Event: Ice Ribbon “New Ice Ribbon #799”
Date: April 29th, 2017
Location: Ice Ribbon Dojo in Saitama, Japan
I know that I haven’t reviewed Ice Ribbon in awhile, but there is a very good reason for that. All of their airings on Nico Nico they put a commentary box on the bottom side of the screen, showing the commentary as they discuss the event. Even if I did understand Japanese I’d find this incredibly annoying, imagine watching RAW and for the entire three hours the bottom side of the screen showed the commentators, its quite distracting. So I haven’t been watching their events. But, this show I got on DVD which means – no commentary box. Granted, it is a small show but at least we get to check out some of their newest rookies. Here is the card:
Pretty small show, as always you can click on the wrestler’s names above to go to their roster page, including all the DATE wrestlers.
Akane Fujita and Nori DATE vs. Hamuko Hoshi and Nao DATE
This is just the second match of both Nori and Nao’s wrestling careers, as both debuted in Ice Ribbon on April 24th. All four of the DATE wrestlers in Ice Ribbon are sisters and have a background in Mixed Martial Arts. They are affiliated with TEAM Date, an MMA gym in Japan, hence their name. All four have had official MMA fights, although for very small promotions. Nao is 19 years old and is 0-2 in MMA while Nori is 18 years old and is 3-3 in her MMA career. Akane Fujita is in her fourth year in Ice Ribbon but still hasn’t won any titles, while Hoshi is the seasoned veteran of the group with nine years under her belt and multiple title reigns.
Nori starts the match against her sister Nao, kicks by Nori but Nao kicks her back and hits a series of knees against the ropes. Nao and Nori jockey on the floor but neither gets the advantage so they tag in their teammates. Shoulderblock by Hoshi to Akane but Akane chops her in the chest, Hoshi chops her back but Akane knocks her to the mat and covers Hoshi for two. Akane tags in Nori but Hoshi clubs her, Hoshi rolls to the mat and she does her pose, which makes the rookie Nori laugh. Poor Nori isn’t used to Hoshi’s antics. Hoshi throws Nori in the corner and rubs her belly in her face, Nao comes in and they double team Nori in the ropes. Hoshi officially tags in Nao, Nao throws down Nori in the corner and Nori is attack by both her and Hoshi. Bulldog by Hoshi to Nori and she eats a double elbow drop for a two count. Nori fights back against Nao with an elbow and they trade strikes, thrust kick by Nori and she tags in Akane. Akane throws Nao in the corner and tosses her down by the hair, Akane throws Nao face-first into the mat and puts her in the camel clutch while Nori kicks her in the chest.
Senton by Akane, and she covers Nao for two. Nao comes back with a boot to Akane in the chest, cover by Nao but it gets a two count. Nao tags in Hoshi but Akane shoulderblocks her down, Nori runs in to hold back Nao while Akane puts Hoshi in a Scorpion Deathlock. Nori manages to break it up, Hoshi belly bumps Akane and hits the Shining Onaka for a two count. Hoshi gets on the second turnbuckle but Nori grabs her, Akane picks up Hoshi and slams her to the mat for two. Akane picks up Hoshi and tags in Nori, kick combination by Nori to Hoshi and she covers her for a two count. Hoshi grabs Nori but Nori hits a scoop slam, high kick by Nori to Hoshi but Hoshi kicks out of the cover. Cartwheel kick by Nori to Hoshi, but Nao breaks up the pin. Nori goes off the ropes and kicks Hoshi in the chest, but Hoshi ducks the spinning kick and Nao kicks Nori into the corner. Hoshi and Nao pick up their opponents and hit Samoan Drops, scoop slam by Hoshi to Nori and she puts her in a crab hold. Akane eventually breaks it up, Hoshi goes off the ropes but Nori hits her with a kick to the chest. Nori goes off the ropes but Hoshi picks her up, Nori and Hoshi trade pins but both get two counts. Hoshi goes off the ropes and hits the Hamuroll, and Hoshi gets the three count! Hamuko Hoshi and Nao DATE win!
