Event: Ice Ribbon New Ice Ribbon #1101 ~ Yokohama Ribbon 2021
Date: February 23rd, 2021
Location: Yokohama Radiant Hall in Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan
Announced Attendance: 150
Broadcast Information: Streamed Live on Nico Nico PPV
It has been awhile since I checked in with Ice Ribbon, so let’s see what they are up to. Like with all promotions, 2020 was challenging for Ice Ribbon but they pushed through to still put on a lot of events and grew their International fan base in the process as they made most of their shows easily accessible. They continued that momentum in 2021 and started to have PPVs more often, which this event was, on Nico Nico. There is only one title on the line on this show, with Tsukushi Haruka taking on Thekla in the main event, but all the major wrestlers in the promotion are present. Here is the full card:
All wrestlers have profiles on Joshi City, you can click on their name above to go to it. As this aired on PPV, all matches will be shown in full.
Akane Fujita, Risa Sera, and Yappy vs. Oikawa, Kurumi, and Honma
We start the event with a fun six woman tag. Both teams make some sense as they do pair up from time to time, but this is mostly a match to get the wrestlers a spot on the card. Risa Sera in particular feels a bit out of place since she is a champion in Ice Ribbon, but sometimes everyone has to take a turn in the opener. I’m glad that Ice Ribbon works with Actwres girl’Z as Tae Honma is always a pleasure, hopefully she gets a chance to show off a bit here.
Team Yappy attacks before the match and triple team their opponents, as they all stack on Tae and Banny for a two count cover. Risa and Banny stay in as the legal wrestlers as Risa puts Banny in the Rocking Horse until Tae and Kurumi break it up. Double knee to the back by Risa and she covers Banny for two. Risa tags Akane, Akane throws Banny into the corner and hits a running shoulderblock. Elbow drop by Akane and she covers Banny for a two count. Akane tags Yappy but Banny throws Yappy into the corner, Banny charges Yappy but Yappy bumps her back and chokes her while sitting on the top turnbuckle. Yappy sits on Banny, but Banny kicks out of the cover. Irish whip by Yappy but Banny dropkicks her and makes the hot tag to Kurumi. Kurumi shoulderblocks Yappy, Akane and Risa come in to help but Kurumi throws them into each other. They try to knock over Kurumi but Kurumi hits a double lariat, she goes back to Yappy but Yappy blocks the powerbomb attempt and hits a back bodydrop. Leg drops by Yappy and she covers Kurumi for two. Yappy tags Risa, running elbow by Risa in the corner but Kurumi blocks the suplex attempt and the two trade elbows. Kurumi jumps on Risa’s back but Risa hits a Schwein for a two count cover. Risa picks up Kurumi but Kurumi throws her into the corner, body avalanche by Kurumi and she dropkicks Risa in the head.
Kurumi tags Tae, Banny comes in too and they double team Risa. Tae puts Risa in a kneelock but Risa gets to the ropes for the break, kicks to the leg by Tae and she dropkicks Risa in the knee. Risa gets away from her and puts Tae in an elevated crab hold, she flips Tae up and powerbombs her in the corner before hitting a running double knee strike. Reverse double knee drop by Risa out of the corner, Akane is tagged in and she joins Risa in shoulderblocking Tae. Akane slams Tae to the mat and covers her, but it gets two. Tae gets Akane down with a Fujiwara Armbar but Akane gets a foot on the ropes for the break, DDT by Tae and she covers Akane for a two count. Tae tags Banny, dropkick by Banny in the corner and she applies a modified armbar. Banny switches it to a cross armbreaker attempt but Akane gets into the ropes for the break. Banny goes up top but Risa hits her from the apron, giving Akane time to recover. Akane gets Banny on her shoulders but Banny slides off. Akane sits on her however, she goes for a cover but Tae dropkicks Akane to break it up. Armtrap crossface by Banny to Akane, but Yappy breaks it up. Banny goes off the ropes but Akane hits a shoulderblock, Yappy runs in with a seated senton before Risa hits a diving double knee drop off the second rope. Texas Cloverleaf by Akane, but Kurumi breaks it up with a superkick. Banny picks up Akane and kicks her in the head, Akane fires back with a shoulderblock however and covers Banny for two. Powerslam by Akane and she puts Banny in a cross-arm Camel Clutch, leading to the tap out! Risa Sera, Akane Fujita, and Yappy are the winners.
