Saturday, February 25, 2012

WWF @ Madison Square Garden 7/12/86

Some mid-80’s MSG action I just found in my DVD collection the other day. Let’s get after it!

1. Tony Atlas vs. Lanny Poffo - 3
2. 22-Man $50,000 Battle Royal w/ Junkyard Dog, Greg Valentine, King Tonga, Jimmy Hart, Billy Jack Haynes, Harley Race, Lanny Poffo, Iron Mike Sharpe, Pedro Morales, Brutus Beefcake, Tony Atlas, Moondog Spot, Davey Boy Smith, Dynamite Kid, S.D. Jones, Johnny Valiant, Sivi Afi, Moondog Rex, Tony Garea, Bobby Heenan, Big John Studd, and King Kong Bundy – 2

The opener between Atlas and Poffo was about 14 minutes of headlocks and armbars, and was about as hard hitting as getting into a fight with a Hulk Hogan wrestling buddy doll. Poffo hit some corner punches that looked to have landed but didn’t phase Atlas. The double dropkick portion looked like hell. This match I’ll bump this up a mere point just because I enjoyed Poffo’s amateur stylings. The battle royal featured one of the strangest roster of participants I’ve seen in a WWF battle royal in a long time. Morales and Valentine had a couple hard exchanges which I enjoyed. The big giants in the match like Bundy and Studd were pretty much eliminated right away. Race probably took the best bump of the match landing on the concrete while taking out the camera man.

3. Pedro Morales vs. Iron Mike Sharpe – 3
4. King Tonga & Sivi Afi vs. Big John Studd & King Kong Bundy – 4
5. Brutus Beefcake vs. Billy Jack Haynes – 2

Morales and Sharpe had a pretty fun six minute match that consisted of a lot of rather hard punching and forearms. I really dug Sharpe throughout the match with his constant vocals and craziness. On the surface, the tag match for Bundy and Studd looks like a complete squash, but in actuality it was a rather competitve match. I really enjoyed the parts with Studd and Tonga just laying into each other. Made me really excited to see a singles match between the two. The crowd went completely nuts for the big spot where Tonga slammed Studd. There wasn’t much I liked from Sivi Afi, although I did notice that somehow his nose got bloodied during the match. Finish looked liked it got messed up with the referee counting the fall even though it seemed like Bundy wasn’t trying to get a pin. Beefcake’s match sounded horrible on paper was just as bad as I though it would be. He looked so disinterested, like he’d rather be shooting up in the back than out there working with this stiff from Oregon. Haynes had better facials here than in his match with Hercules from Mania III that I just watched a while back.

6. The British Bulldogs vs. The Moondogs – 3
7. Tony Garea vs. Harley Race – 1
8. The Junkyard Dog vs. Greg Valentine – 3

I’ve said it numerous times but it bares repeating again, the Moondogs have to be some of the ugliest and scruffiest looking individuals around. When was the last time Moondog Spot went in for a shave and a haircut? Looks to me to at least have been around 1964. The Moondog control section lasted for what seemed to me to be about seven years. I’ve seen crowds in the waiting room of my dentist’s office more excited than the crowd was for this. What a strange looking sell by Spot on a collision with Davey. He sold it like his tripped over a curb. On commentary, Monsoon said the Bulldogs seemed “lethargic”. I think that statement could pretty much be applied to the whole match. Garea and Race was a complete waste of time. Watching Garea work is about as exciting as cleaning out the litter box. I’m not kidding when I say the single most athletic thing that happened during the whole two-minute match was Race’s fisherman suplex. It was about this time last year that the NHO crew and I saw Valentine work a show at a run-down skating rink where he looked especially pitiful. He, and the Dog for that matter, didn’t look much better here. I enjoyed JYD’s selling of the figure four leglock and the front powerslam he hit shortly thereafter. My cats have had more entertaining fights than this.

