FURY News & Notes (9/16/2012)

-- After a decade, Pro-Wrestling FURY will finally come to an end on 10.25 in Osaka. In a press conference called from the site of the company's final event, the Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, five men addressed a small gathering of reporters in front of the gymnasium: Company General Manager ZERO Kubota, current KOF Heavyweight Champion Norihiro Akashi, along with three of the company's most synonymous figures; Hiroaki Nakata, Tetsuhisa NAKAI, and Akira Takayoshi.

The five appeared in solidarity, aiming to reflect on a very tumultuous couple of years for the company. GM ZERO Kubota noted that the company has remained inactive since 5/31 of this year. He pointed out that the show appeared to have breathed life into the company, as Norihiro Akashi dethroned the seemingly insurmountable champion, Naoki Fukuda to become "King of FURY." The reality of the matter however, was the fight FURY had been in for the past few years has simply been, in the words of Kubota, "unwinnable." He stated that there were several factors and events that have brought us to this moment. He noted the Hiroshi Nishida tax scandal from years back that put incredible restrictions on the company, unknown to most. For example, Hiroaki Nakata revealed that the Japanese Police had froze the company's assets during the investigation, meaning the company was working under little to no resources for several months. During that time, the company took on severe debt. When the company's assets were finally released, there was not enough to pay back creditors.

GM ZERO said that 5/31 was a "last gasp" for the company. The hope was that a good showing would save the company long enough to stabilize itself... However, while it did pay off a lot of the debt, there was nothing left to continue on. Around the same time however, FURY had also engaged in a fierce letigation fight with an undisclosed party. The details weren't elaborated upon, but ZERO bluntly stated, "The law is not on our side."

With no funds to continue, the entire roster and staff felt devastated by the severity of the situation. However, as Akira Takayoshi himself explained it, a sense of debt was felt towards the fans, who have followed the company for its decade-long run. "It would be very disheartening to fans to know they were watching FURY's last event, unaware of that fact. And inconsiderate of us as well." While the fate of the company was determined, a decision was made to hold one final event, with 10.25.2012, the company's tenth anniversary being the only possible consideration. In that vein, there was no better place to hold the final event than the Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, which has housed many of FURY's biggest events over the last decade.

Speaking formally as General Manager, Kubota vowed that the company would put everything they have into this event, saying it was everyone's top priority. Kubota noted that many of the wrestlers and staff had taken second jobs to help fund the event. Speaking on behalf of the wrestlers, Hiroaki Nakata said that it was a labor of love for the wrestlers, and said that it is all of their wishes to work the final event without pay, stating that none of them were doing this for monetary reasons. Unable to help himself, GM ZERO lightened the mood, saying, "...Well, speak for yourself. I'd like to get paid! ...But, we'll at least have food... So it'll be okay!"

Again, vowing to put their all into the card, GM ZERO formally outlined the event, stating that the central question everyone within the company have been asking is... Among the wrestler's who have strongly carried FURY's flag over the last ten years, who has meant the most? Which wrestler best personifies the last ten years? The question was even leaked into sports papers, where much debate was had between fans and even sports writers. In the end, a one-night tournament was decided to determine the "KING OF DECADE," as Pro-Wrestling FURY will hold the "F*TOP" tournament on its final night.

Limiting the field to eight men was extremely difficult according to GM ZERO, but said among those polled, four wrestlers stood out: current KOF Champion Norihiro Akashi, Hiroaki Nakata, Tetsuhisa NAKAI, and Akira Takayoshi. From there, Kubota said that the selection became more difficult, as different wrestlers meant different things to different people. In the end, it was mutually decided upon that eight of the would would each pick a wrestler to slot into the tournament, allowing the most important vote of all to come from those who will be competing in the tournament themselves. While not a definitive list by any means, the eight men represent the past, present, and what could have been the future of Pro-Wrestling FURY.

