411’s DGUSA Fearless iPPV Review 11.12.2012
November 2, 2012
Commentator: Arda Ocal
Johnny Gargano vs. Eita
This is a non-title match, and the match is also Eita’s debut in DGUSA. He’s a rising star.
The lighting isn’t great. They didn’t do the whole building lit up, and they also didn’t just do the lit up ring thing. Instead, the whole building just kind of feels “cloudy” or “dusty” so to speak. It isn’t good. They ended up on the floor, and Eita delivered his first chop. Eita got over huge in 2012 during Dragon Gate’s King of Chop tournament. Eita went for a second chop, but he hit the ringpost by mistake. Back in the ring, Gargano was in control. Gargano caught Eita with a powerbomb for a nearfall. Gargano then hit a tope suicida. Eita came back with a springboard dropkick and a moonsault to the floor. Eita hit a Vertebreaker variation: 1…2…NO! Eita hit a middle rope moonsault. Eita went for a top rope moonsault, but Gargano got his knees up. Gargano hit the Lawn Dart and kneeling superkick, but Eita avoided the Hurt’s Donut once. Gargano managed to hit the Donut on his second attempt, and he then locked in the Gargano Escape! Eita taps out!
This was a rock solid opener, and the crowd was even kind of responsive to it. I was hoping that this match would have been later in the show with more time, but this was a very fun way to open the show. Eita should be brought back to DGUSA for sure.
Match Rating: ***1/4
Gargano gave a babyface singles champion speech after the match. Jon Davis attacked Gargano from behind. He beat him down with a series of slams. The crowd’s reaction could be best described as indifferent with a few token boos. Gargano was in the ring for a while afterwards. The referees and Jimmy Bower came out to check on him. The idea was that Davis reinjured Gargano’s back. This segment did not get over with the crowd.
The Dirty Ugly Fucks (Arik Cannon & Pinkie Sanchez) vs. The Scene (Caleb Konley & Scott Reed w/ Larry Dallas & Trina Michaels)
This feud started at the Enter the Dragon 2012 show. Thus, this match started as a ringside brawl, as it is personal. They finally ended up in the ring, and Arik Cannon was quickly isolated by the rudos. Pinkie managed to tag in, but the rudos then cut him off, and they then got the heat on the Sexual Spider Monkey. Pinkie came back with the Shining Ass, and Cannon then made a hot tag. Cannon hit Reed with Total Anarchy, but Conley made the save. Pinkie took out The Scene with a tope of some kind. The director basically made a really unnecessary cut and missed the dive for the most part. Cannon hit Conley with the big right hand, but Trina Michaels proved to be a distraction. Pinkie slapped Trina in the ass repeatedly. Dallas then hit Pinkie with a ring rope to the crotch. Reed hit Pinkie with a Roll of the Dice: 1…2…3.
Cannon and Pinkie were more over than I expected so this wasn’t dull. The Scene is just such a lifeless act that doesn’t belong on these shows. I don’t have any interest in watching their matches, and I imagine most fans agree with me. They’ve been in the WWN universe for over a year, and the act is clearly a flop. They are a sunk cost, and they need to go away because they bring down every card they’re on. If Reed, Conley, and/or Dallas are talents they feel committed to, then they need to get repackaged pronto.
Match Rating: **1/4
Samuray Del Sol vs. Sami Callihan
The chance to see unique matchups like this is why I am still interested in DGUSA and Evolve. Sami hasn’t won in DGUSA or Evolve since January.
They end up on the floor early. Del Sol did some nifty stuff. Del Sol went for a dive, but Sami caught him and hit an exploder on the floor. He went for the countout win, but Del Sol made it back in time. Sami worked him over after that. Sami hit a DVD and the BOING Splash. Del Sol eventually came back with a spinning heel kick and a poison pill hurricanrana. Del Sol then hit a tope con hello. Del Sol hit a Code Red: 1…2…NO! Del Sol then hit a slingshot DDT Destroyer: 1…2…NO! I’ve never seen that before. Sami came back with a shoulder breaker. Sami then hit a lariat for a nearfall. Del Sol hit a standing Sliced Bread #2 for a nearfall. They traded some strikes. Sami hit a Liger Bomb for a nearfall, and he then transitioned into a Stretch Muffler. Del Sol reversed it into a small package: 1…2…NO! Sami then shouted “Ole!” and hit the turnbuckle brainbuster: 1…2…3! That finish was in reference to Sami Callihan facing off against El Generico at the next show.
