THE GATE OF ORIGIN
NOVEMBER 28, 2020
SENDAI SUN PLAZA HALL
MIYAGI, SENDAI PREFECTURE, JAPAN
Watch: Dragongate Network
MEET OUR PREVIEWERS:
- Mike Spears (@fujiiheya): Co Host of Open the Voice Gate & Everything Elite, Mike is trying to see if he can get money on an over/under on how fast Shun Skywalker will beat Dragon Kid.
- Paul Völsch (@darth_dragon): After previewing Dragon Gate’s biggest show of the year Paul is back to preview the B showiest B show that has ever B showed.
- Jon Hernandez (@fatmansalright): Jon enters this preview with all the irrational confidence of a man who seasoned the hell out of a turkey and then turned it into a soup the next day.
Ultimo Dragon, Masato Yoshino, Shuji Kondo & Gamma vs. Team Boku (Naruki Doi, Ryo Saito, Boku R Shimizu & Punch Tominaga)
Mike: This will be a pretty low speed and jokey opener with the entire Team Boku contingent probably doing an opening talk show. I don’t really expect anyone to take it out of second gear here, but there’s a chance that Shuji Kondo might force Doi or Shimizu to take it seriously. The opener won’t be here for a long time, but will be here for a good time. It’s kind of hard to make a prediction for any Team Boku match right now because you have Tominaga laying around with Doi, one of the most protected people in the company. Prediction: Ultimo, Yoshino, Kondo & Gamma
Paul: A few years ago this would have been a really stacked opener but all guys have to some degree down cycled recently. I do expect Doi, Yoshino and maybe Kondo to find their way back up the card eventually but the rest will probably settle in at around this level of the card. Having watched Ultimo Dragon multi man tags for years I refuse to pick against him until he actually loses one of these. Prediction: Ultimo Dragon & Co.
Jon: This match is going to rule, you guys. It’s awesome to have the entire Team Boku squad together – Doi anchoring the meat and the potatoes while Shimizu and Punch’s tandem schtick delights. You’re going to get a brief and poignant DoiYoshi showdown, and you’re going to have Kondo collide with Shimizu at high speeds. Of course, Ultimo will tie up Boku R in a magistral for the finish – but that’s okay! Shimizu’s been a cog in so many major plot points over the past year or two, and now he’s struggling through a string of losses in a unit that practically formed around him. This is going somewhere; I’m gonna enjoy the ride. Prediction: Ultimo, Yoshino, Kondo & Gamma
4 Way Tag Team Match
Masaaki Mochizuki & Don Fujii vs. Dragongate Generation (Ben-K & Keisuke Okuda) vs. Dragongate Generation (Yosuke♡Santa Maria & Problem Dragon) vs. Madoka Kikuta & Taketo Kamei
Mike: There’s a stew going on in this second match. MocchyFujii reunite, the Bensuke team is together, and we’ve got Class of 2020. After Madoka Kikuta gave Boku R Shimizu the Hand of God Discus Lariat at Kobe World, I’ve got to suspect that in a match with Problem Dragon, we can’t rule out that finish. I really hope that we get some hot fighting from the teams and that we get less comedy from Maria/Dragon. I’m hoping the kids get the win here with Kikuta cratering Problem Dragon with his Hand of God. Prediction: Kikuta & Kamei
Paul: This should be pretty good. There is a nice variety of styles and experience levels in this match that should make it a very enjoyable experience. Hopefully the Kikuta and Kamei team can continue their recent run of success. Though the Brave Gate champion and the Dream Gate challenger are also in this match, which doesn’t instill me with confidence for the chances of the 2020 team. Prediction: Ben-K & Keisuke Okuda
Jon: This is a big, screaming “hell yeah” of a bout. The Ben and Okuda squad is a fierce buzzsaw of a duo, and having the likes of Don Fujii, Maria and the red-hot rookies to mix it up with makes this a no-brainer must-watch. As always, I’ll have my eyes on Masaaki Mochizuki, who’s proven to be a magically violent opponent for both Ben and Okuda in the past. While Ben’s en route to a title match, Problem Dragon seems like too convenient of a head for Madoka Kikuta to take clean off with his discus lariat. Zoinks! Prediction: Kikuta & Kamei
Sendai Girls Pro Wrestling Match
Chihiro Hashimoto & Yurika Oka vs. DASH Chisako & Manami
Mike: I wish I was better versed in Senjo to give a full preview here. I really like that it gets a Tohoku flavor with Sendai Girls here and that it’s a true match and not the comedy matches we’ve had in the past. Each time I see Chihiro Hashimoto I’m enthralled, so I’m pulling for her side here. Prediction: Hashimoto & Oka
Paul: This is your usual Sendai Girls offer match that most promotions tend to run when they are in Sendai as the girls help them with the promotion of the show and selling tickets. I am not a regular Sendai Girls watches but I am familiar with Chihiro and DASH. Don’t know too much about the two trainees that are also in this match, but based on the two participants I do know this should at least be good fun. Prediction: DASH Chisako & Manami
NAME: I also wish I had more to offer here. I am familiar with Hashimoto, Chisako and Manami, most recently having watched them in a killer match at Big Japan’s August show in Yokohama. Hashimoto’s a total basher, I look forward to getting to see her at work again in particular. Prediction: Hashimoto & Oka
Dragongate Generation (Kota Minoura, Jason Lee & Dragon Dia) vs. R.E.D. (Eita, Kaito Ishida & Dia Inferno)
Mike: The three former champions from Kobe World are sandwiching the next stage of Dia vs Inferno. It’s going to be very interesting to see how Eita and Ishida co-exist: Eita seems ripe to be downcycled coming off of the Dream Gate & approaching year two of the three generation war and Ishida could be ascendant coming out the war. Kota Minoura will be interesting to watch coming off of his Twin Gate run. He’s so dang young but I don’t see him figuring into immediate singles titles plans.
