From the UK: Best of AJPW Volume II

Well I said I would return with another part of this series and here it is. For those of you who want to read Volume I head on down to my archives at the bottom of the page and have a jolly good read

Enough chatter. LET THE PUNISHMENT BEGIN!!!

Thanks to Gordi Whitelaw and Squat Rocker for the dates.

Kenta Kobashi Vs Toshiaki Kawada

This is from the 12th June 1998

No real back story that I know of here. Of course these guys aren’t that fond of each other but this match is happening for the Triple Crown so it’s about who’s got the belt not a feud. Kawada is defending. Just a quick question, after the ring announcer has announced the participants he says something and then the crowd says something back. What’s the deal with that? Anyway to the match, they go to a test of strength and both try to power the other down. Lock up leads to Kawada taking Kobashi down into a variation of a leg lock. They wrestle on the mat and fight for an arm bar. After some good mat wrestling we have a stand off and that leads to Kobashi getting a headlock which he holds on to. Big camera shot of Kobashi’s right knee with his heavily braced which pretty much guarantees Kawada will kick it later. Kawada gets to the ropes to break the hold and we have a chop fest, Ouch some of these are stingers. Kobashi knocks Kawada outside with a killer chop. Outside Kawada fights off an whip to the guardrail and rolls inside. We have more chops inside and Kobashi gets a kick to the face and ends up outside. Back inside Kawada continues to kick away but Kobashi gets some knees to the gut and Kawada crumples to the mat. Kobashi goes straight to the ribs with stomps but Kawada shifts his weight on a vertical suplex for two. Kobashi gets some more loud chops but takes a spin kick to the jaw. Kawada kicks Kobashi off the apron onto the guardrail and Kobashi rushes in for a striking sequence which is as painful looking as it is awesome. Man some of these shots are BRUTAL. Kobashi takes a mega lariat and rolls outside. Christians worship Jesus I worship Kobashi. He sells the lariat like death outside and climbs onto the apron and gets some elbows and kicks from Kawada. Kobashi takes some evil knees to the head back inside but uses the ropes to stop the Back Neck Drop. Kawada acts like a total dick with come nasty kicks pushing Kobashi into the corner. Kawada kicks Kobashi’s leg but feels some chops and gets a kick rush to Kobashi’s face. I’m wincing at some of the kicks Kobashi is taking here.
Kobashi fights out of a suplex attempt but takes some more kicks but gets the Hart Attack from the corner. He goes for the Half Nelson Suplex but it’s blocked. Another attempt succeeds but Kobashi hurts his right leg doing the move. Kobashi tries to Powerbomb Kawada but his leg gives out. He gets a Powerbomb and then a Tiger Suplex to kill Kawada stone dead but Kawada just kicks out. Kobashi goes for a Moonsault but Kawada pulls him down and then gets a kick to Kobashi’s face. Nasty. Kawada goes for a Brain Buster but can’t get it so it’s high kick time for Kobashi. Kawada gets some STIFF kicks to Kobashi’s spine that make me cringe and he goes for the Brain Buster but Kobashi reverses it. If I was Kawada I’d stop trying that. Kobashi gets a vicious Back Neck Drop Suplex but it only manages two. Kawada goes for the Powerbomb but Kobashi fights it off like his life depends upon it. Kawada finally gets it but Kobashi kicks out at two. Kawada goes for another but Kobashi fights this one but again that fails and Kawada gets it but again only gets two. Into the Eastern Stretch and Kobashi makes the ropes. Kawada gets some more agonising kicks and a Back Neck Drop into the Stretch again.
Kobashi fights for the ropes but passes out and Kawada goes for a pin but Kobashi kicks out at two. Kawada is just mercilessly killing Kobashi here and Kobashi is taking it like a man! Kawada goes for his THIRD Powerbomb as he’s some sort of evil sicko. Kobashi saves his life by back dropping out of it and Kawada is PISSED. He looks angrier than normal. Kobashi takes a nasty high kick in the corner and sells it in such a way that it makes you proud to be a fan of wrestling. Kobashi catches Kawada’s foot and gives him a Dragon Screw followed by a Lariat for two. Kobashi gets a slam and a running leg drop and heads up top for a Moonsault but Kawada rolls away. COWARD. They trade some mega stiff chops and Kobashi gets a Powerbomb for two. Kobashi gets another Powerbomb and heads up top with a Moonsault for two. BULL SHIT, ahem sorry marking out here. Kobashi takes some kicks but blocks one and gets a Lariat. Kawada pops up with a high kick and then falls down leaving both men out. They have a slap fest but Kawada gets Kobashi in a Triangle Choke and then an arm bar. Kobashi makes the ropes to break it but his right arm may be damaged and that’s his Lariat arm. Kobashi gets a Lariat and crumbles to the mat in sheer agony. Note to Misawa THAT’S how you sell and arm injury. Kobashi is my hero. Kobashi takes some punishment but gets ANOTHER lariat and AGAIN falls to mat in pain. He rolls over for a close two. Kobashi holds his arm and yells out. That’s so awesome as he’s basically saying “I know I’m in pain but FUCK IT the title is on the line”. Kawada can barely stand. Kobashi gets a final lariat and he’s the winner after about 33 minutes

