Taiji Ishimori (石森太二 Ishimori Taiji?, born February 10, 1983) is a Japanese professional wrestler currently working for Pro Wrestling NOAH, where he holds the record of being its longest reigning GHC Junior Heavyweight Champion.
Professional wrestling careerEdit
A former judoka and amateur wrestler, Taiji Ishimori was trained in Toryumon Mexico and debuted against Fumiyuki Hashimoto in 2002. He went to compete in the Young Dragons Cup and won after beating Jun Ogawauchi, Henry III Sugawara and lastly Condotti Shuji. Shortly after, he was given a pop idol gimmick and formed a boy band-like faction with Kei and Shu Sato, calling themselves the Sailor Boys. Ishimori was intended to become the "ace" (the top student) of his graduating class, even going so far as to release an album, "Keep in Journey", to support their gimmick. However, the fan interest never matched his hype, and Ishimori became one of Toryumon's bigger failures. Sailor Boys' rival faction, Los Salseros Japoneses (Takeshi Minamino, Pineapple Hanai and Mango Fukuda) was in turn more successful with the fans. While in the Toryumon X brand, Sailor Boys also feuded with Mini Crazy MAX (Mini CIMA, SUWAcito and Small Dandy Fujii), defeating them in X's debut show.
Unlike the rest of his class, Taiji did his Japanese debut for All Japan Pro Wrestling's Wrestle-1 project. Returning to Mexico, he won the UWA World Welterweight Championship on May 11, 2003 defeating Super Crazy to win the belt. Ishimori defended the UWA World Welterweight Championship 2 times, against Fuerza Guerrera on August 31, 2003 and against YOSSINO on December 7, 2003. He dropped the UWA championship to Takeshi Minamino on August 29, 2004. He tried to regain the title in the Dragon Fire The Final Challenge event, but it was unsuccessful. Also, at the last Toryumon X show, Sailor Boys challenged Gedo, Jado and Katsushi Takemura for the UWA World Trios Championship, but they were defeated.
HUSTLE (2004-2005) Edit
Like the rest of Toryumon X's wrestlers, Ishimori made some appearances in HUSTLE under various masked characters, almost always as opponent of HUSTLE Kamen Rangers.
New Japan Pro Wrestling (2004–2005, 2016)Edit
Following the title loss, Ishimori began working for New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) as one of their "Young Lions" prospects. Very early in his NJPW run he was teamed up with Hiroshi Tanahashi for a one night U-30 (Under 30) tag team tournament. In the first round the team defeated Blue Wolf and Katsuhiko Nakajima and in the finals they defeated Ryusuke Taguchi and Shinsuke Nakamura to win the tournament. At one point he teamed up with his mentor Ultimo Dragon for an unsuccessful shot at the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship, held by Gedo and Jado at the time. By mid-2005 Taiji Ishimori had left NJPW and begun working for All Japan Pro Wrestling.
On July 20, 2016 Ishimori returned to NJPW to take part in 2016 Super J-Cup tournament. However he was eliminated from the tournament in the first round by Kushida. After winning the NTV G+ Cup Junior Heavyweight Tag League with ACH, Ishimori and ACH challenged for GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship against the team of Daisuke Harada and Atsushi Kotoge at Super J-Cup Final event on August 21, where the champions retained the title.
On October 21 at Road to Power Struggle event, Ishimori and ACH entered the 2016 Super Junior Tag Tournament. They advanced to the next round after defeating the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions, The Young Bucks in the first round. After defeating David Finlay and Ricochet in the semifinals on October 30, Ishimori and ACH were defeated in the finals of the tournament by Roppongi Vice (Beretta and Rocky Romero) on November 5.
DragonDoor (2005-2006) Edit
In mid-2005, Ishimori was hired by DragonDoor a company created with the approval of Toryumon by unhappy fighters with Dragon Gate. As in Toryumon X, Taiji was chosen as the main face of the promotion, leading a group formed by Kota Ibushi, Little Dragon, Milanito Collection at and Venezia to oppose the group heel Aagan Iisou Shuji Kondo, "brother" YASSHI, Takuya Sugawara, Toru Owashi and Shogo Takagi). However, again as in Toryumon, Ishimori was not able to connect with the fans, and on the contrary it was Aagan Iisou who got all the support of the public. After participating with Ibushi in the Aquamarine Cup Tag Tournament unsuccessfully, Ishimori turned his attention to KAGETORA and his group STONED (Kei Sato, Shu Sato and Manjimaru), who had attacked Ishimori and Dragon in a match. However, due to the disruption of the company's sponsorship, Dragondoor closed soon after all wrestlers were released from their contracts.
