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Secret Santo in August 2022


Matt D
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11 hours ago, Curt McGirt said:

Ah, very familiar with this one; I'll knock out a review briefly. (If you feel like throwing me something I haven't seen I'm down to look at that too.)

Here's a blast from the past for you. I remember liking this one a lot; it was one of the last matches I downloaded back when I lived with rent-free internet and downloaded everything in sight (after that ended I was in the puro wilderness for quite awhile, besides NJ on AXS). It was the first time I had seen or heard of Kenou. I was watching this for my boy Hayato Jr. Fujita, who is apparently back in the fold according to reports. Somebody still needs to put up the Yoshitsune M-Pro title match with him that I was looking for, btw...

 

 "This is excellent, but I am not really enjoying it" is such a weird feeling. I often get it during the G1, whenever one of the last matches on a card goes too epic for my current tastes, for example. 

A buddy of mine was at both Rev Pro shows this weekend, sent this to the chat: "I’m sure that main was excellent but I have apparently hit my wrestling fatigue before Will Ospreay heh. A full on Rev Pro main event was A Bit Much haha. I’m hot. Sweaty. Hungry. And my arse is numb from the balcony seating." 

 Maybe like how you felt at the sushi restaurant. Other things on your mind, food was not quite enough to draw your mind away from that. 

It was cool to watch some 2000s Michinoku Pro. Big blind spot for me. If I had moved to that part of Japan, maybe I would have been one of those hardcore fans sitting on the blue mats. Love those fans. 

if I had been there live this would probably be one of my top ten matches. I'd probably still be talking about it today the way I still go on about Billyken vs Dick Togo sometimes.

Here is a thing I got out of it: current podgy overtanned horrible hair unstoppable tough guy Kenou may be my least favourite wrestler. After watching this, though, maybe I'm willing to re-think that. If I had followed his path from young plucky junior underdog to now, I'm sure I would feel differently.

He takes an insane beating here. Fires back nicely. They kick, and kick, and kick and kick and kick. They do not do anything that doesn't seem like  it couldn't happen in a real fight. They do a bunch of kick outs at the end, but they don't overdo it. 

 

Not really sure why I couldn't get into it. All the execution is really good. The ending is a sick and believable KO. I should probably have loved this.

Partly it's that I have little nostalgia for late-2000s wrestling. Partly it's how quasi  shoot style has evolved so much since then.

for example: Hayato gets caught in a guillotine, and struggles to get  out and tries  so hard to get the crowd to chant their support... and I am thinking, "Kenou's guillotine must be really weak if he  can't put Hayato out after all this time." I dont want to look at it through 2022 eyes, but I can't help but do so.

Definitely a me thing. It really is a good match and I can see why you gave it to me. Maybe I'm just more in the mood for wild brawling than for precision striking these days.

Here's something else for you that you may not have seen:

An "Original" Sheikh match without Terry Funk that doesn't stink! Particularly if you include post-match shenanigans.

 

Edited by Gordlow
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Yeah, that was a lot of fun and brought my mood up. Rick Steamboat, paragon of virtue, gets ticked off enough to fight the Sheik after the bell which is totally unexpected. The Sheik meanwhile plays Abe Simpson wandering around yelling at the moon and bleeding on everything. We all saw Steamboat live ON WEDNESDAY and right in that file is Mr. Sakurada walking around looking all of 16 with his first mustache. You wanna talk some Bizarro World shit, that match has it for you.

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I'm catchin' up over here!

LIONESS ASUKA (c) vs. KYOKO INOUE - 

To be honest I have three pages of notes on this match, but I am just gonna wing it for the most part. I mean, this is a classic joshi speed run, it starts abrubtly and continues at that same pace. To "keep it real", as the kids are wont to say, I get blown up just watching these things. Now, thee RAF usually prefers his Japanese ladies matches with your giant Ainu heels trying to annihilate tiny lipstick idols, but there are always exceptions 'cause the best girls/matches are really so so good (better than most men's work going on in several periods past, work-wise), I am looking at you Bison Kimura, Bull Nakano, Aja, Dump, and of course anything to do with the Crush Gals. My main joshi objection is while the matches are often great, the cards as a whole are not varied enough - it can be an exhausting trial to sit thru a whole tape (see above, re. blowing up).

