Shingo Takagi (鷹木信悟 Takagi Shingo, born November 21, 1982) is a Japanese professional wrestler and former bodybuilder, also known simply as Shingo. He is currently working for New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW), where he is part of the stable Los Ingobernables de Japon.
Takagi in November 2017
|Born||November 21, 1982|
Chūō, Yamanashi, Japan
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Shingo Takagi|
|Billed height||1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)|
|Billed weight||96 kg (212 lb)|
|Trained by||Dragon Gate dojo|
|Debut||October 3, 2004|
Takagi is best known for his work with Dragon Gate, who he competed for from his debut up until 2018. During his fourteen year stint with the promotion, Takagi went on to become one of the most decorated wrestlers in company history, winning the Open the Dream Gate Championship four times, the Open the Triangle Gate Championship six times, the Open the Twin Gate Championship five times, as well as being the winner of the 2010 King of Gate tournament. Takagi was known as the promotion's top heel for many years, leading the villainous VerserK stable through its many incarnations until resigning from Dragon Gate in September 2018. He was also known for the rivalry that he had with BxB Hulk, which main event several events. He has also spent an extended amount of time with American promotions such as Ring of Honor, Pro Wrestling Guerrilla and Full Impact Pro.
Professional wrestling careerEdit
Dragon Gate (2004–2018)Edit
In Dragon Gate, Takagi became a member of the Blood Generation stable. On May 10, 2007, shortly after forming the stable New Hazard, Takagi – along with BxB Hulk and Cyber Kong – defeated the Typhoon team of Cima, Susumu Yokosuka, and Ryo Saito for the Dragon Gate Open the Triangle Gate Championship. They held the championship until July 13, 2007, when the team were forced to vacate the championship as BxB Hulk had sustained a jaw injury. Takagi and Kong replaced Hulk with Jack Evans, and challenged for the vacant championship against the Muscle Outlaw'z team of Naruki Doi, Masato Yoshino, and Magnitude Kishiwada, but were unsuccessful.
On May 14, 2008, Takagi and Kong turned on Hulk shortly before a scheduled Open the Triangle Gate Championship defense against Genki Horiguchi, Gamma and Yamato of the Muscle Outlaw'z, citing Hulk as a weakling. Takagi and Kong then joined up with Genki, Gamma, Yamato and Yasushi Kanda, ending both New Hazard and Muscle Outlaw'z and forming Real Hazard, a new faction. Takagi then teamed with Gamma and Yamato to win the newly-vacant Open the Triangle Gate Championship, defeating Naruki Doi, Masato Yoshino and Hulk. On June 28, they lost the Open the Triangle Gate Championship to Kenichiro Arai, Taku Iwasa and Shinobu of the Tozawa-juku faction.
The following day, he fought BxB Hulk to a one-hour draw in a number one contender's match for Cima's Open the Dream Gate Championship. They were immediately scheduled for a rematch on July 27, but this time the Open the Dream Gate Championship was on the line as Cima had to vacate the championship due to a neck injury. On July 10, doubt was already cast over his standing in Real Hazard when he stopped them and Tokyo Gurentai members from trying to give Cima an unwanted haircut. This caused tensions to stir between him and the others, especially with Kong. On July 27, Takagi defeated BxB Hulk to win the Open the Dream Gate Championship. After the match, Takagi apologized to Hulk and retracted his statement about him being weak. Soon after, Kong attempted to attack Cima, who was at the announce table, but Takagi stopped him. After a brief argument, Real Hazard attacked Takagi and kicked him out of the group for showing compassion towards Hulk and Cima, but he was saved by Typhoon.
Typhoon offered him membership in the faction, but he turned it down. He later teamed with Dragon Kid, a Typhoon member, in the Summer Adventure Tag League Tournament, and the pair reached the finals before they were beaten by Naruki Doi and Masato Yoshino. Following this, Takagi changed his mind and joined Typhoon. Takagi's membership caused tension within the faction, and led to Susumu Yokosuka challenging Takagi to a match on November 16 for the Open the Dream Gate Championship. Takagi retained, and then tried to banish Yokosuka from Typhoon as punishment. Ryo Saito tried to stop him, and then Cima was called out. Takagi gave him a lariat before he could say anything, resulting in his banishment from Typhoon. After that, Takagi announced that he would not be participating in the annual King of Gate Tournament.
