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Relive The Electrifying Inoki V Hogan IWGP Championship Match In Full Glory

April 28, 2016

Not every Hulkamaniac knows about the complete Hulk Hogan story.

Sure, there was his beginnings in the young WWF, but during a career shift in the mid-80s, Hulk Hogan was a heavyweight champion on the other side of the world. Wrestling in the country of Japan was serious business, and the 300 pound, 7 foot 3 Hogan quickly earned the nickname of ‘Ichiban‘ from his Hulkamaniacs across the Pacific, meaning ‘number one’ in Japanese.

A favored contender in the ring, Hogan was challenged for the belt by the legendary Antonio Inoki. A hero in his home country, the Japanese contender was the definition of heart during his battles with Hogan; driving the crowds insane as the pair traded blows and throws both inside and outside the ring.

The matchup would prove to be an iconic IWGP Heavyweight Championship battle, showcasing the technical abilities of a fresh-faced Hogan in 1983. Both wrestlers were out for glory, even if that meant finding ways outside the rules of engagement. As the heel of the match, Hogan played to the crowd with his inciteful antics and American bravado, taunting Inoki right out of the gate with the belt around his waist and a finger in his face.

You’re in for a treat, brother.