NOAH: Departure 2004

 

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NOAH: Departure 2004 - Tokyo Dome, July 10, 2004

DVD Review

Mitsuo Momota vs. Haruka Eigen (8:03) A lockup to start and Eigen gets a hammerlock but Momota goes to the ropes to break it. They lockup and Momota grabs an arm wringer and Eigen backs up to the ropes and breaks the hold. Another lockup and Eigen hits a headbutt and Momota rolls out of the ring. Eigen bounces off the ropes and fakes going for a dive. Momota climbs onto the apron and Momota chops him to let Eigen spit into the crowd. Momota throws Eigen to the outside and then he fakes a dive. Eigen gets up on the apron and Momota chops him across the chest a couple of times allowing him to spit towards the crowd again. Momota pulls Eigen into the ring and Eigen ignores a chop then tricks him down and grabs an Indian deathlock and Momota makes it to the ropes to break the hold. Eigen pulls Momota into the center of the ring and then performs the giant swing. Eigen pulls Momota to his feet and floors him with a headbutt that sends him rolling out of the ring. Momota gets into the ring and Eigen nails him with another headbutt. Momota reverses an Irish whip into the ropes and Eigen takes him over with a sunset flip for a two count. They get to their feet and Eigen gets a backslide for another two count. Momota gets up to his feet and Eigen spikes him with an ugly piledriver then climbs up to the top rope. Momota cuts him off and press slams him off. He goes for a belly to back suplex but Eigen blocks it. Momota nails him with some strikes then takes him over and gets a two count. He pulls Eigen up to his feet and goes for a suplex but Eigen blocks it and plants him with a DDT. Eigen goes for a vertical suplex but Momota rolls him up for a two before Eigen counters into his own rollup for two. They get to their feet and Momota grabs a rear waistlock then runs him into the ropes for a clumsy Oklahoma roll and the three count.

Analysis: * This is for them not doing anything wrong and executing well. The match was boring and there isn’t anything really special here at all.

Tamon Honda, Jun Izumida & Tsuyoshi Kikucki vs. Masao Inoue, Kishin Kawabata & Masahi Aoyagi (10:58) I think Imuzida and Aoyagi start off and they trade some kicks then Imuzida comes off the ropes with a spinning heel kick and the Aoyagi nails him with a copo kick. Imuzida goes to the outside and grabs a mic to taunt his opponent. Inoue tags in and faces off with Imuzida, he kicks him in the midsection then comes off the ropes with a shoulder tackle. Aoyagi comes in and punches Imuzida in the midsection then fakes a dive by bouncing off the ropes and back flipping. Honda tags in and he lands a couple of forearms then bounces off the ropes close to his opponents and gets a kick to the back. Inoue grabs Honda with a belly to back backbreaker then grabs a torture rack that one of his partners breaks up. Honda trips Inoue down and grabs an STF but he gets to the ropes. Honda counters an Irish whip into a sleeper hold variation and flips Inoue over to the mat with it and then they hit each other with clotheslines. Kawabata and Kikucki tag in and they face in the center of the ring as they hit shoulder blocks and nobody moves until Kikucki finally tags him down. Kikucki then misses a headbutt but lands the second and gets a two count. Kawabata gets sent into the corner and Kikucki hits a running splash then goes for a bulldog but Kawabata reverses with a belly to back suplex. Kawabata follows up with a short arm clothesline type move for a two count. Aoyagi tags back in and Kawabata sends him to the mat with a big forearm then tags in Izumida who rails on Aoyagi with some hard kicks to the chest. Inoue comes in and hits a couple of shots to Izumida in the corner then tags in Kawabata who hits a copule of forearms. Then nails Izumida with some big forearms. Inoue tags back in then runs Izumida’s face across the top rope. Inoue goes for an inverted DVD but Izumida blocks in then Aoyagi tags in and he takes Izumida down with some kicks and drops him with a big kick to the chest. Kawabata tags in and hits a missle dropkick. Aoyagi hits an exploder suplex and Kawabata makes the cover on Izumida for a two count. Kikucki comes in and Kawabata takes him over with a big powerslam. Kawabata goes up to the top rope and hits a senton bomb for a two count before it’s broken up. Honda and Izumida throw the other team to the outside and then whip Kawabata into the corner and all three men hit charging moves. Kickuki hits a headbutt for a two count then picks Kawabata up for a DVD but the move is broken up. Kawabata bounces off the ropes and Kikucki floors him with a lariat then climbs up to the top rope and hits a diving headbutt and gets a two count before it’s broken up. Kikucki hits a TKO on Kawabata and gets the three count.

Analysis: ** Not a bad match exactly but it is a little slow moving as these guys aren’t in a hurry to do anything. The match plods along with no real focus or story.

