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(NOAH) WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.12 ~ 30 NOVEMBER 2018

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Hisame brings us another all in-depth review of the previous week in Pro Wrestling NOAH. Updates on Naomichi Marufuji, Global League Finals and much more!






NEWS

NAOMICHI MARUFUJI INJURED


Naomichi Marufuji was withdrawn from the finals of Global League 2018 under doctor’s orders, where he was due to face Kaito Kiyomiya, thanks to left shoulder contusion and left thigh muscle rupture (hamstring). As a result of his injury, the GHC Heavyweight tag titles have had to be vacated, and NOAH will hold a tournament to decide the new champions on the 7th December.

It is not known as of yet when he will return to NOAH, but the likelihood is given his condition (which he was scolded for when the test results came back for carrying on wrestling when he knew there was something wrong), but it will probably not be until Spring 2019.

Marufuji was not at the final night of Global League, but he has hinted that he will be present at Korakuen Hall on the 7th December for the first night of “Winter Navigation 2018” and for NOAH’s final show in Yokohama. I am not sure in what capacity, whether he will be backstage or whether he will be on commentary.

Sadly, he will not be any of the dates in-between as he apologetically explained to a fan that it is hard for him to undergo treatment in rural areas due to the commute. He’s also had to make some lifestyle changes and go to bed early, because he has to be at the clinic early, and much to his chagrin, he also not allowed alcohol.

He has had to cancel his appearance as one day manager of Yoneya as a result of his injuries, but is determined to at least make the MUSCLE GRILL Christmas Party.

However, despite the acupuncture and high-tech treatment (which includes a hyperbaric chamber and NASA designed machines to reduce inflammation), he himself has said that he will manage the condition, thanks everyone for their support, apologizes for the inconvenience (and to Kaito Kiyomiya and Akitoshi Saito in particular), and asks that people give him time.

Takashi Sugiura says that the boat will float without him with all hands on deck, and everyone (fans, wrestlers, office staff) will work hard for Noah so when he comes back, it is electric.

KIMIYA OKADA
Kimiya Okada, now given the all clear from his injury which delayed his debut in August 2018, will make his debut in a fifteen minute match on the 7th December at Korakuen Hall, against fellow trainee, Yoshiki Inamura.

The match will probably come to a draw.

“COME AT ME YOU BASTARDS” ~ KENOH’S COLUMN 
Kenoh’s column was quite emotional this week, as he ended up talking about Takeshi Morishima (Livedoor News are reporting that the charges have been dropped, but no one else is reporting this, so the report is probably false).

Kenoh says that he was horrified to hear what happened, but he was glad that Morishima had at least admitted his guilt and was honest about it. He says that he wishes he could have done more, made Morishima stay in Gifu, but there was nothing he could do, and Morishima wouldn’t listen. Kenoh had tried to tell him that he couldn’t give it his all in the ring and in his social life, (i.e. burning the candle in both ends), and that Morishima’s insistence on other people helping him was a very bad thing when Morishima could easily have helped himself. The whole thing was a mess, and Kenoh concludes that Morishima in the big city was chaotic. He says that Morishima needs to get better in an “isolated clinic” (same as a secure unit for mental health) would be best, and he will always support him.

ZERO ONE VS NOAH
HAYATA fell to SUGI (not Takashi Sugiura) in the finals of ZERO-ONE’S World Junior Tournament, and as HAYATA doesn’t speak much (or rather, can’t really get a word in), so YO-HEY made the challenge for ZERO-ONE to come to Noah and face them there.

SUGI, Shoki Kitamura and Tatsuhito Takaiwa will face off against YO-HEY, HAYATA & Tadasuke on the 7th December.

IPW
IPW have announced that some of the NOAH juniors will be coming back in January 2019. Names to be announced.

TAG TITLE TOURNAMENT
Due to Naomichi Marufuji’s injury, the GHC Heavyweight Tag Titles have been vacated.