WINNER – KOBASHI

***** – that is my favourite Puro match ever. It was like a beautiful piece of poetry. Both these guys are awesome but Kobashi = THE FUCKING MESSIAH. I will follow you forever more Kobashi San. It doesn’t get any better than this. Buy the DVD for this match alone!

Mitsuharu Misawa Vs Jumbo Tsurta

This is from the 8th June 1990

I love how AJPW used to split the ring so half of it was red and half of it was blue. It’s a nice touch. Misawa looks so young here. Misawa refuses a hand shake to start and here we go. They circle one another and feel each other out. We have a headlock and Misawa gets shoulder blocked and then body slammed. He dodges the high knee but not a big boot. Jumbo gets a SICK lariat but it only gets two. I’m sure HHH has watched some Jumbo in his time as he does a lariat just like start except it’s far lamer. Misawa reverses the back drop into a pin and baseballs slides Jumbo outside where he dropkicks him from the apron. Outside Misawa sends Jumbo over the rail and climbs back inside. Jumbo gets jumped on the apron and knocked off into the rail again. Misawa follows with a vaulting body press. This time Jumbo gets back inside and Misawa gets some elbows and stays on the head with a front face lock. Jumbo moves that into a surfboard and the pace starts to slow. They fight over the surfboard and both reverse it a few times. Misawa flips out of the hold and we’re back to the stand off and this time Misawa goes to a hammer lock which Jumbo tries to elbow his way out. The weird thing is in a real fight a hammer lock could be a fight ender if done right but this is Pro Wrestling so it’s just a rest hold. Funny how things like that work isn’t it? Jumbo gets the high knee and into the abdominal stretch. This is turning into an idiots guide to rest holds. Still the holds are being done in way that make them look important. I mean it looks like they are fighting over them instead of Stevie Ray just doing one because he’s lazy and putting no effort into it. Anyway Jumbo locks a chin lock in on Misawa and then gets a flapjack. He goes for another but Misawa gets a dropkick and a body slam on Jumbo. He then gets a beautiful Missile dropkick for two. Gut wrench Suplex by Misawa and he goes up for a Frog Splash for two.
Jumbo drops Misawa’s neck on the top rope for two. Into a piledriver for two. Jumbo gets a Thez Press for two, man if a guy that size jumped on you you’d feel it the next day. Jumbo gets a nice looking dropkick. That’s the best dropkick in the business. Move over Sparky Plug. Jumbo goes to the second rope but Misawa pulls him down. Jumbo goes up top but Misawa stops him and gets head butted down for his troubles. Jumbo gets a top rope high knee for two. Misawa gets Powerbombed but kicks out at two. Jumbo goes for a double arm suplex but gets backslided for two. I like the backslide as a move even though a lot of guys in the IWC hate it. Misawa sends Jumbo outside and gets an AWESOME flying cross body from the top rope to the outside. Back in and Misawa gets a roll up for two. Misawa is getting desperate here. Misawa floors Jumbo with a spin kick and goes up for a Frog Splash but only gets knees. The cover gets two for Jumbo and crowd pop shows they would have bought that as the finish. Boston Crab by Jumbo and Misawa makes the ropes. Jumbo gets a rough lariat for two. Man that was a brutal lariat. He gets another lariat and Misawa kicks out again. The crowd is very much behind Misawa now. Jumbo gets a back drop but can’t capitalise. Misawa gets a German Suplex for two. Misawa goes for the Tiger Driver but that’s an accident waiting to happen and Jumbo powers out. Jumbo gets another high knee and elbows Misawa in the face when he comes from the corner. Misawa dodges a high knee and Jumbo is down. Misawa gets a roll through from a Jumbo pin fall and gets the upset win. And in a surreal picture Kobashi and Kawada carry him on their shoulders. Then Taue, Kobashi, Kawada and Misawa celebrate in the ring. And to think 5 years later everything would be different.

