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Animal Hamaguchi


Real Name - Heigo Hamaguchi

Birthdate - 8/31/47

5'7" 205 lbs. - Hamada, Shimane, Japan

Athletic Background - Bodybuilding

Teacher(s) - Karl Gotch

Professional Background - IWE(`69-`81), WWA(`72), Stampede(`76), WWC(`76), New Japan(`81-`84), Japan Pro(`84-`87), All Japan(`84-`87), WAR(`93-`95)

AliasesHigo Hamaguchi

Groups - Ishin Gundan

Peak Years - `77-`87

Finisher(s) - 

- Airplane Spin into Samoan Drop

- Facefirst Suplex

Favorites -

- Flying Elbowdrop

- Superplex

- Bodyslam

- Neckbreaker Lariat

- Headbutt

Ringwork Rating - 

 Move Set7

Intangibles Rating - 


Place in History - Despite never being a main event pro-wrestler, Animal Hamaguchi is one of the most famous ones in Japan.  His daughter, Kyoko, was a decorated Olympic and her father as her coach was a famous act.  Heigo Hamaguchi was a good athlete and well-schooled, but he was an atypical heavyweight wrestler - smaller than most, Animal was a rough brawler who was known for his interviews as much as anything.  Hamaguchi was one of many IWE wrestlers who cut his teeth in the promotion before it folded.  He went to New Japan first, but found little success there.  He was part of Riki Choshu’s Ishin Gundan that jumped to All Japan for a hot feud.  Animal Hamaguchi was something of a late bloomer who did not really peak until he was closing in on forty.  Unfortunately, his body was breaking down and he was never able to fully capitalize on his rising star.  When Choshu left, Hamaguchi was without a place and retired.  He opened an independent gym that became famous for training the likes of Satoshi Kojima and Shinjiro Otani as well as many amateur wrestlers.  Aside from a run with Genichiro Tenryu’s WAR and a few appearances elsewhere, Animal Hamaguchi was infrequently in pro rings and more frequently on the side of amateur mats.  His daughter’s success with he as her spokesman made him more famous than his twenty-five years as a pro-wrestler.  That, in addition to his contributions as a trainer, make him one of the most uniquely successful pro-wrestlers of recent times.