Michael Modest & Donovan Morgan vs. Kotaro Suzuki & Ricky Marvin (11:55) Modest and Marvin start the match and they lockup and Modest goes behind and takes Marvin down to the mat with a rear waistlock but Marvin spins out and grabs a front facelock until Modest gets up to his feet. Modest pie faces Marvin and gets a slap to the face in return. Marvin comes off the ropes and can’t take modest down with a shoulder tackle then ducks a couple of clotheslines before jumping up and taking Modest over with a ‘ranna. Morgan and Suzuki lockup and Morgan throws Suzuki down to the mat. They lockup again and Morgan sends him into the corner and charges with a clothesline. Morgan whips Suzuki into the opposite corner and Suzuki lifts himself up and catches Morgan with a headscissors that sends him to the outside. Suzuki hits a spinning crossbody block onto Morgan then brings him back in for a two count. Suzuki with a couple of rollups for two then Morgan escapes and tags in Modest and Marvin gets a tag two. Marvin knocks Morgan off the apron then almost falls victim to an exploder. He escapes and goes for a handstand back spring off the ropes but Modest just dropkicks him in the face. Morgan grabs him from the outside and pulls him off with a front facelock then drops him to the floor with a DDT. Morgan rolls him back into the ring and Modest makes a cover for two and then tags Morgan in. Morgan works a side headlock then tags Modest back in. Modest hits a charging ass to the face on Marvin in the corner and covers for a two count. Marvin gets to his feet but Modest just grabs him with a side headlock. Modest whips him into the ropes and knees him in the midsection then follows up with a gut buster and makes a cover for two. Modest knocks Suzuki off the apron and Morgan hits him with a swinging neckbreaker that gets another two count. Morgan keeps kicking Marvin down as he tries to get to his feet then pulls him up and tags in Modest. Modest goes fo ran exploder but Marvin fights free and bounces off the ropes. Modest picks him up and turns it into a swinging fireman’s carry is the only way I can describe it. Suzuki comes in and Modest and Morgan hit him with a 3-D that sends him rolling out of the ring. Marvin manages to fight free of the corner and bounces off the second rope with a dropkick to Modest in the corner then tries to tag in Suzuki but Morgan stops him. They whip Marvin into the ropes and he grabs both men and plants him with DDTs. Suzuki comes in and he hits Modest with a kick to the midsection then counters an angels’ wings from Morgan with a backbody drop then falls victim to a carnage plex that gets a two count before Marvin comes off the top rope with an eblow drop to break it up. Marvin gets sent over to the apron and gets knocked off with a double elbow. Suzuki grabs both Modest and Morgan’s legs and Marvin springboards in with a dropkick to the back of both men that set them up and allow Marvin and Suzuki to hit double 619s. Suzuki then takes Modest over with a German suplex and bridges for two before Morgan breaks it up. Marvin sends Morgan to the outside then springboards off the second rope to the outside with a lionsault. Suzuki powerslams Modest and Marvin climbs to the top rope and hits him with a moonsault for two. Suzuki pulls Modest up and hits the widow’s peak for a two count. Modest fights back and hits Suzuki with an exploder then tags in Morgan who takes a missile dropkick. Marvin comes in and spikes him with a tornado DDT for two. Morgan whips Marvin into the corner and Marvin flips over to the apron. Marvin knocks Morgan down and goes for a 619 twice but Morgan avoids them then drops Marvin with a clothesline and then the angels wings for a two count. Suzuki comes in and gets planted by a running air raid crash. Modest and Morgan with a press slam into powerslam on Marvin for the three count.

Analysis: ***1/4 A nice junior style tag match although Modest and Morgan do slow Suzuki and Marvin down. Still a nice match with some nice work by all four men in the ring. Marvin plays FiP early on and they never really recover although they get a few brief flurries of offense before Morgan and Modest put them down for the finish.

Scorpio Sky & Richard Slinger vs. Akitoshi Saito & Makoto Hashi (16:44) Scorpio and Saito start the match and they start it with a lockup. Saito backs Scorpio into the ropes and then they roll along the ropes until the ref calls for the break and Scorpio breaks it clean. I guess they have a test of strength but the camera is busy looking into the crowd. The two trade some forearms and Scorpio gets a back elbow and Saito responds with some nice kicks to the chest and Scorpio responds with a kick to the head and the tow men go back and forth kicking each other down to the mat. Slinger and Hashi come in and they lockup and Slinger goes behind but Hashi quickly reverses it. Slinger barely connects with a big boot and then Slinger throws some weak kicks while Hashi responds with some weak chops. Slinger takes Hashi down with a couple of armbars then goes into an arm wringer. Hashi flips Slinger over but Slinger rolls through and keeps the armbar in. Slinger backs Hashi into the corner then lands a kick to the midsection. Hashi reverses an Irish whip to the opposite corner and eats a big boot. Slinger gets whipped into the ropes and they fuck up a hiptoss spot and then they do it right. Saito gets tagged in and he goes to town on Slinger and takes him down with some headbutts then takes him to the outside. Hashi jumps off the apron with three diving headbutts to Slinger then rolls him in the way and allows Saito to get a two count. Saito whips Slinger into the ropes and takes him over with a kitchen sink then delivers a nice stalling slingshot suplex slam and covers for a two count. Hashi gets tagged in and takes a weak kick from Slinger but he shakes it off and whips him into the ropes and drops him with a back elbow. Hashi powerslams Slinger then comes off the second rope with a headbutt for two. Slinger recovers and whips Hashi into the ropes and takes him over with a powerslam then tags in Scorpio. Scorpio hits some stiff forearms then drops Hashi with a knee lift for two. Scorpio comes off the second rope with a somersault legdrop for two before Saito breaks it up. Scorpio grabs a modified rear chinlock and strikes at the face of Hashi then turns it into a seated abdominal stretch and rolls him over for two. Scorpio with a jackhammer modification for a two count. Slinger tags back in and delivers a kick to the midsection of Hashi. Slinger whips him into the ropes and hits a spinebuster and rolls over holding the legs for a two count. Slinger grabs the legs of Hashi and gets him in a Texas cloverleaf and Scorpio comes off with a legdrop to the back of Hashi’s head for a two count. Slinger nails a couple of rising knees to the face of Hashi then tags in Scorpio. Scorpio with a nice double underhook suplex for two. Scorpio then plays to the crowd and grabs Hashi with the cobra clutch. Saito slowly decides to come in and break up the hold. Scorpio plants Hashi with a powerbomb then goes up to the top and comes off with a moonsault for two as Slinger blocks Saito from entering the ring. A urinage slam takes Hashi down and then he handstands over Hashi and springs off the ropes into a splash for two. Scorpio nails a superkick then goes up to the top rope and hits his ‘450' splash for a two count. Scorpio comes off with a splash and misses. Hashi runs into a couple of big boots before ducking a kick then bouncing off the ropes with a lariat. Saito gets the tag and he clears the ring. Saito pulls Scorpio into the ring from the apron with a big vertical suplex. Hashi plants Scorpio with a nice lariat that gets two before Slinger comes in to break it up. Slinger whips Saito into the corner and Scorpio nails a clothesline. Saito fights back and takes both men down until Scorpio pokes him in the eye then tags in Slinger. Hashi runs in and takes a flying back elbow from Slinger. Saito gets to his feet and gets whipped into the ropes and takes a kick to the midsection followed up by a bulldog. Slinger bounces off the ropes and Saito dropkicks him in the legs then tags in Hashi. Hashi fakes a powerslam and Slinger lands to get taken down by a reverse DDT. Slinger sends Hashi into the corner and charges nailing him with a big boot. Scorpio charges for the 360 corner splash but Hashi moves out of the way and hits Slinger. Slinger gets snapmared over and Hashi comes off with a splash for a two count. Slinger hits a couple of kicks on Hashi until he catches the leg and drops him with a capture suplex. Scorpio comes in and attacks Hashi and the two men kick away. Scorpio powerslams Hashi down and allows for a splash from Slinger for two. Slinger hits Hashi with a couple more kicks then takes him over with a German suplex and bridges for two. Slinger then picks Hashi back up and hits a fireman’s carry into powerslam move for the three count as Scorpio chokes out Saito on the outside.