WINNER – MISAWA

**** – I preferred the match on Volume I but this match was good too.

Stan Hansen Vs Kenta Kobashi

This is from the 29th July 1993

Hansen beats on a ring guy to start so Kobashi jumps him and beats the shit out of him and unloads with some shots outside and gets a DDT on the floor. Kobashi waits for Hansen to get up and comes off the apron with a shoulder block. Hansen fires back but takes some stiff slaps and chops. Man Kobashi is in a bad mood here. He rolls Hansen in and gets kicks and stomps. He targets the left arm and hits a lariat followed by a leg drop for two. He goes to the chin lock to wear Hansen down. Hansen is in the move for a while and makes numerous failed attempts to break it. After a while Kobashi tries a pin but gets two. They got outside where Kobashi continues the beating. Back in for a two count and Kobashi gets some kicks and a hanging vertical suplex for two. Then Kobashi goes to the chin lock again showing sound psychology. Hansen rolls outside to escape the hold. Kobashi keeps the beating going with a back body drop for two and goes into the head lock. Bulldog gets two for Kobashi. Kobashi is destroying Hansen here, he gets some stiff chops but Hansen gets a boot to Kobashi’s face from no where and Kobashi rolls outside. Hansen follows with a splash off the apron. He then Powerbombs Kobashi on the concrete and this is a real Powerbomb. I mean he just DROPPED him on the concrete. Kobashi is f*cking crazy to take a bump like that.
Hansen gets an elbow off the apron on Kobashi and sends him in for two. I would have taken that as the finish. Hansen gets a knee drop for two and stays on Kobashi. He gets a few near falls and has a stress at the ref. Kobashi gets some chops in and some slaps and gets a BIG kick to Hansen’s face for two. Hansen dodges a missile dropkick and gets a really close two from it. You rarely see people get near falls from moves like that in North America. Second rope splash gets two for Hansen. Kobashi gets his crazy man frenzy chop in the corner but gets sent to the mat and given some kicks. He no sells some Hansen offence and DESTROYS Hansen with a lariat. He drops Hansen on his skull with a DDT for two. Man Gordi wasn’t lying when he said 1993 was one of the stiffest years in AJPW history. Kobashi goes to a sleeper and locks it in tight but Hansen makes the ropes. Kobashi is relentless not staying off Hansen. He goes for an Acid Drop but takes a back drop and but just gets the shoulder up before three. Hansen warms up the lariat arm but Kobashi gets a drop toe hold and four leg drops, the final one from the top rope, for two. Kobashi slams Hansen down and heads up top for a beauty of a Moonsault but that only gets two. FUCK OFF. Pardon me I’m marking out again. Hansen gets an enzuiguri!?!? And both men are down. Bradshaw WISHES he could work like this guy.
The two scrap on the floor and fight up where Kobashi gets a Hart Attack for two. Sunset Flip only gets two as does a school boy roll up. Even the inside cradle can’t get the job done. Kobashi gets the Gajin Killer Lariat for two. Kobashi slams Hansen and goes for another Moonsault but Hansen stops him and gets a big Lariat knocking Kobashi off the top rope for three. That was BRUTAL

WINNER – STAN HANSEN

***** – That was one of the stiffest matches I’ve seen. They just beat the shit out of each other for close to 25 minutes