That was Sami Callihan’s first DGUSA/Evolve win in 10 months: a fact that no one in the company has mentioned. Sami was given a lecture by Fit Finlay at Evolve 11, which can be summarized as Sami was an idiot and he needed to focus on wrestling. Well, Sami finally did that and he got a positive result. And it was not mentioned as a big deal. Instead, his match was just fodder for a match against someone else the next night. It’s shit like this that makes people not give two fucks about this promotion. The match itself was quite enjoyable.
Match Rating: ***
CIMA, ACH, and Rich Swann vs. The Gentleman’s Club (Chuck Taylor, Drew Gulak, & Orange Cassidy w/ The Swamp Monster) [Captain Match]
Swann and Taylor are the captains. The match can only end when one of those two is pinned. This is ACH’s DGUSA main show debut. If Taylor wins, he gets to whip Swann in the ring at Freedom Fight. If Swann wins, there will be another singles match between the two.
Taylor sent Gulak and Cassidy after Swann, but they accidentally attacked ACH because they’re both black. I think that went over the commentator’s head. Not too much of note happened in the early goings. The tecnicos were mostly in control until the rudos isolated, and then worked over, Swann. CIMA has essentially done nothing in this match at this point. Swann eventually came back with a leaping super hurricanrana on Cassidy. CIMA tagged in and ran wild. ACH then entered the match and had some success, until the rudos triple teamed him. Swann then gave Cassidy and Gulak a stunner at the same time. The rudos then got stereo submissions. The tecnicos made it to the ropes. Taylor went for the Awful Waffle on Swann, but Swann avoided it and hit the Lethal Injection. ACH then hit Chuck with slingshot ace crusher. ACH and Swann then hit some dives. CIMA hit Taylor with a 2K1 Bomb, and Swann then hit a frog splash: 1…2…NO! ACH took out Gulak with moonsault to the floor. Taylor hit Swann with the Awful Waffle: 1…2…CIMA MAKES THE SAVE! CIMA then hit Taylor with a superkick and the Air Raid Crash. Meteora! CIMA placed Swann on Taylor: 1…2…3!
This match was pretty good, and it felt tighter than the Evolve 17 Gentlemen’s Club trios match. Considering that this match is about the issues between Swann and Taylor, it seems strange to me that the finish was CIMA saving Swann and then essentially defeating Taylor for Swann. I understand that they wouldn’t want Swann to defeat Taylor easily or definitely here because they had a singles match later in the weekend, but why did they book themselves into a corner with this stipulation? And if this is how they decided to do it, why not have ACH do what CIMA did so to establish ACH as someone to take seriously? These are questions. Solid match.
Match Rating: **3/4
Jon Davis vs. Akira Tozawa
Davis has a new haircut and a new evil vest. Davis tried to intimidate some fans at ringside. It didn’t really work. Something, something, something, Bryan Alvarez mentioning Bruiser Brody. Tozawa got a star reaction. The crowd LOVED Tozawa.
Tozawa was a heel at the other 2012 DGUSA shows. He’s not one here. Davis was pretty much in complete control early, and they quickly ended up on the floor and in the crowd. Tozawa threw a chair at his face to slow him down. They ended up back at the ringside area. Tozawa went for a tope suicida, but Davis caught him and hit a spinebuster on the ring apron edge. Davis was in control for a bit until Tozawa connected on a couple of kicks. Tozawa then hit a trio of tope suicidas. Back in the ring, Tozawa hit a back suplex for a nearfall. Davis came back with a big chokeslam: 1…2…NO! That chokeslam looked sick. Tozawa hit a couple of brogue kicks and a German, but Davis came right back with a SICK KICK! Tozawa came back with a bridging German: 1…2…NO!!! Davis blocked a hurricanrana and hit a Dominator variation. Davis then hit a pair of lariats: 1…2…3. The finish fell flat with the very pro-Tozawa crowd.
