Takeshi Morishima (森嶋 猛 Morishima Takeshi) (October 15, 1978) is a Japanese professional wrestler.
He is best known for his work with Pro Wrestling Noah in Japan and has also performed for Ring of Honor in the United States in the past. He is a former three-time GHC Heavyweight Champion and one-time Ring of Honor World Champion. Morishima held a position on Pro Wrestling Noah's board of directors.
Professional wrestling career
Morishima debuted in All Japan Pro Wrestling in 1998, but left in 2000 to form Pro Wrestling Noah, where he became a mainstay. He frequently teamed with Takeshi Rikio as Wild II, and the duo have previously held the GHC Tag Team Championship. Morishima has also wrestled in the United States and United Kingdom. He competed in Harley Race's World League Wrestling promotion in 2003, defending the WLW Heavyweight Championship, which he had won from Ron Harris while Harris toured Japan. Morishima returned to the United States in February 2007, wrestling four matches with Ring of Honor. He lost to Samoa Joe on February 16, 2007 before defeating Homicide in a match for the ROH World Championship on the subsequent evening, thus becoming the first non-American to hold the title. On February 23, 2007, Morishima defeated B.J. Whitmer in his first title defense, and on the next night he and Nigel McGuinness defeated Samoa Joe and Homicide. On March 4, 2007, he successfully defended the ROH Championship in Japan, defeating Kenta in the Nippon Budokan in Tokyo. Morishima could not return to the United States until almost a month and a half later when he and Chris Hero took on Nigel McGuinness and Doug Williams, and the next night when he successfully defended the belt against McGuinness for the first time.
On April 21, Morishima was honored at the 42nd annual Cauliflower Alley Club banquet, being presented with the "Future Legend" award. Back in ROH, Morishima went on a string of successful title defenses, defeating the likes of Austin Aries, Shingo, Jay Briscoe, and Roderick Strong. Morishima also competed twice on ROH's first pay-per-view Respect Is Earned, defeating BJ Whitmer to retain the ROH Championship, and later teaming with Bryan Danielson to defeat Nigel McGuinness and Kenta. At the second pay-per-view, Driven, Morishima again competed twice, retaining the title against Jimmy Rave and later Adam Pearce. On July 16, 2007, Morishima wrestled in the main event of Ring of Honor's debut show in Japan and defeated Nigel McGuinness to retain the ROH Championship. Morishima lost the title to McGuinness at Undeniable on October 6.
On March 2, 2008, Morishima defeated Mitsuharu Misawa at the Budokan Hall Event of Pro Wrestling Noah's Second Navigation Tour to become the 12th GHC Heavyweight Champion. Morishima has stated that while he plans on returning to ROH in the future, he has no intentions in regaining the ROH Championship, as he will be fully focused on Noah's heavyweight scene. On June 14, 2008, Morishima made his very first defense of the GHC Heavyweight Title against Takashi Sugiura. Morishima prevailed after hitting a backdrop driver. Morishima's second defense happened on July 18, 2008 against former his tag team partner Takeshi Rikio. After about 13 and a half minutes, Morishima defeated Rikio with a backdrop suplex. On September 6, 2008 at the Tokyo Nippon Budokan, Morishima lost to Kensuke Sasaki, who gained a pin at the 22-minute mark with the Northern Lights Bomb. In August 2008 Morishima had a dark match tryout against Charlie Haas for WWE before a live Raw in Chicago, defeating Haas in 3 minutes with a missile dropkick. He then beat Jamie Noble the following night in another dark match, this time for SmackDown. On December 7, 2008, Morishima faced Jun Akiyama for the number one contender's spot for the GHC Heavyweight Championship. He lost to Akiyama, then traveled back to the United States to face Bryan Danielson one last time for ROH's Final Battle 2008. He lost the "Fight Without Honor" to Danielson. On September 21, 2009 in Nagoya, Japan, Morishima and Sasaki defeated Akitoshi Saito and Bison Smith for the GHC Tag Titles. However, on December 6, at the last show of Winter Navigation '09, Morishima and Sasaki lost the titles to Takeshi Rikio and Muhammad Yone.
Through Noah's working relationship with Asistencia Asesoría y Administración (AAA), Morishima has made several trips to Mexico. On March 19, 2010, Morishima teamed up with Taiji Ishimori 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 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.
Morishima was recently on this TV Drama in Japan, "Hesitation I Come" during his time off due to a foot injury. However, on November 23, during (Noah Winter Navigation 2010 - Day 4), Morishima returned to Noah teaming with Kensuke Sasaki and defeating Shuhei Taniguchi and Takashi Sugiura. On January 22, 2012, Morishima defeated Go Shiozaki to win the GHC Heavyweight Championship for the second time. Since this victory, Morishima has defended against Naomichi Marufuji, Maybach Taniguchi, Go Shiozaki, Akitoshi Saito, Kenta, Jun Akiyama, and Kohei Sato. After a year-long reign, Morishima lost the GHC Heavyweight Championship to Kenta on January 27, 2013. On January 5, 2014, Morishima defeated Kenta to win the GHC Heavyweight Championship for the third time. Post-match, Morishima quit Brave to form a new group with Kenoh and Maybach Taniguchi, later named Choukibou-gun, turning heel in the process. On January 25, Morishima and Taniguchi defeated TMDK (Mikey Nicholls and Shane Haste), with help from Kenoh and new stablemate Hajime Ohara, to win the GHC Tag Team Championship. On February 8, Morishima lost the GHC Heavyweight Championship to New Japan Pro Wrestling representative Yuji Nagata in his first title defense. On May 31, Morishima and Taniguchi lost the GHC Tag Team Championship to Masato Tanaka and Takashi Sugiura.