I was amused by this not necessarily because it was a great match, but just seeing wrestlers with MMA backgrounds in Joshi is nice since they bring something different to the table. I mean they are green as grass but its at least some variety. Nori laughing at Hoshi was funny, she just isn’t used to having to keep a straight face during such things, and no one looked bad. A decent way to kick things off.
Matsuya Uno and Maruko Nagasaki vs. Tequila Saya and Satsuki Totoro
More young wrestlers, as Ice Ribbon has debuted quite a few wrestlers in the last couple years. Matsuya has changed her hair since last time I saw her, leaving me confused for several minutes, she debuted last June while her partner debuted in September of 2015. On the other side, Satsuki just debuted a month ago while Saya started wrestling in March of 2016. So Maruko is actually the veteran of the group, I like her quite a bit so hopefully she’ll get the chance to shine here.
Matsuya and Saya start the match, they trade wristlocks until Matsuya shoulderblocks Saya to the mat. Matsuya picks her up but Saya trips her and puts Matsuya in a camel clutch. Maruko runs in to help but Satsuki intercepts her and puts her in a camel clutch as well, but Matsuya makes it to the ropes to force the break. Irish whip by Saya but Matsuya hits a dropkick and makes the tag to Maruko. Maruko clubs Saya and stomps her into the corner, dropkick by Maruko and she puts Saya in a submission hold. Satsuki tries to break it up but Matsuya tosses her out of the ring, Maruko covers Saya but it gets a two count. Maruko goes for a slam but Saya blocks it, she goes off the ropes but Maruko delivers a dropkick. Maruko jumps over Saya in the corner but Saya connects with a rebound crossbody and makes the tag to Satsuki. Hard shoulderblock by Satsuki, she picks up Maruko and hits a scoop slam for two. Maruko pushes Satsuki off and elbows her in the chest, the two trade blows until Matsuya runs in to help. Maruko dropkicks Satsuki off her feet, she picks her up and throws her into the ropes, but Satsuki hits a double lariat on Matsuya and Maruko. Satsuki picks up Maruko, Maruko goes for a sunset flip but Satsuki sits on her.
Maruko dropkicks Satsuki and makes the tag to Matsuya, Matsuya goes up top but Satsuki blocks her diving chop and hits a shoulderblock. Two more shoulderblocks by Satsuki, and she covers Matsuya for two. Satsuki picks up Matsuya and hits a body avalanche in the corner, but Matsuya dodges the next one and schoolboys her for two. Matsuya tries multiple schoolboys with no luck, she picks up Satsuki but Satsuki hits a scoop slam and tags in Saya. Jumping crossbodies by Saya, she throws Matsuya into the corner before hitting a dropkick. Sunset flip by Saya from the second turnbuckle, but it gets a two count. Saya goes off the ropes but Matsuya catches her crossbody attempt and throws Saya to the mat. Springboard body press by Matsuya, but Saya gets a shoulder up. Matsuya goes off the ropes but Satsuki runs in and hits a shoulderblock, Saya goes up top and hits a diving crossbody but it only gets two. Saya picks up Matsuya but Matsuya grabs her legs and rolls her up for two. Matsuya tries a few more flash pins with no luck, Saya goes for Gran Maestro de Tequila but Matsuya blocks it. Satsuki comes in and lariats both Maruko and Matsuya, she goes up top and hits a somersault senton with Saya’s assistance. Saya now goes up top and hits a moonsault, she picks up Matsuya and delivers the Gran Maestro de Tequila for the three count! Tequila Saya and Satsuki Totoro are the winners.
This certainly wasn’t good. Satsuki just debuted so I am not knocking her, but she really lagged behind here as she looked lost a few times and some of her strikes missed. Maruko is my favorite but did the least and some of the action was just disjointed. Everyone has to learn and practice makes perfect, but this wasn’t a good match.
Kyuri vs. Tsukushi
If you haven’t seen Kyuri in awhile, she isn’t the same Kyuri that you used to know. Kyuri and Tsukushi used to be a regular tag team, but Kyuri has grown up and is ready to surpass Tsukushi. Even though both are about the same age, Tsukushi has been wrestling for several years longer and has 11 title reigns (!!!) total in Ice Ribbon. Still, Kyuri has a new attitude and is ready to assert herself in the promotion, finally moving to the next phase of her career. Defeating Tsukushi would be a good way to do that.
