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Rick & Scott Steiner vs Tatsumi Fujinami & Tayayuki Iizuka (WCW Wrestle War 05/17/92)

WCW Wrestle War May 17 1992 Rick Steiner Scott Steiner Steiners Jacksonville FL Tatsumi Fujinami Tayayuki Iizuka 4*

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#21 Tim Evans

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Posted 30 July 2011 - 03:04 AM

Man I thought this was over 5 minutes in but it just kept going. Very stiff and fascinating match.

#22 shoe

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Posted 27 August 2011 - 04:19 PM

Since I didn't wrestle in it. Man that was fun.

#23 El-P



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Posted 24 June 2012 - 04:08 PM

As usual, a legendary Steiner match is just an overatted stiffest, although this one does looks better than the Dome Shows or the Lex/Sting match because at one point Scott actually sells for a while and it's a brutal spectacle. Still, they knew they could stiff the fuck out out of Iizuka without getting reprimanded, and it comes off as unprofesionnal although in Japan it wouldn't look that bad considering how young workers are treated in dojos. The Steiner really could have been much more of a team if they would have known anything about building a match, which they never knew shit about. Watching them in context since 1989, it's no surprise that their two best matches came at the end of Doom, who would throw bombs back and had Butch Reed to slow down the pace and give structure, and the Nasty Boys who would let themselves be thrown around but who also knew how to structure a match. Yeah, I said it, the Nasties were better tag team wrestlers than the Steiners. Anyway, fun brutal match (except for Takayuki), but not a great match by any stretch of the imagination.

#24 Kevin Ridge

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 07:11 PM

Seen this a few times now and I find myself wavering on how good it is. This time around I didn't think it was as great as I once thought though it is still good . Rick was annoying me here because at least Scott was doing some selling earlier in the match. Yeah, it is something else to see Iizuka take such a beating. He gets his face messed up pretty early and he is just holding it most of the time. Poor guy but he did stick it out so he was easy to root for in this match. But damn was there some stiff looking suplexes in this match. Rick catching Iizuka is mid air was really impressive.

#25 Zenjo


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Posted 20 September 2012 - 12:42 AM

This used to be one of my favourite matches back in the day. Whilst it still has entertainment value it's not half as good as I used to think it was. I like stiff work but some of this was the wrong kind of stiffness and downright dangerous. The match had no downtime at all, it was non-stop high impact moves. Spectacular for sure and absorbing in its brutality. The downside is that there was no structure or pacing, just move after move. Matches need to have a beginning, middle and end. Memorable and entertaining at times but not a classic.

#26 WingedEagle

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Posted 15 April 2013 - 12:38 PM

For some reason they're not using the same ring as Pillman & Zenk. Maybe because they were told to work with a fresh scene for the CSIs? The stiffness begins with a lariat by Scott to Fujinami. Iizuka Then Rick breaks Iizuka's face with a knee from the top while Scott holds him up. Just a brutal spectacle that may be uncomfortable at times but is still riveting pro wrestling. You'd hope to see bullies like this get the favor returned but how often does that happen? ***3/4

#27 Zero


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Posted 09 May 2013 - 08:32 PM

I went and re-watched this. GOODNESS GRACIOUS. Brutal! One of the stiffer matches I've ever seen.

#28 PeteF3

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Posted 27 July 2013 - 12:18 AM

So is the claim that Iizuka got all the brunt of the Steiners' aggression? Because while he certainly got the shit kicked out of him, in no way were they gentle with Fujinami. Rick almost spikes his head into the mat on a German suplex and he and Scott exchange some brutal strikes. I have to say I enjoyed this, as I've generally been enjoying the Steiners so far. They're not deep, structured matches but most of their big spots do hit and this one in particular has the feel of a back-and-forth, shoot-type atmosphere, especially when it comes to the ultra-stiff matwork. Knowing this match only by rep, it was also far less one-sided than I'd anticipated. The Steiners never really look to be in serious trouble but they at least give the Japanese some openings to show their stuff. Iizuka gets to show off some flashy moves before dying and Fujinami looks as good as he has since his comeback. I was just fine with this.

