Jay White is a New Zealand professional wrestler signed to New Japan Pro-Wrestling. After starting his career in 2013, White joined NJPW the following year as a "young lion". In June 2016, White left for an overseas learning excursion, during which he worked most notably for the American Ring of Honor and the British Revolution Pro Wrestling promotions through NJPW's international partnerships. White returned to NJPW in November 2017 and won the IWGP United States Championship at the beginning of the following year. In 2018, he betrayed his fellow Chaos stablemates to join Bullet Club, was named the new leader. In 2019, White won the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. White trained under The UK Kid at Varsity Pro Wrestling in early 2013, made his professional debut on 19 February, working for VPW as well as All Star Wrestling, among other promotions. In early 2014, White met New Japan Pro Wrestling's Prince Devitt and competed alongside him in a tag team match for VPW. After the match, Devitt told him to keep in touch.
Shortly thereafter, White was contacted by Bad Luck Fale, who said that Devitt had spoken to NJPW officials about White and that he could get him a place as a young lion in the dojo if he wanted it. Several months White met with Fale and Shinsuke Nakamura in London, where White accepted their offer and began finalizing his visa to leave for the NJPW dojo. White left for Japan on New Year's Eve 2014, began further training as a young lion upon his arrival, made his debut for NJPW on 30 January 2015, losing to Alex Shelley. White lost all but eight of his matches in 2015, as is common for young lions in NJPW. In 2016, White began gaining more victories, on 27 March competed in his biggest match to date when he was defeated by then-reigning IWGP Intercontinental Champion Kenny Omega in a non-title match. White's final match in NJPW took place on 19 June 2016 at Dominion 6.19 in Osaka-jo Hall, when he, David Finlay Jr. and Juice Robinson were defeated by Satoshi Kojima, Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Manabu Nakanishi.
White left for his excursion to the United States the following week. Upon moving to the United States, White was first based in New Jersey, before moving to Detroit, where he lived with Alex Shelley. White debuted in Ring of Honor at the 25 June TV tapings, he teamed with The Motor City Machine Guns to defeat The Addiction. White and The Motor City Machine Guns formed a stable named "Search and Destroy" with Jonathan Gresham and Lio Rush. On 8 July, White defeated Lio Rush. At the next set of TV tapings, White defeated Will Ferrara and wrestled Jay Briscoe to a time limit draw. White debuted for England's Revolution Pro Wrestling on 12 August 2016. On 19 August, White competed in a fatal four way match against Kamaitachi, Lio Rush, Donovan Dijak, won by Dijak; the following day and Rush were defeated by The Briscoe Brothers. White returned to RPW on 26 August. On 30 September, White teamed with Kushida and ACH to defeat The Briscoes and Toru Yano in a quarter final match in the ROH Trios Tag Team Championship Tournament.
White, ACH, Kushida defeated The Cabinet in the semi-finals, but were defeated by The Kingdom in the final at Final Battle. White competed once again for RPW on January 2017, defeating Martin Stone. On June 6th, White received his biggest title opportunity in his career when after winning a Battle Royal he unsuccessfully challenged Christopher Daniels for The ROH World Championship in a triple threat match. At Best in the World 2017 White, teaming with Search and Destroy defeated The Rebellion in a losers must disband match thus keeping the group together. On November 5, 2017, at Power Struggle, White returned to NJPW as the mysterious "Switchblade." He had been teased for the past several months, challenging Hiroshi Tanahashi to a match for the IWGP Intercontinental Championship at Wrestle Kingdom 12 in Tokyo Dome, before attacking him. The following day, NJPW announced the match between Tanahashi and White for Wrestle Kingdom 12. On January 4, White was defeated by Tanahashi in the title match.
On January 5, Jay teased joining Bullet Club. A day he joined the Chaos faction in order to face off against Bullet Club and Kenny Omega, claiming he needed backup in his fight against Bullet Club. On January 28th at the New Beginning in Sapporo, White defeated Omega to become the second IWGP United States Champion in the title's history. On March 25, he went on to defend the title for the first time against Hangman Page at NJPW Strong Style Evolved Event in Long Beach, California. White would make his second successful title defence against David Finlay at Road to Dontaku. White would make his third defense of the title beating Punishment Martinez during the ROH/NJPW War of the Worlds Tour in Toronto, Canada. At Dominion 6.9 in Osaka-jo Hall, White was pinned in a tag team match by Juice Robinson. Because of this, White lost the title to Juice at the G1 Special in San Francisco. Which ended his reign at 160 days with three title defenses. White competed in G1 Climax 28, where he ended 3rd in his block with a record of 6-3-0.
