Tatsumaki (Tornado) Kid
Yujiro Kushida 櫛田 雄二郎
May 12th, 1983 in Ota Ward, Tokyo, Japan
Pro Wrestling Debut
September 7th, 2006 w/ TAJIRI vs. Red Onigumo & Blue Onigumo
Midnight Express [Corkskrew Moonsault Press]
9469 [modified “knee in opp. back” wrench back facelock]
Running Corner Double Knees
Yujiro Kushida is an established grappler early in his age and even won the ZST Genesis Light Weight Tournament in 2004. Kushida was offered to continue on in the MMA field, but his dream was to become a professional wrestler and he went out to do just that. Soon after he would embark to Mexico and begin training as wrestler. He would return to Japan and on February 10th, 2006 was signed under HUSTLE to be under TAJIRI & Hiroshi Nagao. TAJIRI would eventually take Kushida under his wing completely and have him be his apprentice. He would debut as a pro wrestler on September 7th, 2006 w/ TAJIRI to take on Red Onigumo & Blue Onigumo. KUSHIDA would quickly earn the title “Hustle Supernova” and would become one of their top up and comers. In March of 2009, KUSHIDA would face against Ray (Hajime) Ohara in a match that would be a turning point in his career as he would lose and be forced to leave Japan. KUSHIDA would go to Canada, Mexico and most notably compete in Chikara in November of 2009.
In February of 2010, with the fall of HUSTLE and TAJIRI established SMASH and TAJIRI announced that one of the names who will be a part of the promotion is his apprentice KUSHIDA. He would quickly build himself as one of the must see’s of the promotion and even though he may not have won every match, he definitely showed a lot of heart and skill in the ring. With strong matches against Hajime Ohara, Prince Devitt, Isami Kodaka, and even a match for the OVW Heavyweight Championship against Mike Mondo. In May of 2010, he would be given a spot in NJPW’s Best of the Super Junior tournament and even picked up a solid win over Prince Devitt (who would later go on to become the IWGP Jr Heavy Champion). He would go on to compete in SMASH and NJPW throughout the rest of the year.
In March of 2011, it was announced that NJPW had offered KUSHIDA a contract. KUSHIDA asked for TAJIRI’s permission to become a NJPW wrestler, and TAJIRI was more than happy to allow KUSHIDA to join NJPW to grow and continue doing more and more. Also in March, KUSHIDA had an IWGP Junior Heavyweight Title shot against, the man he beat in the BOSJ in 2010, Prince Devitt. He would not be successful this time around, but on April 1st of 2011 he would become an official part of the NJPW roster.