Takagi began teaming with Akira Tozawa and Taku Iwasa after the faction they had been members of, Tozawa-juku, had disbanded, with the trio officially forming a new faction on December 19. On December 28, Takagi lost the Open the Dream Gate Championship to Naruki Doi, who had won the King of the Gate Tournament. On January 11, 2009, Dragon Kid joined the new faction, with Takagi called the faction Kamikaze. On February 15, Takagi, Iwasa and Dragon Kid won the Open the Triangle Gate Championship, but lost the championship to Cima, Gamma and Kagetora on April 15. When Yamato left Real Hazard, he joined Kamikaze, reforming his team with Takagi. The duo won the annual Summer Adventure Tag League Tournament in August, and then the Open the Twin Gate Championship the following month. They held the titles until December 27, when they lost them to Cima and Gamma.
On March 22, 2010, Takagi and Cyber Kong defeated Cima and Gamma to regain the Open the Twin Gate Championship. Takagi participated in the 2010 King of Gate tournament and beat Dragon Kid in the finals on April 14, 2010. This allowed him to contest Open the Dream Gate Championship match against his stablemate and champion Yamato at the Dead or Alive PPV on May 5, 2010, but Yamato retained the title by making Takagi submit. Takagi and Kong would lose their Twin Gate title to K-ness and Susumu Yokosuka on May 13, 2010. Takagi then renewed his old feud with former tag partner BxB Hulk, leading to a Hair vs Hair match at the Kobe World Pro Wrestling Festival 2010 on July 11. Takagi won the match and shaved off Hulk's hair.
After returning from an injury, Takagi disbanded Kamikaze on May 13, 2011 and the following day joined forces with Masaaki Mochizuki's new stable, Junction Three, to battle Cima's Blood Warriors. After Junction Three was disbanded in February 2012, Takagi, alongside Yamato, joined up with Dragon Gate Nex Member Chihiro Tominaga, and the debuting Super Shenlong III and formed -akatsuki- on April 19, 2012. On July 22, 2012, Takagi and Yamato defeated Jimmy Kagetora and Jimmy Susumu to become the 22nd Open the Twin Gate Champions. They lost the title to Don Fujii and Masaaki Mochizuki on September 23, 2012. Takagi and Yamato won the title for their third time together on May 5, 2013, by defeating BxB Hulk and Uhaa Nation. They lost the title to Akira Tozawa and BxB Hulk on June 15, when Yamato turned on Takagi. On July 21, Takagi defeated Cima to win the Open the Dream Gate Championship for the second time. On August 1, -akatsuki- was forced to disband, after losing to Mad Blankey in a five-on-four tag team match. On August 23, Takagi lost the Open the Dream Gate Championship to Yamato in his first defense. In order to continue his battle with Mad Blankey, Takagi formed a new stable named Monster Express with Akira Tozawa, Masato Yoshino, Ricochet, Shachihoko Boy and Uhaa Nation. On December 22, Takagi and Tozawa defeated Naruki Doi and Yamato to win the Open the Twin Gate Championship. They lost the title to Eita and T-Hawk on July 20, 2014. On August 31, Shingo, Tozawa and Uhaa Nation unsuccessfully challenged for the Open the Triangle Gate Championship against Cyber Kong, Naruki Doi and Kzy with Shingo getting pinned after Kong hit him with the Cyber Bomb. Shingo and Tozawa lost in the Summer Adventure Tag League semi-finals against T-Hawk and Eita. On December 28, Shingo unsuccessfully challenged for the Open the Dream Gate title against BxB Hulk. On August 16, 2015, Takagi defeated Masato Yoshino to win the Open the Dream Gate Championship for the third time. Shortly afterwards, Takagi was kicked out of Monster Express after turning on his then-stablemates Yoshino and Shachihoko BOY. Takagi would then form a new heel unit with the remnants of Mad Blankey, becoming the co-leader of the unit alongside Naruki Doi. On September 23, 2015, the new unit was named VerserK. On February 14, Takagi lost the Open the Dream Gate Championship to Jimmy Susumu in his fourth defense. He would regain the title from Susumu on March 6, becoming the first four-time champion. On July 24, 2016, Takagi lost the championship to Yamato. On January 18, 2017, Takagi, along with fellow VerserK teammates T-Hawk and El Lindaman won a special One Day 6 Man Tag Tournament, defeating Kotoka, Masato Yoshino and Ben-K.
