Kazuki Sawada (沢田和樹 Sawada Kazuki, born June 26, 1986 in Ebetsu, Hokkaido, Japan), better known by his stage name Kzy (pronounced "kay-zee") is a Japanese professional wrestler trained and currently working for Dragon Gate, where he is a current six-time Open The Triangle Gate Champion and one-time Open The Brave Gate Champion.
Trained in the Dragon Gate Dojo, Kzy initially debuted in 2006 as m.c.KZ, with the gimmick of a rapper who rapped his own theme song and wore ring attire heavily influenced by American hip-hop culture. In 2009, he changed his ring name to simply Kzy, the name he uses to this day. Shortly after, he was positioned as a heel and found a little success by winning his first professional wrestling title the Open The Triangle Gate Championship. Despite being a mid-carder, in 2015, Kzy, as the masked Dr. Muscle won a tournament to crown the new Open The Brave Gate Champion and afterwards turned face for the second time in his career. Due to Kzy performances in 2018, he would receive a significant push, having an opportunity for the Open The Dream Gate Championship and forming a stable under his leadership named Natural Vibes. In the following May, Kzy reached the semifinals of the King of Gate, but failed to win the tournament.
Professional Wrestling Career[edit | edit source]
During 2006, he debuted during some Dragon Gate NEX shows as m.c.KZ. His gimmick was that of a rapper, and he rapped his own theme song on his way to the ring. In 2007, he and Lupin Matsutani, another wrestler on the Dragon Gate NEX circuit, teamed together as Lupin the KZ. When BxB Hulk and YAMATO became injured before the inaugural Summer Adventure Tag League Tournament, Lupin the KZ were chosen to replace the New Hazard team. Later in the year, he managed to pull out a win against CIMA on a NEX show. CIMA had previously injured his neck and was advised not to wrestle, but did it anyway as a way to put over the young wrestler.
At the start of 2008, he won the NEX-1 tournament, and after completing a five-match trial series, he departed for Mexico to hone his skills. In June, he received a phone call from Naruki Doi inviting him to join his WORLD-1 faction, and he accepted. Despite getting a push when he first returned, culminating in a chance at winning the vacant Open The Brave Gate Championship, he soon fell into a horrific slump, getting pinned or tapping out during tag team or six-man tag matches that he was involved in. He also appeared once for Chikara in the U.S. during their King of Trios tournament that year, beating Michael Nakazawa in a singles match on the third night of the event.
He slightly improved in 2009, but still remained the lowest ranking member of WORLD-1. On June 26, he officially quit WORLD-1 and joined up with heel stable Real Hazard, after helping Ryo Saito and Genki Horiguchi retain their Open The Twin Gate Titles against CIMA and Gamma under the Dr. Muscle disguise and unmasking after the match. The next night, he changed his name to Kzy (pronounced "kay-zee") and debuted a completely new look.
