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Mitsuharu Misawa vs Akira Taue (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/15/95)

AJPW Championship Carnival April 15 1995 Mitsuharu Misawa Akira Taue 5* Budokan Hall

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#1 Loss

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 05:29 PM

Talk about it here.



#2 Ditch

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Posted 28 October 2011 - 12:20 PM

2007: "I think 9/10/95 feels more like the best possible non-epic Misawa title defense; this feels like the best Champions Carnival final, and it feels really epic. And it's Taue's best singles match. Taue is more focused, Misawa is more vulnerable, it's so great" I stand by that sentiment. I don't know what really could have been done to improve this, with the possible exception of one last big Taue comeback and Taue winning. Even that isn't a sure thing since the tiger suplex is a really satisfying finish.

#3 Loss

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Posted 23 November 2011 - 09:14 PM

In a career filled with great matches and moments, this may be my favorite for Misawa, because it's such a triumphant conquering of the odds. This is probably Taue's finest hour, but in the end, Misawa was still The Man. The dynamic bomb had secured wins over Kawada and Kobashi. Misawa kicked out. While Kawada didn't shy away from Misawa's face, Taue went after it far more aggressively than anyone else had. The heat he gets every time he does it is amazing, and he managed to shock me every time that he would go there yet again. Taue had a clear strategy and he pulled it off in excellent fashion, but it just wasn't enough to put Misawa away. As we had seen before, when it looked like someone finally had his number, Misawa always found a way to bounce back. My easy MOTY to date, and pretty safely in the top handful of matches for the decade as well.

#4 jdw

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Posted 24 November 2011 - 08:58 PM

Since the Carny commercial tape wasn't out before this aired, it was really the first time that most gaijin got to see him pick up his game. I don't even think it was noticable to us at the Dome earlier in the month, but that also had Misawa, Kawada, Kobashi and Hansen in there to draw attention. Another reason the 4/2 match (and card in general) would be intersting to watch again just to see how much "new Taue" stood out. John

#5 Childs

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 03:21 PM

I hadn't watched this in a long time, but it's even greater when viewed in the context of the whole Carny. The first half was great fun with all kinds of nifty counter spots, very little fat and a nutty crowd. The build to Taue's nodowa off the apron took it to another level. No one had been able to recover from that move, and the crowd kind of roar/gasped at the real possibility of a Misawa loss. That, of course, made his long rally so much better. I loved the way he fell to his knees after the first few elbows, keeping open the possibility that he might not be able to fight his way back. Once his comeback picked up steam, he threw some of the fiercest elbows of his career. Taue took and sold them like a champ. Taue's last-ditch attempt to claw at Misawa's bad eye was also great, showing his desperation as his brilliant Carny run slipped away. They didn't go back and forth unnecessarily or push it a second too long. Hard not to feel energized after watching a match this fucking good. If this isn't MOTY, it's probably No. 2.

#6 Loss

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 03:29 PM

After thinking about it, I'm wondering if Taue clawing at Misawa's eye in an attempt to salvage his chances is my favorite moment in any wrestling match I've ever seen.

#7 MJH

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 06:04 PM

There's little to add - we all know it's a classic - but I'll just re-itterate that, for all the stuff people have lifted from All Japan, I can't fathom how some babyface hasn't stolen Misawa's elongated comebacks. It's no better on show than here.

#8 jdw

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 06:42 PM

The payoffs are when the comeback doesn't work. We'd seen so many times where the trusty elbows turn the tide. When they don't... when there's just not enough juice in them to turn it, or he's too toasted from something to be able to take advantage, it's even better than when he does comeback. The title change with Doc is a case. He tries to fire the trusty elbows. Doc sells them as slowing him down. But Misawa is too toasted from the backdrop driver to recover, and Doc finally puts him down. 12/06/96 is similar. In that one Misawa recovers enough to have been able to take out... except that Kawada & Taue have killed off Jun. Suspect you'll run across it later in the year as well. John

#9 Tim Evans

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Posted 27 April 2012 - 02:12 AM

1995 truly was Taue's year. Such a great performance by both guys. Nice finish too.

#10 PeteF3

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Posted 11 September 2014 - 12:24 AM

It's late and I'm tired, so maybe this needs a re-watch with fresh eyes. I saw a fine match, but I didn't see a MOTY here. This had some real-life things going against it, as they had to work 30 minutes with Misawa having a broken orbital bone. But the opening control holds by Taue, while logical in a real sense since he can't just pound the shit out of Misawa, aren't that compelling. Now, this picks up in a hurry when Taue starts digging his forearm into Misawa's eyeball, raising eyebrows all across Japan, and there are a good number of holy-shit spots like Taue splattering Misawa's face on the turnbuckle and on the mat, which are sold great by both guys (Taue's body language even comes across as, "I can't believe I just did that"). And Misawa manages to avoid the nodowa off the apron, and come back from the Dynamic Bomb and nodowa on the floor, to the point where the draw feels like a win but at the same time it also feels like a win for Taue, too. Classic work and booking that elevates both guys. I guess I'm talking myself into liking this more the more I write, but as it stands it's the #2 match of the Carny for me.



#11 PeteF3

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Posted 11 September 2014 - 12:26 AM

Fucking Christ, how late is it? There are two Misawa-Taue matches and threads. Disregard the post above.

