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Puroresu Show Reviews

Reviews of puroresu shows in my collection

Monday, August 28, 2006

 

Dragon Gate “Battle Junction” PPV 2/24/2006

Starts off with Blood Gen coming out to discuss the big night they have ahead of them, with Doi and Yoshino facing off against each other in the Brave Gate league match, CIMA & Fuji facing Mochi & Susumu, and the big Dream Gate title defense by Magnitude against Do-FIXER leader Ryo Saito in the main.

Magnum TOKYO, Kenichiro Arai & Jack Evans VS Genki Horiguchi, Anthony W. Mori & BxB Hulk
Genki is GOD. And one of the main reasons that I follow Dragon Gate. For some reason from the first time I saw him 2 years ago until today, he still remains one of the most entertaining workers in the squared circle, be it Japan or anywhere. Just too bad the bookers of Dragon Gate couldn’t do a better job of handling him and give him the push he so rightly deserved.
With that out of the way, this was the usual entertaining Dragon Gate 6-man tag, with some fun comedy bits between Magnum & Genki. There’s a lot of hate for Jack Evans from DG purists, but the live Japanese crowds respond to him well with his flippy-floppy high flying offense, which also helps make his selling of his opponents offense look a whole lot more brutal.
There wasn’t really a whole lot of Mori or Araken in the match, though I seriously would have preferred if Evans pinned Mori instead of Genki with that 630’ senton of his.
Match Rating: *1/2

Shingo Takagi VS Katsuo

Pointless squash match, even if Katsuo did manage to drop Shingo on his head with a dangerous backdrop as the only bit of offense he got in the match. But Shingo more or less didn’t sell it and hit a pair of Pumping Bombers for the win.
Match Rating: 1/2*

Open the Brave Gate Tourney: Super Shisa VS Tozawa

You got to know that if Tozawa was put up against anyone else, he probably wouldn’t have gotten in all the offense he did here. The match was a quick fast paced sprint, and ended after a long sequence of pin-exchanges which Shisa won out of in the end.
Match Rating: *

Open the Brave Gate Tourney: Naoki Tanisaki VS Dragon Kid

This was a fun brawl thanks to Tanisaki’s new found mean streak, bringing a garbage can with him to the ring to use as a weapon and not afraid to take a cheap shot or two. Tanisaki did take a rather sick looking DDT out of a head-scissors from DK though, but was able to pull out the win by count-out after brawling out into the crowd and giving DK the U-Tube onto a pile of chairs. Tanisaki, another missed opportunity of Dragon Gate.
Match Rating: *1/2

Open the Brave Gate Tourney: Naruki Doi VS Masato Yoshino

Now this was rather surprising. The match ended in a 20-minute draw, but the ride they took us on was a lot of fun as they didn’t slow the pace down for a minute with non-stop fast paced action. It more or less put over the fact that the duo were more or less even, and knew each other inside out since they were both in the same faction. They did seem to run out of gas a bit near the end as they didn’t seem to be able to kick out in time on 2 occasions but the referee called it a 2 anyway. It probably also didn’t make sense for Yoshino to take such a long pause to taunt after hitting the Lightning Spiral only to go for the Sol Nociente submission when he knew there was only seconds left on the clock.
It was still fun from bell to bell though.
Match Rating: **1/2

Intermission time and we are shown the tough guy Don Fujii’s abuse of referee Yasushi Kanda from the past few months, leading to the boiling point of Kanda having enough and actually fighting back. We know where this is heading…
After that is the build up of the Dream Gate title match between champion Magnitude Kishiwada and Ryo Saito.

CIMA & Don Fujii VS Masaaki Mochizuki & Susumu Yokosuka
Fujii again gets on Kanda’s case before the match begins and Kanda again fights back, leading to Fujii & CIMA spike piledriving Kanda on several chairs, leading to Mochi & Susumu running in to make the save and starting the match with Yagi as the referee.
The match became really fun once things picked up, ending in a hot sprint with Fujii surprisingly getting a clean pin on Mochi with a pair of Nice Germans. But the main story of the match is what happened AFTER the match, when Blood Gen continued to beat down on Mochi & Susumu, leading to Yasushi Kanda running out to make the save in full M2K gear, mohawk and blue-box included! This sets up Blood Gen VS Original M2K for the next PPV, which I’m really looking forward to watching.
Match Rating: **

Open the Dream Gate: Magnitude Kishiwada (C) VS Ryo Saito

Much like his title defense against Anthony W. Mori in January, a major flaw in this match is Magnitude’s inability (or downright refusal) to sell his bad shoulder. Seriously, that was the only thing that really bugged me about this match. After getting his arm worked over, being put in a jujigatame and a triangle, as well as multiple arm-breakers, Magnitude still throws lariats with wreckless abandon and show ZERO effects of any pain. And this is supposed to be the injury that he’s taking time off to heal! I’m all for pushing him as a monster, but there’s a difference between that and just plain not selling.
Ryo on the other hand is forced to do a million dollar sell job for all of Magnitude’s offense, so much so that I just had to shut off my brain when he once again put on a superhuman comeback from offense that would have put average guys away a lot sooner. Like the Mori defense, I found this to be a big booking mess as far as the ring-work went, and it was really hard for me to get into it. The final sprint and subsequent pinfall just seemed to come out of nowhere, with the Premium Bridge looking more like a flash-pinfall move instead of a last resort finisher.
Match Rating: **

Overall:
Hate to say I was looking forward to the Dream Gate match but ended up being really disappointed. The show wasn’t all bad though, just be ready to shut off your brain for the Dream Gate match.

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