NATURAL VIBES POWERHOUSE, BIG BOSS Shimizu, is on his first U.S. tour. Dragongate’s chameleon, due to his ability to transform and embody every personality he has been given since his debut, is hoping to show the new fans who are getting to meet him for the first time what he is all about. “I am hopeful that the fans will be able to feel my passion and see my strength through my pro wrestling,” Shimizu said last Saturday at MLW’s #SuperFight.
That passion was felt on February 3 at #GardenStateV, in his match against Robert Martyr, and, more notably, on February 4, at the historic 2300 (ECW) Arena. At the latter show, when NATURAL VIBES’ music was cut in the earlier part of their entrance, Kzy (singing acapella) and Boss got the crowd in sync to start the party.
Growing up a fan of WCW and ECW, BOSS was more than excited to face the Full Blooded Italians (FBI) in defense of the Open the Twin Gate championship that night. “Sharing the ring with Little Guido is a dream come true,” said Shimizu.
As he was getting ready for the match, we had to keep the conversation short, but I managed to ask the important questions: Since arriving in the U.S., Shimizu has enjoyed Popeye’s Crispy Chicken Sandwich the most; he believes the that the finals for Dragongate’s #ReydeParejas2023 will be NATURAL VIBES’ Jacky Funky Kamei & Jason Lee vs The Strong Machines, J & F.
In closing, Shimizu has a message for you and other PWI readers: “Since it is my first time wrestling in the U.S., I will ensure every one of my matches is memorable and enjoyable for the fans! Thank you for your support during my first U.S. tour and I look forward to meeting you all at the venues.”
U.S. Tour Schedule
02-09 New Texas Pro Wrestling (Seminar & Match) 02-18 WrestleRave (Texas) 02-25 MEW (Alabama) 02-26 ETU (New Jersey)
BIG BOSS Shimizu vs KAI, Open the Dream Gate Title Match, March 6, 2022
Highlights BIG BOSS Shimizu vs BxB Hulk, Z-Brats vs NATURAL VIBES Singles Match, October 10, 2022
DURING THE MONTH of February, the leader of Dragongate’s NATURAL VIBES, Kzy, and the unit’s powerhouse, BIG BOSS Shimizu, will be wrestling throughout the U.S.—East to West Coast and some in between!
When I was still in Japan, I had the opportunity to speak with Kzy just days ahead of the tour announcement. He is the man in charge of Dragongate’s most beloved faction, NATURAL VIBES, known for its feel-good energy, music, and, most importantly, being the blueprint for what a cohesive unit should be.
“We stay true to who we are,” explains Kzy. “We respect each other, support each other. There are no betrayals. We are made up of ‘Good Vibes Only.’”
Since re-establishing NATURAL VIBES, Kzy has focused his efforts on coaching and mentoring the next generation of talent in Dragongate. “When the first iteration of NATURAL VIBES was established, I had Susumu (Mochizuki) and Genki (Horiguchi) to help develop me as a top player,” he said. “After their departure from the unit, I assumed their former roles in order to pay it forward to the younger generation of wrestlers that make up NATURAL VIBES, Chapter 3: Jacky, Jason, and (Strong Machine) J.”
In my interviews with Jacky Funky Kamei, Jason Lee, and Strong Machine J (SMJ), each effusively praised the group’s leader, with SMJ acknowledging it was Kzy who gave him the opportunity and the platform to be the truest version of himself. Without such a supportive captain, NATURAL VIBES simply would not be what it is today.
Given the choice, I wondered whether Kzy preferred being the undisputed “Top Guy” in Dragongate or being a leader among his peers. He doesn’t see the two as being mutually exclusive. “As a leader, I always strive to be in the limelight,” he admitted. “But helping the younger wrestlers become the next generational group to lead the promotion ignites the fire and grit within [me] to continue to fight harder to achieve my results. Helping them elevates me.”
While that may be true, those who have followed Kzy’s career have wondered when it will finally be his time to reign as Open the Dream Gate champion. That includes the NATURAL VIBES leader himself. “Seeing all the younger wrestlers thrive and become champion, from the lens of the promotion, I am very happy to see,” Kzy told PWI. “However, personally, it is frustrating [to not become champion]. In Dragongate, timing is everything. And when the time is right, I will be ready to take advantage of it.”
Perhaps his journey overseas will enable the veteran wrestler to become closer to undeniable. And what should U.S. fans expect from Kzy? “In every state and venue I will be wrestling at, it is going to be fun,” he said. It is going to be loud, it is going to be exciting!”
Dragongate fans will nod their heads in agreement. They have learned to expect nothing less from “Mr. All Gas No Breaks, Mr. Full Throttle!”
Take it from the man himself: “That is why it is always Kzy Time.”
If you have never seen Kzy wrestle before, you are in for a treat!