He scored major wins over the leader of Chaos, Kazuchika Okada and eventual winner Hiroshi Tanahashi, notably being the only man to defeat Tanahashi in the tournament. At Destruction, White attacked Tanahashi after his defense of his G1 briefcase, he attacked Okada, Okada's for
Big Van Vader
Leon Allen White, better known by his ring names Big Van Vader or Vader, was an American professional wrestler and professional football player. He performed for New Japan Pro-Wrestling, World Championship Wrestling, the World Wrestling Federation, All Japan Pro Wrestling during the 1990s and 2000s. According to CBS Sports, White is "widely regarded as one of the greatest super-heavyweight pro wrestlers of all time". White performed as a monstrous wrestler capable of aerial maneuvers: his moonsault was voted the "Best Wrestling Maneuver" of 1993 by Wrestling Observer Newsletter readers. Among other accolades in WCW and Japan, he won the IWGP Heavyweight Championship and the WCW World Heavyweight Championship three times each, the Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship twice, the WCW United States Heavyweight Championship once, won the battle royal main event of the 1993 Battlebowl pay-per-view. Vader was inducted into the WON Hall of Fame in 1996. White was a nationally ranked center, recruited by forty colleges.
He played offensive line at the University of Colorado, where he was a second-team All-American for the Buffaloes in 1977. He earned a business administration degree. In the 1978 NFL Draft, White was drafted as a center by the Los Angeles Rams with the 24th pick of the 3rd Round. During White's first season, he was put on the injured reserve list, retired due to a ruptured patella. While working out at a gym, White was spotted by a man who remembered him from his college football days who suggested he look into professional wrestling. Trained by Brad Rheingans, White got his first national exposure in the American Wrestling Association, he went by the moniker Baby Bull, changed to Bull Power. White honed his skills during this time, his ring work improved to the point that he was booked in a match with Stan Hansen for the AWA World Heavyweight Championship, where he was defeated. In May 1986, White went to Europe to compete for Otto Wanz and his promotion, Catch Wrestling Association, touring Austria and Germany, using the name Bull Power.
That summer, he took part in Austria. He made it before losing to Klaus Wallas. On March 22, 1987, he won his first championship, the CWA World Heavyweight Championship, defeating Otto Wanz in Denver, ending Wanz's reign of nearly nine years in its only title change in the United States, he held onto the title for nearly four months, before losing to back to Wanz on July 11 in Graz, Austria. In December 1987, he participated in the Bremen Catch Cup, in Germany, he defeated Rambo in the finals. In 1989, Bull Power returned to the CWA, to challenge Otto Wanz for the CWA World Heavyweight Championship. On August 21 in Vienna, Austria, he defeated Wanz to win his second CWA World title, he held onto the title for a little over four months before losing it back to Wanz in Bremen, Germany, on December 22. A year Otto Wanz retired and the CWA World title was held up. Bull Power defeated Rambo to win the vacant title for the final time, he held to the title for over six months, before losing it to Rambo in Graz, Austria on July 6, 1991.
Five months he defeated Tatsumi Fujinami to become the inaugural CWA Intercontinental Heavyweight Champion. He vacated the title in 1992 after signing with World Championship Wrestling. Although signed to All Japan Pro Wrestling, AJPW owner Giant Baba traded White's contract over to New Japan Pro-Wrestling in 1987 after consideration. Upon joining NJPW, White was given the ring name Big Van Vader and began to wear a black wrestling mask, his new identity was based on a strong warrior of the same name from Japanese folklore. He was introduced as the crown jewel of the Takeshi Puroresu Gundan stable, managed by Takeshi Kitano. Vader challenged Antonio Inoki, who had defeated Riki Choshu, defeated the worn-down Inoki; the pro-Inoki audience rioted, resulting in NJPW being banned from its home arena. The ban remained in effect until 1989, when NJPW did their first show back in Sumo Hall on February 22. After winning the final match of an eight-man tournament against Shinya Hashimoto, Vader was declared the new IWGP Heavyweight Champion.
