Stardom 1/29/17 Review: Purrazzo debuts, Hojo defends against Newell

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Stardom held its latest major show on Sunday January 29, 2017

The travel warrior Deonna Purrazzo, who has seen action in TNA, WWE, NXTRing of Honor, and everywhere in between, made her debut and right off the bat it was apparent she fit right in.

Given she hasn’t signed a contract with any company as I write this, it is possible she will be a fixture in the company for future tours.

Six matches were held including two key championship title defenses.

First Match: Triple Threat: Kaori Yoneyama defeated Ruaka and Arisu Nanase in 4:36

This was your standard short but all action Stardom opener.  They crammed a lot into just a little over four minutes and got the crowd properly warmed up.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

One of the biggest differences between Stardom and other promotions is their short matches still pack a punch and do get some talent over in the process.

At the start Ruaka wanted to pair with Yoneyama to take out Nanese; Kaori acted as if she agreed but the second Ruaka turned to attack, she flung her across the ring with a release german suplex.

Nanase escaped a second attempt of a german and connected with a rolling elbow and an inside cradle for a good nearfall.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

Ruaka came off the top and took out both opponents with a nice missile dropkick. She snap suplexed Nanase and hit Yoneyama with a lariat.

Ruaka hit a folding powerbomb on Nanase but Yoneyama broke up the pin.  Yoneyama threw Nanase from the ring and hit a Shining Wizard on Ruaka for the win.

Second Match: Konami defeated Natsuko Tora via submission in 8:46

This was a showcase for Konami’s impressive array of strikes and submission maneuvers.

Right off the bat she kicked Tora’s right arm as hard as anything I’ve ever seen and worked on it for the duration of the match. She took Tora to the mat and  applied a wicked looking armbar.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

Tora struggled to her feet before finally creating space with a headbutt to the chin. She came off the ropes into a spinning backfist followed by a double underhook backbreaker for a two count.

Konami threw Tora into the ring post, then wrapped the injured arm around it for another lethal kick. Konami delivered a hammerlock bodyslam, then dropped a knee across the face for another nearfall.

Late in the match Tora mounted a small comeback including a crossbody block that was good for a two count. But she was fighting with one arm and was unable to lift up Konami for a brainbuster.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

Konami connected with a head kick then locked in a Cross Armbar forcing Tora to submit in short order.

3rd Match: Shayna Baszler & Deonna Purrazzo & Christie Jaynes defeated Kris Wolf & Viper & Kagetsu in 8:22

This could have gone longer but what they did was really great.

Crowd took to Purrazzo like she was a star and the match was built around her for the most part.

I have to say that while Baszler’s MMA career fizzled out, she has taken to wrestling like a duck to water so far.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

She and Wolf began the action with rapid reversals and blocks of strikes which popped the crowd.  It didn’t take long for the action to break down and all six women came into the ring.

Stereo dropkicks sent the heels to the floor where they were met with a triple plancha. Baszler executed a judo toss on Wolf who quickly tagged in Viper.

Baszler tagged in Jaynes in response. Jaynes was in control until a knee to the back from Wolf slowed her down. Kagetsu got the tag and came off with an elbow for a nearfall.

Jaynes eventually rallied and made the hot tag to Purrazzo. She took out Kagetsu with a headscissors and caught an incoming Viper with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker.

Wolf caught her with a springboard clothesline followed by a step up Enzuigiri for a nearfall.

At the end all six women brawled for  a second time with Jaynes and Baszler taking out Viper and Kagetsu.  Purrazzo ducked a lariat and hit a Neckbreaker drop on Wolf for the pinfall.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

4th Match: ICW Women’s Championship Match: Kay Lee Ray (Champion) pinned Jungle Kyona in 11:59 to retain the title

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

Raw viewers would recognize Ray as Nia Jax’s squash victim on the Rumble Go-Home show.  Obviously here her talents were on full display.

Kyona took an early advantage with a wrist lock bending Ray to one knee but Ray ran the ropes and came off with an armdrag.  Two more arm drags followed to keep Kyona grounded.

Kyona countered with a sharp elbow to the chin and hit a fallaway slam. A running senton got a two count.  Kyona worked over Ray in the corner with body shots and scored with a suplex.  Kyona dropped  a knee across the chest for another nearfall.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

Ray avoided a running kick and laid into Kyona with chops.  She spun her around and hit a quick release german suplex ala Akira Tozawa followed by a standing moonsault for a nearfall.

