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Mayumi Ozaki, Cutie Suzuki, Candy Okutsu & Sumiyo Toyama vs Dynamite Kansai, Devil Masami, Hikari Fukuoka & Hiromi Yagi (JWP Dead Heat 03/21/95)

JWP March 21 1995 4.75* Mayumi Ozaki Cutie Suzuki Candy Okutsu Sumiyo Toyama Dynamite Kansai Ozaki vs Kansai Devil Masami Hikari Fukuoka Hiromi Yagi

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#1 Loss

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 05:09 PM

Talk about it here.



#2 Ditch

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Posted 28 October 2011 - 12:24 PM

This was part of a comp that was my first joshi experience. It doesn't compare to the very best matches, but it's unique and FUN thanks to the stip. One might argue that they go a bit overboard with things getting kicked out of at 0, but that's almost all moves that aren't established finishers. For a workrate match this is a lot more coherent than your typical joshi spotfest.

#3 Loss

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 09:01 PM

Apologies for this being way too long, but there's lots worth talking about.

 

***

 

This was pretty awesome. What a match! The heightened sense of urgency surrounding the one-count stipulation makes for some superb drama, and because of the stip, I'm not sure I've ever seen a match where every single thing the wrestlers do has so much meaning and potential consequence. This match is a collection of strategies -- some successes and some failures -- that makes for a nice hypothetical. What if it only took a one count to win any wrestling match? Maybe wrestling would be more like this.

 

The match starts with Dynamite Kansai and Sumiyo Toyama. Toyama is the ultimate, plucky underdog, so it's fitting that she is on the receiving end of an immediate clothesline and pin. This brings in Cutie Suzuki for the second part of the match. Kansai is still dominant, but she gives Suzuki come incredible close calls, including one off of a high-crossbody that nearly gives the crowd a heart attack. Surely Suzuki isn't about to beat Kansai, right? Well, suddenly she found something that works and she sticks with it. Kansai figures out what she's doing and is just too strong to go down. Finally, Kansai tries a powerbomb and Suzuki manages to get her in a sunset flip for the mother of all upsets. Kansai is ELIMINATED!

 

One of my favorite things about this match is that it spotlights wrestlers who aren't featured on the yearbooks as much. I've seen plenty of Mayumi Ozaki and Dynamite Kansai, and a fair amount of Devil Masami. But the stars of this match -- by design -- are Candy Okutsu, Cutie Suzuki, Hikari Fukuoka and Hiromi Yagi.

 

Speaking of Devil Masami, she's in next. The arena is still buzzing over the Kansai loss, and Devil is awesome. She is suddenly the vet who has wrestled everyone and seen it all, and she has this "I got this!" look on her face. Suzuki tries to circle her and Devil just casually stalks her before slapping her in the face and slowing down the pace considerably. She tries a cross armbreaker, but Cutie hangs on. She then tries a powerbomb, but Cutie still hangs on. Now, Masami is very visibly pissed off because she thought she had outsmarted the whole match concept and she hasn't. In frustration, she goes to the top and misses a butt drop, but lucky for her, Suzuki is still worse for wear. While Devil is still focused on keeping things slow, she ends up eating a surprise headscissors over the top rope. Now she's really pissed and starts dragging Suzuki through the crowd. She attempts a press slam on the upper level, but Cutie manuevers her way out, pushes her to the lower level, then catches her with a high knee! At this point, they have been out of the ring a long time. Devil knows she can't beat Suzuki so she goes for the next best thing. She decides that if she's going down, she's taking Suzuki with her and grabs her leg so they're both counted out. Tremendous stuff.

 

So now we have Candy Okutsu and Hiromi Yagi in the ring. She's down two teammates, and their approaches haven't worked, so maybe chain wrestling will? All of the counters have a higher sense of urgency because Yagi keeps trying to wrestle Candy into a position where she's on her shoulders and Candy manages to get away at the last second. Finally, Candy gets in a giant swing and Yagi is out! Now, Hikari Fukuoka realizes she is the team's only hope, so she's incredibly cautious. We get the mother of all collar and elbow tie ups. Candy is still confident about her win over Yagi in the previous round and Fukuoka manages to catch her off guard. She misses a second moonsault after hitting the first one, Fukuoka gets her in a rolling cradle and now she's evened the odds. Candy is out.

 

Finally we're down to Fukuoka against Mayumi Ozaki. If Ozaki loses, her team loses the match, but if she can beat Fukuoka, they'll at least have a tie. Truth be told, this is probably the least interesting part of the match, although I do enjoy Fukuoka's cartwheel-induced offense really throwing Ozaki off her game. Finally, Ozaki manages to get the win and we have a tie.

