review by Kevin Wilson
Date: August 10th, 2007
Location: NTV Tower Plaza
This event took place in the most awesome little place that a wrestling event has ever occurred. It appears as though they stuck a ring in the middle of a plaza outside of some office buildings. The show was more of an exhibition then anything else, hoping to attract new fans who happened to be walking by that would sit down and watch the action. The show was funded by NTV, which is why it took place outside of one of their buildings. Its a short show, here is the full line-up:
- Ippei Ota vs. Mushiking Terry
- Atsushi Aoki vs. KENTA
- Mohammed Yone vs. Ricky Marvin
- Mitsuharu Misawa and Go Shiozaki vs. Naomichi Marufuji and Takashi Sugiura
This is a cute little show that I picked to review because it was short. At least I am honest.
Ippei Ota vs. Mushiking Terry
Tie-up to start, Mushiking Terry gets Ota against the ropes and he gives a clean break. Tie-up again, this time Ota gets Mushiking Terry into the ropes and he gives him a chop before backing off. Wristlock by Mushiking Terry, reversed into a hammerlock by Ota but Mushiking Terry reverses it back. Ota forces Mushiking Terry back into the corner, Irish whip, he does a backflip off of Mushiking Terry and hits an elbow. Irish whip again by Ota but Mushiking Terry flips over him when he charges in. They jockey for position, snapmare by Ota but Mushiking Terry lands on his feet, Ota avoids a back kick and goes for a dropkick but Mushiking Terry swats him out of the way. Takedown by Mushiking Terry and he applies a front facelock, but Ota rolls out of it and applies a hammerlock on the mat. Armdrag by Mushiking Terry and he applies an arm wringer, reversed by Ota but Mushiking Terry reverses it back and applies an armbar. Ota rolls out of it but Mushiking Terry flips around until he has the move re-applied. Headscissors by Ota but Mushiking Terry gets out of it and applies a side headlock. Back to the headscissors by Ota but again Mushiking Terry gets out of it, this time with a kip up. Back on their feet they exchange elbows until Mushiking Terry hits a jumping back kick. Cover, but it gets a two count. A stretch hold is applied by Mushiking Terry, cover, but it gets a two count. Mexican Surfboard by Mushiking Terry, he picks up Ota after a moment and elbows him in the back. Irish whip by Mushiking Terry from the corner and he connects with a jumping knee. Mushiking Terry snapmares Ota, cover, but it gets a two count. Irish whip by Mushiking Terry to the corner but Ota moves out of the way and dropkicks him in the back. Corner Rebound Bulldog by Ota, cover, but it gets a two count. Ota calls for the end, he goes for the airplane spin but Mushiking Terry reverses it with a crucifix pin for a two count. Irish whip attempt by Mushiking Terry, reversed, Mushiking Terry goes for a handstand elbow strike but Ota reverses it with a jumping lariat for a two count. Second rope neckbreaker drop by Ota, but it also gets a two count. Ota picks up Mushiking Terry and gives him the dreaded Airplane Spin before hitting a Samoan drop. Cover, but Mushiking Terry gets a shoulder up. Dropkick to the back by Ota and he goes for the 619, but he gets caught in the ropes. Monkey flip by Mushiking Terry into the second rope and he hits the Tiger Feint Kick. Ota quickly applies a small package however for a two count, then hits another quick pin attempt for another two. Back up they trade strikes but Mushiking Terry gets the better of it and then hits a Death Valley Driver. Myst Crash by Mushiking Terry and he picks up the three count! Your winner: Mushiking Terry
Match Thoughts: I adore Mushiking Terry, but this match was pretty sloppy. They started out crisp while doing fairly basic opening match exchanges, but later they seemed to be a little off. I was glad the match was semi-competitive since those are more fun to watch, even though the outcome was hardly in doubt. The stuff they connected with looked pretty good and the crowd enjoyed it when they were doing more then just laying on the mat, but overall I was hoping for more between a bright dojo graduate and one of my favorite characters. Score: 4.5
Atsushi Aoki vs. KENTA
