The SmarK Retro Repost – Super J Cup 1994

The Netcop Retro Rant for the Super J-Cup Tournament, 1994 edition.

– Someone sent me this tape months ago, but I’ve never sat down to watch

it until now. So by popular request, it’s more J-Cup stuff.

– Taped from Japan.

– The participants are helpfully introduced at the beginning for those

of us who don’t speak Japanese. And in case there was any doubt that

this show will rock, it’s a who’s who: Masayoshi Motegi, Hayabusa,

Ricky Fuji, Taka Michinoku, Great Sasuke, Super Delphin, Gedo, Black

Tiger (EDDY~!), Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko, Justin Liger, Shinjiro

Ohtani, El Samurai and Negro Casas. It’s a single elimination, one

night tournament. Winner gets the WWF Junior Heavyweight title.

– Opening match: Dean Malenko v. Gedo. I hate Gedo almost as much as

Gonnad. Malenko works in his “flip out of a wristlock” spot early. He

also counters a wristlock with a headscissor takedown. Good stuff.

There’s a definite working-on-the-arm vibe going here. Thankfully,

Gedo’s ultra-weak sucky offense is kept to a minimum as Deano controls

the pace. Malenko actually pulls out a Jackhammer to get a two count!

I guess that settles who invented that move. Gedo gets the good end of

a tombstone reversal spot but misses the flying headbutt. Dean comes

back with a big clothesline for two, then a flying bodypress for two.

However, Gedo, International Shithead of Mystery, catches Dean with a

powerslam for the upset pin. Fuck. Dean carried it pretty well,

however. ***

– Super Delphin v. Shinjiro Ohtani. Ohtani, the SUPER-DICK, leaps right

at Delphin’s knee and goes to work like a motherf*cker. I love this

man. He proceeds to destroy the knee with every submission move known

to man. Delphin makes a comeback with a nice tilt-a-whirl, but tries a

second one and gets kicked in the face by Ohtani for his troubles. The

lesson, I guess, is never try the same move twice. Back to the knee,

but Delphin pulls out a backdrop suplex for two. Very delayed

brainbuster for two. I wish he wouldn’t just start ignoring the knee

injury. Ohtani kicks him in the face, right out of the ring, and then

pulls out a springboard plancha. He tosses Delphin back in for a

springboard dropkick, which gets two. Back to the knee, and into a

cross-kneebreaker, which I’ve never really seen before. He makes the

mistake of whipping Delphin into the corner, which leads to a tornado

DDT and the pretzel-pinning combo for the Delphin win. He forgets about

the knee injury completely. Delphin didn’t really blossom until 1996, I

think. ***1/4 Would’ve been more if not for Delphin’s lousy psychology

and the out-of-nowhere ending.

– TAKA Michinoku (w/ big-ass goofy hat) v. Black Tiger. Eddy v. Taka?

Works for me. Eddy works in the face rake, slingshot senton, and KILLER

powerbomb about a minute in. Geez, talk about a spotfest. I’m guessing

Taka has somewhere between zero and almost no chance here. Eddy is

basically having his way with the very young Taka. Taka gets him out of

the ring, but Eddy steps aside to prevent the springboard plancha. It

works on the second go-around, however. Taka gets a rana for two, but

tries it again and gets FLATTENED with a powerbomb for two. Froggy

splash gets two for Tiger. Taka gets a fluke rollup for two, and a

powerbomb of his own for two. Moonsault for two. The Japan Rule again

kicks in, as a second moonsault hits the knees. Brainbuster for two

follows from Eddy. VICIOUS swinging DDT finishes it. Total spotfest

with no flow, but fun. **1/2 Taka took his beating like a MAN.

– Masayoshi Motegi (w/ belt of some sort) v. El Samurai. I’ve always

had a love-hate relationship with Motegi. He looked great and held his

own in MPro match with Kaientai recently (recently being two years ago),

but his persona has always bored me. He looks weird without his beard

here. Samurai ends up outside the ring and Motegi slips on the top rope

and blows a spot. Samurai with the REAR CHINLOCK OF DOOM. Ehhhh, this

one isn’t looking good. Samurai with a piledriver for two. Backdrop for

two. Boston crab, which Motegi powers out of. Tombstone for two. A

slugfest erupts, and Samurai awkwardly works in the inverted suplex for

two. Another awkward spot as a dropkick misses and Motegi seems unsure

whether to sell or not. He ends up out of the ring and Samurai hits a

so-so plancha. Suplex back into the ring, and Samurai gets a missile

dropkick for two. Rana is countered into a powerbomb by Motegi, and he

applies a bow-and-arrow, locomotion style. Nice touch. Ugly flying

headscissor attempt by Motegi gets two, and then he goes into a double

locomotion german suplex, which is reversed on the third one into a

Samurai rollup for two. Suplex reversals lead to a german suplex for

two by Samurai and a powerbomb for three. Didn’t do it for me. **1/4

– Negro Casas v. Ricky Fuji. Fuji is from FMW, so he’s useless. He’s

wearing a jacket with “Canada” on the back for some reason. Lots of

basic stuff here. I like Casas, he seems very fundamentally sound.

