clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Daniel Garcia dances circles around Katsuyori Shibata in ROH Pure title match

Heading into the ROH Pure Championship bout at Death Before Dishonor (July 21, 2023), Katsuyori Shibata mocked Daniel Garcia’s penchant for dancing in the ring. That dancing ended up playing a central role in how the match unfolded.

Garcia tried to rub his sports entertainment style in Shibata’s face to start the match. When hips were shaking, Shibata grabbed Garcia’s wrists to lower him to the mat and stomp on his hands.

Later, Garcia literally danced circles around Shibata. The champ stoically no-sold Garcia’s gyrations, so Garcia went even harder thrusting to the beat in his head. Shibata sat calmly down on the mat. Garcia didn’t know what to do in the chess match of mind games. Garcia decided to play Shibata’s game, but he did it as a sports entertainer. Garcia danced his way into a seated position. Shibata chopped Garcia, and the action resumed. These words don’t do that sequence justice. Watch the clip to experience the full hilarity.

The match wasn’t all fun and games. There was serious hard-hitting physicality and the sweet science of technical wrestling on the mat.

The finish was a hoot and wrapped back to Garcia’s dancing. Shibata surprised Garcia with the sleeper and cinched the choke tight. As Garcia was fading, he was defiant to the end as a sports entertainer. Garcia’s upper body was going limp, but his hips could not be stopped from swiveling. Shibata released the hold to finish with a penalty kick for victory.

This was a true breakout performance from Garcia. He has embraced being a sports entertainer with all his heart, and it shows by elevating his effectiveness to connect with the crowd. Garcia is perfecting the blend of silliness and aggression. When the time comes to rise up the card, he’ll have the experience to adapt to any situation. There are lots of technical wizards in the ring, but there is only one Daniel Garcia.

Check out full results for Death Before Dishonor here.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Cageside Seats Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your pro wrestling news from Cageside Seats