Time is a flat circle, and there’s a lot of wrestling. Mathew touches on a few matches that he wasn’t able to cover so far this year!
Welcome back to my Wrestling Quickies! The last time I did one of these was about three months ago, so I wanted to bring this back since I really enjoyed doing these.
For those that don’t remember how it works, I’ll be covering 6-8 random matches from any promotion as you’ll never know what you’re gonna find from each addition of my quickies and long as they’re uploaded between a 2-3 week period since not all of them are aired live. So which matches will be added to this version of my quickies?
Let’s find out.
World of Stardom Title Match
Kagetsu (c) vs. Hazuki
Review: I know I cover Stardom, but I’m a little behind on the shows and wanna move out of January since we’re halfway through February already. We have Kagetsu defending her World of Stardom Championship against her fellow Oedo Tai member, Hazuki. Kagetsu wanted this challenge once she defeated Jungle Kyona to retain the title. Hazuki won a tag match in the Oedo Tai vs. Oedo Tai bout to get some momentum and she could become Hazuki two belts if she can defeat the leader here. Will Kagetsu retain again or does Hazuki win the big one?
Kagetsu is already treating Hazuki like any of her other opponents when she doesn’t give her special treatment during her little beatdown as she starts throwing Hazuki around the outside of the ring while Sumire watched on as the two fight in the ring. One little critique I would give the match would have to be Hazuki while great in the ring, didn’t show her best work in the match as she had a few slip-ups that were noticeable and not sure if it was the pressure of the main event for the big title or not. Kagetsu though seems to really be stepping up her game recently in these title matches as she’s showing much better work in her performances. Aside from my one little comment, I thought the match was nicely executed for the majority of the match with some nice moves displayed, a good story involved, and very nice near falls.
Kagetsu would hit Hazuki with the Chokeslam and it looks like Hazuki is out of it but would still kick out at two this time around. Kagetsu went for the Oedo Coaster as Hazuki quickly went up to hit a Brainbuster off the top rope. Hazuki would finally hit the Atomic Bombs Away in the match as Kagetsu after failing to do so the first time and would somehow kick out of the move. Hazuki hits another Brainbuster for a two count and once she picked Kagetsu up, the Prime Minister would knee her in the face for the two to fall down. Kagetsu hits a Michinoku Driver off the top rope and goes for the Oedo Coaster for a second time as Hazuki moved out of the way to apply the La Hazukistral and this could be it, but Kagetsu kicked out again! Hazuki went to the top rope as Kagetsu would push the referee into the turnbuckle for Hazuki to fall down and hits another Michinoku Driver. Kagetsu would finally hit the Oedo Coaster onto Hazuki but she picked her up to hit the Death Valley Driver and instead of pinning her, she started to apply a Sleeper Hold and modifies it up a little bit as Hazuki is passed out, meaning Kagetsu retained the title!
Rating: Bruce Prichard
David Starr vs. Timothy Thatcher
Review: Our next match takes place in Germany’s promotion, wXw during their January 19th show called Back To The Roots XVIII where David Starr is scheduled to take on Timothy Thatcher. David Starr is someone I’m not too familiar with but I’m gonna find out more about him when he fights Timothy Thatcher, who is one of my favorites in the UK scene right now. This is sure to be a technical bout and time to see who wins this.
I was right to say that this match was technical in the beginning with the both of them getting even ground until Timothy would now get the control of the match when he worked David’s injured arm. What I enjoy about this match is the shoulder manipulation Timothy would be doing to David throughout the match with submissions, strikes, and impact moves. David did well going with the underdog type of role in this match while taking the punishment Timothy would lay out to him while getting some good comebacks into the match. Timothy would hit a beautiful Butterfly Suplex for a two count and once David kicked out of it, Timothy would quickly get him into a submission hold with that injured shoulder. Timothy would try to roll with the submission but David would roll with him and would get the big pinfall for the surprise victory in a short and sweet match!
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a half
World Tag Team Title Match
Shuji Ishikawa & Suwama (c) vs. Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi
Review: Since I’m not subscribed to BJW and this is for All Japan’s World Tag Team Championship, I thought it would be a good idea to talk about the match on here. We got The Violent Giants defending the titles against Strong BJ, Daisuke Sekimoto and Yuji Okabayashi at the BJW show, To Was Gat Early on the January 13th show. After Violent Giants retained over The Bomber, Strong BJ came out to make the challenge at their show and the Giants would accept the challenge. It should be a great match and can Violent Giants retain again or does Strong BJ beat AJPW in their turf?