Analysis:***1/4 A nice tag match although Scorpio and Saito both seem a bit more advanced than their partners and it shows. Saito especially puts on a good show in this match. Scorpio looks pretty good as well. Slinger and Hashi are alright as they don’t really hurt anything but neither man was truly inspirational to their partner.

Akira Taue & Takuma Sano vs. Daisuke Ikeda & Mohommed Yone (10:45) Yone and Sano start the match off and Yone catches him with a spinning heel kick right off the bat. Yone whips Sano into the ropes and misses a high kick and then the two men collide with clotheslines. Yone flips over when Sano goes for a belly to back suplex but Sano kicks him in the midsection then drops him with a backdrop driver and tags in Taue. Ikeda runs in and jumps off Yone’s back and hits Taue with an enziguri. Sano comes in and throws Ikeda to the outside. Taue sends Yone to the corner then whips him across the ring but Yone avoids it and smacks Taue in the back of the head then powerslams him. He goes up to the top rope but Taue catches him and chokeslams him off the top for two before Ikeda runs in and breaks up the cover with a stomp to the back of Taue’s head. Taue pulls Yone up and then drops him with a big powerbomb and tags in Sano who gets a two count. Sano then grabs a rear chinlock. Sano gives up on the hold and then stomps on the chest of Yone then pulls him up and powerslams him down. He goes to the second rope and delivers a double stomp that gets two before Ikeda breaks up the cover. Sano throws Yone into the corner then tags in Taue who whips Yone into the ropes and hits him with a big boot. Taue whips him into the ropes again and Yone gets a sunset flip for about a one count. Taue then grabs a neck wrench and Yone gets a foot on the ropes to break it up and Sano gets tagged in. Sano pulls Yone up and goes for a suplex but Yone blocks it then delivers a vertical suplex of his own. He goes for the tag but Sano stops him and grabs an STF then turns it into a camel clutch. Ikeda comes in and breaks up hold. Sano kicks away at Yone then throws him into the corner and tags in Taue. Taue with a short arm clothesline and follows up with another one to get a two count before Ikeda breaks it up. Taue goes for a chokeslam but Yone blocks and gets thrown into the corner instead and Taue hits him with a big boot. Taue goes to whip him across the ring but Yone counters and then hits him with a spinning heel kick and tags in Ikeda who hits a leg lariat on Taue. He bounces off the ropes and goes for a lariat but Taue blocks it. Taue goes for the chokeslam but Ikeda flips him over the bounces off the ropes with a big lariat. Ikeda gets a cover for two. The two men go for chokeslams but neither man can get it and Ikeda gets whipped into the ropes and Taue drops him with a big boot then tags in Yone who comes in with a missile dropkick for two. Ikeda blocks an Irish whip from Sano and nails him with some kicks that drop him down. Ikeda picks Yone up and drops him with a DVD for two before Taue breaks it up. Ikeda gets up and sends Taue to the outside then tags in Yone. Yone whips Sano into the corner and Sano hits a lariat then drops to his knees and Iukeda jumps off his back for a bad lariat. Yone sets Sano up on the top rope then drops him with a muscle buster for a two count. Yone then hits him with a big lariat for two before Taue breaks it up. Taue drops Ikeda with a big boot then nails Yone with a chokeslam. Sano fights back and hits Yone with a big spin kick then takes him over with a brutal German suplex. Sano follows that up with a brainbuster for two before Ikeda breaks it up. Sano climbs up to the top rope and comes off with a nice double stomp and covers for a two count. Taue and Sano set Yone up on the top rope then Sano takes Yone off with a second rope brainbuster for the three count.

Analysis: ***1/4 A nice match between these two teams. The match starts off really hot and then Yone gets a nice heat segment in before he manages to make the tag to Ikeda. Ikeda does a nice job of saving his partner while on the outside as well. They start the match off with a nice slow pace and then really bring out the big moves when the match gets near the end and these guys take some pretty brutal moves to finish off this match.

