Weight: 238 lbs.
Hometown: Koto-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Style: Strong Style
Signature Moves: Lariat, Diving Elbow Drop, CCD, Cozy-Cozy Cutter
Satoshi Kojima (小島 聡), a living legend in the world of professional wrestling, carved his indelible mark on Major League Wrestling during a pivotal period, where his prowess, charisma, and connection with the fans converged to create an unforgettable chapter in the promotion’s history.
In the annals of MLW, Satoshi Kojima is immortalized as the first-ever World Heavyweight Champion. His arrival signaled a new era, and his victories in the early years played a pivotal role in establishing MLW as a force to be reckoned with in the wrestling world.
Kojima’s title fights became the stuff of legend, with each match cementing MLW’s reputation as a breeding ground and world showcase for top-tier fighters. Fans were swept up in “Kojimania,” a fervent following that transcended borders, testifying to the global appeal of this Japanese wrestling icon.
A true international defender as the World Heavyweight Champion, Kojima’s commitment to MLW extended beyond American soil. He defended the World Heavyweight title with pride in Japan, facing formidable opponents such as Johnny Smith, Ohtani, and John Tenta. Defending the title in All Japan Pro Wrestling, WMF and Zero-One solidified Kojima’s status as a true global wrestling ambassador and forever cemented the title’s status as a world title.
Kojima’s mastery of the devastating Lariat, his signature finishing move, is a testament to the influence of one of the wrestling world’s legends, Stan Hansen. Under Hansen’s mentorship, Kojima honed his craft and learned the nuances of delivering a bone-crushing Lariat that has since become synonymous with his name. The move, characterized by its raw power and precision, reflects the teachings of the renowned “Lariat Master” himself. Kojima’s ability to unleash the Lariat with unparalleled force and timing not only pays homage to his mentor but also stands as a living legacy of the rich tradition passed down from one wrestling icon to another. As for the results, well, they speak for itself.
In February of 2005 Kojima held both the Triple Crown Heavyweight and the IWGP Heavyweight titles, a first in pro wrestling. In 2022 Kojima journeyed to Pro Wrestling NOAH where he captured the GHC Heavyweight Championship to complete a rare championship grand slam.
Beyond the squared circle, Kojima seamlessly transitioned into the role of a crossover star in Japan. Collaborating with iconic brand Bathing Ape, he blurred the lines between fashion and wrestling, creating unique concepts that resonated with fans on both sides of the Pacific.
Away from the ring, Kojima’s affinity for bread is well-documented, as he proudly carries the title of being the leader of the Bread Club. This quirky aspect of his personality endeared him even more to fan, especially those who savor recreational carb-loading.
Outside the ring, Kojima finds solace in the company of his loyal dogs, Lucky & Sara, often showcasing his softer side by dressing up his furry companions in sassy outfits and sharing it with fans on Instagram.
Now, 20 years after his meteoric rise in MLW, Satoshi Kojima makes a triumphant return to the league. The stage is set for him to once again etch his name in the history books as he pursues a historic feat – becoming the first-ever two-time MLW World Heavyweight Champion. The anticipation is palpable as Kojima, the Bread Club Warrior, steps back into the spotlight to ignite a new era in MLW. The legend continues, and the legacy of Kojimania is poised for a glorious resurgence.