One is a smiley, dance-based wrestler who lies more in the entertainment portion of wrestling; another is tough, power-oriented grappler who has earned the nickname of “Lady Destroyer”; while the third is a wild and crazy brawler who has caused nightmares across four different decades. However, despite their obvious differences, Miyako, Hiroyo and Dump all share the same surname – Matsumoto (no relation).
Of course, it was logical that the trio would eventually end up in the same place at the same time, and that moment arrived at NEO‘s The Women’s Pro-Wrestling Carnival on New Year’s Eve 2009 at Tokyo’s Korukuen Hall. Who would emerge victorious in the Matsumoto Number 1 Decision Match? Click after the jump and find out… (more…)
Many of you will know that Bull Nakano wrestled for the World Wrestling Federation in 1994 and 1995, winning the Women’s Championship from Alundra Blayze in November 1994 and losing the belt back to her in April 1995. Many of you will have been watching at the time. In 1994, Bull Nakano had been wrestling for 11 years and was secure in her character and wrestling style. However, Nakano also wrestled for the WWF back in 1986, less than three years after her debut…
Back then, Nakano was teaming with her mentor Dump Matsumoto, who won the All Japan Women Championship in 1983, three years after her debut. By the time this week’s Retro matches rolled around in March of 1986, Nakano was the AJW titleholder, having won the championship from Itsuki Yamazaki the previous July. Billed as the Devils of Japan, Matsumoto and Nakano only wrestled two matches in the WWF in an eight day span, with the contests taking place in two of the most historic arenas in the United States.
The first took place in the Boston Garden on March 8, where Bull and Dump took on Velvet McIntyre and Dawn Marie (no, not that one), then faced McIntyre and new partner Linda Gonzalez in Madison Square Garden in New York. (more…)
Legendary Bull Nakano returns on her 44th birthday to finally bid farewell to her fans, and shines a light on the current stars of joshi puroresu
1. Ayako Hamada beat Aja Kong (15:14) with an AP Cross.
2. Guillotine Drop Match: Kayoko Haruyama & Ryo Mizunami beat AKINO & Maki Narumiya (13:34) with a Diving Guillotine Drop from Mizunami on Narumiya.
3. 50s & 40s & 30s & 20s & 10s: Dump Matsumoto, Kyoko Inoue, Leon, Sawako Shimono & Tsukushi defeated Jaguar Yokota, Manami Toyota, Tomoka Nakagawa, Natsuki*Taiyo & Cherry (16:15) with a Powerbomb from Inoue on Cherry.
4. Kana beat Kagetsu (11:23) with the Kana Lock.
5. Nanae Takahashi, Meiko Satomura & Emi Sakura beat Ayumi Kurihara, Yoshiko & Tsukasa Fujimoto (21:41) with a 450 Splash from Sakura on Fujimoto.
6. Yuzuki Aikawa beat Hikaru Shida (15:11) with a Yuzupon Kick.
7. Bull Nakano Retirement Ceremony
• Ayako Hamada and Aja Kong go from headlining at JoshiMania the previous month to opening the show here. Not that these two toned anything down for an opener.
• The Guillotine Drop match was four women (each from a different promotion) who all use the legdrop, as per Bull herself. Sendai Girls’ Mizunami eventually hit a top rope version on ICE Ribbon’s Maki Narumiya for the win.
• The concept for the ten woman tag match is genius. Each team has one competitor in their 50s, one in their 40s, one in their 30s, one in their 20s and one in their teens. Cherry is a bit of a cheat on her team, as she’s portrayed as a teenager, but otherwise the gimmick works very well.
• Kana vs Kagetsu was a total change of pace – a grappling and striking clinic early, leading to suplexes and submissions later. Stuck between two multi-women tags, it’s a bit of an unsung gem.
• The six woman tag in the semi-main slot was my most anticipated match of the card, and it was the one I ended up enjoying most. Emi Sakura pinned Tsukasa Fujimoto to win, but more about this match below.
• The positioning of a match between Hikaru Shida and Yuzuki Aikawa as the main event on the show (or at least the last match before the extended Nakano retirement) showed a lot of faith in these two. Aikawa is limited in experience, while Shida has only just moved to the top of ICE Ribbon cards. That being said, they did a phenomenal job in delivering a quality main event, with Aikawa eking out the win.
Click through for observations, match of the night and overall impressions (more…)
Earlier this week, Ringbelles found out about a show taking place on January 8, 2012. We knew nothing about it except that it was taking place at the Tokyo Dome CIty Hall and would be called Bull Nakano Produce “EMPRESS”. And that’s all we knew… until Dave Meltzer furnished us with more information as part of this week’s mammoth Wrestling Observer.
Keiko “Bull” Nakano will be appearing – but not wrestling – on her retirement show on her 44th birthday. Barring a very brief nostalgia comeback when she teamed with her mentor Dump Matsumoto in 2001, Nakano has had very little to do with wrestling since retiring in 1997 at the age of 29 due to injuries suffered because of her hard-hitting style and weight, which was around 220 pounds at the time.
After her retirement, Nakano dropped a shedload of weight – last year, she was reportedly down to 130 – and took up professional golf in 1998. The learning curve turned out to be very steep, and finished 250th place of 251 in a LPGA Futures (essentially a farm system for rising golf stars) Qualifying Tournament in November 2004, and didn’t fare much better the following year when she finished 261st out of 271. However, she managed to make it into Futures in January 2006 a couple of weeks after her 38th birthday. (more…)