NOAH will hold a tournament on the 7th December to decide the winner, competing teams are:

  • 50 Funky Powers
  • Maybach Taniguchi & Cody Hall
  • Kenoh & Masa Kitamiya
  • Katsuhiko Nakajima & Go Shiozaki

Kenoh and Kitamiya teamed a few years ago and held the GHC Heavyweight Tag championships for about a day, that was until Kenoh ditched him for Takashi Sugiura.

CURRENT TOUR RECAP
So, with Naomichi Marufuji injured, NOAH held a three way match between Kenoh, Katsuhiko Nakajima and Kohei Sato to decide the number one contender to go to the finals and face Kaito Kiyomiya. All three were from A Block, and had the highest points with a history of win or lose over Marufuji.

The match was won by Katsuhiko Nakajima (who as ever, smirked, wound the other two up, sat back outside the ring to watch them kick each other and basically acted like your annoying kid brother).

The Chinese wrestler, MA Zhu-Jiang, made his NOAH debut, and many people want to see more of him. He himself says he wants to be GHC Heavyweight Champion.

Mitsuya Nagai announced that there will be a new member of “The Hooligans”, who will be announced on the 7th December at Korakuen Hall, leading to fan speculation of who this could be.

Theories range from: Masa Kitamiya, Katsuhiko Nakajima, Jay Bradley or MA.

Kitamiya, however, seems to be the strongest contender.

Earlier in the day, Hajime Ohara was made the honorary chief of police of Kawasaki, (and he pretty much wore his sash everywhere), and he said the line of the evening when after Hi69 & Minoru Tanaka had beaten Koji Kanemoto and Hiroshi Yamamoto for the belts, that he would arrest Seiya Morohashi for “obstruction of public activities” if he got in the way of The Backbreakers making a title challenge.

The Backbreakers will challenge for the titles on the 16th December at “Great Voyage in Yokohama Vol.2”

Tadasuke faced off against Kotaro Suzuki for the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship, and failed in his attempt (although massive fan support was for him and even Suzuki had kind words to say about him afterwards).

Daisuke Harada made the challenge afterwards, and Suzuki gave him a stipulation; he will give him the title match, but if Harada loses then RATELS disband, and he shaves his head in penance.

Harada accepted.

Match has been set for the 16th December in Yokohama.

Kaito Kiyomiya and Katsuhiko Nakajima faced off against each other in the finals in a highly intense match to a charged atmosphere. Kiyomiya showing how far he has come since the beginning of the year.

However, he is still a very polite boy, as when Sugiura got in the ring (he had been doing commentary), he asked him for a title match. Sugiura said he had no choice but to give him one. Kiyomiya then said he would be the new face of NOAH, and thanked everyone.

Kaito Kiyomiya has made history this year, he has been the youngest person to win Global Tag League and now the youngest person to win Global League, both of which are records and considering his age, is unlikely to be beaten unless a real prodigy comes along who is younger.

Full recap of Global League 2018 can be found here 

GHC BELT NEWS

  • GHC Heavyweight Champion: Takashi Sugiura
  • GHC Junior Champion: Kotaro Suzuki
  • GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: Vacant
  • GHC Junior Tag Champions: Minoru Tanaka & Hi69

TOUR TIDBITS
“I did it! I took it from the champion! This is my entry to the final!! Aaah….what? I’m wrong? What a system! The end is 100 points, like a quiz show! Doesn’t it seem like it? Damn it!” ~ Atsushi Kotoge after beating Takashi Sugiura at Global League 2018.

Masao Inoue and Akitoshi Saito have to hide anything sweet they have from the locker room.

KING SHAMELESS CORNER
None this week as he’s managed to behave himself in Taiwan.

BROADCASTS
The final night of Global League, 25th November, will be broadcast at 6pm on Saturday 8th December
The event on the 12th December, will be broadcast on the 15th December
The event on the 16th December, will be broadcast on the 22nd December

HEIR TO THE ARK 
Farewell All Japan, Hello NOAH

English translation of Naomichi Marufuji’s biography has reached almost the end of Chapter 2, where he takes part in the walkout from All Japan.