Steve Williams and Johnny Ace Vs Mitsuharu Misawa and Jun Akiyama

This is from the 7th June 1996

Johnny Ace is the reason your tag champs were Heidenreich and Animal so hopefully Misawa will hit him EXTRA hard. Williams and Akiyama start us off and Williams takes Jun down. That leads to them butting heads and grappling on the mat again. they fight over the arm on the mat and that leads to a stand off. All 4 guys come in and Jun and Williams are totally in each others faces. Williams pounds away on Jun while not taking his eyes off Misawa. Ace comes in for some double teaming and Misawa comes in to save. Jun high knee floors Ace and Misawa gets a top rope elbow on Williams sending him outside. Misawa gets his floating lariat for two but Ace blocks the Tiger Driver. Williams sneaks in with a Tiger Suplex and Misawa sells it like death. Ace pounds away but eats a back elbow and Jun comes in with a forearm and high knee for two. Legdrop gets two for Jun but Ace dodges a flying elbow and tags in Williams who is all like “Take these punches prick” and Jun is all like “Fuck off take MY punches” Jun runs into a judo toss and gets Gorilla Pressed onto the top rope for two. Jun is sent outside where he takes a shit kicking and an Ace lariat. Williams gets two back inside and pounds away on Jun making him eat the canvas. He gets in Jun’s face yelling “Come on Tough Guy” and slaps him so, as this is Japan, Jun slaps him back but gets speared for two. Williams goes to a front headlock which not only wears Jun down but keeps him from making the tag to Misawa. Smart move there. Jun fires off some forearms but gets Power Slammed for two. Ace and Williams gets some double teaming and a flying forearm gets two for Ace. Rocker Dropper gets two for Ace as he goes for a powerbomb but Jun powers out. Another one is stopped by Misawa and the crowd goes nuts for the hot tag. Misawa gets some elbows in on both guys and roaring elbow knocks Williams outside. Tope floors Ace and a Suicide Dive takes down Williams. Tiger Driver gets two on Ace as does a Frogsplash. German Suplex on Ace but Williams saves at two. Misawa is takingh these guys on alone and ends up taking a Dr Bomb and the entire crowd is going nuts for that. Jun saves at two but is bustled out by Williams and Ace gets another two. Williams gets a couple of lariats in for two but Jun peppers him with some forearms and then floors him with a dropkick making it possible for Misawa to tag. Ace comes in but gets high kneed and belly to bellied. Exploder is blocked with a big back drop suplex and the crowd reacts like they should just bury Jun now but Misawa makes the save and comes in to buy some time. He rolls Jun outside but gets double suplexed and Devestation Deviced. Well both the home boys are finished it would seem. Williams drags Jun inside and Ace goes for the mercy pin but Jun kicks out at two to a big pop. Jun’s selling is Kobashi level stuff here. Ace Crusher leaves Jun laying but Ace doesn’t take the oppertunity to pin and instead goes for a powerbomb but Misawa saves. No one to blame there but yourself Johnny. Jun fights out of a Doctor Bomb but ends up taking a Cobra Clutch Suplex for two. Misawa saves Jun from a double team and Jun gets two from a German Suplex on Ace. Exploder nearly gets the job done but Williams saves at two. Jun gets a rough looking German Suplex on Williams and a Northern Lights on Ace for two. Another Exploder by Jun leads to Williams and Misawa somehow ending up outside and Williams gets Tiger Drivered on the floor. Back inside Ace continues to kick out and kicks out of a third Exploder. A fourth Exploder finally gets it

WINNER – JUN AKIYAMA AND MITSUHARU MISAWA

****1/4 – Really solid match with some quality selling by Akiyama

Doug Furnas and Dan Kroffat (Phillip LaFon) Vs Kenta Kobashi and Tsuyoshi Kikuchi

