Retro Wrasslin'

A look back at pro wrestling history.

All Japan Retro #10: Riki Choshu

Written By Alfredo Esparza

All Japan Retro #10: Riki Choshu

Ishin Gundan (Riki Choshu & Masa Saito) vs. Jumbo Tsuruta & Genichiro Tenryu

Taped 2/5/1985 at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan

Loud cheers from the fans as soon as Riki Choshu’s music starts to play. Tenryu and Choshu start the match off. Choshu picks up Tenryu and slams him to the mat and gets Tenryu in an armbar. Tenryu reverses it into a leglock. Clean break and Tenryu gets Choshu in a side headlock. Choshu reverses it and they test each other’s strength. Choshu reaches the ropes for a break and also tags in Saito.

Tenryu tags in Jumbo to go against Saito. Saito with a takedown on Tsuruta. He gets Jumbo in a side headlock. Jumbo tries to pick Saito up but he blocks it and Saito tags in Choshu. Armbar by Tsuruta on Choshu. Jumbo with an armbar takedown on Choshu. He keeps working on Choshu’s left arm. Choshu slams Tsuruta and follows with a leg takedown.

Jumbo kicks at Choshu’s head but Choshu quickly goes for a scorpion deathlock. Tsuruta blocks it but Choshu drags him to his corner and tags in Saito. Double Russian legsweep by Saito and Choshu. Tsuruta gets back up and gets Saito in a side headlock and tags in Tenryu. Tenryu with a wristlock on Saito. Saito reverses and goes for a cross armbreaker. Tenryu breaks out of the hold and goes for a Boston Crab. Saito reverses it.

Masa Saito whips Tenryu into the ropes and backdrops him. He slams Tenryu and tags in Choshu. Tenryu gets Choshu in a side headlock. Choshu picks up Tenryu by his leg and slams him down. Choshu goes for the Scorpion Deathlock on Tenryu! Tenryu blocks it. Choshu with a snapmare into a reverse chinlock. He tags Saito back into the match. Saito climbs up to the top rope and lands an elbow across Tenryu’s back. Legsweep by Saito and he gets a two-count on Tenryu.

Tenryu counters with a backdrop on Saito. He slams Saito into the corner and tags in Tsuruta. Jumbo attacks Saito and charges at him in the corner but Saito raises his legs up to kick him. Saito tags Choshu and then picks up Jumbo for a piledriver. Choshu climbs up the ropes and they go for a double-team piledriver on Tsuruta! Choshu goes for the Scorpion Deathlock! Jumbo tries to fight him off. Crowd cheers louder. Choshu gets the hold on Tsuruta. Jumbo tries to power out of the deathlock! He reaches the ropes and breaks the hold.

Saito tags back in but Jumbo rolls to the outside. He gets back in the ring and Saito lays in some forearms. Saito picks Tsuruta up and Choshu lands a knee off the ropes on him which Saito only gets a near fall on him. Sleeper hold by Saito. Jumbo gets up and shoves Saito into the corner. He tags in Tenryu who whips Saito into the other corner and follows with a slam. Tenryu with a reverse elbow drop on Saito. He gets Saito in a headscissors until Saito rolls to his corner and tags in Choshu.

Choshu stomps on Tenryu. He kicks away at Tenryu but Tenryu powers up and gets Choshu with a backdrop. Tenryu goes for a pin but Choshu kicks out. Enziguiri by Tenryu gets him another 2-count on Choshu. Choshu follows up with a backdrop driver on Tenryu and he only gets a two-count. Choshu tags in Saito. Saito punches at Tenryu until Tenryu tags in Jumbo. Tsuruta with a running high knee at Saito. They follow that up with double-team kicks at Saito. Jumbo only gets a two-count on Saito. He goes for a second running high knee and again only gets a two-count on Saito.

Saito grabs hold of Tsuruta for a backdrop driver and gets a two count. Saito charges at Jumbo and both go over the ropes to the outside. Saito gets back in the ring. Jumbo climbs up the ring apron and Choshu charges at him with a lariat and knocks him back down to the floor! Tenryu runs into the ring and gets Saito with an enziguiri and sends him back to the outside. Tenryu and Choshu brawl in the ring. Saito and Jumbo brawl in the ring! Saito backdrops Jumbo on the floor. Referee counts both of them out.

