Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D and occasional guests write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Friday, August 14, 2009

Cowards die many times before their deaths, Yoshiaki Fujiwara tastes death but once

Yoshiaki Fujiwara/Osamu Kido/Seiji Sakaguchi vs. Riki Choshu/Yoshiaki Yatsu/Masa Saito NJ 6/8/84-FUN

Fujiwara's first big TV run was as a spunky babyface vs. Choshu's army and he is good here firing away at the heels. This was a match with lower ranked guys on the New Japan side, and the match is dominated by the Army, it needed a bit more competitive to really break out from the pack. Yatsu, Saito and Choshu are an awesome bruising heel trios team, and all three guys do work great with Fujiwara.

Yoshiaki Fujiwara v. Tatsuo Nakano UWF 1/16/90-GREAT

TKG: Yeah this is the stuff. Nakano is great at this kind of hardhitting fast brawl. Nakano has gotten really slick and almost elaborate in his mat work. Whole story here is Nakano challenging and taking it to Fujiwara and Fujiwara catching Nakano with stuff. Nakano headbutts Fujiwara multiple times in the back and side of head. Fujiwara busts Nakano in the jaw multiple times with headbutts. The two trade nasty bodyshots. This was badass.

PAS: Nakano works this match like a guy in a boxing match down on the scorecards going into the last round. Not a ton of defense just a bull rush, Fujiwara is really great at countering and using his aggression against him, and there are also moments where he clearly gets pissed off and throws receipts. For a match built around body shots and headbutts, you got a pair of dudes who can throw a body shot and a headbutt.

Yoshiaki Fujiwara v. Tokimitsu Ishizawa PWFG 7/21/93-SKIPPABLE

TKG: I have no idea what was going on here. Ishizawa is Kendo KaShin and is working as young amateur wrestling superstar. Fujiwara is working defensively but not in his normal defensive guy countering way. Instead he's working like guy on the bottom in Greco trying to keep himself from being lifted or turned. Fujiwara really never attempts an offense. And so its a thirty minute version of Rulon Gardner vs. Alexis Karelin. I mean there was a point where Kashin realizes he can't either lift or turn Fujiwara so he just lets go and asks for stand up. And you think well now something else is going to happen. but then Kashin takes Fujiwara down, Fujiwara turns giving Kashin his back and its back to the same thing. I have no idea what this was about.

PAS: This felt like it might be an exhibition, not a real match, because at no point does Fujiwara ever attempt an offensive maneuver. He never makes even a cursory stab at winning. Ishizawa takes him down, he goes into a fetal position. Ishizawa, attempts to grab something, Fujiwara stops him. The eventually stand up. Parts of this were compelling as Fujiwara makes the defense kind of interesting, I kept waiting for Fujiwara to lure him into his trap, but it never happens. I thought this might be a shoot, because it had the anti story, that shoots sometimes have. As a match it made no sense.

The Complete and Accurate Yoshiaki Fujiwara

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