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Matt D

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Matt D last won the day on January 13

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  1. Agreeing with the caveat that this isn't a GWE but just favorites that sort of represent different periods of my watching too... Negro Casas Nick Bockwinkel Jim Breaks Mocho Cota Buddy Rose Bret Hart Christian Hector Garza Dustin Rhodes Arn Anderson Andre the Giant Bill Eadie Genichiro Tenryu Yoshiaki Fujiwara Serpentico Jose Lothario just missed the cut. He should really So did Satanico and Hector Garza and Eddy Guerrero and Mark Henry and a bunch of french guys (they all sort of eliminated each other, but Delaporte came the closest followed by Leduc/Corn and Manneveau) and who knows who else.
  2. RJ City does a better job of interviewing Arn Anderson than Paul Bromwell.
  3. I don’t think we have to go back to it just because I made a one liner but he said “wife of twenty years.” And… so, MJF and Miz and a super team? Good stuff, huh guys?
  4. Or pretend he has a wife when mimicking a Memphis angle?
  5. I’m actually not as high on the Ishii match as others will be but I’m higher than @Jijiand I like it better than a bunch of 2021-2 Suzuki matches.
  6. Grumpy @Jijiis still more topical than something 18 months and one new TV/streaming contract away.
  7. Whereas I say: “His contract isn’t up for two years! Why are we talking about this instead of the Eddie Kingston match from last night?”
  8. I'm assuming it's all building to multiple end points instead of just one Young Avengers/Champions (America, Kate Bishop, Patriot, Cassie Lang, Ms. Marvel) Thunderbolts/Dark Avengers (USAgent, Yelena, whoever else) and maybe a sort of Strange/Ant-Man/Loki team up against Kang
  9. Just enough sickness in the house that I'm not treadmilling. Some more bonus matches instead: 2/5/86 and 2/6/86: Hogan vs Fujinami Back to back matches best taken as a series. Remember, this is Hogan less than two months before Wrestlemania 1. When people talk about "technical Hogan who is better in Japan" I tend to think 90s Hogan in Japan where he does the hammerlock go behind takedown. But this first match was probably the most technical I've ever seen Hogan. Fujinami started strong winning a rope running exchange decisively with Hogan really hitting the mat on dropdown, high work. But Hogan came back and went from hold to hold to hold. Obviously he's not as smooth as the UWF guys or anything but between his size and Fujinami feeding him, you really believed it. It all led to a fairly impressive bow and arrow, actually. Fujinami struggled to fight back but did get the Scorpion on but really couldn't control Hogan's body because it was so big. Hogan increasingly heeled and bullied in his offense as the match went on (including a spit). This wasn't all that far from the Maeda or Bundy matches in how Fujinami worked to fight back. It was about getting him over through his survival and resilience (including surviving the axe bomber because he was so close to the ropes). He'd get a flurry here or there but Hogan continued to bully him, until he finally managed to get an advantage on the floor teasing the Dragon Suplex before tossing Hogan into the post. It was a near countout but Hogan made it back in. Fujinami stayed on him in the corner, tossed the ref away and then got distracted enough as the ref came back that Hogan got a cheap axe bomber out of nowhere for the win. Post match, Fujinami did get him in the Scorpion. Second match played off the first as Hogan hit an axe bomber before the bell as the referee was checking Fujinami. he was a great troll here, counting the three and raising his hand, then hitting an elbow drop and doing it again. He was outright shocked when the match really began and Fujinami kicked out. Another mauling by Hogan here with Fujinami not coming back until they made it to the floor and he reversed a slam and posted Hogan again. This time Hogan bladed and Fujinami went right after the wound in the ring. Nice visual on an abdominal stretch with Hogan bleeding and the cameramen rushing to get a shot. Fujinami also hit a huge suplex followed by a seated chinlock which had Hogan selling and stooging big. It built to some big moments like Fujinami hitting a lariat before both guys went out for the double countout (but this time with Fujinami having a clear advantage and getting a moral victory over the WWF champion even if not a victory on paper). 6/11/85: Hogan (C) vs Fujinami: This was for the WWF title with Vince there. It's a bit of a hybrid of the above matches but with Hogan wrestling clean so it's not nearly as interesting. He does some technical stuff but it doesn't work as well. Fujinami has some big comebacks but the match as a whole is more even, strength vs speed. The Axe Bomber was a very useful spot in how it could have been ducked. You see less of that with Hansen's lariat, I think, because of how he comes at it with his whole body (and maybe because it was from the left side). Because it was for the belt, the fans bought Fujinami's kickouts and nearfalls as big deals. Finish was a ducked axe bomber where Hogan was supposed to hit the second but they were going a bit too fast for it to work maybe. I do want to point out how cool Hogan's dodge and double axe-hammer the guy as he's passing move was. I wish he had brought that back in 96 with the heel turn. 9/30/80: Inoki vs Patera: Patera was pretty great here. He started the match with three slams but slam isn't even the word for them. They were like lawn darts from slam position. Inoki soared across the ring. Patera followed it up by trash talking and going into the bearhugs. Inoki would escape and have fiery shots but the ref would slow him down and Patera would sneak cheapshots in and ground him again. It all built to Inoki firing his way into the ring with that shoulder blast again and hitting a big dropkick. I don't know if he gets credit for how quickly he can get up to the top in this period for the kneedrop but it's impressive. That's the vibe i get from him. Meaningful bursts. Patera's trash talk game is on point and keeps hie headlocks and what not entertaining. Patera finally locks in the full nelson and later goes for that big slam again but Inoki escapes and gets the Octopus. After that, it's just a matter of time. Patera is able to survive one and even kick out of the back brain kick/top rope knee drop one-two punch but it's right back into the Octopus for the submission.
