This is a December 2013 match, but since it was only this month I discovered I have an erogenous zone with Shane Haste's name on it, I thought I'd post some screen grabs and notes, just for kicks. Thanks, yet again, to Gary for introducing me to this performer's impressive body of work (6'1", 220#, the way I like em). In this Pro Wrestling NOAH rematch, the Perth muscle heel seeks retribution for a humiliating loss to Mohammed Yone (6'1", 240#) in October, a week after Shane's similarly embarrassing loss to KENTA.
- The match starts at the 3:33 spot on the YouTube video. The Osaka crowd has plenty of love for Yone, not so much for the cocky red-haired Aussie. (He and Mikey Nicholls have since become hugely popular with Japanese fans, as you can see in their tag matches on YouTube.)
- The fans urge Haste to offer his hand to Mohammed in a gentlemanly show of respect and he does, getting a hand slap and high kick to the shoulder in return, followed by a clothesline and a quick near pin. Haste powers out and staggers to his feet, only to receive three kicks to the side of his head and another near pin. Yone is the aggressor, but nobody shows Shane any sympathy. They know what this foreigner is capable of, so perhaps they see Yone's strategy as "preemptive."
- It takes Haste three tries, using the full weight of his body, but he finally knocks Yone off his feet. Yone rolls out of the ring, and Haste makes a flying leap over the ropes (4:44) landing both of them on the floor. Shane shows his true colors as he proceeds to inflict trauma to Mohammed's bandaged back. (Rule #764: a bandage is just a red flag for any heel worth his salt.)
- The ref orders Haste back into the ring or else risk being counted out. Haste obliges, but rolls right back out to further his sadistic assault on Yone (5:33). I love it when heels use the rules (the letter of the law) to sidestep justice and order (the spirit of the law). This is so close to the way that real-world evil works it chills the heart. Boos from the fans, but a smattering of applause too. Shane hurls Mohammed back into the ring (on his back, of course). Then he climbs on top of him but can hold the pin for only two counts.
- In the ring Haste continues to wreak havoc on Yone's bandaged back, eventually turning brutal assault into a legit wrestling hold when he flips Yone over and applies a crab hold (6:19, see the second photo above). As Yone crawls to the ropes to force Shane to break the hold, the villain turns the full crab into a single-leg crab and grinds the heel of his white boot to the small of Mohammed's back. After 33 seconds of pure agony, Yone loops his arm over the bottom rope, and the ref orders Haste to release him.
- At the 7:03 spot, we get a nice closeup of Shane's boot nudging Mohammed's hand away so Haste can stomp the grimacing hero's chest unimpeded. I'm struck by the gentleness of the gesture even though the objective is brutal.
- A center of the ring slugfest breaks out (7:15), proof that Yone is far from being conquered by the sadistic hiru (heel).
- After succeeding at inflicting even more damage to Yone's lower vertebrae, Haste strikes a pose at the ring ropes, foot propped up, shoulders slouched, stroking his wisp of a chin patch contemplatively, which I would argue is an homage to Toshiro Mifune in Seven Samurai (7:35--watch the movie and tell me I'm wrong).
- At 7:46 (fourth photo) Haste yanks and rips at Yone's bandage, digging his knuckles and elbow deep into Yone's back muscle. (A deep-tissue massage I wish he would repeat for me at my house this very minute, please.) Then Shane heaves his victim up in the air and slams him to the mat, and tries again for a pinfall, unsuccessfully.
- With a thumb slice across his throat, Haste signals that he is about to finish Yone off (8:28). Or so he thinks. It actually signals a turn in the tide as Yone impressively resists Haste's attempt to lift him, instead reversing the move and tossing the arrogant foreigner over his shoulder (8:44).
- Haste backs up into the turnbuckle, practically inviting a corner beatdown from Yone, and he gets one (8:55), followed by a center-of-the-ring stompdown that Haste's very audible panting, half in panic and half in agony, puts totally over. It looks like good may prevail over evil after all.
- But hold your horses. Haste foils Yone's attempt to dive on him off the corner ropes (9:46) and turns it into a corner demolition, capped with a somersault senton splash (9:57), one of Shane's thrillingest signature attacks.
- Yone comes flying back at Haste, but too late ... Haste has the momentum and the mojo now. At this point, resistance may be futile. Haste tries to submit Yone with an excruciating 45-second Benoit-style crossface (10:30, fifth photo). Once again Yone stretches his arm for the ring ropes for relief, but Haste stops him by stepping on his hand! Ouch! But then Yone pushes his foot over the bottom rope, and the ref forces the break.
- Yone gets a "hope spot" now, short-lived but rousing. Then Haste delivers a forceful body slam, again targeting Yone's injured back. Still he fails to get a full three count.
- Yone lands some desperate chops that would fell a lesser man, but Haste once again heaves big Yone into the air and, with the full force of his magnificent upper body, splats Mohammed to the mat, this time getting a definite pin fall for the win (12:11). An exhausted Shane Haste summons enough energy to perform a brief bump-and-grind for the appreciative crowd.
Postscript: Don't feel too sorry for Mohammed Yone. In 2014, Yone has so far defeated Haste two more times in singles competition.