This is from the 25th May 1992

This is a pretty famous match as it was basically Kobashi and Kikuchi fighting for the honour of Japan against two foreigners. Crowd is heavily in favour of the home boys then as you would imagine. We join this match as it’s started with Kikuchi in trouble. Furnas slams him outside and over the barricade onto a table. This kid is perfectly built to take punishment like that as he looks vunerable enough to die from it but it’s believable for him not to. Hart Attack gets two on Kikuchi and the crowd REALLY like that. LaFon comes in with the Walls of Kroffat but Kobashi saves to a HUGE pop. Jesus Christ this is a hot crowd. Kikuchi tries to tag but is desperately pulled back by his hair. Tilt a Whirl gets two for Furnas as he goes to his own elevated Boston Crab. Kobashi saves again for another big pop. Rolling Samoan Crash gets two for Furnas and he goes to a bow and arrow. Kobashi saves him again giving him a chance to make the tag. Kobashi gest some kicks and slams in but is jumped and the fans boo like crazy. Wow I’ve never really seen a Japanese crowd react so strongly to face and heel like this before. Awesome! Double Lariat by Kobashi leads to a backdrop on Furnas for two. Furnas lariat gets two on Kobashi. LaFon comes in for a splash but takes the knees to the gut. Kobashi makes the hot tag and a Kikuchi Swan Dive gets two as does a Fishermans Suplex. Kikuchi blocks the Tiger Driver but takes a Devestation Device but kicks out at two for a building shaking pop. LaFon goes to the Cobra Clutch as Furnas holds Kobashi back. Kobashi finally saves and brawls outside with Furnas. Inside the faces get their own Double Teams for two. Furnas gets a Frankensteiner on Kobashi for two. Power Slam gets two for Kobashi on LaFon. LaFon dodges the moonsault and gets cradled for two. Kobashi and LaFon do an awesome sequence which ends with a Kobashi Double Arm DDT for two. Kobashi goes up top for the moonsault and the win as the crowd and announcers go apeshit.

WINNER – KOBASHI AND KIKUCHI

***** – Would be my MOTY for 92 if it hadn’t been for Bret Hart Vs British Bulldog at Summer Slam. As a British person that match has a special place in my heart but this match was REALLY close which shows how much I liked it.

Mitsuharu Misawa Vs Kenta Kobashi

This is from 31st October 1998

Lock up leads to a clean break at the ropes. Another lick up leads to a striking sequence that ends with a Kobashi Power Slam for two. Misawa goes to a headlock but Kobashi turns that into an arm lock and then into an arm bar. Kobashi stays on the arm but Misawa fights out with an elbow. Some chops lead to a stand off as Misawa is all like “That all you got?” Leg sweep leads to another Kobashi arm bar as Misawa tries unsuccessfully to fight out. Kobashi tries a chicken wing but instead gets a Russian Leg Sweep and goes to a sit out surfboard. Misawa tries to power out but Kobashi doesn’t let him and adds a knee to the spine. Misawa fails to power out again so he flips out. Come on Kobashi even I saw that one coming. Kobashi chops away and gets a running elbow in the corner. Brain Buster gets two and Kobashi gets some chops to the back in before going to a chin lock. Misawa no sells some strikes and makes a omeback with some elbows which Kobashi no sells and gets his own strikes in sending Misawa down with a spinning back chop. Kobashi gets the shoulder thrusts in the corner and goes for a superplex but Misawa fights him off. Kobashi tries again only to get floored and hit with a Missile Dropkick. A Misawa spin kick sends Kobashi outside but he dodges the suicide dive. Misawa lands on his feet and floors Kobashi with some elbows then hits a twisting vaulting body press.
Misawa sends Kobashi back in and gets a flipping senton from the top for two. Misawa gets his spinning lariat for two and a senton splash for another two. Misawa gets the chin lock on Kobashi but he makes the ropes. Misawa gets some elbows in and gets a Diamond Cutter for two. Misawa goes to the Eastern Stretch and then turns that into the Rings of Saturn but Kobashi makes the ropes. Kobashi fights up with some chops but is elbowed back down. Kobashi gets knocked outside and Misawa goes for clothesline off the apron but gets dropkicked on the way down. Kobashi rams Misawa’s throat into the guardrail with some leg drops and does in inside on the ropes as well. Two back drops get a two count for Kobashi. Kobashi goes to the standing front face lock but Misawa makes the ropes. Kobashi then goes to the chin lock and wrenches that sucker tight. Misawa makes the ropes and no sells a German Suplex, which is so cool when you do it on VPW2, but runs right into a sleeper. Misawa breaks it with a chin crusher but Kobashi chops him down for two. Misawa reverses a Kobashi Powerbomb into a rana but Kobashi turns that into an elevated crab. Kobashi gets some knees to the gut and chops away in the corner. Misawa fights back with an elbow and some raised boots. Enzuiguri buys him some time and a Roaring Elbow knocks Kobashi out.
Kobashi gets knocked off the apron and Misawa flattens him with a tope. Misawa gets a top rope diving elbow and both guys are down. Misawa gets two from a cover. Kobashi blocks the Tiger Driver and no sells a German Suplex but runs right into a Misawa elbow. Tiger Driver gets two as the fans start getting into it now. Frog Splash gets two for Misawa and he heads up again but Kobashi catches him on the way down with a Hart Attack and both guys are out. Fans do dueling chants for both guys. Misawa gets dropped face first into the top turnbuckle and takes a Half Nelson Suplex. Kobashi Powerbombs Misawa into the corner and follows that up with a DDT. Dragon Suplex gets two. Lariat sets up the Orange Crush for two. BOLLOCKS. Come on Kobashi bout time you won one of these matches in this series! Misawa blocks the Burning Hammer twice but eats another lariat for two. DAMN YOU MISAWA DO THE FUCKING JOB! Another Kobashi DDT sets up a leg drop as he heads upstairs for a top rope version for two. Misawa is like Terminator, all be it a much pudgier and Japanese version of Terminator, he won’t stay down. Misawa blocks another Lariat. Misawa rana’s Kobashi into the turnbuckle. WTF? I had to rewind that to see it again. Kobashi goes to suplex Misawa off the apron but he blocks it with a TIGER DRIVER OFF THE APRON! How are these two still able to even walk these days? They go back inside where they trade some strikes. Misawa gets the Killer Driver (Tiger Driver 91′) and Kobashi kicks out! Kobashi gets a lariat from nowhere and both guys are out. Kobashi crawls for the pin like his life depends on it and Misawa just kicks out. Both guys can barely stand here and such a sell job is worthy of praise from the harshest critic. Speaking of great selling Kobashi takes an elbow like it was a hammer to the temple and Misawa gets two from it. Misawa gets the Tiger Suplex for another two. Another elbow gets two and I swear to God I thought that was the finish. Misawa destroys Kobashi with an elbow flurry and that ends it after nearly 45 minutes