On January 10, 2010, when stablemate Genki Horiguchi announced that Real Hazard would be winning more matches through teamwork rather than illegal methods and Yasushi Kanda was against this idea, Kzy - along with Takuya Sugawara - sided with Kanda in the matter. The issue eventually caused a divide in Real Hazard, with them on one side and Horiguchi, Susumu Yokosuka & K-ness on the other. In the midst of this, KAGETORA - who had rejoined Real Hazard a very short time ago - began to resent rejoining their ranks. A match was set for February 11 between Kzy and KAGETORA, where the loser would be kicked out of Real Hazard, and Kzy emerged victoriously. The day before, Horiguchi, Yokosuka & K-ness left Real Hazard, and a couple of weeks later, he and the others in the stable retired the Real Hazard name and began calling their unit Deep Drunkers. On October 13, 2010, the Deep Drunkers were forced to split up, after losing a match against WORLD-1 (BxB Hulk, Masato Yoshino and Naruki Doi), but after the match, Doi turned on WORLD-1 to form a new stable with Kzy, Kanda Naoki Tanizaki and Takuya Sugawara. In December 2010 Kzy was sidelined with a leg injury. Meanwhile, his new stable merged themselves with CIMA's Warriors stable, forming a new top heel faction. On January 18 the new group was named Blood Warriors. Kzy made his return on May 27, 2011, when he was revealed as the newest member of Blood Warriors and the replacement for Gamma, who had just been kicked out of the group. On September 2, Kzy, Naoki Tanizaki and Naruki Doi defeated Gamma, Masato Yoshino, and YAMATO to win the Open The Triangle Gate Championship. They were stripped of the title on January 19, 2012, after Tanizaki was sidelined for six months with a shoulder injury. On March 1, the new leader of Blood Warriors, Akira Tozawa, changed the stable's name to Mad Blankey. On March 25, 2012, Kzy unsuccessfully challenged Ricochet for the Open The Brave Gate Championship. On December 9, Kzy, impostor Naoki Tanizaki and BxB Hulk unsuccessfully challenged Genki Horiguchi H.A.Gee.Mee!!, Ryo "Jimmy" Saito and Mr. Quu Quu Toyonaka Dolphin for the Open The Triangle Gate Championship. On April 12, 2013, Kzy unsuccessfully challenged Dragon Kid for the Open The Brave Gate Championship. On May 5, Kzy, Mondai Ryu and Uhaa Nation unsuccessfully challenged for the Open The Triangle Gate Championship in a 3-way 6 man tag match with Kzy getting his team eliminated by getting pinned by Dragon Kid. On September 29, Kzy challenged for the vacant Open The Brave Gate Championship in a losing effort to Genki Horiguchi H.A.Gee.Mee!!. On February 20, 2014, Kzy, Naruki Doi and Cyber Kong challenged for the vacant Open The Triangle Gate Championship in a losing effort to Jimmy Susumu, Yasushi Kanda and Mr. Kyu Kyu Tanizaki Naoki Toyonaka Dolphin. On May 5, at Dragon Gate's Dead or Alive event Kzy was represented by Naruki Doi in a Lucha de Apuesta style cage match where if you don't get a flag the person your representing for, gets their head shaved, Doi didn't capture a flag so Kzy had to get his head shaved. On June 6, Kzy, Naruki Doi and Cyber Kong won the Open The Triangle Gate Championship in a 3-way 6-Man Tag match with Kzy pinning U-T after hitting his finisher Impact. On September 9 Kzy unsuccessfully challenged Flamita for the Open the Brave Gate Championship. Kzy, Naruki Doi and Cyber Kong successfully defended the titles three times, before losing them on October 9, to CIMA, Gamma and Don Fujii. Shortly, after losing the titles Kzy was sidelined with an eye injury.
On January 12, 2015, Kzy, as the masked Dr. Muscle, defeated Eita in the finals of a tournament to win the vacant Open The Brave Gate Championship. He unmasked four days later, betraying Mad Blankey and jumping to Dia.Hearts. On February 28, Kzy lost the Open The Brave Gate Championship to Akira Tozawa. On February 4, 2016, Dia.HEARTS was forced to disband after he took the final fall in an elimination match which also included Monster Express and VerserK. On May 28, Kzy, along with BxB Hulk, YAMATO, and Yosuke♥Santa Maria, formed a new unit named Tribe Vanguard. On March 4, 2017, Eita faced El Lindaman for the Open The Brave Gate Championship. The match ended in a no-contest due to Punch Tominaga and Mondai Ryu and Takehiro Yamamura (who was trying to save from the attack of VerserK) interference. Due to this the Open The Brave Gate Champion was vacated. Then Kzy came out and he was announced in a tournament to crown the new champion. On March 19, Kzy defeated Takehiro Yamamura, advancing to the semifinals. On March 20, at the Memorial Gate in Wakayama Kzy was defeated by Jimmy Kagetora, failing to advance to the final. On November 3 Kzy, Hulk and YAMATO defeated Shingo Takagi, Takashi Yoshida, and El Lindaman to win the Open The Triangle Gate Championship. The match also included Naruki Doi, Masato Yoshino and Kotoka. On December 23 at Final Gate Kzy, Hulk and YAMATO and lost the titles to Naruki Doi, Masato Yoshino ,and Jason Lee.