A generally inoffensive opener. Not everyone in this match is a great wrestler… not naming names so that Ice Ribbon Twitter doesn’t come after me but at times the action dragged a little bit and there were some awkward moments. Risa Sera shined the brightest, which is no surprise since she is so good, and Tae looked solid when she was in the ring. Nothing memorable in the slightest but not the worst way to begin an event.
Hamuko Hoshi vs. Miku Aono vs. Mochi Miyagi
Time for me to grit my teeth and get through this one. Three way matches by definition isn’t my favorite match type but this one doesn’t really have a ‘worker’ to keep things together. Hoshi and Miyagi both aren’t bad wrestlers but tend to lean into comedy at times, and since I prefer comedy wrestling stick to comedy matches it can sometimes throw off the flow of regular matches. Miku Aono has been wrestling for three years in Actwres girl’Z and hasn’t won any titles in her career as she mostly hovers in the midcard. Hopefully I’ll be pleasantly surprised with how this one goes.
All three circle to start, Miku is singled out first by the friends Mochi and Hamuko as they double team her in the corner. Double Irish whip to Miku but Miku rolls away and does the Hamuko pose on the mat. Mochi and Hamuko get on the mat and pose as well, they trade schoolboy covers but no one gets the three count and they end up posing again. Mochi and Hamuko go back to double teaming Miku before turning attention to each other, they both try to shoulderblock each other over until Hamuko finally sends Mochi to the mat. Crab hold by Hamuko but Miku interrupts things and trades strikes with Mochi. Dropkick by Miku in the corner and she kicks Mochi in the back a few times. Crab hold by Miku but Hamuko breaks it up, Hamuko throws Miku into the corner and rubs her belly on her. Miku goes for a scoop slam by Hamuko blocks it, Miku eventually delivers the slam anyway and applies a leg submission hold. Mochi helps as she rakes at Hamuko’s face, they both release Hamuko before Mochi attacks Miku from behind and covers both of them for two.
Hamuko recovers and she and Mochi both hit body avalanches on Miku, Mochi slams Hamuko onto Miku and both wrestlers try to cover Miku with no luck. Hamuko and Mochi push each other which gives Miku time to cover and hit a lariat on both of them. High kick by Miku on Hamuko and she lariats Mochi for a two count. Suplex by Miku to Mochi, but Hamuko breaks it up. Miku and Hamuko wait for Mochi to get up and both hit lariats, they go for a double vertical suplex but Mochi blocks it and DDTs both of them. Mochi positions Miku and Hamuko near the corner and goes for a Reverse Splash, but Hamuko moves and Mochi only ends up hitting Miku. Footstomp by Mochi to Miku, but Hamuko breaks up the cover. Body avalanche by Hamuko to Mochi and she nails the Shining Onaka for a two count. Hamuko goes off the ropes but Mochi hits the Lou Thesz Press, also getting a two count. Miku runs in but she gets a Lou Thesz Press as well, Mochi goes back to Hamuko but Hamuko reverses the press into a cradle for two. Onna no Shuunen (modified cradle) by Hamuko to Mochi, and she picks up the three count! Hamuko Hoshi is the winner.
My issues with Hamuko have probably been stated enough – she’s a solid enough wrestler but the blurry line between comedy and non-comedy makes it hard for me to take her seriously. Mochi is a hair better but not by much, so the ceiling for their matches for me is “mindless fun.” This match didn’t even reach that level as with the three way match rules it was just random offense with some mixed in flash pins with little of substance. I wouldn’t necessarily say the match was “bad” but it definitely was meaningless.
