BiographyMitsuharu Misawa first made a name for himself in the year 1980, finishing highly in a Freestyle Wrestling World Championship. After his impressive performance, he was recruited by Shohei "Giant" Baba for the professional wrestling promotion All Japan Pro Wrestling. He progressed quickly as a student, and made his debut in 1981. He adopted the mask and personality of popular cartoon wrestler Tiger Mask, being the second wrestler to take this mantle. In 1990, a decade after his amateur breakthrough, Misawa made another huge shockwave: first, in the middle of a tag team match, he commanded his partner to tear his mask off, officially throwing the character of Tiger Mask to the ground. Later that year, Misawa defeated Jumbo Tsuruta, an unprecidented event for such a young wrestler. This was the birth of his professional career.
Through the 90s, Mitsuharu Misawa was one of the most exceptional wrestlers in the entire world. He has a list of amazing matches that would rival the career work of many of the all time greats, usually involving three other young generation wrestlers; Kenta Kobashi, Akira Taue, and his eternal rival, Toshiaki Kawada. These four men, often called the Four Corners of Heaven in the context of pro wrestling, pushed eachother, and the wrestling scene as a whole, to new, incredible heights.
As the new millenium dawned, Mitsuharu Misawa again made a dramatic impact on the scene of professional wrestling. Upset at the state of management in All Japan Pro Wrestling, he left the federation with over 25 of the groups top stars, a coup that has crippled the business of All Japan Pro Wrestling ever since. These wrestlers formed Pro Wrestling NOAH, a promotion that quickly made large strides and changes in the style of professional wrestling, taking the mantle from both All Japan, and All Japan's chief competitor New Japan Pro Wrestling, as being the cutting edge in Japanese wrestling. While this trend has wound down, when the decade ends, people will be hard pressed to deny the tremendous impact NOAH had.
DeathMitsuharu Misawa passed away on June 13th, 2009. In the midst of a tag team match with him and young wrestler Go Shiosaki challenging for the GHC Tag Team Championships against Bison Smith and Akitoshi Saito, Misawa took a routine backdrop from Saito. Following this, he suffered a heart attack in the ring. A doctor was on hand and he successfully recussitated him. He was then taken to a hospital, where he later died.
Wrestling Style The purpose of this section is to detail two things. It's first purpose is to detail how the wrestler performs and acts, to provide a broad outlook of goals to achieve if one chose to create him in a Create-A-Wrestler function. It's secondary purpose is to provide some idea of how to fight them, if they are an opponent in the game you are playing.
Misawa wrestles two different styles, and the style you will encounter depends on the year of the game's release.
In pre-2004 games, Misawa is an amalgam of high flying and high impact manuvers. His agility is understated, but it is still a threat. He will not fly often, using it for effect, but when it does, it leaves a signifigant impact. The majority of his strikes, and his highflying manuvers, are centered around his heavily padded elbow. When creating Misawa, you should be using low level flying manuvers; he's not exactly Rey Mysterio, but his Elbow Suicida dive, and Frog Splash are powerful tools in his arsenal. His offensive attacks should be majorly elbows, with a pad on the right arm. He does have a small set of kicking attacks- kicks to the core, and to the thighs- and a jumping lariat that is invaluable to setting the pace early on. His grapple moves are mostly suplexes and elbow attacks to specific limbs. From behind, his suplexes should include both the German Suplex and the Tiger Suplex. The German Suplex has proven to be quite a difference maker, able to heft men at least a hundred pounds heavier than himself with it. The Tiger Suplex is a mainstay of his arsenal, and a homage to his days as Tiger Mask. Misawa is not a submission wrestler in any sense of the word, although he does utilize a facelock to a sitting opponent to wear him down. The two finishers in his arsenal include the Tiger Driver, a form of sit out powerbomb, and the Emerald Frosion, an incredibly powerful and vicious head drop, similar to the Tombstone Piledriver.
After 2002, Misawa's career began to shift. Games took a while to recognize this slow, deliberate shifting in his moveset. He has severely cut back on his high flying, varied strikes and suplexes, falling back to his elbows. And like Rocky in Rocky Balboa, instead of anything else, he has built his elbow to be a weapon of tremendous power, as dangerous as a baseball bat in a biker's hands. The Tiger Driver is no longer a finishing manuver, but fairly routine and still powerful. The brutality of these elbow strikes has manifest in multiple ways, using rolling elbows and beating men unconscious when all else has failed. The Emerald Frosion remains high priority in his moveset, and should be treated as such.