Ring of Honor (2006–2008)Edit
Shortly after becoming a member of Blood Generation, Shingo began wrestling for Ring of Honor (ROH) in the United States. He made several ROH appearances before becoming a regular wrestler in ROH in late 2006. He became one half of the ROH World Tag Team Champions alongside Naruki Doi on March 3, 2007, by beating the Briscoe Brothers in Liverpool, England. The two lost the championship back to the Briscoes at All Star Extravaganza III on March 30.
Shingo had his final official ROH match at "Good Times, Great Memories" on April 28, 2007, unsuccessfully challenging Takeshi Morishima for the ROH World Championship. He challenged the Briscoe Brothers for ROH World Tag Team Championship unsuccessfully at ROH's Live in Osaka show with his partner Susumu Yokosuka on July 17. At Wrestlemania weekend in 2008 at "Dragon Gate Challenge II" and "Supercard of Honor III", he and BxB Hulk wrestled The Age of the Fall (Tyler Black and Jimmy Jacobs), and El Generico and Kevin Steen respectively in his last two ROH appearances.
Other promotions (2006–2009)Edit
Throughout 2006 and 2007 Shingo appeared in several American promotions, including Full Impact Pro and Pro Wrestling Guerrilla. On February 27, 2007, Shingo won the Southern Thunder Pro Wrestling Texas Heavyweight Championship by defeating Texas Renegade. On September 5, 2007 he made his Hawaii debut for Action Zone Wrestling (AZW) teaming with Sabaki in a losing effort to AZW Tag Team Champions Devilshock. On March 8, 2009, he won his first wrestling tournament in Germany by emerging triumphant at wXw's annual wXw 16 Carat Gold Tournament. In 2009, he began wrestling for Dragon Gate USA.
New Japan Pro-Wrestling (2018–present)Edit
On October 8, 2018 at King of Pro Wrestling, Takagi made his surprise New Japan Pro-Wrestling debut as the sixth member of the Los Ingobernables de Japon stable, and teamed up with Tetsuya Naito, Bushi and Sanada to defeat Kazuchika Okada, Toru Yano, Yoh and Sho of Chaos. He would go on to compete in the Junior Heavyweight division, and would stay both undefeated in singles matches and overall unpinned and unsubmitted until June 2019; during this period, he suffered only three defeats in 72 consecutive matches, all of which were tag team matches in which a partner was pinned. He and Bushi then went on to form a tag team competing in the junior heavyweight tag team division; they competed in the Super Junior Tag Tournament, winning five of their seven matches and advancing to the finals at Power Struggle where they lost to Roppongi 3K in a Three-way tag team match also involving Yoshinobu Kanemaru and El Desperado of Suzuki-Gun. On January 4, 2019 at Wrestle Kingdom 13, the duo defeated both defending champions Kanemaru and El Desperado and Roppongi 3K to capture the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship, Takagi's first title in NJPW. Their first defense took place at The New Beginning in Sapporo, where they successfully defeated Suzuki-Gun members El Desperado and Yoshinobu Kanemaru. They dropped the titles to Roppongi 3K on March 6 at NJPW's 47th Anniversary Show.