He was the first gaijin wrestler to hold the title. On May 25, one month after being crowned champion, Vader lost the title to Russian suplex master Salman Hashimikov. Hashimikov dropped the title to Vader's old rival, Riki Choshu, on July 12. On August 10, Vader defeated Choshu to become a two-time IWGP Heavyweight Champion. On February 10, 1990, Vader faced Stan Hansen at an NJPW supercard show. Before Vader entered the ring, Hansen accidentally broke Vader's nose with the bullrope Hansen carried to the ring for his matches. During an exchange of stiff punches, Hansen unintentionally poked Vader's left eye with his thumb during their brawl, which caused the eye to pop out of its socket. After removing his mask, pushing the eye back into its socket and holding it in place with his eyelid, Vader continued wrestling Hansen until the match was rendered a no contest; as a result of the injury, Vader required a metal plate to be surgically placed under his eye. Vader's success garnered the attention of World Championship Wrestling, who convinced him to work for them while still the IWGP Heavyweight Champion and an active competitor in NJPW.
In January 1991, Vader defeated Tatsumi Fujinami to earn himself a third IWGP Heavyweight Title reign. This reign was short-lived however, as Vader lost the title back to Fujinami on March 4. At this point, WCW and NJPW were reaching a tentative working agreement. This
Tiger Mask IV
Yoshihiro Yamazaki is a Japanese professional wrestler, best known by his ring name Tiger Mask. He works for New Japan Pro Wrestling. Yamazaki is the fourth wrestler to portray the Tiger Mask persona; this makes him the person to have used the "Tiger Mask" gimmick the longest time. The young Yamazaki was trained by the original Tiger Mask and The Great Sasuke and unlike the second and third Tiger Masks, Yamazaki has been endorsed by Sayama himself, he traveled to Mexico where he trained in lucha libre. He made his professional wrestling debut in 1995 for Michinoku Pro Wrestling and became the fourth Tiger Mask, succeeding Koji Kanemoto. While working for Michinoku Pro Tiger Mask won the "APEX OF TRIANGLE" Six Man Tag Team Championship with his trainer the Great Sasuke and Gran Hamada. Just over a year into his wrestling career Tiger Mask won the UWA World Middleweight Championship and held it for 3 months before being forced to vacate the title due to an injury. After returning from his injury Tiger Mask spent a couple of years working mid card and lower main event matches until he was given another run with a singles title when he won a tournament to crown a new British Commonwealth Jr. Heavyweight Champion in London, England.
Despite it being called "British Commonwealth", the title was promoted in Japan. Tiger Mask would vacate the title due to an injury but was given a second reign with the title in 2000 that would last one year shortly before Tiger Mask left Michinoku Pro. Tiger Mask made his NJPW debut on January 20, 2002, at first wrestled as a Michinoku Pro star and not a full-time worker. In December 2002, he joined NJPW, rose in the contenders ranks in the Junior Heavyweight division. On April 23, 2003, Tiger Mask was booked to win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship from champion Koji Kanemoto. Tiger Mask's first IWGP reign came to an end in December 2003, when he had to vacate the title due to an injury. Tiger Mask returned with renewed strength and won the 2004 Best of the Super Juniors tournament where he beat the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Heat in the semi finals and Koji Kanemoto in the finals to win the annual tournament, it wouldn’t be until 2005 that Tiger Mask was able to recreate his semi final victory to defeat Heat for the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Title.
Tiger Mask won the 2005 Best of the Super Juniors making him the first and to date only wrestler to win the tournament two years in a row. In October 2005 Tiger Mask lost the title to the fourth incarnation of the Black Tiger gimmick. Tiger Mask defeated Black Tiger in a rematch on February 19, 2006, in a match where Black Tiger put both the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship and the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship on the line, making Tiger Mask a double champion. Tiger Mask’s reign as IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion ended on May 3, 2006, by the man he won the title from the first time, Koji Kanemoto; the NWA World Junior Heavyweight title would reside around Tiger Mask's waist for over a year until he lost it to Mike Quackenbush on a National Wrestling Alliance sanctioned show in Portage, Indiana. When New Japan decided to create several "Brands", Tiger Mask was appointed as an'ace' of Wrestle Land alongside Hiroshi Tanahashi but ended up wrestling 2 matches under the WRESTLE LAND Brand.
