Looking Back Puroresu Reviews

Strong Style Files Edition #1

Hey guys it’s Izzac back again with another crazy puroresu project. I will be calling this series the ‘Strong Style Files’. I, along with other members of the Wrestling With Words staff, will cover the quote on quote strong style matches from the 2000s. Strong style is my favorite style in professional wrestling, When two men beat each other up with kicks, forearms, suplexes and so forth, it excites me. Whenever Ishii is in a big time match I am always on the edge of my seat because I know I am going to get a ton of action. Big Japan Pro Wrestling is Trask, Lawrence, and myself’s current favorite promotion. Not because of the death matches (which are getting better) but because of the strong division which Lawrence has a great article on if you want to learn about the heavyweights in BJW. This series will focus on matches from the likes of Daisuke Sekimoto, Shuji Ishikawa, Masato Tanaka, Yuji Okabayashi, Koji Kanemoto, Tomohiro Ishii, Yuji Okabayashi, Katsuyouri Shibata, Kohei Sato, Shinjiro Otani, Yuji Hino, Team Yamato and many more. Let me know what you think of this concept and I would love if you guys could recommend me ‘strong style’ matches to view so I can review them for this series.

Daisuke Sekimoto & Kento Miyahara vs. Yuji Hino & Kohei Sato (Fortune Dream 6/15/14)****3/4

My god at this match on paper, and spoiler alert, it exceeded expectations wildly. What an incredible hard hitting bout. Let’s dive into it shall we? Sato and Daisuke run at each other and out of nowhere Daisuke hits a lariat within the first 2 minutes, so that’s a good indicator of how this match is going to play out.  Sato hits three kicks and tags in Hino who does some grapple-fuckery with Kento. Sato and Miyahara throw forearms at one another and my god are they stiff, Korakuen was screaming whenever he would forearm Kento. Hino and Sekimoto chop each other continuously as the camera pans over to Kenta Kobashi on commentary with a large grin on his face. All four men brawl all over the building, Sekimoto and Hino and chopping each other all over Korakuen and eventually end up in front of Mr. Kobashi. They both nod towards Kobashi before chopping each other as hard as humanly possible for a good 2 minutes. Sekimoto and Hino just go at it all match, which basically, is beautiful. At the 20 minute mark Hino and Sekimoto are chopping each other once again. Hino’s chops are definitely harder so Daisuke says fuck it and lariats Hino to death. Kento Miyahara does a flying triangle choke on Hino whilst Sekimoto has the torture rack on Sato. Yuji goddamn Hino hits the ‘fucking splash’ on Miyahara and looks to have the win but Sekimoto hits a German suplex out of nowhere! Sato hits a forearm, Kento his a bicycle boot and Hino hits a lariat. SO MANY LARIATS AND SUPLEXES my heart can’t handle it. Sato executes a scoop brainbuster on Sekimoto followed by a deadlift German but the 30 minute time limit expires. BUT WAIT. The camera pans over to Kobashi and he says ‘5 more minutes’ as Korakuen erupts in joy. The 4 men go right back to murdering each other and everyone hit German suplexes on everyone IT WAS GLORIOUS. Possibly the best 5 minute stretch I have ever seen. The last few moments were unparalleled, Sekimoto lariats Sato and he kicks out so Sekimoto does another deadlift German suplex but the 5 minute time limit ran out! Excellent finish, the crowd were on their feet applauding. Kenta Kobashi comes to the ring and shakes the four participants hands and everyone shows respect for one another. One of the best tag matches ever.

Samoa Joe vs. Masato Tanaka (ZERO-1 5/3/03)***1/2

Another fantastic match to kick off this series. I am about to get into the match but keep in mind all of this happened in under 9 minutes. Joe jumps Tanaka and the two bulls ram each other. Tanaka knocks down Joe with a shoulder block and a forearm. I have never seen Tanaka hit a dropkick. He did in this match it was perfect. Joe starts to attack Tanaka’s arm and attempts an arm bar but just can’t quite lock it in all the way. So if Joe can’t tap Tanaka out he will take to the skies and hit a twisting plancha! He grabs a chair but Tanaka has one also, Tanaka gets the best of the chair war and throws Joe onto the ramp and drives a chair into Joe’s skull. Tanaka spiked Samoa Joe with his signature tornado DDT on the ramp.  Tanaka throws Joe back inside the ring and missile dropkicks Joe in the back of his head. He attempts another tornado DDT but Joe counters it with a spinebuster. Joe then goes savage on Tanaka with a German suplex, a Dragon suplex, and lastly a bridging German suplex! Tanaka hits his own German suplex and a rolling elbow for a near fall. He goes for the elbow again but Joe counters with a Pedigree. Tanaka goes for a reverse tornado DDT but Joe counters it with the Emerald Flowsion to win! Great sub 10 minute match.

Hideki Suzuki vs. Daisuke Sekimoto (ZERO-1 7/24/15)***3/4

This big time match was apart of the ZERO-1 Fire Festival, which is basically the ZERO-1 version of the G1 Climax. This match is also taking place in an outdoor basketball court late at night, Japanese wrestling … never change, I love you. Some grappling to begin with, a test of strength that Sekimoto gets the better of but Suzuki uses his technical abilities to knock Daisuke off his feet. Suzuki won’t let Daisuke escape from a headscissors but after a minute or so he escapes and attempts a submission but Hideki gets to the bottom rope before anything else could happen. Sekimoto bumps Suzuki with a shoulder block and drops the elbow for a 2 count. Hideki uses a series of uppercuts to Sekimoto’s arms and chest followed by an exploder suplex. Our lord Sekimoto just walks to the rope with Hideki on his back to escape the abdominal stretch Suzuki had locked in. Sekimoto did the Ric Flair whip into the corner and does a front flip into the corner and lands on the apron! Then he does a top rope crossbody!!! DAISUKE FLAIR. He hits some lariats and Hideki’s patterned double arm suplex but only gets a 1 count. Sekimoto swings wildly with a lariat but Suzuki catches him with a snap German suplex. Talk about a series of moves, Hideki hit a Rude Awakening, a Gotch style tombstone, and a forearm for a very close near fall. Sekimoto who is the king of German’s does his own snap German but can’t put Suzuki away. A strike exchange between these two beasts sees Sekimoto get the better of Hideki with an enzuiguri and a lariat. Sekimoto does a brainbuster which is rare from him but Hideki Suzuki finds a way to kickout at the last second. Daisuke does his deadlift bridging German that no one kicks out of to win the match. SO GOOD.

This is going to be one of my favorite things on the site because I know I will love every match I watch. I honestly don’t think I have seen a bad Daisuke Sekimoto match in my life. The first match I reviewed was seriously one of the most amazing/spectacular tag team matches I have ever seen. Every man involved in that masterpiece was unbelievable. Joe/Tanaka was a great sub 10 minute match with a surprising finish and Suzuki/Sekimoto was a great match that had an old school feel since it was recorded on a fan cam. If you guys have any matches you would like me to review in this series let me know on the Wrestling With Words Twitter or my own Twitter. This is going to be great fun.

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