Tie-up to start, they trade waistlocks, arm wringer by KENTA into a hammerlock but Aoki reverses it with a wristlock. Irish whip by KENTA, drop down, leapfrog, he connects with a kick but Aoki hits an armdrag before both men spring back to their feet. Tie-up, waistlock by Aoki but KENTA applies an armbar. Arm wringer by KENTA but Aoki rolls out of it and applies one of his own. KENTA elbows Aoki into the corner, Irish whip, but Aoki avoids his charge and hits a quick armdrag. Back up, Aoki drops KENTA to the mat and applies a wristlock, KENTA struggles back to his feet but Aoki dropkicks him in the arm. Irish whip by Aoki and he hits another arm drag before dropping a leg onto KENTA's arm. KENTA slowly gets back to his feet, Aoki goes for a suplex but KENTA blocks it and drops Aoki onto the top rope before kicking him in the face. With Aoki draped over the top rope, KENTA goes to the top turnbuckle and drops a knee onto the back of Aoki's neck. Snapmare by KENTA and he kicks Aoki in the back. KENTA picks up Aoki, Irish whip to the corner and he hits a back bodydrop. Cover by KENTA but it gets a two count. A Camel Clutch is applied by KENTA, he picks up Aoki and knocks him back down with a series of kicks. Cover, but Aoki kicks out at one. KENTA applies a reverse chinlock, but Aoki makes it to the ropes. KENTA picks up Aoki, Irish whip, and KENTA knees Aoki in the midsection. Cover, but again it gets a two count. Back up, waistlock by Aoki but KENTA elbows out of it. KENTA goes off the ropes but Aoki catches him with a heel kick. Aoki picks up KENTA and elbows him into the corner, Irish whip, and he hits a jumping elbow. Northern Lights Suplex by Aoki but it gets a two count. Back up the two trade blows, Aoki goes for a leapfrog but KENTA catches him and delivers a powerslam. Both men are slow to get up but KENTA recovers first, kicks by KENTA and he hits a springboard missile dropkick. Cover, but Aoki kicks out. KENTA picks up Aoki, Irish whip, and he delivers a dropkick. Cover, but again it gets a two count. KENTA goes for a powerbomb, Aoki reversed it, KENTA then goes for a Falcon Arrow but Aoki slides down his back. Kick by KENTA in the corner, Irish whip, but Aoki elbows KENTA when he charges in and hits a double jump missile dropkick off the top turnbuckle. Aoki picks up KENTA and hits the Assault Point, cover, but it only gets a two count. Back up, takedown by Aoki and he applies the cross armbreaker, but KENTA gets a foot on the bottom rope. Scoop slam by Aoki, he goes up to the top turnbuckle, but KENTA is up in time and kicks him while he is still up top. KENTA then joins him and hits a top rope superplex. Cover, but Aoki gets a shoulder up. KENTA picks up Aoki, Aoki fights back but KENTA hits a Fisherman buster for another close two count. Liger Bomb by KENTA, cover, but again Aoki kicks out. Back up, Aoki fights back with elbows but KENTA slaps him and hits a lariat. Cover, but it gets a two count. KENTA picks up Aoki and hits a Tiger Suplex hold, and this time Aoki stays down for the count. Your winner: KENTA
Match Thoughts: This match was definitely better then the last match. Not only was the action crisper but the match was more intelligently laid out as well. I love that while NOAH rarely has upsets at least it allows newer wrestlers to have competitive matches against the established stars, it makes the matches much more fun to watch. KENTA made Aoki look legitimate here and Aoki held up his end of what was asked of him. Sure the arm work wasn't really sold and almost forgotten (at least the cross armbreaker alluded to it), but it was a fun match that established KENTA as the superior wrestler but also showed Aoki's growth over the last six months. Score: 6.5
Mohammed Yone vs. Ricky Marvin
Yone starts the match by kicking Marvin in the stomach, side headlock by Yone, Marvin Irish whips out of it, avoids a Yone leg drop and dropkicks Yone for a two count cover. Irish whip by Yone but Marvin hits a handstand springboard elbow strike. Yone falls out of the ring and Marvin quickly flies out after him with a springboard plancha off the side ropes. Marvin gets back into the ring and Yone slowly follows, tie-up, Yone forces Marvin to his knees and slaps him in the back. Scoop slam by Yone and he delivers a high speed leg drop. Cover, but it gets a two count. Yone applies a neck crank into a headscissors, but Marvin makes it to the ropes. Marvin slowly gets up, kicks by Marvin and he delivers a DDT. Cover, but it gets a two count. Irish whip by Marvin from the corner, reversed, and Yone hits a knee to the midsection. Kicks to the chest by Yone and he throws Marvin out of the ring. Yone follows him out and scoop slams him on the mat floor. Yone picks up Marvin and slides him back