9. Randy Savage & Adrian Adonis vs. Bruno Sammartino & Tito Santana – Steel Cage Match – 5

This is the match I was most curious about on here, not only because it’s a cage match but because these are such odd pairings. Match was done tornado style with no tags and just made it a rambling mess. It was hard to keep track of exactly what was going on but I did see Savage take a few wild bumps into the cage and Santana get busted open. Adonis does a splash from the top of the cage for no reason? Sure, why not. Finish was great with Savage taking this wild bump and banging into his partner who then gets thrown into the cage by Bruno. I’ll be a tad generous with the score mainly because everything else on this show was pretty bad.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Adam & Jessie Co-Review: All Japan vs. New Japan Super Fight 2/10/90

1. Naoki Sano & Pegasus Kid vs. Jushin Liger & Akira Nogami – J: 6 A: 7
Jess: Arguably, (and someone will) these were the best of the best in the Junior division in this early 90’s period as it was becoming what it was. I don’t think this match had the particular bite of some of the classics but what it did bring was a wide spectrum of mat wrestling, hard slams and some high flying. This wasn’t a flashy match at all and not a lot of showmanship here just hard nosed grindstone work.

Adam: What you’ve got here is four legends in the Japanese junior division battling it out in a great match. I enjoyed pretty much everything I saw here with the exception of some pretty pedestrian mat work. Highlights for me in this were Pegasus nearly killing Nogami on a back suplex attempt off the top buckle and a rather malicious spike piledriver with Liger and Nogami on Sano. The last part of this was really good with these four kicking it into high gear with tons of nearfalls and a bunch of great high risk moves.

2. Tatutoshi Goto, Hiro Saito, & Norio Honaga vs. Kuniaki Kobayashi, Hiroshi Hase, & Kantaro Hoshino – A: 3 J: 2
Adam: Ok, I’m going to be honest here and say that I don’t have a single clue who anybody aside from Hase is in this match. The beefy dude with a beard on the black team (for lack of a better term) has to be Hiro Saito. So I guess that makes two people I recognize then. Hase hit a pretty nice hook kick that would make Chuck Norris jealous on a member of the opposing squadron. I dug the guy in teal with a perm on Hase’s team. He’s really got a lot of fire in him.

Jess: Probably the reason is not many of them are household names to most fans today. Honaga had a lot of great matches in this time period against guys his size. This felt like they just kept wrestling despite themselves, you know, how TNA has booked their fed the last 7 years. Totally that throwaway they slapped on the card to get these men on. Nothing stood out at all

3. Masa Saito vs. Larry Zbyszko – J: 6 A: 5
Jess: This was cool to see on here; as I always distinctly remember watching AWA when I was a kid and this title change taking place. Gives you the gravitas of it all though this being merely the 3rd match on this card. Larry was really masterful in this, taking some real nasty bumps and making every thing he did count. Saito showed off that surly attitude and beat ‘em up style he’s so widely known for and his Saito suplexes are so damn tasty you could pour them into a bowl and make 5.99 a lunch special off of them. Nice series leading to the finish as well.

Adam: Since Jess mentioned it, this was the next to last AWA World Title change as Larry Z would win it back a mere 57 days later at the final Superclash event. The thing I was really surprised about was that Larry went right in there and got after it without any of his traditional stalling tactics. The aforementioned suplexes that Jess mentioned led to a bunch of good nearfalls as well. I enjoyed this but the thing that got me was why Saito won with a roll up instead of his traditional Saito suplex.

4. Koji Kitao vs. Bam Bam Bigelow – A: 4 J: 3
Adam: On paper this sounded like a good match but in practice it turned out to be less than memorable. The only thing I remember Koji Kitao from is when he teamed with Tenryu against Demolition at WrestleMania 7. Points were earned here for Koji’s kicks were nice and the big bodyslam spot that was pretty cool. Those were pretty much the highlights. Bigelow seemed distant, as if he would rather be somewhere else and the match felt more like an exhibition of big man spots that something coherently put together.

Jess: This was a total LT match. Kiato gets a big highlight package leading up to this and he was clearly being groomed as a huge star in Japan; unfortunately for him, he never learned how to work. Never been a fan. I’ll tell you why Bigelow was distant: he’s a tremendous worker and had to lead this greenhorn through a bout and do the job. Bigelow’s selling was on, but as Adam stated, it all seemed really hollow, they were just doing moves to get through the bout. This was better than that aforementioned Demolition abortion though.

5. Takayuki Iizuka vs. Osamu Matsuda – J: 3 A: 3
Jess: I enjoyed what they did here, arm bars, armbars, and more armbars. I think this went too long because I saw the same sequence twice near the end as if they ran out of time. Iizuka broke out those kick ass T Bone suplexes he’s known for and that was the deciding factor here.