During January 2018, Kzy started a winning streak, pinning Masaaki Mochizuki and afterwards challenging him for the Open The Dream Gate Championship. In the following weeks, ANTIAS tried to convince Kzy to join them and even offered them help to defeat Mochizuki for the championship, but he refused. On February 7, Kzy unsuccessfully challenged Mochizuki for the Open The Dream Gate Championship. After the match, Kzy left Tribe Vanguard, ANTIAS would then come out and offered him for the last time to join them, but he refused. ANTIAS ended up attacking Kzy until Susumu Yokosuka and Genki Horiguchi (who were also feuding with ANTIAS) made the save. The three would form an alliance with "brother" YASSHI and Punch Tominaga, who were also feuding with ANTIAS. This led them on May 3 announcing the formation of a new stable named Natural Vibes. On May 6 at Dead or Alive, Kzy, Horiguchi, and Yokosuka defeated MaxiMuM (Naruki Doi, Masato Yoshino, and Jason Lee) to win the Open The Triangle Gate Championship. Following the Dead or Alive, Kzy took part in the King of Gate finishing the tournament with a record of two wins, one loss, and one draw, failing to advance to the semifinals due to losing to YAMATO in their head-to-head match. On November 18, Kzy, Horiguchi and Yokosuka made their record-breaking 6th defense of the Open The Triangle Gate Championship against Ryo Saito, Don Fujii, and Gamma. On December 23 at Final Gate, Kzy, Horiguchi and Yokosuka lost their titles to R.E.D (Kazma Sakamoto, Takashi Yoshida ,and Yasushi Kanda).
In February 2019, Natural Vibes started a feud with all the stables in Dragon Gate, except MaxiMuM, agreeing to a match on March 7. At the event on March 7, Natural Vibes failed to win the four-way eight-man tag team elimination match. General Manager Takayuki Yagi capitalized on the opportunity and announced the rules for the Steel Cage Survival match, as well as multiple tag team matches between members of the respective units to decide, which member would enter in the match. Leading to the event, Kzy and YASSHI defeated Yokosuka and Horiguchi, with Kzy pinning Horiguchi to represent Natural Vibes in the match. On May 6 at Dead or Alive, Kzy escaped the "Bonds" steel cage survival five-way match. After the match, Kzy decided that no one would be no one kicked out of the stable. Later that month, Kzy took part in the 2019 King of Gate, finishing the tournament with a record of four wins and one loss. Due to losing to Kazma Sakamoto in his head-to-head match, Kzy faced Sakamoto in a rematch, where the winner would advance to the semifinals of the tournament. On June 6, Kzy defeated Sakamoto to advance to the semifinals. Later that night, Kzy was defeated by Ben-K in the semifinals. On December 15 at Final Gate, Kzy, Horiguchi and Yokosuka unsuccessfully challenged Strong Machines (Strong Machine J, Strong Machine F, and Strong Machine G) for the Open The Triangle Gate Championship in a three-way match, in which was won by R.E.D (Takashi Yoshida, H.Y.O, and Diamante). Three days later, Kzy suspended the stable after he joined YAMATO to form the Dragon Gate stable in order to unite all Dragon Gate generation of wrestlers against Toryumon and R.E.D in a "Generation War". Meanwhile, the rest of the stable joined the Toryumon stable due to Último Drágon being his mentor. From May 15 until May 22, Kzy took part in the 2020 King of Gate, losing in the second round to Dragon Gate stablemate YAMATO, eliminating him from the tournament. On December 27, after R.E.D forced Toryumon to disband, YAMATO decided to disband the Dragon Gate Generation stable, ending the "Generation War". Afterwards, Kzy was joined by Genki Horiguchi and Susumu Yokosuka, who decided to reform the Natural Vibes. However, on January 14, 2021, Kzy, Horiguchi and Yokosuka defeated R.E.D (Kazma Sakamoto, Takashi Yoshida and SB KENTo) to win the Open The Triangle Gate Championship for the second time.
