a review by Kevin Wilson

Date:  February 5th, 2015
Location:  Kitazawa Town Hall in Tokyo, Japan
Announced Attendance:  215

While this may seem like a random event to be jumping back and reviewing, I like to see what the young wrestlers in Japan are doing sometimes.  Not a lot of promotions now have active training centers or dojos, so it is always nice to see one that not only does but lets us watch the wrestlers.  DNA is basically like NXT, to just make an easy comparison, and the wrestlers are still in training.  Of course they bring in a few other better known guys to wrestle as well so it is not just strictly trainees on the show.  Here is the full card:

- Kotaro Nasu vs. Kouki Iwasaki
- Dai Suzuki and Kikutaro vs. Jiro Kuroshio and Tomoya Kawamura
- Suguru Miyatake vs. Yuko Miyamoto
- Kota Umeda vs. Shunma Katsumata
- Kazusada Higuchi vs. Ryota Nakatsu

A lot of new wrestlers for me, let’s get started!

Kotaro Nasu vs. Kouki Iwasaki
They trade waistlocks to start and they take it to the mat, Nasu works the side headlock but Iwasaki gets to the ropes.  Back up they trade elbows, Nasu gets Iwasaki to the mat and kicks him in the back.  Nasu chops Iwasaki in the chest, snapmare, and he kicks Iwasaki in the back.  Scoop slam by Nasu and he hits an elbow drop.  Nasu toys with Iwasaki some more as Iwasaki tries to fight back, Iwasaki hits a few slaps and finally elbows Nasu to the mat.  Iwasaki kicks Nasu in the chest, cover, but it gets two.   Knee to the stomach by Iwasaki and they trade shots until Iwasaki applies a stretch hold.  Iwasaki kicks Nasu in the back but Nasu applies a short armbar.  Nasu kicks Iwasaki in the chest and he hits a high kick.  Kick to the back by Nasu, cover, but it gets a two count.  Nasu applies a reverse chinlock, he goes off the ropes and he nails the PK for a the three count.  A solid opener, I’ve never seen Nasu in the dominate role before in a match.  Iwasaki looked competent (he debuted in November) and overall no complaints.  Score:  5.0

Dai Suzuki and Kikutaro vs. Jiro Kuroshio and Tomoya Kawamura
Suzuki and Kawamura start off, Suzuki bounces off the ropes but Kawamura just watches him.  Armdrag by Suzuki but Kawamura elbows him to the mat.  Kikutaro and Kuroshio are tagged in and Kikutaro hits an armdrag but Kuroshio returns the favor.  Kikutaro tags in Suzuki but he is also arm dragged.  Scoop slam by Kuroshio and he tags Kawamura.  Suzuki eats a double elbow and then a double leg drop.  Kawamura punches Suzuki but Suzuki hits a scoop slam.  Kikutaro is tagged in and he slams Kawamura before hitting a somersault senton for two.  Kikutaro tags in Suzuki and Suzuki stomps on Kawamura.  Kikutaro comes back in and he trades blows with Kawamura, until Kawamura hits a spinning headscissors.  Kawamura tags in Kuroshio and Kuroshio hits a missile dropkick on Kikutaro.  Kuroshio punches Kikutaro in the corner, Kikutaro charges Kuroshio in the corner but he keeps getting kicked back.  The referee has luck but Kikutaro again gets kicked back.  Scoop slam by Kuroshio and she hits a split-legged moonsault for two.  Kuroshio dropkicks Kikutaro but Kikutaro grabs him low and wraps up Kuroshio for a one count.  Dragon screw leg whip by Kikutaro and he hits the Shining Wizard, but Kikutaro fires back with a superkick.  Kuroshio tags in Kawamura while Kikutaro tags Suzuki and Kawamura knees Suzuki in the corner.  Reverse Splash by Kawamura and he gets a two count.  Suzuki kicks Kawamura back but Kawamura avoids the diving shoulderblock.  Suzuki picks up Kawamura and hits an airplane spin and he slams Kawamura for a two count.  Kawamura is double teamed in the corner, TKO by Kikutaro and Suzuki hits a diving shoulderblock.  Kuroshio comes in to help and they throw Suzuki and Kikutaro into each other.  Kuroshio hits a pescado on Kikutaro while Kawamura superkicks Suzuki in the ring for a two count.  Suzuki goes off the ropes but Kawamura catches him with a small package for a three count!  Not enough comedy to be a comedy match, and too basic to get excited about.  Also a bit too long.  Not unwatchable but nothing memorable in a positive way.  Score: 3.0