Adam: I know I’ve seen Iizuka work before but for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out which one he was in this match. I saw some good mat work and everything they did was kept pretty basic. My notes said “interesting suplex variation from red guy” which must be the T-Bone suplex that Jess mentioned.

6. Brad Rheingans vs. Victor Zangiev – A: 3 J: 4
A: Surprsingly short match with the beginning looking much more akin to what you would see your two high school wrestling coaches doing as a demonstration. I’ve only seen Zangiev one other time, when he teamed with Hashimikov on Starrcade ’90 in that tag tournament. His suplexes looked really sloppy. Rheingans hit one of the wildest looking powerslams I’ve ever seen. I liked the mat work at the beginning. This was mainly a filler and nothing else.

Jess: This totally was; Zangiev got a few cracks at the NJPW title at this time, I believe. Oh yeah this was after school practice between #1 & #2 students. Neither man was giving an inch to the other for sure. Rheingans has that cred amongst real shooters as never getting a push he deserved but this was a feather in his cap. Perfect amount of time too, a skill overlooked in wrestling.

7. Steve “Dr. Death” Williams vs. Salmon Hashimikov – J: 5 A: 4
Jess: Even though I love Doc, I can’t go much higher on this one than the previous bout. But this was rough. More jockeying for position and trying to score the takedown or suplex and both these dudes were built like they love beef stew and weights. Salmon himself had a run with the IWGP belt and oh, I’m going all Mr. Knowledge here, I just read that he got the strap from Vader when Dr. Death refused to drop it to him. Interesting. These two were anything but friendly, some really stiff punches but like a lot of these bouts the finish just happens with no build.

Adam: I didn’t know that Salmon had a run with the IWGP title! Think I should probably pass my “Mr. Knowledge” title on to Jess. Salmon is recognizable to longtime WCW fans from being in the tag team tournament at Starrcade ’90. He looks like a guy who takes no shit and could probably bodyguard for the Soviet prime minister. I noticed that late in the bout Salmon had a rough time hitting the ropes and the corners. Doc really took it to him here and this was a fun little bout.

8. Vader vs. Stan Hansen – A: 7 J: 7
Adam: Now this is what I love about watching Japanese wrestling. Two big heavyweight having a wild brawl of a match and just hammering on each other from bell to bell. Actually, to be fair, they were throwing down before the opening bell even rang. Hansen got nailed good on a short-arm clothesline and had a distant look on his face for a minute or two. Vader’s eye got swollen after the first few minutes, probably due to the nasty elbows they exchanged. Hansen caught a hellacious shot when he charged Vader on the rail. Got a couple crowd brawl spots here as well, something not commonly seen in Japan, especially on big shows like this. The ribs of Hansen became a focal point for Vader’s offense after he dropped Hansen across the railing. This match was everything I have expected from these two, wild brawling, stiff strikes, and two guys just beating the shit out of each other. The only thing that perhaps kept this from getting a higher score is that the pace was a bit slower than I would have liked. Otherwise, a damn fine match.

Jess: You just won’t see a match like this anymore; there’s no two guys like these. This never stopped being great. Adam pointed out all the big storyline blows, and the action but you just can’t say enough about how fun this was. I found it humorous that one of Vader’s eyes was closed shut since Hansen is half blind. This was Potato City, for the whole thing, both men just blasting each other as hard as they could. I didn’t think the pace was very slow, and the finish was perfectly fine because neither guy seemed the superior fighter. This was totally a Hulk-Abomination battle.

9. Antonio Inoki & Seiji Sakaguchi vs. Shinya Hashimoto & Masahiro Chono (Special ref: Lou Thesz) – J: 5 A: 6
Jess: Maybe a 5 is harsh, but I guess I expected more? It had the buzz, and the right atmosphere and Seiji really stepped up being at this point probably the least known of the 4 to modern fans. I enjoyed him more than Inoki, who’s all about posturing and his rep; sure he sold because he had to but he didn’t stay down long against anyone. Hash was great here, just disrespecting both veterans with brutal kicks, slaps and takedowns. It seemed both teams were going for submission wins as they constantly just put locks on each other which in most Japanese matches you get some of but it usually dies down for the ending stuff; not here. Which really baffled me with the finish, but I guess you can say a strike in a mostly holds war would be a good avenue to go it just seemed false after the story laid out. I still enjoyed watching esp. seeing Lou Thez looking like a butler minus the jacket.

