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Mixed Martial Arts on Wrestle Redemption

Along with professional wrestling we will bring you coverage from the exciting world of MMA, including news, reviews, articles and trending topics.

Now I know that when it comes to Pro-wrestling and MMA, for the most part people are fans of one and not the other. Most people think the two products are entirely different, and that one has nothing to do with the other, which is very true to an extent. One deals with “good guys” and “bad guys”, who have feuds together for several months to build up rivalries and put on
shows. The other one…is professional wrestling 🙂 Point is, the UFC has done pro-wrestling even better than pro-wrestling the past few years (if that makes any sense at all).

While the two worlds may seem different, true wrestling fans that enjoyed the product of the late 90’s would really appreciate what the UFC has done, and how they have done it. What was offered to Vince McMahon for 2 million dollars back in 2002 has gone on to become a billion dollar company. They have taken the WWE template in terms of marketing their fighters, growth in foreign markets, and storytelling to deliver something new and creative. They have marketed their fighters the same way that Vince McMahon has marketed his characters. Now I’m not saying that UFC fighters are necessarily “characters”, but a lot of them are personalities that the fans are engaged in to the point that you would pay to see them settle their conflicts. These are what the grassroots of pro-wrestling and MMA are; selling conflict for a resolution that you will pay to see the answer to. That being said, they’re not over-the-top characters like we are used to seeing in pro-wrestling, but that just makes fighters more real and presentable to the average person.

The formula is simple: “You have the title, and I WANT IT.” Two guys fight for a title, and that’s it. Getting personal with all that competition obviously does engage the fans more, but it appeals to them because it is true, unscripted animosity that is real even outside the octagon. What’s amazing is that there is no 1 dominant champion, each division has their own title and all of them actually have credibility that the fans genuinely care for, which says a lot considering that there are 7 of them. You would think that having only 2 dominant titles (like in WWE) would mean people would care like they did a decade ago.

When it comes down to business, promotion, and basic structure of the companies, you’ll see that the two products definitely have a lot to do with one another. There is no reason why we can’t be fans of both of these great forms of entertainment.
A perfect mix of the two is Chael Sonnen. Here he is cutting a great promo after his fight at UFC 136.

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The Dojo: Shinsuke Nakamura


Shinsuke Nakamura as IWGP Heavyweight Champion

 

Shinsuke Nakamura

Billed Height:  6 ft 2

Billed Weight: 230lb

Born: Feb 24, 1980(31), Mineyama, Kyoto, Japan.

Trained by: Inoki Dojo, NJPW Dojo, Osamu Kido.

Debut: August 29 2002

  • Finishing moves
    • Boma Ye (High knee to the opponent’s face or the back of the head)
    • Crucifix armbar
    • Landslide (Samoan driver, sometimes from the second rope)
    • Shining Triangle (Nakamura steps off one of the kneeling opponent’s knees and quickly applies a triangle choke)
  • Signature moves
    • Bridging / Release German suplex
    • Death Valley driver
    • Double underhook piledriver
    • El Niño (Springboard moonsault)
    • Front facelock sleeper hold
    • Inverted powerslam
In a lot of ways Shinsuke Nakamura is New Japan’s equivalent to CM Punk. In the same way Punk represents the complete 180 of John Cena, Nakamura is on the other end of the spectrum from NJPW’s number one ace, the uber popular star, Hiroshi Tanahashi. The anti-Tanahashi, which is ironic as the two were once a very formidable tag team, even winning the IWGP tag team championships.

Shinsuke(left) and Tanahashi(right)

Outspoken, brash and arrogant, Nakamura backs it up with unparalleled psychology and technique. A fully trained mix martial artist, Nakamura has found great success since incorporating moves like his patented Boma Ye knee strike, reportedly fracturing the Tanahashi’s orbital bone, not to mention leading him to the IWGP Heavyweight title on more than one occasion.

Nakamura hits a Boma Ye on his opponent.

Debuting in 2002 and garnering much attention, Nakamura was dubbed “Super Rookie” and is recognized as the youngest IWGP Heavyweight Champion in history when he defeated Hiroshi Tenzan for the title. Nakamura would go on to join the BLACK stable, rechristening it RISE, with  Minoru, Milano Collection A.T., Hirooki Goto, Giant Bernard,Travis Tomko, and Prince Devitt. Nakamura would go on to defeat his former tag team partner and now rival, Hiroshi Tanahashi for yet another IWGP Heavyweight Championship.
Recently Nakamura was entered in the G1 Climax and went on to win seven out of his nine round robin stage matches, finished first in his block to advance to the finals of the tournament. On August 14, Nakamura defeated Tetsuya Naito to win the 2011 G1 Climax and earn another shot at the IWGP Heavyweight Championship.