In April 2015, Morishima was forced to pull out of the 2015 Global Tag League due to an injury. On April 21, Noah announced that a blood test had revealed that Morishima had an abnormally high glycated hemoglobin, suggesting diabetes. Following his doctor's recommendation, Morishima decided to immediately retire from professional wrestling. On December 28, 2015, Noah canceled Morishima's retirement ceremony, announcing that his contract with the promotion would expire at the end of the year. It was later reported that the reason Morishima wanted to retire due to both physical and mental issues. He was completely burned out and therefore could not compete at his retirement ceremony. In the last summer when a promoter of a local wrestling promotion asked him if he wanted to start as a coach, his love for wrestling was rekindled. After seeing an All Japan Pro Wrestling show, Morishima wanted to return to professional wrestling. He will return on his birth day on October 15, 2018 on his self produce show called "Genesis" but the show was later cancelled due to Morishima being arrested for assualting a cab driver after reportley refused to pay him for the trip.
- Finishing moves
- Signature moves
- Tony Atlas
Championships and accomplishments
- 3 Count Wrestling
- 3CW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Asistencia Asesoría y Administración
- AAA World Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Taiji Ishimori
- Cauliflower Alley Club
- Future Legend Award (2007)
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- PWI ranked #10 of the 500 best singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2007
- Pro Wrestling Noah
- GHC Heavyweight Championship (3 times)
- GHC Tag Team Championship (5 times) – with Takeshi Rikio (1), Kensuke Sasaki (1), Muhammad Yone (2), andMaybach Taniguchi (1)
- Global League (2011)
- One Day Heavyweight Six Man Tag Team Tournament (2008) – with Mitsuharu Misawa and Muhammad Yone
- One Night Six Man Tag Tournament (2012) – with Kensuke Sasaki and Kento Miyahara
- Ring of Honor
- ROH World Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Tokyo Sports
- World League Wrestling
- WLW Heavyweight Championship (2 times)
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter
- Best Brawler (2007)
- Match of the Year (2007) – vs. Bryan Danielson at ROH Manhattan Mayhem II on August 25
- Most Improved (2006)
- 新役員人事について (Appointment of New Directors) (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling NOAH (2011-10-06). Retrieved on 2012-02-03.
- NOAH roster .
- NOAH official website title lineages .
- Takeshi Morishima - New WLW World Champion . Archived from the original on 2007-02-28. Retrieved on 2007-03-26.
- Online World of Wrestling profile . Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved on 2010-02-03.
- Ring of Honor Title . Ring of Honor. Retrieved on 2010-04-05.
- Johnson, Steven (22 April 2007). "That’s entertainment! CAC banquet ranges from songs to stories to spoofs". Slam! Sports.
- Cauliflower Alley Club 42nd Annual Banquet & Awards .
- Ring of Honor Results From Japan . Ring of Honor (2007-12-16). “ROH World Title Match: Takeshi Morishima defeated Nigel McGuinness to retain the belt in his 12th title defense”
- Puroresu Central profile . Puroresu Central. Retrieved on 2010-02-03.
- Ya estamos en la Casa (in Spanish). AAA (2010-03-19). Retrieved on 2010-03-20.
- De última hora: En Japón los cinturones AAA cambian de manos, los nuevos campeones vienen a Triplemania 18 (in Spanish). SuperLuchas Magazine (2010-05-23). Retrieved on 2010-05-24.
- Great Voyage 2012 in Osaka (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. Retrieved on 2012-01-22.
- ja:2013年1月27日(日) (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. Retrieved on 2013-01-28.
- New Year Navig.2014 ～新春ノア初め～ (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. Retrieved on 2014-01-05.
- 森嶋がGHCタッグ奪取でヘビー級二冠王に 新軍団名は「超危暴軍」に決定 (in Japanese). Sports Navi. Yahoo! (2014-01-26). Retrieved on 2014-01-26.
- ja:ＧＨＣ強奪・森嶋が暴君と化す (in Japanese). Tokyo Sports (2014-01-06). Retrieved on 2014-01-06.
- The First Navig.2014 (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. Retrieved on 2014-01-25.
- The Second Navig. 2014 (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. Retrieved on 2014-02-08.
- Navig. with Breeze 2014 (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah. Retrieved on 2014-05-31.
- 森嶋猛選手 引退のご報告 (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah (2015-04-21). Retrieved on 2015-04-21.
- ノア森嶋が電撃引退 「糖尿病」が原因 (in Japanese). Tokyo Sports (2015-04-21). Retrieved on 2015-04-21.
- 契約期間満了に関するご報告 (in Japanese). Pro Wrestling Noah (2015-12-28). Retrieved on 2015-12-29.
- Cagematch profile . Cagematch. Retrieved on 2010-02-03.
- Radican, Sean 2007-09-30. RADICAN'S ROH DRIVEN PPV REPORT: Full report on show (Danielson-McGuinness, Briscoes-Generico & Steen) . PWTorch. Retrieved on 2010-02-03.
- 3 Count Wrestling Title Histories . titlehistories.com. Retrieved on 2008-07-11.
- Cagematch award history . Cagematch. Retrieved on 2010-02-03.
- Cagematch title history . Cagematch. Retrieved on 2010-02-03.
- ja:「２０１２年度プロレス大賞」受賞者 (in Japanese). Tokyo Sports (2012-12-11). Retrieved on 2012-12-10.