 

Now it's a regular tag with everyone involved. The first team to score a one-count wins. Kansai's team immediately targets Toyama because she was such an easy pin, and there are all sorts of payback spots in this part of the match based on earlier falls. Candy at one point tries a giant swing on Kansai in what would have been the most heroic part of the match had she pulled it off. Toyama throws everything she has at Kansai and nothing makes a difference. But she ends up surprising Masami, who again is taking her lightly. Again, the point is being made that Devil Masami has been her own worst enemy in this match because she seems to be underestimating everyone on the other side. This attitude allows Suzuki to get the best of her for a while too, until she finally puts her game face on and starts a team building activity that I hope we never do at work -- everyone takes turns doing the giant swing on Suzuki.

 

No one is having any luck with Kansai, so Oz comes in. She's not a guarantee either, but she's the only one who stands a chance. We quickly realize that isn't going to work and after a few other pairings, we end with Yagi avenging the loss from Candy earlier. But it literally takes everything she has in her arsenal to make it happen, so in doing the job, Candy was probably put over more strongly than anyone in the match. Great finish!

 

I'm probably the only person in the world who thinks this, but I enjoyed this more than Thunderqueen. The one-count stipulation opened up more possibilities and they leveraged the idea pretty cleverly. I think this would make a good comparison to the epic 5 x 5 match from 1984 New Japan. I don't think I'd have this one quite at that level, but it's not a significant gap. Choosing between this and the January tag feels like choosing between children, so we'll see how I feel about that later. For now, this is a classic match, and the only 1995 match so far that even compares to it is the January AJW tag.



#4 FLIK

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 11:44 PM

When the 94 set rolls around be interesting to see how you compare this to the Kansai/Devil/Chigusa vs OZ/Cuty/Plum 2 count match.

#5 Tim Evans

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 03:33 AM

This was way too much to follow. That might not be a bad thing. What's the story behind it? I'm with Loss that the 1 count thing was kinda nice. Why did they have to do a regular tag after the elimination thing?

#6 PeteF3

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 06:51 PM

I had TWO power outages while I was trying to watch this, so this is a deadly combination of disjointedness and me being in a foul mood. I didn't and still don't get the point of the 1-count stip (I keep expecting Mike Rotunda to show up somewhere here), but it's worked really well and they manage to actually incorporate "near falls" into this. Nonetheless, the layout and rules were confusing as heck even after viewing ThunderQueen. Apparently the match could have ended in the opening 1-on-1 portions but no one could possibly have bought that as a possibility, so there wasn't much drama there. I don't know anything about Sumiyo Toyama but she's the most laughably ineffective wrestler of this entire project, and that includes Mikey Whipwreck--not since that Steve Regal/Spike Huber Memphis tag has there been a more overmatched babyface. She jobs to a Kansai lariat in 7 seconds and pretty much all of her offense is no-sold. At this point I'm expecting this to be elimination or best-of-something rules after last year's match, but one pinfall later and it's over. This is another match that kind of defies a star rating. It was fun, and it may make more sense with more context, but there were times when it felt more like a game of Whack-a-Mole than a wrestling match.



#7 Zenjo

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Posted 28 June 2017 - 10:54 PM

There was a topic recently on Unicorn gimmick matches. This would qualify. The one count rule is the main thing to remember, and the wrestlers did very well not to forget. Right Deano? It begins with singles elimination. Kansai crushes the youngster Toyama in 7 seconds. The next period is great as Cuty is able to defeat Dyno, a result that would never happen without the stipulation. They go through the teams and the final matchup is rather conveniently a 5m draw. So it's a deciding 8 person tag. The time with Cuty in the ring was definitely the highlight of the first phase. The Fukuoka periods were weak. Moonsaults can't get a one count, seriously?

There were numerous positives to the wacky rules. It was a great leveller as any result was possible with only one count required. Early on it created a lot of urgency. This was best seen when Candy and Yagi were exchanging zero count pinning combinations. Like Loss pointed out there was also a focus on the lower ranked competitors.

So I did like the rules, but found the 41m length to be counterproductive. Logically it should be a shorter match. It wasn't just a case of stretching believability, it also exposed a fundamental problem. With no 2 counts they couldn't escalate the damage and the tension. No move could be more effective than any other move. The longer it went on the less tense and dramatic it became.

Overall it is a tough one to rate. Plenty of positives yet heavily flawed. It's certainly worth checking out as a unique viewing experience.





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: JWP, March 21, 1995, 4.75*, Mayumi Ozaki, Cutie Suzuki, Candy Okutsu, Sumiyo Toyama, Dynamite Kansai, Ozaki vs Kansai, Devil Masami, Hikari Fukuoka, Hiromi Yagi

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