ZERO1 “ZERO1 FOURTEEN”
March 1st, 2015
Tokyo Korakuen Hall
I am jumping ahead a bit simply because I heard good things about the main event and I wanted to watch it. Well while I watch it I may as well review it, so here we are. Besides the main event looking good there are two other Championship matches as well, and also some of the best wrestlers of WRESTLE-1 invade. Some of these will definitely be clipped, let’s see how much airs.
KAMIKAZE and Kengo vs. Yusaku Obata and Yoshikazu Yokoyama: KAMIKAZE and Obata start off and they immediately start trading slaps and elbows. Yokoyama runs in and trades elbows with KAMIKAZE also but KAMIKAZE dropkicks him. We clip ahead as Obata hits a jumping lariat and KAMIKAZE is double teamed in the corner. Diving elbow drop by Yokoyama to KAMIKAZE and Obata dropkicks him for two. Diving doublestomp to the back by Obata and he hits a fisherman buster. Things clips make it took like KAMIKAZE was just dominated in this match. Obata goes up top but Kengo grabs him, giving KAMIKAZE time to recover. KAMIKAZE throws off Obata, KAMIKAZE hits a sitdown powerbomb followed by a brainbuster but it gets two. Moonsault by KAMIKAZE and he picks up the three count.
More than half of this was clipped so no score, but Obata looked good here.
Ryouji Sai, Demon Ueda, and TARU vs. Takashi Sasaki, Masashi Takeda, and Toru Sugiura: They brawl to start, but things settle down with Takeda and Ueda in the ring with chairs. Takeda’s chair breaks and flies into the crowd (seems dangerous) but Ueda gets the advantage. Everyone else is still battling around the ring as Takeda and Ueda go back outside as well. Sai and Takeda get in the ring and Sai hits a military press slam. Spear by Takeda and he tags in Sasaki. Sai kicks Sasaki but Sasaki hits a snap DDT. Ueda runs in and is double teamed, and Sugiura hits a senton on Ueda for a two count. Sugiura goes up top and he hits a missile dropkick. Sugiura is hit by a chair, followed by a backdrop suplex for two. Ueda picks up Sugiura and he nails the Lucifer Hammer for the three count.
Also extremely clipped, can’t really get into a match when 25% was shown but what they showed was fine. Probably a smart match to clip, the Lucifer Hammer terrifies me but I love to see it anyway.
International Jr. Heavyweight and NWA World Jr. Heavyweight Championship (c) Jason Lee vs. Minoru Tanaka: Even this is clipped, dammit ZERO1. Tanaka gets the upper hand to start the match and Lee ends up outside the ring. Tanaka goes out too and hits a vertical suplex on the floor but Lee fights back with elbows. After trading strikes they return to the ring and Lee hits a vertical suplex. They trade strikes near the corner, kicks by Tanaka but Lee hits an enzigieri. Tanaka lands outside the ring and Lee hits a missile dropkick off the apron. Missile dropkick from the top turnbuckle by Lee but Tanaka catches a kick. Tornado DDT by Lee, but it gets a two count. Single arm suplex by Tanaka, he delivers a dropkick followed by a brainbuster for a two count. We clip ahead as Tanaka hits a suplex off the top turnbuckle but Lee quickly kicks out. Tanaka hits a pair of kicks to the head and he slaps on a cross armbreaker. Lee gets out of it and he applies La Magistral for two. They trade waistlocks and Tanaka hits a release German suplex. Tanaka gets Lee on his shoulders and he hits a death valley bomb. Tornado Kaki Cutter by Tanaka, and he picks up the three count! Tanaka is the new champion.
I am going to score this even though less than half was shown. I enjoyed what was here, I really like Tanaka, he always delivers in his matches. A fun title match, I just wish more was shown. **1/2
NWA International Lightweight Tag Team Championship (c) Shuji Kondo and Seiki Yoshioka vs. Takuya Sugawara and “brother” YASSHI: They trade elbows and chops to start things as Sugawara and Yoshioka stay in the ring to battle it out. Enzigieri by Sugawara and he tags in YASSHI. Yoshioka hits a jumping kick on YASSHI and he kicks him in the back. Kondo takes YASSHI out of the ring and he hits a vertical suplex. Yoshioka then dropkicks Yoshioka still on the floor, until Kondo and YASSHI return to the ring. YASSHI gets away from Kondo and he hits a release German suplex. YASSHI tags in Sugawara but Yoshioka kicks Sugawara in the corner. Sugawara hits a backbreaker on Yoshioka, Sugawara then dropkicks Kondo for two. Kondo double teams YASSHI and Sugawara, and he tags in Yoshioka. Yoshioka kicks YASSHI out of the ring, and Yoshioka kicks Sugawara in the corner before hitting a tornado DDT. Yoshioka kicks Sugawara but Sugawara avoids the scissors kick. TCO by Sugawara but Kondo runs in to help. Kondo hits The Original on Sugawara, jumping kick by Yoshioka but it gets two. Sugawara catches Yoshioka’s kick and goes off the ropes, but Kondo levels Sugawara with a lariat and Yoshioka kicks him in the chest for two. Kondo waits for Sugawara to get up but YASSHI cuts him off, Yoshioka goes off the ropes and he hits La Mistica on Sugawara followed by a roll-up for a two count. Yoshioka goes off the ropes but Sugawara avoids the sliding kick. Lariat by Sugawara and he hits one on Kondo as well. Kondo falls out of the ring and YASSHI sails out onto him with a tope suicida. Lariat by Sugawara to Yoshioka, he picks him up and he hits a brainbuster for a two count. Sugawara picks up Yoshioka and he nails the Shiisanputa for the three count. New champions!