WINNERS: Double Count Out

Jumbo Tsuruta & Genichiro Tenryu vs. Ishin Gundan (Riki Choshu & Yoshiaki Yatsu) for the NWA International Tag Team Titles

Taped 1/28/1986 at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan

Camera zooms in on Riki Choshu’s bandaged waist. Choshu and Jumbo start the match. The crowd is very loud as the two stare each other down before attacking each other. Tsuruta gets in a few kicks on Choshu but they pace back and forth before locking up. Side headlock by Choshu but Tsuruta takes him into the ropes. Clean break. Jumbo gets Choshu in a side headlock and elbows him.

Riki Choshu with a leg takedown followed by a stomp across Jumbo’s chest. He tags in Yatsu. Yatsu gets Jumbo in a full nelson and switches over to a headlock but quickly breaks. He tries to take Tsuruta down but Jumbo reaches the ropes. Yatsu with a hard slap across Jumbo’s face and the crowd pops loudly. He gets in a few more slaps on Jumbo. Jumbo slaps Yatsu as well and asks for Choshu to get back in the ring. Choshu back in.

Jumbo tags in Tenryu. He chops Yatsu as he walks by and Yatsu grabs him and he and Choshu double-team Tenryu! Yatsu clotheslines Tenryu off the ropes while Choshu holds him. He goes on the offensive quickly and takes Tenryu down. Yatsu sets up Tenryu for a piledriver and Choshu climbs up the ropes to spike him down to the mat.

Tenryu recovers quickly and takes down Choshu with a leglock. He switches it over to an attempt for a figure-four leglock but Choshu blocks it and rolls over to his corner and tags Yatsu. Yatsu lands an elbow off the ropes onto Tenryu. He tags in and claps before going with another elbow drop. Jumbo runs in and stomps on Choshu before he is sent out of the ring by the referee. Tenryu catches Yatsu with a lariat out of the corner! He tags in Tsuruta.

Tsuruta sends Yatsu to the outside. Yatsu gets back in the ring and reverses a whip and catches Jumbo with a dropkick. Choshu back in and they go for a double-team suplex. Hard chops exchanged by Jumbo and Choshu. Tsuruta whips Choshu into the ropes and catches him with a jumping high knee! Forearm smashes across Choshu but Choshu counters with a backdrop suplex! Choshu grabs at his bandaged side.

Jumbo and Choshu run the ropes and catch each other with clotheslines, knocking each other down. Tenryu and Jumbo double-team Choshu to take him down again. Choshu grabs at his side while Tenryu kicks at him. He kicks Tenryu’s injured side and even elbows him in that region. Jumbo back in and he continues to stomp on Choshu’s injured side (ribs). Choshu fights back! Tenryu gets back in and gets Choshu up for a suplex. He gets a two-count and quickly tags Jumbo back in. Tsuruta tries to get Choshu up for a suplex but he gets blocked, so he knees his injured ribs.

Yatsu gets frustrated and tries to help Choshu until the referee gets him out. Abdominal stretch by Jumbo on Choshu. Yatsu climbs to the top rope and lands a double ax-handle across the back of Tsuruta. Choshu tags Yatsu in and he gets Jumbo with a dropkick. He follows that up with a backdrop. Tenryu goes after Choshu outside the ring. He uses a chair on Choshu.

Yatsu gets Jumbo in a spinning toe hold! Tenryu gets in the ring and backdrops Yatsu. Jumbo gets back up and whips Yatsu into the ropes and catches him with a lariat! He whips Yatsu again for another lariat. Tsuruta gets Yatsu in a Boston Crab as Choshu is on the outside. Yatsu is able to reach the ropes to break the hold. Tenryu back in and he whips Yatsu into the ropes and catches him with a knee.

Choshu is able to get back up to his corner but Yatsu is taking a beating from Jumbo and Tenryu. Yatsu makes a brief comeback to escape and tags in Choshu who gets Jumbo with a dropkick but Jumbo is quickly back up on his feet. Choshu gets back up and knocks down Tsuruta and puts him in a scorpion deathlock! Jumbo tries to power out of the hold but Choshu can’t keep it locked on so he breaks it to tag Yatsu back in. Tsuruta tags in Tenryu and he gets Yatsu up in a suplex!

Jumbo gets a whip reversed and Yatsu catches him with a clothesline and gets a two count. Yatsu follows with a bulldog and sends Jumbo to the outside. Choshu slams Tsuruta into the ring post. Tenryu attacks Choshu and whips him into the guardrail. Yatsu brings Tsuruta back into the ring with a suplex. Jumbo’s bleeding from his forehead and Yatsu punches him more.