Kyuri and Tsukushi start by trading wristlocks, Tsukushi gets Kyuri to the mat and they jockey for position. Tsukushi applies a necklock and pulls Kyuri by the hair before tossing her down to the mat. Tsukushi runs on Kyuri’s back and goes for a stretch hold, but Kyuri gets into the ropes. Scoop slam by Kyuri and she stretches Tsukushi, she puts her into the ropes but Tsukushi switches positions with her and messes with Kyuri’s nose. Tsukushi goes off the ropes but Kyuri catches her with a judo throw, neck drops by Kyuri and she covers Tsukushi for two. Kyuri starts on Tsukushi’s arm, tiger feint kick by Kyuri and she covers Tsukushi for another two count. Kyuri goes for a fisherman suplex but Tsukushi blocks it and applies a front guillotine, Kyuri gets out of the hold and hits the fisherman suplex hold for two. Kyuri goes up top and hits a diving body press, but that gets a two count as well. Kyuri picks up Tsukushi but Tsukushi rolls her up and hits a footstomp. Tsukushi and Kyuri trade elbows until Tsukushi knocks Kyuri to the mat, Tsukushi picks up Kyuri and hits more elbows for two. Tsukushi gets on the top turnbuckle and hits a missile dropkick, but Kyuri quickly applies a short armbar. Tsukushi gets into the ropes to force the break, Kyuri approaches Tsukushi but Tsukushi rolls her up for two. Kyuri goes for another flash cover with no luck, hard elbow by Tsukushi and she gets on the second turnbuckle. Kyuri gets her off the turnbuckles with a Codebreaker, Fisherman Driver by Kyuri but Tsukushi gets a shoulder up. Kyuri picks up Tsukushi and hits a cross armbreaker takedown, she reverts it into a seated armbar but Tsukushi gets a foot on the ropes. Kyuri picks up Tsukushi and hits a Blockbuster Suplex Hold, but Tsukushi gets a foot on the ropes. Kyuri wraps up Tsukushi’s arms and applied a submission, but the bell rings as time has expired. The match is a Draw.
I think a Draw has to be done perfectly in order to not annoy me, and this match did a Draw about as perfect as possible. The story here was Kyuri trying to surpass her old friend and tag team partner, and she damn nearly almost did but couldn’t find the right combination to get the job done before the bell rang. Afterwards, Kyuri was mad and went back after Tsukushi, so she clearly was not satisfied with just a Draw. This match was about Kyuri’s growth and I think it told that story about as well as a ten minute match can. Really enjoyable match as they have great chemistry and Kyuri could be a future star in the promotion as I think she is almost ready. Recommended
Risa Sera, Maya Yukihi, and Karen DATE vs. Tsukasa Fujimoto, Miyako Matsumoto, and Hana DATE
For the main event, we get a mixture of high level stars and rookies to hopefully put on an entertaining show. Oh and a comedy wrestler, which I’m not thrilled about. As I mentioned above, the DATE wrestlers are in their second match and are sisters, both have a background in MMA. Hana is 20 while Karen is only 14, however Karen has a better MMA record at 2-0 (both amateur fights). Miyako is the comedy wrestler I mentioned earlier, she is an Ice Ribbon mainstay but hasn’t won a title since 2013, while Tsukasa Fujimoto is the Ace of Ice Ribbon with five ICExInfinity Championship runs. On the other side, Risa is trying to take Tsukasa’s throne, she’s the current ICExInfinity Championship, while Maya Yukihi is another younger rising star that also wrestles in OZ Academy.