They traded forearm shots mid-ring with Kyona getting the upperhand. She hoisted Ray up in a torture rack before dropping her across the knee ribs first for a nearfall.  Kyona locked in a body scissors and threw elbows to the injured ribs.

Late in the match Kyona escaped an attempted Michinoku Driver to land a roundhouse kick to the ribs and a leaping DDT for a nearfall.

Kyona took too long heading to the top allowing Ray to drop her with a top rope brainbuster. A Swanton Bomb secured Ray the pinfall.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

5th Match: Queen’s Quest (Io Shirai & HZK & Momo Wantanabe) defeated Yoko Bito & Hiromi Mimura & Mayu Iwantani in 13:51

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

An excellent match as expected with the talent involved.

Shirai and Iwatani picked up where they left off in their previous singles match signaling a rematch might happen down the line.

Shirai chopped the hell out of Iwatani who answered back with stiff forearms. Shirai was rocked so Iwantani dropped her with a famouser for a two count. Shirai caught her off the ropes with a running headbutt that sounded sick as could be upon impact.

Shirai tagged in HZK and held Iwatani in a backbreaker position; HZK came off with a splash which the crowd went nuts for.

Bito got the tag and was immediately caught with a belly to belly suplex. HZK worked a neck vice until Bito stunned her with a jaw breaker. Bito connected with a float over suplex for a nearfall.  HZK was sent into the ropes but made a  blind tag to Wantanabe.

Wantanabe caught Bito with a nicely executed disaster kick that sent her across the ring. Mimura tagged in and received one for her troubles which was good for a nearfall.

Mimura came back late and delivered a trifecta of superkicks on all of Queen’s Quest before getting a nearfall on HZK with a running knee trembler.

Wantanabe caught Mimura with a vicious boot to the face followed by the Somato for the pinfall.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

6th Match:   Wonder of Stardom Championship Match: Kairi Hojo (Champion) pinned Nixon Newell in 15:43 to retain the title

Fantastic match, about as good as it gets going under 20 minutes.

The story was Newell repeatedly frustrated Hojo, using a variety of scientific maneuvers and preventing her signature moves a few times.

Early on Newell kicked away at Hojo’s leg then took her to the mat looking for a heel hook. Hojo kicked her square in the face and  delivered a fall away slam.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

Newell kept at the leg and snapped it across the middle rope corkscrew style.  She then slammed it on the apron before coming off the ropes with a falling headbutt; that was good for a one count.

Newell hit a butterfly suplex, held on and powered Hojo back up for a second one. Great sequence!  Finally Hojo showed some life blocking a third attempt and countering with a code red style powerbomb for a nearfall.

Hojo slammed Newell but the leg kept her from going up top for her elbow drop in a timely fashion. Newell recovered and hit a superplex for a nearfall.  Newell tied the leg up like a pretzel and punished it further with elbow strikes.

Newell went for a running powerslam but Hojo slipped out and surprised her with a cradle for a nearfall. Newell rolled to her feet and hit a basement dropkick to the bad leg. Hojo powered up to stay vertical and rocked Newell with a pair of uppercuts.

Hojo hit a slingshot suplex but Newell got the knees up when she came off the top for an elbow. Newell dropped Hojo on her head with a spike DDT for a nearfall.

Newell nearly submitted Hojo when she finally locked in the kneebar but Hojo fought to the ropes.  Hojo blocked an attempt to reapply the submission and knocked Newell through the ropes with a kick.

Hojo dove onto Newell and rolled her back in for a nearfall.  Newell sent Hojo into the corner but ate a boot when she followed in.  Hojo was hobbling but managed to dead lift german suplex Newell on one leg, Newell kicking out at the last second.

Hojo hit a power bomb and finally came off the top with a diving elbow for the pinfall.

Photo: twitter.com/we_are_stardom

Final Thoughts:

Another home run from arguably the best women’s wrestling company in the market today.

The cards are always structured perfectly and with each match they go longer until everything is in a fever pitch for the main event.

The entire card is worth checking out but if strapped for time, I recommend watching Purrazzo’s debut match, Queen’s Quest vs. Team Bito, and especially Hojo vs. Newell.

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