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Thursday, October 15, 2020

Fujiwara Family: Bad Boy's BattlArts 10/2+10/4/96

 Bad Boy's Battlarts

10/2/96

Katsumi Usuda vs. Minoru Tanaka

PAS: This was a chance to see both of these guys very young in their careers, and both already had a lot of what made them great (and Tanaka hadn't really developed his bad habits yet). Tanaka has very fast hands and feet and while he didn't land with the force of Usuda, he was often able to land two to Usuda's one. Usuda meanwhile got his feet moving and landed some huge whip kicks including one which caught Tanaka right on the temple, Tanaka did a great semi-concussed sell of that kick (or just got his bell rung, it is always a bit hard to tell in BattlArts), but Usuda got a bit overzealous to finish him off and got spun into a kneebar. Crazy how talented these kids were.

Yuki Ishikawa/Naohiro Hoshikawa vs. Daisuke Ikeda/Takeshi Ono - EPIC

PAS: This is one of the earliest Ikeda and Ono tags and man did these guys mesh early. This match had Hoshikawa trying to prove he could hang with the BattlArts elite. He had his moments, but eventual just get beaten into an unconscious pulpy mess. I liked how they used his MPRO style in the appropriate moments but made it look Battlartsy, Ishikawa bull rushes Ikeda into the corner so Hoshikawa can crush him with a dropkick. There was also a cool double rolling kneebar. Of course putting a submission on a Takeshi Ono tag partner is one of the great mistakes in wrestling history, he is just an incredible dickhead, and he will wing a snap kick right to your eye, as of course will Ikeda. We get some nice Ikeda nad Ishikawa mat rolling, all of which ended with a sick punch or headbutt. Hoshikawa eats a bunch of really nasty kicks and ends up staring at the lights with blood pooling in his mouth.

10/4/96

Shoichi Funaki vs. Minoru Tanaka

PAS: This was a match with a tremendous singular focus. Funaki was going after the leg, and hit it with dropkicks and kneebars, and elbow drops. Tanaka sells the leg the whole match until he hits a spinning cross armbreaker for the flash submission. Technically solid work although nothing particularly compelling. 

Yuki Ishikawa/Katsumi Usuda vs. Daisuke Ikeda/Takeshi Ono - EPIC

PAS: This is JIP about 3 minutes in, but we obviously get the lion's share of the brutality. This was the uncut raw, no baking soda in this match, four of the nastiest violentist guys in wrestling history flinging full force punches and kicks until someone can't stand. We join the match on some matwork, but quickly move into Usuda decimating Ikeda in the corner with body and head kicks, much of the early part of this footage was Usuda beating and being beat upon, Ishikawa doesn't tag in for a while, of course when he does, he contributes straight punches and headbutts. This match seemed especially hard on the ribs and kidney's, the body kicks were as nasty as anything you are going to see outside of Shinya Hashimoto. There is a great moment near the end of the match where Usuda and Ono are strafing each other in the ring and and out of the corner of your eye you catch Ikeda and Ishikawa pummeling each other on the floor. The final Ikeda kick to Ishikawa bent Yuki's neck at a really scary angle. The fact that this was just their regular weekly tag match is ungodly, how are any of these guys still alive 25 years later?



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