The Ace and current holder of the KOF Heavyweight title, Norihiro Akashi chose the man he defeated to lift the title from in May, Naoki Fukuda. Akashi said that Fukuda had become an incredible symbol of strength for Pro-Wrestling FURY as Champion, and said he was as deserving as any to be in this tournament. Showing that both heavyweights, AND juniors contributed to FURY's amazing legacy, Hiroaki Nakata selected Yoshihiro Shimoda to enter the tournament. Nakata said that since debuting, Yoshihiro Shimoda has been "the heart of Pro-Wrestling FURY," and said as a strategist and ring general, his skills were unmatched. Admitly a bias selection, Akira Takayoshi chose his friend and tag team partner Naoyuki Watanabe, stating that as one of the last renments of the "Burning Road," Watanabe's importance to Wrestling, and FURY couldn't be ignored. Finally, NAKAI named young Manabe Tsuji as his selection. Somewhat of a surprising pick, NAKAI said that while Tsuji lacked experience and results, he has amazing "GUTS," which he considers to be an important trait to have in this sport. NAKAI said that it is really wrestlers like Tsuji who are the saddest victims of circumstance, as they will never get the chance to ascend to the top of FURY. In NAKAI's mind, this is Tsuji's golden opportunity.

With the eight men selected, the event is all but official. First round pairings will be decided via lottery drawing in the coming weeks, along with additional card announcements. GM Kubota promised that every wrestler on the roster would be featured on the event, with 2-4 more special matches being added in addition to the tournament, which will span seven matches.


"10.25 Memorial ~ FINAL FURY in OSAKA" (Niconico Douga iPPV)
October 25, 2012
Osaka - Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium ~BODY MAKER Colosseum~


~ F*TOP ~ KING OF DECADE ~
Participants:
- Norihiro Akashi
- Hiroaki Nakata
- Tetsuhisa NAKAI
- Akira Takayoshi
- Naoki Fukuda (Akashi Selection)
- Naoyuki Watanabe (Takayoshi Selection)
- Manabe Tsuji (NAKAI Selection)
- Yoshihiro Shimoda (Nakata Selection)

[Results] KING OF FURY GRAND PRIX 2011, 11/13/2011 @ Yokosuka City Gymnasium

November 13, 2011 (Samurai! TV)
Kanagawa - Yokosuka City Gymnasium (2,600)
2,398 (Super No Vacancy)

1. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Kenichiro Hujikawa [2] beat "Mr. H20" Adam Waterman [DEF] [4] (14:00) with the Axe Bomber-K.
2. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Dusty Griffith [6] beat Masafuji Yoshida [0] (7:34) with with the Stampede Express.
3. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: TAKU [8] beat Manabe Tsuji [6] (11:39) with the Kinniku Buster.
4. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Akira Takayoshi [6] beat Jun Kobayashi [2] (15:42) with the Tiger Suplex hold.
5. Special Tag Match: Hiroaki Nakata & YAKUTA beat Naoki Fukuda & Go Taniguchi (11:42) when YAKUTA used a backslide on Taniguchi.
6. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Ryo Inoue [T.A.P.] [8] beat Masakazu Fujimoto [CRIMSON] [2] (14:09) with a jujigatame.
7. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Chikao Kessin [8] beat ATSUKA [2] (0:09) with the Sekai Ichi no Backdrop.
8. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Masato Osagawa [4] beat Yoshihiro Shimoda [0] (13:47) with the Wild Bomb.
9, KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Norihiro Akashi [2] beat Tetsuhisa NAKAI [6] (22:25) with the Ignition Crash.
10. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Naoyuki Watanabe [10] beat Jet Jaguar [2] (28:02) with a Dragon Suplex hold.

* Naoyuki Watanabe remains in control of the A Block after an incredibly narrow victory over the resilient Jet Jaguar. Arguably two of FURY's top technical fighters, control of the match shifted back and forth as both men were able to pull out amazing counters.

* Norihiro Akashi earns his first victory of the tournament, beating out a man he has had many issues with in the past, Tetsuhisa NAKAI. The match was incredibly violent, with both wrestlers shedding blood. After the match, it appeared as if Akashi had won something of respect from NAKAI, who shook hands with the tenacious youngster.