In July 2008, Tiger Mask defeated Prince Devitt in a tournament final to become a four-time IWGP World Jr. Heavyweight champion. On the "Circuit 2008 New Japan Generation" tour Low Ki ended Tiger Mask's reign. On January 4, 2009, during NJPW's annual Tokyo Dome show Wrestle Kingdom III, he regained the title and became only the third five-time IWGP World Junior Heavyweight champion in the title's history. Tiger Mask made his first successful title defense Jushin Thunder Liger after which he was presented with a third-generation IWGP Junior Heavyweight championship belt. While being presented with the belt he was attacked by new version of Black Tiger, the fifth version of his storyline arch enemy. After defeating and unmasking the fourth Black Tiger at Resolution'09 in a title vs. mask match, the fifth Black Tiger once again attacked Tiger Mask, gave him a Death Valley driver and unmasked him. On June 20, 2009, at Dominion 6.20, Tiger Mask defeated Black Tiger V in a mask vs. mask match. Afterwards Black Tiger removed his mask to reveal Tatsuhito Takaiwa, the first native under the Black Tiger mask.
On August 15, 2009, at G1 Climax 2009 Tour Tiger Mask lost the IWGP Junior Heavyweight title to Místico. He regained the title at NJPW's Destruction'09 show when he defeated Místico. On January 4, 2010, at Wrestle Kingdom IV in Tokyo Dome Tiger Mask lost the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship to Naomichi Marufuji. After losing a rematch to Marufuji on May 8, 2010, Tiger Mask began showing signs of a heel turn as he attacked the champion after the match. Tiger entered the 2010 Best of the Super Juniors tournament in an attempt to win his third BOSJ and on May 30 continued his heelish behaviour by refusing to shake hands with La Sombra after losing his opening match to him; the following day it was announced that Tiger had suffered a neck injury and would be sidelined for two months, forcing him to forfeit the rest of his matches in the Best of the Super Juniors tournament. He made his return on August 14, 2010, in a six-man tag team match, where he, Koji Kanemoto and Ryusuke Taguchi wrestled Pro Wrestling Noah representatives Atsushi Aoki, Ricky Marvin and Taiji Ishimori to a fifteen-minute time limit draw.
On August 22 Tiger and Kanemoto defeated Marvin and Ishimori at a Pro Wrestling Noah event to win the promotion's GHC Ju
Yuji Nagata is a Japanese professional wrestler signed to New Japan Pro Wrestling. He is known for his perennial tweener status a solid fan favorite, his stiff, shoot style wrestling technique. A two-time IWGP World Heavyweight Champion and a GHC Heavyweight Champion, he is the fifth longest-reigning IWGP Heavyweight Champion with a reign of 392 days. He held the record for most successful title defenses with 10, until Hiroshi Tanahashi broke the record at Wrestle Kingdom VI, he is the only wrestler to have won Japanese professional wrestling's three biggest singles tournaments. Before turning professional, Nagata was a successful amateur wrestler. Nagata met future professional wrestling rival Minoru Suzuki in the amateur wrestling circles. In 1986, when they both were seniors, Suzuki beat Nagata first in a Tokyo high school tournament and again at the Japanese sectionals. Competing in the Greco-Roman style, Nagata represented Japan in the Asian Championships twice, placing fifth in 1993 and placing fourth in 1994, in one World Cup at the Espoir level in 1988, in the 1991 World Championships, placing twenty-first.
Nagata trained in the NJPW Dojo. He debuted on September 14 of that year. Nagata increased in stature during the 1995 inter-promotional angle pitting NJPW loyalists against UWF International wrestlers. Taught the shoot-style by Kazuo Yamazaki, who had returned to NJPW after leaving UWFI, Nagata learned the style, his trademark since. Nagata joined the American World Championship Wrestling promotion in February 1997 as an arrogant villain, he was managed by Sonny Onoo, who acted as his translator. He began feuding with Último Dragón, with Nagata injuring Dragon's shoulder; the two rivals faced one another at Halloween Havoc on October 26, with Nagata forcing his smaller opponent to submit with an arm submission hold. They faced one another in a rematch at World War 3 on November 23, with the added stipulation that, should Dragon win, he would receive five minutes alone in the ring with the interfering Onoo. Nagata was able to pin Dragon following a distraction by Onoo. In 1998, Nagata teamed with Kensuke Sasaki and entered a tournament for the number one contendership for the WCW World Tag Team Championship.
