Monday, April 18, 2011

DGUSA: 3 Things I'm excited about, and one not so much

So, finally had a chance to get back to my “3 Things” posts that I wanted to do.  To see my look at three things I’m really excited about in ROH, and one that I’m not, click here!

Today I’m taking a look at three things I’m really excited about in Dragon Gate USA, and one that I’m not as excited about.  I was live at both of the most recent shows for DGUSA in Atlanta, with Mercury Rising 2011, which was the first ever iPPV shown on, and Open the Ultimate Gate 2011, which will air on traditional PPV beginning at the end of May.  Lots of good things happening in DGUSA, so let’s take a look. 

1.  One word, simply…Pac:  Atlanta was my first chance to see Pac wrestle live, and to say I was impressed would be a HUGE understatement!  He had an absolutely outstanding match with Akira Tozawa at Mercury Rising that you should go out of your way to check out.  And then, as if that wasn’t enough, he and Masato Yoshino had what I think may have been the best match I saw that entire weekend (which covers a bunch of great matches) when they defended the Open the United Gate titles against the Blood Warriors duo of CIMA and Naruki Doi.  Pac has both the technical skill and the high flying ability to become a huge star.  He’s a bit on the short side for WWE down the road, but he’s obviously added some muscle mass since I last saw him, but it hasn’t slowed him in the least.  He’s also the Open the Brave Gate Champion in Dragon Gate over in Japan, and I think he could very well be the first non-Japanese Open the Dream Gate Champion down the road!

2.  Most DGUSA shows airing live on  This is a huge step in the wrestling business.  I think DGUSA has a better shot of making it work, since they run shows only every few months.  Other companies that run 1-3 weekends per month will have a tougher time putting every show on iPPV, due to the costs to the consumers, but with 2-3 shows every 2-3 months, I think this just may work for DGUSA!  I don’t know if I’ll buy every single show (due to financial constraints), but it’s awesome to know that if I want to, in most cases, I’ll be able to see any DGUSA show live as it happens in the future (with the exception of shows for traditional PPV).  Right now, I get a chance to see them about once a year live in person when they come to the Midwest, otherwise I have to travel (as I did for Atlanta), which isn’t always a possibility for me.  Now, I don’t have to go anywhere, instead, I can just relax here at home, and catch some great wrestling action!  While part of me wishes you could see the shows forever online, I also understand they are trying to sell DVD’s, so I get that.  Cool offer on the DGUSA shows that you can save $5 on the DVD if you order it on WWNLive as well.  If you’re interested in signing up for an account and purchasing any upcoming WWNLive shows, you can do so by clicking here.

3.  Akira Tozawa:  Another guy who had a huge weekend in Atlanta, but this guy has been having big weekends all over the US as he has been on his learning excursion here.  He had the great match that I previously mentioned with Pac on Friday night in Atlanta, and then had a quick fun Bunkhouse match with Jon Moxley and a Open the Freedom Gate Title shot against YAMATO on Saturday night as well.  I’ve yet to see this guy in a bad match, and he’s had some really stellar ones along the way (I personally can’t wait to see his match against Low Ki in Pro Wrestling Guerilla!)  Tozawa seems like the likely choice to eventually be the one to take the Open the Freedom Gate title from YAMATO, but I was glad to see they didn’t have him win it in Atlanta.  Let that story keep playing out.  Eventually, when he does win it, it will get a GREAT reaction!  Tozawa has a really high ceiling and will be a big star for many years for Dragon Gate.  I’m looking forward to seeing him in matches in the future against guys like Masato Yoshino, Naruki Doi, a rematch with Pac, and I’d also like to see what he could do with Shingo when he’s back in DGUSA as well. 

Now, those are three great things…but I do admit, there is one thing that just isn’t clicking for me, and I’m just not that excited about.

D.U.F of Sami Callihan and Arik Cannon:  I appreciate that DGUSA is trying to do something with Callihan and Cannon, and that they are giving them a purpose.  I’ve seen the teaming of these two coming for a while, and before Blood Warriors formed, I thought maybe Naruki Doi was going to lead them in a type of a Misfits group, but instead, we saw Blood Warriors form, and now the team of D.U.F. (which stands for Dirty Ugly F**ks) has formed as well.  I don’t know what it is, but Callihan just doesn’t click for me, and while I’m slowly coming around on Arik Cannon…it hasn’t quite happened yet.  Every show needs different things at different levels though, so I’m willing to give it a bit of a chance, but I hope we don’t see them get any sort of monster push at all, as I think they are far lower on the ladder than a lot of the American talent that DGUSA has brought in. 

All in all, 2011 appears to be a year with DGUSA on a roll and in a good spot as they innovate and potentially change indy wrestling with their shows on  I strongly encourage you to check out Mercury Rising over at, and check out Open the Ultimate Gate 2011 when it debuts on PPV in May, as you won’t be disappointed with your purchases.  There are far worse ways to spend $15! 


  1. I'm the complete opposite of you when it comes to the DUF team. Sami's got it, in my opinion. His matches are entertaining and on the mic he's crazy enough to freak you out without it seeming incredibly forced.Arik, on the other hand, I just don't get.

  2. I think Arik Cannon is totally underrated. Often times I've felt like his place on the card hasn't allowed him to shine like he can.

    For Sami Callihan, I agree that he's got "it" but also wish that he adds to his promo style soon. His delivery is unique, but I also find that it comes across as somewhat repetitive.

    I am eager to see how and against which teams they match up with in DG USA, because on paper against duos like Yoshino & PAC it seems to be a styles clash.

  3. I must vociferously disagree with Johnny. Callihan is the most forced character out there. Just embarrassing. Talented wrestler technically and nice guy though.

  4. Loving the conversation. I think part of it is that I just don't buy Callihan as that "creepy" as I've never really seen him stalk anyone, or do other types of creepy things that would help me buy into the character more. I haven't seen last night's Evolve show yet (planning to see it tonight) but I will admit I'm looking forward to his match with Sabre...but that's more to check out Sabre's work than anything...