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Thread: Kota Ibushi

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    Kota Ibushi

    While I'm not the most knowledgeable of Japanese wrestling, when I've caught stuff it's Ibushi that stands out to me as a top talent. I think he's fantastic to watch, I love his strikes and his babyface performances, and I always come out being impressed with what I've seen. Matches with Tanahashi (multiple), AJ Styles, ZSJ, Ishii, are all highlights that I've seen that rank among the best stuff I've watched over recent years. Even his brief WWE run in the Cruiserweight Classic produced some magnificent matches against Cedric Alexander, and in particular the Brian Kendrick match was one of the best matches I saw in 2016.

    Some questions:

    - How consistent is Ibushi? His high end stuff is more than good enough to justify a good spot on my list but what is he like in matches that aren't cherry picked like mine's have been?

    - What are some of the more underrated matches you've seen of him (stuff outside of NJPW)?

    - What are his weaknesses as a wrestler?





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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Id say Ibushi is mostly consistent with his performances. I really cant think of a match where ive been disappointed with him. He's one of the reasons Cody had his best WK and one of his best NJPW matches (along with how it was promoted).

    I think he is definitely top 50. He's so good at making everything work - he can be face, heel and comedic.

    Find some of his DDT work and give it a watch. I love any match with YOSHIHIKO. His Budokan match with Omega is great too. DDT Ibushi can be fairly different to his NJPW self though.


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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Not too up on the guy in 2018, but having watching him from his DDT days, is he consistant? Hell no. That's probably his biggest weakness. He can truly spectacular at his best, but that's typically a couple matches a year. As a junior weight atleast he was always super spotty and be a Get My Shit in wrestler.

    That said, I really need to see more of his heavyweight work to have an accurate opinion.
    Last edited by King Steventon; 12-26-2018 at 10:17 AM.

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    He has really turned into a much more consistent wrestler since turning heavyweight. It helps that he is with much better wrestler but he has more than not performed to the highest level. Ibushi's high end stuff with guys like Tanahashi, Okada (as Tiger Mask W), Ishii, Naito, Goto has been excellent. He got the best matches out of guys like Cody and Tama Tonga where people were down on those guys and the matches themselves. His match in the CWC with TJP was sensational as was the rest of his run. The only thing I'd say may lower him down is his tendency to go way too over the top in his matches and it can get to the point of ridiculous at times which can put people off. Worthy of contention.
    Last edited by MC 16; 12-26-2018 at 08:10 AM.

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Ibushi probably just sits in that tier below my #1 contenders, so I expect he'll be somewhere in my top 10. He's one of the best guys in the company when it comes to having high end matches and more often than not he was the better performer in those matches. I know it was only a few matches, but the CWC was the best thing WWE have done in the last 5 years and he was the MVP of the tournament so that's a big string to his bow. Don't forget right at the start of 2015 he has the strong MOTYC with Nakamura that I know you've seen Shock.

    Some questions:

    Quote Originally Posted by Shock
    - How consistent is Ibushi? His high end stuff is more than good enough to justify a good spot on my list but what is he like in matches that aren't cherry picked like mine's have been?
    He does come to life and highly impress at times and then have nothing of note for a while. However you're going to find this a lot with New Japan wrestlers because there won't be an option for you to do anything but cherry pick; no-one here is going to advise you to watch 'road to.....' 6 man tags rated at 3 stars because you'd just be wasting your time. The best way to judge Ibushi's consistency is in a tournament because you're getting a whole month to impress in singles matches, this year he was the MVP of the G1 Climax, last year I don't think it was as impressive although there's a couple of great matches in there.

    - What are some of the more underrated matches you've seen of him (stuff outside of NJPW)?
    No-one watches DDT unless they are forced to for a Puroresu podcast So I can't speak of his DDT work at all. He has a match with Hangman Page in ROH that's fairly impressive because Page isn't that good. You'd love the Cody match at the Dome because you were high on WWE Cody, that's without question Cody's best match since leaving WWE.

