Random Match Roundup #3

Hello everyone! Welcome to Random Match Roundup #3. This is where I review 5 random matches that I have watched recently. Lets get started.

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Ultimo Dragon vs. Shinjiro Otani – Semi Finals of the J Crown – (NJPW J Crown 1996)

This match was the embodiment of the cliché “game of human chess”. This match displays Otani’s aggressive side and his desire to win the J Crown. His facials and body language make him endearing and I was rooting for him by the end. Furthermore, every move matters in this match and build on the story. The slow build to the epic climax of the match allows the viewer to see Otani work his ass of to have the match of his life, but he can’t put Dragon away. Everything, from the arm work to the high impact moves, fails for Otani in this match. The insane nearfalls down the stretch emphasize the importance of the tournament, making the J Crown seem like the most important title in the world. A rather large issue I have with the match, though, is that Dragon disregards the arm work of Otani immediately afterwards. One of the next moves Dragon does after having his arm devastated is skin the cat, which renders the arm work worthless. Due to that, I can’t give the match any higher than this.

Rating: ****1/4

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AR Fox vs. Uhaa Nation – (AIW They Live 2011)

Pretty basic little man, big man story with Fox using his speed to neutralize Uhaa’s power. This match is made worth watching because of the insane agility of these two men and AR Fox’s willingness to nearly kill himself every match. This match was very short and the rest of the match does not justify the near falls down the stretch, but for a short sprint, this match is good. Since it’s under nine minutes this is a very easy watch and is worth checking out.

Rating: ***1/4

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Hollywood Hogan vs. The Warrior – (WCW Halloween Havoc 1998)
            You know how bad this is; Warrior using ROLLING as an offensive maneuver, Hogan botching the fireball spot, and horrible interference. This was SO BORING though. Nothing freaking happens during this match. Its punches and punches and punches and punches for what felt like hours. And there is a horrid ref bump and obnoxious interference. Just don’t watch it. Please.

Rating: -****

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KENTA vs. Yoshihiro Takayama – (NOAH Accomplish Our Fourth Navigation 2004)

These two put on a clinic in wrestling psychology. The big man, little man dynamic has never been done better than it has here. Takayama’s offense and strikes are brutal and deck KENTA every time. Due to that, KENTA tries to avoid the strikes of Takayama and uses every wrestling tactic under the sun, like stiff strike sequences, flash pins, and suplexes. No matter what KENTA did, he could not keep Takayama down. After his offense, Takayama hit some bone chilling strikes to even the score. This needs to be watched by anyone who wants to get into wrestling. If you haven’t been impressed by KENTA yet, or only saw him as Hideo Itami, then watch this match to understand the hype.

Rating: ****3/4

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Shadow WX vs. Tomoaki Honma – Lighttube Board Deathmatch – (BJW in Korakuen Hall 10-17-1999)

This is what a good deathmatch can be. I understand if the violence is too much for some, but the extreme violence helps tell the story of the match. Honma is the underdog and Shadow WX brutalizes him with barbed wire, light tubes, and chairs. By the time Honma makes his comeback, the fans are on their feet, not because of the violence, but because they want Honma to get revenge for the brutality and slay the monster. They used the weapons to enhance their story, which made the heel more monstrous and the face more relatable. I could (and will) write an article on how deathmatches can be used correctly, and this is a premium example. Watch this to see how deathmatches can be good.

Rating: ***3/4

 

That is all for Random Match Roundup #3! Thank you for reading and stay tuned for a new series coming this Sunday and Random Match Roundup #4 next Friday. If you have any match suggestions, you can find some contacts at the link https://myjourneythroughwrestling.wordpress.com/contacts/. Thank you for reading and I will see you next time!

Best Match of the Roundup: KENTA vs. Yoshihiro Takayama

Worst Match of the Roundup: Warrior vs. Hollywood Hogan

-Terrance Smith

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