 

Day later edit: So, okay, watching the actual match that everyone else was talking about, this is my running MOTY (I have a hard time believing 6/9/95 will be unseated by the time the year is out, unless another joshi bout surprises me, but that's ahead of us). This is the best combination of work and psychology seen all year. Taue tries to drop Misawa on the turnbuckle right at the start, but Misawa's ready for it this time, and thus Taue has to put the eye work in his back pocket until he can either get an opening or get desperate. It's what Loss has said about making you wait for the spot that you know is coming, but this is a new dynamic in that Taue is the heel. When he finally does hit the eye, it gets a huge reaction from an already-pumped crowd, and then things pick up big time. Misawa takes the nodowa off the apron, but his trusty elbows are enough to buy him some time and weather Taue's bigger moves. Taue gets in a fantastic kickout off a tiger suplex but goes down to the second one. Putting Misawa over in the CC was the right move, considering he was the ace but without the Triple Crown, and considering they did an excellent job of getting Taue over as a top singles star even with the loss. 



#12 The Russian Daydream

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Posted 05 January 2016 - 02:37 PM

When I watched this, I had it in my head that Taue won this, so as the match wore on, I started doubting myself and then going into the finishing stretch I really wasn't sure who was winning to the point the kickouts really felt exciting.

This was a tremendous match. I guess this is technically the better, cleverer match, withTaues work targeting the face and what-not but part of me found the Kobashi vs Taue match from a few weeks earlier more fun. I think it really does depend on the day you catch me whether I prefer the fun match or the clever match. Either way, watching these matches from Carnival 95 have really changed how I view Akira Taue.

#13 Microstatistics

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Posted 27 June 2016 - 10:33 PM

Misawa has ruined comebacks in wrestling matches for me. His comeback in this is a work of art. This is up there with 6/3/94 and 1/20/97 for me. **** 3/4



#14 JKWebb

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Posted 12 March 2017 - 04:39 PM

http://placetobenati...the-90s-50-1/2/

#14

****3/4

I love the the dramatic strike to Misawa knocking his arm off the rope for the chokeslam to the outside. Misawa won't die and eventually Taue is just stomping him repeatedly on the ground. By the end he's clawing at the inured eye of Misawa as his last glimpse of hope knowing his chance has likely passed him by. Misawa has an epic comeback in an unforgettable match.

#15 Superstar Sleeze

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 11:36 AM

Damn, youre much tougher grader than me if you are giving that ****3/4. Excited you are getting close to the top.



#16 JKWebb

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 01:08 PM

I wouldn't argue with ***** at all.  I went back and forth on it.  It could just boil down to watching it again.  There were some parts that I thought drug just a tad, but the finishing moments are so unforgettable.  Sometimes I think it boils down to context, and I think a lot of people probably are much more knowledgeable in that sense (around here) than me.  I'm about to start the 91 YB, and I have no doubt I'll be on my way to 1995 down the line.  Watching so many great matches like this in a row probably has me looking at them competitively at times, and I really shouldn't look at it that way.  When you watch stuff like this in a more linear fashion, then you're just along for the ride, and it might be easier to just let it sink in and enjoy the moment that you are currently attached to (or more invested in).  I'm not exactly sure that makes sense the way I wrote it, but it makes sense in my head :)



#17 Jordan

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 10:12 PM

If you had to pick a singular year for Misawa's best in my opinion it would be '95 and this might be his masterpiece. Every time I watch this it's always incredible to see just how extended and almost subtle his comeback is. It's like watching a team have Golden State down 14 with like 5 minutes left and then Curry just finds time to hit some threes over about 3 minutes and you realize where this is going. Misawa's elbows carry that kind of potency and you really believe if a guy starts eating too many late he's just got no shot. Taue from the start sets that he's going to attack Misawa's broken face and it's so well done, from Misawa's selling to Taue's attack. And they gradually build to it. He takes a few shots early but he really starts to go after it at the perfect time (when it feels like Misawa is really gaining momentum) and then for the next few minutes you're treated to a great beatdown and some exquisite selling from Misawa. The way he jerks his body around after getting thrown into a turnbuckle manages to show just how painful his orbital bone injury is to the fans in probably the best way possible. The set up for the bombs in general throughout have that great peak 90s AJPW sense of struggle but the Nodowa off the apron is easily the best one and feels like a clincher for Taue. Until of course Misawa finds his opening again, again and again for his elbows. Taue's last stand to try to keep his CC hopes alive by grabbing at Misawa's face is a great moment but equally great is that simple but defiant shove Misawa does to Taue's hands followed by caving his face in with one more elbow before putting him away. As satisfying a victory as I can remember from Misawa.



#18 Zenjo

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Posted 03 August 2017 - 08:14 PM

This was great from the bell. Even before the bell considering the atmosphere. They began with a counter sequence to reference only having met 3 days beforehand. It didn't look choreographed like such things normally would. It's all down to the split second timings of the counters to make yourself look reactive rather than following a set pattern. As Indy wrestling shows this actually takes a fair amount of skill.

I loved how the bout was structured with meaningful periods of domination before the momentum switched. The timings of each segment and the transitions were excellent. Whenever Taue got desperate he'd go after the injured eye, drawing heel heat. The crowd couldn't keep up dai boo-ing for long as he was such a fucking boss all tournament. The ring apron nodawa again caused devastation. Just like Kawada and Kobashi before him, Misawa was fighting defensively to survive. The difference was that he was able to cling on and then launch a glorious fightback. Some killer near falls down the stretch. They absolutely could've gone with a Taue win. Any criticisms would be nit-picking. An all time classic.

#19 Shrike02

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Posted 03 August 2017 - 09:10 PM

Best singles match I've seen from 1995 so far in my viewing. I would give it the full 5 stars.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: AJPW, Championship Carnival, April 15, 1995, Mitsuharu Misawa, Akira Taue, 5*, Budokan Hall

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