DGUSA Open the Ultimate Gate (30/3/12) Review By Adam Timmins

Posted: January 12, 2013 in Uncategorized

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Rich Swann vs. AR Fox – A super-fun opener, as you would expect. I couldn’t help thinking what ROH would look like currently if they had Fox and Swann on the roster. Anyway, Fox hits the Lo Mein Pain at 11.00 to get the show off to a cracking start.

CIMA and Ricochet make their way to the ring. CIMA states that due to suffer a neck injury last night he is unable to defend the OTUG belts against Ronin. Chuck Taylor says they should forfeit the belts to Ronin; however, Masato Yoshino offers himself as a substitute for CIMA. So it will be Ricochet & Yoshino vs. Gargano & Taylor for the belts later. Makes sense in as much as both of the former are members of World-1.

Caleb Konley & Scott Reed vs. Bobby Fish & Tommy Dreamer – Good lord, what an embarrassment. Someone really should tell Gabe that yes, it was fun to be part of ECW back in the day, but no-one gives a shite about seeing Tommy Dreamer wrestle in 2012. Even Raven – one of Dreamer’s best friends – openly states that outside of garbage wrestling Dreamer is rotten: and that was ten years ago! All the usual spots are wheeled out, including Sassy Steffi taking a piledriver (Steffi, Shelley Martinez and Amber O Neal accompany Larry Dallas to ringside). Yet again, The Scene weren’t over; and it’s been a pretty rotten weekend for Bobby Fish thus far, having to put Lo-Ki over last night and team with Dreamer tonight. He does get the mild bonus of making Konley tap out to the FishHook at 8.50. Next time someone opines that Gabe can do no wrong, this must be top of the pile for the evidence against.

Sami Callihan vs. BxB Hulk – Well, this looked like a bit of an odd pairing on paper, and so it proved in practise. Callihan worked over Hulk’s leg in the early going; which the latter then didn’t bother selling until the very end of the match, when it magically came back into play. The crowd was pretty flat as well. I have to say although Callihan has gotten better in the past couple of years, he can still be a bit hit‘n’miss. Christina Von Eerie comes out halfway through the match, and appears to be making eyes at Callihan, so naturally she spits a mouthful of sake into his eyes. Hulk hits the Burn Out and First Flash to score the win at 11.25. I wasn’t too crazy about that finish either; but at least Hulk went over.

After the match Callihan states he will end Sabu’s career tomorrow night. The lights go out, and Tezza Brunk himself is in the ring. Arik Cannon and Pinkie Sanchez run out, closely followed by Jon Davis and AR Fox. Fox and Callihan brawl to the back. Naturally this all leads to….

Jon Davis & Sabu vs. Pinkie Sanchez & Arik Cannon – Street Fight – Well, this match only went seven minutes, but it felt like forever. Sabu has definitely worn out his welcome in DG:USA, and being involved in this feud isn’t exactly doing Davis or the D.U.F. any favours either. Davis puts everyone out of their misery at 7.15 by hitting Three Seconds Around the World on Sanchez.

Maasaki Mochizuki vs. Akira Tozawa –  Incredible to think that when these two last met in DG:USA at Uprising in 2010, Tozawa was still a rookie; now he’s arguably the top guy in the company. This is easily one of the best matches I’ve seen in 2012, from two guys at the top of their game. Simple but effective psychology: Mochizuki batters away at Tozawa’s arm and leg, and it pays off. The Sankakugeri at 19.48 puts Tozawa out for the count. Superb stuff, well worth checking out.

Samuray Del Sol vs. Johnny Vandal – too short to be of any relevance really; Del Sol almost botched a dive, but got away with it, and pins Vandal with a handspring into a rewind-rana at 3.29.

Low-Ki vs. PAC – A lot of talk about this being a dream match, and I guess it is on paper; but the fact that the result is a foregone conclusion takes a lot of the suspense out of proceedings, as indeed is the case with every Low-Ki match. I thought this was solid, but not amazing – a case of a potentially great 15 minute match being stretched to 25 for the sake of its spot on the card. They could have shaved some time off by dropping PAC’s dreaded figure-four headscissors. PAC misses British Airways, and Low-Ki hits the top rope doublestomp at 23.43. Tozawa vs. Mochizuki was better. After the match, Low-Ki talks about the need for an EVOLVE singles title, implicitly burying the OTFG belt in the process. That’s our Ki….

Masato Yoshino & Ricochet vs. Chuck Taylor & Johnny Gargano – So as it stands the OTUG titles are vacant; and this match determines new champions. And what a match it was, one of the best tag bouts I’ve seen in 2012 outside of PWG. Obviously Taylor and Ricochet know each other like the back of the proverbial hand, and Gargano looks to have recovered from his back injury. Ronin work over Ricochet for most of the match; eventually he makes the hot tag and Yoshino comes in like a whirling dervish. Ronin give Yoshino the DDT/Hurts Donut finisher; Gargano goes for the cover…only for Taylor to pull him off and go for the cover himself! Yoshino kicks out due to the delay. Taylor grabs the OTFG belt, and pie-faces Rich Swann at ringside; Gargano takes the title off Taylor. The match goes on for a couple more minutes, with Gargano pairing off with Ricochet and Taylor with Yoshino. Taylor ends up tapping to Sol Naciente at 19.41 to make the World-1 duo the new OTHG champions. Tremendous match with a nice thread of storyline woven into it. I have to say I’m not particularly thrilled with Yoshino being a tag champion again; as I said in my Golden Gate review, he’s become a bit stale recently. But there you go. So, Ronin are defunct now presumably, as Ricochet is part of World-1, and Gargano and Taylor are on their own…for now.

Overall – even though there was some dross (Dreamer/Sabu), you can’t fail to recommend a show with two bouts that will be in the MOTY lists; well, in mine anyway

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