The core of this match is Dia vs Inferno and the finish should be around these two. I would love to see Dia become more of an active participant in the feud versus just a passenger. Maybe he gets DQed himself attacking Inferno? I just want to see the stakes escalate as this should be a trademark feud for Dragon Dia and get a big position at Final Gate Prediction: Eita, Ishida & Inferno
Paul: The main focus of this match will be the continuation of the Dragon Dia and Dia Inferno feud after their inconclusive previous encounter at Kobe World. This will likely continue their build towards an eventual apuestas match at some point early next year. Though I am more curious about Eita’s portrayal in this match and any potential interactions between him and Ishida. I still expect these two to have a falling out sooner rather than later and it likely will start here. With that I do expect the Dragon Gate Generation team to get the win here after some sort of R.E.D. miscommunication but I also expect an Inferno post match attack on Dia. Prediction: Kota Minoura, Jason Lee & Dragon Dia
Jon: There are a lot of moving parts in play here. Where do Minoura and Lee go after a tragically cut short Twin Gate run that was pure fireworks while it lasted? How do R.E.D. power dynamics play out between the rising stock of Kaito Ishida and Eita having lost the Dream Gate title? In particular, I wonder how Eita is presented going forward – regardless of where you stood on his brief title reign, in his increased opportunity to whomp ass out there, Eita’s shown he still has the goods and has compiled a moveset that looks like murder. His recent use of that double upkick on incoming opponents makes me “oof” every time. I hope he continues to be presented as high-level threat, it’s where he excels.
Of course, all these factors will be swallowed up in hijinx between the two Dias, which will likely compromise the bout’s conclusion. You know what? If it looks anything like that smoking hot five-minute preview we get at Kobe World, I’m fine with that too. Prediction: Eita, Ishida & Inferno.
Special Singles Match
Shun Skywalker vs. Dragon Kid
Mike: The only stakes at play here is wondering how long it will take for Shun to hit Dragon Kid with his new finisher, the SSW, and get the pin. On the house shows since Kobe World, Shun has been kept clear of the Gen War in singles matches against Yosuke Santa Maria, Kagetora, Jimmy, and Punch Tominaga. Each of those matches has been between three and five minutes long and Shun wins with the SSW.
So what happens when the Vaporwave King of Dragongate faces off against one of its most enduring stars? It’d certainly be shocking if Dragon Kid ate the SSW in under six minutes, and I can’t dismiss that out of hand. The two have had fun chemistry and this should be a fun match regardless. Prediction: Shun Skywalker
Paul: After Shun’s ascension to the top of the card at Kobe World this is his chance to get a statement win over a bonafide Dragon Gate legend. The outcome of this match shouldn’t be in any doubt but it should be an enjoyable match nonetheless as these two will fly around the ring a bunch. Prediction: Shun Skywalker
Jon: A collision between two generational performers, known for taking to the sky and bringing audiences to their feet (…craning their necks to see if either has died). Much of my favorite recent output from Dragon Kid has come when he’s assigned the task of making a champion look like a million bucks. His Dream Gate challenge against PAC at Dead Or Alive last year comes to mind, or his run up to a Twin Gate challenge at this year’s Gate of Destiny, where he cemented Kota Minoura as major player. Even in a non-title affair, if Dragon Kid shows Shun the same courtesy expect a show of athleticism from the 44 year old that some kids half his age could only dream of putting on. Prediction: Shun Skywalker
Open the Triangle Gate Championship Match
R.E.D (Takashi Yoshida, Kazma Sakamoto & SB KENTo) vs. Toryumon Generation (Susumu Yokosuka, Genki Horiguchi & Yasushi Kanda)
Mike: SB KENTo is the 2020 Rookie of the Year. Any other candidate pales in comparison to the 20 year old who is coming off of tapping out Masato Yoshino, the most protected man in the history of the Dragon System, at Kobe World. He’s going to tap someone else out at Gate of Origin. The only person’s rookie year that’s been this explosive in recent times is Utami Hayashishita’s Belt Collector rookie year, and SBK’s 2020 will go down in the history books.
