Von and morris
Shinsuke Nakamura is enjoying a great WWE career, but his time in NJPW was out of this world, delivering classic match after classic match.
Modern wrestling fans know itShinsuke NakamuraFor his antics in WWE, whether it be his infamous theme song, his career as Rey Nakamura, or playing guitar with Rick Boogs, WWE has positioned him in front of its audiences. However, fans of his pre-WWE work know that there's a lot more to Nakmaura than his in-ring mannerisms orstrange championshipsin the company. your previous careerJapan's new pro wrestlingintroduced him as the superstar he can be.
RELATED:Shinsuke Nakamura's 10 best fights according to Cagematch.net
Nakamura has the ability to carry promotion on his back, and he showed it during his time with New-Japan. With some fascinating games throughout his years in different divisions, fans of his work know that he is so much more than what WWE used in his company. Given the opportunity, Nakamura can produce incredible professional wrestling matches.
THE VIDEO OF THE ATHLETE OF THE DAY
10 Contra Tetsuya Naito - 9.05
The Grade One - or G1 - tournamentis one of New Japan Pro Wrestling's strengths and has an incredible history. Dating back to 1974, the round-robin tournament features the best singles competition the company has to offer and competes over a four-week period to crown the best boxer of the year.
In 2011, Shinsuke Nakamura won seven of his matches in the tournament to be crowned the champion, most recently defeating "Stardust Genius" Tetsuya Naito in a critically acclaimed match. Although he couldn't winIWGP Heavyweight ChampionshipAfter winning the tournament, this match cemented him as a main event player for the company.
9 Gegen Hiroshi Tanahashi - 9.16
At the height of the company's popularity, New Japan arguably had some of the best Japanese talent at all levels of promotion. While the IWGP Heavyweight Championship is the promotion's most prestigious championship, incredible wrestlers have achieved it.Campeonato Intercontinental IWGPHe feels so important that he will go to extremes to beat him.
RELATED:10 things fans might not know about Shinsuke Nakamura
After winning the 2014 New Japan Cup, Nakamura decided not to use his championship match for the Heavyweight Championship and instead focused on regaining the Intercontinental Championship from Hiroshi Tanahashi at the Invasion Attack 2014 Championship and showed why he should do it. considered the cornerstone of this department.
8 Gegen Tomohiro Ishii - 9.21
Before the 2014 G1 Finals, Shinsuke Nakamura showed great performances and overcame many obstacles. Whether it was Gajin talent like DH Smith or Shelton Benjamin, or local talent like Katsuyori Shibata, Nakamura worked hard to bring down anyone who stood in his way.
Participating in Block A of the tournament, he has not faced a strong opponent in his career except for the strong Tomooro Ishii. While Nakamura is known for his arsenal of strong style, there are few new Japanese talents who can beat Ishii, and Nakmaura earned his victory the hard way in an incredible fight.
7 vs. Kazuki Okada - 9.28
When it comes to Superstars produced by New Japan, they don't exceedKazuki-Okada. Rainmaker not only produced fights of incredible quality during his reign at the helm of New Japan, but also cemented himself as one of the best in wrestling today.
RELATED:10 things AEW fans need to know about Kazuchika Okada
Although Okada and Nakamura had crossed paths earlier in individual competition, they reached the peak of their abilities early in their careers. At the 2014 G1 Tournament Finals, both were established stars with a previous tournament win and both were battling for second place. In a match that showcased the strengths of both, Okada emerged victorious to secure his second G1 win of his career.
6 vs. Kazuki Okada - 9.37
Kazuchika Okada and Shinsuke Nakmaura came to the same block in the 2015 tournament barely a year after their meeting in the G1 tournament finals. Although they didn't meet in the finals that year, this match was arguably better than before. previous.
Desperate to prove they belonged in this year's finals, both men put on an incredible performance on day eighteen of the tournament.long tournament, after he already had numerous matches on his account. Ultimately, Nakamura would emerge victorious this time, even making it to the finals of the tournament that year, his stock only strengthened by defeating Okada.
5 v Ibushi City – 9.44
In New Japan in 2013, two things were certain that went into the G1 Climax that year: first, Shinsuke Nakamura had already established himself as a star in the company, and second, thatibushi cityHe was well on his way to becoming the future of PhD. When their patches crossed paths in singles competition for the first time during the tournament, fans saw magic in the ring.
Ibushi was yet to establish himself as the top player he's known for in 2013, but by working alongside established talents like Nakamura throughout the tournament, he showed skills fans knew he had.
4 Gegen Hiroshi Tanahashi - 9.51
While the 2011 G1 tournament was Nakamura's winning year, the nights he wasn't playing a tournament match also put him in some key situations. In New Japan, matches don't rank much higher than a chance to win.World Championship, which was then owned by Hiroshi Tanahashi.
RELATED:New Japan: 10 Fighters Vince had no idea what to do with it
The Ace of the Universe and King of Strong styles have faced each other in the ring many times and have consistently traded wins throughout their careers. That night, with the IWGP Heavyweight Championship at stake, Tanahashi emerged victorious to retain his championship, but it would only be a rest stop on the way for Nakamura to win the historic tournament.
3 vs. AJ Styles - 9.54
WhileEstilos AJand Shinsuke Nakamura crossed paths many times today during their respective stints in New Japan and WWE, their first meeting was one that opened many's eyes to the magic these two could create in the ring.
With the IWGP Intercontinental Championship at stakefight kingdomOn January 10th, Styles and Nakamura had one of the best fights of their careers. with memories of youFailed WrestleMania matchStill fresh in fans' minds, this duel serves as a time capsule to see just how good both players can be in the right situation.
2 Gegen Hiroshi Tanahashi - 9.64
Few fighters have won the G1 tournament multiple times as it is incredibly difficult. With the talent involved in the tournament every year, coming out on top in the round-robin format is no easy feat, and both Shinsuke Nakamura and Hiroshi Tanahashi both strived to do just that in 2015.
Having crossed paths before, this time there was no championship at stake in the tournament finals clash. Ultimately, this would be Nakamura's last G1 tournament before leaving the companyNXT, and Tanahashi would raise his hand at the end of the night.
1 vs. Ibushi City – 9.72
On a map like Wrestle Kingdom 9, it's difficult for individual wrestlers to stand out when there's so much great talent on display on the show. With wrestlers like Okada, Tanahashi and AJ Styles all trying to steal the show, every wrestler played their best game that night.
However, it's impossible to say that Nakamura and Kota Ibushi stole the show in their match for the IWGP Intercontinental Championship that night. As Nakamura's highest-rated match in New Japan, they gave it their all in the infamous match, even opting for a fist bump at the end to show their mutual respect after a great display of athleticism.