February 8, 1972 - Korakuen Hall - Tokyo, Japan

Tiger Jeet Singh defeated Johnny Weaver when Johnny Weaver passed out in the Tiger Claw in 0:08:03.
Rating: *** 3/4

Our final night in Japan was kicked off with Tiger Jeet Singh showing that crazy streak he is known for against Johnny Weaver. Weaver was game, but Singh was too much for him and got the win with the Tiger Claw. Simply winning wasn't enough for Singh as he then grabbed his signature sword looking to inflict further damage, but was sent sprawling from the ring by DOMINIC DENUCCI who hit a dropkick to save his partner.

Chief Jay Strongbow made Rusher Kimura submit to the Indian Deathlock in 0:12:27.
Rating: * 3/4

The GCW stars picked up their first win of the night as Chief Jay Strongbow showed his veteran in-ring prowess by outlasting Rusher Kimura with his painful Indian Deathlock finishing hold. Strongbow is dedicated to his team with Billy White Wolf, but this match showed that he still has what it takes to compete as a singles star as well.

Hiro Matsuda pinned Dominic DeNucci after a small package in 0:11:26.
Rating: ***

Our next match saw Dominic DeNucci taking on a familiar face as he went one-on-one with Hiro Matsuda. Matsuda had a previous run with GCW back in the States as a hired henchman for Lou Albano, and he still had that vicious nature he had back then. DeNucci tried to outwrestle Matsuda and to an extent it worked, but Matsuda's martial arts background and affinity for cheating allowed him to escape with a win.

Osamu Kido defeated Wahoo McDaniel by countout in 0:24:46.
Rating: ** 1/2

Wahoo McDaniel said he was embarrassed by the fact that he was defeated by Osamu Kido on the 5th, so Wahoo demanded that he get a rematch here (non-title, of course). McDaniel, to his credit, took the match far more seriously than he did first time around, but again Kido always seemed to be one step ahead of the US champion. No matter what Wahoo did, Kido seemed to have a counter for it. The frustration became too much for Wahoo to handle as he simply walked away and got himself counted out. Wahoo may have thought that was the end of it, but he received some bad news as he found out he would wrestle Osamu Kido one more time on February 21 in Philadephia, and this time the United States Title WILL be on the line!

Billy Graham defeated Tatsumi Fujinami via pinfall in 0:18:57.
Rating: *** 1/4
[Lou Albano interfered against Tatsumi Fujinami.]

The first match between Tatsumi Fujinami & Billy Graham received such rave reviews that the two met in a rematch on day two. The match didn't quite reach the level that the first one did, but that doesn't mean it was a bad match. Fujinami did a great job of keeping the match on the mat against the much stronger Superstar. Fujinami did a great job of exposing Billy Graham's weaknesses - Graham can bounce you around the ring like a ball, but his defense is lacking at this point in his career. Fujinami controlled the match, but the thing with Graham is it only takes one big power move to put a match away, and that's exactly what happened when he almost lariated Fujinami out of his boots. That was just enough to hold Fujinami's shoulders to the mat for the 1-2-3, much to the delight of Lou Albano.

Toru Tanaka and Mr. Fuji defeated Crusher & Bruiser (The Crusher and Dick the Bruiser) when Tanaka made Crusher submit to the Japanese Sleeper in 0:25:08.
Rating: **
(Toru Tanaka and Mr. Fuji won the GCW World Tag Team Titles.)
[Lou Albano interfered against Toru Tanaka.]

Lou Albano's men always seem to have trouble every time we go to Japan, and this was no exception as Dick the Bruiser & The Crusher defended the World Tag Team Titles against the Japanese team of Mr. Fuji & "Professor" Toru Tanaka. Bruiser & Crusher love to fight and don't care who against, but they had all kinds of trouble against the unique style of Fuji & Tanaka. The combination of martial arts, speed, and flat out cheating kept Bruiser & Crusher uncomfortable the whole match. The turning point came when Fuji threw salt into Crusher's eyes from the apron, temporarily blinding him. Tanaka locked Crusher in the Japanese Sleeper. Bruiser tried to make the save but received a savate kick for his troubles. Ladies and gentlemen… we have new World Tag Team champions. Now the question remains whether or not Fuji & Tanaka are going to bring the tag titles to the United States or keep them here in Japan. Not only that, but where do Dick the Bruiser & The Crusher go from here?

Pedro Morales and Giant Baba defeated Bruno Sammartino and Antonio Inoki when Baba pinned Inoki with the Crush Kick in 0:28:04.
Rating: **** 1/2

You couldn't have asked for a better match to end our stay in Japan than our main event - World champion Bruno Sammartino & former World champion Antonio Inoki taking on Pedro Morales & Giant Baba. These are four of the top main event level wrestlers in the entire world and getting a match together like this is a huge coup for GCW. There was a surprising lack of underhanded tactics from the side of Morales & Baba. They are often spoke of as being on a lower tier than Bruno & Inoki respectively, so they were looking to make a statement. That is precisely what they were able to do as after a tremendous contest, Baba caught Inoki with the Crush Kick to get the 1-2-3. Morales & Baba earned this victory, plain and simple, and it gives Morales more fire power in his quest against Sammartino. Bruno & Inoki, meanwhile, were disappointed, but shook hands after the match. Bruno even hinted about possibly giving Inoki a shot at the World Title in the future. I for one would love to see that match if it could be put together.

Card rating: ***

Match observations:

After a great two shows in the Orient, GCW returns stateside at The Spectrum in Philadelphia on February 21. The card is stacked, and will feature these matches:

WORLD TITLE - Bruno Sammartino (c) vs. Pedro Morales
UNITED STATES TITLE - Wahoo McDaniel (c) vs. Osamu Kido
Gorilla Monsoon/Jimmy Snuka/Arnold Skaaland vs. Dick the Bruiser/The Crusher/Lou Albano
Luke Graham vs. Billy Graham
Chief Jay Strongbow/Billy White Wolf vs. The Cripplers
Jerry Lawler vs. Ernie Ladd

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