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The Celebrity Theater – Phoenix, Arizona – March 26, 2010
We open backstage with Jimmy Jacobs, talking about what happened on the last show with Brian Kendrick, Jon Moxley, and Lacey. Jacobs says since they brought back someone from his past, he’s returned the favor by bringing in Paul London. Having spent a little time around Paul, this promo is pretty much exactly what he’s like.
MATCH #1: Susumu Yokosuka & Genki Horiguchi vs. Mike Quackenbush & Jigsaw
Quackenbush and Horiguchi start it off. They take it right down to the mat and trade holds. Quack muscles Horiguchi up off the mat for a bodyslam. The pace quickens and Horiguchi scores with a dropkick and a back elbow in the corner. Quack moves out of the way on the next charge and they wrestle to a standoff. Jigsaw and Yokosuka tag in and the pace quickens again. Bodies are flying in and out of the ring, and since this is under Dragon Gate rules you know tags aren’t necessary. Quack and Jigsaw take control of Horiguchi with various double team maneuvers. Yokosuka and Horiguchi fight back and target Jigsaw’s knee. After several minutes Quack gets the hot tag and unleashes his lame offense. Horiguchi breaks up a cover and then hits Quack with a tornado DDT. He misses a moonsault off the second rope and then Jigsaw comes in and hits a rack bomb for two. Jigsaw goes up top but Yokosuka catches him with an Exploder. Horiguchi hits a brainbuster on him for two. Yokosuka hits Jigsaw with Jumbo no Kachi! Quack comes back in and gets a couple of rollups for two. He hits QD III for a two-count. Meanwhile Horiguchi throws Jigsaw down to the floor, while Yokosuka levels Quack with Jumbo no Kachi! Quack kicks out at two, so Yokosuka follows up with Mugan for the win at 13:35. That was a good fast paced opener. I’m quickly becoming a big Susumu Yokosuka fan.
MATCH #2: YAMATO vs. TJP
YAMATO is the new Open the Dream Gate Champion, but the title is not n the line here. They take it down to the mat and aggressively wrestle to a standoff. They continue awesomely working the mat and wrestle to another standoff. YAMATO offers a handshake and when TJP foolishly accepts it he gets kicked in the gut. No matter as TJP comes back with a flurry and is able to bait YAMATO into jumping to the floor. However, YAMATO is able to sneak around the other side of the ring and dropkick TJP in the knee from behind. That was a nice bit of subterfuge, good word Lenny Leonard. YAMATO viciously goes to work on the knee now. TJP fights back with some European Uppercuts and kicks, but YAMATO catches a kick and swings it into the referee in the ball bag, knocking him down, and then he blatantly kicks TJP in the groin. That was awesome. YAMATO gets a go-behind and TJP returns the favor and kicks him in the groin, so now all three men in the ring are nursing their nuts. The wrestlers get back up and TJP goes to the top rope. YAMATO dropkicks him down, but TJP throws him down and hits a missile dropkick for two. TJP tries a neckbreaker but YAMATO blocks it. YAMATO then goes for the Choke Sleeper but TJP pushes back like Bret Hart for a two-count. They get back up and TJP nails a superkick and a brainbuster for a two-count. TJP then locks on the Figure Four Deathlock and YAMATO reaches the bottom rope. YAMATO comes back with the Ankle Lock and then tries a release German but TJP lands on his feet and gets a rollup for two. The champ comes right back with the Ankle Lock. TJP powers up to his feet and tries an enziguiri but YAMATO ducks and locks him in the Choke Sleeper. YAMATO then turns that into the sleeper suplex. He hits a brainbuster but TJP actually kicks out at two. YAMATO then once again locks on the Choke Sleeper and TJP is forced to tap out at 11:23. Two good matches in a row is a fine way to start a DVD. That was pretty squashy, but since YAMATO just won the Open the Dream Gate Title that’s fine by me.
