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When is a match too stiff? (NJPW spoilers)

  • 14-04-2017 7:06pm
    Registered Users Posts: 3,491 ✭✭✭

    So I spent my Good Friday catching up on this weeks wrestling, including the latest major show from NJPW. The Shibata vs Okada match up was one I've been looking forward to ever since Okada won the title again. Shibata had very quickly become one of my favourite wrestlers to watch and Okada is perhaps the best wrestler in the world, so expectations were through the roof. And they were more than surpassed. (I won't post the result just in case).

    The match was excellent. I'd put it ahead of the Omega match. It's a masterpiece of storytelling and it's impossible not to enjoy.

    At least that's while viewing it for the first time and not hearing about the aftermath anyway.

    For those unaware, Shibata has an insanely stiff headbutt spot that creates a sickening sound and splits him open also. The spot was done again this time around and sure enough that line of blood came down his face once again.

    After the match, Shibata collapsed and was rushed to a hospital. It turns out he was both seriously concussed and severely dehydrated. Two things that don't mix well together at all. He has no memory of the match and is still in hospital. The news is that it's more serious than first thought and there is the very real possibility that Shibata now needs to retire.

    I felt guilty re watching the spot because it's one I've cheered and gushed over before. Now it looks like, in a quest to get a reaction, we have forgotten how dangerous of a spot it is and a mans career may be over just as it he hits his prime.

    So I thought this would be an interesting conversation to be had. Should we be cheering still for spots like this, ones that have a huge risk factor and can do very serious damage to anyone on either side of the coin? Do you enjoy seeing spots like this still?


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 18,167 Mod ✭✭✭✭DM_7

    I hate seeing spots like that. Seeing Bryan and Dolph on top of a ladder nutting, over the IC title still gives me the shivers (and that wasn't even like the headbutting in new japan).

  • Registered Users Posts: 838 ✭✭✭A Rogue Hobo

    Ugh I dunno it's a really tough one to be honest. Like my head says no they should know better when it starts resulting in concussions and the like. But I'd be 100% lying if I said that when I'm watching it live or for the first time that I don't find it incredibly enjoyable in the right circumstances. Like that match was just insane.

  • Registered Users Posts: 45,552 ✭✭✭✭Mr.Nice Guy

    It's like Lesnar hitting Orton with real elbows to make him bloodied, and ending up concussing him - DUMB.

    The whole point of the business becoming worked, what, a hundred years ago or so, was that you could actually make way more money being able to put guys on the road for long stretches and knowing they wouldn't become injured in the process - which would have cost you money.

    To me it's a bit like one action movie star saying to another, 'hey I'm going to punch you in the face for real because that way it will look really good and convincing when the movie comes out.'

    If the other actor has a clue presumably he'd say, 'well I want to work on future projects and don't want to lose teeth or have my jaw broken; plus, given that this is a movie and we're expecting film fans to suspend their disbelief anyway, wouldn't it be better all round for you to just make it look really good through your acting skills?'