DDT “BUDOKAN PETER PAN 2012 ~ DDT 15TH ANNIVERSARY” Preview

DDT “BUDOKAN PETER PAN 2012 ~ DDT 15TH ANNIVERSARY”, 18/08/2012
Tokyo Nippon Budokan

0. Special Dark Match – Muscle Army Vs Style-E Army: Muscle Sakai, Pedro Takaishi, Kazuyoshi Sakai HG, Kazunori Huzioka, Mr. Magic, Seiya Morohashi & Choun “Daikichi” Shiryu Vs Kazuhiro Tamura, Masashi Takeda,Masato Shibata, Shota, Shotaro Nasu & Choun “Bones” Shiryu
1. Konosuke Takeshita Debut Match: Konosuke Takeshita Vs El Generico
2. Tag Team Gauntlet: Keisuke Ishii & Shigehiro Irie Vs Hikaru Sato & Michael Nakazawa Vs Takao Soma & Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Isami Kodaka & Hiro Tsumaki Vs Saint Seiya Rion & Poison JULIE Sawada
3. Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title – Royal Rumble: DJ Nira (c) Vs Tomomitsu Matsunaga Vs Gorgeous Matsuno Vs Gota Ihashi Vs Akito Vs YOSHIHIKO Vs Cherry Vs NOZOMI Vs Hiroshi Fukuda Vs Daichi Kakimoto Vs Ken Ohka Vs Mio Shirai Vs Batten Tamagawa Vs Choun-Shiryu Vs Yuzuki Aikawa Vs Yoshiaki Fujiwara
4. Five-A-Side Soccer Match: Masa Takanashi, Daisuke Sasaki, Hoshitango, Tetsuya Endo & Tsukasa Fujimoto Vs Yasu Urano, Antonio Honda, Yuji Hino, Tanomusaku Toba & Yoshiko
5. KO-D Tag Team Title: KUDO & Makoto Oishi (c) Vs MIKAMI & Tatsumi Fujinami
6. Special Weapons Rumble Handicap Match: Sanshiro Takagi Vs Minoru Suzuki
7. Special Single Match: Danshoku Dino Vs Invisible Man
8. Special Hardcore Tag Team Match: HARASHIMA & Togi Makabe Vs Shuji Ishikawa & Ryuji Ito
9. KO-D Openweight Title: Kota Ibushi (c) Vs Kenny Omega

The biggest show in DDT history is now just days away. From their first show in Kitizawa Town Hall all the way back in March 1997, DDT has grown to be one of pro wrestling’s more bizarre and unique organisations. It has also been the home to one of indie puroresu’s brightest stars (along with a dozen of indie puroresu’s most perverted stars), the host of many infamous stipulation matches that defied pro wrestling as we know it and pretty much became the place to be if you like things that can only be described with the phrase “Japan is weird.”

Now reaching its 15th year, DDT is marking their anniversary with a very special show held in Budokan Hall, the first time they run the building. While it is not the largest arena DDT has run (I think that honour goes to Fukuoka Dome in 2001 thanks to some deal with New Japan), the special occasion along with their growth makes this their most important show ever. But it could have been a lot different.

Here’s a little fact revealed on the official DDT website a few months ago. Back in 2010 Sanshiro Takagi originally considered booking a show in Saitama Super Arena for the following year. He had to abandon his plans when he found out the arena was already booked out for the entire year. Want another little fact? It was Magnum TOKYO who suggested to Takagi that DDT should run Budokan Hall instead of doing Sumo Hall again for DDT’s 15th Anniversary. I’m not kidding.

DDT has a habit of surprising people with their plans and a lot were caught off guard when they announced this Budokan Hall show, just like when they announced their first Sumo Hall show back in 2009. What they have planned is a mixture of a highly anticipated main event, some special cross-promotional and cross-dimensional matches, a legend’s first championship match in ten years, a multi-person scramble for the hottest potato in pro wrestling, a rookie debut and a battle between two sleazy organisations before the show even properly starts. Oh, and a game of football of course. So let’s have a look at what is in store.

0. Special Dark Match – Muscle Army Vs Style-E Army: Muscle Sakai, Pedro Takaishi, Kazuyoshi Sakai HG, Kazunori Huzioka, Mr. Magic, Seiya Morohashi & Choun “Daikichi” Shiryu Vs Kazuhiro Tamura, Masashi Takeda, Masato Shibata, Shota, Shotaro Nasu & Choun “Bones” Shiryu

Muscle Sakai marks his return to the ring since his retirement back in October 2010 but the special occasion has been disrupted by an outside force. His Muscle sub-brand, which was originally put on hiatus until 2030 when his children would debut has been dragged into a war with Style-E. Not much is known as to why the two groups have declared war on each other but there have been public conflicts since the grudge came to light. To put a quick end to the war, Budokan Hall has been chosen as the battleground and Sakai’s return now has a dangerous edge to it. But this being Sakai’s match, the feud could easily be decided with a table quiz or a cannonball run race instead of a wrestling match. We just have to wait and see what happens.