They send Jumbo back to the outside and slam him head-first into the ring post. Tenryu attacks Choshu. Back in the ring Yatsu gets Jumbo in a piledriver and gets a two-count! He follows with a backdrop but Jumbo kicks out again. Yatsu continues to punch at Jumbo’s forehead and whips him into the ropes and backdrops him again. Yatsu goes for a cloverleaf on Jumbo.

Jumbo breaks free from the hold. Yatsu gets Jumbo with a side backbreaker and goes for the Scorpion Deathlock! Tenryu gets in the ring and charges at Yatsu and knocks him down with a lariat! Choshu gets in and stomps on Tsuruta! Referee gets Choshu out of the ring. Jumbo kicks at Yatsu and slams him into the corner. He tags in Tenryu who slams Yatsu and gets a two count. Enziguiri by Tenryu. Choshu makes the save for Yatsu. Tenryu with another backdrop and he goes for the pin but Choshu interferes. Jumbo gets in as well. Jumbo and Choshu brawl outside the ring.

Yatsu gets Tenryu up with a German suplex and gets another two-count. Tenryu goes for a slam but Yatsu gets him with a small package for another near fall. Yatsu goes for a Thesz Press but Tenryu sends him into the top rope. Tenryu goes for another enziguiri and goes for the pin but Choshu and Jumbo get in the ring. Tenryu gets Yatsu up for a powerbomb and covers him for the pin. Jumbo stops Choshu from making the save. Jumbo & Tenryu win!

WINNERS: Jumbo Tsuruta & Genichiro Tenryu

Stan Hansen vs. Riki Choshu for the AWA World & PWF Heavyweight Title

Taped 4/5/1986 at Yokohama Cultural Gymnasium in Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan

Hansen goes for a waistlock but Choshu reverses and forces Hansen to reach for the ropes to break. Choshu gets Hansen in an armbar but Hansen shoves him into the corner and again they are forced to break by the referee. Hansen with a leg takedown. Choshu tries to fight out of the hold and grabs hold of Hansen’s arm. He reverses it into an armbar. Hansen tugs at Choshu’s foot trying to get him to break the hold. He reaches the ropes forcing Choshu to break again.

Hansen picks up Choshu and slams him. He follows with an elbow drop. He goes to work on Choshu’s left leg but Choshu is able to knock Hansen off balance and gets him in an armlock. Hansen gets on top of Choshu to land a big knee across his head. He picks Choshu up and sends him into the ropes for an elbow. Choshu recovers and whips Hansen into the ropes and gets him with an elbow of his own. He goes for the Scorpion Deathlock as the fans cheer him on.

Hansen is able to get Choshu by the wrist and takes him down while Choshu still has Hansen in his hold. He gets back up and tries to turn Hansen over in the deathlock! Hansen grabs hold of Choshu’s wrist again and takes him down despite still being in the hold. Hansen chops his way out of it and drops a knee on Choshu’s left arm.

Hansen uses the ropes to beat on Choshu’s left arm. Choshu kicks him off and gets him in a leglock. They struggle to get control of the match before Hansen is able to send Choshu to the outside. Choshu gets back in the ring and Hansen whips him into the corner. He charges at Choshu who moves out of the way and Hansen goes flying over the corner to the floor!

Choshu follows to the outside. He whips Hansen to the corner but that gets reversed. Hansen charges at Choshu but ends up hitting the ring post. They both get back in the ring and Choshu gets Hansen in an armbar. Hansen escapes and lays a few clubbing forearms across Choshu. He whips Choshu into the ropes and kicks him. Follows with another whip into the ropes followed by an elbow that sends Choshu to the outside.

Hansen with a slam on Choshu and he goes for a splash but Choshu raises his knees. Choshu follows with a lariat at Hansen that sends him to the outside! Hansen gets kicked by Choshu and taken back to the outside. Hansen beats on one of the wrestlers ringside. Ted DiBiase shows up. Hansen gets back in the ring and Choshu whips him into the ropes but Hansen kicks him. Hansen follows with a couple of knee drops on Choshu. He catches Choshu with a dropkick and gets a two-count. Hansen piledrives Choshu but Choshu reaches the ropes while pinned.