Adam: This has the feel of a huge main event and I wanted to like this a lot more than I did so I’m being generous with my score. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a Hashimoto match and I forgot just how damn big and round he was. Of everything in this match, I liked the striking the most. It was just and hard hitting and stiff as you would expect. Damn, that enziguri from Chono pretty much KO’ed Inoki! Hashimoto seemed content just to walk around the ring and beat the shit out of everyone. Thesz here was just a presence and nothing else. A fun match to close out this major event.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

No Prom Date Numero 19

What this is for first time readers is a collection of matches with no cohesion at all in one big bundle, let's get started

1) Matt Hardy v. MVP US Title (Smackdown 05/02/08)- 5
Personal confession: I loved this series and feud when it was happening. Mick foley on commentary is really making this feel like an athletic fight. Remember when Hardy was in control of his mental facilities and didn't look like a Heffalump? Watch this. They don't stray far from a very simple match formula, nor take many chances (except those silly bumps off the apron into the foam railing) but everything they do has malice and purpose. Matt is one of the best at pacing and getting near falls out of everything. Man, Reby Sky thought Matt punched hard; ask MVP. Finishing sequence, again, nothing fresh but just well done. hard fought match you can't ask for more on free TV.

2) Kensuke Sasaki v. Toshiaki Kawada (NJPW Tokyo Dom 10/09/00)- 5
this had that really big fight feel and Kawada still gives you that sense of All Japan anytime you see him, like Taker does for WWE and Sting for WCW. So this truly felt like an outsider match invading. Surprisingly they built it up nice and slow like an Otis Redding jam. The big story was Sasaki's lariats versus Kawada's kicks, and Kawada has that badass Vader aura but he always sells a knockout and did so here again. This thing built up really nicely but around the last 5 minutes the shots just got weaker and weaker and with less oomph. Finishing kick probably wouldn't wake most heavy sleepers up.

3) Paul London v. Billy Kidman (WWE Smackdown 03/17/05)- 3
I wonder if Kidman taught how to botch a monkey flip during his "Art of the 5 Minute Match" at WWE training classes. If so, here's the perfect film to show. I know these two had major heat at this time and it kind of shows as everything is really rushed and unrefined. Nice London bump outside is highlight. I'm guessing Kidman isn't much of a Yankees fans these days as A-Rod is plowing his old lady with his rod.

4) Chris Benoit v. Shelton Benjamin (WWE Raw 03/07/05)- 4
Benoit looks so jacked it seems as if he moves an arm he'll tear it in half. This didn't get much time, maybe 5 minutes at best but Benoit manages to swan dive into a ladder face first. Any context needed for that? Okay didn't think so. The end almost gave this a good score as the submission exchange was better than most every finish you'll find on TV these days.

5) Balls Mahoney v. Vic Grimes (Explosion Barb Wire Match ECW 03/03/00) -3
Even the hardcore ECW faithful must have had a harder time swallowing that than Francine does getting the stink of cock out of her skin. Let me give you a spoiler: There is no explosion nor bomb, it's just a puff of smoke that goes off....the first time. The 2nd nothing, the crowd chants "you fucked up" like robots and Balls drops a Hogan legdrop on a chair and everyone's filing into their cars wondering whether to gas up or use their last bucks on the cigarettes that will eventually kill them.
There was a stiff superkick and chair shot though

6) Too cool v. Extreme Horsemen (UWF 07/19/07)- 4
This was part of a huge very complicated tag tournament we were about to start as a project but decided better. Corino looks like Bison Smith's little brother here. A lot of this was stock tag stuff, and a lot less goofy WWE schtick than you'd think. I hated a spot where Scotty 2 Hotty played HBK where he was knocking people down with weak punches. There were a few good exchanges and the match had a kind of old school quality but was less thought out than most on the show.

7) Carlos Amano v. Mayumi Ozaki (Oz Acadmey 04/06/00) - 5
Amano picks up right where Yokozuna left off as a barefoot badass. She has some of the more ridiculous facials i've seen, like when Ozaki blocks her spitted beer with a chair, it's as if she saw a living poltergeist. A lot of submission work here, more than I would have thought and it's all done in the vein of MMA as if they can end the match and both women fight out of it with vigor. Can't believe we haven't seen someone try an Armbar out ofa GTS like here; Punk never calls that spot i'm guessing. Pretty cool ending too, nice match that could have done without the lame brawl at the beginning.