This was a really fun match and a significant step up from their match in September 2011. The only real negative of the match was that the crowd just did not treat Davis like a star at the beginning or the end of the match, which made this win feel similar to his win over YAMATO at Enter the Dragon 2012 (because that crowd too also treated Davis as someone who was far inferior to the Dragon Gate star). I think Davis has had a lot of strong matches in 2012 for Evolve and DGUSA (and this was one of them), but the crowds just are not invested in him lately.
Match Rating: ***1/2
Jimmyz (Genki Horiguchi & Ryo Saito) vs. Super Smash Bros. (Player Uno & Player Dos) [Winner Gets a Tag Title Shot the Next Night]
Not too much of note happened early in the match. There were some shenanigans until the Jimmyz managed to isolate Dos. They got the heat on Dos for a while. At one point, Saito held Dos in the ropes, and Genki then hit him with the rubber band attack. That woke the crowd up. Genki went for it again, but it accidentally hit Saito. That allowed Dos an opportunity to tag out. Uno tagged in and ran wild for a bit. SSB hit Genki with the Alabama Slam/Backstabber combo: 1…2…NO! Uno then locked Genki in with a sharpshooter. Dos wiped out Saito with a tope con hello. Genki made it to the ropes. Genki came back with a tornado DDT on Uno. Dos hit the Jimmyz with the double Pele kick. Dos hit Genki with a 450 splash: 1…2…NO! SSB went for Fatality, but Saito pushed Dos off the top rope. Genki hit Dos with a brainbuster, but Uno was able to make the save. Saito then hit Dos with the Double Cross: 1…2…3!
This match was fine, but I think this show really needed something special and this was not that. I enjoyed watching this, but neither team seemed all that interested in getting out of second gear. Saito and Horiguchi vs. CIMA and Fox should be a great main event.
Match Rating: ***
Ricochet vs. AR Fox [Respect Match]
The loser has to say the other man is better after the match. These two have been feuding for a few shows.
Fox dropkicked Ricochet to the floor and hit his no-hands cross-body plancha. Fox then hit the kick-flip moonsault. Fox then hit springboard 450 to the floor. This show needed some excitement. Fox then went for a tope con hello, but Ricochet got out of the way. Fox tried to land on his feet, but he didn’t land cleanly and started selling a leg injury. Officials attempted to bring Fox to the back, but Fox changed course and got back in the ring before the 20 count. Ricochet then went after the injured left leg of Fox for a good while. Fox couldn’t get anything going, until he hit his twisting brainbuster out of nowhere. Fox then hit the Thugbait: 1…2…NO! Fox called for Lo Mein Rain, but Ricochet knocked him off the ropes and then hit a springboard Meteora: 1…2…NO! Ricochet then hit a Trouble in Paradise, Zig Zag, and a standing shooting star press: 1…2…NO! Fox managed to come back with a rolling DVD. He went for a senton atomico, but Ricochet avoided it. Backslide Driver from Ricochet: 1…2…NO! Fox got his knees up to block a shooting star press. Fox then somehow hit the Lo Mein pain, but he started selling his knee again. That was awesome. He finally made the cover: 1…2…NO! Ricochet came back with a Phoenix Splash: 1…2…NO! Fox came back with a diving codebreaker and a cannonball senton. Lo Mein Pain: 1…2…3!
Ricochet did not abide by the stipulation after the match. OK. Ryo Saito and Genki Horiguchi came out after the match and said they were taking the United Tag titles at the next show. CIMA told Saito that he looked like Gonzo. This got the loudest reaction from the crowd all night.
This match was quite good. I never would have guessed that this match would have been based on the selling of a leg, but it was actually somewhat of a pleasant surprise. That being said, this show needed a blow away main event, and this was not that. This was a solid middle chapter in a feud.
Match Rating: ***1/2
Overall Thoughts: This show made Dragon Gate USA seem like a lifeless promotion. The people who run DGUSA and Evolve need to take a hard look in the mirror and then address the reasons why they go to city after city with no one being invested in their characters, the stories, and the promotions as a whole. DGUSA/Evolve shows have been holding my interest this year solely because of the incredible roster that they have, but that’s starting to not be enough for me (and it wasn’t enough for a lot of other people a long time ago). As for this show specifically, there were a couple of good matches obviously, but nothing happened that is worth going out of your way to see.
Recommendation: Thumbs in the Middle. I wouldn’t buy a $15 replay if I were you.
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