Nakamura hits a German Suplex on Yuji Nagata

The Wrestler: The Scott Hall Story


In his prime, Scott Hall was a mountain of a man – 6-foot-7, 290 pounds of solidly sculptured muscle, appearing as close as invincible as they come. As Razor Ramon, he was one of professional wrestling’s biggest names and most villainous villains, busting chairs with the likes of Randy Savage, Bret Hart and Hulk Hogan in front of tens of thousands of screaming fans in sold-out arenas. And he loved the life that came with it: the parties, the women, the celebrity. But the high life soon started to slip away, and Hall has been desperately doing whatever he can since to hold on ever since. Hall’s slide seems to know no bottom – from his deteriorating physical and mental condition, to his ongoing battle with alcohol and substance abuse that has crippled his family life and resulted in pathetic public appearances in school gyms. But he’s hanging on, somehow. Now his only son, Cody, wants to follow in his father’s tortured bootsteps. E:60 chronicles the heartbreaking story of a man who is a shadow of his former self and desperate for one last taste of the glory days.

Bret Hart with Arda Ocal Interview on The Score

Bret sheds light on the new greatest rivalries dvd, earl Hebner, and the Survivor Series.

http://video.thescore.com/embed/arda-ocal-with-bret-hart-oct-17

TNA’s Bound For Glory 2011

Tna is a company that I was excited for back when it debuted on Spike TV. It was fresh and full of great young talent that performed a fast paced style of pro wrestling. The likes of Aj Styles, Christopher Daniels and Samoa Joe were just a few of the rosters great talents. The addition of Sting and Kurt Angle brought the company to new heights and intrigued almost all wrestling fans to tune in.

However, much has changed since then and I am pround to say I have not watched TNA in many years. I dont check the channel or the website or read any spoilers. I have had no contact with the product except faintly when RVD and Jeff Hardy decided to jump over to the Impact Zone. While Aj Styles mimicked the nature boy persona and Sting became the clown prince of TNA provided for fun youtube videos and unbearable  promos and ring entrances, I had vowed that the company was left to the dogs. Hogan and flair and Sting continue to dominate the program and live in the past, I am uninterested.

However for Bound for Glory I will give them a chance. This promo video did not get me excited but the card did. Aj vs daniels, lynn vs rvd will feel nostalgic. While the main event of angle vs Roode is intriguing. I will watch their product this one time and hope that talents like Samoa Joe head to WWE and I can enjoy their work once again.

New Japan Pro Wrestling – Destruction 10/10/11

Headlining is G1-Climax runner up Tetsuya Naito vs IWGP Heavyweight Champion Hiroshi Tanahashi

(0) King Fale & Takaaki Watanabe vs. Kyosuke Mikami & Hiromu Takahashi
Winner: Mikami (8:47) with a Boston Crab on Watanabe.
(1) Schwartz & Weiss [BUSHIROAD], Tiger Mask IV, KUSHIDA & Killer Rabbit vs. Takashi Iizuka, Jado,Gedo, Tomohiro Ishii & Hideo Saito
Winner: KUSHIDA (7:53) with the 9469 to Gedo.

(2) Tomoaki Honma vs. Yujiro Takahashi
Winner: Takahashi (8:22) following the Tokyo Pimps.

(3) Wataru Inoue vs. Lance Archer
Winner: Archer (7:39) following the Dark Days.

(4) Hirooki Goto & Tama Tonga vs. Shinsuke Nakamura & Ultimo Guerrero [CMLL]
Winner: Goto (11:03) following the Shouten Kai to Ultimo.

(5) IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship Match: [Champions] Prince Devitt & Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Davey Richards & Rocky Romero
~ Eighth Title Defense
Winner: Richards (13:29) following the Contract Killer to Devitt.
Richards and Romero become the 29th IWGP Jr. Tag Champions.
~ Following the match, Tiger Mask IV & KUSHIDA expressed their selves as first challengers

Richards and Romero meet their Challengers...

(6) Kojima’s Return Match: Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Satoshi Kojima

Winner: Kojima (10:08) following a Lariat.

(7) Yuji Nagata vs. Toru Yano
Winner: Nagata (12:08) with a Reverse Nagata Lock III.

(8) IWGP Intercontinental Championship Match: [Champion] MVP vs. Masato Tanaka [ZERO1]
Third Title Defense
Winner: Tanaka (12:30) following the Sliding D.
Masato Tanaka become the 2nd Intercontinental Champion.
~ Following the match Goto and Tanaka met backstage. Got expressed that he would like to try for the belt and that he is also going back to Mexico here soon.
~ These two are far from strangers and when they do inevitably face it should be explosive.

(9) Special Single Match: Togi Makabe vs. Minoru Suzuki
Winner: Suzuki (12:14) following the Gotch Style Piledriver.
~ Suzuki with the solid win. 

Suzuki defeats Makabe. Takayama appeared and laid him out again with an Everest German Suplex.


(10) IWGP Heavyweight Championship Match: [Champion] Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Tetsuya Naito
Winner: Tanahashi (29:19) with the High Fly Flow.
~ 8th Successful Defense.
~ Nagata congratulated the champion on his defense and asked Tanahashi if he can get another shot at the belt. They shook hands, but….

The classy Yuji Nagata challenges Tanahashi after a gruelling 8th title defense.

But Toru Yano takes what he wants...