ZERO1 hates showing matches in full as a good bit of this was cut too. Kondo and Yoshioka are a fantastic team, Sugawara and YASSHI didn’t do much for me here as they fought clean but they didn’t look bad. Sugawara’s signature moves lack impact but what can ya do. Kondo and Yoshioka are so much fun to watch though, one of the better tag teams so far in 2015. **
LEONA vs. Shinjiro Otani: Oh but they show most of this match. They jockey for position and then trade chops to the chest. LEONA refuses to stay down each time Otani knocks him to the mat and eventually he knocks Otani out of the ring. Jumping elbow smash by LEONA from the apron, they return to the ring and LEONA hits more elbows. Otani regains the advantage and he hits the facewashes in the corner. Otani goes for the cross armbreaker but LEONA gets out of it and applies a stretch hold. Otani gets out of it but LEONA gets him back to the mat and applies a crab hold. LEONA applies a figure four (is Otani really struggling this much with a young lion?) but Otani makes it to the ropes. Back up they trade chops to the chest but Otani hits a jumping kick. Otani goes up top and he hits a missile dropkick. Otani applies a modified camel clutch but LEONA makes it to the ropes. Otani applies a single leg crab hold but again LEONA gets the break. Backdrop suplex by Otani, he applies the modified Camel Clutch again and this time LEONA quickly taps out.
I am not going to lie, I see nothing in LEONA. Someone does obviously, but he doesn’t have a good look, he lacks charisma, and he doesn’t do anything memorable. So I am not sure he ‘earned’ a 17 minute match with Otani, Otani isn’t who he used to be but he still rarely loses singles matches (he hasn’t gotten pinned or submitted in a non-tournament or non-title singles match since 2011). I still don’t take LEONA as a threat and I just wasn’t impressed even though it was fundamentally sound. *1/4
Ikuto Hidaka and Mineo Fujita vs. Yuko Miyamoto and Isami Kodaka: Kodaka and Hidaka start off the match and Hidaka knocks Kodaka to the mat. Cartwheel kick by Hidaka, he drops Kodaka on the apron and trips Kodaka down to the floor. Corkscrew Asai Moonsault by Hidaka, then Fujita goes up top and hits a tope con hilo. Kodaka gets on the apron and dropkicks Hidaka in the knee (we clipped ahead a bit). Hidaka applies an ankle hold and tags in Fujita. Fujita kicks Miyamoto in the groin in the corner and he hits an enzigieri. Miyamoto lariats the referee by accident, allowing Fujita to set up Miyamoto in the corner and kick him in the groin. Running dropkick by Fujita to the nuts, but Kodaka runs in to help. Hidaka kicks everyone, Fujita goes up top but Kodaka shakes the ropes. Diving double kneedrop by Kodaka to Fujita, and Miyamoto covers him for a two count. Powerbomb by Miyamoto but Hidaka breaks up the cover. Kodaka and Hidaka trade slaps, Fujita returns but Kodaka dives out of the ring with a tope suicida onto Hidaka. Kodaka kicks Fujita, Miyamoto hits him with the Fire Thunder Driver and he picks up the three count.
There was just no way to get into this match, it was clipped up everywhere. I’d rather they just join the match in progress, not just randomly clip it. If you were looking forward to this match, move along, just not enough was shown.
Hideki Suzuki vs. Masakatsu Funaki: They tie-up to start and take it to the mat, trading submission attempts for several minutes. Not much I can play by play here, Funaki finally gets the cross armbreaker but Suzuki makes it to the ropes. Suzuki kicks Funaki but Funaki hits a tombstone piledriver. Sleeper by Suzuki but Funaki quickly gets into the ropes. Knees by Suzuki and he hits a suplex. Funaki goes for Suzuki’s arm again and locks in the cross armbreaker, but Suzuki gets out of it. Kicks by Funaki but Suzuki hits a backbreaker. Double-Arm Suplex by Suzuki and he picks up the three count.