Naomichi Marafuji & Kenta (c) vs. Takashi Sugiura & Kendo Kashin (GHC Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Titles) (22:26) Kashin and Marafuji start the match off and Kashin takes out to Takashi. Kashin then tags back in and locks up with Marafuji and they trade some standing switches and Marafuji goes for an arm wringer but Kashin reverses it and grabs his own and then both men flip around and reverse the hold. Kashin takes Marafuji over with three firemen carries over in a row then Marafuji gets a fireman’s carry and then both men get a couple of roll ups for two. Kashin fakes the handshake then tags Takashi in. Marafuji tags in Kenta who runs in and hits Takashi with a yakuza kick and the two men just start going at each other with big strikes. Kenta sends Takashi down with a yakuza kick but Takashi gets up and spears him down then takes him over with a belly to belly suplex to stun Kenta. Takashi snapmares Kenta over and grabs a rear chinlock but he gets to the ropes to break the hold. Takashi stomps away at Kenta then tags Kashin in. Kashin throws Kenta to the outside then follows him out but some guys stop him and Marafuji launches himself over only to be caught by those observers. Kashin climbs up and goes for a double axe handle from the apron but Kenta dropkicks him off the apron into his friends. Kashin gets back in the ring with Kenta and Kashin pushes Kenta into his corner and tags in Takashi and then the two men choke Kenta in the corner. Takashi goes for a suplex but Kenta blocks it then takes him over with a vertical suplex of his own and tags in Marafuji. Marafuji whips Takashi into the ropes and catches him with a big leg lariat for two. Marafuji grabs a cravate on Takashi then tags Kenta in. Kenta drills Takashi with some kicks to the chest then drops him with a back elbow. He then runs and knocks Kashin off the apron and makes a cover for two. He pulls Takashi to his feet and snapmares him over then delivers a kick to the spine and gets a two count and he goes into a figure four headlock but Takashi gets to the ropes. Kenta tags Marafuji then goes to the apron and springs in with a senton on Takashi and Marafuji follows up with a big slingshot elbow drop that gets him a two count. Marafuji gras Takashi with a rear chinlock but Takashi grabs the ropes to break the hold then double stomps him on the face. Takashi sends Marafuji to the outside with a backbody drop but he lands on his feet then pulls Takashi out of the ring. Marafuji slides into the ring then goes for a baseball slide but Takashi stops him and Kashin comes over and stomps him. Takashi pulls him up onto the apron then takes him down to the floor with a gut wrench suplex while Kashin beats Kenta down in the ring then throws him to the outside. Takashi slides into the ring and Marafuji is still out as the ref makes the count and he slides in at the count of nineteen with the help of Kashin. Takashi makes the cover and gets a two count. Takashi makes the tag to Kashin and Kashin hits Marafuji with a couple of European uppercuts then goes for a reverse fireman’s carry but can’t get him up then takes Takashi back in. They get Marafuji in the corner and then they do some running moves to Marafuji before whipping the ref into him. Kashin makes a cover but the ref won’t count it for him. Kashin holds Marafuji and Marafuji moves and Takashi accidently spears Kashin instead. Takashi then holds Marafuji and Kashin slaps him when Marafuji moves. Kashin hits an Olympic slam but Takashi breaks up his cover at two. Takashi then gets a tag then grabs Marafuji with a camel clutch. Takashi breaks the hold as Kenta comes in then picks Marafuji up for a belly to back suplex then whips him down with a face plant. Marafuji grabs a knuckle lock then jumps up and takes Takashi over with some kind of rollup. He gets to his feet and hits Takashi with a superkick then tags in Kenta. Kenta bounces off the ropes to send Kashin to the floor then charges the corner and hits Takashi with a yakuza kick. Kenta whips him to the opposite corner then hits another yakuza kick. Takashi blocks a reverse DDT and drops Kenta onto the apron. Kenta springboards in and hits Kashin with a dropkick. He hits Takashi with a series of kicks to the midsection then goes to the apron and hits him with a springboard dropkick for two then follows up with a fisherman suplex for another two count. He pulls Takashi up for another suplex but Takashi blocks it and goes for a suplex to the outside but Kenta reverses and lands on his feet. He springboards in for a ‘ranna but Takashi catches him and drops him with a big powerbomb. Takashi then tags in Kashin who hits a hart attack then pulls Kenta up and backs him into the corner with a European uppercut. Kashin goes to whip him across the ring but Kenta reverses it. Kashin hits the corner and Kenta charges into a big boot. Kashin charges the staggered Kenta but Kenta catches him with a big powerslam then covers for a two count. Kenta pulls Kashin up and Kashin manages to duck several strikes then kicks Kenta in the junk. Kenta slides between the legs of Kashin then dropkicks the leg and takes him down with a dragonscrew then tags in Marafuji. Marafuji whips Kashin into the ropes then charges with a big back elbow. Marafuji sets Kashin up on the top rope and goes for a ‘ranna but Kashin reverses it and Marafuji lands on his feet. He charges and Kashin kicks him in the face then grabs him for a reverse ‘ranna and chokes him over the top rope sort of before the ref breaks it up. Kashin levers himself back over and gets a victory roll for two. Marafuji responds with a drop toehold then follows up with a kick to the side of the face for two. Kashin gets to his feet and eats a superkick. Marafuji goes for the sliced bread but Kashin blocks it with another kick to the junk then hits a sliced bread #2 of his own for a two count before Kenta breaks it up. Kashin tags in Takashi who charges at Marafuji but Marafuji ducks it and sends Takashi to the outside. Takashi gets up to the apron and Marafuji bounces off the ropes and jumps over with a sunset flip but Kashin grabs Takashi holding him up. Until Kenta charges and nails Kashin breaking the hold and Marafuji powerbombs Takashi to the floor. Kenta stomps at Kashin in the ring then nails him with some big kicks to the chest and throws him to the outside. Marafuji pulls Takashi up to his feet and rolls him into the ring. Kenta whips Takashi into the corner and hits a charging forearm then drops down and Marafuji leaps off with a poetry in motion. Kashin comes in and he takes a double superkick. Marafuji picks Takashi up for a doomsday device but he fights free and lands in behind Marafuji. He goes for a belly to back suplex but Marafuji lands on his feet. Kashin gets back up and bounces off the ropes to rack Kenta up. Takashi trips Marafuji up and goes right into an ankle lock and Kashin takes Kenta off the top rope with a ‘ranna and goes right into a cross armbreaker. Marafuji slowly manages to crawl to the ropes and get a break of the hold. Takashi pulls him up and whips him into the corner and charges with a spear. Marafuji shakes him off only to be the victim of a good spear from Takashi. Takashi grabs Marafuji from behind and takes him completely over with a German suplex landing him on his face and makes a cover for a two count. Takashi goes for it again but Marafuji lands on his feet and hits him with a superkick. Marafuji grabs him and goes for the sliced bread number two but Takashi catches him and then drops him with a tombstone to counter the move. He pulls Marafuji up and hits a bridging German suplex for two and then goes into a dragon suplex that gets two until Kenta runs into the ring and breaks it up. Kashin throws Kenta to the outside then goes to Irish whip him into the rails but Kenta reverses it. Takashi hits Marafuji with an Olympic slam then sets him up on the top rope. Kenta comes in though and breaks up the hold and powerbombs Takashi down while Marafuji hits a sliced bread #2 that gets a two count until Kashi comes in and hits the ref. Marafuji pulls Takashi up and hits him with a normal sliced bread #2 that gets another two count. Marafuji climbs up to the top rope and hits a back senton that gets yet another two count. Marafuji sets Takashi up on the second rope and hits a sliced bread #2 and that finishes the match off.

