7/28 DGUSA iPPV review: Johnny Gargano reveals his contractual status, Chuck Taylor vs. Rich Swann, CIMA and A.R. Fox vs. El Generico and Samuray Del Sol
DGUSA Untouchable PPV review
Report by Dot Net reader Austin Vitelli
I ordered the Dragon Gate USA Untouchable 2012 iPPV last night, and I must say that there was some excellent wrestling throughout the show. The show started right on time at 8 PM eastern, and the only break in the video feed was right at the beginning for about 15 seconds. Other than that, it was a perfect show in terms of video/audio quality. The one thing that was strange was that the mat on the ring looked like it was a few pieces of material taped together with packing tape, which made the ring itself look pretty low-grade. But since my eyes were on the action most of the time, it wasn’t a big factor. There were eight matches on this card overall, and it ran exactly three hours (including the intermission).
The show started with the Gentleman’s Club of Chuck Taylor and "The Manscout" Jake Manning entering the ring. Manning had a pile of wood in his hands and he proceeded to teach the crowd how to correctly make a campfire. Now I know to put out a campfire with dirt, not water. Lenny Leonard, the announcer, did not like this, saying, "Are we really gonna open up this iPPV with a campfire?" This was mildly entertaining, but didn’t last long as Rich Swann came out and attacked Taylor. They brawled to the back, which allowed for Jon Davis to make his entrance to begin the first match.
1. Jon Davis defeated Jake Manning in 4:42. At one minute, Davis hit a cool delayed vertical suplex in which he held Manning in the air for over 20 seconds. At 3:45, Davis hit a nice spinebuster followed by a running knee strike for a near fall. Davis finished off Manning with his 3 Seconds Around the World finisher for the victory. This was a very bruising and hard-hitting match that made Davis look very good.
If they’re going to continue with his "I must win or I’ll retire" story, then this definitely continued it well. Post-match, Manning literally bear-crawled his way into the back which I thought was pretty funny.
Literally the second after the camera moved away from Manning, the brawl between Taylor and Swann came back out to ringside. This obviously cued their match, which started almost immediately after the first match ended. This is something that I don’t like because it doesn’t give the viewers any chance to digest what previously happened. But, DGUSA tends to do this a fair amount as a way to flow from match to match.
Swann hit a slingshot 450 Splash right at the beginning of the match that looked really cool. Shortly after, Swann was slammed into some empty chairs at ringside. At 1:15, Swann came back with a chair shot after Taylor went to get a ladder. At 2:30, Taylor hit Swann with a microphone, but then shortly after Swann reversed an attack and swung Taylor right into the ladder back-first (which was laying on the ground). Wait, does this match have rules? I guess the referee forgot they existed.
Anyway, at 4:15 the match was still out on the floor and Taylor hit a nasty spike DDT on Swann on the concrete floor. There were no mats at all on the outside of the ring during the show. Finally, at 5:15, the match got into the ring and Swann hit a nice superkick. But, Taylor came back with a spinning sitout powerbomb for a good near fall. At 6:30, Swann hit a handspring cutter followed by a spinning enzuigiri for a two count of his own. Swann then went for a hurricanrana off the top rope, but Taylor nicely countered it into a single leg Boston Crab. He failed to break the hold when Swann reached the ropes, so the referee called for the DQ. Um, ok, so they can hit each other with chairs and ladders, but they can’t keep a submission hold in for a few extra seconds? Very strange move by the referee.
Gargano hit the ring to force Taylor to break the hold, and then Christina Von Eerie hit the ring herself and cut a short promo saying that Tozawa was going to win the title from Gargano later in the night. Swann got a standing ovation from the crowd as he was helped to the back by Gargano. It was becoming a really good match until the DQ, which baffled me. Why have a DQ finish for something petty when they were hitting each other with weapons about five minutes before that?
3. Super Smash Brothers (Player Uno and Player Dos) defeated The Scene (Scott Reed and Caleb Konley) in 12:39. The SSB entered first and accidentally knocked down the entrance archway. They made it funny though and got a laugh out of the crowd. The Scene came out next with Larry Dallas in tow. SSB did rock-paper-scissors to determine who started the match, and Player Uno won. Little funny comedy things like this do a good job of breaking the seriousness of the show for a bit. 2:45 into the match, Player Dos hit a good slingshot Plancha onto Konley on the outside the get the crowd into it early. The Scene began to dominate, but at 6:45, Player Dos hit an enziguri on Reed, although he wasn’t able to gain back the advantage of the match.
Uno then hit a Reverse STO and was finally able to get the tag. Sorry if it is confusing who is legal in the match and who isn’t, but the ref seems to forget that most of the time. At 7:45, Dos hit a very nice overhead full nelson suplex for a near fall. At 8:30, the match started getting really good when the SSB connected with a nice double team that involved Uno holding Reed on the mat in backbreaker position while Dos hit a legdrop from the top rope. At 10:30, Reed hit a superkick on Uno, but Uno fought back and hit a double Pele kick onto the Scene that looked really cool. At 11:15, The Scene looked to finish it up with their DDT/wheelbarrow suplex on Uno, but only got a two count. SSB won the match with an awesome double team in which Uno stood in the middle of the ring and held Konley back-to-back with Konley’s head facing away from the turnbuckle.