Would you like more Pro Wrestling NOAH content? Let us know on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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(NOAH) WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.23 ~ 16TH FEBRUARY 2019

In an odd twist of fate, Marufuji is placed in a familiar, yet flipped position going into his GHC title challenge next month. Hisame let’s us know how the NOAH build is going!

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In an odd twist of fate, Marufuji is placed in a familiar, yet flipped position going into his GHC title challenge next month. Hisame let’s us know how the NOAH build is going!

CURRENT TOUR RECAP
Navigation for The Progress

Kaito Kiyomiya and Naomichi Marufuji continued their feud over the GHC Heavyweight title. Kiyomiya managed to knock Marufuji out of the ring with a dropkick, but was left wondering as to whether Marufuji played it up deliberately. He also turned his back on him when Kiyomiya was in the ring and was announced.

Marufuji, now that he can’t do aerial attacks (and finally realizing that his body is older than he thought), has turned to more vicious tactics, and decided to work on Kiyomiya’s left arm. In Kiyomiya’s post match promo, he told him that he was going to take him apart bit by bit, and next it would be his legs.

Kiyomiya has vowed that he will find “the Genius’ weakness” before “my body breaks down”. 

It has been pointed out to Marufuji that he is in the same position that Mitsuharu Misawa was when he himself was GHC Heavyweight Champion; the senior is challenging the junior.

Mitsuharu Misawa challenges the then GHC Heavyweight Champion, Naomichi Marufuji, a young man in his twenties and of the next generation of heavyweight NOAH wrestlers

Atsushi Kotoge became injured at NOAH’s show in Fukushima on the 11th February, which has put a spanner in the works of the GHC Heavyweight Tag title match with Eddie Edwards, taking on 50 Funky Powers.

Kotoge had gone for the “Revolutionary Cloak Splash” from the top rope, but managed to damage his arm on landing. Fans noticed that he was in a lot of pain, and he was checked out in the ring. NOAH removed him from the subsequent show, and later announced that he had dislocated his elbow and suffered a further fracture to the arm.

Kotoge himself said that he had felt a shooting pain in his arm, and he couldn’t move it at all.

With Kotoge’s injury and subsequent card change, “The Mid Generation” (Go Shiozaki and Katsuhiko Nakajima),took on the champions. They obliterated them with Nakajima choking out Quiet Storm with a sleeper, and then laughing about it afterwards.

Although NOAH have not yet announced what will become of the title challenge, and whether Eddie Edwards will team with someone else or postpone his appearance until Kotoge is better (this may not be until the late summer, and Kotoge will most likely miss Global League 2019), but it may be likely that “The Mid Generation” will receive a title shot.

Katsuhiko Nakajima later posted ….

Three of the Dark Agents (Takashi Sugiura, Masao Inoue and Akitoshi Saito) have reunited to take down The Hooligans, however, they have not been very successful in their efforts with The Hooligans defeating them twice so far. Takashi Sugiura has already started making jokes about Masao Inoue, lumping him together with having experience akin to the rookies in the group, Kinya Okada and Yoshiki Inamura. Should Sugiura be unfortunate enough to join The Hooligans, his job will be as their lackey; KAZMA SAKAMOTO says he will have to carry Cody’s bags, lick his boots, clean their toilets, do Nagai’s laundry and wash Maybach Taniguchi’s back.

YO-HEY was said to be looking a lot happier at “the wife” (HAYATA) returning “home”, and while really the only thing that has happened on this tour between himself and HAYATA and the former friends in RATELS, is Daisuke Harada and Tadasuke appearing in the ring and demanding to know what HAYATA thought he was doing.