Analysis: **** A really nice match here. Four talented junior workers in this match and it pays off. They have some nice spots and just some nice wrestling. The only thing that really hurts this match is the repetition of the finish as Marafuji hits the sliced bread #2 3 times in about 30 seconds. Still these guys put on a great 20+ minute match here. Great wrestling and some brutal looking moves and head drops and they are all going all out from beginning to end in this match.

Jushin Liger (c) vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru(GHC Jr. Heavyweight Title) (17:36) Kanemaru charges and hits a big yakuza kick. Liger whips Kanemaru into the ropes and he grabs the ropes. Liger charges and runs into a big boot. Kanemaru flips off the ropes and Liger charges and drops him with a lariat then follows up with a Liger bomb for a two count. Liger pulls Kanemaru up and Kanemaru grabs him and drops him with a brainbuster for a two count and Liger rolls to the outside. Liger gets in the ring and Kanemaru charges and kicks him in the midsection then snapmares him over and grabs a rear chinlock. Kanemaru turns it into more of a rear naked choke but Liger manages to scoot over then get a foot on the ropes to break the hold. Kanemaru stopms away at Liger then picks him up and puts him in the corner with a tree of woe. Kanemaru charges and delivers a big dropkick to the face of Liger. Kanemaru makes a cover and gets a two count. Kanemaru rolls Liger over and puts him into a camel clutch. Kanemaru breaks the hold and Liger fires some kicks at his legs but Kanemaru just stomps him then grabs a figure four headlock. Liger rolls him over and then pries his head free and jumps forward into a side headlock but Kanemare slips out and grabs his own side headlock. Kanemaru backs Liger into the corner then brings some knees up into his midsection and whips him across the ring. Kanemaru charges right into a big boot from Liger who then hits a rolling copo kick. Kanemaru goes to the outside and Liger nails him with a baseball slide then follows him out and delivers a big powerbomb on the outside. Kanemaru pulls himself into the ring at the ref’s count of 19. Liger pulls Kanemaru to his feet and Irish whips him but Kanemaru just stumbles forward and falls down. Liger pulls him up and drops him with a wicked powerbomb then has the ref start the ten count. Kanemaru manages to get up at the count of nine so Liger takes him over with a German suplex and covers for two. Liger pulls Kanemaru up and then sets him on the top rope. Liger takes him over with a big butterfly suplex and makes a cover for two. Liger then grabs Kanemaru with a seated abdominal stretch. Liger then ties Kanemaru’s legs up with the Indian deathlock and pulls him back into a dragon sleeper. The ref raises and drops the arm of Kanemaru twice and then he manages to keep it up on the third one. Liger pulls Kanemaru up and sends him into the corner with a chop and then runs into a big boot. Liger goes for a Liger bomb but Kanemaru flips off and lands on his feet. Liger bounces off the ropes and Kanemaru delivers a dropkick to his leg. Kanemaru pulls Liger up and Liger hits him with a backdrop driver. Liger pulls Kanemaru up and sets him up on the top rope. Liger climbs up with him and Kanemaru fights free and then takes Liger off the ropes with a running powerbomb. Kanemaru jumps off the second rope as Liger gets to his feet and drops him with a DDT for a two count. He climbs up to the top rope and goes for a moonsault but Liger rolls out of the way. Liger gets a couple of rollups for two counts then sets Kanemaru up on the top rope again. Liger takes him over with a ‘ranna but Kanemaru rolls through for a two count. Kanemaru gets to his feet and comes off the ropes and Liger nails him with a lariat. Liger whips Kanemaru into the opposite corner then charges and nails him with a clothesline. Liger sets him up on the top rope again then takes him off with a superplex. Liger makes the cover and barely gets a one count. Kanemaru fights up to his feet and hits Liger with a big boot then drops him with a brainbuster for a one count. Liger slaps Kanemaru then charges and lariats him. He pulls Kanemaru up and drops him with a brainbuster for a two count. Liger sets Kanemaru up on the top rope again, he climbs up and geos for a suplex but Kanemaru blocks it then punches Liger off. Liger climbs up for a suplex again but Kanemaru blocks it then takes him off with an implant DDT for a two count. Kanemaru goes up to the top rope and hits a moonsault for another two count. Kanemaru pulls Liger to his feet and drops him with a brainbuster then holds on and hits a spinning brainbuster. He rolls over and makes the cover for the three count.

Analysis: **** This match is all action from the beginning to the end and it is just great. These guys go all out dropping each other on their head and just flat out trying to kill each other. Liger does most of that though and Kanemaru just takes the beating like a man and does a good job of timing his comebacks and then maximizing the little offensive time he gets. All the moves are executed well and that really helps this match. A minor quibble would be all the times they go up to the damn top rope. They kept going to the top over and over at the ending. It wasn’t horrible but it was kind of repetitive.

