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This probably should be more in the sports media thread but wrestling fans will remember for a brief period the modern day Bob Caudle

 

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He was fantastic. So enthusiastic, not jaded. Now I'll never get my announcing dream team of the Hog~! and Don West.

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RIP Hog. He was an example of a non-wrestling announcer who did not look down on wrestling, and brought the same level of enthusiasm as he would display calling the ACC Football Game of the Week. Plus, "Slap the Porpoise" was awesome.

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I saw N8 Hatred's real name was Nathan Kehner. Any relation to Mike?

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Frank Andersson, a top level amateur wrestler from Sweden who won a bronze medal at the 1984 Summer Olympics passed away today at the age of 62 due to complications following heart surgery. Andersson briefly wrestled for NJPW and later WCW in the early 1990s, but had retired by 1995. He did come back to wrestle locally in Sweden back in 2014.

 

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The mighty Rastaman from Battlearts.  Goddamn.

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Might already be over in the puroresu thread but

Wajima is probably most known (at least in the wrestling world) for his match with Tom Magee

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Here is my take on Wajima after, in retrospect, seeing his entire career:

 

The man was a oddball in wrestling history, yet during the less than 3 years he wrestled he was a DIRECT INFLUENCE in the change in what would become the AJPW style that made the promotion so great in the 1990s. Though uncredited and probable a reluctant part of it. 

When he debuted in in 1986, it became clear he wasn't going to adjust very good to his new sport, but he was a big mainstream name, wages to boot, so he was going to be used high on the card regardless of how awkward he was. What happened was that he was put with Jumbo Tsuruta against Tenryu and partners to get some mileage out of the investment and the more sluggish style came out of that.

AJPW in the 80s had for the most part fairly short matches in combination by the more gentleman-like NWA/Funk way (more Dory than Terry) unless it was against foreign brawlers. The stiff hitting style grew out of frustration and the crowd reacted to it. Wajima either refused or more likely didn't know how to sell, so Tenryu in irritation would just stiff the guy again and again, match after match, for longer and longer matches. All Wajima could be used for was a punching bag. And out of that the All Japan style changed.

For in all honest, after Choshu left in early '87, and as great as he was, Jumbo was showing signs of resting on his laurels again, as he had been the year(s) before Choshu had entered the promotion. But thanks to Tenryu having been so influenced by the Choshu-style he slapped him back into shape. Or more correctly slapped Wajima so hard Jumbo couldn't sit still and handle it gentlemanly. Jumbo would be the one getting revenge for his pal Wajima, stiffing the guys back. And thus Jumbo found his inner grumpy guy.

So there you have it. Wajima the influencer.

RIP Wajima.

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Wouldn't it have been more directly on Choshu influencing both Tenryu and Jumbo though? Or, you're arguing that after Choshu left, things would have returned to status quo without Short Legs Riki, and Wajima's inability to sell is what continued the trend towards harder hitting/faster pace Oudou style? I think Tenryu wouldn't let that shit slide long term because he was so, so much better at the more violent aspect of wrestling than the NWA traditional mat-based approach but it's been like a decade since I seriously watched Japan Pro invasion and its aftermath. 

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Meltzer mentioned in the WON that Jackie Pollo Jr. died yesterday

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Apparently Don Leo Jonathan passed away today.

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One of Vince McMahon's favorite wrestlers, I reckon there will be a tribute on Raw.

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There certainly should be, every inch a HOFr. A big man that could move like a cruiser when he wanted to. Before my time for the most part, but from the footage I've seen an incredible performer, even makes a match with Verne Gagne look interesting and to me, Gagne is dull as ditchwater.

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All of that agility is on display in this match vs. Thesz from '55... multiple kip ups out of the head scissors by Jonathan, and a rope assisted jumping coconut crusher-style knee strike (also look for DLJ's sharp knees from the clinch in the corner). But you really wanna stick around for the glorious heeling of Don Leo attacking Thesz's cauliflower ears during the instructions, and Thesz spending the rest of the match trying to bust open his right ear. The kind of surly psychology that is life's blood of DVDVR....

 

 

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For the Ralph Kramden Sartorial HoF, I nominate those pants that ref Fred Nicholas is wearing. Nevertheless, Thee Mormon Giant has never failed to impress in any footage I have seen of him, his interviews were effective and he took a great promo shot too, what with that pompadour and 'chops.

- RAF in Mr. Blackwell mode

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Per Les Thatcher - Dick Slater has died

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7 minutes ago, RIPPA said:

Per Les Thatcher - Dick Slater has died

I remember Flair mentioning what terrible condition he was in on his podcast a few years ago. 

Slater is a guy who I'm really high on. Yeah, he was a Terry Funk clone in some ways, but if you're going to be a clone of anyone...

I'll toss this up here. It's not the best Slater from the Houston footage (which would be either the Mongolian Stomper match, or the incredible atmosphere for the match vs Gino, or maybe the Jake title win), but it's not otherwise online:

Other favorite Slater stuff:

The tag w/Flair vs Onita and Baba from 82.

Everything Slater does in JCP in 1984 as US champ.

Slater being brought in by the Armstrongs in Continental only to turn on them immediately (he was just passing through for a week)

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He was broken down by the time he came back to WCW in 1995-1996, but as an adult I have a fondness for Dirty Dick Slater tagging with Bunkhouse Buck. 

 

RIP.

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Buck and Slater were the shit. I would look forward to every Saturday Night beating they laid on Men At Work. I remember loving a match with them vs. Eddy and Cobra on Prime. I was super jazzed when they won the belts from Harlem Heat on Saturday Night.

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