Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Dragon Gate USA: Mercury Rising

March 27th, 2010. The Celebrity Theater. Phoenix, AZ

1) TJP v. Brad Allen- 6
These days with so many indy feds springing up and new talent appearing everywhere, it's easier than ever to find "up and comers" to cheer for; the reason I chose to review this show is this opener, as these two guys are ones I've hitched my wagon too. TJP just has that dickish charisma, is obviously and MMA mark but looks like a Surf Ninja Hacker. Allen's more of a standard power guy but with some aieral spots mixed in. As a matter of fact, he did too many high flying moves here, but a small quibble. I don't want to call out too many specific spots, but TJP pulled off a suplex that took both men outside in a nastier spill than BP's last blunder. Some close near falls near the end leading to the finish cements this as an opener that on most shows will blow away the rest of the show, but I have high hopes so let's see. Great stuff here though.

2) Young Bucks v. Mike Quackenbush/ Jigsaw- 5
This is actually the most restrained I've seen the Bucks, as they dwelt around overkill area, but didn't stray too far over the line. After a bit, I presumed this had some sort of Lucha tag rules as the Bucks tagged in and out, doing some fun arm work but you know that didn't mean shit later on. I thought as they were wrestling, no one moves like these guys, eyes wide, constantly in motion and that's the stuff that takes you out of this stuff being a fight. But I'm guessing most new guys don't see it that way; more of a choreographed dance to appease whatever audience you're in front of. If that's the modus operandi, they're succeeded with flying colors as even during a really loose Nick chinlock the crowd is chanting "This is Awesome." For my own sanity, I'm really hoping two chicks were making out in Section C. If you're going to do this batshit crazy (Thanks Mick) stuff, at least make the finisher the hottest spot of the match, which they rarely do, but nailed it here. Also what's with the Bucks cutting a promo as if they're passing the torch to the Chikara team? They've been in the business for like 3 years, and one of them still has pimples.

3) Genki Horiguchi v. SHINGO- 3
I didn't get much out of this. Was supposed to be SHINGO's comeback match after losing a bunch in a row. Genki looks like a yard seller's dream shopper. SHINGO dumped Genki on his head a ton here, which I think was a detriment because it took all his offense to put a guy away who wasn't doing much anyways.

4) Jimmy Jacobs/ Jack Evans v. Paul London/ Brian Kendrick (Loser Leaves Dragon Gate USA)- 5
Teddy Hart came out for some long rambling mic work where you could see Gabe cueing orchestra music to play him out. This match had a wild feel to it, guys running in and out, kicking each other's faces and so forth that made it quite fun. London seemed to have lost a step since coming back to the indies but was good enough to keep up here. Jack Evans has improved his game tenfold in Mexico, as I was a huge hater of his in the ROH days but have warmed up to him now. He was still a spot a minute but he put it all together quite nicely. This possibly could have scored higher but I didn't buy the finish; not that's it not established Jacobs has choked people out before but once he rolled over you could tell it was as loose as your necktie at an open bar wedding.

5) Tommy Dreamer v. Jon Moxley (Hardcore Match)- 4
Dreamer started with some mic work where someone point blank asked him if he was going to cry, haha! Dreamer was wearing 4 oz. MMA gloves, even though he hardly ever throws punches. Said he wanted to get hardcore; not sure what's hardcore about spitting water and hitting a guy with a beer. Moxley came out with a punk rock chick that would scold even the most anarchistic guys' ethics. Moxley just has it; an untapped and natural charisma as he's performing, he's 100% into what he's doing. I guess the tame brawl around ringside gives us a clue how he'll look once he gets to Smackdown. The ante was finally upped once they brought a steel chair in, with Moxely taking a nasty fall on the back of his head into it. Overall kind of felt like a flaccid hardcore match with a few good touches.

5) YAMATO v. Susumu Yokosuka- 4
I dig the Yamato. Not only are his submission skills hot, but he has a smarmy vibe about him. Watching this, you get the feeling Yokosuka isn't on his level, like comparing Coors Light to Burning River ale. Appearances don't seem to mean as much as they used to; Yamato looked like he's lived in the gym lately as Yokosuka seems more like a frequent Gamestop shopper instead of gaining any kind of physique. This was like a more drawn out version of SHINGO's match earlier, where the result is never in question.

6) Dragon Kid/ CIMA/ Gamma v. BxB Hulk/ Masato Yoshino/ Naruki Doi- 6
Kid and Yoshino continue their ongoing feud of the fastest guy in the wrestling scene; you wonder if they've tapped into the speed force like the new Zoom did in Flash #197. BxB is a fantastic performer and takes his lumps like a pro. I wasn't buying the heel faction though until Gamma got jiggy with it with a kendo stick. Comedy spot with it later felt forced, nothing like most of Manny Delgado's dialogue. The pace felt real refreshing and again, all parties involved restrained themselves more than usual as they pulled in strong to the finish.

Overall, kind of a mixed bag show but I never found myself too bored with it.

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