Sato, but GAINA barely kicks out. Ooma and Sato go for a double vertical suplex, but GAINA reverses it and suplexes both of them instead. GAINA tags in Shinzaki, and Shinzaki gives Ooma a chop to the head followed by a savate kick to Sato. Mandra Hindrei by Shinzaki to GAINA, he goes for one on Sato, but Sato gets out of it with an enzigieri. Shinzaki comes back with a choke hold, Ooma tries to come off the top rope, but Shinzaki catches him and then chokeslams both his opponents to the mat. Shinzaki applies the Gaku-raku Gatame Stretch on Sato, but Ooma breaks it up with a chair shot. GAINA runs in, but Ooma hits him with a chair as well and then dropkicks the chair into him. Cover, but it gets a two count. Irish whip by Ooma to the corner, but GAINA kicks him when he charges in and delivers a lariat. Irish whip by GAINA and he hits a hip toss slam. Cover, but it only gets two. GAINA picks up Ooma, scoop slam, he goes up to the top turnbuckle and nails the diving elbow drop. Cover, but Sato throws a chair at him to break it up. Sato picks up GAINA, Irish whip from the corner, and he hits a step up kick followed by another kick to the head. Cover, but GAINA barely kicks out. Sato waits for GAINA to get up and kicks him in the head again. Cover, but it gets two. Sato picks up GAINA and holds him for Ooma, but GAINA ducks and Ooma accidentally hits Sato with the chair. Lariat by GAINA on Ooma, Irish whip from the corner and he hits a lariat. GAINA puts Ooma onto the top turnbuckle, joins him, and lariats him from the turnbuckle to the mat. Cover, but Ooma gets a hand in the ropes. Back up, rolling lariat by GAINA, and this time he picks up the three count. Your winners: Jinsei Shinzaki and GAINA

Match Thoughts: A minute or so was cut from the beginning but it doesn't seem like we missed much. Pretty simple match, I was surprised that GAINA actually picked up the pinfall. His offense seems pretty one dimensional (this is the first full match I have seen as his), but they hit their moves well and the action kept at a decent pace. Shinzaki mostly watched, but he helped when he was needed. Not much to it, but if GAINA being back was a big deal then I'm happy it went well. Score: 4.5

Great Sasuke vs. Shu Sato
Sasuke brings lots of chairs with him to the ring, but Sato spits water in his face and hits Sasuke with a chair of his own. Dueling chairs by Sato and Sasuke, but Sato gets the better of it. Sato brings Sasuke back to ringside and Irish whips him into a row of chairs in the crowd. After making a giant pile of chairs, Sato picks up Sasuke and kicks him in the back. He then lifts Sasuke and suplexes him into the pile of chairs that he had just created. Sato brings Sasuke back to the ringside area but instead of throwing him into the ring he Irish whips him into more chairs. After sitting Sasuke into a chair, Sato gets a running start and nails him with a Shining Wizard. Finally into the ring we go as Sato slides Sasuke's limp body back into it. Sato picks up Sasuke and applies a blatant choke, which the referee eventually breaks. Kicks to the chest by Sato and Sasuke falls back to the mat. Cover, but it gets a two count. Sato kicks Sasuke in the back of the head and then stands on it. After getting a chair out from under the ring, Sato slides back in, but Sasuke kicks the chair into him. Sasuke goes up to the top turnbuckle while Sato's head is draped over the second rope and delivers a missile dropkick. In the ring, Sasuke gets a running start and goes for a missile dropkick through the ropes, he kicks the chair Sato is holding into him but Sasuke lands hard as well. They trade punches on the outside and then kicks, with Sasuke getting the better of it. Sasuke slides Sato back into the ring and gets back in himself with a chair. Sasuke lays the chair on the mat (unfolded, but on its side), gets a second chair, and sets it up next to the other one. This is taking him awhile. Finally he gets the chairs as he wants them, he picks up Sato and chokes him down onto the chairs. With Sato still on the chairs, Sasuke goes up to the top turnbuckle and goes for the senton atomico, but Sato moves and Sasuke lands back-first on the two chairs in the most painful looking spot I have seen in awhile.

