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Puroresu Dojo

"Work or shoot, it's still a competition" -- Cowboy Bill Watts

*** Below is what I wrote when I first started this website in 1995. Several things no longer apply.

First of all, you may wonder why I call myself the "Great Hisa". I don't claim to be great. I just use the word as a tribute to all those Japanese and Japanese-American wrestlers who made big in North America as "lone wolves": Oki Shikina, Great Togo, Harold Sakata, Duke Keomuka, Tojo Yamamoto, Hiro Matsuda, Umanosuke Ueda, Great Kojika, Mr. Pogo, the Great Kabuki, Great Muta, etc..

As most of my friends know, I've been a big pro-wrestling fan for many years. Unfortunately, first thing that people in the U.S. think of when they hear the word "pro-wrestling" is either World Wrestling Federation or Hulk Hogan. As you can find pro-wrestling almost everywhere in the world, there are so many different styles of pro-wrestling. There are styles which really embarass you while there are styles that wouldn't let you say "it's still pro-wrestling. So it must be fake." In Japan, we look at the skill and fighting spirit of the wrestlers more than their gimmicks. People don't appreciate the wrestling matches with too many storylines or gimmicks unless the wrestlers show their spirit.

Puroresu is a sport. It is not just a shorter way to say "purofesshonaru resuringu (professional wrestling in Japanese pronounciation)." Around 1990, I started using the word PURORESU on the Internet and the BBS to distinguish the pro-wrestling of Japan which was made popular by the legends like Rikidozan, Antonio Inoki, and Giant Baba from the American pro-wrestling. Whether it is scripted or not, puroresu is still an athletic competition through which the wrestlers determine who can appeal to the fans the most. The wrestlers answer to the fans who come to the arena with their indescribable dream. Unfortunately, this great sport of puroresu was introduced to the North American hardcore fans by some people who seems to have almost no understanding of Japanese people. It is hard to understand the perspective of people in different countries without living in those places. However, since 1990, I have been explaining the perspective of typical Japanese wrestling fans through online BBSs and the Internet, and more fans have started understanding what makes puroresu so different from the American pro-wrestling.

Hisaharu Tanabe      

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