This isn’t my thing. It may be your thing, but it is just not exciting for me personally. And I don’t really like the idea of a former Triple Crown champion losing to a double-arm suplex after getting very little damage done. A short and uneventful match. *3/4
NWA Intercontinental Tag Team Championship (c) Takashi Sugiura and Masato Tanaka vs. Kohei Sato and Daisuke Sekimoto: Sugiura and Sekimoto start off, Sugiura gets Sekimoto in the ropes and slaps him in the face. Sekimoto and Sugiura trade elbows and chops before Sekimoto dropkicks Sugiura out of the ring. Sekimoto tags in Sato while Sugiura tags in Tanaka. Tanaka and Sato tie-up, and they end up on the mat as they struggle for control. They go back to trading chops and Tanaka hits a jumping elbow in the corner. Tanaka and Sato trade elbows, and Sato stomps Tanaka to the mat. Scoop slam by Sato and he tags in Sekimoto. Tanaka chops Sekimoto but Sekimoto chops him to the mat. Sekimoto applies a single leg crab hold and he tags in Sato. Tanaka and Sato trade elbows, and Sato hits a back breaker. Sato tags in Sekimoto and Sekimoto works over Tanaka’s back. Argentine Backbreaker by Sekimoto and he hits an atomic drop. Tanaka elbows Sekimoto and Sato , and Tanaka lariats both of them. Tanaka tags in Sugiura and Sugiura spears Sato. Sugiura randomly boots Sekimoto off the apron and hits a vertical suplex on Sato. Big boot by Sugiura in the corner and he hits a running knee. Sato knees Sekimoto in the stomach and he makes the tag to Sekimoto. Sekimoto knocks Tanaka off the apron and lariats Sugiura in the corner. Another lariat by Sekimoto and he hits a vertical suplex. Crab hold by Sekimoto to Sugiura but Tanaka breaks it up. Sekimoto takes care of Tanaka but Sugiura knees him in the stomach. Sugiura tags in Tanaka and Tanaka lariats Sato in the corner. Another lariat by Tanaka and he lariats Sekimoto as well. Tanaka goes for a jumping elbow but Sekimoto catches him and hits a suplex. Sekimoto tags in Sato and Sato kicks Tanaka in the chest. Falcon Arrow by Sato and he hits a PK for a two count.
Sato goes up top but Tanaka recovers and lariats Sato. Jumping elbow by Tanaka, he joins Sato up top and he hits a superplex. Brainbuster by Tanaka, he goes up top as Sekimoto randomly hits a superplex on Sugiura. Sato hits an avalanche Falcon Arrow but Tanaka pops up and goes for a Sliding D. Sato ducks it, knee by Sato and he hits a German suplex while Sekimoto hits a German suplex on him. Sekimoto obviously is the only one ok after that, Sugiura re-appears but Sekimoto knocks him down with a lariat. Sato grabs Tanaka and he hits a brainbuster for a two count. Sato picks up Tanaka, Tanaka goes off the ropes but Sekimoto plants him with a release German suplex. Sato grabs Tanaka and hits a piledriver, but Tanaka kicks out of the pin. Sato picks up Tanaka around the waist but Sugiura comes in and boots Sato in the face. Release German by Sugiura, Sekimoto comes in and both Sekimoto and Sato are attacked in the corners. Sugiura puts Sato on the top turnbuckle and he hits a Frankensteiner followed by a Tanaka diving body press for a two count cover. Sugiura gets rid of Sekimoto again and Sato is elbowed by both men. Sliding D to the side of the head by Tanaka, cover, but Sato gets a shoulder up. Tanaka sits up Sato but Sato ducks the Sliding D, leading to Sugiura hitting a Sliding D instead. Olympic Slam by Sugiura, Tanaka nails the Sliding D this time and he picks up the three count. Sugiura and Tanaka are still your champions!
This was a great hard hitting match. They held nothing back as you would imagine and it was just non-stop slugging from bell to bell with no downtime. I didn’t like the no-sell of the Avalanche Falcon Arrow as it wasn’t even part of a no-selling ‘fighting spirit’ back and forth, it was just not selling for the sake of not selling and it was a bit silly. But beyond that a definite recommendation to anyone that enjoys any of these wrestlers. ****1/4
Final Thoughts: Well this is what they would call back in the day a “one match card.” ZERO1 is absolutely horrible about not only clipping their events, but clipping them poorly. They don’t just join matches in progress, they just randomly cut up matches right in the middle so there is no flow or structure to the matches whatsoever. Plus some of the matches less than half were shown, I’d rather they just cut out one entire bad match than ruin several. As a full card I can’t recommend it as there was just not a lot going for it, but the main event is definitely choice. Grade: D+