All Japan Pro Wrestling (2005-2006)Edit
In August 2005, Ishimori debuted in AJPW teaming with Keiji Mutoh. They, along with Kaz Hayashi, Satoshi Kojima and other face wrestlers, feuded with the villainous Voodoo Murders group. Ishimori also started teaming with another former NJPW rookie, Katsuhiko Nakajima, eventually taking part in the AJPW 2006 Junior Tag League. Together they defeated Kikujiro (Nobutaka Araya) & Kikutaro and Akira & Ryuji Hijikata, but they passed without achieving much success. Ended the league, Ishimori left All Japan.
El Dorado Wrestling (2006) Edit
In April 2006, Ishimori became part of El Dorado Wrestling, the new incarnation of DragonDoor. Ishimori, was the leader of the same group in which DragonDoor happened to be with El Blazer and Venezia was replaced by Jumping Kid Okimoto and fought against Aagan Iisou and STONED during the first events of the company, but shortly after, during the establishment of the roles of face and heel in El Dorado, Ishimori publicly renounced his status of ace and stopped appearing in the company to wrestle in Pro Wrestling NOAH. Despite losing his leader, Ishimori's group went ahead without him until the next season of promotion.
Pro Wrestling NOAH (2006-present)Edit
Ishimori began working as a freelance wrestler for Pro Wrestling NOAH in March, 2006 and often worked as part of the "SEM" promotion that was considered the "Training ground" for Noah wrestlers. He began teaming up with KENTA, wrestling on many shows together, trying to earn a match for the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship. The team failed to win the title on their initial chance. Due to being trained in Mexico Ishimori often wrestled against Mexican Luchadores who toured with Noah, facing such opponents as Charly Manson or Abismo Negro. He also wrestled on the NOAH / Asistencia Asesoría y Administración (AAA) co-promoted show TripleSEM on September 3, 2007 teaming with El Elegido and KENTA to lose to the Mexican Powers (Crazy Boy, Joe Lider and Juventud Guerrera). In 2007 Ishimori became a full-time NOAH wrestler and shortly after Ishimori and Kenta won the Tag Champions. The team went to Dragon Gate and defeated the team of BxB Hulk and Shingo Takagi on March 20, 2008. to bring the Noah Junior Heavyweight Tag Title back to Noah. Ishimori and Kenta successfully defended the title against Ricky Marvin and Kotaro Suzuki and also the team of Bryan Danielson and Eddie Edwards from Ring of Honor. On July 13, 2008 Ishimori and Kenta were defeated by Yoshinobu Kanemaru and Kotaro Suzuki and lost the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship. In September, 2008 the team won the 2008 Nippon TV Cup Junior Heavyweight Tag League, with 12 points for 6 victories including defeating the reigning GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag team champions in the last match. In 2009 Ishimori began teaming regularly with Ricky Marvin, chasing after the Junior tag team titles. In early 2010 the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag title became vacant when Kotaro Suzuki suffered a knee injury. Ishimori and Marvin teamed up for a tournament to determine the next champions. They defeated Bobby Fish and Eddie Edwards in the first round and Genba Hirayanagi and Yoshinbou Kanemaru in the finals to win the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship. On August 22 Ishimori and Marvin lost the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship to New Japan Pro Wrestling representatives Koji Kanemoto and Tiger Mask IV. On January 27, 2013, Ishimori defeated Shuji Kondo to win the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship for the first time. Through Noah's working relationship with Ring of Honor, Ishimori made his debut for the promotion on May 4, 2013, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, facing Eddie Edwards in a losing effort. During the following day's tapings of Ring of Honor Wrestling,Ishimori defeated Roderick Strong in a singles match. After a 405-day reign, the longest in the title's history, Ishimori lost the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship to Daisuke Harada on March 8, 2014. He won the title for the second time on December 23, 2015, by defeating Taichi. Ishimori lost the title to Taichi's Suzuki-gun's stablemate Yoshinobu Kanemaru on February 24.