Fuji hits a sloppy backbreaker and then mis-times a double axehandle off

the top. A sloppy wrestling sequence leads to a Casas majastral cradle

for two and a senton off the top for two. The Japan Rule kicks in

again, as he misses a second. Fuji with some kicks and a move which I

distinctly hear the announcers calling a “Tiger Bomb”, but that move

doesn’t exist so I must have heard wrong. It gets the pin, at any rate.

**

– Hayabusa v. Jushin Liger. Hey, if anyone has an MP3 of Liger’s theme,

e-mail me. I love that song. LIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGER, LIIIIIIIIIIIIGER.

It’s right up there with the Quebecers. Hayabusa hits a highspot before

Liger even gets in the ring. Jesus, Hayabusa is built like X-Pac here.

He works on Liger’s knee a bunch. Liger responds with a figure-four.

The BITCH-SLAP COMBO OF DOOM puts Hayabusa on his ass, and a powerbomb

gets two. Liger puts on a leg submission hold and slaps him around like

his bitch. Lariat gets two. Back to the knee. Whip to the corner and

the somersault kick to the head. Folks, this is an ass-kicking. Liger

superplexes Hayabusa for two. Hayabusa fights to his feet. Liger

smacks him around some more. Hayabusa responds with a pair of dropkicks

for two. Senton gets two. Nice spinning kick off the top gets two.

Moonsault for two. A really weird and ugly attempt at a flying inverted

rana gets two. An equally ugly attempt at a shooting star press misses.

Liger nearly puts him out of his misery with a Ligerbomb, but he kicks

out. Damn. To the top, but Hayabusa knocks him off and jumps off…but

gets caught with a powerbomb, and then Liger finishes it with the

fisherman’s buster for the pin. Pretty useless Liger match. **1/4

– We recap the winners of the first round. I guess Sasuke and Benoit

get a bye. End of part one.

Quarterfinals:

– Gedo v. Super Delphin (w/ Taka). Thankfully, Delphin controls for the

most part in the beginning with some high-flying stuff, although neither

guy has too much in the way of ring presence at this point in their

career so there’s nothing exceptional going on. They trade machismo

slaps and Delphin gets the highspot, with a tope. Back in and Gedo

catches him coming out of the corner with a lariat for two. Powerslam

for two. Moonsault for two. Delphin with a crucifix for two and a

backdrop for tw. Delphin with a Randy Savage flying elbow for two. He

lures Delphin into the corner and nails the tornado DDT, but Gedo

reverses the pretzel rollup for the pin. GOD FUCKING DAMMIT! This guy

is SUCH a worthless piece of shit. These guys didn’t really click at

all. **

– Black Tiger v. Chris Benoit. Oh yeah, this’ll boost the star count a

bit. I’m torn as to who to cheer for here. Damn, and my dinner just

arrived, too. Tiger works on Benoit’s neck, but Benoit reverses an

inverted suplex with one of his own. Nice. Benoit rips his head off

with a clothesline and then drops him on his head for kicks. German

suplex for two. I’d love to continue play-by-play, but I’m eating KFC

and I’d rather not get my keyboard greasy, so we’ll skip to the finish

as Benoit catches Eddy coming off the top with a powerslam for the pin.

Good match. ***1/2

– The Great Sasuke v. El Samurai. Slow submission-based start that

builds considerably once they get into the dueling highspots. Sasuke

nails the Space Flying Tiger Drop, and Samurai responds with a

somersault tope. Back in the ring and the crowd is getting hot. Sasuke

snaps off a rana-rollup for two, then Samurai powerbombs him off the top

rope for two. Samurai tries his own rana, but Sasuke reverses to a

rollup for the pin. Great ending sequence. ***1/4

– Ricky Fuji v. Jushin Liger. Oh, I think we know who’s going over

here. They trade wristlocks to start. Crowd seems pretty into Fuji.

He’s got this great Jericho-like smirk on his face that you just want to

smack off. Fuji gets the first highspot, with a pescado, followed by a

powerbomb on the floor! EE-YOWCH! Liger gets revenge, doing the Kevin

Sullivan gut-stomp, off the top rope, to Fuji, on the floor. Somersault

kick gets two. Powerbomb and release german suplex (No bridge, all

impact as Joey Styles would say…) for two. Superplex, but Fuji ends

up on top for two. Fuji puts Liger on the top rope and dropkicks him to

the floor, then baseball slides him, setting up…nothing. Hmm, thought

a highspot was coming there. Fuji goes for the dropkick bit again, but

Liger comes off with a rana for the pin. Kind of an anticlimactic

ending. ***

Semi-finals:

– I’d like to re-iterate my belief in objective reporting.

– Gedo v. Chris Benoit. DEATH! DEATH! DEATH TO GEDO! Benoit slaps

the taste out of his mouth and clotheslines him, then legdrops him off

the second rope. Chops in the corner so hard that the ring shakes.

