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#21 Jimmy Redman

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 07:07 PM

Kind of like what Cena is doing now, adding indyriffic moves at this stage of his career to reflect the current style?



#22 jdw

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 07:13 PM

I don't have a problem with Cena adding stuff.

 

Though it would be a stretch to call what Baba added as being indyriffic. Or Tenryu or Jumbo and Hansen adding the powerbomb to their moveset.



#23 goc

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 07:14 PM

The indyriffic thing was just a reference to Cena with him busting out (really ugly) Code Reds and stuff now.



#24 jdw

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 07:25 PM

I'm well aware of the Code Red Discussion and got the reference. :)



#25 Jimmy Redman

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 07:52 PM

Yeah I wasn't saying that Baba's moves were indyriffic. Just Cena's. The point is that they were/are both adding moves to keep up with the current style du jour even though they've been on top for over a decade and don't really have to at this point. The style Cena is adapting to happens to be indyriffic.



#26 si oem

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 09:19 PM

.



#27 MJH

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 02:28 AM

I guess this is the perfect place to ask: where did the idea that Baba is/was the perfect wresting psychologist come from?



#28 Jingus

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 06:30 AM

Being the boss of the best-booked company in wrestling history?

#29 MJH

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 07:40 AM

Whilst that's an arguable/contentious point (to put it mildly), I was referring to him as an in-ring worker rather than as a booker. 



#30 Jingus

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 04:44 PM

Well then, I guess the short version would be: I don't remember ever seeing Baba do anything in the ring that didn't make sense. (Not counting the irritating fuck-finishes which infested all of Japanese wrestling in the late 70s and early 80s, anyway.) Everything he did seemed to have a point, and to be going somewhere. Even if he was just killing time with an armbar, there was usually a fairly obvious reason why he was killing time with an armbar. He knew that most of his offense looked crappy in the later days of his career, so he was always very picky in choosing what to do and when. And how he would sell, oh Lordy his selling was just magnificent.

#31 jdw

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 04:45 PM

I guess this is the perfect place to ask: where did the idea that Baba is/was the perfect wresting psychologist come from?

 

Sounds like a quote. Who used it, and perhaps we can ask that person.



#32 elliott

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 05:01 PM

Being the boss of the best-booked company in wrestling history?

 

I think Baba was an incredibly smart worker. On the short list of smartest workers I've seen. But I would absolutely not point to the booking of All Japan as evidence of Baba's genius. He was an incredibly conservative and unimaginative booker. When AJ was hot it was due to outside forces like Choshu jumping and Tenryu leaving, not because Baba came up with some hot program. 



#33 Jingus

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 06:25 PM

I think Baba was an incredibly smart worker. On the short list of smartest workers I've seen. But I would absolutely not point to the booking of All Japan as evidence of Baba's genius. He was an incredibly conservative and unimaginative booker. When AJ was hot it was due to outside forces like Choshu jumping and Tenryu leaving, not because Baba came up with some hot program.

How do you fit the 90s into that description? Aside from the occasional part-time gaijin, Baba's roster consisted of the same half-dozen top guys for years on end; and they still filled those arenas just fine.

#34 jdw

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 06:43 PM

In 1985, Choshu jump.

 

In 1987, Choshu jumped back to New Japan, and Tenryu went opposite of Jumbo.

 

In 1990, Tenryu left and they elevated Misawa.

 

In 1992, Jumbo got sick and in 1993 they moved Kawada over opposite of Misawa.

 

What happened is that every 2-3 years, Baba was faced with one of his top guys leaving or going out. It forced him to change his program, rather than him coming up with a way to freshen up things while everyone stayed around.

 

In 1995... 1996... Kawada didn't leave, Misawa didn't get sick. Faced with a stale roster, the book just went along stale.

 

One can go back and look at 1989 and 1992 before he was forced to make changes. As each of those years went on, and went into the next year, they were pretty stale.

 

Baba wasn't a great booker. He wasn't a bad one. Solid for the most part over a long run, and very good at reacting to change. But things tended to get static, which isn't terribly surprising since the 1960s and 1970s of his prime were static eras. It was easier to do in those years when the gaijin were the "opponents" and they were changing from series to series. Increasingly static roster make static booking kind of stand out if things don't change over a few years.



#35 elliott

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 06:47 PM

Tenryu left in 1990. So that was an outside force driving Baba to make changes going into the 90s and elevate the next generation setting the business on fire. 90s. It will take a while for new talent to become stale. Eventually they did because they were the same guys wrestling each other over and over again.

 

The most beloved feud of 90s All Japan was Misawa vs Kawada. Was that a masterfully booked feud? Or was it one guy beating another guy (in great matches, don't get me wrong) for eternity?

 

If Baba was a genius booker, couldn't he have figured out a way to do something with the next generation of natives to keep the big 4 or 5 fresh? If All Japan was the best booked company in wrestling history why were their undercards so lame?

