Puroresu WWW Review Archive (December 2015-July 2017)

WRESTLE-1 Wild Produce Review (4/24/16)

Saitama, Japan 
Kasukabe Fureai Cube 
250 Fans 

This is different, I usually only review Wrestle-1 from Korakuen but I really wanted to watch this bonus Wrestle-1 show and review it! This Wrestle-1 house show is special and different. The new WILD order of Manabu Soya, Kumagoro, AKIRA and Jun Kasai produced their own show which features two singles matches between the NWO. But it still has the regular Wrestle-1 house show under card which is always solid. This should be a hoot.

(WILD Single Match) Jun Kasai vs. Kumagoro***1/4

This was tons of fun! Both guys came off looking like stars and like they belong in the heavyweight scene in Wrestle-1. Jun Kasai is known as one of the greatest deathmatch performers of all time, and I agree, but he is also a phenomenal professional wrestler and this match proved it. At 41 he still moves great and his timing and ring positioning are superb. Kumagoro is a younger performer but shows lots of potential and could be a major player for Wrestle-1 in the near future. If he improved his body a little I could see him getting elevated sooner rather than later. This was the only match I didn’t write notes for but the main things that stuck out to me were Kasai’s leaping enzuigiri’s, they were great. Kasai won with a sit out backslide. Both men embraced post match, really good.

Minoru Tanaka vs. Daiki Inaba vs. Shotaro Ashino***

This was real short, less than seven minutes but it was very good. It was awesome to see Ashino because he is challenging for KAI’s Wrestle-1 Championship in June. Inaba is always solid and Tanaka is one of the best in the world. So this made for a very fun three way bout. Ashino is a bad motherfucker and I hope he beats KAI. The younger wrestlers threw Tanaka out of the ring initially and didn’t let him back in for three minutes. Really fun spot were everyone was using school boys and then Inaba used one on the referee and he wasn’t pleased. Inaba has a lovely blue thunder bomb. Just a really fun three way sprint for four minutes. Tanaka countered a fisherman’s buster into a cradle on Inaba for the win.

Ryota Hama & Andy Wu vs. Masayuki Kono & Hiroki Murase***

Super solid tag match! I know it’s unbelievable but yes this was a good match! Hama overpowered Kono to the chagrin of Lawrence O’Brien. Wu is always impressive but every since losing the Cruiserweight Championship he hasn’t done anything of note. Murase is very athletic but didn’t stand out. Wu nailed a tornado DDT on Murase which led to Ryota Hama’s crazy hot tag. Hama’s hot tag is truly amazing, just lots of ass attacks and squashing of men. Hama also has the best elbow drop in professional wrestling. Andy Wu busted out a inside out dive on Kono. Wu was very impressive here and the best wrestler in the match, all of his offence is lit. But he was pinned by Kono after a Falcon Arrow, neck-hang bomb and a running knee. Kono was fine here.

KAI & Kaz Hayashi vs. Kotaro Suzuki & Keiichi Sato***1/2

Wow this was bloody fantastic! Korakuen Hall level tag match right here. This match was built around Suzuki and Hayashi interactions which were some of the best I have seen in 2016. For two veterans this was incredible. The quickness and smoothness was on another level. The chemistry they had with one another was on a different level. Some of the best Jr. action you will see.  KAI gets in the ring and just wants to brawl with Sato and throws him to the outside. KAI hit a plancha on Hayashi which Kaz took offense to; but they soon made peace. Kaz and KAI have had really good matches with one another and now that they are teaming it all works perfectly. Great chemistry! KAI is a fucking nut case in the best and worst ways possible. I love the new KAI. All of Kotaro’s strikes were stiff and looked very good. Lionsault from Hayashi. Legit so much innovation from Kaz and Kotaro! Can’t wait to see their singles match from earlier this month. Both men used their signature handspring maneuvers. Sato got some close near-falls on KAI, he went for a package piledriver but Hayashi broke that up then Suzuki took out Hayashi with a dive. Sato looked to have the victory but KAI uses the Gannosuke clutch to pin the former All Japan upstart. ***1/2

Jiro Ikemen Kuroshio, Yasufumi Nakanoue, Seiki Yoshioka & Kohei Fujimura vs. Yuji Hino, KAZMA SAKAMOTO, NOSAWA Rongai & Koji Doi***1/4

Very good eight man tag here. Loved the definitive babyface and heel dynamic. I just want to say this, NOSAWA is so good. I know not a lot of people enjoy his work but that man is a genius in and out of the ring. He knows what works and is one of the smartest men in pro wrestling. I really enjoy his wrestling as well. Fujimura is so tiny! I had no clue he was that small. He wouldn’t even be half the size of Yuji Hino. Ikemen’s charisma definitely shined bright. KAZMA is also very underrated, he makes his opponents look very good. A very good base for smaller high flying wrestlers. NOSAWA did Minoru Suzuki style headbutts. Long heat segment on Fujimura. Hino and Nakanoue had some hot sequences going back and forth. Split legged moonsault from Jiro. Missile kick from Fujimura. Everyone takes out everyone including Jiro using an Asai moonsault. KAZMA and Kohei are left inside the ring, KAZMA wins with a killer Gory bomb.

(WILD Single Match) Manabu Soya vs. AKIRA***

Yeah this was good but I actually preferred the other WILD singles match which was the opener. But I understand why this is the main event. Soya and AKIRA are the bigger stars of the group even though Kasai is the most popular. Both men got ‘WILD’ chants going. Kumagoro came in to assist Soya but ended up assisting AKIRA instead using the WILD double chop. Early on this was slightly comedic but did get more serious as time went on. AKIRA moves incredibly well for someone who has been wrestling for 32 years. Superplex on AKIRA. German suplex followed by two giant splashes from AKIRA but that only heralded a two count. Wild Bomber followed by the death valley bomb for a near fall on AKIRA. Big strike exchanges that Soya gets the better of which leads him to victory. TWO GIANT WILD BOMBERS put AKIRA away for good.

This was a super enjoyable show! I don’t regret watching this one bit. There is nothing great by any means but it was all good and the work was above par. I have noticed this about Wrestle-1 as of late, the house show (smaller shows) never have stinkers. Some puroresu promotions have pretty weak house shows but have great big shows. In Wrestle-1’s case the house shows are always good and the Korakuen shows are usually very good. If you still think Wrestle-1 is the TNA of Japan you are wrong, Wrestle-1 is one of my top 5 promotions of 2016. The storylines always make sense and the work is very good as I said. Very excited for the June Wrestle-1 Korakuen show.


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