What an incredible combination of power and wrestling mixed into this tag match as it was something you would expect for things to go out between these two powerhouses. If you enjoyed when Daisuke and Jun fought Violent Giants during the Real World Tag League, then you’ll love this bout as it was as hard hitting as this match but just had a better display in this match. Yuji being involved in this made it a bit better as he shows a better display of strength, especially when Suwama would have him in a Sleeper Hold and he just grabbed his hair to flip him over to get him to break the hold. Violent Giants were on point in this tag match displaying tag team wrestling and if people haven’t heard of this team, I would recommend start following them immediately.
Shuji was in the ring with Daisuke as he would start doing his combo with a running knee to the face and does a Dragon Suplex but Daisuke would kick out of the pinfall at two. Violent Giants start attacking Daisuke with a Double Lariat as Shuji has him by the ropes now to get the advantage and hits the Fire Thunder for Yuji to break the hold. Suwama and Yuji go at it now as Yuji would hit a Lariat as Suwama gets up to hit a Backdrop Driver to get him out of the ring. Daisuke and Shuji are back at it again as Daisuke starts to hit a few Lariats onto Shuji to try and get him down but Shuji would still kick out of it. Daisuke hits one final big Lariat for a two count before he hits the German Suplex Hold for the pin and we have new tag champs! Stong BJ has won the Tag Team Championships and wonder what it’ll mean for the titles due to BJW wrestlers winning the AJPW titles. Will Violent Giants get them back or will a new team try to dethrone them? Great tag match!
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a quarter
Wrestle-1 Title Match
Shotaro Ashino (c) vs. T-Hawk
Review: You all remember Wrestle-1, right? They’re still around and I know I kinda stopped covering them for the time being until I find a good day to write about them again, but I would still like to talk about Shotaro’s next title defense as he goes to take on Strong Hearts member, T-Hawk. Strong Hearts is still apart of Wrestle-1 as the rivalry is still going on in the company and the show took place on January 5th at Wrestle-1 Tour Sunrise. Shotaro was able to defeat Manabu Soya twice and this is his first title defense for the year as he looks to drive Strong Hearts out of their company while T-Hawk looks to win his first big title. Will Shotaro defend W-1’s honor or do Strong Hearts take another big win?
It’s been quite some time since I’ve seen T-Hawk in singles competition, so let’s see how he fairs here against the champion. I thought T-Hawk has gotten a lot better over the years and you can see the progression in his character and skills once he left Dragon Gate to join CIMA with STRONG HEARTS and seeing how much he’s grown as a wrestler for the past eight years. Shotaro is still showing how amazing he is in the ring and how good he is with the body manipulation as he would work on his ankle once he got the opening from tossing Hawk into the turnbuckle post to make him land on his ankle and once that happened, Shotaro had him right where he wanted him as he just worked on the ankle any chance he would get. Hawk would sometimes get time to shine when he would try to chop Ashino in the match along with a Brainbuster. What I loved about this match was that neither STRONG HEARTS or Enfants Terribles interfered in the match to give it a fair fight and it worked out better this way because it turned out to be a great match.
Shotaro would apply the Ankle Lock in to try and make Hawk tap out as he was able to get the ropes in time but he’s not done as he would be able to hit strong European Uppercuts into the match to get Hawk down and out and once Ashino ran towards Hawk, Hawk would toss him up to give him a knee to the face and a Reverse Suplex for a two count. Ashino was able to get a Running Uppercut in there before he would get him for a few German Suplexes to try and put Hawk away and ends it with a German Suplex Hold as T-Hawk kicked out of it. Ashino calls for the ending of the match as he attempts the T-Bone Suplex but Hawk would fight out of it and picked him up for the Night Ride and this could be it, but no since Ashino kicks out of it! T-Hawk would quickly get back up and hits the Cerberus to knock him down as we have a new Wrestle-1 Champion! T-Hawk has won his first major singles title in his career and it was the right time to pull that trigger in Wrestle-1. I wonder who will take the belt away from him but I would love to see these two go at it again in the future.
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a half
ROH Women of Honor World Title Match
Kelly Klein (c) vs. Mayu Iwatani
Review: Sure, I’ll throw ROH a bone and give one of their matches some love. Their first show since The Elite left the company has had negative reviews for the most part and now we’re gonna cover their recent show on February 10th, Bound by Honor 2019 as we’re gonna cover their Women of Honor Title match where Kelly Klein defends the title against Stardom’s very own Mayu Iwatani. The last time they fought was at the Five Star Grand Prix where Kelly defeated Mayu and it even happened during their first-round tournament for the WOH title as well. Mayu has a lot to prove here tonight as she looks to try and defeat her rival. Will Mayu win her first ROH title or will Kelly retain?
So about this match, I didn’t think it was an awful match but I also felt like they definitely could’ve done a lot better for this one as well. My problem with the match really was that it didn’t felt like a Mayu match and what I mean by that is that there was no story fully told in the match or just Mayu not giving it her all as she felt like she was just there. Also, guys, it’s a Dragon Suplex and not a Tiger Suplex, how did you guys mess that up? The match also felt very one sided with Kelly doing most of the dominating and we know how Mayu works and can give Kelly a run for her money and they just didn’t seem to be going for that role in this match which just felt odd.