1. Konosuke Takeshita Debut Match: Konosuke Takeshita Vs El Generico

One of the first wrestlers announced to wrestle for DDT at Budokan Hall was the Generic Luchador himself, El Generico. After wowing everyone in Union and DDT during his trips to Japan in 2011, he came back this year to face the very best both brands had to offer. Now Generico will face a young lion, just like in his first match for Union against the now absent Shinichiro Tominaga. The debuting rookie here is 17 year old Konosuke Takeshita from Osaka, already a former Iron Man Heavymetalweight Champion. DDT must see a lot of potential in the kid to pit him with El Generico in his first professional match.

2. Tag Team Gauntlet: Keisuke Ishii & Shigehiro Irie Vs Hikaru Sato & Michael Nakazawa Vs Takao Soma & Yukio Sakaguchi Vs Isami Kodaka & Hiro Tsumaki Vs Saint Seiya Rion & Poison JULIE Sawada

A Gauntlet match that could very well determine the next challengers for the KO-D Tag Team Championship. We have two established tag teams in Keisuke Ishii & Shigehiro Irie and Do Hentai Dan. Takao Soma & Yukio Sakaguchi are paired together to represent New World Japan. Isami Kodaka & Hiro Tsumaki fly the flag for Union and have gelled well together since their recent team formation. The possible dark horse team is Poison JULIE Sawada and the newly named Saint Seiya Rion, formerly Rion Mizuki. JULIE saw an improvement to his win-loss record when he changed into his current gimmick. Maybe the same can happen to Rion.

3. Iron Man Heavymetalweight Title – Royal Rumble: DJ Nira (c) Vs Tomomitsu Matsunaga Vs Gorgeous Matsuno Vs Gota Ihashi Vs Akito Vs YOSHIHIKO Vs Cherry Vs NOZOMI Vs Hiroshi Fukuda Vs Daichi Kakimoto Vs Ken Ohka Vs Mio Shirai Vs Batten Tamagawa Vs Choun-Shiryu Vs Yuzuki Aikawa Vs Yoshiaki Fujiwara

You all know the story by now. This is the championship that has been won by many useless objects such as a Ladder, a curry, a poster, a truck, a doll, a Chair, a piece of Yakitori chicken, a can of Beer and Naoshi Sano. After an unexpected tour of Bolivia where the title briefly rested on Dick Togo’s shoulder, the belt is now currently in possession of the self-proclaimed King Of Time and master of the Rocket Punch, DJ Nira.

It was a sad tale for poor little DJ Nira. After gaining possession of a Money In The Bank style contract that gave him a KO-D Openwight Title match whenever he wanted, he chose to wait until the biggest stage of them all to cash it in. Unfortunately WrestleMania took place later that same day and it was too late to book flights for Miami. So Nira decided to cash in at Budokan Hall. But shocking news struck when Nira eavesdropped on Tsurumi Amon and heard that the 15th Anniverary Show was going to be cancelled! Knowing that it was now and never, Nira cashed in his title shot during Beer Garden week. Unfortunately for himself and humanity, Nira lost the match and left empty handed. Even worse was when Nira found out that Amon never said the Budokan show was cancelled, Nira just misheard him. Nira was crushed now that he wasted his title shot for nothing. Feeling as desperate as a wrestling fan browsing through his favourite SHIMMER woman’s Amazon Wish List, Nira kept the crumpled remains of the contract and cashed it in for a shot at the Iron Man Title. You know, the belt that’s defended to anyone and anything 24/7. Logic aside, this time his plan was a success. DJ Nira finally became a champion! Then he lost the belt. But he won it back, so everything’s ok again.

Except now he has to defend the belt in a Royal Rumble match and as champion he is expected to be entry #1. With an odd mix of male, female and inanimate wrestlers going after the champion, this can still be considered one of the more normal matches happening on the card.

4. Five-A-Side Soccer Match: Masa Takanashi, Daisuke Sasaki, Hoshitango, Tetsuya Endo & Tsukasa Fujimoto Vs Yasu Urano, Antonio Honda, Yuji Hino, Tanomusaku Toba & Yoshiko

Match Of The Day, this is not.

