IWGP Tag Team Title Match
Bad Intentions (Giant Bernard & Karl Anderson) © vs Tenkoji (Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima)
Whether this is the feeling of someone in the know or a genuine issue, I have to admit that a lot of wrestling matches don't feel as if the match is a proper fight but rather a flashy affair with the intetion of winning sprinkled between the big moves. This, however, felt dirty and it felt like a real fight. Bad Intentions truly beat the crap out of Tenzan at the match's start with repeated elbows and knee-drops (after Kojima was knocked off the apron) and it gave the crowd an awakening thanks to Tenzan's counter of Anderson's brainbuster due to his growing ego and confidence in thinking Tenzan was down for the count. This definitely got the crowd heavily behind Tenkoji, with a loud pop when Kojima went for the Bakayaro Elbow.
I honestly thought Bad Intentions would retain after a Gun Stun, Magic Killer AND a very impressive aided-powerbomb by Bernard. Tenzan's kick-out gave a lot of kayfabe sense to Bad Intentions dropping the belts (adding to booking sense of this being the perfect time and opponents to drop it to), though, and Bernard definitely didn't look bad in defeat, either, having succumbed only to both of Tenkoji's individual finishers. This had A LOT of things that went right for it but, sadly, it did have it's weak points, too.
Bernard's selling of Kojima's DDT was, without question, below par but otherwise he held his own (and despite him not being the greatest thing in the ring, a match such as this makes his badass nature a gem). The worst moves of the match and a major issue for me were, however, were Kojima's chops. Sure, they had the crowd behind them but I have a massive disdain for weakly attempted chops. Unlike quite a few people I don't have an issue, as such, with the move but rather the tendency for a wrestler to deliver a superfluous amount of them to the point that they look weak and extremely ineffective. Perhaps I'm being overly critical of them, but it's a definite means of lowering my enjoyment within the match and hurts its rating. Faults aside, I also have to bring up the issue of Anderson's Gun Stun (and this is perhaps my newbie experience of Anderson showing, here) but his mannerism during the cutter and setting up of the Gun Stun on Tenzan reminded me A LOT of Randy Orton's RKO - especially the ground pounding. Whether done in homage or not (and this doesn't seem it is) I'm not a particular fan of wrestlers using another's "set ups" or mannerisms.
All this aside, and in summation, this match was damn good and definitely better than my expectation of it. It's not going to win any awards for greatest match of the year, but it does everything it needed to, and does it well, I must add. Great match.
(the chops make me want to drag this down to a 4 but I'll make somewhat of an exception and settle with this)
Still have Tanahashi/Suzuki, Apollo 55/NRC and Yano/Marufuji to watch through. By the looks of things I'll have another three early MotYCs. Not bad for one show.
I'll throw this in:
Black Terry/El Hijo Del Pirata Morgan/Skayde vs Negro Navarro/Trauma I/Trauma II-1/1 Todo X Todo Lucha Show...****.
Match was very good. Navarro & Skayde had some really good exchanges when they were in together and Skayde was able to hang.
You can never go wrong with Black Terry. I'll give that a watch after I'm done with Wrestlekingdom. I've read, though, that the second and third falls are a bit rushed not to mention El Hijo Del Pirata is probably a bit out of his league but you and Segunda Caida only sing its praises so I shall give it a go. Not the greatest Maestro Lucha fan but I'll make do. If a match is good enough, though, it can make a fan of just about anyone.