I believe this is the first singles meeting of these two geniuses (DVDVR scholars, back me up?). The theme appears to be angry vet heel w/crowd support versus plucky underdog with great spirit, a classic to be sure, and both are perfect for it. LA in particular has that "giving no fucks" vibe and is mildly annoyed that you are making her beat you up so she's just going to ramp up the violence until you stop irking her which could be never. Ringside is full of Asuka's dojogirl acolytes, and right away Inoue throws a few of them around like salt before a sumo match. Is it obvious and redundant to say that these two for all intents and appearances are straining to perform each hold and move with maximum impact and intention to be as hard'n'hurtful as possible? Because they certainly are, but we already knew that. THEE LIONESS IS A VENGEFUL JUGGERNAUT WITH THE HAIRCUT OF MY SECOND GRADE TEACHER, MS. BARNHART. Kyoko Inoue chose the style of dress of an extrovert clown but it's the kind of clown who cries, and we too are crying along with her and her beatdown. Those ringside underlings really are interfering, giving a very USA heel/face dynamic to this thing, which I appreciate. About 3/4s of the way through they are outside the ring and LA drags KI by the hair into an unoccupied block of yakuza ticketed seats on the first tier off the floor and casually tosses her over the side to land thigh-first on thee Unbreakable Japanese Table. Yow. KI get whipped into thee UJT leaning against the ringpost sweet merciful Kwannon I saw a crack I swear. Things are looking even more dire for the Befringed Upstart as she eats a monstrous picture perfect superplex. You might miss Inoue landing on her feet after taking a backdrop over the top rope later because Asuka does a no-frills but evil dive onto her right after. LA takes this opportunity to hang her weakened foe by her neck with a belt over the stairs to the lower floor bathrooms. Back in the ring KI survives the pin attempt after a underhook cradle powerbomb off the top - don't get your minions to bump the ref if you want a fair count, Lioness I am talking to you. Kyoko certainly has had her comebacks and shine but a powerbomb of her own into a pin is countered with a slick kickout right into an armbar. Ropes, ropes, ropes - acceptable behavior for a babyface underdog challenger against a sadistic champion. The speed kicks up a notch or two, and @DEANis thrilled by a series of missile dropkicks and LARIATOs but are not we all, my friends? Our pal thee UJT reappears and dances with the ladies, who at one point both climb upon it, I've done some stoopid thing in my life but that was nuts. Inoue really fires up, and layers on German suplexes and powerbombs and LARIATOs akin to a luscious Austrian torte, and the richness of it is too much for Lioness Asuka who finally goes down for the 1-2-3, and we get a new champion. Post-match, insults and challenges are hurled, but I am reaching for the oxygen tank. To quote my late great pal, The Cosmic Commander Of Wrestling, "That shit was sick!". So true, my brother.

Thank you, Mr. DEAN.

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Ms Barnhart?  Did you go to second grade in Newport News, VA?  My second grade teacher was Ms Barnhart.  One totally forgets about the brutality of Unbreakable Japanese Tables.

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No, upstate NY, Kingston area. I totally but unknowingly had a crush on her. However, everyone else in the class got a birthday shout-out (except maybe the mutants born in the summer I don't remember) except me, because my solar anniversary fell on the date of the death of her husband, which in hindsight was an odd fact to reveal to a bunch of 2nd graders. See, i was doomed from the start, and maybe this explains my predilection for goth girls in my youth...

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Hey, folks.  I forgot to mention this after I asked @Matt Dabout it a week or two ago.  But I asked him about doing a live Secret Santo-ish watchalong on Discord and he said that would be a good idea.  So I figured what better place to ask than here.

