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  July 30, 2000



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READER ALERT: For all the latest wrestling happenings, check out our News & Rumours section.

New Japan Pro Wrestling's 1st Pay-Per-View
New Japan Pro Wrestling's
1st Pay-Per-View

Sunday July 30th, 2000 - Yokohama Arena
Yokohama-Japan



As part of SLAM! Wrestling's growing commitment to provide in-depth coverage of International wrestling, we are proud to present a full preview of New Japan Pro Wrestling's first ever pay-per-view event. Airing this Sunday on SkyPerfecTV in Japan, the main event will see New Japan booker Riki Choshu step out of retirement to face FMW founder and the original King of Hardcore Atsushi Onita in an explosive, barb-wire, death match. Will Onita make Choshu another one of his helpless victims or will Choshu outdo Onita at his own game? Find out what the experts say. Offering their picks and predictions for this event are SLAM's own John Molinaro and Live Audio Wrestling's Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski. John Molinaro will have a full report on the show Sunday afternoon.

The Main Event


Riki Choshu

New Japan booker, Japanese wrestling legend
Best Move: Riki Lariat (running clothesline)
Best Moment:Winning three IWGP Heavyweight titles, winning the G1 Climax tournament in '96

VS


Atsushi Onita

Founder of Frontier Martial-arts Wrestling (FMW)
Best Move: Throwing his opponent into the exploding barb-wire.
Best Moment: Defeating Terry Funk in an exploding ring barbed wire land mine match, May 5, 1993 in Kawasaki, Japan.


SLAM! Predictions

  • John Molinaro: Should be interesting to see how these two legends work together. Choshu's been retired for over two years now and will be rusty so it'll be up to Onita to carry Choshu through this match. While it's hard to believe Onita would agree to lose a match that he made famous, I just don't see Choshu coming out of retirement to put over Onita. Go with Choshu.

  • Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski : I would guess that they are putting a lot of faith in the Choshu vs Onita main event to draw people. I'm sure it will since it is something that they have been hinting at since 1998. I've got Japanese wrestling magazines from that time that feature Onita challenging Choshu even then. I would expect Choshu to win if he is going to come out of retirement and Onita to take the fall since he is talking about going into retirement after this match. Whether it will be a good match is another story all together.



    Shiro Koshinaka

    Underrated worker, mainstay of New Japan roster
    Best Move: Flying butt-drop
    Best Moment: Winning the first Top of the Super Juniors tournament in 1988, three-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight champ.

    VS


    Koji Kanemoto

    Pound for pound best worker in the world
    Best Move: Northern Lighs Suplex, moonsault.
    Best Moments: Winning the Top of the Super Jnior tournament in '97, three-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight champ.


    SLAM! Predictions

  • John Molinaro: Seeing how all the junior heavyweights were buried in their matches against the heavyweights back in April at the Tokyo Dome, I suspect that things will be different this time. While Koshinaka is an underrated worker in Japan, he is not in the league of Kaneoto. They need to rebuild Kanemoto after jobbing him out in the Top of the Super Juniors tournament and a win here would be a step in the right direction.

  • Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski : Koshinaka over Kanemoto.



    Shinjiro Ohtani

    One of the best junior heavyweights in the world
    Best Move: Springboard dropkick, Dragon suplex.
    Best Moment: Winning the IWGP Junior Heavyweight title in '97.

    VS

    Takashi Iizuka

    Underrated heavyweight
    Best Move: Iizuka kick.
    Best Moment: Winning the IWGP Tag titles with Kazuo Yamazaki in '96.


    SLAM! Predictions

  • John Molinaro: New Japan appears to be set to give Iizuka a push in the coming months and a more deserving guy I can't think of. He's toiled in the mid-card for long enough and deserves his shot. I'm an admitted Ohtani-mark and I'd love to see him go over here but it won't happen. Pick Iizuka.

  • Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski : I would love to see Ohtani win his match, especially after losing the Juniors's tournament to Takiawa earlier this year. He deserves to get a lot more attention than he has lately. However, since Iizuka got a title shot at Kensuke Sasaki last week, whether he won or not, I'm sure he'll go over Ohtani.


    Under card matches

    Match John Molinaro Dan Lovranski
    Shin'ya Makabe vs Hiroshi Tanahashi
    Makabe Makabe
    Minoru Tanaka vs Akira Nogami
    Tanaka Tanaka
    Junji Hirata vs Kenzo Suzuki
    Hirata Hirata
    Kensuke Sasaki & Yuji Nagata vs. Manabu Nakanishi & Yutaka Yoshie
    Sasaki & Nagata Sasaki & Nagata

    New Japan's 1st PPV a blast




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