MKW: Taisuke Kimura vs. Syuuou Fujiwara (April 29, 2018)

Our Story So Far…
– These guys are both from a Japanese promotion called Pro Wrestling Alive that MKW is working with. All I could find about them is this old Puroresu Central subpage.
– Taisuke Kimura is the founder of Pro Wrestling Alive. He approached MKW about forming a partnership because he wants to expose Japanese wrestling to a Chinese audience.
Syuuou (Shou) Fujiwara is a graduate of the Pro Wrestling Alive school. He won the Canadian Heavyweight Championship in a Canadian promotion that is now defunct, but he continues their legacy by keeping the title alive.

This match was for Fujiwara’s Canadian Heavyweight Championship, and it was perfectly fine. Fujiwara worked in a mask, a green dress shirt, and slacks at first, but after Kimura sent him out of the ring with a dropkick, he got serious and removed the mask and shirt.

Both guys look middle-aged and seem like they’ve been doing this for a while without a lot of reward (check out their photos on page to see how young they used to be). There’s something to respect in that. I didn’t notice any mistakes; everything fits together really nicely. Fujiwara is the aggressor (once he’s removed his mask and stuff), using a lot of chops and holds, occasionally mugging for the camera. Kimura comes back with some fire and gets a bunch of nearfalls. Fujiwara counters and ultimately retains his title with a backdrop suplex.

Straight and too the point. I thought it was pretty enjoyable and easy to watch, though it’s not going on my match of the year list. I think both of these guys would be good to have around to help the young MKW trainees develop the fundamentals. I hope they can keep up the relationship with MKW.

Discovering these guys reminds me that, even with all the publicity that groups like New Japan, All japan, Dragon Gate, Stardom, and even DDT get, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of dinky little promotions in Japan whose wrestlers will never be well-known outside of their small reaches. Good for Pro Wrestling Alive for getting a bit of inroads into a new market with this MKW partnership. (And good luck to Big Sam and Hong Wan as they travel to Japan this weekend (June 3rd) to work a PWA show.)

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