Starting on May 13, 2019, Takagi took part in the Best of Super Juniors tournament for the first time. He won block A by winning all nine of his matches and scoring 18 points; this set up a new record for most victories within the same block, as well as a new record for most points scored at the tournament (not counting the original 1988 tournament which used a different point system). He eventually lost in the finals against Block B winner Will Ospreay on June 5, marking his first defeat in New Japan as a singles competitor. The match received considerable acclaim, with Dave Meltzer giving it a rare five and three-quarter out of five rating and calling it "the best junior heavyweight match I’ve ever seen and one of the best matches in any division"; it would go on to be Takagi's final match and only singles loss in the Junior Heavyweight division.
At Dominion 6.9 in Osaka-jo Hall on June 9, after a victory over heavyweight Satoshi Kojima, Takagi stated his intent to move to the Heavyweight division and declared himself an entrant for the 2019 G1 Climax.
Championships and accomplishmentsEdit
- Dragon Gate
- Open the Dream Gate Championship (4 times)
- Open the Owarai Gate Championship (1 time)
- Open the Triangle Gate Championship (6 times) – with BxB Hulk and Cyber Kong (2), Gamma and Yamato (1), and Taku Iwasa and Dragon Kid (1), Cyber Kong and T-Hawk (1), Takashi Yoshida and El Lindaman (1)
- Open the Twin Gate Championship (5 times) – with Yamato (3), Cyber Kong (1) and Akira Tozawa (1)
- King of Gate (2010)
- New Year's Unit 6-Man Tag 1 Day Tournament (2017) – with El Lindaman and T-Hawk
- Summer Adventure Tag League (2009) – with Yamato
- New Japan Pro-Wrestling
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- Pro Wrestling Noah
- Ring of Honor
- Tokyo Sports
- Westside Xtreme Wrestling
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter
Luchas de Apuestas recordEdit
|Winner (wager)||Loser (wager)||Location||Event||Date||Notes|
|Shingo Takagi (hair)||BxB Hulk (hair)||Kobe, Japan||Kobe Pro-Wrestling Festival 2010||July 11, 2010|
- "鷹木信悟". Dragon Gate. Retrieved September 6, 2016.
- "Roster: Shingo". Dragon Gate USA. Archived from the original on February 24, 2012. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
- "Shingo Takago profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2009-11-06.
- "Summer Adventure Tag League 2008". ProWrestlingHistory.com. August 9–28, 2008. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
- "Summer Adventure Tag League 2009". ProWrestlingHistory.com. August 1–26, 2009. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
- "Dangerous Gate 2012 – 22 Sep 2012". iHeartDG. 2012-09-23. Retrieved 2012-09-23.
- "Dead or Alive 2013". Dragon Gate (in Japanese). 2013-05-05. Retrieved 2013-05-06.
- "6/15 Champion Gate in Hakata – 15 Jun 2013". iHeartDG. 2013-06-15. Retrieved 2013-06-16.
- "ドラゴンゲートKobe プロレスフェスティバル 2013". Dragon Gate (in Japanese). Retrieved 2013-07-22.
- "新時代の扉が開いたドラゲーで、暁を解散に追い込んだMBが戸澤を追放！鷹木のDG初防衛戦の相手がYamatoに決定！". Battle News (in Japanese). 2013-08-02. Retrieved 2013-08-01.
- "The Gate of Generation". Dragon Gate (in Japanese). Retrieved 2013-08-24.
- "意地を見せた斎了を下したYamatoに、土井から裏切られた吉野が挑戦表明！ジミーズを下したミレニアルズはベテラン軍を指名！". Battle News (in Japanese). 2013-09-13. Retrieved 2013-09-13.
- 吉野、鷹木、戸澤らの新ユニット本格始動 トライアングルゲート戦はＭＢに苦杯. Sports Navi (in Japanese). Yahoo!. 2013-10-07. Retrieved 2013-10-07.
- "The Final Gate 2013". Dragon Gate (in Japanese). Gaora. Retrieved 2013-12-22.
- Ｔ―ＨａｗｋとＥｉｔａがツイン王座奪取. Tokyo Sports (in Japanese). 2014-07-21. Retrieved 2014-07-21.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-12-26. Retrieved 2014-12-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "鷹木がドリーム王座奪取 独裁政権樹立へ". Tokyo Sports (in Japanese). 2015-08-17. Retrieved 2015-08-17.