Nagata and Sasaki won the tournament, but were unable to win the titles in their subsequent title match. Nagata returned to New Japan. Upon his return, Nagata began challenging for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. On September 23, 1998, Nagata fought Scott Norton for the vacant title in Yokohama, but was defeated. On August 28, 1999 in Tokyo and Manabu Nakanishi defeated Tatsutoshi Goto and Michiyoshi Ohara for the IWGP Tag Team Championship, they held the title until July 20, 2000, when they lost to Satoshi Kojima and Hiroyoshi Tenzan in Sapporo, Hokkaido. Nagata and Nakanishi feuded with Kojima and Tenzan for several months, but were unable to regain the title. On January 4, 2000, his mentor Kazuo Yamazaki retired and Nagata served as his final opponent, winning the match. In March 2000, Nagata formed an ill-fated stable known as Fighting Club G-EGGS, with all the stable member having legitimate sporting backgrounds; the stable included Manabu Nakanishi, Nagata's tag team partner and co-IWGP Tag Team Champion at the time, Masakazu Fukuda, Yutaka Yoshie and Brian Johnston.
Fukuda died in April 2000 from a brain hemorrhage suffered during a match with rookie Katsuyori Shibata, was honored with a ten-bell salute and a tribute show in September of that year. Johnston's participation in the group was limited after he suffered a stroke, Nagata disbanded G-EGGS on June 16, 2001. In August 2001, Nagata won the eleventh annual G1 Climax tournament, defeating Keiji Mutoh in the finals by submission. Nagata had entered the tournament twice before, but was eliminated in semi-final matches on both instances. Nagata challenged for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship once again after it was vacated by the injured Kazuyuki Fujita on January 4, 2002, but lost to Tadao Yasuda on February 16, 2002, in a tournament final. Nagata defeated Yasuda for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship on April 2002 in the Nippon Budokan. Following his victory, Nagata was attacked by Pro Wrestling Noah mainstay Yoshihiro Takayama, he held the title for thirteen months before losing to Takayama on May 2003 in the Tokyo Dome.
On January 4, 2004, he defeated Kensuke Sasaki after 12 minutes of intense action at the Tokyo Dome. In April 2005, Nagata formed "Team JAPAN", a group of former amateur wrestlers with a grudge against the younger generation of wrestlers in NJPW. On December 11, 2005, Nagata challenged Brock Lesnar for his IWGP 3rd Belt Championship but was defeated. On June 28, 2006, Nagata was announced as a participant in the 2006 G1 Climax, his eighth appearance in the tournament. Nagata challenged for the Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship at the January 4 Dome Show entitled Wrestle Kingdom in Tokyo Dome against the current Triple Crown champion, Minoru Suzuki. Nagata lost, he was knocked-out by the hold. On March 21, 2007, he won the third annual New Japan Cup, becoming the first man to win both the New Japan Cup and the G1 Climax Tournaments. On April 13, 2007, Nagata defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi to win the IWGP Heavyweight Title, marking his second reign, the first time he has held the belt sin
New Japan Pro-Wrestling
New Japan Pro-Wrestling Co. Ltd. is a Japanese professional wrestling promotion based in Nakano, Tokyo. Founded in January 1972 by Antonio Inoki, the promotion was sold to Yuke's, who sold it to Bushiroad in 2012. TV Asahi and Amuse, Inc. own minority shares of the company. Naoki Sugabayashi has served as the promotion's Chairman since September 2013, while Harold Meij has served as the President of the promotion since May 2018. Owing to its TV program aired on TV Asahi, NJPW is the largest professional wrestling promotion in Japan and the second largest promotion in the world, it was affiliated with the National Wrestling Alliance at various points in its history. NJPW has had agreements with various MMA and professional wrestling promotions around the world, including WWE, World Championship Wrestling, American Wrestling Association, World Class Championship Wrestling, Impact Wrestling, WAR, UWFi, Ring of Honor, Pride Fighting Championships, Jersey All Pro Wrestling. NJPW's biggest event is the January 4 Tokyo Dome Show, held each year since 1992 and promoted under the Wrestle Kingdom banner.
The promotion was founded by Antonio Inoki in 1972 after his departure from the Japan Pro Wrestling Alliance promotion. The first NJPW event took place on March 1972, in Tokyo. Inoki would serve as the president of the promotion until 1989, when he stepped down to pursue a political career as a member of the Japanese House of Councillors; the promotion was a member of the National Wrestling Alliance from 1975 to 1985 and once more from 1992 to 1993. NJPW was reaffiliated with the NWA in the late 2000s to the early 2010s as well. Known as "Shin Nihon Puroresu", NJPW is considered the top wrestling promotion in Japan and is comparable to WWE in the United States in terms of popularity in the country, they promote events throughout Japan with their biggest event being their annual supercard held every year on January 4 at the Tokyo Dome billed as Wrestle Kingdom. In the past NJPW has worked with WWE, World Championship Wrestling, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, Global Force Wrestling, Westside Xtreme Wrestling, among others.
