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THE TOURNAMENT TO END ALL TOURNAMENTS: Bracket XLI (Matches 321-328)



Mick Foley (aka Cactus Jack, aka Dude Love, aka Mankind) VS Teddy Hart

Teddy Hart: Incredibly, incredibly talented in the ring.  Unfortunately, American fans don't know who he is because his main talent is being a master bridge burner with every promoter he meets.  And also, unfortunately for him, Foley knows many, many ways how to kick someone's ass (and then write a memoir about it).  Mr. Hart will not be having a nice day.




Tatanka (Buffalo) VS Mike Mondo (aka Mikey from The Spirit Squad)

Mike Mondo has evolved into a pretty damn good wrestler in ROH.  But he would still get felled by Tatanka from back in 1993 (all wrestlers in their prime, rermember).


 

The Sandman VS Manu

Well, we know Sandman hitting Manu in the head with a Singapore cane won't work; he's samoan.  But since Manu was only in the big leagues for a cup of coffee and Hack was a 5-time ECW Champion back when that meant something, I think he'll find a workaround.




 Paul Burchill VS Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat

Silly rabbit.  Dragons always beat Pirates who love their sister a little too much.  (Yes, despite being talented, those were Burchill's two gimmicks with WWE.)




 Wilbur Snyder VS Karl Gotch

This one was really tough to figure out.  They're both freakin' legends in pro wrestling: Snyder is the guy who made the abdominal stretch famous, and Gotch sort of invented the cradle pile driver, and had the German Suplex named for his heritage.  Gotch brought the American wrestling style to Japan, where he was known as "Kamisama", or "God Of Wrestling".  Snyder defeated Verne Gagne for not only the AWA World Title, but their U.S. Title as well.  And though Gotch has won some form of World Title gold as well, I gotta give it to Snyder because of the pedigree.  It's the only real tie-breaker.  I imagine this would be a long match, with lots of science in it.


 

Adrian Adonis VS Hakushi

A battle of the underrateds.  In the early 80's, Adonis was a perennial challenger to both the WWF and Intercontinental Titles, and looked good doing it.  He also won the tag belts with Jesse "The Body" Ventura (who coincidentally enough, is in the next match).  But nobody remembers that; they just remember him being this androgynous 400lb. freakshow who is the reason Brutus Beefcake got the nickname "The Barber" at Wrestlemania III after losing a hair match to Piper.  (He started getting fat 'round '83.)  Hakushi had a few really good matches with Bret Hart, who put him over in his book Hitman,  but then inexplicably got stuck in the Barry Horowitz/Skip feud as a random third leg, and his career never recovered.  Gotta give this one to Adonis, though, because even though Hakushi had more skills, Adonis had more experience.


 

The Great Muta VS Jesse "The Body" Ventura

"The Body" was a legendary commentator, but as a wrestler, he never got past mid-card.  Muta is a Japanese legend, who just wrestled on TNA's Lockdown pay-per-view last week.  (In spite of barely being able to walk, he can still kick and fly, some-damn-how.)  Muta kicks this guy's conspiracy theory filled head clean off.


 

The Dynamite Kid VS Frank Gotch

Great matchup.  A lot of wrestlers that went on to win the World Title cited Dynamite as an influence, but the man himself never got the chance because his style was so high impact that he broke his body to pieces before he could break out as a singles wrestler (like his partner Davey Boy Smith did).  He's been in a wheelchair for about 20 years now, and is bitter as hell about it.  What was his style like?  Take Chris Benoit's moveset, and crank up the stiffness.  (I've seen Benoit continue a ladder match with a clearly separated shoulder.  Now imagine worse.)

Okay, so what makes this Gotch guy so great that he can stand up to...oh.  Fourth longest reigning World Champion in history?  Did it when wrestling was still a real sport?  Only ever lost six matches?  Beat Stanislaus Zbyszko after Zbyszko allegedly won 900 matches in a row by picking up the first fall in six seconds and the second after 27 minutes?  (Matches back then routinely went hours, because the shit was real.)  Okay.  I think he advances.


RECAP:

Mick Foley defeats Teddy Hart
Tatanka (Buffalo) defeats Mike Mondo
The Sandman defeats Manu
The Dragon defeats Paul Burchill
Wilbur Snyder defeats Karl Gotch
Adrian Adonis defeats Hakushi
The Great Muta defeats Jesse Ventura
Frank Gotch defeats The Dynamite Kid

Come on back for Bracket XLII!

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