* ATSUKA's wave of momentum from defeating Naoki Fukuda in Aichi came to a sudden and screeching halt. ATSUKA, foolishly as it would turn out, attacked Chikao Kessin before the match, only to immediately talk into the Sekai Ichi no Backdrop! The match immediately began with Kessin going for the cover, only for ATSUKA to kick out after one! However, ATSUKA only charged to his feet to walk straight into a second Sekai Ichi no Backdrop, ending the match just shy of the ten-second mark.

* Along with Chikao Kessin, Ryo Inoue earned top billing in the B Block after submitting CRIMSON's Masakazu Fujimoto in a hard fought, back-and-forth match. Inoue found trouble dealing with Fujimoto's size, forcing him to have to isolate Fujimoto's arm en route to securing the win via jujigatame.

* Kenichiro Hujikawa finally earns his first victory of his campaign, picking up a big win over DEFIANCE Import Adam Waterman, who proved arrogance to be his Achilles heel as he took time show off and embarrass Hujikawa, giving him opportunities to fight back. Hujikawa eventually connected with two straight Axe Bomber-K's finally putting the big man down.

A Block:
1. Naoyuki Watanabe [10]
2. TAKU [8]
- Manabe Tsuji [6]
- Tetsuhisa NAKAI [6]
- Dusty Griffith [6]
6. Adam Waterman [4]
7. Jet Jaguar [2]
- Kenichiro Hujikawa [2]
- Norihiro Akashi [2]
10. Masafuji Yoshida [0]

B Block:
1. Chikao Kessin [8]
- Ryo Inoue [8]
3. Naoki Fukuda [6]
- Hiroaki Nakata [6]
- Akira Takayoshi [6]
6. Masato Osagawa [4]
7. Masakazu Fujimoto [2]
- ATSUKA [2]
- Jun Kobayashi [2]
10. Yoshihiro Shimoda [0]

[Results] KING OF FURY GRAND PRIX 2011, 11/12/2011 @ Sky Hall Toyota

November 12, 2011 (Samurai! TV)
Aichi - Sky Hall Toyota (6,500)
4,315 Fans

1. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Dusty Griffith [4] beat Norihiro Akashi [0] (14:10) with the Atomic Powerbomb.
2. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: "Mr. H20" Adam Waterman [DEF] [4] beat Masafuji Yoshida [0] (9:52) with The Waterfall.
3. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Naoyuki Watanabe [8] beat Kenichiro Hujikawa [0] (8:45) with the Shining Wizard.
4. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Jun Kobayashi [2] beat Yoshihiro Shimoda [0] (12:44) with the Splash Mountain.
5. Special Eight Man Tag Match: Chikao Kessin, Daisuke Iwata, Mamoru Sekishima & Kazuki Sendo beat Masato Osagawa, Shigeru Iwasaki, Tetsujin & Shintaro Kan (9:27) when Iwata used the Cobra Twist on Kan.
6. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Tetsuhisa NAKAI [6] beat Manabe Tsuji [6] (16:28) with the MAX BULLET.
7. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: ATSUKA [2] beat Naoki Fukuda [6] (17:05) with the Viento Clutch.
8. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Akira Takayoshi [4] beat Masakazu Fujimoto [CRIMSON] [2] (14:15) with a Grounded Octopus hold.
9. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Jet Jaguar [2] beat TAKU [6] (15:25) with the Jaguar Special II.
10. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Ryo Inoue [T.A.P.] [6] beat Hiroaki Nakata [6] (19:36) with an avalanche style Brainbuster.

* In front of his home crowd, Ryo Inoue defeated Hiroaki Nakata in an incredible match of the year candidate. Nakata took the legend to the limit, forcing Inoue to use a move he hasn't used since his days in the JPA, the nadare-shiki Brainbuster. Inoue closed the show with a rousing microphone appeal, promising to paint the FURY ring with the colors of T.A.P.