#29 MikeCampbell


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Posted 26 August 2013 - 07:27 PM

This was much more brutal and stiff than I recalled. It's well known for Iizuka's facial injures, but considering the shots they dished out, someone was gonna get hurt. Credit to the kid for keeping going.

#30 Superstar Sleeze

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Posted 08 June 2014 - 01:49 PM

Watched this match for the first time, just now, and thought it was way more cooperative than I expected given what I had read on here. It was definitely brutal and stiff. They were working typical pro wrestling sequences that would only work if everybody was on the same page. Also, if you listen closely, Rick asks the ref during a chinlock "if Iizuka is alright". Not the big, bad demonic pricks they were made to be now are they. I thought they were just working a very friggin' good New Japan match albeit in a WCW ring. Did the Steiners botch some shit, yes, they did. Were they unprofessional in this match? I did not think so. Before, I write up a full review I am going to watch this again. My first reaction was this one helluva a great match and on par with the Doc/Gordy match from the Clash.  

EDIT: Just wanted to add this does not excuse the Steiners from other unprofessional behavior in and out of the ring. They do strike me at the very least difficult people to work with to probably being assholes. Kudos to Iizuka for sticking with it and Fujinami giving as good as he got. 

#31 ajtroma

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Posted 25 May 2015 - 11:42 PM

The wrestling fan in me doesn't give one good crap about all that Mitchell jive up there. I want hard-hitting, exciting wrestling. This delivered in spades.

#32 ...TG

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Posted 05 June 2015 - 08:17 PM

If I'd heard about this before, I had forgotten about it, so I was going in cold. The Steiners are frightening people. Still, I'd probably use Rick as a realtor - who would have the balls to lowball him? 

#33 garretta

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 07:33 AM

It's really hard to tell just how dirty the Steiners may have been here, with the exception of Rick's forearm off the top that closed Iizuki's eye. Everything else could have been Rick and Scotty stiffing the Japanese, or it could have been the Japanese selling their hearts out. One thing's for sure: They kept going and didn't complain, nor did they make any attempt at a receipt too obvious. The closest they might have come was when Fujinami kicked Rick hard in the head while breaking up a pin late in the match. The telltale sign that it might have been a potato was Jesse chuckling as he said, "He rung his bell, Jim Ross."


You wouldn't think that the Steiners would want to rough up anyone associated with New Japan, seeing as how they're scheduled to go back in June (their match with Vader and Bam Bam made the set, in fact). They're taking an awful chance on getting paid back sometime when no one's around to protect them, and Fujinami's experienced and knowledgeable enough to hurt anyone if he really puts his mind to it.


I noticed that JR covered Fujinami's resume by saying that he's won "too many championships to mention". That, of course, includes his controversial NWA World title victory over Flair last year at SuperBrawl I.


My guess is that they definitely wanted the Japanese team to look and act more like heels, which would explain Fujinami's mustache (which, by the way, does nothing whatsoever for his look).


I've never seen Iizuka before, and he looked like he belonged in the same ring with the Steiners for the first few minutes. Then Rick hit the foream from the top and he was (understandably) never the same. I hope we see more of him on upcoming sets, because he really impressed me (not to mention Jesse).


Did Fujinami and Iizuka ever team before this? JR made them out to be an experienced team, but that could have been just hype designed to make them seem like a big deal and thus make the Steiners' win look better.


I guess this was a non-title match, because neither Cappetta nor the announcers ever mentioned the WCW belts being on the line, even though Rick and Scotty were announced as champions and wore the belts to the ring.


JR pretty much had his way in this match. Jesse tried to make this about the All-American Steiners from Detroit defending the honor of the country from the dirty Japs who make our cars these days and thus put Americans out of work, but JR put a stop to that PDQ and probably warned Jesse nonverbally not to open his mouth in that way again for the rest of the match. Jesse got the message, apparently, because he was almost 100% neutral from then on.


Free to call the match his way, JR sounded like his old self, putting over the physicality of the bout and telling us again and again that we only get that kind of action in WCW. Being an American, he was naturally biased slightly toward the Steiners, but made sure to give the Japanese team the respect it deserved. This was helped by the fact that Fujinami and Iizuka wrestled a relatively clean match. It's going to be interesting to see how he and Jesse frame Steiners/MVC matches; how do you portray two Americans as dastardly foreign heels, especially when one of them is the son your new boss never had even though he has two biological sons of his own?