Dos then dove from the top rope and did a front flip, connecting with a beautiful cutter on Konley for the three count. This was the best tag match I’ve seen from The Scene (and this is the fourth time I’ve seen them), but only because the SSB were in it. It’s a shame because they’re pretty talented, but as a heel team, they don’t even attempt to get the crowd riled up. This led to both me and the crowd caring much less about a match that should’ve been very exciting.
Ricochet then came out and cut a promo about how he has never lost the Open the United Gate titles despite having them stripped from him twice with two separate partners. So, he’s still undefeated in tag title matches and should still have the titles. He said don’t worry though, because he’ll "murder YAMATO tonight and win the titles again" to become a three time champion. YAMATO then made his entrance with a towel on his head. This was his first match in DGUSA since he lost the Open the Freedom Gate title back in November. He then removed the towel while in the ring to show that he once again had hair (he had shaved his head the last time he was in DGUSA).
4. YAMATO defeated Ricochet in 11:30. The first 6 minutes of the match were pretty slow with many strikes and knife-edge chops. At 7:15, Ricochet hit a spinning enzuigiri, a jumping reverse bulldog, and a standing 450 Splash all right in a row, but only got a two count. At 8 minutes, Ricochet went for a Pele Kick, but YAMATO reversed it into the ankle lock. Later at 9:15, Ricochet hit a jumping cutter and a standing corkscrew moonsault press, but still only got a two count. At 10:30, Ricochet hit a crazy corkscrew/dive from the top rope that Leonard called a Phoenix Splash, which also got a two count. This move led to "This is Awesome" chants.
Right after this, YAMATO out of nowhere hit a nasty spear and got the three count. This match was very well wrestled with great action, but really would have benefited from five more minutes and a little more exciting offense from YAMATO. Surprisingly, Ricochet player the babyface and YAMATO played a tweener/heel during the match, but YAMATO still got cheered after the match. This was strange since Ricochet had always been one of the strongest heels in the company.
Jon Davis then came out to congratulate YAMATO, but to warn him that in their match the next night, YAMATO would have to work harder than he’s ever done to beat him. YAMATO cut him off with a kick to the stomach followed by a choke sleeper, which he kept locked in until Davis was lying on the mat. These were more heelish tactics by YAMATO, yet he still got cheered. This either shows the crowd doesn’t care enough about Davis, that YAMATO is turning heel, or that DGUSA doesn’t know what they’re doing with Davis. He is the one of the company’s fastest rising stars, yet they buried him in a meaningless angle. Very strange.
The intermission occurred right after this, which lasted a little over 15 minutes. It was only 9 PM when the intermission, which meant four of the seven advertised matches were squeezed into one hour. I knew that either the main event matches were going to be very long or the show overall was going to be very short. They really were speeding through the show at this point, so they badly needed to slow things down.
5. Arik Cannon and Pinkie Sanchez defeated N8 Mattsen and Derek Ryze in 8:20. Mattsen is a local wrestler from the area and Ryze (not sure about the spelling) was put on the show due to him standing out in DGUSA’s seminar/tryout from earlier in the day. At 4 minutes, Cannon hit Ryze with a beer can after Ryze had just been sprayed in the face with beer. At 6:30, Mattsen hit a springboard double knee facebuster on Sanchez, which eventually led to the double hot tag. Cannon and Ryze were now in, and Ryze was hit with an ugly-looking chokeslam.
At eight minutes, Cannon held Ryze in a wheelbarrow while Sanchez hit a double stomp from the top rope. Cannon then won the match with his Total Anarchy finisher. Post-match, Cannon cut a promo on how Sami Callihan shouldn’t have been suspended, and then he welcomed the newest member of the D.U.F., Masada. Masada came out and strongly declined the offer, saying groups and teams have always hurt his career. Cannon then forced Sanchez to stand up to Masada or him and Callihan would beat him up. This led to an impromptu match.
6. Masada defeated Pinkie Sanchez in 5:56. Some early taunting by Sanchez was turned into a quick assault by Masada. Later, Sanchez went for a suicide dive and connected, but when he went for a second one, Masada threw a chair at him. He then threw Sanchez into an area of empty chairs in the crowd. Would you be surprised if I told you he wasn’t disqualified for this? At 5:45, Sanchez went for a slingshot dive, but Masada reversed it right into a powerbomb.
Masada then hit another powerbomb right after that for the victory. This wasn’t too exciting of a match, but it was nice to see the debut of Masada. Sanchez is easily the least compelling act on the entire DGUSA roster, so I don’t really care for his matches at all.
7. CIMA and AR Fox defeated El Generico and Samuray Del Sol in 26:30. Apparently CIMA is now a face. I thought maybe he picked Fox to make him a heel because he’d be a very good one, but this whole match was babyfaces. This led to the crowd not knowing who to chant for, so they just chanted "everybody," which I thought was pretty funny. The first five minutes was full of stalemates, so no one was able to gain an advantage. Later, Fox hit an imploding shooting star press of the middle of the ropes, jumping onto both Generico and Del Sol on the outside. This was a crazy move that caused Generico to go to the back. He came back shortly after with some tape on his shoulder, so if it was a legit injury it wasn’t bad.