Big elbow drop from Hansen on Choshu gets him another two-count. Hansen with an elbow at Choshu. He whips Choshu again into the ropes and kicks him. Hansen with a slam and he motions that he’s going for the lariat. Hansen gets Choshu with a lariat. He gets him with it again! Hansen picks Choshu up and tosses him to the outside. Choshu climbs back in and gets a knee drop from Hansen.

Hansen readies for the lariat and charges at Choshu but Choshu ducks and Hansen instead hits the referee who goes flying to the outside. Choshu picks up Hansen with a backdrop. DiBiase interferes. Killer Khan gets DiBiase out of the ring. Hansen beats on Choshu in the ring. He places a knee across Choshu’s neck. Referee calls for the bell.

Ron Bass joins Ted DiBiase and Stan Hansen in the ring. They all leave the ring. Riki Choshu is awarded the PWF Heavyweight Title on a DQ.

WINNER: Riki Choshu via DQ

Riki Choshu vs. Killer Khan in a Death Match

Taped 7/31/1986 at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo, Japan

Killer Khan wears a hood over his head. He removes his robe and hood and stares down Riki Choshu. He has a rope with him but decides to not use it and tells Shunji Takano and Super Strong Machine that they can leave the ringside area. Choshu and Khan lock-up on the ropes and Choshu throws a chop at Khan. Armbar by Choshu on Khan and he gets shoved into the ropes. Khan kicks at Choshu and goes on the attack knocking him down to the mat.

Khan hits some elbows across Choshu’s back and starts to choke him. Referee Tiger Hattori warns Khan. Choshu gets Khan in the ropes and kicks him. They go back and forth with some chops and kicks before separating. Big knee into Choshu’s mid-section. Khan whips him into the ropes and again gets him with a knee. He screams loudly and stomps on Choshu. Choshu gets sent to the outside and Khan follows and throws him into the guardrails. He continues to stomp on Choshu and yells at him.

They get back in the ring and Killer Khan continues to stomp on Choshu who rolls back to the outside. Khan knees Choshu and chokes him on the ropes. Referee count breaks the hold and Choshu rolls to the outside floor again. Killer Khan climbs the corner and jumps off, landing a knee drop on Choshu on the floor! Choshu moved out of the way! He stomps on Khan. Killer Khan grabs hold of his knee while Choshu continues his attack.

Choshu continues to beat on Killer Khan as they get back in the ring. Backdrop by Choshu on Khan. He goes for the Scorpion Deathlock! Killer Khan reaches the ropes to break the hold and rolls to the outside. Choshu heads out and continues his attack on Khan with punches and chops. Khan fights back! He tries to slam Choshu into the ring post but Choshu reverses and sends him into the ring post not just once but twice before returning to the ring.

Choshu goes back outside and again slams Killer Khan head first into the ring post. Killer Khan is bleeding from his forehead. Choshu waits for him in the ring as Khan staggers to get back in. Choshu knocks him off the ring apron and back to the floor! He kicks at Khan keeping him out of the ring.

Killer Khan finally gets in the ring but is bleeding profusely. Choshu continues to just beat on him. Choshu goes for a lariat but Killer Khan catches him with a big boot! He delivers a knee at Choshu’s mid-section. Knee drop by Khan on Choshu. Killer Khan climbs up the ropes and goes for a top rope knee drop and gets Choshu! Khan struggles to get the cover for the pin and when he finally does, Choshu kicks out at two.

Killer Khan starts to leave the ring thinking he won the match. He waves three fingers to the fans believing he won but the referee chases after him and tells him to get back in the ring. Killer Khan lands another kneedrop across Choshu’s back and again only gets a two-count. Khan motions that it was three but the referee tells him it wasn’t. He chokes Choshu.

Riki Choshu gets back up but Khan gets him with a choke and takes him back down. Choshu back up again and he gets Khan up with a backdrop! He gets Khan again with another backdrop. Motions that he’s going for the lariat. Choshu hits Killer Khan with the lariat and covers him for the pin but Khan kicks out at TWO!!!

Choshu motions again for the lariat. He bounces off the ropes and gets Khan again with the lariat and covers him for the pin and this time he gets the win!

WINNER: Riki Choshu

Riki Choshu vs. Genichiro Tenryu

Taped 9/3/1986 at Osaka-Jo Hall in Osaka, Japan

They stare each other down before the bell rings. Tenryu points at the bandages around Choshu’s waist and wants him to remove them. Choshu removes them. They stumble onto the floor before getting back up. Choshu catches Tenryu with a backdrop off the ropes and Tenryu heads to the outside. He gets back in the ring.