#34 ohtani's jacket

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Posted 07 December 2016 - 06:03 PM



If nothing else, this is a match which holds your attention.


Scotty Steiner was pumped up to begin with. If there's one thing I like about pre-Big Poppa Pump Scott Steiner it's his matwork. He just cannibalises guys on the mat. In fact, he may be one of my favourite mat guys of all time simply from an aesthetic point of view. He wouldn't budge an inch when it came to giving up position, but man did he look good. He was so fired up that it wouldn't surprise me if his brain thought he was in some legit competition. All of the Steiners' shit looked good in this match. Yeah, structure, and selling, and pacing are important, but I've got nothing against a spotfest when an amateur wrestling spotfest. I guess Kurt Angle really was the third Steiner brother after all. Iizuka took a licking, that's for sure. He would have been pretty sore in the morning. I thought they let up on him a bit after his injury and started pounding on him again when they wanted their shit to look good. Fujinami vs. each brother was the most fascinating wrinkle for me. I thought Fujinami looked pretty good in this. As good as you can look in a match where your opponents aren't being entirely cooperative. The Steiners did sell a bit for the Japanese and there was a brief Scotty in Peril segment, so it wasn't entirely uncooperative. Throughout the course of the bout I kept thinking would the stiffness have been so much of a factor in Japan or did it just stand out because it was so stiff for a WCW match (ala Regal vs. Finlay). I'm still not really sure. I'm not even sure if the Steiners would've taken liberties with Iizuka in Japan. Really interesting match. 

#35 JKWebb

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Posted 09 December 2016 - 11:35 PM



Crazy, stiff, brutal, memorable, unprofessional, entertaining - ***3/4

#36 Superstar Sleeze

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Posted 05 January 2018 - 09:15 PM

WCW World Tag Team Champions Steiner Brothers vs Tatsumi Fujinami & Takahashi Iizuka - WCW Wrestlewar 1992


The match lives up to its rep as a brutal, violent spectacle, but still don't know if I would go so far to call it unprofessional. Scotty Steiner lets Iizuka shine early and the Steiners are still cooperative late into the match. I really think what it comes down to is that Steiners did some ridiculously dangerous shit in this match rather than being uncooperative or unprofessional. Scotty Steiner nearly piledrives himself on a flip powerslam. Then Big Brother, Rick tries to outdo him by catching Iizuka in the Electric Chair and doing a flip bodyslam from Fujinami's shoulders. That was fucking nuts. I don't think that has ever been attempted since. Rick does ask if Iizuka is ok to the ref in a chinlock after he explodes his face with an elbow. Rick Steiner was brutal with those elbows drops in the match. Some vicious Steinerlines. After Scott nearly breaks his own neck, he tries to decapitate Fujinami. Give Fujinami credit, he gives as good as he gets as starts stiffing the fuck out of the Steiners. Iizuka takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin'. Like I said throughout the match, the Steiners still take the Japanese offense, they just did three dangerous spots early and after that it was just the Steiners being the Steiners. Scott Steiner was incredible at integrating amateur wrestling into pro wrestling. He just gobbles up Iizuka. There is a great spot late where Steiner does a double over the top armdrag of the Japanese into a Top Rope Steinerline. Stuff like that require cooperation. They may have been hitting hard, but I don't think they ever lost respect for each other. Jesse & I both mark out for the SPIKE PILEDRIVER~! from the Japanese. Fujinami gets the Dragon Sleeper late. The Japanese still got offense down the stretch. It was not a squash match by any stretch. In a fracas, Rick Steiner hits a super Belly to Belly Suplex to win the match. One of the best Steiner spotfests because they just go balls out with 8 million suplexes, hard hitting Steinerlines and they have opponents willing to take a lickin and keep on tickin'. ****1/4

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: WCW, Wrestle War, May 17, 1992, Rick Steiner, Scott Steiner, Steiners, Jacksonville FL, Tatsumi Fujinami, Tayayuki Iizuka, 4*

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