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    Friday, February 25, 2022

    Finisher Friday (2/25/22): The Ol' Ironhead's Rise To The Top (And His Opponents To The Bottom)



    Welcome to another edition of #FinisherFriday! This is Wreddit_Regal giving you a short review of a grizzled old (new?) champion's finisher. 

    Kazuyuki Fujita is one of those veterans you barely hear in discussions, despite having a rich history of success. An acclaimed athlete of the Greco-Roman discipline before pursuing puroresu, he became a three-time IWGP Heavyweight Champion on NJPW soil, rose to the top of the IGF food chain, and amassed a record of 18-14-0 in pro-MMA, beating the likes of Mark Kerr, Ken Shamrock and Bob Sapp through pure toughness (earning the nickname "Ol' Ironhead").

    Entering the jungle of NOAH in his late 40s (and just in time before COVID happened) wasn't a hindrance to his work rate and success in any way. Despite the low morale and attendances caused by the pandemic in early 2020, Fujita rose to the occasion by being the central part in some of NOAH's important matches of the COVID season, such as his unsuccessful venture for the GHC Heavyweight Championship against Go Shiozaki (which featured the longest staredown in all of pro wrestling history):

    And in shocking fashion, snatching the GHC Heavyweight Championship from Katsuhiko Nakajima a couple of days ago:


    His arsenal carries the theme "Simple but deadly is the best," as he strikes, slams, and stretches his opponent with impunity and without risk:








    His finisher is a classic folding powerbomb called the Beast Bomb:

    Bah gawd, just look at how Fujita forcefully slams Kenoh onto the mat like he owes him money












    What irks me about Fujita's execution though, is he doesn't put all of his weight in pinning the opponent on folding position, which could give them a chance to break the three-count.


    Using my Regal Rating, I'd give this move a:

    8/10 for aesthetics. A monster inside and outside the ring should have a move that matches their aesthetic. The folding powerbomb fits every category you could imagine for an imposing finisher: placing the opponent in a very vulnerable position, a freakish display of strength, and the final pose of a predator finally killing his prey for the feast.

    10/10 for damage. Fujita slams his opponents with the intention of incapacitating them for the three-count (or longer). He doesn't simply drop them to the mat (I'm looking at you, Kevin Nash), he drives his opponents back-first to the mat with the goal of knocking the air out of their lungs and making their head bounce multiple times off the canvas.

    And that's it chaps, my short review of Kazuyuki Fujita's Beast Bomb! Do you agree on NOAH's decision to give the big gold belt to an old-timer like Fujita? Let us know in the comment section below!


    *****

    Wreddit_Regal is the resident finisher fanatic of Reddit's wrestling forum, r/squaredcircle. From the most basic of punches to the most intricate double-team maneuvers, he can explain them within the realm of human anatomy and physics, because when doing absolutely nothing wrestling-related, he also happens to work as an operating room nurse.

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    Item Reviewed: Finisher Friday (2/25/22): The Ol' Ironhead's Rise To The Top (And His Opponents To The Bottom) Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Wreddit_Regal
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