WINNER – MISAWA

****1/2 – Best Misawa/Kobashi match in the compilation so far but Kobashi loses yet again! I mean I know it really doesn’t matter who wins so long as the match is good but COME ON! Let Kobashi win at least one of them. Although I am biased as Kobashi is in my top list of favourite wrestlers, Although so is Misawa.

Steve Williams Vs Toshiaki Kawada

This is from the 16th April 1994

Lock up leads to a clean break. Williams goes to a side headlock and shoulder blocks Kawada down a couple of times. Williams goes for a back drop but Kawada slaps him off and gets his own. He means buisiness tonight folks! Kawada elbows and chops away. Williams no sells some strikes and they go nose to nose. Williams laughs off some chops but an elbow stuns him as does some kicks. Williams knocks Kawada down and pounds away but gets cocky and takes a kick to the face. Kawada gets some stiff kicks in the corner and a spinning back kick to knock Williams outside. Williams no sells the guardrail and mows Kawada down with a lariat. Williams goes to the sleeper and wraps the legs around Kawada’s ribs. Kawada makes the ropes but takes a T-Bone style suplex for two. Williams gets some stomps in and blocks a kick. He throws kawada down and gets some of his own kicks in but eats turnbuckle and a Kawada Kick in the corner for two. Kawada goes to the chin lock but Williams makes the ropes to break. Williams no sells some more strikes with a big grin on his face so Kawada kicks him HARDER. Well if that’s what he wants…
Williams floors Kawada with a clothesline and knees away on the mat before going to his own chin lock. Williams gets a Tiger Suplex for two and Kawada rolls outside to regroup. Williams has none of that and sends Kawada into the rail but runs right into a raised boot. Back inside Williams misses a top rope splash amd Kawada gets some chops in. Kawada gets a second rope knee drop for two. Williams blocks a suplex so Kawada goes to an arm bar. Williams makes the ropes to break and gets a Spine Buster for two. Williams gets some nasty chops in the corner but Kawada holds onto the ropes for dear life to avoid the Oklahoma Stampede but Williams is tennacious and gets it for two. Lariat on Kawada gets two for Williams. Williams goes down from a running high kick and Kawada goes to the Eastern Stretch but Williams makes the ropes. Williams no sells some kicks and fires off with a big right hand that knocks Kawada down. Williams gets the Press Slam and drops Kawada neck first on the top rope for two
Williams stomps away and goes to a Pumo Handle Stretch but Kawada makes the ropes. Kawada blocks the back drop and gets a Kawada kick. Williams ducks the lariat and gets the back drop and Kawada rolls outside. Williams throws him back in and gets two. Dr Bomb gets two as well popping the crowd big time. Kawada fights for his life to avoid another back drop and gets a Rolling Kawada Kick for two. Kawada gets the Powerbomb for two and goes to the Eastern Stretch and let’s it go for a two count. Williams back body drops out of another Powerbomb attempt but gets knocked down and Kawada Kicked. Kawada gets another Kawada kicks and gets another Powerbomb for two. Crowd thought it was over there. Kawada goes for another Powerbomb and that gets the win