An odd storyline happening in DDT during the summer was the formation of the Monster Army. Yasu Urano, Antonio HondaYuji HinoMasa Takanashi, Daisuke Sasaki and Hoshitango all joined together to form a new stable. However, the group has made such little impact in DDT that they could hardly be called an immediate threat to the rest of the roster. Consisting of three former KO-D Champions, you can see why it is odd to see the group fizzle almost immediately. The trouble has led to the Monster Arm splitting into two groups, the original Crying Wolf members on one side and La Familia on the other. DDT figured out a way for the two sides to compete against each other and it involves an unlikely collaboration they established with a popular manga artist.

Back in June Sanshiro Takagi announced that DDT was working with Yoichi Takahashi, the creator of the famous football manga Captain Tsubasa. The deal involves Takahashi creating a special animated video for DDT’s show at Budokan Hall. To celebrate the deal, Takagi has booked a 5-a-side football match to take place inside the Budokan during the show. Crying Wolf and La Familia were chosen to be the teams and given the task to recruit more players. La Familia chose rookie Tetsuya Endo and Ice Ribbon ace Tsukasa Fujimoto (presumably playing the role of Hope Solo) to be part of their squad. Crying Wolf responded by getting Tanomusaku Toba and Stardom’s resident bitch Yoshiko (presumably playing the role of either Joey Barton or Mario Balotelli) to join their team.

5. KO-D Tag Team Title: KUDO & Makoto Oishi (c) Vs MIKAMI & Tatsumi Fujinami

KUDO & Makoto Oishi have been on top of the world since winning the KO-D Tag Team Title from Yasu Urano and Yuji Hino in June. Since then they have fought off most of the established tag teams in DDT to keep the belts. For the 15th Anniversary show, they are going to take on an unexpected pairing. In July, MIKAMI stepped back into the ring after spending seven months recovering from a torn rotator cuff. His return match was against the legendary Tatsumi Fujinami, who by then already agreed to compete for DDT at the Budokan. After Fujinami won the match, MIKAMI asked if they could team together to face KUDO & Makoto Oishi at the 15th Anniversary Show. Fujinami accepted the offer, the champions accepted the challenge and the KO-D Tag Titles were later put on the line. This match marks the first championship bout Fujinami will have in over 10 years, giving the match a very special feel.

So will this be the return to glory for both The Dragon and The Suicide Boy or will Homoiro Clover Z continue to dance the night away as champions?

6. Special Weapons Rumble Handicap Match: Sanshiro Takagi Vs Minoru Suzuki

The match one year in the making, Sanshiro Takagi challenged Minoru Suzuki to this match all the way back at “RYOGOKU PETER PAN 2011”. Since then both mean have gone through different paths. Takagi brought his TKG48 project to an end and transformed into CM Punk because he was feeling bored, then briefly became the KO-D Champion a reign that lasted the same amount of time it takes to make a cup of coffee. He then got tired of doing a knock-off anti-establshment gimmick and went on to form the very original New World Japan group. Minoru Suzuki meanwhile main evented in New Japan’s biggest show of the year in the Tokyo Dome, formed the Suzuki Army to wreck havoc in that company and continued being the cocky badass he always is.

Takagi knows how difficult a task he has ahead of him. So to make sure he has the advantage, Takagi has made the match a Weapons Rumble Handicap Match, where a new “weapon” gets introduced after a set period of time. Takagi has spent a lot of time thinking of weapons to use against Suzuki. One of them is to put Yuzuki Aikawa in a bikini and have her distract Suzuki with her bounciness, allowing Takagi to whack Suzuki over the head with a broom. I’m half expecting one of Suzuki’s weapons to be Chopper from One Piece. Also have you ever noticed how wherever Minoru Suzuki goes, Yoshihiro Takayama is never that far behind?

7. Special Single Match: Danshoku Dino Vs Invisible Man

Danshoku Dino continues to play an important part in DDT’s annual big bash. In the Sumo Hall years Dino won an 8 championship unification match to create the GAY Crown, then defeated HUSTLE star HG in his retirement match (RG was there too but nobody cares about him) and topped it all off by vanquishing Bob Sapp in a feud that drew more money than a Davey Richards heist main event.

But now Dino faces his toughest challenge yet. His opponent has one advantage that no one else Dino ever faced has. Dino’s next opponent is The Invisible Man. Is this Invisible Man the former Iron Man Champion Arnold Skeskejanaker who appeared in DDT back in 2008? I don’t know. The Invisible Man said is he’s sick and tired of being ignored and challenged Dino to grab everyone’s attention.