Yoshihiro Takayama & Minoru Suzuki (c) vs. Takeshi Morishima & Takeshi Rikio (IWGP Tag Team Title) (12:55) Suzuki and Rikio start off the match and they lockup and quickly break. Morishima comes in and grabs Suzuki but he escapes before Rikio can hit him and Suzuki tags Takayama in. The two men go for a test of strength and Rikio backs Takayama into the ropes then slaps him as they break. Rikio fires off some forearms and then they start trading them back and forth. Rikio comes off the ropes and sends Takayama to the mat with a shoulder tackle then tags in Morishima. Morishima whips Takayama into the ropes and hits a rolling back elbow. Takayama gets to his feet and the two men go for a test of strength but Takayama just goes behind Morishima and grabs him with a sleeper and tags in Suzuki who kicks away at the midsection of Morishima. Suzuki avoids the strikes of Morishima and Rikio tas in. The two men circle and Suzuki manages to land a slap an avoid the strikes of Rikio and fire back with his own until Rikio nails him with a good slap then follows up with a shoulder tackle that sends him rolling to the outside. Takayama drops down and Morishima comes over and the Takeshi’s chokeslam him on the outside. Rikio splashes Suzuki and gets a two count. They whip Suzuki into the corner then both hit a splash and then crush him between them with clotheslines. Rikio then hits a big lariat that gets him a two count. Morishima goes up to the top but Takayama grabs him. Rikio gets Suzuki up for an electric chair but Suzuki spins around and takes Rikio down with a cross armbreaker but Morishima comes over and breaks up the hold with palm strikes. Suzuki tags in Takayma and and hits a charging boot to the face of Rikio and Takayama hits one as well. Takayama whips Rikio across the ring into the corner and then charges with a high knee and follows up with a double underhook suplex for a two count. He snapmares Rikio over then charges with a kick to the chest and makes a cocky cover for two. Suzuki comes in and they sandwich Rikio with kicks then pulls him up and both men start nailing him with kicks and then Takayama hits a belly to back suplex for a one count before Morishima breaks up the cover. Rikio blocks a knee from Takayama then chops him and chokeslams him down and then tags in Morishima. Morishima whips Takayama into the corner twice and follows up with lariats both times. He whips Takayama into the ropes and goes for a lariat but Takayama ducks it then comes off the ropes with a crossbody and tags in Suzuki. Suzuki avoids a punch from Morishima and takes him down into a Fujiwara armbar. Suzuki grabs a side headlock then goes into a hammerlock and flips Morishima over in the hold and then they start rolling around the ring. Takayama comes in and knocks Rikio off the apron with a big boot. Rikio manages to back Takayama off and then enters the ring and breaks Suzuki’s hold. Suzuki tags Takayama back in and Takayama grabs the hammerlock type move as well but Rikio is quick to break it up. The Takeshi’s hit Takayama with a double dropkick and then Morishima charges with a jumping yakuza kick for a two count. Morishima follows up with a backdrop driver that gets two before Suzuki breaks up the cover. Morishima slaps Suzuki stupid then goes for a lariat on Takayma but he doesn’t budge and Takayama drops him with a big knee. Takayama sets him up and then hits the charging knee for a two count before Rikio breaks it up. Suzuki jumps on Rikio from behind and chokes him out then rolls him out of the ring. Suzuki slaps Morishima a couple of times and then Takayama flips him over with a belly to back suplex. Takayama pulls Morishima up and takes him over with a German suplex and bridges it for the three count.

Analysis: ** A fairly tame match here. Standard tag team work from these guys with nothing really amazing here. It wasn’t actively good but it wasn’t really bad either. There just wasn’t much of anything special here.

Mitsuhara Misawa & Yoshinari Ogawa (c)vs. Keiji Muto & Taiyo Kea (GHC Tag Team Title) (21:46) Kea and Ogawa start the match for their teams and they start the match with a test of strength. Kea goes for an overhand wristlock to a side headlock to a hammerlock and then takes him down with a cobra clutch and Ogawa escapes by grabbing Kea with a headscissors and both men get up to their feet. They lockup and they go back and forth with hammerlocks and then Ogawa starts wringing the arm of Kea until he gets nailed by some hard forearms. Ogawa hits a jawbreaker and Kea nails him with a knife edge chop then tags Muto in and Ogawa tags in Misawa to the delight of the crowd. The two men circle and then they lockup and Misawa grabs a side headlock and Muto shoots him into the ropes and they stand off with a shoulder tackle. Misawa hits Muto with a big forearm then drops him with a tiger driver for a two count. Muto gets up to his feet and knocks Misawa down to a knee and then hits a shining wizard and Misawa rolls to the outside to regain his composure. The two men go into a test of strength and Muto goes behind Misawa but he counters quickly and goes behind Muto grabbing a hammerlock and forcing him down to the mat. Muto fights back up and Misawa grabs an arm wringer. Muto rolls forward then trips Misawa up and grabs a legbar and then Misawa turns over and Muto tries for a rear naked choke but Misawa manages to block it. Muto tags out bringing Kea into the match. The two men lockup and Misawa backs Kea into the ropes and hits him with a spinning back elbow instead of giving a clean break. Misawa tags Ogawa in and they drop Kea with a double back elbow off the ropes and then Misawa drops an elbow while Ogawa hits a back senton that gets a two count. Kea counters an Irish whip into the corner on Ogawa and then takes a couple of big boots as he charges in. Ogawa comes out of the corner and Ogawa takes him down with a messed up lariat then picks him up and powerslams him down. Kea whips Ogawa into the ropes and takes him down with a back elbow then goes up to the top. Ogawa kicks the ref into the ropes and sends Kea crashing down to the mat then tags Misawa back in. Misawa and Kea start trading some big strikes and Kea gains the advantage with the rake of the eyes then whips Misawa into the ropes and hits him with a nice dropkick. Kea grabs Misawa with a front facelock then backs up and Muto tags in. Muto snapmares Misawa over then bounces off the ropes with an elbow drop for two. He then grabs the leg of Misawa and torques the leg and then goes into the legbar again. Muto pulls Misawa to the corner and tags in Kea and they wishbone Misawa. Kea goes for a suplex but Misawa blocks it and makes it back to his corner and Ogawa tags in. He whips Kea into the corner and charges with a spear but Kea moves and he smashes into the ringpost. Kea grabs Ogawa and hits a belly to back suplex and then tags in Muto. Muto hits Ogawa with some dropkicks as he starts getting up and then tags him over with a dragonscrew and goes right into an STF. Misawa eventually comes in and breaks up the cover with a bunch of stomps to the back of Muto. Muto picks Ogawa up and hits him with an island driver then gets up on a knee and Misawa runs in and hits Muto with a nicely done shining wizard. Muto tags out to Kea who backs Ogawa into a corner and chops and stomps away at him then whips him into the corner a couple of times and follows up with lariats then nails a sitout death valley driver for a two count. Kea catches a kick from Ogawa and then takes an enziguri but he fires back with an enziguri of his own and both men tag out. Muto comes in and hits a dropkick and Misawa fires back with one of his own. The two men trade some forearms and then Misawa goes for the tiger driver but Muto blocks it. Muto then drops Misawa down to a knee with some strikes and charges for the shining wizard but Misawa blocks it. He gets to his feet and drops Muto with a big forearm that sends him rolling out of the ring. Misawa gets pumped up the makes a suicide dive onto Muto and knocks the camera man over. Muto climbs onto the apron at the count of eleven and hits Misawa with a forearm then climbs to the top rope and comes off with a missile dropkick.Kea comes in and whips Misawa into the corner and then charges with a forearm. Misawa bounces off the ropes but Kea takes him over with an armdrag. Misawa gets up to his feet and Kea nails him with a super kick. Misawa misses a lariat to Kea in the corner and Kea takes him over with a ‘ranna for a two count. Kea goes into a cross armbreaker but Misawa manages to get a foot on the ropes and break the hold. Kea nails Ogawa with a forearm on the apron then whips Misawa into the corner and charges but Misawa comes out with a spinning back elbow that staggers Kea. Misawa bounces off the ropes for a lariat but Kea hits his arm with a big boot. Kea goes for a belly to back suplex but Misawa flips over and lands behind him. Kea turns around right into a big rolling forearm from Misawa that drops him. Misawa backs off and tags in Ogawa. Ogawa pulls Kea to his feet and goes for an Irish whip but Misawa counters it. Ogawa ducks a clothesline and spikes Kea with a DDT. Kea gets up at two and hits Ogawa with some big kicks. Kea picks Ogawa up for a DVD but Misawa comes in and breaks it up. Ogawa whips Misawa into the corner and he hits a back elbow on Kea. Misawa whips Kea out of the corner and Ogawa drop toeholds him and Misawa jumps over Ogawa and drops an elbow onto Kea’s back. Misawa comes off the ropes and hits Kea with a forearm as Ogawa takes him over with a belly to back suplex. Misawa drops Kea with a tiger driver then Ogawa picks him up and hits a belly to back suplex for two before Muto comes in and breaks up the cover. Ogawa goes for a belly to back suplex but Kea flips over and Misawa sort of catches him and then Ogawa rolls him up for two. They whip Muto into the ropes and hit a double kick in the midsection then Ogawa hits him with a jawbreaker. Muto jumps up and hits Misawa and Ogawa with dropkicks then hits Misawa with a shining wizard that sends him to the outside. Muto powerslams Ogawa down then climbs up to the top rope and hits a moonsault and Kea makes the cover for two before Misawa comes in and breaks it up. Muto dragonscrews Misawa and then Misawa no sells it and hits Muto with a big forearm. Ogawa tags Misawa in and he goes for a clothesline but he ducks under it and then takes Misawa over with a cobra clutch suplex and covers for two. Kea goes for a DVD on Misawa but he lands behind him and then the two men start trading forearms. Kea picks Misawa up and hits a TKO for a two count before Ogawa breaks it up. Muto comes in and throws Ogawa to the outside. Kea and Misawa start trading forearms and chops and Misawa comes off the ropes with a big forearm and covers for one. Misawa hits an ugly island driver on Kea for a two count. Misawa picks Kea up with a suplex and then drops him into an island driver for the three count.

