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  October 9, 2000



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

New Japan Pro Wrestling's Do Judge!! Spectacular
New Japan Pro Wrestling's
Do Judge!! Spectacular

Tokyo Egg Dome, Tokyo Japan
Monday, October 9, 2000.


As part of SLAM! Wrestling's growing commitment to provide in depth coverage of international wrestling, we are pleased to provide a preview of New Japan Pro Wrestling's Do Judge!! Spectacular at the Tokyo Egg Dome. History will be made as I.W.G.P. World Champion Kensuke Sasaki takes on All Japan Pro Wrestling's Toshiaka Kawada in the main event, while the two promotions square off in a series of inter-promotional matches on the undercard. We're tagging up with the good folks at Live Audio Wrestling, as Jeff Marek & Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski, two noted observers of Japanese wrestling, along with John Molinaro, SLAM's resident international wrestling junkie, offer their full predictions for the show. We'll have a full report on the show on Monday.


New Japan vs All Japan


Kensuke Sasaki

Best Move: Lariat clothesline, Northern Lights Bomb.
Major titles held: IWGP Heavyweight, IWGP Tag, G1 Climax winner.
Video Clip: Sasaki defeats Jushin "Thunder" Liger (1.2 MB)


VS


Toshiaki Kawada

Best Move: Jumping High Kick, Stretch Plum.
Major titles held: All Japan Triple Crown, All Japan World Tag, Carnival Championship winner.
Video Clip: Kawada defeats Mitsuharu Misawa for the Triple Crown (1 MB)


SLAM! Predictions

  • John Molinaro: The New Japan vs All Japan feud has the potential to break the attendance and gate records that the ground breaking New Japan vs UWFI feud set in 1995/96, if booked correctly. Kawada needs the win here or this feud is dead before it starts. Kawada has to go over cleanly and issue a challenge to all of the New Japan roster, setting up the next big money match for the January 2001 Tokyo Dome with someone like Mutoh or Chono and that feud could play out into the G1 tournament next summer. If they pace this thing out correctly and program the right guys with Kawada, then a potential Kawada vs Hashimoto or Kawada vs Ogawa match could be your main event for the January 2002 Tokyo Dome.

  • Jeff Marek: A very smart match by both companies that will make this inter-promotional feud the hottest thing in pro wrestling (even though it already is now). In order for this angle to have any legs and work for both companies Toshiaka Kawada has to go over and continue to beat all top New Japan talent. The match will be as good as Kawada can make it since Kensuke Sasake is not even on the same planet as Kawada in terms of work-rate. The heat in the Tokyo Dome will be incredible although it will be interesting to see if it's as strong as the Ogawa/ Hashimoto feud. Look for Kawada to get the nod here.

  • Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski: Kawada and All Japan have to get the first wins in order to build up the feud, but if it's booked right it could turn into another wrestling dynasty in Japan.This has the chance to take a lot of attention away from Misawa's NOAH group as well. And best of all, Kawada should be able to lead Sasake through a half decent match.


    Grudge Match


    Shinya Hashimoto

    Best Move: Jumping High Kick, Stretch Plum.
    Major titles held: IWGP Heavyweight, IWGP Tag titles, G1 Climax winner.
    Video Clip: Hashimoto battles Naoya Ogawa at the Tokyo Dome (1.1 MB)


    VS


    Tatsumi Fujinami

    Best Move: Dragon Suplex, Octopus.
    Major titles held: IWGP Heavyweight, IWGP Tag, G1 Climax winner.
    Video Clip: Fujinami beats Ric Flair at the Tokyo Dome (1 MB)


    SLAM! Predictions

  • John Molinaro: I can't say I agree with the way they're trying to rebuild Hashimoto after his "retirement". They should have put him with someone strong like Nagata and having him beat a legit contender, not an old fossil like Fujinami. If put with the right opponents, by this time next year, he could recapture his old spot in the company and be involved in a top program with Kawada. New Japan wants to do it the hard way, which, I guess they're entitled to do, no matter how much I disagree with it. Pick Hashimoto to destroy Fujinami.