Choshu gets Tenryu in a side headlock. Tenryu whips Choshu into the ropes but Choshu keeps hold of him until he eventually breaks. Tenryu with a hiplock takedown into a side headlock. Choshu picks Tenryu up over his shoulders and slams him. He gets Tenryu in a Fujiwara armbar. Tenryu gets up and counters Choshu until he breaks out and kicks at him.

Tenryu whips Choshu into the ropes but Choshu knocks him down and gets Tenryu in a headscissors submission hold. Tenryu escapes and gets Choshu in a bow and arrow submission hold. Choshu reaches the ropes and falls to the outside. Choshu gets back in and is met by a hard chop by Tenryu. He whips Tenryu into the corner and elbows him. Tenryu fights back with some kicks.

Tenryu goes for an armbreaker on Choshu. He drops his knee across Choshu’s left arm a few times but keeps hold of it with a wristlock. Choshu kicks at Tenryu but he keeps the wristlock on and switches over to an armbar. Choshu shoves Tenryu into the corner forcing a break but Choshu gets in a few knees on Tenryu and refuses to break away.

Tenryu charges at Choshu and gets him with a dropkick. He whips Choshu into the ropes and knocks him down with a lariat. Kneedrop follows and Tenryu goes back to an armbar on Choshu. Hair pull by Tenryu to keep Choshu down on the mat. He stomps on Choshu and then whips him into the ropes and goes for a jumping high knee but Choshu blocks it. Choshu goes for the Scorpion Deathlock.

Tenryu blocks it briefly but Choshu chops him on the mid-section and gets the Scorpion Deathlock on but Tenryu reaches the ropes. Choshu keeps trying to get Tenryu in his move but Tenry reaches the ropes. Choshu climbs up the ropes and Tenryu catches him with an enziguiri that knocks him down. Tenryu misses a clotheslines on Choshu who’s back up on the ring apron and instead Choshu gets him with a lariat that knocks him down! Both men are outside the ring. Tenryu sends Choshu into the ringside table. They both get back up on the ring apron and Choshu gets Tenryu with a backdrop onto the ring apron and he falls to the floor. Choshu rolls back into the ring.

Choshu goes for a lariat at Tenryu but he gets kicked in the ribs. Tenryu kicks him again. He elbowdrops Choshu several times. Choshu gets back up and tries for another backdrop but he gets blocked and Tenryu kicks him again. Tenryu with a slingshot suplex on Choshu. He only gets a two count! Tenryu goes for an octopus submission hold and drops to the mat keeping Choshu locked in the submission hold.

More kicks from Tenryu at Choshu. Choshu blocks another kick and gets Tenryu in the Scorpion Deathlock. Tenryu reaches the ropes for a break. Choshu with a suplex on Tenryu and he goes for a pin. Tenryu kicks out and hits Choshu with a shoulder attack. He tries to kick at Choshu but gets blocked and Choshu picks him up and backdrops him again.

Tenryu climbs up the ropes but Choshu pulls him off and slams him to the mat. Choshu with another backdrop on Tenryu. He goes for another pin but only gets two. Choshu sends Tenryu shoulder first into the ring post and Tenryu goes to the outside. Choshu follows and attacks Tenryu outside the ring.

Tenryu is now bleeding from his forehead as he makes his way back into the ring. Choshu punches at him and sends him into the ring post again. More punches thrown by Choshu. Tenryu falls into the ring. Choshu catches Tenryu with a lariat and then drags him back to the outside. He slams Tenryu’s head into the table. Choshu heads back into the ring.

Tenryu returns to the ring. Choshu whips him into the ropes and punches him. Referee warns Choshu so Choshu decides to shove him. Referee Tiger Hattori gets back up and again Choshu knocks him down. Referee calls for the bell to ring and disqualifies Riki Choshu.

Choshu continues his attack on Tenryu. Everyone ringside tries to separate them and Choshu eventually leaves.

WINNER: Genichiro Tenyru via DQ

SHOW THOUGHTS: Excellent episode from this All Japan series. My favorite match on this show was Jumbo & Tenryu vs. Choshu & Yatsu. Other matches were good but that one had a lot more to it and thought all four involved were great. The earlier matches felt a little more even while the last two had Choshu really putting on quite the beating on Killer Khan and Tenryu in their singles matches.

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