Rina Yamashita and Mashiro vs. Saori Anou and Suzu Suzuki
Random tag team pairings in wrestling can be hit and miss, but this one worked out pretty well. Suzu and Saori were far from a regular team at the time of the match but both are really good wrestlers and I am looking forward to seeing how they work together. Rina Yamashita is one of the top Freelancers on the scene while Yuuki is a promising young rookie for Ice Ribbon. Even with nothing on the line, I am going into the match expecting something entertaining just going by the participants.
Rina and Suzu start the match, Suzu works a headlock but Rina Irish whips out of it and avoids Suzu’s dropkick. Headlock by Rina, Suzu gets out of it but Rina hits a hard shoulderblock. Rina poses which gives Suzu time to kick her from behind, and both wrestlers tag out. Saori and Mashiro circle each other, Mashiro asks for a knucklelock and gets it, which quickly backfires. Saori dances on Mashiro’s hands and throws her into the corner, Irish whip by Saori and she elbows Mashiro in the corner. Rina runs in and attacks Saori from behind, Rina jumps on Mashiro’s back but Mashiro collapses. Saori stumps on Rina and goes back to Mashiro, putting her in a chinlock. Stretch hold by Saori, Rina comes in but Suzu takes care of her. Saori lets go of Mashiro and tags Suzu, dropkick to the back by Suzu and she covers Mashiro for two. Suzu slams Mashiro repeatedly in the corner before driving her into the mat, she picks up Mashiro but Mashiro blocks the German suplex and dropkicks her in the back. This gives her time to tag in Rina, Suzu kicks Rina as Saori runs in but Rina suplexes both of them. Rina stomps on Suzu and goes for a suplex, but Suzu blocks it and elbows Rina in the chest. Rina elbows her back as they trade shots, Suzu goes for a high kick but Rina blocks it. Rina kicks Suzu in the head, cover by Rina but it gets a two count. Rina picks up Suzu but Suzu hits a jawbreaker and dropkicks Rina in the face for a two count. Irish whip by Suzu and she hits a spear, but that gets a two as well.
Suzu tags in Saori, Saori goes up top and she hits a missile dropkick. Saori charges Rina but Rina moves, Rina ducks the enzuigiri but Saori lands on her feet when Rina goes for a backdrop suplex. Anou boots Rina in the head before Suzu connects with a sliding dropkick from the apron, cover by Saori but it gets two. Rina kicks Saori but Saori delivers the enzuigiri, Rina fires back with a hard lariat however and both are down on the mat. Rina manages to tag Mashiro, Mashiro dropkicks Saori a few times and covers her for two. Mashiro gets on the second turnbuckle but Saori hits her before she can jump off, Rina grabs Saori from behind but Suzu then grabs Rina. They all end up on the mat except for Mashiro, Mashiro jumps down and picks up Saori, delivering a series of elbows. Boot by Saori, she picks up Mashiro but Mashiro blocks the Fisherman Suplex attempt. Rina cuts off Saori, giving Mashiro time to recover and apply an armlock. Suzu breaks it up, Mashiro gets on the second turnbuckle and hits a diving crossbody for two. Mashiro goes off the ropes but Saori catches her with a sidewalk slam, but Mashiro barely kicks out. Saori goes up top but Rina runs in and joins her, hitting a superplex. Rina picks up Mashiro but Suzu dropkicks Rina from behind, double Irish whip to Rina and she gets booted in the chest. Saori goes back to Mashiro and Mashiro quickly applies a few flash pins for a two count. Saori finally grabs Mashiro and delivers the Fisherman Suplex Hold, but Mashiro kicks out. Saori quickly applies the Potering, and she gets the three count! Saori Anou and Suzu Suzuki are the winners.