WINNER – KAWADA

****1/2 – That was an awesome fight with Kawada being able to overcome Williams by sheer will and constant kicks and Powerbombs

Mitsuharu Misawa and Kenta Kobashi Vs Akira Taue and Toshiaki Kawada

This is from the 21st May 1994

Don’t know whether it’s the VQ but Kobashi seems to be wearing pink tights here. A fruity number for what will no doubt be a brutal fight. Anyway to the match, Kawada is furious that Kobashi and not Misawa starts. Kawada goes to the headlock and they do a nice striking sequence that leads to a Kobashi running shoulder block. Both Misawa and Taue come in and do a nice sequence which ends with a Misawa dropkick. Go behind is reversed by Taue to an arm lock. Misawa elbows out and bodyslams Taue and gets a senton splash for two. Kobashi comes in with a leg drop for two and goes to the chin lock. Kobashi chops away but takes an enzuiguri kick and Kawada comes in to be a dick and kick away at Kobashi. Kobashi tries to tag out but Kawada kicks Misawa off the apron and goes to a single leg elevated crab. Taue gets two from a leg drop and another two from a lariat. Kawada chops away and knocks Misawa off the apron AGAIN. What a dick! Misawa has had enough and comes in to nail Kawada with an elbow. Misawa gets the tag and no sells a running high kick and gets his own spinning kick. Misawa elbows Kawada and goes to a chin lock. Misawa blocks a Kawada kick and knocks him down with an elbow. Kobashi comes in with a shoulder barge and wins a chop battle with Kawada. Kobashi gets some MMA punches in and cobers for two. Misawa soringboards in with a splash on Kawada for two. Taue gets the tag and stomps Misawa down. Taue throws Misawa into the corner and throws him accross the ring in a suplex motion for two. Abdominal Stretch by both Taue and Kawada as they switch over. Kobashi comes in to break but gets a lariat from Kawada for his troubles.
Taue comes back in and the K Dojo do some double teaming in the corner. Misawa flips out of a suplex and tags Kobashi who doesn’t fair much better with Taue. Kobashi gets a hanging vertical suplex on Kawada for two. Kawada kicks out Kobashi’s leg and Taue bundles him outside where he drips his knee on the ringside table. He then sandwhiches it between the guardrail and kicks it. Come on thats just mean. Back in Kawada stays on the knee with a stepover toe hold. Kawada pulls over the kneepad, being even more of a dick, and stomps on the knee. Taue comes in, with substantial heel heat, and puts him in the Laso from El Paso but Kobashi makes the ropes. Kawafa destroys the knee more twisting the leg in ways I couldn’t think you could but Misawa saves. Taue gets a kee crusher and goes to a single leg Boston Crab as Misawa saves again. Kobashi fights out of another knee crusher but Kawada knocks Misawa off the apron to stop the tag and a double suplex gets two on Kobashi. Kobashi no sells some chops but a Kawada kicks knocks him down. Kobashi blocks the Back Neck Suplex and dropkicks the knee out from Kawada and hot tags Misawa. Misawa unloads with elbows on Kawada and knocks both Taue and Kawada outside. Suicide Dive lays out Taue and Kobashi sends Kawada in for a Tiger Driver for two. Kawada Kick buys Kawada some time and he tags in Taue who drops Misawa neck first on the top rope for two. Misawa no sells the Snake Eyes and elbows Taue down but takes a DDT for two.
