Parm: We got some outside brawling right away, with a neat comedy chair spot. A lot of this match was Mochizuki vs Punch. Mochizuki was a damn star for me here, with VerserK playing good foils. The heat on Mochizuki was well done, and Mochizuki’s comeback was dope. At one point the commentators started screaming “BEER!” We got fun action, though this felt like no one was taking this too seriously, cause you know, it’s just a midcard match with some comedy and cool moves, an easy watch **¾. One thing I did enjoy is that it felt like the babyfaces overcame something to get the win. Fujii and Mochizuki win in 10:55. (**3/4)
Tribe Vanguard (Flamita, Kzy, & Yosuke Santa Maria) vs Over Generation (Eita & Gamma) & Drastik Boy – Dragon Gate (05/05/2017)
Parm: This was a fine choice to open the show, we got some fun comedy spots involved water spitting and dancing. The moves were good, though Drastik Boy didn’t really do much for a his final DG tour match. The heat on Santa Maria was solid, and Eita & Flamita had the typical crazy ass fast sequence DG is accustomed to. The majority of the match was inconsequential, but the finish stretch was really well done, with Draztik Boy and Flamita squaring off and making me want a singles match between them now. Tribe Vanguard wins in 8:01. (***)
Parm: This was a fun and easy to watch match. Team Shun had some fun flying moves, while the Boy/Jimmy team worked well together. There were a lot of cool sequences including an elbow drop, and I left very impressed with all four. The finishing sequence was great, with Kanda looking great. My only true complaint is that Shun Skywalker looks like a geek in terms of ring gear. Kanda and Boy win in 8:01. (***1/4)
Trask: What a ridiculously fun mid card match. I’ve always wanted to see more Jacob Fatu, and what a draw to the screen this was for me. Between commentary putting over Brown as the best European Champ of all time, to Brown doing everything in his UPS parody shirt, so minimally to the point where this was a Fatu carry job – just a mini-spectacle to behold. Fatu sold his ass off for the majority of the match as we transitioned into two really good near falls in the Sky High and a side-slam. The finish came in the form of a Fatu moonsault. Brown got on the mic post-match, saying Fatu’s dad sent him here to test his skills, and he passed. NEAT. (**1/2)
Corwo: It’s not often that Zeus is the smallest competitor in the match, but Doering towers over him in comparison. Zeus has made great strides as a competitor in the last twelve months, and he held his own against Doering here. Naturally, Zeus had to utilize chops and lariats to wear down his larger opponent. The match was largely worked as a hard-hitting sprint, in which Zeus displayed great urgency by quickly following up on all of his power moves. Try as he might, Doering found himself unable to put Zeus away and was pinned after a Jackhammer. A rock-solid main event, but nothing more.
Corwo: There are a lot of things to like about this match. For starters, Mashimo’s work on top is compelling. Everything he does, from viciously trapping Omori’s arms in the guardrail to disregarding the referee’s orders, makes him come across as a resourceful, cunning athlete willing to do anything to win. Around the twenty-seven minute mark, Omori failed to capitalize on a lariat due to Mashimo’s work on his arm, which was a nice bit of continuity. With that said, the match didn’t begin to kick into another gear until the last five minutes or so.
Mashimo’s performance made this match infinitely more interesting, but the negatives far outweigh the positives. The show was sorely lacking a standout match at this point, and I’m not sure that a thirty-minute draw in the semi-main event was best positioned to deliver that. The effort was clearly there, but I felt that they could have accomplished the same goals in roughly half the length. Post-match, Mashimo requested a handshake and kicked Omori’s hands away when he extended the olive branch.
Dalton Drellich, Atsushi Aoki, Hikaru Sato, & Suwama vs Jake Lee, Kento Miyahara, Naoya Nomura, & Yuma Aoyagi – AJPW (04/18/2017)
Corwo: The early stages of the match establish Aoyagi as an underdog. From there, Suwama and Aoki spend a significant amount of time working over Yuma as their stablemates brawl with NEXTREAM on the floor. It’s difficult to keep up with the action on the floor, as the hard camera doesn’t quite catch everything. Aoyagi excels as the face in peril, and his facial expressions are befitting of a never say die babyface. Miyahara and company briefly fire back with several double-team maneuvers that allow them to put away Drellich for the win. The match was structured basically, but it was a solid effort from everyone involved. Steady escalation led to a series of strong near-falls down the closing stretch, and Yuma Aoyagi impressed with his performance.