Minoru

Full Name: Minoru Tanaka
Birthdate
:  November 29th, 1972
Height: 5'9''
Weight: 199 lbs.
Debut:  January 24th, 1994
Background:  Shoot Boxing and Gymnastics
Previously: Heat (New Japan)
Promotion History: BattlARTS (1994 to 1999), New Japan (2000 to 2008), Freelancer/All Japan (2009 to 2013), and WRESTLE-1 (2013 to present)
Alliances: None 
Ring Attire:  Trunks, usually white
Card Position:  Mid-Card
Major Tournaments Won: Best of the Super Jr. (2006)
Current Title Held:  None

Championship History:

IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship:
- Defeated Tatsuhito Takaiwa on 10/29/00 and lost to Masayuki Naruse on 7/20/01
- Defeated Masahito Kakihara on 2/16/02 and lost to Koji Kanemoto on 7/19/02
- Defeated Jado on 12/14/03 and lost to Tiger Mask on 1/4/05
- Defeated Koji Kanemoto on 12/24/06 and lost to Ryusuke Taguchi on 7/6/07

IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship with Koji Kanemoto:
- Defeated Otani and Takaiwa on 6/25/00 and lost to Jushin Liger and El Samurai on 3/5/01

IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship with Jushin Thunder Liger:
- Defeated Jado and Gedo on 5/2/02 and lost to Kanemaru and Kikuchi on 8/29/02

IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship with Hirooki Goto:
- Defeated Kanemoto and Inoue on 5/14/05 and lost to El Samurai and Taguchi on 2/19/06

IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship with Prince Devitt (Held 2 Times)::
- Defeated Togo and TAKA Michinoku on 1/27/08 and lost to Jushin Liger and AKIRA on 2/17/08
- Defeated Jushin Liger and AKIRA on 7/21/08 and lost to Naito and Yujiro on 10/13/08

FMW Jr. Heavyweight Championship:
- Defeated Ricky Fuji on 5/5/99 and lost to Naoki Sano on 5/14/99

Independent Jr. Heavyweight Championship:
- Defeated Naoki Sano on 1/30/00 and lost to Katsumi Usuda on 5/11/00

UWA World Middleweight Championship:
- Defeated Shoichi Funaki on 3/19/97 and Vacated on 4/19/98

Biggest Matches:
- Match 19th, 1997 vs. Shoichi Funaki (title win)
- June 25th, 2000 with Kanemoto vs. Shinjiro Otani and Takaiwa (title win)
- October 29th, 2000 vs. Tatsuhito Takaiwa (title win)
- June 18th, 2006 vs. Tiger Mask (tournament win)
- December 24th, 2006 vs. Koji Kanemoto (title win)

Pictures:
- Minoru with an overhead suplex
- Minoru steals the Samurai Gym's sign
- A backdrop suplex by Minoru
- Minoru with the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship

Featured Signature Moves:
- FIREBALL Splash
- Minoru Special
- Santa Monica Pier

Signature Moves:
- Fisherman Buster
- Half Nelson Half Chickenwing Suplex
- HEAT Clutch
- Leg Feed Cross Armbreaker
- Release Dragon Suplex
- Release Tiger Suplex

2005 Recap:
Minoru Tanaka made the official change from being known as Heat to being known as Minoru in early 2005.  As Heat, he held the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship, but he lost the title to Tiger Mask early in 2005 and after the defeat was able to stop appearing as Heat (since he had won the title as Heat, he had to defend the title as Heat).  In May, Minoru would team with Goto and win the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship and together they would hold the title for the rest of the year.  Minoru also had success at the Best of the Super Jr. Tournament, coming in first in his bracket (although he lost in the semi-finals to his old foe Tiger Mask).  Usually wrestling as a "heel," Minoru is one of the brightest stars of the junior heavyweight division.

2006 Recap:
Minoru opened the year as one half of the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship with Goto, but the duo would lose the belts on February 19th to El Samurai and Taguchi. At the Best of the Super Jr. Tournament, Minoru defeated Inoue in the semi-finals and Tiger Mask in the finals to be crowned the winner of the tournament. At the CTU 2nd Anniversary show, Minoru teamed with Masaaki Mochizuki to defeat Koji Kanemoto and Wataru Inoue. After a failed attempt to win the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship against Kanemoto on October 9th, Minoru would succeed in winning the title for the fourth time in his career on December 24th, ending the year on a positive note for Minoru.

2007 Recap:
Minoru held onto the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship for the first half of 2007, defeating Wataru Inoue, Taguchi, El Texano Jr., and Yujiro. On July 6th, however, he would face Taguchi again and this time Taguchi would come out the victor. At the Best of the Super Jr. Tournament Minoru reached the semi-finals but fell to Inoue. Minoru teamed with fellow CTU (then RISE) member Prince Devitt for much of the year, picking up key victories that would lead to a IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship shot in 2008 against TAKA Michinoku and Dick Togo.

2008 Recap:
Minoru and Devitt would win their match against Michinoku and Togo for the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship on January 27th, the fourth time that Minoru held the title. They would only hold the title for a month however before losing them to Jushin Thunder Liger and AKIRA in February. At the Best of the Super Jr. Tournament, Minoru only had two wins and failed to reach the semi-finals. On July 21st, Minoru and Devitt challenged again for the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championship and again they would win the titles. This time they would hold the titles for less then two months before losing them to NO LIMIT in October. For the first time since 1998, Minoru was not involved in a match for the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship during the year.

2009 Recap:
As many expected, Minoru and New Japan did not renew his contract in January and he became a free agent. Minoru wrestled in ZERO1 but spent much of the year in All Japan as part of the Voodoo Murderers. He got his first shot at the All Japan World Jr. Heavyweight Championship against Kaz Hayashi on March 14th, but Hayashi would win with the Power Plant. Minoru had more luck in the All Japan Jr. Heavyweight Tag League, teaming with Toshizo to win the tournament. In the All Japan Jr. Heavyweight League Minoru won his Block but he lost in the semi-finals to Super Crazy. Going into 2010, Minoru continues to be a big part of All Japan's Jr. Heavyweight division while he wrestles occasionally in ZERO1 and other promotions as well.

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