* Jet Jaguar scored a much needed victory in the semi final, overcoming the Muscle Beast TAKU after working over TAKU's right arm for much of the match. Jaguar was ultimately able to counter TAKU's Chojin Bomber with a sharp kick to the arm, followed by the rolling jujigatame called the Jaguar Special II.

* Akira Takayoshi had a lot of trouble with CRIMSON's Masakazu Fujimoto, following prey to several near falls as a result of Fujimoto's powerful offense. However, after avoiding the MONSTER RUSH!, Akira countered with three sharp Enzuigiris, before cradling Fujimoto with the Ground Octopus hold, pinning him just long enough for the three!

* In the biggest upset of the tournament so far, ATSUKA managed to cradle F-MAX Unified Heavyweight Champion Naoki Fukuda, giving him his first victory of the tournament. ATSUKA was able to trap Fukuda with the Viento Clutch after countering the Mastodon Hades. The result earned an enormous reaction from the crowd, as ATSUKA himself celebrated as if it was the biggest win of his life.

* Despite coming close to his fourth consecutive win, Manabe Tsuji's streak was ended at the hands of Tetsuhisa NAKAI. Tsuji gave a leveled up performance, but ended up falling short after suffering NAKAI's MAX BULLET.

* Daisuke Iwata turned many heads by appearing in his old black trunks, along with sporting a clean face and head, as oppose to the long beard he has had for the last two years. He wrestled the match clean, even submitting rookie Shintaro Kan with the Cobra Twist. Many of the wrestlers seemed impressed. All of the wrestlers but Iwata's former tag partner, Shigeru Iwasaki that is. Iwata attempted to shake hands with Iwasaki after the match, only to be given the cold shoulder.

* Naoyuki Watanabe earns his fourth win, taking firm lead of the A Block. However, the series is not even half over, and can still be anyone's game.

A Block:
1. Naoyuki Watanabe [8]
2. TAKU [6]
- Manabe Tsuji [6]
- Tetsuhisa NAKAI [6]
5. Dusty Griffith [4]
- Adam Waterman [4]
7. Jet Jaguar [2]
8. Kenichiro Hujikawa [0]
- Masafuji Yoshida [0]
- Norihiro Akashi [0]

B Block:
1. Naoki Fukuda [6]
- Hiroaki Nakata [6]
- Chikao Kessin [6]
- Ryo Inoue [6]
5. Akira Takayoshi [4]
6. Masato Osagawa [2]
- Masakazu Fujimoto [2]
- ATSUKA [2]
- Jun Kobayashi [2]
10. Yoshihiro Shimoda [0]

[Results] KING OF FURY GRAND PRIX 2011, 11/11/2011 @ Korakuen Hall

November 11, 2011 (Samurai! TV)
Tokyo - Korakuen Hall (2,100)
2,350 Fans (Super No Vacancy Full House)

1. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Manabe Tsuji [6] beat Masafuji Yoshida [0] (8:53) with a spear.
2. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Naoyuki Watanabe [6] beat Dusty Griffith [2] (14:19) with a Frankensteiner.
3. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Masakazu Fujimoto [CRIMSON] [2] beat Jun Kobayashi [0] (10:31) with the MONSTER Buster.
4. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Ryo Inoue [T.A.P.] [4] beat ATSUKA [0] (16:54) with a front sleeper.
5. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Chikao Kessin [6] beat Akira Takayoshi [2] (10:59) with the Sekai Ichi no Backdrop.
6. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Hiroaki Nakata [6] beat Masato Osagawa [2] (16:40) with the Santa Muerta.
7. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: TAKU [6] beat Norihiro Akashi [0] (11:12) with a La Magistral hold.
8. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Naoki Fukuda [6] beat Yoshihiro Shimoda [0] (12:35) with the Mastodon Crash.
9. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Tetsuhisa NAKAI [4] beat "Mr. H20" Adam Waterman [DEF] [2] (18:22) with a lariat.

