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Yoshihiro Takayama


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#1 Grimmas

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Posted 14 September 2014 - 08:18 AM

Discuss here.



#2 dawho5

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Posted 14 September 2014 - 10:16 AM

Short run as a main eventer, but he made it into a really great run.  Watching his matches from 2002-2009 I really started to love the guy.  I can't say he'd be top 50, but he'd definitely have a shot at bottom half.



#3 Loss

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Posted 14 September 2014 - 11:28 AM

Takayama's pre-All Japan career is a bit underrated, I find. I enjoyed plenty of matches he had in UWFI as early as 1992. I'll come back and provide specific match recommendations.



#4 dawho5

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Posted 14 September 2014 - 08:39 PM

He does have some good stuff from 90s AJPW also:

 

Kobashi/Akiyama vs. Takayama/Kakihara 4/98
Kobashi/Ace/Hase vs. Albright/Takayama/Kakihara 7/18/98
Holy Demon Army vs. Takayama/Kakihara 10/31/98
Kawada vs. Takayama 7/17/99
Misawa vs. Takayama 9/4/99
Kobashi/Akiyama/Shiga vs. Takayama/Omori/Fuchi 10/9/99
Kobashi vs. Takayama 5/26/00



#5 Ditch

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Posted 14 September 2014 - 10:07 PM

I was the only real Takayama supporter in the SC vote. I stand by it. Some good matches in UWFi, more good matches in All Japan, and a hellllll of a 2002-2004 run before the stroke. Plus a few more strong outings since his return as icing.

#6 Timbo Slice

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Posted 15 September 2014 - 01:25 AM

For someone with such a short peak, he really did have some tremendous times as a top guy. Would have heard arguments for him as the best worker in the world in 2002. I'd have to think long and hard about him not making a Top 100, but it's gonna be close.



#7 Steenalized

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Posted 08 October 2014 - 11:20 AM

I was worried that Takayama hadn't somehow been nominated yet. I need to see more of his 90s work, but his matches in the first half of the 2000s get him a spot on my list. The guy was absolutely stellar, one of the best at making every move feel important. 



#8 DylanZero

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Posted 09 October 2014 - 03:54 AM

I actually liked his NO FEAR run (But I'm also one of Omori's bigger supporters as well.) too even though there wasn't a lot of classics or anything. There were many great performances in Takayama's singles runs, also another point in his favor is that he has a lot of good in a lot of very different and companies and styles. Really such a fine wrestler in his younger days out of the all people nominated so far I would say a vote for Takayama is simply a vote for fun.



#9 Childs

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Posted 28 October 2014 - 01:09 PM

As I've watched a bunch of 2000-2009 puro, trying to get a ballot together for Ditch, Takayama has steadily climbed my theoretical GWE list. He reminds me of '80s Choshu in that any scene he entered instantly got better, whether we're talking G-1, NOAH main events or undercard matches pitting him against that pipsqueak KENTA. Hell, even PRIDE.

 

Around 2000-2001, he achieved a great understanding of what he brought to the table, along with that memorable look. And almost like Vader, he could plug himself into any context and produce something memorable. His absolute peak was short, I suppose, but the duration over which he produced entertaining matches was much longer, like 20 years. So that's plenty of meat.

 

At some point before we vote, I'll need to do a focused rewatch of his UWFI work. But he'll definitely make my list.



#10 WingedEagle

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Posted 04 October 2015 - 07:48 AM

How impressive is the 90s All Japan run?  Watching some of the less touted matches from his NOAH era I'm wondering just how high I can place him.  You've got the incredible Misawa & Kobashi matches in '00 and '01, respectively, and then a few years of excellence up and down the country across promotions.  Hell, last night I watched his '03 match vs. Rikio that would've had Kobashi envious.  Very much feels like an early-aughts Brock Lesnar.



#11 soup23

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Posted 05 October 2015 - 07:06 AM

90's All Japan stuff is fine but I think Takayama's best case for 90's work may be his early UWFI stuff as it has been incredibly entertaining to watch. 



#12 Childs

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Posted 05 October 2015 - 08:59 AM

The overarching point with Takayama is that the old wisdom suggested he sucked ass until 2001. He didn't. So that gives him a solid base to go with his terrific peak and should help him in the voting.



#13 Jetlag

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Posted 05 October 2015 - 01:29 PM

Takayama was mostly jobbing in All Japan early on. There are some goodies though,  just not the epics you want. There is a longish match against Misawa from 99 though which is a damn great one and he looks like the Takayama we all know in it.



#14 fxnj

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Posted 05 October 2015 - 09:24 PM

He didn't suck pre-2001, but he also doesn't have a whole lot of memorable stuff before then, the Misawa and Kobashi matches being the big exceptions. I'd argue the stuff post-2004 adds a lot more to his case. I'd go as far as saying that you could extend his peak all the way to 2010, since that year saw him having pretty much the 2 best matches of the year against Nakamura and Sugiura.

#15 dawho5

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Posted 06 October 2015 - 04:45 PM

He had a pretty great match with Kawada in either 98 or 99 as I recall.



#16 Loss

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Posted 06 October 2015 - 04:55 PM

As soup said, UWFI, not All Japan.



#17 WingedEagle

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Posted 17 March 2016 - 10:19 AM

Someone I'll have no clue what to do with.  His run from 2000 - 2004 or so is so great I'd probably rank him top 5 in the world over that stretch.  How to place that in GWE terms?  No clue.



#18 InYourCase

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 07:22 AM

Someone I'll have no clue what to do with.  His run from 2000 - 2004 or so is so great I'd probably rank him top 5 in the world over that stretch.  How to place that in GWE terms?  No clue.

Mid-30's guy for me. Part of that is due to the fact that I really enjoy him in UWFi, but his early 2000's run is unreal to me. He has been the star of early NOAH in my eyes. The Misawa matches, the Ogawa stuff, a few awesome squashes vs. Hashi and Kikuchi. Huge fan of what he did in New Japan around the same time period, also. Super high peak with the Kobashi match and his stuff with KENTA. Short peak and longevity isn't on his side, but factoring in UWFi to his insane early 2000's run and he suddenly has a super strong case. 



#19 gordi

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Posted 07 August 2017 - 10:41 AM

Some very sad news today

If I understood correctly what my friend was trying to tell me (and, sadly, I am pretty sure I did) there was a story in the news over here yesterday that Takayama is now paralyzed from the neck down. He took a bad bump off of a Sunset Flip back in May and has been hospitalized since then. Apparently he can still talk, but he can't move anything below his neck.

#20 rainmakerrtv

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 10:54 AM

I read the same thing. Heartbreaking news :(






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