Kobashi comes in but is promptly knocked out again. Taue gets a high kick and bulldog for two. Kawada comes in with some chops but Misawa fights out of a Powerbomb attempt. Kawada goes to the Eastern Stretch but Misawa counters and blocks a Kawada Kick. Misawa no sells some Kawada strikes and fires back with some of his own. Kobashi gets some chops in and Kawada fires back with some of his own and kicks Kobashi’s leg so Kobashi kicks HIS. Kobashi can’t get a Brain Buster and takes a Spinning Kawada Kick and Taue comes back in with a running high kick for two. Kobashi reverses an Irish Whip and chops in the corner and Taue is all like “Oh sorry was a mildly annoying mosquito biting me?” And throws Kobashi down but Kobashi pops back up and is all like “Just try that again JUST TRY IT” So Taue does it again but Kobashi blocks the Choke Slam and gets a couple of DDT’s and a leg drop. Kobashi goes up the Moonsauly but hurts his knee. Misawa comes in with a diving elbow on Taue the twisting lariat. Taue bags him into a corner but Misawa flips out with an elbow and goes to an Eastern Stretch but kawada murderises him so Kobashi lcoks him in a sleeper and its DUAL SUBMISSIONS BABY! Kobashi and Kawada tumble outside as Taue makes the ropes. Misawa heads up top but Kawada holds his leg allowing Taue to get a superplex for two.
Kawada floors Misawa with a lariat and another one for good lick. Back Neck Drop gets two thanks to a Kobashi save. Taue Choke Slams Kobashi as Kawada Powerbombs Misawa for two. Kawada goes for another Powerbomb but Kobashi saves at two as he’s a f*cking awesome tag partner. Taue and Kobashi fight outside which Kawada goes for a third Powerbomb. Kobashi lariats Kawada down but Misawa can’t tag. Back suplex is turned into a body press for two and Misawa knocks Kawada down with an elbow. Kobashi gets tagged in and runs right into a dropkick to the leg. Kobashi gets up and is all like “Let’s see how YOU like it Bitch!” As he kicks away at Kawada’s leg and gets his own Back Neck Drop for two. Kawada gets a leg sweep and tags in Taue who floors Kobashi with a dropkick and a Power Slam for two. Kobashi gets a German Suplex for a really, really, really close two. Elbow, Lariat, Tiger Driver combo gets two on Taue. Kobashi comes back in and heads up for the Moonsault but Taue kicks out. Seriously, people SHOULDN’T kick out of that move unless it’s a special occasion in my opinion. Another Moonsault misses and Kawada comes in for a sly Back Neck Drop to buy Taue time. Misawa gets dumped by Kawada and Kobashi gets given the Choke Slam/Back Drop double team for two. If anyone has the real name for that double team feel free to email it to me. Kobashi takes another Choke Slam but Misawa saves at two and Kobashi gets the Hart Attack which Kawada saves. Kobashi Powerbomb’s Taue for two and heads up top for a final Moonsault, as Misawa holds Kawada back, and that gets the win.

WINNER – KOBASHI AND MISAWA

***** – Come on like it could be anything else?

The Inside Pulse
Well another Volume done and another great set of matches. This is definately the Kobashi tape as he’s in the majority of the matches and it’s a great platform to show how great the guy really is. Misawa holds up his side of things on this one as does Kawada and Steve Williams gives a good account of himself too. I could do with a little more Akiyama though. I don’t know when I’ll do Volume III but needless to say I hope this will be a big enough AJPW fix from me to last you a while. Thanks to Gordi, David and everyone else for all the help with this. It was a labour of love and hey it was a good excuse to watch 4 hours worth of great wrestling. Seriously pick up these DVD’s. If you live in the UK here’s the site for you to use Nevermore DVDs.

Until next time CHEERIO

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