  10. Bonus matches as I had some time to kill yesterday and our new friend in Japan posted a Bundy handheld (which we already had), which made me wonder what else we had from Bundy in 85. 1/25/85: Fujinami vs King Kong Bundy: A good amount to like here. Bundy was excellent in this match at knowing just how much to give/sell. I tend not to put him in the top level of wrestlers along those lines as I might a One Man Gang or Earthquake but he really had it down here. I probably use the term "large canvas" in my reviews of guys who hit hard against giants but it's very much appropriate here as early on Fujinami was laying in forearms. Bundy could clubber and did hit a short avalanche at one point but at that point everyone was watching Fujinami and whether he'd come back. Bundy didn't really start selling until the leg kicks came (and even a chest kick which is something I don't really see Fujinami do even in 86 vs someone like Maeda or other UWF guys; it reminded me of how Shunji Takano would have a more varied offense against someone like Abby because of the size differential unlocking his ability to do a little more) and Fujinami had a big moment staggering him with a clothesline before Bundy cut him off. They ended up outside and the other big moment was Fujinami forcing the draw by not letting Bundy back in and yeah, this was one of the first time those double countout finishes really clicked for me. I can see how this would have meant something even if it's kind of a BS finish. 5/31/85: Bundy/Adonis/Murdoch vs Inoki/Kimura/Fujinami: This one's a little bit of a blur looking back but Adonis and Murdoch were just excellent here. It's not like I didn't have an appreciation of Murdoch from his US work but he's really good in New Japan. Let me scan back through so I can write it up. Anyway, Adoins works everyone to start, matching up really well against Inoki and having a cool French Catch style exchange with Fujinami (Top Wristlock > leaping headscissors takedown counter > headstand out of the headscissors > leap forward for a headlock turned into a hammerlock). Inoi wanted to get his hands on everyone but the first half of the match really built to Bundy coming in and him fighting everyone until Fujinami rushes in with huge energy and can't slam him. Bundy had a really good abrupt knee drop. Not running, just dropping onto a guy's face. I've never noticed that before. Inoki takes the Calf Branding better than Kimura but not as good as Fujnami. Anyway, heels work the corner. Inoki plays face in peril until he can reverse an abdominal stretch and there's a big comeback until everything breaks down on the outside. Fun stuff. 10/18/85: KONGA THE BARBARIAN vs Inoki: Ten minutes of fun here. Konga had a lot of stuff at this point, and he'd just lean on Inoki until Inoki had enough and would fire back. Then, Barbarian would do something underhanded and take back over, including a slew of groin based offense (low blow, inverted atomic drop, headbutt to the groin). There was a cool delayed sunset flip from the outside in which almost turned into a slow motion code red but what was almost as cool were Inoki's headbutts/shoulder blasts to lead up to it as Barb took them keeled over. It was a good visual. Inoki took over on the leg after catching a kick and recovered well after screwing up a figure four by locking in a proto STF. The finish stretch was battle of the titans stuff with Inoki crashing into him and Barb headbutts and a huge power slam before he missed the headbutt off the top and Inoki hit the back brain kick. I'm sure Meltzer would have given this one and a half stars but it was cool stuff. It would have probably been even better a year or two later.
  11. I liked the first half of Eddie vs Ishii better than the second half, but I didn't hate the back half or anything. Eddie's chops looked better early but he sold Ishii's more and thus made it seem like Ishii was the stronger striker. Then he used the abrupt arm attacks not to chip away at him but just to crack the door open a tiny bit so he could offset that advantage in the striking. I'm not a fan of delayed selling in wrestling though I know it's been a thing for decades, but Eddie is one guy who can almost, almost make it work for me. When he was dragging himself back to his feet to maybe, maybe duck a clothesline and hit something (and then getting nailed anyway), that's the kind of selling he can do better than anyone wrestling today. But yeah, full emotional commitment to the moment from both guys which is more important than just about anything else.
  12. I watched about three or four minutes of Starlight Kid vs Natsupoi and decided that it really wasn't for me.
  13. They should bring in Renee with her Southpaw character as his wife.
  14. So if I have this straight, Statlander’s new gimmick is “interim Shida”?
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