Benoit is my HERO. Dropkick misses and Shithead gets his lame-o

submission move on. Gedo with a shitty piledriver for two. Gedo with

some crappy restholds and some lame kicks to the back. Benoit no-sells

the chops, because Gedo is a big JAPANESE PUSSY and Benoit is a MAN’S

MAN. He does hit a nice somersault tope, but I’ll attribute that to

dumb luck. Stupid powerslam gets two. Sucky northern lights suplex

gets two. Lousy clothesline sets up a pathetic diving headbutt, which

misses. They trade suplex reversals, and Benoit gets a powerbomb for

two. Another one sets up the swandive for the pin. HAHAHAHAHAHA! Go

home and die, Gedo, and let REAL wrestlers advance. ***

– Jushin Liger v. The Great Sasuke. They trade go-behinds to start, and

quickly go into a mat wrestling sequence. Liger with a funky submission

move, that segues into a body scissor, which in turn segues into a

bow-and-arrow type thing, which in turn segues into a proper

bow-and-arrow. Good stuff. From there, Liger does something to Sasuke

which is hard to describe, pulling the head down while keeping the legs

in the air and nearly bending his neck back 90 degrees. Can’t really

explain it in words, but it looked PAINFUL. Liger keeps working on the

back. Rolling kick appears to knock Sasuke right out. Referee tries to

revive him, and he is assisted to his feet by Liger, then dropped again.

Jumping tombstone and cross-face chickenwing by Liger, which is fitting

because I had chicken for dinner. Okay, perhaps that’s a stretch.

Liger goes to work on Sasuke’s arm now, with an armbreaker and MEGA-DICK

hammerlock where he wrenches on it repeatedly. He goes into a

cross-armbreaker. Backdrop puts Sasuke out again. Man, he’s taking a

hellacious shitkicking. Sasuke blocks Liger’s dropkick, then gets the

first highspot with a quebrada. Liger wanders over to another corner of

the ring, so Sasuke gets back in the ring and fires off a MAN-SIZED

somersault tope, nearly landing right on his head. Gosh, I wonder how

he cracked his skull open? I can’t imagine. Back in the ring and

Sasuke with a Razor’s Edge for two. Jumping tombstone sets up a senton,

which misses. Liger gets an elbow for two. Ligerbomb for two. He puts

Sasuke on the top and snaps off a rana for two, then showboats and

Sasuke rolls him up for two. Release german suplex for two.

Fisherman’s buster gets two. Christ, Sasuke has taken everything but

the kitchen sink. Kitchen sink gets two. Just kidding. Liger suplexes

Sasuke to the floor and then gets his own highspot with a tope. Sasuke

tries to climb to the apron but gets kicked in the head. Liger brings

him back in, all cocky, and Sasuke hits a rana for the pin! Wicked

match. ****1/2

Tournament final:

– Chris Benoit v. The Great Sasuke. 3/4 facelock from Benoit to start,

but Sasuke flips out of it. Benoit with chops in the corner. Benoit

ends up outside the ring but dodges the potential highspot. As per

tradition, all the other guys are surrounding the ring to watch.

Headscissors from Benoit. Sasuke reverses to a bow-and-arrow. Snapmare

into a surfboard, then they break. Hot wrestling sequence which leads

to a MANLY clothesline from Benoit and a german suplex for two. Sasuke

sells getting the crap kicked out of him very well. Leg lariat from

Sasuke gives him the advantage. Sasuke with a slam and legdrop for two.

Benoit tries a powerbomb but Sasuke armdrags out of it, only to get

clotheslined again. Benoit suplexes him onto the top rope, gutfirst.

Springboard elbow from Benoit (!) sends Sasuke crashing to the floor.

Wow, how many moves *did* Jericho rip off from Benoit? Back in with a

dragon suplex for two. Sasuke really sold being terrified of the move

well, and the crowd responded. Benoit gets the swan dive for two.

Powerbomb for two. Benoit actually pulls out a Sharpshooter. Why

doesn’t he do this stuff in the US? Tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for two.

Dropkick misses, cue the comeback. A series of reversals leads to a

Sasuke clothesline. Benoit bounces back with a german suplex for two.

Benoit tries the dragon suplex, but Sasuke escapes, and Benoit rolls him

up for two. Benoit ends up outside and Sasuke pulls out the SPACE

FLYING TIGER DROP~! Back in the ring, and Sasuke gets a german suplex

for two. Perfectplex for two. Missile dropkick misses and Sasuke

crawls to the outside. Benoit tries to grab him but gets suplexed to

the floor in a spot to make you go “Fuuuuuuuck.” Benoit rolls in and

out again, so Sasuke gives him a missile dropkick to the floor. Just to

remind him that he’s still there, I guess. Back in the ring and Sasuke

kicks Benoit in the head and hits a twisting moonsault for two. Sasuke

to the top again, but Benoit nails him and delivers a spine-crushing

gut-wrench superplex for the pin and the tournament win. Another great

match. ****1/2

– Benoit collects his belt, trophy and ugly yellow jacket. Celebrations

abound.

The Bottom Line: Hey, you can’t lose with this one. Aside from Gedo’s

continued existance on the planet, nothing sucked here and the last two

matches rocked bells. I found, much like John Williams, that the 95 Cup

was more fun (especially with the participation of Damien 666), but

there was some great wrestling here.

Very recommended show.