 

I'm not trying to shit on Baba or All Japan. There will probably be 4 AJ guys in my top 10 and between 6-8 AJ guys in my top 30 for the GWE. The company has produced some of my favorite matches, feuds, wrestlers, etc ever. But it is almost in spite of the booking that the there were so many great matches. 

 

Late 70s-late 80s "These guys will wrestle to a double countout because we have to protect them."

Late 80s-The Split "Wrestler X will beat Wrestler Y because Wrestler X is older and more Experienced"

 

Not exactly the most exciting booking philosophies.

 

Riki Choshu was right there. :)

 

I also would have accepted Jerry Jarrett :)



#36 elliott

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 06:50 PM

Shit, I totally brainfarted on Jumbo getting sick forcing Baba to change again in the 90s. Geez. That's the last really major thing . Thanks John :) 



#37 Jingus

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 08:44 PM

Burying Baba's booking in the 90s is like burying Akira Kurosawa's filmmaking in the 50s: I literally don't comprehend that anyone could believe that. To me, you're speaking gibberish. The Four (or five or seven or ten) Pillars era was the greatest pro wrestling I've ever seen, full stop. And hey, could anyone besides me maybe try addressing MJH's original question?

#38 elliott

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 09:25 PM

Burying Baba's booking in the 90s is like burying Akira Kurosawa's filmmaking in the 50s: I literally don't comprehend that anyone could believe that. To me, you're speaking gibberish. The Four (or five or seven or ten) Pillars era was the greatest pro wrestling I've ever seen, full stop.

 

In ring, absolutely. The main events were often great-all time great matches. The overall booking of the promotion, unless outside forces were pushing his hand, was disappointing relative to the main event talent.

 

Kurosawa showed more creativity in 90 minutes of Rashomon than Baba did in 30 years of All Japan.

 

I won't hold Baba's uninteresting booking against him in the GWE poll. He'll rank really high for me. As will a lot of his disciples. I like them as workers. I wish they had a Riki Choshu type booker.



#39 jdw

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Posted 04 September 2015 - 12:01 AM

Burying Baba's booking in the 90s is like burying Akira Kurosawa's filmmaking in the 50s: I literally don't comprehend that anyone could believe that. To me, you're speaking gibberish. The Four (or five or seven or ten) Pillars era was the greatest pro wrestling I've ever seen, full stop.

 

Who is burying Baba's booking? We're just saying that the actual *booking* wasn't the greatest thing since sliced bread.

 

I've got the 20 year online rep of being All Japan Fanboy #1, along with eating plenty of shit for the evil influence that I've had on creating a generation of ditto heads following my lead to create an All Japan Hegemony as the greatest wrestling ever. So...

 

When All Japan Fanboy #1 is willing to admit that certain elements of All Japan weren't God's Gift To Pro Wrestling, perhaps there's something to it. :)

 

And hey, could anyone besides me maybe try addressing MJH's original question?

 

 

I asked him who said it so we might get some insight into what it's all about.

 

It's certainly not from me. Even with the positive things that I've said about Baba over the years... I haven't tossed out something like that. I'm not sure how I'm suppose to address a question releated to an opinion that's not mine, or quite mine.

 

I'm sure MJH can point to what he's talking about. Links are good, and what not. Then the rest of us can take a look at it.

 

My thoughts on Baba, if I haven't tossed them out enough over the years?

 

He was a very good worker given his limitations, very smart in his work, and often a lot of fun to watch. I've called him a smarter version of Taue, and that's not comparing him to the version of Taue that I like less than most these days, but the version of Taue that I've pimped the shit out of. Praise.



#40 jdw

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Posted 04 September 2015 - 12:08 AM

 

Burying Baba's booking in the 90s is like burying Akira Kurosawa's filmmaking in the 50s: I literally don't comprehend that anyone could believe that. To me, you're speaking gibberish. The Four (or five or seven or ten) Pillars era was the greatest pro wrestling I've ever seen, full stop.

 

In ring, absolutely. The main events were often great-all time great matches. The overall booking of the promotion, unless outside forces were pushing his hand, was disappointing relative to the main event talent.

 

Kurosawa showed more creativity in 90 minutes of Rashomon than Baba did in 30 years of All Japan.

 

I won't hold Baba's uninteresting booking against him in the GWE poll. He'll rank really high for me. As will a lot of his disciples. I like them as workers. I wish they had a Riki Choshu type booker.

 

 

I don't wish they had Choshu. I liked the contrast. 6/9/95 meant something because there has been a delay. If Choshu were booking, Kawada would have gotten a pin on Misawa before Misawa even won the Triple Crown. Jumbo would have jobbed to a bunch of younger guys in the 1992 Carny.

 

What Choshu did was cool for New Japan for a good stretch. What Baba did for All Japan was good for stretch. The contrast is nice.






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