Punishing Nunchaku Stance

In Liu Kang’s Dragon’s Breath variation, he gains access to Nunchaku Stance. This gives him several new moves:

1. Nunchaku Flurry (Overhead)
2. Kusari Slam (Command Grab)
3. Nunchaku Dance (Low)
4. Cancel Nunchaku Stance (Cancel)

1. Nunchaku Flurry

Nunchaku Stance is best used after the 2nd hit of Liu Kang’s Back+1,2,4 string. The reason is because Nunchaku Stance leaves him at the least amount of disadvantage when used after it. If the overhead is used after the 2nd hit of Back+1,2,4, then it cannot be interrupted. This gives Liu Kang a 50/50 mixup between Nunchaku Flurry and Nunchaku Dance when using Back+1,2,4.

If the overhead is blocked, it will leave Liu Kang at -15 allowing for a free punish.

2. Nunchaku Dance

Most of the time, Liu Kang will use Nunchaku Dance because Nunchaku Flurry becomes a Krushing Blow if you are previously hit by Nunchaku Dance. If the low is blocked, it will leave Liu Kang at -16. However, this can be very difficult to punish or completely safe against many characters due to pushback.

In order to punish this, you must block low then jump immediately. By jumping, you will be hit by the first hit of Nunchaku Dance, while the rest of the the attack will whiff. You can then whiff punish Liu Kang as you are getting up from the ground.

Note: Since you are being hit by the Nunchaku Dance, it will allow Liu Kang to meet the Krushing Blow requirement for Nunchaku Flurry, so use at your own risk.

Fuzzy Guarding

It is possible to fuzzy guard both the overhead/low mixup by blocking high and then quickly blocking low. This is because the overhead has a start-up of 7 frames, while the low has a start-up of 12 frames. This means that the overhead will come out 5 frames earlier than the low.

This however will not work if the overhead is slightly delayed. Fuzzy guarding can still work though if Liu Kang is not delaying the overhead.

3. Kusari Slam

While you are looking to block the overhead or low, Liu Kang can mix this up by using Kusari Slam. This is a command grab that will hit if you are blocking. In order to punish this, you must jump immediately to avoid it. You will then be able to punish Liu Kang on the way down.

Additionally, jumping will punish the overhead. Although you will be hit out of the air, you can punish Liu Kang as he is recovering.

Jumping will not avoid the low unless it’s done after an attack other than Back+1,2,4. However, doing an instant jump attack will allow you to avoid it. This is a great option because it will punish both the overhead and low.

Note: This can only be done if you are blocking high before jumping and is dependent on the character and jump attack used.

4. Cancel Nunchaku Stance

Liu Kang also has the option to cancel out of the Nunchaku Stance. This allows him to continue pressure if you are blocking. Cancelling also allows him to anti-air your jump.

Instead of jumping, you can do a Short Hop. This is a bit more difficult to anti-air while also allowing you to avoid the command grab.

Nunchaku Stance cancels can also be punished by attacking immediately. After a stance cancel, Liu Kang will be at least -15. If you think that he will cancel out of the stance, use a quick jab to punish him.


In summary, you will want to mix up all of these options when defending against Liu Kang’s Nunchaku Stance. If you guess correctly, you will punish Liu Kang for a full combo. Meanwhile, guessing wrong will not do much damage and will only knock you down. The risk/reward will be in your favor unless you are hit by the Krushing Blow from Nunchaku Flurry.

Your options to punish Nunchaku Stance are:

1. Block High = Counters Nunchaku Flurry
2. Block Low, Jump = Counters Nunchaku Dance
3. Jump = Counters Kusari Slam / Nunchaku Flurry
4. Jump Attack = Counters Nunchaku Flurry / Nunchaku Dance
5. Attack = Counters Cancel Nunchaku Stance / Nunchaku Dance

Note that Liu Kang can use Nunchaku Stance after any of his attacks, making it a bit more difficult to react to. However, if Nunchaku Stance is done outside of the 2nd hit of Back+1,2,4, it will leave him at more disadvantage. This means that you will have more time to jump out of his mixups or interrupt him. Nunchaku Stance also has a start-up of 24 frames, and his fastest option afterwards is Nunchaku Flurry which has a start-up of 7 frames. This means that you will have at least 31 frames to react to the Nunchaku Stance, which is very doable with practice.

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