The gist of it is pretty simple in that there's matches that y'all pick and we'll stream them while discussing them on a chat.  I'm sure most of us have done similar things in the past and I know for me personally they helped introduce me to aspects of Japanese wrestling I only heard about.  If anybody is interested we could lock in a day and plan things out.  If not then that's fine too.

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On 8/21/2022 at 4:48 PM, DEAN said:

Hey @Matt Dhave you seen this?  Possibly the greatest pro wrestling match ever.EDIT:  I'm sorry.  I meant THIS ONE.

 

Funny thing. I was supposed to watch this back in 2015 in order to counter <NAME REDACTED> being an ignorant ass about LA Park over at PWO and I never quite got around to it. I'm not sure we've ever even covered over at SC which seems crazy? Especially as we have C+A for both Mesias and Park. I just must not be able to find it.

It's a big AAA spectacle match, which means you get Hernandez interfering now and again and a ref bump and the ref really missing the foul on the finish and that it's probably ~5 minutes too long. 

But it's still great nonetheless. Park's rudo here and Mesias is (de facto?) tecnico, which I didn't come in aware of. If nothing else, I figured it might be rudo vs rudo and the fans would get behind Park because they usually do over the last decade. 

Park was 45 here, and he takes the advantage immediately with a lot of stomps and chairshots on the outside and some nasty stuff with the chair on the inside. The initial moment of comeback was Mesias ducking a shot and getting a kick in and that wasn't ideal maybe, especially because he's got a very good punch, but then Park just dives headlong into a chairshot and it's awesome. He completely made that moment, as he made his getting back into the match by sliding through another chairshot later. In the middle, his mask got completely torn and it's a great visual to match Mesias' blood. 

From there it's back and forth with big overwrought spots and pins attempts. Some big bumps in here, some big drama though I think AAA fans were probably conditioned to know things wouldn't end without some amount of BS. I will say that the submissions were worked different than I'm used to in CMLL. With CMLL, usually if the submission doesn't end something immediately, it's not going to end the match. Here they were worked in a way that there was a real sense of peril over time.

Everything builds to the ref bump and the tombstone and Park's weird dead brother ghost thing. Mesias is great after this, working generally from the mat desperately trying to get a pin however he can until he can get back in it. The finish, with the foul and the chairshots feel like desperation out of LA Park where he'd done everything he could and was just throwing everything he had left (a foul, chairshots) at Mesias to keep him down.

Overall, a little less BS and a few less minutes would have been nice, but in general, you know what you're getting here and you wouldn't be watching it if you weren't prepared to embrace what makes it special. It's a "sometimes food."

 