Anyway, the more I think about these issues, the more I get mad about it and then realize that they’re not in Stardom and this is a different promotion, which is also not the best promotion or best division right now. One thing that really threw me off is that they treated Mayu’s Dragon Suplex like it was nothing in this match when we know it did put a lot of people away and Kelly felt like she just brushed it off and I know she’s a big girl and all, but come on. Aside from the complaints I had about the match, it wasn’t the worst one I’ve seen, just how ROH handles that division and their wrestlers. Mayu would hit a Moonsault off the top rope for a two count and then Mayu would go for a second one for the pinfall as Mayu wins the WOH Championship. I know a lot of people were mad about the fact Kelly lost it quickly after chasing it for nearly a year, but I guess Kelly is set to go to AEW and they needed a new champion crowned, at least it’s not Sumie Sakai again. The good part of this is that I can hopefully see Mayu with the title at the garden now since I’m going to that show.
Rating: Tony Schiavone and a half
IWGP Heavyweight Title Match
Hiroshi Tanahashi (c) vs. Jay White
Review: Well, I guess it’s time for another surprise with New Japan Pro Wrestling with their recent big show on February 11th, New Beginning in Osaka where Hiroshi Tanahashi will defend the IWGP Heavyweight Championship against Jay White. Tanahashi went from having a classic match against Kenny Omega at Wrestle Kingdom 13 to win the title for the eighth time to defending the belt against the new Bullet Club Leader. Jay White has been on a roll lately with his new leadership when he defeated Kazuchika Okada at Wrestle Kingdom, cleanly no less. Jay now looks to go for the big title in this match against the ace at the New Beginning show. Will the ace reign supreme or will it indeed be a new era in NJPW?
This match was mostly about one thing and that was the evolution of Jay White and his character in New Japan over the past year and everything he’s been doing since this new persona has been unveiled to the world. Jay’s character has evolved with how his mindset works, how he speaks, the mind games, and the following he has gained when he was the new leader of Bullet Club. Tanahashi, despite having a classic with Kenny Omega recently, he’s still injured and body is still busted and you can see that with how he moves in the ring and when Jay attacked his knee recently, he found a target point to use throughout the match. The best part about this was that the interference with Gedo was very minimal and I’m glad that was the case since that would’ve been overkill if he did it constantly, even Tanahashi would attack Gedo a few times when he just had enough of his shit.
Gedo would be used as a distraction once again to give Jay enough time to try and hit Tanahashi with the chair but would move out of the way as he accidentally hits Gedo with the chair. Tanahashi was able to get High Fly Flow in but onto Jay’s back and wasn’t enough to put him away and as he went for the second one, Jay would roll out of the way. Whenever Tanahashi would try to hit a big move in the match, Jay would use the ropes to hold himself up so that Tanahashi wouldn’t get a chance to hit a Slingblade. This was a smart move as he would do it a few times and whenever Tanahashi had him away from the ropes to try and hit it, Jay would fall to his knees to buy himself a little bit of time. Jay would attack the knee a little bit more but Tanahashi would finally get a chance to get some Dragon Screws in before applying the Lucky Cloverleaf to try and make JAy tap out but Jay had the ropes just in time. Jay caught Tanahashi to try and go for the Blade Runner but Tanahashi turned it into a Slingblade and would hit another one to put Jay down. Tanahashi is up on the ropes once again as he would attempt another High Fly Flow but Jay caught him in midair to hit the Blade Runner and he connects this time for the pinfall and we have a new champion!
I’m actually speechless as to seeing Jay White win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship here since I expected Tanahashi to at least have a few successful defenses under his belt before dropping it at the G1 Supercard or Dominion, but it looks like they backed themselves up into a corner with Jay White since he had a ton of momentum leading to this match that losing here would hurt him slightly. Jay White has been wrestling for six years and has been with New Japan for about four of them and he has now defeated the ace to win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. It looks like New Japan has a new star made to fill the void of Kenny Omega, which Jay did beat early in 2018 along with Kazuchika Okada, and now Hiroshi Tanahashi, Jay is the new star and we’re indeed in the Cutthroat era.
Rating: Brice Prichard and a half
Overall: Aside from the ROH match being lackluster, the rest of the matches would deliver in quality with W-1 and NJPW giving us my favorite matches for this set of quickies in this one. I had to reset the list a couple of times since I wasn’t happy with the lineup I originally had set up, but I was satisfied with this one.
Favorite Match: Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Jay White
Least Favorite Match: Kelly Klein vs. Mayu Iwatani