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It seems counter-intuitive on the surface, but I think All Japan having generally longer matches actually helped Vader a lot at that stage of his career. He isn't trying to do sprints, instead he plays this slow moving dreadnaught that is always on the verge of destroying what is in his path. They got what they needed out of it. All the big dream matches were good, hell some of them were extraordinary. You got your champion carnivals and real world tag league moments. And you got the Dome match with Misawa where Vader throws everything he has in the tank into it. Vader never had any problem selling for guys (hell, took criticism for selling for smaller wrestlers too much) so the kind of back and forth, long drawn out matches suited him a lot.

I honestly thought Vader looked pretty bad a lot of the time once you get to early NOAH, but the late-90's All Japan run rules.

It's kind of like how George Foreman had a weird late-career resurgence where everyone was like "damn he looks fat" but suddenly he was going 12 rounds without the constant stamina problems that plagued him in his "prime" and won another world title. 

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45 minutes ago, For Great Justice said:

14:45 gawwwwww lee

I rewatched about six times in a row. Such a good punchline to the imaginary little birds and stars you visualize circling Kawada's head right before that.

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Asuka has had a varied and odd career.  Here, she and Meiko Satomura kick each other in the face a lot. From 2014.

 

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Hansen as the cheating roughneck with impeccable timing was great to watch. As was Lawler coming in with the fake hot tag and putting his head on Stan's chest and going to work with both fists to the gut. And that bleacher brawl at the end with the trash can! Super fun. I know some of the Hansen/Idol matches are on YT but did Hansen have a program with Lawler while he was in Memphis too?

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Pre-WWE Asuka was waaaaay fun.  I am unfamiliar with Hanako Nakamori but she kicks Asuka in the face quite a bit.

 

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7 hours ago, DEAN said:

I am unfamiliar with Hanako Nakamori but she kicks Asuka in the face quite a bit.

She is PURE-J's ace. I'm pretty sure you have checked out more Nakamori matches than myself in the last year or two.

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WARHORSE vs Gary Jay, Last Man Standing

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Stan Hansen in PR!  Chicky Starr hits a mild PR-level  gusher.

 

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Carlos getting fake hung reminds me of the Kevin Sullivan shoot where he said they convinced him and I think Mark Lewin to do that to the head babyface of the Dominican Republic promotion, who was black. Kevin said if the guy didn't help them with the fans he'd shoot kill him. The way to the ring was a freakin cattle shoot with corrugated steel barriers and the guy that got hung had to sit on another wrestler's shoulders and swing a chair at the fans trying to come over the wall 😄

He also said Jake Roberts got chased to the heel dressing room by the fans when they were in the DR once and he attempted to hide under the only defense in the room which was a wrestling mat, which the fans proceeded to beat with sticks and chairs! 

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More Stan Hansen in Puerto Rico!  Carlos and Stan punch each other in the face~!

 

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11 hours ago, Curt McGirt said:

Carlos getting fake hung reminds me of the Kevin Sullivan shoot where he said they convinced him and I think Mark Lewin to do that to the head babyface of the Dominican Republic promotion, who was black. Kevin said if the guy didn't help them with the fans he'd shoot kill him. The way to the ring was a freakin cattle shoot with corrugated steel barriers and the guy that got hung had to sit on another wrestler's shoulders and swing a chair at the fans trying to come over the wall 😄

He also said Jake Roberts got chased to the heel dressing room by the fans when they were in the DR once and he attempted to hide under the only defense in the room which was a wrestling mat, which the fans proceeded to beat with sticks and chairs! 

I don't know when it happened but I remember hearing Roddy Piper telling a story once about being in PR with Flair and getting into a riot, which led to one of my favourite pieces of advice ever. He said in a riot the first thing you should try to do is grab a chair, "not to hit anyone with, you want a chair so you can use it as a helmet".

Seems like good advice.

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Carlos gets a little offense in before getting slaughtered by Hansen.  Then Hansen slaughters him.

 

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It's now overdue into the Hansen love fest to bring back this classic moment. Complete with the shittiest tape trader level quality, as our forefathers intended.

 

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Watching that Hokuto / Nakano cage match a couple of pages back made me think "Hell, I'd rather be in a strap match with Wahoo McDaniel than in the same ring with either of those two."

Which then made me think...

Maybe this has too much story for proper clubberin' but I thought I wouldn't be going too far wrong posting this.

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How have I never seen this?  The most punchable face in Japan against the guy in Japan who will punch you right in the face.

 

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Anjo was honestly a huge bright spot in that dark, post-NOAH window where All Japan still mattered. Honestly in hindsight I think he was really undervalued in the 1990's where he was "that guy that never won the big one" in UWF-i for way too long.

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I'm guessing this takes place before Bulldog Brower puts a cigar out in his eye.

---------------------------------------------------

Bulldog Brower and Bearcat Wright beat the crap out of each other in Buffalo at some point in the 60s.

 

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Bulldog B showed a lot of personality and heelishness against the allegedly Mighty Igor, and wore his workin' boots, which were a requirement when facing TAMI. I certainly booed Ivan Paduski (cf Jesse The Body Ventura) aplenty, and he swiped Igor's gimmick, kielbasa and all. They both still irk me but at least Igor (w/Kamilkoff) were there first, and have the sheen of nostalgia.

- RAF (now contemplating a list of my least fav workers)

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