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Sandokan vs Rockystar- Panama- At some point in time: I don't know how much Panamanians hate Mexicans so I don't know if this is a Mexico vs Puerto Rico level of hate.  I did notice some Panamanians weren't standing for the Mexican National Anthem and that every Panamanian knew the words to the Panamanian National Anthem.  I'm assuming all this leads to the riot later.  It's hard to tell if this is the 70s or 80s because everybody in Panama dresses like adults and nobody is wearing a Keep On Truckin' t-shirt or a Where's The Beef trucker hat.  It is on film so I'm guessing 1975.  Anyway, I assume Sandokan is a national treasure of pro wrestling and Rockystar is the scalp collector from Mexico.  Rockystar takes the first fall pretty quickly with an impressive series of moves and procures a Romero Special for the submission win- and then goes total Ox Baker In Cleveland and starts Garnering Heat!  Sandokan quickly takes the second fall in like 45 seconds by procuring a preposterous lucha submission after taking a couple of shoulder tackles.  I assume things get crazy in the third fall.  Sandokan starts the third fall off by working on the shoulder for a little bit.  Rockystar works on Sandokan's skull with odd kicks and a neckbreaker.  He does a lot of flapjacks.  He beats a wad of heat on our babyface and hits a really neato Brainbuster.  FOR TWO!  Rockystar sinks in an Abdominal Stretch and the crowd is waiting for Sandokan to go on offense, as it seems that they are expecting Sandokan to fight back and win, as he isn't a sympathetic babyface but a dominant babyface who has let this Mexican get the best of him.  I'm guessing.  Sandokan makes his comeback with a roll-up counter out of a Gory Special variation and then another nearfall with a Victory Roll.  Sandokan then hits a bunch of fun roll-ups for a batch of nearfalls and the crowd is suddenly WAY into it.  Sandokan headbutts Rockystar out of the ring and hit a SWEET old school tope.  The crowd is now all standing up and milling around.  Rockystar kind of moves out of the way of a charging Sandokan and then CRUSHES Sandokan with a BEAUTIFUL Plancha off the top turnbuckle to Sandokan on the floor. Rockystar throws Sandokan to the floor again and hits a nice Cannonball Senton off the apron.  The crowd is definitely turning into a mob by now.  Rockystar feins a few UNE FOULEs and while the ref is talking to Sandokan, Rockystar grabs Sandokan's leg and lowblows the REF!  THEN!  He lowblows Sandokan while the ref is trying to come to grips with his own exploded groin.  Rockystar get the pin and NOBODY IN THE AUDIENCE IS HAPPY!  Fights are breaking out in the audience as they presenting Rockystar with the belt and bowling trophy.  You would think they would know enough to get the fuck out of the arena. THEN!  ALL HELL BREAKS LOOSE AS THE AUDIENCE JUST STARTS BEATING THE SHIT OUT OF EACH OTHER!  At 25:15, the first chair flies!  Rockystar and Sandokan yell at each other over the PA and things settle down for a few seconds, then another wave of mob hysteria kicks in and Rockystar makes his way to the back under an umbrella of chairs and Sandokan makes his way to the other entrance and the place GOES FUCKING INSANE!  Dudes beat on each other with pipes and chairs while little boys run around in utter delight.  This was more psychotic than the Ox Baker- Ernie Ladd riot because Sandokan and Rockystar didn't seem afraid of the mob.   KAYFABE, DADDY!  JILLION STARS! 

 

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Alright@SirSmellingtonofCascadia, let's git this mudshow on thee road.

In a earlier post, I rambled on like a Bughouse Square prophet about thee "history of rassling". I'm still a-thinkin'. But --free thread topic alert-- what about The 20 Pro Wrestling Matches We Should All See, chosen for their work quality, historical significance, and being representative of an important style/era/promotion. Not just our faves or "*****" epics, but milestones of a sort, a time capsule for our future Venusian Overlords to dig our fantastic culture. I'm thinking of Hart vs. Austin SS '96, Barr/Guerrero vs. Octagon/EHDSanto at When Worlds Collide '94, Slaughter vs. Patterson Alley Fight '81, Lawler vs. Idol Steel Cage etc. '87, Kerry VE wins the title from Flair '84, probably a NWA Wargames w/the Horsemen. It is going to be biased towards stuff that there's footage of, for sure, but if not I would include Rogers vs. Sammartino and such. The above match would absolutely be on my list. Really, you gotta know some of the backstory and context but it's a scorcher. RAF wishes he could find a version that has the post-match riot on there. Right around '93 or so, I was at a Chiller Theater con doing the vendor thing, and as I made the early morning rounds to spend my own dollare, I was asking around for some interesting rassling merch. A gruff gentlemen answered my inquiry thusly: "I got this tape but I don't know what's on it. How about five bucks?". What a bargain, I said. It was one of those dupes taped for resale at a big Japanese mall, and the only non-kanji characters on the ink jet label were "NJPW". Well, that tape was the saga of one of my favorite workers Big Van Vader in New Japan. It had promos and talk show appearances and matches, such fun matches. It's in the basement somewhere, I hope with the Go Video deck. Inoki is someone I never followed too much, but his influence casts a long shadow. His good stuff is really good, but I've seen a whole bunch of dross too, and his ego definitely hurt the business. Nice robes, tho'. Here ya go, SSOC my royal chum, for Your Noble Pleasure, it's short but powerful. I didn't spot Beat Takeshi's weathered mug, but Masa Saito brings the scary violent casual dress energies. Enjoy...