On July 5, 2016, Ishimori defeated Yoshinari Ogawa in a four-man tournament final to win one of Noah's three spots in NJPW's 2016 Super J-Cup. In this same month, Ishimori took part in the 2016 NTV G+ Cup Junior Heavyweight Tag League with his partner being American wrestler ACH. The pair won the tag league defeating Hajime Ohara and Kenoh for a spot in the final match then defeating Momo no Seishun (Daisuke Harada and Atsushi Kotoge), at the time the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship holders, in the final match. Their title match against Momo no Seishun was held on the final of the 2016 Super J-Cup and they were defeated.
Upon Atsushi Kotoge's vacation of the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship, Ishimori faced Hajime Ohara for the vacant title on January 7, 2017, Noah's first show of the year. Ishimori lost the match to Ohara. Following a victory over Hi69 on January 9, the two agreed to form a tag team and made their interest in the newly vacant GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship known. The team squared off with the team of HAYATA and YO-HEY on February 18 for the vacated titles and defeated them to become the thirtieth champions. Following the win, the pair dubbed their team "XX" and accepted the challenge of their first challengers Daisuke Harada and Tadasuke for the March 12 'Great Voyage in Yokohama' show where they won. On March 25 XX teamed up with Hitoshi Kumano and the GHC Junior Heavyweight Champion Hajime Ohara to face RATEL'S in a two out of three falls eight-man tag team match. During the final moments of the match Kumano and Ohara had miss communication with XX which lead them to losing the match. After the match Kumano and Ohara atacked Ishimori and challengd them for their titles. On April 22 XX defeated Back Breakers (Ohara and Kumano) to make their second successfull defense of the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championships. On May 27 Ishimori challenged HAYATA into a GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship title match. On June 25 Ishimori defeated HAYATA to win the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship for the third time, becoming a double crown champion in the process. On August 26 Ishimori and Hi69 lost the titles to HAYATA and YO-HEY. On October 1 Ishimori lost the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship to Daisuke Harada.
Asistencia Asesoría y Administración (2006-2007, 2010, 2015-2016)Edit
Through NOAH's working relationship with AAA in Mexico Ishimori sometimes travells to Mexico, wrestling for AAA. This began in 2006 when he travelled to Mexico to team up with El Oriental and Naomichi Marufuji to defeat The Mexican Powers (Crazy Boy, Joe Lider and Juventud Guerrera). Subsequently he appeared on AAA's 2007 Rey de Reyes event, teaming with El Alebrije, El Zorro and Brazo de Plata to defeat Los Vipers Revolusion (Antifaz, Histeria, Mr. Niebla and Kaoma, Jr.). On March 19, 2010 Ishimori teamed up with Takeshi Morishima to defeat La Hermandad 187 ("The Brotherhood of 187"; Nicho el Millonario and Joe Lider) to win the AAA World Tag Team Championship, representing the AAA heel ("bad guy") faction La Legión Extranjera ("The Foreign Legion"). On May 23, 2010 Morishima and Ishimori lost the AAA World Tag Team Championship to the team of Atsushi Aoki and Go Shiozaki during Pro Wrestling NOAH's NOAH Navigation With Breeze - Day 1 show in Niigata, Niigata, Japan.
Ishimori returned to AAA on May 24, 2015, when he, Atsushi Kotoge and Yoshihiro Takayama represented Pro Wrestling Noah in the Lucha Libre World Cup. They were, however, defeated in the first round of the tournament by the Dream Team (Myzteziz, El Patrón Alberto and Rey Mysterio Jr.).