It didn’t reach the heights I was hoping for, but a perfectly watchable midcard tag match. Really the main thing holding the match together was just the quality of the wrestlers themselves, as it was a bit disjointed at times and they didn’t seem to have a real structure planned. Part of that was Mashiro, who is obviously still a work in progress, but even when she wasn’t in the ring something really didn’t click. Some of the pairings were fun, particularly when Suzu squared off with Rina, and the ending was exciting. Still the best match on the card up to this point, but nothing they did really elevated it beyond just another midcard match.
Maika Ozaki, Yukihi, and Kaicho vs. Matsuya Uno, Satsuki, and Fujimoto
This match has a bunch of wrestlers with a wide range of experiences. Both sides have a S Tier wrestler (Maya Yukihi and Tsukasa Fujimoto) along with four younger/newer wrestlers still looking to stake their claim in Joshi. Ram Kaicho will always get a special mention from me as I love her look, and for the fact she disappeared for years before suddenly becoming a regular wrestler in Ice Ribbon. Up to this point the show hasn’t done a lot for me, so hopefully these six can deliver.
Maya and Tsukasa start the match, they trade wristlocks until Maya gets a headlock applied but Tsukasa Irish whips out of it. Back kick by Maya but Tsukasa hits an armdrag, Maya returns the favor and the two eventually reach a stalemate. Tsukasa dropkicks Maya in the corner and tags Totoro, Totoro goes for a slap but Maya blocks it and hits a drop toehold. Dropkick by Maya and she tags in Kaicho. Mounted elbows by Kaicho, Maya and Maika come in the ring and they triple team Totoro. Ram puts Totoro in a Camel Clutch with the help of Maika while Maya kicks Totoro in the face. Tsukasa eventually breaks things up, Kaicho goes off the ropes but Totoro catches her before dropping her to the mat. Totoro and her friends all stand on Kaicho’s back Totoro picks up Kaicho and slams her face into the mat. Totoro stands on Kaicho’s back before covering Kaicho for a two count. Totoro tags Matsuya and Matsuya puts Kaicho in a leglock, but Maya breaks it up. Matsuya grabs Kaicho and puts her in an abdominal stretch, but Kaicho gets into the ropes for the break. Kaicho chops Matsuya but Matsuya elbows her back and the two trade shots. Matsuya punches Kaicho into the corner, Irish whip by Matsuya but Kaicho kicks her back and hits a face crusher.
Kaicho can’t get to her corner as Matsuya puts her in an ankle hold, but Maika breaks it up. Dropkick by Kaicho and she finally makes it to her corner to tag Maya, kick to the chest by Maya and she puts Matsuya in an Anaconda Vice. Matsuya gets out of it and applies a Fujiwara Armbar, but Maya slides away. Matsuya re-applies the hold but Maya gets a foot on the ropes for the break, Matsuya goes off the ropes and hits a shoulder tackle but Maya trips her when she goes off the ropes again. Matsuya trips her back and applies an ankle hold, schoolboy by Matsuya but it gets two. Maya goes back to the ankle but Maika breaks it up, spear by Matsuya and she covers Maya for two. Matsuya tags Tsukasa, Tsukasa goes up top and hits a missile dropkick. Dropkick by Tsukasa in the corner and she covers Maya for two. Maya and Tsukasa jockey for position until Tsukasa applies an Octopus Hold but Maya gets into the ropes. Tsukasa goes off the ropes but Maya hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, running knee by Maya and she delivers a PK. Maya picks up Tsukasa but Tsukasa reverses the suplex attempt into guillotine choke. Maya muscles out of it and hits a vertical suplex anyway, cover by Maya but it gets a two count. Tsukasa trips Maya and hits a PK, senton by Totoro and Tsukasa goes for the Infinity but Maya blocks it. Kaicho runs in and hits a Codebreaker on Tsukasa, hard shoulderblock by Maika and Maya delivers an enzuigiri to Tsukasa for a two count.