A Block:
1. TAKU [6]
- Naoyuki Watanabe [6]
- Manabe Tsuji [6]
4. Tetsuhisa NAKAI [4]
5. Dusty Griffith [2]
- Adam Waterman [2]
7. Kenichiro Hujikawa [0]
- Masafuji Yoshida [0]
- Jet Jaguar [0]
- Norihiro Akashi [0]

B Block:
1. Naoki Fukuda [6]
- Hiroaki Nakata [6]
- Chikao Kessin [6]
4. Ryo Inoue [4]
5. Masato Osagawa [2]
- Akira Takayoshi [2]
- Masakazu Fujimoto [2]
8. ATSUKA [0]
- Jun Kobayashi [0]
- Yoshihiro Shimoda [0]

[Results] KING OF FURY Grand Prix 2011, 11/08/2011 @ Kobe Sambo Hall

November 08, 2011 (Samurai! TV)
Hyogo - Kobe Sambo Hall (2,100)
1,805 Fans (Super No Vacancy)

1. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Manabe Tsuji [4] beat Kenichiro Hujikawa [0] (9:41) with the Bloody Guts.
2. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: TAKU [4] beat Masafuji Yoshida [0] (8:11) with the Chojin Bomber.
3. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Ryo Inoue [T.A.P.] [2] beat Masato Osagawa [2] (12:52) with a Triangle hold.
4. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Chikao Kessin [4] beat Yoshihiro Shimoda [0] (15:30) with the Sekai Ichi no Backdrop.
5. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Hiroaki Nakata [4] beat Jun Kobayashi [0] (11:07) with the Santa Muerta.
6. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Akira Takayoshi [2] beat ATSUKA [0] (9:20) with a lariat.
7. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Naoyuki Watanabe [4] beat Norihiro Akashi [0] (14:35) with a Japanese Leg Roll Clutch.
8. KOF Grand Prix - Block A: Tetsuhisa NAKAI [2] beat Jet Jaguar [0] (3:14) with the MAX BULLET.
9. KOF Grand Prix - Block B: Naoki Fukuda [4] beat Masakazu Fujimoto [CRIMSON] [0] (26:31) with the Mastodon Crash.

* FURY Ace Naoki Fukuda and Pro-Wrestling CRIMSON's Masakazu Fujimoto collided in heavy-hitting main event. Fukuda had trouble dealing with Fujimoto's size early on, forcing him to have to resort to short-burst offense to wear the mammoth down. The F-MAX Unified Heavyweight Champion eventually won out, but only after using two consecutive Mastodon Crashes to put the monster down, giving the champion his second straight victory.

* The semi final saw a first-time match up between Tetsuhisa NAKAI and Jet Jaguar. Unfortunately, fans would barely be given the chance to breathe as Jaguar eagerly attacked NAKAI before the bell, getting a jump on his much larger opponent. Both wrestlers traded heavy moves, ending ultimately with NAKAI SPIKING Jaguar with the MAX BULLET following a SICKENING strong-arm lariat, giving NAKAI the win in under four minutes!

* Watanabe and Akashi clashed in a thrilling technical exchange of holds and counters. Akashi played the aggressor, which led to him falling into several of Watanabe's laid traps, leading to Watanabe eventually stealing the win with a Japanese Leg Roll clutch to secure his second win! Akashi seemed to take the loss hard, even refusing to shake hands with Watanabe post-match.

A Block:
1. TAKU [4]
- Naoyuki Watanabe [4]
- Manabe Tsuji [4]
4. Dusty Griffith [2]
- Adam Waterman [2]
- Tetsuhisa NAKAI [2]
7. Kenichiro Hujikawa [0]
- Masafuji Yoshida [0]
- Jet Jaguar [0]
- Norihiro Akashi [0]

B Block:
1. Naoki Fukuda [4]
- Hiroaki Nakata [4]
- Chikao Kessin [4]
4. Ryo Inoue [2]
- Masato Osagawa [2]
- Akira Takayoshi [2]
7. ATSUKA [0]
- Jun Kobayashi [0]
- Yoshihiro Shimoda [0]
- Masakazu Fujimoto [0]