Although his given name might inspire some silly wrestling-themed puns, Go Shiozaki is a serious wrestler considered NOAH’s future Heavyweight ace. The 29-year-old has been slowly groomed to carry the promotion in the future and began to realize his potential in 2009.
Shiozaki entered the NOAH dojo in 2003 and made his debut in 2004. Soon after his debut, he would begin training with the legendary Kenta Kobashi (he also was trained by Tamon Honda and Yoshinari Ogawa) and also formed a tag team with Kobashi. The biggest match the two had as a team was a losing effort against Kensuke Sasaki and his own protégé, Katsuhiko Nakajima. The match reached critical acclaim, being given a near-perfect rating from The Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Early in 2006 he suffered a fractured jaw in a match with KENTA. After his return he began competing against the bigger names in NOAH, and put up valiant efforts despite always losing. When Kobashi was forced out of action due to cancer, Shiozaki briefly teamed with Tamon Honda but failed to have the success he had with Kobashi.
Late 2006 saw the first of what became semi-regular excursions to the USA and Europe. He debuted in Ring Of Honor during their August ’06 England tour, then represented NOAH in 2007’s King Of Europe Cup. He would win his opening match before losing in the quarterfinals. Summer 2007 saw Shiozaki compete in ROH’s first Japan event, then a loss to then-ROH Champion Nigel McGuinness in January ’08 led to him becoming a regular in ROH. He would get both ROH World Title and ROH Tag Team Title shots in summer ’08, but came up short in both. He then joined Larry Sweeney’s heel faction and moved to ROH affiliate Full Impact Pro (FIP), where singles success finally came. In August ’08 he won the FIP Heavyweight Championship and had a successful 4-month reign before losing the belt in late December. He also received a tryout match with WWE during this period. While WWE did not come calling, Shiozaki followed it up with a successful run in Harley Race’s WLW promotion including a 7-month WLW Heavyweight Championship reign.
Shiozaki returned to NOAH in June 2009 and he immediately went on an emotional rollercoaster. He would be paired with Mitsuharu Misawa upon his return and began getting a major singles push while teaming with Misawa, and they earned a shot at the GHC Tag Team Championship on June 13. They came up short in what would be Misawa’s final match due to the tragic injury spot that ultimately resulted in Misawa’s death. But the next day he finally climbed up to the top when he was nominated by Jun Akiyama, who had just vacated the GHC Heavyweight Title due to injuries, to face takeshi Rikioh for the vacant title. Shiozaki won the match and the title and is now starting to realize the potential that NOAH has for him as the future torchbearer for the promotion-and it appears the future is now for the young ace.
After losing the title to Takashi Sugiura in December 2009, Shiozaki got revenge in July 2011, ending Sugiura’s record-setting 19-plus-month reign to win the title for the second time.
Stats & info:
Weight: 242 pounds/110 kg
Experience: 7 years
Finishing move: Go Flasher, Go Lariat
Current affiliation: NOAH
Ring entrance theme: “KEEP ON GOING”
2-time GHC Heavyweight Champion
1-time FIP Heavyweight Champion
1-time WLW Heavyweight Champion
1-time AAA World Tag Team Champion
2007 1 Night 6 Man Tag Tournament
2009 Global Tag League