- "08/23 Gate of Generation". iHeartDG. 2015-08-23. Retrieved 2015-08-23.
- "09/23 Summer Adventure Tag League". iHeartDG. 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2015-09-24.
- "【ドラゴンゲート・後楽園】６人タッグＴはヴェルセルク優勝". Tokyo Sports (in Japanese). 2017-01-19. Retrieved 2017-01-19.
- "Ring Of Honor Tag Team Championship". Ring of Honor. Archived from the original on 2010-04-12. Retrieved 2010-04-05.
- Rose, Bryan (October 8, 2018). "SHINGO TAKAGI JOINS NJPW AT KING OF PRO WRESTLING". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved October 8, 2018.
- Renner, Ethan (October 8, 2018). "NJPW King of Pro Wrestling live results: Omega vs. Cody vs. Ibushi". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved October 8, 2018.
- "Will Ospreay Ends Shingo Takagi's Undefeated Streak To Win NJPW's BOSJ 26 Tournament". The Ring Report. June 5, 2019. Retrieved June 12, 2019.
- Jason Powell (January 4, 2019). "1/4 NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 13 results: Kenny Omega vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, Chris Jericho vs. Tetsuya Naito for the IWGP Intercontinental Championship, Cody vs. Juice Robinson for the IWGP U.S. Championship". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
- "NJPW New Beginning in Sapporo 2019 results for Sunday, February 3: Naito vs. Taichi and more". Cageside Seats. February 3, 2019. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
- "2019.05.23 BEST OF THE SUPER Jr.26 Night08 | NEW JAPAN PRO-WRESTLING". New Japan Pro-Wrestling. Retrieved 2019-05-23.
- "2019.05.13 BEST OF THE SUPER Jr.26 Night01 | NEW JAPAN PRO-WRESTLING". New Japan Pro-Wrestling. Retrieved 2019-05-13.
- "2019.05.24 BEST OF THE SUPER Jr.26 Night09 | NEW JAPAN PRO-WRESTLING". New Japan Pro-Wrestling. Retrieved 2019-05-24.
- "2019.05.22 BEST OF THE SUPER Jr.26 Night07 | NEW JAPAN PRO-WRESTLING". New Japan Pro-Wrestling. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
- "2019.06.03 BEST OF THE SUPER Jr.26 FINAL Night15 | NEW JAPAN PRO-WRESTLING". New Japan Pro-Wrestling. Retrieved 2019-06-05.
- "Will Ospreay Vs. Shingo Takagi Handed Massive Star Rating By Dave Meltzer". WrestleTalk. Retrieved June 7, 2019.
- Rueter, Sean. "Will Ospreay ends Shingo Takagi's undefeated streak, wins BOSJ 26 in MOTY candidate". CageSideSeats. Retrieved June 5, 2019.
- Currier, Joseph (June 9, 2019). "Jon Moxley, Shingo Takagi declare themselves for NJPW G1 Climax". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved June 9, 2019.
- "Open the Dream Gate Championship" (in Japanese). Dragon Gate. Retrieved July 31, 2019.
- "Open the Owarai Gate Championship" (in Japanese). Dragon Gate. Retrieved August 1, 2019.
- "Open the Triangle Gate Championship" (in Japanese). Dragon Gate. Retrieved July 31, 2019.
- "King Of Gate 2010". www.cagematch.net. Retrieved August 1, 2019.
- "Summer Adventure Tag League III 2009". Purolove. Retrieved 2011-05-29.
- ""PWI 500" 2016". Pro Wrestling Illustrated. 2018-09-24. Retrieved 2018-09-24.
- "Winners 2000–2009". Tokyo Sports (in Japanese). Retrieved December 14, 2017.
- "16 Carat Gold Tournament 2009". www.cagematch.net. Retrieved August 1, 2019.
- Meltzer, Dave (January 26, 2011). "Biggest issue of the year: The 2011 Wrestling Observer Newsletter Awards Issue". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Campbell, CA: 1–40. ISSN 1083-9593.