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Dragon Gate Rainbow Gate (July 5) Results & Review

Dragon Gate Rainbow Gate (July 5) Results & Review

DRAGON GATE
KING OF GATE
JULY 5, 2017
KORAKUEN HALL – TOKYO, JAPAN

Translations: IHeartDG.com

Watch: Dragon Gate Network

KOTA MINORU DEBUT MATCH
MASATO YOSHINO, BEN-K, & JASON LEE DEF. KOTA MINORU, “BROTHER” YASSHI, & PUNCH TOMINAGA

Kota Minoru is 19, and in his debut match, he scored a ton of offense on the fine folks representing MaxiMuM. He was met early and often with over the top, frying pan chops by Masato Yoshino. However, when his focus was away from the Dream Gate Champion and on Ben-K and Jason Lee, Minoru looked strong. He looks like a healthy kid with a big upside. Dragon Gate is in desperate need of new stars, and perhaps Minoru will be the one they’ve been looking for. This was a solid debut match, and a fun opening bout. He was speared by Ben-K, ending his first match soon after. I look forward to seeing how he progresses. ***

HIROSHI YAMATO (FREELANCE) & HYO WATANABE DEF. KAGETORA & YUKI YOSHIOKA

These was a disjointed mess. If there is any positive to take away from it, it is that a newly beefed up Hyo Watanabe looked pretty good. However, Yoshioka and Yamato did not mesh well. Their timing was all over the place, Watanabe and Yoshioka nearly dropped each other on their heads a few times, and Kagetora, per usual, was practically nowhere to be found. There is no wrestler with more talent who hardly ever shows it. Yoshioka was pinned with Hiroshi Yamato’s Fisherman Suplex. Very curious to see if he sticks around, as he did not impress me. **1/4

SHUN SKYWALKER & MASAAKI MOCHIZUKI DEF. YOSUKE SANTA MARIA & U-T

Shun Skywalker is developing nicely. Sticking him with a now Dream Gate-less Mochizuki has been a very smart move, and constantly throwing them against Maria and U-T has helped those two stay relevant in the mix. Skywalker picked up the win with a moonsault, which was also nice to see. He continues to slowly be elevated. He’s still not at a point where I could consider him to be even a legitimate Brave Gate threat, but he’s trending in the right direction. This match was a fun undercard bout. ***1/4

“Mochizuki announced that he & Shun were going to participate in the All Japan Junior Tag League. They weren’t just going as an experience building exercise for Shun. They were going to win the whole thing. All Japan is also shown on GAORA so he hoped the fans would tune in. He turned his attention to Watanabe & Yoshioka who had appeared at ringside wearing Masaaki Mochizuki shirts. Why? Watanabe said they want to receive the same treatemet from him as Shun. Yoshioka pleaded with him. DG needs 50 year old men like him! Mochizuki clarified that he was 49. Yoshioka clarified. They wanted the 50 year old man to form a a unit with them. Mochizuki understood how they felt, but was skeptical. He just lost the Dream Gate and wasn’t exactly at the top of the card. Maybe they would have better results asking one of the existing unit leaders. Yoshioka once again pleaded. “Mr. Mochizuki, please teach me how to wrestle”. (This is a famous line that Cyber Kong once said to Mochizuki before betraying him 45 minutes later). Mochizuki picked up on it and wondered if he had something similar planned. He didn’t think it was a good idea. He didn’t see how they could compete with the other units. But! Maybe his mind could be changed after fighting against them. Himself & Shun vs. Yoshioka & Watanabe wouldn’t be very fun. Instead, he would fight all three of them in Korakuen Hall next month.” IHeartDG.com

BXB HULK, YAMATO, & FLAMITA DEF. NARUKI DOI, BIG R SHIMIZU, & BANDIDO

This is more like it. The international six-man delivered in the way that I was hoping it too, and once more, Flamita & Bandido add immediate entertainment in the DG mix. Flamita has bulked up and his changed to a singlet, which is about as much character development as he’s had since he stepped foot in Dragon Gate five (5!) years ago.

The main story here was Big R and Doi not getting along, as Dragon Gate has repositioned Big R as a clumsy, bumbling fool. Shimizu and Doi bumped into each other multiple times throughout the match, and it eventually led to the finish. You have to wonder if Doi, seeing his longtime partner Yoshino ascend to the top of the card while he remains battling in the midcard with fools like Shimizu, is going to eventually get the best of him, or if Shimizu, sick of being berated, is going to eventually snap. ***3/4

“Shimizu accidentally hit Doi with a tackle, leading to the loss. Shimizu was quick to criticize again. Another loss. He really needs to get his act together! Is he even trying? Doi pointed out that this was entirely Shimizu’s fault. He really needs to watch his tone. He’s been going way overboard this last month. Shimizu bluntly pointed out that it is no one’s fault but the loser’s. Doi was the loser. He lost because he is a loser. Doi told him that this has been mostly laughs but it isn’t funny anymore. He’s going to get angry.” IHeartDG.com

OPEN THE TRIANGLE GATE CHAMPIONSHIP

KZY, SUSUMU YOKOSUKA, & GENKI HORIGUCHI DEF. DON FUJII, K-NESS, & RYO SAITO

The conclusion of Ryo Saito’s young boy act went off with a bang, as he and Kzy dueled in a series of strikes, suplexes, and pinning combinations in an epic Triangle Gate battle.