  • Jeff Marek: Disappointing that New Japan had to shoot that bogus angle that saw Hashimoto "retire" after the last Naoya Ogawa match but nonetheless.... The company needs Hashimoto to return strong and if they could ever get Inoki to green light Ogawa into doing a job for Hashimoto they could get fresh on top again. This will be the curtain jerker since the company needs to make it appear that Hashimoto is starting over again. Hashimoto will go over in this one without much of an issue.

  • Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski: This is the re-emerging of Shinya Hashimoto and he has to take out one of the veterans of New Japan to do it. Perhaps they are going to work a storyline where they need to get Hashimoto out of retirement in order to help fight off All Japan. Should be interesting to see how their two different wrestling styles work or don't work together.


    IWGP World Junior Heavyweight title match


    Tatsuhito Takaiwa - Champion

    Best Move: Death Valley Driver, Triple Power Bomb.
    Major titles held: IWGP Jr. Heavyweight, IWGP Jr. Heavyweight tag, Super Juniors tournament winner
    Video Clip: Takaiwa beats Kendo Ka Shin to win the IWGP Jr. title (1.1 MB)


    VS


    Koji Kanemoto - Challenger

    Best Move: Northern Lights Suplex, lethal stiff kicks, moonsault.
    Major titles held: IWGP Jr. Heavyweight, IWGP Jr. Heavyweight tag, Super Juniors tournament winner.
    Video Clip: Kanemoto beats Dr Wagner Jr, then he's challenged by Jushin Liger. (868 K)


    SLAM! Predictions

  • John Molinaro: Pound for pound, I think Takaiwa has been the best in ring worker in Japan this year. He's proven himself to be a worthy flag-bearer for New Japan's Junior Heavyweight division and I suspect the company will reward him with a high profile win here over Kanemoto. Should be a dandy as these guys have had some excellent matches in the past and are both on top of their game right now.

  • Jeff Marek: This will probably be the best match on the show since both have been in there a million times with each other and have torn the house down before. The tag match where Takaiwa and Ohtani lost the IWGP Jr. Tag straps to Kanemoto and Minoru Tanaka is a match of the year candidate and this should capture that spirit as well. Look for Takaiwa to defend successfully.

  • Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski: Kanemoto has already had his shot at an upper spot and Takaiwa did win the Juniors Tournament this year, so I would count on Takaiwa winning and then realize they have to band together to stop All Japan.



    Battle of the Junior Heavyweights


    Jushin Liger

    Best Move: Palm blow, running Lyger Bomb.
    Major titles held: IWGP Jr. Heavyweight title, J-Crown Championhsip, Super J Cup winner, Super Juniors tournament winner.
    Video Clip: Liger beats Ultimo Dragon in Tokyo for the J-Crown title. (1 MB)


    VS


    Super Delfin

    Best Move: Tope con Hilo, tope suicida.
    Major titles held: Michinoku Pro/UWF Super Welterweight, UWA Welterweight.
    Career highlight: Facing Jushin Liger in the finals of the 1994 Super Juniors tournament.


    SLAM! Predictions

  • John Molinaro: Since New Japan will put over some of the All Japan stars in the inter-promotional matches on the show, I doubt Liger will job for Delfin, who wrestles for the Osaka Pro Wrestling outfit. Should be very good as Delfin is an aerial daredevil and Liger is, well..... he's Liger. I'd be hard pressed to recall a Liger match that stunk. This one won't as both can still cut it loose in the ring. Go with Liger.

  • Jeff Marek: An interesting and safe match. Both are really good workers (although Liger's best days are behind him) and should have a three star match.

  • Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski: Pick: Liger



    Under card matches

    Match John Molinaro Jeff Marek Dan "The Mouth" Lovranski
    Takashi Iizuka vs Don Frye Iizuka Iizuka Iizuka
    Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima vs Manabu Nakanishi & Yuji Nagata Nakanishi & Nagata Nakanishi & Nagata Tenzan and Kojima
    Yutaka Yoshie vs Taiyo Kea Kea Yoshie Kea
    Scott Norton vs Steve Williams Williams Williams Williams
    Masa Chono & ?? vs Shiro Koshinaka & Masa Fuchi Chono & ?? Chono & ?? Chono & ??



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