The Many
Faces of Mutoh
Great Muta vs. Power Warrior
on January 4th, 1997

Event: New Japan at the Tokyo Dome
Location: Tokyo Dome, Japan
Attendance: 62,500

Tie-up to start, Power Warrior gets Muta into the corner but he gives a clean break. Tie-up again, waistlock by Muta but Power Warrior breaks the hold. Tie-up again, side headlock by Power Warrior, Muta Irish whips out of it but Power Warrior shoulderblocks him down. Elbow by Muta and he connects with a kick, knocking Power Warrior into the corner. Irish whip by Muta but Power Warrior fires out of the corner with a lariat. Military Press Slam by Power Warrior and Muta rolls out of the ring to get a breather. He returns after a moment, stomps by Power Warrior, Irish whip by Muta rolls out of the way of the lariat and delivers a back kick. Vertical suplex by Muta, cover, but it gets a two count and again Muta bails out of the ring. Power Warrior stomps on Muta when he rolls back in the ring, Irish whip by Power Warrior, reversed, but Power Warrior hits a powerslam. Once again Muta rolls to the floor to recover, and he rolls back in at around a 10 count. Kick to the stomach by Muta and he throws Power Warrior out of the ring. Muta joins him and throws him onto the table on the other side of the railing. Muta joins him on the table, picks him up, and nails a piledriver (not breaking the table). Muta hits the table with chairs and then throws tables and chairs onto Power Warrior as he lays on the floor. Power Warrior powers up however out of the wreckage and chases after Muta, catching up with him at ringside and throwing him into the ring post. Power Warrior chases him to another table, picks him up on the table and slams Muta down onto it, breaking the table. Power Warrior slides Muta back into the ring, snapmare, and he applies a reverse chinlock with eye raking. Irish whip by Power Warrior but Muta avoids the dropkick and delivers the Flash Elbow.

Muta throws Power Warrior out to the ramp and hits a face crusher. Muta then runs up the ramp so that he can hit his ramp running lariat. Muta gets back in first with Power Warrior slowly following, Irish whip by Muta to the corner but Power Warrior catches him when he goes for the cartwheel elbow strike. Muta elbows out of the suplex attempt and goes to the top turnbuckle, but Power Warrior joins him and dumps Muta down to the floor. Muta grabs a chair and chucks it in the ring and then throws a few more. Power Warrior eventually gets tired of waiting and comes out of the ring, but Muta throws him into the railing. Muta gets back in and grabs a chair, hitting Power Warrior in the head with it when he returns. Power Warrior isn't effected by the chair shot however and levels Muta with a lariat. Muta goes for the Red Mist, but Power Warrior blocks it with a steel chair and hits Muta with it. While the referee yells at Power Warrior, Muta rolls out of the ring and goes under it to pop out on the other side. Muta jumps off the top turnbuckle but Power Warrior hits him as he jumps off. Powerslam by Power Warrior, cover, but it gets a two count. Power Warrior goes off the ropes and hits a lariat, but that also gets a two count. Powerbomb by Power Warrior, but that doesn't work either as Muta sprays Green Mist in his face! Muta goes up to the top turnbuckle and hits a head chop, moonsault by Muta but Power Warrior kicks out of the pin attempt. Muta rolls out of the ring to get a table and he throws it into the ring. After setting up the table in the corner, Muta throws Power Warrior into it and hits his Cartwheel Elbow Strike. Muta puts the table on the mat, puts Power Warrior onto the top turnbuckle and hits a Frankensteiner onto the table. Muta puts Power Warrior onto the table (laying on the mat) and goes to the top turnbuckle, but Power Warrior rolls out of the way of the moonsault attempt. Power Warrior is up first, he goes off the ropes and hits a lariat. He then picks up Muta and nails the Northern Lights Bomb onto the table! Cover, and he picks up the three count. Your winner: Power Warrior

Match Thoughts: Naturally this match was more about story then anything else, and I thought that it told the story very well. In essence, Sasaki was trying to out-Muta Muta by using his old Power Warrior persona, and it did the trick. Throughout the match Muta was picking at his paint as Sasaki picked at it as well, almost showing that the paint didn't matter. Sasaki's normal big moves weren't working but when he used the tables and chairs like Muta was then he found success. The crowd was entertained as was I, people make the mistake of thinking that Mutoh is lazy as Muta, when really the slow style and rolling out of the ring are simply mind games Muta uses to lure his opponent of the ring (which eventually worked in this match towards the end). It was also a good buffer between title matches as it put on a very different style then what they were going for. Overall it was just wholesome fun, no one would confuse this with a technical masterpiece but it achieved what they were going for and put on a good gimmick match. Score: 6.5

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