Warning! This review contains spoilers!
Los Carros Exoticos (Gallardo, Lambo Miura & Murcielago) VS Mini CRAZY-MAX (Mini-CIMA, SUWA-cito & Small Dandy Fujii) VS Los Salseros Japonesas (Pineapple Hanai, Mango Fukuda & Takeshi Minaminno)
This is a three-way elimination match, with the winning team members having to face each other in a second three-way elimination match right after this to crown a new UWA Welterweight champion. The title was held up due to some controversy.
The good thing about multi-person tag matches like this is that everything moves fast and so they get to bust out their moves faster so we can check out what they are about.
Los Carros Exoticos are 3-guys dressed up as race cars! From what I’ve seen here, they work a very Lucha-style, which is fast with lots of dives and highspots. I’m sure they can do more than that, but I’d have to watch more of them to know for sure. I’ve heard a lot of praise for Gallardo on the net though.
Mini Crazy Max are a sad imitation of the originals. Other than Small Dandy Fuji, Mini-CIMA and SUWA-cito are mirror images of the originals, but lack the talent. For example, Mini-CIMA almost botched the Mad Splash. Why Ultimo Dragon couldn’t come up with an original concept (or none at all) for these guys is beyond me as making miniatures of the originals is like placing the “New” tag at the beginning or “2000” tag at the end of the names, which usually never work.
Los Salseros Japonesas definitely had the most potential from the three teams here. Takeshi Minaminno is the leader and the most into the Salsa band gimmick, as he’s also the best dancer. Pineapple Hanai is the green haired youngster with the guitar, though I don’t know if he can actually play the thing. Mango Fukuda is a HUGE heavyweight powerhouse of the group, though he also sticks out like a sore thumb in the colorful attire.
This was a very good opener with a lot of fast paced action, big spots and even some comedy thrown in. Like I mentioned above, a good way to introduce you to the three teams involved.
Match Rating: ***1/4
UWA Welterweight Title
Pineapple Hanai VS Mango Fukuda VS Takeshi Minaminno
Poor Mango is booted out of the match cause he’s a heavyweight and no way near being a welterweight. The big man does however return later when Hanai and Minaminno knock each other out and gets a big pop when he tries to get the win on his downed teammates! Hanai and Minaminao recover and work together to officially eliminate the big man from the match and continue an excellent bout between the two. This was said to be Hanai’s breakout match as prior to this he hadn’t shown much potential.
Everyone on the internet wasn’t kidding when they said Dragon Gate should have picked these guys up cause they have so much potential to be major heel players wherever they go.
Match Rating: ***1/2
Manabu Murakami VS Shinji Nohashi
Murakami looks like a bald shoot-fighter in a thong. NOT something I wanna see in a wrestling match. Shinji Nohashi on the other better just change his name to Mini-Shinzaki Jinsei, cause he’s another copy-cat gimmick. He’s got all of Shinzaki’s moves and mannerisms down, which doesn’t make for very exiting wrestling here. Murakami with the thong on the other hand likes using jumping hip attacks.
Match Rating: *1/2
King Ali Baba VS The Karaoke Machines
King Ali Baba is a brawler in league with Abdullah the Butcher, The Sheik and Tiger Jeet Singh. In other words, he can’t wrestle for sh*t other than throwing throat jabs and brawling into the crowd disrupting the seating arrangements.
The Karaoke Machines get their name by dining their way to the ring, but I can’t tell how well the masked men work since they were just squashed here by Ali Baba. This was a big waste of time other than it set up KAB VS Toru Yano for the next big Toryumon X show as Yano made the save when KAB went on a post match rampage and was about to squash the referee with a second rope splash.
Match Rating: *
Yuji Nagata, Hiroshi Tanahashi & Kaz Hayashi VS Manabu Nakanishi, Ultimo Dragon & Minoru Suzuki
Surprisingly, one of the best matches of the night, but it relied on outside talent. Suzuki was a mystery partner, and Nakanishi was not happy to be teaming with him. And as you’d expect, it lead to tensions between the teammates. Nagata was his good explosive self, and Tanahashi was even at his A-game here. Hayashi even worked well with his New Japan team mates and matched up nicely with Ultimo Dragon.
This was a good match, though the outcome was a bit predictable, but still better than most of the stuff I’ve seen from New Japan recently, which isn’t a lot anyways. Still, this could easily have been the main event of the show too.
Match Rating: ***1/2
UWA 6-Man Tag Titles:
CTU (Katsushi Takemura, Jado, & Gedo) VS Los Sailor Boys (Taiji Ishimori, Kei Sato & Shu Sato)
- This wasn’t as good as I expected it to be, mainly because the Sailor twins are REALLY green, and the CTU’s lack of selling the smaller teams offense didn’t help much either. Ishimori was OK as team leader, and he kinda reminded me of MIKAMI a bit. One of the twins got busted open the hard way, and when the other got the hot tag, he botched several spots in a row! NOT GOOD for a future prospect, and it didn’t help even more since this is the main event. The three CTU rudos who couldn’t do much more than brawl didn’t help the match all that much either and I didn’t see the point of them winning the titles since I don’t think they’ve even defended them since.
Match Rating: **
The show ends with Ultimo Dragon calling out all his students and thanking them for all their hard work and such. They then end the show with the Sailor Boys performing in the ring, and the rest of the UDG students dancing along (most rather badly) and a list of Gym graduates scrolls across the side of the screen as the show ends. Now I know when who graduated
This was an OK show, with three good matches and three bad matches to even things up. Worth checking out for the NJPW participation like I did, and a great look at Los Salseros.
Labels: Misc Indies