At 17 minutes, Fox hit a split-legged moonsault on Del Sol for a two count. At 19:30, Generico hit a Tornado DDT on CIMA. Shortly after, Del Sol hit a moonsault onto the outside without a slingshot which looked really cool. At 20 minutes, Generico hit a Blue Thunder Powerbomb on CIMA for a near fall. At 20:45, Del Sol hit an assisted 450 Splash on CIMA for another good near fall. This garnered some "This is Awesome" chants. At 21:30, Fox hit a Swanton Bomb on Generico for an extremely close near fall. A minute later, Fox hit a springboard cutter for yet another near fall. At 23:45, Generico hit an exploder suplex, a Yakuza Kick, and a belly-to-belly suplex, but didn’t go for the pin because right after that, Del Sol hit a reverse hurricanrana. But, he still only got a two count!
At 25 minutes, CIMA hit a backstabber on Generico followed by Fox’s 450 splash, but still couldn’t get a three count! Fox then hit Lo Mein Pain and CIMA hit Meteora on Del Sol and they finally got the pin. Post-match, the crowd gave everyone a standing ovation and everyone in the ring shook hands. CIMA then cut a promo putting over Fox in a huge way. They both said that they’re ready to take the tag titles the next night. This was definitely the greatest tag team match that I’ve ever seen, so I strongly recommend getting this DVD immediately just to see this match. If you like high-flying/exciting spot-fests, definitely see this match. It was a completely perfect match, and I don’t think I’ve ever said that.
8. Johnny Gargano defeated Akira Tozawa to retain the Open the Freedom Gate Championship in 25:40. Tozawa came out with Christina Von Eerie, and together they represented the Mad Blankey stable, which must be part of the Dragon Gate stable situation in Japan. It was announced to have a sixty minute time limit. At 4:45, after they traded suicide dives, Gargano gained control with a spear through the ropes. At 7 minutes, Von Eerie distracted the ref and allowed Tozawa to put a chair on Gargano and hit a senton. At least the ref had an excuse this time. At 11:30, Gargano hit a slingshot DDT to slow down Tozawa’s attack. Chants for both men started after this as both men were down. At 15:30, Tozawa hit a Superplex for a good near fall.
At 17 minutes, there were a series of no-sells by each man that included superkicks from Gargano and Saito suplex from Tozawa. The burst of offense ended with a Shining Wizard from Tozawa. At 18:30, Gargano hit a belly-to-back Superplex, then a Lawn Dart, then another superkick for a near fall. At 19 minutes, Gargano locked in the Gargano Escape, but Tozawa eventually got his foot on the rope. At 20:30, Tozawa hit his German Suplex on Gargano, but connected it on the apron in a crazy spot. At 22:30, Tozawa hit another German Suplex, but somehow Gargano was able to lock in the Gargano Escape right after it.
Tozawa though was able to escape from this submission attempt as well after reaching the ropes a second time. At 24:30, Tozawa hit his Straightjacket German Suplex, but still only got a two count. Gargano came back shortly after and hit the Hurts Donut? for another near fall. He then hit the move again and followed it up with a third connection with the Gargano Escape. This time it was in the middle of the ring and Tozawa was unable to get to the ropes, so he tapped out. This was an excellent match and definitely the best effort I’ve ever seen from Gargano. This stacked up as my second favorite match of the night next to the awesome tag team match right before it.
Gargano received multiple chants after the match and he thanked the fans. He cut a promo saying that he always wanted to be an independent wrestler, and that an indy wrestler who does this just to make it to the next level is cheating. He said he wants to stay in indy wrestling even though the independent wrestling business is dying, no matter if it’s ROH, PWG, DGUSA, or Chikara. He finally said he signed a new contract with DGUSA, which became obvious since he retained the title.
All of a sudden, Taylor and Manning attacked Gargano. Taylor then went under the ring and out appeared The Swamp Monster (who had apparently been missing). The Swamp Monster hit the Awful Waffle and ripped off its costume, showing it was Taylor. CIMA then came out to save Gargano. He picked up the title and looked at it, but gave it right to Gargano. CIMA thanked the fans and put over DGUSA, saying they’ll be back soon to end the show.
Notes: This was definitely a better show than the Untouchable show from 2011 (which I reviewed last year), and that’s hard to do considering its main event was excellent as well. The last two matches really stood out from the rest of the card by far, but that’s not to say the other matches weren’t there. The only little things I didn’t like about the show were Tozawa’s use of blatant no-selling too much and The Scene’s rather boring act (not the wrestling aspect though), but these are very small problems when looking at the show overall.
While I complained that the first hour they were in TNA mode with squeezing in as much as possible, it was clear that they slowed it down for the second half of the show, which made it more entertaining. The tag match with CIMA/Fox vs. Generico/Del Sol was an instant classic and should definitely be checked out, as well as the main event. This company definitely gives you the best deal for your money and in my opinion is the best independent wrestling company in the world.
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