written by Kevin Wilson
During the wrestling boom of the early 90s, dozens of promotions came and went while leaving little impression on the puroresu scene. The original W*ING lasted from 1991 to 1994, right in the middle of the most successful time in puroresu history. Created when Micky Ibaragi and Victor Quinones split off from FMW, W*ING never surpassed its parent in popularity but it was successful to an extent as it presented a style of wrestling that had not been seen before in Japan. With characters such as The Boogie Man and The Crypt Keeper, W*ING mixed reality with fantasy to put on a unique wrestling product that many fans fell in love with as soon as they saw it for the first time.
On August 7th, 1991, Wrestling International New Generations put on its first show at Tokyo Korakuen Hall in front of a sold out crowd. The main event saw Mitsuteru Tokuda, Koichiro Kimura, and Akitoshi Saito defeat Mr. Pogo, TNT, and Steve Collins when Tokuda pinned Collins. Unique matches such as these would be a staple of W*ING, as between the packed main events and the fantasy characters the promotion kept the fans entertained. Many wrestlers would get their first big chance in W*ING, such as Kanemura, Hido, Araya, Matsunaga, and many more wrestlers that would go on to have long and successful careers. The promotion also had Death Matches as well, with Pogo and Matsunaga being the main stars.
Unlike a lot of offshoot promotions, W*ING had its own wrestling titles that were defended within the promotion. Their Heavyweight Championship was created on July 11th, 1993 when Crush the Terminator defeated Goliath El Gigante in the finals of a 16 man tournament. The Crypt Keeper would be the only other wrestler to hold the title while the promotion was open, as he held the title when the promotion was disbanded. The Jr. Heavyweight Championship was created on June 12th, 1992 and won by Jimmy Backlund, but it was infrequently defended. The Tag Team Titles would be won by The Headhunters in July of 1992 and would be held by three other teams before the Headhunters won the titles back prior to the promotion closing.
After nearly three years of running shows, the promotion would close on March 13th, 1994. Most of the wrestlers would go to IWA Japan, which was opened by Victor Quinones after the fall of W*ING (IWA Japan was launched only two months later). Other wrestlers went back to FMW while still others went to WAR. IWA Japan would take a lot of W*ING's characteristics (such as the scary monsters) and IWA Japan is still open to this day. The Heavyweight Title would be defended again in 1995 but would soon be abandoned again.
There have been a few re-starts of the promotion since it closed in 1994, but they were with different management and rarely lasted long. For example, in 1995 a number of shows were held with Jason The Terrible, Grave Digger, and ECW wrestlers participating. Another promotion listed as W*ING appeared after that, but they used AAA wrestlers instead of American wrestlers. The primary run of W*ING from 1991 to 1994 helped launch a number of wrestler's careers and gave wrestling fans in Japan another brand of wrestling to enjoy during one of the brightest time periods in puroresu history.