Their new teammate, Yoshinari Ogawa (backed by YO-HEY & HAYATA, as Kotaro Suzuki is currently absent), continued the fight with The Backbreakers (Hajime Ohara and Hitoshi Kumano) over the current GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag titles. Ogawa (in a supreme Golden Era move) threw a table at Hitoshi Kumano, and the team of The Backbreakers and Yoshiki Inamura were wiped out completely, with Ogawa posing with the belts at the end.

Yoshiki Inamura continued his “Seven Match Series”, this time against Masa Kitamiya.

NOAH have so far done very well this tour with both of their two opening dates being sold out.

NEWS

“COME AT ME YOU BASTARDS” (Kenoh’s column in “Weekly Pro”)
Kenoh visited the new NOAH offices and spoke of a variety of different things ranging from how nice the NOAH staff look now (even Mr. Okada looks smart now, despite “those fucking glasses”), the new company and how they should ask him for advice, the validation of his own opinion on “Leaving Misawa”, and Marufuji vs Kiyomiya.
Continuing his concerned older brother theme when it comes to Kiyomiya, and his hope that Marufuji will beat Kiyomiya for the belt for two reasons; the first being Kenoh wants to challenge, and the second that he seems to intimate that the longer Kiyomiya has it, the worse damage it is doing him, and the more Kenoh of all people seems to worry.

Kenoh’s other idea is that he will second Marufuji on the night (so to be first in line to challenge him), but I doubt that Marufuji is going to allow him to do that.

FAREWELL HAKATA STALENE
NOAH will return to the venue for the last time ever on March 17th, as the building is going to be torn down. Although the full card hasn’t been announced, Naomichi Marufuji will take on Yoshinari Ogawa (this will be their first singles match in 14 years) and Go Shiozaki and Takashi Sugiura will put on a “Golden Era Match” (as they always do when they collide in big matches).

CURRENT CHAMPIONS

TOUR TIDBITS

~ Katsuhiko Nakajima decided to wind up Kenoh by sticking his leg in his fist when Kenoh entered the ring and knelt to do his ring introduction.
~ Yoshinari Ogawa denied ever being part of Special 4.
~ NOAH returned to Shinyousei Twenty-One Hall, which has the infamous staircase named “The Demon Staircase of Hell” due to the fact that it is two flights, and means that due to there being no underground parking at the venue for the truck, the equipment has to be carried up and down it, across a courtyard and through the lobby.
~ Minoru Tanaka says his first wish has been granted (i.e. for a title match at Yokohama), but his second one is still outstanding, he won’t say what it is though.
~ Both Daisuke Harada and Tadasuke have hinted at possible moves to the heavyweight division. Tadasuke when he fought Kenoh and Masa Kitamiya and said something “sparked” in him, and Daisuke Harada pointing to the GHC Heavyweight and declaring it was his “final goal”.
~ Mohammed Yone got beaten up in front of a group of old ladies (one was his mother) by Katsuhiko Nakajima.
~ Hitoshi Yamato did his usual singing entry, and incorporated the lyrics that Naomichi Marufuji couldn’t have dried seaweed. Marufuji had a priceless look on his face. 
~ Cody Hall took a picture of Atsushi Kotoge who was sitting drinking coffee near a window; Kotoge came out as a big pink blob.

KING SHAMELESS CORNER
Takashi Sugiura has posted pictures of either what is coming out of his dog, or what his dog has left behind. On a pleasanter note, he was given gifts by fans after a small gathering at “Muscle Grill”, and said that as he was carrying a big plushie, he probably looked like a “Weird old man” getting on the train.

BROADCASTS
NOAH’s Korakuen Hall show of the 24th February will be broadcast on Samurai at 10pm (JST) on Samurai TV.

BOOK CORNER
The ongoing translation of Naomichi Marufuji’s “Heir To The Ark” can be found here

LINKS
HAYATA (Costume Research)
“Come to Noah” ~ interview with Naomichi Marufuji
The Green Guide to Muscle Grill
Takashi Sugiura mini interview ahead of the match with The Hooligans
Battlemen Recap (Noah, Wednesday February 13th 2019)
Noah’s Arkive Podcast (ITunes)

NOAH FROM THE VAULT (articles translated by Purodino)
YO-HEY “My turning point”


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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(NOAH) WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.22 ~ 9TH FEBRUARY 2019

Hisame brings us the NOAH news leading up to the Navigation to The Progress tour and assorted NOAH information.

