Naomichi Marufuji VS Kaito Kiyomiya - NOAH 1/21/2017
CJD: So here's what I like about Kiyomiya. He makes you feel like he's legitimately trying to win his matches at all times. He finds creative ways to dig in deep on simple pinfall attempts that really hammer this point home. He's focused on selling realistically and showing believable fire in the face of nearly overwhelming adversity. And he's paid his dues in matches like this one, which reminds me so much of the right of passage matches that great AJPW talents had to go through against Tsuruta, Hansen, and Fuchi in the early 90s. Kaito performs admirably. Everything I've seen from him makes NOAH's decision to strap a rocket on him seem totally justified.
JJZ: You trying to butter me up with Kaito wearing a Sugiura shirt in the pre-match interview! Can you believe the career Marufuji has had considering our borderline dislike of him in MaruKen? I love me some young lion VS vet action. It's really interesting that you picked this match since Marufuji just wrestled Kaito for the GHC Heavyweight title only 24 hours before I watched this match. Also I'm almost positive I showed you a Harada VS Ohara match from this same show during a night when we watched wrestling together for many hours. Anyway. Loving this from the start. 'Fuji just being dickhead stiff with Kiyomiya, trying to use his speed and energy to gain offense whenever he can. Crowd is really getting behind the greenhorn here while Marufuji brings out his inner Misawa. Fantastic pick baby.