    - What are his weaknesses as a wrestler?
    Steve touched on his in-ring weaknesses a bit (I wouldn't agree fully with that, he's been a lot better since going heavyweight and that is the majority of this time period). The big weakness for me is Ibushi's way of life and his insistence not to sign full time with NJPW means they will never get behind him as a top guy, he's never won the top two singles titles in the company and only has the NEVER title at the moment because they need him to drop it to Ospreay next week. What that creates is a bittersweet atmosphere in his big title matches because as impressive as the matches can be, you know management won't be giving him the win, which takes away some interest and excitement. He has been one of the best wrestler for the company over the last 4 years but has nothing to show for it.

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Anyone who wants to watch his DDT stuff, watch this:

    (His match against HARASHIMA at DDT Max Bump 2015). Excellent match. Admittedly not a lot of selling but amazing otherwise.
    Last edited by MC 16; 12-26-2018 at 02:28 PM.

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Last year's G1 was great too tbh. The year before that was very lackluster & unsurprisingly he took a hiatus shortly afterwards due to burnout. That was probably his lowest point actually.

    When he's on he's one of the best, arguably the top of the class in wrestling, but bad booking gets in the way too much, like many others. Still, I find it hard to believe there are many who have had more consistency than him since 2015, & he has the peak higher than basically anyone. Top 5 contender with a good 2019.

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Ibushi the past few years has me going through Boxes of Tissues between the reunion with Omega, to his G1 performances especially the Finals and now Openweight Champion again 2019 could be the year when this man stands at the top of the mountain as World Champion.


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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Quote Originally Posted by Kairi HoHo View Post
    Ibushi the past few years has me going through Boxes of Tissues between the reunion with Omega, to his G1 performances especially the Finals and now Openweight Champion again 2019 could be the year when this man stands at the top of the mountain as World Champion.
    HoHo that’s just a little to too much we didn’t need to know


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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    just watched

    Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Kota Ibushi, 05/11/2017

    Tanahashi works over Ibushi's leg, so of course Ibushi's comeback involves him jumping up high, then doing a bunch of kicks and highspots. It's a shame he hasn't yet learned how to sell a body part yet because he's one of the few NJ guys who works stiff and he does have some great offence. There is a good moment late in the match where Tanahashi bitch slaps Ibishi, and Ibushi responds with these really hard palm strikes. Last 10 minutes got pretty good and were fairly heated, but the first 2/3 was a bit of a slog due to the perfunctory leg work and bad selling of said perfunctory leg work.

    I'll have to watch the recent G1 Finals but so far none of their matches have lived up to the hype for me

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Didn't you say you liked Omega/Tanahashi from the dome? because that's a match where Omega just runs through his high spots and V-triggers regardless of the fact he sold like his leg was broken. I feel like I very rarely see anyone execute a 'my legs fucked' story in a match because wrestlers still want to give the crowd the exciting moves in a closing stretch which they can't do when they're hopping.

    Reading my review of the this match I said 'would of been better if Ibushi didn't forget about the leg selling halfway through' so it was must of been a common complaint about the match. I remember it finishing strongly and being somewhat of a spiritual successor to the Ibushi/Nakamura matches.

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    I did like the Omega match more, but I didn't feel like there Tanahashi was working his leg for an extended period of time. Without actually checking, it was probably like 5 mins of a 40 minute match, so it never felt like a focal point. I'd agree Omega does tend to oversell in the short term from what I've seen. Here the entire half 10 minutes or so were built around Tanahashi working Ibushi's leg with various dragon screws, dropkicks and stomps.

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    Their G1 Finals match is basically the same as their 2017 match as far as the leg work goes. Tanahashi goes for the leg in the match, Ibushi no sells it soon after and it's basically filler and inconsequential so if you didn't like their 2017 match, don't expect much from his G1 Finals match with Tanahashi either.

    I loved both matches by the way but they are glaring flaws with both matches.

    -

    One thing Ibushi has going for him is his incredible versatility. Can do most styles really well, comedy, stiff, high flying, tag and singles. Even in WWE where it can be hard to excel with the restrictions placed.

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    Re: Kota Ibushi

    I think Ibushi will make my ballot after all but I will no doubt be the low voter. Great highs when he is 'on' but just way too inconsistant and so much of a Get My Shit In wrestler running through the same spots over and over. He has tonnes of ability but is frustrating because he is often neither braindead of mentally lazy. I think he is below Ishii and maybe Okada but above Tanahashi, Naito, and the rest.

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