My views on Pro Wrestling from the East and West

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Another thumbs up for RAW

I enjoyed RAW again this week as it did an OK job of following up the excellent Royal Rumble PPV.

- The opening handicap match was a good well paced bout as Y2J & RVD (Being punished for being the last two RAW guys in but not winning the Rumble) took on Evolution's Orton, Batista & Flair. Solid match but Batista & Orton blew a couple of spots near the end. Orton ain't no DDP as he blew the first RKO, but hit a 2nd to beat Jericho. Batista also took 2 chop blocks to his RIGHT knee, but both times he held his LEFT!
- I kinda feel they took the cheap way out forcing Y2J to use his Survivor Series favour to cancel a match between Trish vs Kane. Here's a guy that has every right to be in a main event spot and is being shot down again.
- Victoria & Lita on the same team? Coolness! My two fav wrestling Divas defeat Molly & Jazz, though the small package roll-up at the end came out of nowhere. Victoria has played her psycho character so well since she first started it and is probably the best running gimmick in WWE today. Hope she eventually does win the title off Molly.
- HHH is out next and begins to gloat how he is still the champion and try as he might, HBK couldn't get the job done (Reality was HHH got stretchered out, but HBK walked). HBK comes out and says this between them is just getting started. Does this mean their still gonna be feuding years from now with a ton of false finishes?!? Anyways, Austin comes out and compares their Last Man Standing match to the Texas Chainsaw Masacre, what with all the blood they left in the ring. He then says the winner of the Royal Rumble gets to face the champion at WrestleManiaXX, but was never stated WHICH champion (Please note last year they did....). Austin then brings out the 2004 Royal Rumble winner Chris Benoit and he gets in the faces of noth HHH & HBK as he doesn't care who he faces at WrestleMania is as his spot is guaranteed.
- Next up Kane and Bubba Ray Dudley put on one hell of a FIGHT!!! This was fun 'till Kane got himself DQ'd for hitting Bubba with the ring steps. DVon gets taken out trying to help Bubba, then the lights go out and the bell tolls again like during the Rumble. This time we also get a titantron video clueing us in more that the Darkside Undertaker is coming after Kane.
- Rico with Ms. Jackie beats Rene Dupree with Rob Conway after Jackie flashes her goods to distract Dupree! What a damn lucky live audience as the camera was behind her when she did it! During the match I think she popped out of her very loose top as King suddenly went nuts. I musta blinked or something...
- Post match and Stacy Kiebler comes to the ring and confronts Ms. Jackie, but then raises her arm as its announced the duo will tag... IN PLAYBOY!!!
- Next up it's Coach & Mark Henry Vs Goldberg. Coach was being punished for laughing at Bisch cause Heyman attacked him at the Royal Rumble. Teddy Long used it as an example of how whitey was only using the blackman and offered Mark Henry's services. Good big-man bout between Goldberg & Henry. Goldberg slams and tosses Henry out of the ring before hitting the Spear & Jackhammer on Coach for the win. He then called out Brock Lesner, not caring which show he was on.
- Show ends with a great promo segment by Mick Foley as he confronts Randy Orton in the ring and scares the be-jesus out of the youngster before pounding away on him only to get ganged up on by Flair & Batista. Foley comes back with a chair and cleans house to end the show. Foley's promo was just excellent.

Puroresu news and thoughts
- It's been announced that Jushin Thunder Liger's V1 defence of the GHC Jr. Title will be against 55yr old Mitsuo Momota! Will be interesting to see if the son of Rikidozan can bring the gold home to NOAH. The match will take place on 2/15, same show as the IWGP provisional champion tournament.
- Long time NJPW regular, AKIRA has also announced he will be a freelancer as he did not renew his contract with NJPW. I think its fitting as he doesn't wrestle as often due to the fact he also has a career in stage acting.
- There's also talks of a rematch between Shinsuke Nakamura and Alexey Ignashov. All I got to say about that is that after seeing Ignashov in action (see below), Nakamura better win!
- On 1/25, Kenta Kobashi succesfully made his V6 defence of the GHC Title against Naoki Sano with a avalanche-Brainbuster at 25:58. Much like HHH in WWE, NOAH seems to be having a hard time finding credible challengers for Kobashi. But unlike HHH, he is on a legitimately higher level than almost all the roster (save maybe Akiyama & Misawa). His next defence is scheduled to be against Akira Taue before going on to face Akiyama at the Tokyo Dome. Should be an entertaining match at least.

Caught a good K-1 show on satellite TV again this past monday. It was part of the 2002 World Grand Prix and had the following 4 fights:
- Alexey Ignashov beat Peter Aerts by Decision after 5 rounds. The man who would claim a tainted victory over Shinsuke Nakamura looked OK here. Has very high stamina, but like the description of his match with Nakamura, seemed to not know how to finish off an already exhausted Aerts.
- Rey Sefo beat Gilbert Yvel by KO, or shoud that be Knock Down as he totally clipped Yvel's leg till he couldnt stand anymore? This bout was just killer as after absorbing some blows from 'The Hurricane', Sefo shrugged off Yvel and just battered away before taking out his legs with some sweet kicks to the thigh area. Sefo is my new K-1 fav :-)
- Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson beat Cyril Abidi by KO. This one was over quickly as Abidi was totally embarrassed by PRIDE regular, Jackson. The striker got outpunched by a grappler in under a minute!
- Mirko CroCop beat Remy Bojansky by Referee Stop. CroCop spent the first round feeling out the longer limbed Bojansky, but really let loose in the 2nd round after closing in and pounded away. The referee stopped the bout when Bojansky could do nothing but block CroCop's assault, rather questionable decision and Bojansky wasn't happy with the call.



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