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fxnj

Member Since 06 Nov 2013
Offline Last Active Today, 06:39 AM
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Posts I've Made

In Topic: El Dandy vs Black Warrior (CMLL 10/15/96)

Yesterday, 09:58 AM

I remember it being mentioned before that the idea of lucha as some alien style comes from over-thinking things and the best way to get into it is to watch it as you would any other style. As I work my way through these pimped lucha matches I find myself agreeing with that sentiment. It has its quirks just like any other style. The holds are wackier, the strikes are softer, and the guys take rolling bumps, but it's still pro wrestling at the end the day. All that said, comparing this to Flair/Steamboat is nuts.

 

I will give these guys credit that they worked something resembling a 70's US title match and avoided the masturbatory catch-and-release shit that I often see with these title matches. But I just didn't see much rhyme or reason to it. Why are some holds treated as instant tap-outs while others are ones guys can fight through? Why was Dandy using a headlock at the mid-point of the match after he was already down a fall? The sort of strategy and progression from feeling out type stuff into match ending attempts that I normally look for when I watch matwork just wasn't there. The first two falls felt like them spending 15 minutes doing feeling out shit while they just so happened to trade pinfalls along the way. 

 

I will admit that they built some cool moments in the third fall between the attack on Dandy's shoulder and Warrior's leg selling from later. But those were just moments. Trying to make sense of them in the context of the rest of the match made them feel flat. At first it was cool with Warrior finding Dandy's weak spot when he hit that top rope move on Dandy's shoulder, as well as for Dandy to follow it up with by going to town on Warrior's own arm. And then Dandy just dropped it and did a figure four. Why? Warrior reached the ropes, but Dandy refused to break the hold and it took the ref forever to get them apart. Again, why? I would have been willing to just go along with it if it was actually treated as a big thing in the match, but instead we got this weird thing where Warrior sells the legs for a bit but ultimately has no issue running around and hitting top rope moves when he needs to do it. It reminded me of Hayashi/Kondo 2006 in that they wanted to get some leg selling just for the hell of it but weren't gonna let it stop them from getting their high spots in. I will give them credit for building to some impressive spots and even a few dramatic near falls, but I struggle to understand what the psychology at play here. ***


In Topic: Low Ki vs American Dragon vs Christopher Daniels (ROH Era of Honor Begins 02/...

Yesterday, 07:57 AM

I want to take a moment to note what a great feel good moment this match is. In ECW's old stomping grounds of Philadelphia, Eddie and Super Crazy stepped aside to let these 3 young guys go out in the main event of the beginning of the ROH experiment and the biggest indy show since ECW closed almost exactly one year ago. And they tore the house down with a breathtaking display of athleticism, receiving standing ovations from the crowd at various points of the match. As has been noted, the main strength of this match is how these guys go all-out from the opening bell with nothing resembling down-time or a botch to be found. There's way too many great spots to list, many of which are just as amazing to watch today as they were all those years ago when this match took place. The most spectacular of which happened near the end, when Low-Ki hit a beautiful phoenix splash on Danielson while he had Daniels in a Cattle Mutilation. I'd always heard this described as a spot-fest, but there was a surprising amount of structure to be found. Ki was the Kung-Fu master with the world's hardest kicks, Danielson, was the submissions guy trying to prove he could kick as hard as Ki, and Daniels was the dark horse. It was more or less built around Ki and Danielson trying to one-up each-other while Danielson's role varied between that of a punching bag and a spoiler. The one big problem I had with this match was the lack of escalation. As impressive as it was what these guys did, there's not much room to accelerate when you're going max speed right from the start and never slow down. I felt it hurt the drama that they just kept throwing out spots at lightning speed up to the closing bell with no one slowing down. If it makes sense, when Ki won the match it just felt like he hit a move that happened to have been what they planned as the finish rather than something that was organically built up. Despite all that, this is still an incredible match that's aged amazingly well and really something every fan should watch at some point. A very important match that delivered in spades. ****1/4


In Topic: Dave Meltzer stuff

Yesterday, 05:46 AM

I find the *****1/2 rating for the BOSJ final just as suspect as the Okada/Omega 7 stars business. If he has now presumably reigned in going over the scale as a regular fixture of his ratings, it does make it difficult to fully grasp what a ****3/4 match might really mean compared to when he held back. I imagine this might give him some publicity in the short, but it seems long-term it's gonna hurt the staying power of his newer ratings quite a bit. I will say that might be exactly what he wants. When I had a subscription 10 years ago I remember him being dumbfounded on the board when people would treat the ratings as the main thing to look at on the older issues rather than the news that he covered.


In Topic: Greatest Match Ever Project

16 June 2018 - 09:16 AM

The 3 people nominating matches is something that I'll agree seems nice on paper, but in practice I don't think it's really paid off. It seems like most of the posts have ended up being people 2nding or 3rding matches just to make them eligible for voting, while you wouldn't have any sort of worries like that play a factor at all if all that was necessary was to have 1 person nominate a match. 


In Topic: John Cena vs Daniel Bryan/Randy Orton vs Daniel Bryan (WWE Summerslam 08/18/13)

16 June 2018 - 09:11 AM

I feel kind of bad comparing this to a completely different match that happened to have been on the same show, but when I was watching this I couldn't help but think, "How can anyone think this is better than Punk/Lesnar?" Just look at the video packages. Punk/Lesnar had this great story about a former trying to get revenge on a friend who betrayed him by taking down an unstoppable monster. Here we get a strange beard storyline with some referee shenanigans. The match also doesn't suddenly grab you like Punk/Lesnar, instead slowly really slowly as they play up Cena's injured elbow. He goes out and gets it checked by the doctor and then works a headlock using it to show he's fine and that's about the last time it's made out as serious factor. It feels like Chekhov's gun that they'd make a big deal out of it in the beginning just for it to become a non-factor as the match gets going. Anyway, they work some nice submissions stuff from there. I appreciate Cena really going out of his way to sell the surfboard as a serious move to avoid. They also kind of establish the dynamic of Bryan finding ways to stop Cena from doing his usual stuff with his unique style, which forces Cena to rely more on powering through things. I do think the match was built too much on big moves and near falls for my tastes, though the style seemed to work for the crowd. That piledriver thing Cena did off the top rope and the transition into the STF looked sick. I enjoyed the finish run, though it kind of felt like they were aping HBK/Taker with the yay-boo strike exchanges and spot where they used each other's bodies to get up. Neat post-match. I'm in the camp it probably would have been a better moment to have Bryan kick out of the pedigree like how Cena kicked out the first spear during Edge's NYR cash-in, but I can see the argument for why he didn't.  Not a classic, but a great WWE moment and main event. ****