Cause Aoyagi is the Finest Picker to Ever Play the Blues
Masaji Aoyagi/Shiro Koshinaka/Kengo Kimura v. Genichiro Tenryu/Takashi Ishikawa/Koki Kitahara NJ 11/23/92-GREAT
TKG: This is kind of oddly constructed. Kengo Kimura is treated as the powerhouse of the New Japan team while Koshinaka is treated as guy in over his head who just gets wrecked by Tenryu. But their are large sections of the match where it really feels like Koshinaka is the captain( to borrow from lucha trios of his team). Koshinaka has a ton of awesome moments of selling, and comes off really sneaky and sadistic when he gets opportunities to take advantage of his opponents. Kimura looks like a powerhouse in everything he does, his flying knee kick which is a pretty weak looking move in the NJ80s set, here is superfast and violent looking. Kimura gets caught with an Ishikawa knee and then the three War guys take turns stomping his head in...essentially eliminating him from a large section of the match where Koshinaka has to take over for the NJ team. there is an awesome moment where Kohinaka gets Kitahara in the NJ corner and invites Kimura (still selling) to come in and give his receipts. And fuck I want to see Aoyagi v Kitahara as a singles match.
PAS: This was really a ton of fun. Tenryu takes a bit of a back seat as he often does in these trios match, and it was focused mainly on Ishikawa and Kitahara beating on the HI guys, and they are a pair of guys who can beat on someone. Kithara is the face in peril and he is way better at it then Orihara who usually plays that role. Koshinaka is awesome when he tees off on someones nose and he cracks Kitahara right on the bridge. Every Tenryu moment in the match was spectacular though and he is such a fucking superstar even standing on the apron. The NJ team was hurt by not having someone of his aura to play off of.
Masaji Aoyagi vs. Genichiro Tenryu WAR 10/8/83-EPIC
TKG: Tenryu is so amazing at facial selling. This is a hand held and not one of these ringside handhelds either, and you can still make out all of his facial wincing as he gets kicked in the face by Aoyagi. This is another guy in a gi vs. wrestler match but this time there is no feeling out round. Just two guys beating on each other from the first bell. Tenryu stops Aoyagi in first round by yoking him in a nasty choke. Second round ends with Tenryu eating kicks and then getting kicked some more after the bell. They do the big Aoyagi throws gi to crowd moment that always gets the drop the strap pop. And third round ends with a series of disdainful Tenryu powerbombs as Aoyagi's corner gets more and more pissed.
PAS: This was as good as it looks on paper. A pair of guys who don't pull punches not pulling their punches. I loved the spot where Aoyagi kicks Tenryu in the face with the toe of his boot, only for Tenryu to get his revenge the next round by returning the eye kick. I also loved Tenryu saying "fuck the niceties and hurling the corner stool at Aoyagi during the break. Finish was great as Tenryu's "I don't give a fuck" powerbombs were totally brutal looking.
Masaji Aoyagi/Terry Funk/Great Kabuki v. Leatherface/Metalface/Freddie Kruger IWA 1998-GREAT
Cool discovery, this is a HH from IWA and the kind of fun wild brawl you would expect from this group of guys. Not sure who was playing Leatheface but he was the highlight of the Monster team, pinballing around the ring for the babyface team including making Kabuki look like a killer, and taking big bumps into chairs. Aoyagi is a bit of a minor player in the match, but he definitely brings the violence whenever he tags in. Of course Terry Funk was great, it pretty much goes without saying, and if you can't enjoy Terry Funk recklessly throwing chairs at movie monsters, you should probably get a different hobby.
COMPLETE AND ACCURATE AOYAGI