The Ladder Match 2: Crash and Burn

Reviewed by Adrian Surujbhan

WWE The Ladder Match 3: Crash and Burn

Overview:

The sequel to WWE Home Video’s 2007 release “The Ladder Match” is another comprehensive look at wrestling’s greatest high risk, high drama contest, the ladder match. Hosted by WWE veteran and ladder match pioneer Christian, we’re presented with a slew of matches from WWE, WCW, OVW and SMW.

The Iconic Ladder Match

The Good:

From start to finish the breadth of great matches on the set is pretty staggering. The 3 disc set features twenty-one matches that run the gamut. The bulk of matches are from recent WWE history including from the first Money In The Bank PPV, as well as this years Extreme Rules PPV. The production is a pretty straight forward affair that plays great and definitely has repeat value. Considering this is the second dvd set dedicated to ladder matches, WWE Home Video has done a great job of mixing rare matches like an old WCW gem like Syxx vs. Eddie Guerrero for the US Title to classic, often seen matches like the legendary Razor Ramon vs Shawn Michaels Intercontinental Title match. As usual with WWE Home Video releases, the opening aptly sets the stage for the high risk, unbelievable offense and the OMG moments that follow. The little snippets we get of Christian between the odd match are a lot of fun and add necessary levity to the proceedings.

Mr.Kennedy wins Money in the Bank at Wrestlemania 23

The Bad:

The original set didn’t really cover a whole lot of ground in terms of history and excluding a brief origin story we don’t get any here either. The original did however give us promo videos to open a few of the more famous matches that really helped set the mood and get first time viewers up to speed. The lack of any back story might alienate newer wrestling fans from otherwise great matches. For instance, the Stone Cold Steve Austin vs Vince and Shane McMahon Ladder Match from King of the Ring ’99 really didn’t come across as important as it really was when I went in cold.  Having hit Youtube to recall what lead to this match it helped establish a sense of urgency and gravity to the match, which I felt was lacking on the original viewing. One thing I enjoyed from the original set was the small interviews from WWE superstars between chapters that added an interesting dynamic, really bringing home the danger that goes into these match-ups. Unfortunately like the original, volume two contains no extras. No interviews or personal accounts, no bonus matches, nothing but an online survey. The Blu-Ray contains a few extra matches, but nothing to write home about.

Sheamus vs John Morrison TLC 2010

Highlights:

Ladder Match for the Intercontinental Championship

Shawn Michaels vs. Razor Ramon
- WrestleMania X 20th March, 1994

This match has been well documented but has stood the test of time.  This may not have been the original ladder match but in a lot of ways this match is the conception. A true classic, always worth a watch.

Ladder Match for the Intercontinental Championship

Christian vs. Rob Van Dam
- Raw 29th September, 2003

I can vaguely recall watching this match in my bedroom when I was 14 years old so I was so happy to get the chance to see it again. Van Dam and Christian had a lot of chemistry and told a great story in this one. A really engrossing match-up even knowing the outcome.

Ladder Match for the Undisputed OVW Women’s Championship

Katie Lea vs. Beth Phoenix
- OVW 23rd December, 2006

Had no idea this match existed until I bought the set. A really intriguing concept, that Phoenix and Lea pulled it off.

Ladder Match for the WWE Tag Team Championship

The Hardys vs. The World’s Greatest Tag Team -
One Night Stand 3rd June, 2007

I’ve only been able to stand The Hardy’s in a tag situation and even then it’s fleeting. The ladder match is where they shine. In a lot of ways their second run as a tag team was more fruitful than their first. They’d never shared the amount of success as Edge and Christian or The Dudleys. This time around they were the veterans and clearly in their element. The match was a great mix of athleticism, high risk and creativity.

 

Lowlights:

 

TLC Match for the World Heavyweight Championship

Undertaker vs. Edge
One Night Stand 1st June, 2008

As much as I loved the rivalry between Edge and The Undertaker throughout 2008, including their epic Wrestlemania match and their subsequent rematches, I have never enjoyed their foray into the ladder match. The match was more or less a contrived spot fest. Very hokey and shallow. Not up to their usual standard.

 

Ladder Match

Tracy Smothers vs. Chris Candido -
Smoky Mountain Wrestling March, 1994

Talk about a head scratcher. I have no idea why this match was added to the set. Tracy Smothers and Chris Candido aren’t exactly big names but worse even is the match itself. Nothing that sets it apart as worthy of making the cut other than it’s classification as a ladder match.

Ladder Match for the Hardcore Championship

Mankind vs. Big Boss Man
Raw 30th November, 1998

Another “what were they thinking?” match, a quick, completely forgettable contest for the meaningless Hardcore championship.

Jeff Hardy Leg Drops Edge at Wrestlemania 23

The Verdict:

I’m honestly happy with my purchase. If nothing else, it’s a great companion piece to the original three disc set.  It may be very bare bones and I may have liked a few extras, interviews, etc, but you can’t argue with the result. It’s a focused production, it’s intention is to shed some more light on the ladder match and it does just that.

Repeat Value: 3/5

Presentation: 4/5

Match Quality: 4/5