Analysis: ***3/4 Another great match on this show. I really like the confrontations between Misawa and Muto and how Misawa steals the shining wizard and then Muto uses the island driver. Some nice stiff competition from these two teams here and this match was nicely down with the action and excitement. I didn’t like the fact that Muto and Kea do the work on Misawa’s leg and then he no sells it and I don’t want to hear any crap about it being the style because that’s still lame. Still it was a good match with great build to the finish without it being overdrawn.

Kenta Kobashi (c) vs. Jun Akiyama (GHC Heavyweight Championship) (35:34) The two men circle each other then lockup and they break off and yell at each other. They lockup again and Akiyama grabs a side headlock but Kobashi shoots him into the ropes and they face off with a series of shoulder blocks. Kobashi then calls for a test of strength and Akiyama locks up and Kobashi slowly takes control. Akiyama rolls backwards and turns the tables on Kobashi as he takes control of the leverage. Kobashi manages to power his way free and back Akiyama into the ropes and force the break. Kobashi lights Akiyama up with some big knife edge chops then goes for an Irish whip that is reversed. Kobashi avoids a big boot then hits a flying shoulder that takes Akiyama down. Akiyama gets right up and nails Kobashi with a high knee that sends him rolling to the outside. Akiyama follows him out but Kobashi slides right back into the ring and Akiyama circles on the outside until the count of five before coming back in. The two lockup and Akiyama lands the first forearm and then they start going back and forth with Akiyama throwing forearms and Kobashi throwing some hard chops and Kobashi slowly takes control then sends Akiyama to the mat with a series of chops. Kobashi pulls Akiyama up to his feet and whips him into the ropes twice and hits kitchen sinks. He goes for a side russian legsweep but Akiyama sweeps the legs out from under Kobashi and grabs a legbar and Kobashi slides backwards to grab the ropes and force the break. Akiyama gets to his feet and grabs a leglock I don’t know the name to. Kobashi hits Akiyama with some slaps and slowly starts karate chopping at the back of Akiyama’s neck and then forces him down to the mat and breaks the hold. Kobashi pulls Akiyama up and drops him down with a knee to the back of he neck and then chops down on his chest sending him down to the mat for a two count. Kobashi then grabs Akiyama with a rear chinlock and then picks him up and karate chops him down to the mat again. Kobashi pulls Akiyama up and goes back to the rear chinlock. Kobashi pulls Akiyama up to his feet and delivers another karate chop to the chest that sends him down to the mat for another two count. Kobashi pulls Akiyama up and goes for a suplex but Akiyama blocks it and then the two men start trading strikes and Kobashi’s chops take Akiyama down. Akiyama starts firing up and he just shakes off the chops and ges to his feet and then Kobashi hits a series of karate chops but Akiyama ducks one and hits some big forearms and comes off the ropes but Kobashi stops him with another knife edge chop. Kobashi bounces off the ropes and avoids a lariat then goes for the flying shoulder but Akiyama blocks him with a high knee. Akiyama takes Kobashi onto the apron then drops down with a DDT that drops Kobashi face first on the apron. Akiyama climbs back onto the apron and comes off with a double axe handle. Akiyama drapes Kobashi over the apron then comes off the second rope with a knee to the back of Kobashi’s head sending him to the outside once again. Kobashi pulls himself up onto the apron and Akiyama knocks him back off with a high knee. Kobashi climbs onto the apron and Akiyama pulls him into the ring and covers for a two count and then goes into a figure four headlock. Kobashi turns Akiyama over and then Akiyama completes the roll taking Kobashi onto his back again. Kobashi manages to stretch a leg and get it on the bottom rope to break the hold. Akiyama nails a fist drop and Kobashi starts to pull himself to his feet using the ropes and he fights back and Akiyama punches him into the corner then whips him across the ring. Akiyama charges into a big boot and Kobashi goes up to the second rope but Akiyama grabs him and throws him down to the mat and then grabs a front chancery on Kobashi. Kobashi manages to power his way free of the hold and just pull his head out of the grip of Akiyama. Akiyama puts Kobashi into the corner and then slams some elbows to the neck of Kobashi that drops him down in the corner then he charges with a knee to the face of Kobashi. He pulls Kobashi up and drops him with a double arm DDT then climbs up to the top rope and jumps off with a forearm to the back of Kobashi’s neck for a two count and then he grabs the front chancery again. The ref checks Kobashi and the hand drops twice before Kobashi starts fighting and rolls to the ropes to break the hold.