At the end of this article, we will provide you with some recommended matches to watch via YouTube. However, the one that solidified everything for Kzy is available exclusively on the DRAGONGATE Network (dragongate.live). This is Open the Dream Gate challenge against PAC on February 10, 2019.
Even though Kzy was not victorious in the end, he proved that he could go toe to toe with a world-class wrestler, giving him the confidence in his ability that he can stand with the best on the planet
U.S. Tour Schedule for Kzy & BIG BOSS Shimizu
02-03 GSPW (New Jersey)
02-04 MLW (Philadelphia)
02-17 Prestige (Portland)
02-18 BLP (Chicago)
02-25 MEW (Alabama)
02-26 ETU (New Jersey)
02-03 GSPW (New Jersey)
02-04 MLW (Philadelphia)
02-18 WrestleRave (Texas)
02-25 MEW (Alabama)
02-26 ETU (New Jersey)
Kzy vs. Shun Skywalker, 12-16-2022
Kzy vs. Shun Skywalker, Kobe Pro Wrestling Festival 2021, 07-31-2021
Kzy vs. Kota Minoura, King of Gate 2021, 06-03-2021
IN PRO WRESTLING, one needs to develop a character or persona that resonates with an audience. This is no easy task to accomplish merely once—just ask any wrestler who has cycled through multiple gimmicks over the course of a career.
Imagine, then, a tag team ably portraying multiple characters within the same wrestling company … at the same time.
Indeed, it is a major challenge to embody two different characters and the relationships those characters have—completely distinct and unique—and yet, DRAGONGATE’s Jason Lee and Jacky Funky Kamei have managed to do just that!
Both members of the NATURAL VIBES unit, Lee and Kamei make for an awesome pair. Lee introduces himself as the “pro wrestler from Hong Kong that represents DG, able to master everything he does.” While Kamei is the self-described “funky energetic Jackie Chan lookalike with a deadly POW!”
Given their respective namesakes (Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan) and connections to the culture and land, the two tandem specialists decided to create a Hong Kong-centric unit of their own. (Note: DG is based in Kobe, home to a large Chinatown area named Nankinmachi.)
Realizing that a two-wrestler unit would not be able to survive long in DG’s competitive landscape, invitations were extended to Hong Kong native Ho Ho Lun and his friend Super Shenlong III.
When asked if it’s ever confusing to alternate between their original personas and newer personas, Lee is nonplussed. “Honestly, no,” he told PWI. “Kung Fu Masters (KFM) is more a comedy unit, something I do not mind doing. However, the Jason Lee you see wrestle as part of NV (Natural Vibes), the technically sound, high-speed athlete with an infusion of kung fu, is who I am.”
So, if he must pick one version of Jason Lee, which does he prefer? “NV Jason Lee, definitely!”
For the record, KFM’s Jason and Jacky are more than just a comedy act. At Kobe World Festival 2022, they dethroned Open the Twin Gate champions Shun Skywalker & Diamante—pound-for-pound, one of the promotion’s biggest, most dominant, and most agile duos. Interestingly, the so-called comedy unit seems to have made its members more confident in their abilities.
“KFM has given me the ability to expand my range when speaking on the microphone, show that a wrestler with a small body, big heart, who will never give up, is not limited in the ring,” said Kamei. “My style remains the same for the most part … displays of strength, with the ability to cover every inch of the ring, and strike from any angle.”
And, while both Kamei and Lee have desires to win singles titles in a not-too-distant future, they both prefer tag team wrestling. “With a great partner,” adds Lee. “Like I’ve had with Kota Minoura, and now Jacky.”
“In a tag team, you have the ability to develop and create powerful team moves,” Kamei said. “Which requires a combination of strength and skills.”
Moreover, Lee & Kamei have plans to conquer the world as a team … and regain the Twin Gate title they lost to D’Courage in Tokyo. “I truly believe the outcome [of the match] would have been different, had they faced the NV team,” said Lee. “KFM, the unit that is specific to Kobe … We were at a disadvantage by not having the energy, power, and the spirit of the community with us.”
And having been there in September to witness the loss, this author cannot disagree with Lee’s assessment.
With that, we leave you with Lee & Kamei’s parting words for readers of our ongoing DRAGONGATE Series:
“I hope to have more fans learn about and watch DG. And, when I wrestle again in the U.S. and Mexico, new fans and current fans come to watch and support during the tours.” – Jason Lee
“Please everyone watch and support DG and my FUNKY wrestling! POW POW!” – Jacky Funky Kamei
Jacky Funky Kamei vs SB KENTo, October 17, 2021
Jason Lee vs Shun Skywalker, April 25, 2022
Jason Lee & Jacky Funk Kamei vs. Diamante & Shun Skywalker, July 30, 2022
Kung Fu Masters vs. Genki Horiguchi & Teelan Shisa, November 19, 2022
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