into the ring before getting back in himself, Irish whip by Yone but Marvin hits a moonsault off the top rope for a two count. Elbows by Yone but Marvin trips him up and hits a quebrada for a two count. Irish whip by Marvin but Yone kicks him in the chest. Yone goes off the ropes but Marvin catches him with an Octopus hold. Yone gets out of it, superkick by Marvin, he catches a Yone kick and hits an enzigieri but Yone fires back with a lariat. Marvin charges Yone in the corner, Yone back bodydrops him out to the apron but Marvin kicks him over the top rope. Marvin then goes to the top turnbuckle and hits a rope running dropkick, cover by Marvin but it gets a two count. Marvin goes out to the apron but when he does a springboard move Yone catches him with a heel kick. Cover, but it gets a two count. Back up, Irish whip by Yone to the corner and he hits a jumping knee. Yone scoop slams Marvin, goes up to the top turnbuckle and hits a leg drop, but the lazy cover only gets a two count. Yone goes for a lariat, Marvin ducks it and goes for a kick, but Yone catches the kick and delivers the lariat. Cover, but Marvin barely gets a shoulder up. Yone puts Marvin onto the top turnbuckle, sets him up for the Muscle Buster but Marvin reverses it with a stunner. Marvin goes off the ropes but Yone catches him with a dropkick. Yone puts Marvin onto the top turnbuckle again and this time he nails the Muscle Buster, cover, and he picks up the three count. Your winner: Mohammed Yone
Match Thoughts: While I've accepted that this show was intended to be an exhibition of the wrestler's talents more then anything else, this match went way beyond the first two matches. The moves here meant literally nothing. One wrestler would hit a big move but 10 seconds later the other wrestler was in control, and that pattern would just continue over and over until Marvin was finished off with a Muscle Buster. Marvin looked good (the rope running dropkick was questionable though) as did Yone, but it was just too meaningless, contrived, and all over the place for me to be able to get into it. It might have been exactly what NOAH wanted for the event but it wasn't near as good as what these two would be capable of if they put together a more logical match. Score: 5.0
Mitsuharu Misawa and Go Shiozaki vs. Naomichi Marufuji and Takashi Sugiura
Shiozaki and Sugiura start things off. Side headlock by Sugiura, Shiozaki Irish whips out of it but gets shoulder blocked down. Sugiura goes off the ropes but Shiozaki catches him with a dropkick, armdrag by Sugiura but Shiozaki chops Sugiura to the mat. Wristlock by Sugiura, reversed into a side headlock by Shiozaki, Sugiura gets Shiozaki into the corner and he gives him an elbow. Shiozaki comes back with a chop and Sugiura makes the tag to Marufuji. Marufuji and Shiozaki circle each other, side headlock by Shiozaki, Marufuji pushes Shiozaki into the ropes and he gives a clean break. Tie-up, side headlock by Marufuji, Shiozaki Irish whips out of it and the two collide in the middle of the ring. Shiozaki goes off the ropes, Marufuji leapfrogs but Shiozaki chops him in mid-air. Shiozaki tags in Misawa, tie-up, elbow by Marufuji but Misawa returns fire. Another elbow exchange, which Misawa gets the better of. Marufuji has had enough and tags in Sugiura, tie-up, snapmare by Misawa and he elbows Sugiura in the eye. Misawa tags in Shiozaki, who clubs Sugiura in the back. Irish whip by Shiozaki and he delivers a high dropkick. Cover, but it gets a two count. Knee to the chest by Shiozaki, cover, but again it gets two. Shiozaki applies a reverse chinlock, Sugiura struggles to his feet but Shiozaki drives him back into the corner. Marufuji tags himself into the match, wristlock by Marufuji on Shiozaki and he applies a keylock. Irish whip by Marufuji and he takes Shiozaki to the mat before going back to the arm. Shiozaki slowly inches to the ropes and makes it to force a break. Marufuji tags in Sugiura, arm wringer by Sugiura and he applies an armbar on the mat. Again Shiozaki makes it to the ropes, and back on their feet they exchange strikes. Shiozaki goes off the ropes but Sugiura hits a gutbuster followed by a front suplex for a two count cover. Sugiura tags Marufuji and then holds Shiozaki over the second rope so that Marufuji can hit a running dropkick from the floor. Marufuji rolls in the ring to make the cover but it gets a two count. Irish whip by Marufuji but Shiozaki hits a sunset flip for a two count cover.
