KING OF GATE 2020 – NIGHT FOUR
MAY 22, 2020
KOBE LAPIS HALL, KOBE, JAPAN
Watch: Dragon Gate Network
Dragongate’s King of Gate tournament trudges along for another year, this time without fans. Instead of spanning across two different Korakuen Hall dates and shots in Kobe Sambo Hall, Sapporo, and Osaka, these matches are confined to Dragongate’s home base, Kobe Lapis Hall, which is where their studio show Prime Zone is filmed.
K-NESS & GAMMA DEF. KONOMAMA ICHIKAWA & SHACHIHOKO MACHINE
Ichikawa quickly pinned K-Ness. He then got back on the mic and I’m assuming he demanded some sort of rematch, leading to Gamma quickly pinning him. They agreed to a rubber match, which meant we had to sit through another, longer match. There are only so many hours in the day. Go for a walk with a mask on. Go call someone you haven’t talked to in a while. I can’t fault the effort. I can’t even fault the output. They were put in the position of having a fifteen-minute comedy match in an empty arena. No one can succeed in that environment.
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KING OF GATE 2020 A BLOCK SECOND ROUND
DIAMANTE DEF. YOSUKE SANTA MARIA
Yosuke Santa Maria has cultivated an act over the last six years that is really interesting. The character ricochets back-and-forth between being over-the-top with sexual gestures, but then a month later she can be a credible contender for a lower-rung title in Dragongate. The mean streak that Maria possesses is a legitimate one. Maria has to be taken seriously in big matches like this. When she starts throwing forearms bombs like she did to Diamante in this bout, she becomes as credible as almost anyone on the roster.
Because of the Maria Factor, I found this match to be incredibly engaging. I predicted on the most recent Open the Voice Gate podcast that I thought Diamante would win the match, simply because DG wants as many R.E.D. guys as possible in the block finals. I was correct that Diamante would win, but I had a fear in the back of my mind during this match that Maria’s intensity and grit would be too much for the masked import to overcome. In the end, he managed himself just fine, and put Maria down for the three count. ***
KING OF GATE 2020 A BLOCK SECOND ROUND
YAMATO DEF. KZY
YAMATO survived this match. To stay he won would be a stretch, and any sort of notion that he won convincingly would be a falsehood. YAMATO survived Kzy. This was their fifth singles match ever and their third in King of Gate. YAMATO has won all five. He has Kzy’s number, for now. Tonight showed once again that Kzy, who has been in this company for over a decade at this point, and up until five years ago was nothing more than a heel fall post, is now someone that I could conceivably see headlining some of the company’s biggest shows one day.
I would love to see some advanced analytics on this match. I feel like Kzy landed double the strikes YAMATO did. He was dominating the former four-time Dream Gate Champion at one point. I had YAMATO pegged to win the match going into it, but halfway through I really thought DG was going to show some guts and pull the trigger on Kzy. YAMATO is a four-time Dream Gate Champion for a reason, though. He weathered the storm for just long enough, eventually catching Kzy and dropping him down head-first with a Galleria for the win.
YAMATO will go on to wrestle Diamante in the block finals, meaning YAMATO will win his block. He’s had the two best matches in the tournament thus far. This is the first empty arena match that after it was over I thought, “wow, I would’ve liked to have seen a little bit more of that”. An abrupt finish keeps this match from being spreadsheet-worthy, but as of now this is the best match of King of Gate 2020. More power to these guys. ***3/4
The block matches from this show are very much worth watching. I wish I could say the same thing about the bonus tag team match. The bonus tag was very, very long. Other than that, King of Gate continues to be a very fun, very easy-to-watch tournament that I think is worth checking out, especially today’s YAMATO vs. Kzy match. Thumbs up for Night Four of King of Gate 2020.