1.Eita vs Yoshino ***1/4
2.Mochizuki vs Shun Skywalker ****
3.Kzy vs Doi ***1/4
4.Ben-K vs YAMATO ***3/4
Waiting for King of Gate coverage on Cutting Edge wasn't going to happen, so I turned to their much older show, Infinity. Man, I used to love watching this series and I am thankful for it for helping me catch up on the King of Gate stuff faster than Cutting Edge, which is still covering DoA.
Note that the first 20 minutes basically just recap Dead or Alive with highlights etc and all of the matches listed here for review are indeed King of Gate contests. Skip about 28 minutes in for the bell of our first match.
Eita and Yoshino had a nice contest to kick things off, and I enjoyed the finish with Eita getting the surprise victory.
Following up on Shun leaving Mochizuki's unit at Dead or Alive, the two tried their best to murder each other in our next match. Fantastic work and great storytelling. I say often that Dragon Gate's future is brighter than most due to how talented their younger stars are, and Skywalker is a perfect example.
Number three was good, with Kzy continuing to put out impressive work and Doi continuing to be...well, Doi. Neither are likely to win the actual tournament, of which I've managed to stay largely spoiler free on, but they are perfect building blocks to ensuring a memorable King of Gate series.
We close with another noteworthy match, this one showing Ben-K overcome the former Dream Gate Champion, YAMATO, and confirming his spot in the company. I strongly believe that Ben-K will be the one to dethrone PAC, and it's matches like this that prove his worth. Outside of a clunky powerbomb sequence, this was truly great.
After the match, RED attack Ben-K but Skywalker makes the save. Interesting.
We close with Yoshino basically asking for Ultimo Dragon to please come home to celebrate the anniversary of DG, Owashi coming out in an UD mask asking if the entire company wants the return to happen, and then the locker room coming out to say they do.
If you follow this blog and the FB page attached to it, you know that Ultimo Dragon appeared this week in a DG ring and then said he'd be coming to Kobe in his gear.
This was sincerely one of the best TV episodes of wrestling that I've seen all year, and I encourage you to go check it out. Note that I am considering going back to watching Infinity instead of Cutting Edge, at least for now. I just hope that you are getting in some form of Dragon Gate at the very least, regardless of what source you use.
Overall Rating: 80/100%