8) TJ Grant v. Julio Paulino (UFC 119)- 4
Grant def. won the 1st round, and more than likely the last 2. This was that old classic strugle between puncher and wrestler and TJ was way more highly skilled at grappling he just couldn't wrap up a lock that would stick. Paulino showed some decent standup and defense on the ground but at other times he looked as lost as Dana White at a hackers convention.

9) Mascara Sagrada jr/ Blue Demon jr v. Abismo Negro/ Electro Shock ( AAA TV 07/19/99)- 3
Demon looked like a young Mike Graham under a mask, way more talented but just that ugly small build with frocks of strange colored hair. The heels tried the old Gringos Locos top rope hurricanrana/ frog splash combo and it's never looked worse, i mean both moves, the execution was downright terrible. Demon's got a nice snapping right hand though. These falls are moving faster than the first time my cousin Daryl smoked pot and relegated to cliched toker phrases such as "This is good shit, man." Love how ECW was doing the women catfight run in and AAA goes with mini's. Scary this was some sort of tag title match, as work wise, it wasn't good but did keep me entertained.

10) Raven v. Mikey Whipwreck (ECW Fan Cam 05/17/96)- 3
ECW really took the cake for how many lackies one guy can have, Mikey wipes out 4 dudes in the beginnin incl. fun talker JT Smith. At this point, Raven's a pretty new character as his boots are still shiny and his Tool Tshirt still fits. Mikey is the only 187 pounder with a gut. He takes a bump into the crowd into an empty wheelchair; where the fuck's the person that's supposed to be using it? Was there a godly miracle taking place in the crowd? I'm stumped, like Raven's left foot. This is based around front face locks and what will Raven do from them, but Mikey easily kicks out of an Evenflow on a chair, no less, in the middle of this match. Stevie easily takes the best bumps of the stooges outside and I think Nova's terrible Ratt hair from the 80's makes him be taken less serious than his stupid costume and makeup. So Mike's hit 2 Evenflows too; hold on Raven was working a loaded boot gimmick? I have no idea what I just watched. Also on this show is a kick ass 20 minute between jericho and 2 Cold and Dreamer and Brian Lee fight into the next neighborhood over; but avoid Mustafa v. Kronus at all costs.

11) Bret Hart v. Papa Shango (WWF Saturday Night's Main Event 10/27/92)- 5
This had more depth than you'd think, Shango played big scary dude pretty well but none of his offense was that scary so Hart really had to sell big just to make you think there's a shot in hell he's losing. And as always, his comebacks are like the ends of great dramatic novels and the way he pulls on the Sharpshooter, well, no wonder India loved this guy for so long.

12) The Handsome Stranger v. Rip Rogers (Global Wrestling Federation, '92)- 4
This was a fun trip back to my childhood where i voraciously consumed anything wrestling and this happend to replace World Class which was replaced by AWA and then by Global on ESPN every weekday at 4pm. Rogers was game to lead this rookie through a fun bout even taking a concrete bump and had a lot of momentum switches. Bagwell never looked outmatched at all during this either even though his fisherman suplex would have Curt Hennig turning over in his grave more than when Charlie Haas visited Dave & Buster's pretending to be him.

13) Jerry Lynn v. Tajiri (ECW Cyberslam 1999)- 6
Every time you look back at ECW, you see diff. things. About 10 years ago i would have thought this was a sloppy, ECW spotfest and looked to criticize it for everything about it that ECW does constantly. Probably 5 years ago I would have marked big for this being a standout on a particularly wretched ECW affair. 2 years ago, would have seen it twice already and skipped right through it. This time, I enjoyed the mat work, the high fly then the spot fest at the end and thought it all congealed into something worth watching and something worth pointing at and saying "this was probably one of the best things going in ECW at the time" I liked the reckless bumps but the precision they put into it too.