The company has working agreements with five foreign promotions—Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre and The Crash Lucha Libre in Mexico, Ring of Honor and the NWA in the U. S. and the British Revolution Pro Wrestling. NJPW will host cross-promotional matches with other Japanese promotions, such as All Japan Pro Wrestling and Pro Wrestling Noah; the promotion is owned by Japanese card game company Bushiroad, which parlayed its entry to the world of professional wrestling into a best-selling trading card game, King of Pro Wrestling, appearances from NJPW stars in its various franchises. The promotion has its own governing body, the International Wrestling Grand Prix, shortened as IWGP. NJPW has eight titles: the IWGP Heavyweight, IWGP Intercontinental, IWGP United States Heavyweight, IWGP Junior Heavyweight, IWGP Tag Team, IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team, NEVER Openweight and the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championships, it holds several tournaments each year, including the G1 Climax, World Tag League, New Japan Cup and Best of the Super Juniors.
The promotion debuted a new series called NEVER in August 2010, designed to be a series of events spotlighting younger up-and-coming New Japan talent and feature more outsider participation in the promotion. The final NEVER event was held in November 2012. On January 4, 2011, New Japan announced the NJPW Invasion Tour 2011: Attack on East Coast, the promotion's first tour of the United States to be held in May 2011; the tour featured shows in Rahway, New Jersey on May 13, New York City on May 14 and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on May 15, as well as cross-promotion with American independent group Jersey All Pro Wrestling. As part of the tour, NJPW introduced the IWGP Intercontinental Championship. On January 31, 2012, Yuke's announced that it had sold all shares of New Japan Pro-Wrestling to card game company Bushiroad for ¥500 million. New Japan aired its first internet pay-per-view, the fourth day of the 2012 G1 Climax, on August 5, 2012; the October 8, 2012, King of Pro-Wrestling pay-per-view marked the first time viewers outside Japan were able to order a pay-per-view by the promotion through Ustream.
On October 5, 2012, New Japan announced the creation of the NEVER Openweight Championship, which would be contested for on the NEVER series. A two-day tournament to determine the inaugural champion was held between November 15 and 19, 2012. In February 2014, New Japan announced a partnership with ROH, which saw the promotion return to North America the following May to present two supershows. During the tour, New Japan wrestlers took part in an event held by Canadian promotion Border City Wrestling. A year NJPW and ROH announced another tour together to produce four more supershows. In June 2014, New Japan announced a partnership with the new American Global Force Wrestling organization helmed by Jeff Jarrett. In November 2014, GFW announced that it would be broadcasting NJPW's Wrestle Kingdom 9 in Tokyo Dome on pay-per-view in the United States as a four-hour event. In November 2014, the American AXS TV network announced it had acquired rights to rebroadcast a series of thirteen episodes of NJPW matches from TV Asahi.
The series premiered on January 2015, airing weekly on Fridays. Averaging 200,000 vi
Daisuke Nakae is a Japanese professional wrestler, better known by the ring name Kenoh. He wrestles in Pro Wrestling Noah, where he is a former GHC Heavyweight Champion. Kenoh began his career in Michinoku Pro Wrestling after being scouted by Jinsei Shinzaki. There, he would go on to win the Tohoku Junior Heavyweight Championship three times, before leaving Michinoku Pro and signing with Pro Wrestling Noah in 2015. Competing as a junior heavyweight, he formed a popular tag team with Hajime Ohara, the two went on to hold the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship two times, he graduated to the heavyweight division in 2017, would go on to win the Global League and the GHC Heavyweight Championship in the same year. Nakae started training nippon kempo at age of 3, while in highschool won the championship of his category. In 2003, he was crowned as the youngest All Japan kenpo champion and went to win the contest again in 2006 and 2007. Nakae signed with Michinoku Pro Wrestling in 2007 after being scouted by Jinsei Shinzaki, wrestling several exhibition bouts before debuting against Alexander Otsuka.
