The Many
Faces of Mutoh
Keiji Mutoh and Masahiro Chono vs. Hiroshi Hase and Shiro Koshinaka
IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championship Defense on May 28th, 1990

Event: New Japan Pro Wrestling TV Taping
Location: Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium in Osaka, Japan
Announced Attendance:  Unknown

JIP, with Hase punching a kneeling Chono. Irish whip by Hase and he delivers a dropkick. Cover, but Chono kicks out. Hase rolls Chono to the mat and applies an achilles hold, he releases the hold after a moment and tags in Koshinaka. Koshinaka applies a figure four leglock and while still in the hold tags in Hase. Hase picks up Chono and goes for a backdrop suplex, but Chono lands on top of him. Chono tags in Mutoh, and he enters the ring off the top turnbuckle with a chop to Hase. Irish whip by Mutoh but Hase avoids the dropkick. Hase picks up Mutoh and does a front slam before tagging in Koshinaka. Irish whip by Koshinaka and he delivers the hip attack. Koshinaka picks up Mutoh and hits a folding powerbomb for a two count. Single leg crab hold by Koshinaka but Mutoh gets to the bottom rope. Koshinaka tags in Hase, and Hase drops an elbow onto Mutoh's leg. Hase applies a single leg crab hold of his own but again Mutoh gets a hand on the ropes to break the hold. Hase tags in Koshinaka, Koshinaka grabs Mutoh and applies a full crab hold, but Chono quickly gets in the ring to break it up. Koshinaka picks up Mutoh and punches him in the back of the head. Mutoh snaps off a backslide but it only gets a two count. Koshinaka tags in Hase, and Hase applies a knee lock. Hase releases the hold after a moment and applies a Muta Lock, but Chono comes in and breaks it up. Hase tags in Koshinaka, Koshinaka puts Mutoh's leg across the bottom rope and jumps down onto it. Koshinaka picks up Mutoh but Mutoh hits an enzigieri, Irish whip to the corner and Mutoh delivers the Space Rolling Elbow. Vertical suplex by Mutoh and a dropkick sends Koshinaka out of the ring. While Mutoh considers the pescado, Hase comes in the ring and lariats Mutoh from behind, sending Mutoh falling out of the ring. Hase then goes to the ropes and hits a pescado down onto Mutoh. Chono comes around and fights Hase, while Koshinaka tries to suplex Mutoh back in the ring. Mutoh lands on his feet however and hits a German suplex hold for a two count. Mutoh picks up Koshinaka and tags in Chono, scoop slam by Chono and he goes up to the top turnbuckle, diving off with a shoulderblock. Cover, but it gets a two count. Chono picks up Koshinaka and hits a snap backdrop suplex, cover, but Hase breaks it up. Knees by Chono, he goes up top while holding Koshinaka and nails the Calf Branding. Chono applies the STF, but Koshinaka crawls to the ropes and forces the break. Chono picks up Koshinaka and hits a Samoan Drop before re-applying the STF, Hase runs in but Mutoh cuts him off. Hase breaks free of Mutoh and breaks up the STF, then Koshinaka makes the tag to him. Irish whip by Hase to Chono and Hase hits the dropkick. Hase picks up Chono, Irish whip again and Hase delivers a heel kick. Cover, but it only gets two. Irish whip by Hase from the corner but Chono kicks him in the stomach. Chono goes off the ropes but Hase avoids the lariat and hits the uranage. Cover, but Mutoh is already in the ring and breaks it up. Irish whip by Koshinaka to Chono and he hits a hip attack, Hase picks Chono up and does the Northern Lights Suplex but it only gets a two count. Hase picks up Chono, Irish whip, but Chono hits a forearm smash and an enzigieri. Chono tags in Hase, who comes in the ring with a top rope elbow smash. Face crusher by Mutoh and he hits the rib breaker. Mutoh goes up to the top turnbuckle, Koshinaka runs in the ring but Chono grabs him from behind just as he reaches Mutoh. Mutoh sails off the top turnbuckle with a moonsault to Hase and he picks up the three count! Your winners and still champions: Keiji Mutoh and Masahiro Chono

Match Thoughts: While I like all four of these wrestlers, the match itself was pretty disjointed and average. The first half of the match was leg work, and it was just completely blown off the rest of the match. Mutoh didn't even pretend to sell it once he went back on offense, and Koshinaka/Hase never went back to it again after that. The second half of the match did pick up and was interesting, it was just a little too late to save the match as a whole. I did like the chaotic ending with Koshinaka trying to block the moonsault knowing it would end the match, it makes the matches seem more important when the wrestlers do everything they can to win. Overall, if it was just the last five minutes I'd say it was a great match but with the rest of it there just wasn't enough structure or logic to it to recommend it. Score: 5.0

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