Puroresu Reviews

Stardom “Stardom of Champions” (February 23) Review & Results

8.0/10

Stardom “Stardom of Champions” on February 23, 2017 

Watch: Stardom World

Korakuen Hall – Tokyo, Japan


Elimination Match: Queen's Quest (AZM & HZK) def. Arisu Nanase & Hiromi Mimura and Christi Jaynes & Zoe Lucas and Kaori Yoneyama & Natsuko Tora**1/2

What worked:

  • Queens Quest look like heels in their match, top tier heels at that too.
  • Christi Jaymes and Zoe Lucas looked strong.
  • Queens Quest and the team of Yoneyama & Tora had a hot closing stretch.

What didn’t work:

  • A good amount of moves in this match felt choppy.
  • No major moves felt like they had impact.

Verdict & Result: A “nothing was bad” type of opener. Queens Quest looked great.

Zoe eliminated Nanase with the Lucas Landslide, HZK eliminated Zoe () with the Bombs Away, winners HZK & AZM (9:28) by sending Yoneyama & Tora over the top rope.

Yoko Bito def. Konami***3/4

What worked

  • This match was instantly established as being a strike based match, and stuck to that motif.
  • Very unique and powerful looking kick based offense was used throughout this match. Helped make it feel different.
  • Konami is being elevated right off the bat with these singles matches.
  • A great leg-bar made it look that Konami had the match won.
  • Easy to digest length with a believable finish.

What didn’t work:

  • No complaints!

Verdict & Result: Kicks, lots and lots of awesome kicks with a great closing stretch, and the short time made this an easy watch. Yoko Bito pins Konami with B Driver (Back to belly piledriver) on 7:18.

We got a show of respect post match

SWA Championship: Toni Storm (c) def. Deonna Purrazzo***

What worked:

  • Toni Storm projected intensity via her entrance.
  • Clean chain wrestling at the beginning.
  • Stiff strikes got the crowd into the match.
  • Deonna’s submissions throughout the match all looked strong.

What didn’t work:

  • The chain wrestling went too long
  • After the chain wrestling, Toni Storm hit a ugly suicide dive that looked like it hurt her quite a bit.
  • This match lacked a true face vs. heel dynamic halfway through
  • Dead crowd for most of the match.

Verdict & Result: Solid title match, though nothing must see, it was fine for what it was–a midcard title match. Toni Storm retains after a piledriver in 8:01.

High Speed Championship: Kris Wolf def. Kagetsu and Mayu Iwatani (c)***1/2

Kagetsu and Mayu have pre existing issues, and Kris Wolf and Kagetsu are both in Oedo Tai. Oedo Tai cut a funny promo promising shenanigans in the match. Mayu Iwatani promo noting this is her 10th title defense. Hana Kimura of Oedo Tai is at ringside

What worked:

  • All three competitors showed great chemistry with each other.
  • True to the title’s name, this match had an action packed pace most of the match.
  • Mayu fighting both Oedo Tai members made her come across great.
  • Mayu suplexes are beautiful and make for great near-falls.

What didn’t work:

  • Too much Oedo Tai shenanigans, it takes away from the seriousness and intensity of the match, making it feel too much like a comedy match.
  • Mayu looked strong despite the result.
  • Hana openly interfered and the ref just said “don’t do it again”.
  • A damn briefcase was used as a weapon and the ref didn’t even say don’t do it again.

Verdict & Result: Nice fast paced bout with a surprise finish that kept Mayu strong. Kris Wolf rolls up both Mayu and Kagetsu to become High Speed champ in 10:08.

Wonder of Stardom Championship: Kairi Hojo (c) def. Jungle Kyona****1/4

What worked:

  • Both ladies offense looked brutal.
  • Kyona and Hojo kept a strong intensity throughout.
  • Both sold each other’s offense well.
  • Great diving crossbody to the outside from Hojo that didn’t look like she nearly died for once!
  • Great suspense built leading up to a bodyslam off the top rope
  • Good pacing throughout the match.
  • Good near-falls.

What didn’t work:

  • Minor nitpick: Hojo did a backhand that clearly missed Kyona, and Kyona sold it like it completely dazed her.
  • Tree of woe corner stomp spot is always annoying.

Verdict & Result: I loved this. Kyona looked like a monster, Hojo looked like a strong champ, and the match had great pacing. Kairi Hojo retains with a Diving Elbow Drop on Kyona in 17:51.

World of Stardom Championship: Io Shirai (c) def. Shayna Baszler****1/2

 

Pre-match Io promo notes this is her 11th defense.

What worked:

  • Shanya on offense looked great. She looked like a monster with all of her moves looking impactful.
  • Really unique corner choke from the second cope from Shanya.
  • Great splash to the outside from Io!
  • It’s offense was superb, showing a weapon using brawling style at one point of the match.
  • Super suplex followed by another suplex by Shanya came off as devastating, Io had some great bridging suplexes of her own.
  • Io sold a chokehold like death at one point, with even the ref selling it as a potential TKO as well.
  • The finish of the match looked great, with Shanya losing nothing in defeat.

What didn’t work:

  • Shayna came off as a heel and Io, a babyface in this match, and since Io Shirai is leader of the head heel stable, Queens Quest, that is a problem.
  • Even when she used a weapon, Io came off as a resilient babyface.
  • Io openly showing fighting spirit and asking for more kicks from Shanya is one of the most babyface things she could do.
  • Shanya’s submission based offense doesn’t lend itself for babyface work.

Verdict & Result: Once I got past the fact that Io worked face, this match was amazing, telling a great story of Io fighting off the bigger, stronger and violent Shanya with plenty of action and the submissions looking great. Plus a G.O.A.T. chokehold sell. Io retains with the moonsault press in 16:45.

Post-match Kagetsu, Toni Storm and Kairi Hojo all stake their claim for Io’s World of Stardom Championship. Kagetsu announced herself as the new leader of Oedo Tai. Io told Kagetsu to beg for a title shot, Kagetsu cheap shotted her. Io in anger announced Kagetsu as her next challenger and said Toni and Hojo would have their title shot afterwards, promising they would both have a title shot. Overall a great promo, though Io being cheap shotted and taking on all challengers is not a very babyface move.

STARDOM "STARDOM OF CHAMPIONS" - FEBRUARY 23, 2017
  • Great - 8/10
    8/10

OVERALL

The worst match was a breeze to watch, with the second, fifth and main being matches you should seek out. I could see a lot of other people liking the High Speed title match more than me, especially if you're a Kris Wolf fan.

8.0/10

About the author

Parm

Parm is the newest member of WWW. He knows a lot about wrestling, history, and literature. He's got charisma. He reviews CMLL every Friday, Dragon Gate, provides a 2012 ROH retrospective, and dabbles in more topics.

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