14) Rey Mysterio jr v. Psicosis (WAR Super Juinor Cup 1995)- 6
This actually could go higher to a 7; this was the first time these two particular athletes had ventured to Japan so they didnt' bother with the comedy act or the long drawn out hiptoss/armdrag stuff and let it build for a few minutes then broke out every high flying trick they had and all done so dang well. I was trying to straighten up with my daughter when this match came on and we both stopped and stared; I try to keep my pro wrestling watching away from her but this was more like watching a circus trapeze act and she was mouth agape saying "wow those guys are flying." Pretty cool experience, and hardly a punch was thrown.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Stampede Wrestling - 10/31/86

1) Vladimir Krupov v. Kahn Kavedis- 3
Two smaller guys in the "Mid Weight Division" and it was pretty quick paced. Kind of fun though, no real emotion put forth but lots of good moves back and forth and was really fun for 4 minutes

2) Ted Arcidi v. Brad Foster - 1
Old Teddy here was so built, he looked like he ingested steriods with breakfast every morning. Dude was more green than She Hulk's labia. post match promo where Makanh held a needle in his hand, big rip on Hogan as well.

3) Bill Kazmaier & Mr. Hito v. Adolph Barbee & Cuban Assassin- 2
Man you thought PWG's announcers were reaching for humor, this is worse. In case any promotion forgot how to do cut off tag wrestling on a face, you could insert the first 6 minutes of this into a textbook. Kazmaeier looked like a young Lars Ulrich with freak muscles. This was old school tag match if you've ever seen one but they cut out the beginning and just went to the hot tag that didn't go very long. Rips on Arcidi on post match promo talking about "gimmicked weights" A wrestler cheating using a gimmick? That doesn't sound right at all.

4) Ben Bassarab v. Les Thornton - 2
They're in front of a Halloween crowd with some monkeys and Charlie Chaplins enjoying this action. This bout is clipped and came in about 9 minutes in and both guys looked just about ready to hit the showers at this point. Who's the manager fuck dressed like Hitler? It's really strange. Bassarab had a decent dropkick. Thornton is looking like Damian Meia on UFC on Fox 2, third round. Really bad selling too

5) Viet Cong Express v. Keith Hart/ Johnny Smith - 2
Keith just looks too much like an insurance salesman for me to take seriously. The Viet congs both are wearing black masks, red track pants and Asics shoes. Yeah I'll leave that one alone. First 4 minutes is spent all on the ground with some really loose leglocks. Wow, it took Keith like 3 diff. moves just to transition out of a sunset flip; dead fish selling, this guy blows. Never seen two guys miss a whip in to each other spot; decent near fall at the end or "skullduggery" as the announcer called it.

6) Makanah Singh v. Owen Hart - 3
Besides Bassarab earlier, these two guys are the only people really selling stuff and making it seem real. Real refreshing to see Owen busting out those suicide dropkicks and splashes here. Security must be shittier here than at the old Real Deal shows where as fans, you were practically in the match, as a guy in bowler's cap and a Jimmy Carter mask beat up Owen then casually got back in his seat.

I thought the show would be much better honestly, most everything was shortened for TV, some good moves but the fluidity of the matches was terrible

UFC 143: Diaz vs. Condit

Preliminary card (Facebook)

1. Welterweight bout: Dan Stittgen vs. Stephen Thompson - 5
2. Middleweight bout: Rafael Natal vs. Michael Kuiper - NA

Preliminary card (FX)

2. Welterweight bout: Matthew Riddle vs. Henry Martinez - 3
3. Welterweight bout: Matt Brown vs. Chris Cope - 4
4. Bantamweight bout: Alex Caceres vs. Edwin Figueroa - 2
5. Featherweight bout: Dustin Poirier vs. Max Holloway - 4

Main card

6. Middleweight bout: Ed Herman vs. Clifford Starks - 5
7. Bantamweight bout: Renan Barão vs. Scott Jorgensen - 5
8. Welterweight bout: Josh Koscheck vs. Mike Pierce - 4
9. Heavyweight bout: Roy Nelson vs. Fabricio Werdum - 6
10. Interim Welterweight Championship bout: Nick Diaz vs. Carlos Condit - 6

Thompson is Kenpo Karate wizard. Great KO. Didn't see the Kuiper fight -- too busy fingering your mom. Riddle showed nice stamina. Nice to see Cincinnati native Brown get the big KO. Bruce Leeroy getting deducted 2 points for groin shots -- crap fight. Slick submission victory for Poirier. Holloway didn't even look like he belonged in same cage. Great scrappy slugfest to open PPV. I'm a big Jorgensen fan (dating back to WEC) but Barão is the hottest rising prospect on the MMA scene. Period. Koscheck fights dirty, grabs trunks, pokes eyes, etc. I thought Pierce was robbed. Nelson's already ugly face looked like freeway roadkill. He's got a hell of a chin though. Welcome back to the UFC, Werdum! Main event was awesome. Diaz looked to be doing his usual early, using range, etc. and Condit seemed a little rattled/unsure but by the third Carlos was looking confident and smooth and really put in the work being one step ahead of Diaz. Don't be scared, homey.