- Finishing moves
- 450° splash
- Hermosillo (Double underhook piledriver) – 2006–present
- Revolución (Pumphandle sitout side powerslam, sometimes preceded by a fireman's carry) – 2011–present
- Superstar Elbow (Handspring backflip elbow drop) – 2002–2006, still used rarely
- Telaraña (Hammerlock cradle DDT) – 2006–present
- Signature moves
- Death Valley driver – adopted from Takeshi Minamino
- Flip DDT
- High-angle senton bomb
- Mexican Roll (Scoop powerslam transitioned into a modified reverse rolling prawn hold)
- Moonsault slam
- Multiple kick variations
- Drop, sometimes missile
- Handspring enzuigiri
- Springboard somersault drop
- Tiger feint
- Multiple suplex variations
- Cobra clutch
- Running hurricanrana
- Sakauchi (Crucifix driver)
- Superstar 619 (Tiger feint hurricanrana)
- Superstar Quebrada (Springboard moonsault onto a standing opponent outside of the ring)
- With Hi69
- Double team finishing moves
- Aided snap swinging neckbreaker
- Double team finishing moves
- Entrance themes
Championships and accomplishmentsEdit
- Asistencia Asesoría y Administración
- AAA World Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Takeshi Morishima
- New Japan Pro Wrestling
- U-30 One Night Tag Tournament (2004) – with Hiroshi Tanahashi
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- PWI ranked him #204 of the top 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2011
- PWI ranked him #278 of the top 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2016
- Pro Wrestling NOAH
- GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship (3 times)
- GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship (5 times) – with KENTA (1), Ricky Marvin (1), Atsushi Kotoge (2) and Hi69 (1)
- Nippon TV Cup Junior Heavyweight Tag League (2007, 2008) – with KENTA
- NTV G+ Cup Junior Heavyweight Tag League (2012) – with Atsushi Kotoge
- NTV G+ Cup Junior Heavyweight Tag League (2016) – with ACH
- Super J-Cup Qualifying Tournament A (2016)
- Toryumon X
Luchas de Apuestas recordEdit
|Winner (wager)||Loser (wager)||Location||Event||Date||Notes|
|Taiji Ishimori (hair)||Taichi (title)||Tokyo, Japan||Destiny 2015||December 23, 2015|
- ↑ Cite error: Invalid
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- ↑ "NJPW Chrono Stream ~ Masahiro Chono 20th Anniversary" (in German). CageMatch.net. November 3, 2004. http://www.cagematch.net/?id=1&nr=16490. Retrieved March 24, 2010.
- ↑ "Super J-Cup 2016" (in Japanese). New Japan Pro Wrestling. http://www.njpw.co.jp/match/detail_result.php?e=1175. Retrieved 2016-07-20.
- ↑ Macklin, Matthew (October 21, 2016). "10/21 NJPW Road to Power Struggle report". Pro Wrestling Insider. http://pwinsider.com/article/105517/1021-njpw-road-to-power-struggle-report.html?p=1. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- ↑ Meltzer, Dave (October 30, 2016). "Daily Update: Hell in a Cell, Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte, NJPW tag tournament". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. http://www.f4wonline.com/daily-updates/daily-update-hell-cell-sasha-banks-vs-charlotte-njpw-tag-tournament-223626. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- ↑ Rose, Bryan (November 4, 2016). "NJPW Power Struggle live results: Tetsuya Naito vs. Jay Lethal". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. http://www.f4wonline.com/japan/njpw-power-struggle-live-results-tetsuya-naito-vs-jay-lethal-224011. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- ↑ "NOAH Summer Navigation 2006 - Tag 1" (in German). CageMatch.net. July 1, 2006. http://www.cagematch.net/?id=1&nr=6655. Retrieved March 24, 2010.
- ↑ Yoav (September 3, 2007). "Super Luchas desde Japón: Resultados TripleSEM en el Differ Ariake de Tokio (3 SEP 07)" (in Spanish). SuperLuchas. http://superluchas.net/2007/09/03/super-luchas-desde-japon-resultados-triplesem-en-el-differ-ariake-de-tokio-3-sep-07/. Retrieved September 12, 2009.
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 9.2 "Global Honored Crown Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Title". Wrestling-titles.com. February 18, 2010. http://www.wrestling-titles.com/japan/noah/ghc-jt.html. Retrieved March 24, 2010.
- ↑ "NOAH Northern Navigation '08 - Tag 10" (in German). CageMatch.net. June 1, 2008. http://www.cagematch.net/?id=1&nr=21946. Retrieved March 24, 2010.
- ↑ "NOAH European Navigation 2008 - Tag 10" (in German). CageMatch.net. June 21, 2008. http://www.cagematch.net/?id=1&nr=22613. Retrieved March 24, 2010.
- ↑ "NTV Junior Heavyweight Tag Team League 2008". ProWrestlingHistory.com. August 23 – September 6, 2008. http://www.prowrestlinghistory.com/supercards/japan/noah/ntv.html#2008. Retrieved March 24, 2010.
- ↑ "NJ in NOAH results; Kanemoto & Tiger win belts, Nakamura loses". Strong Style Spirit. 2010-08-22. http://www.puroresufan.com/njpw/?p=2007. Retrieved 2010-08-22.