Suguru Miyatake vs. Yuko Miyamoto
They tie-up to start and trade holds before trading shoulderblocks, which sends Miyamoto out of the ring.  Miyamoto gets back in and they trade elbows, which Miyatake gets the better of.  Back up they trade elbows again and this time Miyamoto hits a scoop slam.  Miyamoto applies an armbar by Miyatake makes it to the ropes.  Miyamoto picks up Miyatake and he slams his arm into the mat.  Miyamoto removes a turnbuckle pad and he rams Miyatake’s arm into it.  Miyamoto going full heel for this midcard DNA match.  Miyamoto does it again and then applies an armbar, but Miyatake gets a foot on the ropes.  Miyamoto picks up Miyatake but Miyatake hits a jumping hip attack.  They trade elbows but Miyatake slams Miyamoto to the mat for two.  Miyatake and Miyamoto trade chops, Miyatake picks him up and throws Miyamoto into the exposed corner.  Miyatake charges Miyamoto but Miyamoto moves, sending Miyatake crashing into the exposed corner.  Miyamoto applies a Cobra Twist but Miyatake makes it to the ropes.  Miyamoto goes up top and but Miyatake blocks the diving chop.  Belly to belly suplex by Miyamoto and he hits a jumping knee in the corner.  Dropkick by Miyamoto and he hits a lariat.  Miyamoto picks up Miyatake but Miyatake hits a vertical suplex.  Spinebuster by Miyatake, but it gets a two count.  Miyatake goes off the ropes and he hits a back bodydrop.  Miyatake goes off the ropes but mmm knees him in the stomach and applies a short armbar.  Cross armbreaker by Miyamoto but Miyatake gets a toe on the bottom rope.  Scoop slam by Miyamoto, he goes up top and he hits a corkscrew senton for a near fall.  Miyamoto goes for a suplex, Miyatake gets around him but Miyamoto applies a Manji Cobra, getting the submission!  Miyatake also debuted in November, and Miyamoto gave Miyatake a whole lot here as it was a pretty even match.  Liked the arm work by Miyamoto and everything felt meaningful.  Not a long match but well done.  Score:  6.5

Kota Umeda vs. Shunma Katsumata
Umeda works a headlock to start and he hits a big hiptoss out of the Irish whip.  Dropkick by Umeda and he hits a scoop slam before kicking Katsumata around the ring.  Umeda applies a headscissors but Katsumata makes it to the ropes.  Katsumata slaps Umeda but Umeda hits a back kick followed by a dropkick.  Katsumata falls out of the ring and he pulls Umeda out with him.  Back in the ring Katsumata throws Umeda in the corner before hitting a step-up dropkick.  Dropkick by Katsumata, he goes up top and he hits a diving crossbody.  Scoop slam by Katsumata and he hits a standing moonsault for a two count.  Dropkick by Katsumata but it gets a two count.  Katsumata and Umeda trade elbows, Katsumata charges Umeda but Umeda drops him out onto the apron.  Katsumata goes up top but Umeda jumps up and knees him, sending Katsumata crashing to the floor.  Umeda hits a pescado out onto Katsumata and then kicks him before sliding Katsumata into the ring.  Umeda hits a swandive missile dropkick and elbows Katsumata but Katsumata elbows him back.  Katsumata kicks Umeda but Umeda hits a springboard kick for a two count.  Kick by Umeda but Katsumata gets away and hits a dropkick.  Running shooting star press by Katsumata, but it gets a two count.  Katsumata goes to the apron but Umeda kicks him as he swandives in.  Umeda goes for a kick but Katsumata rolls him up for two, kick by Umeda but Katsumata quickly sneaks in the Casadora for the victory!  Katsumata is one of those wrestlers you feel drawn in to root for because every time he bumps you think he is going to die.  Umeda did a good job too of looking dominate and I think this match worked really well.  Looking forward to seeing more of them.  Score:  7.0