MATCH #3: Brian Kendrick & Jon Moxley vs. Jimmy Jacobs & Paul London
London is wearing an astronaut suit and generally acting weird. Jacobs looks frustrated with his partner. attacks Kendrick right away and London tries to separate them for some reason. London dumps Moxley to the floor and Kendrick dumps Jacobs, leaving the former WWE Tag Team Champions ready to face off. Unfortunately, Kendrick tags out to Moxley before any contact can be made. London takes the advantage and makes the tag. Jacobs works Moxley over in the corner, and then Moxley just pops out with a back elbow. Moxley hits a falling vertical suplex and London breaks up the cover. Jacobs comes back with jabs and Moxley goes to the eyes and then suplexes Jacobs to the floor and tumbles down with him. With both men out on the floor, London challenges Kendrick to face him. Kendrick refuses so London wrestles an invisible man. Finally Kendrick gets in the ring and London goes to the floor to kick Moxley in the head. London gets on the microphone and cuts a weird promo. He gets back in the ring and finally he and Kendrick hook it up. They go back and forth for a bit and London seems to have the advantage. Moxley distracts London and the referee, allowing Kendrick to hit a collection of low blows to incapacitate London. Now Kendrick and Moxley tag it and out and target London’s arm. After several minutes London makes the hot tag and Jacobs is on fire. He traps Moxley in the End Time, but Kendrick breaks it up with a superkick. Jacobs recovers and hits Kendrick with a Spear. Moxley whips Jacobs into the corner, but Jacobs pops out with a leaping Ace Crusher. London gets in on the action too, hitting Moxley with a missile dropkick. He hits the Mushroom Stomp and then goes after Kendrick. He hits the Dropsault (dropkick to Moxley, moonsault on Kendrick) for a two-count. Kendrick whips London hard to the floor, leaving Jacobs alone against both opponents. Jacobs isn’t afraid though, hitting Kendrick with the Contra Code and rolling right into a headscissors on Moxley. Unfortunately for Jacobs, Kendrick recovers just in time to trap Jacobs in an inside cradle for the quick pin at 13:52.
The brawl continues after the bell, and Jacobs puts Moxley on a table. London looks to go to the top rope, but Kendrick stops him. Kendrick gets on the mic and explains to London how it’s not worth it to hurt himself for these fans. Meanwhile Jacobs and Moxley are brawling on the floor. Then for some reason Teddy Hart makes his way out. Hart hits a springboard moonsault to wipe out both Jacobs and Moxley. Back in the ring London and Kendrick attack Hart, and even when he tries to leave they continue attacking him outside the ring. The match could generously be described as a mess, and the post match made absolutely no sense to me. Let’s just move on.
MATCH #4: Shingo vs. Masato Yoshino
This is a lot of awesome concentrated into one spot. They start off cautiously with some chain wrestling. Yoshino scores with his version of the Tarantula and then goes to work on Shingo’s knee. He then switches it up and goes after the arm, which seems weird since Shingo already has his knee taped. Shingo grabs Yoshino out of the air and hits a belly-to-belly suplex. Now Shingo goes to work on the back. After a few minutes Yoshino fights back with a dropkick to the knee and then hits the Sling Blade. Back on their feet Shingo hits a DDT but misses a senton, and Yoshino lands a dropkick to the back. Yoshino goes back to the arm and locks on From Jungle. Shingo escapes and muscles him up with a vertical suplex. They fight up to the top rope and Yoshino takes control of the arm again and goes for Sol Naciente but they’re too close to the ropes and the hold has to be broken. They both go for some big moves and Shingo grabs Yoshino with a Death Valley Bomb and a Pumping Bomber for two. Shingo takes him up top but Yoshino counters him with a super Sling Blade and both men are down. Back on their feet Yoshino locks on From Jungle again but Shingo counters with a powerbomb. Shingo then muscles Yoshino up to the top rope and hits Stay Dream but it only gets two! He goes for a Rack Bomb but Yoshino counters with a crucifix for two. Shingo tries a Pumping Bomber but Yoshino blocks it and hits Ude Yoshino. Yoshino hits Lightning Spiral for another two-count. He hits Torbellino and locks on Sol Naciente, then turns it into Sol Naciente Kai and Shingo taps out at 16:05! They started off slowly but picked up nicely down the stretch. It felt like they were holding back a bit though, and at third from the top that was probably the right choice.
