Naofumi Yamamoto

Birthdate:  July 1st, 1977
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 225 lbs.
Debut:  October 12th, 2002
Background:  Amateur Wrestling and Boxing
Promotion History: New Japan (2002 to present)
Alliances:  New Japan Pro-Wrestling Sekigun
Ring Attire:  Black trunks
Card Position:  Mid-Card
Major Tournaments Won: None
Current Title Held:  None

Championship History:


Biggest Matches:
- March 19th, 2006 with Nagata vs. Masahiro Chono and Tenzan (title challenge)
- October 24th, 2007 with Iizuka vs. Giant Bernard and Tomko

- A Mid-Kick by Yamamoto
- Yamamoto with a German Suplex

Signature Moves:
- Backdrop Suplex
- Fisherman Suplex

2005 Recap:
Older then many of the other young lions, Yamamoto was slow to progress in 2005 past the lower mid-card barrier.  A future heavyweight fighter, Yamamoto has flashes of success (such as pinning Blue Wolf), but has yet to capitalize on his victories.  Yamamoto is popular with the crowd, however, and is still poised to become a big player down the road for New Japan.

2006 Recap:
Yamamoto was thrust into the main event in early 2006, much to everyone's surprise. He didn't have a lot of luck, often getting pinned, but working in big matches helped him progress as he wrestled against the best in New Japan. During the G1 Climax, Yamamoto went winless but put up a fight against many wrestlers, including Tenzan, Makabe, and Nagata. In the G1 League he teamed with Nakanishi, but the pair would only pick up one win, which was against Giant Bernard and Travis Tomko. Yamamoto did get the pin though against Tomko, one of his biggest pinfall victories to date.

2007 Recap:
Yamamoto failed to live up to his sudden push of 2006 as he continued to struggle against the upper tier of New Japan. After being pinned by Suwama at the Tokyo Dome, Yamamoto did pick up a victory over Yano on the next show. He did not participate in the New Japan Cup or G1 Climax, however, and soon found himself back in the mid-card. In the G1 Tag League, he teamed with Iizuka but the pair would come in last place with Yamamoto picking up no victories. New Japan decided that Yamamoto needed an excursion, and he had his farewell match on November 2nd, losing to Yuji Nagata. It is unknown when he will return, but hopefully he will learn the skills necessary to follow the success of his dojo mates Shinsuke Nakamura and Ryusuke Taguchi when he returns.

2008 Recap:
Yamamoto was in America for all of 2008, and was signed by WWE in the fall. There is no timetable for his return to Japan.

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