Kazusada Higuchi vs. Ryota Nakatsu
They circle each other to start, Nakatsu gets Higuchi to the mat but Higuchi gets back up and hits a shoulderblock.  Nakatsu does go down and hits a dropkick but Higuchi shrugs it off.  Drop toehold by Nakatsu and he applies a short armbar, Higuchi gets back up and Nakatsu elbows him in the arm.  Nakatsu twists Higuchi’s arm in the ropes and snaps his arm over the top rope.  Armdrag by Nakatsu as he continues working over the arm, but Higuchi picks him up and dumps Nakatsu out of the ring.  Higuchi hits an ax handle off the apron and clubs Nakatsu in the back. Higuchi rams Nakatsu back-first into the ring post and clubs on him before eventually sliding him back into the ring.  Higuchi works over Nakatsu on the mat, scoop slam by Higuchi and he hits a body press for two. Higuchi chokes Nakatsu with his boot before applying a crab hold but Nakatsu makes it to the ropes. Back up they trade strikes, Higuchi goes off the ropes but Nakatsu kicks him in the chest and delivers a dropkick. Nakatsu picks up Higuchi, Irish whip from the corner and he hits a jumping knee. Sliding kick by Nakatsu and he hits a leg drop for two. Strike combination by Nakatsu and he kicks Higuchi in the chest for a two count. Nakatsu goes for a suplex but Higuchi blocks it, Irish whip by Higuchi but Nakatsu hits a crossbody out of the corner for two.

Keylock by Nakatsu but Higuchi manages to make it to the ropes. Irish whip by Nakatsu but Higuchi hits a dropkick. Higuchi picks up Nakatsu in a vertical position before slamming him to the mat, backbreaker by Higuchi but Nakatsu wiggles free. Big boot by Higuchi and he hits a scoop slam. Higuchi goes up top but Nakatsu joins him, hitting a superplex. Back up they trade chops, which Higuchi gets the better of, Irish whip by Higuchi and he hits a lariat in the corner. Higuchi charges Nakatsu, waistlock by Nakatsu but Higuchi elbows out of it. Higuchi goes for the Oklahoma Stampede but Nakatsu gets out of it and hits a German suplex hold for two. Palm thrust by Higuchi but Nakatsu hits him back and hits mounted punches. Higuchi gets back up but Nakatsu slaps on the cross armbreaker! Nakatsu reverts it into a triangle choke but Higuchi eventually powerbombs out of it for a two count cover. Higuchi goes off the ropes and hits a big lariat, he drags Nakatsu up and he nails the Todorokiten for the three count! A long match for two rookies but they put it together pretty well. Higuchi shows a lot of potential but he is still a bit awkward at times. He isn't a 'natural' in terms of being fluid with his moves but he has the size and ring presence so he could become great down the road. A good power vs. submission match, a step down in terms of pure entertainment compared to the previous match but overall enjoyable nonetheless. Score: 6.0

Final Thoughts:

When watching a show like this you have to keep in mind that you are watching rookies, so not only are they still learning but it is going to be a bit more basic than you average event. That being said I thought they did a great job. Katsumata, Umeda, Higuchi, and Nakatsu all left a favorable impression and I am impressed DDT has so many promising looking wrestlers currently training for them. They may not all "make it" but the potential is definitely there. The last three matches were all solid and had their highlights, and even though it lacked "star power" I can still give this show a light recommendation, especially if you enjoy watching young wrestlers as they hone their skills like I do. A really good effort by all involved.

Grade: C+

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review completed on 4/25/15