Sato covers Sasuke, but Sasuke gets a foot on the bottom rope. Quick kicks to the head by Sato, he goes off the ropes and delivers a dropkick. Cover, but again it gets a two. Savate kick by Sato, cover, but Sasuke kicks out. Sato picks up Sasuke and slaps him repeatedly in the face, but Sasuke blocks the kicks and kicks Sato in the leg. The two trade punches and then slaps, boot to the chest by Sasuke and he chops Sato in the head. Knee by Sasuke, but Sato comes back with a jumping kick. Cover, but it only gets a two count. Sato rolls out of the ring and slides multiple chairs into the ring. Sato slowly piles them up while Sasuke waits on the mat, Sato picks up Sasuke and suplexes him onto the chairs. Sato goes up to the top turnbuckle, but Sasuke is up in time and joins him. Superplex by Sasuke into the pile of chairs, hurting both wrestlers. Sasuke is up first and he starts setting the chairs upright facing each other. I think these two are obsessed with chairs. Sasuke is still stacking them, now with six on the bottom with two on top of it. He then gets on top his stack with a steel chair in theory to jump onto Sato, but Sato is up and dropkicks him off the tower. Sato goes to the top turnbuckle with a chair and dropkicks it into Sasuke's head. Sato then piles the chairs on top of Sasuke, goes up to the top turnbuckle and delivers a body press. Cover, but Sasuke barely kicks out. Kei Sato comes out nowhere and starts beating Sasuke with a big wooden stick, and the match is declared a No Contest.

Match Thoughts: This match took everything I love about Michinoku Pro and discarded it while implementing all the things I don't like about Big Japan. By biggest complaint about death matches is sometimes they take too long setting up big spots and not enough time wrestling... but at least Big Japan delivers on the big spots. There were just too many times that the action stopped so that chairs could be gathered... and what the hell was Great Sasuke doing with his tower? He spends a full minute building a tower of chairs but only planned to jump off of it? Is the top turnbuckle no longer the cool thing to use? Not to mention I have no idea why this was called a No Contest since Kei Sato interfered, and I don't know why he interfered when his partner had the match well in hand. Some of the individual spots were fun, but overall the match was just too slow and too illogical for my tastes. Score: 3.5

Takeshi Minaminno, Mango Fukuda, and Pineapple Hanai vs. Yoshitsune, Rasse, and Nakajima
Fukuda and Nakajima start things off. Tie-up, Fukuda pushes Nakajima into the ropes but he gives a clean break. Forearm by Nakajima, Nakajima pushes Fukuda into the ropes and he forearms Fukuda in the chest before backing off. Waistlock by Nakajima, reversed by Fukuda, Nakajima applies a wristlock, reversed by Fukuda, but Nakajima applies a hammerlock. Side headlock by Nakajima, but Fukuda Irish whips out of it. The two collide with neither man budging, Nakajima goes off the ropes as does Fukuda, but they remain at a deadlock. Nakajima and Fukuda trade strikes, Nakajima goes off the ropes and delivers a jumping forearm, but Fukuda fires back with a lariat. Tired, Fukuda tags in Hanai while Nakajima tags in Rasse. Irish whip by Hanai, but Rasse rolls out of the way of the lariat attempt. Tilt-a-whirl backbreaker by Rasse, but Rasse headscissors him out of the ring. Rasse goes to do a dive, but he sees that Hanai has moved so he flips himself back in the ring. Minaminno runs in and clubs Rasse from behind, Minaminno picks up Rasse and gives him a headbutt. Minaminno tags in Fukuda, who kicks Rasse in the ribs. Club to the back by Fukuda, he picks up Rasse and scoop slams him to the mat. Fukuda tags in Hanai and Hanai applies a single-leg crab hold. Fukuda stomps on Rasse while he is in the hold, as does Minaminno. Yoshitsune finally manages to break it up, but he is quickly thrown out of the ring. Irish whip by Hanai and he hits a double team move with Fukuda. Cover, but it gets a two count. Hanai picks up Rasse and tags in Fukuda. Fukuda chokes Rasse in the corner with his boot and Hanai does the same as Fukuda tags in Minaminno. Minaminno picks up Rasse and throws him into the corner. Irish whip by Minaminno, reversed, Minaminno back bodydrops Rasse as he charges in but Rasse lands on the apron. Rasse blocks an Minaminno and goes for a moonsault, but Minaminno moves out of the way. Minaminno goes off the ropes but Rasse catches him with an overhead belly to belly suplex.

