Segunda Caida

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

Thursday, July 01, 2010

BattlArts 12/6/09

Katsumi Usuda v. Akifumi Saito

TKG: Appaently Usuda’s entrance music is T Rex’s “20th Century Boy” and well there was nothing glam about this match. Just two guys really kicking the shit out of each other. Usuda kicks the shit out of Saito’s arm, and Saito goes to kick the shit out of Usuda’s arm. They do submissions to close to the ropes and Usuda wins with a absolutely nasy submission in the center of the ring. Move like a cat. Talk like a rat. Sting like a bee, baby I wanna be your man.

PAS: This is the second time we have seen Saito this year in BattlArts and he has been really impressive both times. Usuda can be such a wrecking ball that it takes a lot to look credible in a slug fest with him. This had everything you want from a BattlArts undercard match, cool tight matwork and reversals, nasty kicks and punches and multiple moments where you audible curse because of the violence.

Keita Yano v. Takeshi Takeshimi

TKG: What bizzaro world am I living in where I watch a god Nova match and a good Yano match in the same night. This is Keita Yano vs. a rookie which is something I was dreading but really there was nothing at all objectionable here. Takeshimi has some cauliflowred ears and I assume he has a wrestling background as he rolls and turns on the mat really well. He throws some nice elbows and semi-European uppercut like strikes. And Yano does nothing at all objectionable and actively contributes lots of good to this match. He ends the match with Danielson style elbows to the face into a really cool chickenwing. We see the elbows to the face from the back so we don’t get a real sense of the impact. But normally when Yano does Danielson spot it feels like a spot “Hey I’m doing a spot for pops”, here everything he did felt like it worked into telling the story of the match.

PAS: I would have never expected Yano to be able to carry anyone, but not only did he look tolerable here, he was clearly leading this dance. I kept waiting for him to do something stupid, he never did. I kept waiting for him to jack a PWG move, he never did. I kept waiting for him to throw sissy strikes, and not only did he never do that but he actually jaw jacked Takeshimi a couple of times. I really liked all of Takeshimi’s simple wrestling mat work, but Yano was leading here to, doing a bunch of nifty elbow and arm twists, leading to the really nasty finishing arm lock. Shockingly good match.

Munenori Sawa/Bison Tagai v. Ryuji Walter/Yoshinori Narita

TKG: This is a pretty fun undercard Battlarts tag. Ryuji Walter and Bison Tagai have some surprisingly fun two thick guys heavyweight matwork and Ryuji Walters absolutely wastes Sawa with punches and lariats. I don’t know Yoshinori Narita is but he’s mostly doing kickboxing gimmick with simple sub attempts and most of his kickboxing was guy swinging wildly. But Sawa just murders him. They do a section where Sawa bobs and weaves ducking all of Narita’s strikes and then tagging Narita at will. And at another point Sawa just grabs Narita’s head and cocobutts him full force.

PAS: You rarely see WALTER out crowbarred in a match, but man was Sawa laying a nasty beating on Narita. His mouth was busted, that coco butt looked like it crosseyed him, just a nasty unnecessary asskicking. Walter did his part though, as he cracked Sawa and Tagai with some big punches and lariats. Not great execution, but all of the sweet violence you want from a BattlArts match.

Yujiro Yamamoto v. Sanchu Tsubakichi

TKG: I don’t think we’ve had good things to say about Tsubakichi in the past. But Yamamoto is a guy who will make epic matches. This starts with a lot of Tsubakichi beating on Yamamoto. And Yamamoto is great as guy coming back from below: great as guy selling fighting to stay on his feet and great as a guy hunched over (after a beating) grabbing a leg. He can just destroy a leg in a minute. Tsubakichi does a neat job briefly selling that he was struggling to support himself on his knee. You do that and Yamamoto will go in for a kill. Tsubakichi does get a hold of Yamamoto’s arm and they a couple of really nice U style rope break near falls before Yamamoto can escape and come back from below again.

PAS: Yammamoto is the absolute truth, Tsubakichi is not only a guy who has never shown any spark before, but also a guy coming back from an injury, and Yamamoto carries him to one of the best BattlArts matches of the year. Lots of dramatic stops and starts, it starts with Tsubakichi jumping him at the bell, but evens out until he absolutlely spikes Yamamoto with a uranage, it slows again just to build to another dramatic moment. Just great pacing.

Super Tiger II/Tiger Shark v. Yuki Ishikawa/Yuta Yoshikawa

TKG: This was super disappointing. Ishikawa was great in his little sections working the mat against either of the Tigers, had nice standing technical exchanges and was cool as tag guy coming in to save partner. But this really felt like a collection of moments and not really a tag match. There are points where the Tigers are double teaming on Yoshikawa and you get the sense that he is supposed to be junior partner working in peril. But the Tigers really aren’t beating him hard. I mean he may have taken one of the least beatings of anyone on the show and Yoshikawa was kind of selling it like that was the case. I can’t get amped up for Ishikwa making a save when it feels like that save was unnecessary.

PAS: Ishikawa is coming back from an injury due to Super Tiger II, but he never really felt like a guy who wanted revenge. There is brutality, intensity and fire up and down this card, but I didn’t feel it here at all. Nothing engaging about this in the least. Worst match on the show, which is a shocking thing to say about a Yuji Ishikawa match.

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