MATCH #5: Open the Freedom Gate Title Match – BxB Hulk vs. Naruki Doi
Hulk has been the champion since 11.28.09 and this is his third defense. He’s defeated Susumu Yokosuka and Dragon Kid so far. They take it right down to the mat and wrestle to a standoff. Doi comes back with a headlock but Hulk escapes. Hulk tries a dropkick and Doi swats him away. Ever resilient, the champion comes back and goes to work on Doi. He hits a back heel kick for a two-count. Doi avoids a charge in the corner and hits an elevated neckbreaker. That leaves Hulk in the Tree of Woe, and Doi flattens him with Dai Bosou! Doi follows up with a DDT for two. Hulk comes back with a headlock as the crowd is barely into the match. Doi comes back with a belly-to-back suplex for a two-count. Hulk comes back with a kick to the head, a missile dropkick, and a running cannonball in the corner. He hits a Rock Bottom and a running Shooting Star Press for a two-count. He sweeps the legs and hits a standing corkscrew press for another two-count. The champion maintains control, hitting a springboard spin kick to level Doi for a two-count. Doi comes back with a Saito Suplex and both men are down. Back on their feet Doi hits a Rydeen Bomb for a two-count. Hulk counters Doi 555 and hits a solid superkick for two. He goes up for a Phoenix Splash but misses. Doi comes off with a Bakatare Sliding Kick for a two-count. He goes for the Muscular Bomb but Hulk counters with the FTX for two. Back on their feet they exchange forearms. Hulk hits a lariat, but Doi comes right back with a DDT variation and the Doi 555. Doi hits the Bakatare Sliding Kick but it only gets two. He goes up top and Hulk blasts him with a spin kick to the head and then a series of elbows. Doi fights him off and hits Super Doi 555 but Hulk kicks out at two! He tries the Muscular Bomb but Hulk counters with the FTX. Both men are down. They get up and exchange forearms again and the champ wins that battle with a kick to the chest. Hulk hits EVOP for a two-count. He follows up with H-Thunder to get the pin at 14:00. The crowd was rather subdued throughout that match, and the wrestlers never really got any kind of story going. The action was solid and these guys are both pretty fun to watch, there was just no spark here.
For more info on Dragon Gate USA, please visit www.DG USA.TV.
MATCH #6: The Six Man Tradition Returns – CIMA, Gamma & Dragon Kid vs. Jack Evans & The Young Bucks
CIMA, Gamma, and Dragon Kid are members of the Warriors stable. I get the feeling this is going to be one of those matches that I don’t do a lot of play-by-play on. CIMA and Matt Jackson start the match. They do some quick back and forth and then make tags to Nick Jackson and Gamma. Moments later Evans and Kid tag in. The Warriors take advantage with their superior teamwork, going to work on Evans. After a few minutes Evans pushes Kid back into the corner and now the Bucks take control. This goes on for a few minutes until CIMA spits in Evans’s eyes and reclaims control. After a few minutes Nick gets a hot tag and his team takes control. They knock Warriors to the floor and hit three simultaneous moonsaults off the stage and down to the floor. Evans and Gamma are the first back in the ring, and Gamma hits a powerbomb facebuster for two. Gamma tries to use a kendo stick but the Bucks thwart him and execute some double-teams. CIMA is able to counter both Bucks, and then dropkick Evans out of the air. He hits Evans with the Perfect Driver for a two-count. The match is starting to get too fast for me to call. The Bucks hit Kid with almost More Bang For Your Buck but he got his knees up at the last second. Gamma hits Matt with the Schwein and CIMA follows with Meteora to get the pin at 18:02. Even though I didn’t write that much about the match, I really liked the structure of the match, where the two teams took turns dominating their opponents, leading up to the final minutes of the match that of course got crazy.
You Lost Again
Jon Moxley is lecturing Shingo backstage about his loss tonight. He makes the mistake of calling Shingo lazy and gets slapped in the face for it. Then for some reason Christina Von Eerie shows up and Moxley walks off with her.
