Mao Inoue (井上 麻生, Ionue Mao, born January 28, 1997) is a Japanese professional wrestler, better known by the ring name MAO (stylised in all capital letters). He currently works for Dramatic Dream Team (DDT), where he is a former one-time KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Champion and Ironman Heavymetalweight Champion and KO-D Tag Team Champion and he's currently in an overseas excursion.

Professional wrestling Career[edit | edit source]

Inoue was in high school a backyard wrestler and he filmed his pro wrestling matches and posted them to Youtube. The videos caught the attention of Dramatic Dream Team president Sanshiro Takagi.

DDT Pro-Wrestling (2015-2019)[edit | edit source]

On August 2, 2015 DDT's president Sanshiro Takagi announced that Inoue would make his debut match on August 23 at DDT's most important pay-per-view event Ryogoku Peter Pan. After the announcement, Inoue was assigned to DDT's sub-brand DDT New Attitude (DNA) which was to showcase of all DDT Pro-Wrestling up and coming young talent prospects. On August 23 at the Ryogoku Peter Pan Inoue teamed up with another who was also going to make his debut Mizuki Watase and Kota Umeda in a losing effort against Yasu Urano, Akito and Ryota Nakatsu. As is customary for most professional wrestlers, Inoue spent most of his matches losing to other, more experienced wrestlers, which would help put over other wrestlers while at the same time give Inoue some in-ring, televised, experience. Inoue got is first win almost one month after his debut defeating Shunma Katsumata.

On May 29 Inoue formed NωA alongside Katsumata and Makoto Oishi. Following the formation of NωA, Inoue renamed himself only to his first name MAO (stylised in all capital letters). The three then took part in a tournament for the vacant KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Champions, losing in the semifinals to the eventual winners' DAMNATION (Daisuke Sasaki, Mad Paulie and Tetsuya Endo). In October MAO took part of the DNA Grand Prix, finishing the tournament with a record of three wins and two losses, failing to advance to the finals. NωA ended up winning the KO-D 6-Man Tag Team Champions defeating Kazusada Higuchi, Kouki Iwasaki and Mizuki Watase to win the titles on March 20. The match also involved Smile Squash (Akito, Soma Takao and Yasu Urano). On June 25, they lost the titles to Shuten Doji (Kudo, Masahiro Takanashi and Yukio Sakaguchi). In July, MAO and Katsumata took part in Pro Wrestling Noah's 2017 Global Junior Heavyweight Tag League, finishing the tournament with three wins and four losses. Following the tournament, MAO and Katsumata challenged Global Junior Heavyweight Tag League winners and newly won GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions HAYATA and YO-HEY into a title match. The two received their title match on October 1 at The Great Voyage 2017 In Yokohama Vol. 2 losing to HAYATA and YO-HEY in a rematch. On January 28, 2018 NωA made their last match together defeating T2Hide (Sanshiro Takagi, Toru Owashi and Kazuki Hirata).

Shortly after NωA disbanded MAO formed a team with Mike Bailey. On March 10, MAO defeated Super Sasadango Machine to win the Ironman Heavymetalweight Championship, but quickly lost it to Sanshiro Takagi. On May 29 in the sixth episode of DDT Live! Maji Manji, MAO won the Right to Challenge Anytime, Anywhere contract to receive an opportunity to the KO-D Openweight Championship. On June 11, it was announced that DNA would be suspended, leading to MAO being transferred to the DDT main roster. On July 22 MAO and Mike Bailey defeated Tetsuya Endo and Mad Paulie to win KO-D Tag Team Champions. From November 30 until December 15, MAO took part in the 2019 D-Oh Grand Prix, where he finished the tournament with a record of two wins and four losses, failing to advance to the finals of the tournament. On January 5, 2019 MAO and Bailey defeated Shiori Ashai and Oishi to win Strongest-K Tag Team Championship, becoming double crown champions in the process. On March 21, 2019 MAO and Bailey lost the titles to Daisuke Sasaki and Tetsuya Endo. On October 10, 2019 MAO wrestled his last match in DDT before his UK excursion teaming with Yukio Sakaguchi to defeat Kemeno Mask and Yuki Ueno.

Overseas excursion (2019-present)[edit | edit source]

After MAO left DDT he would travel to various independent promotions like Evolve, Revolution Pro Wrestling (RevPro) and Over The Top Wrestling (OTT) in the United States, England, and Ireland where he would continue his tag team with Mike Bailey. On November 11, 2019 MAO and Bailey defeated Deadly Sins (JK Moody and Kane Khan to win SWE Tag Team Championships. Twenty days later the would lose the title in a unification match for the British Tag Team Championships where they lost to Rampage Brown and The Great O-Kharn.

In wrestling[edit | edit source]

  • Finishing moves
    • Cannonball 450º (450 Splash)
  • Signature moves
    • Body Slam
    • Dropkick
    • Uchubito Plancha (Somersault Plancha)
    • Standing Leg Drop
    • Waist-Lift side slam
  • Nicknames
    • "Idol Wrestler"
  • Entrance Themes
    • “a pipe hope” (feat. CCO)

Championships and accomplishments[edit | edit source]

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