So Budokan Hall, the location of famous matches such as Jumbo Tsuruta Vs Mitsuharu Misawa, Antonio Honda Vs Muhammad Ali, Nobuhiko Takada Vs Super Vader and many more will now play host to Danshoku Dino fighting an invisible man.

It could be worse. They could have put Yoshiaki Yago in that match. Do you guys want to see Dino Vs Yago in a headline match Budokan Hall? No, I didn’t think so.

8. Special Hardcore Tag Team Match: HARASHIMA & Togi Makabe Vs Shuji Ishikawa & Ryuji Ito

HARASHIMA and Shuji Ishikawa have fought some hard matches against each other in the past. This trend continued in July when the two met in a Hardcore Match that Ishikawa won. Afterwards Tsurumi Amon booked the two to face each other once more but this time they each get to bring a tag team partner of their choice. Ishikawa chose Ryuji Ito, their alliance created as a result of some co-promoted shows between Union and Big Japan held this year. HARASHIMA went and invited an old friend he knew from from his college days. That friend just happens to be the The Charisma Gorilla from New Japan, Togi Makabe. The two originally met and became friends at their college wrestling club. They eventually faced each other in a professional bout in 2010. Who else but Makabe could be the partner HARASHIMA needs to counter both Ishikawa’s size and Ito’s brutal wrestling style? With the teams set, the match has been turned into a Hardcore match and could provide violent scenes rarely seen in DDT.

This match is what I like to call the Fire Pro Special. Have you ever played a game of Fire Pro Wrestling where you just randomly select wrestlers and come up with unusual tag team matches? This feels like one of those matches. All that’s missing is an Independent World ring canvas and somebody like Kyohei Wada as the referee.

9. KO-D Openweight Title: Kota Ibushi (c) Vs Kenny Omega

And so here we are at the hotly anticipated main event. The Golden Lovers collide over who is the best wrestler in DDT. With both wrestlers going through a very eventful 2012, this match here could wind up as the biggest highlight out of them all. After finally going through surgery to heal a niggling shoulder injury that cut short his biggest career achievement, Kota Ibushi came back with a polite vengeance. The Independent Genius won the KO-D Openweight Title from Yuji Hino, then followed that by winning back the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Title that he was originally forced to vacate thanks to his injury. Things were looking great for Ibushi.

Now that return to glory stuff is great and all, but while Ibushi was out of action Kenny Omega forged his own path and made sure everyone in Japan knew his name. Omega went to All Japan to win the AJPW Jr. Heavyweight Championship and proceeded to rub it in to both the fans and the roster that he was the coolest champion All Japan had ever seen. While making stops in DDT to receive a hero’s welcome from his fans, the All Japan crowd were just waiting for the day when one of their favourites would take back the belt and shut him up. The AJPW Jr. Title came and went, but Omega was quick to focus on a new goal. He entered the King Of DDT tournament and defeated Daisuke Sasaki, Masa Takanashi, HARASHIMA and finally Danshoku Dino to be crowned the winner. He earned the grand prize of challenging the KO-D Champion at Budokan Hall. Of course, that champion is Omega’s BFF Ibushi. And the two have quite the history together.

The whole reason Omega originally came to DDT four years ago was to challenge Ibushi over who was better at Falls Count Anywhere matches. The two fought each other in a fierce 2/3 Falls Count Anywhere match in Shin-Kiba 1st RING during the chaotic week of Beer Garden shows. Ibushi emerged the victor two falls to one and from that match a friendship was born. The two became a tag team at the beginning of 2009 and quickly won the KO-D Tag Team Title with their combined finisher, the Golden Shower. Weekly Pro-Wrestling originally named them the Golden Twins but Omega corrected them and said they weren’t twins. Omega called himself and Ibushi the Golden Lovers instead. From there they went on to even more success, branching over to New Japan where they won the IWGP Jr. Tag Team Title along with a Match of the Year Award from Tokyo Sports for one of their matches with Apollo 55. Add in a Best Tag Team Award from Weekly Pro-Wrestling and you can see Ibushi and Omega were both becoming hot properties in Japan.

In recent times the two have mostly been seperated in the ring with Ibushi being out of action and Omega being busy annoying everyone in All Japan. But now fate has brought them together again. Fate or maybe destiny. Either fate, destiny or Sanshiro Takagi thinking “You know what would be an awesome main event at Budokan Hall? Kota Ibushi Vs Kenny Omega!”

And what an awesome main event that is going to be.

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