Dec 19, 2014

Johnny vs Daniel, the Final Match

The final match between Johnny and Daniel is overflowing with evidence of wrong-doing. To the untrained eye, as was mine when I first looked for the leg tap, the fight seems normal enough. But for those who know where to look the truth is there, in every punch, in every kick, in every action and reaction. 
A conflicted Johnny

After Sensei Kreese tells Bobby he wants Daniel out of commission Johnny suddenly realizes his problems might have been solved. If Bobby takes Daniel out with a cheap shot and is disqualified Johnny is off the hook. Johnny's mind races with the possiblity and his face reflects it. 

Johnny's problems are almost solved when Bobby follows through with Sensei Kreese's orders and takes Daniel out with an illegal kick to the knee. Daniel however emerges from the locker room ready to do battle (thanks to Mr. Miyagi and some ancient Okinawan healing techniques) and Johnny can't believe it, he smiles and shakes his head in disbelief.

However once the reality of the situation sets in Johnny's demeanor changes quickly and soon we see Johnny clenching and unclenching his fists a total of six times. Johnny is nervous for the first time in the tournament.

Johnny is as stiff as a board, his arms frozen with tension. This is not the same Johnny we saw in earlier fights, something has changed him.

Johnny looks at Daniel with anger and resentment. Angry that Daniel couldn't let the tournament go, resentment that he had made this secret pact and is being forced to dump the title.

- Round 1 - Johnny comes out kicking, he doesn't look like someone who plans on losing this fight. 7 seconds into the first round though Johnny pauses during his attack which gives Daniel a chance to drive a punch to Johnny's chest taking the point. Did Johnny pull back on purpose? I believe so. Johnny loses his first point of the entire tournament.

- Round 2 - Here again Johnny holds back. After knocking Daniel to the floor 4 seconds into the round Johnny actually waits for Daniel to get back up. Johnny could have easily gone for the point, (notice Johnny is leaning forward ready to pounce while Daniel is on his heels and in no position to defend himself) but instead he decides to give Daniel a break. Johnny never gives anyone a break, more evidence that something wasn't right. Johnny missed his chance and Daniel later takes another point.

- Round 3 - Before this round Johnny is sent over to his sensei for attention to a bloody nose. After Sensei Kreese utters the most famous three words in all of Hollywood history, "Sweep the leg," Johnny comes out with a vengeance getting his first point and knocking Daniel to the ground in a staggering 2 seconds flat. That's even faster than Frank Dux's Kumite knock-out record of 3.2 seconds.

- Round 4 - Johnny toys with Daniel in this round for 12 seconds but ultimately gets his second point. It seems Johnny is back to his old self.

- Round 5 - Next point takes the title. Will it be Daniel or will it be Johnny? Johnny has scored the last two points in easy fashion, he has Daniel on the ropes. But what happens next?

Johnny realizes he needs to tone things down. Since he has taken the last two points decisively he can't slack off and give Daniel an easy point, that might make things look like something is up. But what can Johnny do? He does some quick thinking and comes up with a plan that will allow him live up to the terms of the agreement he has made with Daniel and one that also help him save face. Instead of losing to Daniel he decides to try and get himself disqualified.

Bobby's disqualification in the semi-finals came from "deliberate and excessive contact." Johnny figures he might have luck getting out of this situation by doing the same.

Johnny first goes for a shot to Daniel's left knee 20 seconds into the round, the same knee that Bobby took out.  

When that doesn't work he goes for a shot straight at Daniel's face 31 seconds into the round. How much more blatant can Johnny get?

Still though the disqualification doesn't come.

Daniel catches on to what Johnny is trying to do and takes it a step further by trying to help Johnny.

The infamous knee tap comes. (more on the knee tap in a moment)

Even still, after three blatant cheap shots Johnny is not disqualified. He does however receive a warning from the referee that anymore illegal contact will result in a disqualification. This in a way seals Johnny's fate and forces Daniel to take the next step. Johnny certainly can't go with another cheap shot, he's just received a stern warning against such a move.

Daniel then does the unthinkable, he strikes a pose for a move he has shown Johnny before during their training sessions. One that Johnny however hoped would not be needed due to it's nature, a dangerous and difficult leaping front kick to his face.

If done correctly and timed right the two of them might be able to sell it to the referee and crowd and end the fight in spectacular fashion. If done incorrectly the fight might end with one of them being injured and the tides of history changing forever.

(the audio in the following video is in Spanish, which for some reason YouTube allows but all English versions of the same video have been deleted)

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