Quebrada Pro Wrestling, Puroresu, & Mixed Martial Arts Reviews by Mike Lorefice

OZ Academy Puroresu King #36 1/22/06
12th OZ Academy ~RESTARTING TO A GLORY~
taped 12/11/05 Tokyo Shinjuku FACE

Carlos Amano vs. Azumi Hyuga 8:26 of 12:32. I don't get the logic of putting such a good matchup, arguably the best on this or frankly most joshi shows from 2005, as the opener, especially in this day and age where it's not as if there are going to be so many other great matches it isn't going to matter. They took it seriously, but it was also a “safe” match. In other words, they weren't going anywhere near full force, but everything was very well done, and there were several moments of brilliance. The execution was crisp, and there were numerous slick counters. The running sequences were particularly impressive, though they are actually capable of going a lot faster than the merely very fast we got here. ***

Tojuki Leon vs. Mayumi Ozaki 9:09 of 13:16. Ozaki bullied Leon with weapons, and KAORU and Police made their presence felt at every turn. Leon wasn't competitive, but Ozaki was heelish enough the deck was so stacked against Leon that I'm not sure anyone would hold her getting squashed against her. I mean, in essence this was the typical underachieving veteran vs. promising youngster match we've been seeing since they forgot how to create a new star, but at least it was a logical and well executed squash that did contain exciting, albeit brief, spurts of offense from Leon. In addition to her mostly aerial offense being impressive, Leon took very well. **

AKINO vs. Chikayo Nagashima 13:32 of 20:00. An awesome match on paper, but disappointing in actuality because they simply exchanged control rather than developing the sequences and delivering the brand of quick, explosive counter laden action they are more than capable of. 20 minutes isn't THAT long, but the match was much slower paced than expected. It was well executed, of course, but it was almost as if the length intimidated them. They weren't killing time by any means, but they seemed distracted by the idea of filling it rather than simply being loose and going with it. ***

HIKARU & Ayako Hamada vs. Aja Kong & Mariko Yoshida 16:02. Hikaru was a drag on the match – rather robotic and not really up to working with Yoshida – but once Hamada got involved she more or less disappeared. Hamada has always worked really well with Aja, as Kong puts Hamada into the mode of Manami Toyota and works her classic big woman vs. athletic flyer sequences. Yoshida can make Hamada look bad if she decides to keep it on the ground, but she can always make her look great. Today they worked really well together because Yoshida allowed Hamada to stay fully in PuroLucha mode, and simply concentrated on developing the counters. Though Kong vs. Hamada has been Hamada's rivalry from her first days in ARSION, Yoshida was actually the opponent we felt the sense of urgency against. ***

Meiko Satomura & Amazing Kong & Dynamite Kansai vs. Mayumi Ozaki & Chikayo Nagashima & Carlos Amano 20:53. After so many intelligently and efficiently worked undercard singles matches it was disappointing to see such a contrived and unconvincing main event. Kansai & Kong weren't working that well with the smaller opposition, and the brawling of Ozaki's team was particularly feeble. The match just never came together, and, in fact, was really only good when Satomura was in. *3/4


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