Karen and Miyako start the match, Miyako goes to the mat and challenges Karen but Karen promptly puts her in a heel hook. She gets rescued, then Karen goes on the mat and challenges Miyako, leading to her promptly putting her back into a heel hook. Miyako gets out of it and rolls up Karen, but Karen puts her in a triangle choke. Miyako gets Karen into the corner while still in the hold and tags in Tsukasa, Tsukasa throws Karen into the corners but Karen returns the favor. Tsukasa rams her again and chokes Karen in the corner, Tsukasa stomps her foot and tags in Hana. Hana picks up Karen but Karen ducks all her kicks, Karen kicks down Hana in the corner and tags in Maya. Maya goes for a kick but Hana blocks it, Hana puts Maya in a camel clutch but she lets go after a moment and goes for a scoop slam. Maya blocks it and elbows Hana, the two trade elbows until Maya hits a jumping knee in the corner. Hana kicks Maya in the stomach and boots her to the mat, cover by Hana but it gets two. Hana tags Miyako back in, but Maya scoop slams her. Miyako trips Maya and rolls her around the ring before putting her in a submission, but Risa breaks it up. Miyako picks up Maya but Maya hits an STO and covers Miyako for two. Maya tags in Risa, Risa puts Miyako in the Rocking Horse before hitting a double knee drop for two. Risa picks up Miyako but Miyako hits a Sling Blade and puts Risa in an Octopus Hold. Hana and Tsukasa join in the fun, but Risa makes it to the ropes to force the break. Miyako snaps Sera’s neck over the top rope and tags in Tsukasa, missile dropkick by Tsukasa and she dropkicks Sera in the corner.
Tsukasa and Sera trade elbows, Maya runs in and knees Tsukasa and Karen comes in also and armdrags Tsukasa into the corner. Running double knee by Risa, she covers Tsukasa but it gets two. Reverse Double Knee by Sera, but that gets a two count as well. Risa goes up top but Hana grabs her from the apron, then Miyako runs in and tosses Risa off the top turnbuckle. Double kick by Tsukasa and Miyako to Sera, Tsukasa covers Sera but it gets two. Tsukasa goes up top and hits a diving neckbreaker, she goes off the ropes but Sera catches her with a dropkick. TKO by Risa and she tags in Karen, dropkick by Karen but Tsukasa blocks the scoop slam. Tsukasa puts Karen in an armtrap crossface, but Karen gets into the ropes. Tsukasa puts Karen in the ropes and chokes her, but Maya comes in and hits a missile dropkick. Sera also comes in, they pick up Karen and ram her into Tsukasa. Scoop slam by Karen, and she covers Tsukasa for two. Tsukasa puts Karen in a crab hold but Risa breaks it up. Tsukasa dropkicks both Sera and Maya, then her teammates come in and triple team Karen in the corner. Hana comes in but she hits a crossbody on Tsukasa by accident, Miyako tries to help but she hits Tsukasa by accident as well. Sunset flip by Karen to Tsukasa, but Tsukasa gets a shoulder up. Karen goes off the ropes and rolls up Tsukasa, but that also gets two. Karen goes off the ropes but Tsukasa kicks her back with both feet, cradle by Tsukasa and she picks up the three count! Tsukasa Fujimoto, Miyako Matsumoto, and Hana DATE are your winners!
First, I have to give Miyako credit since she didn’t do any comedy here aside from the quick bit at the beginning, so kudos to her. Its wild to watch a 14 year old rookie going toe to toe with Tsukasa, they definitely are pushing the DATE wrestlers. Which is fine with me, hopefully they will be regulars and put enough training in wrestling to continue to improve. The match was fast paced and entertaining, a few iffy moments which you’d expect with a match with two rookies, but the veterans were all solid. I am still a bit concerned about Maya, she is getting a decent push but still is a bit awkward at times, I like her but she needs to continue to improve if she is going to put on high end main event style matches. A fun main event, wish it was a bit longer but I enjoyed it for what it was. Mildly Recommended
Even though this was a small event with limited visibility, it still had some fun action. The DATE Team wrestlers are getting quite a push out of the gate, so if they stick around that will likely really benefit Ice Ribbon in the near future. Kyuri/Tsukushi was entertaining, the only match that disappointed was the second match. This event was combined on the DVD with Ice Ribbon #797 so not a bad deal, a decent enough casual view.