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Hisame brings us the NOAH news leading up to the Navigation to The Progress tour and assorted NOAH information.

CURRENT TOUR RECAP

Since finishing up “Navigation For The Future 2019”, NOAH will not be active until the 11th February when the next tour, “Navigation for The Progress” starts in Fukushima.

Yoshiki Inamura will continue with his “Seven Match Series” facing Masa Kitamiya.

Naomichi Marufuji and Kaito Kiyomiya will be building up to the GHC Heavyweight title defense on the 10th March in Yokohama, as will Daisuke Harada and Minoru Tanaka over the GHC Junior Heavyweight. This tour will also see a rare match (twice) which will put Marufuji and Harada facing each other in the ring.

Atsushi Kotoge and Eddie Edwards will challenge for the GHC Heavyweight tag tiles on the 24th March at Korakuen Hall. Edwards (due his schedule in IMPACT) will not be appearing in any earlier dates, and at the time of writing as NOAH have not announced the cards for the last two dates of tour (2nd or the 3rd March), so it is unknown as to whether he will be appearing on them.

The Hooligans will face Takashi Sugiura, Masao Inoue, Akitoshi Saito, Yoshiki Inamura and Kinya Okada on the 24th February. The match will be an elimination and comes with stipulations; should The Hooligans win, Sugiura enters and is their lackey, should The Hooligans lose, they have to disband.

The Backbreakers will defend the GHC Junior Heavyweight tag against Kotaro Suzuki (who gets a chance to team with his “older brother”, Naomichi Marufuji, on the 22nd February) and Yoshinari Ogawa on the 24th February.

This will be NOAH’s last tour using the iconic green mat outside of the Misawa memorial shows.

NEWS

DIFFER ARIAKE TORN DOWN
“Next to the venue is the former NOAH office and dojo. You go up the stairs where the commemorative photographs of the wrestlers were held at the inaugural meeting in 2000, you go through the office next to the Differ offices, and then to NOAH’s office. There was once a dojo on this floor where the training equipment and ring was installed.”
(Differ Ariake, “Holy Land of Noah”, looking back in records and memories)

Masa Kitamiya recently retweeted a post a fan had sent him, of the empty lot where the venue, and once the “Holy Land of NOAH” once stood.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Differ Ariake started life in July 1988 not as NOAH’s home or a sports venue, but as a venue for disco and other music related events, later foreign bands would play here, and it saw a boom during the “Bubble Era” of the 1980s and early 1990s before closing and reopening as a sports venue in 2000.

NOAH moved into the venue soon after Misawa led the exodus from All Japan, and set up their offices and dojo there (their home was not the main stadium, but rather the complex to the left of the picture, the famous staircase can be seen on the main building).

Three generations (arguably from Marufuji’s to Kiyomiya’s) would grow up here until 2016 when the venue changed hands, and NOAH moved out.

NOAH would return to the venue one final time in November 2017 for the last ever Differ Cup. After the event they walked sadly through a place that they once called home. Each corner, each room, each inch must have held some memory for all of them, whether good or bad.

It was here in 2000 that NOAH held their inauguration event, “Departure”, which sold out in twenty minutes and for those fans who couldn’t get tickets, monitors were set up in the parking lot. Round about 6pm that evening, Misawa came out to talk to the fans who were waiting in line.

It was here that NOAH had held SEM, and filmed all their Christmas (and otherwise) specials, and in June 2009 after the tragic death of Misawa, 25,000 came to pay their respects.

It is ironic that with NOAH’s new owners changing the promotion and doing away with the iconic green, changing the new logo and laying the memory of Misawa to rest, that the home of NOAH should also disappear, like a final break with the past.