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On 8/23/2022 at 9:54 PM, Octopus said:

Sorry, getting caught up on things. I plan to do this and last week by weeks end. ?

My ham brethren, @porksweats. Here’s a zinger for you:

Katsuhiko Nakajima vs Kenoh, the 2021 N1 final

 

~~~Secret Santo Review~~~

Okay, so modern day NOAH is really not something I watch, I've seen little Nakajima and even less Kenoh so here we go. Nice to have some English commentary, it'll help me familiarize myself better here. Nakajima's little sweep kick to send Kenoh down was slick, soccer kick to the chest after also nice. Brawl on the outside and we're back in. Nakajima's kicks to the back while Kenoh is down look harsh. Oh he's a cocky guy eh? Good showboating, I get it. Kenoh's got the control back but it isn't really doing much here. Big strike exchange, Kenoh's got a strong jaw. Kenoh's turned the tables mocking Nakajima with the choke showboat of his own.  Dig it. Now it's kicks exchanging. Both roll through Germans oh!!! Both kicked each other in the head and are down! Nakajima's up and vertically spikes Kenoh, almost wins, misses a running kick and Kenoh's got him fully locked in an ankle lock, good grip oh he's put him up and kicks Nakajima's throat??? while upside down with a kick! I liked that! Vicious!

 

That isn't enough so Kenoh goes for the double stomp from the top after that but also not enough! Couple more pin exchanges that don't get the three, and now we've got some serious heart and soul going into these kicks back and forth. GODDAMN Kenoh slaps Nakajima who responds with his own but Nakajima can't take a second, goes down. Something has awoken in Nakajima, the adrenaline takes over and he overwhelms Kenoh with some combo chops and demands Kenoh's strikes go harder. Kenoh can't take any more! He's down! Nakajima with the vertical spike one more time and that's it. 

 

Takeaways: I enjoyed this match, this isn't what I'd normally seek out but I get the appeal. More into Nakajima than Kenoh, but Kenoh is one sleazy looking dude and I like that.

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Big Van Vader vs. Antonio Inoki

I've seen Vader/Inoki before, maybe even this Vader/Inoki match specifically. Actually, yeah, I think I did, but not with the preceding match that led up to Vader showing up. 

What else I didn't see is that great transistor radio commercial that Inoki did for Hitachi. I would like a Secret Santo for commercials from around the world. Japanese companies, Hitachi in particular, are wonderful at using pro graps representatives and random American movie stars in their commercials. I offer you this (which I know you all, in the plural sense, have probably seen before, each and every last one of you, but still): 

 

Hitachi + cutting-edge technology + pro grapplers = magic

But I digress. 

I do not recognize Inoki's first opponent. It's a match that happens, and the crowd is really, really into it, but I lack the context to care very much. I'm really just here to wait for Vader to come out and kill someone figuratively and maybe also literally, who knows, it's Vader! There's a whole angle going on here after Inoki wins with an octopus stretch, and I feel culturally poorer for not being able to follow it. Vade then comes out and pretty much murders our hero (???) Inoki; he looks like a total monster in doing so. The description references Brock/Cena, but shorter, which I think is a fair comparison. It's more of an angle/setting up for a full match later (and I seem to recall one that clears chairs in the front row, so wild is the brawling). 

It's a historical footnote that is worth viewing, especially since it's so short.

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38 minutes ago, SirSmellingtonofCascadia said:

 

I do not recognize Inoki's first opponent. 

It's Riki Choshu! 

He's a pretty major guy. Worth getting to know. His feud with Tenryu is right up there with that Hogan commercial, Ebessan vs Kuishinbo Kamen, and Babymetal on the list of "Best things to ever come out of Japan."