BONUS MATCH #1: FRAY! Featuring The Prophet, Chimera, Brad Allen, Jake Crist, Dave Crist, Dustin Cutler, Brandon Cutler, and Malachi Jackson
The Prophet and Chimera start the match, and I’m glad Lenny Leonard is on commentary or I would not know who either of these guys is. They go back and forth for about two minutes and Dustin Cutler is the next man in the ring. Prophet and Chimera break up each other’s pin attempts on Dustin, which makes no sense since it’s an elimination match. Dustin comes back with a flurry of offense, sending Prophet to the floor and hitting Chimera with a big boot for a two-count. A vertical suplex gets another two-count. The next man out is Brandon Cutler, and the brothers immediately work together. They hit Chimera with the Rollercoaster Powerslam to eliminate him at 5:10.Moments later they hit Prophet with a double-team Codebreaker to eliminate him at 6:10, right as Brad Allen makes his way out to join the match. Allen goes to work on both Cutlers. The numbers game takes over though and the Cutlers go to work on Allen. The sixth man out is Dave Crist. He hits a missile dropkick on both Cutlers at the same time. Dave and Dustin have an awkward little exchange before Dave kicks Allen back down to the floor. Malachi Jackson is number seven, and I didn’t know that the Young Bucks had a younger brother. He hits Dustin with a leaping armdrag off the top rope, and Allen follows with a corkscrew body press off the top rope to eliminate Dustin at 10:31. Jake Crist is the last man in the FRAY! And there are five men left. Jake hits Brandon with Death From Above to eliminate him at 12:24.
The Crists of course work together on their two remaining opponents. They hit Jackson with the Irish Air Raid to eliminate him at 13:23.Obviously Jake and Dave have a huge advantage here. They work Allen over but he fights back and hits a Rock Bottom on Jake. He tries a second rope senton but Jake gets the knees up. The Crists try the Irish Air Raid once again and but Allen avoids it and traps Jake in an inside cradle to eliminate him at 15:04. Dave tries a moonsault but Allen catches him and hits The Deal to get the final elimination and win the match at 15:50. The FRAY! is the FRAY! and it is what it is.
BONUS MATCH #2: L.A. Park & Hijo de Rey Misterio vs. Derrick Niekirk & G.Q. Gallo
This match was actually third from the top on the main show. So Misterio would be Rey Mysterio’s cousin? Park and Gallo start the match with some slow paced chain wrestling. Boy the years have not been kind to Park, no how matter how nimble Lenny Leonard thinks he is. Park mostly dances and then tags Misterio. Gallo responds by tagging Niekirk. They stall for a little bit and then blow whatever spot it is that they’re trying to do. Misterio gets the first offense with a bulldog, and Gallo comes in for illegal double-teaming while Park gets in the ring for a closer look but doesn’t actually do anything to help his partner. Misterio fights back with a seated senton to Niekirk and a rana to Gallo, sending both of them to the floor. Gallo and Park tag back in and Park dances some more. More nothing continues to happen. Park slowly outmaneuvers both Gallo and Niekirk to make them look like fools. While Team Elite recovers on the floor, Park tags Misterio back in. Gallo comes in and catches Misterio in a Fallaway Slam and now they go to work on Misterio. The battle spills outside the ring and back in. This is just terrible. They fight out into the crowd now. The slow and not interesting brawling continues. It continues forever and ever and it never seems like it’s going to stop. The referee takes a shitty bump, and then Gallo hits Park with a low blow, but the referee actually sees him and calls for the disqualification at 22:51. That was not only by far the worst match in DGUSA history, but one of the worst matches I’ve ever seen. I’m embarrassed for all of them.
BONUS MATCH #3: Masaaki Mochizuki vs. Roderick Strong, Wrestle Jam, Kanagawa, Japan, 7.10.06
Lenny Leonard is solo on commentary here. They start off trading wristlocks as Leonard points out that both of these guys are former FIP World Champions. Mochizuki lands the first stiff kick but Strong responds with his trademark chops. Strong knocks Mochizuki to the floor and takes the fight right to him. They trade chops and kicks on the floor, and Mochizuki ducks a chop, causing Strong to make contact with the ring post. Back in the ring Mochizuki goes to work on the injured hand and arm. Strong counters one arm attack with a sleeper, but Mochizuki backs him up into the corner and attacks the arm again. Moments later Strong fights back with a backbreaker and a nice dropkick to once again send Mochizuki to the floor. Mochizuki unloads with some kicks but makes the same mistake as Strong did and winds up kicking the ring post! Back inside the ring Strong is relentless in attacking Mochizuki’s leg and knee. Strong goes for a surfboard but can’t pull him up, so instead he stomps the knees down on the mat. Mochizuki comes back with kicks from his right leg, which is awesome since Strong was working on the left leg. He kicks Strong to the floor and tries to follow him out with a dive but gets cut off with a forearm. Strong then hits a backbreaker on the ring apron for a two-count. Mochizuki fights back with kicks but Strong catches him in another backbreaker for a two-count. Strong follows up with the Sick Kick and Mochizuki follows with one of his own. Both men are down now. They get up and trade kicks and chops, and Mochizuki wins that battle. He hits a running kick to the chest for a two-count. Mochizuki follows up with the Twister for a two-count. Strong comes back with the Gutbuster, the Sick Kick, and the Gibson Driver but Mochizuki kicks out! He hits a clothesline and puts Mochizuki on the top rope for a superplex but it only gets two! They rise to their feet and trade strikes, and Mochizuki wins that battle with the Shin Saikyou High Kick to get the pin at 13:47. That was a rock solid and entertaining match from two guys who could have an even better match nowadays.