Friday, February 3, 2012

AAA TripleMania 11

1. Esther Moreno, Mascara Sagrada Jr., Mascarita Sagrada, & May Flowers vs. Poly Star, Picudo, Mini Abismo Negro, & Polvo de Estrellas- 2
This felt like watching a David Lynch film. The typical man/woman/tranny/mini formula and it's just all over the board. Mascara got to pull off some really good stuff though, but it felt a little stacked against him, as no one was giving him much offense, kind of selfish work there.

2. Four Corners Match: Chessman & Tiffany vs. El Brazo & Martha Villalobos vs. Gran & Faby Apache vs. Electroshock & Lady Apache (Elimination Match)- 3
This match just flew by, like when i watched the Lost finale. The Apaches looked like a Mexican Culture Club cover band. I was impressed with Chessman and his ability to keep everything moving, and the finale with Brazo and Tiffany lacked punch but told a good story. God damn Chessman looked like Sasquatch from the old Tenacious D show.

4. Juventud Guerrera & Mr. Aguila vs. Raymon & Zorro- 3
Aguila after his WWE run just looks like an opium addicted pirate and his work is lazier than TV executives these days when scheduling 100 reality shows on their channel. Juvi was real busy here, either posing or ripping jeff hardy moves. Their opposition was pretty lackluster too and the beatdown with kendo sticks felt like a court appointed punishment in Thailand.

5. Four Way Hair vs. Hair Match: Pirata Morgan vs. El Texano vs. Sangre Chicana vs. Heavy Metal- 5
I could get a graspe on these rules about as well as trying to fish that gooey white stuff out of the egg batter. This was basically a 3 on 1 handicap against Heavy who did get to bust out a little matwork early on. He was a good fiery babyface in the fact that the crowd was into it; esp. when his proud papa Pepe Casas got in and worked the heels over in a really fun spot. There was a lot of interference from a bunch of announcers and managers that I really didn't care about and Metal won with a neat rolling magistral i haven't seen before.

6. Abismo Nego, Cibernetico, & The Headhunters vs. Lizmark Jr, La Parka II, Octagon, & Super Calo- 3
This was a chaotic mess and not necessarily in a good way. Parka had one of the most spectacular entrances I've seen; a full piece zombie backups and Michael Jackson impersonator doing "Thriller." as Parka came out dressed as King Tut. Abismo was a complete firebug in this, just walking around scorching Octagon's face repeatedly while not selling a damn thing. Calo tooks some good bumps and did a front flip into the crowd. A DQ finish really took something out of this too but the brawl never ended; the angle was damn hot but the match quality was bottom barrel dying days WCW shit.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

PWG Battle of Los Angeles 2008 - Stage 1

This will be my last "official" review for the interim. I might pop in for an occasional nonsense post or notes on something I'd seen recently. This was originally intended as a co-review seeing me do the odd numbered matches (2, 4, 6, etc.) and I only ever took shorthand notes on the evens. So that explains why those (1, 3, 5, etc.) may be more fragmented thought and esoteric. My amount of "free" time is limited these days but I do have some other projects currently including an ongoing web show RtW TV and my longtime project Review the World. Enjoy!

1. TJ Perkins vs. Chuck Taylor (Block C) - 3

Height differential lead to some oddness including Taylor looking heteroclite doing springboard shit with that lanky body. Parts came off looking more animated than Eddie Valiant wrestling with a 'toon. CT must be a Gail Kim fan. Fuck finish on a BoLA? Say it ain't so!