Maya picks up Tsukasa but Tsukasa nails an elevated Infinity, leaving both on the mat. Both wrestlers tag out as Maika and Totoro come in, elbows by Totoro but Maika hits a body avalanche in the corner. Hard shoulderblock by Maika, she picks up Totoro and tries to get her on her shoulders, but Totoro blocks it. Totoro gets Maika up but Maika slides away, Kaicho runs in but Matsuya grabs her from the apron. Scoop slam by Totoro by Maika and Tsukasa hits a PK, body press by Totoro but Maika kicks out. Maika goes off the ropes but Maya runs in and boots her, Tiger Feint Kick by Kaicho and Maika gets Totoro up on her shoulders in an Argentine Backbreaker. Matsuya breaks it up, Maika gets on the second turnbuckle and hits a diving senton to Totoro for a two count. Maika goes off the ropes but Totoro grabs her, Maika gets away however and hits a lariat for a two count. Maika goes up to the top turnbuckle but both Tsukasa and Matsuya run in to interrupt her, Totoro gets Maika on her shoulders and hits the Kamikaze for a nearfall. Matsuya hits a spear on Maika, Totoro gets on the second turnbuckle and delivers a diving senton, but Maika gets a shoulder up on the cover. Totoro goes all the way up while Matsuya and Tsukasa hold her arms, helping her hit a somersault senton but the pin is broken up. Totoro scoops up Maika and drops her with a modified Samoan Driver and she picks up the three count! Tsukasa Fujimoto, Matsuya Uno, and Totoro Satsuki are the winners!
I have some mixed feelings about this match but definitely more good than bad. First the good – Totoro and Maika are both limited wrestlers but they stayed within their limits here and did what they do well, so they added to the match rather than taking away from it. Also, the segments with Maya and Tsukasa were really good as they have great chemistry. I didn’t love the inclusion of Matsuya, as she wrestles a completely different style and it didn’t mesh with everyone else. It felt like five of the wrestlers were on the same page while Matsuya was applying random submission holds that had no connection or meaning. Not that her style isn’t one that has a place in wrestling, of course it does, it just didn’t vibe here. Also, while I love Ram Kaicho, she seems to have lost some of her personality since wrestling regularly in Ice Ribbon, she’s talented but she feels more like ‘just another wrestler.’ No posing, flipping off anyone, etc. as she just blended in with everyone else. An enjoyable match overall, just with some flow issues due to Matsuya not fitting in. Mildly Recommended
(c) Tsukushi Haruka vs. Thekla
For the main event, we have a championship match with one of Ice Ribbon’s secondary titles. The IW-19 Championship existed early in Ice Ribbon’s run, but had been vacant since 2013. Once the pandemic hit, they decided to bring it back, holding a tournament last summer to crown a new champion. Hamuko Hoshi won the tournament, but Tsukushi won the title from her on January 9th, making this Tsukushi’s first defense of the championship. Thekla joined the Ice Ribbon roster in 2020, she briefly left Japan in the fall but returned to Ice Ribbon in January to continue wrestling for the promotion. This is a big match for her, and with Tsukushi being a new champion I am confident they will go all out to end the PPV with a bang.
Thekla jumps off the top turnbuckle as the bell rings but Tsukushi greets her with a dropkick, Tsukushi works a headlock but Thekla Irish whips out of it and they go into a high speed exchange. Thekla hits an armdrag out of the corner but Tsukushi hits an armdrag of her own, Thekla goes off the ropes but Tsukushi avoids the dropkick as they eventually reach a stalemate. Thekla sits on the top turnbuckle but Tsukushi dropkicks her and throws her back to the mat. Tsukushi stomps on Thekla’s hand repeatedly and puts her in Camel Clutch, she lets go after a moment and ties up Thekla in the ropes. Dropkick to the back by Tsukushi and she covers Thekla for two. Tsukushi throws Thekla into the corner but Thekla avoids her charge and hits a hard dropkick. Monkey Flip by Thekla and she covers Tsukushi for two. Thekla stomps on Tsukushi and throws her face into the mat, eye rake by Thekla and she hits a few bootscrapes. Irish whip by Thekla but Tsukushi avoids her charge and slides to the apron, Thekla goes for a lariat but Tsukushi slides back in and elbows Thekla in the head. Knee to the midsection by Thekla and she kicks Tsukushi back, Thekla gets tied up in the ropes but she avoids Tsukushi’s dropkick and kicks her in the back for a two count. Thekla goes up top but Tsukushi joins her before she can jump off, she knocks Thekla off so she is hanging from the ropes over the apron and delivers a diving footstomp. Tsukushi quickly gets back into the ring and hits a running elbow on Thekla, cover by Tsukushi but it gets a two count.