Back up, Marufuji goes for the Shiranui but Shiozaki blocks it. Marufuji tags in Sugiura, who drops Shiozaki with a backdrop suplex. Cover, but it gets a two count. Sugiura goes for a suplex, Shiozaki blocks it, but Sugiura suplexes him onto the top rope. Sugiura goes for a kick but but Shiozaki slides out to the apron and hit a springboard shoulderblock. This gives him time to tag in Misawa, Misawa goes off the ropes and hits Sugiura with an elbow. Scoop slam by Misawa, he goes up to the second rope and hits a tiger press for a two count. Irish whip by Misawa to the corner, reversed, Misawa kicks Sugiura when he charges in but Sugiura hits an overhead slam anyway and tags in Marufuji. Irish whip by Marufuji to the corner and he hits a jumping elbow. Superkick by Marufuji and he dropkicks Misawa in the knee. He goes for a dropkick but Misawa moves, elbow by Misawa and he hits a monkey flip out of the corner. Misawa tags in Shiozaki, Irish whip by Shiozaki and he delivers a shoulderblock. Cover, but it gets a two count. Shiozaki chops Marufuji into the corner, Irish whip, and he hits a diving elbow. Scoop slam by Shiozaki in front of the corner and he hits a knee drop from the second turnbuckle for a two count cover. Shiozaki picks up Marufuji and goes for a German suplex, Marufuji elbows out of it and wins a strike exchange by driving Shiozaki's face into the mat. Marufuji tags in Sugiura, Sugiura waits for Shiozaki to get up and delivers a spear. Irish whip by Sugiura to the corner and he hits a running kick, another Irish whip and he delivers a second one. Sugiura goes off the ropes but Shiozaki catches him with a chop and delivers a suplex. Misawa comes in the ring, Irish whip to the corner and both he and Shiozaki hits elbows onto Sugiura. Scoop slam by Misawa, he hits a senton and Shiozaki follows with a top turnbuckle knee drop. Cover, but Marufuji breaks it up. Shiozaki and Sugiura trade strikes in the ring before Shiozaki hits a lariat. Cover, but it gets a two count. German suplex hold by Shiozaki, but Sugiura barely gets a shoulder up. Scoop slam by Shiozaki in front of the corner, he goes up to the top turnbuckle but Sugiura rolls out of the way of the moonsault. Running knee by Sugiura, he picks up Shiozaki and hits a backdrop suplex while Marufuji hits a springboard lariat. Cover, but Misawa breaks it up. Marufuji takes care of Misawa while Sugiura picks up Shiozaki and nails a release German suplex. Cover, but it gets a two count cover. Shiozaki sneaks in a small package but Sugiura knees out of the Go Flasher attempt. Dragon suplex hold by Sugiura but Shiozaki kicks out yet again. Sugiura picks up Shiozaki and delivers the Olympic Slam, cover, and he picks up the three count. Your winners: Naomichi Marufuji and Takashi Sugiura
Match Thoughts: Not bad, but a pretty standard NOAH tag match. Misawa did as little as possible, allowing Shiozaki to do the bulk of the work. The match was nice and fluid as they have all wrestled together hundreds of times, but there wasn't anything special about it. They also didn't do any of their big moves which you'd expect in a main event (moonsault, shiranui, anything from Misawa, etc.), giving the match an even more run-of-the-mill feel. Nothing really to see here, even though it was perfectly watchable. Score: 6.0
There were too few matches to really recommend this, but it was a fun atmosphere. The crowd was into it and the scenery was neat-o, but the matches ranged from average to very good and you can see better action on just about any SEM show. KENTA vs. Aoki is certainly worth watching to see how far Aoki has come in the last year, but the other three matches are missable, especially if you have other NOAH events from 2007 already. Since the show was short on matches there are better NOAH shows to buy from 2007 if you can only pick one, but if you are a NOAH completist go ahead and pick this event up as the unique atmosphere does help overcome the exhibition-style of the matches.
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