Rasse makes the tag to Nakajima, and Nakajima dropkicks Minaminno to the mat. Hanai and Fukuda come into the ring as well, but Yoshitsune knocks them to the mat with a double Cyclone Elbow Strike. Yoshitsune then sails out onto Fukuda with a Space Flying Tiger Drop while Nakajima kicks Minaminno in the ring. Irish whip by Nakajima and he delivers a forearm. Vertical suplex by Nakajima, cover, but it gets a two count. Irish whip by Nakajima, but Minaminno reverses it and hits a high kick. Cover, but it gets a two count. Back up, Minaminno and Nakajima trade forearms and slaps, but Nakajima kicks Minaminno in the back of the head. Nakajima goes for a German suplex, but Fukuda runs in and pushes Nakajima, sending both Nakajima and Minaminno out of the ring. Rasse comes in with a springboard dropkick on Fukuda, he goes for a scoop slam, but Fukuda is too heavy and lands on top of him for a two count cover. Fukuda goes for a suplex, but Rasse slides behind his back. He also goes for a vertical suplex, but Fukuda reverses it into one of his own. Fukuda picks up Rasse, Irish whip from the corner and he delivers a lariat. He goes for a second one, but Rasse ducks it and hits an enzigieri. Fireman's carry slam by Rasse, he goes up to the top turnbuckle but Fukuda rolls out of the way of the Firebird Splash. Fukuda goes off the ropes and hits a lariat, cover, but Yoshitsune breaks it up. Yoshitsune and Hanai stay in as the legal men, Irish whip by Yoshitsune from the corner and he connects with a diving forearm. Yoshitsune goes off the ropes but Hanai catches him with a slam. Hanai picks up Yoshitsune, Yoshitsune get away from him, but Hanai hits a spinebuster. Face crusher by Hanai, cover, but it gets a two count. Hanai picks up Yoshitsune, but Yoshitsune spins away and hits a heel kick. 619 by Yoshitsune, he goes up to the top turnbuckle and nails the Shooting Star Press. Cover, but Minaminno breaks it up. Rasse comes in and kicks Minaminno out of the ring, but Fukuda enters as well and hip tosses Rasse to the mat. Nakajima comes in and gives Fukuda a backdrop suplex, but Fukuda pops to his feet and hits Nakajima with a lariat. Hanai grabs Yoshitsune from behind and holds him for Minaminno, but Yoshitsune ducks and Minaminno kicks Hanai by accident. Yoshitsune quickly rolls up Hanai and he picks up the three count! Your winners: Yoshitsune, Rasse, and Nakajima

Match Thoughts: A better match then we have seen so far, but still pretty simple. Course I might just be bitter because Yoshitsune wasn't in the match much, but when he was at least he hit all his moves very well. Rasse plays a good rag doll, but some of the Pineapple group's offense wasn't very convincing. Maybe it was because they were so in and out of the match, but really no wrestler had a chance to make a serious impression. Normal mid-card multi-tag entertainment, except less fun then usual. Score: 5.5

Kagetora vs. Makoto Oishi (K-DOJO)
This match is for the vacant Tohoku Jr. Heavyweight Championship. They circle each other to start, Oishi goes for a single leg takedown but Kagetora moves out of the way. They jockey for position, again Oishi goes for a single leg takedown, Kagetora blocks it, but Oishi applies a waistlock on the mat. Oishi rolls Kagetora over and applies a front facelock, but Kagetora rolls out of it and reverses the hold. Kagetora reverses the hold back, but Kagetora fights to his feet and applies a wristlock. Oishi does a forward roll to get out of the hold however and both men are back on their feet. Tie-up, side headlock by Kagetora, Oishi Irish whips out of it but Kagetora shoulderblocks him down. Kagetora goes off the ropes but Oishi dropkicks him in the knee. Another dropkick to the knee by Oishi, he grabs Kagetora by the leg and drops an elbow onto it. Another elbow drop to the leg by Oishi and he applies a leg lock. Kagetora slowly inches to the ropes and eventually reaches them, forcing a break. Kick to the leg by Oishi and he punches Kagetora back into the corner. Oishi wraps Kagetora's leg over the second rope and applies pressure to it before delivering a dropkick. Back up, snapmare by Oishi and he drops another elbow onto Kagetora's leg. Leg drop to the leg by Oishi and he applies the bow and arrow. After a moment Kagetora reaches the ropes, Oishi picks him up and kicks him in the leg some more. Oishi goes off the ropes, ducks a Kagetora lariat attempt and dropkicks Kagetora in the knee. Back up, scoop slam attempt by Oishi but Kagetora blocks it and hits a scoop slam of his own. Oishi quickly applies an ankle lock however, Kagetora almost reaches the ropes, but Oishi pulls him back to the middle of the ring and re-applies the hold. Finally Kagetora reaches the ropes and Kagetora breaks the hold. Stomp to the leg by Oishi, he picks up Kagetora and throws him into the corner. Oishi runs at Kagetora, but Kagetora kicks him when he charges in. Kagetora then connects with a pair of lariats. Oishi rolls out of the ring, but Kagetora sails out onto him with a somersault tope suicida (onto the hard gym floor).