EDIT: In case you were also wondering, the guy who breaks it up is Hiro Hase and the dude who walks out with Vader is Masa Saito. Also major-ish dudes. Saito vs Inoki generated some pretty good discussion, a couple of Santos ago.

First time seeing that Hogan commercial, for me. Thanks for posting that!

Edited by Gordlow
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Week 5. And that's it for this round. I have every intention of coming back in December for the holiday version. Thanks to everyone who participated. It's been a lot of fun. Here are the last pairings!

Octopus
DEAN

Matt D
Curt McGirt

thee Reverend Axl Future
porksweats

gordlow
SirSmellingtonofCascadia

Curt, I've got something in mind for you soon. Give me something that you really want me to watch/write up!

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@SirSmellingtonofCascadia.

Pre-1980 preferred, eh? 

How 'bout 1950? That pre-1980 enough for ya?

Two out of three falls, for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship.

This is really excellent stuff. I'd recommend everyone give it a watch when they have the time.

Also: I never drew DEAN or Porksweats, so here are hand-picked fully optional bonus matches for the two of yous:

@DEAN I give you your handsome cinnamon boy vs my erstwhile drinking buddy:

@porksweats 

You don't like EVOLVE, eh? I don't even know EVOLVE but according to Wikipedia their alumni list includes awesome wrestlers like Eddie Kingston, WALTER, Daniel Garcia, The Workhorsemen, Jeff Cobb... but also a ton of maximalist guys which I assume is what you meant.

So: I'm gonna assume, possibly incorrectly, that what you dislike is a kind of self-consciously epic overdone too many finishers multiple 2.999 kickouts unnecessarily fancy style? Feel free to let me know if I am close or not. In any case, I offer you this:

i already posted it on the general discussion thread. I described it as possibly the most minimalist, least flashy pro wrestling match filmed in my lifetime. It's the opposite of what I (possibly incorrectly) assume is the EVOLVE style you do not dig. It may in fact go too far in the other direction, but I honestly found this fascinating. A typical mid-card late-60s Japanese "indie" match? Maybe! I really don't know. I'm dying to get someone else's thoughts on this.I

Oh! Hey! @SirSmellingtonofCascadia.

Just struck me that I should have offered you up some Choshu! This is a great one. Feel free to choose either match. 

 

Edited by Gordlow
Choshu
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I offer young @Octopus either of the following:

Since you wanted something epic, from this week, my favorite match so far this year, El Lindaman vs Douki.

OR since you wanted something epic AND some Akira Hokuto, the greatest match in the history of GAEA, Akira Hokuto vs Meiko Satomura, April 29, 2001.

Or do both!  Quit your job.

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44 minutes ago, Gordlow said:

Also: I never drew DEAN or Porksweats, so here are hand-picked fully optional bonus matches for the two of yous:

@porksweats 

You don't like EVOLVE, eh? I don't even know EVOLVE but according to Wikipedia their alumni list includes awesome wrestlers like Eddie Kingston, WALTER, Daniel Garcia, The Workhorsemen, Jeff Cobb... but also a ton of maximalist guys which I assume is what you meant.

So: I'm gonna assume, possibly incorrectly, that what you dislike is a kind of self-consciously epic overdone too many finishers multiple 2.999 kickouts unnecessarily fancy style? Feel free to let me know if I am close or not. In any case, I offer you this:

i already posted it on the general discussion thread. I described it as possibly the most minimalist, least flashy pro wrestling match filmed in my lifetime. It's the opposite of what I (possibly incorrectly) assume is the EVOLVE style you do not dig. It may in fact go too far in the other direction, but I honestly found this fascinating. A typical mid-card late-60s Japanese "indie" match? Maybe! I really don't know. I'm dying to get someone else's thoughts on this

 

~BONUS SANTO CONTENT~