Despite in-ring and creative lows for DG, the Triangle Gate belts have been in great hands for the past year between MaxiMuM and now Natural Vibes delivering on all cylinders. This team of Kzy, Yokosuka, and Horiguchi is so incredibly smooth, and facing a team with the grappling skills like Saito and K-Ness made this encounter as exciting as it possibly could be.

Kzy pinned Saito with the Skyade Schoolboy, putting an end to his entertaining young boy character. I hope this is not the end of he, Fujii, and K-Ness as a team, however, as I really enjoy the way those three gel together.

This match rocked, and I recommend you seek it out. ****1/4

LOSING UNIT DISBANDS NANIWA ELIMINATION RULES
SHINGO TAKAGI, EITA, TAKASHI YOSHIDA, & YASUSHI KANDA DEF. DRAGON KID, KAITO ISHIDA, GAMMA, & PROBLEM DRAGON

In the great lineage of great Losing Unit Disbands matches, there have been bouts such as Mad Blankey vs. The Jimmyz from 2014, -akatsuki- vs. Mad Blankey in a 5 on 4 Handicap 2 Count Rules match, and Blood Warriors vs. Junction Three from 2012, who also utilized the Naniwa Elimination Rules (expect they were 7 vs. 7, instead of 4 vs. 4). This match will not be spoken of in the same way that those historic matches are.

This was dry.

How they made a Losing Unit Disbands match boring, I do not know. Yes, Over Generation was long played out even before CIMA took off for greener pastures, but Kaito Ishida and Dragon Kid on any team should give it some life. Add in Gamma, who is typically over, and Problem Dragon, who can be a fun secret weapon in these sorts of matches, and this should have formed a squad that at the very least, could give the crowd hope.

Instead, Antias squashed them like a bug. Yoshida dominated in the early goings, then Takagi used his raw power to gain the upper hand, and finally Eita used his precision kicks and his daring speed to put Dragon Kid away, prolonging their feud and retiring Over Generation once and for all. Dragon Kid’s late elimination of Takagi was a nice moment, but it didn’t give the crowd any prolonged feeling of hope.

We are approaching four years of red, black, and yellow standing atop Dragon Gate. When this heel unit initially formed, it was VerserK, led by Shingo and his dominate run as Dream Gate Champion, backed by YAMATO and Doi as Twin Gate Champions, and flanked by Naoki Tanizaki, Cyber Kong, and Kotoka as the bottom rung of the unit. We are four years in now, and the additions of El Lindaman and T-Hawk added no sparks to the color scheme, whether they be under VerserK or Antias. Lindaman and T-Hawk were pulled out of the trenches by CIMA, leaving Eita as the only young blood in the unit.

Over Generation was the obvious choice to lose this match. On top of overstaying their welcome for quite some time now, Shingo Takagi will be headlining Kobe World for the fourth time, and such a deadly heel challenger can’t go into the biggest show of the year without a unit. However, I believe that a lot of the creative problems in Dragon Gate stem from having such a dreadful unit at the top of the card, and as I thought about this match more and more before it happened, I was forced to think about Madame de Stael’s famous words, “One must choose between boredom and suffering”.

Over Generation was dreadfully boring, but they were ultimately harmless. Sure, Kaito Ishida is probably being held back a little bit, but since CIMA took Takehiro Yamamura and the two hightailed to Shanghai, Ishida has looked as appealing as a leftover pumpkin sitting in a pumpkin patch on November 1st. Everyone knows he’s rotten compared to the treatment Yamamura got. So really, we were faced with a boring unit, and a unit that has been dominant for four years, and is sucking the life out of the promotion. I would rather be bored than suffer, and so although I understand the logistical reasons behind Antias winning, I don’t like the decision. I want them gone. Give Shingo fresh blood. He’s one of the most interesting wrestlers in the world, and his home promotion is continuously hitting new creative lows.

Not only was this match a let down, but I did not like the result. The post-match angle partially redeemed the match, but this was a wet fart in the middle of a Holy Day of Obligation match. Unit Disbands matches always deliver. They are full of drama, loud crowds, and wrestling that only Dragon Gate can produce. This was not that. This was a disappointment. ***1/4  

“Eita celebrated the long awaited and inevitable end of Over Generation. That Gong Kids bullshit is done, too. All that was left now, would be to take the Brave Gate championship and finish Dragon Kid off for good. Takagi got in on the taunting before calling out the Triangle Gate champions. They were such a shitty team the Triangle Gate was relegated to the undercard today. It’s basically a comedy title now. The only way to restore the value of the championship was for Antias to take it.” IHeartDG.com

Final Thoughts:

A flat main event greatly hurt this show, because matches four and five were really exciting. Over Generation is dead, but the string of disappointing Dragon Gate Korakuens live on. This was a thumbs in the middle show. Check out the Triangle Gate match, perhaps checkout the Flamita tag, and skip the rest.


About The Author

Case Lowe

I mainly do Dragon Gate things for Voices of Wrestling. Dubbed as Joe Lanza's young boy. @_InYourCase on Twitter

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