Two months ago tomorrow Masakatsu Funaki defeated Jun Akiyama to gain the AJPW Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship. AJPW is far from its peak and Funaki is a guy that fits perfectly as the champion of the company today so take that as you will.
This match from last year’s AJPW Champion’s Carnival sees Funaki face experienced grappler, Yuji Nagata. Reports that Funaki is wearing CM Punk’s indie trunks may have been made up by me just now.
The wrestlers start off with some mat wrestling to feel each other out. Nagata starts with strikes first by landing a kick, which Funaki responds to in kind. Nagata then shoves Funaki and all heck breaks loose! Funaki slaps Nagata like a madman and knocks him out of the ring. Nagata only gains control after reversing an Irish whip into the guardrail.
The two go between the ropes once again for some good strong style fun. A ton of strikes happen here! Nagata being the technical wizard that he is changes it up from time to time by clamping on a submission here and there. The finale of the match is a little comical with Nagata falling like a tree after Funaki kicks him in the head.
This was a bittersweet victory for Funaki because despite losing, Nagata would go on to win Champion’s Carnival that year after defeating Seiya Sanada in the finals.
Categories: Wrestling Clips
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