BONUS MATCH #4: Open the Dream Gate Title Match – Naruki Doi vs. Masato Yoshino, Gate of Maximum 2009, Tokyo, Japan, 6.11.09
Doi has been the champion since 12.28.08 and this is his fourth defense. These two are partners in the World-1 faction, and are collectively known as Speed Muscle. They start off slowly with some chain wrestling and take it down to the mat. Neither man can gain a clear-cut advantage in the early going. Yoshino goes after the arm and starts wearing it down. He shows off his speed and hits a headscissors. Doi then grabs Yoshino out of the air and dumps him to the floor. He follows the challenger out with a suicide dive. It looks like Yoshino’s left knee has been injured, so back in the ring Doi wisely goes after it. Yoshino fights back with a hard chop to the chest. They trade strikes and Doi wins the battle with a flying back elbow for a two-count. Doi locks on a figure-four leglock and Yoshino briefly turns it over, and then makes it to the ropes. The champ resumes control, but the challenger quickly comes back and starts attacking the arm as we pass the 10-minute mark. Doi still has a lot of fight in him, but Yoshino is able to subdue him and continue working the arm. The champ comes back by dropping Yoshino’s midsection on the top rope. Surprisingly, Yoshino makes it back to his feet first and goes right back to the arm. Doi backdrops him to the apron and Yoshino tries to land on his feet but his leg is too injured and he collapses in pain around the 15-minute mark.
Yoshino recovers and goes to the top rope for a double stomp to the arm, but then runs into a back elbow. Doi hits an electric chair drop. He traps Yoshino between the ropes and hits a running dropkick to the chest and a DDT for two. He tries the Doi 555 but Yoshino counters and hits the Sling Blade for two. Yoshino goes up top but puts the miss in missile dropkick. He lands on his feet (really?) but runs into a boot. Now Doi goes up top and Yoshino crotches him. Doi tries a sunset bomb but Yoshino blocks it and hits a falling dropkick to the chest and then the Ude Yoshino for two. Yoshino tries some strikes but Doi catches him in a dragon screw and then locks on the figure-four leglock again. Doi hits a cannonball in the corner and a belly-to-back suplex for a two-count. He goes up top and hits an elbow drop, hurting his own arm in the process. They both get back to their feet and Yoshino locks on From Jungle. Doi makes it to the ropes. Yoshino hits Ude Yoshino and locks on Sol Naciente but Doi kicks his way out of it. Doi fights back with a Rydeen Bomb for two. Yoshino comes back with Torbellino and Doi blocks Sol Naciente with a rollup for two. Doi blocks the Lightning Special and hits a Buckle Bomb. He hits Doi 555 and the Bakatare Sliding Kick for a two-count. He signals for the Muscular Bomb but Yoshino counters with the Lightning Special and both men are down. They take it up to the top rope and exchange strikes. Yoshino tries Sling Blade but Doi counters with a Super Doi 555! Yoshino pops right back up and gets the Speed Star for a close near-fall. Doi fights back with a straight jacket suplex with a bridge for a two-count, and then the Bakatare Sliding Kick. He goes for the Muscular Bomb and Yoshino gets a cradle for a two-count! The crowd is on fire. Yoshino hits two Torbellinos and locks on Sol Naciente! Doi is able to escape and hits a Tiger Suplex for two! He hits another Bakatare Sliding Kick and Yoshino won’t stay down so hit hits him with one more to get the pin and retain the title at 28:11. That was awesome in just about every way – the action was great, the selling was great, the strategies were great, and the last several minutes were non-stop with a hot crowd.