Shiro Koshinaka & Antonio Inoki vs. Hiroshi Hase & Riki Choshu (4/11/88)- 6
Throwing ceremonial flowers at each other before the match begins? Ok, this is going to be good. Solid matwork throughout this match, which I dig. Hase is incredible. He's so technically sound, a selling master, and brings the hate.I dig all four of these guys, but Hase is the MVP here (sans balling). He took a sick german, and sold it great. Shiro gets busted open on the outside which adds to the heat. Shiro goes for his flying ass attack, Hase catches him into a german~! Mark out moment on my behalf. Enjoyed this matchup. Great selling by all, but especially Hase.
Akira Nogami, Tatsutoshi Goto, Keiichi Yamada, Kantaro Hoshino & Shiro Koshinaka vs. Kuniaki Kobayashi, Hiroshi Hase, Hiroshi Saito, Norio Honaga & Kensuke Sasaki (4/27/88)- 7
This match was cool because it highlighted some of the guys previously not on the set, to which I got exposure to a couple of workers I've never seen before. There was a great energy in this match -- an energy focused around giving the younger guys some time in the spotlight, which they well-deserved. Mutoh hit a beautiful float-over bridge butterfly suplex (it'd be awesome to have a gif of this). Although a lot of the young guys got eliminated rather quickly, this was still a good match with Yamada hanging in there with both Sasaki and Kobayashi. Good pacing in the match -- I didn't feel burned out after viewing.
Tatsumi Fujinami vs. Vader (4/27/88)- 6
Vader and Tats take turns beating the shit out of each other... surprised? As the young lions look on at ringside, they witness the beat down of the man they watched in the the early part of the decade. I love the story here: Tats kept trying to make a comeback, but the leviathan known as Vader wouldn't have any of it, no matter how hard Tats tried. Tats made a comeback and once he got Vader to the mat, there was a huge pop. Had he finally done it? YES~~~! Vader ran into the post for a count-out. Good match, good story.
Tatsumi Fujinami vs. Riki Choshu (5/27/88) - 8
The reprise of their awesome match (from '85, I believe). More solid matwork to start. Choshu sells great in an armbar, reaching towards the ceiling in pain - I like it. Tats gets intense and rams Choshu's head into the exposed turnbuckle. I swear, he must know exactly what I want to see. Choshu sells it perfectly, too-- not too over-the-top, but not too little. Fujinami sold his knee so well I legit thought he blew it out. Like a shark smelling blood, Choshu was on the knee right when he sensed something happened to it. Match ended by ref stoppage, but Fuj wanted to kep going. Punishment is flying everywhere in this match. It was so intense. I loved every minute of it! Out of all the workers on this set, Fujinami is my #1.