- ↑ (in Japanese) Pro Wrestling Noah. http://www.noah.co.jp/result.php?tour_id=1101. Retrieved 2013-01-28.
- ↑ Caldwell, James (2013-05-05). "ROH News: "Border Wars" iPPV results & news from Sat. night". Pro Wrestling Torch. http://pwtorch.com/artman2/publish/ROH_News_29/article_70397.shtml. Retrieved 2013-05-05.
- ↑ Namako, Jason (2013-05-05). "Spoilers: 5/5 ROH TV Tapings from Toronto, Canada". WrestleView. http://www.wrestleview.com/roh-indy-wrestling-news/41307-spoilers-5-5-roh-tv-tapings-from-toronto-canada. Retrieved 2013-05-06.
- ↑ "「Great Voyage 2014 in Tokyo」方舟進章～有明春の陣～" (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. http://www.noah.co.jp/result.php?tour_id=1254. Retrieved 2014-03-08.
- ↑ "Destiny 2015" (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. http://noah.co.jp/result.php?tour_id=1510. Retrieved 2015-12-23.
- ↑ "The Second Navig.2016" (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. http://www.noah.co.jp/result.php?tour_id=1555. Retrieved 2016-02-24.
- ↑ (in Japanese) Pro Wrestling Noah. 2016-07-05. http://noah.co.jp/news_detail.php?news_id=8719. Retrieved 2016-07-05.
- ↑ "プロレスリング・ノア公式サイト | PRO-WRESTLING NOAH OFFICIAL SITE" (in ja). noah.co.jp. http://noah.co.jp/result.php?tour_id=1626.
- ↑ "プロレスリング・ノア公式サイト | PRO-WRESTLING NOAH OFFICIAL SITE" (in ja). noah.co.jp. http://noah.co.jp/result.php?tour_id=1619.
- ↑ "プロレスリング・ノア公式サイト | PRO-WRESTLING NOAH OFFICIAL SITE" (in ja). noah.co.jp. http://noah.co.jp/result.php?tour_id=1722.
- ↑ "「俺とHi69の持ってる可能性ならヘビーのタッグを狙うことだってできる。NOAH the REBORNって言ってるなら､全部を覆す!(石森)」2月18日(土)博多スターレーン大会 試合後コメント" (in ja). noah.co.jp. http://noah.co.jp/news_detail.php?news_id=9682.
- ↑ "Asistencia Asesoria y Administracion Rey de Reyes Tournament". ProWrestlingHistory.com. March 18, 2007. http://www.prowrestlinghistory.com/supercards/mexico/aaa/rey.html#2007. Retrieved February 19, 2009.
- ↑ Cite error: Invalid
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- ↑ "De última hora: En Japón los cinturones AAA cambian de manos, los nuevos campeones vienen a Triplemania 18" (in Spanish). SuperLuchas Magazine. May 23, 2010. http://superluchas.net/2010/05/23/de-ultima-hora-en-japon-los-cinturones-aaa-cambian-de-manos-los-nuevos-campeones-vienen-a-triplemania%c2%a018/. Retrieved May 24, 2010.
- ↑ Boutwell, Josh (May 24, 2015). "AAA Lucha Libre World Cup Results - 5/24/15 (Live results)". Wrestleview. http://www.wrestleview.com/misc-news/54563-aaa-lucha-libre-world-cup-results-5-24-15-live-ippv-results. Retrieved May 24, 2015.
- ↑ "6/3 & 6/5 AAA “Lucha World Cup” Results – USA/Lucha Underground vs. Team AAA finals, TNA represented in men’s & women’s tournament, Noah, Mysterio, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. June 5, 2016. http://www.pwtorch.com/site/2016/06/05/63-65-aaa-lucha-world-cup-results-usalucha-underground-vs-team-aaa-finals-tna-represented-mens-womens-tournament-noah-mysterio/. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- ↑ Cite error: Invalid
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- ↑ "Results". Puro Love. http://www.purolove.com/noah/results/13shinynavi.php. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
- ↑ Kent, Peter (2005-03-11). "VIOLENT PANDA Wrestling Digest 03.11.05". 411mania.com. http://www.411mania.com/wrestling/columns/29201/VIOLENT-PANDA-Wrestling-Digest-03.11.05.htm. Retrieved 2013-03-21.