I guess I should revise my statement, I'm not into the Gargano contingent of EVOLVE and the dream of Black And Gold NXT because I do like the Workhorsemen and Garcia (not a WALTER fan though I'll be honest) and you did assume correctly. I don't want 40 minute epics with a trillion kickouts. ONTO THE REVIEW. Wow okay yeah that is working a headlock. They're at it, leg scissors now. The reversal sequence from 3:10-20 is INCREDIBLE, it's so simple but I'm enthralled. We're back up, we're back down, we're jockeying oh it's a leg scissor again, more jockeying into a headlock. This continues on for quite some time back and forth. Daigo breaks free at 10:24 and bounces off the ropes, going for a shoulder block but Oiso catches and takes him down with another headlock! Back and forth, Oiso got control, but Daigo with a dropkick!? What a high spot! Daigo on the offense with some strikes now and Oiso is definitely out of his wheelhouse, now out of the ring as he gets tossed out. Oiso plays this smart, drags Daigo out, gets back in and is ready for him with another HEADLOCK. Daigo with a flurry of dropkicks, I like his kicks because they aren't parallel to the ground, they're angled up like a / but with the angle of the upper part of a <. Oiso dodges the last one, bodyslams Daigo and goes for a splash thats rolled from. Oiso ends this match with a pair of bulldogs from the corner, the second one Dustin Rhodes-esque.

Takeaways: Loved this. Ain't no thing as a rest hold, they're fighting every minute of this match. Both Daigo and Oiso, very cool. Doubt theres much if any other footage of them but I'd love to check and I will. Thanks Gord.

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8 minutes ago, porksweats said:

~BONUS SANTO CONTENT~

I guess I should revise my statement, I'm not into the Gargano contingent of EVOLVE and the dream of Black And Gold NXT because I do like the Workhorsemen and Garcia (not a WALTER fan though I'll be honest) and you did assume correctly. I don't want 40 minute epics with a trillion kickouts. ONTO THE REVIEW. Wow okay yeah that is working a headlock. They're at it, leg scissors now. The reversal sequence from 3:10-20 is INCREDIBLE, it's so simple but I'm enthralled. We're back up, we're back down, we're jockeying oh it's a leg scissor again, more jockeying into a headlock. This continues on for quite some time back and forth. Daigo breaks free at 10:24 and bounces off the ropes, going for a shoulder block but Oiso catches and takes him down with another headlock! Back and forth, Oiso got control, but Daigo with a dropkick!? What a high spot! Daigo on the offense with some strikes now and Oiso is definitely out of his wheelhouse, now out of the ring as he gets tossed out. Oiso plays this smart, drags Daigo out, gets back in and is ready for him with another HEADLOCK. Daigo with a flurry of dropkicks, I like his kicks because they aren't parallel to the ground, they're angled up like a / but with the angle of the upper part of a <. Oiso dodges the last one, bodyslams Daigo and goes for a splash thats rolled from. Oiso ends this match with a pair of bulldogs from the corner, the second one Dustin Rhodes-esque.

Takeaways: Loved this. Ain't no thing as a rest hold, they're fighting every minute of this match. Both Daigo and Oiso, very cool. Doubt theres much if any other footage of them but I'd love to check and I will. Thanks Gord.

Also a match for you @Gordlow

You said you wanted some Eddie Guerrero and I don't know if you ever caught his quick pop over to England in his 02 Indie run.

 

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@GordlowYou mentioned Finlay and you preferred short matches. Let's go with this match, which I just saw during my Nitro watch-through. Everyone talks (generally quite positively) about Finlay/Regal at Uncensored 1996, which is a match that I found to meander and be sort of dull and disappointing.

This, on the other hand, is the rematch on the Nitro after Uncensored. It is quite short and has one really stupid spot in it that I hope you might enjoy, even considering the over-proliferation of hardcore wrestling since this match originally happened. 

 

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