The Toryumon Generation team has been attached to each other through their careers dating back to M2K. Horiguchi and Kanda don’t wrestle every show anymore, but have been a highlight whenever they’ve been around. There’s a simmering explosion between SBK and Yoshida, SBK is somewhat of a brat, and Yoshida wants him to chill. That’s a story for future R.E.D. matches. They’re going to retain, but the question here is if KENTo puts Horiguchi, Kanda or Susumu in the SB Shooter. If they’re going for impact, it’s going to be Susumu. Prediction: R.E.D.
Paul: There has been some low key drama brewing in the R.E.D. team between Kento and Yoshida but I do not expect that to explode just yet. Rather this is yet another chance for SBK to get a submission win over yet another veteran to further establish himself as Dragon Gate’s hottest young prospect. Given the absurd amount of young talented wrestlers in the promotion that is quite saying something. But the sky is the limit for this young man and I wouldn’t be surprised if he Opens the Dream Gate in less than two years after his debut and the journey to that starts here. Prediction: R.E.D.
Jon: Honestly, I would love to see this Susumu-led squad pull it out, and if there’s any place on the card where a patchwork team can pull out a surprise win, it’s in the Triangle Gate. Still, we’ve only just begun the absurd, meteoric rise of SBKento, and I imagine this will be go down as another feather in his branded baseball cap when he taps Horiguchi in the SB Shooter. The Yoshida-SBK tension will continue to simmer, but if it reaches a boil too many events are set into motion for a show as haphazardly pieced together as this one. It’s just not the time. Prediction: R.E.D.
Open the Twin Gate Championship Match
R.E.D (BxB Hulk & KAI) (c) vs. Dragongate Generation (YAMATO & Kzy)
Mike: I really like this YAMATO and Kzy team. There’s a level of chemistry that these two have had dating back to Mad Blankey or Real Hazard that will be nice to see play off of each other in the main event. Kzy facing off against his former North Tribe partner Hulk a week before their homecoming tripleheader in Hokkaido is worth a mention. KAI’s been a spectacular dickhead since turning at Dangerous Gate and this R.E.D. has some real sleazy energy.
It is interesting to me that they are choosing to main event with the Twin Gate versus the Triangle Gate. Hulk and KAI have been literally mocking YAMATO over the last few months and the matches between the three feel more like angles than actual matches. Are we going to get a true match or is it going to be fifteen minutes of brawling and shenanigans? I have to suspect that if this is main eventing, that that means that this will be more of a match than sleaze. I wonder if we will get a more concrete blow off with YAMATO vs R.E.D. This sort of match definitely feels like it should be the blow off, but I doubt they’d do that here. Prediction: R.E.D.
Paul: I don’t really have a good feel for this match. KAI has been tremendous as a heel but Hulk is hanging around his neck like an anchor dragging the match quality down. YAMATO just had a Twin Gate shot at Kobe World, but he was just a fill in and I assume that this was always the plan for this show. It would be weird for Hulk and KAI to immediately lose the titles but their whole story is built around their feud with YAMATO and there isn’t really anywhere for them to go after this match unless it’s a match with Lee and Minoura. Still putting these belts on YAMATO and Kyz gives both men something to do so that’s who I am going with. Prediction: YAMATO & Kzy
Jon: I’m in the same boat as Paul here, this is a tough pick. KAI’s been a revelation as an RED scummer – the same underrated bell-to-bell talent with the added sheen of new sleazy gear and a true dipshit goatee. As the resident BxB Hulk apologist of these previews, I look back fondly at the fierce encounters between him and YAMATO early in the year. (In the stands at Korakuen in January!) There’s still plenty of chemistry to mine between the two, it’s just that this feud never seems to want to cash it in. My hope is that here, in the main event slot, we finally get a new chapter in the KAI-YAMATO-BxB saga that we can really sink our teeth into. I’ve written before about the sneaky upward trajectory Kzy’s been on – new look, new music and a parade of memorable “special singles matches.” I don’t think he can afford another loss, but his partner seems ripe to be clowned by the heels one more time. Prediction: BxB Hulk & KAI