2. Brandon Bonham vs. Kenny Omega (Block A) - 4

Didn't know Omega had the best hip swivel since Rude and Hase. We get some sthick early (World of Sport, surfing, dueling armdrags, involuntary high fives, fellatio, etc.) but it's all good. Kenny does some Tom and Jerry selling. Apparently Omega can stop time and space? Wait, so he's Doctor Fate? Unbelievable missile dropkick off the top by KO. Nice little counter of the Croyt's Wrath leading into the finish and a fun little match that kept it fairly light without teetering into absurdity.

3. Austin Aries vs. Nigel McGuinness (Block A) - 6

Nigel perched in corner upside down longer than Drak in Drak Pack or the girl Pillman allegedly fucked on the campus of my alma mater Miami University while she hung upside down wearing gravity boots. Good stuff, not as nuanced as long ROH battle, but snug & contained, no detritus. Loved how AA bounced on apron on Tower of London bump. Took that shit like a beast that is to say like a Platybelodon.

4. Low Ki vs. Roderick Strong (Block B) - 6

Hard-hitting deliciousness. This brought to mind Low Ki forging through wars in the IWA Mid-South Ted Petty Invitational '06. You got the sense he was saving some of the heavy artillery. Strong, who went to the BoLA finals last year, going out early showcases the unpredictable nature of BoLA. Lots of stiff action highlighted by Ki countering Death by Roderick in mid-air with a double-foot stomp that was just unreal. That'll make you drink your ginger ale with a straw. The finish brought to mind MMA as one move on the ground didn't work so Ki transitioned seamlessly into the Dragon Clutch for the tap out.

5. Scott Lost vs. Joey Ryan (Block D) - 4

Fat guy in crowd in neon green Kayne shades -- never laid. Ugly elbow suicida by JR. Lost pin post-superplex looked like Kevin and Winnie cuddling in the barn during that storm. I'd rather be working through this extensive ultimate Smallville: The Complete Series set (62 discs, bitch!) I just got.

6. Bryan Danielson vs. Davey Richards (Block C) - 6

Brian: Richards' testosterone is so high he's practically a walking date rape. I like the dual nature of Danielson that at times he can be this very calm, relaxed, focused tactician but he also exhibits fire better than almost any other wrestler in the world. One of my favorite visuals in PWG history as Danielson does a flying knee off of the apron onto Richards who flies backward into a fan who's desperately trying to run out of the way -- looked like some Saving Private Ryan shit. No sophomore slump as directly after Bryan rams Davey into a chair a hot, busty brunette is sitting in (while she's still in the chair!). I had to pop a few Tylenol after watching Davey's top con hilo out into the crowd. These guys' overblown 45 min. ROH blowoff in Boston I found sort of trying but Danielson is just so good with the subtleties here that I can't help but not dig this. I loved Bryan elbowing Davey's skull into tapioca.

7. El Generico vs. Nick Jackson vs. Masato Yoshino (Block B) - 4

Green tiger trunks on NJ bring to mind my brother and my childhood tag team "Tiger 1 & Tiger 2" that we created after receiving ridiculously tight spandex biker shorts mine orange bengal print and his, of course, neon green. Sol Naciente by Yoshino sees yet another finish via submission.

8. Chris Hero vs. Necro Butcher (Block D - No DQ) - 5

Ugh, that seaweed green and purple get-up on Hero is unsightly. Chemists and doctors are clamoring for a sample from Necro Butcher's jean shorts to run tests. For a No DQ match the first 10 min. thus far have been pretty plodding with not much happening save for lock-ups, etc. The mind begins to race: I could really go for a Dole Whip right now. Hero gets tossed into a row of chairs and lands with all the impact of a teddy bear dropped in a ball pit at Chuck E. Cheese's. I'm at the halfway point of this 30 min. match and thus far it's been tame but I have faith these two can turn it up. Necro's missile dropkick had all the impact of the missiles shot from the old Footski TMNT toy vehicle. Hero uses a soft camera bag like it was a brick or something. We've got our crowd brawl going now but it's being played almost more for comedy than the viciousness of a street fight. Oh no he didn't -- Hero just placed a bag of Sour Cream & Onion Lay's on Necro's head and then head-butted him. Hero does a Buff Blockbuster off of some military crates onto Necro through a table which exploded. Chris tosses a garbage can lid like a frisbee and it nearly decapitates a vampiric fan in the audience. Hero wins with the Hangman's Clutch so yet another submission victory tonight (not that I'm complaining!). Overall a step up from last year's and have heard promising things about Stage 2 so ready to spin that.