Kagetora picks up Oishi and slides him back into the ring, Kagetora gets back in himself, Irish whip, reversed, but Kagetora hits a diving lariat. Kagetora picks up Oishi, Irish whip from the corner and he connects with a running lariat. Cradle Side Slam by Kagetora, cover, but it gets a two count. Kagetora waits for Oishi to get up, but he misses the kick and Oishi kicks him in the leg. Oishi dropkicks Kagetora out of the ring and then hits an Asai Moonsault off the top rope. Oishi slides Kagetora back into the ring and elbows him into the corner. Irish whip by Oishi, reversed, but Oishi avoids the lariat. Moonsault off the second turnbuckle by Oishi, cover, but it gets a two count. Oishi picks up Kagetora and nails the Sambo Suplex, Kagetora comes back, but Oishi gives him another one. Again Kagetora pops up though and this time delivers a lariat, but falls down afterwards. Kagetora is up first, but Oishi gets up as well and the two trade forearms. Oishi goes off the ropes, but Kagetora catches him with a forearm. Quick roll-up by Oishi, but it gets a two, as does a small package. Crucifix pin by Oishi, but Kagetora kicks out at two. Aztec Suplex Hold by Oishi, but Kagetora barely kicks out. Oishi picks up Kagetora and goes for a dragon suplex, but Kagetora gets out of it and delivers a kick to the head. Brainbuster by Kagetora, cover, but it only gets a two count. Kagetora picks up Oishi, goes off the ropes, and hits a lariat from the back followed by an enzigieri. Another lariat by Kagetora, cover, but Oishi barely kicks out. Back up, Kagetora hits a wrist-clutch driver, but it also only gets a two count. Hangetsu by Kagetora, he picks up Oishi and drills him with the Ikkitousen. Cover, and he picks up the three count. Your winner and new champion: Kagetora

Match Thoughts: Not too bad, Kagetora is a wrestler I have really been enjoying so far this year. Oishi never had a chance here, which hampered the match a bit, but he put in a good effort. The early leg work was well done, but while Kagetora sold it for a few minutes afterwards it was a non-issue the last third of the match. Since none of Oishi's finishing moves seem to deal with the leg I am not sure why that was the focal point, but that's pretty standard in puroresu matches. The strike battle right at the end of the match seemed oddly placed, but things picked up and they had a pretty hot finish. Kagetora's dive onto the hard gym floor was sick, I don't know what possesses wrestlers to do things that they know are going to hurt.... but I salute them for it. Kagetora's power moves looked great here, he is a real up and comer that within a few years will be making a strong impact in one of the larger promotions (such as Dragon Gate, Zero-One MAX, or All Japan). Overall it was a fun match and definitely the best one of the event. Score: 6.5

Final Thoughts:

This was a clipped down event that aired on a show called Puroresu Kings, a program that shows events from different promotions. The event didn't have any great matches and was pretty short, so I can't recommend it. Kagetora is worth watching for sure and his match was good, but none of the others are worth going out of your way to see. Please note that just because I did not like this event does not mean that Michinoku Pro in 2006 isn't entertaining.... it is just one show, and you can't judge an entire promotion off of one show. But unless you are a Michinoku Pro completist or really want to see Kagetora doing his thing, there is no need to pick this show up.

Not Recommended

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