He went under the name of "Kenoh", a reference to the character Raoh from popular manga and anime Fist of the North Star. He spent the year in low-profile matches against fellow trainees Rui Hiugaji and Takayuki Aizawa, in late 2008 he was sent to hone his skills in Okinawa Pro Wrestling, where he adopted a parodic gimmick named "Kanmuriwashi Yoko" patterned after famous boxer Yoko "Kanmuriwashi" Gushiken. Under this character, Nakae sported an afro hairstyle similar to Gushiken's, although complete with a lucha libre mask and kickboxing attire. In September 2009, Kenoh made his return to Michinoku Pro, being introduced by Jinsei Shinzaki as a special ally to counter the fellow shoot-style wrestler Fujita "Jr." Hayato and his heel stable Kowloon. Kenoh declined an offer by Great Sasuke of having his redebut match against him and instead demanded a match against Hayato for the Tohoku Junior Heavyweight Champion, which the champion accepted. Shockingly, Kenoh won and captured the title, went to enter in a heated feud with Fujita and his stablemates.
He became the next ace of the promotion, a place vacated after Yoshitsune's departure. The same year and Rui Hiugaji took part in the Michinoku Tag League, beating the teams of Munenori Sawa and Yuta Yoshikawa and Kowloon's Fujita Hayato and Rasse, but they were defeated at the finals by another Kowloon team, Takeshi Minamino and Maguro Ooma. On the individual field, Kenoh retained the Tohoku Junior Heavyweight title before Hayato and Taro Nohashi, until he lost it to Great Sasuke. In 2011, Kenoh and Kenbai were sent to compete in Pro Wrestling Noah's NTV G Cup Junior Heavyweight Tag League, where they got a big victory over heavy favourite team No Mercy, with Kenoh pinning Kenta, they challenged ANMU for the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship, but they were defeated. Kenoh recaptured the Tohoku Junior Heavyweight Championship from Rui Hiugaji in September 2011. Started 2012, he claimed to have the goal to "change Michinoku Pro," which few understood, but it was all revealed when Taro Nohashi betrayed Fujita Hayato and expelled him from Kowloon, instead bringing Kenoh as the new leader.
This made Kenoh turn heel, adopting a more arrogant persona for himself, they renamed the stable as Asura, replacing with Hiugaji the members that had followed Hayato. They feuded with Hayato and his remnant group, called Bad Boy. Kenoh and Fujita clashed again, this time Kenoh lost the match and the title, but he retaliated eliminating Bad Boy from the Michinoku Tag League 2012 to win it with stablemate Hiugaji. In 2013, Kenoh pinned Hayato to gain the Tohoku Junior Heavyweight Championship back, but on December 13, he vacated it, announcing his intention of joining Pro Wrestling Noah. Kenoh returned to Noah as a freelancer, joining the new Choukibou-gun stable in 2014 and forming a tag team with stablemate Hajime Ohara. On August 2, 2014, Kenoh and Ohara won the 2014 NTV G+ Cup Junior Heavyweight Tag League by defeating Daisuke Harada and Quiet Storm in the finals. On October 12, Kenoh and Ohara defeated Atsushi Kotoge and Taiji Ishimori to win the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship.
They lost the title to El Desperado and Taka Michinoku on March 15, 2015. On March 28, Kenoh signed a contract with Noah ending his affiliation with Michinoku Pro. On March 19, 2016, Kenoh and Ohara won the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship for the second time by defeating Atsushi Kotoge and Daisuke Harada, they lost the title back to Kotoge and Harada on April 5. On July 5, Kenoh defeated Genba Hirayanagi in a four-man tournament final to win one of Noah's three spots in New Japan Pro Wrestling's 2016 Super J-Cup. On July 20, Kenoh defeated Gurukun Mask in his first round match in the tournament. On August 21, he was eliminated from the tournament in the second round by reigning IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Kushida. On December 23, 2016, after losing to Takashi Sugiura and Alejandro Saez, Kenoh announced the break up of Kenohara. Kenoh and Ohara wrestled their last match as a team on December 24, defeating Taiji Ishimori and Hitoshi Kumano. Kenoh's heavyweight debut was on January 7, 2017, in a tag team match where he and partner Masa Kitamiya defeated Akitoshi Saito and Muhammad Yone.
Following this match, the pairing made a challenge to GHC Tag Team Championship holders Go Shiozaki and Maybach Taniguchi to a title match. On January 21, Kenoh and Kitamiya defeated Shiozaki and Taniguchi to become the new GHC Tag Team Champions. On February 24, Kenoh turned on Kitam
Minoru Tanaka (wrestler)
Minoru Tanaka is a Japanese professional wrestler. Tanaka first gained prominence in Fujiwara Gumi and Battlarts before moving on to New Japan Pro Wrestling, where he became a four time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion, a five time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion and the winner of the 2006 Best of the Super Juniors tournament. After leaving NJPW, he joined All Japan Pro Wrestling, where he found continued success in the junior heavyweight and tag team ranks upon winning the World Junior Hevyweight Championship once and the All Asia Tag Team Championship twice. From 2013 to 2016, Tanaka worked for Wrestle-1, he is a freelancer, competes in Pro Wrestling Noah, where he has held the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship twice. He is the current GHC Junior Heavyweight Champion, making him the second man to hold all three major Japanese junior heavyweight singles titles as well as the only man to hold all five major junior heavyweight titles in Japan. Minoru Tanaka was a shootboxer.