Tsukushi goes up top but Thekla jumps up as well and suplexes Tsukushi down to the mat. Both wrestlers slowly get up, head kick by Thekla but Tsukushi fires back with a release German Suplex. They elbow each other as they slowly return to their feet, Tsukushi knocks Thekla to the mat first and kicks her when she tries to bridge up. Thekla quickly hits a series of vertical suplexes, but Tsukushi kicks out of the cover. Spear by Thekla, but Tsukushi barely kicks out of the cover. Thekla applies a bridging leglock, but Tsukushi gets into the ropes for the break. Thekla applies a double underhook but Tsukushi gets away, head kick by Thekla and she follows with a Buzzsaw Kick. Elbows by Thekla and she toys with Tsukushi, but Tsukushi elbows her hard and attacks Thekla while she is on the mat. Thekla gets to the ropes to try to escape but Tsukushi keeps on her, she drags Thekla back into the ring and drills her with a dropkick. Tsukushi goes up top and hits a missile dropkick, cover by Tsukushi but Thekla kicks out. Tsukushi goes up top again but Thekla avoids the diving footstomp and hits a chop block. Thekla now goes up top and hits a diving footstomp of her own, covering Tsukushi for two. Double underhook into a slam by Thekla, she goes up top but Tsukushi gets her knees up on the body press attempt. Tsukushi quickly cradles Thekla and then goes for a La Magistral, but her pin attempts are unsuccessful. Thekla goes for some flash pins as well with the same result, Tsukushi cradles Thekla to the mat and hits a series of footstomps. Double underhook facebuster by Tsukushi, she goes up top and nails a diving footstomp for a two count. Tsukushi drags up Thekla and delivers a Tiger Suplex Hold, and she picks up the three count! Tsukushi Haruka wins and retains the championship!
A solid match, nothing that will blow you away but entertaining. Tsukushi has been an underrated talent for many years, as due to her age and the fact she was generally stuck in the midcard she didn’t get a ton of notice. She’s been great for awhile though and continues to be, I can’t call her a murder child anymore as she is an adult now but she hasn’t lost her aggression. The match was pretty non-stop as Tsukushi only has one speed, and Thekla was able to keep up. This is the first long singles matches I’ve seen with Thekla, she isn’t as crisp as Tsukushi but has a quality move arsenal and didn’t do anything to slow the match down or hold it back. The match was about 15 minutes and felt like it ended at the right time, no need to stretch something out just because its the main event. A good outing and first defense by Tsukushi, hopefully she continues to impress this year and gets more chances in big matches. Recommended
I am going to evaluate a PPV a bit harder than a free event on TV (or on a cheap streaming service) as one should expect a bit more if they are paying extra (this event cost $15 to $20). This really felt more like a standard Nico Nico show and not a Nico Nico PPV, as the best wrestlers were buried in tag matches and the undercard was average. The main event was a good match, but again felt more like the main event of a regular event. More promotions are doing PPVs this year to likely recoup money lost due to the pandemic, and I can respect that, but if they are charging extra I’d like a more compelling event. Still, more good than bad here and an easy watch from start to finish, just not a high end or memorable event in the long run.