Kobashi gets to his feet and Akiyama nails a running knee lift and covers for a two count. Akiyama pulls Kobashi up and hits a belly to back suplex but Kobashi grabs a side headlock and doesn’t let go. Akiyama gets to his feet and tries to shoot Kobashi into the ropes but Kobashi just holds on and takes Akiyama down to the mat. Akiyama gets to his feet and takes Kobashi over with a belly to back suplex but Kobashi still holds on. Akiyama gets to his feet and hits another belly to back suplex and Kobashi still holds on. Akiyama fights to his feet again and tries to grab the ropes but Kobashi grabs his arm and takes him over with a sleeper suplex that drops him on his head. Akiyama gets to his feet in the corner and Kobashi goes crazy with knife edge chops to Akiyama then hits a couple of spinning knife edges. Kobashi pulls Akiyama onto the apron and takes him to the floor with a big vertical suplex off the apron and it wasn’t one of those bullshit suplexes they both land flat back on the floor and Akiyama bounces like 4 inches off the ground at least after hitting and Kobashi is bleeding from somewhere. Kobashi takes Akiyama into the ring at the count of fourteen and both men are down on the mat and out. Kobashi eventually makes his way over to cover and gets a two count. Kobashi pulls Akiyama up and takes him over with a half nelson suplex and covers for another two count. Akiyama makes an attempt at an exploder but Kobashi easily fights out and hits a vertical suplex into powerbomb for yet another two count. Kobashi takes Akiyama down with a lariat and gets yet another two count. Kobashi sets Akiyama up on the top rope and pulls him off for the burning hammer but Akiyama goes down behind him and drops him on his head with a German suplex and then hits an ugly shining wizard. They go to the apron again and Kobashi blocks an exploder attempt and then fights free. Kobashi goes for the half nelson suplex but Akiyama blocks it and then gets chopped down. Kobashi goes up to the second rope and Akiyama takes him off to the floor with an exploder suplex. The ref applies the count and Akiyama rolls into the ring at the count of sixteen and Kobashi barely makes it in at the count of nineteen. Akiyama crawls over and makes a cover for two. He pulls Kobashi up to his feet and hits an exploder suplex for a two count. Akiyama pulls Kobashi up to his feet and then sets him up on the top rope. Akiyama climbs up with him and takes him over with a top rope exploder for a close two count. Akiyama tries again and gets another two count. Akiyama grabs the unknown leglock again and Kobashi tries to control the hand but Akiyama nails him with a bunch of head butts then grabs the front chancery with the leglock still applied. Kobashi refuses to tap and Akiyama breaks the hold then pulls Kobashi up to his feet. Akiyama then hits the wrist clutch exploder and gets another two count. Akiyama pulls Kobashi up to his feet and goes for the cross special brainbuster and Kobashi counters with a fucking sick looking brainbuster on Akiyama, he just folds up on the back of his head. The two then trade half nelson suplexes on Kobashi’s part and exploder suplexes on Akiyama’s part and then both men land forearms and fall to the mat exhausted. Kobashi is up first and he grabs Akiyama and clobbers him with a lariat for a two count. Kobashi then powerslams Akiyama down and then climbs to the top rope and hits a nice moonsault for a two count. Kobashi picks Akiyama up and then drops him with the burning hammer and makes the cover for the three count.

Analysis:****3/4 I withhold the last 1/4* just because there were way too many chops for my liking. This is a phenomenal meeting between two awesome competitors apparently. I don’t know much about puro but I know a good match when I see one. The beginning of the match is built up slowly but it establishes Akiyama’s front chancery as dangerous which comes into effect later in the match. Both men are rocking each other with some really stiff strikes and it comes across well. Once Kobashi hits the sleeper suplex all hell breaks loose as these two start pulling out some big head drops and just brutal moves. The vertical suplex off the apron to the floor and the exploder from the apron are both awesome bumps and give a great feeling of determination and pride from both men. The first time I watched the match the suplex exchange at the end bothered me but it really wasn’t that bad I’ve realized. This is just a great example of fighting spirit in a wrestling match and it was just a brutal encounter that was fun to watch. It went by really quickly for a thirty plus minute match.

Recommendation: But this show! If you aren’t into puro it is still a great one off to get and it’s only $15 on DVD. You can’t go wrong. Plus it has a bunch of fucking awesome matches on it. Some of the undercard is a little weak but compared to some of the undercards I’ve seen on puro stuff it is still really good. This show is easily one of the top five shows of 2004. Believe that Playa!

You can purchase the NOAH: Departure 2004 DVD by clicking here.



Copyright © 2005 Derek Burgan. All rights reserved.