He started his career as a wrestler in Fujiwara Gumi, trained by Yoshiaki Fujiwara. In late 1995, Tanaka and everyone else in the promotion abandoned Fujiwara and formed their own promotion, led by Yuki Ishikawa. Despite being a simulated shoot style professional wrestling promotion, like its predecessor cooperated with other federations and styles, such as Fighting Network Rings, Michinoku Pro and Big Japan Pro Wrestling. Tanaka's first championship, the UWA World Middleweight Championship, came in 1996, he won Frontier Martial Arts Wrestling's Independent World Junior Heavyweight Championship. Tanaka made his New Japan Pro Wrestling debut on April 10, 1999 and would proceed to take part in Best of the Super Juniors in block B. Tanaka would reappear for New Japan in late 1999 to early 2000 before he joined the New Japan roster as a full-time competitor, his natural talent enabled him to rise in the junior heavyweight ranks and win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship in July with Koji Kanemoto, who used a similar but more ground-oriented style.
The Kanemoto-Tanaka combination was reminiscent of the old Akira Maeda-Nobuhiko Takada combination in 1987. In October, Tanaka won the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship - thus becoming the first man to hold both junior titles at the same time. In March 2001, Tanaka and Kanemoto lost their titles to El Samurai and Jushin Thunder Liger, in June he lost in the finals of 2001's Best of the Super Juniors to Liger and in July he lost his singles title. With all these losses, Tanaka finished 2001 strong, winning the G1 Jr. Six Man Tag Team Tournament Masahito Kakihara and Masayuki Naruse. For a second time in his career, Tanaka held both junior titles, defeating Masahito Kakihara for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion and defeating Gedo and Jado with Jushin Thunder Liger for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship. After Koji Kanemoto defeated Tanaka in 2002's Best of the Super Juniors, Kanemoto defeated Tanaka once again for his IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship, a month lost his tag team championship to Tsuyoshi Kikuchi and Yoshinobu Kanemaru.
In late 2002 Tanaka began wearing a mask and calling himself "HEAT" in reference to the Game Boy Advance video game Toukon Heat. In only his second match under the persona, Tanaka faced on Kanemoto in an attempt to regain the title but failed. Like the game, the HEAT character floundered in his early years with the only positive being his victory of the Naeba Cup Tag Tournament alongside Manabu Nakanishi. Heat began to pick up steam in 2003, defeated Jado in December to become a three-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion. In September 2004, Heat returned to his birth name and reunited with Kanemoto to challenge Gedo and Jado for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship. Before the match could end, Minoru turned on Kanemoto and helped Gedo and Jado win, turning heel and joining CTU in the process. Heat's true success came after turning heel, though he competed as both Heat and Minoru Tanaka after joining CTU. After losing to Tiger Mask in the semi final of the 2004 Best of the Super Juniors, he found his new rival and defeated Tiger Mask.
Their rivalry continued over the year and culminated at Toukon Festival: Wrestling World where Heat lost his IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship to Tiger Mask. After this loss, he dropped the mask and began wrestling as Minoru Tanaka once again until dropping his surname, calling himself Minoru, he competed as Masked CTU-J sporadically from this point forward. On May 14, Minoru teamed up with new CTU recruit Hirooki Goto and defeated Koji Kanemoto and Wataru Inoue to become a three-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion and would lose them to El Samurai and Ryusuke Taguchi in early 2006. In 2006, Minoru joined the American Total Nonstop Action Wrestling promotion as a member of Team Japan, one of the four teams competing in the TNA 2006 World X-Cup Tournament, he debuted in TNA on April 23, 2006 at Lockdown, where he teamed with Hirooki Goto against Team USA members Sonjay Dutt, Jay Lethal and Alex Shelley. Team Japan defeated USA. On the April 27 episode of Impact!, Goto and Minoru lost to Dutt and Shelley, giving a first round victory and two points to Team USA.
Following his stint in TNA, Minoru man