Factions[edit | edit source]
- WORLD-1 (2008–2009)
- Real Hazard (2009–2010)
- Deep Drunkers (2010)
- Blood Warriors (2011–2012)
- Mad Blankey (2012–2015) 
- Dia.HEARTS (2015–2016)
- Tribe Vanguard (2016–2018)
- Natural Vibes (2018–2019, 2020–Present)
- Dragon Gate Generation (2019–2020)
In wrestling[edit | edit source]
- Finishing moves
- Signature moves
- B-BOY (Running somersault neckbreaker)
- Beat Boom (Fireman's carry powerbomb)
- CDJ (Flip piledriver from the second rope)
- Diving elbow smash to a seated opponent
- Jumping cutter
- KZ Move (Dance pose locking the arm of a opponent followed by a lariat)
- Mission Impossible (Springboard tope con hilo) – adopted from Akira Tozawa
- Shotgun (Running spear into the abdomen of a cornered opponent)
- Silver Bullet (Slingshot somersault senton)
- Swanton Bomb (High-angle senton bomb)
- With Naoki Tanizaki
- Double team finishing moves
- Adios, Mother Fucker (Implant (Tanizaki) / Impact (Kzy) combination)
- Double team finishing moves
- Entrance themes
- "KZ. Time" by m.c.KZ.
- "TIME TO GO CRAZY" by ACMA feat. Kzy
- "TIME TO GO CRAZY -kick ass collaboration mix-" by ACMA feat. Kzy
Championships and accomplishments[edit | edit source]
- Dragon Gate
- Open The Brave Gate Championship (1 time)
- Open The Triangle Gate Championship (6 times, current) – with Takuya Sugawara and Yasushi Kanda (1), Naoki Tanizaki and Naruki Doi (1), Cyber Kong and Naruki Doi (1), BxB Hulk and YAMATO (1) and Genki Horiguchi and Susumu Yokosuka (2, current)
- Open The Karaoke Gate Championship (1 time)
- Open The Brave Gate Championship Tournament (2015)
- NEX-1 Tournament (2008)
- Summer Adventure Tag League Last place (2012) – with Cyber Kong and Mondai Ryu
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- PWI ranked him #252 of the top 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2015
Luchas de Apuestas record[edit | edit source]
|Winner (wager)||Loser (wager)||Location||Event||Date||Notes|
|Kzy (hair)||Kotoka (hair)||Sapporo, Japan||Live event||December 5, 2010||[Note 1]|
Notes[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- Boutwell, Josh 2010-10-15. Viva La Raza! Lucha Weekly . WrestleView. Retrieved on 2010-10-28.
- 1/14 PRIMAL GATE, Metal Masks Revealed - 14 Jan 2011 . iHEARTdg (2011-01-14). Retrieved on 2011-01-14.
- 1/18 PRIMAL GATE - 18 Jan 2011 . iHEARTdg (2011-01-18). Retrieved on 2011-01-18.
- 5/27 AGGRESSIVE GATE - 27 May 2011 . iHEARTdg (2011-05-27). Retrieved on 2011-05-28.
- 3/1 Truth Gate Finale - 01 Mar 2012 . iHeartDG (2012-03-01). Retrieved on 2012-03-04.
- Purolove profile . Purolove. Retrieved on 2012-02-28.
- Kzy profile . iHeartDG.com.
- Kzy profile . Cagematch.net.
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated (PWI) 500 for 2015 . The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved on 2015-10-07.