Interesting backstory. I'll see how it turns out...
Ayako Hamada vs. Azumi Hyuga (Queen of ARSION Title, 2/12/01 Tokyo)
I liked parts of this, but overall wasn't exactly amazed by what was going on here. Hyuga seemed to be going through the motions and coupled with Hamada's green-ness that wasn't the greatest combinatilon for a match. I liked Hamada in this, liked her matwork, and she is game to take crazy punishment. I think this is the first ARSION match that went full „puro epic“, building from matwork to a slew of big moves and strikes being dished out. Hamada sold fine and the match had it's moments, but Hyuga's lack of urgency just kept taking me out of the match. Also, there was the popping up and sense of overkill that I've grown to dislike in 2000s japanese wrestling so much.
Mima Shimoda/Etsuko Mita vs. Michiko Ohmukai/Bionic J (Twinstar of Arsion Tag Title, 3/20/01 Tokyo)
This looked good but suffered from having the integral parts clipped out. We get to see LCO brawling and chair swinging, leading to Bionic J being bloodied and becoming the focus of the match. J sold fine and was a fun powerhouse, so this was a nice breath of fresh air. They seemed to have good drama going, but the finish was a little cheap and due to the clipping the match feels incomplete.
Yumi Fukawa vs. Mariko Yoshida - Fukawa Retires (3/20/01 Tokyo)
Yumi Fukawa retires. Hey, remember when this lady got to look like a worldbeater in 1998? This wasn't much serious like most retirement matches are. Decent grappling in a time when ARSION didn't do that stuff often anymore, but mostly just a nice sendoff for Fukawa.
Ayako Hamada vs. Mariko Yoshida (Queen of Arsion Title, 4/21/01 Kanagawa)
Their previous matches were quick tournament finals, with Ayako as a huge underdog. Now, Ayako is the champion and they have their sights set on „epic“. Largely this match was pretty great, but there are some flaws. Yoshida dominating Ayako with submissions and punch combos still works perfectly, and these two still mesh really well. I thought Ayako's selling was great, and the spot that set up her dominance was both brutal and really smart. All of Ayako's stuff was extremely sharp and well timed. However, I expected a little smarter work from Yoshida in the last third of the match. Her selling was pretty spotty and she could've picked her offense a little better as the match progressed, as the previous urgency was a deflated a little. However, they redeem themselves with a great finish that was just fucking awesome pro wrestling. Anyways, this is one of the better and more interesting matchups japanese wrestling had in the store in the 2000s, and to be fair some of the flaws here are par for the course with lesser workers.