Differ may have now physically gone, NOAH may be changing and heading out to new and unknown waters out of Misawa’s shadow, but the picture taken of a vanished era in NOAH standing on the steps of their new home, their faces young and full of hope for the future, no matter their individual fates and that of the promotion they all turned their faces towards, will always remain part of the landscape, no matter what fills the now vacant lot filled with so many memories, emotions and history.

HOLY WAR
Toshiaki Kawada held his 4th “Holy War” produce. This is the first time that he has not had a “Talk Battle” with a NOAH wrestler (the others being Naomichi Marufuji, Katsuhiko Nakajima and Akira Taue).

Results 

  • Hiroshi Yamato defeated Junta Miyawaki (7 minutes and 1 seconds)
  • Kazushi Miyamoto, Mitsuya Nagai & Shiro Koshinaka defeated Shunsuke Sayama, Tomoya Hirata & Yoshiki Inamura (13 minutes and 59 seconds)
  • Go Shiozaki & Shotaro Ashino defeated Masao Inoue & Tamon Honda (18 minutes and 19 seconds)

IPW
IPW have announced that Fight Network (SKY Channel 192) will start broadcasting an edited version of their shows. This a great way for NOAH fans to catch the roster members when they appear in the UK, especially (at the time of writing) Daisuke Harada, who is the current IPW Junior Heavyweight champion. You can watch the inaugural show (featuring Harada) here

COALITION
Yahoo Japan are hinting that there may be a coalition or an alliance between NOAH, All Japan and W-1. However, it looks as if NOAH’s new owners will be instituting a policy of isolation at the present time and not entering into any partnerships with other promotions, besides the ones they all ready have. Naomichi Marufuji, however, has spoken of the importance of co-operation.

CURRENT CHAMPIONS

TOUR TIDBITS

~ Due to his injury, Naomichi Marufuji had to cancel his one day stint as the manager of “Yoneya” (Mohammed Yone’s restaurant), the rescheduled date took place recently.
~ Hitoshi Kumano celebrated six years in wrestling on February 9th. Ge debuted at Korakuen Hall in 2013 against Atsushi Kotoge
~ Naomichi Marufuji did some clearing out, and found old phonecards with Takashi Rikio during his sumo days on them
~ Takashi Sugiura was given a chocolate gorilla for Valentine’s Day
~ Because the NOAH dojo has no heating or air conditioning, Kiyomiya and Miyawaki trained in tracksuits (the picture Miyawaki took revealed the dojo to have a CD collection and remote controls for the player)
~ YO-HEY celebrated his 31st birthday on February 6th
~ Naomichi Marufuji commented that he doesn’t know what KENTA’S plans are, but he wants him to go somewhere where he can be himself again. Takashi Sugiura came out and basically asked him what his plans were.
~ NOAH will be holding an event called “Navigation TO A NEW ERA” on May 2nd. Further details to be announced.
~ President Fuwa has started a Twitter account 

KING SHAMELESS CORNER
He’s managed to behave himself this week, no pictures of Masao Inoue at the urinal or his dog defecating.

BROADCASTS
“Great Voyage in Yokohama” on the 10th March will be broadcast by G+ plus on the 16th March on G+ at 8.30pm (JST)

Jun Akiyama wrote a book called “Inheriting The Giant Stars” (thanks to GuyOnInternet for telling me about this); the book has been added to my shopping basket and will be purchased and then translated in due course.

If you do know of any NOAH\All Japan related books, by all means, do let me know. My ambition is to one day build up a digital library translated into English for Western fans.

LINKS

The “Green Guide to the History of Pro Wrestling Noah” has been updated 
Eddie Edwards Mini Interview 
Press conference: Naomichi Marufuji vs Tetsuya Endo 
The Last Showa Born Heel: Can Masa Kitamiya be the new era Masa Saito? 
Naomichi Marufuji to challenge Kiyomiya, defense plans after taking the championship 


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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