Holy christ if you think their first match was crazy then you have to watch this rematch. Much longer and for the belt this time around, but still all around a very physcial big lads match with the best of both guys. It might've gone overkill by the end with finisher spam and no sells galore, but the crowd was still eating everything up by the end. If Lee needed one final crazy match to finish off his indie career, then it was this match, ****3/4.
Tomohiro Ishii vs Keith Lee (RevPro Epic Encounter 5/11/18)
Posted 21 May 2018 - 07:09 PM
This was pretty fantastic. Would have been slightly better if they dropped a one count or two (since it seemed like the crowd temporarily burnt out), but Ishii's gimmick makes better use out of the fighting spirit pop-up kick out style than basically anyone else I've ever seen, so it still works. I have a new appreciation for Ishii after seeing him live three times in 48 hours in New Orleans (including the best of the 3 matches, with Jeff Cobb) at ringside, and he's every bit one of the five best wrestlers in the world in his element. I'll have to rewatch the Cobb match to compare, but I'm pretty sure this edged it slightly. Lee has grown so much as a worker in the last year, as his impressive athletic spots are work so much better when they come out of nowhere, and that added an element that the Cobb match didn't have. I was even biting on false finishes in spite of knowing Lee was gone (though I hadn't read results so the possibility of a farewell win/vacated belt was there). Only thing I really didn't like was recycling the big near fall from the Cobb match from catching the sliding lariat. But it was really nothing in the grand scheme of things. Well worth going out of your way to see.
Posted 23 May 2018 - 10:02 AM
Great match and manages to surpass the first match by a hair. Very much a war of attrition between who hits harder. The thing that always impresses me about Ishii is the ability to project himself as bigger than he actually is, and it worked really well against a bigger guy like Lee. Some of the no-selling and 1 counts could have been toned down just a tad, but both guys still managed to make it look as convincing as can be, something a lot of other folks would not have been able to pull off.
All in all, one of the best bombfests you'll see this year. ****1/2.
Posted 07 June 2018 - 02:25 PM
I came away a bit disappointed here. I am not sure why. This one really never grabbed me. It felt like they were going for big where their first match felt more like something unique that developed organically from their styles/statures. It was still good, but it never got near great to me.
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