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Jushin Liger vs Koji Kanemoto (NJPW Summer Struggle 07/15/98)

NJPW July 15 1998 Jushin Liger Koji Kanemoto Sapporo

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#1 Loss

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Posted 17 June 2014 - 03:45 PM

Talk about it here.



#2 Loss

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Posted 31 August 2014 - 10:00 PM

This is the last half of a 28-minute match, just as it was aired on TV. Ditch mentioned in the match recommendations process that the first half is pretty dull and aimless, and that we didn't need this in full. I suspect I'll like it and want to pick it up now to see for myself. What we do get here is awesome, with Kanemoto doing some nice work on Liger's knee with Liger making a nice limping comeback. I'll hold off on ranking this for now but I want to revisit.



#3 Loss

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Posted 08 September 2014 - 08:37 PM

I just watched the full version of this (from Samurai TV), and I'm glad I did. I saw the first half of this in a different way from Ditch and loved the match overall. Kanemoto goes after Liger's knee almost immediately and stays on it throughout the match. The layout is designed to put Kanemoto over strong, as he takes the majority of the match while Liger sells. For those like me who enjoy a good focused narrative, this is absolutely a match to check out. It sacrifices some excitement for the sake of coherency, but they fully committed themselves to that choice. Some of the stuff Kanemoto decides to Hulk up from is questionable, but it only really happens with two spots, and that's the only real flaw in an otherwise outstanding match. I will upload this to YouTube soon and post a link in this thread.



#4 Loss

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Posted 08 September 2014 - 10:08 PM



#5 Childs

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Posted 01 October 2014 - 08:32 AM

I just don't find Kanemoto as compelling as Ohtani down the stretch of these Liger matches. And the comparison is inevitable, because the layouts are similar. He did a terrible job of selling the accrued damage. I mean, even if he was going to do the hulk-ups, he didn't have to then move around like he was fresh as a daisy. Maybe that wouldn't have bothered me as much if I'd watched the whole match? But something felt off about the whole thing, with even Liger's final palm thrust striking me as out of rhythm.



#6 Zenjo

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Posted 31 October 2014 - 05:02 PM

I watched this just before Maeda vs Yamamoto and the comparative quality of the matwork was like night and day. The build here was so tedious with KK just kicking away and the feeling that none of it is going to matter anyway. The selling was pretty bad as they have to get all their stuff in. I actually quite like Kanemoto from say the 02-05 type of period. There's something about him in the late 90's that bugs the hell out of me though. The cocky persona that he is putting across makes it look like he's being lazy and isn't trying that hard, which doesn't work at all in a big match environment.

#7 soup23

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Posted 18 November 2014 - 10:56 AM

Watched this in full, I do think the opening matwork and stuff centered around the leg does help in the final stretch, but I also agree that some of Kanemoto's selling was wonky that took me out of the match a good bit at times. Perplexing match as all the elements were there for an absolute classic, but the leg work just slightly prevented it from reaching that level for me. (***3/4)



#8 PeteF3

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Posted 24 June 2016 - 10:24 PM

A good closing stretch, but not much better than that. I would be stunned if this compared positively to the earlier Liger-Otani in full.



#9 TravJ1979

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Posted 26 September 2016 - 10:55 AM

I want to check this out in full, but what was shown was very good.



#10 Superstar Sleeze

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Posted 07 February 2017 - 10:34 PM

IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Jushin "Thunder" Liger vs Koji Kanemoto - NJPW 7/15/98

 

Had my witty "Don't try to hit a diving headbutt on Kanemoto" line already and then Liger goes and wins the match.

 

Loved the first twenty minutes, thought they sacrificed all the great foundational work for bomb throwing in the last right minutes. I maybe alone in this, but I really enjoy New Japan juniors matwork. I thought Liger and Kanemoto were great at chaining their moves and really making the reversals seem organic. You can tell how chippy this is from the start. Liger seems really fireed up to take the Best of the Super Juniors champion. Early we see Liger drive the knee repeatedly into Kanemoto and then hit a middle rope kneedrop the first big move of the match at about the five minute mark. Liger goes for powerbomb early, but Kanemoto deadweights him and takes the leg down into a spinning, snapping toehold. Kanemoto fires away kicks on the knee, but Liger gets a dragon leg screw. He goes up for a King Kong Kneedrop, but misses and now Kanemoto is a shark that smells blood. Kanemoto was on fire in this match with his kicks. He is just rifling the knee. The submissions like the figure-4 and heel hook were great. Liger's first hope spot of a desperation Palm Strike to the head fighting through kicks was great. I liked the dropkick to the knee and then a chinlock. Exactly what Liger needs is a hold to wear Kanemoto down and recover some of his own energy. Low risk, smart move. Liger loses control and Kanemoto is able to land some fierce kicks to the head. I really think Liger needs to focus on the head to make in-roads now. There is a huge suplex struggle that feels like the match is on the line. Liger is able to hit a BRAINBUSTER! Huge moment swing here is Liger can consolidate. Liger goes for another suplex, but Kanemoto floats over and trips up the legs and then slams the knee repeatedly into the apron. AWESOME! Exactly what Kanemoto needed to do to swing the momentum back to him. Loved the work on the outside against the knee especially the kneecrusher on the railing. Back in the ring, Kanemoto gets the heel hook, but can finish Liger off who gets to the ropes.

 

Kanemoto hits an overhead belly to belly and LIGER HULKS UP! Match goes downhill from here. He dropkicks Kanemoto in the knee. He is still selling, but I hate the whole a Belly to Belly wakes me up. Kanemoto tries to fight through  powerbomb and takes a palm strike to back of head. Then LIGERBOMB~! What happened to that injured knee? I wonder if the Liger Hulk Up is when the match was going to start being shown on TV. Nice palm strike/slap exchange which would have been better than a hulk up to create the transition to finish. Kanemoto hits a wicked slap to set up his twisting senton. Kanemoto turns a Kappo Kick into a heel hook, which is the best spot of the finish run I marked out. If that was the finish, I think I would have forgiven everything because it at least went back to the main story of the first part of the match. But Liger makes the ropes. Kanemoto misses moonsault again. I also liked Kanemoto immediately reversing the figure-4, that's the best time to reverse it right before it is really cinched in. Liger just throws a German. I am very surprised how much I am disagreeing with Liger's decision making in this match. SUPER FISHERMAN BUSTER~! Finish please...kick out! Tombstone...Diving Headbutt missed...this is how the Kanemoto comeback started in the Wagner match...TIGER SUPLEX...this is how he won the Wagner match...too close to the ropes. Third time is the charm, but Kanemoto moonsault does not put the champ away. Liger meets him at top. SUPER BRAINBUSTAAAHHHHH~! Finish please...NO SELL, FUCK ME! LIGER HITS THE MUTHA OF ALL PALM STRIKES TO WIN!

 

First twenty minutes was just excellent gradual progression, Liger looks sharp in the opening matwork, but Kanemoto creates opportunity by attacking leg. Liger wins a major suplex struggle, but Kanemoto come back at leg. Then Liger just hulks up and it is finish run stuff. The finish run stuff was good, but it just felt like a lot of moves. There were individual spots that were great like kappo kick into the heel hook or super Fisherman Buster, but too many weird no selling choices brought it down. There is way too much good call this anything less than great. Just a frustrating match because it could have been so much more. ****

 







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: NJPW, July 15, 1998, Jushin Liger, Koji Kanemoto, Sapporo

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